Week from Monday 3rd January 2011

Highlight of my New Year's Eve was a visit to the doctor for a fresh supply of happy pills and some antibiotics for the FUNNY EARS... In this town at least, there was surprisingly little 'artillery' noise to sound in the New Year. Or perhaps I really am THAT deaf! I'm told there was a craze for floaty Chinese lanterns this year instead... 

I attempted to get the GOOGLE CHROME version of the "Stylish" plug-in to work with my my[______]-specific scripts. I failed to do so, but then found some scripts of someone else's that did the trick. So now I'm back on the faster browser again. 

I am in the process of setting up a JOHNSON'S GRIDLING BAND presence on REVERBNATION. The verification email took a while to arrive, which didn't bode well, but now we're up and running. This will 'replace' the my[______] site that Shelfy lost the keys to, but which is still VERY MUCH ACTIVE - it's had enough views of its photo albums to win a BADGE for it, without even trying! 

...Excuse me while I download the legendary 1975 FRIPP & ENO Paris Olympia concert... This is it's first 'official' release, although, as we know, it's been doing the rounds as a b***leg for thirty five years or so. It certainly sounds several generations better than the old tape I had!

Week from Monday 10th January 2011

I am dismantling my HOME OFFICE today, so that (a) I've got more room, and (b) I can finish painting the walls, a job that was started some five or so years ago when I first noticed I was suffering from moisture damage. So far I've managed to achieve just (a), before dropping with exhaustion!

I uploaded another track to ZAYNCLAYD over the weekend. This is an "ALTERNATE MIX" of Winged Eyeball Music, featuring a concatenation (if you will) of parts of "NINETEEN DORIAN RACQUETS", and the funky little number called "SCATORIGINE" which was, it so happens, based on the SAME Shelfy samples as the former.

But the knock-on effect of there being NOBODY LEFT on my[______] is that, no matter how much you try to tell people about your various online activities in blogs, bulletins and 'activity stream' messages, NO ONE IS LISTENING ANYMORE. The BandCamp site has totally FLATLINED for a couple of months (so nobody wants to 'buy', even when we give it away for nothing!)... Nobody, with the exception of certain Brass Sturgeons, has come over to ReverbNation to become 'fans'. Perhaps that is understandable, as Johnson's Gridling Band are not exactly constituent 'indie-rock' fare. ReverbNation is inextricably linked to Facebook, so perhaps I need for a few 'emigrating' chums to put a good word in! Everyone is going to Facebook out of desperation, but nobody has a good word to say about it. Only the electro-centric SoundCloud seems to be in any way active, and even then, it could do with improvement from where I'm sitting... I now spend more time perusing and participating in forums and feedback groups than I do at "BEING CREATIVE" - and that is not a good sign!

Some my[______] friends of mine are in the process of starting up their own SOCIAL NETWORKING site especially aimed at the struggling artist. Understandably, I've hit one or two SNAGS along the way myself (I couldn't log back in, for one thing!). There are still a few bugs for them to iron out and things to be... well, FINISHED... but it's COMING ALONG NICELY! It's nice to be in at the beginning of something like this. I wish them every success.

Towards the end of the week, I got struck down by one of those 48-hour COLDY FLUEY THINGS... Bunged-up tubes; coughs and sniffles; a headache that starts about two feet above the nape and stretches all the way to one's toes... Nothing for it but to take a load of cold remedies and waste the day away in delightful oblivion.

Week from Monday 17th January 2011

So now we have ANOTHER website to maintain... as well as my[______] (a cultural dustbowl), BANDCAMP (flatlining), REVERBNATION (it's out there but it's no fun), SOUNDCLOUD (growing! hooray!) and various blogsites, I am now welcoming people to AQUALOUNGE, a new 'social networking' site for "Music People". If you're STILL keen on my[______] Profile 1.0 layouts, then this could be the place for you. If, on the other hand, you are the kind of person who moans because things are still in the "beta" stage, then don't join JUST yet, because some things are not QUITE finished...

The weather is atrocious... I've been stuck indoors. No matter, several of those US DRAMA SERIES WITH INITIALS FOR TITLES have started new seasons and I've had a couple of quirky movie treats to watch ("THE MEN WHO STARED AT GOATS" and "THANK YOU FOR SMOKING"). Not to mention the bottomless supply of MONTY PYTHON that I got for Christmas... Today, I shall HAVE to wrap myself in plastic to venture out on bizniz.

I did a few CHARITY SHOPS during my travels. I found my own copy of the wonderful "JERRY SPRINGER: THE OPERA" for 99p, jamtuckered with deeveedee extras... as well as a[nother] CD cleaning kit (Can't have too many of those - it's worth buying for the fluid alone!)... and seedydiscs by HUUN-HUUR-TU and the AFRO-CELTS mob.

