An animated music walk is coming to Birkenhead and will feature new music from some of the Wirral’s most iconic musicians.

The Leftbank Soundtrack will launch on Friday, August 27 as a part of Future Now Festival and is the brainchild of the community music venue, Future Yard.

Visitors can access exclusive music via their smartphones as they visit different locations across the town.

Founder of Future Yard, Craig Pennington said: “Birkenhead, like the whole of Wirral, has music in its DNA.

“We have a unique story to tell. The Leftbank Soundtrack will tell the stories of our town through the musical perspectives of some of our finest noise makers.

“This will be a journey of musical discovery and urban exploration, an opportunity to reimagine spaces you pass by each day and discover a whole new perspective.

“Grab a smartphone and, pair of headphones and let the journey begin.”

The project uncovers Birkenhead’s past, future and culture whilst celebrating the people, places and sounds that make the town.

Andy McCluskey from OMD, Louisa Roach of She Drew the Gun and singer-songwriter Bill Ryder-Jones have joined the project. Matthew Barnes of Forest Swords, musician and composer Andrew PM Hunt and musician and producer Nigel Blackwell from Half Man Half Biscuit will also take part.

Andy McCluskey said: “It’s a fascinating and interesting concept for Birkenhead and as a Wirral boy born and bred, I am delighted to be a part of the project.

“My first bass guitar was bought from Park Selling services over 45 years ago. Perhaps this is me coming full circle?

“The Ventilation Tower is an iconic building hard against the Mersey and it’s a really exciting challenge to create a musical piece for it.

“I stood next to the tower doors in early July and recorded the sound of the wind whistling through them. These recordings became my inspiration and bed track for the music.”

Wirral Globe: Louisa Roach outside community music venue, Future Yard. The venue provides performance opportunities to national and international artists, live industry training and a regional hub for artist development. Photo: Robin ClewleyLouisa Roach outside community music venue, Future Yard. The venue provides performance opportunities to national and international artists, live industry training and a regional hub for artist development. Photo: Robin Clewley

She Drew the Gun performed at Future Yard in September 2020, as part of the venue’s series of digitally streamed and socially distanced shows.

Frontwoman, Louisa Roach, has been paired with Argyle Street and Future Yard.

She said: “I'm really happy to be adding a song to the project. Birkenhead is a big part of me, all my family are from here, it's one of the places I spent a lot of time growing up, and I'm getting married here in September.

“It's good to see some new creative things happening in the area, we've got a connection to Future Yard as well, being the first band that played here so it's nice to be doing a song based around the venue.”

Bill Ryder-Jones headlined Future Yard’s first festival in 2019 and has been twinned with Woodside Ferry Terminal.

Bill Ryder-Jones said: “I'm always made up to be asked to write about my home. I took a trip over to Woodside Ferry Terminal and got a clear sense of what I wanted to write.

“It's one of those places where nature meets industry in a very pleasing way. Hopefully that reflects in the music I've written.”

The Leftbank Soundtrack is commissioned and supported by Wirral Council as part of the Town Deal programme.

Chair of Wirral Council’s Economy, Regeneration and Development Committee, Cllr Tony Jones said: “This is part of the £25 million Town Deal programme and is part of a £1 million in initial funding being invested in Birkenhead as part of a major bid to transform its town centre.

"This project is just one example which shows how we as a council are supporting growth of the creative sector in the Argyle Street area. It is incredibly exciting to see so many talented Wirral artists using their skills, local knowledge and insight, and their affection for Birkenhead to put together this ‘audio adventure’ celebrating the town.”

The Leftbank Soundtrack Locations

  • Hamilton Square | Artist Nigel Blackwell
  • Ventilation Tower | Artist Andy McCluskey
  • Woodside Ferry Terminal | Artist Bill Ryder-Jones
  • Birkenhead Priory and Cammell Laird | Artist Forest Swords
  • Future Yard and Argyle Street | Artist Louisa Roach, She Drew The Gun
  • Birkenhead Central | Artist Andrew PM Hunt

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