Six Of The Best: Ren Lawton | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Singer-songwriter Ren Lawton drops his latest single Love By Night. The track is a spirited Americana number with heartfelt vocals, jangly tambourine percussion and infectious country riffs. Written nearly a decade ago and recorded at Ren’s home studio, the track is about two people in love who have to hide their relationship for fear of being shunned by those around them.

Here, Ren gives us his six of the best…

Film
Detroit Rock City is one of my go to favourite films. It’s about a group of school friends who will go to any lengths to get hold of tickets to watch a Kiss concert. Hilarity ensues combined with a great sound track featuring T-Rex, Thin Lizzy, Black Sabbath and AC/DC to name a few. I first watched this film when I was about 14 and I had to have a day off school to recover from getting some stitches on my lip (football injury). My Mum took me to blockbusters in the morning to pick out a couple of films to keep me entertained during the day and this was one of them. It was a bad idea to watch a film this funny when you’ve got a face full of stitches!

Book
A book that really sticks out in my mind is ‘The Dice Man’ by Luke Rineheart. It’s a pretty raw book that follows the life of a therapist who decides to let fate pick which side of his character is on display by throwing a die. I read the book a few years ago and it still intrigues me as to whether it’s a true story or not. I was chatting to an old fella at a pub who swears it’s all true and that he’s visited a dice centre in the U.S.A.

The book I’m reading at the moment is ‘Lonesome Traveller’ by Jack Kerouac. I’ve only read about 5 pages of it so far so I can’t really tell you much about it.

Music
An artist that I’m really interested in at the moment is an Irish singer songwriter called David Keenan. I discovered him online a few years ago and then saw him at Newcastle City Hall supporting Hozier back in September 2019. He has excellent stage presence and brilliantly descriptive and poetic lyrics. His 2nd album is coming out very soon and I’m very much looking forward to listening to it. If you’re into Van Morrison, Glen Hansard and Foy Vance then you’d love his music.

TV
Well, this is very cliche but I just loved the Game of Thrones series. I was a bit late to the party so I only heard about GoT by the time the 6th series was out but that gave me the perfect opportunity to binge my way through the series that I’d missed. My favourite character is Bronn the sellsword and my least favourite character has to be Joffrey.

A very close 2nd in my favourite TV series is Vikings and the series that I’m watching at the moment is Baptiste.

Art
One of my favourite artists is Francis Bacon and I was lucky enough to see some of his work at the Hatton Gallery in Newcastle. Another artist that I’m really into at the moment is Matilda Sutton. She has a piece on display at the Baltic right now and she’s also going to have a couple of pieces on display at The Turner Contemporary in Margate towards the end of the year. Check out her work on instagram @matildasutton94

Poetry
Harry Owen is a Liverpudlian poet now living in South Africa whose work I really admire. He’s had a number of collections published as well as being the inaugural poet laureate for Cheshire in 2003. My favourite of his collections is probably his latest one ‘Thicket’ which was published earlier this year. From that collection make sure to check out ‘Piece de resistance’.

I’m also dipping in and out of Jack Kerouac’s ‘Mexico City Blues’. It’s brilliantly weird. All the poems are consecutively titled ‘Chorus 1,2,3 etc..’ and flow in and out of one another in loose ways.

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