New Album (week1 recordings)part 2

Well today was Marshs last chance in the studio. He had been told to be there for 11Am but as usual he was late, but this time it wasn’t Rocksey who was waiting for Marsh it was Senor Penguino ! ! ! ! . Penguino could be tolerant and forgiving but Marshs escapades this week had erased all forgiveness from Penguinos mind. Penguino was sat in the studio lights on in the recording booth and only one spotlight on the recording desk in the studio. He twirled a pencil in his fingers awaiting Marsh, muttering to himself “I knew this was a bad idea”

Finally 45 minutes late the door burst open and in fell Marsh, “you’ve been drinking again” Penguinos voice coming out of all the monitors in this studio “NO” was Marshs response…  Right then lets do take 1 “92 in the shade” you’re ready “yes” was the response. It wasn’t long before they were on take 18 Marsh was fumbling and missing beats left right and centre (strange as he can play the piano) Penguino was now shouting at Marsh like a drill sergeant major. To which Marsh was impervious, he thought things were going great and that they had completed 4 songs already.

Ten Minute break Penguino announced, he got out of his chair and left the studio. Marsh saw the door open and close and immediately opened the music bag he had brought in with him. Now sitting in the corner of the studio Marsh opened his first can of lager and a bottle of white wine, gulping from both one after another Marsh could feel the cool liquid settling his nerves, unfortunately Marsh isn’t a person who know when to stop and unfortunately Penguinos 10 minutes were actually 35. By the time Penguino returned to the studio Marsh had drank 3 bottles of wine 5 cans of lager and 1/4 bottle of gin.! !  ! ! And to anyone looking it seemed all the bones from Marshs body had been removed as he now resemble Mr Wobble.

Penguino found Marsh curled up behind the drum kit phone in hand calling home the line was connected but just the answerphone bleeps could be heard (Melody was still in the US “Thats it” Penguino shouted his words even managed to echo in the sound deadened room, and summoning help loaded Marsh into a car with his teeny tiny suitcase and passport and drive him to the airport. On the 3 hour drive to the airport  Penguino had managed to book a flight , load the app on Marshes phone and download the boarding card.

Penguino knew Marsh wouldn’t look so wrote the flight number on Marshes hand and arranged for someone to get him to the boarding gate and on the plane. By the time they had reached the airport Marsh had come round Penguino said “all recorded” Marsh smiled self congratulating himself  for a job well done. Marsh boarded the flight without even looking at the destination helped by the assistance Penguino organised (Penguino didn’t want Marsh missing the plane) and sat back in his chair and relaxed knowing soon he could endulge in his favourite Gin & Tonics.

Penguino was on the phone to Rocksey ” he’s gone and on a plane we got nothing complete he’d been on the booze again” Rocksey replied “ok ok you were correct” i’ll see you in 6 days when I get back from the States. SP was off to meet  a hero of his John5 in LA and hopefully to wow him with his guitar handiwork – Rocksey had also wanted to go on this trip but as Kitten was due at the villa any time now he felt he couldn’t just up and leave especially with the chaos that Marsh had left behind – Rocksey most definitely didn’t want Kitten to think he had been on the beer all week!!

Marshs flight touched down on a dull drizzly night and he trudged towards passport control, straight through and to the awaiting drivers, There was his name on the board and he dutifully followed the driver. Marsh didn’t pay any attention to where they were going until they pulled up and Marsh read the sign, his worst nightmare had come true he’d been booked into rehab. The car door opened and two male orderlys escorted Marsh into the centre and to his room. Marsh head in hands it had come to this as he reached into his travel bag and pulled out a 6 pack of lager sipping from the 1st can he wondered how much it would cost to bribe the orderly to keep him supplied……..

Reliving our youth

With Rocksey now reliving his wasted youth in Malaga with his 14 year old ( in spirit mostly) side kicks SP and Marsh  acting like they had been let loose on their first school trip, Melody, Suki and myself had been left to our own devices!! However, this hadn’t meant acting like a provisional Hen party running round town knocking back as many  fluorescent   pink shots as we could before closing time nor had we decided to be a bit up market and spend the day at Spa sipping Champagne, eyeing up the lifeguard no the three of us weren’t even together in person ( although there had been plenty of text messages backwards and forwards during the course of the afternoon). The reason for this , as guardians of 3 hyperactive flawed geniuses, some down time in the guise of complete solitude was needed before Suki and I jetted off to join the party next week . Melody was in Florida  to discuss her new book deal and close the deal on an apartment that had  been owned by Veronica Lake.

