Part-timer joins pop giants on UK Ivor award list

Tue Apr 21, 2009 7:17am EDT
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By Mike Collett-White

LONDON (Reuters) - A little-known musician working in a warehouse for a living and without a record deal was nominated for a coveted Ivor Novello Award on Tuesday, joining some of the giants of British pop including Coldplay and Duffy.

Nicholas Hemming, 35, is on the shortlist for best song musically and lyrically for "The Last of the Melting Snow" which he wrote and performed with indie band The Leisure Society.

The single was released in December to critical acclaim, but failed to break into the top 40 in the UK singles charts despite extensive radio play.

According to Ivor organisers, Elbow frontman Guy Garvey named it his favorite song of 2008. Up against Hemming and his song is none other than Elbow for "One Day Like This."

As well as The Last of the Melting Snow, Hemming has written and performed music for films including "A Room for Romeo Brass" and "Dean Man's Shoes."

"I worked in a record shop for many years and I can remember reading about the Ivors, thinking how it would be the coolest award to win as it's decided on artistic rather than commercial merit," Hemming said.

"I went straight on to the Ivors website after I'd received the nomination letter and found endorsements from Paul McCartney and John Barry, two of my biggest musical heroes."

The annual Ivor awards honor songwriters and composers who are often eclipsed by the more famous acts who perform their works.   Continued...