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Paul Clarvis Plays Percussion

By: Paul Clarvis

Date: 14 Feb 2013

Paul Clarvis is an extremely talented percussionist in high demand.  As one of the most requested session percussionists in the country, he has played on numerous films including the James Bond franchise, Star Wars, The Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, and The Bourne Ultimatum.  Paul is also known for bringing his unique style of music to many genres and can be heard on recordings from Mick Jagger, Elvis Costello, Elton John, Paul McCartney, Annie Lennox, Sting, Bryan Ferry to John Williams.

He’s just recorded an album for Audio Network and here he explains why….

It's funny how things work out....

I was working upstairs at Abbey Road in studio 3. I’d had some drums delivered for the session, but they’d mistakenly been sent studio 2. Gently cursing, I popped down to 2 in order to hump my gear to the right room.

Tim Garland and friends

Turns out a friend of mine, Tim Garland, was running a big band session in 2. I was just saying 'Hello', when this chap came up to me and warmly began chatting as I explained my predicament.  He offered to help me carry the drums upstairs, even though I politely declined. However, he was most insistent and to be honest, I was glad of the help!

Production music

As we walked, he asked me what I did, to which I gave a vague response that I often worked in this building. We carried on chatting and although he had asked why he hadn't heard of me before, I had a feeling he did know my work. He continued, and rather out of the blue said, "Why don't you do an album for us at Audio Network?" Although taken aback, I didn't really feel in a position to decline - after all, he had just carted my drums up 2 flights of stairs!

Percussion music

And so I learned he was Andrew Sunnucks, co-founder of Audio Network and true to his word, he duly made contact by email a few days later... We talked and he came up with a brief for a percussion record. This was all done very casually, but actually the brief was very, very clear and  made it easier for me to write the tracks.

Recording at Abbey Road

Andrew was very supportive with studio time as was the excellent engineer - Andy Dudman. This gave me a great sense of security in which to prepare the music/drumming for the sessions. 

Recording production music

When the music has been edited and mastered, what you’ll hear is probably 75% written  in advance and the rest ‘blagged’ creatively on the day... All, of course, rolled in glitter by Mr Dudman. The sessions flowed easily and again I was supported with genuinely excellent production ideas, encouragement (and wine) from Andrew Sunnucks.

Production music

I find that when people believe in me, I believe in myself more and I play my assorted instruments with more confidence. The intention was to make the music clear and concise and I hope we’ve achieved this.  
Hopefully, when they’re finished, they will be useful to some of you out there in library music land.

As I said at the start... It's funny how things work out


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