Monthly Archives: June 2012

The Magic Trio’s first gig! And some indie/folk library larks…

What a week! It’s taken me a few days to get around to updating the blog, but last week saw me running around like a mad woman brandishing a toy glockenspiel…well, no ‘like’ about it really, as that’s exactly what I was doing some of the time.

Before we get onto that though, last week also saw the first ever Magic Trio gig. We played at the Wenlock and Essex in Islington as part of a night hosted by Edge Music, a lovely bunch who have started putting on new music nights around town. We shared the bill with a jazz quartet and an avant garde recorder group – a first for me! Our set was lots of fun and the audience seemed to like it too. Jeff was on serpent and ophicleide, Tom played bass clarinet and I was on baritone sax. The set was mainly my compositions, with one from Tom (more like a suite really – ‘The Birds of Stoke Newington’ – soon to be heard in a slightly different form played by his sax quartet). The night had a really nice, relaxed vibe, which was perfect for trying out new music in a new ensemble. Our next gig is hopefully at a street party hosted by Jeff’s neighbours (yay!)…more on that soon. I look forward to more trio activity later in the year too!

So, back to the toy glockenspiel. It was played very beautifully by Quadraceratops keys player Kit, as part of a recording for an album of library music I’ve been working on over the past few months for JW Media Music. They wanted a kind of ‘indie/folk’ sound, so I rounded up a band featuring brass, accordion, mandolin, ukulele, violin, piano, bass and drums. It was the first time I’ve done something like this, and it was interesting to get my teeth into the writing, thinking about how genre is constructed through rhythm, tonalities and instrumentation etc….plus, the session was a good laugh and it was fun to play with an ensemble featuring some cool instruments I don’t usually work with. Accordion in Quadraceratops anyone?!

Ceratopsians head North! And a homebrew EP emerges.

Last night the members of Quadraceratops converged in Manchester (from various other gigs around the country) for a really nice gig at Sandbar. We were hosted by Efpi Records at their Freedom Principle night, which I thoroughly recommend you check out if you ever find yourself in Manchester on the first or third Tuesday of the month. Everyone from Efpi and Sandbar were super friendly, and a lovely audience turned out to hear the band. It was a perfect second outing for the Quad and a great night all round!

Over the bank holiday weekend I also decided it would be a good idea to make a live EP from some of the tunes we played at the Forge gig, and so with the help of a team of ‘volunteers’ (read: unsuspecting family members) I made a short run of CDs to take to Manchester. They went down really well, with six out of the ten copies (I was short on materials!) snapped up at the gig. More are now available, along with downloads, at our new Quadraceratops Bandcamp page…head over and see what you think.

All in all, a thoroughly good long weekend without a river pageant in sight. I look forward to a return trip sometime, perhaps as some kind of northern mini-tour…*schemes*.