Running in memory of DarceysUncle

Ever since our Dan died, I’ve intended to do a Spill thread about my brother. But grief kept kicking inspiration into submission: over the last four months I have stared at my keyboard dozens of times, and written not a single word! Now I’ve finally got a deadline looming that has helped me write something, even if it isn’t what I intended. Continue reading

Gig Review – Black at Zanzibar, Liverpool

DsMam, Colin Vearncombe, DsD My wife doesn’t *do* gigs. The last time I made her come with me was a day at the Leeds Festival over ten years ago. She suffered a couple of openers, was impressively unimpressed by The Delgados, and finally lost it during a particularly noisy set by The Deftones. She borrowed our friend’s car keys, and drove herself home, returning to pick us up after we’d stayed on to watch At The Drive-In (probably a good job she’d gone by then, TBH), Embrace, Gomez, Beck, Pulp & The Black-Eyed Peas. Even when the surroundings have been more comfortable, she has made me leave before the end: gigs by Ruby Turner and Blondie both spring to mind. So when it was HER suggestion that we not only go to see Colin Vearncombe play as Black, but to make a night of it by booking a hotel and staying over, you could’ve knocked me down with the proverbial feather! I shouldn’t have been surprised really. Our wedding first dance was to Wonderful Life, and THIS album has been our joint favourite for almost a quarter of a century now. Continue reading

HELP! required ASAP, again!!

DsSis has just thrown us a huge curveball for Christmas, just when we thought we’d finished the kids’ shopping.

She says she wants a copy of this:

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Avid Sibelius First software – Version 7 is apparently what they use at school.

She says she wants it for writing music without having to draw it out on manuscript paper. Seems an expensive way to save time and pencil lead, if you ask me. But DON’T ask me, because I am the iDunce, remember? And Tone-Deaf-Dad to boot.

Several questions then.

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An [almost officially] old romantic writes …

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I’m a heavy rocker, me, right?

Starting with classic Zep, Purple, & Lizzy; defining myself by UFO, Judas Priest, AC/DC & Motorhead LPs in the 70s; surviving the 80s thanks to Van Halen, The Cult, Faith No More & Guns’n’Roses; reviving in the 90s with Thunder, Gun, Live, Pearl Jam & Soundgarden; and indulging myself with all of the above and more in the internet-fuelled new millennium.

Tennent’s Super and Jack Daniels; denim & leather; festival bottle battles; fast cars and loud guitars; Breaking The Law & Running With The Devil. That’s yer DsD profile, yeah?

Well I’m fifty on Sunday, and you know what has absolutely knocked me for six this week? A vid featuring a colliery brass band, a walk on the moors, pints of orange juice and cola, and a crooning couple of middle-aged singers yearning for a cuddle. If you haven’t seen it over on The Graun, get a load of this song, newly available this week on the expanded rerelease of the What Have We Become album. I figure it’s just too late to force its way into my Festive Spill considerations for this year, but Lawdy I can’t stop playing it right now!

http://www.vevo.com/watch/paul-heaton/loving-arms/GBUV71401195

Kew, Queues, Qawwali-for-Youth, Poppies, In-Laws & Grub

(10 ‘Spill points & a drink of your choosing to the first person to ‘get’ the lyrical reference in that title.)

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I pretty much missed Shane’s first proper RR Guru stint, much to my own annoyance. Did you notice? No? Oh well, as you were ….

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