Ola amigos! OK, here we go with this months moving and shaking at FDCHQ. We had a run of local gigs at the start of the month which got better and better as they progressed. By the end of the run, I was filled with a strange sense of pride and accomplishment as it certainly appeared and felt like we had finally made our mark on the area after a year of hard work. I felt the love in that room at MFN and after speaking to almost everyone in attendance that night, I realised that as well as the friends and fans who followed our previous bands before the FDCs, we also have a fresh bunch of faces who are becoming familiar fixtures at our shows. It’s a great feeling to have and I can’t thank you all enough for your support. Ok, hippy shit over with. Let’s move on!
Next order of business: It is with a heavy heart that I announce that Danny Gunn has left the band. This may come as a shock to a lot of people, but internally, all four of us have been preparing for this moment for at least the last six months or so. As business picked up for the FDCs and more and more opportunities started presenting themselves to us, Dan quickly realised that he was struggling to balance his other commitments with ours. We all tried different plans of attack in an attempt to work in conjunction with his other obligations, but unfortunately nothing seemed to work out. (As a sidenote, I fully appreciate how hard it is to balance two active bands at the same time. Eventually, one group always loses out!) So rather than continuing to put our future plans and gigs in jeopardy, we all agreed to proceed without him. I must emphasise that this is not what Dan, myself or Joey and Daz WANTED to happen, but unfortunately it’s a necessary step to ensure that the FDCs continue to evolve and grow. Dan will always be a proud card carrying/arm-band wearing member of the FDCs. Hell, we’ve already discussed a cameo for him in our next music video! His talent and input has been massively appreciated by us and most importantly, (and needless to say) we of course will all remain great friends. WWWYKI.
That being said, as anyone who follows us on Twitter, Facebook or even god forbid in real life knows, we NEVER stop working on this band and pushing forward. So without further ado, we’d like to announce and indeed welcome our brand new drummer: Michael Richards. Click on his website. He’s kind of a big deal! His first gig is at the Camden Underworld in 11 days. No pressure mate!
We’ve still been hard at work in Barnsley with Jason Sanderson building the “Recognise” album brick by brick. It’s sounding great and we actually have the first of our “guest stars” coming in tomorrow to lay down some vocals. She’s a very talented lady called Carol Hodge who has most recently been seen touring the US, Australia and NZ with Steve Ignorant on his final ever Crass tour. We’ve been friends for many years and I’m so glad that I can finally involve her in one of my musical endeavours. There are many more cameos to come on the album and although everybody I’ve asked to appear so far has wholeheartedly agreed, there are many other issues to consider such as schedule conflicts and management that could scupper my well laid plans. So please forgive me if I remain somewhat mysterious about these guests in the coming months. Until it’s a done deal and in the can, I’m only going to look like a total dick if I announce something that doesn’t end up happening!
We’ve just finished our new three song EP and I’ll be mastering it tomorrow. I heard the mixes yesterday and I’m thrilled. The lead track is “Burn This City Down” which will also be appearing on the forthcoming LP and we’ve incredibly somehow managed to keep the other two tracks secret, so hopefully there’ll be a lot of raised eyebrows upon it’s release! Believe me when I say that the tracks are FAR from being a couple of “B-sides that weren’t good enough to make the album”. We recorded the two tracks at The Crash Factory in Nottingham with Mark Elmore old school style: To tape! That essentially means that most if not all of the recordings were done in one take. And no computers were involved in the making of those two tracks! The pressure was definitely on, but it was also quite liberating to work under conditions like that again. The CDEP will be available for purchase on our website on September 1st. We’ll also be selling them at our shows starting with the Swingin’ Utters gig at the Camden Underworld in London on September 4th and it will be available on iTunes, Amazon etc on October 1st.
Always attempting to think outside the box, we’ve been steadily working on a short film/rockumentary project with the makers of our “Never Gonna Stop” video Free Running Films. Currently titled “Behind The Schtick”, we had a crew follow us around at our recent Nottingham and MFN shows, filming both live footage and backstage stuff. Last week, myself, Joey Strange and the film crew paid a visit to “Wayne Manor” on the set of the new Batman film to shoot some additional interview footage. The editing process has already begun and quite honestly, it’s a mystery as to how it’s going to turn out at this stage, but the idea is to not only document our first year as a band, but to give a little bit of background, history and insight into who we are as people too. It’ll be hitting Youtube in October and yes, we’ll keep you posted!
I was lucky enough to pay a visit to Gordon Smith Guitars recently to pick up my first ever custom guitar. It was an honour and a priviledge to meet Mr. and Mrs. Smith and to have a tour of the factory. I’d been using the same Gordon Smith guitar for about 10 years and at the risk of sounding like a shill, I honestly can’t imagine ever playing anything else. My eternal thanks go out to John and Linda and trust me, I WILL be popping in for a cup of tea next time I’m in the area! Here’s a pic of John Smith and myself at the factory. Taken by Linda.
Finally, after selling out of our first run of Honey Badger shirts very quickly, we’ve just had some more printed up and this time we’ve included some girls sizes too. You asked for it ladies and we delivered! Also, head to the gigs section to see when we’re rocking your area next. Outta here! JD.
PS. I was given some fantastic advice recently…..