Category Archives: General Music Stuff I’m Up To!

Stuff and stuff!

July 24th 2021

Afternoon all,

So due to a child at my school testing positive I have had – despite testng negative every day for 7 days – to isolate for the last EIGHT days, just at the start of a much-needed break from work and as the weather finally turned good! Today my last day of isolation and as to be expected the skies have darkened, the temperature dropped and the winds whipped up. Yay!

The unedifying experience further embellished by the neighbour downstairs deciding today is the day they will take a sledgehammer to their walls for no logical reason…:-)

Since my last post my wife and I have thoroughly rinsed out our wedding celebrations quite literally with a soggy start to a Wedding Party in the Sussex Countryside, the clouds mercifully parting for our vows and then our 200 guests enjoying the hog roast, ice-cream van, free champagne, beer and spirits and superb DJ entertainment and camping. Tick.

I continue to apply for work in the Hastings area and our move will happen…Duck, weave and win the way forward.

If you’ve ever wanted a lesson in piano, accordion, percussion or drum-kit, do get in touch. I have solid experience delivering these successfully not only in person but also online.

The same goes for Private Tutoring having successfully led many students to happy results ay GCSE, BTEC and A Level, again, in person and online.

It was good to flex my experience and skills in organising events to make our wedding so very magical. If anyone thinking of having an event of any type, do get in touch as I have a wealth of experience here as well as equipment and team.

Do take a look around my website here as content been updated and these updates here in fact now available as a Podcast (!) too (with an infinitely cooler narrator then me!) at https://anchor.fm/barneymusician.

Wishing all a great summer ahead.

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June 26th Update

So I got married….

A wonderful wedding day with the Ceremony at Chiswick Town Hall followed by an excellent lunch at The Duke of Sussex (a fitting venue not least as this the county we moving to).

This followed by a fabulous London honeymoon including many meals (Zedels, Hawksmoor), wild water swimming, a bread-making course, the theatre and a stay at Zetter Town House, Marylebone.

School work continues, children working on Beatles songs for class video performances. Looking forward to the end of this chapter now…

New opportunities beckon but unable to say what, where or when at this point…!

I have a second wedding event for all those unable to attend our first. For a few more people….

After that, time to focus on creating new opportunities…

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April 19th 2021 Update…

Still in Covid Years. Now at least double Pfizered…

Had a good Easter break overall. Only music is teaching my niece in Monaco piano remotely. Going well and she’s learnt a few pieces now and understanding notation gradually.

Interesting to see that online piano tuition can work. I dial in using Google meets with my iPhone on a neck brace pointing down at the piano and my fingers and the camera on my laptop pointing at my face so the student can see me and my hands at the same time. I might trial it with more pupils. I actually tested the system over 10 years ago when Skype introduced new tech that allowed teachers and others to accept money via PayPal incrementally during the duration of a video conferencing call for this very reason. It never took off though I thought it was a brilliant concept but perhaps now the world is more open to receiving such ideas….

I continue my music teaching work at my primary school working with a 440 children every week and bringing music into their lives.

The band I play with The Estimators have gigs lined up for later this summer and I will be playing a few of those.

I’m still interested in my cabaret show even though it seems few others are and I hope to get it performed in someway somehow at some point!

Our plan to get out of London and moved to the south coast continues despite the many challenges and obstacles that continue to be put in the way.

I hope to read more and ride my motorbike more often. At some point I will have my own music room where I keep my piano, drum kit, percussion, accordion and other instruments. Good to have plans.

I keep fit, diet and track my progress on Instagram at @getonwithityoufattoad

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December 30th 2020

Well….it’s been a bit of a year hasn’t it?

I trust and hope that all and any reading this have fared as best they can under the conditions and extend my sympathies for any losses. I’ve lost 6 friends in 8 months…all under the age of 55…

I continue teaching 450 children weekly at school and remain to date, negative of Covid-19, somehow. What a different world we live in hey?

Christmas has been good. I am very lucky to have a partner I love hugely and we are very good company to each other. For those who have had to spend Xmas and other periods during these restrictions on their own I imagine it may have had different and greater challenges.

Musically I have been learning the music from Lala Land, one of my favourite films. The “Mia and Sebastian” theme by Justin Hurwitz doffs it’s cap to Yann Tiersen and others but no less than inspired in it’s own right. I’m a sucker for a sad song or tune, Tom Waits and Nina Simone my constant companions during my 20s (amongst others) and along with a an overly enthusiastic appreciation of pubs and their products may have kept me in a state of some malaise for that decade.