If I may make a little recommendation at this juncture... JUDY DYBLE is currently streaming via her my[______] the whole of "ENCHANTED GARDEN", the album she recorded around 2005 with Marc "SWORDFISH" Hunt (of festival faves ASTRALASIA and the MAGIC MUSHROOM BAND). No, I'd never heard of it either... After a brief appearance on the Talking Elephant label, it pretty much disappeared off the radar. Which is a big shame, because it's a LOST CLASSIC of  psychedelic spacefolk worldytrance that is deserving of a wider audience. It's certainly a million light-years from "If I Had A Ribbon Bow" or "Chelsea Morning" and yet completely different again from the prog-folk of her more recent "TALKING WITH STRANGERS" material. What's more, SIMON HOUSE plays electric violin on it, so I'm hooked! I shall have to keep one eye out for a 'proper' copy, next time I visit a record fair.

HOORAY! I've got my "DAILY SHOW" back! Along with a lot of people in the blogosphere, I was REALLY P***ED OFF that Channel Four had decided, in their wisdom, to stop broadcasting "THE DAILY SHOW WITH JON STEWART" on a ...um... daily basis in this country. Instead we now just get the "GLOBAL EDITION", a mere half-hour of 'highlights' from the previous week, in a late Monday night slot. According to Channel Four, the decision was 'market led'. The show on More4 was pulling low ratings. Much better for them that they fill the 8.30 slot with yet another soddin' home makeover show. Anyway, a perusal of the blogs and postings on the 'closure', alerted me to the fact that you CAN watch the show ONLINE if you install a wee applet to bypass (via an American 'proxy') those infuriating "THIS VIDEO NOT AVAILABLE IN YOUR COUNTRY" restrictions. 

Once again, I say "HOORAY FOR FIREFOX PLUG-INS!" you've made my cyberlife so much friendlier and uncluttered and ad-free! Is it strictly legal? Er... I dunno really... it's one of those grey areas we hear so much about. I don't care, I'm a happy little camper! Hey! I could even watch "THE COLBERT REPORT" as well now!

Week from Monday 24th January 2011

I've somehow been recruited to produce all the publicity material for the Portsmouth Chinese Students' NEW YEAR do at the Kings Theatre... so this morning, I'm banging my head on the desk in frustration, having tried, but failed, to get my CorelDraw to display the LINGO properly. This despite having installed all the appropriate Windoze 'additional language' plug-ins and fonts. Now I've started the booklet again using one of SERIF'S FINEST instead. Honestly, the things we have to do to earn a wee crust... Of course, I'm not able to understand a single word of Chinese myself (Pah! a mere technicality!)

DREAM DIARY... I was running around a shopping mall, helping to catch someone's lost pet spider, for some reason clad only in a bathrobe and baggy swimshorts (me, not the spider...). Eventually, the beast was caught using the tried-and-tested Tupperware Box Method. Then it jumped down my pants, with hilarious consequences. At some point, I was also a figure of ridicule for admitting that I can't stand hip-hop. I'm not sure why this would be relevant...

Week from Monday 31st January 2011

Of course, Shelfy, with his inexplicable and resolute dislike for cymbals and bells (I've got two words for you, matey - "ship" and "yard"!), cannot understand why I would have anything to do with Chinese music. 'You'd never hear SLY & ROBBIE backing them', says he, by way of justification. 'No', says I, 'but JAH WOBBLE did do a Chinese Dub album... so I've got you there!'.

Hooray! Bunny's back! It's come to my attention that the Christmas Song is still on the MySpace... whoops! here we are, the end of January, and I haven't taken down the Christmas deco's yet! I've also got a bit lax on my "READING FOR FUN". These last few months have found me reading nought but technical manuals and periodicals. She suggested a fine addition to the 'Book Club' list, but... once I'd got to the library, I couldn't remember the author's name! So I'm going to give "THE ASCENT OF RUM DOODLE" a go instead, once described by The Sunday Times as "[doing] for mountaineering what 'Three Men In A Boat' did for Thames-going or 'Catch 22' did for the Second World War...". Well, I'M sold!

In between doing bits of THE CHINESE JOB, this week I've manage to finish Volume 2 of my [never-to-be-heard-by-anyone-ever] "kcOLLISIONS" project, which, as you may have read elsewhere, consists of XENOCHRONIZATIONS constructed from various 'Hot Tickles & Stormy Selections'. It does sound rather good too, now that I've burned a seedydisk of it. As I sit typing this, I'm listening to a Fripp & Eno track that never happened! But you can't hear it, nyah nyah nyah!

The weather can best be described as NON-COMMITTAL, if not a tad irritable. A beautiful, clear, starry-starry night is followed by the most appalling wind and rain, followed by a clear but windy day, followed, in turn, by rain but no wind...

My naughty-but-nice collaboration with DJ BEN ESPIRITU (or Benoit, as he's known to his mum) has gone live on his SoundCloud site. It's just a wee bit of fun we threw together, in between his remixing of SYSTEM 7 and my... oh, whatever it is that I do now... "Sextastic Radio Remix" consists of an X-rated cut-up of  radio conversation that he had tagged on the end of one of his albums, laid in XENOCHRONISTIC fashion against a piece that I'd had knocking about in my "Works In Progress" files for some time. I think it's a piece that I had previously sent to Shelfy to play with, but I don't recall it ever being used before. You can currently hear it embedded on my Aqualounge and my[______] pages.