[Blog] New Single: Seperations (Produced by Stakker)

A couple of months ago myself and a mate of mine Richard Baldwin, who produces and writes under the aliases Stakker, The Soviet Union and Belville (check out his tunes here), had our first jam, which immediately produced some promising sounds and ideas. We’d previously bonded at a party over a shared interest in old-school audio hardware, and learning that Richard owned not one but two mint condition Roland 808 drum-machines, I knew I had to get together and see what our minds could create.

I was slightly nervous at first to be jamming with such an experience musician, but we kicked straight into it and gelled quickly over some 808 pattern experiments. Quickly laying a beat into Ableton, I scrapped previous verses that I had brought to the jam, and wrote something on the spot to fit the sparse, mid-80s dark electro vibes that Richard was cultivating. Taking some ideas from previous incomplete verses, discussing the refugee crisis, I initially went down the route of the partying-at-the-end-of-the-world theme, that  I had previously explored in End Times. We sat on this rough initial draft for a month or so, having a few jams in between to remix tracks and hang out. Then, after the EU referendum decision, I decided it was appropriate to pick up this jam again and lay something down while the topic and inspiration is fresh. The upcoming US election adds another level of perverse inspiration behind the content of this track.

What we’ve come up with is called Separations, and I’m pretty proud of it. This is the first time I’ve finished a track for my ongoing solo rap project over a beat made not by myself. It felt particularly collaborative due to Richard taking particular interest in how I was delivering the vocals, honing it on specific line delivery as well as the tone of whole verses. We tracked all the vocals in about 3 hours, split up with pizza and cider, and I think the extra production input has taking the track up a notch. It’s still loose, there’s some improv at the end which Richard and I decided to keep in, and there’s a few vocal flubs we’ve kept in there for the hell of it. Stop it sounding too laboured or whatever.

I hope you’ll dig the message of the track – don’t want to be too preachy, but taking influence from political rappers of the past, this is all about unity in the face of the divisions placed upon us by the media, politics and negative rhetoric . Check the track out above, or on bandcamp.

Hamish Gavin and Richard Baldwin Stakker recording Separations

Dicking around at the recording sessions

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Glastonbury 2015 live blog: Day One

As long as I can get some wifi, and have a little bit of battery life, i will attempt to blog live throughout Glastonbury. Which means the writing might be a little sloppier, but will benefit from being in the moment, rathered than a laboured review two weeks after the event.

09:34

I’ve made it through the gates. The queue wasn’t too bad for me although i had to trek for some time around the festival perimetre to find the international ticket pickup office. The various security and festival staff all seemed to have a different idea of where the ticket office was – at one stage i went back and forward over the same field between different gates three or four times, until eventually finding the correct gate. The line was thankfully short from then on, although my friends perhaps weren’t quite so lucky. As we speak I sit eating a bacon, sausage and egg wrap from the first food stall that greeted me upon entry, quite delicious and a much needed energy boost. My friends on the other hand did not have to trek between gates to pick up their tickets, they are however still in a much larger queue to enter.

Last night we stayed at the town of Glastonbury, which is a town full of history, old buildings and a pagan vibe. Felt like I was sleeping in the Inn from the film The Wicker Man. We took the Megabus yesterday from London to Glastonbury, which on the other hand, is not an experience I would recommend or repeat. It will probably go down as my least favourite bus ride ever, with drunken young lads from London drinking, fighting and streaking throughout the bus. Added to this, the bus had a toilet onboard, which soon lost its ability to flush. ‘Nuff said.

But onwards and upwards, its a beautiful day, and i may blog again soon.

glastonbury day 1

14:48

Tents have now been set up and the crew has been reunited minus a few who are still stuck waiting for coach back in London. We’ve found a good spot to camp near John Peel stage, which, upon scouting the area seems to be not too far of a walk between the Pyramid and Other Stages, as well as much needed necessities such as toilets, taps and food areas. Competition is high already in the quest for the perfect spot, we’ve had to protect our area already from a flood of fellow opportunist campers.

Most of the afternoon has been spent exploring the grounds, mapping out routes between stages and checking out the markets and food stalls. Bacon buttys’ seem so far to be the food choice of the day, another having been consumed at the Summer Cafe on the way back from checking out the Other Stage. The grounds are as magnificent and spectacular as I had expected, the iconic Pyramid stage being surrounded by other notable icons such as the blue and orange John Peel circus tent, the giant maypole in The Park and the..

I’m now on a mission to try and find showers, which are apparently near Michael Eavis’ house. Fingers crossed I’ll run into the man. More from me soon.

18:22

No luck finding Michael Eavis but i did run into his grandson working at the Merchandise tent, upon buying an official festival Tshirt. I’m still exploring the Glastonbury site and haven’t returned back to the camp, so I’ve no idea what the rest of my group are doing. It turns out that the Glastonbury site is indeed huge, and around every corner is another section of interesting food or market stalls – or crazy, wild, diverse music stages.

21:33

Finally made it back to the campsite and to my friends after already having a pretty great time, just one day into this festival. Most of the enjoyment came from having cool conversations with random festival goers and staff, including a long chat with Glastonbury veteran, photographer and friend of the Eavis’s, Matt Cardy. I also found a jam spot in The Park complete with a drumkit – and proceeded to join in a jam of American Pie. A pretty sloppy jam at that, but I can kind of say I’ve ticked something else off the bucketlist – gigging at Glastonbury.

