Right then...I've begun the 3rd album (the follow-up to 'Speak For Yourself'). I'm going to write a more frequent blog as I did with the last one so you can keep an eye on me and make sure I'm not slacking! I wonder how it's gonna turn out? How exciting! You're very welcome to comment but please don't ask me questions on here or i'll never get any work done. You can email me with any questions you have and every month we'll pick 20 from the virtual 'hat' and post them. Send your questions to: igrill@imogenheap.com

Much much more to come! Love, fluv x i x Wheeeeee!!!

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Click here and here to see 360s of my cosy studio in London where I wrote and recorded the last album "Speak for Yourself" xxx

Saturday, June 18, 2005


Leepin' Lizzards


free runner on the southbank
Originally uploaded by immi.



Yooooooo! News news news..many immi news.

Album release is set for 18th July over here in the UK on Megaphonic Records. Whopeee! Having 5,000 manufactured just for starters then once they're on coffee table and in ipods I can get some more made. Having your own label you get to find fun things out like how much It costs just to get them nmanufactured and into the shops! Don’t kill me US peeps. The licensing deal in the States still isn’t finalized so no release date there yet I’m afraid. I am going to make a limited amount available for mail order though from my site for those of you who just can’t wait!

Lots of little hot topics to talk about...

Hide and Seek download
Wow...this gave the whole campaign a nice little leg up. Getting to 32 in the billboard download chart! That is waaaay cool. Even billboard rang us up to find out what was going on coz it’s so unusual for an indie label (my megaphonic label) to get into the top 100. Not bad for a first release! Thank you to all of you out there who bought the song. It’s enabled me to pay for a few other things. Amazing what one spot on a TV show can get you. A BIG thanks to the OC guys and to Marisa and Sanne from Zync who pitched for and nabbed the slot. Big kisses! The OC episode airs over here in the UK on 11 July, (timing!). I am pretty excited to see what will happen over here once it airs. Hoping it’ll have the same effect. I'm going to radio with Hide and Seek in the UK as a really low key intro to the album. You gotta use what you've got and we got the OC baby!

Indtroductions...
I'd like to welcome a few new members to the team. Bjorn - our National Radio plugger...so the first thing he'll be doing is taking Hide and Seek to specialist shows to hopefully get some spot play. National Press gal - Judy Shaw. Regional Press girls - Maureen and Mandy from Momentum PR. The guys who are manufacturing the GORGEOUS digipacked "speak for yourself" as we speak Clear sound and Vision. I'd just like to add that i actually designed a whole new digpack pattern for this album! The layout I needed for the artwork i wanted didn't have a pattern so I got one made. oooo. see how much i care...

Funny note:
a while back you may remember I mentioned I’d produced Nik Kershaw's single off of his forthcoming album “then and now”. Predominantly a “Best Of” album but with 4 new tracks. The one I did is called “What it is”. I was asked a couple of weeks back, along with Richie (my boyfriend who I got in to play drums on it) if Nik could use us and my studio for a day. His record company wanted to get together a TV commercial for his new album and wanted to get some footage of him “signing and recording” in the studio. So if any of you UK ers do catch it…that’s my studio and yes that is me at the computer and Richie on the drums! Pretty funny really. It’s good to have a varied diet you know. I think that relates to all things in life. His album's out this monday if any of you fancy hearing my first go at producing someone else's stuff!

Tori Tour
Most of you will have heard rumours of a Tori Amos support tour…along with the Ditty Bops…who are REALLY great for those of you who haven’t caught them. I saw them singing alongside a girl called Jesca Hoop at The Hotel Café in LA on my last trip there. A lot of you may have been wondering why we haven’t plastered this news about the tour all over the website. Well…. Because the licensing deal hasn’t been sorted yet it’s been difficult to say 100% whether it’s going to happen or not. However we have been speaking to the interested parties about the tour and all have said they will pay (within limits) for the tour if and when we do sign with them. One slight bummer in this situation is that because the dollar is $2-£1 £ it is twice as expensive to tour in the states as the UK so I’m really having to par down the live show. Originally with all the guys I wanted to come on tour with me plus equipment plus tour bus, flights, visas, crew, tour manager, etc etc it came to ….wait for it…$250,000! Which I’m sure you’ll all agree is a little excessive for my first US tour! So for those of you that do come, expect a completely different version to any of the songs you may have heard already. It’ll be me on the piano with a few geeky bits, vocal sampling live and all that will still happen…plus my mmmmmmmbira…Plus a double bassist who’ll be accompanying with some deep luscious string textures who'll also be sampling the instrument live, building up harmony and counterpoint. I’m actually going to be designing a piano to take on the road with me. The picture in my head is one that kinda looks like the shape of a really squished grand piano but see-through with little fairy lights that relate to the notes on the keyboard and instead of a music stand a flat screen! Oh yeah…we’ll see if it ends up really looking like that or not. That’s the dream now though, I like the idea of using the classic curved body of the grand piano but being see through so that you can see all the gadgetry going on inside it. The guy who I’m going to talk to this “piano” about lives in Brighton…which leads me to my next piece of news…

