Sunday, October 29, 2006

DIY Guitars

I have just purchased the above "build it yourself" guitar kit. It's based on the Fender Telecaster design, it cost £71, although I will need to buy some proper pickups for it which will cost about £116. Still it will be 'cut price' compared to the real deal which would be around £500.
I have always wanted to give a project like this a go, I can create a truly individual and custom look, I may even consider getting an art student to give it a real custom paint job! Not like any of those grotesque guitars of Steve Vai's though, they would give me headache, my head is awash with ideas, I will post a pic of the finished article when it's done.

8 random things about me.....

I saw Katt do this on her blog and thought I would give it a go, maybe you'll feel you know me a little bit better, who knows....

I grew up on the largest council estate in Europe – also I think referred to as “the projects” in the US, it's called Bransholme, although times were often hard, especially as England was in a recession during this period in my life and the area was rife with crime and trouble of various sorts, this is were I grew up and went to school. Even though it was not the nicest (but not by far the worst) place to live in the UK, I really enjoyed growing up here, I loved school, there wasn’t much to do so we would find an overgrown patch of wasteland and make Dens and tree houses. We used to play on a big roundabout which we called “Island” and made Dens in the bushes, we would have to defend these dens from rival groups of kids who were also looking for a good spot to build a den. I miss those days!

I am scared of going into the sea – ever since I saw Jaws as a kid I will not go into the sea not just from the fear of getting attacked by a large shark but also because I wouldn’t like not knowing what is beneath me! I have been invited by a work colleague to go out into the North Sea on his new speed boat sometime in the future; I really want to go because it’ll frighten the hell out of me!

I hate it when the guy gets the girl at the end of a movie – i.e. Jerry Maguire, American Pie etc. It really gets me annoyed, I just think ‘well that doesn’t happen in real life, or it would have happened to me’ petty really, and I probably won’t think that way when I find a woman, you just get that way when you’ve been single for 4 years. I think I’m a bit of a romantic and miss having that special someone.

My favourite year in my life so far is 1996 - it was a very special year, so many nice things happened, first of all it was that magic summer of Euro 96 when football fever hit England and everyone looked forward to England’s next game in the competition, there was a definite “feel good factor” in the air, after years of growing up with no money, I got my first job which lasted for four months during the summer between years at college, this allowed me to buy things I had always wanted such as my own hi-fi system and CD’s, I also started going out and drinking around town. I was working with another girl from the college course, and this led to a very special, summer romance, this was predicted by others on the course and the romance faded when we arrived back at college mainly due to embarrassment. There were also a couple of other romances that year of which one led to us moving in together a few years later, sadly that didn’t last.

I would love to learn the art of Bush craft and to travel the world – after watching a TV show about Bush craft and survival techniques I have always wanted to learn the art of using nature to survive and in the future I intend to go on a bush craft holiday. I also have a desire to see the world, I have never been abroad, but would love to travel and see the world like Michael Palin writing about my adventures, I have had this desire ever since I read Paulo Coelho’s ‘The Alchemist’ however I have never seen the point in going on vacation abroad for a fortnights holiday in the Costa del sol, or Ibiza for example, it seems like a waste of money!

I want to become a star of a cult TV comedy show – not like Little Britain which is a series of crap character based sketches (same joke, different episode) , but more like Spaced, which was great. I’m really quite shy; I try to combat this by pushing myself into these situations, like acting in my mate’s sketches and playing in bands etc. I nearly fainted when I played my first gig! My friend is writing a sitcom for us, it’s about 3 flatmates one of which has an imaginary friend who is a pineapple.

Body piercing – I have had a pierced tongue, nipple, nose and ear, although only the tongue piercing is still in place, I also have a tattoo of a shark on my arm and an oriental dragon on my chest. It must have been a phase I was going through lol.

I regret not going to University – when I was finishing college I was going to go to Uni and study either Marine Biology or Forensic Science. I had this lecturer who was dealing with our University applications, when I told him what I wanted to do, he simply said “oh no…not another f#cking Jack Cousteau” and promptly tried to discourage me from applying for these courses on the basis that there are hardly any jobs in either of these fields, it true of course, but I listened to him and in the end took a year out to re-think what I wanted to do. This was my first big mistake as I then got a job as a Microbiologist and got used to earning money, later that year I moved in with my childhood sweetheart and took out a loan for furniture and stuff, this was my second big mistake, the relationship ended after nine months and I needed to work, to pay off my bank loan. After working for a number of years now I realize that it doesn’t matter what you do a degree in, as long as you get a degree, so what if I did marine biology, I may not have gotten a job as a marine biologist, but I would have gotten a science based job. I also regret missing out on the University student lifestyle!

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Stray cat strut

Todays random photo is another bit of graffiti, I think the simplicity of this one actually makes it an attractive image.

I have sore fingertips, the last few nights I have been playing my guitar again, I think I would like to start another band in the future, possibly with a hint of 'Stray Cats' type rockabilly, but my thoughts on this will probably have changed by tomorrow. The worst thing about starting a band is trying to think of a band name, a lot of bands settle for any old rubbish like 'The Killers 'or 'Jet' or 'Muse', singular words often with 'The' affixed to the front, but I prefer something a little bit more imaginitive like 'The 1910 Fruitgum Company' or 'Led Zeppelin' or 'Queens of the Stone Age' something a little bit more.......something with a bit more thought! Anyway I'm ranting on again about nothing of any real importance.

