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Showing posts from August, 2020

A Love Letter to Music Venues

I was in Dublin city centre this morning for the first time in 12 months.  The last time I was there was to see Jane Willow perform in the Cobblestone Pub  on February 29th 2020.  I never, not for a moment, thought things would turn out as they did.  I was looking forward to a year full of gigs and excitement.  I think we all know how that turned out. After doing what I had to workwise, I took a spin around Dublin before I headed home.  I drove by the aforementioned Cobblestone Pub , the Voodoo Lounge , The Grand Social , The Workmans Club , The Sugar Club and ended up outside Whelans . I've had great nights out in each of those venues and in many more around the country!   Dolans of Limerick, Crane Lane Theatre and Kino in Cork,  Odd Mollies in Drogheda, the Moat Theatre in Naas, the Riverbank Arts Centre in Newbridge, the Solstice Arts Centre in Navan, Visual in Carlow...  The list goes on and on. 2017 and Helmet played Whelans.  There I am partying with them after the s

A Whole Lot of History...

Back in the day (by that I mean the mid 80s and early 90s), music came on Vinyl and Cassette Tape. Yeah, CDs were just starting to make headway, but CD players were still expensive.  Me, being a poor student, stuck to the humble cassette tape.  They were rugged, cheap, easy to record on and best of all, easy to create your own mixes. You could, if you searched, get C120 tapes, on which you could fit up to 120 minutes of music! Why do I mention this?  Well, this week I collected my old tape collection from my parents house.  It had been living in their attic, undisturbed, for the last 21 years.  Actually, not only did I pick up the tape collection, I picked up my vinyl collection also!  There were some absolute gems in the tape collection, Dignam and Goff , Power of Dreams , The 4 of Us , Blink , The Golden Horde , The Dixons , Ghost of an American Airman ...  and that was just in one bundle! Only another 170 something tapes to get through! As for the vinyl, I haven't really gone th

Bandcamp Friday

Bandcamp Friday... If any online music company comes out of the Covid19 Pandemic with honours, it looks like it will be Bandcamp .  Why?  Well, it's quite simple, it's down to Bandcamp Friday. What's Bandcamp Friday? Well, on the first Friday of each month, Bandcamp waives its fees on album and merch sales (on both physical media and downloads), meaning more money goes to the artists. This all kicked off in March as the world ground to a halt and with it, the music business.  OK, the waiving of these fees won't make up for the loss of earnings from not gigging, but y'know, every little bit helps. Today, being the first Friday of the month, I did some shopping.  I picked up a copy of the  Sowing Acorns Limited Edition EP by Emma Langford on cassette. Yes, you read that right, on cassette.  Look, don't ask why, just go with it! I also picked up a copy of a copy of The Swedish Railway Orchestra LP by, well, The Swedish Railway Orchestra on vinyl.  Yeah yeah, I

Bye Bye Spotify...

I ditched Spotify Premium this weekend. Why?  Well, I read an interview with Daniel Ek , the CEO of Spotify, and I profoundly disagreed with what he said and his attitude towards musicians in the interview.  So I said 'F*ck it', and closed my premium account.  I still do have a free account as many bands choose Spotify to release their music, so I'll keep it for that reason. What now though?  Well, I'd created a large library of music on my home server over the last 20 years or so.  Every time I bought a CD, it got ripped to the server.  Every time I bought digital music from Bandcamp , Google or 7 Digital , they too got stored on the server, and that was fine for home use, it worked well.  But now I'd dumped Spotify, what could I do, how could I access my music outside the house? I'd played around with software called Plex a few years back, but had no use for it. I ended up doing nothing with Plex, but for this project, I decided to revisit it.  I knew that if