Monday, 8 March 2010

Technology sends me mad


It’s been one of those strange weeks’, busy, yet when sitting down to work out what progress has been made, little or nothing has progressed.
It all started, as usual, with a shorter than usual Masher practice at The Bridge.  Well, in all honesty it was a quickie before the main event of the night, Nellie Folk.  But we did manage to get two of the four new songs planned in to some sort of shape.
Our repertoire is beginning to have a very political look to it as the big boy Politicians gird their loins for the General Election.   We think it’s important to get the message out there that there really is an alternative to the three main Parties if people are prepared to empower themselves. 
If nothing else the songs do at least have some brilliant choruses for folks to join in with.
Nellies, and all the usual suspects could be found in residence, supplemented by a surprise appearance from Paul Pearson.  A super evening of music again though, with some great songs.  Well done Rob and Roy.
On Thursday The Mashers had the honour of being Special Guests – their term, not ours, - of the Princess Royal Folk Club at Crookes, Sheffield.  We always enjoy taking our music to the unwashed who live on the other side of the M1and this trip was no exception. 
The Princess Royal is part of the South Yorkshire Folk empire run by the hard working Pete. 
We were treated to a veritable feast of excellent singing and playing before making our contribution to the evening which appeared to go down quite well, me thinks.
To end both evenings we tried out one of our new songs, the classic Matt McGinn Number, We’ll Have a May Day.  We’re told it’s one of our better songs, hmmmmmm , we’re not sure how we ought to take that.  Anyway people seemed to enjoy it and so I’m sure it will feature in our Spring collection quite a bit.
The Mashers were also doing their bit for Sports Aid.  Yes, we were!!!   We were wearing Sports Relief sweat bands throughout the entire performance.  
If you were execting news of The Mashers having run all the way from Rawmarsh to Sheffield or swimming ten lengths of the local pool – forget it.  We might look and sound mad – but not that mad.
Pictures of those attending will soon be with you – except for the concertina player who was a little camera shy – not wanting to be a part of the Acoustic Rotherham picture collection.   “I’ve seen the site” he said “and no thanks”.  Oh well.
Of course no trip to a new venue for The Mashers would not be complete without us getting completely lost, reading Maps from all angles except the correct one and so it was on this adventure.  Strange, we travelled eighty miles for Kirkby Fleetham and went door to door; ten miles and we’re totally out of our depth.   
We had an excuse though.  Myke was feeling under the weather with a touch of Man Cold, while that day The Doctor had prescribed me new tablets, and having warned me about the consequences of taking the medication proceeded to tell me that they would make me feel a little strange for a couple of weeks until my body adjusted to them.  He wasn’t wrong.
All just what I needed.
You see it had been one of those weeks.
It all started with a switch in our communication supplier, having come to the end of my patience with Virgin. 
We’ve actually switched to Talktalk who initially had a pretty poor reputation in our area but as they’ve sorted out their technical problems it is now considered to be a reliable service and a lot cheaper than Virgin. 
Mobile phone and and my very slow (it needs a big memory boost) Laptop computer linked in two minutes flat.
Main problem for me was that the connection to my main computer had to be Radio.   Apparently a line from the living room of Masher Towers to the Office at the top back would bankrupt BT (who have to put the line in) and the charge would have had to be paid by me, Bankrupting me, so Radio Hub it is.
Problem, my version of Windows XP had decided to delete all the files that handle wireless networks.  Nightmare!
So I dutifully went about backing up all my stuff – including Email client etc.   Getting serial numbers etc.  
And then the main task, reinstalling Windows, oh what fun that is.  I think there’s a song all about that, I might have to see if I can find it.
You would have thought that by now Microsoft would have come up with an Operating system that allowed one to repair the critical areas without having to undertake a major reinstall.  But no. 
And then of course the software has to go back on.
Worse still when I came to import the Email client I discovered that the file had been considered too large and corrupted itself!!!  
So the cry goes out please – if you’ve had any business with The Mashers or Acoustic Rotherham please send me an Email so that I can rebuild my data base.
And now everything looks different.  It’s strange isn’t it how some of the programmes take on a completely different appearance as they are re-installed.    Strange – I’m sure there is a reason for it, but I can’t think what it is.   Just the magic of those digital files.
So folks, there is nothing new to tell you about the Web Site this week.   Those amongst you who are keen on the statistics might like to know that with a little push we might just slip through the million trap door in this coming week.  That would be quite something for the Jmucreate site.
So pop across and bounce through Reviews or even check out our Pete’s Animation page, listen to the music and help send us soaring up or is it down the charts – a bit like my map reading not sure which way to read it.   Jmucreate HERE
On the Reverbnation scene, The Mashers made it to number one for a few days again before being beaten off by our good friends, he says between gritted teeth, Jacks Rake.   The Acoustic Rotherham page has slipped just a bit having enjoyed that long run in the number one spot.
If you’ve not already done so you might find that a visit to The Mashers Influences page quite interesting, a real trip down memory lane, with links to loads of interesting acts.  Who were the Yetties?  And not the rock band of the same name.  Find out HERE
And don’t forget the Cd Shop and the Amazon Associate Shop – the best place to buy all your listening and music accessories. 
The Mashers next major outing is of course The Rawmarsh Mashers and Friends night at The Bridge, (formerly Nellie Deane’s) Rotherham, - it’s the pub on the bridge near the Railway Station.  Saturday 13th March.   We’re bing joined by our good friends, Phillip Hartley and or course the amazing duo Tina Mckevit and Matt Hegarty.
And guess what, March 30th will find virtually the same crew, with the addition of Paul Pearson playing a Fund Raiser for the Haiti UNICEF Appeal at The Riverside, Sheffield, organised by Dave Paskell.   Should be a super night for a great cause.  
The 13th March also sees a special Festival to Celebrate the 30th Anniversary of The Kiverton Park Folk Club.
The event will be going off at The Kiverton Park Folk Club home at The Cricket Club.  Always fun to try and find when you’ve never been before – or in the case of The Mashers – even when you have been before.   It promises to be a fantastic event with Clubs from all over the Borough coming together for the knee’s up.  It all starts at twelve noon.  
Plenty of time then to pop along and get back to The Bridge to join The Mashers night.
This week is quite quiet – we’ll be practicing hard at The Bridge on Monday Night and then it’s open – so who knows where we might spring up.  Keep an eye on the status bar for any news.   Tuesday night at the Three Tuns, Stainton, has a ring to it, but it’s a clash with that big England versus Egypt match………   oh alright we’re try to get the Folk session into the number one priority spot.

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