Graham Graham Beck

my world

Graham Graham Beck

Keyboard player, performer, singer-songwriter, 'audio soundscapist', lover of all things analogue, & the bloke who pops up with the 'odd' TV appearance, here & there. I've even started performing a few 'magic' tricks in between songs!

My music doesn't fall into any particular category, although 'Alternative Theatrical Pop' seems to emcompass what I'm doing at the moment (particularly my stage act, which has become more comedic recently - I think a spot on the Hull Comedy Festival 2019 confirmed that). There are elements of pop, rock, rock 'n roll, jazz, vaudeville, ambient, electronic noodlings & other accidental sources, particularly when I'm recording. 'Live' performance takes the music in a more-Surreal direction, with various stage props used to 'enhance' the songs, & this is where 'lo-tech theatre/vaudeville' comes into play - 'play' being the operative word.

Albums - exploring the peculiarities of the ordinary

I've tried to capture my world on record (well, on CD at any rate), with songs & instrumentals that delve deep into the things we all take for granted - the things that surround us everyday & make us (& me) what we are. Life is strange now, so maybe it's life imitating art/art imitating life, or both.

Anyway, all solo albums, 'A BATHFUL OF NASTURTIUMS' (2013), 'LO-TECH MUSIC FOR HI-TECH PEOPLE' (2015), 'REVERSING SIDEWAYS IN AN OPPOSITE DIRECTION' (2016), 'LEISURE LAND' (2017), 'SOUNDS FROM THE TENFOOT'(2018), 'NO GIGS 'TIL FILEY' (2018), 'SWITCHED-ON BECK' (2020), can be bought from the 'Buy' page (physical CDs), or can be downloaded via Bandcamp, & indeed all major digital platforms - just search for 'Graham Graham Beck'. 'ALPHONSO & HIS DINING ROOM HAPPENING' (2021), 'FROM THE FRONTAL LOBES, TO THE BACK OF BEYOND' (2021) & also the 2012 Menu album, 'TAKEAWAY', are available only as a digital download/streaming from Bandcamp, Spotify, Amazon Music, iTunes, blah, blah, blah...

Album cover for 2020's SWITCHED-ON BECK

Kardomah94, Hull (2018)

Performing at Hull's Freedom Festival (2016)

A Potted History

I followed a 'musical path' whilst at Hull Regional College Of Art during the 1970's, with the help of AMM drummer Eddie Prevost (who taught me improvisation), & fellow student Eric Goulden (who basically changed my life, musically, forever!). We formed RUBY & THE TAKEAWAYS (with Eric, guitar & vocals, Arthur Smee, drums & vocals, & myself on electric piano & vocals)...............

3 years later, & back in Gt. Yarmouth, local band PARISHEIGHTS came together - when I really started writing my own numbers. Next stop............

London: In bands PENGUIN FURY (which included bass player Charlie Sinclair, from Kilburn & The Highroads), DEAR JOHN & lastly THE WORRY DOLLS. In between, I was working on solo recordings, collaborations & gigs.

Hull: Past bands have included HULL MAN, THE ORDINAIRES, BRAZIL, FRANK, BIG SPIDER BECK (duo), MENU (psychedelic pop duo) & FEAR OF BICYCLES (experimental/jazz/rock/noise-thing)...& apart from my own solo performance/recording, & other ambient/jazzy/electro/improvisation stuff, I've taken part in Art-based webcasts & events (see 'Art' section for more details). There have been occasional gigs with WRECKLESS ERIC, as well as playing keyboards on 5 tracks of Eric's 2004 album, 'Bungalow Hi'.

Humber St. Gallery Space, Hull (April 2017)

The present

SOLO - Playing/singing/acting-out my own songs, under the name (& alter-ego) of GRAHAM GRAHAM BECK. There have been numerous live performances around the UK, & further afield - just me, a home keyboard & a growing number of cardboard stage props. By 'blurring boundaries', I hope to take the audience to a new experience, as I did with the two appearances on ITV2's BRITAIN'S GOT MORE TALENT. The judges seemed slightly puzzled, perplexed & amused - I suppose I do have that effect some time. After singing, ACTION MAN WITH A GIRAFFE'S HEAD, DAVID WALLIAMS said, "You could make a whole series out of this." ALESHA DIXON commented, "That has got Britain's Got More Talent written all over it."...& there was a standing ovation!

With nine solo albums under my belt, there have been various radio-plays on BBC6Music & BBC Radio Humberside (plus other commercial, local & online radio stations). I shall be promoting albums, SWITCHED-ON BECK & ALPHONSO & HIS DINING ROOM HAPPENING, when you read this. Gigs, local & festivals are now taking place here, there & somewhere else. Beware!

