Well we are all getting comfortable now in our new term at Rock Choir and we've started our next song which is Leonard Cohen's 'Hallelujah'. I've been quite excited at the prospect of learning this as it is an amazing song and will just suit Rock Choir so well. It does sound amazing already and I sense it will be one of those songs that will be included in the repertoire for many future performances. It will be one to stand beside the very popular 'Something Inside So Strong' which has become an anthem for us Rockies.
I was looking at the lyrics to 'Hallelujah' and trying to work out the meaning and interperet what Mr Cohen was trying to say with this song but the further I looked into it I realised there are so many different ways in which this song has touched lives and numerous ways people interpret it's lyrics. It can seem dark and melancholy, have many biblical references and is to be believed that the song is an account of just how many ways a Hallelujah can be expressed. It has also been covered by so many artists, I'm sure you all have a favourite version.
I love that that some lyrics can be so complex they can mean different things to different people, it's a personal thing and you can hold quite an intense debate which I remember I did one morning sat having a brew with my fellow Rockies. The melody wraps itself around these dramatic lyrics beautifully and it is really quite emotional to sing. I'm so looking forward to our first performance with this.
I have tended to be a bit side tracked with this song and cannot help but think about Shrek, it was featured in the first of the films and have watched it numerous times thanks to my son. It has become lodged in my my memory with the vision of poor old Shrek losing the lovely Fiona to Lord Farquaad, oh the sad twinge I get thinking it's all over for them but then it all ends happily in the end. Phew!!
'Don't Stop Believin' made it's debut over the weekend for our Derbyshire & Nottinghamshire Choirs. There was a flash mob performed in Beeston near Nottingham which looked great and they did the newly learnt moves too with the song, well done Nottinghamshire Rockies!!! The Derby guys and gals went to Belper in Derbyshire on Saturday night and performed at Voices for Hospices to celebrate World Hospice and Palliative Care Day. Well done to everyone who took part to all choirs everywhere.
So the fun continues as we polish our Hallelujah's. Please pop and see Rock Choir when you can, if you would like any information about joining us you can still sign up for a free taster so go to the Rock Choir website at
www.rockchoir.com and find your local session.
Thanks for reading today, I will be back for Teapot Tuesday tomorrow but for now.......
I love a good introduction to a song, it gives me time to prepare my inner diva or rock chick especially with a tune like Livin on a Prayer by Bon Jovi. I need that bit of time to make sure the air guitar is tuned and also I find it quite amusing to try and guess when the vocals actually come in as most of the time I get it wrong, mainly due to impatience and eagerness. I do wish those professionals would keep up.
Apparently though we are seeing the big intros die out slightly. You see people are streaming music more and when listening to a track, if the vocals don't happen within a few seconds we get fed up and flick to the next track. Now that is being very impatient, give the artists a chance for goodness sake. I would hate to think people were not waiting to hear what I'd got to sing about and especially when I wanted to also show off my musical talent in sound and not just lyrics.
Songs such as Sam Smith's 'Too Good at Goodbyes' don't process any introduction at all, he's there straight in there within one second and just gets on with the job. I suppose it depends on the song and it does work really well for that song. Queens 'Don't Stop Me Now' is straight there and that works too, I kind of get it a little especially in this digital age but when we only had vinyl, yes in the old days, we took the time to listen to the beginnings of records because, well frankly it was a lot more fuss to take the stylus off and take the record off and pop a new one on so we put up with it.
I'm glad we did because there are some great intros to some classic songs. Hotel California by the The Eagles is just one of the best, how can you not listen to that? What would we do without the intro to Survivors 'Eye of the Tiger', I even sing the dum dum dum dum dum dum dum dum dum daaaaaa' on that and U2 have the amazing intro to 'Where the Streets Have No Name' which is phenomenal in my opinion. One minute and eighteen seconds of great guitar before Bono does his thing.
Don't forget, if your song hasn't got a good intro we can't guess it in a 'guess the intro quiz'. Now that's a game changer eh? (see what I did there). If a song starts in a second then how can we guess that? It becomes guess the song which just isn't the same and I need a big intro to gain points because it takes me a while so longer the better.
