Myself and Graham Dominy (my co-producer at Embassy Studios) have decided to set up a website in order to provide Rockabilly/Rock n Roll backing tracks. There seems to be more and more singers out there that are going out to the Rock n Roll clubs with backing tracks and we want to provide authentic versions of our favourite Rockabilly songs for them. If you're a budding singer and have always wanted to hear how you sound singing along to your favourite Rockabilly songs, then this website and the backing tracks included will also do the trick.
It can be found here - www.vintagebackingtracks.com - and have a look at what is on there and hopefully there'll be a few tracks that will suit your tastes!
A new CD release on Foot Tapping Records and here I delve into the back catalogue of one of my favourites of all the great Rockabilly artists from the 50's - Johnny Burnette. But this CD also pays tribute to his song-writing partner, bassist and brother, Dorsey as well as guitarists Paul Burlison and Grady Martin (although Grady played lead on all but one of these songs). Tracks are:
1. Sweet Love On My Mind
2. Lonesome Train
3. Rockabilly Boogie
4. Your Baby Blue Eyes
5. Rock Therapy
6. Honey Hush
7. Lonesome Tears In My Eyes
8. Drinkin' Wine Spo-Dee-O-Dee
9. All By Myself
10. The Train Kept A-Rollin'
11. Tear It Up
12. Please Don't Leave Me
This can be purchased right here
We're thrilled to announce to the entire universe that we've found a new Bop Beater for The Enforcers - Tony Hillebrandt.
Tony has been on the Rockabilly scene for a good while now and has made his name with bands such as Jack Rabbit Slim and Jesse & The Orbits, as well as backing many top rockin' artists over the years.
He's an incredibly diverse drummer and will be invaluable to us as we carry on plying our trade throughout the UK and Europe as the year enfolds.
He also now becomes the youngest member of the band. Unfortunately, Adam has been replaced as the young 'un. Adam wore the badge of pride of being the youngest Enforcer, pinned to his youthful chest for many years. It has cruelly snatched away by Tony - not that Tony knew much about it, nor had any say in the matter.
Of course, in my head I shall always be 25 years old. So I shall rely on both Tony and Adam to carry me onstage and walk me out to the van after the gig if my slightly befuddled 25 year old brain can't remember where it is or who I once was..
Whilst this is not strictly new news as such, I felt it was worth mentioning.
Those of you that have seen us live in recent months will have noticed a very hairy-faced Adam on bass. I think the general consensus amongst his many fans around the galaxy is that it makes him look very regal, almost King-like.
So had he been born during the Medieval times, he may well have been known as King Adam - The Bop Slapper, as all Kings back then had a quirky adage after their name to let you know what they excelled at. Like King Henry VIII - Wife Killer. That sort of thing.
12 of my favourite Rockabilly songs. Tracks are:
1. THERE'S GONNA BE ROCKIN' TONIGHT
2. CRAZY BABY
3. HEY BABY (Featuring Imelda May)
4. SO LONG, GOOD LUCK & GOODBYE
5. TOO MANY LOVERS
6. HOORAY FOR THAT LITTLE DIFFERENCE
7. ARE YOU READY
8. I DON'T DIG IT
9. TOUCH OF LOVING
10. ROCK, ROLL, JUMP & JIVE
11. EVERYBODY'S ROCKIN'
12. BABY BABY
THIS IS AVAILABLE AS A CD OR 12" VINYL LP!!!!!!
An album that took years to finish! Finally it's out and was it worth the wait? Of course it was! It's quite literally the greatest album called Are You Ready ever released by me. You can't get a better endorsement than that.
The album can be purchased right here
12 songs all originally recorded by my fave British rockers from the 1950's. Tracks are:
1. ROCK WITH THE CAVEMAN
2. PLAY ROUGH
3. GONNA TYPE A LETTER
4. REBEL ROCK
5. JUST TOO LATE
7. MISS IN-BETWEEN
8. BAD BOY
9. I'M COMING HOME
10. JELLY BABY
11. YOUR LOVING TOUCH
12. HAVE A DRINK ON ME
All songs were recorded at The House Of Bop earlier this year and then mixed and mastered at Embassy Studios with Graham Dominy. Our good pal, Bernie Keith has been playing every song off the album on his superb Northants Three Counties BBC Radio Rock n Roll show every Saturday, between 6-8pm. A brilliant show and superb presenter.
Songs originally recorded by the British heavy hitters from the '50's, such as Billy Fury, Marty Wilde, Tommy Steele and Cliff Richard. The more obscure songs come from the likes of Craig Douglas (Miss In-Between), Jimmy Miller (Jelly Baby), Johnny Luck (Play Rough), Peter Jay (Just Too Late) and even a bit of Skiffle is thrown in with Lonnie Donegan's Have A Drink On Me.
