Saturday, 7 December 2013

Gig business!

Hello to you lovely people! How are we all?

Today I popped down to Ventnor - a lovely little town on the Island, where I met with my friend Vic to chat to some people about some gigs!

We visited a lovely church and a really cool arts club (I'll write more about them when the gigs are definitely confirmed) and it looks like I'll be playing in both places February/March(ish) in the new year. Exciting stuff. :)

Here's a picture I took inside the church. It's rather pretty there...


I will be playing there with the lovely Emily Scotcher which I'm rather excited about! We did a gig together at Brading Roman Villa once and it was good fun.

In other news I'm currently applying for jobs whilst keeping up with my music and volunteering at the school. :) I'd like a day job so I can support myself and then be able to gig and create music in the evenings. I need the stability!

I'm thinking of doing a cover of this song for YouTube soon (when I get rid of my cold/bunged up nose!) - what do you reckon? I'll have to get on the motorbike. ;)



Lots of love xxxxx

Sunday, 1 December 2013

Somewhere Only We Know

Greetings, lovely people of the blogosphere!

I hope you are all well and looking forward to Christmas. ;) We'll be putting up our decorations soon I think! Have you got an advent calendar? I haven't yet...though this means that when I do get one I'll be able to eat lots of chocolate at once! (Hurrah!)

Though actually I'm trying to get fit at the moment. Yesterday I played an hour of badminton with my Dad, and then did a gig in the evening. Today I woke up feeling SO achey! Lol. Just shows how unfit I am at the moment. That's going to change though - I played badminton at a club before, but stopped because of Uni, so I've got no excuse now!

The other day I did a little video for a John Lewis competition. :) John Lewis do some lovely Christmas adverts - this is the current one...



And the competition winner gets their version of 'Somewhere Only We Know' replaced with the current version (by Lily Allen) on Christmas Day! A rather cool prize!

This is my entry:



I love the song - it's originally by Keane (who are judging the competition! Pretty cool.).

Anyway, TTFN, and I hope you are all well and happy. :)

Sending lots of love xoxoxoxox

Friday, 1 November 2013

Waiting For Time EP - OUT NOW! :D

Hello everyone! :D

I'm sorry it has been a little while! Here's a little update of a post for you, and to let you know that the first EP in my 4 EP collection is out now! Hurrah! :D

Here's the link to my shop where you can download it or purchase a physical copy if you wish to do so. :)

http://hollykirby.bandcamp.com

Also, just to let you know what I'm up to aside from creating CDs - I'm currently volunteering in a high school's music department, gaining some experience - hopefully so that I can do some teacher training, and then become a music teacher. :) The moment I stepped into the school I knew that's what I want to do from day to day. I will keep on doing my music outside of working, of course, and hopefully some gigs too, but I really would like a steady job.

I hope you are all well!

Sending lots of love and a HUGE thank you for your continued support!

Holly xxxxxx

Thursday, 12 September 2013

A letter for Andrew :)

Hello everyone!

I'm currently waiting on the manufacturing company to send me artwork proofs, and then if they're ok they'll start making the CDs! We're in the final stages now, but it seems to be taking forever! Ah well.

In the meantime I'm writing new music and trying to finish half-finished songs! Here's a little song I wrote the other day for my friend Andrew. :) This one's pretty folky, and I really enjoyed recording it actually. I didn't use any MIDI instruments (fake strings or whatever) - just acoustic instruments, so I got out my appalachian dulcimer, guitar (nylon and steel string) and clarinet. I hadn't played my clarinet in ages, but it reminded me how much I enjoyed playing it. I think it blended quite well with the other instruments, so will probably be using it again in the future. :)



Now I'm going to try to finish a very Enya-ish track! It'll be interesting to see what people make of it. It's pretty obviously inspired by her! But I kind of thought...Enya is the ONLY person who makes that sound, and in my opinion, there needs to be more of it out there! The layered vocals/orchestral/synth backing is almost a genre in itself. Like she said when asked which genre her music fits into, it's just 'Enya'. So I'm going to try to write a song in the Enya genre! Lol.

I'll keep you updated about the CD, but hopefully it won't be too long now.

TTFN, hope you're all groovy. :)

Holly xxx

Sunday, 25 August 2013

POSTFEST

Hello everyone!

