Built from the sound of my creaking chair, the fan on my laptop, the clicking of a rotary knob on a midi controller.
A long time ago in a galaxy far away I took the sound of a metronome and tried to make the best music I could. It was around that time when I was exploring silence a lot, John Cage rules. I was let to Matthew Herbert and his label Accidental. The work he was doing really fitted with the way I was thinking, in terms of building your own orchestra from everyday sounds and essentially remixing the spaces you inhabit.
This is a throw back to that attitude and I hope you enjoy it.
A new bit of music, it’s child friendly too!
Well you can stay if you really want too, but you can’t tell ANYONE!
So today I went to songwriting workshop, it was a great chance to meet some people and co-write a song, then perform that song. We wrote a pretty crumby song, but we did it 90 mins, so that’s kinda OK. Anyway, toward the end of the workshop the workshop became a bit of a showcase, and I got a little restless. Two hours of showcasing will do that, plus I hadn’t prepared anything so selfishly didn’t have anything to look forward too.
Anyhoot, came home , had a cup of tea and decided to play with a synth chasing that 8-bit sound from my youth. I’ve been playing some of the classics recently on an emulator (cardinal sin) and it’s got me aching for more. Plus I seem to have grown up a bit and stopped making one off pieces of music, everything’s album this or EP that. And projects are exhausting!
So here’s my trip to being a child again. I loved making it!
The Great British Beat Off - Hulk Hate When She Gone & Holiday With Oscar
Me and fellow friend and producer Le Bop have decided to duel, 1 beat in 1 hour using the same samples as a starting point. Naturally, you get to decide who wins, it’s happening on Weds 8th, voting at 9pm! Hosted by Preciptoman Recording & Events on their Facebook page, vote and like HERE Here’s two tracks we’ve come up with while practicing.
It’s going to be fun,
WE KNOW WHAT IT’S LIKE (TO LIVE RIGHT) - THE NEW SONG FROM ADVENTURES OF…
Check this out!
Paper Cuts - with Adventures of…
It’s been a whirlwind of a time over at Preciptoman HQ. We’re working hard on bringing the new Adventures of… album together and doing some really exciting stuff to promote it. The biggest things we’ve achieved recently is getting our own radio show on K2KRadio! We’re officially two shows in and you can hear them HERE or you can just click and listen below:
OxJam Islington 2013 performance overview
I performed at the Coffee Works Project near Angel Underground over the weekend as part of OxJam Islington. It was a great gig and the audience was a real mix.
The room was a real treat, so many weird and wonderful things buried in plaster and light switches hidden behind painted pine cones! Koopa Nut took a few videos of the gig, both a spoken word freestyle and a tribute to our friend Michael Brown.
You’ll notice I’ve got a very strange lurch and limp back leg thing going on, the ceiling was really low but I managed to squeeze my head in between the ceiling beams… here’s some photos!
There’re more photo’s on the face book page but you get the idea, me in a strange place rhyming and telling stories.
I had a great time, so thank you to every one who came!
Bernard James x
I’ll put music into this
When my dad hears I’ve been booked for a poetry gig
my dad says,
“well at least put some music in there
if I’ve already told my friends”,
and maybe I should,
but whenever I do
it gives me too much to concentrate on
and when I’m thinking there’s always much more
of a chance that something somewhere will go wrong.
So how about I only go half the way?
How about I throw in some nervous humming
against the creaks of chairs whose passengers
want to leave but they don’t know if they should just yet,
because they think, “this poet might just get good, any second now,
and our coffee’s still hot
and maybe we missed something anyway
because we couldn’t work out if he was trying to be fashionable
or popular thrift store, like Macklemore”
But now 15 seconds have slipped by and I’m still humming
a choice selection of notes, all of them friends
who bunch together tightly and know each other so well
that at most times, to the untrained ear,
you couldn’t really tell them apart,
just that every now and then one seemed a lot more tense than the other.
Let’s call them the Rat Pack,
and with a name like that
they spread out and push their shoulders back
and start to swagger around my vocal chords,
and if only I could beat box right now
I could pull out my best Rahzel
and swiftly swoon and wow the crowd with
Biff Your Cover Bonely Que,
but I can’t and my nerves are rattling
so I settle for a gentle foot tap
against an old wooden floor that’s hiding
a thousand corpses of conversations drowned in coffee beans
spilt from lovers coffee cups and then wiped
from the table to forever stain the floor.
My foot taps carelessly on broken promises
and crazily caffeinated brand new ideas which might just change the world
if only Sony hadn’t invented the Playstation,
and Ikea didn’t sell cheap sofas,
and Tettley hadn’t found a way of making tea bags
taste kind of OK with hard southern water,
not that my mum would ever agree.
But now 20 seconds have past and still no poem,
and the first one went OK I think, so I should’ve just dived right into the next
rather than sink into not this uncomfortable sludge,
this one went more like Failure suddenly finding both an identity and a ghost
and shoving each one
into my pockets for my hands to wrestle with
so nobody ever sees the truth.
My hands stay stuffed in my pockets,
each one holding down a devil of doubt
and I absolutely know I’d look more comfortable if I bought my hands into plain view,
but believe me
can’t see me for the devils that chase me.
so there I am,
possessed by a drunk Rat Pack reunited with no talent and only memories of dusty
my foot ruthlessly kicking up the dust of stories best left undisturbed
and my hands fruitlessly choking the necks of two demons
knowing full well they don’t need air to breathe.
Next time I won’t be so quick to put music into my poetry set.
I’m performing at OxJam Islington - 19th October (1pm)
I’m both pleased and proud to say I’ve been invited back to perform at OxJam Islington for the 2nd year running. This year I’ll be performing a spoken word set with poems both old and new at a lovely looking coffee shop called ‘CoffeeWorks Project’. Hopefully in the backroom because it looks awesome!
Here’s the address:
96-98 High Street, Islington, N1 8EG
So come along Saturday afternoon, have a coffee and some cake and enjoy some poems from me and then tons of music from other brilliant bands and artists.
Tickets are £6/8 for an all day earlybird ticket or £12 for an all day standard (£10 with a flyer) click HERE to get yours now. It goes without saying that all proceeds go to Oxfam, right?
Join the Facebook event here: https://www.facebook.com/events/187022444786189/
See if you can spot my name in the poster xx