I’m excited to announce the release of my 3rd single ‘Never Felt So Far From You’, out worldwide on Feb 16.
I wrote the song about that feeling of distance that comes in relationships of all kinds at some point. Sometimes it’s just because you are apart, sometimes it’s when you are close to something or someone and you feel you are drifting apart.
Like my first two singles ‘Just Like The Old Days’ and ‘Rebecca’s Curse’, we were lucky enough to record this at beautiful Monnow Valley Studio in Wales with producer / engineer Mike Spink, who’d worked with Jake Bugg and The Gaslight Anthem.
Unlike the first two releases though, I’ve gone a little more ‘americana’ with the sound in this new song.
I’d written the lyrics back in 2015 and I’d sat on them for a while. In my head, the song had quite a tuneful americana feel to it. I wanted an uplifting feel in the melody.
I was driving back home one night and a country number came on the radio. It was really weird because I’m certainly not a country singer and wasn’t interested in making this a full on country song, but the track had a real vibe to it and I thought, “Yeah, I could soften this a bit and give ‘Never Felt So Far From You’ a sort of light Nashville sound.
A blogger in Ireland called mp4hugger heard this a week or so ago and wrote a really sound comment:
“Has a touch of Morrissey in the performance, a singular way of throwing caution to the wind and all housed in a country tinged piece of homespun loveliness. When he sings we tend to listen because he always has something interesting to say and the most interesting ways of saying it. Good stuff.”
We recorded this with a great bunch of musicians. Christian Evans on guitar, Alex Reed on bass, Jamie Smith on drums and pedal steel player Joe Smith.
DD Allen from Bournemouth has beaten thousands of other acts to be named as one of the UK’s top ten unsigned artists after being nominated in the Best Unsigned Male category at the 2017 Unsigned Music Awards (UMAs).
Launched in 2012 the awards have seen more than 50,000 music fans cast their vote including celebrities such as rock star Frank Turner and International footballer Gareth Bale.
DD Allen first started attracting fan and media interest late in 2014 as a solo artist after supporting James Blunt on the Bournemouth leg of his Moon Landing world tour.
“There’s something exciting about the music of DD Allen” claims Blunt, “Sort of a cross between Jake Bugg and Neil Young with a great deal of honesty in his lyrics.”
Now performing with a full band, the South Coast based Singer-songwriter is no stranger to awards and competitions.
After performing at the O2 Islington earlier on this year in the national finals of the Pogues Irish Whiskey Shot at Discovery promotion, Allen and his band also made the finals of Bestival Invaders of The Future competition.
The latter resulted in a live performance at this years Camp Bestival leaving Bestival founder Rob da Bank hailing DD Allen as“A very, very, cool band.”
A blistering showcase in Ireland during the summer resulted in an offer for two shows at the Electric Picnic Festival whilst back in the UK, the official video for debut single ‘Just Like The Old Day’s’ won ‘Best International Music Video’ at the Cardiff Film Festival.
DD Allen is a young Singer-songwriter with a difference. There’s a uniqueness to his voice, a poignancy to his songwriting, and his compelling live shows are a mixture of irresistible guitars and heartfelt vocals.
It’s a towering sound bringing together stories of jailbirds, lovers and people doing whatever it takes.
From the ominous 7 minute drama of ‘Whistle Blower’, written about infamous Mob enforcer John Alite, to Howard Marks ‘Mr Nice’ and the achingly gorgeous ‘Third Time Prosperous’, Allen’s songwriting has led Louder Than War to claim; “...beautifully written songs - think Dylan, think Neil Young, DD Allen really is that good.”
On hearing about this latest nomination, Allen said: “What an honour. To know that there are people out there who are interested in the music I’m making really means the world to me.”
Other award categories include Best Female, Best Band and Best Song, the latter previously won by Molly Smitten-Downes, who went on to represent the UK at the Eurovision Song Contest.
The awards are organised by Best of British Unsigned (B.o.B), the UK’s number one website for ‘Unsigned Music’ which supplies a weekly radio show to 70 FM stations in 15 countries. The winner of each category is crowned thanks to an online public vote.
Matt Graveling, B.o.B founder said: “The UK produces the best musicians in the world and we get to play them before anyone else! The UMAs are the much needed recognition for these acts and we hope will help motivate them to achieve more and more."
Nominees are also put forward for 'The Critic's Choice Award', and DD Allen will hope their sound impresses a panel of three industry experts.
This year's judges are: Max Helyer, guitarist for rock band You Me at Six, Dave Gilyeat, radio presenter for BBC Introducing, and Louise Dodgson, Editor of online music directory The Unsigned Guide.
Max Helyer said: "For me it's important to support upcoming artists and help to give them more exposure. I’m looking forward to listening to the wide variety of styles of music submitted, some of which will hopefully become part of my personal everyday music catalogue."
David Gilyeat added: "It makes a real difference to get behind new unsigned music. The Talent of the future depends on our passion for it in the present."
The 2017 awards are sponsored by Vocalzone who produce world famous throat pastilles and herbal tea used by singers and voice professionals.
George Ponsford, Sales & Marketing Director said: "Unsigned music in the UK is stronger than ever before, and these awards are not only great for recognising some of this country’s most promising artists, but also giving them the platform to share their music with the masses online.”.
The vote for Best Unsigned Male 2017 takes place at www.vocalzone.com/vote between: Monday 16th October- Sunday 22nd October.
Catch DD Allen LIVE in Bournemouth at the following venues:
Sun 15 Oct - Arts By The Sea Festival, The Bandstand, Lower Gardens, Bournemouth
Fri 10 Nov - The Big Hometown Headliner - The Old Fire Station, Bournemouth
Admission: Get Tickets - http://bit.ly/dda-ofs
Award winning Singer-songwriter DD Allen will be performing on the Lower Gardens Bandstand as part of Bournemouth’s Arts By the Sea Festival in October.
The show comes hot off the heels of a busy festival season for the home grown artist with performances at Teddy Rocks, Camp Bestival and Electric Picnic in Ireland as well as a high profile show at the O2 Islington in the national finals of Pogues Irish Whiskey Shot at Discovery Competition.
One of Bournemouth’s most iconic landmarks, the Bandstand is ironically just a stone's throw from the BIC where DD Allen supported James Blunt as a solo acoustic artist back in November 2014.
Since then, Allen has been busy working on recording his eagerly anticipated debut album with music producer Mark Tucker (Portishead, PJ Harvey, Fairport Convention).
Now performing predominantly as a full band with some of Bournemouth’s most talented musicians, DD Allen’s live shows are a mesmerising rock infused lyrical tour de force.
His songwriting has drawn comparisons with Bob Dylan and Neil Young whilst the music features guitar driven influences from the early Rolling Stones to The Verve leading Bestival founder Rob da Bank to hail DD Allen as “a very, very cool band.”
DD Allen takes to Bandstand at 15:15 on Sun 15 October.
Date: Sun 15 Oct, 15:15
Venue: The Bandstand, Lower Gardens, Bournemouth. BH1 2AQ.