Yesterday I played at a lovely little festival called POSTFEST, which raises money for the Earl Mountbatten Hospice on the Isle of Wight.
There was such a lovely atmosphere and everyone was so friendly. I had a great time chatting to people afterwards and enjoying the music. Here are a couple of pictures from the day.

(Taken by Donna Woodward Taylor)

Mid song! (Wearing my Tanita Tikaram t-shirt :))


Chatting with my lovely friend Emily Scotcher :)


Re: the EP, I'm still waiting to receive my barcode number so I can get on and send it off to the manufacturers! When I've sent it off I'll be taking pre-orders. :) (Oooooh!)

I hope you're all groovy.

Lots and lots of love xxxxx

Saturday, 17 August 2013

All I Want

Hello to you :)

Today I did this cover video of a song by Kodaline - called 'All I Want'.

I hope you like it. xxx

Friday, 9 August 2013

A Woman You Don't Know Online :)

Hey lovely people :)

At last, 'A Woman You Don't Know' is online and available for download at the following sites!

(Clickable links. :))

iTunes

and...

Amazon

TADAAAA! About time too. Lol. (Not that it was anyone else's fault but mine!)

The production of EP1 is coming along nicely! On-CD design is done...


DOUBLE TADAAAA! Right, back to it. :)

TTFN xxxx

Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Digital release...

Hello lovely people!

A few people have asked me about why I haven't put my songs on iTunes, so I thought I'd do a little post about it.

I originally didn't put 'A Woman You Don't Know' on iTunes because of the song 'Poetry'. Within the song there is a lyric, 'moon wrapped in brown paper' - a direct quote from a poem by Carol-Ann Duffy. I didn't think this would be an issue, the quote being so short, but I thought I ought to check it was actually ok to include it in the song before setting about distributing the album. I wrote to Carol-Ann Duffy's publishing company and they allowed me permission to use the line as long as I only produced 1000 physical copies of the CD. - Their permission did not cover downloads. So I decided not to put the album up on iTunes.

Recently I've come to realise that I should've just put the album up without the problem track! Duh. But then I had to research the best way of getting it on to iTunes, and I'd had good and bad reviews from friends about all the sites I'd considered using. So it was just a bit of a pain in the bottom. Each aggregator company requires payment in some form, whether it's an annual subscription to keep the album on iTunes or a percentage whenever a track is sold.

However, I've now just gone for it and used a company called Ditto Music to put my first album (A Woman You Don't Know) on to iTunes and Amazon (as digital downloads). Apparently it takes between 24 and 72 hours to show up on iTunes, so hopefully I'll be able to provide a link soon.

If all goes well I'll be using these guys to release my EPs too. :) Fingers crossed it all goes to plan!

I've been working solidly the past few days so tonight I'm going to treat myself to a night down the town with my lovely sister and her lovely boyfriend. :) I need to get out a bit more or I'll become a reclusive hippy hermit. Or a crazy cat lady. I'm definitely already on my way.

TTFN lovelies. xxx

What I'm listening to at the moment:

I wish I'd written this song! Though it would be pretty tricky having not met anyone like this. :P Yet. :)

Also, I love Emeli Sandé. What a talented lady, strong and individual - everything I admire.



P.S - I just noticed that at the very beginning her sleeves are turned back, then as she begins to play...TADAAAA! Magic. ;)

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

The EP Collection

Hello lovely people!

I am back to explain the path I've decided to take with my next release.

Rather than making one thirteen (ish) track album I'm going to be making a collection of four five-track EPs. :) I found that I was missing songs off because I felt they didn't really fit in properly with the style of the other songs. So I am now putting them into smaller groups with other songs I feel they work well with.

The first EP is going to be called 'Waiting For Time' and will contain...

1. Let The Fairytale Commence
2. Serendipity
3. You & I
4. The Upper Hand
5. Waiting For Time

I've recorded these five, and yesterday morning I sent them off to Abbey Road (ooh!) to be mastered, and in the evening I got them back, all lovely and polished. :D Now I have to sort out a few technicalities whilst creating the booklet artwork, then I'll be sending EP1 off to the manufacturers! Exciting stuff! When I've sent them off I'll be taking pre-orders through my website. :)

Right, back to work!

