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Blog: The Language Of Music

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I stomped manfully across town to Old Street last night, there to take part in a rehearsal for the Pop Art Allstars, with whom i shall be ROCKING OUT at the Bloomsbury Bowling Lanes tomorrow. I've been invited along every time I've been BOOKED to sing with them, but this was the first time I'd been able to make it, so i was quite EXCITED.

Also a bit nervous, especially when I got to the street where the studio was meant to be and realised I hadn't brought the street number with me. Luckily I discovered Metal Tom asking a Back of a Warehouse Smoker if HE knew where the studio was, and together we retraced our steps to a door from which MUSICIANS were emerging, and realised we'd found it.

Soon we were upstairs and in the studio - it's AGES since I was last in a rehearsal studio, but I was very pleased to find that THEY HAVEN'T CHANGED THE SMELL. Aaah, the heady aroma of sweat, beer, sweat, arguments and sweat! Everyone was in full swing doing a run through of "All Right" by Supergrass, which sounded MARVELLOUS. They then swapped instruments and tuned up, during which it was revealed that TUNING HAS CHANGED! Apparently SOMEONE decided to change concert pitch from 39 Hertz to 40 Hertz... or something like that, i didn't really understand, but still: WHAT? Who did this? How was it decided? Why did The World Of ROCK not get a memo about it? It's a disgrace! Possibly.

Next up was "Suffragette City" and, as they worked it out, I realised that i UNDERSTOOD what was going on. I could HEAR the parts where the drums were unsure what was coming, i could SEE which bits someone had REALLY practiced and was a bit nervous of, or which SOLO they'd known for years, and could FEEL the way everyone was relying on each other, leaning in together SONICALLY. It was amazing! For fifteen years or so I've only really played with The Validators so have just got USED to this sort of thing as What We Do, but being suddenly with OTHER people doing the same thing, speaking the same LANGUAGE, it was revelatory. Also, GRATE!

Also also: it's always nice to see someone else, Dom in this case, being BOSSY and telling everyone else what they should be doing, which bits to do again and generally being in CHARGE. I always feel a bit (not a lot, but a bit) GUILTY when it's me doing that, so it's good to know it is THE NORM.

And then it was MY turn to sing - i was a bit worried about the song I'd asked for as it is a bit COMPLEX but everyone seemed to know it REALLY well and, indeed, SANG ALONG with most of it. I was glad of this because it's a bit HIGH for me to sing (hopefully tomorrow BEER will aid me) but it sounded GRATE. I'll not reveal WHAT it was for now, in case anyone comes tomorrow and can be AMAZED by it - suffice to say, some of us were playing the original version and some the Guns N Roses, and it all worked together amazingly welll - SUCH is the POWER of The Language Of Music!

posted 29/1/2011 by MJ Hibbett

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