As I write this we’re heading off to the Stonecircle to watch the sunset, so I should probably get off social media for today and get in the moment. I will try to keep up these blogs or at least write a couple more from here, but no promises.Making the most of the festival should probably be my priority so for now, peace out from Worthy Farm.

glastonbury day 1

Posse In Effect – Lazarus [NEW EP]

Posse In Effect is the indie rap project of myself and Andy Weston. We’re both based in different cities (Melbourne and Auckland) so touring is a bit of an improbability, but we’ve managed to make a few music videos when in the same city, as well as two EPs. Our second EP, Lazarus was released last week, and was a labor of love over the last few months. Demos and song sketches were sent to one another, which were slowly built over time, sending various drafts back and forth, adding new elements, replacing samples, getting guest vocalists and musicians in while trying to get the songwriting to the best possible standard.

Big shout out to the guest musicians and all those who helped during the making of the EP. Credits are below.

We’re pretty happy with the result – it’s good, diverse, New Zealand accent rap. Check it out by clicking on the image below, it’ll take you directly to our bandcamp. Give us a like on Facebook here, and tell us what you think.

Posse In Effect Lazarus

 

Tracks 2, 3, 5, 6: Hamish Gavin
Tracks 1, 4: Andy Weston

Guest Rappers/Singers:
Sam Blissett (Sammy B)
Kellie McDonald (K-Mac)
Harley Neville (The Nevs)
Aidan Ginn (Doughnut Boy)
Hamish Marchant (Marshon)
Rachel Trainor (Raq-Hell)

Guest Musicians:
Nic Dwyer
Drew Handcock (Skillrex)

Mixed and Mastered: Hamish Gavin

Artwork: Andy Weston

2015 PIE Productions

Projects: (John Key) Stop Bullshitting Me – Goes semi-viral!

Well viral in terms of anything else I’ve released previously. 7000 views on Youtube in 4 days, not bad I think, and of course largely this is due to dirty politics being the theme of the week in New Zealand news. But there has been some positive discussion surrounding the video on the Youtube page, and on Reddit, Twitter and Facebook. Some websites even shared us including NZ Herald and Ultimate Student.

Some of the good feedback include things like this from user biggles2661 on Youtube:

a great inclusion of the political discord! a hugely perceptive and in depth analysis of keys government! i see it attracts the brightest of kiwi society

And on the negative side, user KoraraProductions gave us this;

This was TRASH!
Made me wanna vote for national even more.

If you haven’t seen the video, the topic is pretty evident from the title. We shot it all in one afternoon and largely improved most of the ideas. Allister Whyte my good man shot it, Harley Neville gave a guest verse (and contributed in a large way to the creative ideas in the video), Guy Pigden appears (and also have some backing vocals), Julie Clark popped in for a cameo, as did Raice Hannay and Hayley Sharp helped us out on set and looked after Allister as he went a little far into his role as the gas-mask dude (that blood is real).

If you haven’t seen it and are watching it after reading this, lower your expectations – it’s very much a homemade thing.

 

Projects: New music vid ‘Put On My Shades’

Here’s a music video I directed and edited for a song I produced and rapped on with my collaborator Andy Weston, under the pseudonym Posse In Effect. We released one EP a few years back and this is an old song that Andy had rapped on, but I had never really finished, besides putting it up on Soundcloud. Andy visited Auckland for a wedding and we decided to shoot a video, seemed a suitable time to bring this one out of the archive. I’m pretty happy with how it turned out, there’s a bit of dubstep in there towards the end, so you can tell it’s a product of 2011; but there’s heart to the lyrics and the video turned out fairly nicely considering how quickly we shot it.

If you’re interested in checking out more of Posse in Effects stuff, find us on bandcamp or facebook:

posseineffect.bandcamp.com

http://www.facebook.com/posseineffect

Or find more of my stuff on soundcloud:

http://www.soundcloud.com/hamish-gavin

Back in the Daze music video shoot

Ended up shooting a video for a recent rap track made with my friends Harley Neville and Guy Pigden of Pigville Productions this Saturday just been. The video features much goofing off, with all three of us using the inspiration  of looking back at our youth to come up with visual gags and comedy skits. One of the skits included dressing up as future elderly versions of ourselves and attempting to engage in youthful pursuits such as skateboarding and basketball (influenced by the Beastie Boys video for Ricky’s Theme). Another involved Guy Pigden dressed as a nerd getting gangster up in a children’s playground.

We also found some pretty cool locations to rap in front of, both parodying rap clichés at the same time as paying homage to others. One particularly serendipitous film-making moment happened after pulling up to a graffiti covered dairy. I’d had the idea of leaning against the dairy playing the part of ‘street rat’ type youths and having a group of girls walk passed that we would check out in a suitably dodgy fashion. By luck there happened to be three South American girls sitting on a bench next to the dairy and with a bit of encouragement we managed to convince them to join out shoot, playing the part of the girls to be checked out. They seemed to enjoy the experience and with hope it’ll make an interesting part of the video.

The end of the shoot also featured me shaving my hair off for the Shave for a Cure Leukaemia and Blood Cancer New Zealand fundraiser. We decided to include this as part of the shoot as the opportunity to bust some rhymes while shaving my own head proved too perfect to pass up on. Whether or not it makes the final cut remains to be seen.

Below are some photos from the shoot. The video should be out in the coming weeks, but in the meantime check out the song on soundcloud – Back in the Daze.