Speak soon. xxxx

Friday, 2 August 2013

From now...

RIGHT!

Hello everyone. :)

So...as I said...I'm back from Uni...

Tadaaaa!!



And now, aside from my CD recording, I'm kind of wondering what to do. :-/ One needs to earn the pennies in this world to be self sufficient, so I'm searching for one of those job things. It's a scary thing, having a whole blank canvas before you. It's just me, and the world is my oyster. I want to find myself a little place on the Island...in fact I've already found myself a target rental place! Lol. Not too far from home. I've even picked out the colour scheme/kitchenware in my mind (of course!) but first...I have to get a job. I'll let you know when I manage to find something.

I realise at this point, that motivation is going to be key to my success in whatever I do. In the past there has always been a school or university to keep me on the right track when it came to work, but now it's all me. A scary yet exciting thought!

I'll be back very soon with some more news with regard to the CD(s). ;)

TTFN xxxxx

Monday, 1 July 2013

Hah!

In the folder labelling process I made a little error...can you spot it? ;)

*chortle*


Monday, 24 June 2013

DONE.

Hello to you, to you hello!

So here I am, after a very long time, to say...I am done. Today I received my results back and I got a 2:1. Not the first I was after, but I know I tried my best, and unfortunately in the land of academia that wasn't quite enough. I was 0.9% off the first which is a little frustrating, but oh well.


So now it's time to get on with album number two with a vengeance. I'll keep you posted here with updates and snippets throughout the process. :) Aaah and the album art has been selected! Just here...




And here's a rough, updated track listing:



Smooth Talking
Serendipity
Crazy Rolling Train
Gone For Good
Forever Bound To Fairytales
Go Figure
Waiting For Time
Lost In You
Queen of Hearts
Warmer In May
The Tallest Tree
Hearts & Roses
The Lady & The Past
Let The Fairytale Commence

Most of the songs on there which I've already put out will be re-recorded. I'm planning on doing all the instruments/recording myself, and then sending them off to be mastered. :)


I'm rather excited actually! Once I've created the tracks/artwork and have sent them off to the CD manufacturing company, I'll be setting a release date and making the preorder option available. :) Exciting stuff!


Lots of love xxx 

Friday, 17 May 2013

I'm still here!

Hello lovely people! It's been a while!

I'm still here, but things are getting really busy now. I only have a couple of weeks left of university, and it's all systems go to get all the final bits of coursework done and handed in! I've done my dissertation now! Pheeeeew! But I've still got loads of work left to do. :-S Eek!

So looking forward to being free and able to do what I like! Though also a tad scared...I need to work out how to earn a living. :-S Still, I like a challenge! lol. It will involve music, but I just need to work out in which way.

I'll be starting on my second CD recording and release too. :) I'm looking forward to that, as I've been waiting a long time to have enough time to do it!

I hope you are all well, and I look forward to spending more time with you soon!!

TTFN xxxxx

Thursday, 28 March 2013

#WearAHatDay


Today is #WearAHatDay for Brain Tumour Research. Here's my piccy to raise some awareness. :)

http://www.braintumourresearch.org

Sunday, 17 March 2013

The Man In London Town

Hello all :)

Rather a long time no see! I've been working extra hard on Uni bits and bobs. (Soooooo looking forward to when I can do my own music!) Today I wrote a celtic/folk song as part of my coursework, so here it be! I really enjoyed making this one actually, and I'm looking forward to doing more like it when I'm back home on the Isle. :)



Lots of love xxxx

Saturday, 9 February 2013

Here beginneth the final semester!

Hello lovely people!

So the semester has started up again, and we're in full swing! We've had our work for the rest of University assigned, and now I just have to get it all done to the very best of my ability. (What is the best of my ability? How do I find out?! AAH!)

I got my CMC grade back for last semester - that's the one that included "The Upper Hand", "The Dialling Tone", "Raindrops", and also "Minuscule - Grasshopper Catapult". I got a 67 for those collectively...3 marks off a first, grrr! However, I've worked out (using a spreadsheet...oooh get meeee!) that if the only mark that I'm waiting for from last semester comes back as 65 or above, then I'll have got 70 for the first semester. Then, (as year 2 counted for 30%) I need to get at least 74 this semester to get a first. I so, so want to prove to myself that I can do it, so I'm going full steam ahead on the train of academia!!!!! (does that even make sense?) (You get the idea anyhow.)

