Thursday, October 25, 2018
Scene. I choose that in place of a better word instead of 'Community'. Ah yes, the 'Myth of Community'. I am planning to write about that soon, but I'll leave it as it is and just move on for now.
Last weekend I visited Chester for FantasyCon. I was hoping to catch up with old friends, make some new ones and even meet a hero or two. And I succeeded on all counts. It was wonderful to see Philip and James again, to spend time with Penny, Simon, Adele and Tom (as well as a bunch of others I haven't mentioned), and to chat, albeit briefly, with Ian Watson. Ian is a fabulous writer, someone I started reading back in the late 70s and never dreamed of meeting. I managed to get a book or two signed, and even copped some written abuse from him in one of them - which was pretty special.
I spent time chatting with Dr Abbey from Japan, even though my Japanese was rusty and he was polite about my abilities, and met Ian Whates and Adrain Tchaikovsky, who were both delightful and fascinating.
Restaurants, bars, sitting outside with friends, walks, and even listening to the karaoke (bleah) made for a memorable weekend.
Seriously though, how do we manage to spend an entire weekend based in a hotel and still not catch up with people we know? I missed a few people I had planned to see. And they were there! I've seen the photographic proof.
If you haven't been to FantasyCon and you live in the UK, it's highly recommended. I plan to be there next year again.
Wednesday, October 10, 2018
They're a band who went through a number of changes, both in line-up and style, yet I've loved every incarnation - even the country band they were before Horrendous Disc. Alarma, Doppleganger, Vox Humana and Fearful Symmetry (known collectively as the Alarma Chronicles) were released throughout the 80s, with each album changing style and instrumentation which also reflected the lyrical content.
Tim Chandler joined the band in 1981, in time to tour and record the Doppelganger album. I immediately loved his bass playing. He had his own style, his own musicality and brilliantly creative bass lines. His sound was distinctive and recognisable. Tim played on albums by a bunch of artists, and his playing was always second to none. Standouts include his work on John Wayne by Terry Scott Taylor, and Daniel Amos's own Darn Floor Big Bite.
Apparently he was a really lovely guy. Funny too. He was a member of the Swirling Eddies, a pseudonymous Daniel Amos side project. Berger Roy Al, as he was dubbed, had his own personality, who would suddenly appear in Daniel Amos forums ranting and verbally attacking Tim Chandler. Mad, mad, hilarious stuff.
I only managed to see Tim once. He played bass in Phil Keaggy's band when I saw them at a small venue in Melbourne during the 80s. I still regret not waiting to chat to him after the show.
Tim passed away a few days ago. I saw it on social media just after his friends all changed their profile pictures. Apparently he was ill, but I didn't know that. In fact there is very little I actually know about the man, yet his passing has saddened me.
RIP Tim, I wish you safe travels.