Paul Goodwin

Resolutions Rundown

Published on Sun 11 May 2014

So, 4 months on, the last entry here is the one where I promise to write every 2 weeks. There are actually several half written things waiting to go (containing details of the excellent Chris T-T and Kevin Devine gigs I went to as well as lots of last year), so maybe I'll finish those at some point. The other resolutions aren't going a huge amount better (though I have learnt to drive! Third time. Failed one of them for stopping at a green light.). I stupidly passed up the chance to see Courtney Barnett by not being aware of quite how popular she was becoming and assuming the gig wouldn't sell out. I like the album and all but I've got to say I was a bit surprised she was on Jimmy Fallon. Good on her. Jason Isbell is also playing on a day I'm busy. I think the record *might* get finished though - I'm a gnat's crotchet away from finishing all the lyrics and there's not so, so much recording to do. 10 solo performances looks out of reach (I've done one, where I played a new song that's currently called "Some Manic Pixie Dreamgirl Bullshit". I say new, it's 6 months old but I've not played...).

I'm getting the time to write because I'm on a train to London to go to an event and there's not enough mobile signal to take any of my goes in the 8 concurrent chess games I'm playing on my phone. At least I've stopped with Hay Day now (a resolution ticked off!) though I do miss the feeling of achievement. This event is at Google's new offices which I'm expecting to contain Oompa Loompas. Of course it's on the day of a tube strike...

Looking back through the photos on my phone (ignoring the myriad ones of grammar errors on signage and people in Tesco wearing pyjamas) it seems like it's been a busy time again with real life stuff (decorating, gardening etc.). Who knew that gardening was such fun? You plant stuff and it grows and looks nice. Also, garden centres do amazing cheesecakes. The raspberry one I had a Fordham Nursery is probably the best I've ever had, and it wasn't even chocolate-based. There has been some culture too though.

A few weeks ago we went to see The Book of Mormon in London. I'm sure I've made my feelings about Musical Theatre clear on here many times in the past (in principle I'm with Stewart Lee but I always seem to enjoy it when I'm actually there. Even the ARU production of Footloose). This was genuinely hilarious though, and however stupid the form, seeing it done well is great. One of the main roles was being played by the understudy and you couldn't really tell. Afterwards we went to London Aquarium for the first time. They wouldn't let us take water in, which I thought was quite funny, but it's really much better than you'd expect for something on the South Bank. Lots of sharks, jellyfish and seahorses. Animals are pretty weird. It's easy to forget.



I also saw Anais Mitchell at The Portland. My opinion of her has been completely transformed since I saw her supporting Ani DiFranco (probably a scarily long time ago). It's known as "Doing a Ritter" and in both cases I think it's because they got better, but in both cases I now really like the early stuff too, so maybe it was me. I don't think so though - properly great later stuff makes you take the earlier stuff more seriously I think - I doubt I'd really care about Okkervil River's first album if they'd not done the others for example. Anyway, she was great - seemed a little bit high maintenance in the in between song talky bits (though maybe I'm projecting because she looks like Goldie Hawn) but the songs are the real thing.


"Young Man in America" is so good - the last verse just keeps on building and then when you think it's not going to build any more it builds a bit more. It did come to light that her new album "Child Ballads" is actually an album of English folk songs "collected" by a man named Child and not a load of children's ditties as I'd (for some reason) assumed. I meant to check it out, but never did. The support act was one half of Pooka who I saw more than 15 years ago at the Boat Race. She had a lovely voice but it was very much in that extremely tasteful late 90s London Acoustic style that I really hated at the time.

I've seen a few films (as we do every year we rejoined the cinema just after the bit before the Oscars when all the good films come out and haven't been since). The Grand Budapest Hotel is by far my favourite Wes Anderson film (have I gone on about how The Royal Tenenbaums is responsible for everything being crap these days?), The Wolf of Wall Street was good, if a little long (I can't believe it's a real story), Inside Llewyn Davis gets better the more I think about it, 12 Years a Slave was alright, if pretty disjointed (though I guess any attempt to fit 12 years into 2 hours is bound to be).

Other than that everything else has been mentioned in half written stuff that I will finish at some other point. There was a scare when it looked like KFC had shut, but actually they were just refitting it. A heron landed on our shed. Went to Bishop's Stortford and will be trying quite hard not to go back. Yeah.