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Blog Archive: September 2022

Media Onslaught Begins
If you hear distant HOWLS today, fear not, it is merely THE MAN rolling around in ANGUISH as news reaches him that the MIGHTY MEDIA CAMPAIGN for my new album has begun!

FOR LO! Over the past few days I have begun the process of emailig various media types to let them know that the new single Why Do Bad Things Happen To Good People? is coming out on Monday, and that this will be followed in due course by the aforesaid ALBUM, The Unearthly Beauty Of MJ Hibbett.

As with most things related to this album I am doing all the media stuff MYSELF, which has given me an excellent excuse to spend many happy hours building a new CAMPAIGN SYSTEM DATABASE in order to try and keep a top on who I've contacted so far. I spent WEEKS wandering around the Indie Music METAVERSE trying to work out who to send stuff to, and now I'm trying to make sure I don't accidentally send deligtful personal messages out to entirely the wrong addresses. It's a bit headache-inducing, but also good fun thinking that FINALLY the Actual Songs are starting to get out there for people to listen to.

If you ARE a Media Type and haven't had anything from me yet, do not PANIC, as I still have quite a lot more to get through. However, if you remain uncontacted by the end of the week then please DO PANIC and get in touch! In the meantime I shall continue spreading the good word!

posted 27/9/2022 by MJ Hibbett
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The Future Of Entertainment Formats
So far this month I have UNLEASHED the cover for both my new album The Unearthly Beauty Of MJ Hibbett, and its accompanying single Why Do Bad Things Happen To Good People?. At the risk of blowing MINDS at a time when capacity for MIND FIXING is low, I will today be unleashing not just the PHYSICAL FORMAT upon which THESE items will be delivered, but also a possible future for ALL entertainment content.

For LO! although both album and single will be very much avaialable in the traditional Digital Format and available on All Good (And Not Good) Streaming Services, there will also be the option to buy them both together as a MEMORY STICK, which looks very much like THIS:
GOOD EH? This image shows two memory sticks together, in order to display both sides of the elegant design. Each one contains both the album AND single in WAV and MP3 formats, along with instrumental versions of everything, non-sweary versions, a set of DEMO versions, and on top of all of that an actual SONGBOOK so you can play them all yourselves if you wish. It all fits quite easily onto the memory stick, providing a futuristic FULL-ON entertainment option that is much easier to stick in your pocket and wander aroud with than a lump of vinyl. ALSO of course, if you don't LIKE the entertainment content provided (I mean, obviously you DEFINITELY WILL, I'm talking about it as a vehicle for future entertainment content OBVS) you can wipe the whole thing clear and use it for something else instead. Can CD, VINYL or CASSETTE do any of that? Well, yes, a cassette can, but otherwise NO, IT CANNOT!

I'm really pleased with how this all works, although less pleased with quite how long it's (still) taking me to copy over each memory stick, which is why I'm quite glad that I only ordered 100 of them! To put it another way, this is a LIMITED EDITION - that does sound more exciting doesn't it? - which will be available first of all to newsletter subscribers, then at gigs, and then from release day on Friday 14 October via our online shop.

What I'm saying is this: sign up for the newsletter if you haven't already, and then PANIC BUY, as these are almost definitely going to be worth A MILLION QUID in a couple of years! ALMOST definitely!

posted 16/9/2022 by MJ Hibbett
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Another Cover Is Let Loose
A couple of weeks ago I UNLEASHED the cover from my forthcoming solo album, The Unearthly Beauty Of MJ Hibbett, and LO! delight filled the world as people looked upon it in WONDER. Today I am DELIGHTED to be able to follow that up with a further UNLEASHIFICATION, this time of the cover for its first single, Why Do Bad Things Happen To Good People?

I hope its immense power has not rocked your world TOO much.

Keen observers may have noticed a THEME developing i.e. MY FACE. I can report that your observation is CORRECT and there will be much more of that sort of thing to come!

