Started Live Streaming, but No-ones Watching? Isolation Thoughts #3

Started live streaming, but no-ones watching?
In short, keep creating and keep sharing. It’ll find it’s way to those who’ll find value in your art and connect with it.

I heard this quote somewhere, I forget where, but when I heard this, it changed my approach and attitude towards social media.

It’s not about how many followers you have, it’s about how you gained those followers. 

This is so important when it comes down to your audience on any social media platform. Depth over width. Because that one live stream where no-one watches for 80% of it, could find it’s way to one new person who completely connects with your art. Who then follows your art religiously and rewatches all your previous live streams, because that first time they saw you, they were having the worst of days and your music, your words, your art brought them so much joy – now that’s magic. It happens, the internet is a maze filled with continuous live streams, there are so many platforms and so many possibilities to find completely new things. Two people watching your performance could share it on their blogs which has a combined 10k followers, which then brings 1,000 people to your next live stream which then grows and grows. But that can’t happen if you don’t show up. It’s like a job, if you don’t show up to work, you’re not going to get paid.

It applies to general performance too, I found this as a busker. Once whilst busking in Worcester, I did about four hours worth of busking and barely made £10. I floated between not caring and enjoying the ambient soundscapes I was making with my bass, to caring so much feeling unloved and invisible. As I was feeling that invisibleness, a girl passed by ‘Lucy’ her name, and took a video of a song and picture of my sign. I forget what she said, but it was around the lines of “Thank you for making my evening better”, that was about four years ago, she’s been to many of my gigs since, follows all the social media platforms and has become a great friend. Now a connection to an art form like this is wonderful when you find a sound or an image or a voice that you feel passionate about, it’s amazing. Your art does that, providing you put it out into the universe, it’ll find it’s way to someone and connect with them in a wonderful way that gifts them joy and value.

That one person, that one connection beats a thousand people watching and all forgetting the next day.

So my advice, whatever it is you love doing, your art, your words, your music – put it out there across the many platforms online, at any location you can, out into the universe. Keep on creating and sharing it, ignore counting your followers and putting yourself down when no one is watching. Focus on the followers you do have and the connection you and your art have with them. Because that’s what’s important, the connection your art has with others, the value it brings to them.

Create.


I streamed on Twitch today, via my laptop whilst streaming on Periscope and Instagram on my phone. I enjoy the multiple platform streaming, it’s like how when you busk in a town, your music bounces across different streets. The music is on a hunt to find an ear that enjoys the sounds. I’ve also discovered from streaming, that it is a great way to connect with others who may never get a chance to see you live. So it’s worth doing for any art form 🙂

Link to live stream;

https://www.twitch.tv/videos/585612058


Thank you for reading through! If you’ve enjoyed the words and you feel it’s brought you value, drop a comment let me know or share it on socials 🙂

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chatfieldtheaudiojournal.bandcamp.com/

Best wishes,

James

 

Lockdown Thoughts #2 in a song. I Miss Busking

Lyrics inspired by the recent blog post on Lockdown thoughts + a musical idea inspired by a meme = this song above.

I first wrote this (below) and built from the ideas to form a full song (above).

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This meme was sent by a friend in relation to our current situation – these are difficult times – indeed they are. So I figured if I could write a riff in those times, but at a slower speed (90bpm). I could in some way respond with; ‘these are difficult times, but if you take it slow, then it’ll be slightly easier’, which is true in regards to this riff. It is also true in regards to our actions, we all need to slow down, staying indoors slows us down as we cannot go out and do all things that this world allows us to.

I imagine this lockdown to be much longer than first ordered, and as the world learns to slow down and stay indoors, we’ll step closer to a healthier world – I hope. It’ll be easier if we all slow down, so – stay the $%&* inside


I’ve truly been missing busking,
…and as I sat in thought on this, a busking buddy messaged me saying she felt like a lost soul, that her heart wasn’t into making music. As buskers, we have both lost that spontaneous interaction with the passing world, we’re missing the smiles from strangers, the compliments from people you’d never expect to enjoy your music. Although there is online busking, it has nowhere near the same interaction as ‘actual busking’ like this – spontaneous dancing – or this – spontaneous jam sessions. I struggle with ‘online busking’ somewhat, enjoying the playing but I find it strange to be inside playing alone in a room, to a virtual audience who are also inside. I can only imagine their smiles and dancing, imagination is helpful. But it may quite possibly be the future of busking, so I’d better compromise.

