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Archive for March, 2011

Here is some amazing stuff from Belgian designer/artist Stephane Halleaux…

The steampunk art of Stephane Halleux

The steampunk art of Stephane Halleux

Visit his website here (in French), or read a potted description (in English) here >>

Very wonderful. . .

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Last week The Cakes re-entered the recording studio for the second and hopefully final (at least for this initial CD) time… (see our first post here >>)

Working on a few new tunes as well as tweaking some we recorded on Day 1, the hours fairly flew by!

We are going for a very ‘live’ feel for this initial outing of ours, with a minimum of overdubbing and tweaking. . . What we did add however was a bit of surreptitious percussion, courtesy of Karen’s extremely talented son Jack.  Here are some photos of the general process – obviously when we have something to listen to (some initial tracks can be heard on our website here >>) I will be back in touch!

Two mics on my guitar - ooh, get me!

Two mics on my guitar - ooh, get me!

A view from Star Command

A view from Star Command

Jack lays down some folky grooves

Jack lays down some folky grooves

Just an arty shot of the plug board

Just an arty shot of the plug board

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This week my friend, and sometimes playing partner, Gerald started a new night of jazz at the excellent local cocktail bar Mokoko.

Planned to run every two weeks or so with a rotating rota of jazz duos and trios, the first night featured Gerald and upright bass player Chris Hartgoves – visit their website and listen to a few clips here… The soon-to-be-regular Tuesday night sessions will also feature a floor spot or two (I played a few numbers with Gerald last night) so grab your instrument and get yourself down there!!

Here is a (rather fuzzy!) photo from the night, which I am sure will go on to be very popular amongst the jazz fraternity of St Albans!

Chris Hartgroves and Gerald Roberts playing at Mokoko

Chris Hartgroves and Gerald Roberts playing at Mokoko

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Back in April last year (was it really that long ago!?) I posted about Shed Night III, when my old mate GG and myself crafted Eric, my superb ‘made-for-tall-people’ bike out of bits of other bikes… See the post here >>

It’s been a hard year for poor old Eric, and I am sad to say he suffered a catastrophic back wheel failure a few weeks ago. In trying to repair it, and a host of other wear-related ills, GG decided it was simpler to start a fresh and cannibalize him  for Eric Mark II… (he did all the work this time for which I am eternally grateful!)

And here he is… Frankenstein-like in all is splendour. The custom handle bar riser is not quite as high as Eric’s, but again features some nifty welding and general jiggery-pokery from GG –  a close up is below the main shot.

Eric II

Eric II

Handle bar close up

Handle bar close up

Early road trials indicate that Eric II is even better than The Mark I – the front shocks make for a smoother ride and in fact ht saddle is higher than Eric I which makes a much better ride for my 6ft 5in frame.

Now, what to call him?? Suggestions to me and you may even get a prize of some sort!!?? (yet to be decided!)

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The lovely people at StockdaleMartin have just bought me the following fabulous present. . .

Not only is it an actual Leatherman (a Juice C2 to be exact) but they even had it engraved with my name! It comes in a very attractive leather case (complete with belt clip!) and will now be carried with me wherever and whenever a handy tool may suddenly be needed. . .

. Clivey's tool

Clivey's tool

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A little while ago I posted about some marketing work I had performed for jazz and folk guitarist / singer Chris Flegg. . . see here for details of that post >>

Following on from the success of that activity, we have just conducted a commensurate exercise for another Chris-led project, the Mellow Tone Jazz trio. Using a similar design template and DM delivery mechanism, we have augmented this campaign with the creation of  a new single page website for people to visit if they are interested in learning more – check out www.mellowtone.co.uk to see this mini-site.

Mellow Tone Jazz trio flyer

Mellow Tone Jazz trio flyer

So far, so good! Early results seem encouraging, and hopefully these will continue to increase over the next few weeks as we send out more – I had better get back to the Herculean task of sticking on stamps!

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