Saturday, September 16, 2006

Maybe if the world contained more people like these...

Well, I'm a Londoner.

Actually at this moment in time, I'm back being a Cardiffian. The house I will be living in in London isn't available until the 27th Sept, but my PGDip course started on Monday. So this week I've been staying in what must be the cheapest hotel in London. It certainly felt like it. It was quite dingy and small and certainly not the cleanest I've ever seen. However, I had a bed and a bathroom and the staff were very pleasant.

My first week has been interesting. I turned up on Monday, and I can honestly say, I've never felt so nervous in my entire life. I wandered into the college to have a nose around, and ended up having a cigarette outside. As if by magic, Joe Hughes crossed the road! He is also just starting. My word, it was the best feeling seeing a familiar face! Then, another friend, Steph, turned up. I didn't even know she was coming to RCM, but huzzah, she's here. In fact, there are around 6 ex-rwcmd students now at the RCM!

The first day was pretty dull, registering and what not. Got chatting to quite a few people, a lot of whom are rather pleasant but I sort of know who my friends are going to be already. The Freshers' week is pretty bad! I was quite looking forward to it, but the first night was abysmal. It was like a school disco. Not a school disco night, but like being at a school disco again. The band were shoddy to say the least. Luckily, and old friend Dan stopped by and we had a nice bit of banter. It was nothing compared to RWCMD Freshers' week. They have an SA (Student Association) rather than an SU and I wouldn't know any of them if they came up and spat in my face. I'm probably biased being part of the SU for a while, but I think it's rather important to have student representatives. We wore our lovely SU t-shirts, which meant people knew immediately who we were. There's nothing like that there.

On the second day, I had a massive downer and felt completely out of my depth. It ended up with me crying non-stop for about 2 hours worrying about whether I'd made the right choice. My conclusion, luckily, is that I have. I'm a small fish in a big pond, but that doesn't have to be a bad thing. Joe has been great, keeping me company and making sure I've been alright. It's not as if I even mentioned that I was finding it a little difficult, he just seemed to know and asked me. Which wa nice.

The last few days have been cool. I've been chatting to new people and feeling more comfortable. I really think that staying in a hotel was a bad move. Apart from the fact that it was a depressing place, there was no company. If i was in my house, at least I know the lads would be there when I got in. It's strange being in a new city and living out of a bag, I need to be settled!

But enough with the negativity! I think it's going to be a great year and I'm really looking forward to getting stuck in. There's going to be a lot of hard work and probably a few tears along the way, but I've been through worse.

Bring it on.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

More inane ramblings...

It's funny how people come in and out of your life very quickly. I went out to drink with Mel as it's her last night in Cardiff and she's back to Oz tomorrow. She's been here 8 months and I've gotten to know her fairly well. Not in a best buddy kind of way but we were friends. Now she's leaving I'll probably never speak to her again. Obviously it's not because I dislike he, nothing of the sort. The more I think about it, the more I realise how much it's happened in the past. People I was close with in school - now there's a prime example. There are some people who I've never seen or heard from since even though we were really close. It's a similar situation with ex-workmates. Our lives take us down completely different paths which are unlikely to cross ever again. On the other hand, due to MySpace, old friends have gotten in contact with me, which I'm sure is a positive thing. I've not made my mind up about that yet though.

I suppose this is one of the reasons I have this blog, not too many people read it. My old blog had certain readers which meant I had to be rather careful about what I said and who I mentioned, but here it doesn't matter so much as I completely trust those who do read it. I probably wont slag anyone off still, I try my best not to do that and even if I do it's generally not because I dislike them, just more fed up.

Anyway, that was something that came into my head.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

I just feel like writing at the moment, it'll probably just end up being a collection of things that happen to spring into my head!

I've just been practicing, it's too hot to do too much so I'm just doing half an hour at a time. It's amazing how much you can get done in a short space of time. After my lesson with Kyle, I feel like I've reached another level in my playing. There was one small piece of advice he gave me and I now feel like a completely different player. That's good tuition. I still feel I'm stuck in a bit of a rut though, but if my lessons keep going as they are I'll soon work my way out of it. I'm quite positive in that respect. I'm still really nervous about going to London but I think it's the best thing I can do at the moment. It means the plans I had for travelling after college will have to take a back seat, but if I'm having to prioritise, my playing comes first at the moment.

I think travelling would be just what I need. I sometimes wonder if I'm not as independent as I think I am. I want some culture, new people, new experiences and freedom. Who knows, London could bring that to me. I'm really going to miss Cardiff though. It's funny, when I was in London last, I hated it. Mainly because I was stuck in train and bus stations and it was about 35 degrees!