She said she felt a lost soul, I said it might be that your soul just needs to do other things right now. To not beat yourself up for not continuously playing/making music, that productivity comes in many forms, even resting with meditation or reading, speaking with family and friends is all productive for the soul.

This time now is for us to slow down, and that might be taking a break from what you’d be doing daily in an ‘opened world’, reflecting on it or even forgetting it for a moment. Don’t beat yourself up, do what it is that you feel you need to do right now, as long as it’s not detrimental to your soul.

And although I have been missing busking, it’s been a good time for me to sit and work on new material, to look at cover songs and to break apart some of my songs to fine-tune them and develop better techniques. Which I usually don’t make time for as I normally focus my time on getting to the streets and just playing.


That’s all I really wanted to say for now. My lockdown today will mostly be filled with learning cover songs and annoying my family until they finally succumb to a game of scrabble!

If you’ve any suggestions for cover songs, comment below and I’ll see what I can do 🙂

Wishing you a good day! Stay safe and stay at home!

James


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Lockdown Thoughts #1

This now is a time like no other, all my family members tell me how they’ve never experienced anything like this. It is such a strange time, to be locked inside and socialising in this new age, group video chats in virtual bars. Festivals closed, concerts and cinemas all locked down. I can’t imagine what it must be like on the frontline of all of this.

During this time I wish good health for you, your family and friends. Now is a time for us to connect more than ever and be strong in this! And although the world has been flipped and we’re in lockdown. My best advice is to not delve into screens promoting the worst of things. I’ve discovered that the news from multiple sources is just rotatory articles of the same stories, mostly designed to scare us and bring negativity. Of course, it’s good to know the core ideas to practice and live by, stay at home, avoid unnecessary travel to other buildings, wash you hands etc. But if you read the reports from all over the world you may end up falling down endless rabbit holes of darkness, and it’s not enjoyable.

The past couple of weeks I’ve woken up and fallen into this sunken worry of the world, that glued me to the mattress in this anxious saddened state. As I’ve probably consumed too much of this worldwide horrific news.

Instead, turn this off and focus on the time that we’ve been gifted. It might be hard to see it as a gift. But if we do, it’s an opportunity to connect deeper with our family and friends. A chance to sit still, slow down and jump into our minds and understand ourselves. A chance for nature to take a break from humans relentless travel and to finally breath.

A good friend virtual slapped/snapped me out of continuous delving into the Newsline rabbit holes. She said, “As soon as you wake, get up, take a deep breath, close your eyes, think of the good that you have now and the good that you will make, then get out, shake your body and start working towards good things“.

This lockdown is a standstill, a time to slow down and reflect on our individual, communal and worldwide actions. Learn from our mistakes, understand our minds and begin to plant new and good thoughts to elevate our futures and build a better world.

Ideas on what to do with so much time indoors;

  • Meditate on our thoughts and understand our own mind.
  • Relax and still the mind, body and soul. Perhaps by reading a book, or sitting in the garden, watching the birds.
  • Create/explore ideas. Draw, paint, sculpt, sing, dance, write, design or recycle a bunch of junk and create a junk robot out of old tins, boxes and plant pots.
  • Join together as a family, play games, share stories, share recipes, host your own TV game show. Connect deeper.
  • Write that book you’ve always spoken about. Learn that language you’ve intended to for years. Exercise, start yoga, tai-chi.
  • Clear out that room and paint a mural on the wall. Find all your old photographs and create a collage across the kitchen wall.
  • Live stream something you enjoy doing? Start a twitch.tv channel on playing chess against your Dad.
  • Write your own list – ‘100 Things to Do in Isolation’.

My own intentions;

  • Write plenty of music and learn cover songs. Prepare a set of songs with added vocals to later take to the streets.
  • Work on my fictional worlds and begin writing short stories.
  • Connect with my Sister, Mum, her husband and my dog – pretty east to connect with a dog; cuddles + walks + treats + playfights!
  • Meditate and read a lot.
  • Mindmapping on music and the business behind it. Especially that of live streaming and generating an income via online platforms.
  • Blog more. More content for social media – learn about these platforms to better understand how to give better content for followers.
  • …many more things…

27th March 2020, Live Stream whilst Roxy Sleeps, Mums House by Chatfield Audio Journal

Yesterdays live-stream audio chopped up and loaded to Bandcamp (above). The full live video below;

Tips here – paypal.me/jameschatfield

Big love for you all who’ve read through this! Let me know your ideas on what to do during the lockdown, comment below. Share with anyone who you think will benefit from this!

