Hi Again. my good friends Ian and Tracey do a blog for their site and I've heard Tracey say to me before now..."time to try and find something to write about" etc. Me? I used to have free time once. I vaguely recall what it felt like to doss in front of the TV on a Sunday. Now? I'm trying to think how I can shorten this so I can get on with drying my sheets etc. and relaxing before the onslaught of next week.
Fridays gig was great in every sense. Despite having a power cut when the haze machine (not mine but installed by someone else known to the bride and groom) ran out of liquid and triggered the trip switch. The laptop hates it when this happens as it's running off an external mega sized hard drive and despite not losing power itself (due to it's battery) it refuses to recognize the said drive when power resumes. Luckily, I have a separate Numark system which runs on Linux and boots up again much quicker.
At the end of the gig I tried to get a video testimony from the groom and in turn the bride but the groom said he didn't agree with that sort of thing so I didn't push it.
He then went on to say how very impressed he was with my music, mixing aand the show in general, to which I replied: "if only I could get that on camera!" he grinned at me in the way of a man who knew the true value of what he was withholding.. Never mind, I'd already got his dads testimony and unbeknown to me I was about to get his best man's too. See it on the up coming video number 6.
On to Saturdays gig. This was a sort of after-the-wedding-in-Barbados party for the rest of the family do. As far as the guests were concerned everything went fine. As far as I was concerned everything WAS going fine until the chief pain in the arse at the venue decided to switch on the "flash different coloured traffic lights at the band area of the stage" lights. This had the effect of lighting me up which is wrong for a start because I'm not the star. The music is the star with a mobile disco or at worst, the bride in all her glory. More importantly it had the effect of lighting the dance floor up like Tescos which to put it politely I found a tad exasperating. I went over and asked her if those lights could be turned off. "No" she said. No explanation, just "no". "But the dance floor is lit up like a supermarket" I said. "it's turning the customers off. No One wants that much attention. It's clearing the floor". "I'm not turning them off" she said. "Why?" I said. "It's too dark and they're staying on" She said. As I walked back to my show in defeat i fantasized at all the things I'd like to do to her like Coming on the microphone and hurling insults at the attitude of the horrible bitter cow etc. but of course I'm much too good mannered and sensible for that. I can think of other deejays who would have let rip. Me? I just stood there doing my job to a thinner dance floor quietly seething and wishing the flees of a thousand camels to infest her nasty armpits. Do you ever get that overwhelming feeling that someone is only doing what they are doing just because they either have decided they don't like you or they think everyone is having too much fun?
I don't get it very often but when I do I sure as hell know it.
i'm sure you're thinking that's it but alas, no. DJ Software is an organic thing. It obviously grows week on week with new songs but other things get worked on and saved at the gig as well like buiding new genres of music and beat processing etc.
So imagine how I felt when after doing some particularly good work for "Disco kind" I found that at the end of the gig I couldn't damnwell save any of it! I'm not blaming the software this time. The software is solid gold. It's the most stable software I've ever used. No It's bloody windows that's what. The most unreliable computing platform ever to darken the solar system. Deliberately designed with future failure in mind... and lots of it! As I type this I have lots of defragging going on and this new defrag programme I've downloaded seems to be taking about three days to complete the cycle. Of course I downloaded it because windows panorama doesn't like you to see what the defragger is up to. I'm beginning to see why. So as I type this I don't for sure know if I can still save my work. Like to take bets? Oh well If I have to re-install or throw some sort of sci-fi solution together I'm sure I can do something to get it working again. All it means is that my laptop needs some TLC. Sitting down there all on it's own waiting for my next gig before she get's any more attention. Perhaps that's whats wrong with the traffic lights woman.
Hello for this week folks. I've just done my first mixed race wedding in all my nine years of business. I must have deejayed for hundreds of happy couples over the years so why only now?
When I was a much younger man living in West London in the late eighties I think, I was a keyboard player in a mainly Jamaican soul band. Musicians have always mixed with other races and cultures but you don't see much of it Down here in Sussex. The reason? Next to no black or Asian folks live down here. They must like to stick together like white Brits Abroad in Spain or the South of France or Florida (flo-rida?) or Australia or Somewhere.