I had spent most of the weekend in the company of The Baron and Missy  which had been lovely but as all mums know waving a way their adult off-spring although tinged with sadness also allows you to enjoy the peace and quiet even more – compounded with the absence of Rocksey I was happy to make myself a cup of Bluebird Melon tea ( a gift from Missy which was most welcome) and find a book and a quiet spot in the garden to while away a few hours.

The thing about peace and quiet is that when you crave it you don’t get it and when you finally get it, well the silence is deafening ( you know Rocksey can be quite loud!). Having had 2 phone calls from him and a video and then further requests for vegan ice cream suppliers I decided that if I was going to get some peace and quiet I would have to turn the radio on.

So with an army of cushions, sun screen, sunglasses and a large G&T I slung everything in the hammock in the dappled shade of the middle patio and tuned in for my very favourite radio show –  The Sound of the ’70’s. This is a 2 hour show on a Sunday afternoon which plays….well you’ve guessed it ….music from the1970s. Of course, the large G&T the sway of the hammock and some of my favourite tunes and I dozed off.  Now sleeping in the sun is not a good thing, we’ve all done this, I see that Marsh did it this afternoon on the beach, Suki’s done it, Rocksey says he hasn’t but he fell asleep in the toilets at a Damned concert in 1979 ( and Boy THAT was loud) so I will safely assume he has also fallen asleep in the sun. SP also says he wouldn’t do anything that stupid but he let Rocksey video him twerking in a pair of speedos last summer and so I think that was probably more stupid than falling asleep in the sun…..Anyway I digress, slumbering in the sweltering heat of a June afternoon listening to Boz Skaggs, I was transported back to the summer of 1976 when I was 13. The Summer where the UK sweltered for 6 weeks ( yes I know)  and a plague of ladybirds ate everything in sight. As an awkward  tall skinny teenager I read the likes of teen magazines where Farah Fawcett Majors shone down from every newsstand with her lions mane of hair and sparkling white teeth and the girls from Abba sashayed across the TV every Saturday night. My friends older sisters were going to the Disco with their Afro hair and FFM flicks, platforms and maxi dresses smoking those pink cocktail cigarettes and meeting boys called Steve and Darren who drive ford cortinas and could dance like Les Gray. Oh me and my friends so wanted this glamorous lifestyle and , according to my friend Alison, the way to do this was to ‘GET A TAN’. Now getting a tan was easier said than done in the land locked town where we lived, 200 miles from the nearest beach with its cooling sea breezes. GETTING A TAN meant, that you had to do some pretty hardcore sunbathing in the back garden.Alison’s sister had a tanning mat which looked like a massive sheet of Bacofoil. The idea was we covered ourselves in olive oil ( bought in A teeny bottle from the pharmacy ) and then laid on the Bacofoil mat for 4 hours between the hours of 11-3 without moving . The Beauty page in Jackie said we should squeeze fresh lemons into our hair for natural highlights. –  well as no shop in the 70’s sold lemons we made do with a bottle of PLJ. The Bacofoil mat only  ever succeeded in Alison who was ginger, getting 3rd degree burns and her mother throwing the mat on her dads bonfire where the olive oil residue made it shoot out of the brazier like a flaming rocket setting fire to next doors washing; and for me? Well I would love to say my naturally dark brown hair turned as blonde as the blonde singer in Abba and attracted Steve or Darren’s younger brother but the PLJ made it a sticky mess which only attracted wasps, the Bacofoil just reflected off my blue tinged Persil white skin and did nothing except make me hot, sweaty and bad tempered.Alison and I fell out that summer and I spent the remaining school holidays lying in a sheet attached to the two apple trees in my granddads garden listening to Bos Scaggs and counting ladybirds. 

I woke with a start almost falling out of the hammock, Melody was on the phone from Florida telling me she had secured Veronica Lakes old apartment and the book deal had made her several millions dollars in sales. Now she was celebrating at her gay ex porn star friends villa in the hills where there were several hot body guards and a tray of fluorescent pink shots had just been handed to her. 

