On a working narrowboat moored somewhere in deepest Shropshire, Yorkshire songwriter Boo Sutcliffe recently recorded solo acoustic versions of three tracks from his much-heralded debut album Blink. The first one, “Almost Done” is available now.
Each summer, the narrowboat Cariad IV travels the canals of Britain recording musical sessions and videos. “It’s a fabulous, quirky set-up on board”, says Boo, “and the sound is really warm, intimate and true, like you’d get at a gig in your front room – if your front room was about seven feet square, had a divine acoustic and floated on water.
“I’ve been enjoying these rather magical sessions on Facebook for a few years, so it was great to finally track them down and hop on board. We drove for miles, navigated appallingly and were happily side-tracked by the lush Shropshire countryside and lovely Shrewsbury. I still have no idea where we finally found the boat but man, did I need a pint after all that road.
“I’ve been looking for interesting ways to capture more stripped-back versions of a few of my songs and The Narrowboat was a perfect fit. There are a few other projects in the pipeline, which I’m running alongside my usual (home) studio recordings, so there should some interesting new versions of familiar songs emerging in the next month or two.” A new EP is also due for release in the Autumn.
Captained by former engineer and all-round muso Mark Holdsworth, The Narrowboat Sessions aim to promote the myriad talents of some of Britain’s finest and most interesting unsigned musicians, while raising money for cancer research. “I think quite a few musicians, at certain points in their life, feel they can probably walk on water, but this is about the nearest we can get to putting that into practice”, Boo concludes, before slowly sinking into the drink.