27.4.14

Music (2)

I have a band which has, it its relatively short life, undergone some major changes. I want to write about how the band came about and how it got to where it is now but this isn't the time to do that.

What I do want to, briefly, write about is that we're producing some very good songs and we'll soon be recording some of them. Our goals are pretty straightforward: write good songs, record them and play to audiences who might want to here them. If only the band had a name...

Music (1)

The Eclipse Trio continues to work on its music. This is despite the piano player being on the other side of the world and our phenomenally bad attempt to promote the most recent album.

What we have done is re-record some tunes for the next album, improve the technique for recording Russ's vocals and do more interlocking acoustic guitar parts. We have done something else as well. The oud, which was horribly underused, has gone. It is being replaced by a Godin Multioud. This is a modernised version of the same instrument but one that is much better suited to what we're doing.

Our intention to play more gigs hasn't exactly worked out, but Russ and I will be playing as a duo very soon. I'll post dates as soon as they are confirmed.

23.4.14

The Neighbours and Sovereign Housing - more of nothing


We still have no word from Sovereign Housing after the last anti-social report about the neighbour's and their weeks of car alarm fun. I did speak to someone else in the street who was being driven mad by the noise but didn't want to complain.
Today, and yesterday, we were entertained by hours of drum and bass music, swearing in the back garden and the sight of their car parked right outside our house while their friends hang around.

Our reward for sticking our heads over the parapet and complaining is that we’ll have an almost impossible job selling our house. I hate to sound like a victim but our qulaity of life goes down each week. We're doing what we can but feel increasingly isolated.
Today's lesson is...

Work hard, do the right thing and suffer.

Play loud music, swear, intimidate, act aggressively and … carry on.

17.4.14

Progress

Some progress to report.

Last week I sat down with my great pal, Emma and we put together some interesting backing vocals for the songs we'll be recording next month. 'Interesting' means 'untested' of course, but I have high hopes. This band, still needing a name, is now taking shape to be one of the most powerful and exciting music projects I've ever been involved with.

Last night I recorded some upright bass parts for new Eclipse Trio songs and helped Russ, the singer, to record his vocals. This came after recording acoustic guitar parts for each song. Russ played a conventional part first and then recorded a second, interweaving part on a separate track. The style of the second guitar part was different for the two songs but, in each case, created a huge sound. Once the vocals were complete we did a very rough mix and liked the results.

One other thing that came out of last night's session was the need for some oud playing on one of the tracks. I've had an oud for a while now but, despite enjoying the instrument greatly, it's just not suiting me. It is a beautiful instrument but it's a traditional oud and the violin style tuning pegs and I are not getting on. Taking more than twenty minutes to tune up doesn't work when those twenty minutes might be the only practise time I have. This is my fault for not prioritising my time better and for not thinking through the nature of the instrument. Luckily, there is a solution. I'll tell you more about that later.

9.4.14

A quick update: including the latest on Soveign Housing


I’ve been a bit quiet on the blog recently. This is not because I’ve had nothing to write about but because there has been so much going on I’ve not had time to catch up. If you follow my picture-a-day project on Flickr you’ll notice that hasn’t been updated much either. Rest assured (if you weren’t already) that my camera is filling up with pictures of the day which will soon be uploaded.

In brief, the good news is that we’ve been making headway with the house. Decorating it in the hope of selling and getting away from our neighbour problem. The bad news is that Sovereign housing seem to have stopped replying to our questions and anti-social behaviour reports. We had a nasty outbreak from the neighbours (after listening to their car alarm go off for nearly three weeks), wrote to Sovereign’s anti-social behaviour report and followed it up with emails to three of their staff. This is what we got…

 

“Dear Will Crutenden

Thank you for contacting Sovereign about anti-social behaviour, domestic abuse or hate motivated behaviour.

We work hard to look after the communities where we have homes, making sure they're safe and developing the sense of community that makes a great place to live. Dealing with anti-social behaviour (ASB), and the harm that it can cause, is a priority for us and we want to deliver a high quality service to our residents.

We regularly monitor all correspondence received into this email inbox during office hours, (Monday to Friday 9am-5pm). Unfortunately, we are unable to monitor this during out-of-office hours. If you feel especially vulnerable or at risk you should immediately contact your nearest Sovereign housing office or your local police team by dialling 101 in non-emergencies and 999 in an emergency.

We will be in touch with within 1 working day to discuss next steps which will include an assessment of the situation and agreeing actions with the situation.

To find out more about our work to protect communities from harm please visit www.sovereign.org.uk .

If you have any further questions please contact your local housing office or send us an email to
community.safety@sovereign.org.uk

 

The part where it says “We will be in touch within 1 working day…” is a lie. We’ve heard nothing.