Theo Travis
Songs from the Apricot Tree
The latest release from Theo Travis

Photo by Raphael Beckers

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Latest News from Theo

End of 2023 Round Up

Dear Friends

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Thank you very much for your continued support and interest in my music. I really do appreciate it. 2023 was a pretty good year for me musically. Lots happening and some successful releases.

Soft Machine

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In July, we released ‘Other Doors’, Soft Machine’s twelfth studio album. The album was the swansong for our wonderful drummer John Marshall. It was in fact his last ever performance, and he sadly passed away on 16 September 2023. The album features John, together with John Etheridge, me and Fred Baker. Plus Roy Babbington guests on two tracks. I not only play tenor and soprano saxes, flute, alto flute, wood flute, Fender Rhodes piano and grand piano on the album, I also produced it alongside John Etheridge, was the main composer of new music for it and brought and arranged the two older classic Soft Machine tracks for this version of the band. The album has been received very well and the response and reviews have been fantastic. It even made a few Best of 2023 end of year lists. The album was described in The Guardian as ‘an idiosyncratically hip and earthy set’ and in The Wire magazine as displaying “Intrinsic charm, technical refinement, sleek manoeuvres“

 “The latest Soft Machine album is, again, a shockingly good jazz/rock album. Shocking that is if you haven’t been paying attention to them in the last four or five years or haven’t had the chance to see them knock it out of the ballpark live, night after night! “Wayside Music (USA)

One fan even posted on Facebook ““Absolutely loving it. Most consistently enjoyable album of theirs since 1973 (Seven) or even 1969. The Stars Apart is my favourite. There’s this huge lust just not for life, but a really confident ‘This is a Soft Machine album- what did you think it would sound like?’ Can’t recommend it highly enough.” 

The band toured the USA (after some initial Visa problems), Europe and the UK and has a string of dates throughout 2024, starting with a UK tour in February. We are delighted to welcome the brilliant drummer Asaf Sirkis who has joined the band as the permanent new member. 

Live Dates (with links for tickets)

SoftsLive

February 2024

02 London New Cross Inn  https://www.newcrossinn.com/gigs/

07 Guildford Boileroom  https://www.theboileroom.net/

09 Canterbury Gulbenkian Theatre  https://thegulbenkian.co.uk/whats-on/

11 (1pm) Market Harbough Jazz Club https://harboroughjazz.com/sunday-gigs  

15 Cheltenham DEYA Brewery  http://bit.ly/47eMjTE

16 Falmouth The Poly    https://thepoly.org/whats-on/music                          

18 Farsley Old Woollen  https://bit.ly/48fffMk

19 Manchester Band On The Wall https://bandonthewall.org/events/soft-machine-5/

20 Wolverhampton Robin 2 https://therobin.co.uk/js_events/soft-machine/        

21 Brighton The Chalk   https://chalkvenue.com/live                                       

22 Cardiff Acapela studio https://acapela.co.uk/events/soft-machine-other-doors-tour-2023-24/

New Soft Machine vinyl single – to be released on 2 Feb 2024

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My Only Desire Records contacted us about taking part in their Brit Jazz 45s series on the label and suggested we cover Harry Beckett’s The Dew at Dawn for the A side. We’re big fans of Harry’s jazz work and he played with jazz-rock/prog acts like the Keef Hartley Band, Manfred Mann and Jack Bruce, so very much inhabited the same musical sphere as Soft Machine. So we were delighted to take part.

Fred’s an ex-bandmate of Harry’s and his love and appreciation for the great man really shines through on his superb bass playing. Anyway, we hope you enjoy our arrangement and tribute to a key figure in British jazz.

For the B side we decided to record a new arrangement of Mike Ratledge’s “Slightly All the Time” from Soft Machine’s seminal 1970 opus ‘Third’, which we had played live before but hadn’t recorded yet. Working within the time constraints of a 7” vinyl, was an interesting but fun challenge and we think people will love this concise reworking of a Softs classic.

* Limited one-off pressing of 600 copies worldwide.

* 7” vinyl housed in a reverse-board picture sleeve.

* Mastered by and lacquer cut by Caspar Sutton-Jones @ Gearbox Studios

Pre-order 7" vinyl & DL: Click Here!

Hear "(Slightly) Slightly All the Time": Click Here!

