Friday 25 November 2017

Rab Noakes and Emma Pollock…their songs together – and Rab’s rendition of Girl from the North Country with Roddy Hart – were my highlights of the ‘Concert for Stewart’ 🙂

OFF into Glasgow’s icy and snowy. Brrrr…..

I drop Margaret off then hole myself up in McDonalds for a coffee and free wifi. I get a bunch of work done while I drink my coffee and manage to send a 150+ meg video file I’ve been working on in just a few minutes. Impossible from home broadband!

The extra order of  ‘Dave Arcari’ Glencairn glasses and whisky tumblers is ready so next stop is the manufacturer in East Kilbride to pick ’em up, We sold out the first batch in just a couple of weeks, so hopefully this’ll keep orders fulfilled both at tomorrow (Saturday) night’s show in Strathblane and also from my online store.

I’ve some other bits and bobs to do then pop into Chem19 studios to see Paul for a coffee.

Once I’ve met Margaret we pick up tickets for tonight’s ‘Concert for Stewart’ (Cruickshank…radio and music champion who sadly died a couple years ago) then head to St Luke’s & the Winged Ox for some grub before the show.

Lots of pals to catch up with before doors open then we enjoy a night of varied and mostly excellent music…my highlight being Rab Noakes’ rendition of Girl Form the North Country (one of my very favourite Dylan songs) with Roddy Hart.

It’s icy underfoot when we leave, but Margaret gets us home safely and I tumble into bed.

Davie Scott, left, and Duglas Stewart (far right) kick of the Concert for Stewart in style

Monday 23 January 2017

This second hand bargain picked up after a wee appeal on Facebook could be the key to a live recording…

BLUDDY cold today…so we light the fire as soon as it’s set!

There’s a lot on the to-list so we have a ‘Buzz meeting’ to catch up. In addition, I really need to update the ‘Introduction to Dave Arcari’ video  that means trawling through, and selecting, a load of video clips and also filming a ‘personal’ piece to top and tail the thing.

Margaret’s not so sure we need the extra bit of personal filming, but I’m adamant that it needs a couple of seconds at the start and finish to give some perspective and insight into what I’m busy with rather than just jamming together a set of clips. We spend time debating and discussing…but it’s important! Looks like decent weather on Friday so we’ll film something then. Meantime, I’ll try and identify some video clips.

The need to do a Facebook Livestream – mainly to promote the upcoming Scottish dates – is becoming urgent. However, we face the  usual crap broadband service at home issue…Margaret suggests a wee test, and we manage to get ‘connected’…but the stream is constantly interrupted and sound etc breaking up/ The replay works OK, but that defeats the purpose of the live stream which, for me, is all about the real-time interaction with folks watching.

So with the home broadband being too flaky we decide the only thing to do is wait ’til Saturday and do it from ‘somewhere up the lochside’. So, 2pm Saturday it is – at

A courier delivers the Zoom R16 multitrack recorder – a second hand bit of kit at a bargain price after a wee appeal for one on Facebook. This may be the key to a successful (ie: usable) recording for a live album.

In the studio I rehearse a couple of new tunes for next week’s (Wednesday 1 February, 5pm) appearance on STV’s Live at Five show.

I also manage to complete all the backup, organising and archiving of hard drives I started a few weeks ago. All that remains is to make a safety copy of the resulting archive so I can move/copy every six months or so to maintain the integrity of the data. It appears that even hard drive archives can become corrupted and the best way to prevent that is to copy form one drive to another and rewrite the data every so often. Bleedin’ hell. More work.

I take a couple of mics and some headphones back to the house and run a few tests on the R16 recorder to make sure it’s all working as it should. All’s good, so the next step is to source some mic splitters to take direct live feeds – I don’t want to take outputs from the venue’s mixing desk or use ‘y’ cables which could compromise the sound of both the show and the recording. And although I’m pretty well up on recording techniques and procedures, I reckon there’s gonna be a bit of trial and error even working out if the live recording idea has legs.

Dave Arcari is a full-time touring alternative blues (alt.blues) guitar player and songwriter 
based on the eastern shores of Loch Lomond, Scotland

Friday 4 November 2016

Banda de Goma join me for a song later in my set

Banda de Goma join me for a song later in my set

BREAKFAST at the hotel in Providence then we get some work done before checking out.

There’s just a couple of hours’ drive to Newburyport, Massachusetts so we spend some time at a shopping mall then drop into a Panera Bread for lunch.

We aim to get to Newburyport between 4 and 4.30pm, but the traffic as we go through Boston is unbelievable…and the presidential candidates’ motorcades that are on the route are causing havoc too!

It’s nearer 5pm when we arrive at the Carriage House, an amazing building in beautiful surroundings, where the house concerts series is held. Organiser Jason helps us load in and I get set up…his partner Lynne and mum Lesley are busy getting the place ready for folks arriving from 6pm.

There’s a load of food being prepared and, in true US house concert style, guests bring ‘pot luck’ food – everyone eats and chats then showtime kicks off just after 7pm with a short set from Pat Pollard (who also did the amazing poster art for the show) then Jason, Lynne and Matt – aka Banda de Goma –play a set before I take the stage.

The room is jam packed and the audience is incredibly enthusiastic and out for a good time.

There’s lots of chat after the show then Jason, Lynne, Lesley, Margaret and I have a nightcap before turning in sometime after 2pm.

Pat Pollard opens the show at Carriage House Arts & Music...

Pat Pollard opens the show at Carriage House Arts & Music…

..followed by Banda de Goma

..followed by Banda de Goma