My, what a busy day!

It started with three hours of teaching, followed by two hours of missed teaching (occasionally students don’t turn up – it’s quite worrying when they don’t let me know, as they may have had an accident or anything – this time I only had a work phone number for the guy, so couldn’t call him…) Filled in the time with some more web tweaking – added a load of the photos from the marvellous photo sesh with the marvellous Steve Brown, and designed a little desktop image for anyone who wants it.

Anyway, that was followed by an hour chopping wood in the back garden – oh yes, it’s like victorian england here… The wood chopping in question was actually getting a pile of stuff that was cut from the bushes and trees at the end of last year and left in a pile on the lawn, into small enough bits to fit in the green waste recycling bin (there the victorian similarities end abruptly…) That was followed by some lawn mowing – which took a long time and a lot of energy, due to the grass being very long and the mower being a bit spluttery after sitting the garage all winter (you’d be a bit spluttery if you sat in our garage all winter, surrounded by boxes for music gear, much of which I don’t even own any more…)

So grass cut, wood chopped, now to tackle a job that’s been hassling us for a few days, a broken tap in the kitchen. It’s the hot tap, and it’s been getting harder and harder to switch off. I don’t want to have to call a plumber if it’s just a matter of dismantling it and replacing a washer. So I try to take it apart. I remove the obvious screw – no joy. can’t seem to get the tap part off the top. Can see a nut or two inside it, but my pliers don’t have long enough points to reach down to the nut. Oh bollocks. So out to the shops to try and find pliers. Only shop open is Asda. I hate Asda – owned by Walmart, scumbag bottom feeders that they are, but I go anyway. No pliers, so I buy eggs instead. Feeling grim stood in the queue, but get a phone call from Orphy Robinson which cheers me up no end – Orphy’s a vibraphonist, a marvellous musician who I’ve played with a few times, and always look forward to working with. He’s got all kinds of fun plans for this and that.

Get home, still can’t fix the tap, turn it off as best I can, put the lawn mower away, and collapse. I guess today was my first day’s training for next year’s Marathon. I’m not doing too well, am I?

SoundtrackKT Tunstall, ‘Eye To The Telescope’ (been listening to this loads in the last couple of days); Stevie Wonder, ‘Innervisions’; The Cure’, ‘Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me’.

Today's activity.

Well, after getting my Edinburgh application in yesterday, I’ve been working on my flyer design. It’s weird that so much rests on this – if you’ve got cool looking posters and flyers, people are going to want to see the show. If you haven’t, they aren’t, simple as that. It’s the same as with CDs – I just don’t buy CDs with bad artwork. I get sent them, and sometime enjoy the music on them (been listening to a lot of M83 lately, and really don’t like their packaging at all, but the music’s pretty good – if I’d had to go to a shop and pick the CDs up, they’d have stayed on the shelf).

So, I’m pretty happy with what I’ve got so far. Now I’m just working on pithy ways of describing what I do that will appeal to yer average EdFest punter… hmmm, maybe I should just change my name to Antonio Forcione and make it all a whole lot easier!

One thing that’s particularly fun about doing the flyer and posters is that I now have these fantastic photos that Steve Brown took of me. Really fine high quality pics, it’ll make a difference I’m sure. Steve’s just had a couple of high-fallutin’ magazine commissions, so if you’re wanting music photos done in London, get in quick, or he’ll be far to busy to work with the little people like you and I!

that’s one of them, and I’ve scattered a few others around the site.

Did someone switch a light on?

One of the upshots of my photo shoot with two weeks ago was that I noticed just how dark my computer monitor was. So I rummaged around in the display settings and had a go at getting closer to what I was seeing on Steve’s computer monitor, and reset the colour (for some reason I’m having to redo it each time I switch my computer on, but I’m sure I’ll find the reset default command at some point).

So from that I noticed that some of the pictures on my site were way too light, and that the blue colour on there looked a lot nicer on my dark screen than on most other screens. So a little picture editing and a colour change later, the site has been tweaked. I rather like it!

Soundtrack – Various Artists, ‘Bossa Nova and Samba – The Gold Collection’; Redbird, ‘Redbird’; Gin Blossoms, ‘New Miserable Experience’.

coming soon to a mag/poster/website near you…

Last week I had a new photoshoot done. I’ve been using the same handful of promo shots for years, and needed a load more. The photographer is – a hugely talented photographer. We did a whole load of studio, white background shots at a studio in central london then went down to Picadilly Circus for some outdoor shots. Much fun was had, and it’s true that all you need to do if you want people to think you’re a celeb in London is have a couple of people with cameras and flash guns follow you around in the middle of the city!

So yesterday I went round to Steve’s to see the edited doctored photos, which are, as expected, marvellous. Steve’s done an amazing job (given the subject matter – hah!), and they’ll be appearing in a couple of mags in the near future – I’ve done a handful of interviews lately, so hopefully they’ll be printing some pics!

Anyway, here’s a sneak preview of one of them –

Oh, and still no word on my wallet. (If any of you have been planning to buy CDs from the online shop here, now would really be a good time.)

Soundtrack – Tom Waits, ‘Nighthawks At The Diner’; Stevie Wonder, ‘Hotter Than July’.