The chill is in the air, the nights are drawing in and its beginning to look a lot like Halloween/Samhain everywhere. Cool crisp mornings with long shadows followed by golden light everywhere. Or as is the case here in Stoke, cloudy days with lots of rain. Oh well, can't have it all ways, eh? So what have we been up to? Lots to be honest. We've played a few gigs and are planning a couple of side projects, which will hopefully come to fruition in the next year or so.
One thing that many people don't know, is that if you're a musician you don't just get up and play music, or sing songs. It takes weeks and months of preparation, learning songs, writing, composing, so much goes into the 'act' that is booked by a venue to play. You don't just turn up off the street with a guitar in your hand and play, it might look that way, but it takes skill, dedication and hard work to perfect your 'act'. Anyway, I'm not moaning, just stating the facts as I see them. Anyone who thinks its the 'easy option' should really try it sometime ;-) Particularly jazz.. Jazz is infernal. It sounds great, lots of modalities, odd time signatures, weird melodies, all that takes practice. Jazz musicians didn't just get up and play and still don't. It all takes hard work and dedication and its what shows when you go out into the world and gig. You can knock something off and busk it, or you can work hard to put on a good show. Personally I prefer the latter.
Anyway, on with what we've been doing gig wise.
Saturday 20th Sepetember 2014 - Fundraiser for Kemball Special School and Crohns Disease, Joiners Square Community Centre
This event was considered an 'all dayer' and it certainly was! Rachel who put it all together worked tirelessly to ensure there was a constant flow of music for the people attending. There were intially acoustic acts during the day, with the odd band, then as the day progressed and as everyone moved inside, the bands took precedence. Mainly metal bands performed, which made a nice change to be amongst a different crowd and what a great crowd they were, all digging deep to support the charities. The venue has a proper stage too, which is always nice to play on. We were sandwiched between two metal bands (Adrenalize and .. erm... Oh, I forget now, I've such a rubbish memory!), which was kind of cool. We took to the stage and knocked out our Who songs, we only had a 20 minute slot, so knew we had to make an impact. The numbers were well received and it was a pleasure to play. Sometimes a short set can be as much fun as a full set to play. I know they raised loads of money for the charities.. Here's hoping that Rachel organises some more.
I know this isn't a lot of gigs, well, only one since last time it doesn't mean that we haven't been busy. We've still been filming some of the final scenes for the video. I've been working hard with the online side of the band and getting our presence felt all over the world. We're now on Number One Music which is a brilliant website promoting original new music across the globe. It allows us to write newsletters, post videos and music and generally get ourselves out to a wider audience. Which, as far as I can see is a great thing!! I've been twittering on my personal account too, which has seen an increase in traffic, so all a good thing.
The music side, well, Graeme worked really really hard and has condensed The Who album Tommy down to half an hour for a gig we have this week. Its not been easy, not at all. In fact, he's put in so many hours, he really deserves some time off. However, its workable and is sounding great. We've even been working on harmonies, just to add an extra dimension to the duo, hopefully there'll be more of that in the future too, but we'll see how it goes. We're playing for a great charity on Saturday called The Extra Guest (click on the link to find out more), hosted by the very lovely Moyra at The Hayes in Stone. Looking forward to playing this spooky venue. We're also opening for a folk act on Thursday at the Beer Festival, which should be a good one. We played last years Beer Festival and it was enormous fun, so be really chuffed to play again. A few other gigs coming up, though we still have a few slots for the end of the year and are taking bookings into next year now too. So, if you want us to play for you, better get in quick!!
Rightio, that's it from me for now.. Take care, check out the links and I'll see you soon