"I am extremely sad to hear about Charlie Gillett's death. He has been such a benign Godfather to so many artists who have fallen under the name of world music, as their first home on the radio, their record label and most of all, their champion.
Bumping into Charlie was always one of my regular delights at WOMAD. There are many artists around the world who owe a good slice of their income to Charlie's enthusiasms. His generous and good nature, fired by his passion, was a beacon of light in the music world and a rare and wonderful example to all of us involved". (Peter Gabriel)
We've just mailed all the winners of tickets for Saturday's warm-up show at Radio France Studio 104 in Paris.
Congratulations to the winners.
If you missed Peter's appearance on Weekend Edition, you can now catch up on the web. Peter is featured on the NPR music home page and you can listen on-line to the Weekend Edition segment
Peter took time out from 'New Blood' preparations to talk with Audie Cornish for NPR's Weekend Edition. The interview will be broadcast on Sunday 14 March.
Record Store Day on April 17th will see two 7" singles from the 'Scratch My Back' project available in independent record stores.
Real World will release the Peter Gabriel 'Book Of Love' and Stephin Merritt of The Magnetic Field's 'Not One Of Us' double a-side, whilst Jagjaguwar will release Peter's 'Flume' and Bon Iver's 'Come Talk To Me' double A-side.
Peter's epic take on Bon Iver's Flume is paired with the enigmatically monikered Wisconsin singer-songwriter's interpretation of Come Talk To Me from 1992's Us. They're both astonishing, the latter initially wearing the light shades of bluegrass and calypso before building into something akin to gospel as it supplies seven minutes of deep spirituality.
Ane Brun will be joining Peter and Melanie Gabriel on stage for the upcoming New Blood dates, kicking off with the warm-up show in Paris on March 20th.
Ane Brun is a songwriter, guitarist and vocalist, born in Molde, Norway in 1976. Since 2003 she has recorded six albums, three of which are studio albums, a live dvd and a collection of duets. She has lived in Stockholm, Sweden since 2001, where she writes, records and runs her own label (Balloon Ranger Recordings) when not on tour.
As a precursor to the 'New Blood' dates in which Peter is bringing the live 'Scratch My Back' experience to select venues - Peter Gabriel, orchestra, no drums, no guitars - there will be a 'warm up' show with the Radio France Orchestra at Studio 104: Maison de Radio France on March 20th.
We're giving away hundreds of pairs of tickets, drawn at random from those who enter the competition.
The long wait is over in the U.S.A today where 'Scratch My Back' is released today, so it should now be available pretty much everywhere.
Given Peter's comments, quoted in the New York Times yesterday, the later release in the U.S is in keeping with the albums ethos:
..."There's a Slow Food movement," he said in an interview during a New York City stopover. "I think I'm part of the Slow Music movement."...
..."I was trying to make a grown-up record," said Mr. Gabriel, 60. He was sipping tea and sampling a plate of berries in the lounge of the Mercer Hotel in SoHo. "This is treating people as if they can handle difficult music and words. Not that I've courted the lowest common denominator before, but there's a playfulness and childishness in some of my older work that isn't present on this record."
"It is daffodil time, so the robins all cry,
For the sun's a big daffodil up in the sky,
And when down the midnight the owl call "to-whoo"!
Why, then the round moon is a daffodil too;
Now sheer to the bough-tops the sap starts to climb,
So, merry my masters, it's daffodil time. "
Clinton Scollard 'Daffodil Time'
February's Full Moon sees the release of the second 'double A-side' - Digi 45 from the 'Scratch My Back' project on iTunes. Peter Gabriel's version of 'The Boy In The Bubble' and Paul Simon's reciprocal cover of 'Biko'
Peter, Paul Simon, Bob Ezrin and John Metcalfe talk about the two songs and the process of recording the two tracks in the video below.
Peter's Ferbuary update finds him busy in the studio with Bob Ezrin and John Metcalfe working on arrangements for the 'New Blood' dates. Watch out for more news of a special date coming up in Paris.
Sighs of relief as signs of spring emerge around the studio in Box
"On Peter's behalf, I would like to say a big thank you for your birthday greetings, cards and gifts. Your kind thoughts are much appreciated....
....I have divided the competition into two sections: 'New Blood' in which the the first name out of the hat will win 2 tickets for Peter's Sunday show (28th March) at London O2 (please note that there is no sound check that night) as well as a CD and T-shirt, and 'SMB' in which winners will receive an item (chosen at random) from my collection of lovely 'Scratch My Back' goodies
"The art-rock guru looks back on his astonishing 40-year career. From fronting progressive masters Genesis to solo pop success, his is a story of restless toil and adventure. With a new album set for release in March, Gabriel guides us through a unique life in music. PLUS! Kate Bush, Elbow and Vampire Weekend salute the legend!"
Peter Gabriel will be appearing on The Radcliffe & Maconie Show on BBC Radio 2 this evening. The show starts at 8PM GMT. If you can't get it on the radio, you may be able to listenon-line. Links are on the BBC web page.