Where these mystical roads lead

We were travelling at night in the rain through Sherwood Forest Country. The skyline glowed with the orange city lights. Eerie. The flooded roads, as dark as addiction in denial, manipulation failures and that empty bitterness of self pitying rejection for some.  Opportunity knocks for all of us when we travel along the road of hope, good omens and vision. Friday night the Harvest Moon had shone brightly. Enlightened and changing times. Synchronicity and gratitude always. You all know who you are.

It’s all been positively busy the last month. Shutting one door when it came to the end of the road felt like a demon lifted from my soul. Diplomacy from my part. The escape. The casualties of departures that didn’t take advantage of opportunities lie bitter in ignoreland. With various projects on the go. I’m excited going into the autumn. Beautiful rustic colors.  a nip in the air. 

Last weekend. (14th & 15th September) I performed 4 sets of my Earth Tree Healing music at Newark Showground, Lizian Events Well Being Show. In the sunny garden. Tired out from a busy working no duvet days off for a while. Reinvigorated in the sunshine and creatively. My tools of communication = my instruments. Again, I am grateful meeting intriguing, spiritual folks. Fluke loop pedals, reptilians, crop circles, the Brexit pantomime….Belonging is a feeling I cherish. (Being one of the non fitter inners in the world.) Thank you Liz and Ian and the community for opportunities.

Reiki practice and meditation is helping a chilled out Claud with a positive, strong mindset.

I’m expanding my Library music portfolio.

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With my Earth Tree Healing single ‘Ethereal Sunset 432 Hz (Boho Mix) out on the 20th September. Followed by album ‘Western Mystical Tradition’ is released 28th September.

https://linktr.ee/earthtreehealing

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Another exciting new project will be unearthed publicly soon… winkety winner winky wink. Watch my instagram for sneaky stinking previews. @claudsville

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Not forgetting a big thank you for all the hard work uniquely gifted Angela Barker does behind the scenes for continued evolution, success and support for others. https://angelabarkertarot.com/

Love and Light ~ Claudine

 

 

 

Making Monsters

Oh yes we made it! The mid-season break for us is the opposite of a writers strike. With a 2 week break over the holidays and New Year. 2016 had killed my Banjo. (A new Hercules triple whammy guitar stand purchased for out of its case protection) catching up with sleep, countless games of drunken ‘New market’ and ‘Cards Against Humanity’ and indulging the sick horror of human nature when prompted.  Arse sitting whisky a go go was a luxury. When the over indulgence ended and the toilet rolls depleted, the detoxes began. Armed with a Garnet stone for creativity. 2 New Age albums ready to go in 2017. I began more work on the backing tracks for the new album. Plans as of this blog are: Making Monsters by Strange Currencies. It’s useful to lock ‘oneself’ away during the darkened months. I don’t get ‘SAD’ I get ‘Gutted’ =’ Godforsaken Unadulterated Traumatic Tedious Exhausting Darkness’

Pumped up with extra vitamin D complexities. Strange algae and red berry concoctions downed inspired by some doctor on my face book feed turned. Ones PP into rainbow bright droplets of strange waz. After a fleeting though of knowing now what I didn’t then ‘should I have not done ‘normal’ day jobs and dedicated myself to music full time when younger with gigging. Not drank, smoked, got stoned and let my shyness and rage rule too much.’ But then again I wrote and recorded loads. https://bogwoppit.bandcamp.com/   So not time wasted. But you see now. As my only left addictions to crisps and chocolate fade after getting some dietitian help. I looked at my  video reflection on facetime last night and thought no no NO!

I’d hoped for a quiet return to the day job into 2017. https://strangecu.wordpress.com/2016/12/13/into-2017-strange-currencies/ This was marred by it not being quiet. Organised chaos where everybody pulls out the stops to help out. I like my NHS job. It is rewarding when you can help make a difference….. and never boring. I might ache from running about miles of corridors after ‘slothing’ on my hols. Regret purchasing the ‘on sale’  £21 walking shoes that basically shit. I’ll stick to my Nikes and shoes for office/ meeting days. Luckily my trouser still button up and I can bend over without splitting my britches!

I regress… So plans in motion for a video for American Saviour. Really.. Really soon. The album is taking shape over evenings and weekends. Got some late January gigs with Strange Currencies. The 30 min set has been chopped and honed. Last year we tested various songs; have buried the ones that got less reaction from the people ignoring us on stage.  We’ve got a set that we like playing more now.

Big thank you to Andrew Neil for some inspiring advice and opportunities via his Facebook feeds.

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We’ve had a lot of fun on Acacia Radio http://acaciaradioaw.weebly.com/ Big thanks to Ian Hales, Shaun and Lucas Jackson. Interviews and live songs without swearing of to many FCUK ups. I even shocked myself doing Xmas songs with enthusiasm.  I was even in a good mood and excited! Little Donkey and Jingle Bells all the way baby!  https://www.facebook.com/strangecu/videos/1136161273172057/

The last time I dressed as Santa ended up being my last gig. I quit the band  that I’d  cofounded and put so much creative effort into a decade earlier. So the curse of Xmas jumpers… Only time will tell 😉 Jesus seriously doesn’t want me for a sunbeam.

