Dyble Longdon and 10 Questions with TotalNtertainment. Dyble Longdon is a collaboration between iconic vocalist Judy Dyble (ex Fairport Convention, Trader Horne) who sadly passed away after a serious illness on 12 th July, and Big Big Train songwriter and frontman David Longdon. They release their highly anticipated album Between A Breath And A Breath on 25 th September. We got the chance to have a chat with David about the album.
1. Thanks for your time David, you’ve just put out a tribute to Judy Dyble in the form of two unreleased tracks. Aside from the album and these two tracks, are there plans to release any more unreleased material from your collaboration?
There are seven tracks on the album and we recorded an additional two songs that will eventually be released in due course. That is it! That is the total Dyble Longdon output. Judy left several lyrics with me, that she said I could write music to if I chose to do so. I am currently promoting the release of our album and I’m not thinking about other songs at the moment. I don’t know what I will do with these lyrics. They may or may not surface at some point in the future. It’s not long since Judy passed and at this point it’s far to early to say what will happen.
2. Your friendship came about in 2017, what was it about the two of you that clicked musically and personally ?
Actually we became friends in 2015 after we met after a Big Big Train concert. I told her that I really liked that first Fairport album and also the Trader Horne record. She then contacted me via our friend Jo Kendall, with a view to writing some songs together and it was from this point that we began our collaboration. Judy wrote the words and I wrote the music.
3. Any good/funny stories from the Dyble Longdon recording sessions that stick in your mind ?
There are lots of funny stories to do with Judy’s life. She had a great sense of humour and she took delight in the eccentricities and absurdities of life. She had a very engaging online presence. She could be both fun loving but also at the same time she was very wise and profound. There are many great observations and funny stories in her autobiography ‘An Accidental Musician: The Autobiography of Judy Dyble’ by Dave Thompson.
The vocal recording sessions which happened at Real World in 2017 were very intense. Mainly because of the nature of the material and also because Judy had been receiving treatment for chronic emphysema. This made the vocal sessions very demanding for her. But despite all of this, she was determined to deliver great vocal performances, which she did.
4. What about on a personal level, what will your lasting memory of your time with Judy be ?
Judy has been a great friend to me over the years and I hope that she’d say the same about me. She is wise and experienced. She’d learned what is important to hold on to and also what is better to let go of in life. I miss not being able to FaceTime her when I see something that I knew would make her laugh. Judy had a close group of good friends. Losing her has made this group of people bond closer together. Having these people in my life is a life enhancing thing. We also aim to get together and remember Jude, once COVID-19 has been addressed and social distancing has become an unpleasant memory.
5. On a musical level, Judy had a huge history in the folk rock scene, do you remember your introduction to Fairport Convention ?
Yes, it would be during the last two years at Comprehensive school. My friend Simon Withers was getting into Fairport. Historically, Simon and I had shared our musical tastes with each other and so he introduced me to the music of Fairport. I later bought the first Fairport album, which features Judy and I really liked it. It had youthful energy and naivety. In addition to songs there were moments of experimentation, which I really liked. It was quirky, engaging and interesting.
6. The album is due out on 25th September, what do you hope fans will get most out of listening to the album ?
I hope that the listeners hear what a great vocalist and storyteller Judy is. I hope it makes people want to investigate more music from both Judy’s past and also my work with Big Big Train. I hope our music lives with people and becomes a cherished soundtrack to peoples lives. I hope the listeners find the album adventurous and dynamic and hopeful. I hope it finds a special place in peoples lives.
7. Aside from the current pandemic situation, what are your plans to promote the record in terms of live shows?
Dyble Longdon was only ever intended to be a studio based project. Mainly due to the limitations of Judy’s health.
8. What about moving forward, what are your own musical plans ?
I am currently busy writing new material for the next Big Big Train studio album. I am going to make a solo album in 2021 and hopefully once the world of live music can safely return, there will be more Big Big Train live shows to perform around the globe.
9. Have fans of Judy spoken to you about her and their memories ?
Yes. Judy was appreciated by many people and understandably there has been a significant outpouring of grief. Obituaries for Judy’s passing have come from far off places. Judy is missed by many because she was gregarious and she liked people. She was genuine and sincere in the way that she communicated with others.
10. Thanks for your time David and good luck with the album. Are there any final words or messages you want to pass to fans ?
Thank you for your questions, I’ve enjoyed replying to them. Judy was very proud of these final recordings. Although we knew that Judy’s health was failing we carried on regardless. We also supposed that these songs would be her last album and in a way, the subject matter, when viewed through this prism is very profound. Judy wanted to see how this music would be received in the world but she stayed with us for as long as she could. As swan songs go, ‘Between A Breath And A Breath’ is an assured final bow.
Between A Breath And A Breath – Dyble Longdon – out on 25th September
You can read more about the new single release here: https://www.totalntertainment.com/music/astrologers-is-the-new-release-from-dyble-longdon/