When I was living in Los Angeles in about 2003-4 I felt like the Mexican immigrants. A bit of an outsider in someone else s' world. I would relish the trip to the English shop and restaurant on Alameda (I think). The same street that Disney, Warner Bros and NBC with Jay Leno - (their flagship show) were situated upon. As an aside, I once went for a tour around NBC and the slim young tour guide/TV wannabe girl got quite offended when I explained that in my country, a canned laughter machine, no matter how antiquated, was nothing to be gushingly proud of.
For those of you who don't know; when you see some awful American sitcom of yesteryear and the jokes aren't funny (Jerry Seinfeld anyone?) yet everybody in the audience is howling with laughter; that's canned or sampled laughter. Some bloke sitting out of view presses down keys on a box to simulate varying degrees of laughter, which must be soul destroying work, considering how crap the "jokes" are. An absolute crime to proper comedy in my book, as any proper comedian would agree.
As usual, I digress.
It was a trip down homesick lane where you could have a pint of Mc Kewens (spelt wrong) , a bowl of cocky-leaky soup and a fry up, followed by a visit to the ajoining shop for a packet of Digestives and a bottle of HP sauce at hugely inflated imort prices.
Aah you could practically still smell the expensive aviation fuel on the packets...and yes the biscuits at the end were still broken just like at home..
So whilst I may mention LA in a future blog (you don't know what I was doing there yet; unless you know me in which case you'll be bored rigid with the story) I will just say that I can see why immigrants/expats/poor natives or whatever tend to stick together geographically at least. It's very comforting and somewhat homely. Having said that, I always feel like it's a good thing when you see others venturing outside those parameters. Not just because I like to see young love, but because the more integrated we are, the less mystery and false rumours about those others in that group over there that ultimatly lead to conflict, are aloud to grow.
See video number 5 on the video page. One thing I didn't find out though. Why do Ghanian men spend so much time on their mobiles? Some hardly saw the reception at all. Whatever it was must have been important..
Hi all again. Well video number 3 is finally up and if you only knew what I had to do to get it to y'all.
I'd much rather have a trouble free life than some of the Victor Meldrew stuff that's happened to me lately. Yesterday I upgraded my video editing software, as I liked the look of the upgrade and since it's become a bit of a hobby in recent years I thought, what the hell, let's go for that swish looking improvement with it's nice dark grey interface. I'm a sucker for anything that's not too "glarey" and blinding.. why do you think I love being a DJ so much? It's not because I'm a vampire you know. I painted the roof lining of my VW golf in vinyl flavoured charcoal long before the the car companies did - All apart from Mercedes. That's where I got the idea.
Big mistakes often look so innocent at the outset don't they?
All upgrades ask you if you want to get rid of the old version so of course you say yes to keep the hard drive tidy and slick etc. Don't do it! Keep it for a while until you're more than satisfied with the new version. i WISH I Had. The new version won't edit anything at all without crashing almost instantaneously. I haven't seen software this bad since running 8 tracks of audio simultaneously (and that's two 'taneouslys" in one paragraph I know) on Windows 95 in my "then" Studio. Actually, truth be known I had far fewer problems.
See i was convinced it was my old PC; as we built it in 2003 and it won't take more than 1 GB of ram these days without refusing to boot up! Before I cleaned the C-drive up a bit it used to take a full 1:20secs for my Firefox browser to open...Slow eh?
How wrong I was! My old PC is kept pretty clean (now) by some standards and right now is pretty quick for it's age - a bit like it's owner..
How do I know this? i went out today and bought a kickin' powerful gaming style laptop with all the right graphics hardware installed for a trouble free film editing experience. Don't you just love gamers? Who do they listen to when they push the envelope? Deejays? No. Graphic designers? No. Gamers that's who. I bow to you all, you techie nerds with no girlfriends in your parent's basement sweating over quake 5.3 with excited palms and a great big glowing turbo-cooled tower.
It was at this point I found out the guilty secret of the upgraded software affair.
It doesn't even work on the best laptop you can get for the job!
Yeah so anyway like...guess what got me out of the shit?
Good old original unstable as hell, but strangely not now Windows Movie Maker. That's right baby.. The most fangled and cool looking product is callously and rudely swiped off the table to be replaced by the very thing I originally bought said product to escape from due to excessive crashing and limited scope! Oh the irony! The turning of the tables coming full circle and other clumsily mixed metaphors...
A somewhat painful and cringing big thank you to Microsoft, who were they present, would be as surprised to hear it, as I indeed am to utter it.