Ray Cooper is a singer/songwriter and multi instrumentalist currently
residing in the depths of Sweden where he moved in 2000. He left
Oysterband in 2013 after a year in which they picked up 3 BBC2 Folk
Awards and appeared live on the "Later..with Jools Holland'
show. Since then he has carved out a successful solo career.
His second solo album Palace Of Tears is unashamedly romantic.
It is a bittersweet album about living and working in Northern Europe
over the last quarter century, 'I tried to avoid nostalgia, but
many songs deal with the past and how it can never be reclaimed.
My first album Tales Of Love War and Death by Hanging has a strongly
historical theme, this one is about more recent history , more personal
'The sound of the album is placed firmly in Northern
Europe too, with the addition of Swedish musicians, and some songs
that reference Sweden, Scotland, and my roots'.
All this seen through the prism of the Swedish winter as I look
out from my studio.
The title track Palace of Tears was inspired by my memories of
working in the former East Germany. The Berliners had a nickname
for one of the checkpoints in the wall, this was a tube station
in Friedrichstrasse and was used to visit their relatives in the
East. On the way back it was a place of goodbyes, hence the ironic
name 'Der Tränenpalast', The Palace Of Tears.