Here we are then - everyone across the world is in a variation of lockdown, and the vast majority of us are now back home, either jobless, working from home, or suffering from the repercussions amid Covid-19. Despite all of this, however, the amount of creativity, spontaneity and media posted online from those that are close to us keeps us all going. Days before the lockdown, I made the decision to return back to Sussex. With the university now closed, and the restrictions in place regarding travel and social distancing, it was the right time to return home. I will be going back up to not-so-sunny Newcastle when I can to continue my studies, but for now I have a handful of essays and some songs to sing for recitals which are fast approaching.
Since coming home, like many of us, there have been ups and downs. It is with great sadness to tell you that my uncle, Carl Hogsden, passed away after a long illness. As one of my (if not my biggest) musical inspirations, as well as a phenomenally admirable man, uncle, and friend, it has left somewhat of a hole that hasn't filled, and i doubt will for some time. Yet with this loss, comes the positives; the remainder of the family have taken to music more than ever as we realise what he have and how special that can be. He can be seen in the gallery section with the photograph of The Hogsden Family performing at Cambridge Folk Festival.
Now that I'm home, and here without work and a small amount of money behind me, I have taken to the wonderful art of sound engineering. With some new softwares on my slightly knackered MacBook (it fell off of a train... long story!), an audio interface, one microphone, my Fylde and epiphone guitars, and my Dino Baffetti, I am finally embarking on the recording of my debut album...
DOWN BY SOME PLEASANT ARBOR
This album is a 10 track CD, that will be available as a physical disc, digital download, and maybe even on vinyl... one day! It is an amalgamation of the songs that started my passion for traditional music, as well as the songs my family have sung for generations. Luckily, since coming back home, my dad has a small collection of microphones and hardware that I can record with, and I have invested in some studio monitors to allow me to mix/master my recordings. This is the start of a project that I have dreamt of for years, and I'll let you know more about it when the time is right.
It's such a shame to be back home and so far away from those that I have become very close to whilst studying in Newcastle. Musicians, friends, industry professionals, colleagues and lecturers that I could turn to for a laugh or a cry, are no longer round the corner. Yet in the current climate, I wouldn't have it any other way.
This website is looking fancy, right!? I've had some time to kill and I needed a change. Time to work on another one... I wonder what this project is.....
Stay safe, and thanks for all the support in this troubling time. My thoughts are with you all.