My train of thought has been interrupted by a call from Jonny. I rang him when I woke up this morning as I was suddenly extremely excited about going to see the Cat Empire on Tuesday. I was listening to them earlier and it made me so happy and joyful! They mean the world to me and I just can't wait!

Now my mood has been heightened somewhat. I feel like I'm going to pop like a balloon with excitement.

My brother was on TV just now on the Eisteddfod. I'm happy for him at the moment, and I think he's thinking about moving to London too which would be ace. My Mam would be a bit lonely, but that's just something she'll have to deal with. He's also very happy with Nicola. Now she's an interesting case. I haven't made my mind up about her yet. She's a nice person and means well but I get this feeling she's a little bit immature and insecure. She reminds me of someone else, always trying to prove they're cool or better etc. They're happy together though and that's good enough for me.

It's Brecon Jazz this weekend. I'm looking forward to it, it's just a shame that Polar Bear are playing the same time as us. I hope the weather is good and the vibe is good. It's my last ever gig to do with College so I want to go out on a high. Even though the band is a bit ropey this year, that's nothing to how it'll be next year with half the jazz department leaving. But that may be a good thing and a start of something new in the band.

That's enough for now. Another bit of practice is due. More later.
I'm hugely fed up at the moment.

I returned from Edinburgh 2 days ago and it's a really strange feeling I'm experiencing at the moment. I hate living back at home, I really do. It's weird and I feel bad saying it, but I'm my Mam's only company apart from the pets at the moment and she just doesn't leave me alone. She talks at me all the time about things i'm blatently not interested in at all and then gets all tetchy if I come across like I'm not interested. I've also turned into her fucking runaround. All I hear is 'Will you do this', 'Will you do that' etc. Now, don't get me wrong, I pull my weight when it comes to housework and chores but why should I have to go and buy her a bottle of wine all the time or go and get her cigarettes? She manages ok when I'm not here so she can bloody well do it herself.

Also, all the friends I want to spend time with are away on courses and the like. I find myself becoming a little upset sometimes actually. The people that are in my vacinity are people I can't bear to spend anymore time with as we're practically joined at the hip! Last night for example, a friend who lives 'round the corner had a free house, as did I, so it was automatically assumed that we'd do something. Last night all I wanted to was veg out with a can and my chips in front of a film. I know I just said I'm missing my friends, but last night was just one of those nights where I wanted to slob out on my own, but I couldn't 'cause my friend had to come over. To make it worse, this person is the type to take offence if I simply said I wanted to spend the night on my own. They're a bloody pain in the behind I tell you.

I feel like I have loads of pent up fustration and am close to bursting point. I had a great time in Edinburgh, but it wasn't relaxation time because of our gig. I desperately need a break otherwise I'm going to pop.

I think I'm just going to go and practice really really loudly now.

Monday, July 10, 2006

It's been a good few days. Obviously, as you can see from the picture, it was my graduation day on Friday. It was a prety good day, perhaps until Katherine Jenkins started singing, bless her. The meal afterwards was quite pleasant as was the party. I am, however, heartily pissed off that I had to spend the last hour of the bash nursing a very pissed Drew. The security were covering their backs and called an ambulance, predictably they wouldn't do anything with her so we had to get Big G to pick us up and carry her back to Jonny's house and up the stairs to bed. To be fair, I'm more pissed off by the fact that we didn't get an apology or a thank-you for staying with her all night making sure she was ok. Apart from that it was a quality evening.

Saturday was mainly spent sleeping and weeing after watching Dr Who, what a lovely sad episode, with many many similarities to The Amber Spyglass but that's never a bad thing. Russel T Davies actually became a fellow of our college on Friday, and I was disappointed I couldn't get to meet him, but hey ho.Yesterday I just chilled out, tried to get someone to see Pirates with me and someone to cover my shift at work so I could go and see said film, both without luck.

Then george came over and we had some serious drinks and chat, talking everything over. It's amazing how after all these years, nothing has changed between us all and we're still all best of friends. Then James came over and we had a few more drinks and chats and then he told me that Mark B still fancies me which caused much hilarity. This was the guy who when I turned him down when I was 14, yes 14 years old, he went on a run up Caerphilly mountain with a weighted back pack to try and get me off his mind. I only found that out a few years ago too, funny funny times. Anyway, it's been a pleasant few days just relaxing and catching up on things. I still haven't seen Pirates yet, but that's tonights mission! Yes.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Pleasure/Pain

I do believe in that in experiencing pain, you will also experience pleasure. It's not exactly an advanced principle, as most people can see the good things in a bad situation and those people are usually arseholes. Ok, slightly harsh. But I hate it when I'm really angry about someone or something there are certain people who go, 'Oh but you know, imagine how they're feeling', or something along those lines. No thank you. I want to remain angry and pissed off, I do not someone calming me down. I need someone agreeing with me and making me feel better. Sorry about that slight tangent, it wasn't what I meant to say really.

