The electricity was cut off in the studio one day last week. No radio, no CD player, no coffee machine!
It was lovely for a little while, I opened the door, listened to the birds singing and realised just how little time I allow myself to appreciate nature. So I painted for a while, in tune with the singing of the birds.
Then I got a bit restless, went for a swim in the pool in Mulranny and when I came back to the studio the electricity was back on. So I switched on the coffee machine, put Dublin band Whipping Boy's album 'Twinkle' in the CD player and started again. Caffeine and loud music. That's what gets me going in the studio. And it doesn't come any better than Whipping Boy. I went to see them play in Dublin's Tivoli theatre on my stag night seven years ago. At the time I was still working in software development, having just moved back from San Francisco. Wow, that seems like an age away, a different world, it's hard to believe just how much has changed since then. Earning a living as an artist is such a privilege! And such a pleasure.
But spending days alone in the studio can lead to a lot of reminiscing. In fact it's amazing the things that go through your head - it's not all about contemplating the meaning of life or the importance of each brushstroke! But reminiscing is what I've been doing most over the last week or so, with a soundtrack of Whipping Boy, Teenage Fanclub and the Harvest Ministers playing in the background. And this song - 'When We Were Young' - just brings me back 25 years in an instant. Sometimes bands come along that seem to write songs that just connect with you, songs that stay with you forever, no matter how old you get! This is one of mine (although the lyrics don't necessarily reflect my own experiences as a teenager growing up!). Play it LOUD.