I can't believe it! Christmas just finished and yet I suddenly realised that there's only a couple of weeks till my birthday. Which of course calls for (yet-another) list.
This year's focus is a hard-edged one - no fluffy distractions for Minim this year - I'm all about the composing and building up my business to get it to a point where I can support myself doing stuff I enjoy and over which I have some control, rather than working for other people to other people's timetables (9am starts are banned when they don't involve just getting up and starting work in your pyjamas).
Usual disclaimer: If you're not expecting to see this, don't worry - I'm not hinting for presents, this is solely for the convenience of people who were going to get me something anyway but who don't know what I'd like. This is what I'd like :-)
Starting with a bang:
Rode M3 microphone. I think this one looks a good one - it's not too pricey, is getting good reviews and is apparently a good all-round mic. The purpose of this is because my tiny Sony stereo mic, while it produces pretty good sound, is unusable with Pro Tools without hacking it through the MiniDisc recorder on mute which involves lots of cables and confusion and generally doing things three times over to get the sound into the programme. Recording my songs would be much easier with a proper mic I could just plug straight into the Mbox, and apparently it's also good for field recording. Thanks, Mutti!
Logic Studio. This is ludicrously expensive. Which is why I haven't invested in it before now. The price on Amazon fluctuates up and down around the £300 mark, so if you're keen for this one (ha! it's alright. I know when I'm dreaming), you might want to watch it for a few days? Seems to be at a high point at the moment (£365) The price made a sudden dip just before my birthday, so I snagged it as it was too good a bargain to waste and I was pretty sure (I checked with Djeli too) that nobody was buying it for me. And SO glad I did!
Writing Poems by Peter Sansom. If I'm to write the libretto for my opera, I have to face the fact that at some point I will need to write real live actual poetry. I have a book by Ted Hughes, but it's not really grabbing me. This one looks better and looks like it focuses on a certain amount of analysis too. If you find anything else that looks like it might help me limp my way to an interesting libretto, that would be grand. Not interested in learning how to write stuff that rhymes though - too difficult to set to music. It boxes everything in. Thanks, Buffygirl!
Minimal Piano Collection Vol X1-XX. This sounds like fun :-)
Vienna Symphonic Library
Well, one can dream! If you win the lottery, though, even a lowly Special Edition package would be brilliant :-)
It's available on the 25th of March. Whee! This is cloud-cuckoo-land stuff. It's on here because I want it, but unless you win lotto I will probably be aghast if you buy it for me. Just sayin'. If you DO happen to win lotto, I'll take the 32GB 3G version please :-) With our iPad 1 taking off to Scotland without me for 3 weeks and the deep unliklihood of EuroMillions wins before The Day, I have reserved one for pickup on the 30th. There always needs to be a birthday present for oneself, yes?
Marc Johns: Fuck Art, Let's Be Hedge Fund Managers print
I LOVE this post-it-note artwork. So much that I actually wrote to him and asked him to make it a print. And today he wrote back and told me that, lo, there it is in the store.
Chuck Season 2
Cos Season 1 just isn't enough Chuck. Thanks, Buffygirl!
Structural Functions in Music by Wallace Berry
An amazing book. Very dense and difficult to read, but so much to be learnt from it. But in order to wade my way through it, I need to own it. Found it first in Ealing library (which, knowing Ealing Library, means it will never be found there again if I go in looking for it) and even 3 renewals weren't enough to get through a single chapter. Nobody got this for me, and there was a secondhand one on Amazon for something like £2, so it's now off the list :-)
Barnbrook Bible: The Graphic Design of Jonathan Barnbrook
Amazing, amazing work. Really inspiring
Twyla Tharp: The Collaborative Habit
Her other book, The Creative Habit, has been a very important one for me and this one on creative collaboration looks really interesting and useful.
The Shape of Content by Ben Shahn
This one was recommended by @pkpiano - I've read three of his previous recommendations (Art & Fear, The War of Art and Twyla Tharp's The Creative Habit) all of which have been fantastic and have shot straight to the top of my best-creativity-books-ever list, so I'm very interested to see what this one's like too.
Nigel Slater's Tender, Vol. 2
This is the one about fruit - looks fantastic! Awww, thanks, Djelibeybi!
Nico Muhly's Mothertongue & I Drink The Air Before Me
Yeah, Mothertongue has been on the list for about 3 4 years now and everyone's studiously ignored it. Please don't ignore it. I still want it! Again, if you get the CD + download option direct from Bedroom Community, these come with a bonus track (FLAC format please).
Morton Feldman: Rothko Chapel/Why Patterns?
Started listening to Feldman's work before Christmas, but it's really distracting on Spotify, even with a Premium subscription - really needs to be a CD, I feel
I never saw enough of this when it was on TV and always wanted to except that Channel 7 kept moving its timeslot. Now the whole thing is available in one box. And on sale :-) If you don't know it, it's very cool, very quirky. And it has Jason Bateman. Again, Amazon had a sudden massive discount on this (£19.95 down from £50) so I snapped it up (several months after the birthday though - I'm just keeping the list tidy)
A fantastic board game for two players or more - used to play this at lunchtimes at LBi and it's awesome.
Had my eye on this for a while but keep putting off buying it, largely because until the bookcase situation was sorted out in the study, but it would be very helpful - easy access to my files, plus allow me to put my ankle up (or just stretch the legs - not just for the injured period!) while I'm sitting in my chair. Note that it may be cheaper in-store than online. Not sure if there are colour options - if so, black to match the chair would be nice, or just the neutral colour that's online would be fine.
Plus of course, the ever-welcome Amazon vouchers. I will not think you are cheap or lazy, I will just be delighted.
And a new addition:
This is a brush-stylus for the iPadPod and it actually seems to behave like a real brush! Sounds like it's a heap of fun to use. They're on back-order now because they've received so many rave reviews (the video on the site doesn't look like much, but read the reviews in the news section and have a look at the review & video at iPadCreative.com ) but I don't mind waiting :-)
NMC Digital Subscription
NMC are a fantastic label who release all sorts of groovy stuff - Howard Skempton, John White, etc. Lots of fabulous new music, mostly British. They're now doing a digital subscription model where for £80 they send you every release for the whole year (usually about 12 CDs) in digital format.