A ladybird landed on my knee,  Blondies Denis Denis came on the Radio and I was transported back to 1979 and that fateful meeting with Rocksey…… know the power of music is surely a great thing ! 

working title

Rocksey is making a video.  Or in Rockseys eyes he is following Rob Zombie down the rocky road of movie making. Well I have my suspicions that Mr Zombie actually had a film crew to make his movies for him, Rockseys film crew is me and him  and so far he has managed to edit 22 seconds of film for his video.

Winding back a few weeks, after our day out with Max Millionaire Rocksey announced the following day that he was going to take a break from song writing and concentrate on movie making. Inspired by Max Millionaire and his short film debut, Rocksey decided that he was going to make a video of one of the bands songs – for his own pleasure and experience of course, but it may even air on You Tube ( or dare I say it – as a trailer to Maxes film!!).

Rocksey set up the Perpetual Students drawing board in the office and squirrelled himself away with some felt tip pens to write a story board. Much scribbling was done along with much wandering around the garden with a note pad and a distant look in his eye, followed by the chickens in a weird Pied Piper sort of way. Then there was silence, writers block he said as he sat with his guitar playing chords, the drawing board abandoned for the time being.

When I arrived home one afternoon, Rocksey was spinning round the kitchen in a state of excitement. Warily I wondered whether Mr Lucky and SP had been round earlier in the day but there were no tell tale bottle of JD on the kitchen counter and Rocksey appeared to be sober. Guess who I spoke to today, he yelled picking me up and whirling me around in his arms. ‘George and Patty’. I extracted myself from his arms, I didn’t recognise the names of the people he was talking about. I gave him a quizzical look  – you know from ‘Frankenhooker’ he spun around again – they want to use my video for their promotion work at a Horror Convention they are hosting at Halloween. Halloween when…I say…this year? Do they know you haven’t even started this video?

Transpired they didn’t and yes Halloween this year. Hence Rocksey and I then spend the next few days scouting out scary places to start filming and then armed with my camera we set out to make a 2.45 minute film based on both Rockseys song  and the actual 1990’s film of the same name –Frankenhooker.

Now for those of you who may not know the story of this cult classic,  the story is loosely based on Mary Shelley’s ‘Frankenstein’. After his attractive fiancée is cut into pieces in a freak accident involving a lawnmower, aspiring mad scientist Jeffrey Franken is determined to put her back together again. He sets about reassembling his girlfriend using parts from a variety of New York prostitutes. However, his bizarre plan goes awry when his reanimated girlfriend no longer wants just him, but for money will take on anybody, and afterwards try to kill them.

Max Millionaire had designed the front cover of the same titled album for the band and George and Patty had found this somewhere in new York and had contacted Rocksey several months ago. They had sold a few copies of the album and posters at other horror conventions they had been involved in and then in an idle chit chat on Messenger Rocksey ‘let slip ‘ that he was making a video of the song. He didn’t let on to George that the video was still in his head but Rocksey is good at convincing people that his ideas are actually reality –or near enough!

So we have around 5 weeks to make this video which includes everything on Rockseys storey board and whatever else is in his head. Finding spooky places in our town did not prove difficult, of particular interest to Rocksey was a ruined barn close to where we live and earmarked for demolition by housing developers, ever increasingly surrounding the village with new housing estates.  The ruined barn can now only be reached by squeezing through a fence laced with barb wire and then negotiating the field beyond made more precarious by the deep ruts made by diggers and other heavy machinery used by the builders. Last weekend we decided that we had to make our move for scenes in the barn before it was torn down. As there is no where close to park the car Rocksey had to walk down the main street of the village donned in stage wear which , if it had been the middle of the afternoon when the village fete was in full swing may have got us some odd glances. However, at 10pm on a rainy Thursday night there was no one around which made us less conspicuous but heightened the heebie jeebies I got when crossing the filed with the barn looming in front of use, a full moon peeking out from behind scurrying clouds in a break between rain showers.

Rocksey pushed the door open and shone his torch around, rousing pigeons nesting in the rafters that gave us both a shock as they whirled around above us. Thank god its not bats, I stage whispered to Rocksey even though we were in the middle of nowhere and unlikely to be disturbed. Rocksey set up the lights and lazer curtain which he wanted ( the lazer curtain reminds me of those things they use for trapping ghosts on dodgey channel 5 programmes) leaving me in another part of the barn with my camera and a torch  – its pitch black , I’m scared stiff wanting to get this part of the video done and out as quickly as possible. I’m imaging I can hear all sorts of things although common sense tells me there is nothing inside or outside of the barn apart form a few pigeons and nothing that is going to cause us any harm.

