Christmas and post-Christmasism

Immediately pre-Christmas was a period of stress in the family, occasioned by one member, unparalleled since, er, last Christmas.

That was settled in time for Christmas day, although the repercussions will repercuss for some time yet. The Day went off well, with Madame’s father and sister in attendance and Plague and Pest being unusually civil to each other. Madame presented me with gifts expected (a ukulele) and unexpected (a voucher for a helicopter trip over the Forth), both of which delighted me. My gift to her was to sponsor a day of haircut and personal shopping supervised by Pest, an aficionado of Gok Wan, Trinny and Susannah and all the rest of it.

Since Christmas, a fair bit of recording bits and pieces for the next collection.

Yesterday afternoon I found guitar tab online for McCartney’s Jenny Wren which I’ve wanted to play since I first heard it. Daughter of  ‘Blackbird’ and just as  beautiful.

Last night, a gig at the Dalriada, with a few friendly faces in attendance and more interest from the audience than on previous occasions. During the gig I ‘found’ a fresh way to play and sing Bob Dylan that made it enjoyable again.

Today I woke in compositional mode with a ska instrumental in my head, which I managed to capture by rushing to the computer before even washing my face and plonking down a few MIDI tracks. Sure enough by midday I’d forgotten how it went so that immediate record was vital and has preserved what might become one of the defining works of 21st centure art. (Note ‘might’.)

I went on a clothing binge myself, buying shirts and trousers, changing the ukulele for one slightly less warped and more playable, and also acquiring a new shoulder bag (Madame refers to it as a ‘man-bag’ which has connotations of ‘man-boobs’ or worse) and, on impulse, a book called Ethnic Rhythms for Guitar.

Returning to Jenny Wren, I’ve been conscious over the last few days of how much I have two favourite songs of 2007, so here they are.

Paul McCartney Jenny Wren

Beirut Postcards from Italy

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