Friday 27th April 2001- we can perform under pressure

Today we had our audition and oh man we rocked! I’m hyper now! Got into school this morning and went straight to Mr Hendries room to squeeze in some much needed practice before registration. It was not looking good at all. We knew our individual parts but when it came to putting it all together we could not keep in time with each other. At interval it was back to Mr Hendries room for more practice and to let Jack hear the song for the first time. He didn’t practice at all but Tina assured me he is a genius on the drums. It still wasn’t looking too good, we were just so out of time and the closer it got to the audition the more nervous I felt. So we went up at lunch time to set all the equipment up in one of the music rooms. We didn’t even have time to run through once before Mrs Campbell came to hear us play. So Jack counted us in and we just threw ourselves into it. It was fantastic! Jack’s drumming was perfect and with him keeping the rhythm me and Tina were able to keep in time with each other. When I heard our music blasting out of the amps all nerves vanished and I was lost in the song. I really enjoyed it. It worked so well. It was such a great achievement for us to pull it all together in just two days. I’m so proud of us as we have shown we have talent and can perform under pressure. Wow! I’m going to get my own bass, but until then I have Tom’s. Oh what a brilliant start to our band!

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Thursday 26th April 2001- I have mastered the verse and the twangy chorus bits

More shit, you know the kind. I was carrying Tom’s bass around school today so I told those bullies I would hit them with it if they didn’t shut up. It seemed to work, they backed down a bit. Of course I wouldn’t do that really, it would cause them too much damage and more importantly I wouldn’t want to break tom’s beautiful bass. But the threat seemed to deter them, maybe I’ve found a way to make them get lost.

Anyway, today was a day of rehearsing like mad for an audition we have tomorrow and getting in a total state over it. We were using the school amps but it wasn’t looking good, we hadn’t rehearsed enough, and I only started playing bass on Tuesday. But I have mastered the verse and the twangy chorus bits which is amazing given how little time we’ve had. I was doubtful as to whether this whole thing would work but Tina phoned me tonight and made me believe we could conquer the world if we wanted to. She said we should just go for it tomorrow and see how it goes. She said I had done amazing and had great potential. We agreed that it wouldn’t be the end of the world if we weren’t chosen to perform because as long as we do well then we have proved to ourselves we can play together and that will be enough. She was full of positivity and she’s passed that on to me. By the end of the call we were both like ‘yes we can do this, we are the best, we will show them just how good we can be.’

I had a seven hour shift at the Tryst after school which meant we couldn’t rehearse tonight but I’m confident we will do ourselves proud. We will succeed! I know we will1

Tuesday 24th April 2001- I’ve fallen in love with the bass

Oh how wonderful this is! I am currently in possession of a beautiful bass guitar, I am looking at it right now and I love it. It’s not mine though, it’s Tom’s, he’s let me borrow it for as long as I need it. He’s so nice, I love him, this is so exciting. Today was the first get together of  Left of Deviant so I must document it so we can remember the starting point if we ever make it. Well there was only me and Tina, we went to borrow Tom’s bass and he also loaned us a bass amp. Tina brought her electric guitar and Jack’s amp. What fun we had trying to get that bass amp up to my room, it was so heavy and a struggle. We just messed around and Tina showed me how to read bass tab. We didn’t get too far with the actual music but she is photocopying some of Bush’s songs for me to learn. We looked over my lyrics I had been scrawling during the holidays. Then we had s bit of a laughing fit because one of the songs I wrote starts with the line ‘nobody has mental balance, you have least of all’. I’m not sure why it seemed so funny but we laughed and laughed especially at the thought of it being the first song on the album and that being the very first line. Oh well. My room was filled with guitar stuff and amongst it was the two dogs wafting their tails about.  When Tina had to go we discovered getting the bass amp down the stairs was even harder than getting it up. We struggled down with it, almost crippling ourselves, and eventually got it out to the car. Oh how I need to properly learn bass and get one of my own. It’s so cool! I’ve fallen in love with the bass in the corner of my room! I don’t want to have to give it up when Tom comes back for it (though it does have a sticker on it which says ‘don’t be a dick’).

Monday 23rd April 2001- left of deviant

School was hell so you’ll understand why I don’t want to talk about it, especially when I have far greater things to relate. I am now in a band. Yeah you heard right! I think I might explode at the prospect. Tina is on guitars and vocals and Jack has agreed to drum for us until we find our own drummer. It’s all so exciting. Me and Tina have just ended a text conversation in which she suggested a name which is pure genius. We have called ourselves ‘left of deviant’. Why? Well apparently deviant means diverging from the norm   while we will also deviate from the usual alternative scene (Tina’s words not mine) so we aren’t just plain deviant but a little left of deviant. Brilliant! I am in a band! My songs can be used now. In assembly today Tina was getting so excited about the whole thing. She was shouting across the room to Tom saying ‘I got a bass player’ and hugging me. I love the bass. I’m picking it up really well. I have a theory on this; when I touched Taka’s hand at the gig some of his skills must have rubbed off. I’m so fucking happy I could cry. We have a title for our first album too- Black Doves and Broken Wings. It’s a product of both mine and Tina’s minds. How good is that? We’re going to make a great team. We will conquer the world with our creative genius and we will be huge. So here is to the birth of our musical revolution. Here’s to Left of Deviant.

