I've worked with Jonnie on a fewthingsnow and he's asked me back to draw some bits and pieces for Kitchen Sync. My work features in Jonnie's promo video (above) but I've also dotted some of my favourites around here as animated gifs.
Because I didn't have much time to spare, these are all first-try little drawings of the different 'instruments'. Some are pretty wonky (bottles, I'm looking at you), but I'm happy with how they turned out.
Once I'd scanned everything, I added a little animation using Photoshop. Again, there's some perspective dodginess going on here and there but I'll hold on tight to my 'don't blame me, I'm not really an animator' excuse forever.
To launch Kitchen Sync, Jonnie is playing a couple of live shows in Glasgow and Edinburgh in early April. I’m 100% positive that they’ll be amazing. Jonnie says he’s gonna go into the process of making the record as well as performing some of the tracks live.
I've had a preview copy of Kitchen Sync for a while now. It's beautiful - all instrumental and ambient and intriguing. It's also got some of the best song titles going: Harder, Faster, Washer, Dryer?.. C'mon! That's textbook JC.
Big thanks to Jonnie for having me on board. Go buy the record.
Jonnie has a new album, Trapped in Amber, coming out in November. I'll go into that properly later. For now we've got a single: Crumbs.
Crumbs is Jonnie at his best - a funny, inventive, reflective and playful piece of music that sounds bloody awesome. You can listen to it over here or on the player below.
I'm super proud to be on artwork duties for all the Trapped in Amber releases and related materials (*cough* animation *cough*). It's been a blast working on this stuff over the past wee while and I'm looking forward to seeing it out there in the real world. Stay tuned for more information as we get closer to the launch. If you're convinced already, you can pre-order Trapped in Amber today.
You can find Jonnie on Song, by Toad Records, on Twitter as @jonniecommon and on his personal Bandcamp page. He'll also be playing shows around the country to promote the record and you'll hopefully catch a tune or two on the radio. Any shares, spins and tickets bought are much appreciated.
(also, apologies if my website is being flakey - I'm in the process of redesigning it)
Today, Jonnie Common has announced that Hair of The Dog is now available for free download from his website. The album, a reinterpretation of Master of None (best record of 2011 in my opinion) features remixes by Geese, Dems, Found, Ben Butler & Mousepad, OnTheFly, River of Slime, GRNR, A La Fu, Miaoux Miaoux and The Japanese War Effort and is most definitely worth a listen - it's free for Christ's sake.
For those, like myself, who are a little, um, wet behind the ears when it comes to electronic music, I'd recommend checking out GRNR's brilliant remix of Bed Bugs as a good starting point - a real treat of a track with a great rap(?) by Jonnie and an all-trumpeting, all-squelching climax.
Visit jonniecommon.com for more information and to download the full album. The original tracks can be heard on Master of None which, for the millionth time, I really recommend.
To celebrate the now-freeness of Hair of The Dog, I put together the little video at the top of this post using footage from the launch gig (an art/installation/music collaboration between Jonnie, Zero Waste Design and myself) at Mono here in Glasgow last November.
Footage from the night was scarce - we were super busy setting everything up and whenever we did remember to shoot something, my wee Nikon's video mode kinda struggled with the low light and our shaky hands. I was pleasantly surprised to get anything useable at all.
In just under 2 weeks time I will be participating in a weekend of showing off at the wonderful cafe/bar/record shop that is Mono here in Glasgow. Jonnie Common is set to release Hair of The Dog, a full-length remix album that sees his fantastic debut Master of None set upon by a bunch of talented friends. To celebrate the launch there will be a number of certain things:
Thing number 1: The remix album will be released as a download code exclusively available on a limited-edition Gocco screenprint by myself. It features my Headless Dog drawing and will be available at the event and via the Red Deer Club webshop (p.s. you can head there now to pre-order the album should you wish to guarantee yourself a copy). It costs £5 and will be shipped from Monday 28th November. I will do a follow-up post with images of the Album soon. A print and an album for a fiver! Wait, what?
Thing number 2: Jonnie will also be unveiling a new interactive sound-installation that he’s made in collaboration with Zero Waste Design. Over the whole weekend (25th, 26th & 27th November), all visitors to Mono will be able to ‘mix’ Master of None in a wonderfully inventive way (trust me, it’s awesome). Nip in for lunch and a wee bit of lo-fi surround sound. I’ve had a wee sneak peak at what these guys are up to and I’m really looking forward to seeing the finished product.
Thing number 3: If that’s not all, I will be putting together a small exhibition of bits & bobs (drawings mainly, hairy ones) closely related to my work on Master of None. There will, hopefully, be some new work, large & small, as well as a few older pieces and, if I can figure out the logistics, a wall drawing or two. Remember, this will be a 3-day only show so if you fancy a look you won’t have long to stop in before it comes down.
