Tapeworm

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There was an opportunity to compose a one page score for top ensemble Noszferatu as part of Frontiers Festival. I was mad busy working/writing essays/finishing other pieces and had resigned myself to not being able to do so. However, when I spotted my name down on the list, I thought I’d rise to the challenge anyway.

I wanted to further explore my interest in parasitic relationships.
The relationship between a flatworm parasite and snails was intriguing, the fact it became almost like a zombie  was curious. I wanted to find a way to explore the imbalance. One idea starts with a lot and is stripped bear, the other multiplies and grows at the expense of the former. Non-mutual symbiotic relationships.

As a title I thought ‘Flatworm’ sounded a bit dry, so opted to entitle the piece ‘Tapeworm’, another parasite, sounds cooler, and it connected to a piano piece ‘Tick’ I had written earlier – which explored the same idea in a slightly different way.

You can have a listen here
Many thanks to top musicians Finn Peters, Joel Bell, Ivo de Greef and Percy Pursglove!

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.

Chef Concertino

At the start of the year, I was fortunate to have an orchestral piece called “Chef Concertino” performed at Birmingham Conservatoire. The composition department has an annual competition where composition students can submit works to be performed; the best 6 are chosen.

My performance incorporated two passions: food and music. It featured my chef uncle and Graeme Rose from Stan’s Cafe. It was a good first attempt and a lot of work went into it. I would make more tweaks if I had time, such as more interaction between orchestra and chef, but there’s only so many hours in the day.

Have a listen:

 

Video:

 


 

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”

Respek Vanley: Music Workshops Sessions 3 & 4

We are getting there… thank goodness for that, as I’m having the trippiest dreams as the pressure is on.

Young people have written two original sets of lyrics for songs using the riddims of Steel Pulse and Burning Spear, I have an  a capella idea for the final ditty, we have one session left to devise/rehearse, using “Hail Him”. We shall see what the young people think of my idea.

Continue reading “Respek Vanley: Music Workshops Sessions 3 & 4”

Respek Vanley: Music Workshops 2 and 3 plus updates

Today’s workshop was great! 4 sessions to go before the big day!
There is no shortage of energy with this group, loads of personalities and ideas. I’d definitely describe this group as like an over-excited puppy, wanting to greet every passer-by with a nuzzle.

Continue reading “Respek Vanley: Music Workshops 2 and 3 plus updates”

May sketch a day: funny

laughter. nuff said.
a bit lazy this one, sorry.

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May sketch a day: memory

well behind. still got 3 to do, but was able to blitz some today. a crazy week.

here is memory. audio from youtubes ennit.
i took the piano triad used on the video and messed around with it, took half the time, it is very simple. white notes.

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Movements Fi Make

Finding time to write this blog post has proven to be a mission… Nearly in April already! Seriously, wtf!  Time (yes, a constant) appears to racing ahead, feel like I am going to wake up an elderly woman at this rate! Anyway, I’ve some great projects happening at the moment.  Continue reading “Movements Fi Make”

Workshopped Out

Been delivering a fair amount of workshops this term, as well as being busy running new promotion Rea River Soul, last venture was a success, lots of great feedback – woop! The promotion game is a tiring one when you’re work full time, most of us do and I shan’t complain!  Continue reading “Workshopped Out”

The Waiting Room

Harborne Academy‘s waiting room transformed:

We faced several drawbacks, people not understanding the ideas of our transformed space, (especially older groups), some said there was not enough seating, some didn’t like it, but we quickly we addressed their concerns, and resolved any issues.  Continue reading “The Waiting Room”