I got an 87 for an academic poster that I designed/presented in a group with two other girlies, hence the boost there! They did the content and I did the design...(that was allowed, and the way we wanted it to be. Lol. I didn't just chicken out of the writing.)

This is it:



Anyway...the new semester...

Our new lecturer for CMC is keen for us to learn coding, so that we can be extra creative in our musical practice. Musicians have starting releasing apps rather than albums...Björk is a rather good example...so he believes it'd be useful for us to learn Javascript. It's pretty daunting! But also quite exciting. I'm using a site called "Codecademy" at the moment, and I'm really enjoying it.

As well as that, we've got our DI2 module (Digital Improvisation 2) in which we learn about...well...using technology in a live musical setting...for an example see Imogen Heap in this little set up...

(This is the more singer/songwritery take on it - but something DJy (definitely a word) would be equally as fitting.)



Just out of interest...what is your take on this kind of technology-based performance? Do you think this is an interesting development in performance*, or a bit too 'different' to the 'normal' acoustic/band set up? In this video she's prepared a lot of the music beforehand, and is also manipulating/looping on the spot.

So there are two of our modules...another one is the dissertation module...and the other is Anglo-Celtic Folk Song Traditions. We have an exam for the latter! I haven't done an exam in ages...quite scary actually.

Anyhoo...I'd better go and do some more work! My friend (and coursemate) Christine is coming over soon to practise for DI2. :) We're doing a performance in Monday's lecture of Massive Attack's "Teardrop" using looping, Christine's harp, and my voice, (and some keyboard effects!). Maybe we'll do a little recording. :)

Also, I'm cooking tuna pasta. A student delicacy! ;)

TTFN xxxxxxxx

*Speaking of developments in performance, the video below is one of Imogen Heap using gloves to play a song...the song begins around 13.40 I think - the rest of the video is her explaining how they work. :)



Saturday, 2 February 2013

Thoughts for after...

Greetings all. :)

Recently I've been having a think about what I'm doing after Uni. It's a scary thought really. Do I go home to the Island? Do I stay in Guildford? It's a tricky one...but after much consideration I've decided to return to the Kirby household on the Island.

From there I'll be making music most of the time, and will hopefully be able to get a part time job to support myself. :) I do like Guildford, but what makes me happy is being at home, close to my family, along with the lovely Island scenery and sense of community. I'm also hoping that I'll be able to take a course or two at the college there...just to pursue a few interests that have been put on hold whilst I've been at Uni.

But right now, the final semester is just about to start...the final push before the end of University education! It's all systems go. Soon I get my marks back for the first semester...I'll let you know when I know! *Fingers crossed they're ok*

Sending lots of love and virtual hugs to you through the computer screen! I hope you're good. :)

xxxxxxxxxxxxx

P.S - I haven't forgotten about the album cover song! - It's in progress - I've got the bare bones of the song written...I just need to record it. :)

Friday, 18 January 2013

Album Covers Mini Competition! :)

So here we have it! An assortment of totally randomly generated album covers! Many thanks to everyone who submitted! I've posted the entries below and numbered them. - It would be fantabulous if you could now post your favourite entry's number in the comments section on the blog post!

Tadaaaa!

(Voting closes on Wednesday 23rd January)

1.


2.


3. 


4. 


5.


6.


 7.


8.


9.

Thank you again! :D (and if, for some reason, your entry's not up here, please feel free to have a shout at me via Facebook and I'll try to locate it! 
xxxxxxx

Thursday, 17 January 2013

The Upper Hand

Good day to you lovely people! :D I thought I'd just post this video for you! I finished making it this morning. The blokey in it is my lovely housemate, Alex Harden (aka SubsonicWinter) - it was a lot of fun to make! I really hope you like it. :)

Lots of love xxxxxxxxxxxx


P.S - I haven't forgotten about the album covers. ;) I'll post them up here tomorrow, and the voting shall commence! ;) xxxxxxx

Sunday, 6 January 2013

A little album cover game/competition!

Good day hello good evening good morning good afternoon to you all!

How is everyone?

