Music

Alan’s influences range from the psych-folk stylings of the Incredible String Band, to the lyrical dynamism of Leonard Cohen and Bob Dylan, to the shameless indie-pop of James, Blur and Oasis. He plays rhythm guitar, alto saxophone, tin whistle and harmonica.  He has had work played on local radio around the UK, as well as on BBC Radio Scotland and BBC Radio 6 Music.

 

"Alan McClure is a man to watch.  A thirty-six year old from south-west Scotland, he first crossed my path as lead singer and chief songwriter to quirky combo The Razorbills.  Now he arrives with a solo album, confirming his status as a profoundly interesting writer.  Here he's backed by the Mountain Sound Session. According to the press relaease, they 'comprise some of Hull's finest musicians', and I'm inclined to believe it.  Most of the songs sit on a bed of sensitive two-guitar arrangements, McClure's own fingerpicking blending with Dave Gawthorpe's classical guitar.  The arrangements never overwhelm the voice. 

As ever, McClure's lyrics take you to unexpected places.  'Ugandan Sun' remoulds a folk motif about forbidden love, complete with recurring refrain line, to skewer the state-sponsored homophobia of a certain African nation.  The title track is full of his trademark verbal dexterity: statements are advanced, qualified, withdrawn, forcing you to attend to what the man is saying.

But he does easy tunefulness as well.  'The Notion' has a relaxed Laurel Canyon vibe, harking back like much of his music to the 1960s, while 'Rant' ironically updates Woody Guthrie's 'This Land is Your Land' to the context of the Glasgow dockyard and the 'empty Highlands'."

Four-star review of 'Everything is Fine (Until it's Not)', by Philip Ward, R2 Magazine, May/June 2014

 

 

They Know

On the corner, by the school
That's where they warn her to keep her cool
She shrugs her shoulders, it's this again,
Same old story, just different men

And all those who ask where she goes,
They know
They must know

In the hostel, curtains drawn
something precious is lost and gone
No-one to turn to, no-one to help
She has to face this by herself

And all those who ask where she goes,
They know
They must know
And all those who act like sho chose
They know
They must know

I don't hide and I don't lie
All this is right here in my eyes
Just waiting for you to see
If you would only look at me
Frozen till I hear someone say,
"Hey, kid - are okay?"


From the album 'Everything is Fine (Until it's Not)'

by Alan McClure and the Mountain Sound Session, (c) 2014

Alan McClure - guitar and vocals

Dave Gawthorpe - guitar

Andy Swift - bass

Mark Knight - drums

Pete Jack - banjo

Frankie Banham - clarinet

Recorded and produced by Paddy Tobin at Mountain Sound Studios, Hull

Putting Yourself Back Together Again

 

 

Written for a friend following the breakdown of a marriage.

From The Razorbills' album, 'To Hell With Youth and Beauty'
© Lost Wasp Records 2012

Alan McClure - guitar/vocals
Michelle McClure - violin
Harry Thomson - mandolin
Jon Noad - bass
Richard Ipaint - drums

The Razorbills:  www.therazorbills.co.uk

Recorded and produced by Marcus Samson Wright


Putting Yourself Back Together Again

Well it's funny how quickly things change
what seems certain goes fast out of range
and it's hard not to wonder just who was to blame
as if that makes a difference at all
Things get broken, that we all know
you can cry or think, 'Where should I go?'
There is always someone with a light that will show
and a heart that could cushion your fall

Here comes the cavalry, the army of friends
to judge and advise you on justified ends
to hell with the horses, to hell with the men
you're putting yourself back together again

Well there's love and there's lust and there's sex
one thing one day is not that the next
when we're not messing up well we're trying our best
it's a wonder we've lasted so long
You can fret over games that were played
and regret the mistakes that were made
but this crap from the past will just stand in your way
you've a life to be lived, right or wrong

And here comes the cavalry, the army of friends
to judge and advise you on justified ends
to hell with the horses, to hell with the men
you're putting yourself back together again

So things may be awkward here and there, now,
disapproving glances, icy stares, now
got to wonder why you'd even care, now
life is waiting

Here comes the cavalry, the army of friends
to judge and advise you on justified ends
to hell with the horses, to hell with the men
you're putting yourself back together again.

Contact:  Alan can be contacted for bookings or commissions, at:  48 Catherine Street, Gatehouse of Fleet DG7 2JB   alanmcclure70@hotmail.com   Tel: 07496181254

 

Copyright © Alan McClure 2015. All Rights Reserved.