Monday, 31 January 2011

Summer 1969, I'm 8 Years Old.

It's a Sunday night.
(Actually, it was every Sunday night.)
Ma & Da would come home from the pub and sing to each other.
This one jumped into my head tonight!

Thursday, 27 January 2011

Ta Pal!

Text message;

"You in the office?" (that's what we call the pub!)Paul.

"Is the pope a paedo?" Me.

This is very close to closing time.

Paul arrives, just to give me a lift home.

Big fat hairy plumber.

I don't have many friends.

But I have good friends.

Thursday, 20 January 2011

'Falling Slowly' Progressing At Quite A Pace Actually!

Yesterday was the first rehearsal day for Kate & Da's new act.
We spent most of our time 'jamming', getting to know each others voices, finding songs that would suit us, finding the 'balance'. Having fun!

It was only day one, and no doubt things will change over the coming weeks, as we tweek things, throw out stuff we originally thought was good, realise that songs we thought might not work do actually work if you change a little bit here, drop a key there, completely transform a time signature!

We had fun throwing a completely obscure song (Acceptable In The 80's!) into the rehearsal, which made us both 'jam' and dance about the place!

We took 'Something Stupid' by Frank & Nanci, and swopped roles, Kate taking the lead with me doing the harmony!

My fave so far was our version of 'Falling Slowly' the Oscar winning song by Glen & Marketa. Kate playing piano, and me taking up the guitar again after a long, long time. (My fingers are cut to ribbons!)

But what fun!

It is so great to work with with someone who understands where I am coming from musically, and not be frustrated, like I often am when working with 'others' who do not 'get' me!

And what fun!

We are making good progress, and quickly. We might even YouTube! :¬)

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Be It Fair Or Stormy Weather, Take My Hand.

One of my most favourite songs, written by one of my favourite singer/songwriters (Paul Brady), sung by the legend (Liam Clancy), for my dear friend Peggy.

Saturday, 8 January 2011


I was 22. Had been unemployed for over a year, in the last big recession.
My buddy Jim and I both got jobs at the same time in a factory producing computer disks. (The early 80's). The hours were long, but the money was good, and we knew how to spend it! We were young, gifted and black! (Okay, we were young!)

One of the first friends I made there, (if not THE first) was Peggy. A more glamourous 'older' woman you could not meet. (She was in her early forties!) She always looked out for me, making sure I was eating enough etc. (I had just left home and was making my way in the big bad world!)

We became good friends, a friendship which lasted for a long time. Peggy had her ups & downs, as does everybody, but she always shone through, and never seemed to let things get the best of her. Good times or bad she came to work every day with the 'face' on, hair done, and best 'gladrags' adorning her body!

A few months back I went to visit her in a nursing home. She was suffering from a condition which had her confined to a wheelchair, her body wracked in involountary convulsions, her speech slurred, yet her mind as sharp as the first day I met her. It broke my heart to see her like this, yet her wit was as bright as ever! And she was the one who cheered me!

Peggy passed away yesterday, she had been moved from the home to our regional hospital, suffering from breathing difficulties, and her condition deteriorated rapidly.

She will be missed by the many, many friends she made in that factory that changed the lives of a lot of people (another story!), and even before I go to see her laid out in her coffin tomorrow, I know that she will be glamourous to the end.

Farewell Peggy, I will miss you dearly, you will not be forgotten.

Thursday, 6 January 2011

Some Nights The Stars Do Align.

On a good night, a photographer such as Dermot Culhane can make a baldy fecker even such as 'MOI' look good!

And it WAS a good night.
How can I call nights like this 'work'?
(Though believe me, there are nights..... but not this night!)