“This music is, indeed, theatrical and exciting. It is clear that Dan McGlade grew up in a musical landscape where melodic interest and sturdy chord progressions counted for something.”
Paul Graham Brown, Musical Theatre Composer and Author
My name is Dan McGlade. Based in Shipley, West Yorkshire, I've composed, devised, recorded and performed music for over twenty years - for theatre, film, bands, schools, universities and community groups.
Most recently, I ran a district-wide online community music course funded by Bradford Council’s Covid Response Fund, and have just finished producing the music for 'The Not So Ugly Sisters', a Leeds Playhouse, Red Ladder and Wrongsemble co-production. In June 2020, I also wrote and recorded the Leaver's Songs for two local primary schools.
I've just written the theme and incidental music for Wrongsemble's latest project, a series of short mystery films called HUMBUG, released in December 2020. You can hear and see it in the Portfolio.
Studying English Literature at the University of Leeds’ Bretton Hall College, I spent an unhealthy amount time haunting the Schools of Music and Drama. My final degree reflected this rather cruelly, but you can't have everything...
But performing in plays, musicals, making films, recording as a session musician, and even playing in an improvisational jazz orchestra, cemented my appreciation of the value of cross-media and cross-genre experience. It also meant that after graduation, I was able to join an actors’ co-operative, touring the UK with composer/director Paul Graham Brown in his new musical, The Porridge Opera.
After graduation, I embarked upon a quest to bring Theatrical Dandy-Rock to the world. Our band, Rent, were described as a three-way train crash between the Divine Comedy, Scissor Sisters and the Rocky Horror Show. Success and failure followed in the time-honoured tradition - band members came and went, gigs were played to audiences of four digits and one - but the musical vision remained, albeit weathered to a leathery patina by the ongoing experiences of age, then fatherhood.
Playing solo now as a singer/songwriter, I like to embellish performances with pedal effects, loops and triggered samples for added drama. Tales of deviant ribaldry remain, but are increasingly peppered with explorations of a more domestic nature, taken squarely form the write-what-you-currently-know-school of writing.
Over the years I’ve performed at many music venues in Leeds and Bradford (St George’s Hall, The 1in12 Club, The Brudennel, The New Roscoe, The HiFi Club, The Irish Centre), and theatres (The Alhambra, Leeds Playhouse), along with venues in London (Camden Barfly, Clapham Grand), Manchester (Night & Day) and elsewhere.
Notable supports included The Sensational Alex Harvey Band, Bill Wyman, Rolan Bolan (son of Marc) and Shana Morrison (daughter of Van). My most recent performances include the Water Rats in Kings Cross and the Gaslight Club in Leeds (the very night before lockdown), and online at VHepFest.
Parallel to performing, I began composing music for theatre, film, and online media. I wrote and musically directed a preposterous rock musical, ‘Pout and About’, which sold out five nights at the Theatre in The Mill, in Bradford, and wrote and performed the closing number for the 2010 film 'The Big I Am', starring Michael Madsen and Steven Berkoff.
Alongside commissioned work and live (currently online) performance, I'm developing a new performance piece, ‘Darcy Filthound’ - a morally questionable tale set in 19th Century London, in a style best (indulgently?) described as ‘Victorian Sleaze-Rock’.
When I'm not doing that, I play and sing in an Alt-Country/Americana band called Poison & Wine.
It's good to keep busy.
Especially these days.