00 - My Sincerest Thanks

8 January 2023

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A couple of weeks ago I posted #01, a selection I'd intended to close out my year of mixes which was all about raising some funds for the work of the wonderful charity Sue Ryder and I'll come onto the fundraising aspect later in my post. 


I don't feel that I closed the year off particularly well, either in terms of the musical output nor the commentary that I'd put alongside some of the posts. I want to close the series of mixes off with a mix that to my mind / ears has a slightly more positive feel and sound about it. It's up to you whether that is the case or not.


I do feel conscious that throughout the year, and likely beyond, the posts I have put up here for the most part have not been particularly positive in nature and I do want to try and close this off with some sense of positivity. I'll caveat this by saying that positivity has long been in short supply for me and although I've perhaps given a flavour of where I've been, how I've felt or what particular hurdle may have been in the way, nothing I have posted here is a true reflection of my day in, day out over a very long period of time; it's probably fair to say it's a more challenging place than that and it's not easy to find the right words or the right balance while remaining true. Here's the positive though, I haven't given up on myself to this point and despite how it might look from the outside, there's a positive in the sense that I have always tried to approach things with a sense of hope and dare I say it, with love. I guess my tendency to have always worn my heart on my sleeve is something that trips me up in more ways than one. 


Although this year did not really go as well as I had hoped there are things that I know I should try to feel pleased about. At the start of this year of weekly mixes I really wished that I could have driven this forward and raised more funds / appreciation for the work of Sue Ryder, especially among those who may never have heard of the work they do. I hoped if this project had been a success that it may also have given me more confidence, belief in myself, a feeling of being a part of something and if I'm really shooting for the moon, perhaps contributed to some direction in my life. The reality is, well, you can look back at previous posts, but in summary, none of the above and in some senses it dented me even more. Perhaps if I'm being really honest, I don't even know how I'd have handled things if it had ticked all those boxes. Probably not very well is the truthful answer and in all honesty, I have to probably find a way to focus on getting myself into a better place. certainly health wise, before I could think about coping with anything else.

I don't want none of the disappointment I have felt along the way to give off the wrong impression though. I am so very grateful to those that have taken the time to listen, share, comment and donate to this worthwhile cause, I don't feel that I really have adequate words to express myself in this regard. The numbers and donations may not have gone where I dreamed they might go but my sincerest thanks go out to those who have engaged in any capacity. To Lisa, Matt, David, Alison, Linda, Giel, Johnny, Tom and Brian & Danielle and any 'anon' donors, I send my sincerest thanks to you all and dedicate this final mix to you and to anyone else who took the time to listen or read my nonsensical ramblings.


For 2023 (and likely beyond if the universe smiles upon me) I am going to need to find a way to spend time to focus on myself, try and get on top of some health issues and work towards finding a place in society that fits me. I have no idea how to start, where to look or whether I will make it, but that's what I must try and aim for before life really starts to evaporate. I'll likely be taking a break from here, I'll certainly be posting much less and likely be less active on Twitter too (not that I'm terribly active on there anyway). That's not to say it's the end of the road, that's not to say that it isn't. Let's just go with the flow for now, eh?


Finally before I sign off, I must make a final push for my fundraising. In Aberdeen, Sue Ryder is a facility that provides a home for people with serious neurological health conditions such as Multiple Sclerosis (M.S), Motor Neurone Disease (M.N.D) / Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (A.L.S), Huntington's, Parkinson's, as well as those who have suffered brain trauma through injury or illness such as strokes.


My Mum had Secondary Progressive M.S, a form of the illness which led to a slow and steady decline in her health and motor functions. She was diagnosed around 1995, but had symptoms of the illness for several years before diagnosis. Of course these were not her only challenges in life, she also had two husbands that let her down, on both occasions where she would have really needed them most. What she did have was a Mum, Son & Daughter, as well as a devoted Daughter-In-Law in Lisa, that loved her. For my own part I did my best for her through my own challenging times and I think she knew that. Sue Ryder came to her life in the final 3 years, and honestly, I look back and think of the places the care system tried to shoehorn her into and dread to think how those final years might have looked but it was a battle to get there. Was it perfect? No, sometimes things didn't go right, but in a challenging system, with people who had very individual and the most complex of needs and staff who for the most part are often undervalued in society themselves, even before they take on employment as a carer, I can't think of anywhere that was safer, more caring and at least gave her the opportunity to live out those years with as much dignity as could be afforded with an illness that strips you of every ounce of that. I miss her greatly and my motivation for this last year was mostly about trying to add some much needed funds to the kitty of a resource that is underfunded, over burdened and does not receive the coverage that many other charities receive, not to mention the lower level of coverage and understanding of the conditions of people they support.


The bottom line is that it's an organisation with genuine care at the heart of it. It needs as much support as it can get so that they can provide as good a service as they possibly can. You can find out more via their own website and my own Just Giving page, where 100% of donations goes directly to Sue Ryder. My page will remain open through 2023, so please, if you are in a position to donate and you've listened / enjoyed any of the mixes I have posted, make a small contribution and know that it is for a very worthy cause.


As always, you will find a linked up tracklist below where you can support the artists and labels who release the music I have included. They too need support, so if you enjoy the music, you can buy it legally and also perhaps go find them on social media, engage with them, stream their music etc. It all helps.


Thank you,



Man Watching The Stars - Avoir Une Belle Jounrée (CIÛIN)

Yumiko Morioka - Moon Ring (Métron Records)


Steve Kemner - You Awoke (Facture)

Ishmael Ensemble - Solace (Banoffee Pies)

Nala Sinephro - Space 4 (Warp Records)

Christina Vantzou, Michael Harrison & John Also Bennett - Tilang (Séance Centre)

Evadney - Ready (Self Release)

Rich Ruth - Doxology (Third Man Records)

East Forest & Ram Dass - Love Everybody (Aquilo Records)

Satoshi Ashikawa - Still Space (Light In The Attic)

Tiny Isles - Thoughts Borrowed From Books


Textural Being - Vantage Points (A Strangely Isolated Place)

Hamish Lang - Scarlett (Hush Hush Records)

Adriaan Swerts - Adieu (Piano & Coffee Records)

Nightports with Tom Herbert - Arcs (Leaf)

Kahil El' Zabar Quartet - Summertime (Spiritmuse Records)

Scrimshire ft. Nat Birchall & Faye Houston - I Hear You, I See You (Albert's Favourites)

* for those that haven't cottoned on, if you read the first letters of the tracklist vertically on the first mix of the series  it spelled - S U E   R Y D E R - try the same with this one.


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