December 11, 2020

Late yesterday evening, I’d began reading an MA thesis by Peter T Ford, entitled ‘The Compositional Style of Keith Emerson in Tarkus (1971)’. It’s a piece of music that I know very well, and which has accompanied me through life since my mid-teens. Clement Greenberg read music criticism avidly. He appreciated its approach to dealing entirely formally and analytically with an entirely abstract mode of creativity. I didn’t pretend to understand all the technicalities, but I learned a great deal about how to write objectively and descriptively in an engaging and illuminating manner. (Ah! The nostalgia of a typewritten text.):

8.00 am: A communion. 8.30 am: A review of the day and the list of those duties that needed to be acquitted before the vacation. 9.00 am: An MA art history dissertation tutorial. The final tutorial of the year.

9.30 am: On with adminology: chase-up, confirm, decline, projected thinking, and an academic reference. 10.30 am: Back to the Noisome Spirits website. 11.45 pm: A career development and research admin consultation with Professor Meyrick. 12.30 pm: On with the website infill. The grey sky and drizzle had dispersed; cirrocumulus clouds now straddled the width of the window overlooking my studio mixing desk. 1.30 pm: Breaking with my established routine, I took my constitutional while the sun still shone.

2.30 pm: Futurology: I wrote a letter that finalised a decision and put into action a plan that have been in the air since 2017. (A red-letter day in a small way.) 3.00 pm: Emails arrived in my inbox with the rapidity of Christmas cards on the door mat in the age before the internet. (‘Last orders, please!’) I had to decide which should be answered now and which could be postponed. On, then, with the website.

7.30 pm: There’re some emails that couldn’t wait until the New Year for a response. Too much hung on them. I rounded-up all that I could. This had been the ‘fever term’. And we’d survived it. Had someone back in March described to the School’s students and staff what would be asked of them in terms of the reception and delivery of teaching during the pandemic, they’d have fainted at the prospect. However, that which appears undoable may yet prove doable in the doing of it.

A diary sabbatical until January 4, 2021.

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December 10, 2020
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January 4, 2021

2 Comments. Leave new

  • Dear John Harvey,
    I am a music professor working on my self-evaluaton for promotion and was working on my website to see how I could “pad” it for relevance, and I googled myself. A few clicks in I found found reference to my work here in your work! I am deeply honored and humbled to have found this, and that it meant enough to you to post and even mention it. Thank you for doing so–made my day. Be well!


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