I’ve had various periods in my life of enjoying the trappings of hedonism shall we say, but having started an NVQ in Health, Nutrition and Fitness in the last 2 weeks have already been educated enough to realise I’ve been rather lucky to arrive where I am with no greater injuries than sustained…I’m not there yet but continue on a journey to improve, address and redress my state of health, my journey now being documented on Instagram at @getonwithityoufattoad .

As for next year…life goes on. I’ve set up an eco-committee at the school I teach at, made up of wonderful, bright, engaged, passionate and inquisitive children who keen to improve the school’s eco credentials and introduce systems that lead us to getting our bronze, silver and gold accreditations.

I have a plan forming (oh-oh….) to combine an interest in health (mental and physical) with green eco activity as part of my next career chapter, happening possibly outside of London but not until 2022…more to be revealed as I go.

Musically, much has to be on hold until this human-caused virus abates. I have resurrected a cabaret show I wrote some years ago that can work in a Tier-2 or lower setting. Getting that going may be a focus in 2021 outside of job, academic study and fitness/health. My attention though will be prioritised on partner, family and friends.

I’ll also be riding my Triumph Bonneville motorbike and indulging my passion in all related to that.

Much love to all, be kind and look after each other.

B x

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MaskAPony!

Yes! My mask biz is up and running! 10 online sales already and now a gallery to go with them! Click here for full details – https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/GreenWiz

In other news still at school teaching 440 children weekly dodging Covid (at time of writing…), teaching piano and A Level music online remotely.

Riding my bikes (motor and pedal) when I can and keeping fit. Best wishes to all worthy recipients! 🙂 Now go and buy a mask!

https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/GreenWiz

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August 2020 Update :-)

The world is still on fire in a few different ways.

Covid continues.

I’m going camping for 5 days tomorrow. The weather has been blissful if a little hot for weeks….torrential rain is predicted for the next 5 days….

I spent 1 day being creative musically…knocking out something then adding the speech by Killer Mike of Run The Jewels following the Atlanta Riots in reaction to the killing of George Floyd. I sent it to him but he’s not got back to me…yet…here it is – https://soundcloud.com/barneymusician/plot-plan-strategise-organise-mobilise

I’ve started selling masks…details here – https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/GreenWiz

I’ve done a motorbike course with the Met Police called Bike Safe – great.

I’m off to a motorbike festival in Kent, I seem to have entered myself in to a race….

I’m off to Paris for the last weekend in August, I could live in France….

Back at School September…

I’m more than ready to move out of London….

Big love to anyone that passes by and catches this update 🙂

B x

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June 2020 Update!

Locked down for months so rode my motorbike round London delivering PPE to Doctors and food to Shelters for homeless.

Just doing my best like all of us to keep going.

Stay safe and feel free to join me in thinking how we can improve things so this doesn’t happen again…

Bx

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March 26 2020…Staying In…

So here we all are experiencing the biggest turn of events in what seems like the history of humankind. I have created a specific webpage here at my site for parents, students and anyone looking for musical resources to engage with and also other resources and support links. Click above or go to https://barneymusician.com/music-links-for-remote-learning-when-you-need-it/

I’m hoping all can see this latest update ok. The utter minefield that WordPress is have decided in their nerdy un-human friendly wisdom to change things once again making it still a challenge to use this portal to host and maintain a website (and this is apparently one of the easier ways!!! I’ve had websites on the internet for years and never found it anything less than incredibly difficult, WordPress as bad as all the rest). Anyway, do feel free to let me know in the comments below (if WordPress allows there to be!) if it’s working for you. Ok, rant over.

These updates are meant to inform on latest events with me musically but of course, like everyone, world-wide, I’m currently homebound (save for shopping and a daily run/walk/cycle). As a teacher I am teaching remotely now and going in to school fortnightly with my allotted team working with the children of frontline workers.

I am constantly gathering online materials which I initially posted to my Facebook Page (also accessible via my website here) but now posting to the link here (see above). I will also be using this time to do some much needed piano and accordion practice (I might save the neighbour from the drum practice…).

Before this catastrophe changed the world I was still keeping my musical life active, mainly through playing drums for Ska band The Estimators. We had a brilliant gig in Southend and then another at The Dublin Castle. Here’s some footage of us at the Southend gig – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JDzVp9iklkU

Of course, like all musicians, all our pending gigs have now been either cancelled or postponed. These include weddings and festivals. Fingers crossed we all get through this and also the band can get back to gigging. I;m thoroughly enjoying playing with this outfit and all great guys. At the end of my first gig with them they all gave me a big shout out to the crowd thanking me. That sort of consideration, good manners and kindness goes a long way.