It's just that I've had a rotten few months, I mean really bad and I've felt to put it bluntly, fucking terrible. However the last few weeks have been wonderful and it's made me think a bit more, I mean it's like someone has been rewarding me for all I've had to put up with and it's made me so happy. I want to thank someone, but there's no-one I can thank!

I came third in the woodwind prize which was a massive massive morale booster. I personally thought I played quite rubbish, but it just goes to show how my old 'rubbish' is a lot worse than my current 'rubbish'. I'm working harder and it's rubbing off and I'm become more critical of myself as a musician. I'm feel much freer now than I ever did and I can't wait to do my recital!

Most importantly, after waiting patiently, I received a letter confirming that I have a place at the Royal College of Music next year. I was so happy about this, I spent a whole week grinning inanely to myself! I need to find £6k from somewhere but it'll be so worth it I don't care. I'm majorly excited.

Also the LSQ have their first Civil Partnership gig! Another exciting thing! My good friend Alan and the wonderful Tony are having a civial partnership ceremony in a few weeks and I'm so happy for them. It's such an amazing thing, I can't wait :)

Wheee

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Hey gang.

I think today is my first day off for as long as I can remember. I've bought my paper, the Eastenders omnibus is on, I'm at home with my Mum with a cup of tea and a Tunnock's teacake. Life is good.

Just a note, all check out postsecret.com, it's brilliant. Every Sunday it's updated and people send in secrets on a postcard and some are posted every week. Some of them are really sad, some are filthy and some are downright hilarious.

Anywaaaaay, I'm not quite sure what I've come here to say, there's not much in the way of news in my life. I'm just plodding along, working for my recital most days, hoping to get a first this year. I've changed my programme so now it's more likely to give me a great mark, and I feel much more relaxed about the whole thing now. I just want it to be over.

I'm still not sure what to do about graduation, whether to have my parents sit together. They said they would, but I really couldn't care less, but I don't want to offend anyone by saying I'd rather they sat separately. I'll ask Nathan, 'cause I don't want him to be stuck in the middle of anything. Graduation is for the parents really, I don't care about it really, I'm more concerned about my recital.

Blah Blah. I've got into some Tom Waits recently, what a lovely voice. Oh, and I bought Paul Anka's album, Rock Swings with some great pop songs being covered, big band styleee. Highlights include Smells Like Teen Spirit, Eye of the Tiger, The Lovecat, The Way You Make Me Feel etc. Classic times. Anyhoooodle, things to do, places to be. Byee.

Monday, May 01, 2006

I am the Sky

Hello.

What a funny few months I've had. It's been really bloody hard at times, but my outlook has changed and I'm feeling so much more positive than this time two months ago when I couldn't even begin to explain how I feel. I've decided not to alienate my Father anymore. I don't approve of the things he's done, but to villify him for what has happened was just making me far too upset. Since I have been more open and welcoming to him, I have felt much more comfortable and less tense and it's rubbing off in other areas which is great.

I'm feeling positive about going to London next year too. Though it pains me to leave Cardiff, I feel like I have no choice in the matter and it could make my career. I was thinking during a show the other night that I was surrounded by excellent musicians but working for pitiful money in the arse end of nowhere, and I couldn't wait to go. It might not work out, and if it doesn't, I can move back to Cardiff, nothing lost. I'm at the stage in my playing life where I could really make something of it, and I don't to throw that away.

It was really good to see Richie a few weeks ago, it took me back to last year which was just the best time ever, very happy and well, just great times. I hope he had a great time too. Oh that reminds me, the new Cat Empire CD, "Cities", is just incredible. I can't wait til August!

LSQ performed in the London Saxophone Competition on Saturday and came joint first, which is a complete cop-out. Annoyingly, the prize we wanted, a recital in the London Saxophone Festival, went to another quartet and we had a measly £250, which we can earn per hour of playing on some gigs. Oh well, it was a good experience but left me with a bitter taste in my mouth.

There's lots more to say, but I haven't got the time or patience. Plus I have to practice for my excerpts exam on Wednesday, joyous.