It's that time of the year again - the countdown to the Marsden Jazz Festival. What is strange is the way in which a regular involvement in an annual event comes to establish seasonal markers which co-exist with the more normal markers such as Christmas, Easter and Holiday-time. Thus, July normally means sending out the Festival leaflets (we are a little late this year), August means starting to sell tickets, September means getting the final publications together and October means ... the Festival (this year it is the weekend of the 10th to 12th October.
And so the other evening, a handful of us gathered together to stuff leaflets in envelopes at the Annual Stuffing Evening. The leaflet this year maintains the sheep theme, although we move away from the usual swinging sheep and feature a photograph of jazz saxophonist, Rod Mason, wearing a sheep's outfit on the moors above Marsden. When I took the photographs a few weeks ago, the vision of a very substantial, bearded, jazz musician, holding a soprano sax, and dressed in a sheep's outfit, stood alongside the main A62 road nearly caused one of two accidents.
This week I will be concentrating on getting all the various gigs up on the Festival website. For full details of who is appearing where and when go to www.marsdenjazzfestival.com (but leave it until later in the week so I can get all the latest news uploaded).