Last week something wonderfully unusual happened and we found ourselves all in the same place at the same time! We were meeting for a writing weekend to begin work on the music for Kolar’s Gold and after confirming important details such as who would bring gin, and who would pick up beers, we were good to go.
For us the writing process is a very collaborative one. Someone will bring a tune or idea to the group, and together we turn it into a complete piece of music. It’s a melting pot of ideas, we try out all of them (however unusual!), sometimes our first idea is the one we go with, at other times we try numerous approaches before finding the right one.
For this project, we have the added consideration of how to combine our own ideas with those of the Indian musicians we are collaborating with. This would be a far simpler process if we could all be in a room together, but as Laura is the only band member that will be meeting the Indian musicians in person, much of the joint composition will be done over the internet. Luckily we are working with a very accomplished composer/arranger/performer in India and a talented group of musicians. We will announce these collaborations very soon.
By Thursday night we had ‘rough drafts’ of 4 of the pieces for Kolar’s Gold. We went home, listened to them (a lot), and came back the following morning to revisit and revise the work of the previous day.
On Friday, after hours of writing and rehearsing we decided to clear our heads and walked down to Neal’s local beach. We couldn’t resist taking the music with us and spent some time singing together in a large cave, a very magical experience, so much so that even reluctant singer Tom joined in!
It was incredibly beautiful, but the intention of re energising us was questionable after we hauled ourselves back up the steep cliff with the assistance of a rope and wobbly railing and collapsed at the top in need of an afternoon nap!
After 12 hours writing and rehearsing and sustained by a tasty vegan curry, we had achieved a lot, but were in need of a break, a fit of giggles signalling it was time to abandon music for the day.
On Saturday we played a sell out gig at The Old Library in Bodmin, a fantastic new venue run by intoBodmin, an organisation doing transformative work within the town. It was a very special night and only our second ever gig with drummer Richard Morgan who has brought a whole new energy to our music. Richard’s composition and arranging skills were put to good use over the course of the previous few days!
We are really pushing ourselves musically in this project and after two days we were mentally and physically exhausted, but feeling incredibly lucky to have this opportunity, and to be doing it as a group of musicians that have a lot of love and respect for one another. It would be an impossible task without that.