The pandemic has been tough on everyone mentally, even without the terrible tragedy of losing a family member. The loss of the freedom to meet our loved ones, to travel (even within our own country) and the 'Groundhog Day' repetition of spending a lot of the last year working from home has made keeping positive at times a herculean task. Netflix etc really does only gets you so far!
Diet wise, last November and December I started to relax a little bit too much, two family birthdays followed by a family Christmas which lasted most of December took a toll on my will power and although I still didn't have anything sweet, too much cheese, wine and generally tasty food meant I put a stone back on. I really wasn't happy about this and I made a determined effort to get back on track mid January and have now lost that weight and a bit more (currently the lightest I've been for 25 years!)
Having a studio at home has meant that I could carry on working on the Marillion ideas and developing some more music for my "Revontulet' album. I'm still undecided when I want to release 'Revontulet' as I not only have to avoid clashing with the Marillion album, but I also want it to come out at a time when I can actually promote it properly. There's a very exciting and uptempo second track, 'X-15', finished and mixed (featuring a guest appearance by Steve Hackett, bass by Pete T and drums by Paul Craddick, with Riccardo and myself on keys and developed from a an idea I originally had around the time of the 'Brave' album), and a third track, 'Moonrise over Paranal', currently being mixed.
I've been suffering from what I think is a frozen shoulder for the last several months, probably too much time working on the computer, but that has been painful, especially at night. I'll hopefully get to see my doctor in the next week or so. I had my first covid vaccination just over a month ago and as a consequence felt relatively safe enough to return to the studio with Marillion for the first time this year. It really was good to be back with everyone. We have the makings of an outstanding new Marillion album!
The Steve Rothery Band 'Live in London' Blu-ray (and possibly DVD) is currently being finished and it should be ready to send off for manufacture in another month or so. More news when I have it.