Monday 7th August 2006 -- 7:00 pm
Made the mistake of presuming that I'd finally completed the track running order for this year's Nelsonica CD but I was wrong. (And after I'd announced it on the Dreamsville Inn Forum too.)
The first two versions proved to be far too long to fit onto a CD so I had to drop three tracks and record two shorter, brand new ones to get the total running time to just under 80 minutes in length. The revised, (and hopefully final) track listing looks like this:-
Bill Nelson. Album for Nelsonica '06.
1. 'Premium Standard No.1.'
2. 'The Girl In The Galaxy Dress.'
3. 'Take It Off And Thrill Me.' (Jazzy option.)
4. 'Memory Skyline.'
5. 'Distant Towns With Different Lights.'
6. 'The Song My Silver Planet Sings.'
8. 'Superadventure (Sound-On-Sound.')
10. 'Transparent Towers At Dusk.'
11. 'El Swingo Collapso.'
12. 'The Rest Of The World Rolls By.'
13. 'Wind Chimes Of Memory.'
14. 'Take It Off And Thrill Me.' (Rock Option.)
15. 'Sequinned Skeleton Blues.'
16. 'Snow Is Falling.'
17. 'A Buddha For My Brother.'
The three tracks that I couldn't fit on to the album are: 'Railway Across The Roof Of The World;' 'Pilgrim' and 'This Sky,This Sea,This Summer.' These leftovers will either go towards next year's Nelsonica cd or appear as bonus tracks on any re-issue projects that I might undertake next year. It all depends on context and mood.
'Arcadian Salon' has been a tricky album to put together as the music on it covers a quite diverse set of styles. The first six tracks are all from the 'Return To Jazz Of Lights' sessions and have a very jazzy feel. I couldn't find space for them on that album so they are presented here instead.
Track 7, ('Spaceport'), whilst not from those sessions ALSO has a jazzy influence and features my recently aquired Greco L10P archtop guitar. (See photo.)
Track 8, 'Superadventure (Sound-On-Sound)', is the epic instrumental piece that originally appeared exclusively on Sound-On-Sound magazine's DVD, an item that was attached to the magazine's special anniversary issue. It appears here on one of my own albums for the very first time. This piece covers several of my musical acres in one single composition...it almost constitutes a potted history of my instrumental work.
Tracks 9, 10 and 11 continue in an instrumental vein and act as a bridge between the cd's earlier jazzy feel and the 'rockier' tracks that appear on the latter part of the album. Having said that, tracks 13 ,15 and 17 are also little instrumental interludes and serve to break up some of the vocal tracks.
The entire cd is now just a few scant seconds under 79 minutes long, making it a somewhat longer listening experience than the 'Return To Jazz Of Lights' album.
I now have to try to get some mastering time booked at Fairview so that it can be manufactured in time for the convention. (Actually, after writing that sentence, John Spence literally just called me to say he can fit the mastering session in at the end of this month, so manufacturing should be on schedule if the master goes straight off to the factory, once we've completed the process.)
Yesterday afternoon brought a meeting of the Nelsonica Planning Department, which I was invited to attend. Always a pleasure to meet the members of the convention team...they're so enthusiastic and creative and always make me feel rather special. And this particular meeting was made extra special by Ian Haydock who gave me a gift of a 1950's Selcol Toy Guitar (which may well make an appearance at Nelsonica this year).
Actually, this is the second Selcol guitar I've been given...long-time fan Scott Tiggert sent one to me by post a week or so ago. Suddenly, I've been re-connected with the very roots of my guitar playing. In the late 1950's, this plastic, toy instrument introduced me to the delights of the guitar for the very first time. I'll relate the story of my guitar beginnings at Nelsonica as part of my presentation.
The toy Selcol Elvis Presley guitar I was so generously given yesterday actually has an 'autochord' unit with it...a small box with buttons. This fixes on to the neck and produces a few simple chords when each button is pressed. These Selcol guitars are very rare and, being a collector of retro design items, I'm thrilled to now own two of them, thanks to the generosity and thoughtfulness of my kind benefactors.
At the Nelsonica meeting, the team and I talked through various details regarding this year's convention content. It's going to be a non-stop delight if all goes to plan. Fitting everything in to a single day is the hardest part but, there's certainly no lack of content. Apparently, the event has already sold out and there is a waiting list for any tickets that might become available.
Attendees certainly get value for money as the ticket entitles them to a copy of the limited edition 'Arcadian Salon' album; (These things tend to become valuable collector's items); A live performance of instrumental music by myself; A 'meet and greet' session; A live on-stage interview between Leeds University School Of Music lecturer Simon Warner and myself; A separate talk about 'guitar philosophy' including the importance of the instrument in my life and some technical hints and tips; A question and answer session; an exhibition of several special items from my guitar collection; An exhibition of some early artwork; Rare video footage presentations of Be Bop Deluxe and Red Noise; A special tribute to my much loved and missed brother Ian featuring rare Fiat Lux videos; A 'Dreamsville Radio Show' with me acting as presenter and DJ; A video presentation of some of my own musical inspirations; A selection of my self-created videograms; A preview of the re-mastered 'Getting The Holy Ghost Across' album; Exclusive previews of unreleased recordings from the 1980's; An auction of artwork and memorabilia; A raffle with some impressive prizes; A preview of work -in-progress on the Ghosts Etched On Glass' film. (If I can find time to take it beyond the opening title sequence which is all I've completed so far!) A preview of the previously unreleased Be Bop Deluxe live tracks AND a merchandise stall that will have advance copies of 'Return To Jazz Of Lights' for sale, amongst other things.
How we'll fit all that into the day is a mystery but there certainly won't be a dull moment.
Now I have to start making a list of the pieces of music I want to include in my Nelsonica 'radio show.' I also would like to create a couple of new pieces to play as part of my live performance too...so, perhaps I should park the diary for a little while and get on with some work.
On the domestic front, not much to report. With all the work on my plate at the moment, there's not a lot of time available for socialising, 'though Emi and I are attending our friend's 40th Birthday celebrations soon and also going to a little art gallery party North of York later this week. It would be nice to find a little more time for relaxing though. But work is a pleasure for me...how can music making not be?
Saw a beautifully coloured bird outside our house a couple of days ago. Couldn't identify it but we certainly hadn't seen one like it in our garden before. Perhaps it was a finch of some kind. I wonder if it's the result of this particularly warm summer? There seems to have been a few more butterflies in our garden this year too, and bumble bees. The English Summer of childhood fantasy, right here and now. Wish I had more time to enjoy it.
Images attached to this diary entry are:-
1. Bill's Greco L10 P Archtop Guitar.
2. Two rare Selcol Elvis Presley toy guitars and a '56 Custom Shop Fender Stratocaster.
3. Custom Shop Fender Stratocaster re-issue in Fiesta Red.