Author Topic: TV TUTS INTERVIEW: Tim Renwick talks of The Three Tim's by Uli  (Read 24226 times)

Offline Uli

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Tim Renwick plays guitar and bass on TV Smith's brandnew album "In The Arms Of My Enemy" (releasedate: May 23rd/May 27th). He's already played with TV in the past 25 years, e.g on "Channel 5", "March of the giants" and "Not a bad day".
He's also a well-known session guitarist and played with many artists (check his website), e.g. on Al Stewart's hit "Year of the cat". He played and toured the world with David Bowie, Mike Oldfield, Pink Floyd and many others.
He's got a solo album out called "Privateer", featuring instrumentals of a wide stylistic range. He agreed to be interviewed for the TUTS Forum to celebrate the release of TV's new album!

Here is Part1:

1. Which kind of music did you grow up with? How did you learn to
 play guitar (classical/lessons/self-taught)?


I was raised in a musical family. My parents both sang, mother
played the violin, father the double bass and my brother violin also -
he now plays with the BBC Symphony Orchestra. I played the clarinet
and later dabbled with saxophone, flute and cello before deciding that
the guitar was my chosen instrument of torture!

2. For those readers who don't know much about you, can you give us
 a short summary of your musical career? (Anyone wanting to know more
 details can of course look at your website's "Chronology".)


After playing in various local bands in my home town of Cambridge I
moved to London and secured my first proper `pro` job as part of the
backing band for Jackie Lomax at Apple Records. After that I joined
the group Junior's Eyes and extensively toured Europe. Then I was co-
founder of Quiver who later joined forces with The Sutherland Brothers
and had some international success with our records, also touring
America regularly. I left the group at the beginning of 1977 to pursue
a freelance career as studio session musician and sideman - this
enabled me to work with a long list of artists (see my website for
details!) and also build up a catalogue of media music for various
music libraries. After touring the world with Pink Floyd I decided to
move from London and escape the `rat race` - I now reside in Cornwall
where I continue to write and record media music in my home studio.

« Last Edit: June 23, 2009, 02:00:42 PM by Tj »
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Offline Uli

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Re: Tim Renwick interview
« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2008, 01:53:40 PM »
3. How did you first meet TV Smith and Tim Cross? What was it like
 working together on "Channel 5" and also gigging together in the 80's?


I first met Tim Cross when I was hired by Mike Oldfield to tour the
world promoting his album `Five Miles Out` (1982/3). I was replacing
Rick Fenn (10cc) who didn't fancy the travelling! I had only one week
in which to learn the entire repertoire which was quite a challenge
and involved playing bass guitar also. Tim Cross had been playing in
Mike's band for some time and we became good friends. After the
M.O.tour I played on various sessions for Tim and he introduced me to
T.V. Smith for the first time.
The Channel 5 recordings were a joint effort along with engineer Phill
Brown - we all provided our services for nothing, I played guitar and
bass and Tim Cross programmed the drums as well as playing all
keyboards. Unfortunately after all that work the small indie label
that was to release the resulting album went bust within a week or
two! Very frustrating! We never actually played live as a band.

4. What did you think about TV's former bands The Adverts and The
 Explorers? Did you like punkrock back in '77?


I was familiar with the singles `Gilmore's Eyes` and `Tomahawk
Cruise`from radio airplay, and read about the Adverts' antics in the
press of the time, but had never seen them perform. I found punk rock
a bit alarming (I suppose that was the general idea!) but subsequently
enjoyed a good deal of the recordings of the era. The Sex Pistols
records were very well made. Elvis Costello also appeared during that
time and I was a big fan of his early records.

5. What do you remember about the demos TV recorded in the 80's, did
 you play on some of them? What did it feel like re-recording two of
 them (Open up your heart and Trojan Horse) a good 20 years later?


We used to get together at Tim Cross's house and I'd stick guitar
parts on various tunes of TV's not really knowing whether they were
demos or not! I really liked both of those songs, although the
original Trojan Horse sounds a little wobbly these days - hence the re-
recording.

6. How did you get involved in recording one of TV's masterpieces
 "March of the giants"?


In the same way as usual with the two Tims. We tended to work quite
fast, record several tracks of guitar for T.C. to rearrange later!
« Last Edit: May 22, 2008, 01:55:59 PM by Uli »
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Offline Uli

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Re: Tim Renwick interview
« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2008, 01:59:02 PM »
7. Later on, you performed great guitar work for "Not a bad day".
 Tim Cross told us his story about 9/11, what are your memories of
 that day?


