Categories
Song Vault

Tonight

She’s shining like a constellation
A moment of transcendence down the pub (co-written with Harry Verity)
Download     mp3 demo     Chords (pdf)     Lyrics (pdf)

Looking at that girl at the other end of the bar
Grinning like an idiot an’ still don’t know where to start
Need something to do or something to say
When it comes to love I get my own way
Love is a needlessly contrary competition
Often complicated with no proper definition
Taking aim at nothing and complaining when I hit it
Love is not a lottery if you don’t buy a ticket

Tonight she’s got the whole world at her fingertips
So why not unlock my life with just one kiss?

Tonight, don’t let me down tonight, the arguments and fights
Are violins and choirs sent to serenade tonight
There are sonnets I could write, revolutions to ignite
If I just put down my pint and talk to you to…

…Set the scene more thoroughly a dreary Wednesday night crowd
It’s mental in the gentlemen’s’ – the ultraviolet light’s out
A dog is licking lager up under someone’s table
Sat amongst the gargoyles is a solitary angel
They’re no brighter than their bling and bitter as Bacardi
All I hear is whistling, the pounding of my heartbeat
Everyone smells of smoke, sweat and desperation
They’re tryin’ to be stars, she’s shining like a constellation

Tonight she’s got the whole world at her fingertips
So why not unlock my life with just one kiss?

Tonight, don’t let me down tonight, the sirens and blue lights
Are violins and choirs sent to serenade tonight
There are sonnets I could write, revolutions to ignite
If I just put down my pint and talk to you tonight…

For tomorrow is a siren’s lullaby
Watch love sail away as day turns into night

Don’t let me down tonight, don’t let me drown tonight
Be swept out with the tide while there’s land in sight
And sonnets left to write, revolutions to ignite
If I just put down my pint and talk to you and…

Suddenly she’s by my side, and ‘penny-for-your-thoughts’ me
I just shake my head, say “being back in here transports me,
The first time that I saw you was the last time I felt lonely”
She says, “let’s go home love, ‘cos the babysitter’s phoned me”

Categories
Prose Into Poetry

Everyday Poetry: Snow: Bob Dylan

Here’s a bit of prose that I tweaked into a poem.

Snow or no snow,
It was time for me to go.

When I arrived in Minneapolis
It seemed like a big city;
When I left it was like some rural outpost
You see once from a passing train.

Bob Dylan

Quoted in Howard Sounes: Down The Highway (p.95)
[Edited]

Categories
A Blog's Life Homework Teaching

The 2015 String Learning Speed Championship Thing

This term I’ve been teaching all my pupils the notes on the guitar up to the 12th fret. Big congrats to anyone who managed to learn the WHOLE GUITAR. Here’s the fastest 3 peeps for the whole guitar and the fastest 3, string by string. Then we have everyone who did the whole guitar and everyone who did any string in 5 seconds and under (except for the top E because there were just toooooooooo many!).

Well done everyone (try not to forget it all over the holidays!)

WHOLE GUITAR

(NAME – SCHOOL – TIME, in minutes and seconds)

1) Empress (HF) – 0.30.0
2) Emily G (FW/PR) – 0.33.0
3) Lauren (HF/PR) – 0.35.9

TOP E STRING

1) Aysha (FW)  – 2.7
=2) Ishmael (FW), Sam E (FW) – 2.8

B STRING

1) Nathan (HF) – 2.8
2) Sam M (SCA) – 3.1
3) Zac H-I (FW) – 3.3

G STRING

=1) Nathan (HF), Oliver (HF), Sam M (SCA) – 3.0

D STRING

=1) Emily G (FW/PR), Harvey (SCA) – 3.3
3) Katy H (SCA) – 3.6

A STRING

1) Abbie-Leigh (PR) – 3.3
2) Sam M (SCA) – 3.4
3) Katy H (SCA) – 3.7

BOTTOM E STRING

1) Zac H-I (FW) – 2.8
2) Abbie-Leigh (PR) – 3.1
3) Harry (FW) – 3.2

FULL LISTS

ALL STRINGS

1 Empress HF 0.30.0
2 Emily G FW/PR 0.33.0
3 Lauren HF/PR 0.35.9
4 Destiny HF 0.37.7
5 Pav HF 0.39.3
6 Robert FW 0.52.2
7 Melissa SCA 0.53.7
8 Abbie-Leigh PR 0.57.0
9 Niall HF 0.57.5
10 Leo FW 1.00.0
11 Jess S PR 1.02.7
12 Yashas FW 1.48.8
13 Ethan FW 1.52.4