The single is out on Monday 3 October and will feature I Like You as the b-side. Between you and I, oh cherished reader of the blog, you don't really need to BUY it or anything as the single version is exactly the same as the album version and the b-side will be included on the Bandcamp album AND on the USB stick. The basic idea is that sticking out a single gives me an EXCUSE to PLUG everything one more time. However, please keep this between ourselves - I am pretty sure that NON-blog readers will be queueing up at Woolworths on the Monday morning to send it soaring up the pop charts!

posted 14/9/2022 by MJ Hibbett
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Super 6
There had been a lot of stomping about involved in me even GETTING to the "Super VI" conference in Moers, but as the first day didn't start until 1pm I decided to do a bit more, by stomping into town .

I had looked up some VEGAN places because, having been to Germany before, I was aware that it's all a bit MEAT-BASED. I found a very nice but PERPLEXING shop that seemed to require you to bring a bunch of empty jam jars in order to buy anything, then went to somewhere called VEGANLAND which turned out to be a (delicious) Falafel shop. In the end I wandered into a supermarket and found a SPECIAL section which was full of clearly marked snacks and bought a LOAD of dried fruits and chocolate.

On the way back I saw a squirrel running across a car park. "Oh it's a squirrel" I thought, correctly, but then my BRANE swung into action. "That's a very fluffy squirrel," it said, "with very fluffy ears. Also, it's RED." It was an ACTUAL RED SQUIRREL! I've never seen one of those before!

After all that excitement I wondered if the actual conference would be able to compete, but compete it did. Usually when I go to conferences I go through the schedule and FILLET it, looking for GAPS where there's nothing particularly relevant to my interests, so that I can spent that time either going for a walk and/or loafing around in the hotel room, but as this conference was about SUPERHEROES it was all HIGHLY relevant and HIGHLY interesting. It was also WEIRD because in the breaks I got involved in conversations about superheroes and other Related Topics and kept thinking "Oh no I have started banging on about which Star Trek series is the best, surely they must all be bored out of their minds" before realising a) it wasn't me who had brought it up b) everyuone else was ALSO banging on about it and c) some of them were WRONG, but WRONG from a fully argued and in-depth (but still wrong) viewpoint. It was AMAZING!

I did my talk just after lunch on the second day, which was ACE as I was neither on right at the start (and so got to see how it all worked) NOR right at the end like I usually seem to be (and so got to SWAN AROUND a bit afterwards). It was also GRATE because I didn't have to do the bit I always have to do elsewhere where I explain who Doctor Doom is BECAUSE THEY KNEW!

It was a lovely, if rather EXHAUSTING time - being around very friendly people who actually WANT to talk about this sort of thing turns out to be knackering, especially when it keeps happening until the early hours with BEER. The only downside is that it's going to make normal conferences in future feel a bit boring!

posted 13/9/2022 by MJ Hibbett
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The Road To Moers
I headed off to German Germany on Thursday afternoon, to attend a conference about SUPERHEROES!

The getting there was mostly dead easy, not least because I was going from City Airport which is about 3 seconds from my house. I arrived in Dusseldorf Airport and then got the VERY EXCITING SkyTrain, which is one of those upside down suspended monorails that they have over there. Apart from me everyone else was not grinning like a LOOON, as if to them this was nothing special. Perhaps they live on THE MOON or something where this is normal?

At the main railway station I bought my ticket to Moers, where the conference was, and was most impressed by the fact that they printed me out an actual itinerary. I then very determinedly sought out a VALIDATING machine - the time the band went to Germany and did NOT do this still weighs heavy on my mind - and caught a train to Druisberg (which is pronounced more like "Doosberg" and not like on League Of Gentlemen, it turns outs). This was all fine and dandy and, as I boarded my last train to Moers, I was full of delight at how easy it had all been.

Then the train stopped. And continued to stop. Eventually a man came down the carriage saying something in German which I had no idea what it was. Luckily for me someone else noted my confusion and told me that we were being kicked off the train, and so we disembarked at a place called TROMPET. The other passengers lurked about a bit then headed for the underpass. I thought we were off to another platform but they all kept walking out of the tiny little station (which was barely a station at all, more of a bus stop for trains) and away. I found my friendly person again who told me there were no trains into Moers now and we all had to either call a taxi or walk. I was very surprised by this - surely this was Germany, land of Things Actually Working? Surely we weren't just being left to fend for ourselves?