I suppose the vocals are the main core in a song now and we live in a fast moving society where we need to get everywhere quickly and obviously need to listen to an artist as quick as possible too. There has been a massive drop in long intros to songs since the 80's so if you are an upcoming artist you have to start quick otherwise the punters will move on and listen to something else. Shame isn't it? I get a little impatient when they faff about on Strictly and don't get dancing straight away which I suppose is the same thing, I feel a few seconds of boredom creep in and before you know it I'm debating whether I can make a brew before they start tangoing. I too feel my inner 'get on with it' starting to emerge so we all have our limitations.
Oh well times change I suppose and so does music. It's all down to timing but I think it's just down to what you like and whatever makes you happy. We all have our own different tastes, likes and dislikes so go with the flow. Let me know whether you like an intro or if you like to get straight down to it, also what are your favourite intros? Leave a comment.
Thanks for reading and I will be back tomorrow for Teapot Tuesday.
Take care for now.....
This weekend saw Radio 1 and Radio 2 celebrate 50 years of broadcast. Wow I'm nearly as old as BBC Radio, I just missed the launch by three years but have been an avid fan ever since I could listen to the radio. On 30th September the BBC light entertainment programme split into two, the younger listeners were treated to Radio 1 and an older audience would tune into Radio 2. That's the way it's always been hasn't it? When Radio 1 had it's major overhaul a few years back I then realised I had probably hit the Radio 2 age, I can't even listen to Radio 1 anymore - it sounds all the same to me......oh yes! never thought I'd say it.
It's funny though, I did grow up on both stations. My mum always had R2 on with her favourite shows being Terry Wogan and Jimmy Young and then upstairs in my room would be belting out the current tunes of R1. I remember listening to the charts on a Sunday evening, never taped it though eh? None of us did such a thing, yeah right. The Radio 1 roadshows were the highlight of the summer, taking part in the quiz 'bit's and pieces' and having a cry with Simon Bates's 'Our Tune'.
Radio 2 was always the oldies station wasn't it? It was the one mums and dads, granny and grandads listened to. Well I'm a mum now so it only seems fitting that I made the leap. Think we were all forced really. Radio 1 became too old fashioned would you believe, a lot of the presenters went over to Radio 2 and a new younger, modern Radio 1 was formed.
I don't actually mind, I got the chance to listen to Wogan again and I actually like Radio 2 as it is, there is a good mix for all ages so goodbye and good riddance to ageist listening. I actually prefer the radio and listen to it a lot, I don't really listen to cd's and my downloaded music much as I prefer the music, chat and the odd go at Popmaster with Ken Bruce. You'd think it would be a thing of the past with all the technology around today but radio is still popular today as it's always been. To be honest sometimes it's a lot better than anything on the tv and with all the stations available there is always something for everyone to listen to.
So thank you for the past 50 years BBC Radio, thank you for all the good memories and may it all continue for the next 50 years and beyond.
Thanks for reading and I will be back tomorrow for Teapot Tuesday.
Yes it's back to a new term with Rock Choir and blimey I've missed it so much. It was lovely to see everyone again and get warming those vocal chords up. We have three great new songs to learn this term and true to our name we kicked off in style with the rock classic 'Don't Stop Believin' by Journey.
Air guitars were all tuned up and I have to say for the first week in and a new song we sounded blooming fabulous. I do love this song, it brings back funny memories of a great friend of mine who used to work as a presenter for a local radio station called RAM FM. I used to drive this man mad by requesting this song nearly every day, luckily it was a favourite of his so it became our workplace theme song. I couldn't wait to tell him what we were learning this term, think the conversation went something like, 'you'll never guess what song we are doing at Rock Choir'.......he knew!
Not only did we start a new term we also had a gig on Saturday, I know!!! straight in there eh? We had the privilege of headlining, yes that's headlining The Duffield Arts Festival in Derby. We were in great company with The Derbyshire Constabulary Male Voice Choir and Derby A Capella for a Singing Spectacular. It was spectacular too and I was on my best behaviour obviously with police presence in the house.....didn't want the Derby Telegraph's headline the next day to be 'It was Jailhouse Rock for one member of Derby Rock Choir at the weekend' Yikes!!!
I have to say a big welcome to all the newbies who came along this week, it was lovey to see so many people wanting to join in the fun. Looking forward to progressing with 'Don't Stop Believin' and hopefully taking part in more performances. It's not too late if you want to join us too, just go to the Rock Choir website at www.rockchoir.com and register for a free taster. We have a laugh as well as singing our hearts out so come along, you'll love it. You don't have to audition or be a professional, just as long as you love music and like to sing that's it!
