Today we were finally allowed to announce this year’s Record Store Day release. The clouds rolled across the sky in a stampede of fluff and wet wool…Oh, you wanted to know about RSD? Ok, fair enough. This year it will be a limited (red) vinyl release of Nightjar which until now (or April 18th) has only seen the world as a CD. It’s a lovely gatefold with some more drawings that I did at the time in the same style as the cover art. The first 700 people to buy it will get a free trip to Mars. If you were still looking for Hanging Out In Heaven, released last year, I do believe there are a few left, but they will all be gone by the end of the year, you can get in touch with Schoolkids Records to order it and party like it was 2019. I must get one myself.
Other hot news (it’s pouring in today with the rain) – we got a new sofa in the archive. It’s taken so long to find the right one. It’s the perfect size and red as all sofas should be. Sitting in it now my body can’t believe how comfortable it is. We had a futon couch in here before and the frame was breaking more and more each day till it eventually looked like a spilled pancake mix.
Now we have to dispose of it. I thought chop it up for firewood, but if there’s one thing I don’t have in the archive it’s an axe…actually.
I started today with the sound of a pagan drum and perhaps a silver band? It was as clear as a medieval court and I rushed out to photograph some close ups of French horns and tubas. But when I got into the street they had gone. I saw people walking up from Morrab Gardens and ran down there, but a lady told me that they were no longer there. I ran into the town, frantically searching, listening on the slight wind, but there was no brass, no silver and no sacrificed virgins. They had disappeared into the black mist of tousled locks and spells.
I headed to Simeon’s coffee truck, the alternative centre of Penzance. There, Simeon made me a perfect decaf and I got into a conversation with some locals about the glory days of the Penzance music scene in the sixties and seventies when all the bands would come down here and play at the Winter Gardens. Queen, Genesis, Jethro Tull, Yes, The Sex Pistols, The Vibrators, Talking Heads, The Ramones, Donovan, Mike Chapman, Al Stewart, Bert Jansch, Fairport Convention and then all the other bands I have records by like Family, Strife, Curved Air, Caravan, Gentle Giant, the list is endless. What happened?
I also met David at Simeon’s, he described himself as a dawn photographer. He was telling us about an event he wanted to put on down at the art deco open air pool on the seafront with lasers and blimps. There’s often an interesting crowd gathered around Simeon’s van, for many reasons, he’s cool, the coffee is hot and proper and it all happens out of a Citroen, what’s not to like?
Because the sofa is so exciting (I’m still sitting here and still comfortable) I must tell you about the job Charlie and Ben had getting it down the stairs as in, it wouldn’t fit. Quite a problem after buying it, getting it delivered and dismantling what we had and clearing everything out of the way so there was a pathway to its final resting place. It was obvious what we had to do, take the bannister off the staircase. This hadn’t been moved since 1896 and the paint underneath told a story of another world. Also the bannister was ‘L’ shaped and a little awkward (I once knew an awkward barrister). The moment of truth, it was like the rescue scene in a disaster movie, the last resort. It slid down those stairs like an ice cream on a plate of glass, 1mm to spare. The risky life we lead with our dangerous big red sofa.
I also had two seshes today, one with Matt in Brooklyn and one with Jed in Minneapolis. How come my sessioneers are so cool? The effort, the listening, the practice and the evolution. Wonderful.
So running around like a nutter today chasing phantoms, hearing things, seeing things, moving things and specifically listening to things. I finally got to David Axelrod’s Seriously Deep (1970), interesting, but I would say only for completists. Then there was Future Legends by Fruupp, Northern Irish Progressive Rock from 1973. Some Trower at the BBC and Hendrix at the Isle of White on CD. Fun CD of the day was Joe Walsh – Analog Man. Contemporary foray today was Grimes, Miss Anthropocene, I’d like it more if someone else was programming the drums, that’s the flaw for me. So where was I, “The clouds rolled across the sky in a stampede of fluff and wet wool…”.