by Nick Harper in Marlborough, England, United Kingdom

We did it
On 13th September 2020 we successfully raised £22,516 with 540 supporters in 35 days

A project to support my new album 'Phantastes'

by Nick Harper in Marlborough, England, United Kingdom

 New stretch target

A professional animated film of the story, projected live on the Phantastes tour - whenever that happens ...

Hi Folks!

   Right now I should be at the Edinburgh Fringe. I should have been previewing my new album 'Phantastes' and then touring it across the UK this Autumn. Alas 2020 had other plans for us all and every show of mine in 2020 has been cancelled! BUT the silver lining is that this crowdfunder is a really personal way of telling the story and a great way for you to be involved. I am excited to be offering some special stuff that resonates with the songs and the album, above and beyond the usual merch stall at the gigs.

   'Phantastes' is partly inspired by a book of the same name. It was written by Aberdeenshire literary giant, George MacDonald. First published in 1858, 'Phantastes' is the Grand-daddy of all modern fantasy, inspiring Lewis Carroll, C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien (and me!) amongst others. I bought a paperback version of this faerie romance for adults when I was 17, from The White Horse Bookshop in Marlborough in 1982. I would read this book in bed in the mornings in a little house on the edge of Savernake Forest. At the time I was trying to shake the shadow of loneliness as I pursued a local beauty at school, whilst in the book, the main character was plagued by a shadow as he pursued a Marble Lady in a mythical forest. The pages within hold some of my favourite passages of prose. In the real world the boy got the girl and he still lives with her today.1596794739_phantastes_book_pic.jpg                                                    Here is a pic of my treasured and well-thumbed copy that has been in (and out of) my bookcase all these years. I always pass on a book if I enjoy it, so .. it is time to offer it to you now as a special reward for supporting this project. Inside, you will find a personal note that explains why it means so much to me and to wish you well on your own journey.

   So the album is a journey through the ethereal world of a young dreamer, (who, it turns out, has a knack of making dreams come true). To evoke this feeling I wanted something more other-worldly than my usual low-slung acoustics. I turned to IGOR. IGOR is an Airline Map Baritone electric by Eastwood Guitars in Seafoam Green, with a few unique customisations by yours truly. Like any guitar IGOR is a Interactive Global Oscillatory Reactor. He has been my faithful six-string assistant throughout the recording and conjured up the magical dreamworld I was trying to re-inhabit perfectly. I wouldn't have been able to do it without him.  1596797872_igor_pic.jpg                   

   Somewhat reluctantly IGOR is now offered as the very top tier reward for supporting this project. I will be happy if he ventures from Harperspace and finds a new home, but if not, I'll be just as happy to keep him in my employ.

   Many of the rewards come with a free ticket to a livestream gig. This will be the 'Phantastes' show that I would have performed at the Edinburgh Fringe and beyond. The date will be set after the CDs and LPs have been delivered. We will endeavour to make the time of the show a world-friendly one so you can interact with Nick live, but you will still be able to access the show after the live broadcast.

   The story of the album is in essence, the history of a kiss. The story of one big thing in my life I got right. So it sure is one from the heart. I hope the songs resonate with you as much as they have with me as I wrote them and help you escape the real world just for a moment or two. We all need that every once in a while and maybe even more so in these strange days.

   There are lots of ways you can get involved. You can pledge as little as a quid and become part of a select group, who will receive an honorary mention in the pantheon of backers on my Facebook page if you so wish.

   You can have the music delivered as a digital download, a CD or a 12" Vinyl LP. Or any combination of the three. 

  1596817558_images.jpeg I am also offering hand written lyrics. I will get out my (mum's) best fountain pen and write on my best paper in my best handwriting the lyrics to your choice of any one of my songs.

   The 'Everything Bundle' includes a discount on all the music rewards, with a handwritten lyric and A Big Thank You. BUT, if the specific combination of rewards that you would like is not in that bundle - fear not - you can back the project more than once and get the combo you need for your collection!

   As well as the top-tier rewards already mentioned 1596883145_lps.jpegthere are 3 vinyl white labels and I also have a unique one-off reward of a handmade writing book, inside which, I will write all the lyrics to 'Phantastes'.

