Friday, 14 December 2007

Mains d'Oeuvres Memories

Have a look at some videos and photos taken by a couple of audience members from my first live show on the 29th November 2007 at Mains d'Oeuvres (Saint Ouen). I'll try to upload some better quality clips later. Watch this space.

It was a really great evening. The audience was so enthusiastic and really seemed to follow us on our mysterious and MaJiKal journey into the heart of the Body-Piano-Machine.

Special thanks to Camille and Maya Barsony who joined us for their fabulous Dreamgirls-style routine in the grand finale.

My collaborator, Benedicte Le Lay was brilliant. It's a privelege to be involved in such a creative and fulfilling collaboration.

Check out this clip show by someone in the audience where a small dog enthusiasticly barks at the start, and then later I create a loop which is spectacularly out-on-tune on the first note (I think I just about get away with it...?). Oh yeah and watch that green sweat drip down my cheek. It's all action with me, init?

Some more pics:

Thanks to everyone who came, and hope to see you at the next show, probably in late January / early February 2008.

Wednesday, 28 November 2007

Nova & No Nerves

Well my first solo show for "Body-Piano-Machine" is tomorrow and everything is coming together smoothly. Final rehearsals and soundcheck today. I'm especially excited to be performing with Camille and Maya (Barsony) together! It's gonna be crazy fun, all that energy on one small stage...

I'm not especially nervous, just very excited. Maybe it will hit me tomorrow... or 10 minutes before I go on stage.

I had a really enthusiastic article written about my album by Remy Kolpa Koupol who works at Nova , the most interesting radio station in France.

Check it out (en francais);

Jeudi 29 novembre 2007
Concert - Paris
Majiker (Chansong Organic & Synthetic)

Vous vous rappelez "Le Fil" qui courait sur le disque de Camille (c'était le titre de son album). Le voici, en spaghetti électrique multicolore, sur la pochette du disque imminent de Majiker. Pas par hasard, le Britiche parisien est le clavier et producteur de ladite Camille. Un album délicieusement foutraque, "Body-piano-machine", tout un monde à partir d'un mini-clavier Yamaha, d'un maxi-piano et de voix empilées en équilibre salutairement instable, du mélodique à l'human beat box. Voici un jeune homme qui bouscule le panorama d'une pop routinière, à suivre de très près.

20h (6 €)

Mains d'Œuvres - Saint-Ouen
1 rue Charles Garnier - 93400 Saint-Ouen (M° Garibaldi)
Tél : 01 40 11 25 25

Friday, 9 November 2007


Just a quick update, as I've been neglecting my Blog duties somewhat in the midst of a very hectic period.

I am here in Iceland mixing my "top secret project" (otherwise known as the new Camille album). It's all going great - we are working with Valgeir Sigurðsson as the mix engineer, whose album I wrote about in a previous post. It's pretty tranquil here, occasionally rainy, always chilly, but wonderfully exciting to hear the album come together.

And no, sorry to disappoint anyone, but we have not employed the 'Red Army Choir' to provide a polyphony of burps and farts as a rhythmical counterpoint to Camille's songs, but bravo to the inventive soul who concocted that rumour.

If only it were feasible...

By the way, if you are planning on coming to my show at Mains d'Oeuvres on 29th November 2007, please do reserve your tickets by emailing The venue is small and if you don't reserve you will not be guarenteed entry to the show. You have been warned!

Saturday, 13 October 2007

Very Special Guests Confirmed

I am most pleased to announce that the special guests for my show ("Body-Piano-Machine - LIVE PERFORMANCE") have been confirmed.

They are:

Camille, , my long-term collaborator and friend with whom I produced 'Le Fil', as well as her new album (release planned for March 2008)

Bénédicte Le Lay , a theatre maker who has helped me develop the mise-en-scene of the whole show and who performs on stage with me throughout.


Maya Barsony, , with whom I have composed a couple of songs for possible inclusion on her forthcoming album. She's a French pop phenomenon waiting to explode when her album drops in early 2008. Ah oui...!

