David Mellor's Musical Autobiography...
I learned piano and cello as a child from age seven and eleven respectively. I had a few guitar lessons around age ten or so, but I didn't take to it at that time. I later took up electric guitar at age sixteen and eventually mastered the F chord. Classically I achieved the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music Grade VIII in both piano and cello. I was awarded an Associateship of Trinity College of Music, London, for piano performance. In my last year of school I became principal cellist of the Cleveland Youth Orchestra. I later attended the University of Surrey and achieved the degree of B.Mus (Tonmeister) (Hons).
Concurrently with my experiences in classical music I experimented with songwriting from age sixteen or so. Fortunately no record of these early attempts survives (I hope). My more mature efforts gained me entrance to the A&R departments of all of the major record companies, and the offices of all the professional managers of the major publishers in London. At this time however the limit of my success was encouragement in the form of several letters from Dick James personally, who was the publisher of The Beatles.
Still struggling to enter the world of professional music I won my first contract at age thirty to compose production music for the Chappell Production Music Library and subsequently the Carlin Production Music Library. My hundreds of compositions have achieved continuing application as TV background music and have featured on The Oprah Winfrey Show, which maybe isn't quite as good as a Billboard No. 1, but I like to think of it as a reasonable measure of success.
From 1987 I started working with Karl Blake as Evil Twin, releasing The Black Spot in 1993. I also performed with Tony Wakeford's Sol Invictus on several European tours and several albums including King and Queen. In 1993 my first solo CD was released by Hyperium Records in Germany. It was supposed to have been called The Days of the Moon and subtitled The Words and Music of David Mellor by David Mellor, but through a misunderstanding it was released as The Words and Music of David Mellor by The Days of the Moon. This recording will be re-released shortly with the correct title and authorship information. For this CD I received a number of excellent reviews including, "David Mellor is an iridescent bird of paradise". Nice.
Subsequent CDs were The Prince, Inspired by the Works of Machiavelli (1994) and The Nightfall (2002), which are also scheduled for re-release. Two more CDs had very limited releases - A Long Night in a Flotation Tank and The Mysteries of Death, both around 1999ish. These will both be re-released soon, however the latter will be re-titled as the original title caused some misunderstanding because the work is nowhere near as dark as people expected it to be. It is in fact an optimistic and forward-looking work. Watch out for it on iTunes.
Although I had been developing a reputation for music that some perceived as 'avant garde' and other music that sat quite well among the work of others in the 'alternative' genre, I had for some time suppressed an interest in more easily accessible genres of music. Coming out of this particular closet has been quite difficult, but now I feel confident to release my works of all styles and genres. In particular I had an interest in American country music for a time around 2000 - 2001. My reasoning for this was that modern country music can be interesting and enjoyable, and speaks to an adult audience. I originally promoted this work as being by Hank Nelson who, in effect, was my alter ego. Over the years however I have come to see Hank as a character in a story I have written, and illustrated with music. Hank will be making an appearance on iTunes in due course.
I took a break from writing new music for several years. The reason for this was a serious spell of 'revisionitis' where I felt I had to keep going back to earlier work to - as I thought - perfect it. Revisionitis has affected many a creative artist and hardly ever to their benefit, or to those who would have preferred that they had created more original works. But I've had my epiphany on this and I'm better now. A stream of new material started in March 2014 and I feel that it is going to become a tidal wave.
That's all for now. Of course there are a lot more details but if you have got this far you probably need to do something more productive with the rest of your day ;-)
- David Mellor
P.S. I'm learning to play the violin. I've had one lesson so far...