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Warm winds of positivity

Updated: Apr 10

The weather is getting warmer, the blossom is coming out and there is slight sense of positivity in the air. Having said that, organisers are being very cautious to commit to any events in the summer (in case things change), so my diary is still remarkably empty in the months to come. Normally I’d have bookings right through till the autumn and beyond at this point in the year. I suspect when live performances are possible bookings will come in pretty quickly though, so I’m not too concerned.

Blossom in Camberwell

One or two of my regular annual gigs have popped up. One is 5 days playing at Royal Ascot horse racing in June - they reckon they’ll be able to hold the event as usual. Also, Chelsea Flower Show has been shifted to the end of the summer. It would usually be held in May, but the organisers have obviously decided that they don’t want to cancel the event two years on the trot. The Queen would be very disappointed for a start – she’s always there on the gala opening night!

“The Bay Jazz Club” in Enfield is planning to re-start their afternoon outdoor gigs in May that were such a success last summer, and a Sidcup Jazz Club have optimistically booked bands from June to the end of the year. I’m looking forward to my local regular gigs in central London re-starting – Nightjar cocktail bar, The Ned, Cafe Boheme, the OXO tower and various others. Not a peep from them yet.

Six of us met in Twickenham to make a video for funeral band. We thought we should make good use of the time that we have now to create some promotional material. We tried to find quiet spots, but as soon as we started playing groups of people started gathering to watch and listen, and film us with their phones. It was nice to see the appetite for live music from the public. It was tempting to put on an improptu concert in a park, but years of experience tells us that even without a pandemic it wouldn’t be long before we were in trouble from some busybody with nothing better to do!


Funeral band in Twickenham on a sunny day

I’m currently trudging the streets and knocking on doors working for the UK Census, and I’ve been working in a Vaccination Centre. Doing this work has been a reminder of how good I have it when I’m busy making my living from music. Despite the many downsides of the lifestyle (antisocial hours, erratic work and long journeys being the worse for me) it is so much better than doing a job that you don’t have any passion for, and having to work long, relentless hours to make a significant wage.

I continue to get odd enquiries – one recently for a funeral in Sheffield playing at 9:45 am. Not an attractive proposition!


Picnic on Highbury Fields

And now that we are allowed to meet outdoors in a group of six, and with the unseasonably warm couple of days we had recently, a group of us met in Highbury Fields for a picnic.

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