Theo Travis’ Double Talk

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For the first time since before Covid – my Double Talk quartet will be performing live in the UK. This band and our two releases are very special to me, so it is great we are playing live again. There will be three dates in January, then one in May in Birmingham and one in Suffolk (the Fleece) in July.  This is very exciting as it is such a fantastic band featuring some of my favourite musicians in the whole world!. We will be playing tracks from the albums ‘Double Talk’ and ‘Transgression’, plus other tracks from my recorded catalogue, plus some surprises.

Thurs 18 Jan 2024– Poole Soundcellar The Grasshopper 139 - 141 Bournemouth Rd, Poole, Dorset. https://soundcellar.org/

Thurs 25 Jan 2024 – London – Arts Depot. Nether St, N12. (Tel 0208 369 5454) https://www.artsdepot.co.uk/event/theo-travis-double-talk/

Weds 31 Jan 2024– Bristol Music Club - 76 St Paul's Road, Clifton, Bristol BS8 1LP.    https://www.fringejazz.com/

If anyone (anywhere in the world) can't make the gigs but wants to see and hear the band they can buy a livestream ticket here (you have a month to watch it via a private link)

Solo albums in 2023

thumbnail TheDarkHoursIn the summer of 2023 I released not one, but two albums of late night atmospheric jazz noir. They have a bit of an otherworldly ‘Twin Peaks’ flavour and some very lush tenor sax, soundscapes and cool laid back drums (played with brushes). The first one is called ‘The Dark Hours’ and is available for purchase on Bandcamp as well as an extended one hour version on my Youtube channel (TheoTravisOfficial)

Click here!

The companion album called ‘After Hours’ is also available on Youtube, but was composed for mainly for use in TV and film and the tracks can be licenced from the Music Production Company Audio Network. 

Click here!

In 2023 I also expanded my Youtube Channel with various meditation videos, mainly featuring the sound of the beautiful Armenian duduk. This wonderful instrument is something I have been learning and its unique sound is something very very special.

These tracks are designed to give you time to meditate, relax, sleep, study or just chill out. With everything that is happening in the world at the moment, we all need some time to regroup and allow ourselves some peace and calm inside ourselves. I hope you enjoy these. These tracks have been proving popular with my most successful one now having over 990,000 views.

 

Click here!

Also, 2023 also saw me collaborating in the studio with some wonderful composers, co-writing three great albums, again mainly for Production Music purposes (ie incidental music on film and TV), but equally for you lovely people to listen to, if of interest.

Garry Judd (album Air)

Richard Salmon (an album of acoustic songs - Bittersweet Daydream) and

Andrew Kremer (album Dressed to Kill)

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I wish you well and a Happy New Year. I will be out and about on the road, especially with Soft Machine, so I hope to see you in 2024.

Best wishes

Theo

www.theotravis.com
www.softmachine.org
https://theotravis.bandcamp.com/music

Theo Travis – The Dark Hours

Theo Travis 2021 Roundup

On 10 June 2023, Theo Travis releases his brand new album ‘The Dark Hours’. It is released soley on Bandcamp as a digital release.

The new studio album, recorded in London in 2023, embraces the world of dark jazz. It was inspired by Film Noir, the atmospheres and music of Twin Peaks, Doomer and Industrial musics but is all refined through Theo Travis' own musical vision and his jazz and ambient sensibilities. 

It features Theo on tenor sax but also on a classic Fender Rhodes electric piano. Theo has also produced the album and incorporated subtle ambient soundscapes to give the album its noir ambience.

The main guest musician is London based trumpet and flugelhorn player Paul Higgs who contributes to three of the tracks. There is also a remix of a track ‘Here’s that Rainy Day’ that first appeared on Theo’s ‘Heart of the Sun’ album. The remix fits the atmosphere of this new album which is why it was included. That track features two internationally famous musicians Palle Mikkelborg and Daevid Allen (from Gong)


Perhaps Theo’s darkest and most filmic release, it has been suggested that the best way to listen to the album is to play it at night, turn the lights down low and pour yourself a glass of something, or maybe one more cup of coffee...

Credits:-

Theo Travis - Tenor Saxophone, Fender Rhodes piano, Electric Guitar, Soundscapes, Samples 
Paul Higgs - Trumpet/Flugelhorn (2,5,6,) 
Palle Mikkelborg- Flugelhorn (4) 
Daevid Allen- Glissando Guitar (4) 
Andy Hamill - Double bass (4) 
David Gordon- Piano (4) 
Bjorn Luecker - Drums (4) Produced by Theo Travis 
Recorded, mixed and mastered by Theo Travis 

Cover image by Alex Fu

Theo

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