All I Can Say is, “WOW!”

Tonight is the closing ceremony of the Rio Olympic Games 2016. It has been an incredible 2 weeks of competitive sport of the highest order, played in a wonderful spirit among all the competitors and athletes.

But, as a British man, I must single out, if I am to single out any team for special praise, TeamGB for pulling off the greatest performance by the team in 108 years! Never in history has a host nation gone on to improve upon their hosting performance at the next games. And, never, since 1984, have TeamGB ever finished in front of China in the overall medals table, until now! What a team! What a games! A huge congratulations to every single team member for a fantastic team effort.

Team GB Medal Table (Top 10)

Like the London Games four years ago, my memory is overwhelmed by some staggering individual performances, Usain Bolt’s Triple Treble of Golds, and Mo Farrah’s Double Double, to name but two. London gave us 65 medals total, with 29 Golds. Rio surpassed the total by one (with, as at time of publish, one further guaranteed at least silver medal to come), but fell short of Golds by 2.

Can TeamGB beat that in Tokyo 2020?! I really do believe so. The trend is upward since Beijing 2008, and we blasted that games out of the water this time!

So, what has these games meant for me? Well, it has blown me away with just what a human being can achieve when pushed to extremes, and it has inspired my kids to give some of these sports a serious go. As a former sportsperson, who is married to a former gymnast, the level of inspiration in my kids is thrilling.

The next entry will be somewhat less sporty as the dust on these Olympic Games settles. Until next time…………

Summer is Icummin In……

The kids are on holiday from School and nursery, and thus far, the Scottish weather has been mostly……predictable. Nevertheless, we have been having a lot of fun building “film sets” with duplo and lego blocks for all the kids’ Star Wars and Police lego sets to interact. It has kept them amused for literally HOURS! The kids have been getting into playing on the Wii Fit, trying to out-do each other for setting time records, speed records and bizarrely, their new favourite – ski jumping distances!

Meanwhile, I have been enjoying promoting my EP and being a domestic deity, and returning to making mixing and mastering tutorial videos for my studio YouTube Channel. My good friend Johnny Geib and I have been finally getting out some podcast episodes for our Songwriting Simplified Podcast (which can be found HERE).

Having really enjoyed the entire process of making my EP, I am already finding the itch to write for the next one is needing scratched! I had originally planned that from now on, I would release one 5 song EP every year, and a full 9 or 10 song album every couple of years or so. We’ll see how that goes!

My EP, called Belonging To Tomorrow, is available from HERE, and looks like this:

JonnyLipshamCDCover

With thanks to the awesome Mr George Gibson for his graphics and artwork.

Sorry this is a short one….again, but with the kids being at home, life has become extra busy!

Until next time………….

Unless You Live Under A Rock….

Hey friends!

The last month has been INSANELY busy! In the UK, as most of the world will be aware, we had a referendum on remaining/leaving the European Union. Whilst also being very busy with work, and the kids school years drawing to an end, I have been voraciously campaigning for a Remain vote.

Sadly, and much to my amazement, perplexion and complete bewilderment, the people of the United Kingdom voted, by a very narrow majority to leave the European Union. At present, I have been so bowled over by this result, I have yet to form a rational, cool and objective response. As a result this post will end here. Apologies. Normal service will resume in due course.

 

Belonging To Tomorrow!

The EP is OUT! Yaaaay!!! Three months of hard work, and the EP sounds EPIC!

The EP is called “Belonging To Tomorrow“, and is available from my new online store HERE

JonnyLipshamCDCover

This time, I went for a somewhat different pricing policy. I have been reading and hearing a lot about a strategy often referred to as ‘name your price’. The idea is that artists allow their audience to decide how much the work is worth to them. So, we are talking about VALUE for money. If the consumer thinks my music is worth something, and I am worth supporting in creating more music, then they will invest in me and my work over the long haul; while it remains completely possible for him/her to also edit the suggested price to zero and get the EP for free if they so choose.

I decided to create two different editions of the EP: a standard edition (Name Your Price) and a deluxe edition (Fixed Price). Here’s how each is different:

Standard Edition – EP in either High Quality mp3 or HD wav formats 
                                   –  PDF Liner Notes

EP Standard Edition Store Pic

Deluxe Edition – EP in either High Quality mp3 or HD wav formats 
                              –  PDF Liner Notes
AND…..
– 24 minute “Making of….” video
– selection of photos taken during tracking sessions.

EP Deluxe Edition Store Pic

I am very pleased with the EP. I really actually believe that this represents my best work to date as a songwriter, recording artist, musician and also as a mixing and mastering engineer.

I took a very fresh and different approach to the songs this time around, through all phases, I worked hard to try and make all that I have learned and gained from my influences and make it my own, with my own sound and my own way of doing things.
I think I have made some big leaps forward with this record. The next one will be even BETTER!

I am planning on releasing an EP every year from here on out, and also a full length album every two years or so.

So, dearest Reader, please go and check it out HERE. If you like what you hear, please consider purchasing it. I would really appreciate it a LOT!

Until next time……………

 

Many Apple Logies

So….it has been a couple of months without a blog post. Sorry about that! Has everyone been well? Good!

