Video shoot and rehearsal at Eiger studios in Leeds

I just got back from Eiger studios in Leeds where we spent the day shooting video and rehearsing for the Sept 23rd Green Eyed Records/Music for the Head and Heart showcase.

I chose Eiger as it had by a mile the best facilities for this work and also was really central in Leeds. Mal Williamson came over from Hull to do the video work and Towse came up from London before their two month USA tour starting next week.

Planning makes for a productive day

I’ve long learned that the best video shoots require proper planning. The right equiptment, right space and right people all contribute to making such an event a success. I’ve seen some disasterous video shoots where there was lack of attention to using the best gear and properly organising time. A big mistake is to focus only on the visual aspect and not pay attention to sound capture and I’ve seen many examples of album launches where hours of video are rendered non productive because there wasn’t proper audio capture! Fortunately Mal Williamson is a seasoned film maker and has superb attention to detail and attention to detail is essential to make a success of any video shoot. I picked Mal up at 10.24 from Leeds station and we has a good 90 minutes before the other artists landed at Eiger studios.

The space at Eiger studios

I booked the main studio space at Eiger as this was by a mile the best location for any filming. There were three separate rooms, the main space for playing, the studio and a separate booth that we used for green screen work. This gave us a variety of excellent options and crucially there was no sound leakage from other rehearsal rooms. Unlike some other spaces in Leeds, Eiger is manned by actual human beings who were really helpful with all our needs. Food and drink were supplied by my wife Sue who has become the designated catering manager for such events! She provided a great spread for all involved. Such details are often missed and when people have proper nutrition, concentration is always improved!

Working with Towse and Harry Orme

Its an absolute pleasure to work with Harry Orme and Towse on a new project which will be revealed at the showcase on September 23rd in Leeds at Heart. These are exceptional professional artists with great creative skills and are easy to work with. I’ve learned to only work with professionals in such projects and we’ve already recorded a number of really superb tracks which are very different to anything I have done to date. Of course Towse was featured on the “All is fine ’til the world goes pop” album described by Jim Glennie founder member of James as

“NIck Cody continues to write great songs that span genres and sound fresh, vital and relevant.’

‘Nick and Towse’s new album is a must have for your next long car journey.

Taking you from the Yorkshire Dales to the US prairies and back again.

Harry Orme has been a game changer in terms of working up new material, a superb guitarist with a great musical brain. It was great to see him playing with Corwin Zekley from Towse and I am in awe of their musical skills! This is a great example of creativity through collaboration, the central theme for the Green Eyed Records platform. I recorded two great inteviews with both artists which will be released in the near future.

Musical plans for 2022

2019 – 2021 was spent mostly recording new material and I now have 48 tracks “in the vault” across four very different musical projects. Some of these have already been released as singles under “Nick Cody and The Heartache” and the collaboration project with Towse. I’m really pleased with all this material and 2022 will see the release of two EPs to follow these singles.

In Aptil 2021 I also set up Green Eyed Records which is a music platform that encourages “collaboration through creativity” among artists. I’ve come to the conclusion that this is the best way forward for artists wanting to reach a wider audience. Of course this is a personal view, but I am astonished that many artists don’t see the value in this and continue to lament their lack of creative and financial fortunes while spectacularly avoiding all manner of really excellent opportunities. The GER FB platform is growing at an extraordinary rate with 12,056 post engagements in the last 7 days alone!

The return of Music for The Head and Heart live showcases

2022 will see the return of the Music for the Head and Heart live showcases, starting in Oct 7th. These were suspended due to covid 19, after we hosted two excellent evenings with a number of really excellent musicians. From 2022, the events will be substantially bigger in terms of higher profile main acts and audeince capacity which previously was capped at 80 due to venue size, but now will be 200 – 300. This means a great deal of extra organisation and planning and more information will be announced in Jan 2022.

Special thanks

Special thanks to all of those who have assisted in promoting my musical projects and platforms in 2021, including Jen Geering, Neil Atkinson, Frank Wilkes, Carl Rosamond, Nick Field, Andy Coote, Shelly Morgan, Mike Evans, Daz in the Hat, Agi, Rich Ferdi, Fergus Quill, Alex Eden, Sharon Cannings, Towse aka Grace Fellows, Sylvie Simmons, Jim Glennie and too many others to mention!

The Power of Reciprocation in Music

In setting up Music for the Head and Heart and Original Ukulele Songs platforms, I have increasingly pondered on the power of reciprocation in music and between artists. I have always had the policy of sharing opportunities and resources and this in my view brings a new energy and positivity to artists. Both these platforms are 100% free for artists and are essentially free advertising. I’m happy to fund the websites, video recording and editing and social media promotions as its for the love of music and the world is a better place for such expressions.

When I set up OUS, some artists immediately spread the word about the platform and really demonstrated the power of reciprocation in music, while others were happy to have a presence on the main site while others would endlessly post on the FB page but never engage in any discussion or promote the resource. Others would try to copy the idea and set up their own version! Let me be clear, I have no problem with people making their own choices and in some ways imitation is truly the best form of flattery. That said, I have the absolute belief on the power of reciprocation in music and between artists.

Music for The Head and Heart is now live

Music for The Head and Heart is all about the power of reciprocation in music and between artists. After my experience with OUS, I have made this an invitation only platform. The invites can come from MHH team or from artists who appear on the platform. I’m keen that unlike OUS this does not become one way traffic!

Creating this platform is a huge amount of work and myself and the team have been involved in this for 18 months already. There’s a financial investment, but also a big time investment to make this possible. I’m always looking at artists who appreciate the importance of positive reciprocation so everyone benefits. In return I’ve shared all manner of resources I have with such artists and then we all benefit collectively.

Group Momentum for Musical Expression

I blogged recently about “The quick and the dead” where some artists immediately spot and seize opportunities and some just don’t get the whole concept. Again its up to each person to decide what works best for them and its 100% fine to agree to disagree. That ensures a variety of creative expression, but I’m amazed at how some artists spectacularly fail to seize really great opportunities that are right in front of them. I employ my two strikes and retire policy I previously blogged about where I simply stop offering opportunities as with respect I prefer to work with like minds.

I’m working with a few people at present who are extraordinary in networking and collaborations. All of these artists maintain their own unique voice and are wonderfully opinionated in the best possible way, but crucially they also see the value of the power of reciprocation in music and they are all doing brilliantly.

Final Thoughts

I’ve learned that the best way to work is to connect with like minds. When I say “like minds” we may have different thoughts, but we are collectively more interested in the end results that any individual idea. In my non musical world (the one that pays the bills) I teach my communication model in 14 different countries and the heart of this success has come from working in this way. In my musical life its an absolute joy to meet so many creative types with their own unique musical voices. The world is a far better place for such people which inspire, provoke and entertain.

Below is a poster from last year which is a great example of collaborations. I’ll be back this year to meet up with many artists in Japan and to film for the new platform.