Saturday, 17 October 2009
It's now October and I've started at Cov Uni doing Music Composition & Performance, it's only two weeks in and I'm loving every second! I can imagine it'll get more challenging as the year goes on but I really can't wait to get stuck in and start playing with new people!
As for the acoustic night at Eden Bar, alas it is no more. It had it's good weeks and bad weeks and we had some great acts down but after having a slight disagreement in regards to payment and promotion etc. I thought it best to knock it on the head and take Tuesday nights off! It's such a pleasant little venue and it's got a lot of potential but I reckon the location just puts people off.
However, I have started another night down Rosie Malone's. I'll be honest and say that so far the locals in there haven't been as responsive and I'd have hoped, but I think there's a lot of leeway for it to progress and get better. For one it's the official pre-club for the Kasbah which draws in a lot of students anyway. In the meantime James is usually busy downstairs at Rosie's twiddling, pulling and pushing certain buttons to make the bands sound ace. Does a good job of it too.
As for the album/EP, things are certainly looking up! We've been recording new material recently and still have dates in the future for the studio to lay even more tracks down so that's definitely something to look forward to. We've recently finished a track called 'Start the Show' which will be on the myspace pretty soon. Currently working on a new song called 'Jezebel' and 'Wasting Time'. After that I reckon the EP will be near enough ready! I've been looking into sponsorship for the album from different companies, one being Sailor Jerry's rum. I sent them a dinky little box filled with little totes and delights and a letter enquiring about sponsorship and to my surprise they were really responsive! They even sent me some free Sailor Jerry t-shirts, playing cards, stickers and a bottle of rum! Was a lovely little package to wake up to! As for sponsorship they'll be in touch as they haven't set up anything in the UK for supporting unsigned acts like they have in the US but they said they'd let me know :)
Me and James have booked a camper van holiday for the 7th December. We'll be bloody frozenbut I'll be damned if I'm gonna pay as steep as it costs during the summer! I thought about looking up some venues to play round the south of England while we're away but I reckon a weeks break from the music side of things is definitely needed!
The Godiva Festival has come and gone (it seems like light years ago that it was summer) It was a lovely weekend, with constant sun and some interesting music. I was running a small acoustic stage myself in the mini-market which was good fun. Playing on a different stage whilst Newton Faulkner was on another proved difficult to keep a crowd though! Got terribly sunburnt too!
I was asked to run the open mic night at the Tin Angel throughout October which has been really enjoyable so far. It's a lovely place to host anything musical. We've even had a few poets share their work too.
Me and Katie organised another Bank Holiday Lovin' at the Campbell. It was pretty last minute that I was asked but we managed to raise a bit which was what really mattered. Not as much sun this time and no live bands but lots of acoustic delights downstairs in the corner that made the day :)
The Tuns is apparently re-opening which is something to look forward too! It'll be good to have somewhere else to go other than the Campbell again! Noth that there's nowhere else in Coventry, but I always liked the atmosphere in there. Gave you that warm fuzzy feeling.
As for the nights down Esquire's I passed them along to my friend Lee Evatt who was eager to start a night of his own. I usually work Saturday nights which doesn't give me a lot of leeway to get acts booked and organise/promote the night properly, but Lee's doing a darn good job so far.
We moved into the flat about 2 months ago now. It gets messy at times but it's nothing we can't all keep on top of! There seems to be a lot of instruments strewn about the place, guitars, tele's, bass's, banjo's, trumpets, bongos, violins etc. ... the neighbours love us.
Almost halloween, meaning a mass metal band night at the Campbell I reckon. The Monster Mash. with Finish Him and support from evenflowerskill and a zombie discotheque to follow. Sweet! Also planning some kind of Christmas Carol sesh for Songbird... not to sure where to start with that one but I'm sure we'll think of something!
Currently sat in Mum's flat as have locked myself out for the first time since moving there. Which has resulted in having to cancel a gig and an acoustic night. Goody.
Roll on Christmas 09.
Thursday, 11 June 2009
It's proving a little hard to juggle shifts at the pub with the acoustic night and gigs of my own but I seem to be managing it somehow :)
Mr Jonny Nichold's, frontman from the Bellows has started a new night down Inspire every other Thursday called Jonny's Broken Mic. I've popped down a couple of times now and it's a brilliant atmosphere. No rules, just a nice crowd, open mic's and instruments and drinks. Oh, and a megaphone :)
I recently popped down to Brighton to visit Claire and have decided that I actually want to live there. If only I could! Everythings so quirky with little tucked away shops on cobbled streets leading down to the beach. I've heard the music scene down there's on it's feet so me and James are thinking of taking a week off to stay down there and write the album and do some gigs.
Godiva finals have just gone by too. It's such a shame that Reuben's Cane didn't get through, I reckon they deserved a slot. Although I think they'll definitely get bigger offers in the future. Newton Faulkner's playing Godiva this year so there's every reason to go down still... although they still have the drinking ban which is a load of crap.
I saw Andy McKee at Taylor John's on the 20th May too! I can't actually put into words how much I enjoyed that evening. The guy's unbelievable. When I heard he was coming to Coventry I HAD to get a ticket. I remember watching him for the first time on YouTube when I was like, 15 or something. It wasn't too busy either. It's a small venue but I preferred it as it was. We were all just sat on the floor watching him. The Tin and Taylor John's seem to share a same relaxed atmosphere.