Do feel free to check my social media links as listed on another page on my website here as I’ll be updating regularly. I hope you all stay safe and keep well. Staying indoors, following all official guidelines on good health practice and avoiding contact with others outside your home whilst keeping up with events via news sources seems the best way to do this.

Best wishes to all and keep healthy and safe,

Barney Musician x

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January 4th 2020

So, Happy New Year all….I ended 2019 with a final gig with The Future Shape of Sound at Hootenanny’s in Brixton. Not only was it my final gig of the year but my final gig with the band as recent changes in personnel conveniently coincided with a long-held decision to move on from the project and explore new opportunities and as no gigs planned or booked after this it felt the best time to throw my towel in the ring whilst looking for new rings to throw my hat in to!

I do have a new project already up and running, as dep drummer for great Ska band The Estimators, our first gig on February 8th 2020 in Southend and then at the end of the month at The Dublin Castle on February 29th. All gigs and details at their webpage at http://www.the-estimators-london-ska-band.co.uk/gigs.html. I haven’t played drum-kit with a band for over 6 months now so looking forward to it, not least because I’ll be using my new drum kit, the Pearl Mid-Town, a great compact and portable kit.

My day-work as a music school teacher continues with an exciting potential new development on the horizon I’ll be able to talk about soon hopefully. At my regular school I’m running 2 after-school clubs this term – choir and keyboards, exploring the new Akai bluetooth mini-keyboards I acquired via a grant I won and preparing for the Spring Concert, Variety Show and of course BLastonbury, our big event of the year.

As a punter, I’m looking forward to seeing Tame Impala locally in Victoria Park and Nick Cave in Oslo, both events in May. I’m hoping to attend a music festival too, Black Deer looking good along with Timber Festival.

I’d like to explore devising a show this year. I wrote a mini-Musical called The Pillars of Hercules a few years back and may refresh it or work on something new, with the aim to be able to swap between kit, keys, accordion, percussion, guitar and viola along with 1-2 other multi-instrumentalists and a cast of 2-3 singers/actors.

If there was one musical goal I wished for me for this year it would be to find or create a scenario where I’m performing monthly and locally, playing good music with good people making happy memories for those listening and viewing. Get in touch if this fits or interested in collaboration.

Outside of music, I’ve one last test to pass – my Mod 2 – before a qualified motorcyclist. It’s been a 4-month journey so far with my CBT, Theory Test and Mod 1 completed and this last challenge hopefully completed by the end of January. I then hope to get a Triumph Street Twin motorbike. Other goals are to get my tooth sorted as nearly 2 years since my accident, keep saving for my future security and maintain my health continuing to run 10k at least weekly.

I hope 2020 brings good things and happiness for all. Barns xx

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October 2019

Another update on BarneyMusician activities. I had a riotous successful gig playing keys with The Future Shape of Sound on Friday night 11th October at Nambucca as part of the Gypsy Hotel evening hosted by The Urban Voodoo Machine.

Our next gig is on November 2nd at The Macbeth in Hoxton but in the meantime do check out our fabulous new video for our latest single at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gdinZNTdRzA

I’ve also been appointed as part-time drummer for highly established and accomplished Ska Band – The Estimators and will update when gigging with them, their website here.

I’m on the look-out for a more permanent fixture as a drummer with a band and have an ad on Gumtree currently so do see below (the text of the ad) and get in touch if fits with you or someone you know. Checking in again soon 🙂 x

Looking for Americana band/collaborators to write songs, learn covers and gig. I play drum kit, keys, accordion, percussion and other stuff too. The YouTube link has me drumming from 2 minutes in and gives an idea of my playing though not looking for this style – If you type in to Spotify “The Pulse of Americana” you’ll get an idea…I’ve been playing a LONG time and the keys player for The Future Shape of Sound. I’m a music graduate with a post-grad too and a Primary Music Teacher during the days. If you in to the same music, up for rehearsing as needed with a good work and play ethic, organised, pro-active and a view to be gigging soon , recording an album on vinyl, building a fan base and having some good times I’ve a bunch of connections to help along the way. I’m looking for local to Bow people for efficiency (you’ll either get this or not) and if/when replying do please add links for eyes and ears 🙂 I have too much kit to mention (though keep it lean on stage) and wheels. Rehearsing/Writing would be evenings anytime from 5-9pm and Saturdays as available/inclined. Happy to start with covers and move to more originals as we progress.

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