So it's only a few days until I'm back in the land of University. After that it's out into the big wide world I go. What a scary thought!

*Moving on...*

For this post I thought we'd try a little game/competition thing. This may, or may not work. As is the case with most things!

This is one that has been circulating for a while, but it's quite good fun. I've done it once before...now listening carefully. ;)

We are going to...CREATE OUR OWN ALBUM COVERS! Wooo!!! (Really, I can hear your cheers from here.)

The idea is...that you send your randomly generated album cover to me, I'll post it here on the blog, and we vote for the best one in the comments section. Then I will compose a song that I feel fits the style of the album cover! Just a bit of fun really. :) If you wish to partake, please complete the following steps...

1. Go to Wikipedia and select "Random"...or just follow this link to do exactly the same: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Random
The first article that comes up is the name of your band.

2. Now visit this page, http://www.quotationspage.com/random.php3 scroll to the bottom, and click "New Random Quotations"
The last four OR five words of the last quote on the page make up your album title.

3. Now visit this page, http://www.flickr.com/explore/interesting/7days and no matter what it is...
The third picture along is the one for your album cover.

4. Now put all the different elements together, using something like Photoshop, Microsoft Word, Pages, PowerPoint - anything that allows you to do so.*

5. Send your completed album cover (don't be shy!) to me via Facebook (just click the tab at the top of the blog that says Facebook) or email it to me if you already have my address!

And that's it! Please send me your album cover by January 13th, and if you have any problems, please write them in the comments section below.

As I said...don't be shy! We'll all have a good giggle together in the comments section I imagine! ;)

Good luck and I hope to see some truly awkward, hilarious, cute, sophisticated album covers very soon. ;)

Lots of love xxxxxxxxx

*(If you don't have any of this software, fear not! Just send me the links to your band name, title, and photo, and I'll put them all together for you. - You can reach me by email, of just send me a message via Facebook. :))

Thursday, 3 January 2013

Minuscule - Grasshopper

Hello lovely people :)

Today I've been working on the music and sound design for an animation - another piece for my coursework. The volume is a little low at the moment, but hopefully it's not too bad. What do you think of it? I had fun making it! The "Minuscule" animations are a really clever little series actually.



Wednesday, 2 January 2013

2013

So here we have it...nice to meet you.

2012 was filled with so many ups and downs, and I said goodbye to it in the knowledge that I had grown up more in 2012 than any other year. And as the end of University approaches, I am more aware than ever that to simply dream of doing something is not enough.

I've always been a fan of the saying "if you can dream it, you can do it", and now it's time to put the "doing" into action. Recently I've realised that when University ends, I'm out there on my own, and that's quite a scary thought! What do I do? Where do I live? How do I make a living?

I haven't set any New Years Resolutions, as I know that by the end of the week I would've forgotten them. However, I've chosen to follow a process called "Goal Mapping". I've been reading a book (called "Goal Mapping" (funnily enough)) by Brian Mayne (an Islander :)). I saw him talking at a conference when I was in high school, and recently looked him up and bought the book. It's a really interesting process, based on stimulating the left and right side of the brain to work together, and positive thinking. Here's his website if you're interested: http://www.liftinternational.com

It's something that I think I'll be able to get into, and not just forget about, like I normally do with my New Years Resolutions.

My goals include...graduating, creating an album, and becoming what I regard as healthy (20st should be fine. Joke! I just mean cooking and eating good meals and making an effort to exercise.)

I'm definitely looking forward to being FREEEEEEEEEEEE in June, so I can make the music that I want to again and not worry about whether it's electronic enough.

I'd best be off now...I have some more coursework to do...grrrr...it won't be long I guess. :)

TTFN xxxxxxx

Violet "helping" me to write my blog...

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Raindrops :)

HAPPY NEW YEEEEAR! :D

I hope the first day of the new year has been a good one for you. Mum and I went for a walk in the winter sunshine earlier today, and I finished off a song for my coursework. :)

(Look! I saw a horse! 1, 2...3 in fact. ;))



This is my coursework song, called "Raindrops" and here it be...


A little more electronic - specifically for the course. I'll be back tomorrow with a bit more of an update and plans for the new year. :)

Have you set any New Years Resolutions? ;)

TTFN xxxx