Musician’s plans for community studio as he releases book
- Credit: Archant
Disadvantaged people in north Norfolk may soon have the chance to make and record their own music at a new community music studio.
Sheringham singer/songwriter Paul Thompson hopes to open the studio in his home town to give people a chance to express themselves through music.
Mr Thompson, 50, said: “For those who are perhaps suffering from mental health issues, or loneliness, it can be a way to connect with feelings that are often hard to express, and can give hope and meaning to our lives. “Being able to record those songs also gives a sense of purpose, and the reward of a finished product.
“There aren’t currently any professional recording studios in Sheringham or surrounding area, so there is definitely a need.”
Mr Thompson said the studio could be run as a social enterprise partially subsidised by grants. He said he was on the hunt for a suitable location, and anyone who could suggest somewhere could reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Mr Thompson spent part of his time during lockdown writing an account of a unique tour of Scotland he made five years ago in an electric milk float.
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The book, called Floating to the Fringe, outlines the adventures he had travelling to the 2015 Edinburgh Fringe Festival, where he performed, as well as playing gigs at other locations including the Outer Hebrides.
Mr Thompson said he travelled at an average speed of 15mph.
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He said: “It was an incredible journey full of ups and downs, with my milk float Bluebell breaking down several times. The motor burnt out completely near Hadrian’s Wall. I took B-roads most of the way, and travelling at such a slow pace gave me the opportunity to appreciate the incredible beauty and diversity of the British landscape. I met such wonderful characters, too, and always found help at hand when I needed it the most.” Mr Thompson said after an official launch event for the book at Gresham Hall on August 30, the book topped the Travel Writing category of the Amazon US and UK free charts for several days. Mr Thompson, who plays acoustic guitar and sings, said he was delighted with how the launch went.
He said: “Everyone laughed in the right places, and I interspersed reading sections of the book with performing some of my own songs.”