Aberdeen singer-songwriter Craig John Davidson is set to release his hotly anticipated new album Tickets To The Sea on March 25.
A buzz has been building around Craig in recent months with Best You Ever Had named Single of the Week on BBC Radio Scotland.
Craig has been backed on radio by Roddy Hart, Janice Forsyth and legendary DJ Bob Harris.
Tickets To The Sea explores issues such as love and mortality but Craig insists there is an air of positivity to his recent release.
Craig said: “This album is a bit more optimistic, more hopeful.
“Usually I write songs as a form of psychological rehabilitation.
“On Tickets To The Sea most of the songs end on a positive note even if they do seem to be covering a darker matter.
“With the albums I previously released I probably wasn’t in so great a space as I was for this recording.
“Circumstances change and people’s lives get better.
“I think we have all surprised ourselves in recent times about how resilient we are.
“Also how grateful we are for what we didn’t know we had.
“For the album’s title I was thinking it is a ticket to freedom from various things.
“The sea is so vast, so it is a ticket away from everything.”
Already working on next album
Prolific musician Craig has been writing and recording since the early 2000s.
Tickets To The Sea is the follow up to the acclaimed Queen Compulsion which was released in April 2020.
During the pandemic, as well as recording the new album, Craig released a number of superb singles and EPs.
In the last 18 months he has released It’s Always Gonna Be Okay, The Beautiful Battle of Being Around, Good Luck Love, Down at Dawn and Best You Ever Had.
Craig revealed he has already started work on his next album.
Yay! Cassettes of the new album “Tickets To The Sea” have been pressed and are in my possession. See link in comments to pre-order. Cjd. x pic.twitter.com/S2G7A8lerF
— Craig John Davidson (@craigjohndavsn) February 19, 2022
He said: “This album (Tickets To The Sea) was finished almost six months ago.
“So now I already have 13 songs half recorded for the next album.
“It is what I do day to day. I treat it like a day job and make sure I do the music every day.
“The songs are always there.”
Guest appearance by USA rock star
Tickets To The Sea was preceded by single Best You Ever Had which is included on the 10 track album.
Best You Ever Had boasts a guitar solo from Peter Clett of Lotus Crush and formerly USA multi-million selling rockers Candlebox.
Clett is one of a number of guests on Craig’s ninth studio album release.
He said: “Peter Clett from Candlebox played a guitar solo and mixed a track.
“We have toured together with Lotus Crush in Europe and I also did a two-month tour with them in America.
“We are good mates. It is good to know someone who has a big name in America.
“Jonny Hardie from Old Blind Dogs played fiddle on a tune.
“Isaac Barnes was the backbone to most of these recordings as he did the bass and slide guitar which gave it a different flavour.
“He was responsible for pretty much the majority of the groove on the album.
“Oliver Richard who I did a single with plays Cello on the new album and Matt Duncan from the Malpaso Gang plays lap steel.”
Mini Scottish tour confirmed
Craig will headline The Blue Lamp for an album launch on April 1.
Prior to that he will embark on a mini Scottish tour with Finnish musician Kadonnut Manner that will kick off at The Flying Duck in Glasgow on March 24.
Craig will then have a home city show at The Tunnels in Aberdeen the following day before playing The Settle Inn, Stirling on March 26.
He said: “All the radio stations have been supportive and my name is out there now.
“I was even played on Bob Harris’ show.
“I used to watch him on the Old Grey Whistle test.
“Best You Ever Had was named Single Of The Week on Janice Forsyth’s show on BBC Radio Scotland.
“When I was waiting to be interviewed on that all the people on before me were famous.
“Then there was little old me sitting in my bedroom studio waiting to take a call from BBC.”
Concern over European tour dates
Craig has also shared the stage with The Twilight Sad, Pictish Trail and Terry Reid.
In December last year he toured Finland with shows in Turku, Tampere, Jyvaskyla and Oolu.
The tour, alongside Finnish musician Kadonnut Manner, concluded in Rovaniemi, the capital of Lapland.
Craig had planned a European tour for May but admits those plans may have to be delayed.
He said: “I have gigs in May in Europe.
“However I’m struggling because due to Covid it has been really difficult for people to commit to dates even if you are booking months in advance.
“I may have to contact the venues that are booked and maybe move it to August.
“With the war in Ukraine and the coronavirus situation it is all on hold.”