I had a little spark of thought when watching an episode of classic albums yesterday (it was the one on Nirvana's Nevermind) about how best to tackle my aproach to recording some songs with my limited equipment, to do with double tracking vocals to get a more fuller sound. I think how i'll do it is to record acoustic guitar and vocals, then add an electric or acoustic guitar melody to it, then double track my vocals to fill it out, that will take all four tracks of my 4-track tape recorder. I will then take this round to my mate Rob's house and record the whole thing into his computer after the levels have been set, then get him to record some piano over the top, hopefully it'll work out OK. I just need to get some songs together.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Dreaming of Guitars

The puppies are 9 weeks old tonight! Five of them have been sold, which leaves four, but we are keeping this one, he was the biggest male and weighed in at 10kg when he got weighed at the vets last Saturday!

Since seeing Johnny Jazz's pictures from Nelsonica the other day I have had an envious craving to buy lots of electric guitars (of the expensive veriety) due to looking at the photo of Bills guitar collection. The only problem with that is lies in the fact that I can't afford another guitar. Then the reality hit me that my own guitar, a Fender 'Big Apple' USA Stratocaster is in need of an overhaul as the pickup selector is now faulty.....probably due to me banging the guitar with my fist when I played in a couple of rock/blues bands a few years ago, then another thing hit me.....I have not played my guitar for quite a while now, it's amazing how lazy and de-motivated you can get at practicing an instrument when you don't play in a band. Being in a band really is the best way to learn an instrument!

So if I win the lottery this weekend, the first things on my shopping list will be;

A Gretsch Silver Falcon

A Gretsch Billy-Bo Jupiter Thunderbird

A Duesenberg Starplayer TV

A New Fender Stratocaster (so mine can go into retirement)

and A Fender Telecaster

Anyway back to reality, I watched a Lauryl & Hardy movie the other day 'Way Out West' it was excellent and recommend it to anyone who has not seen it, I love watching old b&w films it's staggering to think of what they acheived, the story telling in modern movies is pretty poor in comparison, a sweeping statement I know but for the most part, true!

I'll have to get back to work on writing some comedy sketches and naratives as....with most things I get involved with, I have gone off the boil, also I will get back on top of my guitar practicing, and painting, and taking photo's and writing my sci-fi crime thriller novel and Salsa dancing lessons and my blogging, the list goes on, so much to do in so little time, you know, working for a living really does stifle creativity!

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Foggy morning comedy thoughts!

I took this photo as I was walking through the city centre, I was on the way to work at about 7am the other day, as you can see, it was quite foggy.

I have not been doing anything musically of late, as me and a friend are working on some comedy sketches, with the hope that they will be funny enough to do as live stand up shows. First of all we want to record a comedy radio show though...again with a hope that it will be funny enough to actually be played on the radio. We are both really into Monty Python, The Goons and much other stuff as well. I get nervous just at the thought of acting on stage in front of people and hope the experience from my days of playing in local bands will help with that old chest nut....self confidence! It will also be an opertunity to throw a few funny songs together, to perform as well.

Anyway, it will probably be months before we have anything as we are just getting initial ideas and such things together. You never know, I might end up fullfilling one of my ambitions, to star in a cult comedy TV series.

Right now though, I have the prospect of helping my stand-up comedy partner to lift some very heavy sandstone paving slabs......not! Hi-ho! Hi-ho! It's off to work I go........

Saturday, October 14, 2006

More fair pics...

Taken when walking to the fair, through Hull's West Park at night
A scary ride, this picture does not portray the scariness!
That swinging arm has people sat on the end of was maybe 70ft above my head when this photo was taken.

Monday, October 09, 2006


Here's a picture of part of Hull Fair (Europe's largest travelling fair) taken whilst on the big wheel, it's not brilliant, but it gets the idea across I suppose. I'll post a few more images, but I'll have to pop back and take some more photo's as some didn't come out too great. Anyway that's all for now.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Bathing pups, Audits & Hull Fair

Todays photo is of a telephone box, just ouside work.

Well it's good old Friday again! Although I have had a reasonably good week at work, I'm glad it's Friday. Looking forward to next week as I will be 'shadowing' people on the chemicals plant and seeing what goes on, ready for my move next January into said plant.

I will have to spend next Wednesday back in the Laboratory as we have a mock FDA (American Food & Drug Administration) audit, to prepare us for the real one in a few weeks, which will spoil things a little but who's the weekend.

Just spent the last hour or so bathing and drying the puppies as tomorrow they will be advertised and ready to go to their new homes, although, wether we actually sell any is something of a concern as there has been some bad Rottweiler press recently and it may put people off.

Anyway it's Hull Fair week starting tonight, I'll try and pop along tomorrow as it should be a good opertunity for some fun photo's and to go on a few rides....and eat junkfood and sweet treats!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006


A picture of Wincolmlee an industrial part of the city which runs parallel to the river. I love these old industrial streets.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Wilmington Bridge Controller Tower

Came across this picture of the bridge controllers tower, on one of the old bridges which crosses the river Hull, whilst trawling through my photograph archives the other day.