Peter Conway

Peter Conway

BandRockClassic Rock

‘One of the most honest and courageous singer/songwriters on today’s scene. It’s no exaggeration to say the venue fell completely silent when he sang. ..he sings half of his set without a mic; it’s an example of pure music at it’s very best..’ (www.themusicmagazine.co.uk)

Biography

Paddington born and West Hampstead based musician Peter Conway is an artist upsetting all the right apple carts and as bright, heretic and unusual as any artist these shores have produced this century. Less of the reference points and more of the passion, less of the 'I know where this is going' and more of the unexpected. His voice has a dark, brooding, intensity and when he sings it feels like you are holding something close to your heart. You will not want to let go.

There’s an air of serendipity surrounding Peter Conway. Amazingly, he was discovered whilst serenading his nascent manager’s wife under a tree in West Hampstead. Furthermore and more bizarrely still, at the very moment Peter signed his music publishing to Sony/ATV, that same manager (Kwame Kwaten) thought he recognised a motorcyclist scooting past and it turned out that he did. Several months later, Charlie Rapino (that same motorcyclist) signed him a record deal. And in Peter’s songs, things happen – albeit sometimes via literary correspondence; the guitar parts for Breakthrough a song about “not giving up and finding a way of breaking through”, had already been written when Peter found himself walking down the road on a sunny day and opening a letter that changed everything. And yet another letter appears in Lonely Tears, a love story about two lovers missing each other that leads to him walking through “wild, wild rain”.

Musically Peter is unique and through his songs and voice has the ability to communicate deeper feelings and emotions. His debut album (due next year and variously recorded at Ben Thomas’s Victoria studio and with Ian Davenport at Courtyard in Oxford) is a record of shattering depth and substance and has an instant, classic feel, like something you have had on your record player for years. On this debut album Peter deals in universal themes like love and fear: Angels Inside and More Than A Million are all about Peter’s love for his young son whilst I Am Not A Yes Man and Chains are about keeping strong in the face of adversity. The latter (released as part of The Chains EP earlier this year) is a case in point:, it bemoans the big brother behemoths who constrain our freedoms of speech and the walls he has to walk through to “break these chains.” Interestingly, the other tracks on The Chains EP also dealt with love and fear: Arms Of Mine (featured in the forthcoming Arts Council-financed film Love Me Still) tackled love, Innocence (featuring a gorgeous Rhodes organ and some lovely guitar harmonics by Danny Valentine) embraced the fear of achievement and one’s own capabilities whereas Trouble actually juxtaposed both: “Have you seen the world today?/Talk about trouble/Where is the love?/Where is the love?”

The album's centrepiece, if not its coda, is a song called Bring Me. Bring Me could be a hymn or a prayer and is a song (written comparatively recently) that Peter admits he couldn’t have written at any other/younger stage of his life. “Bring me a song that I can sing, a song to mend my broken wings/Bring me a light so I can’t hide, a space that’s safe for me to cry/Bring me a government that’s sane, a world without suffering or pain/Bring me the fortitude of mind, a love that is not blind.” Peter apocalyptically intones these words as if his life depends on them and continues, “Bring me a life that is not staged, the strength to be myself each day/Bring me to understand the pain, the wisdom to learn from my mistakes/Bring me a drug that I can take, a drug where my mind won’t break/Bring me a god that I can know, a place inside that fear won’t go.” If this song doesn’t close the LP then it should do for herein Peter has come full circle, fear has been abandoned and the love song reinvented as a secular requiem.

One might suspect that with the album imminent and Peter’s recorded output so strong, studio trickery had won out with smoke and mirrors to the forefront - but you’d be wrong: Peter is a revelation live and as comfortable in front of thirty or 3000 people as he is in front of a microphone and a mixing desk. Indeed, on and off, he has been on the road for the best part of two years and it is here more than anywhere that his songs come frighteningly to life. Peter is also fiercely principled, setting up the largely independent Rainbow Hill Records and releasing the Consequences of Freedom EP well before the other elements of his deal were in place. This is something that is continuing with the release of Breakthrough, a record that will surface with a Rainbow Hill Records imprint.

Peter Conway is a special artist. He has a song about dressing up for sex and getting off your face (Honey) and another spiritual, almost gospel song about our hunger for love and friendship (Let It Rain) and I can’t think of many artists (apart from, perhaps, Leonard Cohen and the freedom encapsulated in an artist like Dylan) lyrically who encompass such divergent emotions and thought processes. He’s funny too – something yo

Discography

Chains The EP
Breakthrough (single) - playlisted all over UK regional radio and support from national BBC Radio 2 & 6Music.

Set List

20 Years From Now
Bring Me
Chains
I Am Not A Yes Man
Breakthrough
Lonely Tears
Angels Inside
Peace Song