Me and Katie organised a charity event at the Campbell on the 24th May called Bank Holiday Lovin'. Went down a treat :) It was for a charity that Katie works for called SoLo. We had a lot on that day. I put on loads of acoustic sets outside in the beer garden from 2pm. The BBQ was on the go, we had a raffle. Was a great day. And the weather was perfect! Not a spot of rain thankfully. We had Momma's in the Kitchen, the Shortlist & Marble Skyes play upstairs in the club later on at night too. We raised around £850 I think! Good times! Ever so glad it went so well.
Looking through my diary now I didn't realise how busy I've been!
It was my birthday on the 29th May too, was booked in to play the Tuns but unfortunately it shut down :( Was so bummed out when I heard. So instead we had lunch at Browns, viewed some art at the Degree Show and then got rather drunk at the Campbell :) Tha Saturday was the Godiva finals. Wasn't happy that Reubens Cane didn't get through but very glad the Satin Dolls did. They deserve it for sure.
I think I've covered everything! Got quite a few things lined up in the future to get ready for too.
'Fall Into Me' is being played tonight and on Saturday on BBC Coventry & Warwickshire Introducing which is pretty cool. It'll be on iTunes soon with some luck!
I'm running a couple of nights down at Esquire's Coffee House called 'Spotlight' in June and July aswell. Fingers crossed it goes down all right. :)
I've just started revising properly for my Music Theory Exam which is next week. I'm not too worried about it, although I probably should have revised more a bit earlier! Still looking forward to starting Music Compostion in September too! :) I'm moving out into a flat with James and Rich in early July which will be really ideal as it's literally on the uni's doorstep... as well as the Campbell's! Not sure how I feel about living with two guys though. They've mentioned naked Sundays which is worrying. Don't believe I'll be participating in that!
Think that's all for now ya know. :) Signing out.
Thursday, 9 April 2009
Over £4000 was raised which was great to hear! It was a great event to be a part of - I hosted the first few hours over at the Acoustic stage at Dogma until it was time to play my set which went well too! James and Dave played with me and they make things sound ten times better. Since these guys have been playing with me there's been a bigger and better reaction to the set so I'm very lucky to know such talented lovelies :) We communicate well and enjoy playing together so fingers crossed for a possible electric set later on in 2009 maybe?!
Myself, Rich, Han, Patrick & Claire helped out on the door as well, handing out wrist bands,
selling CD's and bucketing the dosh and what not. After finishing my set we all hung around to enjoy the rest of the acts. Especially enjoyed the Satin Dolls set as always, and Reubens Cane. I can't remember most of the other acts as I believe I took advantage of the free drinks.
Thank you as always to Chris Johnson for the photographs and thank you to Annie, Justine and to all who made Covfest happen. It's great that the local music community, as small as it is, can raise that much money and make such a difference. NICE ONE ;)
Monday, 23 March 2009
Okie doke. So it's Monday the 23rd March, and tonight will be the tenth Songbird Acoustic since starting the night in January. It's also my best friends birthday, so Happy 19th Sin! The acoustic night is going so much better than I thought it would be at this point. It's pretty much busy every week and on it's toes. www.myspace.com/songbirdatthephoenix
I have a gig this Saturday in the city centre at Shelton Square for Oxjam which I'm really excited about! Face-paints, raising money and local music - I can't wait! I've got gigs lined up throughout the year until July aswell so things are pretty busy.
I recently got back into the studio with James and a few other friends a couple of weeks ago. We recorded 'Fall into Me' and it sounded so much better once we got the bass, drums and other things down. So thanks to Dave, Jonny, Dan, James, Alex & Matt for sticking around that night to get things done. It'll be on the myspace soon hopefully! www.myspace.com/xemmaxacousticx
I'm starting Music Composition at Cov uni in September so I've really gotta start getting down to learning some theory for this exam in June. A couple of good friends have offered to help me out and give me some tutoring which is a great thing to have. Everyone I speak to about the composition course has given great feedback about it. So it's sounding like it's definitely for me, instead of Graphic Design!
I had another idea for the acoustic night a couple of months ago. I thought about filming the acts as they play and giving them a small interview afterwards so they can promote themselves on Youtube and I can promote the night at the same time. It's called Songbird TV and the first episode can be seen on Youtube and on the Songbird myspace. I can't watch it myself as I can't stand to see myself being filmed! But it was a good idea and me and a few friends ran with it and it turned out really well. Thanks to Mark and Rich for the filming.
I'm going to see Andy McKee on the 20th May!!!!!! He's playing at Taylor John's! I couldn't believe it when I heard. I first saw his videos on Youtube about two years ago. Who'da thought that two years later he'd pop up in Coventry?
April 4th will be Covfest. SO excited about it! There's so many great acts playing, both acoustic and full bands. It's taking place at Dogma and Escape throughout the day. It's for the Snowball Appeal so it'll be great to get as many people as possible down there.
I ran the night at the Squirrel a couple of weeks back. It was good to use a full PA instead of the small mixer I have at the pub! The girl that usually runs it was ill and asked me to take over for the night so I jumped at the chance. It's all good experience I guess.
So there's the quick update about what's been happening in the new year. More to come later on!