All three ladies have recorded their own 'featuring' songs for my album, and so I'm thrilled that they will be contributing to varying degrees on stage at my debut live show.

So if you haven't already done so, reserve your tickets now, for just 6 euros each:

Check out the press release below. C'est en francais bien sur!


MaJiKer + special guests
Body-Piano-Machine - Live performance
le 29 novembre 2007
a 20h00
Entree = 6 euros
Reservations par email:

Mains D'oeuvres
1 rue Charles Garnier
93400 Saint-Ouen
Metro: Garibaldi (ligne 13) / Porte de Clignancourt (ligne 4)

Apres avoir marché sur Le Fil de Camille, MaJiKer présente aujourd'hui un concert live et unique, avant goût appétissant de son premier album à venir: "Body-Piano-Machine (BPM)".

Cet auteur et producteur anglais de 27 ans travaille et vit à Paris depuis 2005, date de la sortie de l'album de Camille "Le Fil" (qu'il a co-réalisé).
Depuis la fin de la tournée internationale du Fil, il a produit les albums (à venir) de jeunes auteurs et interprètes :
Sacha Bernardson (de Bordeaux), Mélissa Laveaux (d'Ottowa) ainsi que le 3ieme album (à venir) de Camille.
Parallèlement à cela, il a trouvé le temps d'enregistrer son premier album solo et d'en créer un événement scénique innovant:

Trois instruments, trois sources, trois couleurs

Rouge, le sang qui bat dans nos veines, notre boite à rythme interne, la percussion primaire et incessante de notre corps humain.

Du ton le plus profond du Blues au saphir Rhapsody, le piano; une invention classique qui dénote sophistication et mélancolie.

Décoré de vert électrique, le clavier d'enfant: Yamaha PSS 270, affiche le nom de ses sons absurdes et programmés. A l'intérieure de la machine, les câbles sont soudés dans sa chair d'émeraude.

Sur scène comme dans son album, ces 3 instruments sont les seuls a être entendus dans ses chansons . C'est une bataille entre chair, bois et plastique, entre veines entremêlées, cordes et câbles; un triptyque homogène: the Body, the Piano, the Machine.

Pour cet événement, Benedicte Le Lay, artiste de scène, a collaboré avec MaJiKer dans la mise en scène. Elle sera aussi interprète théâtrale, explorant et enrichissant les concepts et textures des morceaux à travers mouvements, création d'images et de textes.

Sunday, 23 September 2007

Equilibrium is Experienced

My 'top secret' project, which entailed 2 weeks in a studio in central Paris recording all manner of weird and wonderful noises from the human body and its interaction with a few carefully chosen artefacts, has unfolded most thrillingly. A lot more work to do with her (or him etc.) in October.

I had the privilege and pleasure of working with Valgeir Sigurðsson as sound engineer for this project. Yesterday I listened to his own album ‘Ekvílibríum’ on my creaky old Discman (yes, yes, I’ll get an iPod when I know I’ll use it) whilst walking up the Montmartre hill to Sacré Coeur. It just so happened that I landed on track 7, ‘Equilibrium is Restored’ as I reached the summit, and as my eyes were filled with the eternally breath-taking vista of all Paris unfurling beneath me. Buy Valgeir’s album, and experience your own out of body experience.

As I focused on the glimmering gold angels of the Opéra Garnier I saw a strange object float up into the sky – it was kind of shuffling side-to-side, all the time climbing. I concluded it must be a pair of black helium balloons. As they darted off ever-upwards into the late afternoon sunshine, I enjoyed a truly mesmerising moment as sound and image combined to magical effect. Takk fyrir Valgeir!

Friday, 7 September 2007

Pop Goes The Concept

This week I’ve taken some exciting steps forward in most of my current projects. And yes, I shall use asterisk bullet points.

* Final preparations were made for studio sessions next week for a certain top secret project that must remain secret or else it won’t be a secret anymore. I think I’ve already said more than I should have.

