So I was clicking through my Facebook profile last night and I saw a few photos that I had accidentally set to ‘public’. I panicked and quickly set them to ‘friends only’. That’s a bit strange isn’t it? I don’t like the thought of people from the past clicking on my profile and seeing anything of my present. And yet…. I’m happy to pour out endless nonsense to the world on this website. – so I asked myself, “Why is that?”.
A more pertinent question is probably “What is the value of privacy in the ‘social-media-age’?”. We all have friends who say “I don’t have a Facebook page and I never will”. We all know people who have a real aversion to all things ‘public’ about the internet. And yet, one by one, we are all being caught by the creep of the Blob-like privacy invasion(/Steve McQueen-less). Our phones now have apps that are sneakily sending and receiving info about us behind our backs. Before you know it your phone will start judging your behaviour. People with iPhones already have that ‘assistant’ guy who schedules appointments for them and tells them the time in Beijing (I know, I’ve seen the adverts). Soon that assistant will be giving you a right kicking for drinking too much coffee and watching too many YouTube clips when you’re supposed to be cleaning the house. Invasion of privacy is pervading all of society now… even the naysayers who claim they don’t know what Twitter is. (I’m on Twitter… but I don’t really #understand it @like I probably should).
You either fight the creeping blob, switch your phone off and spend every night at the pub… or you learn to embrace it. I’ve opted for the embracing, although I do quite fancy the drinking.
With my previous musical exploits I tended to be quite secretive. I didn’t really want people to know too much about me. I certainly didn’t want them to know how I created the songs. Being in a band was like being in the bestest, most funnest club ever. Outsiders were scorned… unless they were fans. Then when I no longer had a band I wanted to be the mad scientist, locked in the lab, creating sound from bubbling test tubes of self-indulgence. But the problem then was… if I’m not giving anything up… why do I think anyone will care?
And now we are here. Confession of the Whole School. The band name itself suggests a major revelation. I created this site to spill the beans on what it takes to create great music. We are talking self-sacrifice, extremely good looks, a level head, extremely good looks and, most of all, the ability to open one’s soul to the world. This is the difficult bit – because it clashes with my fundamental desire to skulk in the shadows – to be an enigma. But this is more fun. Being open is fun. I love watching documentaries about the making of art. I love eavesdropping on snippets of the Beatles in the studio. I watch endless YouTube clips on ‘behind the scenes’ music-related bollocks. It’s all good. I’ve entered into the spirit of it, and I have made myself available to the world. This website is my voice piece… my megaphone. And where my band was my club and any fans were just a bonus… now this website is my club and any ‘fans’ are members of the club too. It’s like a bigger club. Whereas before I was playing venues with an audience of one man and his dog… today I can probably afford to hire a decent sized tent. As my web-based-fan-base grows I’ll up-size. Next stop… a decent static caravan. The world is my oyster.
Hmmmm… Now, just gotta change my Facebook profile picture to an old cartoon show or something just so that anyone who searches for me by name can’t see my face! Imagine that!!! Arrrghhhh!!! The horror.
So, I sit here watching Question Time… mobile phone in hand… and I can post to my site! From the comfort of my sofa… Rather than the comfort of the chair upstairs. Different chairs different comforts. To be fair a phone isn’t a huge leap of faith from a computer… although I find typing on this touch screen a complete pain in the arse! Therefore please forgive any grammatical errors when I’m posting from this phone. There is likely going to be a lack of paragraphs.
No, it’s okay… I found the ‘enter’ key. Hmmm. In the time it’s taken me to type this I could have not only run upstairs and typed it on the computer… I could have eaten the computer and a whole pack of Cream Crackers… Dry! Yes… Dry!
Anyway, the purpose of this post? I have nearly finished the latest Confession of the Whole School song. And I think it’s a belter! Be prepared though… It is a little off the beaten track!!! I hope to post it tomorrow. Night night.
Feels like a long time since I last visited these hallowed halls of verbal dexterity, but here I am. I’ve taken a break from producing music for a few weeks and it was probably just what I needed. I sit here now listening to Appetite for Destruction on my brand new ‘Rega’ turntable. I know I’ve said it a few times recently, and I don’t want to sound like a broken record (see what I did there?), but there is something comforting about listening to vinyl. It’s real. For all the other reasons people will spout, and there are many reasons… I think the “it’s real” argument will always win the day. I can hold the artwork. I can watch the black disk spinning. I can see the music physically being extracted from the ether like a caveman bashing a rock to carve a wheel. (A pretty crap wheel – made of rock.)
And the slightly alarming fact is that I am updating a site that is intent on persuading you to download CONFESSION OF THE WHOLE SCHOOLtm albums. Download. Ones and Zeros. Or rather ones and noughts. 10000110101100101100101010010110101010100101010100000100111111010100110101010110110111001010… soulless? Well… maybe. Luckily I’m not so wholeheartedly down on the idea. Ha ha! Good job hey!?! Ha ha! No… music is music, and ones and noughts can still touch the soul. If you close your eyes you can’t really notice the difference (bar the odd crackle here and there). Ones and noughts give the world access to all music. You can type any band into google and find somewhere to download or stream it. The pirates have won. Type ‘confession of the whole school’ into a search engine and you’ll find a rip of my albums. Do it if you like. We as musicians just have to hope that there are enough people out there who are touched by what we create so as to feel they are one with us. We want you to feel as though you are on board our ship, headed in the same direction as us… enjoying the facilities (there’s a rather nice swimming pool sunk into the back of my head!). And don’t worry… should we have a rocky ride you can rest assured I won’t be ‘tripping’ into any life boats. I will be on board till the end. I’ll go down with the ship, hand held at the temple in a salute.
Appetite has finished. Hmmmm…. what to play next? Oh well… a cliché maybe but I’ve just stuck Dark Side of the Moon on. Come on! Give me a break! There are certain albums that record players were invented for! Wow… it sounds superb. I’m a pretty recent convert to the Dark Side actually. For years I have been more of a Wish You Were Here fan. But Dark Side just holds so well together. The ALBUM that I’m always banging on about! Confession of the Whole School… the repetition of topics. I will drill it into you. Ha ha! Well… you know I’m a fan of repetition… I’ve said before that repetition is one of the fundamentals of comedy and music. Just don’t stick a wet finger in my ear too many times!!!
So… this post is just to say “hello”… I am still here… I haven’t forgotten my purpose in life. In fact… you should probably nip over to my sister site http://www.eleventhhourinitiative.com for I am (/was) working on a new song. To be honest I had to load it up today to recall whether it was any good or not! Ha ha! But… thankfully, yes, I thought it sounded quite fantastic. Better than I remembered. One of those songs that I’m already forgetting I wrote. Like it’s taking on an identity. Becoming something bigger than its creator. That happens every once in a while. You write a song that takes on a life of its own. You hear it and think “What a fantastic song”. And then you think “… hang on… I wrote that didn’t I?”. Followed by “Bloody hell! That’s really good! … How did I write that?”.
Hmmm… off topic. Topic? Subject? Hmmmm. Would it surprise you to know that I’m coffee’d off my head? Ha ha! Probably not! Till the next time. And I promise next time I’ll have something significant to say. Or…
You’re drinking. And you’re not thinking about tomorrow. You’re thinking about today. You’re thinking about now. And only now. After all… now is now. Tomorrow may come. But, when you’re drinking, tomorrow may as well be a lifetime away.
But my friends… tomorrow does come. Today was tomorrow. And it hurt. I’m a trooper, so I didn’t let it break me – but it did hurt. And I made new vows. Vows that I may or may not adhere to. But for now, today, I am sticking to them steadfastly! I don’t like the hurt! I’m not a fan of physical pain. Emotional pain has its uses in terms of songwriting – but that is a whole essay for a rainy day – but physical pain is only for the deviants of this world. Of which I am not one. I am me. Ha ha!
Lucozade is a drink that I can definitely recommend. I know I could get the same result mixing 100 spoons of sugar into some water – but Lucozade comes in a yellow bottle, and has a Z in the title! I know, I know… you’re going to tell me to “get with the rest of the modern world” and drink Red Bull. Or some other drink that has packaging that looks like a tattoo. Well, I’m not drinking something that looks like a ’70s aftershave, and I’m not drinking something that has ‘Bull’ as part of the name and medicine as part of the taste. So… old skool Lucozade it is. Oh, and I found that a Double Decker as the food part of the ‘food and drink’ equation works wonders too! I would ordinarily dunk the Double Decker in hot coffee… but I don’t suggest boiling the Lucozade to try to achieve the same result. I tell you my friends… it would be a regrettable situation involving much sweetness, tears and mess.
So, that was a day of my life written off. No songs to be written when I can’t be sure I’m even making a coherent sentence. I wonder if I could use Lucozade to my advantage on a day not having involved drink the night before – perhaps to help the songwriting process? Hmmm. Every positive has a corresponding negative. And Lucozade‘s negative is HUGE! This drink is… radioactive! Or at least it is when it comes into contact with a carpet. I once made the mistake of drunkenly spilling Lucozade on the carpet in my house. Okay, I compounded this error by then forgetting I’d done it and going to bed. Cue next day… glance at the floor… Arrrgh! What the hell? Here’s my question then – Why does Lucozade stain your carpet pink??? I mean… that is surely a very peculiar colour for a yellow drink. To stain a carpet pink? Hmmm. Now here’s a thought. Is the actual drink yellow? Or is it just the bottle? I haven’t got any Lucozade here right now to check this out. Maybe it’s clear? Or… maybe it’s pink, and they put it in a yellow bottle to hide the fact it’s pink – so blokes will buy it. (They don’t sell no pink Yorkies – no no no). But… then… the pink would clash with the yellow to produce a weird looking bottle. So maybe the bottle isn’t actually yellow – it’s some other colour that when mixed with pink looks yellow. Anyway… today I drank some Lucozade and it made me feel better. Then I drank 4 cans of Coke before I typed this. Can you tell?
Disappointment – To fail to satisfy the hope, desire, or expectation of.
Okay, so perhaps as a nation we were again a bit full of ourselves to think we could win the World Cup… but we always have that hope. To be honest it’s the ‘hope’ that keeps a lot of us going.
What is it with England and disappointment? I think it’s in our DNA. But cheer up guys, it’s not all bad! We are what we are. Some of our brightest lights have shone from a place of disappointment. Take a listen to Nick Drake. Sometimes, just sometimes, from a bleak place can come a beautiful thing. The Americans have a “build them up and take pride in them” attitude to life. The English come from a different place. We dwell in “build them up and knock them down”. Our music can be bleak. Listen to Pink Moon, or any of the wealth of bleak albums that this little island has produced. I love bleak. I love sad. I love empty. Some people shine brightly, but just for a moment… then they’re gone. But never forgotten. Here’s to all the people that others will never forget.
And don’t worry… we’re gonna win the World Cup four years from now!
Just a quickie.
I’ve added another youtube video to the HISTORY section of this site. Again, not very good quality but please understand that these vids were filmed on crappy cameras. It also doesn’t help that the cameraman on each occasion chooses to stand right in front of the PA speakers. However, on the lastest addition the cameraman was my brother so I’ll let him off 😉
A couple of new songs are coming on strong. I shall add them to the “album in progress” as soon as I can. I can’t wait until I get to a time when I can start deciding on a final track listing!
I shall also unveil the album title soon!
Oh, and my girl, if you read this… I miss you xxx
I have created a new page with some images of the confession of the whole school studio. The dream theatre 😉