Doing the amount of gigs we did from July 2016 https://strangecu.wordpress.com/gigs/  (as well as a full time day job and recording an EP.) At times the enthusiasm to play live after a long day was hard, tempers were tested, moods low. Well there were times when I just wanted to walk away and quit. As did PP Johnson. But. Then we’d have a good gig. The bad gigs when we played to the bar staff or crowds with their back to us were atypical of the growing expectation for musicians in the wrong venues to be background noise or karaoke with a guitar. There were nights after a long day I was tired and questioning, full of PMT and just want to cozy up with the Walking Dead. Resilience gets one through. The drive to achieve and surprise myself is strong like the force. My strumming fingernail has still not recovered and I’ve had to resort to more plectrum usage when used to my usual finger picking style.  Evolving….

I love technology. Xmas also produced make over  app fun! (My zombify pictures of Ange over xmas didn’t go down too well!)  But putting her Dad who had fallen asleep and provided an opportunity… Alan in make up and wigs did!

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Then I went blond

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Then we went to Harry Potter World

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The end…..of 2016

Into 2017…

Onto the album Making Monsters

I’ve just bought a £23 self-assembly blues cigar guitar. I’ll be indulging along with the sitar to use on recordings this year. It’s very easy to get caught up with loops when in studio. American Saviour began as a mess about around the punch line. ‘Ride The Pony’ That Ange (My Wifey) and I were going to do for a piss take. We have some tracks nearly ready such as ‘Stay Down Kid.’ Originally a riff from one of my own ‘Sonic World’ reworked. I’m quite excited about Gypsy Disco. In Your World is a loopy starter for ten. The first batch is nearly there for final vocal takes. ‘This Girl’ is a haunting piano ballad. ‘Automatic’ is currently a bone of contention. The song ‘Making Monsters’ is near.    There is a new song ‘Mantaray’ that I’ve done some vocals on. This may end up on my next solo ‘Claudine West’ album though. There is a duet under the working title ‘Twosome’ about to be written. I’ve initially recorded a backing track and submitted some lyrics and concept ideas that may well be scrapped. I imagined a dark ‘Islands in the Stream’ around obsession and blame, about a lover and bit of a motherFCUKer that loses the plot and murders the man she is having an affair with. We will see what the next few months produce. PP Johnson has been producing lyrics and ideas.  I do love the writing and recording process. Big Thanks again to Angela Barker. Who organises, manages, drives, rodies, networks, gets the sh1t, gets the drinks at the bar and much more.  We are not easy Divas 😉

We spend the end of 2016 watching the winter sun setting in Portsmouth. Its rather lovely sat on a beach with a cup of tea readying for new musical adventures…

  • Claudine

Read this! Into bliss.

The flat line of silence is unbecoming. Have you ever had a dream where you are performing an amazing song? The shadows watch from the sidelines. I still don’t wish to make amends with the past. Those shadows still watch in the waking world. I bang the drum, a different rhythm than I’m used to. The keyboard player was filming the birth of this baby during his performance. It was organ like and organic with an acoustic guitar. Others were present too, ghosts and vocals. But it’s all just a blur. Flowed on a different plane. Who that keyboard play is, was lost when I awoke. I cannot remember the rhythm. Maybe a soundtrack to a movie about finding yourself. The discovery and elation of travelling the right road. The subconscious is a magic maker. Tap into it and explore a whole new universe. The sign at my crossroads was a mirror on the wall. Oh the reflections…

I recall the old days of listening back to that days recording efforts. Stoned. Hearing new things, frequencies. Like a golden glow coated the track. Staying up all night analysing lyrics about want, obsession. The whisky and vodka relaxed inspired takes. Chain smoking Marlboro Reds. All night sessions are great when you are young. The body handles it better. Does sobriety bother me now?  Clear heads help one enjoy the mornings. The escape, the thrill is the music. Drugs and booze just numbed it eventually. Fun though. Nothing to prove, or ‘brag’ about. The dark times are but a memory. The recovery spanned a decade.

I’m sitting here with a cup of tea getting rather excited about our next session. Ive just been sent a bunch of new ideas. Basslines sent via dropbox. Then the guitar and drums and lyrics come. What came first? The chicken or the egg? There are no rules. There is the energy that channels through you. There is the true connection between musician and instrument. The vortex of creativity that sucks you inside, into bliss. When I look upon you from the stage. I read your eyes, your moves. I feel your energy. Then I get lost in the vibrations of sound. The adrenalin truly is the natural drug of choice. What does it for you?

The last jigsaw piece, A committed vocalist, will slot in pretty soon. I did manage to phone Dave our Bass player in my coat pocket yesterday. He text me asking what the underwater sounds answer machine message was? Womb and heartbeats! The second person of the day to get my pocket stalking.

I spent last year writing and recording meditation music, then a solo album. In between rehearsing and writing Subway Circus ditties. That will be unearthed. From new age, to folk/pop to rock music keep things nicely varied. Evolution and challenges for a musician. Is the popping candy of sweetness.

≈ Claudine