Tag Archives: artwork

Take A Stand – 5 years

Take A Stand…Robb Murphy’s solo career started with this…the album was released 5 years ago on the 27th of April. Something to celebrate…and to write a blog about! I’ve been looking back into the blogs I wrote over the past few years, but I didn’t write a blog about Take A Stand and how this album came about. This 5-year anniversary sure is a good reason to do that!

‘Take A Stand’ is an album with an electronic pop sound. Robb had no intention to officially release it. It was all just something he did, because he liked it. It was an experiment for himself to get familiar with the studio programs that he was using. He sent a rough copy to BBC, not expecting to hear back from them. Robb then went on holiday and while he was away a few friends told him that they had heard his songs on radio and that a few DJ’s had been saying really positive things about it. In the next months BBC Introducing played a lot of the tracks and Robb made the decision to officially release the album. Robb was invited to do a live session for BBC Introducing and at that stage he didn’t have a band yet. The opportunity was reason enough to get a band together and do the live session for BBC Introducing, which was recorded and broadcast in the UK.

‘Love in Abundance’ was the first single Robb released. It wasn’t until later when the video for this single was released, filmed and edited by Carl Best, lead roles by Kelly Long (HBO Game of Thrones) & Ignacy Rybarczyk (BCC Ripper Street/Faraway):

The story behind the video is guy meets girl in a coffee shop with a twist. The male lead played by Ignacy Rybarczyk (Ripper Street/Faraway) is dumped by his girlfriend, seeking solace he heads for coffee and encounters Angela, played by Kelly Long (HBO Game of Thrones) who is on a blind date. He is mesmerised by her and when her date doesn’t show he ends up being the one sharing coffee. The concept for the narrative of the video was developed by writer/director and DOP Carl Best. Together Robb and Carl worked out the ideas, keeping the plot line simple to reflect the simplicity of this song.

‘Love In Abundance’ got a lot of attention and great feedback over the years. Recently the song was used for the documentary ‘Love In A Day’ on BBC Northern Ireland.

The next single Robb released from the album was ‘On My Side’, released in March 2012.
For this video Robb teamed up with award winning short film director Patrick Maxwell of Headline Films. He captured Robb and his real life girlfriend (who is now his wife!) over the course of a day in Belfast for the video of the single ‘On My Side’.

The video starts showing a young man shifting his weight, filled with the excited nerves that come before a big date. Will the following hours hold the potential for intimacy, indifference or even rejection? He resolves to rely on his tried and tested formula — ‘We will talk and I will smile’ — after all — he’s ‘got an act to keep up dear’. But what if he just goes with it and sees what the day holds. Could it live up to his expectations? Or even surpass them? Message of this video…Stop imagining. Drop the act. Be yourself. And she might just surprise you.

The last single of the album, ‘What Do I Say?’, was released in February 2013.
Robb teamed up again with Patrick Maxwell for the music video.

‘What Do I Say?’ was filmed over a six month period at various locations in and around Belfast. This music video was created using time lapse footage mixed with a real time performance by Robb Murphy and his band at a show in The Black Box, Belfast.

The artwork of all singles and the album were created by the very talented Ronan Reid.
Ronan Reid is an artist originally from Ireland, who lives in Melbourne, Australia. His work is really amazing. Whatever idea Robb has in mind for an album or single artwork, Ro is always able to translate those ideas into amazing covers. Have a look!

Take A Stand…5 years…a milestone! it’s good to look back and write about how the album came about.
It makes me think how much has happened since and how much has changed as for Robb’s music, but that’s a different story…
Time to end this blog and celebrate this milestone with a glass of wine! Cheers!

Artwork – Ronan Reid

It’s the fourth day of the new year and everything is turning back to normal again. The children went back to school again today and work starts again tomorrow. During the weekend I took down all Christmas decorations and yesterday I started tidying and cleaning the living room. The house feels empty now, but it also feels good that ‘normal’ life starts again.
Time to sit down and write a blog while enjoying a big mug of tea.

Subject of this blog…the album artwork. Those of you who have been following Robb for a while  most likely have noticed the artwork of the albums and singles. Even though we’re living in the days of digital downloads and streaming, album artwork is very important. It’s the first thing you see before even hearing the music. Eventually it’s all about the music, but an album without artwork is like a book without a cover. The album artwork reflects and represents the music and the artist and is therefore very important.

