home thoughts

The track listing for the new Rumer album, ‘Boys Don’t Cry’ due out at the end of May, made my heart sing.

When I was a lot younger, I would visit record stores (like we all did back then) and do my own bit of promotion.

The albums of artists who I thought the world should know about were brought to the front of the rack designated to that letter in the alphabet.

This could prove tricky in record shops where alphabetical correctness was a religion, and the owner and staff clearly believed in ordering the rack with the Beatles before Bowie, and so on.

But it usually meant that my artist of choice got the chance to eye-ball a potential purchaser before being shuffled back into oblivion, either mid-rack and or at the back.

So you can imagine my excitement when I saw that Rumer has covered songs by two of the artists, who I gave the ‘front of the rack’ treatment to.

Stephen Bishop’s ‘The Same Old Tears On A New Background’ features on his debut record ‘Careless’ from 1976 – more of which in a future post.

But it was Clifford T Ward’s ‘Home Thoughts From Abroad,’  a track from his 1973 album, which I’m enjoying hear Rumer tackle.

Rumer – Home Thoughts From Abroad

‘Gaye’ was the big hit on that album, putting CTW on ‘Top of the Pops,’ but as a song ‘Home Thoughts From Abroad’ seems to have aged better.

In 1987, by which time Clifford was in the early stages of the MS which was to prematurely end his life, I met him and his family at their then home in Worcestershire.

Such was the un-showbiz life he led and without a major record company doing his PR, his wife, Pat, sent me a letter with detailed instructions about how to find their house.

Pat, of course, was the inspiration for ‘Home Thoughts From Abroad,’ a song dating from Clifford’s time on the road before fame came along.

Interviewing him about his songwriting proved fascinating – he was obsessed by chord inversions and how they had to sound just right.

Afterwards we kept in touch for a while, which you can’t always say of interviewees.

Now I and all CTW fans will be hoping that Rumer’s patronage will give his back catalogue a boost, and perhaps lead to other singers exploring his many other fine songs – Up In the World, The Best Is Yet To Come, Wherewithal.

You’ll find lots of them on YouTube, but here are two that show Clifford was also a decent live performer despite his reputation as a reluctant one.

Clifford T Ward re-releases – Cherry Red Records

4 Responses to “home thoughts”

  1. Diane Sampson says:

    Rumer is a wonderful new talent! She has a beautiful voice and writes fantastic songs. It will be interesting to hear her cover these songs on the new album.

  2. Carol says:

    I agree that Rumer does a great job with this song. I prefer Cliff’s version, but hopefully this will promote even more of his amazing catalogue of beautifully written songs.

  3. Cliff Webb says:

    Rumer has done justice to Cliff’s song. Let’s hope it gives his music a higher profile. Many thanks.

  4. Pat Ward says:

    Thanks for the memories x


  1. Clifford T Ward - [...] Home Thoughts – blogpost – 4th April 2012 [...]
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