Thing number 4: Finally, there will be a closing party on Sunday the 27th at 7:30pm featuring live music from Ben Butler & Mousepad, Dems and GRNR as well as a couple of DJ sets in between by Found and The Japanese War Effort. All these acts have contributed to Hair of The Dog by remixing a track of Jonnie’s music. Entry is £4. This’ll be the time to visit if you wanna catch everything at once. Not bad eh? Here are the summarised details:
Hair of The Dog by Jonnie Common ft. David Galletly Runs: Fri 25th - Sun 27th Nov Mono, Glasgow Free entry
Closing Party ft: live music & DJs Sunday 27th Nov Mono, Glasgow £4
Please, please, please stop by if you can. It’ll be a weekend of food, drink, art and music. I’ve put some web-flyers and a blurb up on my site should you like to post them on your blog or your social network of choice. Any help in this way would be greatly appreciated as we’re getting to the full-on headless chicken stage and it’s becoming hard to stay on top of the internet stuff. If you’ve never been to Mono, it’s a really great little place and well worth a visit in its own right - good food, nice atmosphere, one of the best record shops in Glasgow.
In August, Jonnie Common released Master of None, his debut solo album. I was massively proud when he asked if I would provide some drawings (one old, one new) for the artwork. If this sounds familiar, I briefly wrote about this project back in July - it's worth revisiting in a little more depth with some new photos, though.
From my side, it was a fairly painless process. I sent over my Dog drawing and put together a big, furry pattern for the inner sleeve. JC then added some rockin' pink magic and handled the layout. The end result is a really great wee collaboration - something completely new and different to what we'd think up individually.
I first started talking with Jonnie a while back after I made a little music video for Infinitea by Down The Tiny Steps (his old band). I did this on a whim to accompany a blog post announcing it as my 4th most listened to track of 2009. By happenstance, Jonnie also knew my work and we began chatting about maybe collaborating on something or other. This was a weird thing because I was a fan, y'know? I'd been listening to his stuff for damn near 10 years and I'd seen plenty DTTS / solo sets at various Fence gigs. How many dudes who live on your iPod do you get emails from? Aye, exactly.
Anyway, Jonnie's a good dude. I've since caught up with him a handful of times in person and we're hoping to work together on a couple different projects over the next few months. Stay tuned here or on jonniecommon.com for further news and information.
As for Master of None, it's my favourite album of the year by a long way. I really, really love it. Honestly, it's amazing. I kinda wish my artwork wasn't on the cover so I could sound completely genuine when I gush about it to my friends. I also kinda wish I didn't know Jonnie so I could act like a totally lame super-fan without being, um, a total creep. Alex says it's her go-to record 'it feels like having a conversation with a friend' and it's a rare day that we don't either give it a spin or find a track or two sneak into a playlist.
Without writing a flat-out review (there's a great one up here on Song By Toad), I'd just like to recommend you give Master of None a listen. It's a sweet, funny, charming album that can effortlessly drift from a beautiful letter to his future kids (Heir To The Throne) to a wordplay-fuelled rap (Bed Bugs) without missing a step. Jonnie's distinctive voice (in both senses of the word) somehow creates a personal, cohesive whole from a big ol' mountain of sounds and styles.
And, man, the man has a way with a lyric - I'd happily write out Hand-Hand in its entirety just for fun. There's more ideas in those 4 minutes than in most full length LPs. Highlights: opening with "sing for us, Jonnie!", facing mortality "when I leave this planet, I don't wanna leave a mess" and a curiosity about horse-hair brushes: "do they pluck them from the living ones or do they take them off the corpses?". It'll put a smile on your face and a shake in your arse. Listen to it, learn it, sing along:
Good eh? As I mentioned, being associated with this LP in any way makes me very proud. For any artist, designer or illustrator, providing artwork for music you love is a dream job that can't easily be beaten? I mean, what else comes close? Film posters? Maybe, I dunno. Oh yeah, I've put a few more photos of the vinyl cover up on my Flickr page.
So, should you want to check out Master of None for yourself, it is available on vinyl (with an mp3 code included) through Red Deer Club records. You can also download a digital copy over on Boomkat and, should you want to try-before-you-buy, you can stream the whole record (!) right here on Soundcloud.
Support Jonnie Common, he's one of Scotland's finest songwriters and he's made a wonderful thing.
I'm extremely happy to announce the launch of Master of None, the new album by one of my favourite musicians Jonnie Common. Not only am I hyped about the music, but I'm also chuffed because Jonnie asked me to provide some artwork for the cover.
It's been a nice little collaboration, with me sending through a couple of drawings (my Dog drawing & a new pattern) for Jonnie to go crazy over with pink neon. The end result has a really awesome feel to it that neither of us could have created without the other's input. And isn't that, my friends, the point?
Master of none goes on general release on Monday the 1st of August through Red Deer Club and Glasgow folks can see Jonnie play a special album launch gig tomorrow (Sunday 31st) at the Captain's Rest in the West End. I'm gonna stop by to catch the show & to doodle up a little chalk sign for the venue, which is a first for me. Stop by if you can, he's one of the best dudes to see live.
I'm really proud to have been involved with this project. I think I've been into Jonnie's stuff for pushing 10 years now (which is scary) after I picked up one of his Down The Tiny Steps 'Picket Fence' CDs while I was studying. Not to be too much of a sook, but I've long said amongst friends that if I had any musical ability (I don't), I'd want my stuff to sound like Jonnie Common’s. He has an incredibly playful, sweet and funny way with lyrics and a seemingly bottomless bag of unusual instruments, sounds and squelches. Check out the very lovely Photosynth:
I would have preferred to have got this post up here a little sooner, but damn, my life has been busy recently. Nothing bad or serious, but my artwork has had a little break and I'm only now getting back into it and getting my head around what I want to do next.
My future output may or may not involve this blog, but there will be more to see and to read soon.