Sunday or Monday afternoon I received a phone-call from my friend Grainger, who is the leader of the band Positronic. For almost a year now, I've been playing Grainger's music with the band. Anyway, he called me and he said, "Stephen, you're out of the band."
That is, he didn't actually say "you're out of the band" – Grainger has a habit of saying things the long way, so to type what he actually said would take about ten screen-fulls. But I'm just paraphrasing the general gist of what he said.
I was surprised. "But Grainger," I said, "I want to stay in the band."
"Well you can't," replied Grainger. "We don't need you. You're not necessary. The only reason I let you into the band in the first place is because you're Mishka's friend. But that's just not a good enough reason anymore. Enough! You're out!" And he hung up the phone. Once again, this is not exactly what he said. It's the shortened version. But he did hang up at the end of it, that much is true.
After the phone-call, I was sad and frustrated. I thought to myself, "I was this close to becoming a famous musician with a successful band." And I held up my thumb and forefinger to indicate a very small amount. Now that I'm out of Positronic they'll hit the big time and sell lots of records and get radio air-play – and when I'm sitting back watching TV and their video comes on the Video Hits show, I'll munch on a piece of chocolate and think "It should have been me in that band."
But you know, the worst thing about leaving the band is that I won't see my friend Mishka as much. She is the singer and I used to only see her at practices and stuff. So now I won't be able to have much contact with her at all. I guess I can still see her on stage at the live gigs – but if I understand Grainger's game-plan, there won't be many of those.
I'm still with the band The Boris Pink, the rock band – at least I still have a chance of success with them. We haven't had any practices since the last gig on March 15th, though, so it doesn't look like The Boris Pink will keep me very busy.
My grandmother, in Sydney, fell and broke her hip. She's in hospital now. I received an email about it from my parents. When I read it, I thought, "That must have been painful. Ow!"
I've been looking into doing a sound-engineering course this year. I obtained an information-pack from SAE, the School of Audio Engineering. They have a twelve-month course starting in August. But it's very expensive. I know my parents would be paying for it, but it still seems very unwise to start an expensive course like that in August when I could just wait until the start of next year and do a regular TAFE course like I originally intended – that would be much cheaper 'cause they have concession fees for disabled people.
This week I went several times to a print-shop because I was printing out a copy of my diary from 1995. It was about two hundred and fifty pages. I don't have a printer at home, and anyway I wanted it to be nice and neat, double-sided laser-printing, and I wanted it to be bound. The final result is an A4 book, fourteen millimetres thick. It's full of nine-point text in double columns, with the occasional photocopied artwork.
Speaking of artwork, I haven't been working on my painting much lately. I meant to work on it today, but instead I just watched a video, read the paper and fell asleep. I did work on it Tuesday night, though, and now it looks like this:
Some evil rich person in Fitzroy is complaining about the noise-levels that come from the Empress Hotel. The Empress is famous for having cool bands play there. I went there last Friday night to see my third-favourite band Bidston Moss – when I walked in, I hardly recognised the place because they've re-arranged the furniture and put an extra wall in, to make it more sound-proof with a double-door system at the back. But even so, the bands had to play really quietly. Apparently the local council says they have to take noise-complaints seriously when the neighbouring residents say the music is keeping them awake or whatever.
But it's not fair – the Empress hotel has been having loud live music for years and years and now some evil rich person moves into the area and complains about the noise, and now we all have to quieten down? If she's so sensitive to the loud noise, she shouldn't have moved in so close to the Empress. When I go to see Bidston Moss, I like to hear them loud, not soft. Tonight they had to play ever so softly and I was thinking, "They're still good – but I'd rather hear them loud and then I could dance to them." You know, this is a big problem for the Empress. They're getting a petition together, and getting people to sign it, trying to change the local laws.
Chris and Beth – these two girls sing in Bidston Moss
Tonight I went to see Bidston Moss again – this time they played at the Tote, in Collingwood, and that was plenty loud. I danced a lot. I've never been to the Tote before – they usually have really loud rock bands so I don't go to it except when Bidston Moss is playing. What I really like about them is, they have two female lead singers. Sometimes, when I see a band over and over again I get tired of them after a while, but not Bidston Moss – some of the band-members have come up to me and had conversations with me, and emailed me as well, so it's like they're my friends now. The two singers even came to one of my solo gigs last year.
Abdoujaparov – Less War, More Rock
The next band to play at the Tote that night were Abdoujaparov, they had English accents and they played some very lively rock music. I recall they had this one song where the verse lyrics went like this: "Let me tell you something that'll make you laugh – I wear a scarf – In the bath – Let me tell you something that'll make you cry – I'd rather die – than keep it dry." That's so deep. But I had to leave early, as usual.
Flash animation – move your mouse over it and click on it Hmmmmm this was a waste of time
I have this CD called "Length Of A String" by Bilby – it's full of gentle music with soft guitar and female vocals and it's nice to listen to when I'm chilling out and doing nothing else – the melodies are sweet and simple and it sounds like the musicians were making the best of a very low budget. This CD was a side-project of Mung the guitarist from Bidston Moss. He said he'd check out my web-site this week, that's why I'm reviewing it now.
Historical photo of the week:
Stephen Clark, four years old
This Wednesday I went to the karaoke and first I sang the song "Whoever You Are" by Geggy Tah – it's been a heckuva long time since I heard that song so I wasn't sure of it and I sang about five semitones too low in the verse. Not many people were in the audience tonight – it was a quiet, non-dancing night. Later on I sang another song, "This Is A Call" by the Foo Fighters and that was very loud and powerful – I sang it with much passion and energy, feeling like a real rock-star, and it felt good.
I saw this movie on TV called Frequency, it's science-fiction/fantasy story about this guy who discovers he can talk to his father thirty years in the past on this magic ham-radio. And thus he's able to save his father's life in the past, but then in meddling with time he causes all sorts of other problems concerning this serial-killer who kills his mother and a bunch of other women. It's a cool movie – there's so many plot-twists and turns, and so much action, you don't have time to think about the impossible time-travel paradoxes. But after seeing it, I had a look at the comments on the nitpickers.com web-site and found out that there actually is a flaw or two in the plot – like, why does the old version of the serial-killer attack the son at the end? You could say it's because the son spoke to the killer in the bar, thus arousing suspicion, but that time-continuum would have been erased after the events at the pier, and the killer wouldn't know that the son is investigating him so it doesn't make sense. But it's still a great movie.