Archive for November, 2008

What did you do yesterday?

I may not have “got going” properly until about midday, but I spent yesterday afternoon tinkering with music for Wizard of Oz. I got done more or less everything that I wanted to (which makes a change) but I was up until 1.20am doing so!

As far as songs are concerned, I think I’ve got everything sorted apart from the very beginning of “Jitterbug”. (This is not the Wham song by the way – just one of the ‘extra’ songs that appears in the stage version but not the film.) There’s bound to be something I haven’t thought about, or I’ll be ask to change though.

I even got one or two of the ‘sound effects’ sorted. Namely the cyclone and the sound of a mechanised broomstick taking off. I am quite proud of the broomstick – but only because it means I may have finally mastered the trick of “how to record more than one track” in a song on my ‘new’ keyboard. This is one of those ‘acheivements’ that is significant to only me though.

I have two keyboards. My first one I’ve had for 10 years now, and I know more or less how to operate every single function. I got a second one about 3 years ago now, and I still haven’t cracked it for this one! I’m gradually getting there. It’s having the time to sit down and tinker with the instruction book to hand. Sometimes I’ll manage something once but then I’ll have forgotten how I did it by the next time I need to do something.

Here’s the new keyboard.

What are you doing today?

You can record on both of them, so what I tend to do is either record the whole of a song on the old keyboard and play it through the new keyboard, or start something on the new keyboard and out of frustration finish it off on the old one. The process gets a bit fiddly because the old keyboard only saves to a floppy disk drive, whereas the new keyboard has a USB port and a smart media drive instead. This means I have to fiddle about on the computer in between.

I really should buy a few more floppy disks before you can’t get them any more, shouldn’t I?

Anyway – that’s what I was doing yesterday. How about you?



I am busy procrastinating. Putting it off. I know I’ll be alright once I start it, but it’s the starting that I’m having trouble wanting with. Writing this post is the last job I can do before I run out of excuses. The thing I’m putting off is doing stuff for the drama group. I need to play with some of the music (create reprises, tweak endings etc), and then put as much of it as possible onto a cassette so the person who sorts out the dancing has something to work from. It’s just I’m tired, and it feels like too much effort. (car alarm thing went off in the night again. That’s the 5th time now I think.)

Originally uploaded by Simon_Bell

Anyway, for your general amusement here is a fantastic little movie thing of what I was doing last Sunday. I met up with some flickr people and we went out and took some photos in Shrewsbury (the county town for Shropshire, the county where we all live.) I think most time was spent here in the pub. Anyway, like I said, I hope you enjoy it. I particularly like the bit where we’re all eating, and the wave at the end.

Thank you Simon (one of the youngest members of our “group”) for saying I could use the vid in my blog. 🙂

Shiver me timbers.

Well, I had my week off and spent most of it chained to the keyboard getting the music ready for “Wizard of Oz” which will be the drama group’s next production. I was constantly singing the songs in my head which got just a tad annoying. I think a couple of my interpretations sound like something you’d expect to hear on C-Beebies (British TV channel for the very tiny), but never mind. I was also competing with the car alarm that my next door neighbour’s son was installing on his souped up motor. It’s a particularly annoying alarm that has about 10 different sounds, and changes after about 5 seconds of each one. It also loops – presumably until someone switches it off.

I know this because it’s gone off three times in the night so far. *grumbles and yawns* Never mind. I’m sure he didn’t mean it to do that although I might have to go and have a quiet word if it does it too many more times.

Thanks to my little red pills, I’m starting to “get my mojo back” (as Austin Powers might say). Feeling more positive and energy levels starting to go up. Work is mostly tolerable, although I’ve noticed if I feel stressy that thing on my forehead prickles. (My blood pressure went straight up the second I arrived back to work since some rude knoblett had pinched my chair – painstakingly set up just how I like it – and I had to run around the office to find another one – completely different style and not used to it yet – keep forgetting I haven’t got a head-rest anymore etc.)(We’re short on trivial items like chairs and desks lately. It’s been known for some of the millions of contractors who are currently crawling over the place to have ended up working from their hotel rooms.)

The first sign that I was feeling more like doing stuff was I felt like messing around with photos again. Have had four busy days in a row. Thursday night I went out for a meal with the drama ladies, Friday I went over to my pal’s house (to avoid trick and treaters), Saturday I met up with other pals that I haven’t seen for agesand Sunday I was out flickering in Shrewsbury.

Rather alarmingly – and early – we had some snow last week. At work, we all looked out of the window aghast. Well – I was a bit aghast! Snow is very pretty if all you have to do is look at it. I have a habit of (unintentionally) slipping over in the stuff. I hope this doesn’t mean we’re in for a long, cold winter.

Anyway – to give it its due, the snow waspretty. It froze overnight, so was still on my car-roof the following morning. Here’s a “close-up”. Not great because I was rushing to go to work, and completely forgot about measuring for white balance thus meaning much tinkering in Photoshop elements. Still – it’s all crystal-y and pretty! Bokehlicious in fact. (Well….maybe!)

Frozen snow on my car roof


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