Tagged with music

The Importance of Context

I’m starting the new year with one of my favourite songs, ‘There She Goes, by the LA’s. I love it. A perfect pop song about a young woman.  But someone told me it’s really about cocaine. Listen to it again. It works.  Or it could be about a young woman having the effect of cocaine … Continue reading

Singing Together

I’ve been enjoying reading singer fro Everything but the Girl’s Tracey Thorne’s book ‘Naked at the Albert Hall. She has a lot of great insights into the art and craft of the vocalist, but also of the importance of signing to us as people and as communities. Something I never thought about is why kids … Continue reading

6Music and Bristol History

Last weekend the extraordinarily wonderful 6music festival took place in my former home town of Bristol. I didn’t go but I was intrigued by how the various DJs responded to the city. Radcliffe and Maconi seemed pretty well informed about the place and were, like most of their colleagues, keen to visit the boat-venue The … Continue reading

Bowie RIP – His Final Performance –

I never really got Bowie, but his importance to modern art – not just music – has been phenomenal. He kept the secret of his terminal illness, and was producing his best work right up to the line. An incredible act. The announcement of his death botched by BBC radio news. For comment, they asked … Continue reading

Good News from Gaza

It’s not often we see a headline like this, but from yesterday’s i newspaper comes the following, by Nidal al-Mughrabi: “The group of girls dressed in pink stretched their arms out and pivoted on to their toes, trying desperately to hold still. Eagle-eyed, the instructor surveyed Gaza’s latest crop of would-be ballerinas. Fifty girls aged … Continue reading

Punk Music as Metaphor

Some years ago BBC 6 music was at risk of closing due to its small listenership, so a campaign was launched to save it. One night, DJ Gideon Coe played the punk song by Half Man Half Biscuit, Joy Division Oven Gloves, adding that only on 6 music could this oddity be heard. Listeners started … Continue reading

Music and Architecture

I used to steward in a former church, now concert hall, and we were constantly aware of how suited it was to acoustic performances but amplification of any kind bounced round and made a hell of a mess. MY partner at the time wsa a drummer who hated playing there. But a single violin note … Continue reading

Byrne on Performance

I am fascinated by what happens to people at public gatherings, such as concerts, in churches, political rallies, by the energy, the sense of community, and why this seems to be such an integral part of most civilisations. David Byrne is also fascinated by the process of performance; in his book How Music Works he … Continue reading

Paul Simon on Graceland

When Paul Simon’s album, Graceland, was released I was utterly blown away by it. I was never into what was then being called World Music, but I’d never heard anything like it, and it soon became a ritual for me to have it on my headphones whenever I went travelling. The opening groans of the … Continue reading