It was a Tuesday - I remember we had been working hard on overdubs
that morning and during a break in proceedings the phone rang. It was
my daughter Phoebe who sounded terribly shocked and told me to turn on
the television straight away! We watched open mouthed as the twin
towers burned and toppled in horror - very strange to watch real life
drama unfold `as it happened`in that manner.

8. Who inspired your guitar sound on the track "One Million Pounds"?
 To me it sounds a lot like Pink Floyd.


Possibly after working such a lot with Pink Floyd (over 300 concerts)
some of David's style has rubbed off on me! I was not consciously
trying to sound like anyone in particular - except myself that is!

9. Now TV used your services again for the brandnew album "In The
 Arms Of My Enemy". Any stories about these recordings you'd like to
 share with us? Did you record your parts over a short period of time
 or did you return to the studio from time to time (like TV did in
 breaks between his touring commitments)? How do you rate this album
 compared to TV's previous works?


I stayed at Tim Cross's house for a couple of nights and we recorded
guitar and bass all in one go.
The drum parts were added later in Germany. I think the album hangs
together very well, TV plays more guitar than usual which I think adds
to the interest, and the songs are strong.
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Offline Uli

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Re: Tim Renwick interview
« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2008, 02:02:31 PM »
10. You played with so many artists (as can be seen on your website
 "session credits" etc.), what were the outstanding sessions for you?
 And is working for TV Smith more of a "hobby" compared to other
 sessions?


It's very hard to pick out any special sessions, I just enjoy playing
at most times. It is great to have the opportunity to perform
alongside so many different musicians in various locations. Working
with Tim is pretty informal - we tend to record everything and Tim
Cross sorts it out (edits) later!

11. What was it like performing at Live8 in 2005 with the reformed
 Pink Floyd? What do you think: why weren't there any more "reunion
 gigs" by the Floyd?


The `Live 8` show was very odd indeed for me. I think that David
expected it all to be `a laugh` (as it should have been) but it didn't
turn out that way. Roger entered into the project as if he was the
group leader from the start and tried to change the song arrangements
during our three afternoons of rehearsals - this made for an
uncomfortable atmosphere, with most of us `keeping our heads down`
throughout. On the day of the concert there was a great feeling of
tension which didn't help the nerves much. It was a great pity that
grown men could not put aside their differences for a few days for
such a good cause - although, as it turned out, not a lot was achieved
by the event. The politicians did not take much notice of the event after all!

I don't think that there will be any more `reunions` - I personally
think that there was a great element of self-promotion going on. Both
Roger and David having new projects on the near horizon. Perhaps I'm
being too cynical!

12. Looking at the impressive list of artists you worked with, one
 question springs to mind: is there anyone left you haven't played
 with yet, but would like to?


I always loved the early work of Stevie Winwood but never got the
chance to work with him. I've been fortunate to have had the chance to
play with many great musicians and also see many artists perform live
around the world.` Luck` must be my middle name!

« Last Edit: May 22, 2008, 02:06:21 PM by Uli »
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Offline Uli

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Re: Tim Renwick interview
« Reply #4 on: May 22, 2008, 02:10:26 PM »
13a. Please tell us more about your solo album "Privateer"!

This is a collection of guitar-based instrumentals taken from a batch
of media music composed for Audio Network Plc over the last few years.
It is not usual for media music to be available in this way, but,
thanks to internet downloading, this music can be accessed by any
member of the public now for their own personal use. I simply got
permission from the company to assemble some extracts of my work and
package them up into album form. It is only available from my website,
there are no record company dealings or advertisements.
If interested - go to my website www.timrenwick.com
or my Myspace site www.myspace.com/timrenwick
where there are samples of the tracks to listen to.

13b. Can you tell us more about the  "Music Library"?

Music libraries own collections of various styles of music for use
in the media - for advertising, the film industry. television and
radio, background music to accompany the spoken word in documentaries
and many dramatic genres. It is used world-wide - often when a film
production is at the sound dubbing stage the director will require
additional background music and there's no time (or budget) to
commission more original underscore, library music will be used to
`fill the gap`. Over the years I have written and recorded material of
different styles for several major libraries and have built up quite a
large catalogue of published works. Luckily for me, the guitar is such
a versatile instrument that it can cover a wide range of musical
styles. Good job I hadn't taken up the bassoon!

14. What are your upcoming projects or future plans?

Simply to carry on writing and recording at home as usual. I have just
completed some music which, I hope, may be used for the Beijing
Olympics season, and more music is in the pipeline for Audio Network
Plc. I would like to record my own instrumental album in it's own
right (not media-based) and have that released in the normal way, at
some time soon. I have also been dabbling with some folk music
recently - which has been of interest.