Wishing you all the best! 😀

 

The Gargantuan Hand that Pulled me from the Depths of the Mindhole

 

 

It’s a while since I last wrote a blog or interacted fully on social media. A mixture of reasons, one being; me feeling that my content has no worth, that my day to day happenings are not worthwhile sharing. Which is a weird feeling that comes from self-doubt, lack of confidence and low self-esteem, those feelings come from a multitude of reasons, some I have control of, others I don’t. Its definitely been a weird few weeks, inside my mind and my surroundings outside. It’s not until quite recently that I’ve felt genuine confidence in myself as a person and this music and its meaning.

Busking always seems to be the ‘cure-all’ a ‘greater restoration‘, this act, has been keeping my head above water (both figuratively and literally – rain has been frequent). Everything has felt like waves, up and down, and as I got heavy I sank far below the surface. Then yesterday 23rd January 2020 ( 😮 2020! Happy New Year! ), felt like a gargantuan hand reaching in the water and pulling me to shore. Following quite a rough evening of family-related problems, with a lack of sleep, I woke early and felt drawn to busk in Hereford. It was a bizarre mix of encounters that seemed pre-composed, someone/thing had planned it all out. Bumping into someone I met only a couple times, (Dan Jaye, a musician from Manchester) we had breakfast in his new ‘Retro/Vintage/Assortments of Wonder/Cafe/Music Studio’ shop, catching up I felt it necessary to only choose the good things that have happened and ignore the bad that I was feeling – that process helped my mind massively, focusing on the good of it all. Dan also busked and traveled when he was my age, with his experience he spoke a lot of incredibly advisable things, that snapped my mind out of negative into positive. Like, “f**k yeah, this music has a story and it’s got to go through every chapter word by word, just get through each emotion and keep going, this is okay. You’re lucky to have a) been born, b) found something which you love and you’re good at! We’ve got this and we can’t stop!” – internal dialogue speaking. This taught me to; take the time to catch up with yourself inside yourself, go through each emotion, each happening and divide the good and bad, learn from the bad and understand it, then go to the good and sit in that and enjoy that, because there is a whole lotta good out there/in here. 

Whilst busking that day, like every day of busking there are people who stay, watch and converse and it’s nice to connect with them, music like a key, opening a door to a conversation between two humans. A line of four people, all from different places, all with different lives, watched for the entirety of a song and applauded so loudly. They got quite hyped, a woman said she heard the music subtly from the distance and had to follow it, she said it’s music that uplifted her and music that this world needs. A couple said they were amazed by the technical side and the composition itself, said I need to be playing to crowds, be on TV and share it with more people. — See I haven’t felt like sharing much recently, although I’m on the streets playing, I feel like the soundtrack to the streets rather than a performer, like why would anyone want to come to a show and watch a whole set of this? Why should I be filmed and put on TV? Which comes from the lack of confidence in oneself, I still feel that I’m just the soundtrack to the streets and the concept of being on stage playing a show to a crowd, passes me by and I’ve kind of forgotten about even pursuing that. I sit and I write these words and feel that it’s not worth writing because it’s not worth reading, but then I think, I don’t actually care if anybody reads this, but I find a sense of relief writing these words and this somewhat diary entry is part of a greater journey that I can look back on for my own growth and learn from this moment, this timeframe. — That moment on the streets of Hereford outside M&S, playing for this small group of people who were really emotionally connected with music, along with the meeting with Dan, gave this feeling of worth. A feeling I haven’t allowed myself to feel, but it was like this day was a showcase of my reason why. “Here, let me show you why you need to keep your head up and keep going, this is why you need to keep doing that which you love and put your attention on expanding, growing, exploring” – said the gargantuan hand that pulled me from the depths of the mindhole.

Multiple interactions with people on Hereford highstreet kept uplifting me. People said very relatable things to what I was feeling, “you can’t stop, you gotta keep going. This is amazing, I’d give you money but I have none” one voice said.

It’s bizarre, I feel all sorts of weird right now.

The day ended with conversations with family members, that healed up previous happenings. A message via Instagram that detailed the impact it had on their day in Hereford. Then a couple of beers and a chinwag with one of my closest friends Ollie – check out his music – check out our music. A monologue of encouragement from Ollie completely shaped my focus to; growth as a person, growth in music, aiding on the difficulties of family members. I mean I don’t know what else to say, because I feel weird, but I feel determined and really set on a good path.