   Delivery is included for all rewards sent to the UK. We are asking a small additional donation for international postage.

*We think we will be able to deliver the rewards on time, but completion dates may slip a little due to the extraordinary circumstances around the world affecting production and delivery times at the moment.  

   Thank you for reading this .. Most musicians make their living from live shows these days and most musicians have had their live shows cancelled this year. For the first time in at least 25 years I will not be gigging for a calendar year.

   If the response to this crowdfunder goes crazy - I do have dreams of making an animated movie of the story. I have already storyboarded some songs/scenes in my head! Realistically any funds raised will go towards the production costs of making Phantastes and hopefully giving me the breathing space for writing and recording my next project ..

I believe the arts are not a luxury, but a necessity. We need them for our mental wellbeing, the life-affirming world of shared experiences and for how they enhance our lives in innumerable, immeasurable ways. So: a huge thank you for supporting your favourite arts projects, including this crowdfunder! Love, Nick.


                            Nick at the Edinburgh Fringe 2019. Photo: Simon Foster    


                  Here's to the companies whose great products Nick has used in the making of 'Phantastes'. Nick is not 'endorsed' by these companies, but buys their products because he thinks they're good.

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This project offers rewards in return for your donation.

£10 or more

Phantastes audiobook read by Nick

An audiobook of Phantastes read by Nick. Not only a great book, but the story that is the essential companion to the album, giving an insight to the music's inspiration and an extra resonance to the songs. 25% of any donation for this will be forwarded to the Music Venues Trust charity, who do absolutely vital work supporting grassroots venues up and down the UK.

£1 or more

A Big Thank You

A Big Thank You for helping 'Phantastes' become a thing. If you like, we will post your name in the Pantheon of backers on Nick's Facebook page

£7 or more

Phantastes Digital Download and A Big Thank You

A digital download of the album and the option of A Big Thank You on social media

£12 or more

Phantastes CD and A Big Thank You

Phantastes CD and A Big Thank You - Nick will sign it for you if you like

£20 or more

Signed Phantastes CD Bundle

A signed copy of the CD, digital download, a ticket to the online Phantastes gig and A Big Thank You

£30 or more

Signed Phantastes Vinyl LP Bundle

A signed copy of the album on 180g vinyl, A ticket to the Phantastes online gig, digital download and A Big Thank you

£50 or more

Nick Harper Hand Written Lyrics Bundle

Nick will write the lyrics to one of his songs for you and personalise them if required. You can choose any lyrics from his back catalogue. The Phantastes lyrics will be posted online. You will also receive a digital download of the album, a ticket to the online gig and A Big Thank You

£80 or more

Everything Bundle

A handwritten Nick Harper lyric of your choice, a signed Phantastes vinyl LP, a signed Phantastes CD, a Phantastes digital download, a ticket to the Phantastes Online Gig and A Big Thank You

£150 or more

3 of 3 claimed

Signed Phantastes White Label Vinyl + Bundle

A signed test pressing 'white label' copy of the album on 12" 180g vinyl. You will also receive the Everything Bundle!

£180 or more

1 of 1 claimed

Phantastes Book - Nick's Original Copy + Bundle

The 1st edition (thus) paperback copy of Phantastes by George Macdonald, that Nick bought from The White Horse Bookshop in Marlborough in 1982. This is the very copy he read whilst his real-life echoed the story within. Inside you will find a personal note from Nick explaining why the book is so special to him. You will also receive the Everything Bundle!

£250 or more

1 of 1 claimed

Nick's handwritten Phantastes lyrics book + Bundle

A one-off artisanal writing book with the lyrics to every song on Phantastes handwritten by Nick. A unique reward. You will also receive the Everything Bundle.

£2,000 or more

1 of 1 claimed

Nick's Airline Guitar used for Phantastes + Bundle

Meet IGOR. The Interactive Global Oscillatory Reactor. IGOR was the only instrument used to record Phantastes and has had a couple of unique customisations added by Nick. IGOR proudly wears his name and uniquely, sports a tremolo on the bridge, that Nick operates with his palm rather than a tremolo arm. This is also the guitar Nick played on Lies! Lies! Lies! and on tour with the Wilderness Kids! You will also receive the Everything Bundle.

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