15. Finally, will you be working with TV again? Have you ever
 considered playing a special gig with him (like Tim Cross did for
 "Earthbound" fan gatherings)?


I would love to work with TV in a live situation - just waiting to be asked!
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Offline Fred21

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Re: Tim Renwick interview
« Reply #5 on: May 22, 2008, 02:14:27 PM »
...lets hope it happens!

Thanks a million for that Uli - great stuff!

Offline Uli

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Re: Tim Renwick interview
« Reply #6 on: May 22, 2008, 02:16:22 PM »
Thank you's:

Extra special thanks to Tim Renwick for answering all of the questions!!
Special thanks to Tj for help with some questions!
Thanks to TV and Klaus for this wonderful website and Forum.
Thanks to everyone who is interested in reading this.
Thanks TUTS everywhere.
Thanks to T. Renwick's webmasters for forwarding my mail to him.
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Offline Klaus

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Re: Tim Renwick interview
« Reply #7 on: May 22, 2008, 02:18:46 PM »
Great interview Uli!  :)
Many thanks!

I really hope there will be some special gigs with Renwick, Cross and Smith.
"And if our castle should come tumbling down - We'll fix it up again somehow
We can do anything - That' the wonderful thing...

Carrying On"

Offline Rockula

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Re: Tim Renwick interview
« Reply #8 on: May 22, 2008, 02:34:15 PM »
Excellent stuff Uli. Interesting and illuminating. 8)

Offline Alan

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Re: Tim Renwick interview
« Reply #9 on: May 22, 2008, 02:38:14 PM »
Interesting stuff!

Offline Uli

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Re: Tim Renwick interview
« Reply #10 on: May 22, 2008, 02:42:19 PM »
I'm just glad you like it!!  :D
I've met so many nice TUTS at gigs and TV is always giving his best at his gigs and his new album is so brilliant, I just felt I had to do something to go along with the album release. Hope it creates a bit more interest towards the album! Will try and link the interview on other Forums etc.
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Offline Tj

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Re: A Brand New TUTS Exclusive - Uli's Terrific Tim Renwick Interview
« Reply #11 on: May 22, 2008, 05:27:20 PM »
Quote
3. We never actually played live as a band.

Tim Renwick


I'd always assumed that The Party Line was a sort of Channel 5 live show. Did Tim Renwick play with The Party Line TUTS?

Quote
5. What do you remember about the demos TV recorded in the 80's, did
 you play on some of them? What did it feel like re-recording two of
 them (Open up your heart and Trojan Horse) a good 20 years later?

We used to get together at Tim Cross's house and I'd stick guitar
parts on various tunes of TV's not really knowing whether they were
demos or not! I really liked both of those songs, although the
original Trojan Horse sounds a little wobbly these days - hence the re-
recording.


This is what Tj loves to read about. :D

Quote
15. Finally, will you be working with TV again? Have you ever
 considered playing a special gig with him (like Tim Cross did for
 "Earthbound" fan gatherings)?

I would love to work with TV in a live situation - just waiting to be asked!


This has to be my very favourite answer from Tim. Is one of C5's biggest dreams one day going to come true? :D :D :D :D :D

So Tim do you fancy a pint when I'm in Cornwall in July?

Tj's buying. :D ;D ;D ;D

This interview is awesome Uli.

YOU ROCK!

I hereby award you The Terrific TUT of the month.

Mayvelous. :D
« Last Edit: May 22, 2008, 05:29:45 PM by Tj »
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Offline Fred21

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Re: A Brand New TUTS Exclusive - Uli's Terrific Tim Renwick Interview
« Reply #12 on: May 22, 2008, 05:28:49 PM »
Nice, fast appreciation for a great idea - well done Uli!

Offline Uli

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Re: A Brand New TUTS Exclusive - Uli's Terrific Tim Renwick Interview
« Reply #13 on: May 23, 2008, 08:25:24 AM »
I'd always assumed that The Party Line was a sort of Channel 5 live show. Did Tim Renwick play with The Party Line TUTS?

That reply confused me a bit as well, as I'm about 98% certain that I did see a photo of TV performing with Renwick, Cross and others in the 80's! (Looking at Renwick's seemingly endless list of sessions, gigs etc. it is however forgivable if he can't remember a few club gigs from the 80's.)

Thanks for all your kind words. I hope this interview helps to celebrate the album release (today in Germany, next week UK)!!  :)
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Offline jock

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Re: A Brand New TUTS Exclusive - Uli's Terrific Tim Renwick Interview
« Reply #14 on: May 23, 2008, 10:28:30 AM »
Superb Uli ..what a great read ... i never realised Tim Renwick played with Pink Floyd  8) :o

cheers Uli  8)
Bloody hell !