It turns out we were, and so I got out my phone and saw that it was a one hour twenty minute walk to my hotel, and set off. I stomped through the small town, along a VERY long road through various fields and then onto another VERY long road which was basically The Moers Ringroad. It was a BIG walk but wasn't too bad as it was gently drizzling the whole way, which kept me fairly cool, although it was a very strange place to be when I looked at my phone and found out that the Queen had died.

This had clearly been coming all day, but it was still a massive shock. It reminded me of the MANY dreams I used to have growing up about NUCLEAR WAR. Again and again I'd dream of seeing a mushroom cloud on the horizon and think "It's finally actually happened" and that was how I felt in that moment. It didn't last long, and did not lead to EITHER waking up in a cold sweat OR further narrative about trying to find a shelter but it WAS a bit weird.

Twenty minutes later I was finally in my hotel, which did not have a NAME on the front but was otherwise LOVELY. I had a much needed shower and then put BBC World on, where the weirdness continued, as they started talking about "King Charles". This time it felt like being in one of those NEAR FUTURE MILD SCI-FI TV shows, particularly British ones where it's not really very science fiction at all but they all have slightly different mobile phones and there is a KING now. It's going to take a while to get used to that!

I soothed my weary brow with an EVEN MORE NEEDED beer and then headed to bed. It had been a BIG day, and the conference had not even begun yet!

posted 12/9/2022 by MJ Hibbett
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A South London Odyssey
On Saturday I ventured to distant SOUTH LONDON to do a THING. The thing in question was part of a vague idea I have for a video for the song Someone Else's Turn, which is about moving over to let another generation have a go. I thought it might be fun to go to some of my old HAUNTS and see what they looked like now, and then... er... make it a video somehow. I did say it was vague!

Early on in the executive decision making process for this project I decided to stick to LONDON venues because a) it is much easier b) there is no b). I did a query on The Database Of ROCK to see which of these venues I'd played in most, then drew up a list of the ones that I had fondest memories of, and found that the vast majority were in walking - or at least STERN HIKING and the occasional tube - distance of each other in central London. Only The Green Dragon in Croydon and The Fox And Firkin in Lewisham were outside of this area, HENCE I decided to do them FIRST as a seperate excursion.

THUS I zoomed off to Croydon and walked the familiar way down to The Green Dragon that I had walked MANY times over the years. Every time I played there was to do one of Mr T Eveleigh's "Freedom Of Expression" gigs, which moved to other venues in later years, and the walk was just as I remembered it, with the addition of TV's Box Park where Croydonians gather to throw beer all over themselves during The Football. When I got to The Green Dragon it had BOUNCERS on the door, which I don't think it did before, but otherwise it looked EXACTLY the same as ever.

A walk, a train, another train and a DLR and I was in LEWISHAM, which seems to have changed A LOT, with GINORMOUS buildings going up. The walk to the Fox and Firkin was, as it always used to be, a lot further than I'd thought, but once there the pub itself was also EXACTLY the same as it had been - YIKES - over a decade ago when I last played there. On the way back I passed some very wholesome graffiti ("Otters are endangered but do live in London! Have you seen one?") and then had a WEIRD experience when I went under a railway bridge to get to the crossing back to the DLR station. I walked through and found myself in an ENTIRELY different area, all wide pavements and new blocks of flats, like an architect's drawing. I looked behind me to Lewisham, somewhat down at heel and As It Always Was, then back to the glistening new area, and could not marry the two together. I'm used to very different bits of Lonon being right next to each other, but not quite THAT starkly.

With that I headed home, my phone full of VIDEO CLIPS and my BRANE mildly surprised that, apart from METROPOLIS landing in Lewisham, things in South London seemed to be much the same as last time I was there. I wonder if the same will be THORT in a couple of weeks when I do the NEXT bit?

posted 5/9/2022 by MJ Hibbett
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