Iain Cameron's Diary
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2004-05-20 - 8:51 a.m.

Laurence rang as I was driving along a quiet lane about a mile towards Tanworth from Honiley enjoying the rurality and the evening sunshine. I pulled over – and said how the Jurassic scarp stretched from my horizon line across the Avon valley south west to where he was speaking from in Bath. IThe emotional tone of such evenings was not to my taste, I said.

We agreed that the philosophical investigation by exchanging text messages was very much to the point and that we should press on and see where it led. Laurence said that Ben was enjoying his time in Seattle with the producer responsible for the first Nirvana album.

My guess is that Sony Uk who have given the band a year’s contract believe that they might go well in the US and so they are spending money doing the album in Seattle as a result. If the album is released in the US then the band get an immediate cash benefit. Laurence has heard that they have the drums and guitar tracks down and have moved to another studio to do vocals and second guitar. The producer is impressed that a neo-punk band have managed to get a contract with a major like Sony. It is very exciting – even at this distance.

Talking of punk I have started dipping into Jon Savage’s Englands Dreaming

Pressing on with the Bruces Fingers Electroacoustic CD. The first piece has had very good reviews – I think its called Playing Poker with Morton Feldman . On a first listen it sounded as if it was a recoded performance but the notes explain that it was derived by sound manipulation. Very encouraging.

In fact I was so encouraged that this morning I have gone back to Wavelab and produced about a minutes of material – just with four words from the first song of mine that Cathy Bell recorded. It was a song I wrote first in 1977 and then about 2O years later I changed the words to those from a found poem. “This lazy day they will remember / Lazy and idle in the garden sun” And the opening phrase “Here at the start” is now being abused and manipulated in Wavelab.

I said to Peter Chatterton this morning that I thought that Microsoft had been defeated by the hackers. There are so many viruses that seem to get through both their system, the anti-virus system and the organisational service that provide the first line of support. As entropy masters the equipment there is a gradual loss of function – it is almost a literal model of the ageing process. I understand that the German government is going to move away from Microsoft because there are so many vulnerabilities in the software. Anyway I am really struggling with the portable and I am wondering whether I ought to buy a new standalone just to do music on.

The Mandela foundation have just published via the SA social science research council on the impact of HIV/AIDS on children. Its available on the Links page of the Highveld site at the top of the page. It makes the case for the Lullabies event well very though we have said that we wont use schock and guilt techniques . Maybe we can use it with the stakeholders. The new Meridian Lullabye Philomel should be up on the site soon. We are going to put 6 Luls on the main page to start – Paul’s Gilbert’s Robin’s and mine plus the organ composition from the Lloyds – all originals.

My first big event is on 2 June with the scenarios rather than 27 November. Invitations have started to go out and I think I have acceptances from TRW, DTI and Toyota which is a good start. One of the acceptances comes from someone who I last saw in a hotel bar in Dearborn with a professor from MIT – twelve hours later I was jamming in the room next door with some local jazz funk heroes. That has to be out of the ordinary.

I have decided to make the usage of graduates one of the key issues in the 8 June event. The LSE research is so interesting and direct that it makes a really good counterbalance to the general Warwick model.

I had a meeting with Nick for a couple of hours working on his grand design. His mathematical training is very effective at laying information out in two dimensions in a way that highlights the areas of difficulty. We chatted a bit about one the recently knighted Warwick gurus and marvelled that he seemed to have led a charmed life. He once gave me tea at the Reform Club not that I am suggesting for a minute that this contributed to his success but the chat was as good as the scones.

I am listening to Gilbert’s versions of Fifths – one with Robin’s voice background and one without. Andrew wonders whether I played the new version of Magic when it was originally performed – I would say probably yes – and that the other flute player was Steve Pheasant who was at Caius with Robert. There was a Linda Peters interview in the Independent at the weekend – and it made me think how odd it has been bumping into all these people for the odd gig or jam here or there. Maybe that’s what I am getting at with the Lul concoctions? As Mark says reflected glory is better than none at all.

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