Monday, 23 April 2012

Back to reality

This is my first normal 5 day week at work for quite a while. In some ways, it's been good to get back to earth and try and re-establish a bit of a routine. My dogs have been in and out of the kennels, I've had a parking ticket and managed to go over my overdraft limit - both unlike me and entirely accidental. But it's definitely been a sign to just watch things a bit.

I've done some really good intense practice the last few days, and tonight was the best for a long time. I'm working on some duets for my harp buddy's birthday party in a couple of weeks, and working on some bits for my next recital which is in June. The audition has been a really good experience in so many ways, but mainly it has proved that when I really put my mind to it, I can achieve a lot in a short space of time. I can't keep that pace up indefinitely, but I have taken a lot from it and will be able to use this for a spot of re-balancing. (again!)

I'm working on I Feel Good, a piece written by Monika Stadler. I was incredibly lucky to work with her in Italy last year, I found her very inspirational and supportive both at and away from the harp. I Feel Good is probably my favourite of the pieces she has published, it starts so simply and then gets rather more complicated all the way through. It's pretty infectious and when she plays it, I can't help tapping my feet or clicking my fingers or something along with it.

Lastly, here are some photos from last weekend - it feels like so long ago already, I can't believe it was just a week ago. Our rather talented friend Natasha took them for us.

I did a gig on the Friday with John and Frankie, a real mixed bag where we did a mixture of jazz standards and blues songs, plus I did a couple of harp solos. I was begged to play Stairway to Heaven which went down rather to well - I'm hoping to get some video footage of this.

This was our last gig together for a little while, as Frankie was about to leave for Liverpool. It was an emotional night, and we all went that little bit further with our music and it really came off - the pub was packed, we had people dancing along while we played and the atmosphere was just brilliant. So we had a little photocall at the end of the night just for a souvenir, and I love this picture of all three of us together.

On the Sunday night, Frankie had a bit of a farewell jam night - she is a rather well connected girl so many local musicians came along to join in and see her off. 

One of my fantastic friends had built me a new stand for my electric harp, and seeing as this harp had brought me and Frankie together (I was playing it at an open mic night in town), it was really fitting that I played it the last time I would see her in her current incarnation. I broke my own golden rule, I was super tired and went out with dirty hair so looked a bit scruffy, but again I love the picture.

It's so sad to think we won't be together for a while - I have learnt so much from playing with Frankie and John. But it's hopefully been the start of something wonderful, and I plan to find some other poor unwitting souls to play with soon.

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