Mum will have been in hospital for three weeks tomorrow. Her condition, whilst only slightly improved in some areas, is less so in others, and the last few days have seen a worrying deterioration.
One of the problems, (amongst others,) is her loss of mobility due to being bed ridden, plus all the attendant discomfort that such a thing presents. Getting her to eat is difficult too...she is very weak and often in pain, but refusing pain killing drugs because of an old prejudice against them. She can be very stubborn sometimes, but stubbornness is not working in her favour, I'm afraid.
Emi and I have been visiting her in hospital for several hours every day, but it's so difficult to see her in such a fragile and painful condition. Getting back home from Wakefield every night, to face all the preparation needed for the upcoming launch party event on top of the worry about mum, leaves me feeling drained, helpless and hopeless.
Nevertheless, I have managed to make a little progress: The hour long video to accompany the new album's preview playback has been completed and now only requires transferring to Paul Gilby's computer in preparation for projecting on the day. I've also, this evening, completed autographing 250 copies of the 'Old Haunts' CD, which will be available for launch party attendees to purchase ahead of the official release date. (The signing of these CDs was not made any easier by the fact that many of them came shrink wrapped. Not the easiest thing to remove and it certainly slowed down the signing process.)
I've also settled on a set list for the live performance. It includes a new piece titled 'Antique Gods'. It also would have included a couple more new pieces but I just haven't had time to get over to Fairview for John (Spence) to master them. The set includes a few old favourites and a couple of tracks that have only had a limited hearing previously.
There are 12 pieces to perform in all. And, of course, 12 different guitars, one for each track. Deciding on which guitar would be best for which track has also occupied a lot of time and experimentation. I think I've arrived at the right choices now. One of the guitars that will feature is a new Backlund Model 200 which has a great, raunchy sound and will be used on the piece 'I Always Knew You Would Find Me.' I'll also be featuring the Backlund Model 100 DLX which was bought as a 70th birthday gift from loyal fans last year. Another guitar will be the Musicvox 'Space Cadet' model that also came my way due to the wonderful kindness of fans.
And whilst on the subject of guitars, I have managed to decorate a fabulous Airline Coronando '59 guitar which has been generously donated by Mike Robinson of Eastwood guitars for a special charity auction in aid of Sara's Hope Foundation. This guitar will be auctioned at the event. I have to say that it's an excellent instrument, retailing at over £900, and I've actually used it on a new piece of music I've been working on. (I'm afraid I couldn't resist the temptation!) Unfortunately, I've drawn all over it with permanent marker pens, which may not be to everyone's liking, but for fans, it may add an extra desirability, (along with the fact that the eventual auction winner can say that the guitar was actually used on one of my recordings.)
I've not yet managed to create any artwork for the merchandise stall though, but will try to make a start on this in the coming week. However, time is running out and my main focus is on my mum's health needs, so no promises, but we'll see...
THE AIRLINE CORONADO '59 GUITAR WHICH WILL BE AUCTIONED AT THE 'OLD HAUNTS' LAUNCH PARTY IN AID OF SARA'S HOPE FOUNDATION CHARITY.
BILL IN HIS HOME STUDIO WITH GUITAR DESIGNER JOHN BACKLUND EALIER THIS YEAR.
BILL HAS CHAMPIONED JOHN'S DESIGNS FOR A LONG TIME NOW AND IS THRILLED THAT EASTWOOD GUITARS HAVE MADE THEM A PRACTICAL PROPOSITION FOR GUITARISTS WHO APPRECIATE SOMETHING OUT OF THE ORDINARY. (BILL IS HOLDING THE BACKLUND 'ROCKERBOX' MODEL.)
BILL'S DIGITAL GUITAR PROCESSOR RIG AT A PREVIOUS 'CLOTHWORKER'S HALL' CONCERT.
BILL WILL HAVE A NEW GUITAR TECH THIS YEAR IN THE FORM OF GORDON WHITE WHO HAS PROVIDED REPAIRS AND SET UPS FOR BILL'S GUITARS OVER THE YEARS BUT WHO HAS NEVER GUITAR TECHED FOR HIM IN A LIVE PERFORMANCE. THIS WILL BE A BAPTISM BY FIRE FOR BOTH GORDON AND BILL. THE DIGITAL RIG IS COMPLEX AND FAR FROM SIMPLE TO SET UP BUT, HOPEFULLY, THINGS WILL WORK OUT WITHOUT TOO MANY MISHAPS!