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Christmas is a time for giving, a time for loving, and a time for sharing, but it can also be very stressful with all of the holiday shopping crowds vying to find that ‘perfect’ gift for somebody. Books make great gifts because they just keep giving, especially if they are as packed full of useful information as MY FIRST GOAL-SETTING BOOK by development coach and mentor, Anthony James Donnelly.
“Just making a New Year’s Resolution won’t make it happen!”
In MY FIRST GOAL-SETTING BOOK – How To Effectively Set & Achieve Your Life Goals, Donnelly clearly lays out every step you need to take in order to prepare for RESULTS.
He uses clear, simple language with no ‘fluff’, just the information you need to succeed.
If you’ve never set goals before, or set them but not hit them, or are shopping for somebody you know that needs help setting goals to get their life back on track, this is the book for you. It’s available in three convenient formats: Kindle, Paperback, and Audio Book, narrated by the author.
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In the light of sharing, I had to post this… an old school buddy of mine (that obviously holds me in much higher regard than I hold myself!) was kind enough to share this… BUT he makes a good point… WOULD Chas & Dave approve…?
Personally, I think they would approve, but I’ll let YOU be the judge… you can hear the song (well, a rough studio version) at the end of this post…
<sure enough, ‘ere comes trouble…>
Like a good teenager, I’ve highlighted the words I heard…
“This is a totally outrageous project that’s kind of ‘okay’ and reasonably funny but does not present you in your very best light. I want to see you in EastEnders, mate, not a downmarket novelty Christmas video. Don’t waste your time. The good thing is that you have regressed back to your teens with this project. And some of the language has regressed too. Can one still say “‘er indoors” nowadays? The last time I heard that phrase was on Minder circa 1989!
“Out of principle, I won’t support such frivolity at a time when I have two daughters to put through university but I will certainly take you for a pizza at <BEEP!> and you can tell me about the more serious projects that you’re going to tackle in the New Year. This one is just too self-indulgent and esoteric. Successful Christmas songs are promoted through the “yoof” but this one’s full of expletives and reveals Santa Claus as an incurable alcoholic who regularly gets into pub brawls and ends up in jail. It really ain’t gonna go down ‘wiv da yoof’. Who do you envisage as the ‘target audience’? Even the late, great Chas with his fine mate Dave stopped doing this sort of material about 20 years ago.”
BLAH…! BLAH…! BLAH…!
All I heard was… parents (of MY age) will LOVE this song!!! AND kids will too…! It’s like that Haribo-song… time will tell…!
Have a listen, and tell us what YOU think…
Until Next Time…!
Thankfully writing about building our recording studio takes a lot less time and effort than building the actual studio, so here’s the second installment of how we built our own sound studio in our back garden with limited funds, limited knowledge, and just enough stupidity not to quit! If you haven’t read Part One, you can read it here.
So, on with the story…
After many months of arm-aching toil, things slowly started to progress, even though the garden looked like a very cramped building site! Hundred of bricks and blocks had to be ferried by wheelbarrow down a narrow back alley and over an assault course of construction before being stacked neatly ready to be used. Likewise bags and bags of sand and cement were carried into the building site. Now it was time to call in the professionals:
Oh, but hang on… Now we have to halt on building the walls before they get too high, as we need to pour the floor first!!! The concrete pumping truck was unavailable that weekend, so guess what…? That’s right, we had to ferry all the concrete in by wheelbarrow!
Who knew Tone Def Tony was a dab-hand at donning his wellies and leveling concrete floors! Quite amazingly too no four-legged fucks walked across it as it cured, so there were no footprints for eternity left behind. We would also like to state for the record (although it was tempting at times) there are absolutely no dead bodies buried beneath this slab!
By this time we were many, many, many months into the project, and it still felt like we were miles away from ever completing Finch’s Folly (as it was now being called!) But wait! What’s this…? Actual WALLS going up…
Many more beers later and months more hard work, things actually started to look like a building, and oh, what’s that…? A roof and a door…!!!