The album can be purchased right here
In all the excitement of not having any gigs at all these past 14 months, it seems I quite forgot to make mention on the news page about this 13 track Christmas CD that was released in the first week of December last year. Of course, I did manage to mention it on the home page and my various unsocial media pages but that's not the point, it it? I completely forgot about it on this, the most important and read page on this website. So, for all 4 of you that read this crap on a regular basis; this newish CD was a labour of love and even my daughter joined in by singing the lovely Brenda Lee chestnut, I'm Gonna Lasso Santa Claus - and a wonderful job she did on it. Only 8 years old and the voice of an angel, unless she's shouting at me about the latest LOL Doll, in which case she normally sounds like a 40 year old chain smoker with a cough. Imelda May joined in and duetted with me on a song, which was very nice of her. Cost me an absolute fortune, as the favours have all been used up these days but I'm paying her back a fiver a month until the next Ice Age. I wrote 12 of the songs and played all the instruments myself. This wasn't due to social distancing but rather the fact I didn't have any money to pay a proper drummer and bass player. And because of social distancing. Whatever that means these days. I will say it's a great album. Mainly because no one else has or ever will but I really like it a lot. I've even played it all the way through twice since it's been released. If you would like to get in early and purchase a copy before next Christmas, may I suggest you do this now as it will probably never be repressed ever again. You will find a copy at www.musicking.co.uk and the good people there will sort you out a copy, once you've paid them a small fortune. All proceeds will help fund my boredom habit, which costs a fortune these days. MERRY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!
Yes, after 15 months of enforced (!) retirement, gigs are back.
But what is a gig, I hear you all cry. Well, once upon a time, many people used to gather in a hall - like a community centre, pub, large living room or kitchen - and watch talented musical types play their instruments and sing songs. People would pay to watch and listen for this privilege as these musical types had spent many years learning their craft, often ignoring the world and everyone in it in order to practise 28 hours a day to become entertainers with musical instruments, causing great relief and merriment for those watching and listening.
But humans are now starting to reacquaint themselves with the concept of fun. A Gig - a term used to describe a musical event in which people pay to enter - it seems is very close to the top of the list of things people have missed greatly. And they will return, albeit with some form of restriction initially - those attending musical events must wear full body amour and a gasmask. You will not be able to look at another person in the room in case you burst into flames. You cannot dance or hum along to the music. You must order an egg sandwich but beer is forbidden. If you cannot find a gasmask, a deep sea diving helmet will be provided at the door. Bands must set up four miles away from the audience. The drummer, five miles back from the other band members.
Adam, Rob and myself have booked a space flight back from Planet Bop, out in the far reaches of the galaxy near to the Shatner System and we will arrive back in time for our first live gig in 15 months - for the wonderful people at South Coast Rockers on June 6th, a Sunday afternoon show that starts at 3pm. We will be rusty, no doubt. But our joy and enthusiasm should see us through.
We look forward to this momentous return to Rock n Roll - as the great Danny & The Juniors once sang, will never die.
I'm very pleased to announce on here that I have a guitar tuition book avaiable for sale via Amazon. You can purchase a copy here - https://geni.us/rockabilly - and audio downloads come with it to help demonstrate the various licks.
It has been released for awhile now and has been very successful in the various Amazon book charts, with lots of very positive reviews, I'm pleased to say.
My thanks go out to Joseph and Tim at https://www.fundamental-changes.com/ for all their hard work in making this happen.
On April 18th, 2020, Darrel, Adam and Rob will be performing a special gig at Embassy Studios to be streamed live on the internet. The cost will be £5 to log in and watch live and 10% of the profits will be donated towards the cost of filming a new documentary being made about the life of Darrel's life-long musical hero, Eddie Cochran.
The lads will be playing two 45 minute sets - the first will be songs usually played at Enforcer gigs and the second set will be a special tribute to Eddie. There are plans for a Q & A between sets.
More details will follow...
A new 45 has been released in conjunction with The Boozinstoke Fraternity - a Rockabilly club in Basingstoke, Hampshire, UK (hence the name, get it?!). Darrel wrote the A side, The Boozinstoke Bop and the flip features a cover of the great Ray Campi classic, How Low Do You Feel. Darrel sings and plays all the instruments on both tracks! Limited to only 500 copies. It can be purchased via www.musicking.co.uk
Darrel has been recording guitar tuition videos for his brand new Patreon page - 4 solos have been added for January and you can visit and subscribe here - https://www.patreon.com/darrelhighammusic
A new service now provided at Embassy Studios is a joint venture between engineer/producer, Graham Dominy and Darrel and is aimed at singers and song writers. Together they are able to turn songs (within the Rockabilly and Rock 'n' Roll genres) into proper backing tracks. Bass, drums and guitars are recorded in the studio by Darrel, engineered by Graham and the finished tracks are then ready for the singer to come in and record their vocals.
Just email over mp3s of your songs or list your favourite tracks and it will all be recorded for you!
Expert advice will be given to you on how to publish and protect your songs as well as advice and prices for pressing the finished songs onto either CD or vinyl.
For more info and prices, email Graham at email@example.com
Foot Tapping Records are planning a series of Darrel Higham vinyl for 2019. Firstly, there will be an LP release on 12" vinyl entitled There's Gonna Be Rockin' Tonight - a 12 track LP featuring cover versions of some of Darrel's favourite 1950s Rockabilly songs. Titles include; Everybody's Rockin', So Long Good Luck Goodbye, Hooray For That Little Difference, Too Many Lovers, Touch Of Loving, Rock Roll Jump & Jive, Crazy Baby, Baby Baby, There's Gonna Be Rockin' Tonight, etc.
A classic CD release from the band back in 2003 will be re-issued on vinyl by Foot Tapping Records in early 2019.
Darrel has 2 tracks on this brand new CD - available for purchase here - Christmas Blues, a Rockabilly re-working of the song that originally appeared on the rare Ghost Of Love CD from 2000. Also, a cover of the Johnny Horton Yuletide classic, They Shined Up Rudolph's Nose.