Tascam DP-008EX.


It's a while since I posted but as usual getting studio time has been incredibly difficult. Every time I've tried to spend time in the studio I've been pulled out. In August on my birthday really cheered me up; I popped out to the wheelie bin very early morning; as I returned I was shocked to find our entire two roomed rear extension now detached from the bungalow wall; I'd just got on top of all the big heavy jobs looking forward at last to a nice birthday putting in some violin practice. The severe heat of summer had dried out the foundation clay hence subsidence; there was an 1/2" wide gap up the three walls and along the full roof joint. We've lived here 35 years so just how downright unlucky can we get; earlier in the year storms damaged a big tree resulting in me felling and disposing of 15 big trees working on our steeply sloping garden in sleet showers; now this.

Being fully insured I tried to contact LV Insurance by phone but with at least a 20 minute queue I'd have been quicker joining hands to contact the dead and hung up. I then filled in their online claim form and waited and waited and waited; this brought us to Bank holiday so I sent LV a message cancelling the claim; now I received a very rapid reply it still the bank holiday asking me to confirm cancellation; so much for LV Insurance.

I started work repairing the wall and ceiling damage thinking for once I'll get a roofer in for the roof repair so contacted a local highly recommended roofer who was to visit but he proved to be the invisible man. I completed the wall repairs then repaired the roof joint finally the ceiling joint working on my own with Bron as support with mugs of tea. Cost of excess on the LV policy would be £1000 had they carried out repairs assuming we lived long enough actual cost of repairs using top quality materials £400; Stuff LV insurance.

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From inside our extension the opened up wall joint which actually didn't surprise me in the least with my bad luck.

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It made a mess of the random stone wall here joints chopped out ready to be pointed.

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Some of the pointing completed.

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Not only the extension suffered heat damage glass beading shrank and door joints opened a bit so I also had the front and two wooden garage doors to repair as a bonus Benjamin Moore no longer stock the colours seen so all three doors are now repaired and black. This didn't half cheer me up when all I wanted was just a bit of peace to play my violins; at last the jobs are once again completed and I've spent a bit of time in the studio.

My dream/obssession was to play the song Lara's Theme (Somewhere my love) as sung by Andy Williams; yesterday I achieved my dream in spite of every set back suffered this year and played the full song. Being a novice violin player I can't read music so as I usually do when faced with a problem I find a solution of my own;

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Here's what I dreampt up making violin playing so much easier to understand; each song word is on top below are the string and note to play; it work's a treat for me and being printed in large font #22 I can see it at a glance; the only downside was the amount of experimentation coming up with this then painstakingly converting from the original score I bought through eBay.

I used my Yamaha YEV -104 violin; Yamaha THR 10 amplifier; Rode mic; and Tascam etc for practicing and recording then I had to learn how to transfer the sound from the bow onto YouTube another huge learning curve; I wasn't too bothered about selecting my best recording I was more interested in just getting a video sorted; I used Audacity & VEED for a bit of editing and WOW at last a bit of my playing on YouTube; as I say this was just an experiment; having succeeded I'm now concentrating on playing my violins.

From August just over a year ago I've put up with so many problems but now I've succeeded in my dream I'm over the moon; I'm now 75 and as keen as ever to play my violins it being such a wonderful challenging hobby. to add to my endless fun a few months ago I went deaf in my right ear for a solid week then two further weeks of drops and ear popping which was horrible.

I'm sure if I can learn to play a violin then anyone with sufficient determination also can.

Kind regards, Colin.