“I try to score Tommy Shelby’s inner voice with my guitar. I’d play with a bow or hit the strings with the guitar on the ground, all sorts of weird stuff”: How Anna Calvi threw out the guitar rulebook to write the Peaky Blinders score

Anna Calvi, live onstage in Italy with her Telecaster
(Image credit: Roberto Finizio/Getty Images)

For most guitar players, composing music is a means for self-expression that often can provide the deepest and most profound insight into their hearts, minds and souls. The same can also be said of Anna Calvi’s three solo albums, though by the London-based songwriter’s own admission it was a somewhat different approach for her original score for Peaky Blinders seasons 5 and 6, released on CD and vinyl at the beginning of this year.

In these creative situations, she reasons, it’s not her own story being told, but rather that of the characters depicted on screen, so her primary objective is to join the dots between what people see and what they hear.

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Amit Sharma

Amit has been writing for titles like Total GuitarMusicRadar and Guitar World for over a decade and counts Richie Kotzen, Guthrie Govan and Jeff Beck among his primary influences as a guitar player. He's worked for magazines like Kerrang!Metal HammerClassic RockProgRecord CollectorPlanet RockRhythm and Bass Player, as well as newspapers like Metro and The Independent, interviewing everyone from Ozzy Osbourne and Lemmy to Slash and Jimmy Page, and once even traded solos with a member of Slayer on a track released internationally. As a session guitarist, he's played alongside members of Judas Priest and Uriah Heep in London ensemble Metalworks, as well as handled lead guitars for legends like Glen Matlock (Sex Pistols, The Faces) and Stu Hamm (Steve Vai, Joe Satriani, G3).