Webcore was kind enough to send Mrs Maki and me the DVD of his family’s appearance on a Japanese TV programme. We thought the rest of you would like to see it. Here it is with an introduction from the man himself:
Back in April this year a Japanese TV company asked me if I would play a Beatles’ song by the River Mersey, discuss Irish immigration to Liverpool, including any Beatles Irish connections, and indulge them in several other other sketches and vignettes, including going to my house, meeting my family, and singing Galway Bay for the population of Japan.
They turned out to be fantastic people; the lovely and extremely personable presenter, Yuuke, whom I hadn’t met before she approached me on camera; the director and crew; and especially Jim, the fighting-fit 66-year-old Oxbridge gent co-ordinator who got me the gig, fluent in Japanese, looking like a movie star, wowing the women like a clean-shaven Robert Redford.
I don’t play Beatles’ songs, I told them, and I’m certainly not going to play Galway Bay – my grandmother sang that one.
Then they told me how much I would be paid. Erm, I’m prepared to compromise, I said: I choose the Beatles’ song, and you film me reading Galway Bay off my laptop so that it’s obvious I wouldn’t normally play it.
As part of a 90-minute programme, a fourteen-hour day’s filming was edited down to 10 minutes.
As the day went on I was attempting to edit the filming in my mind, knowing that they couldn’t fit it all in to a TV programme, and I knew that it was the director’s job to create a coherent cut from a mass of material.
I was sorta unsurprised at what was included in our ten minutes. Leza had written the song only the week before, and Kevin had learned the guitar part only the night before.
I’d just like to say that MAKINAVAJA volunteered to organise and arrange this post for me. I couldn’t have managed it. So a big public thank you to him for being a gentleman and a scholar.