It's holiday time!

I've been spending some time with the family in a tiny, but lovely flat on the South Wales coast. Get up, have breakfast, go swimming in the sea. Who cares if it rained nearly every day. One outcome of this break is that I've had a chance to put some things from day to day life into context. There will be changes. Actually, there have already been a few.

The other news for today is that the long awaited oud has arrived. The oud is an acoustic instrument with eleven strings and no frets. Being a fretless bass player this isn't quite the challenge it might be for others, more used to fretted instruments. I've only had a few hours on it so far but seem to be getting somewhere. The oud is the mother of the lute, which is the mother of the modern guitar. I don't really play guitar because I'm so hopeless with chords. That's one reason why I play bass. But with no frets the oud isn't very suitable as a chordal instrument so I'm on reasonably safe ground.

One interesting development was when I sat in the kitchen trying to improve my knowledge of why, exactly, the notes are on the fingerboard. My daughter starting playing on the laptop and the music from her game came drifting across the room. At first I wanted her to turn it off, but it soon became obvious to me that having something to pay along with was a good idea. So there we sat, video gaming five year old and her dad on his oud. As ever, the unplanned moments can be truly rewarding.

I'll post pictures of the oud (it's beautiful) and write again soon about what its future is in my music al life, soon. My musical life is, hopefully, about to take an interesting turn quite soon too.


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