I suspect that if Charles Dickens were to sit down and write a story of my 2019, he might call it A Tale Of Two Projects…or maybe not. For me, though, as December ticked over into January I was acutely aware that this is going to be the year of the album and the book.

As of yesterday evening at just after ten o’clock, the recording work on Joe’s album is done, although as I write I imagine that the seemingly indefatigable team is getting ready to drop in a bit of sax here and there to make sure that the final product will shine just that little bit more brightly. My part in the whole affair, apart from a few amends to the parts to make sure that what we will have matches what we have done in the studio, is now pretty much done.

What we have are ten tracks of cinematic sax music, what I like to refer to as “widescreen” sax, and as we recorded band, strings, choir, cymbals and timps over the part few days I suggested, only half jokingly, that our motto should be “never knowingly underorchestrated”. It has been intensive, detailed, sometimes difficult but usually rewarding work, and the two twelve hour sessions of the past two days, which mean that I have spent more than half of my life in RAK Studios since Wednesday morning, have put the final icing on the top layer of what we believe to be an exceptional cake.

Sounds better than it looks…

As soon as I press “Publish” on this post, though, I need to catch up on my research for the music book, which has fallen slightly behind due to the recording. Time and deadlines wait for no man (or woman) so I definitely need to catch up to the caravan today.

Both of these projects represent new areas for me, but things that I feel ready to do, having long believed that you never truly know what you might be capable of doing until you set yourself goals that you think are out of your reach. So, if you’ll excuse me, I need to dig into the nooks and crannies of music around the turn of the 1600s and see what gems I can dig out that might entrance our readers when they finally get the book into their hands…but we’re already talking about 2020!