I spent the summer in 2010/11 (southern hemisphere) writing and recording songs for the new fleaBITE album. I felt like I was on a roll, and while everyone else was away on holiday I sat in my studio every day experimenting and having fun.
I generally worked in the morning and late afternoon, and took time out in the middle of the day to enjoy the sun, go swimming and have a bite to eat in good company.
When I had reached my limit and was ready to show my endeavours to a real person, I thought hard about who to approach. Having spent all that time alone it was quite a scary prospect to introduce others to the workings of my mind. Who should I show the songs to?
I decided to ask my friends Jeff Henderson and Hermione Johnson. Jeff is a crazy, talented friendly guy. He plays brilliant jazz saxophone (and later played on the fleaBITE album), and has run experimental/alternative music venues ‘Happy’ and The Space’ in Wellington. His partner Hermione is a fine composer who plays the piano ands organ, is studying music at Victoria University and also works part time at Radio New Zealand. They both have a good feel for the theatrical, are very open minded and very welcoming. They also have the fattest cat I have ever seen – the aptly named ‘Piggy’
So one afternoon as northerly gales lashed Wellington I popped round to visit Jeff, Hermione and Piggy. They put the CD on and cranked the stereo up. I couldn’t bear to listen so I borrowed a bathing suit and went for a swim in Balena Bay, just below their home on the hill. It was pretty wild out there.
When I returned wet and salty they had huge smiles and praised me to the skies. Phew… I was relieved, and knew I had chosen the ideal people to help. Piggy didn’t express an opinion, but waited hopefully beside his empty bowl.