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Love Letter To A Record: Carl Renshaw On Todd Rundgren’s ‘A Wizard, A True Star’

Written by Carl Renshaw on August 6, 2019

Many of us can link a certain album to pivotal moments in our lives. Whether it’s the first record you bought with your own money, the chord you first learnt to play on guitar, the song that soundtracked your first kiss, the album that got you those awkward and painful pubescent years or the one that set off light bulbs in your brain and inspired you to take a big leap of faith into the unknown – music is often the catalyst for change in our lives and can even help shape who we become.

In this series, Music Feeds asks artists to reflect on their relationship with music and share with us stories about the effect music has had on their lives.

Carl Renshaw – A Wizard, A True Star Todd Rundgren (1973)

Hey Todd Rundgren,

A Wizard, a True Star is the album that influenced me to start recording and writing music.

Back in late 2015 I was just finishing year 10 and after realising I wasn’t very academically capable, I thought I should try and work hard at doing something I’d always wanted to do, and that’s record and produce music under my name. I discovered your album at a second hand shop and the first thing I noticed was the artwork. I was too stingy to spend the 30 dollars on the album, so I just looked you up on YouTube instead (sorry).

I was immediately fascinated and fell in love with your whole album. I loved how experimental it was and how weird and wacky it was, but at the same time it incorporated pop elements and created the perfect mix between pop and experimental music.

After doing my research on you, I discovered that you recorded this album, produced it and played most of the instruments. This immediately resonated with me and I thought if he can do it, I can do it! So, I then used my birthday and Christmas money to buy some recording gear and set out to write/record as many songs as I can and play every instrument.

I can’t sing very well AT ALL so I think playing every instrument and recording it all have me some sort of self-worth and hopefully made up for the fact I’m not really that good at music haha. Your album made me fall in love with wacky synth sounds, weird chord progressions, experimental music in general and inspired me to aim to push boundaries and not follow what everyone else does.

Thanks, Todd, for writing this masterpiece,

Carl

Hobart-based artist Carl Renshaw has just unveiled his arresting new single ‘En Fantasy’ – produced and mixed by the musician himself, with additional production by Tasker (Tia Gostelow, Kinder, Pleasure Coma).

It’s a woozy, enigmatic and colourful pop circus, a psychedelic mind-fuck in the best possible way and you can take it for a spin below.

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