My preposterous interview with Sea of Bees

I interviewed Julie in a luxurious Travelodge room whilst on tour with Smoke Fairies. It's fair to say we were both a little inebriated at the time. Have a listen:

  Sea of Bees interview by hells-belles


The hunt for a BACH Bogen

***the hunt is over see Update 5 at the bottom***

The BACH.Bogen is a cunningly constructed curved bow which enables string players to play all four strings at the same time. It looks like this:

...and here's a video of one in action performed by the guy who invented the thing.

This is an awesomely intriguing invention and I need to get my shovel-like hands on one; but where from?

I've emailed numerous musical instrument shops but haven't had any luck so far. Bridgewood and Neitzert (who recently did a wonderful repair job on my viola after I inadvertently tore a large hole in it) said that they're "sadly not aware of any manufacturers for this bow."

During my online search though I did come across a marvellous site called The Viola Workshop and there's a nice little section on the site entitled 'A Brief History of the Viola' which claims that the viola is entering a 'golden age' with its increasing popularity. I'll certainly raise a glass to that wildly optimistic claim!

I'll be documenting my, probably tedious and non-eventful, progress right here. If you know where I could obtain one or know someone that might be able to offer a lead please get in contact.

UPDATE 1: I've just had an email back from Anton Lukoszevieze who's a superb cellist that uses one of these bows. He gave me the email address for the man who invented it; I just tried emailing him and it bounced back as 'failed to be delivered". Maybe he's given up on his creation. The search goes on. 

UPDATE 2. Helpful bow maker Howard Ball has got back to me with a few suggestions of people to try. You can see him in action here 

UPDATE 3. Tom Blackburn from Blackburn Stringed Instruments said I should try J. P. Guivier and with a name like that I'm expecting him to brandish a bach bow crafted by wizards. Tom also suggested I should Google 'Bach Bogen'... WHY THE HELL DIDN'T I THINK OF THAT? [/sarcasm] He also seems to share the 'londonviolins' domain with Bridgewood with the simple difference of a .com and I imagine they duel with each other regularly on ferocious steeds wielding huge 'cello bows for lances.  The prehistoric-wild goose chase continues.

UPDATE 4.  I had such high hopes for the awesomely named JP Guivier but he's crashed out with this reply: "We don't sell the Bach Bogen bows. I am afraid I don't know who does"  BUT I also received an email from someone who I think is a supplier of these bows so fingers crossed. Maan, this is as viveting as watching Deal or No Deal with weird beard Edmunds.

UPDATE 5. The hunt is over but the dog hasn't caught the fox; the dogs were close but the fox surrounded himself in a diamond encrusted impenetrable box. The cost of one of these bows ranges from £500 to £1500, which isn't that unreasonable but still way out of my range......for now. 


Hear me interview Jeanette Leech on ResonanceFM today

A few weeks ago I met Jeanette Leech in a probably-far-too-noisy-to-be-conducting-a-radio-interview pub in Crouch Hill and I asked her some questions about her smashing book Seasons they Change and I spent hours and hours editing it into a nice concise quarter of an hour chunk. Listening back to my voice though made me wonder how anyone understands anything I say... ever.

Anyway, you can listen to it on Dexter Bentley's show at noon today, more details here

UPDATE: you can listen again to the show here


Smoke Fairies on XFM

A week or so ago we popped into the XFM studios in Leicester Square to record a session for John Kennedy's Xposure show. There was something quite pleasing surreal about lugging massive amps and drums through one of London's biggest tourist traps.

We played Storm Song, Devil In My Mind, Summer Fades and Killing Joke's Requiem. It was aired last night and you can listen back to it here  I wonder if it's the first time they've ever had a viola solo on XFM?