Clearly things must be getting back to some kind of new new normal, because I failed to write a blog post yesterday and actually felt guilty about it, and also because (the news you have all been waiting for…) RetroChic are dusting off their dancing boots and getting back together for rehearsal this evening. To be fair, like all those bands who have gone quiet at various points, we never went away – the phone just stopped ringing for a bit.

We were quite busy at the beginning of the year, but then we had a few cancellations over the summer and it has taken a while for the momentum to pick back up, but that is what is happening, so we are reconvening this evening to swap stories of brushes with Covid, remind ourselves of how the songs we know are supposed to go, and slot a couple of new ones into the repertoire. Thus it transpired that this morning, in a typical snapshot of the modern composer’s life, I found myself huddled over the laptop transcribing some keyboard parts for Lizzo’s About Damn Time. As you do.

Meanwhile I have continued to chip away on other things, including a new carol for Parliament Choir and a couple of other pieces for some opportunities I have seen around and about, competitions mainly. I always view these as chances to try out some ideas, but approach them as commissions, so, as with commissioned pieces, the sooner I start the better they are likely to be. It will make for a busy few months but will keep me at the composing desk, and as long as I continue to be open to learning from everything I do, good and, especially, bad, then it all feels like progress.

Looking forward to the weekend, we have the performance of the St. Mary Abbots Jubilate coming up on Sunday morning, after which I think my focus needs to turn to getting some Christmas repertoire out there, so be prepared for some self-aggrandising links to appear from time to time even if, as I was reliably informed, you cannot open them on your phone. Apparently this is a WordPress “style issue”, so it is good to know that online blogging platforms have the same problems as composers, ho ho.

If ever a link does fail to work, though, then please drop me a line, as I am always happy to pass on my scores some other way, and can even point you to places that will print up very fine copies indeed. Slowly and surely, in the background, I am going to continue editing those pieces and some others and bring my website more or less up to date. I know that a website is borderline archaic in today’s done-in-a-second world, but I view at as that nagging advertising billboard that you pass regularly, and it is worth keeping. As with all these things, it is the small and consistent efforts that will end up making the difference.