TOP E STRING

1 Aysha FW 2.7
2 Ishmael FW 2.8
2 Sam E FW 2.8
4 Ben M FW 2.9
4 Ruby FW 2.9
6 Emily G FW/PR 3.0
6 Harry FW 3.0
6 Sam M SCA 3.0
9 Conor D FW 3.1
10 Pav HF 3.2
10 Seb FW 3.2
12 Aimad RF 3.4
12 Aman FW 3.4
12 Ella FW 3.4
12 Owen FW 3.4
12 Robert FW 3.4
17 Lily FW 3.5
18 Destiny HF 3.6
18 Jai FW 3.6
18 Leo FW 3.6
18 Summer HH 3.6
22 Abbie-Leigh PR 3.7
22 Louis FW 3.7
22 Niall HF 3.7
25 Eden FW 3.8
25 Martha D FW 3.8
25 Subhaan FW 3.8
25 Tilly FW 3.8
29 Daisy FW 3.9
29 Harry FW 3.9
29 Lauren HF/PR 3.9
29 Todah FW 3.9

B STRING

1 Nathan HF 2.8
2 Sam M SCA 3.1
3 Zac H-I FW 3.3
4 Ben M FW 3.5
4 Lauren HF/PR 3.5
6 Emily G FW/PR 3.6
6 Robert FW 3.6
6 Seb FW 3.6
9 Josh T HH 4.1
9 Skylar HF 4.1
11 Katy H SCA 4.3
11 Pav HF 4.3
13 Kieran C PR 4.5
14 Abbie-Leigh PR 4.6
15 Emma C SCA 4.9

G STRING

1 Nathan HF 3.0
1 Oliver HF 3.0
1 Sam M SCA 3.0
4 Ben M FW 3.6
4 Katy H SCA 3.6
6 Robert FW 3.7
7 Emily G FW/PR 3.8
7 Empress HF 3.8
9 Emma C SCA 4.1
9 Niall HF 4.1
11 Lauren HF/PR 4.2
12 Daniel H SCA 4.3
12 Pav HF 4.3
14 Abbie-Leigh PR 4.6
14 Destiny HF 4.6
16 Josh T HH 4.7

D STRING

1 Emily G FW/PR 3.3
1 Harvey SCA 3.3
3 Katy H SCA 3.6
4 Robert FW 3.8
5 Oliver HF 3.9
6 Daniel H SCA 4.0
7 Abbie-Leigh PR 4.1
7 Empress HF 4.1
9 Josh T HH 4.2
10 Kieran C PR 4.4
10 Nathan HF 4.4
10 Pav HF 4.4
13 Lauren HF/PR 4.8
14 Leo FW 4.9

A STRING

1 Abbie-Leigh PR 3.3
2 Sam M SCA 3.4
3 Katy H SCA 3.7
4 Emily G FW/PR 4.1
5 Aman FW 4.2
6 Empress HF 4.3
6 Zac H-I FW 4.3
8 Daniel H SCA 4.5
9 Kieran C PR 4.6
9 Lauren HF/PR 4.6
9 Sadie H FW 4.6
12 Alex S FW 4.7
13 Drew FW 4.8
14 Josh T HH 5.0

