Love and Lazors

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Hi all, I usually put my blog up on Sunday but i must confess to having met a lovely lady online and have been spending hours and hours every night chatting away on Skype with the webcam giving us a view into each others lives. I love Skype. It’s no different to windows messenger except that if your friend in another country has a Mac type of ‘puter then apart from calling them “flash” you soon realise that they cannot get a recent enough version of messenger to incorporate video. Nice one Microsoft (sarcastic thumbs up with cheesy grin), enter Skype. You can even leave a comment on the call quality if you really want to but I never do as most of the responsibility lies with the quality of the phone line owners themselves and how much nice clean fibre optic cable you are talking through. Also if like me you fancy who you are talking to, you can take their picture at any time and save it for when you can’t see them. Of course it saves a fortune on phone calls as it’s all free. A four hour call to Germany would cost me about a hundred quid on my mobile so it’s quite a saving really.

Enough promoting other companies services!

I have by sheer accident discovered how to make a text file of my entire music catalogue to date and have of course immediately put it up on the site. You can get to it via the link page or just go to any of the main pages where the word “catalogue” is highlighted. I’ll try and make the database easier to search in the future but for now just scroll down and find each artist or band or lame excuse for an act in alphabetical order, much like you would in a karaoke menu.

I did my second ever Bat Mitzva on Saturday night and I’m still not totally familiar with how they are supposed to work as this one was “non traditional”. The party was upstairs at the Brunswick in Hove and i would like you to imagine if you will: Having a large heavy duty show to get out of the back of a van, up a driveway with out being able to reverse up it, into a back door, up a double flight of stairs, round a corner, down a short corridor and into a large bedroom. Even though I hired a roady in the shape of a teenage girl who was looking to earn some cash for college, I have still never sweated so much in many many gigs!
Alas, Lovely and helpful as the friend was, she unfortunately tripped over the wire to my cooling fan and knocked it to the floor, ending it’s current working life in a moment. The time for this to happen is not at a time when you are so in need of a fresh breeze!
I had to commandeer the services of my Hard drive cooling fan for the night but as my hard drive then became hot enough to fry eggs on, I had to share it with the hard drive. I must have looked strange with my head pointing up under the console half the night.
the most memorable morsel of the night was the lady who booked the party commenting on how great my lazors looked, throwing shapes as they do when I turn them on – usually to the more electro sounding tracks. only memorable because in about 4 months of using them, nobody else has said a word. I mean last week I was in a big white hall with an atrium and had them pointing up at it in the dark. It was something akin to a pink floyd concert (but more up to date) so you’d have thought some one would have said SOMETHING?
Oh well, even though her husband used to “do them for all the raves in the 90’s” at least my day had sort of come…

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Video and Copper

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Well as I type this, I’ve almost finished building this site. I had a total nightmare yesterday trying to upload a three and a half minute video clip to You tube. It was entirely down to my lousy village broadband which runs at…get this 54k. That’s 2k less than the last incarnation of dial up modems! My god, I like living in Barnham but BT really need to get their shit together! If you think the word “shit” is bad then you shouldn’t be anywhere near me when I boot up this ‘puter. We are so far behind the rest of Europe on this with our ancient neolithic copper wire system. I look at Fred Flintstone with his stone phone and get a little jealous..I guess this might be because we were among the first with telephones? I don’t know but I think we’re due for an update Mr Marshall and your coy looking bird.
Here endeth todays blog.

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Open All Hours

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It’s been another interesting week. As I type this I feel like Ronnie Barker at the end of an episode of “Open all hours” hence the title.
Yesterday was a mammoth day in all aspects.
I had a gig through an agency and it said the set up time was 11am. This is fine normally for most gigs for most Deejays as they don’t tend to stray far from home and go to said place in between setting up the show and actually coming on at night, some even programming the background music to come on before they get there in the evening. Ian, I so admire your confidence in technology..I on the other hand, cover the entire South of England so I can’t just pop back from Salisbury to jolly old Barnham for some dinner and TV. I meant to ask the bride if I needed to be there at 11am as I knew she was not getting back to the venue until 3:45pm but forgot and called her the day before to ask her this very thing. Alas, she was at a friends house for the day before and for some reason, she may still not have received the mobile answer phone message that I left her. Have you ever had that thing where the message turns up days later? I know I have. Anyway I had another brilliant gig as you will see when I put the video blog up and even got given a bottle of wine as a thank you (for being here all this time and staying awake?) from the Bride and Groom who were a wonderful couple and had many friends who had helped out with the costumes etc. which shows that I’m not just saying they were wonderful! On the way home though, I suddenly realised I should have brought some matches to prop open my eyelids as I couldn’t drive anywhere without really wanting to close them. I’ve been a temp truck driver for years so I know all about odd hours and “sleep driving” but this was severe! I’ve never been this tired before. Never mind, I’m still here to tell the tale.

