Category Archives: Music

It’s been a good day Tilly, let’s run!

I do enjoy the expression on Malcolm’s  face in that advert, and the concept of running with the cats for joy I can relate to. Yesterday afternoon our cat Tilly declined to come out for a run with me, but it had been a good day. Continue reading


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My Favourite Songs Ever? According to my i-Pod anyway

I was looking at the #myfavouritesongsever posts on Twitter at the weekend. but I had scrolled a long way down without recognising any of the songs or most of the artists.

No doubt this is because I am an old codger and most of those posting are about the same age as my grandchildren, but I thought that I would consult my i-Pod and see what the top ten most played are, and here is the list:

2001 – John Phillips (he of Mamas & Papas fame)

Mumblin’ Guitar – Bo Diddley

Lodi – John Fogerty

Time Is Tight – Booker T & the MGs

She Lets Her Hair Down – The Tokens

I Get a Kick Out of You – Gary Shearstone

Stay Awhile – Dusty Springfield

007 (Shanty Town) – Desmond Dekker & The Aces

Abdul & Cleopatra – Jonathan Richman & The Modern Lovers

Have You Ever Seen The Rain – Creedence Clearwater Revival

So there you go. No doubt there are a few there that no-one has heard of either!

I’m a little surprised myself; no Dylan (not ’til about number 13), no Stones (not in the top 25, although Out of Time, which is a Jagger/Richards song and they are on it doing backing vocals, is in about 23. Keef is also on 2001 playing guitar and, possibly, singing backing vocals). But there you go. The little white box keeps score so I’m not going to argue.

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why do I love music and books?

Music and books played a part in my life from an early age. I was something of a sickly child and would be laid up for one to three weeks at a time. As both of my parents worked, albeit not that far away and could pop in to check on me, when I was ill in bed it was just me and the radio to start with. Thankfully talk radio hadn’t been thought of then (not many of us had ‘phones to call in with anyway) and most of the programming was music.

This was in the 1950s and so a lot of the music was from the big shows; Carousel, South Pacific, Calamity Jane, Oklahoma! and so on. These especially sparked the imagination for farway places and times and could take that small boy with them.

One of my early treasures was an atlas, and I would try to find anywhere mentioned in a song on the map. Of course there were some fictional places, but, through song, I found a love of geography, travel and maps (even now I can spend a happy hour with an ordnance survey map).

Song also helped my vocabulary, pestering my parents when they came in about new words, and when Doris Day sang Que Sera Sera or Dino crooned Volare more horizons burst into my developing mind.

Picture books and annuals with cartoon strips came into my life as well then and I began to understand a few written words too as I struggled with the captions. We didn’t have much money, but jumble sales were a good source of cheap books that helped me read well before I went to school even if I did make a complete nonsense of pronouncing some of them (ocean came out as okeen, and Pharaoh as something like farrower I recall).

Books still play a big part in my life, but music require less effort and I can listen with my eyes shut (that does tend to impair one’s reading ability). I have an ancient i-Pod that I love dearly and be transported to places and memories or just listen to the different components of the sound.

I have very catholic tastes and there are all sorts of genre on the i-Pod; punk, chamber music, folk, big bands, blues, light opera, soul, classical , protest songs and pop plus a few that I’ve no doubt missed.

Along the way I’ve I’ll write some more about music and books that I enjoy in coming blogs

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Filed under about me, Books & Reading, Music

a little light relief from The Muppets

The Muppet show was always a highlight of the weekend TV for me when the children were small. This clip is from an episode that featured Mark Hammill fresh from his Luke Skywalker role, but strikes a chord for me as a lover of DooWap singing.

So for a bit of innocent pleasure on the anniversary of a dark day for the world, enjoy a Muppet take on Ramalamadingdong.

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Filed under america, fun stuff, Music

Lucy Snivelshed is dead – let her rest in peace

So Lucy Snivelshed is dead? I can’t say that I am especially interested in this news other than because it still rumbles on. Of course there are those that miss her dreadfully, and I can empathise with that; I have lost people I loved too. But is there not something of a whiff of profit in the air here once again?

We all know that anyone in an artistic field will have their work become more valuable posthumously, and to see that two of her albums are in the top 10 with a third top ten entry of, oh yes, a double album of the first two. I gather these days just someone looking at the album on Amazon counts towards sales, and you only need to sell about 5 to go platinum, but even so…

I have never deliberately listened to anything of the lady’s work, but I do recall my browsing amongst the CDs in the late lamented local Border’s store being made less pleasurable by the noise coming from the speakers above. When asked for about the fourth time “can I help you with anything?” I suggested that I might be more likely to buy something if they could turn off that dreadful racket. “But that’s Lucy Snivelshed” they said, adding “she’s won awards”.

Perhaps, but my personal pantheon of favourite lady singers features the likes of Nina Simone, Dionne Warwick, Doris Day, Dusty Springfield, Judith Durham and more. Maybe Lucy S did have talent, but my brief encounter with her work did nothing to suggest that I listen further, or to add her to those that grace my i-Pod.

Those that might have helped her defeat the trouble that surrounded her are now profiting from her demise. Fortunately she is now safe from the grasp of the demons that troubled her, and perhaps her squalid demise might save another soul from following the same path. If she is to be any sort of role model, that would, at least, add up to something.



Filed under fun stuff, Music, serious stuff

Gerry Rafferty RIP

Sad to hear yesterday of Gerry Rafferty leaving us, but we do have his songs to remember him by.

City to City got me safely home on many a dark night and I wore out three cassette copies before I finally got a car with a CD player. These days it’s on my ipod and is one of the few albums that I look forward to listening to in one go.

Someone who made music that truly touched people and I for one will treasure his songs.


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Filed under Music, obituaries

radio too?

A funny thing happened today. I had a loan car from the garage and, on starting the engine, the radio came on. Now I don’t have the car radio on much these days. Maybe just a little Classic FM perhaps, but most of the time I’d rather listen to my own CDs or a talking book as radio has just become abysmal. However, the programme wasn’t too bad and, with it being a strange car and in traffic, I was too preoccupied with avoiding all the would be assassins with whom I was sharing the road and who were trying to kill me to hunt around for the off button.

Then came the funny thing. It was Radio 2 and the Chris Evans show, except that it wasn’t the poisonous carrot, but a stand in who appeared to be actually capable of stringing a sentence together and at reasonable volume. I was so impressed I left it on for the rest of the drive to the office.

Now I was never a Wogan fan, but at least I could tune him out and that just isn’t possible with the shrieking Evans. If ever there was someone who should never have been let loose with a microphone it is him. Rumours that he might replace AC one the One Show, even if just on Friday’s, is enough to ensure I shall turn the TV off for the duration.

Come on BBC. You can make quality programmes like the recent Indian Hill Railways series and you appear to have finally arranged to get rid of that talentless abomination Ross, so do the decent thing and get shot of Evans as well. On the other hand, I do at least know where the off switch is, so I shall just continue to use that to spare myself.

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