God bless My Darling YOU! and their brilliant titles.
In the absence of spring, one has to find other ways to keep going. I book train tickets. Having gone through a really dark patch recently, I've decided I'd rather exhaust myself by jumping on trains at every opportunity to see pop and people than wallow in misery. The little bookshelf in the spare room where I keep all the tickets is now positively packed with ticket printouts and that makes me feel human and helps me breathe because they transform my immediate future into a place of possible joy. Almost certain joy, in fact, because I've never had a bad time when I've been away dancing or sitting around drinking. And there is the simple happiness of sitting on a train listening to music and reading which is about the most peaceful thing I can think of.
At the last Spiral Scratch, my friends Remi and Delphine gave me a copy of the second release on their new label Phonic Kidnapping, a totally mind-blowing Left Banke-esque song by Cocoanut Groove. The record looks beautiful and you could tell straight away that that piece of vinyl came straight out of a moment when someone fell in love. That'll never stop making me happy about the process of starting a record label. You are idly sitting there, listening to things and something hits you with the strength of a thousand hurricanes, so strong that it makes you say 'I want to do this, everyone needs to know'. I remember Innocent Label and This Happy Feeling from Greece having started like that as well, with a boy playing a tape down the phone to his friend saying "This is the greatest thing ever, let's start a label". The best thing about stories like that is that they are true. I still see them every day. Brilliant or what?
ConIFA 2018: The Venues
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