Wednesday, July 25, 2007


Up and out early yesterday for a pitch to the client. Went pretty well and quick too, giving me an extra few minutes to continue relighting my fire for actual fact interesting music. Strolled to Oldham Street and to Piccadilly Records which I have followed around Manchester over the years. I could spend all day in there. I got some great records. Studio’s West Coast album hase just been re-released on 2x45 and it is big and fat and great. Map of Africa are interesting too… but one of the best is a great mix CD from Sweden’s Prins Thomas who successfully squidges Boards of Canada and Hawkwind onto the same disc.

Then, before leaving town, I have a little time to go to the Hacienda exhibition at Urbis. Very, very good. Happy/sad memories for me and for many others I expect. I desperately want a pair of Fac 51 Y3s, but at £345 for one of 250 pairs I don’t think it’ll happen. The only thing I don’t get and never have is Miranda Sawyer. Why is she?

Back into work and driving off to another grimy northern town listening to Prins. A fun meeting which was also a bit nostalgic as it was about web layouts, colour ways, intuitive navigation, click-throughs, etc. It was just like the ecommerce wars of the 1990s all over again.

Back home to find that the wife and kids have left me. Great!

They’ve gone camping in someone’s garden in the next village. So after a listen to my new records I take the dog for a drag in the first evening sunshine we’ve seen since April and go visit the family. Not a step does that dog walk and I have to heave him all the way. (On the way home though, he trots along like butter wouldn’t melt. Nice puppies!)

The family are set up in a big eight man ubertent. Brownsea Island it ain’t. I pump their beds up, have a glass of wine and off I go.

At home I get to play music really loud without being told off and read some more of the book that mustn’t be named. I also watch Nick Lowe from BBC4 the other night. Really great… and he’s only 85 you know.

Monday, July 23, 2007


Something of a washout today. Up at 5am to get ready for the 6 o’clock train to the smoke. The bleary eyed chap in the mirror looked a good ten years older than me. Still, caught the train. Too awake now to properly doze so got the book that must not be named out of my bag. Most of the other passengers seemed to be reading the same thing except for those who, somewhat sniffily, were pointedly reading something else. Bet they save it for when they are tucked up in bed. I was hoping to get the adult cover, you know the one with Hermione in a hippogriff-skin unitard on the front, but they didn’t have any in the crate when I annexed ASDA. I was going in for four of their bargain-basement loss-leading fiver-a-copy jobs, but it was limited to two per customer so I had to go in a second time in disguise. I swapped socks. Why four? One for me, one for Mrs B, one for Alley and one for Mrs B’s sister. Alley reckons she’s already finished it, but I don’t think that’s possible in just a day, especially when most of it’s been spent running up the phone bill.

Anyway, I’d just got to the bit where XXX XXX XXXXX snuffs it when the train ground to a halt. And that was that. Line problems. No more London. Get off here at Grantham and go home. So I did. Took me ages and now I’m knackered and have had a complete waste of a day.

To be honest I haven’t got over racing to complete my last book in order to ready myself for the book that must not be named. It was the third Andrew Collins autobiography and, to my mind, the least satisfying. It follows his last fifteen or twenty years as he fails to really get into any of his dream jobs. It all seems so unsatisfactory. By the end I’d lost sympathy a bit. I thought I’d check up on him at 6music only to find that he’s quit that job now. Stickability, that’s what you need Collins, you fly-by-night. Stickability, like what Maconie’s got. Anyway, good look with your talking head work.

Of course, like all right minded sorts, I’ve been spending a lot of time listening to The All Day Breakfast Show and can heartily recommend it, especially to those who listened to Morning Edition before Radio Five became Live. I can especially recommend the episode entitled Dump, Chubby, Trolleys, Dim-Sum and Ark as I am on it. I even let Danny Baker get a word in.

I have recently been investing in my mid-life crisis, by replacing a lot of CDs purchased over the last twenty years or so with vinyl LP copies. Perverse, maybe, but it’s so exciting when a 12” mailer envelope arrives at the door. Oh, and coloured vinyl still gives me a semi. The downside to this activity is that I can’t sneak new purchases into the house as easily. Mrs B caught me red handed the other day with my Excellent Italian Greyhound tucked under an arm.

Perhaps I should get a job as a DJ, then it’d be so much easier to bring my work home with me. Not as far-fetched as it sounds. Got another request to do a kids’ party the other day by another local milf who had heard about the legendary DJ Dad’s Halloween play-outs. No-one can segue the Hokey Cokey into Disturbance at the Heron House quite like me.

The dog’s settling down now, thanks for asking. Mind you, he’s knackering my new lawn. Can’t seem to understand the purpose of going out for a walk, so he saves his business for the garden when he gets back. Although, it’s not only the toileting aspect of walking he hasn’t grasped, it’s the actual walking bit. Which is fairly fundamental to going for a walk I find. It’s more accurate to say that we tend to take him out for a drag. We were told that they’re a lazy breed, but blimey. I have fetch his slippers for him.

Time for a brew. We’ve gone all loose leaf in this house. No more bags for us. Have you seen what they put in sausages?