We film several scenarios, Rocksey coming in and out of the shadows, disappearing behind doors and wandering around in the gloom and rain miming the words to the song whilst I scurry around after him one eye on him and one eye actually expecting frankenhooker to appear lurching from behind the barn door! Luckily nothing sinister happens and we are soon on our way back home.

A few days later we are filming in a subway and on a motorway bridge  and the next day in our local museum ( which crazily has an indoor street scene from the Victorian times complete with pub and cells).  We watch, and re-watch the original film on You Tube and find ourselves enjoying the cheesiness of it. Rocksey emails updates to George and Patty every night and then hides himself away to edit bits and pieces.

Suky and SP pop round for a visit, wondering why we have not been seen out and about for some time now. The filming is pretty much in the bag, Rocksey says to them both and  – he proudly announces  –  he has created 22 seconds of his 2.45 minute film.

I roll my eyes, this has taken 8 days , if we go on like this we won’t be ready for Christmas let alone Halloween I say to him. Don’t expect to see you guys anytime soon then -SP shakes his head when they leave, Rocksey hopping up and down on one foot desperate to get back to the editing suite.

This morning I drive past the site of the ruined barn, a pile of bricks lay in the middle of the field where it used to stand. I hope Rockseys video doesn’t reach the same fate.

However I am sure Mr Zombie will be pleased that Rocksey won’t be in the market for making full screen horror films any time soon!

The video will be available sometime soon on You Tube – I will post a link when Rocksey finally comes out of the office!





Mum this is Dave…….part 1

Missy is my daughter from my previous marriage to The Northerner. Rocksey loves Missy as Missy reminds him of me when I was ( a lot) younger. Rocksey and I first met when I was 16 and he was 18 but lost touch and were worlds apart for many many years…..but thats for another day.

Missy is 23 and lives in Amsterdam. She works as an Air Hostess out of Schiphol Airport. She used to live with her DJ Boyfriend but he has fled the scene ( in more ways than one she says) and I understand he now lives in a hippy-drop out commune similar to Christiana in Copenhagen. I have a feeling that The Baron would like to be there with him – it will probably only be a matter of time.In the meantime, The Baron & Dreads are in Spain with us.

A couple of months ago whilst we were having our extended month long vacation in Southern Spain Missy calls out of the blue with some news. Missy always drops bombshells of ‘news’ when either she or me are out of the country -this way she feels I can get over whatever she has to say, drink some foreign sounding alcohol to calm me down and then when we meet again , the ‘news’ has sort of settled down and settled in to my psyche and is not so disconcerting/controversial any more.

Muummm, she says, have you had any wine today? Why do’t you pour yourself a glass, it must be lunchtime in Spain – she starts the conversation.
I sweep the half full bottle off the table and take it and my mobile away from our noisy terrace ( the band are all here for a few days -its a bit chaotic) and into our bedroom. Shutting the door into semi darkness, I pour a large glug into a tumbler and take a sip.

OK – I say – I’m ready, whats happened?

Well, Missy says and I can hear her taking a long drag on a cigarette – I’ve met someone-

Oh – I say. at this point I am not too worried. Missy is a pretty young woman , never short of admirers – meeting someone is par for the course.

There is a pause – its …well…she’s a woman, well, not exactly a woman but …..not a man either…..its complicated – the words rush out, I take a larger swig of wine, well a gulp actually and make a sort of encouraging noise.

Missy, it transpires, hooked up with a friend of the DJ who had some friends over to Amsterdam for the weekend. Flossie was in the group of friends and Missy – always attracted to pretty young men – immediately noticed this slighty feminine boy and started the conversation going. During the course of the evening, Flossie is not the slightly feminine boy she appears to be but actually a rather butch lesbian – or a boy trapped in a girls body as Missy patiently explains to her mother who, sitting on a bed in a darkened room clutching a bathroom tumbler of wine, tries very very hard to actually grasp the situation.

Anyway , Missy finishes off the conversation as if she was just making small talk about the weather -we are getting on a flight to Malaga in about 2 hours so you can meet her this evening – and hangs up.

Rocksey appears like magic at the bedroom door ….almost ( but not quite) as if he had been listening, The Baron & Dreads not too far behind. ‘JD? ‘ he innocently asks holding up the bottle.