Anyway I'm sure I'll keep updating you all with our antics and what we get up to over the next few months. For now though thank you for reading, I will be back for Teapot Tuesday tomorrow, until then......
Remember them? Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark. If you were a 80's teen like myself you would have danced to their electronic tones at the school disco. Songs such as Electricity, Joan of Arc, Maid of Orleans, Talking Loud and Clear, Locomotion, Tesla Girls and the anti war song Enola Gay. Oh brilliant songs, well guess what? They're back!
Yes, this September has seen the release of a new album 'The Punishment of Luxury' and listening to the title single it's as if they've never been away. It just got me the other day listening to them on the radio. They just have that distinctive sound that you recognise as OMD. It took me back and made me feel good. I like a good nostalgic session especially with music, it can project you to a different time and recollect some great memories. I also love to see a band which was formed way back in 1978, still doing their stuff today and it remaining relevant.
Andy McCluskey and Paul Humphreys founded the band and gained success with a rotation of different band members over the years until the time they disbanded in 1996. In 2006 they made a come back and now, back as strong as ever. If anyone mentions both their names in a music quiz of in conversation I always remember what they look like and recall their hits. That's probably because I'm a bit of a music buff and a total 80's fan. It would be my specialised subject if I ventured on Mastermind, I blame Smash Hits magazine and listening to the Top 40 as a teenager. It was my era, my time and I loved it.
I remember when leaving school I applied for a job with EMI in sales and I knew in a way that I wouldn't have the experience but crikey it was the best job I ever applied for, even though I didn't get it. I think I still have the rejection letter, it's my evidence of chasing a big dream even for a little moment.
The new single by OMD is great, again it's called 'The Punishment of Luxury' and available on all good downloady places like itunes to name one. I say that one because it's the one I use.......go get it now and do what I did, think ahhhhhh OMD are back and a little bit of the 80's.......timeless classic music. You'll be punching the air singing 'hey hey hey' I guarantee!
Enjoy and thanks for reading today, come back tomorrow for Teapot Tuesday.
Take care for now......
I had a really nice relaxing day yesterday. I pressed the red button on my tv and tuned into the Radio 2 Live Concert in Hyde Park. It really was a neat festival in a day and musical artists played to a packed out crowd on the park. Yes it rained a bit but nobody seemed bothered, people seemed well equipped with umbrellas, raincoats and the infamous festival ponchos.
The Stereophonics kicked off the show, followed by a bit of folk by Seth Lakeman and Wildwood Kin who were excellent if you can broaden your music mind and delve into something different. Seth certainly got the crowd going but I felt so sorry for the girls from Wildwood Kin who unfortunately experienced a lot of technical difficulties.
This seemed to be a common problem which cropped up later on in the evening before Take That came on stage. Radio Presenter and Scissors Sister member Ana Matronic played a DJ slot and the power went off suddenly for a minute or so, she looked shocked but what made me laugh was the sound engineer who stood next to her holding his hands up to say ' well I don't know what's happened'. It's ok love you're only live to millions of people around the world, at least look technical.
Rick Ashley woo'd the audience with his recent hits and of course the classic 'Never Gonna Give You Up' which he left to the last moment. He is so good and doesn't look any different. I boogied in my living room and closed my eyes, no I didn't fall over but was transformed back to to the 80's but without the terrible poodle perm.
Emeli Sande and James Blunt both followed with great performances. Emeli has just an amazing voice that sounded great. I had transferred over to the radio coverage at this time as I had a bit of ironing to do. See you can festival and do housework at the same time. James was also great and you forget how many class songs he has produced. The crowd sang out loud and how could you not sing along to 'You're Beautiful'. Loved it!!!
I eventually finished my ironing. I had saved it up a bit to be honest. I tend to iron on demand so it was a bit of a shock to the system. Kids have gone back to school now and that means school shirts!!! So yes after that I went back to the tv coverage as it was Shania Twain up next. I love Shania, loved her early days and love her now. She looked fabulous and belted out all her popular tunes such as 'Man I Feel Like a Woman' and the ballad 'You're Still The One' regardless of having previous problems with her voice due to illness a few years ago. She sounded great and seemed a little excited to be there and good because I hope she enjoyed it that much she returns soon. I know I'd like to see her tour in the future.
