COMPOSER AND GUITARIST Neil Clark was born in Hamilton, Scotland and lives in Toronto, Canada. He holds dual British and Canadian nationality. When the city of Glasgow and the rest of the U.K. was in the midst of the new wave explosion he formed the group Newspeak with future Creation Records head Alan McGee playing the city’s many small venues along with other contemporaries at the time, who included, Aztec Camera, Orange Juice, The Jesus And Mary Chain and The Bluebells. This led to a meeting with Blair Cowan and Lloyd Cole and then to the formation of a unit that was to become Lloyd Cole and the Commotions.
The Commotions enjoyed considerable success, touring extensively and releasing three studio albums – Rattlesnakes, Easy Pieces and Mainstream. The band split in 1990, but reunited in 2004 for a number of sold out concerts in the U.K. and Ireland marking the twentieth anniversary of the release of Rattlesnakes. Interest in the group remains strong with Universal Music to release a 5 CD box set of their complete recordings in early 2015.
Returning to work with Lloyd Cole in support of the singer’s second solo studio album, subsequent recording and touring with Lloyd followed – Clark adding guitar to the albums Love Story, Etc, The Negatives, Music In A Foreign Language and 2006’s Antidepressant. Additionally during this time period he worked with a number of different artists on projects in Canada, France and the U.S.
As a composer Clark has enjoyed a productive relationship in Ontario with filmmaker and director Terrance Odette, working on two of Odette’s films, Heater and Sleeping Dogs, and scoring the documentary TV series, Photograph. He has also collaborated with Toronto composer and singer David Wall working with him on the scores for episodes of War Story (History Television) and The Beetles Are Coming (an episode of the CBC series, The Nature of Things).
Neil is currently working on a new set of recordings – adding to the 2008 release of his first solo album album Sundogs and its follow-up, Second Story Sunlight. He also plays guitar in the trio Sleepers, with Alisdair Jones and Ambrose Pottie. As a long time admirer of the ECM catalog he was thrilled to recently take the opportunity to study improvisation and harmony with renowned vibraphonist and educator Gary Burton in his Berklee College of Music course.
Neil teaches guitar privately, emphasizing the creative and wide musical context of the instrument. More details on that can be found here.