I’m afraid it’s in my genes: my father was a musician, and my mother is a gifted seamstress. So what do I do for relaxation? I arrange or compose tunes, and I sew. It’s an absolutely essential outlet for me.
I arrange Scottish tunes for small ensembles, and occasionally write songs with a folk influence. Find my tunes on Sheet Music Plus, or as Finale renditions on SoundCloud. In 2019, I aspire to more tunes and (definitely) more live performances!
The lone wanderer
Nora’s vow – wind trio, or for voice, flute and treble recorder
The twa corbies
David Middleton goes to Aviemore – a set of tunes
For the Guild – a set of tunes
Jackdaw Jo, a ballad – voice, flute, violin, piano
My foot has gone to sleep – a set of tunes
Also by way of relaxation, I sew – my own clothes, patchwork, and occasionally whimsical toys or wallhangings. Here are some highlights from 2018:-
I am a Performing Arts Librarian 3.5 days a week, and a Postdoctoral Researcher 1.5 days a week. In this self-imposed annual review, I’m not listing routine activities conducted in either capacity; it goes without saying that I’ve answered queries, catalogued, delivered library research training to a number of different class groups, attended meetings, and pursued research-related activities and fieldwork.
From September 2017 to September 2018, I was the AHRC-funded Principal Investigator for a new research network, the Claimed From Stationers’ Hall music research project. Since then, I have continued to conduct research and network with the various scholars and libraries involved with this project, and in the new year shall be pursuing further grant-funding in order to extend the reach of the project.
As someone who continually asks themselves, “Am I doing enough?”, I feel that even I can be reasonably content with this year’s outputs!
Chaired sessions at Traditional Pedagogies, international conference at Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
Readers of this blog will recall that I spoke about training students in effective electronic resource research at the ARLGS (Academic and Research Libraries Group, Scotland) teach-meet a couple of weeks ago. In a timely confluence of meetings and publications, my article on the same topic has just been published in my professional association’s journal: ‘Coffee and Collaboration’ appears in the Nov/Dec 2018 issue of Information Professional, published by the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals. I’m a chartered Fellow of CILIP, but I don’t think I’ve ever had more than a single-column news announcement in this journal before, so I’m quite pleased to have achieved this in my final decade before retirement!
Coincidentally, yesterday afternoon saw me arranging the second iteration of this information literacy training for early next year. And so the wheel comes full circle ….!
“Join us on the afternoon of Tuesday the 20th of November to share best practice in teaching and training with other information professionals. You’ll hear from a range of speakers about their experiences and innovations in teaching, training, and delivering information skills in academic libraries, with the opportunity to ask questions and participate in discussion. Refreshments will be provided.”
UNIVERSITY OF GLASGOW – SCOTTISH LIBRARIANS
This week, I attended a TeachMeet at the University of Glasgow, organised by ARLGS (Academic and Research Libraries Group Scotland). One of eight speakers, I spoke about the very successful two-part seminar that I and a teaching colleague ran for third year B.Ed students last session, contrasting it with a slightly less successful Mendeley installation session a couple of weeks ago! (The Mendeley demo went fine – it was installing it onto a myriad of different devices and operating systems, during a seminar in a tiered lecture theatre, that was the problem …!)
There were plenty of new and innovative ideas at the teachmeet – ways to teach students about referencing, literature reviews and similar topics – an afternoon well-spent. I must remember to go through my notes, as I always remember more if I revisit what I’ve written.
SORBONNE, PARIS – MUSICOLOGY RESEARCH
I returned to my desk to find an invitation to speak at a seminar at the Sorbonne in Paris next May, this time about one of my research interests – I shall have to go back to my notes and see what more I can add to the information that appeared in my thesis and subsequent book!
ICELAND UNIVERSITY OF THE ARTS LIBRARIANS
And then this morning, it was my turn to exchange knowledge with visiting librarians from Iceland University of the Arts – as always we found much in common, although it was also interesting to spot the differences in provision, too.
Suddenly, here we are at the end of the week again. It has been a busy one!
Well, I made a valiant attempt, anyway! My set of strathspeys is called, whimsically, “My Foot Has Gone to Sleep” – partly because I really prefer watching dancing to actually doing it, so the title is just one of my excuses for not joining in! Having said that, this weekend I found I would have to play Clavinova rather than organ at church (an electrical problem), so both my feet had a rest. I played my strathspeys after a more sedate voluntary. No-one passed any comment, so who knows if they didn’t notice or were too polite to say they didn’t like it!
The computer-generated audio file for violin, acoustic bass and guitar is horribly artificial-sounding, so I hope that one day someone will play the piece and I’ll have something more human-sounding!
I’ve recently given seminars on catalogue and database searching to all our traditional music students, and to our first year B.Ed. students. Biteable animations are proving a fun way to summarise what they’ve learned with me. They have a certain sheer surprise value, too. (Today, the speakers were set louder than I’d expected, so they surprised me, too!)
I’m looking forward to giving a talk to students at the University of Edinburgh this week. The University Library was one of the recipients of legal deposit materials during the Georgian era, before the law changed in 1836. Amongst all the learned tomes and textbooks, they received sheet-music too. The interesting question, of course, is what they did with it!
I'm a musicologist disguised as a librarian. I'm qualified in music, librarianship and education. I began this blog when I was studying for my PGCert in Learning & Teaching in Higher Arts Education, and I'm now using it for CPD. I'm a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. Midweek I am PI for an AHRC-funded research network @ClaimedStatHall – early legal deposit music. Off-duty I'm hard-wired into my sewing machine!