Last Friday I went to a studio to record some tracks with banjo player Dickie White and trumpeter Pete Rudeforth (whose studio it was). I was told Government advice was that recording sessions were allowed, and the studio was apparently large enough for eight while maintaining distance, and there were screens between us all as well. However when Dickie called me on Sunday to say he had tested positive for Coronavirus I felt pretty miffed. It was a closed space, with limited ventilation, and we were in there for several hours so I felt like I was sure to have picked it up. The government Track and Trace system contacted me (by text) to advise that I had to isolate for 14 days from the date of the recording.
I had been booked to play for two New Orleans style funerals in the next week. These would have been my first gigs with this band for over a year, and I was looking forward to getting back in with them. It would also have been a welcome bit of income. But now I’m in isolation it’s illegal for me to even leave the house. It’s just the way it is, but it does make me feel angry. Not with anyone in particular though, just with the way things are.
In retrospect I might have said I was unwilling to record until after the current lockdown, but that would have been letting Pete down. In my area of the music business (and most areas I guess) the successful musicians are those that are up for anything and don’t let people down, so it would have gone against my instinct to scupper the session.
I’ve been feeling a bit low over the last week, with a mild but stubborn winter cold and a mouth ulcer which makes practice a bit hard work, but none of these symptoms seems to be for the virus. Hopefully my body is enough of a war-zone of antibodies for the virus not to bother me?!
In the news there’s lots of talk about the new vaccines that have recently passed trials, but to put a damper on any optimism it has been pointed out that it will be months before any major roll-out will have a significant effect on our current lifestyle. I don’t think I can expect any regular work at least till next summer. In March, when this all began in the UK, I’d have laughed at anyone who said it would go on for over a year.
In the mean time the anti-vaccine lobby are having a field-day spreading unscientific rumours. They only need to suggest the vaccines are tied up with multinational profits and government control via social media to recruit whole swathes of people. There are suggestions in government to ban anti-vaccination posts on social media, although I feel this would only backfire and play into their court. It’s scary how social media now has so much power.