Sunday 22nd April 2001- they’ll make me a zombie

Well here it is, the next round of despair. I’ve been free from it for over two weeks, I’ve been so happy, I’ve been myself, and now, as the holidays close, that will all end. Oh bloody hell it’s the worst case of  pre-school depression I’ve ever had. Take the misery I felt at the end of the Christmas holidays, multiply it a billion times and you’ll know how I’m feeling now, totally hopeless and in a deep depression. Where am I going? Where the hell am I going? I have no direction at all. I am too free for this world. I am a creator, an artist, but society doesn’t cater for people like me. This future is not what I want but I’ll get it anyway, because society is screwed up right now and everything is geared towards the trained professions. I’m suffocating in the academic world. Others might not feel,the need to repair their broken wings, the wings society clipped, but I need mine, I want mine, without them I will die, without them I will be crushed. Help me. I can’t ever be happy in the world of the office, of smart clothes and coffee breaks spent reading ‘woman’s own’ with a host of shallow and boring people who are content to live this way. Well I can’t do it. I’m trying to dig my heels in the ground to stop time propelling me so quickly toward the oblivion that is the constricting, unsatisfying world of work. I’ll loose myself because they will take my essence and destroy it. They’ll make me a zombie. Who knows they may cut off my wings entirely rather than just break them and then they’ll never heal, I’ll be grounded for life. Oh somebody please do something before it’s too late, don’t let them ruin me.

Saturday 21st April 2001- A band!

Today we went to the forge shopping centre in the park head area of Glasgow. It was a nasty place and I didn’t like it one bit! Why? I’ll tell you why! It was like stepping into ned city! Now do you see why I didn’t like it? It was filled with evil looking people wearing baseball caps, socks pulled over their trousers and hundreds of gold jewellery (sovereign rings, hoop earrings, name chains, the usual) and amongst them all was me in my baggy combats, bandana and Feeder T-shirt and a skull chain. I was the only mosher in the whole place! I won’t be going back there in a hurry. On the way home we went the wrong way and ended up in the most foul estate I have ever seen. All the flats were borders up with their roofs missing, many had been burned out and all where covered in graffiti. It reminded me of how I imagine Edgefield to look like in ‘World Against Me’. It would be a good location for filming as long as the cameras didn’t get nicked! Tina phoned to let me know she wasn’t ignoring me last night, her phone had just ran out of credit. I talked to her about my guitar playing and how I seem to be inclined to pick out the bass parts of the songs and she suggested we could start a band and she could play guitar and I could try bass. I’m all for it considering it’s been my dream since the age of about nine. She says Tom (Jack’s best friend and bassist in Jack’s band) will let me borrow his bass no problem. A band! I know we won’t actually get anywhere but hey, what fun I used to have in our band in Newcastle with Laura even though we were unbelievably crap. It’s just a hobby, some messing about, that’s all.

Monday 16th April 2001- Tina is more unique than most

Well, last night after going to bed I had another late night text conversation with Tina. She started it at 12.30 saying she was sorry if she woke me but she couldn’t sleep. I couldn’t sleep myslef so I was glad to have her to talk to. I was telling her about my cool crow bag and how he needed a name and she came up with something I should have thought of myself. She said as he is a crow why not call him Brandon after Brandon Lee in the film the Crow. So Brandon it is. Mam Doesn’t approve of my darling Brandon*. Maybe it is because of his distinctly punk rock appearance.

Today I took the dogs down to the village to meet Tina’s dog, Timmy. It was a really nice day and it was sunny and warm so we took the dogs waking in the forest. It was a really pleasant day and the dogs all got on fine together and they were playing in the water. I took Brandon with me on his first public outing!

Oh yeah, I forgot to say, I ended up taking to Tina until 1.30 am this morning  before I finally told her I had to go and she sent me one more message after that which said ‘Goodnight honey!’. She is such a food friend and like Monica said on Saturday ‘Everyone is unique but Tina is more unique than most’ I agree with that! I’m so happy now! This is the happiest I’ve been since we were forced to move here. I finally feel like I belong, like I’m wanted, no longer just a tag along who no one cares about,, but actually part of the group. I feel more like myself than I have in my whole life, I’ve discovered the real me and a lot of that is down to my new friends. Without even knowing it they have allowed me to become me without any judgement and that’s important. I love them all. I really love them all.

 

*Brandon started life as big fluffy crow hand puppet. I stitched a zip in his entrance, fitted straps and he became a back pack. I gave him a mohawk by sticking bright coloured stripes on fur on his head, pierced his beak several times, put spiked wrist bands on his legs and gave him a stripy jumper. Sadly I don’t have any photos.