What have I been up to the last two months? You ask. Well…..Mostly I have been writing  a bunch of new songs,and then recording and mixing them for a new EP that comes out on May 8th at 8pm (UK time). I like the number 8. Not sure why though.

That has been the main focus of my time. The EP is called Belonging To Tomorrow and features myself plus guest musicians from the UK and around the world. My good friend George Gibson has create some awesome art and graphics work for the EP, for which I owe him way more than just his fee!

Wanna take a wee look?…………..

JonnyLipshamCDCover

Awesome!

I have already pre-released a song from the EP for free, which I posted to Soundcloud, to give folks a wee fore-taste of the record……

 

Tomorrow night, I will be mastering the record ready for release on Sunday, and then on Friday and Saturday I will be creating the bonus content for the “Deluxe” version of the EP.

So, this Sunday, May 8th 2016, this blog will be dominated slightly by celebrating the release of Belonging To Tomorrow. Until then……………. Take care, folks!

There Is No Fork….

Bent Fork

Hey folks! Apologies for the  delay in posting another episode of the blog. Been a busy time here!

So, you are probably thinking that my bizarre title may be vaguely related to the movie The Matrix, where the main character, Neo, is challenged to see his reality from a different perspective. A kid is apparently bending spoons with the power of his mind with incredible ease. Neo goes to watch him, amazed and intrigued. The boy says to him:

“Don’t try to bend the spoon. That’s impossible. Instead, realise the truth: there is no spoon. It is not the spoon that bends, it is YOU.”

I admit, I was kind of thinking about that film and its fascinating philosophical ideas. But not entirely. You see, I have seen Uri Geller apparently bending spoons in a similar fashion. But……I have never seen anyone attempt to bend a fork.

Now THAT is interesting! Why not? I have no idea. Where am I going with this, I hear you ask. To which I reply, “Pardon? Speak up a bit.”. Seriously though. I do have a point.

Life can be tough and perplexing a lot of the time. Things that you think should work out, don’t; and things that you think never will happen do, for better or worse. So, what am I learning from life at the moment, with all the confusing things and frustrating things that happen along the way? I am learning the valuable, more valuable than gold, lesson that life is one long opportunity-laden learning experience. A chance to discover something new about myself, about God, and about other people; and how I can learn better to get on with all three parties!

All too often, I face a disappointment or set back with a grumble and a “how dare you!”, rather than a, “well, that is totally gutting, BUT……teach me! What can I learn from this, and how can I develop better for the next time? What does this teach me about me, about God and about other people? What does it teach me about how I handle situations? How can I handle them better? I want to learn! I want to grow! I want to be better at being me, and better at interacting with the people I care about the most: God, my family, my friends, my Church family, my neighbours, my fellow Edinburgh citizens.

Now, I do not do at all well in social situations. I find them extremely stressful and hard. And I end up exhausted by them at the end of them. But, I have, in recent years sought to deliberately put myself in those kind of situations. It is my way of bending the spoon, so-to-speak.

Do you, dear readers, have ways in which you seek to “bend the spoon” of your lives? If so, or even if not, leave a comment below. I am really interested in beginning a discussion on how we face our challenges, and how we allow ourselves to keep humble and have a teachable heart.

Until next time………..

New Year, New Era….

Happy New Year, belatedly, to all my readers! Thanks for stopping by and reading my ramblings, rants and musings over the last year. I appreciate your support, and I value your comments on the things I write about, so please keep them coming.

2016 has got off to a racing start! The decorations are down, the kids are back at school, and our normal routines are re-established. In some ways, this year will be just like last year, but there are some exciting new things on the horizon for us.

We also have to finally close the book on our life connected to Cornwall. At last, my parents have finally found a buyer for their house and will very soon by moving up to Scotland to be much closer to us! That is exciting, and we are seriously glad it is happening, but there is a wee tinge of sadness about this book coming to an end. Cornwall has been a MASSIVE part of my life, even though I left there in 1994, I have regularly summered there. I began my music career there. I had the best music teachers in Bob Peters and John Austin, who encouraged and inspired me enormously. I would possibly not be doing what I do now, if it had not been for them. I was encouraged by my Dad to get into Cricket at a very early age, and, down in Cornwall, I had some great coaches who provided some wonderful opportunities for me to play for my local club and explore playing at county level. Although I no longer play the sport, due to a number of injuries, I still love to watch and write about Cricket. If I could name but two of those coaches, I would like to thank Nigel Bishop and Dennis Roberts for encouraging me and giving me chance to shine.

On the studio front, I am working with a client on his forthcoming EP, I am continuing to work closely with Johnny Geib developing songwriting training resources and content and I am also working on my own EP, which I am aiming to release in the Spring this year. I am looking to fill my diary with a lot more clients this year and really develop the business in to a successful profit-making concern.

2016 is shaping up to be an amazing year! We are looking forward to seeing all that God will do in and through us as a family, and all the adventures we can get ourselves caught up in! If that interests you – and I will be documenting it all right here – then, please, follow me! Subscribe to this blog, my studio YouTube Channel, check out my Studio website HERE…….AND….please leave your comments!

Until next time…….See ya!