So Easter was a blast! I flew to Egypt for some down time and had my mind blown by the history and tranquility of the place. We stayed in Hurghada and spent most of our time snorkelling with parrot and puffer fish along with a whole variety of silvers and shapes dashing through the blue. I was most proud of myself for finally having the courage to swim in deep water near boats and piers (I don't like dark water... or any water where I can't put my feet down) but I'm so glad I went for it. Special moments included finding a couple of clown fish and spotting a huge lion fish in a bay, yes don't worried we stayed clear of that stripey wonder. Aside from snorkelling we visited Luxor for one epic road trip of a day...in 31 degree heat. Now I'd already heard Luxor was home to Karnac and the Valley of the kings but nothing prepares you for when you actually see it. I felt like I was Rachel Weiz in the Mummy and just couldn't believe where I was.
I learnt so much about Egyptian history and culture, I was jotting down details in my sketch book as we went - and melted - in the temples. I'm sure something musical or at least poetic will come out of it because it was such a spiritual experience; taking a barge down the River Nile and spotting a crane feeding and water Buffalo having a drink with the city of the dead rising above them like some mythical home of the Gods. Incredible sights. We stopped at the Colossi of Memnon before exploring the tombs; a huge pair of figures once guarding a temple, now sat with birds all over the laps, that was a peaceful sight.
We meandered our way through the city of the dead, past Howard Carter's, and up into the colossal Valley of the Kings. Now I'm normally the first to avoid tombs - normally due to an overwhelming sense that they are there to rest and I shouldn't be poking around their remains - but the heat was so overbearing I was happy to get into the lovely cool tombs as quickly as possible. Then it hit me. The blaze of sunshine stuttered my eyes and when I opened them again it was like being in a palace. Walls made famous by national geographic were suddenly right in front of me and I couldn't believe it was real. I got out the sketchbook again and made some drawings (no photos allowed here without extra payment which I kind of liked, it felt like you were giving it more respect).
An absolute whistle stop tour of a day but one that has stood out for me. I shall definitely be going back!
Right onto musical endeavours then! Who knows what might come out of that little trip to Egypt? Anyway I'm sorry I'll stop waffling about my holiday.. I have some exciting dates for the diary coming up, I'm just keeping them close at the moment until they are fully confirmed and there are pictures to share. So in about a week I think I'll be announcing those. I've been working on putting bass lines on the new album so that gives you an idea or where we are. My method of recording is:
1. Get the bones down (guitar & vocals and percussion if available)
2. Overdubs (instrumental solos)
3.vocal overdubs (harmonies)
4. bass lines
7.duplication and celebration!
So as you can see we're nearly there! I've also been working hard on a Johnny Cash tribute act with my talented percussionist friend, Ian Holleran so I shall keep you updated with those dates too.
I've probably said enough now so I shall leave you in peace. Thank you for your unending support and for taking the time to read my rambles.
Love you all,
Greetings from the white hills of North Devon!
As I type this the second wave of snow this year is whipping its way past my window in a craze of heavy white flakes. I'm having a productive Sunday of planning out my future musical endeavours. I have recently taken the bold step of dropping a day at work, which in my world is financial madness but I felt it was the right thing to do. I was raised with the ethos of life is work; you work and you work and you work for as long as you can because that is how you survive. The trouble with that ethos is you will work yourself to death and at the end of it all you'll realise you didn't do much of what you wanted. I want to get back to doing what I love so this is the first step to achieving that.
You'll notice for example there's a new tab on the website - music tuition! I'm been tutoring for twelve years now - where does the time go! - and now that I have more time it would be lovely to have more students with a variety of instruments to teach. I'm also a lot more active on youtube, trying out tutoring videos and just singing some songs to the camera. I'm hoping to look into wedding singing too as I did one once, many moons ago, and although I probably under charged and froze to death in the process I had a lovely, memorable night. Maybe it's because I'm getting married too and I've been around a tonne of wedding fairs already this year; I realise there's a niché in the market for someone like me to come and play something soft. You can tell I've been thinking for sometime about what I would like to do and it's kind of exploded like some thought bubble. Ultimately I love to sing and perform and it will be wonderful to have more time to share more music with you.
Thank you for your continued patience and support; the comments left under new songs on Soundcloud and videos shared on Facebook often make my day and give me the motivation to keep going xx Look after each other and keep warm!
ps. I'm heading back to the studio this week (hopefully it'll be warmer by Saturday!) and also continuing to rehearse a Johnny Cash Tribute-Duo side project so much more music to come, stay tuned x
I feel like I've spent this year repeating the line, "soon" but now that work has finally begun and we're 2 sessions into recording I can honestly say the new album IS finally coming. I've been working with a lovely bubbly percussionist who is single handedly keeping me motivated with his positive reinforcement. The older I get the more I realise I am actually tinkerbell and require continual clapping to survive... sad 'innit?
It's been quite strange to be back in a studio situation, I've found it weirdly daunting. The past six months have been quite hard for me as I've been suffering with asthma and acid reflux (what bad luck!) so I've been getting used to lots of new medication and, what felt like, a reduced lung capacity so wow was it a shock to be rehearsing again and sustaining notes. I've been climbing the recovery ladder and I'm getting there, more determined than ever to give you an album you'll love. Rest assured... Oo there's so much I want to tell you but I don't want to spoil it or indeed count my chickens before they've hatched. As I said we're two sessions in, looking forward to overdubbing in the 3rd (that's the fun part where we put all the layers on). You might've guessed already but I am all about the layers...
I've been trying to keep you guys a bit more involved in what I'm up to while I feel like I'm in the pits having work done (strange formula one reference there...) so there's lots of videos on my Facebook and I'm getting back to using my youtube channel again. Check 'em out as I'd love to hear if you have any suggestions of songs to do or cover - I have truly missed gigging lately so for the time being my videos are my way of reaching you so hey let me know you're out there! If that's still enough I've managed to clog my Soundcloud account and have spilt on over to clypit.com. I will of course have to delete a few oldies on my Soundcloud and upload some new stuff soon - so hard to do - so enjoy 'em while they're still up.
Thank you for your continued support and in the words of Pink, 'I'm not dead yet' haha
Love your friendly, needy local musician
ps. it was cold in the studio!