New Albums on the Horizon (and an old title just to spice the pot)

Two of the artists I respect most have new albums coming in the next few weeks.

First up is Bob Dylan whose new album is due on cd and vinyl on the 28th of April. I think the artwork is dreadful but I’m sure the musical content will be better. It’s called "Together Through Life"

Next is John Foxx who, as I’ve mentioned before, has been working with Robin Guthrie. Their album will also be on cd and vinyl and will appear the first week in May. It’s called "Mirrorball".

On a more personal note, I’ve been working on remastering the sound on three albums for a band from the 70s and 80s called Sad Cafe. I now have a provisional release date for the first of these. The album also called Sad Cafe will be on Renaissance Records in the States on the 21st of April.

I mentioned John Foxx. Another album he has been busy on dropped through my letterbox this morning. This time he’s worked with Steve D’Agostino and Steve Jansen (ex-Japan). I’ve not shown the artwork for this one before so here goes:

Mr Foxx is frighteningly prolific.

What other discs would I recommend at the moment?

Walter Becker – Circus Money (not just because I was involved in the release of this one)
Alice Cooper – Along Came A Spider (oh, another one I was involved in)
Mostly Autumn – Glass Shadows
Bob Dylan – Tell Tale Signs
Revue Noir (Debut EP – featuring Sam Rosenthal from black tape for a blue girl)
Sam Yahel Trio – In the Blink of An Eye
Rubicks – In Miniature
Frankie Valli – Romancing the Sixties (one for the nostalgists – but very good!)
Marie-Juliette Beer – The Garden
Barclay James Harvest – Revolution Days (just happens to feature Ian Wilson and Mike Byron-Hehir from Sad Cafe, did I mention I’ve been remastering for them)
Bob James – Urban Flamingo
Saviour Machine – Legend 1
Son Volt – On Chant and Strum
Danilo Perez – Panama Suite
Richie Furay Band – Alive (Catch my interview with him on Cross Rhythms on the web and in Natural Progressions Magazine in the world of print)

Enough for now………….


The rain doesn’t have to hurry in the city……

Joyce lived on her own. She’d pretty much given her life caring for her aging Mum. When Mum died, Joyce lived on her own. Each Sunday, her friends from the local church would come and collect her to take her to a service. Her neighbours avoided her. Joyce lived on her own.

Joyce died on her own. One Sunday, her friends from the local church came to collect her to take her to a service and there was no answer. Her friends from the local church called around the hospitals. The strain of life had given Joyce some mental health problems and it wasn’t unusual for her to need to go away for a week or two. But the hospitals didn’t know. Her friends from the local church called the police. They came and opened the door to Joyce’s lonely house and found her in her bed. The coroner said that she had stopped breathing. Her heart wasn’t in it. He said it was good that her friends from the local church noticed. Joyce died on her own.

When you’re poor and you die on your own, you become less important than you were in life. The local authority had to wait “for a convenient slot” for Joyce to be buried. There was no money in this departure. It was a little inconvenient. Nobody wanted to know. Her friends from the local church felt that this wasn’t right. So they told the local authority so. It didn’t make a lot of difference. They offered to pay for the funeral. The money was declined. But slowly, because they were a nuisance, things began to change. Finally six weeks after her death, Joyce was allowed to be buried. Joyce was not buried unnoticed. Her friends from the local church saw to that.

Some tell me that religion divides and cause war. I think they’re right. But a true faith in God and the proper understanding of the nature and worth of humanity – now that can be something else. It brings dignity and respect in a society that fast seems to be losing those things. 

Time…no more

A friend of mine died yesterday. She was an old lady in my care. I wrote about her before in a journal entry I called “Time passes slowly… here in the mountains”. You could look it up! I’d meant to call on her on Thursday afternoon but the pressures of life got in the way. I decided to go Monday instead. Now there’ll be no calling. It wasn’t a commitment. She didn’t know I was coming. But I got it wrong. Life is very hard. Sometimes. This year is shaping up to be one of the worst.

Genuine Imitation Life

Well, what a week. A little over a week ago I was having my foot manipulated because three of my metatarsals had become displaced and tender. Couldn’t walk. The manipulation was excruciating but I wasn’t going to let that stop me. Worked as normal. Even managed to take a couple of days away at a concert (I’ll post about that as soon as I’m feeling human again!).
Then the ultimate irony – I’ve come down with a flu and chest bug thingie. Spent most of the last two days in bed and off work sick. I should have just given up when the foot went. Well, maybe not. I would have missed some great times. But I’ve ground to a halt now.

Time passes quickly…. here in the mountains

Life goes by too fast. Over the last few weeks a friend of mine has died, my daughter got baptised, another friend spent way too much time crying (and I don’t know what to do about that) and they began to mess with my favourite cereal. Is nothing sacred?

Human life doesn’t seem to be. An old lady in my care is resident in a nursing home now and I went to see her today. They say that in her day she was brilliant and determined and achieved much. She even had contacts with the royal family…. but, hey, I’ll forgive her that. Now her memory has gone. Today, talking to her I could only find two people she remembered from the recent past and I was one of them and she couldn’t quite figure out my name.

The trouble is with her spectacles. Four months ago, she was transferred to her nursing home. Her glasses were broken and the frame was held together with a sticking plaster (band aid). Four months ago, they said that her glasses would be sent away and repaired. Each time I visit they can’t find her spectacles and then when they do, they still have that sticking plaster holding it together and there are the usual round of excuses and we go through the pantomime of placing the glasses on her nose. Each time they say that they will be sent away to the opticians for him to do their work … but they never are. And I know they will be missing next time… And I know that when they find them they will still have that sticking plaster holding them together. Trouble is they never find them on the floor or under her clothes or on her chair or in her bedroom….. they always find them somewhere where the nurses have put them for safety. On a shelf or behind a desk. Somewhere safe where the broken glasses won’t get broken.

To add to this conundrum, all of the nurses seem reasonably dedicated and professional. The optician tried to test her for a new prescription but she won’t co-operate.

It seems there’s no-one to blame except the passage of time that has robbed her of the capacity to arrange these things for herself and the passage of time that has laid waste to all of her close family. And the passage of time that means that there’s nothing can be done and by the time it is, she’ll probably be dead.

There’s a lot happening at the moment but I know that sticking plaster is going to haunt me for a long time to come……..