the politics of friendship

many hands make light work is a piece about sharing the load.

props to all musicians involved; loz, anton and james.
thanks to cheryl at grand union and the grubby mitts for asking me to be the support act.

for its first incarnation we did well in such a short space of time and yay we didn’t burn down minerva works!

thanks to photographer david rowan for some top photos!

 

Bobbie-Jane Grubby Mitts  GU 006  Bobbie-Jane Grubby Mitts  GU 009 Bobbie-Jane Grubby Mitts  GU 037 Bobbie-Jane Grubby Mitts  GU 038 Bobbie-Jane Grubby Mitts  GU 040Bobbie-Jane Grubby Mitts  GU 042  Bobbie-Jane Grubby Mitts  GU 046 Bobbie-Jane Grubby Mitts  GU 044

 

String Arrangements

I have been asked to compose string arrangements for Lizzie Emeh’s new LP. I thought I’d find this quite easy as my compositions tend to be quite melodic, oh how naive of me!
So as the stress levels have increased (writer’s block) – I decided to take a day off working on the tracks, start a 6000 word research essay due in 3 weeks (!!), and listened to great string arrangers. Whilst figuring out how to create arrangements for Lizzie’s tracks, I have enjoyed working on the texture/warmth/subtleties. What I have found challenging is being bold at the right moment. Thanks to Mark at Heart and Soul for being patient with me and giving me this opportunity. Time to step up now!

Listen and learn from great string arrangers:

Patrice Rushen:

Rod Temperton:

Will Malone:

Will Gregory:

Lalo Schifrin:

Glen Page:

David Van DePitte:

David Whitaker:


A nice interview with Mr. Whitaker.

X

vanley and ian
(Photographer Vanley Burke with curator Ian Sergeant)

‘X’ was revolution no. 20, under the Free School events curated by Ian Sergeant. It was inspired by an intriguing, enthralling and what John L. Williams calls a tragicomic story of black political activist Michael X.

Initially Ian Sergeant wanted a performance inspired by black British politics in the Midlands. Shamefully, knowing very little about black British politics I penned some ideas for an audio-visual performance, calling in artist and musician Matt Watkins to assist. Ian had just started reading the John L. Williams book and quite quickly his ideas changed…. Michael X became the focal point. I have to admit, I was resistant, having reservations because I was invested in the first idea, but once I read the biography it all made sense. I am glad Ian made that change! Continue reading “X”

Busy bee

 

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This summer I have four composition projects on the go, I have never composed so much in my life! It is great but I can’t wait to have some down time (which means only thinking about one piece at a time… ) It has been a busy summer.

 

Fun with Cancer Patients

I have just completed work on a project commissioned by Fierce Festival called ‘Fun with Cancer Patients’. Lead (performance) artist is Brian Lobel:

Brian Lobel has drawn on his own experience of cancer treatment as a young adult to facilitate a series of ‘actions’ by Birmingham teenage cancer patients. These actions are self-initiated and designed to be of value to the teenagers themselves in processing their experience of cancer. These actions took place following a workshop process over the summer of 2013. The exhibition documents these activities, alongside reflections from medical professionals. “

Continue reading “Busy bee”

Summertime sum up

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What beautiful weather! A year ago, I met a Swedish lady in London (on the bus I think), who said the main reason she decided to stay in the UK was down to the summer of ’76. She told me she had been longing ever since for another glorious summer like that to return. Maybe her wait is over….

Anyway, I feel it is time to update you with the world of Bobalon.

Continue reading “Summertime sum up”

May sketch a day: blurry

absolutely shattered, so many places i should be tonight, sleepy, but gonna fight it. i blame the hunt for real-life xlr leads. ended up buying the blimmin’ things online whilst on the bus, was loads quicker, than failed attempt at maplin and hockley repairs shop, apparently the geezer will solder you up any leads you want. where he at? steve!

more ambient stuff, today’s remit was ‘blurry’. so no reference to damon albarn, straight in with synths. with 30 mins you have to go for it, no turning back.

use headphones, seriously, no, seriously bab, you’ll miss the bass frequencies….

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does this sound blurry? my emotive response to having steamed up contact lens, steamy windows in a greasy spoon.

i know five people are listening: loz, marcus, rose, jen, sergeant, zip. feel free to say you don’t like ’em. developing a thick skin. i’m womaning up.

right, time to have a life. booze! sure this is day 4? 27 to go.

How the Fr*&g is it February Already?

Listen from 10:27 to the end if time is limited, lurve, lurve, lurve John Adams, please be my mentor, i’ll bake for you! I’ll propose to you on the 29th!! Lol! Don’t tell the wife.


Developed the ‘Push and Pull’ ting some more. Quite like where it’s going, getting darker, a real challenge today considering I was in such a good mood.

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Headphones, don’t bother playing through tinny speakers. As requested have put more of a beat behind it. A lot of tidying and quantising to do, sonically too, everything is competing. Got a session with a mix down pro. Can’t wait!

A late Akemashite Omedetou De Gozaimasu (Happy New Me)

A new year, new year’s resolutions,  brand new second hand you, new diaries, new socks. Instead of resolutions I have made some determinations (kind of similar) but the process is habitual (twice daily in fact), and I am winning, I’ll share a few.

They are:

Push and Pull


My Uchenna dance score commission deadline fast approaches. It’s been good fun working on it, is my compositional skill developing? I hope so. I am starting to see patterns in my musical style which is good, this awareness will mean I can take more compositional risks, (as I’m starting to grow bored of what I am producing).

Continue reading “Push and Pull”

New Commission, Another Sketch

Collaborating some more with Uchenna Dance co. Have learnt loads from previous commissions;  indeed the process never ends. Here’s a wicked bit of advice for budding dance composers like me.

Today’s 30 min sketch, loops, playing with midi, ah, if only I could access live musicians more easily. This academic year’s challenge.

Listen with headphones or you miss the bass line – needs a tidy up. 

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