Bad Boy Come Good!
Julian Murphy and I talked about doing an interview about his life and work at the end of 2019. One thing and another got in the way but I am pleased that I finally caught up with him recently and he was happy to answer some questions.
Knowing Julian had grown up in Pembrokeshire from the age of five, I asked what life had been like.
“School was a ‘No No’ for me,” he told me “I did not like it one bit and I always felt that I never fitted in. Growing up in Fishguard back then was no picnic. As a kid you had to stand up for yourself, mostly against older boys. Having said that, I wouldn’t change a thing and I have made many lifelong friends.”
Now residing in Narberth Julian often goes to Fishguard to visit family. “It is not the buzzing place I remember. I do hope one day it can return to what it was as the people of Fishguard work hard and deserve a thriving town.”
I asked Julian about his work now, which is what brought me into contact with him last year (2019) He explained that he is currently in the process of recording and producing his next album: “It’s a mixture of classical music, mixed with rock, and Gothic overtones.”
Sounds interesting. It is Julian’s seventh album and is due for release in 2021. He writes all of his own material.
“I also present a YouTube channel called ‘It’s a Weird World’,” he said.
I have seen it and it’s very entertaining.
“It has grown rapidly in the past 12 months. The channel has thousands of subscribers from all over the world whom we are happy to call our friends.”
Julian also writes all the spooky music for his friend John Clarke’s YouTube channel called ‘The Wonderful World of Weirdness’. “This is our main channel with over 140,000 subscribers worldwide so far.”
Julian and John met when they were children. “We lived on the same street in Heol Preseli, Fishguard. We performed in a band together and have always been friends continuing to work together successfully on all our YouTube channels. It brings me great joy and satisfaction that two boys growing up on the streets of Fishguard continue to work together and be pals to this day.
“I got into music through my mother. She used to play a very old record player, a Dansette. It had a hole in it where a little bright light used to shine through. My mother would play records by people like the Rolling Stones, the Everly Brothers and Elvis, and I actually thought that all these artists where inside the record player. I used to peep into the hole where the light shone to see if I could see Elvis or Mick Jagger!”
Juian remembers standing on a table in school when he was seven years old and belting out Time is on My Side by the Rolling Stones, so it’s no surprise that he bought his first guitar at the age of 14, forming a band soon after. He describes this as a steep learning curve and great fun. “Nobody in the band wanted to sing, so I had a go at it and from then on started writing my own songs.”
Over the years Julian has played in many bands all over the country.
“It takes an awful lot of work to make a band successful and, none of them really worked out. I eventually decided not to rely on anyone again. I wanted something physical to hold in my hand for the hard work and that meant, learning the art of recording.
“My past two albums have seen me progress musically in style, going from country, gospel and blues. My latest release, which was a concept album called The Final Battle about the battle between Jesus and the Devil was released last year and had great reviews.
“My last live performance was in the Queens Hall in Narberth. The current pandemic seems to have put a big stop on live performances, so I feel lucky that I am self-sufficient in having my own studio where I don’t have to pay out thousands of pounds for studio time and I am able to progress on my own.”
Julian started working as a producer in 2010, and from humble beginnings is thankful to be able to work with all sorts of fantastic equipment.
As if that were not enough, he has also written and published an audio book called JESS which is a supernatural story about a boy’s journey from his home town of Fishguard to London where he helps people to understand the true meaning of Salvation.
“ I have had quite a wild life in the past,” Julian tells us “but here I am now married to a vicar.”
Sounds interesting. I do hope we shall hear more very soon.
Julian’s published work along with the links to music videos, audio book and albums can be found on https://www.julianmurphy.co.uk/.