Origin of TROUBADOUR
French, from Old Occitan trobador, from trobar to compose, from Vulgar Latin *tropare, from Latin tropus trope
First Known Use: circa 1741
…and it’s a word that’s been used quite a bit since!
OK, now that I have a minute to myself I thought I’d write a few lines to share with you how I feel about my latest release.
Normally I try to stay away from making comments like – “oh, this is my best album ever” because I’ve heard it so often from other artists, only to hear them say the exact same thing when their next album is released. Even worse, you sometimes hear them disown past releases and try to elicit pity by blaming their record company, or whoever, for forcing them to make it.
Newsflash – if you made it you own it. 🙂
I’ve never disowned any of my previous releases. If I listen back to some of them now I realise I could improve on some things, which I think is a good thing. Imagine if you looked back on one of your earlier albums and thought to yourself – “I wish I could make an album like that now!” 🙂
…which brings me back to “Troubadour”. I don’t think I could have made this album at any other time in my life. I needed to go through all those other experiences first. I needed to play rock ‘n’ roll and discover the blues and live life and tour and have ups & downs in both my musical and private life. I needed to experience all that so that I could make “Troubadour”. I think it adheres to Malcolm Gladwell’s 10,000 hours theory. In his book Outliers, author Malcolm Gladwell says that it takes roughly ten thousand hours of practice to achieve mastery in a field. Now I’m not for a minute saying I’ve achieved the level of a master but I do agree that you need to put the hours in to understand at a deeper level what you are doing. There just doesn’t seem to be any way around that, no matter what field you are in; medical, juridical…
I have to admit, I really like this record. It says all the things I want to say, it feels good, I think Ralph & Bas’ contributions are sublime, I think Monica’s sleeve design suits the music perfectly and I think Suzanne’s editing of the DVD – and the DVD itself – completes the package. I think Troubadour is a nice bookend to my music career, bringing things around full circle.
I got a really nice message from someone and part of what he said was – “there is a lovely ‘warm’ feeling to this album which reminds me of all the times we played vinyl back in the day”, which is perfect because that’s exactly what I was hoping to achieve with this record. Going back to playing acoustic reminded me of when I was growing up and when sitting down and really listening to an LP was what you did and so by selecting the songs I did and picking an intimate venue to play them in and supporting the whole thing with some visual help allowed me to re-create that feeling of being ‘at one’ with the music and it’s so rewarding to hear that that feeling comes across when other people listen to the record. I couldn’t ask for more!