Posts Tagged ‘‘4 star review’’

Original English song ‘Normal Shade Of Blue’ acc. Francesca Milner

November 17th, 2012

Performing ‘Normal Shade Of Blue’ acc. by Bournemouth musician Francesca Milner on keyboard and vocals @ Solid Air

Performed on the handmade Lowden O10; the acoustic guitar ‘Normal Shade Of Blue’ was written on, @ Solid Air run by Conrad Barr at The Cellar Bar, Boscombe, Bournemouth, Dorset, UK

‘Normal Shade Of Blue’ has been with me for a few years now and for a while it was my opening song to give the fingers a good warm up. I’ve recently added a new intro that I’m very happy with.

There are a number of versions of ‘Normal Shade Of Blue’ out there;


Audiences often request this song and I recently did a real time transatlantic version of ‘Normal Shade Of Blue‘ at a gig for a lady in Halifax, Nova Scotia Canada, which inspired me to the add the lyics to this website for her.


There is a live event version of ‘Normal Shade Of Blue’ performed at Mr Kyps played on my David Oddy sunburst dreadnought in 2006


A 2010 studio version from the album ‘Frank’ on Soundcloud


Somewhere, lurking in a file, is a video of James Harrison playing piano and singing ‘Normal Shade Of Blue’ whilst I stood in a Frank Sinatra style pose, accompanied and did harmonies, at a lovely venue called Cafe Fleur in Canford Cliffs, where the pair of us shared a monthly residency.


I rather like the filming that Dan Bridge did at BBC Introducing: The South Live session in Brighton with Phil Jackson a couple of years ago. Dan uploaded the video to Vimeo


On the homepage of this website is a version filmed at conversion live (clive #7) garden party 2011; I’m very happy with the sound quality of that live recording


And of course I play ‘Normal Shade Of Blue’ on Radio shows like Russell Hill’s Country Music Show on 93.7 Express FM

Reviewers often make mention to  ‘Normal Shade Of Blue’:


BBC Radio South Live’s Phil Jackson – Pete Christie on BBC Phil Jackson South Live Demo Panel on BBC Introducing reviewed ‘Normal Shade Of Blue’ 11_04_2010 as part of their South: Live showcases unsigned musicians. Quoted about the song and their perception of my approach to music :


– Al Scott, Metway Studio, Brighton I thought he was extremely accomplished. The whole package just sounds like he really knows what he’s doing. It was a nice song, an interesting lyric. He plays very well. He bought an interesting edge to it. The band were understated but right where they wanted to be.Very Good.


– Nick Coquet, The Brighton Source Nice sparse arrangement, a simplicity emphasises the story-telling aspect. There’s a melancholic maturity in what he’s talking about and I think that matches the maturity of the man. Uncluttered – Let’s the flow of his words come out. ”


– Chris Taylor, The Greys, Brighton The one thing I look for in a good songwriter is where a performer paints good pictures and this man does that. If you close your eyes when you listen to his lyrics, you can see those pictures – They’re there. They’re real and that’s the essence of good storytelling with a song. There’s a lot more going on behind the voice than you immediately gather. His south of the river, not Americanised, voice works very well. ”


“FRANK” – Pete Christie – Review
by Beca Fludgate

“Normal Shade of Blue” is a story type song and finds Pete drinking “coffee flavoured water in a service station” – this illustrates the humour that flavours the whole album which although quite intense and dark also lifts the listener with moments of irony and bittersweet analogies.


Tom Semioli in Minor 7th

“…Normal Shade of Blue” is a bona fide tear-jerker…”


The FATEA review of the album Frank plays ‘Normal Shade Of Blue’ on their site.


Karl Hayman review at Mr Kyps supporting Jackie Leven in December 2010


Pete Christie is the archetypal singer songwriter, opening his set with a wistful and dreamy number called ‘Normal Shade of Blue’, an ode to unrequited love. His story of distance and missed opportunity is paired with interesting chord voicing and well used vibrato during instrumental sections. His playing style is further defined with his second song, using a loop pedal to create a rhythm track as a basis for his emotive lead playing.


‘Frank’ – Review by Fiona Heyes – formerly with Live Wire

“…a mini masterpiece, Normal Shade of Blue. The addition of other musicians on this track reduces the impact of the awesome loneliness of Pete’s solo guitar version, a welcome relief for those not readily given to tears…”


popped culture review of PETE CHRISTIE ALBUM ‘FRANK’

October 7th, 2011


Defined by The Troubadour as a ‘powerfully melodic and intelligent, lyrically diverse and thought-provoking singer-songwriter’, great things were to be expected from my first listen of Pete Christie. Thankfully, I wasn’t disappointed. Residing in the Isle of Purbeck near Bournemouth, Christie is a true ambassador of the genres of Folk and Traditional music, writing honest and sincere lyrics which are lost with many of today’s modern singer songwriters.