* I recorded all the bass parts for the album I’m producing for Canadian-Haitian singer/songwriter Melissa Laveaux. The man for the job was Martin Gamet with whom I performed on Camille’s tour in 2005 - 2006. Here’s a little sneaky peak of how funky Mr Gamet is and what a great voice Ms Laveaux has... Break it down now:

Melissa Laveaux - 'Tiptoe' (work-in-progress, bass and vocal clip)

* Finally, and this is my big news… I can proudly announce that I have booked the venue for the first ever concert for my own project Body-Piano-Machine (BPM)! It’s going to be 29th November 2007 at Mains d’Oeuvres in St Ouen (5 mins walk from the northern limits of Paris.) This is obviously enormously thrilling and slightly daunting for me, especially as I do not yet have a show to perform. But hey, I’ll worry about that later.

Helping me to create and develop the performance and featuring on stage in a performative capacity will be Bénédicte Le Lay , a theatre maker with whom I studied at Dartington College of Arts . We are collaborating to create a performance that lies somewhere between contemporary theatre and a pop concert, which seems appropriate considering the nature of my album.

I’m actually massively inspired by concept in pop music, especially when it forces the creators to explore new ground in their lyrics, arrangements or structures. The usual suspects could be listed but did you know that one of the most persistent exponents of Pop With A Concept was Donna Summer? Check out I Remember Yesterday, where Ms Summer adds a twist to her disco universe by adding in sounds from the 40's , 50's and 60's on the first three songs respectively. She ended the album with a track representing ‘The Future’ and so successful was her conceptual challenge that this track still sounds futuristic 30 years later. That track was I Feel Love. So if ever proof were needed that having a conceptual approach to making pop music can lead to marvellously creative results, then there we have it.

Wednesday, 29 August 2007

Blogs and Bangles

Hello, Bonjour etc.

Welcome to my brand new blog.

My name is MaJiKer, . I am a music producer and songwriter, as well as a stage performer. I've worked with several artists, including French singer/songriter Camille, whose award-winning album Le Fil, I produced with her. I've also recently finished my own album entitled "Body-Piano-Machine (BPM)" which you can preview on my MySpace page. I'll fill you in on some of my other collaborations in due course... watch this space! Well, more accurately, READ THIS BLOG.

I want to use this blog not only to share my opinions on and analyses of certain pieces of music that have thrilled or challenged me, but also to share some of my experiences as my various collaborations and projects unfold.

Having massively enjoyed reading the brilliant Nico Muhly's blog, when I randomly woke up one morning with the following song by The Bangles, in my head, I just knew that I should create my own corner of the web to share my musings with others:

The Bangles - 'If She Knew What She Wants' (1986)

Things to note in this song (aside from the shockingly poor grammar):

* The gorgeous backing vocals (BV's) that characterise so much of The Bangles' work, apparently inspired by The Beach Boys, were most likely what lured this song into my dream-based subconscious, as rich contrapuntal backing harmonies are a passion of mine.

* There is a stark contrast in interpretation and texture between the almost robot-like backing vocals and the girly, dynamic lead, a contrast that is accentuated splendidly when the two lines reunite in unison at the end of the first line in this clip ("fine, fine fine") and again with "nothing from mine".

* The catchy backing vocal part for the chorus is teased in the calmer 'breakdown' chorus, by stripping the BV's down to a unison line "he'd be giving it to her" etc. so that when the full harmony version come back on "he can pretend to give her everything" the effect is positively orgasmic! Well, maybe that's just my reaction...

* The genius decision to leaves the BV's on their own at the end without the lead so that (as in Britney's "Baby... One More Time") the listener can latch on to both the lead and the BV part, making the song twice as catchy, and giving even the casual pop listener a taste of the joy of counterpoint

OK, well a first post about The Bangles can't be all bad, non? Please feel free to leave some comments below.

Where we go from here, you'll have to wait and see...