Starting back the year after a bit of a break with a gig at Orpington Liberal Club - on a wintry Saturday night in deepest darkest Kent, preceded by curry with friends and wrapped up with flowers and chocolates (I only won the raffle! I’m considering that an auspicious sign for 2019!) It was a shared set with Bernard Hoskin who splits his time between Kent and Cambridge and who I consequently run into a fair bit at gigs - in fact we played back-to-back at one of the OLC garden parties back in the summer. The Liberal Club to me is one of those places that you only have to visit once (particularly if it’s for anything music-related) and you will walk away with a whole bunch of mates and feel at home there forever afterwards. They run a whole range of music events of different scales and genres so there’s always something to get involved with and they do know how to give a warm welcome.
It’s been about 6 weeks since my last gig, and having had some time to pause and reflect I am feeling much more relaxed about things in general; person first, musician second after all. I need some new songs to revitalise what I’m doing live; as much as I love my existing songs, my darkness has shifted and going through the process of stepping back into it because of pressures to perform just seems really counter to me-as-a-person thriving, for the moment. I also just need a whole lot more home alone time to be happy than I thought I did, so I am writing a bit more, and going to other people’s gigs a bit more, and gigging ever so slightly less, and am in a contemplative phase about all things creative which may yet see me more active on the blog and sharing a bit more via livestreaming of what comes out of the process. It has been good to be reminded that, ultimately, creativity is freedom and there are no rules on how you approach it or what you then do with the output. I am feeling ever-better and long may that continue! On that note here’s the first ever outing of Ahead of the Game courtesy of the OLC’s Peter Muldoon: