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November 24, 2008

Best Laid Plans...

...or Rock & Roll weekend heads south!

So, this weekend I wasn't working and Tim was away on a course so I had planned an intensive musical time.

Things started off well enough. Col of AxeVictim's band, Magic Ship were playing a support gig at the White Hart in Barnes. Magic Ship are a good-time rockin' band and the perfect way to get the musical juices flowing. For the sake of 'journalistic integrity' I have to say that their performance wasn't up to the standard of their previous Half Moon headlining gig, but there were pre-show issues with the promoter, the evening's line-up was incredibly badly thought out, with a strange mix of electric and acoustic acts, which sucked the life out of the room and then on top of that, Col's Firebird was throwing a wobbly, refusing to stay in tune. Not to mention the fact that through illness and so on they'd not managed to squeeze in a rehearsal inbetween gigs.

Despite the ribbing that we gave the band post-set, they did manage to get on top of most of the songs, particularly "Monkeyphonic Alphabet" and "Lucky Lost". Lucky's not my favourite tune of theirs by a long shot, but they managed to knock it out of the ballpark on Friday night.

A few beers, some good music and the last train home to civilization. A promising start to the weekend.

When I woke up early on Saturday morning I was buzzing with ideas. Intro riffs were running through my mind. Power chords, lead lines. The works. By the time I'd showered and my head was starting to clear I could feel things starting to slip away so I quickly fixed coffee, grabbed the nearest available guitar and started to try and nail down my inspiration.

Nearest guitar... big mistake. The nearest guitar was the acoustic. Not the rock 'n' roll leviathon that I needed. I could literally feel the inspiration slipping away as I sat there, plucking at the strings. D'Oh!

Frustration set in, so I took a step back and looked at some of the homework that had been set for Rockschool. I was keenly drawn to the first solo from "Let It Be" that we'd been told to study, learn, whatever. It's not a hard solo to learn by any means, but it's got bends, slides, hammer-ons, pull-offs etc, which I guess was the point of the exercise. I 90% learned it. Not well enough to play it through without looking at the tab, but well enough for now.

I was starting to get back into the groove. Riding the George Harrison wave, I started writing down lyric ideas... Not Good. ABORT!!! ABORT!!!! My mental rhyming dictionary was fully engaged and I couldn't not rhyme! Everything I came up with was trite.

So, I decided to take a break... at which point I realised that while music may be the food of love, my company tax return was due and I needed to get that out of the way to put some food on the table. Disruption. Documents to sign, information to mail off.

I could go on, but let's just say that from then on, whilst I did manage to play/practice guitar more, my muse had definitely left the building. It really does underline the fact that when you have inspiration you just have to seize it there and then. Don't shower, don't fix coffee. Just get to work!

Oh, and yes, I had a listen through to most of the new Guns album. You know, they just let the perfect adjective into the next edition of Collins English Dictionary: 'Meh'!


Furtheron said...

I read Col's views over on the axevictim blog.

just the line up seems a bit mind warping to me. Now I have electic tastes in music but I think I'd have struggled with that lot.

Kenski said...

Well, to the casual observer it wasn't as bad as all that. I think after the high of the Half Moon gig, it was a bit humbling to have so many things go wrong in a row.

They weren't perfect, sure, but they were still the best act on the bill as far as I was concerned.

Definitely a darn sight more engaging than the 'interesting' lady who attempted to enchant us with her vocal stylings before the boys came onstage.

Aunt Jackie said...

hehe "interesting" lady... :)

Well looks like you're still quite involved... Good for you, hoping it works out great.

As for me, I had a bummer of a gig Saturday night, but I guess it happens to the best of us.

iSTVANSKi said...

Good review, Ken, told it like it happened and it was all Colin's fault...
Read some of your recent posts and was dismayed to find you've put the metal on the back burner. I'm getting a real kick out of playing the opening riff from 'Seek and Destroy' with a Les Paul through a half stack at the mo (specially when it pisses off the neighbours at 3 in the morning - fuck 'em, I'll start with my Slayer repertoire if they ever get comfortable with it).

Col said...

Hey Ken. I am 'in' for some serious supporting of your future live work mate. I can't begin to tell you how much we all appreciate you coming along to our gigs and giving us your friendship and support. Cheers pal. Don';t forget to book now for Jan 16th 2009 back at the Halfmoon. Only a more managable three bands this time. One of which is a funk band. Dance party!!!