June 29, 2018

8.00 am: A communion. I’d had a restless night on top of the duvet in minimal attire. The heat. The room. It cooled around 3.00 am. I awoke feeling exhausted and dehydrated. 9.00 am: (‘Running late, today, John!’ He’s a task master, that one.) Iced-water to hand, I began to re-adjust and equalise the volume levels for the I. Nothing. Lack tracks:

It’s very tempting to reconsider the entire mix of a track on returning to it after several month’s absence. In the intervening period, my ear has changed. I hear things … feel the weight and balance of the constituent elements … differently … more organically. The current trend for remixing 70s progressive rock albums arises from the same realisation. The examples that I’ve heard aren’t necessarily better than the originals. Some, where the stereo field is more considered, certainly are. But the initial mix is, for me, as much a part of the character of the music as the notes. And this is what I hear at the back of my head, even while listening to the revision. There’s one example of crude stereophonic separation that I adore, however: Cream’s ‘I Feel Free’. I wouldn’t want it to be changed. The approach is of its age. Perhaps, too, it reminds me of the limitations that I was under as teenager when recording my various bands using a reel-to-reel tape recorder, one channel at a time (in order to overdub).

11.00 am: The MacBook that I was using suddenly an catastrophically froze. I’m a firm believer is learning to repair your own kit, whether that be computers or sound equipment. So, I took the plunge. I’d a professional technician visiting to this afternoon to help me with my ailing iMac in the study. But I would sit with, and learn of, him as he worked. When in doubt, reinstall the IOS. The laptops need a little additional RAM too. While various computers upgraded, I photographed the studio interior for the PhD student who’d interviewed me yesterday. They’re interested in my working environment. I cleared the floor of pedals, and the walls of remembrancers:

After lunch, I proceeded to monitor the computers’ progress. I’ve learned not to say ‘fixed’ before time. The studio is now walkable again. The temperature outside was around 27°c. But with a light breeze. A mercy:

My computer tecky arrived at 3.00 pm. He’s Russian and has an endearing accent, like the celebrated by Mr Chekov in Star Trek. Out went the Sophos antivirus software, Office 2011, and a variety of other background programs, some of which appeared not to have any relevant function other than to slow down the machine. Thereafter, operations were far more zippy.  Having learned from the tecky, I applied the knowledge to all of my other machines. This was not how I’d expected to spend most of my day:

6.00 pm: I undertook dinner duties in readiness for the return of my younger son from his adventure, on a delayed train. My other son is far from me. The computers are all functional and, now, far more efficient. A day well spent in that respect. But I’m now behind on my schedule.

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