Song of the Week: All at Sea


I’ve decided to revive my highly unsuccessful ‘Song of the Week’ posting because this song has been in my head all the time and it’s lovely.  So I thought I’d share the Jazz Hobbit, Jamie Cullum.

Enjoy!

Song of the Week: Take It Right Back by Bessie Smith


I first heard this song as part of the London Cast Recording of ‘Blues in the Night’, where it’s performed by a group of women and a lot more upbeat.  I’ve chosen it as song of the week because I think it fits with the sentiment of my last post.

Bessie Smith is an amazing blues singer that I’ve been listening to a lot recently, and I just love her version of the song.  She had an interesting life, she was the most popular female blues singer of the 1920s and 1930s.  Smith became the highest paid black entertainer of the day, heading her own shows, which sometimes featured as many as 40 troupers, and touring in her own railroad car.

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Song of the week: Happy Days Are Here Again – Get Happy


This week I’ve been re-ordering my ipod, adding podcasts, removing duplicates and sorting out new playlists.

I’ve got over 1200 tracks that fall under the ‘Musicals’ playlist, which is a little ridiculous really.  Equally ridiculous is my ‘Glee’ playlist which has over 700 tracks.  My brother is ashamed of my love for Glee, but I’m celebrating it, especially now that it is finishing its run in the US.

I’m a Glee fan, I have the board game, all the DVDs and two Glee karaoke games for my Wii.  (I really need to get those moved up here)

I was one of those kids in school, I was in every choir, I auditioned for (nearly) every production.  I made some great friends through our shared love of musicals, cheesy pop and singing together.  When Glee started I loved it, because it was loud and brash and in your face.  It was brilliant.  It dealt with issues around love, loss, struggles, sexuality, gender identity, discovering who you are and standing up for that in the face of everything that the world might throw at you.  Not every episode was a classic, not every cover was particularly great, but there were always funny one liners and Sue Sylvester.

 

I could have chosen ‘Don’t Stop Believing’ as my tribute to Glee for this week’s song, but instead I’ve picked something a little bit more low key that also goes with my love of musicals.

 

I’ve posted two clips of the song below, the first is the original from Barbra Streisand and Judy Garland, of course both complete legends who just blend together beautifully.  The second is Lea Michele and Chris Colfer (Rachel and Kurt) from the show.  To be honest, there’s at least 20 I could list as my favourite, but this just makes me want to sing both parts over and over.

 

 

Song of the week: 22nd March 2014


I’m sitting in the airport (again) and am on my way to Australia for the first time.  I’ve bought a bottle of Southern Comfort that *should* last me my month and a bit there.  I’m off to see friends old and new – Jess, who I’ve known since school, possibly before, Ruby, former flatmate and marvelous Aussie, Ruby’s extended family who are hopefully putting me up for a bit.  I might bump into David, who I met coming off the last plane and who needs to earn more about Australian TV.  I’m definitely going on the Neighbours tour – hat self respecting fan with two board games and two best of DVDs wouldn’t?  (I really don’t think it matters that I’ve not really seen it in 5 years…)

 

So my songs this week have been prepping for the oncoming country.

The first is from Nancy Kerr and James Fagan, two brilliant musicians I’ve been lucky enough to be taught by.

The Drover’s Boy came up in a lecture I’ve been listening to from La Trobe University about picture books for children and I’ve known it for a long time as this wonderful song. You should also look out for The Outside Track and Dance to your Daddy/The Flaming Drones, actually just get yourself the album. (No video available of The Drover’s Boy so here’s Dance to your Daddy)

 

As I’m also going to Sydney I have to include an ABBA song – it’s Fernando – simply because Muriel’s Wedding is an awesome film and I love the trip to Hibiscus Island where Mariel (as she has renamed herself) and Rhonda become friends.  Ruby and I are off to Fiji later in the year and I fully intend to dress up in ABBA costumes and perform Waterloo before collapsing at the foot of a tree laughing and hoping that life is as good as an ABBA song.  I’m also really tempted to go and try on wedding dresses and pretend I’m marrying Tim Sims, but I’ll rein myself in.

When I get on youtube again I’ll also give you a little bit of Monty Python’s Flying Circus and some The Fast Show that also help sum up what Australia means to me.  Comment below if you want to guess what those clips might be….

 

And here they are:

Song of the Week: 17th March 2014


Sorry it’s a bit late, but I’ve been trying to fit as much into the last few days as I can, as well as getting on with writing and trying to rest my back. 

