Paul Goodwin

Back to School

Published on Sat 14 May 2011

Andy, Dave, (other) Paul and I spent the day recording with Sam from The Morning People and our friend Steve, who has access to a primary school at weekends. I was under the impression that we were going to do it in the hall, but we actually used one of the classrooms (Year 1 I think). This led to me taking a lot of pictures of people sitting on tiny chairs. I think I would have to see a lot of people sitting on a lot of tiny chairs for a long time to stop finding it funny.

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It was also fun to see musical equipment on tiny tables with cartoon vegetables and insects on them and to reread childhood favourites like Funnybones and be surprised at the modern equivalents like Floppy and the Bone. Floppy and the Bone? Really?

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Paul's sense of direction is quite impressive - he turned up about 25 minutes later than expected because he left his house, drove for half an hour in what he thought was the direction of the village the school was in, and found himself back at his house again.

We were doing it partly because I've never recorded anything "live" with a band, and partly because Sam was testing out an audio interface he's reviewing for work. I don't know which make it was, but I'm not sure it's going to get a great review - it has an innovative function that detects the best take you're going to manage of any given song and stops the recording halfway through. Despite that, weird interference from the computer with Dave's amp, and my voice only really lasting until lunchtime we got seemingly ok takes of 6 or 7 songs. If any of them turn out to be usable I might make a little "live" CD. Or just put them online. Even if none of them are up to scratch, it was a lot of fun playing entirely electric and being able to have the amps turned up to a reasonable level (which is about 1.5 out of 10).


Talking of little CDs - Trinkets and Offcuts has been sent off for pressing, so barring any cock ups by the pressing people (or cock ups that have already happened by me) it should be ready in a few weeks. I suspect it'll arrive the day after I next head off to New York.

My amp has seen more action in the last 2 days than the preceding 2 years - last night was another in the Ciarafest series of charity gigs at The Portland and Dan (who I'd not seen for too long) and the guy from Tellison (who was fantastic I thought - I really want to see them but they keep playing when I can't make it) both borrowed it. The whole night was really high quality - as well as those two, there were sets from Emily Barker and Gill Sandell (who were playing their second Portland gig in a week and, again, made a lovely sound) and Liam Dullaghan who used to be in a band called The Havenots, who were a semi big deal a few years ago, but somehow passed me by. He sang very sad and pretty songs and said some very funny things in between them. I approve of both things. I meant to buy a CD but didn't get round to it. Though my CD listening time is currently being taken up with the Deer Park tour EP from the other week (which is excellent) and the new Okkervil River album so that there aren't songs I don't know when I see them on Monday. I relented and started paying for Spotify because I realised that I only own about 10% of the albums I like to listen to these days. And it turns out that my iTunes plays 50% Leonard Nimoy if left to its own devices.

I don't know if it was the 5 hours spent singing and holding a guitar or the 15 minutes spent kicking a ball around at lunchtime but I've been incredibly tired ever since I got home. I've gone to bed really early and watched some Eurovision. I can't decide whether to be amused or appalled. Not that the UK and Ireland cover themselves in glory at these things, but it does sometimes seem like you go back 10 years in time for every hour you go forward. I did enjoy the Ukranian backing sand artist drawing a big wang with a face on it at one point. It turned into a mother and child in the end. I wonder if there was some deeper meaning intended or if that's just a step on the way to a mother and child in sand.