OK lovely weekend. I am happy, Musa is happy, Atilla's wife is happy. Atilla was apparently in tears of joy that he didn't get IPP'd. Incarceration has had a transforming effect, long may it continue. Obviously I wonder if our country hadn't been involved in ariel bombardment and occupation of Islamic countries whether Hamid and Atilla would have said these words. I think they are British and Britain made them. It was only when the tapes got released that I heard what I thought of in court as a non commital mumble after Hamid's "breakfast" comments as Atilla saying "I know." I am glad now, that the Police moved when they did. Musa said in court that the Police knew that Atilla was falling away from Hamid's group and that he wasn't the emir, still they recorded what Atilla said.
Obviously the Police can only try and stop atrocities in this country they can't solve the wider picture we are all a part of which has involved unaccounted for atrocities in Iraq who no one will be brought to justice for. That is up to us. I hope Atilla will be able to maintain his Islamic faith and move in a more positive direction. Musa tells me he is reading the Koran properly inside and it has been a revelation to him. When he gets out he wants to concentrate entirely on his family who he is sorry he has neglected.
I didn't realise until Saturday quite how much tension this has been for me since 2003. It could have ended much much worse in ways I don't want to think about. Saturday night we managed to score a full Tama drum kit off of Freecycle. I knew it was worth joining Hampstead freecycle as when I was squatting up there I found expensive French cookware and suchlike thrown in the street. The only thing the kind family whose son has just left for college asked was that we make a donation to Gt. Ormond st childrens hospital so the next gig will be for that.
We picked it up from a street almost parallel to Bishop's Avenue and went off to play a gig in North London with some of the Random Artist posse. I wasn't sure how we would be received as every other act involved rappers. We finally took to the stage about 1 AM, playing into a techno, almost gabba track the DJ was playing. Me and fastfingers particularly enjoy this as we often jam along to techno, but on a proper rig we could actually match it in terms of fullness of sound. The DJ managed to flick the cross fader a couple of times crashing us in at full tilt which felt fucking great.
I think this is the first time we have played through a proper techno rig as opposed to a band PA and it really payed off especially for Mr fastfingers. I could hear every slap and the whole phasing effect. It was like techno bass guitar. I think we need to buy one of these rigs. Unfortunately I couldn't really hear myself properly as the monitor didn't work and my amp just isn't loud enough to monitor from. I could hear when I was playing the wrong note, when I played the right one it slipped into the mash. Obviously in a situation where if you can't hear yourself you are doing the right thing is not ideal but I'm not bothered as we had probably the best audience at any gig we have done so far, we jumped about like lunatics and the dancers were fucking fantastic.
A few people said the set was a bit short and I got lost a bit for the slow stuff in the middle as I don't know how to play funk but we got a lot of good feedback from the audience and the "What the fuck is this" looks when we started were priceless. I particularly love the way the dancers cook dinner and have a chat in the afternoon before the gig, and when I open the dressing room door to tell them we are about to go on they are fully costume and colour coordinated, totally original every time as if they have been meticulously designed by a stylist.
It's really nice to see the Random Artist guys, crusty and anti-establishment as ever still in spontaneous messy creativity mode, focusing on what they can achieve with African children, totally self-funded by parties such as these rather than what they can't achieve protesting here. Do watch the film Invisible Children if you can. Whatever your political persuasion, the stories of the child soldiers of Northern Uganda will move you. There is a "makings of" on google video but it's a bit shit compared to the real thing which you really must watch.
I have turned such a corner here I have been thinking about leaving this blog here and starting a new one. Obviously I'd still like to finish a film when Atilla gets out. Thanks for the encouragement from all sides of the Political spectrum.
I am currently working on a gonzo edit of stuff from Hamid's friends and enemies at Speakers Corner last weekend. I've been a bit tardy but it will be up soon.
Good to hear that Atilla is trying to cope and finding solace in the Koran.
I still hold the view that our country’s involvement in Islamic countries shouldn't be a justification for a minority of Muslims to show dissent and disapproval by inciting others to commit acts of terror or Jihad activity. Whatever happened to good old fashion protesting and picketing?
We all have a part to play in stopping these atrocities – we all need to support HMG in combating Islamic terror both here and abroad.
Anyway, you know I have thoroughly enjoyed your blog and remain a fan.
Dave, been a while. Since reviewing my previous posts I have discovered an ace Brit, Pat Condell. www.patcondell.com I am sure you have heard of him. If not, you would get yer kix.
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