Click here to return to the main site.

Music Review

Cover Image

The Andrew Fisher Songbook


Music: Andrew Fisher
Lyrics: Andrew Fisher
Performed by: Various
Label: SimG Records
RRP: £10.99
Click here to buy -
Release Date: 21 May 2021

As we seem to be getting towards the end of the pandemic, and theatre and the arts starts to reopen, there’s a feeling of positivity in the air. I think we’ve all found it hard over the past year, and people in the entertainment industry especially. One of the good things to come out of it though is we have all had more time to listen, enjoy and appreciate the vast array of recordings that have been produced over the past year. There have been some excellent recording released - recorded in and out of lockdown - and I’m always happy when a new SimG release lands on my virtual doormat.

SimG Records - the independent label, created in 2009, has established itself as the UK’s leading record label dedicated to supporting emerging artists and musical theatre writers. The Andrew Fisher Songbook is their 40th physical release, and past releases include the award-winning ‘Flowers For Mrs Harris’ by Richard Taylor and Rachel Wagstaff, and most recently the all-star studio cast of ‘Gabriel’. Reaching 40 CDs as an independent label is no mean feat, and Simon should be proud of everything he has done.

Andrew Fisher is a name I’ve come across a few times, and always been impressed by his work. Andrew is a composer and lyricist and writes musicals, film music, concert music and pop and jazz. In the past, I’ve had the pleasure of reviewing several of his works, including Gabriel, Girl In A Crisis and The Little Fox. This Songbook release presents Fisher’s musical theatre songwriting, specially selected from his catalogue of original musicals. This compelling collection of solo stand-alone songs are ideally suitable for cabarets, concerts and auditions, and showcase his gift for melody, his characterful, insightful and witty lyrics, and stylistic range as a composer. Including a range of comedy, drama and pathos, these well-contrasted highlights are given a ravishing orchestral treatment.

The talent on here is pretty mind blowing. Ben Stock, Annalene Beechey, Daniel Boys, Chloe Hart and the lovely Wendi Peters (who I worked with on her very first professional panto, and now starring in the musical You Are Here which opens this week at the Southwark Playhouse) are all just as excellent as you would expect. There’s also a great mixture of ballads and more ’thoughtful’ songs to balance out what Fisher is perhaps best at - comical and very clever light hearted numbers. In the former category, Beechey’s ‘At The Crossroads’ is really poignant, and I also enjoyed ‘How Foolish Of Me’. In typical Peters casting, ‘All Men Are Bastards’ is a great number, as is the opening song ‘Alphabet Soup’, both showing Fisher’s skill in word-smithery.

I really enjoyed this great mix of songs from the pen of one of our greatest up and coming composers, and another winning release from the UK’s premier label for new and exciting musical theatre talent.


Ian Gude