Ah, don't you love that feeling we only ever get to indulge in a handful of times a year - you know, that one when it's a Sunday and you don't have to be up at the crack of dawn in the morning to go to work? Bliss!
I decided to take advantage of the long weekend and headed up to my hometown to see the folks - and catch up with an old school friend for her birthday. Her dad's band Moonshine were playing on the five year anniversary of their first gig, which I was apparently present at, so it seemed fitting that I tag along. They didn't disappoint, with covers of tunes from the sixties onwards, with a preference for rocky numbers with melodies that made full use of my mate's bro's ever-improving vocals. Needless to say I was impressed, and had a good old boogie too (anyone who doesn't dance to "Play That Funky Music," in my humble opinion, may as well be dead), much to the amusement of the band and the more conservative residents of Lincoln.
It seems that, despite my disappointment at not getting Glasto tickets AGAIN (yep, still not over that!), new, live music is cropping up in the most surprising of places. On Friday, after a quick glass of wine after work, I went home to make my Peru collage Pacha Mama whilst listening to the Global Psychedelic Sound-system, a very funky DJ I discovered at the Isle of Wight festival last year, courtesy of the island radio station's website. As always, I loved his set but, as it drew to a close and my collage became close to completion, I found myself at a bit of a loss as to how to spend the rest of my evening. After resorting to my fail-safe option (a bath with a glass of red on the side), I found myself listening to yet another talented musician, Jace Thompson, via the wonder of Twitter and YouTube. I was mighty impressed and, after nattering over social media for a bit, was delighted to hear that he has a gig in my hood next weekend. Well, that's Sunday night sorted...
You see, I do love my music - and I love discovering new artists who, behind all the popularist crap that plagues our airwaves, have something really important say - and real talent when it comes to saying it. Being an undiscovered "artist" myself, whilst I get why they do it and the joy that it gives them, I feel their frustration and celebrate their successes, which although often small in comparison to those headlining Glastonbury this year, are perhaps the things that keep them going.
Something I can wholeheartedly relate to.
Happy Easter Monday everyone!
Whether you're religious or not, you can't help but love Easter - never mind all the chocolate, for me it's all about the four day weekend!
My Easter Sunday ended up being quite traditional - with an alternative edge. In the morning I went to the Sunday Assembly, a Godless congregation which, rather than banging on about a higher power, makes its mission to help people realise their full potential. It was quite fun, with singing (strictly secular) songs, a poetry reading, a personal memoir on giving up things for lent (no alcohol? For 40 days? Respect!) with tips on how you can help people in this predicament, and talks on optimism and how important is is if you want to succeed. All in all, very thought provoking with some useful reminders on the power of positive thinking - something I am now making a conscious effort to put into practice.
One of the things that was pointed out to us during the talk on optimism is that, if you want to be something, you have to take action - and keep going, even when you feel like giving up. So, with that in mind, I'm chuffed to say that this weekend I've made a start on two collages which, after a little titivation, will be good to go. I've also sent a "pen portrait" to Mslexia magazine in the hope that they will consider it for their next edition. The theme was "Caged Animal" and you can see my (very short) interpretation of this subject here. I hope you like!
Anyway, I digress. After the Assembly I ended up having a traditional Sunday Roast before winning a big bag of Maltesers in an Easter egg hunt - all in the pub, of course! Today I am going to keep the Bank Holiday tradition alive with a spot of mattress and fridge shopping (Middle aged, me? Well, maybe getting there...) as, although things have stalled, I am still hopeful that I will be moving into my little flat in two weeks time. Assuming the tenants in the place I'm trying to buy eventually move out...
So, without further aplomb, I shall wish you adieu. Enjoy the rest of the holiday!
It's the weekend - woo hoo! And what a week it has been. It all kicked off on Monday at the Royal Albert Hall, where I had the privilege of singing a "pocket" version of opera Orpheus and Eurydice, Ode to Joy, Walking on Sunshine, Daft Punk's Digital Love and the world premiere of Shake off your Sleep! I'd like to say I did this all on my own but I'd be lying. I was, erm, accompanied by about 2,000 children - and some of my esteemed colleagues too. It's the second time I've been involved in the bi-annual festival, and I absolutely loved it, especially the comparing of Jon Snow and a guest appearance by David Walliams! Mmm, I could get used to show business...
And my vocal chords aren't the only thing I've been flexing. My credit card and I have been reunited after finalising the sales of FOUR pieces of art from my Out of Hours exhibition! Okay, so I'm not exactly rolling in it (I can't quite justify Damien Hirst prices for my work yet) but it does mean I made a profit, which, whilst small, has been a bit of an ego boost. So a massive thanks to Ann, Wayne, Claudio and Julian for parting with some of their hard earned cash for one of my pieces - you made what was a good experience great.
Of course these sales do mean that I've got a bit of a hole in my back catalogue now, so I have the perfect excuse to get my paints out again. Tonight I'm going to a talk about Matisse at Putney Art College (courtesy of fabulous fellow artist Laura), so hopefully I will find some inspiration, and some insight into the Tate exhibition opening soon.
Oh yes - I almost forgot! On Wednesday I went back to Keele University where I gained my degree in Visual Arts and Sociology, met the aforementioned Laura (among many others - you know who you are) and cemented my desire to live a creative life. I was recently asked to attend a networking
event for current students and, although they made me feel ancient, I was really impressed by their forward thinking - some of them were only first years and were thinking about post-graduate employment, and one lass had already saved ten grand to pay for her masters - amazing! Naturally I didn't leave before taking a walk around the campus and having a pint or who in the Student Union - so changed since my day, yet so comfortably familiar.
Well, having written all that, I think I've just realised why I slept in until midday today - it has certainly been a busy one! So, now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to chill out for an hour before heading over to South West London.
Have a great evening everyone!
P.S. New Overground Underground blog also online this week - check it out here!
Here you will find my latest news, including what I have been up to and what I have been writing (and making). Hopefully you'll like what I have to say - and perhaps I will motivate you to get creative too...