Just in time for the colder (and wetter) months, the build was FINALLY in the dry! But we were far from finished. Although it was grounds for celebration, we did contemplate just turning it into a pool hall instead, as money was getting tight, but Finch’s Folly wasn’t looking like such a folly after all. It was now time to fit out the interior:
No-one had told us that sound-deadening plaster board is a lot heavier than regular stuff… About three times as heavy in fact! Oh, and I wonder if you can guess how we had to maneuver fifty sheets of the stuff from the curb to the studio…? That’s right, all by hand! But once the door was closed, it was as silent as a grave in there! Now we could build the partition wall between what would be the actual studio space and the engineering room:
This is where I actually thought about extending the readers’ agony by stopping and creating Part Three, but felt if you have read this far, you need to be put out of your misery! It just so happened that the BBC were renovating one of their London studios, so we somehow managed to acquire some amazing sound-proof studio doors (magnetically sealing doors no less!) and that gave the studio a feel of elegance! But the outside walls still needed rendering. The cheapest quote was almost a thousand quid…!!! Enter Tone Def Tony once more… not just a dab-hand at leveling concrete floors, but we discovered he had a knack for rendering too…
Not one to show off at all, but here he is feeling rather chuffed at his achievement:
And this is how the studio finally looks inside:
Having taken a little over two years to complete, we sat back for some more, well-earned beers! But our journey wasn’t over just yet… even though we now had a sound studio at our disposal 24/7… NOW we had to learn how to operate the sound equipment and software, well, Finch did, but that’s topic of another post…
As always, thanks for reading, thanks for all your support. The first song, I GOT PISSED WITH SANTA CLAUS will be released very soon…!
As a little aside to the story behind the song, I GOT PISSED WITH SANTA CLAUS, we thought we’d share some of our journey of building the studio we recorded in…
ONCE UPON A TIME there was a young drummer called little Mr Finch. Even though his Dad was an accomplished drummer, and his Mother had the patience of a saint, I’m sure any parent reading this can imagine what a right royal f**king pain in the arse it is to have a son practicing drums in the house! So, at the tender age of sixteen, young Mr Finch dreamed of having his own private soundproof studio to practice in and create the next great masterpiece.
As with most children’s dreams (unless you are born a Trump, Zuckerberg, or Jobs!) it languished unfulfilled for many, many, many years… There were attempts, but none actually came to fruition. Undeterred, young Finch – now getting on in years! – clung dearly to his dream, even though it was beginning to fade and get fuzzy around the edges.
“Dreams Don’t Quit On People, People Quit On Their Dreams!”
Fast forward to the year 2015. Having met two new friends (Davey and Donnelly) on film set earlier in the year, he felt brave enough to share his childhood dream. Rather than laugh (as many might do at the folly of such a project) they were encouraging, in fact, more than encouraging, they offered to help! After all, how difficult could it be to build a sound studio in your back garden…?
The first step was to clear the space ready to build:
That seemed easy enough! The plans were already drawn up and permission had been granted – weren’t THEY the biggest hurdles? Now it was time to break ground. Due to the location, the footings had to be dug by hand. How hard can that be?
Eleven tonnes of dirt later, and many weeks of manual labour, the footings were dug (one and a half meters deep!) and approved. But what to do with this mountain of dirt…? That’s where mates and beer come in VERY handy – and wheelbarrows! Over the course of a couple of weekends, two large skips were painstakingly filled to the brim with all the dirt, and we were left with a large moat in the back garden.
And now came the most disheartening part of the project… Time to fill the trench back in again, but this time with 11 tonnes of concrete…! Weeks of sweat and muscle-ache left us right where we had started from months ago!
We’re back to where we started, almost. Exhausted, but excited, the next stage could finally begin: building the walls!
“If You Build It, They will Drum…!”
If you knew the effort, energy, and money it would actually take to complete a building task on your own, you’d probably never start it! But we had put so much time and effort into it so far, and called in so many ‘favours’, we had no choice but to see it to the end. Call it stupid, or call it smart, but we were too dumb to know it couldn’t be done… A little bit like we were Bumble Bee Builders: we didn’t know we weren’t supposed to be able to build a studio on our own, so we just kept on!
Stay tuned for Part Two of building the studio, which will be coming very soon. In the meantime, please like our posts, follow us, reblog us, and all that great social media jazz…
Until next time!