It feels as though I have been waiting to script this entry to my blog for a very long time. It isn’t as though nothing has been happening during the seemingly endless, chill, wet winter. Scott McLaughlin has been steadily progressing his sleeve and programme notes and emailing me with queries and updates. Towards the beginning of the month I received a “nearly ready” draft which was almost immediately followed by a final draft. Yes!
Scott’s task has been demanding and complex. My Non-Prescriptive techniques are not widely known and need to be clearly and convincingly explained in order that my music can be listened to with a greater degree of understanding. That is why Scott’s input is so necessary and crucial. I have always believed that he would deliver something quite exceptional and he has. The finished text is masterful and scholarly, his insight to my ideas pellucid and profound. He commences with a wonderful, apt, extended metaphor and his constant interpositions of quotations always lend additional layers of insight. The level and delivery of prose is delightful and, I am certain, will instantly attract and maintain the interest of the reader.
After many readings and only a few minor adjustments the mouse clicked and the draft sped across the Atlantic and, as I anticipated, was enthusiastically welcomed by Stephen Sutton. The remarkable, indefatigable Stephen Sutton. The thought has occurred to me that if the UK was ever to experience the forecasted energy deficit then there is a solution which does not involve nuclear power, fracking or wind turbines. No. Just connect Stephen Sutton to the national power grid.
Within three days this human, organic fission reactor had produced the CD booklet, a complex coalescence of artwork, design, layout planning and all the necessary technical details involved in the production of a disc. An accomplishment all the more remarkable as, at the same time, he was compiling a file on the recently deceased Antony Hopkins for the BBC.
The spectral, other worldly fractal image by Peter Vodden which appears on the front of the cover is echoed on every page and on each page appears a photograph taken during the recording sessions by AVI who, whilst not recording, managed to shoot stealth photos of the goings-on. They convey a most intimate visual narrative of the recording sessions. There are, amongst the many, two that I personally cherish. The first is of a beaming, radiant Mary-yes, despite all the stress and pressures of making a recording-this was just so. The second, an image of Mary seated at the piano in a state of peaceful repose, hands still, after a most successful take.
Now another long period of expectancy awaits me.The CD, now advertised on the Divine Art website together with a short extract of the opening movement of Piano Sonata No. 7, will be released in October. Not only a very long winter but a very long summer. At least now the days are longer and the Manchester rain is warmer. Please visit my blog occasionally for if there is any news I will inform you.
Meanwhile, work on another C.D, is in progress . . .