Ranging from the stripped back beauty of ‘Just a Song’ to the full electric sound of ‘Easy Come, Easy Go’, Christie provides his listeners with a remarkable array of talent across a spectrum of 9 well crafted compositions. Every song features Christie’s signature simplistic guitar playing which lays the foundations for his plain spoken yet powerful lyrics, accompanied by the Band of the Royal British Legion Christchurch and his own backing band.

Inspired by his late mother who suffered from dementia, Christie speaks on his MySpace page of how she addressed him as ‘Frank’ which gave him the inspiration to produce the album. This is, indeed, evident throughout the entirety of the record; the emotion, integrity and sentiment found in each lyric presents his fondness and love for his mother. Certainly, his unique and mature writing style, met with lyrics which hold such depth, present a modern and somewhat ‘cool’ depiction of folk and traditional music; Christie truly is the epitome of what modern folk artists could only aspire to be.

His sincere arrangement of the Bob Dylan classic ‘Not Dark Yet’ clearly shows his sheer versatility as an artist; his individual interpretation illustrates a whole separate musical dimension to him and demonstrates his capabilities as an exceptional guitar player. Despite the open nature of ‘Frank’, the album proves slightly repetitive due to a lack of variety among songs; his pure simplicity, which often works in his favour, creates at times a rather tedious listen and each song is somewhat reminiscent of the last.

Criticisms aside, there is no doubt that Pete Christie has crafted a sheer masterpiece and his latest album proves to be a frank portrayal of an influential era in his life.

Review by popped culture

New Album – the songwriting is well under way

February 20th, 2011

Pete’s current album ‘Frank’, which received favourable and 4star reviews and interviews, was completed at the end of 2009 and launched early in 2010

The next album material is an evolution in Pete’s crafted fingerstyle guitar technique and his honest Anglicana song writing approach.

Living on The Isle of Purbeck affords Pete plenty of space to work out what the album will be about. The hardest decisions will be what to leave out as the songs just keep ‘landing on him’.

Pete is quoted as saying he wants the next able to be ‘simple’; however, if the occasion presents itself for a full-sized orchestra to be available, then don’t be surprised if it is included on one of the tracks,

Pete is dedicating much of this year to touring throughout the UK and Europe, offering his audience an opportunity to hear some of the new songs as they grow and naturally develop.

Maverick Magazine – 4 star review of Pete Christie’s album ‘Live at Mr Kyps’ by Russell Hill

May 26th, 2010

Maverick Magazine
The voice of country, folk, bluegrass and roots music
Issue 95 June 2010

Pete Christie

Self Released

Solo and outrageously done, this live album demonstrates what an unsung talent Pete Christie is.
Bournemouth based singer-songwriter Pete Christie first started performing in 1979 with his 3-piece ska-rock band the Skavengers.
This nine track album which rightly shows his ability to pick an awesome tune is delightful from start to finish.

Performed with just an acoustic guitar at the Poole venue, he gives a master class into how to use his chosen instrument stupendously, as all but two of these tracks are written by Pete himself.
‘Not Enough’ is one of Pete’s own compositions, and has a sparse sound that features some excellent picking throughout. With some hypnotic singing and frenetic strumming at the end, this song is simply astonishing.

One of the tracks which isn’t written by Pete is Bob Dylan’s ‘Not Dark Yet’. It takes a daring soul to try and upstage any version which Dylan releases, and here Pete gives it his all in a song which by no means harms Pete’s credentials as one of the UK’s finest acts, but strengthens his cause to be regarded as an awesome artist in his own right.

If you haven’t seen Pete live, please rectify this by going to one of his upcoming performances. His music is good for the soul, and when you see him perform live you’ll leave his gig with a wide smile on your face for days due to the superb musical quality you have just witnessed.


Russell Hill

Live at Mr Kyps - CD

Maverick Magazine – 4 star review of Pete Christie’s album ‘Frank’, by Russell Hill

April 26th, 2010

Maverick Magazine
The voice of country, folk, bluegrass and roots music
Issue 94 May 2010

Pete Christie
Self Released
* * * *

There is so much to enjoy about this album that it would take an age to
list them all.

Based in Bournemouth and one of the best guitar pickers I have heard
for some time, this second solo album from the former member of the
Skavengers is delightful to say the least.

The only track not written by Pete is ‘Not Dark Yet’. Originally written
by Bob Dylan, it is sparse in its sound but as mighty a song if ever
I’ve heard one. The electric guitar makes this track a sleeping giant,
and I’m sure Dylan would not object to this version, as Pete performs it
so damn well.

One tune which is Pete’s own is ‘Waiting in the Wings’. The guitar
picking is not run-of-the-mill at all and with the occasional minimalist
sound joined by the Band of the Royal British Legion Christchurch, this
is one song I would certainly enjoy hearing live.

Prior to hearing this record, I did not know of Pete. When
singer-songwriters as good and talented as this are gigging continuously
around the UK throughout the year, it makes you want to travel
extraordinary distances just to see what they have to say and sing


Russell Hill