BOTTOM E STRING

1 Zac H-I FW 2.8
2 Abbie-Leigh PR 3.1
3 Harry FW 3.2
4 Niall HF 3.3
5 Conor D FW 3.4
5 Sam M SCA 3.4
7 Katy H SCA 3.5
7 Todah FW 3.5
9 Emily G FW/PR 3.6
10 Pav HF 3.7
10 Sohola HF 3.7
12 Nathan HF 3.8
12 Sadie H FW 3.8
14 Daniel H SCA 3.9
15 Aman FW 4.2
15 Evie FW 4.2
15 Leo FW 4.2
18 Harvey SCA 4.7
19 Jess T HH 4.8
19 Skylar HF 4.8
19 Tyler HH 4.8
22 Josh T HH 4.9
22 Lauren HF/PR 4.9
22 Matthew SCA 4.9

Categories
Former Pupils Nottingham Sounds

Deeper Than Forever: Now It’s Over (BBC Introducing)

Here’s an video from a BBC Introducing gig a couple of years ago. Deeper Than Forever is a band I worked with that came out of the County Youth Arts ‘Supergroup’ project and Now It’s Over is the first track we wrote together.

And here’s the band’s first ever gig at the Palace Theatre – with me filling in as session guitarist!

I’ll hopefully be starting work on a new supergroup project in September 2015.

Categories
Humour Ruining Songs With Science Songwriting

Ruining Songs With Science #3 – Like I Can (Sam Smith)

He could be a lawyer on a witness stand
But he’ll never love you like I can, can

But if he’s a lawyer he wouldn’t be on the witness stand. He’d be in front of it questioning the witness. Unless he WAS a witness. In which case his profession as a lawyer would be “Not pertinent, or germane, to the matter at hand or to any issue before the court”.

If you’re self-seeking an honest man
Then stop deceiving, Lord, please

If you are seeking an honest man, then it would make sense to stop deceiving. Unless it’s your intention to find a man you can easily deceive. But if you are self-seeking in your motives but nevertheless quite an honest man generally (particularly about your self-seeking tendencies) then you probably don’t need to stop deceiving.

Unless you’re not an honest man after all … well are you? Lord, please!

More Songs Ruined With Science

Categories
Appreciation Composing Soundtracks

John Powell: Bourne To Compose

I’ve loved John Powell‘s film scoring ever since I saw The Bourne Supremacy. On the DVD bonus feature John talks about the way he used the piano/strings vs the dhols (drums) to communicate the two conflicting emotions of loss and revenge inside Jason Bourne’s head as he contemplates the death of his girlfriend (started around 1:20).

John has a great sense of humour, very dry and self-effacing (or ‘British’) that makes him an inspirational communicator. In this interview and masterclass he focuses on how he works with choirs and vocal groups

Here’s a short interview on How To Train Your Dragon 2

And a roundtable with Marco Beltrami, Danny Elfman, Trent Reznor and Hans Zimmer.

Categories
Nottingham Sounds

Nottingham’s Diverse Music Scene

A cheeky little promo for the music scene in the world’s best city

Categories
Deep Vault Former Pupils Nottingham Sounds

Headstrong Savage

Here’s a song I co-write with Chris Bradley of Savage. I realised that over the years I’ve playing in different bands with three members of Savage (Mark Nelson is also mixing and drumming on my new EP) and the fourth member Kristian Bradley is a former pupil.

Categories
Nottingham Sounds

Scorzayzee And The Invisible Orchestra Live (in) Great Britain

Hot on the heels of his long awaited debut album @Scorzayzee performs his ‘banned’ track Great Britain live in Nottingham in a one of kind collaboration with the Invisible Orchestra. If you look closely you can spot John Matear who played Sousaphone on my Let’s Build An Airport EP.

Categories
Appreciation

My New Favourite Band…

…is Mucca Pazza. They are a punk rock marching band that doesn’t really march, but do use amplifiers built into their hats (when they’re not playing in someone’s office).

Their compositions are really original and creative and since seeing this video I have bought all four of their albums.

… that’s Gary Kalar is playing an electric 4-string mandolin shaped like a mini Gibson Firebird. And he’s playing it with a slide!!!!!

Here’s some links

Free download of the audio of this tiny desk concert
Free download Radio Show from Free Music Archive
Website  Facebook  Bandcamp

NOW GO BUY THEIR ALBUM!!!