stevelawson.net

Steve's Blog: Solo Bass & Beyond



Quick catch up… normal blogging will be resumed shortly.

July 15th, 2008 · Comments Off on Quick catch up… normal blogging will be resumed shortly.

Illness+tour+grandad’s funeral= not much blogging from Steve. Sorry ’bout that.

So the last 10 days have involved 3 days mostly in bed ill, 4 gigs, 2 days of rehearsing learning mad prog tunes with multiple time signatures (and in one case, an impossibly difficult line in 7/8 that I just had to ditch and make up as I went along!). The four gigs broke down into two gigs in churches, and two at the Eisteddfod in Llangollen, North Wales, where we were told as we arrived that we couldn’t go over 75db… nice.

Sunday was spent travelling – it took 7.5 hours to get from North Lincolnshire to London, in which time I could’ve got to New York, and yesterday (Monday) was the toughest gig of my life, as I had to speak at my Grandad’s funeral. Did I hold it together? Yeah, right, of course I did.

In the meantime, the illness that had me in bed for 3 days hasn’t really got much better – I just couldn’t stay in bed, so didn’t…

There’s going to be a whole series of posts, I suspect, about the tour, but I’ll debrief with the rest of the musicians, before posting my thoughts on it here, it’s only fair 🙂

So there you have it. More Teaching ideas, more Creative Choices posts, more other stuff coming v. soon.

And of course, Lo. and I have a gig coming up at Darbucka on July 29th, with the magical Roy Dodds on drums and percussion, and a return visit by the amazing Lloyd Davis on ukelele. So put that in your diaries NOW, and we’ll update you further ASAP.

Tags: Random Catchup

RIP Grandad…

July 1st, 2008 · Comments Off on RIP Grandad…




DSC00474.JPG

Originally uploaded by solobasssteve

This pic was taken two years ago. Yesterday, my grandad, 98 years old, passed away. My nan was with him.

There are mixed emotions when someone of such advanced years dies. It’s not like he was cut off in his prime… He was ill and in hospital. We saw him last week, and my comment after was ‘well, he could get over this illness and last another few years, or die in his sleep tonight, you just can’t tell’… as it turns out the latter prediction was much closer.

He was a lovely bloke, who mellowed hugely with age. My ‘nan’ is actually my step-nan – he had two 30+ years marriages in his 98 years. Amazing.

When we were kids he’d get very stressed about us breaking nana’s stuff, and we thought he was being gruff and miserable. Actually, he just adored nana and was genuinely really concerned that if we knocked over a vase or something, it would deeply upset her. Truth was, she wouldn’t have cared much. She just loved being around the family – and the two sides of the family have integrated better than almost any step-family situation I’ve ever come across.

The most striking thing about my grandad’s younger years is that he was a music-nut. He never played an instrument seriously, but for a quite a few years, he’d go into Foyles on Charing Cross Road in his lunch hour (this is back in the 40s/50s), listen to ALL the new releases that week, and buy whatever he liked. No real concern for a particular style, just whatever took his fancy. And he sang. Right up until we saw him last week, in hospital on a drip, unable to keep his false teeth in unaided, he was singing, remembering the words to songs when he forgot just about all else. He knew more of the words to Moon River than I did. He had the deepest voice I’ve ever heard. Made Barry White sound like Barry Gibb.

…so my huge and varied music taste, and the thousands of pounds I’ve spend on CDs, records, tapes and gig-going are probably somewhere down the line his fault. I will be eternally grateful. It’s one obsession I’m more than happy to have inherited from John Barker.

A lovely old bloke, who adored his family and food and real ale and a good laugh and traveling (oops, there’s another inherited obsession!) and cars and friends and walks in the country. He was full of crazy stories, having worked loads of jobs and lived through two world wars (born in 1910!). Stories I haven’t got recorded. I really wish I’d got his stories recorded years ago, before his memory started to slip. If you’ve got elderly grandparents, go and document their stories – they won’t be around for ever!

See ya, grandad – this is how I’ll remember you, smiling out the window.

Tags: Random Catchup