Music and Spoken Word
Over the years, the journey I have taken in finding an identity through the language of my region has changed from a written base to a recorded base. Committing any dialect to paper in written form invites debate. This is more so in the Black Country where differences can be heard within a mile of each other. Also each individual variety can contain 'idiolects' (words owned by specific small groups such as workers, neighbours). From the book form that you have seen elsewhere we have the collection of recorded voice. My 'voice' or a voice I have come comfortable with. It not only reflects where I come from, Oldbury but also some of the colourful differences I have picked up as I have journeyed around the region over the years. They contain spoken word, stories unaccompanied and accompanied songs. The journey continues as I explore the voice as an instrument of identity.
Click on one of my CDs below for more information and the chance to order it to be delivered to your house if you may wish to do so!
Charity CDs - Billy’s Bostas
Here is a collection of CDs I have done for various charities along the years. These charities include: Autism West Midlands, Action Heart Dudley, and Parkinsons UK. All proceeds for these purchases will go to the respective charities.
I suppose to some extent I could be called a prolific writer. I think part of it is I don't feel the need now to commit words to paper and publish them. There is too much variation of ‘eye dialect’ from one individual to another when writing in dialect that the voice is a purer way of expressing what I want to say. There are so many tracks across these CDs and I'll add to them as I develop both as a writer and a singer. I could make a long list of tracks that for me stand out but the snippets of tracks will give you an idea. I love the variety of song to story, spoken word to a 'broth' of all styles.
There are songs that have been with me since the beginning such as Oldbury Mon, Bricklayers Daughter that I never tire of singing. Stories such as The Wrenna Boy, 'E Never Cries grow every time time I perform them. Then there are the oddities, the old songs (not mine) that I drag into the Black Country and Twist them around like Billy Joel's Piano Man. I continue to wander the path and pick up stories and ideas to work into pieces. I work in issue based pieces when I can. ‘Ard Times about the workhouses, Joe Blower (Dementia), The More We (Parkinson’s) and so on. I am constantly learning a craft and also singing with John Langford, Dave Coughlin, Tom Stanton to exercise how my Dad must have felt singing with his brothers in Law. There'll be a CD of songs that I'm working on with Tom and Pete Wain and that will be another step in another direction and great fun!