Friday, December 23, 2005

Christmas Musak

Busy wandering around the local Mall listening to Classic Christmas Rock - Slade I do believe - and realising how much it has become a part of Christmas.
Not just there in the background as advertising technique, but expected. It sets a cetain mood - and, wry smile that comes to my face not withstanding, it does lift the spirits a little. The kitch and glitter is Modern Christmas and is enjoyable.

More serious music at home (I was off to buy some Bach to listen to on Christmas Morning - Eliot Gardener's version of the Christmas Cantatas). There I listen, think, contemplate - a curiously intellectual pleasure - for despite how I phrase it, the first listen-through does give a bit of a kick- and later listenings are a pleasure.

But the shock came on listening to a cheap-o I picked up in Romania a couple of day's ago: Royal Phil and a girl's school doing modern (Rutter) carols, all very nice, and exceptionally well sung which suddenly shifted to God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen . .

I felt a serious kick at that - all sorts of emotions surged around inside and a tear came: Silly Old Git I might be - but strange how it worked.

It is as if there are three types of music (or three effects ?).

And the deep level of gut feeling is buried in some experience I must have had back when a child - I have sensations of brass band and Sally Army: of shining silver and green pine - red and white.

All very odd.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Blue remembered hills . . .

I recently posted a message on my old school website: So hello to any visitors from there.

As one gets older ones memories mix with fictions. I know from meetings I have had with ex-students of mine, what they remember is very different from what I remember.

School was a sort of pleasure to me - or so it seems now. I am sure, at the time, I would have said differently.

Individual episodes stick in the memory - singing one of the Three Kings in front of an audience at the Manchester Albert Hall - with Mr Knight conducting; Don Boyle at the piano writing a setting of a Shakespeare song for me to sing (I still hum away to it); Alison Steuart (?) / Berry doing a thousand things - but mostly making Geography live - especially physical Geography (she was the only person who could get me to understand the effect of gravity on the weather); Ms E. Stone (one of the truely great teachers) - rather large humps in a see-through blouse (or is memory playing a trick?).

There was a tomato once - Paula Collins knows all about it.

Steve Keating - strange, one looses touch of people, friendships die even if the friend lives on: But the memories are there.

And the plays: Ruined me for life - ideas of talent - but not got the drive needed to be a success. Never take the stunning hights we reached in them though.

Thank You to all who contributed to a time lost but not totally forgotten.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Another Off the Air

After aCNN interview with a journalist:

The trouble with today's journalists is that they are looking for conflict. They also think balance is to report both sides of a conflict.

A much better view is to find agreements - and publish areas where people agree. If you do that you actually help sort the problems, the world becomes a much better place and looking for solutions that are already working is much more interesting.