Now I don’t know if this holds any value to you, but if it does, then I just hope you to find a way out of the darkness inside and towards the light. Because there is light there, there’s so much light!

Here’s an amazing song;

Here’s a video from a recent busking session in Stroud;

Here are some inspirational words that have helped me many of times;

Here’s to you and all your wonder 🙂

With love,

James

 

Slapped by a Mole

PatreonTemporaryImage-912a14bf-8f60-4e5f-836b-f07a58670698Short Story;

A man goes off for a wander to explore the world and see what’s going on. He sees many wonderful things and meets many interesting people. His quest slowly reveals itself; to become a nomad and share melodies to bring spontaneous joy and happiness to all who wander. This world needs more positivity, as negativity is loud and powerful. The light slowly burns in the darkness and bathes it in good. At times a challenge as darkness is overwhelming.

The wandering man finds himself falling into a hole, tripped up by a series of small events, he gets stuck and struggles to find a way out. The world begins to slowly bury the wandering man and he feels all is lost, he feels he belongs in this hole, that he should stay. So he stays, and as time goes on he feels his fire fade.

A mole comes across this buried man, “Oh, hello, why are you in the ground? You’re not a mole”, the mole asked sniffing at the man.
“Well you see I fell and got stuck here, so I figured this is where I am meant to be”, the man replies, a tear in his eye.
“Don’t be silly human, everything falls over, even I do when I am above ground, but I do not belong up there, I have a world of my own down here. As you have a world of your own choosing up there. I will dig you out of here human and you will create your own world up there as I create my own world down here!” slapping the man as he spoke.
The mole dug this man out and dragged him up slowly by his tiny claws. As the man felt the fresh air again he thanked the mole, the mole sniffed up at the man and said, “Everything falls over, but everything has the ability to get back up, so don’t come falling into the ground again and staying there, unless you want to be a mole” the mole slapped the man once again and hurried off back to his own world.

The wandering man realised that to keep on wandering and to keep on his quest, that he must do exactly that. So the wandering man continued with a warmer fire inside.

Taking you Outside the Inside Shopping Centre with Busking

Busking inside a shopping centre – Merry Hill, a high street within a claustrophobic complex. I’ve never really liked spending time here as the lack of fresh air always makes me uncomfortable, and I really don’t like shopping, I have no desire in consumerism, I feel I don’t need anything new, I basically spend my money on food and travel. But it’s a placed I’ve always loved to play music in; a) to see how long I’d manage to play before getting kicked out by security and b) to see what the reverb would be like inside. So when I got an invite to come busk here, definitely. But there was the internal debate, like ahhh, I hate that place, but I love music, can you rid hate of something by bringing what you love into it? Turns out, yes you can.

Maybe that could work in another context like, ‘Ahhh I hate this job, but I have a love for conversation and learning new things’ – start having conversations with everyone at work, even your managers and find out new information about them or what they know. The daily ‘Three New Things I Learnt About This World in a Workplace I Hate’ quest……….? The Lunch Break Podcast inside….x company. Lessons Learnt From the Workplace of Hell.                  – #tangent

So it wasn’t technically what busking is defined as, because there was a payment upfront for the performance. I wasn’t allowed to have a case out for coin drops, but I was allowed to display my CD box, which I had to hide by the side of me, it was barely noticeable. But people still found a way to give me a coin or two, they didn’t even ask if I was collecting, they were just determined to gift me something. Which is absolutely fascinating, people are incredible and when they feel something gives them value they want to show it with a physical gift, a natural instinct to give back to something that’s gifted them in some shape or form. People would come from a distance with a coin in hand, flying and seeking a place to drop it, (like when you try feed a baby, spoon like a plane, zooming around to land in the mouth) eventually the CD box hidden beside me, then a “thank you, it sounds lovely in here”, walking off smiling.

So really, it was just like busking, with that magic ripple affect of positivity that street music brings. People walking past smiling, stopping and swinging their hips, starting a street party in a shopping centre. Old men eating sandwiches and applauding each song, smiling and giving the good ole thumbs up. Babies and children totally mesmerised by the weird blue box that’s making sound, their parents pulling up beside the music and watching their child smile and laugh. It’s amazing their bodies dance like they’re not in control, a natural instinct to the music.