The artwork for Robb’s singles and albums is made by Ronan Reid.
Ronan Reid is an artist originally from Ireland, who lives in Melbourne, Australia.
His work is really amazing. Whatever idea Robb has in mind for an album or single artwork, Ro is always able to translate those ideas into amazing covers.
Have a look!

First the artwork of Take A Stand, Robb’s debut album and the singles released from that album.


Below the artwork of Robb’s second album ‘Sleep Tonight’
This album was written in Italy. The cover of the album shows the remote house where Robb and his fiancée stayed during their holiday and where Robb wrote most songs from the album.
The second picture shows what the double vinyl looks like from the inside. The images are places Robb and his fiancée visited during that holiday, places that were an inspiration at the time Robb wrote the album.
The third picture shows two pages from the CD booklet.


Below the artwork of the singles released from the album ‘Sleep Tonight’.


What stood out to me the most was the artwork Ro Reid made for ‘Headstrong’.
I remember that I was blown away by it when I saw it for the first time.
It’s a head with a multilayered timber tunnel representing the self-built inner focus you make to get things done.
Ro was inspired by ‘Inversion’ which was an artwork by sculptors Dan Havel and Dean Ruck. You can read more about it through the following link.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inversion_(artwork)

If you want to know more about Ronan Reid, visit his website for more info:
http://roistootall.com/

 

As always a song to end this blog with.
A live version of ‘Bound For Your Arms’ recorded live for Universe Radio (www.universeradio.nl) during the tour of The Netherlands a couple of months ago.

Watch and enjoy!

Headstrong

It’s a very lazy Sunday out here…
It’s raining and we didn’t have to go anywhere, so I decided to just stay in my jammies, nice and comfortable! Perfect day to just take it easy.

As you can read in my previous blog, Headstrong will be the next single from Robb Murphy’s new album ‘Sleep Tonight’.
What most people don’t see is what needs to be done to prepare a single release. Of course it starts with picking the song. Not always an easy thing to do. There are a lot of things to keep in mind when deciding which song from an album will be released as a single. Maybe the most important thing is to look at the feedback the album and songs got so far. Next is to decide which other songs will be included with the single. An album track? Record a new song? Live recording? A lot of other decisions have to be made as well. Sell the single as a digital release online? Have CDs or Vinyl copies manufactured?  Do it all? Shoot a video or not? Artwork needs to be sorted and a plan to promote it all is needed as well.

There will be a video for Headstrong. At the moment Robb is planning and sorting things out for a video shoot.
The artwork for Headstrong is finished. In the past few years Robb worked with the very talented Ronan Reid. He created the artwork for the album (and the singles from) ‘Take A Stand’ and also created the artwork for the album ‘Sleep Tonight’, the single ‘The Mysteries of the Heart’ and now ‘Headstrong’.

1.artwork Headstrong

Headstrong is one of the songs that features The Ulster Quartet. The song has a very infectious melody, it will make you smile and tap your feet!!

Lyrics:

Spiders creep across your skin like tickley fingers
Ice melts down your spinal chord like lights on a highway
Feels like nothing’s going your way, you’re in over your head
Not smart, heart is in the car park pining for home time

You haven’t really lived
You haven’t really lived ’til your far from
The strongest and the wise
The hopeful and the few that lay between
I need my headstrong

Caffeine fuels you when your stressed, messed, chocolate or cinnamon ?
Irate people in your face waste your only coffee break
Trapped, caved, man your feeling brave, escape is priority
Sparks fly, cogs and leavers just die, ready for beddy time

You haven’t really lived
You haven’t really lived ’til your far from
The strongest and the wise
The hopeful and the few that lay between
I need my headstrong

Relax, cut yourself a break mate, your mind is a fragile thing
Brain waves crave a little respite and skin needs sunlight

do do do do do do
do do do do do do do do do do

You haven’t really lived
You haven’t really lived ’til your far from
The strongest and the wise
The hopeful and the few that lay between

You haven’t really lived
You haven’t really lived ’til your far from
The strongest and the wise
The hopeful and the few that lay between
I need my headstrong
I need my headstrong

Keep an eye on this page and on Robb’s facebook page to stay updated about the release of the single.