Of Recording and Air Conditioning

Over the last week I have been recording the remaining items from the Six Images. I'm pretty sure I've got them now, and I can now start the rather tedious process of listening to all the various takes, and editing them into something musical. Hopefully this won't take more than a couple of weeks. Editing recorded music always takes longer than actually making the recordings. There's no fast way of assessing what you've done -- everything has to be listened to, usually several times. If there's just one good take of a section then it's easy, but deciding which is best between three good takes can take quite a while.

You may have noticed that this took me a little bit longer than I intended. The delay has been down to my piano. Since the piano has been in the music room, it has not been happy, and we've really struggled to keep it tuned. Discussing this with my piano tuner (the very good Norman Motion) we reached the conclusion that it was probably down to fluctuations in the climate: over the last year or so I've measured a temperature range of between about 13°C and 28°C, while the relative humidity has varied between about 35% and 70%. Which is too much variation. So this spring I took the rather drastic step of installing air conditioning (in Scotland!), and thus creating a new, and more stable, climate. If you've ever moved a piano into a new environment, you'll know you need to leave it to settle for a few weeks before getting it tuned, and so this made my tuning problems much worse!

Did it work? Well, only time will tell. The piano has settled down, been tuned and is holding up ok so far. Hopefully it will all be worth it. I'm certainly looking forward to getting back to composing and playing on an instrument that sounds like it's meant to be musical!


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