Monday 19 September 2016


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Fun filming some music with Julia Bradbury's production team

Fun filming some music with Julia Bradbury’s production team

OUR weekly meeting throws up loads of tasks – mostly to do with the upcoming USA tour.

The tour shirts are underway, but the coozie printing company can’t deliver on time…and although posters are all printed and distributed, I’m right on the deadline for getting all the other promo print ordered.

There’s a few bits of website work needing done and reports from various PRS and Music+ meetings to be done.

It’s a busy day then I get a text  late afternoon from the production folks filming Best Walks With a View with Julia Bradbury – I’ve to play a wee bit of guitar for them. We head down to the local coffee shop to meet the crew and have fun filming a wee bit for the end of the episode they’re working on.

Back home, Margaret gets some dinner ready while I mess about with some tunes in the studio….then it’s back onto sorting out some final loose ends for the USA tour….

..and a good laugh with Julia

..and a good laugh with Julia

Wednesday 15 June 2016


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Event organiser Pat Byrne is also one of the writers collaborating with songwriter Jim Byrne on  the Ten Writers Telling Lies  project

Event organiser Pat Byrne is also one of the writers collaborating with songwriter Jim Byrne on the Ten Writers Telling Lies project

WE’RE going to see a show in Glasgow this evening, so decide to kill as many birds with one stone as possible and head into the city early to make the most of the trip.

I drop Margaret off then hit a McDonalds for a sneaky breakfast, coffee and free wifi. I get a couple hours’ work done then leave before outstaying my welcome by too long.

Next stop, B&Q…then the Chinese cash and carry, Tesco and Costco before picking Margaret up just after 2pm.

We have a few more things to do through the afternoon before we make our way to the Siempre Bicycle Cafe beside Kelvin Hall underground just in time for our pals Jim and Pat Byrne’s Ten Writers Telling Lies show.

The cafe is a nice space for an event like this and there’s a good crowd in. Jim has collaborated with ten writers who’ve written pieces inspired by songs they’ve collaborated on – the evening starts with five of these writers reading their work. Now if anyone had told me I’d enjoy spoken word/poetry/prose I’d have said a big ‘no chance’...but I found myself being drawn into each section and really enjoying it. I guess I never really entertained the idea of listening rather than reading, but why not? Especially when it’s the writers themselves delivering their work. It was enlightening and inspiring.

The first half closes with Jim and friends performing the songs relating to the first set of stories. Magic.

After a break the same format second half is just as enjoyable. There’s another chance to see (and hear) Ten Writers Telling Lies at the West End Festival on Sunday afternoon (2.30pm at Tchaiovna House of Tea).

My only complaint is that the kitchen was closed and we didn’t get the chance to sample the cafe’s interesting looking menu….we’d planned to eat there but I have to make do with a few bottles of Birds & Bees ale. Margaret’s driving 😉

We’re starving by the time we leave, but it’s getting too late to think about going anywhere for a sit-down meal. Margaret suggests a chippy….oh well, we rarely eat that kinda stuff so what harm can it do just this once? I enjoy my  haggis supper and the remains of Margaret’s chips on the way home but can’t help feeling I’m gonna suffer in the morning…not because of the beer, but because of all the deep fried goodness!

A large dram when we get home should help my body break down the fat 😉

Jim Byrne and friends perform the songs that inspired the stories and poems....

Jim Byrne and friends perform the songs that inspired the stories and poems….

Saturday 11 June 2016


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A fantastic finale to the Hellbound Train tour :-)

A fantastic finale to the Hellbound Train tour 🙂

WE have a lazy morning – recovery, I guess – at Lesley’s and after breakfast and catching up with some online stuff we pack the car and make our way to Glasgow.

It’s an easy load in at The Hug & Pint and nice to see engineer Doug who’s done my sound in the past in various Glasgow venues.

We’re set up and soundchecked when Lee arrives and gets set up…we have some grub then wait for doors opening at 7.30pm

The Hug & Pint used to be the Roxy 171 – and the Liquid Ship before that. With each reincarnation the venue has got better and now it’s the perfect space for a Dave Arcari show…not too big, monster PA, great engineer. Oh, and the food and beer is great too!

There’s a great crowd in, Lee plays a blinder and I have an amazing time playing, fuelled by the great crowd and maybe some beer and whisky too!

Lots of pals and folks we know in for the show and once we’ve packed up there’s time to hang out for a few drinks. A great finale to three hectic nights’ gigging.

Monday 25 April 2016


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WEF_launch_PatAndJim - 1

Nice to catch up with our pals Pat and Jim at the West End Festival launch.

ANOTHER panic to get some stuff done before I get down to the village to take some snaps of cars taking part in the Scottish Malts rally. This is the first stop on the first day!

I get there and set up a vantage point to grab some pix of the cars driving into the village then run up to the car park for more pix and some video vox pops with drivers..all for the G63.scot webzine.

Back home, though, the rally stuff needs to wait – I need to get my photo feature from yesterday’s Balfron 10k road race online and banded about.

As soon as I’m done we jump in the car for Glasgow. We’ve to pick up new glasses from the optician in Milngavie..I have new reading specs. ‘Clic’ frames that come apart in the middle and have a neck/head band. Only one step away from the dreaded ‘spex on a  chain’, but I can only afford one pair and it’s a desperate attempt to keep them handy. I hardly used my old readers ‘cos they were always in the other room…or out int eh office…or in the studio. Always in the place I wasn’t!

Next stop, post office to get a bunch of poster packs and tickets off to venues, record shops and other outlets then onto Costco and Tesco for some shopping.

I drop into the Hug & Pint with posters and flyers for my show there on 11 June before we head off to the Kibble Palace in the Botanic Gardens for the real reason for our trip into town…the launch of the West End Festival. The Hug & Pint show is part of the festival.

There’s drinks and some grub, but we stick to the booze as next stop is Hanoi Bike Shop which we booked earlier on. Just as well, ‘cos the place is mobbed. Catriona and Will gave me a voucher for the place – my current favourite place to eat in Glasgow – at Christmas. Put to good use tonight 🙂

We’re home soon after 10pm but no chance of an early night – too much work to catch up on after skiving all afternoon and evening!

Mmmm....dinner at my favourite Hanoi Bike Shop :-)

Mmmm….dinner at my favourite Hanoi Bike Shop 🙂

 

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