Spark was one of the massed sing pieces commissioned for Sea Sound Sing Festival 2002. Twelve local choirs took part in an outdoor concert as part of the Streets of Brighton Festival. It’s an elemental kinda thing… This song is often sung as part of my song cycle The Four Directions, as it combines as the elements and their cardinal points!
I wrote this song after 9/11, inspired by a conversation I had with my (then) eight-year-old children about how the WTC events had made them feel. September sees those events through the eyes of children, who just wanted to lock the door, close the curtains and forget about the rest of the world.
In the subsequent 16 years, I have written many songs around the theme of strength and solidarity through adversity, but this song is still as powerful for me as the ‘stand up and be counted’ songs, as the headlines continue to bring terrifying news of division and bigotry.
I wrote Hands for Tongue and Groove, who were an a cappella quintet I wrote for and sung with for many years. It is about the rite of passage and transformation of a relationship from lovers to friends. Enough said! It has always felt like a really positive song, though it is slow, bluesy and reflective. I always think it needs serious stadium rock drum accompaniment!
This song was commissioned by Walcot Community Choir, in Bath, many moons ago – it was the beginning of a beautiful friendship! They requested a song about ‘positive ageing’ – I got the words of the intro / outro from Das Energy by Paul Williams. The song ended up having a slow, reflective dub-vibe.