History Part - 3

The future is not yet written

History Part 3

Production & Cock Ups - 1994

1994 was a time of various adverts and production work including an interesting trip to Sweden. While in Stockholm I used some samples on a project from a sample library in the studio that I thought I had access too, but apparently not. The Executive Producer ended up being so pissed off that he threatened to withhold my payment until I owned up to my “theft”. The problem was that I didn’t have the foggiest idea what he was talking about as I was not aware that I had committed a crime. Thanks to my management it all got sorted out in the end but only just.
Unfortunately that was not the only stupid misunderstanding that year. I was asked to do a remix for Ernie Watts for a track called Show Me. I headed over to the UK for the job and rented the studio of an old friend of mine and settled down to work. It was a fairly straight forward funky track with a nice female vocal, great hook and some OK rapping. I ran off an extended dance mix, an ambient version, and a ethnic Arab version as well as Instrumental and Vocal versions. I thought I’d done a great job, but amongst the things I’d decided NOT to use from the original was the terrible Saxophone.
It was after I turned the tapes over to the record company that the shit hit the fan. Turned out that Ernie Watts was the Saxophone player and he wanted to know what the hell I was up to. Well nobody told me what he played and he could have been the Rapper for all I knew. I thought it was funny (but nobody else was laughing). Shit happens... And the moral of this story is “Do your homework before you start” None of this helped my growing dissolution with the Music Industry and the feeling that I did not want to work in Recording Studios anymore. In 14 years it had gone from the only place that I dreamed of being to the thing that bored and irritated me.

I Quit - 1995

Two things happed early in 1995. My son Linus was born, and an opportunity to start working for a big German Distribution and Export company for music came up. I wanted a change and I wanted to be there for my son so I hung up my headphones and started a 9 to 5 for the first time in my life.
Despite deciding that enough was enough, I was surprised that I was still getting requests coming in for remixes and some production work. It was nice to be able to pick and choose and feel that I was doing things completely on my terms like the Souldier Nonstop project. I also spent some time with one of the godfathers of German electronic music Klaus Schultz after I was asked if I’d like to record an album with him. We did a few sessions deep in the woods at his own studio which was built onto the side of his house. However I realised that even with such an opportunity, my heart wasn’t really in the project. Regardless of the fact that I had written a mass of material I thanked Klaus for his hospitality and packed up and headed back home.
Despite having a studio I could use for free and still the possibility of commercial work, by the end of 1995 I was sure I had nothing else to say and withdrew from the world of music production for what I thought was for good. Now I was going to sell music instead of making it. My last two pieces of commercial work that year was a remix for EMI’s fledgling ethnic label Hemisphere, and a remix of a new single for Tony Banks from Genesis. A track called Only Seventeen.

Pictures and Plans

- 1996-2009

My creative talents naturally adapted to the new situation I was in and the changing world. I was no longer making music, but without thinking about it I had morphed and found new outlets to express myself through. A drop in price of Servers and the development of software were catalysts that led to me being asked to help with the design and construction of the first of several websites.
Alongside my normal responsibilities, I also took over graphic duties at the company I was working for and started to produce all our advert and poster materials. One of my most memorable promotions was H’art Musik condoms which I produced for the MIDEM Canne Music Festival and my play safe (with your business) campaign. It was also during this time that I bought my first Digital SLR camera and reignited my earlier passion for photography. Experimentation followed and I soon had requests for image use as well as some exhibition. I was also heavily involved with the design and development of a whole series of exclusive limited box sets featuring such artists as Underworld and The Prodigy.
The company then needed to build bigger premises and several architects were contacted and asked to submit designs. We were dissatisfied with each proposition both from and ergonomic and aesthetic point of view.
As I knew I understood our requirements better than any third party designer, I purchased Technical Drawing and Architectural design software and developed my own building. My design was accepted at once, but where as I had conceived an hexagonal main office building, the planners would only allow for a quadratic structure. However to allow for my orientation of the building a new road that I required was allowed and built.

Rebirth - 2010

It was the inquisitive nature of my young son that prompted me to dig out my old equipment and I quickly realised that my long hibernation was over. The simple fun of making some noise started to distill into a creative plan and I re-equipped myself. Armed with the latest gear I was ready to begin again. It was against the backdrop of Post 911, the Gulf War and the New World Order courtesy of Bush/Cheney, that I started to develop a concept album under the artist name 20-12. It was to be my Social Political comment on where we were. My protest. Thanks to the help of Markus Roeder the album Necessary Means was picked up and released by Psyshop Germany. 
My awakening also brought about involvement with other creative projects and I did various pieces of audio editing for other artists. It was also the start of writing music for my wifes Meditations, which in turn was the catalyst to rediscover my first love of pure Ambient. This would eventually lead me to establish the New Nails For Old Crosses project specifically for this output.

Mixing and Remixing

- 2013-2014

I once again started to get behind the mixing desk for other artists. One of the first projects that I was involved with was mixing for Tom Brüderer’s Summer In The Sky album. I was originally contracted to mix the whole album but in the end an unexpected run of ill health forced me to withdraw before completion. After that I became involved with the alternative rock band film. First as a technical advisor, however this role has developed into that of a “back room” 4th member. I  also started to review and edited Sound Libaries and Sound Designs of mine with a view to releasing them. This in turn started me Re-Mastering some of my earlier works such as my Falconer album.

Afp - 2015

The next challenge was how best to promote and organize all these different phases of my creativity. My own website was the answer and so was born Afp. Having finally got fed up of Record Companies that either get the information wrong. Don’t account properly, account slowly or just plain old don’t pay, I have also decided to do my own retail. I am proud to be able to offer you a selection of my work for Digital Download. Either available here at the Store or via my Digital Partner Selz. What you also get as a customer is flexibility and the knowledge that you are directly supporting the artist. I get paid at once and you don’t need to purchase a full album anymore. Simply buy what you want and leave the rest.

May - 2015

Inspired by the memories of a 911 camera man and his emotionally charged narration. The new track Blue Coat from my 20-12 project is released. This was followed by the release of New Photo Prints Architecture 01, Architecture 02 and Wood Texture 02 My first News Letter is made available to registered members.

June - December 2015

New releases continue for my musical projects New Nails For Old Crosses, 20-12, as well as the first new track in years for the Falconer project. As well as musical releases, my photographic output also continues and I updated the website store into separate Music and Prints sections to cope with the output. September saw me guest hosting a 3 hour radio show The 180 for KRTU San Antoniom. Registered membership continues to grow and October brings the release of News Letter No. 06.
The new track and accompanying video for “pyramiden über ‘m bett” for the band film is completed. Work also commences on “the clown” and the first co- written track for the band which is so far going under the working title of “Andy’s Anthem in D”. 2016 should see the first live dates from the band.
Thanks to the inspiration and input from Fast Mouse Graphics the News Letter starts to take on a much more impressive magazine form. The end of the year also sees the release of the 20-12 track Rachel, the first track to be recorded in duel language formats. There also follows a great remix of this track by Rob Mo from the UK. Small editing and Mastering jobs continue to roll in and I develop a website for Joanna Falconer Projects as well as designing various fliers and poster material. All in all 2015 has been a busy year with a lot going on and a lot of good feedback. I’m enjoying myself and looking forward to 2016!