The BHF's London to Brighton Bike Ride
Tomorrow I am taking part in the London to Brighton bike ride. It’s a charity event (it would have to be really to go that far in one day!!!) for the British Heart Foundation. The total distance is around 60 miles and there are a few gruelling hills thrown in for good measure. One of them I know quite well as it’s just at the bottom of the road where my mum lives so she’s going to be waving me on. It’s going to be a test of willpower not to take a slight diversion to where there’s always nice food and a log fire! I know it’s a bit late in the day but if any of you would like to sponsor me you can do here. Now I haven’t exactly been very organised with this event because I only found out about it from a friend a couple of weeks back and missed the chance to officially register as all the places had been taken up already but people can still tag along who haven’t signed up. They’ll be getting an extra cheque they weren’t expecting which I’m sure they won’t mind. It’s going to be 30 degrees tomorrow too! Yikes and I'll be taking pics from my phone and sending them to my Moblog so you can all see how red faced i'll be!

What else…
Oh yeah!
Tomorrow we’ll find out who I’m cooking for!
I wonder who’s going to win the competition…mmm….
There's still time to muscle your way into the top 75..just. I’ve got 25 little Cds I’ve made for the next 25 runners up and got a cool pic for those next 25 again. I’m going to be cycling on the announcement day but James will fill me in I’m sure on my mobile whislst bombing down a country lane somewhere between here and the coast. Thank you, all of you for taking part in that contest, It REALLY made a big difference to the amount of people that heard and bought Hide and Seek and general immi awareness. I’m going to be working on another emaily thing for the UK album launch too. That’s only a month away…I’d better swap to skates.

This is turning into quite an essay….i wonder if anyone’s still reading this? Anyway…I gotta go “tune” my bicycle and dig out the padded pants.

Oh oh before I go. A few of you have been asking how I got the song came about and how I made my voice do what it does… well

Late one night. A night that followed a day of computer hell. My spanking new computer had actually blown up due to a faulty power supply. What a big fat waste of a day that was. Just about to get on my bike and head for home… defeated in battle…when this piece of gear, nestled on the disused radiator kinda caught my eye. Not really wanting to leave with nothing to show for myself, I quickly hooked it up to a keyboard and mic and set it up to record onto my 8 track mini disk recorder as Pro-Tools was being held captive by my recently deceased computer…This piece of gear makes a noise only when you sing into it. It has no noises of it’s own. The only sound you can hear on Hide and Seek is my voice (apart from some backgroujnd noise). There’s no keyboard sound. All those harmonies are a result of what notes I play on the keyboard which then tells the harmonizer which notes to make my voice appear to sing. I can choose the amount of effect (harmonies) to show through. I used about 50/50. So you hear unaffected natural voice too.

The first thing I sang (luckily set to record) were the words “where are we? What the hell is going on?” I carried on playing and singing, reacting to the chord inversions the harmonizer was throwing at me (It was set to 4 note polyphony, 4 notes a time, but using most or all fingers on the keyboard the box is forced to choose which notes to use out of a chord) and before my very ears a song had emerged out of nowhere. The words “Hide and Seek” a theme I’d toyed with a while back came into play, seamlessly, appearing from the vast undergrowth of abandoned lyrics. In one spontaneous improvisation of a few minutes the song was there. The theme, melody, timing, a performance and production direction. I then immediately after that take recorded an answer line coming in from the 2nd chorus, again, as it is on the album exactly as it came out. Where she breathes and holds notes It was perfect except the lyrics weren’t all there. I loved it. Like it was someone else’s coz it happened so fast. Dropped right into my lap. Such a nice surprise. And to top it all off on the last note I sang a train went by the window. The sound you can hear under my voice on the last note is the squeaking of a key on the keyboard followed by a commuter train tailing off into the distance.

The next day I came in and started to finish the lyric. Then spent the next week learning the chords that had randomly been played into the harmonizer and all everything else that made the demo so great. I didn’t want to loose a moment of it. I actually ended up using most of the breaths from the first recording that night and slotting them in. It was the timing. The urgency of it.

So there we go. Now you know.
I'm all typed out and you probably need to get back on with whatever it was you were meant to be doing!
xxx
love love
speak soon xxx

immi

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