Some unusually non-public work is going on currently, for the general life of a professional performer. (Though it’s a paradox that, in the particular world of non-classical covers acts (ie most people that actually make money from rock, pop, soul, etc.), performing at private events (weddings, posh parties, Forces dinners, you name it) is much more sort after, because more remunerative, than at events which are open to the public at large.)
Saturday gone, the Filthy Spectacula were out and about filming our next video (look up ‘Murder of Crows’ on Spotify for the accompanying track). It rained most of the day, we were outside for all of it, much fake blood was spilled and a surprising number of real hand tools were swung around in a fashion that would have been life-threatening with less carefully judged distances. Watch this space for results – but don’t watch them alone.
This coming Monday, meanwhile, besides rehearsing with Kindred Spirit for our next band gig (the Cross Lances, Hounslow, Friday 15th October – be there or be the usual equilateral rectangular quadrilateral), I’m playing a private function in a Chiswick hotel, with an acoustic reshuffling of the Razzberry Jam band (if the name seems familiar, I’ve guested with them the last two St Patrick’s nights). My housemates and neighbours have been spending a fair bit of this week putting up with me learning or refreshing my memory of 2 hours of material, from the unsurprising with an Irish singer and a fiddle in the lineup (Fields of Athenry, the Corrs’ Runaway) to the slightly less predictable (Long Train Running, Proud Mary and Bill Withers’ Lovely Day).
In between those I’m fitting in a trip up to home turf in Merseyside, to make my classical mandolin performance début as a hired extra hand to the Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral Orchestra. The poor Gretsch mandolin is being dragged kicked and screaming back 150 years from its origins to provide the obbligato in Mozart’s ‘Deh vieni alla fenestra’. (I’ll be spending the rest of the concert – other arias and the overtures from Don Giovanni and Cosi fan tutte – in the rather more familiar territory of bumping the 2nd violins).
And for anyone who reads this blog regularly, yes, this is the last weekend of what seemed like a worryingly dry patch for gigs (in fairness, music video shoots aren’t paid). Shows I should be careful what I wish for …