So I got a little bit tired there at the end of 2018, began to realise that the year had actually been frenetically busy when it should have been part of my sitting in the country masterplan, but one needs to make good come out of tricky things, so I have definitely taken some decisions as we head into the new year. The Advent and Christmas patch, which saw me away from home for days at a time, dropping back only for stolen hours here and there, was good for my music, if not for my sleep patterns, and the performances continue into this year.

Yesterday afternoon the choir of St. James’s, Sussex Gardens, performed Sweet Was The Song, my first performance of 2019, and they will be giving an outing to This Light Of Reason later in the month as well. This came hot on the heels of a RetroChic gig on Saturday night in Midsomer Norton for the enthusiastic locals, and while it is probably never advisable to get to London at half past two in the morning off a gig and then head out to a day’s work on four hours sleep, at least it is easier to do when one has had some time off, put some mental fuel in the tank, Yule fuel, if you will.

The two big projects for the year are the album with Joe and the book. We go into the studio in a couple of weeks time to record the remaining tracks for the former, and after that, who knows? Anything or nothing could happen and we shall just have to take it as it comes and see where it leads, but I am excited again to hear how everything sounds once it has all been put together.

The book will occupy me through the year, as it is due for publication in 2020, so I am shifting some work around, filing some other jobs under ‘r’ for ‘arrivederci’ and making sure that the vistas are as clear as can possibly be for what is to come. This is going to be another one of those things that is going to eat up time unless I am prepared for it, so I am making sure that I can be on top of things.

Oh yes, and there is also composition, which is what I am here for. The current project is to recast the Advent Mass into its new version, although the first performance of the music in its new garb lacks a confirmed date as yet, and there was good news as early as five days into the year when four of my works were selected for consideration by a music festival, so it has been a good start. If I can look after myself properly, keep that life/work thing in slightly better balance than last year, then everything else should be easy enough to deal with.