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Anyone who wants to knit or crochet or donate wool can now send to the address below.
Hugs For Noah
C/O of Woolsty Crafts
19, High Street
About the Maker
Rich James is a songwriter, musician and producer from the West Midlands in the UK.
Born in 1974, Rich grew up surrounded by music played by his older brother and sister which captivated him from an early age. Growing up listening to John Lennon, The Beatles, John Denver, Duran Duran, Depeche Mode and Shakin’ Stevens he quickly developed a diverse musical taste.
He formed his first band, Havamal+, at Junior School when he was 8 years old. This progressed into Havamal and later Spellweaver when he was 15. These bands regularly performed at school concerts. Bands NCA, Magic Happens and Sona followed through his late teens and early twenties where Rich was the lead singer and main lyricist.
In 2001, Rich suffered a breakdown and battled for the next nine years with mental health problems which lead to him being registered disabled. However, with support from friends and family, and a great team of medical professionals, Rich was able to dust himself off and continue with life in a reasonably ‘normal’ fashion.
Rich spent a great deal of time in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s experimenting with writing electronic dance style music at home and recorded a couple of CD’s for friends and family. This lead to the release of his first proper album available for download worldwide, again in the electronic dance music genre, called ‘Sex Angels’ in mid 2010 and the accompanying ‘Life Sentence EP’. ‘After The Dawn’ followed in early 2011.
In February and March of 2011, the UK television network which covers Channel 5, 5USA and 5* used Rich’s track ‘Infectious Sunshine’ to back a trailer for comedy programs on their channel 5*. In February 2012 the Channel 4/E4 drama ‘Skins’ featured a remix of Rich’s track ‘Hypno-ties’ in episode 6 of series 6.
In June 2012, Rich formally registered his record label and publishing company – Pink Dolphin Music Ltd – to handle his creative output.
Listening to many off-beat rock acts such as Richard Thompson, Nick Cave, James and Billy Bragg, Rich approaches Deep Tech House, Techno and Hip-Hop from a different angle. This results in the unique, slightly skewed-from-the-norm sounds of the music of Rich James.
How the song was created.
Rich: “After chatting to Noah’s mum via Twitter and email about the possibilty of a charity single in aid of little Noah, I thought I was up to the challenge so offered my musical services. The only brief I was given was that the song was to be an original children’s song about animals. I decided to seek the help of my wife, Sarah, who is a primary school teacher and used to the form of children’s songs.”
Sarah: “I wanted the song to be accessible to all ages, especially younger children. I thought of some animals and how they moved. I wanted to choose animals that younger children could use actions to remember them (for example, a crocodile snapping). Then I wrote rhyming couplets and made a song. I wanted it to be simple and fun. Hopefully I’ve achieved that!”
Rich: “After seeing Sarah’s lyrics, I set about editing them slightly – paying close attention to metre and structure. Instantly I started to form a melody around a marching rhythm that seemed to suit the words. Originally all 4 verses were in the same key but, to my ears, it sounded quite boring amd monotonous. I didn’t believe it would hold any child’s attention for the duration. So I added 2 key changes for the final 2 verses, and a final change for the coda at the end. At this stage the song was complete.
Time was ticking on and the deadline that we hoped to meet for completion of the single was approaching. Over a fortnight, I recorded and programmed each instrument in my home studio one by one. Once I was happy with the instrumentation (complete with a rousing brass section) I set about recording the vocals. The song was finished the night before Noah’s first birthday, and I eagerly played it to Sarah and sent it to Shelly for approval. Luckily both gave it the big thumbs up and my work was almost done. All that remained was to provide sheet music, lyrics and set the wheels in motion for the online distribution of the single as a download worldwide via my record label, Pink Dolphin Music Ltd.
I am very proud to have worked on this project with Shelly and my wife. Although totally different to anything I have done before musically, I am happy with the end result and I feel we have created a great, new, fun children’s song for many to grow to love. I hope it can raise funds to help little Noah. Thank you Shelly for allowing me to join the Hugs For Noah family!”
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