This issue has been a real labour. I started the issue being extremely excited about the amount of time I had to get around and do interviews, but as the time has faded and deadline drew closer, space became more and more limited and things had to be cut. Creating a magazine is a very balanced and precise process. The structure, the people, the editorial, the design and the advertising all sit in the balance. At the helm I had a great plan for this issue, but the reality of the situation is, everything changes. Life is just the same. You think you have control over something, but soon enough you’ll realise control is simply an illusion. None of us have entire control over our own lives – but we can pretend we do, which makes us all feel a little more secure. When I met with The Shires last month for their interview, it was made even clearer to me that we all affect the balance. The Shires have just had incredible success with their album BRAVE acheiving number 10 in the UK charts. For a country music artist in the UK, this is ground-breaking news and something most artists dare to dream of achieving. Their performance at C2C in March definitely made this possible – if you caught their set you know what I mean! But for them, the reality is simple – as soon as success slips, their lives could return to normal quicker than they could have ever imagined. For these artists they have so much further to fall. To get used to the idea of success is almost setting yourself up for a fall – nothing lasts forever and these artists know that all too well. So rather than getting ahead of themselves, with the big tours and the meet and greet type shows, they stay behind and speak to their fans, never too big to make an effort with the people who made it happen for them in the first place. Darius Rucker is another prime example of this. He put his success down to luck in his interview and spent his time highlighting all of those artists whom he admits may be better at singing than him, better songwriters than him, and never had the success he has acheived. There’s no doubting the teams behind these artists play a key part and for once I feel they should receive the acknowledgement they really do deserve. So many people work so hard behind the scenes to make an album a success, to be sure an artist makes the right decisions and to get them up on that podium. But for how long they stay there – that’s no sure thing. So next time you go to a gig, you spend time admiring an album or the quality of a music video, give a moment of thought to the people behind the machine – without whom the success wouldn’t have been possible.