I DON'T MEAN TO BE AWKWARD BUT...
I still didn’t hike my gig prices up from £3 to £4 this autumn. In the end we plumped for giving you wonderful attendees value for money. We have had some of the best local live acts play & the most fun , at these gigs, I have had at any gig I have put on in the last 7 years. I did not lose any money either, which is a new thing I will be happy to have to get used to. I did not make any money either so maybe there is more work to be done.
I’d like to make some formal apologies. I’d first and foremost like to apologise to Piers Morgan & anyone who advises him what to say ever for making him look like a cunt. I’d like to apologise to A. A. Gill for being A. A. Gill and dying a horrible, slow and painful death, in the future. And I would also like to apologise to Jonjo from Deltasound (@Deltasounduk on Twitter) who took me up on the fact that I was using the word ‘am*azeballs’ ironically. I did some research on the word and all I can say is that I was unaware of how offensive that word can be to those who are artistic, motivated, vibrant & have even the slightest ounce of sophistication within them.
I’d also like to apologise to avid readers of my blog, however few of them there are… I’ve been a bit useless with it lately. I have been busy. Apart from the autumn gigs, I am organising a UK tour and an album, and another project with Ian Courtney (@cowandspoon on Twitter) AND our wonderful podcast. Our first podcast, which is a bit like this blog in audio, will be on iTunes this weekend. It has taken us ages to get this sorted, so I hope you’ll like it. It has loads of unsigned bands and artists’ music in it & is fair for me to say that as well as being entertainment it is interesting too! I envisaged the podcast to be around 90 minutes long with lots of clever, humorous chit-chat in-between the marvellous music I come across in Newcastle. The delay in this podcast actually coming into existence has been due to 3 main factors: 1) Asking permission to play songs from the bands/Martin was too drunk on first recording. 2) Finding somewhere to host it/Martin having to wait for pay day to pay for that and 3) Our recording was nearly 3 hours long/editing down to 1 hour 40.
All that annoyance aside, I think this podcast is a wonderful thing. We are recording the second next week – I hope it becomes vaguely popular (maybe just around people in Newcastle – it’s our little thing). Having listened to the first, I realise we have made plenty of obscure references to the first unbroadcastable podcast that you will have to find on a white label near you one day.
December is song-writing season to me. If I wish to fulfil my ambition of doing 3 albums in 3 years and complete my trilogy, then I have to start the process almost immediately after I have finished the last. That leaves no time for promotion of the last and because I am obsessive and abnormal, I am happy to strive and achieve a goal I set myself 3 years ago just to prove myself wrong to myself. I thought I wouldn’t be able to do it. I have £50 on me not being able to achieve this – but then I have £50 on me being able to actually achieve this. When I’ve done it, we’ll have a little free gig with just me there, laughing. Only me.
Newcastle’s City Council will next year cut the local arts & performance budget by 100%. That’s 100% peeps. All of it. The arts scene is important to Newcastle as it brings us tourists who feed the City’s economy. It’s a fantastic place to live these days. Newcastle is clean, beautiful & interesting - with loads of great things to do when you arrive but if they cut the arts funding then I guess it’s not going to be for everyone. I’m guessing most people arrive in Newcastle to do or see something & the fact that it is clean, beautiful & interesting will come as a nice surprise to them. It affects all of us living here as I suspect, if there is nothing to come to see, then what’s the point in keeping the city kempt? We could go back to the 1980s ideal where the city is a dirty horrible place to work. I’m surprised the Tories had such an impact on our northern city so quickly. What do we do? We can all collectively kill Ed Milliband, so his brother has to take over – we will all be each other’s witness, so legally no crime would have been committed. I think If we were to do that though, as I know many of you would be going out of their way… we could just get a load of barrels of gunpowder.. yes gunpowder! Find an insider sympathetic to our cause, and then get it stashed in a basement in the Houses of Parliament and then set fire to it & run away… (not informing the MPs in there – except from Tom Watson, I have decided I like him & I want him to become a disappointing Prime Minister in my lifetime).
Other than that, I guess now more than ever I have to persuade you all to go outside and support your local unsigned band, your mate’s band or go and see your friends perform, or DJ, or act, or see their paintings or see their film. Not at the Academy or Odeon or Arena, you dick! Look at your Facebook event page invites those annoying local people keep sending you? It is far better than staying in and watching the X Factor. It is live and on your doorstep. Your opinions are not welcome & you will feel satisfied because of that.
Look, if you want to do something about the cuts to the public arts funding in Newcastle, then I guess we have to protest. It’s not something I care for doing but I’m in a position to do it. This blog gets around 400 reads per month (I don’t know why either) – but if even 30 of us pull together, perhaps we can turn this horrible situation around.
If you want to keep Newcastle’s art’s flowing… consider yourself as a part of it.
Here is a video from a man with no money, no job, no friends… but awesome talent:
By Martin Meiosis Thompson