We’re nearing the end of October, the clocks are going back an hour and once again I find myself trying to adjust to a new routine.
I always used to be an early riser. When I started working full time in my late teens I’d usually be waiting for the 7:00am train, wide awake and raring to go. Mind you, I suspect youth had a lot to do with that.
Fast forward 20-odd years to 2022 and I’ve gained a few decades; a smorgasbord of grey hairs; and a few new aches and pains. That’s all to be expected I guess –aging has its quirks, but what wasn’t part of the plan is that waking up has gradually become later and later.
For someone who spends his free time taking photos, darkness has its challenges, particularly in a rural area. It is properly dark at 4pm and if I start work around 9am, I’m not getting out of work until 5pm. If I start at 7:00, that’s a whole 30 minutes of sweet, sweet daylight.
Long story short, I’m trying to train my body to wake up when my alarm goes off and not two hours after. I seem to be getting the hang of the early starts, but I’m not so good at going to bed earlier. I’m going to pay for that, aren’t I…
I don’t want to alarm anyone, but these past few months I’ve been taking an interest in jazz. I’m not sure how I arrived at this point and I didn’t really see it coming, yet here we are. Retracing my steps a little, I might have mentioned in an earlier post that I’d developed an interest in home audio.
As it turns out, audio nerds are happy to talk about albums that are interesting from a production standpoint. One album that pops up in discussions time and time again is ‘Kind of Blue’ by Miles Davis. So, I fired up Tidal and had a listen on a decent pair of headphones.
As someone who listens to a lot of music that has singing/growling and often chunky guitars front and centre, it is very easy for the nuances to get lost in a maelstrom of other instruments fighting for attention. Tracks like ‘So What’ on Kind of Blue have a lot less going on, so it is much easier to focus on Davis’ trumpet, the bass and the drums. The way it has been mixed also means each instrument occupies a distinct place in the sound stage.
Jazz appears to be all about improvisation and an unspoken communication between musicians who are at the top of their game. I can’t say I have it all figured out yet, but there’s a lot to like about it. I’m currently going through the growing list of most-recommended albums on Tidal.
The back three
We’re into the final quarter of yet another perplexing year. The great many crises continue to multiply and metastasise with little hope in sight for better times to come.
War, accelerating climate change, dysfunctional markets, rising interest rates, extortionate energy costs and a UK Government that seems to have been inspired by Elysium, steered by shadowy organisations with opaque funding.
It would be easy to become despondent after so many years of this, but I don’t feel ready to give up on the future just yet.
Anyway, you came here for the photos. Here’s the highlights of the last three months.
Until next time…