The days, weeks and months are certainly racing by and certainly keeping busy helps and that is what I have tried constantly to do during these extremely difficult times for us all.
I am as frustrated as the next person about the lack of concerts, the empty theatres and the rules that surround them. Like many people I struggle with the fact that you can have full airplanes, busy pubs and crowded beaches, but theatres have to abide by rules which make them non-viable to open. The effect it has on everybody in the entertainment profession is profound and it upsets me greatly. It does appear that nobody from ground roots level upwards has been asked to contribute ideas and thoughts. Ah well, did I really expect any different ? There may not be answers, but there are certainly workable solutions.
Well that's my morning Grumpy rant out of the way and now on to the RW News.
Because of the lack of live performances and the social distancing, (or unsocial distancing as I call it), making life extremely difficult, I have been doing a lot of writing and composition for projects for the future and it's been really inspiring and I am really happy with what I have been doing and when it's time to announce them, it may well surprise a few people……in a nice way I hope.
Sticking with the subject of live performances, my management and agents both here and abroad, have been working extremely hard in planning for concerts and hopefully an announcement will come during this month.
So this month sees a lot more fun at the piano and discussions with those I am already working with on the future projects.
There are however a few items of note….
On the 5th I have a meeting with Rob Ayling to discuss the editing and broadcasting of Rick's Plaice on our RW YouTube TV. We have filmed 6 shows and I am really pleased with the way they are turning out. Informative and fun I hope will be the final result.
I am also meeting up with Jools Holland this month to record a duet with him. I always loved doing his radio show where we played two pianos together so this is really an extension of that …..
Last Christmas, Jools asked me if I fancied doing a duet with him of a classic boogie woogie track of the 1940s... there was no hesitation in my reply as I love that piano style and Jools is a past master at it too... thanks to the pandemic and lockdowns, it has taken its time to happen, but it did yesterday in Jools's studio with Nitin Sawhney, (a fine piano player himself) producing and what great fun it was too... a real pleasure and the track will be part of an album which Jools is recording with guest musicians... as I am privy to some of the other artists he has used I have already got my order in now for a copy!
Whilst recording with Jools Holland in his studio this week, we both remarked on stiffness in the hands caused by a lack of live performances. You can practice as much as possible at home but it's live performances that hone the hands and muscles and Jools used the words "match fit" which are so apt and it's now my aim to get the fingers match fit for the London Palladium on the 27th.
I cannot put into words how genuinely pleased I am that my manager and agent have managed to pull this together as the loss of the UK Xmas tour was really devastating. In fact the whole year has been devastating as regards live performances which I knew I would miss, but never realised how much. It has shown me that I can never retire from live performances unless forced otherwise!
I have played at the Palladium on a few occasions, but always for memorial concerts and always as part of a big cast, so this is really special to be doing the evening by myself… although son Adam will be joining me throughout to both play and trade insults!
And that's it really… the rest of the month will be putting things together for the bright future ahead, and it has to be a bright future. We can't let it be anything else.
Stay safe and thanks for all your support as always… Rick