What was truly amazing, within the first couple of songs a woman, Nina and her Mum stood watching smiling massively. Nina bought a CD and later sent this message via Instagram;

When this happens, when music creates an effect like this, it’s truly amazing. I feel so grateful that our paths crossed and this connection was made. These little moments add up to big change, and it fuels my belief that I’m doing something good for this world, it makes me never want to stop and only grow it and keep on giving music to the world. So that’s my plan – don’t stop.

A little clip of some looping I did towards the end of the day, which was 3pm – 9pm.

Shopping centres like this, just like High Streets are designed for people to come and buy things, encouraging and installing consumerism on those that wonder it. Why I’ve always loved street art and busking, is because it’s totally contrasting to that, it fills a need that we all have, an artistic, creative and somewhat in-explainable need, it gives without expecting anything in return. It allows people to step out of their world and into a moment, one that could last for just a few seconds, but it politely interrupts their day. This is why I’ve always felt busking is important in any high street, and what ultimately fuels me to continue, to give strangers those kind of moments of relaxation, taking their mind someplace else.

I feel this project within Merry Hill is so important for shopping centres like this. Personally I feel somewhat trapped inside the place at times, like I can’t escape the one-thousand half-price discounts or bright lights or temptations to buy a million things. So a spontaneous event where a musician or artist is sharing their talents and creating these little moments to take you outside the inside shopping centre – well that’s just magic. I’d love to see this happen more frequently in shopping centres, maybe this blog post could be a gateway into a conversation to start a regular project within them. Maybe it could grow to really add value to the centres and a place for musicians and artists to earn part of their living by giving their talents to the thousands who wonder through these centres.

Ultimately I thoroughly enjoyed the experience to play here. A new experience and a new place to bring music to, one that has filled my mind with many more ideas. One which involves playing music fairly loud while being pushed around a supermarket in a trolley, utterly stupid, but fun. Bringing music to new environments to see how it affects people, which currently on my journey so far, has seemed to affect people in a positive and beautiful way.

I shall continue…

 

Thank you for reading this post 🙂

Wishing you a wonderful day! 🙂

Continuous Travel, Continuous Music Creation – What Do You Want?

Continuous Travel, Continuous Music Creation

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In all the things I want in this world, I’ve slowly figured out the two basic happenings I desire 🙂

To Travel and to Create Music – that’s it. In basic terms, someone can ask, what do you want to do with the rest of your life?

I want to Travel and Create Music!

Sure there’s a thousand things that fit into these desires; certain countries to explore, the kind of gigs I’d like to do, being on stage singing and talking about creativity and giving words of motivation to pursue what makes them happy, to create a family on the road, to home school those children, while continuing to travel and create music. There’s a whole list of buckets to jump in, a billion to-do lists to throw around in excitement. But many of those to-do’s are personal and will be better shown rather than spoken about.

Now I ask you and, you ask yourself;

What do you want to do for the rest of your life? Or at least for a large portion of your life?
What do I want to do for the rest of my life?

Maybe write it out in a journal and really delve into everything you desire, till you pick out the core components – the simple answer.

Note: I really don’t know enough about this life to know what I’m writing about. I’m just writing constantly in hope to bring someone value! and because I enjoy it and it helps me document the travel and music creation.


Live stream video from today’s busk in Caernarfon

The streets were quiet today, but it was still an effective day, where a whole range of people walked away from the music with a smile. Shop owners poked their head out to see what the sound was, noticing the eye contact and either smiling and waving or quickly darting behind the door then popping back out to smile and wave.

A gang of kids followed by their Mum, the one boy looked at the CD box,
“WHOAW you have CDs! Mum is this man a professional musician?! How much? Can I have one? I have a 10p, and it’s got a little bit of rust on it, just a little bit, where is it? Ah yeah, here, look! Just a little bit of rust!” his eyes filled with excitement, stretching his hand out to share this wondrously rusty 10 pence.
“Take one!” I said back,
His Mum replied, “Oh no, we can’t do that! It’s only 10 pence!”
“But Mum he said so! Look this one is a Dragon!”
The other children put some more coins in, and they all walked away happy. The excited child came running back after they reached the end of the street.
“Hello! Just wanted to say, thank you, we are going to listen to the CD on our drive home!”, said so quickly fuelled with excitement. Then waving and running back, he turned and shouted down the high street – “It’s a three hour drive!”.
Ha! Brilliant 😀


Too tired to write more! Arrived in another YHA in the middle of Snowdonia!

 

 


Thank you for reading my words and following this journey.

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