Videos

There are numerous videos 'out there' to accompany my songs (besides the typical live performance videos), including the 'AT HOME WITH GRAHAM GRAHAM BECK' live videos, that took place during the lockdowns (which can still watched on Youtube). Videos of songs include 'Action Man With A Giraffe's Head' (2018) & 'You Are A Giant' (2012). There are stop-frame animations for: 'Fig Roll Overkill' (2013), 'A Song For Those Not Listening' (2014), 'I Think, Therefore I'm Not' & 'Merry-Go-Round' (both 2015) & 'There Are Plastic Gnomes At Asda' (2016). Plus, there are my two Britain's Got More Talent appearances, from 2018 & 2019, all on my Youtube Channel.

See the dedicated 'Music Videos' page for examples.



Discography

- 'ALPHONSO & HIS DINING ROOM HAPPENING' (GRAHAM GRAHAM BECK - June 2021) - easy listening from a fictious dance band who delight in playing Latino, Disco, Ska, laid-back Jazz, Big Band & other styles, but with an 'electronic edge'.

- 'FROM THE FRONTAL LOBES, TO THE BACK OF BEYOND' (GRAHAM GRAHAM BECK - Feb. 2021) - unreleased experimental recordings from 2005-09. Mainly instrumentals, with contributions from Eric Goulden/Wreckless Eric & others.

- 'STEAMPUNK RECORDS - VOLUME EIGHT' (various artists, on the SteamPunk Records label - Nov. 2020) - a compilation album featuring acts that appear on the Steam Punk/Alternative circuit, of which I am now one. My two tracks, 'I Don't Hold With Furniture That Talks' & 'Action Man With A Giraffe's Head', hold their own, in this very eclectic mix.

- 'SWITCHED-ON BECK' (GRAHAM GRAHAM BECK - Oct. 13th 2020) - a mix of songs & instrumentals, with the emphasis on electronic keyboards/synthesisers & with inspiration taken from Wendy Carlos' Switched-On Bach album.

- 'NO GIGS 'TIL FILEY' (GRAHAM GRAHAM BECK - Nov. 5th 2018) - songs, plus a couple of instrumentals, related very much to the seaside. Playing all instruments, all analogue, on the album + drum machines, percussion & vocals.

- 'SOUNDS FROM THE TENFOOT' (GRAHAM GRAHAM BECK - May 16th 2018) - an ambient/field recording journey through Hull's unique tenfoots. Found sound, atmospheric keyboard work & drum machine.

- 'LEISURE LAND' (GRAHAM GRAHAM BECK - Oct. 13th 2017) - part-instrumental album, with a hint of the seaside. Playing all instruments/percussion, samples & vocals.

- 'UTTERANCES' (various artists, on the 'LINEAR OBSESSIONAL' label - DEC. 2016) - a free download-only compilation album. 120 tracks, all 2-minutes each. A diverse collection of human voice-based pieces. Experimental. My track is no.40 - 'HipHopSkipJump' (spoken word + DJ Stylophone & keyboard).

- 'REVERSING SIDEWAYS IN AN UPWARD DIRECTION' (GRAHAM GRAHAM BECK - 2016) - playing all the instruments (& percussion) on the album, plus vocals.

- 'LO-TECH MUSIC FOR HI-TECH PEOPLE' (GRAHAM GRAHAM BECK - 2015) - mainly all-analogue music gear. Vocals + keys, guitars & add. percussion.

- 'A BATHFUL OF NASTURTIUMS' (GRAHAM GRAHAM BECK - 2013) - vocals + all sorts of things, with guest musicians.

- 'TAKEAWAY' (MENU 2012) - vocals, piano, various synths, Hammond B3, Moog Theremin, loops, samples & FX. The album features Pete Cox on electric guitar & FX/loops.

- '3 1/2' (FEAR oF BICYCLES 2012) - playing on all tracks (various keyboards & devices, samples , FX).

- 'ONE DOVER SOUL' (ALAN CLAYSON - 2012) - on tracks 'Celestial City' & 'Teenage Runaway', playing piano. Produced by Wreckless Eric.

- 'SERVE HOT WITH CUSTARD' (FEAR oF BICYCLES 2011) - a three-track EP - playing on all tracks (keyboards, samples, FX

- 'THIS IS NOT A CD' (FEAR oF BICYCLES 2010) - playing on all tracks (keyboards, samples, FX).'FoB' (FEAR oF BICYCLES 2009) - playing on all tracks (keyboards, Moog Theremin, FX & 'rubbish guitar').

- 'YOU ARE LISTENING' (209 RADIO, various artists - 2005) - 'Awakening', solo recording playing Moog Theremin & FX units.

- 'BUNGALOW HI' (WRECKLESS ERIC - 2004) - on tracks 'Same' playing piano; 'Ladypower' playing synth & harmonium; 'Zulus' playing synth & Hammond; 'Local' playing piano, synths & Farfisa Compact; 'Housewives' playing synth.

- 'ONE MORE BITE OF MY HEART' (PETE BITE, 7" vinyl single, 1984) - on Loose Records. Cat. no. LSE5). Playing grand piano & organ.

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