Category Archives: history

Mostly a review of the year to date

I think a bit of  a summing up will be helpful for me at this point.  At the start of 2020 I had got to a point where I was just about ready to start trying to reconstruct my life and move forward again. My confidence was rather lacking but I managed to pull my self together sufficiently to front a couple of gigs and at that point in February I felt like I was on the mend again and could start getting out into the world again. I still had the anxiety and arthritis problems but they were not so bad at that point. Then of course at the end of February the lockdown kicked in and the plans I had to link up with a few people were stymied. For the first few weeks I was frustrated but OK. But after my self esteem started dropping and I started to feel pretty useless about myself in often depressed and then on top of that started to have anxiety attacks. Often just triggered by a random thought or the prospect of going somewhere. So I have got more and more isolated as time has gone on and my confidence is pretty much at zero in some regards. I have never had to ability to be an easy mixer or make new friends easily. I am not antisocial but I am awkward and small talk is difficult for me so the normal avenues to making new friends and acquaintances are difficult for me to follow.
As the year has progressed I have found it more difficult to keep things together. 

I do have a routine for most days which is  to practice sight reading and spend a bit of time working up musical themes for songs and other works. I write stuff down on manuscript in a condensed form to keep the germ of the ideas. If I am working on a recording (which is most weeks) I put down parts and premix stuff. Part of the day may also be spent on a remote rehearsal/ collaboration session. In between that there are various exercises I need to do to stop myself from ceasing up. This week I have also managed to get out once a day which is helping with the depressive side of things a little. 

When I moved out of London I had hoped to get more involved with collaborative side of recording as I now have the space to work with 2 or 3 people live, and had Vicky and the Delta Ladies continued that potentially would have made for some very interesting sonic interludes along the way.  Sadly the fates intervened and it was not to be. I really had hoped to try and hook up with some local players  and see what might be done but that did not go to well either. 

If we ever get out of this Covid-19 centric universe again it will be rather like starting from zero in many ways. I cannot imagine a normal world where one can lean on a bar listening at a folk club or music pub again. Just being able to nip out and catch a gig again would be great but it is  almost impossible to do anything casually like that now. I feel that we are in for up to another 2 years, before there is any chance of real normality. Maybe by next year this time there will be a light dawning. I really dont know, but thats how its looking at the moment on the basis of everything I see in from the medical and research community.

I note that many people seem to believe we dont have a problem or that Covid is not real or anywhere near as dangerous as it actually is. That is really not helping.   

I am not on my own and its much worse for those that live alone of course, and I dont have a job to loose so I should l be able to just about roll along and keep the wolf from the door but that will not be an option for many others, and I do worry how people will survive let alone thrive.  As I write this I am  listening to “The New Deal – A Story For Our Times” on Radio 4.   A bleak time but there was hope and things did eventually get back to normal in some respects. In contrast to the current covid threat where it seems that “Normal” is  nowhere to be seen or hidden under a rock somewhere and realistically there does not seem to be much hope of sunny uplands being reached anytime soon.  


The last song this month is Golden Ticket

I finished a song a day or so ago. I slightly messed up the final transfer of the mix so I had to redo it. Its  fairly conventional sounding tune for a change. Straightforward one might say in many ways.  As I type this we have gone from a heatwave to conditions more like the beginning of November in the space of a week or so. So I am sulking as I cant go out to play mostly due to the dread C19 virus messing things up bigtime. I dont expect much sympathy as you lot can’t really keep calm and carry on either can you? 

So here is the song first in case you dont want to read all the whinging first.

I am glad we got that bit over first. So back to the whinging then.  Some people are relentlessly upbeat all the time.How do they do it and what are they on?  The walls continue to close in on me I am afraid. I have been trying to open the doors but the wind is blowing them firmly shut again. The damp is making my bones complain again.

I cannot say I have ever felt as isolated and out of touch at anytime in my life so far as I have during the weeks since March 23rd this year when lockdown restrictions were formally introduced in the United Kingdom. Everything is strange and surreal. Even the most mundane activities as we go to the shop masked like cowboys with bandanas as we buy a hand of bananas. The novelty has worn off now though.
Will we ever get back to normal? I am not convinced its going to happen anytime soon. One year, two years, longer perhaps. It’s hard to imagine really. So far we have had restrictions for 159 days.  And we are still here.

if only I still had something to say.

“Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day.”
― A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh

“He that can have patience can have what he will.”
― Benjamin Franklin

“Why is patience so important?”
“Because it makes us pay attention.”
― Paulo Coelho


Music and Recordings from 2020

Some of my latest recordings from this year are listed below. Click and enjoy
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RSS Diana Stones Music


I may have finally run out of anything worthwhile to say

Since I have moved out of London I feel as if I am almost in a different country. It’s very quiet at night and everything closes early. There’s not much traffic most of the time and it feels a little like there is tumbleweed blowing down the street.

Wow, it’s different.  At first I was really enjoying the peace and tranquility, but its wearing off a little now. Also time seems to manage to run both faster and more slowly in certain respects. I have been working on music, and also there is still quite a bit of domestic stuff to do. I keep finding papers that should have been thrown out years back.  Its really difficult to get rid of certain “might come in useful” items too.  By a supreme effort I did let go of a few things today, but it took some doing.

The slightly dreamlike state of everything is perhaps my personal projection rather than anything inherent in this place I guess.

I haven’t  bonded with the locals exactly yet. Met one or two and they seem OK. Not that I was really expecting to to be honest.  Everyone seems friendly enough on the whole but there is something missing that is yet to be found.  Also there are spiders. Large and small and many and various. Everywhere.  And Sunday joggers plus hoards of cyclists. the lycra clad legion reins supreme here without a doubt.
I have not detected too much in the way of artistic endeavor yet though I am sure it must exist. I did see some works for sale by local artist though I confess.

Time will tell.