Call me ‘Dicky’
Carbonear musician recording long-anticipated solo album
When Andrew “Dicky” Strickland walks out on to a stage for a performance, he’s in his own glee.
The 29-year-old musician and performer is a member of the Long Distance Runners, a local band with fans in the St. John’s area and all over Atlantic Canada, and Sonny Tripp, a foursome from the Conception Bay North region.
Throughout his life, the Carbonear native has been a member of many bands.
He developed the persona of Dicky after high school. It suited his personality, and became the way he was recognized in the local music scene. If you call him Andrew in front of some of his friends or bandmates, some of them might question who you’re talking to.
A new dad of son Bowie, named after the late David Bowie, Dicky has been balancing family life, his day job and being a part of musical groups.
But there has been something missing from his life for a long time, something he has dreamt about since he was 13 years old — a solo album.
“I started writing songs for this album 10 or 12 years ago,” Dicky told The Compass. “At least half the songs on the album are from a decade ago. I’ve just never had the guts to do it.”
At the start of every year, I’d say, ‘I need to get this done.’ Andrew (Dicky) Strickland
Although he’s confident on stage, and has even wrote and helped write songs with his bands, he has been afraid to make himself vulnerable in a solo market. He used to be afraid of what other people would think of him and his work.
“At the start of every year, I’d say, ‘I need to get this done,’” he admitted. “Now I want to get it done before I turn 30. I don’t care what people think anymore.”
For a few years, Dicky had some personal struggles, and that prevented him from being able to write songs.
“Lyrically, I felt a few years ago I didn’t have a lot to talk about,” he said. “But now, I feel like I have stuff to say.”
Dicky has matured musically and lyrically, and he is now ready to move forward with his album.
For many musicians, stepping out from behind a group and baring themselves in a solo album of original music is a difficult task. The music scene, especially in Newfoundland with so much talent, can be a tough place to make your mark.
Dicky has already received some success through his work with the Long Distance Runners. But taking that step to releasing a solo recording is a difficult one.
“I hope I can gain the respect of my peers,” Dicky said. “And I want to differentiate myself from my old self and the music scene. I want to be different. I want them to say, ‘This is something we haven’t heard before.’”
And yes, it’s about individuality and acceptance, but those things don’t always matter. And to Dicky, overall, he just wants to influence his son.
“I want my son to have something physical to hold and audible to listen to when he is older, and he can say to his little friends, ‘That thing you’re hearing is my dad. He did that.’”
A helping hand
Albums are expensive to produce and record. And for Dicky, it’s just not financially possible to invest that kind of money up front. He put some $2,500 into recording by last summer, and had to step away. He had a baby on the way and other life necessities to pay for.
With words of encouragement from friends, Dicky decided to start a GoFundMe page to help make his dream come true.
In just under a month, he has raised over $2,600 from friends, family and strangers who want to see him succeed. With donations ranging from $10 to $350 per person on the page, Dicky is beginning to see his dream take shape.
Because it’s the cost up front that is the biggest concern, he is offering incentives to those who donate. These incentives are from $5 to $6,000 donations, and include everything from two digital downloads to a private live performance. He has even thrown in some quirky offers, including a lunch date with him and Bowie, a T-shirt out of his own closet and spending a night with him and his drummer, Chris Donnelly, in the Trinity Conception Square parking lot making foolish YouTube videos. He plans to honour all offers.
Visit www.GoFundMe.com/SoloAlbum to see more details about Dicky’s musical journey or to make a donation.
“Thank you so much to those who have supported me so far,” he said.
Andrew (Dicky) Strickland has decided after years of holding off, he will release a solo album.