Monthly Archives: April 2009

  I wrote this song a couple of days ago. It’s rather sad and mournful. Infact it’s rather tragic. I seem to write sad songs easily. I don’t feel sad though. Thoughtful sometimes for sure.  Anyhow, I haven’t done any of the youtube vids of me playing for a while. I always feel a bit exposed doing that kind of stuff. It’s totally different from playing live because you have this invisible audience who you have no way of knowing properly. But I think I’m going to “pre-release” the whole next album as live takes. Maybe it’s interesting to see the pieces migrate from the live pieces just after writing to the finished CD recordings. So anyway, here’s the first one of these. It’s raw and has a few wee glitches in it including my ugly puss, so warts and all – 16 Candles.


scannen0001Back in March I played a show in a lovely wee vegan café here in Zürich called Café Zähringer with a great duo called Ad-hoc.

Anyhow, as is usual they asked me for some press details and stuff which I did. Now quite often you give places your bio and pictures and you get flyers and press that bears no relation to what you send them. Whoever does them at Café Zäh did what is so far one of my outright favourites, quite wonderful as you can see!

Very appropriate too given the Cafe Zäh is smack bang in the middle of Zürich’s pink quartier.

They even managed to errrr…. pin my music down! “Fat pop songs accompanied by his stamping  wooden shoes.”

Is it cos I is Scottish?

Gordon Bell – Songs for the Broken Hearted

Somewhere in the journey between True North and his ninth CD Gordon Bell decided that his alter-ego, Gustav Bertha, had to go. The rising popularity of Scotland’s most profilic export meant that some people didn’t realise that Gustav wasn’t his real name. While this may initially affect his listener base I doubt it will be long before the ill-informed catch up and dive into his strongest and most accessible album yet.

He is not one to name-drop his influences, but this album has clear muses. The Sensational Alex Harvey Band are long-time guides on Gordon’s musical path and evident in tracks such as Don’t Go and White Collar Slave. The Kinks, Pavement, and Tom Waits also deserve a mention here.

While at times the subject matter is dark, the album buzzes with humour and positive, upbeat melodies. American Boys taunts listeners with the line “Osama is coming to get you”, Lucky Stars is a double-twist love affair set during a war featuring a memorable tongue-in-cheek hook “so I took my place in a dead man’s bed”. The Pavement-esque chorus of lead track Song for the Broken Hearted is a mood lifting battle cry to those in despair. The final stages of Weightless is a journey from Parisian chic into 60s power pop which will have you singing along. The 50s noir atmosphere of The Policeman will stun – easily the best song on a strong CD.

Ian Simpson

I’m playing a show with some other singer songwriters. It’s kind of a band together and back each other up kind of thing. I’ll probably put forward three of my songs. Also there are Heinz Bernegger, Timothy Jaromir, Luca Honneger and Jannick Pfenninger. I think Heinz has even found us a drummer. Anyway, it’ll be a cool evening with some good tunes, a cozy ambience and sweet sweet moments. Come along!

It’s here:-

Smeileys, Berninastrasse 43,8057 Zürich. (Benninaplatz Tram 10 / 14)