Life is what happens to you while you’re making other plans (to blog about stuff) Pt. 2

Sly and Jasper relaxing on the set of Sly and Reggie’s Dub Save The Queen video shoot

Okay, so I realised today that it’s been the best part of a month since I last blogged on Intensely Relaxed. Appropriately enough, my last post was about life being what happens to you while you’re making other plans (to blog about stuff). True to form, just as things have gotten interested I’ve gone quiet on the personal blogging front. So what’s been happening, I hear you ask?

No Sleep Till Weston 

Weston Grand Pier at Weston Super Mare. Sadly, I never saw the pier as I was working long days in Weston General Hospital. Photo: Lauren Tucker Photography

Let’s deal with the basics. My freelance project lead work for thinkpublic has taken up a fair amount of my time this past month. You might think that with ongoing speculation about the prospect of a double dip recession the idea of a work-based perk would be nothing more than a distant memory. However, I am proud to report tmy work for thinkpublic has taken me as far afield as Weston Super-Mare and Catford. Oh yes.

That takes care of the day job. But this month I’ve put Max Fischer from the film Rushmore to shame with my extra-curricular activities.

Push It Along

Clearly Rod Stewart hadn’t fully embraced the wonders of Web 2.0. Photo: Vintage Vinyl Journals

First off, there’s the constant companion that is my search for a new full-time job. I don’t want to say too much just yet but I feel I have made good progress in this regard. What’s great about job hunting is the fact there’s always something to do, from scanning the job sites and procrastinating over completing an application, right through to the interview and nerve-shredding wait for news of the result. If I were the kind of a person who looks to shamelessly link everything back to a musical reference point I would have to select Rod Stewart’s never-more-ironic Never a Dull Moment LP as the soundtrack to this activity.

Better Must Come

My flyer for the latest Roots of Reggae, lovingly designed using Microsoft PowerPoint

Next up, and much more enjoyably, I’ve been working hard to develop and promote the next Roots of Reggae event, which is taking place tomorrow  afternoon (14 April) in Brixton. The centrepiece of tomorrow’s event will be the screening of the classic Reggae film, The Harder They Come, starring Jimmy Cliff and a legendary soundtrack of vintage Reggae. We’ll also be playing tunes from Reggae’s golden age and we might even have East Dulwich’s finest, Sly and Reggie, as special guests. If this sounds like your cup of tea, click here for more information.

Don’t forget your friends

As well as developing Roots of Reggae, I’ve also been supporting other friends’ projects. I’ve been continuing to support the Heritage of Ska project, which held its second ever gig on 29th March, this time in Shoreditch instead of Brixton. I’m sorry to say I wasn’t able to attend the night, which is a real shame as I missed out on the chance of meeting the legendary Rico Rodriguez, a pivotal figure in the development of the first wave of Ska and who also then played a crucial role in the second wave of British Ska through his performances with The Specials. You can find out more about that night and future plans for Heritage of Ska by clicking here.

Corrine Edwards as The Queen on the set for Sly and Reggie’s Dub Save The Queen video shoot

Alongside my ongoing work with Heritage of Ska I was mega-excited to be asked by the aforementioned Sly and Reggie to support their campaign to promote the release of their forthcoming Dub Save the Queen single and crowd-sourced collaboration album. For the uninitiated, Sly and Reggie are perhaps the world’s foremost exponents of Middle Class Dub. Hailing from straight outta East Dulwich, they combine righteous bass and drums with Guardianista lyrical concerns. Dub Save The Queen is their irreverent way of celebrating The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

Entering the Blogosphere

Frank Pitter, founder member of Skinhead Reggae legends The Pyramids

I’m pleased to say I’ve successfully managed to get Sly and Reggie’s campaign featured in both the Brixton Blog and Brixton Buzz sites. Both sites have also provided tremendous support to both my Roots of Reggae project as well as Heritage of Ska events. In fact, I was flattered when the Brixton Blog recently approached me to write a regular column for them on the Brixton Reggae scene. It’s a great honour to be asked and I am looking forward to shining a light on the amazing talent that can be found in every corner of Brixton.

You can read my first article for the Brixton Blog, an interview with Skinhead Reggae legends The Pryramids’ founder member, Frank Pitter,  by clicking here.

You can read my Brixton Blog article on Sly and Reggie’s Dub Save The Queen video shoot by clicking here.

You can read my Brixton Buzz article on the same video shoot by clicking here.

Putting the Fun in Unconference

What else is new? Last month I mentioned that I’d applied to UKGovCamp for some funding to put on an unconference-style event focused on how technology can support more flexible forms of collaboration between the public sector and smaller third sector organisations. I’m pleased to say the funding came through and I have begun the process of developing the event. Watch this space for more information coming very soon.