Being in business it’s really important to have your phone on and be available not to miss that call. Early this week I changed my mobile contract to try and save on the 3million “free” minutes I was paying for and not using. No problem. “Do you want a free upgrade” they said. “No Thanks” I said. After all, I have my Ideal phone already. It’s a razor v8 Motorola. Slim, second generation so not too many design glitches although the first one (v3i – Are they meant to sound like cars?) was ok. Fit’s in my pocket without looking like I’m over excited. What more could the man about village of today wish for? After all Who uses WAP and Facebook on the move anyway? I have enough trouble keeping up with it at home not to mention all the generated email!. Anyway, I digress. I didn’t go for the free upgrade for the afore mentioned reasons but also I am becoming more and more aware of the shear number of mobile phones on poor hapless planet earth by the year and I don’t at this time need to add to the pile. Now, that being said, also early this week the battery decided to die on me.
Ok I thought, Lets get a new one from Orange. After navigating my way into the not-often visited site, I eventually discovered that you could still after significant web site potholing find through many sub-drop-down menus; a genuine V8 battery. Yey! Joy too soon though. Unfortunately, Even though my credit card, visa debit card and address are all genuine, plus the annoying add on bit for my bank to add extra security complications, alas, “My details were not the same as the ones on record at the start of the transaction”. Oh yes they were. Even on the third attempt I was still getting the same stupid message. My award for the hardest site to buy something off of this week goes to Orange.co.uk. It doesn’t end there though.
I had decided before going to the Orange site that I wouldn’t get another useless generic battery from Ebay like last time but now what else could I do? I went on to Ebay and found a supplier of GENUINE Motorola Batteries. Brilliant! Once again, Much cheaper than Orange. The upshot? It’s Sunday now and I’m still waiting for the bloody thing to arrive. I’ve “emailed a question to the supplier” but I’m guessing he’s on holiday and conveniently not told anyone on the site. Don’t you just hate that? I’ll tell you this, If I go on holiday, I”ll take my phone and diary with me and if it’s Australia where the time difference is unbearable, I’ll tell you on the front page!
In Short, You’ll never get the shoddy treatment I’ve had this week! Period.
Here endeth todays moan, sorry blog.

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Old Pc? You’ll love this.

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Hi all again. Well video number 3 is finally up and if you only knew what I had to do to get it to y’all.
I’d much rather have a trouble free life than some of the Victor Meldrew stuff that’s happened to me lately. Yesterday I upgraded my video editing software, as I liked the look of the upgrade and since it’s become a bit of a hobby in recent years I thought, what the hell, let’s go for that swish looking improvement with it’s nice dark grey interface. I’m a sucker for anything that’s not too “glarey” and blinding.. why do you think I love being a DJ so much? It’s not because I’m a vampire you know. I painted the roof lining of my VW golf in vinyl flavoured charcoal long before the the car companies did – All apart from Mercedes. That’s where I got the idea.

Big mistakes often look so innocent at the outset don’t they?

All upgrades ask you if you want to get rid of the old version so of course you say yes to keep the hard drive tidy and slick etc. Don’t do it! Keep it for a while until you’re more than satisfied with the new version. i WISH I Had. The new version won’t edit anything at all without crashing almost instantaneously. I haven’t seen software this bad since running 8 tracks of audio simultaneously (and that’s two ‘taneouslys” in one paragraph I know) on Windows 95 in my “then” Studio. Actually, truth be known I had far fewer problems.
See i was convinced it was my old PC; as we built it in 2003 and it won’t take more than 1 GB of ram these days without refusing to boot up! Before I cleaned the C-drive up a bit it used to take a full 1:20secs for my Firefox browser to open…Slow eh?

How wrong I was! My old PC is kept pretty clean (now) by some standards and right now is pretty quick for it’s age – a bit like it’s owner..
How do I know this? i went out today and bought a kickin’ powerful gaming style laptop with all the right graphics hardware installed for a trouble free film editing experience. Don’t you just love gamers? Who do they listen to when they push the envelope? Deejays? No. Graphic designers? No. Gamers that’s who. I bow to you all, you techie nerds with no girlfriends in your parent’s basement sweating over quake 5.3 with excited palms and a great big glowing turbo-cooled tower.
It was at this point I found out the guilty secret of the upgraded software affair.
It doesn’t even work on the best laptop you can get for the job!

Yeah so anyway like…guess what got me out of the shit?
Good old original unstable as hell, but strangely not now Windows Movie Maker. That’s right baby.. The most fangled and cool looking product is callously and rudely swiped off the table to be replaced by the very thing I originally bought said product to escape from due to excessive crashing and limited scope! Oh the irony! The turning of the tables coming full circle and other clumsily mixed metaphors…
A somewhat painful and cringing big thank you to Microsoft, who were they present, would be as surprised to hear it, as I indeed am to utter it.

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Site Building

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Today I was working on my other site (www.cloudandsun.com) and god knows no end of problems came up. I have been working with the worlds moodiest web software for 5 years now. I bought it in Office Depot in Los Angeles in 2003  and have been faithful to it ever since . It has more bugs than a ships biscuit on the Cutty Sark. To give you an idea, they update it about once every three years.
All I wanted to do was install some videos on a new page and ad a link of a fellow business on another, but I might as well have asked Robert Mugabe to run a country. I’d made the mortal mistake of fiddling around a little with the page file names and as a result upon upload they were missing from the servers. Reason: the missing pages had gaps in the titles… I have to say the help and support is usually “awsome” as i have to phone America for it. I could phone the Plymouth office in Devon But they don’t like to speak to you directly. You have to get this thing called a “support ticket” which translated means “if you want our support you can stick it!” i love what I’ve made of the site despite problems such as the text coming out different in the online published site but the bugs just make me want to go off and do something else which I shouldn’t mention here.
I have finally had enough and moved over to the software for the site which you are now gently cruising at 40 000 feet with excellent weather and just l little dash of turbulance to remind you that you’re still alive.
This is captain Mike. Have a pleasant flight.

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