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A quick update on me… Yes it’s true, I am a raging anglophile, a Beatles fanatic, a believer and follower of Jesus, more commonly known as a Christian, a flyer of aeroplanes with over 3,000 hours.
Yes I know it’s an old chestnut but cut me some slack. Come back in a bit …
The Secret Album was recorded in conditions of discretion which have remained to this day. Some would call it absolute secrecy, but anyway it’s time Jim and I put and end to all that cloak and dagger stuff.
However, we are still not sure if the studio was ever paid for, so we don’t want to draw too much attention, you understand.
After all, we’ve survived obscurity for this long, it isn’t so terrible. Hence our marketing strategy consists of furtively passing CDs to people inside plain brown paper bags. In case of trouble and in order to spread the blame, Jim and I would like to point out that Richard Tandy was the producer and that we were immensely egged on by guitarist and vocalist Bob Daffurn (who was born with magic fingers and a left-handed guitar). Steve Wheate was also heavily complicit in the proceedings, both with encouragements and the wonderful throbbing that emanated from his drumkit.
We note that Steve has now emigated abroad, Richard has moved to Wales and Bob Daffurn works for an electricity company.
The album notes above were written in 2010 when I put together a test CD of the album. It pains me to report to you that on 10 April 2012, after a short illness, Jim Cleary died.
Well it’s true. My biggest milestones are being part of the stage line up of the cosmic British band ELECTRIC LIGHT ORCHESTRA (ELO), and also being the writer of a top ten Pan-European hit (‘Hiroshima’ sung by Sandra). But all that was way back and now things have changed beyond recognition.
Look at me – I’ve become a record company and a publisher too and I’m also the guy who licks the stamps and makes the tea. Phew! – As well as all that I’m down in the boiler room doing my proper job – writing, recording, playing gigs and loving every minute of it! I record all my songs at my home studio – ‘Grimm Doo’ (so called because legend has it that the mixing desk used to growl at people). The other things I love are my wife Mandy and the fact that when I’m not doing music, I teach people, to fly aeroplanes down at Wellesbourne airfield near Stratford-on-Avon.
Let me think – what else is there worth a mention… In the past I did a whole bunch of work with Richard Tandy, ELO’s keyboard player, most notable being the album EARTH RISE. I am credited on ELOs SECRET MESSAGES and Jeff Lynne’s ARMCHAIR THEATRE album. The bottom line is I’m more writer than anything else. – I’ve written loads of songs and a couple of books too. (Check out my recent albums ‘Across the Divide’ and ‘Bubbles’ from my Music page).