Scenes from a Well-Spent Youth
About the project: Exploring the songs of 1965-75
‘Scenes from a Well-spent Youth’ is a personal exploration of the mellow side of pop from 1965-75. With stripped-back arrangements that let the tunes shine through, rich and compelling vocals, and a knack for finding new meanings in familiar lyrics, Tim delivers an atmospheric, absorbing experience.
‘Scenes’ features songs written or made famous in the years 1965-75 by Dusty Springfield, Bob Dylan, Simon & Garfunkel, Gene Pitney, The Monkees, Shirley Bassey, Carole King and others – great artists whose songs I grew up with in my down-under home town of Wellington, New Zealand.
Their hits are re-imagined for keyboard and voice by London-based Simon Wallace. A leading arranger for film and TV (Absolutely Fabulous, Clive James Show), Simon works with many top UK jazz and cabaret singers including Sarah Moule, Clare Teal, Ian Shaw, Pete Atkin, Gill Manly and Barb Jungr.
For those of a certain age, ‘Scenes’ brings back poignant memories and youthful dreams – including some that didn’t work out. Like the peace and love predicted in the ‘Age of Aquarius’ in 1967.
For a younger audience the show is an opportunity to discover songs from a particularly fertile period in popular music, spanning the British Invasion, Motown, country rock, the rise of singer-songwriters and more. Watch the video trailer here: Scenes Trailer
“A lovely, gentle, contemplative evening of music” – audience member
‘Scenes’ features the songs of my youth, and for me personally they’re loaded with echoes of people, places and experiences past. Walking the sandspit at New Zealand’s Ohope Beach. Summer road trips in my trusty/rusty Beetle. Drinking at the Western Park pub, the Grand or the Southern Cross (often, all three). Friday and Saturday nights racing around town singing ‘spots’ at the Empress and Majestic ballrooms, Toro’s restaurant, Clare’s and the Pines.
Memories like these (along with the hindsight of 40-odd years’ life experience and the creative poking and prodding of Simon Wallace, producer, arranger and collaborator) have provided the artistic fodder for our interpretations.
That, and this lovely piece from beat poet Fran Landesman that Simon set to music for her (and features as the last track on the CD):
It’s the happy memories that make you sad,
the bitter ones are not so bad ….
It’s the memory of a better day, so fair and far away,
that breaks your heart
A Paradox – Fran Landesman