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15 YEARS AGO TODAY...

Updated: Apr 24

It was 15 years ago today that my brother Ian passed away on the morning of his 50th birthday. He would have been 65 today. Emi and I have driven over to Wakefield again to place flowers and a card on his grave. When we got there we found that someone had already put flowers at his headstone so we placed ours between them, along with a birthday card which had an illustration of jazz musicians on the front. It was a very warm and sunny day in direct contrast to the day he was buried there which was dismal and bitterly cold. Sad memories that haunt me still. Ian is always in my heart and so often in my dreams.

Earlier today I gave an interview to ‘Planet Rock Radio’ which involved me choosing ten records which had inspired my earlier days as a guitarist. The choices were nor exactly ‘rock’ music based but I tried to at least choose tracks which were loosely in the genre. Not all ten will be featured though.

Obviously ‘The Shadows’ were an early inspiration to me but the track I chose seems to have been dropped. Duane Eddy made it though, as did Albert King, The Yardbirds, the Beatles, The Byrds and the Beach Boys, (though the latter, apparently, had never been played by the station.) I think the stations remit is fixed on the rock genre to the exclusion of all else. Not surprising with a name like 'Planet Rock' of course!

The interview required me to buy a USB microphone and headphones for my computer to make a connection to the station’s recording system. I duly bought these items from Amazon but there was a lot of ‘faffing’ about to get them to work properly. And, after a lot of trial and error, it transpired that the link to the station wouldn’t work unless I downloaded and installed Google Chrome, an app I don't use. There then followed a hair tearing process to get this application installed and working but finally, after much cursing, the connection was made.

And, talking about hair tearing, I finally got my lockdown locks cut the other day. My hair had grown down to my shoulders and I resembled an aging hippie, not a look I was keen to expose. All neat and tidy now though, thanks to a visit from ace snipster Steve Cook.

Also had another eye injection session at the hospital, this one lasting two and a half hours. My eyesight continues to deteriorate and the scans were not good. I required an injection in both eyes and the one into my right eye was excruciatingly painful. I’ve never experienced such intense pain on previous occasions so I don’t know why this one was so bad. The left eye injection was more like what I’ve been used to, a bearable amount of pain and discomfort, but the right eye was simply unbearable and I nearly jumped off the hospital bed with the acute pain it caused. I tried to not make a fuss but, even now, my right eye feels very sore and I’ve been experiencing a slight, sickening headache.

On a more positive note, my personal copies of ‘Dazzlebox’ have arrived and the package looks really good, though I haven’t found time to listen to the album yet to check out the pressing. It should be released to the public next week I’m told.

Meanwhile, I’ve continued to record new tracks for ‘My Private Cosmos,’ which may be the next album. Already enough material in the can for it but still trying to get a final shape together, a sort of cohesive concept or feel. I think this is going to be a special one...eventually.

Time to get back to it, even at this late hour...




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