Salut! Comment ça va? I'm all right, thanks very much. As you might be able to see, I've now added random backgrounds to the page. This can only mean that things have been... well... slow around these parts. Definitely not like last year.
But the summer has had its high spots; I put together a group for the Olympic Handover celebrations called PATAGIUM. It was effectively a jam band [or "happening", as someone once put it], but with the point of making something coherent. Lucky then that I had the collective skills of Paepae Mmekwa, Arun Ghosh, Dave Sturt, Sara Littlefield and a folk singer who I hope will do more work, Julie Bernstein. It was very short, but very sweet, and we chilled the crowd out by the end. It was a good day all round, and Arun and I got to hang out afterwards, which is always a good laugh.
And... ahem... did I mention that I would be playing with Arun on October 10th in Derby? Did I? Ah.
I also forgot to mention that I did some recording for Scanner: he was composing a piece of music for the new arts centre here called QUAD, and it's to be played at Pride Park stadium some time this month. We didn't get a lot of time to chat as he was also doing stuff for a dance piece; but he had a good ambience about him, very relaxed. Instead, I jammed with the violinist Graham Clark and we had a ball! Graham has a flexible, driving tone on the violin, and great ears. A lovely, very fluid discussion in the Flowerpot followed, and I suspect that there will be more where that came from... including gigs... assuming I get a new instrument, of course. If anyone has any suggestions... I'm currently looking at fund-raising, and designing my own instrument: but I also have my eye on the Saito VS-220DC and am finding Saito to be a lovely company to communicate with!
But let us not dwell on the negative: I really want to draw your attention to something that I think will be really good, namely a new trio with two of my favourite musicians, the drummer Josh Blackmore and bassist Dave Kane. We're doing our first gig in Stratford upon Avon this November. I've wanted to work with Dave since we both did the jazz version of Big Brother last year, and in addition to his being a great musician, he's a good character. He's got a new CD with Matthew Bourne that sounds great. And those that know me here know the high regard I hold for The Blackmore. So I really think you should head over for this one.