After Shania it was Blondie time. Wow I cannot believe Debbie Harry is 72!!! I wanted to be Debbie when I grew up, as well as Suzi Quatro and Cheryl Ladd from Charlie's Angels. maybe I've still got to grow up yet. I don't care what anyone says Blondie can still rock and can knock out those tunes such as Heart of Glass, Hanging on the Telephone and One Way or Another. A great show. LEGENDS!!
Take That headlined the event and did what they do well, entertained everyone with their songs which to be honest if you're a Take That fan or not, you usually end up tapping you're feet them. I think even though they are now a three piece they still own any stage and were just a brilliant act to end this 'Greatest Day' (see what I did there?). Lovely blokes, you just can't help love em'
Well done Radio 2 for providing a very entertaining day including the entertainment in between the acts, loved Popmaster with Ken Bruce, Zoe Ball and Claudia Winkleman, so funny. Thank you also for helping me work off 10,000 steps on my Fitbit. Just goes to show you don't have to go to the gym or go for a massive walk, you can work it all off with a dance around in the living room. I got some very funny looks from my boys as they passed through now and again but was I bothered? NO!
If you missed this music moment you can catch up on BBC iplayer or go to the Radio 2 website for more info at www.bbc.co.uk/radio2
Thank you for reading today, come back tomorrow for Teapot Tuesday.
Take care for now.......
I saw this lovely young man perform on Saturday night and a treat it was too. Local Derby boy Ryan has been performing since he was nine years old and has gained a lot experience in the theatre world and commercially too. He's rocked the cruise liners and worked the stage like a true professional.
Wherever he performs, whether it be a large or small venue he knows how to work an audience and the audience on Saturday night at the Mickleover Country Park Social Club couldn't get enough of him. Even for a small venue he fills it with his presence and star performances of West End classics from The Lion King, Les Mis and Miss Saigon which completed the first part of the night. The second set involved fun filled, disco diva and singalong songs we could all join in with from Tina Turner, Queen, Take That and The Beatles. Something for everyone and no one went away disappointed, you really are guaranteed a fabulous night.
The night was a charity event raising money for the Me & Dee Charity whom Ryan is a regular supporter. The charity is run by Maria Hanson and together with her very small team work hard all year round to raise funds to provide holidays to anyone of any age, with life threatening, life limiting and terminal medical conditions. They also now offer holidays to serving and ex serving military who have sustained serious injury and PTSD through their service. There are two fabulous caravans on the East Coast resort of Mablethorpe and this really is a chance for these families to take time away and make some precious memories together. The charity have no funding from anywhere else other than from the the events they run and from public support so it was an honour to all get together with Ryan to help raise some precious pennies for this charity to enable them to continue their great work.
There is a short live video taken from the night on my Facebook page of Ryan but if you would like more information you can visit his website at:
www.ryanjoseph.co.uk Here you can check out some of his tracks, find out where he his performing next and book him for an event you may have so please take a look.
If you would like more information on Me & Dee they have a website at:
Thank you for reading today, I'll be back tomorrow with Teapot Tuesday so take care for now.......
I don't have to say they are brilliant because they just are. After fifty or so years in the music business and all that they have been through as a band too they just own it.. I love Fleetwood Mac, as me and my brother would say, it's 'proper music'. There are so many bands the younger generation need to educate themselves with and this is one of them.
So when Lindsey Buckingham and Christine McVie released their duet album in June of this year I wondered what it would be like and wow I'm not disappointed. It has a huge Fleetwood Mac feel and that's probably because it has input from Mick Fleetwood and John McVie too. I just love it, I love both of their voices and their music makes me so chilled and relaxed, the lyrics to their songs are ones you can just relate to which makes their work so meaningful and special.
The singles taken from the album are 'In My World', 'Red Sun', 'Feel About You' and 'Lay Down for Free' are great and if you are an avid Radio 2 listener you will have heard them played a lot especially 'Feel About You' with it's pop, 60's reggae influence, one that definitely stays in your head. I woke up with it going around my head this morning, it's a feel good tune, one that makes you smile and happy. Another track that I think makes an impact (struggling as they all do) is 'Game of Pretend', beautiful lyrics and a bit of a smoochy which for those who don't know is a song referred to as a slow dance, lovey dovey song. So if you're in love, grab your partner and have a dance to this one.
Great these aged rockers eh? They keep on going, still knocking out great classic songs and they look good too. If you are a Fleetwood Mac fan you will love this but even if you aren't I do think it will appeal to all really. Try it, have a listen and see what you think. Let me know by leaving a comment, I'd be interested to hear what you think too.
