Tuesday, 11 September 2007

Mini-Gig-a-Blog™ (GoodBooks album prelaunch acoustic instore thingy, Pure Groove)

Friday, 27 July 2007

On the "social notworking" site Facebook we received an invitation from supermanager Anna G to attend a pre-launch event for GoodBooks' album ''Control" which was coming out on Monday 30th July. Naturally we went. How could an album successfully be launched without the entertainment gossip columnists noting the presence of "Muswell Hill's coolest daughter/father trumpet section"? Oh alright I'll stop now, sorry: early morning, no breakfast, low blood sugar.

Where was I? Oh yes. On the way to the launch thingy. I am in danger of running out of time so let me summarize:

  • Pure Groove: absolutely delightful - a proper, independent, loveable record shop with enthusiastic handwritten recommendations all over the place. Makes we want to browse in there for hours and come out with dozens of CDs. Please go there immediately and spend lots of money. Thank you.
  • It's at the top of Holloway Road (number 679, just a block or so south of Archway tube).
  • GoodBooks did a short acoustic set of songs from "Control" including, naturally. Passchendaele. This was excellent.
  • It was nice being there as a punter but I'd have preferred to play.
  • It is, however, a rather small shop and the audience was already spilling out onto the pavement. The band was operating at a somewhat minimalist level. I am not sure where a horn section would have fitted in unless on flying wires like Peter Pan. Wheeeeeee toot toot splat ouch.
  • Much though it grieves me to admit it, they sounded great anyway and the Passchendaele trumpet solo works just fine as a guitar solo chiz chiz. Of course (before I get hauled up before one of the Guild's notorious Secret Inquisitorial Hearings) I must emphasize hastily that it's better on trumpet, good Heavens yes! But its being played on guitar did not, despite expectations, cause the universe to melt or anything. Truth to tell I knew this already, the Acoustical Performance Variant being one of the many downloads over which I'd already lined the pockets of MSN Music UK, iTunes, and, no doubt, the band itself.
  • Just to clarify, here's a Goodness Hierarchy for that solo:
    • Perfectly acceptable: played on guitar (but slightly sinful and not to be overindulged-in).
    • Better: played on the trumpet, as nature intended, by, for example, er, me. Ahem. Yes.
    • Best by a mile: played on trumpet by Ollie Beer, as on the CD. At this point I do have to crush my natural jealousy and childishness and admit (albeit through gritted teeth) that Ollie plays it absolutely beautifully. There's no questioning the Gold Standard for this tune! (Chiz.)
  • When it came to the solo, Max looked over and kind of twinkled at me, the winsome young thing (steady Vogel steady). It's very Sad-Old-Gittish of me to even mention it, but I have to confess that this made me feel a bit better about standing there in a rather less trumpetistical state than I'd have liked.
  • We bought another two copies of the album. Soon we will have enough to open our own shop.
  • I'm 99% sure I saw Christopher write something amusing and trumpet-related on a sleeve for us. It didn't, however, show up in the post at Schloss Neustadt. I conclude that someone Out There is a little confused by the sleeve that they received!
  • Middle-aged people were not strongly in evidence at this minigig. I felt as if I could have been everyone's Dad! Aaaargh.
  • The poor band were rushing off to do a gig, in Cambridge I think.
  • I should not give the impression that this band does only one tune, Passchendaele. Remember that I see it through a certain kind of filter (egomania, I think it's called). They actually did a very nice set and it just sounded terrific in there. Obviously very different from when they are electronically tooled-up and coming over at a zillion megawatts, but actually a very good way to hear them in an alternative voice.
  • There was a good friendly atmosphere at the shop, and infusing the pavement outside: it was a lovely evening too. A splendid way to spend an hour on the way home even if I did not, as it were, get my horn out.
  • All very very nice.
  • Vogel out.

Addendum: summary timeline-o-blog-orama index thingy

Right, now my "OCD" (or not) is giving me trouble. My habit of writing things up weeks or months after the event, though mostly unavoidable, has some odd consequences, particularly when things are in some kind of sequence and I have inadvertently trashed it. So here (now linked below as the GoodBookDex™) is a sort of summary which, if only for my own benefit, lists what happened when. Someone please put me right if I have messed this up!

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