Starting out as an idea for a music-driven theatre project, Whatever Gets You Through The Night soon grew into a sprawling beast that resulted in an award-winning theatre show (which I performed in), a 16-track album (which I produced), a film (which I recorded and mixed sound for) and a 32-page book (I squeezed some photography into this too). All the material was themed around the idea of the hours between midnight and 4am. I was lucky enough to record artists like RM Hubbert, Meursault (Supermoon), Rachel Sermanni, Withered Hand, Wounded Knee, Seafieldroad, Bigg Taj and Cora Bissett for the album and worked as music supervisor on the revived theatre show. A personal highlight for me was instigating a collaboration between cellist Peter Gregson and talkingmakesnosense – two artist I’m a big fan of – and letting them get on with it.
Initial conversations between project collaborators Cora Bissett, David Greig and myself (with colleagues from my old band Swimmer One) produced a wish list of writers and musicians to approach about contributing, but as more of the ‘dream team’ came on board and the potential scale of the project became clear, we soon realised we needed to take things in several different directions to best serve the contributed work. We had already planned for an album collecting the music, and soon realised the prose and lyrics contributed, plus the photography documenting the process, warranted being collected into book form – beautifully designed by StudioLR. It also became clear that the growing scale and ambition of the theatre show would make it impossible to tour on the resources available, so making a film seemed like a way to get the most from the process of bringing these collaborators together, and soon became integral to the project. The strong visual element already present thanks to Kim Beveridge‘s visuals for the theatre show was great to build from, and we commissioned Daniel Warren to make the feature-length work.
The theatre show ran at The Arches, Glasgow in June 2012 and at Queens Hall, Edinburgh (selected for the Made in Scotland showcase) August 2013 and again at Edinburgh’s Hogmanay 2014. Winner of the Creative Scotland Theatre Award 2012.
The film toured nationwide, including screenings at Glasgow Film Festival and Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
Stream the album below. It’s also available for digital purchase, and the last few copies of the book are still available too.