Thank you for reading, do come back tomorrow for Teapot Tuesday, I'll be here!
Take care for now.........
It's Bucks Fizz and they're back! The 1981 Eurovision Song Contest winners haven't released anything for a good many years so now they have a new single and a brand new album. They have a slightly different name due to a bitter legal battle with ex band member Bobby G who apparently owns the legal rights to the name 'Bucks Fizz' and as I'm aware still performs under that name. So the other guys have broken away and made their comeback as 'The Fizz' with new member Bobby McVay.
I was listening to the new single on the radio and when the legend that is Ken Bruce on Radio 2 announced that these 80's stars were returning under a different name I did say out loud 'oh what as? The Fizz?' and then two seconds later Ken confirmed it, 'The Fizz'. I laughed a little to myself but I suppose the name has to still have some relevance otherwise all their hard work would have gone to waste.
So the new single 'Dancing in the Rain' is a good little pop tune, sounds very like Steps who are also back on the scene so I may well get very confused (nothing new there). The Fizz's new album 'The F-Z of Pop' is produced by Mike Stock from Stock Aitken and Waterman fame so that's why they have that pop sound similar to other tunes. It's good though and I will always appreciate them for one of those very rare wins in Eurovision. The UK will always have thanks for The Fizz. So well done Cheryl Baker, Jay Ashton, Mike Nolan and the new Bobby and hope things go well for them.
Cheryl did really well from the Bucks Fizz fame, she became a popular presenter on TV and quite a household name. I always use to think Mike Nolan was a Nolan brother but not to be, I was convinced the other musical sensation, singing sisters 'The Nolans' may have had a musical brother in the mix and he had gone and set his own band up. The disappointment was immense. I got over it.
If you're not over a certain age and born way after 1981 you are probably wondering who? Well you may need to go do some You Tubing. Let me tell you that skirt ripping off thing at the Eurovision was saucy at the time and we held our breath on the night incase there was a huge wardrobe malfunction. Some may have celebrated a faulty piece of velcro but it was tense times and could have affected the result massively, I feel it did anyway.
The Fizz were performing at Glasgow Pride over the weekend with all their classics and even wowed the crowds with the lovely soft heart melting Land of Make Believe'. You're going to love or hate them but they are great for a party and let's wish them luck with their comeback. They are amongst a lot of 80's artists to make that return, showing kids these days what real music is.....errrr well maybe showing kids what entertained us in the old days.
Thank you for reading and I will return myself tomorrow for Teapot Tuesday so join me then.
Take care for now........
My Music Monday this week is dedicated to the great Glen Campbell who passed away on the 8th August. An absolute legend in music with so many hits and awards spanning over his fifty year career.
An amazing man and musician with songs I will remember as long as I live. I've listened to him a lot recently with the release of his recent album 'Adios' in June this year. Aptly titled you could say and after six years suffering with Alzheimers it would be his 'goodbye'.
I loved his voice, so soothing and classic songs you could sing along to. Wichita Lineman had a place in our household and we all sang it to my youngest brother who became a 'linesman for the county' when he started his career as a linesman for the local electricity board. It just stays in my memories from back then and I will always associate it to that time but also most recently the end of the song marked the end of the Steve Wright in the Afternoon show on Radio 2, it fitted so well. His music always played on the radio when I was young, 'Galveston' is just a song you can belt out when you feel like it and 'Rhinestone Cowboy' was the ultimate country song which everyone knew. 'Southern Nights' a toe tapping cheery number and I loved him singing 'Everybody's Talkin', so relaxing.
He may have been 81 years old but his voice was timeless even with Adios which was recorded in 2012/2013 he sounded like he always did. According to his wife he wanted to preserve 'what magic was left' and although having problems remembering some lyrics his long time co collaborator Carl Jackson stated that Glen 'never lost his melodies and that beautiful pitch and tone'. I think he was right.
So Rest in Peace Mr Campbell and although you have left this earth your songs will live on I'm sure for many years to come. Goodbye and Adios, fly high cowboy!!
Thanks for reading, feel free to join me again for Teapot Tuesday tomorrow.
Take care for now......
Today is about anything to do with my love of music, whether it be reviews of concerts and gigs or shouting out my favourite tunes and my experiences at Rock Choir!