 

This week I’ve been in Vietnam and so I was thinking of listing the Original Cast Recording of Miss Saigon, but I can’t stand Jonathan Pryce as The Engineer, I can manage him as Peron in Evita – he even signed my book and video case – I just think he’s not that good in this.  Plus that seems like an obvious choice and I don’t want to be doing that. I also thought about Billy Joel’s Goodnight Saigon, but that didn’t seem right either.  Although Vietnam is synonymous in many minds with war, that’s not how the country feels to me.  So nothing actually connected to Vietnam. 

 

Instead, I’ve been thinking about the journeys, long bus trips I’ve been on over the last two and a half weeks.  The songs (yep, can’t choose again) I’ve picked are both Elton John, both feel like they should be listened to as you drive along with the sun setting and turning the sky a selection of inky blues, reds and oranges with the wind blowing through your hair. 

Here is a lovely version of ‘Goodbye Yellow Brick Road’ by Sara Bareilles:

And the ultimate bus song, thanks to Almost Famous, Tiny Dancer.

 

Enjoy..

Song of the week: 22nd Feb 2014


I’ve bought a pair of Dr. Dre Beats because I thought it best not to have in-ear headphones whilst battling a possible ear infection.  They’ve been amazing.  After about 4 days of not listening to things I was suddenly filled with a world of my choosing, able to block out the bustle and clamour of Khao San Road, bus and train journeys.

I’ve not had over the ear headphones since I was about 12, so every time I’ve put them on I have the feeling that I should be listening to Now 29 on a coach trip to Alton Towers; my lunch box should have two packets of crisps – smokey bacon and chicken, there should be two drinks, two scotch eggs (!) and sandwiches which are a bit squished.  Instead I’ve had iced coffee in a can and char sui buns from 7 Eleven. (In case you’re wondering, I have Now 29 on the ipod, but have been favouring Now 75 instead.)

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Song of the week 8th February 2014 (a little late)


I was torn between two songs this week as the main post.  There could have been many more contenders and there’s an amazing one from Nina Simone that will eventually be featured, but didn’t fit with what I’ve been been up to.  Come to think of it, the actual song of the week doesn’t either, but I’ll get to that in a second.
The runner up is an oldie.
Let’s set the scene a little.  You find that your hostel can’t book you in for Friday or Saturday night, so you manage to arrange somewhere else for Friday and then decide to head off on some trips.  Saturday night you will be sleeping on a floating house on the River Kwae (Kwai) as part of a two day excursion, so what to do on Friday?  I know, visit some temples.  So I did and was trundled into a bus with a group of strangers for a fair few hours.   I got chatting away with Sharron from the moment the bus door closed, she’s Scottish, a make up artist and doing a little trip of Thailand.  But the rest of our excursion we’d not really chatted to. But that’s fine, everyone is doing their own thing, looking around, taking the pictures of monuments and thumbs up in front of a giant Buddha.
But at lunch time we were all sat around the same table having almost warm rice, sweet and sour chicken, stir fry cabbage and omlette. A song was playing.  The American to my right said it was Celine Dion. He was correct.  So I, of course, started a game, how quickly can you name the next song?  This people guessing, however there was a mis-translation at some point as we then started predicting the next song.  I said I’d really like some Spice Girls.  One of the others suggested ‘2 become 1’.  All agreed it would be a classic.  Three tracks later – 2 become 1 came on.  We all thought we were magical.
So that’s the runner up.

The main track, however, is a song that I first heard on the plane from Mumbai to Bangkok and I’m going to have to learn it.  It’s haunting, it’s beautiful, it’s tender and sad.  I love it.  I don’t know how you couldn’t really. 

Manhattan  – Sara Bareilles. 

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(click pic for her website)

Song of the week: 1st February 2014


I’m now going to try and link to a song I’ve been been listening to each Saturday.  It probably won’t last but you never know. 

So I’m trying to pack, make sure I’ve cancelled all I need to, washed clothes, sorted medications, found passport, re-checked passport, but I’m also trying to put together a set list for a school friend’s wedding, so I’ve been searching through my singable collection to see what happy love songs I’ve got.  

The Way I Am – Ingrid Michaelson

Ingrid Michaelson is one of my new favourite singers.  This song is beautiful. Have a listen.  I think you might like it. 

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(Click on the picture for her website)

Let me know what you think.