Today I am veering from the path slightly, and will give you a detailed update of my weekend activities tomorrow.
And instead, I am going back to Peter, musician and writer, who I met up with on Wednesday and to me, in my unemployed status is a breath of fresh air – I think he only asked me once how my job search is going, and instead very kindly allowed me to ask him all sorts of questions about what he gets up to. For the record, he is completely not ‘all over the shop’ but he does love to use the expression 😉..
So as I am writing this I am listening to Peter Charles Franklin Vaughan’s album ‘The Road that leads to Love leads back out again’, which is incredibly heart warming.
Peter creates his own music – always melody first, lyrics second, and describes his music as ‘traditionally folk’. He has recently written a song about the Thames and I really enjoyed listening to his explanation of this process. The song evolved first by creating a melody on the guitar, playing with chords and rhythm, trying to recall the sound of an English river – a recent reading of Jerome K. Jerome’s ‘Three Men in a Boat’ was part of this inspiration. This led to further research on the Thames, and the incorporation of place names along ‘The Devil’s Highway’ a Roman Road that ran from the bridgehead of the Thames. To Peter it is important that his music will ‘translate infinitely’ – it can be understood by everyone, and he always incorporates metaphors and adds an element of humour to his lyrics.
I am not a particularly musical person, although I do enjoy listening (and dancing!) to music a lot, and it was really wonderful to hear Peter speak so eloquently about his process.
Peter sings and plays guitar and has started performing his own music with a band – he is thinking of calling it ‘Peter Vaughan & sons’. He also currently plays bass for both Lou E and Dregas. For Peter, performing live is an adrenaline rush, a chance to show off, and to make people listen to him – because if you can’t say it in a song, when can you say it. I think it is incredibly exciting that he has spent the time teaching himself to create, write, and perform his own music. He only took up guitar aged 16 after hearing a friend play ‘House of the Rising Sun’.
Peter also writes, and recently won a prize for a short story ‘Real Love’ which I have just read. It is incredibly poignant, a love letter to friends, and has a Kerouac-esque feel to it. To me it is a quiet, but powerful homage to a new generation of artists, musicians and writers, united by a a deep, abiding friendship and mutual respect for each others endeavours. He himself is very well read, Hemingway, Nabokov and Orwell were mentioned as people who have inspired him, along with the Albert Camus quote ‘ A novel is never anything, but a philosophy put into images’. We also spoke about Orwell’s six rules on writing – I learnt rather a lot!
We spoke about a few other things including dressing up – Peter likes to be able to laugh at his own appearance and is often changing his hair style, narcissism – he sees himself as a narcissist; his first tattoo – a memento for being part of the shoot for the band Formation’s new single ‘Love’. He really enjoys hosting and cooking for people (he is a vegan) and finally that he would like Daniel Day-Lewis to play him in a film about his life.
Peter is one of these people who is entirely himself, and does not make any compromises. He speaks very eloquently about things that absorb him, and he is always interested in your point of view. For me it is really exciting to speak to someone who is wholeheartedly pursuing their passion, has veered from the unconventional career path, completely taken it in their stride and I am very excited for what is to come next 😊