“Makes Me Think Of Home”, the 6th solo studio album from former Stiltskin and Genesis frontman, Ray Wilson, will be released on 7th October. This release comes hot on the heels of “Song For A Friend”, an acoustic album released earlier this year and which garnered great reviews.
“Makes Me Think Of Home” is a mix of pop, rock and prog which showcases Ray’s remarkable voice. The title track sees Ray looking back to his days living in Scotland, a country he left after finding love with a Polish dancer. He moved to Poznan 8 years ago, and in this ambitious and very moving track he reflects on his years trying to find peace and happiness in Edinburgh.
The album also contains subtle humour; particularly in the first single “Amen To That”. The track is accompanied by a multi-layered video production in which Ray showcases his acting skills as he takes on multiple characters in a range of unusual professions. The intense 7-day shoot produced what is undoubtedly the best video of Ray’s career and which takes the instantly memorable “Amen To That” to another level, throwing in some unexpected twists along the way.
You can watch the video here:
The album also touches on complex contemporary Scottish issues such as The Scottish Referendum with “They Never Should Have Sent You Roses”, exploring how it divided families and a nation. Also, widespread alcoholism, which affected one of Ray’s close family members, is challenged in “The Next Life”, and having to fight these demons alone in “Anyone Out There”.
He also has time to pay homage to one of the world’s best-loved cartoon strips with “Calvin and Hobbes”.
Reflecting on his latest work, Ray says, “Makes Me Think of Home encompasses the joy of freedom we have all come to enjoy and perhaps take for granted as well as the fear of solitude. It highlights the many imperfections that make us special and reminds us not to fear them, but to embrace them. In the words of Leonard Cohen. “There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in”.
“Makes Me Think of Home” full Tracklist:
1. Never Should Have Sent You Roses 2. The Next Life 3. Tennessee Mountain 4. Worship The Sun 5. Makes Me Think Of Home
6. Amen To That 7. Anyone Out There 8. Don’t Wait For 9. Calvin And Hobbes 10. The Spirit
What the media have said about Ray’s last album, Song For A Friend:
His voice draws you in – Classic Rock The stripped-back recordings give Wilson’s rich voice room to breathe – Prog Achingly beautiful release: An unexpected and understated gem – Classic Rock Society A literate emotional work well articulated by a sandy toned singer; quality control all the way down the line – Ramzine An emotional collection that must rank as one of the high points of his career to date – seaoftranquility This one’s a masterpiece – TWR
Ray Wilson, recognized as one of the UK’s finest ever vocalists by Classic Rock Magazine, is also renowned as an exceptional singer/songwriter and live performer. He has built his solo career the hard way. With extensive tour schedules covering 15 years, Ray meets his fans after the show and has built a strong, loyal fan base who continue to support him time after time. As Ray says,
“It’s a great joy to regularly meet people who come to my concerts and buy albums. It allows me to connect with my audience and understand why my own music strikes a chord in them. Social Media is one thing – face to face is another level completely”.
Makes Me Think of Home Release date 7th October Catalogue number – RAY 08
Stiltskin frontman and ex Genesis lead singer Ray Wilson has announced the release of his fifth solo studio album ‘Song For A Friend’, dedicated to his much missed friend James Lewis who passed away in 2015. The record will be available on June 3rd and it’s described by the acclaimed singer/songwriter as ‘a collection of musical short stories’. Formats are CD with booklet and black vinyl LP.
‘Song For A Friend’ showcases Ray’s ‘up close and personal’ storytelling style, stripping his soul bare with tales of loss, friendship and human emotions. Opening track ‘Old Book on the shelf’ takes us to a cafe in Amsterdam, where a man sits alone unable to find inner peace. When he notices a solitary book on a shelf he comes across a memoir of his own life, and with that the realization that his peace and happiness will only come if he accepts himself for who he is and stops trying to fight it or prove himself to anyone. It’s a fable we all can relate to, and it opens hearts and minds to the intimate stories that follow.
“The meaning of life is the journey: this album encapsulate the journey” states Wilson. He then elaborates: “This album was written to inspire. When you feel like giving in, when you feel you are losing the will to keep pushing or fighting. This was written to help you dig deep, and fight for joy and peace in your life”.
From Lewis’ tragic suicide to his partner’s accident, life on the road and some of the friends who touched his life in one way or another, Ray Wilson shares his experiences, feelings and beliefs without holding back. ‘Song For A Friend’ is an open book aiming not only to entertain listeners with its heartwarming melodies, but also to encourage them through the obstacles of their life journey.
Talented Scotsman Ray Wilson is well known as the frontman of rock outfit Stiltskin and lead singer of seminal prog legends Genesis from 1996 to 1999. He covered vocal duties on Genesis’ 4th best-selling album ‘Calling All Stations’. After the band split Wilson’s fame continued to flourish as he produced a further studio album with Stiltskin and embarked on a prolific solo career. His live tribute ‘Genesis Classic’ in 2009 involved 10 musicians from across Europe, with members Stiltskin joined on stage by the Berlin Symphony Ensemble.
In 2015 Stiltskin guitarist and collaborator, Uwe Metzler, sketched out some acoustic ideas, and once again the solo journey began. Helping Wilson on ‘Song For A Friend’ together with Metzler and drummer Nir Z are Lawrie McMillan on bass, Kool Lyczek on piano, Hammond and melotron, Ali Ferguson on guitar, Marcin Kasper on sax, brother Steve Wilson on backing vocals, Mario Koszel on percussion and Peter Hoff on percussion loops, with mixing courtesy of Yogi Lang.
Tracklist as follows:
01. Old Book on the Shelf 02. Over my Dead Body 03. Cold Light of the Day 04. Song for a Friend 05. How Long is too Long 06. Not Long till Springtime 07. Backseat Driving 08. Parallel Souls 09. Tried and Failed 10. High Hopes
Life’s a journey: ‘Song for a Friend’ is the soundtrack.