About Saint Raymond
With two further EPs reaching number three in the iTunes charts and selling over 100,000 copies in total, Saint Raymond signed to Asylum and found himself on everyone’s tip lists for 2014.
Then he met Ed Sheeran through a mutual friend and after a couple of drinking sessions together, out of the blue Ed texted to ask if he would like to play support on a 37-date arena tour of the UK and Europe. ‘It was so like Ed for it to come like that, rather than through a manager, booking agent or label. It was so casual.’
Playing with his band to a total of 290,000 people in nine weeks taught him a lot, and he soon learned how to get audiences to sing along. But more terrifying were the small gigs he did beforehand, taking his guitar and playing a few songs to the fans queuing outside, as a way of introducing himself. ‘That was way out of my comfort zone, because people are talking, on their phones or whatever and you have to win them over.’
It’s taken a while to fully capture the energy of his live shows in the studio, to do his infectious songs full justice. In London, he worked with Richard Wilkinson (Amy Winehouse, Hot Chip, Adele), and Hastings production duo Artery Music. In the US, he recorded with Jacknife Lee (whose many credits include REM, Snow Patrol and Kasabian) at his home in Topanga Canyon, a wild, bohemian and often eccentric enclave just outside Los Angeles where wild coyotes still howl at night. One morning, on the drive up the mountain, Callum saw a man killing a rattlesnake with a spade, and he realised he’d come a long way from home.
With such tales to tell, it’s easy to forget that Saint Raymond is only just 20-years-old. Young Blood is a fitting title for an album that shows the real story is just beginning.