Feeling good

Another year – and a decade – draws to a close. I don’t know about you but my thoughts tend to look forward to what may be coming in the New Year rather than only looking back on what has been. In spite of an uncertain economic outlook in 2011, I’m feeling good about the coming year both professionally and personally. One song in particular epitomizes that outlook for me, not coincidentally called Feeling Good. Many artists have covered this song since it first appeared in 1965. My two favourites are the versions by Michael Bublé and Nina Simone – two singers who bring very different and powerful treatments to a modern classic. Choices and best wishes for the New […]

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The success of the Ealing Tweetup

If you’ve been to a tweetup, you know the kind of thing it typically is: an informal get-together of like-minded people, usually in a pub or other social venue, who sign up on Twtvite to say ‘yes’ or ‘maybe’ they’d be there. It’s advertised and promoted by the organizer and anyone who tweets or retweets about it. And there’s a hashtag. Usually, a tremendous time is had by all. So it was last Tuesday at the sixth Ealing Tweetup organized by Mark Hillary, hashtag #ealingtu. This one, though, had three significant differences from your average tweetup – a food-and-drink sponsor, a recording artist, and a strong mainstream media presence in the form of BBC Radio 6 (listen to their event […]

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Just two strikes and Ping’s out for me

Like many other people, I’ve joined Ping, Apple’s new social network integrated into the latest iTunes 10 release that the company launched last week. Reaction by critics and pundits hasn’t been particularly positive even though Apple says over a million people joined Ping within the first couple of days following its release. I’ve already seen the word ‘Ping’ spelled out as ‘Ping Is No Good.’ So what is Ping exactly? Apple says: [… Ping is] a new music-oriented social network for following your favorite artists and friends to discover what music they’re talking about, listening to and downloading. iTunes Ping lets you post your thoughts and opinions, your favorite albums and songs, the music you’ve downloaded from iTunes, plus view […]

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Stamps for collecting not for posting

The Royal Mail has a terrific series of stamp designs it plans to release on January 7 that features the covers of some iconic British rock music albums over the last 40 years. The Classic Album Covers collection features album covers from these bands: from left to right, top row – Pink Floyd: The Division Bell, Coldplay: A Rush Of Blood To The Head, Blur: Parklife, New Order: Power Corruption And Lies, Rolling Stones: Let It Bleed; bottom row – The Clash: London Calling, Mike Oldfield: Tubular Bells, Led Zeppelin: IV, Primal Scream: Screamadelica, David Bowie: The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars. Special stamps are something the Royal Mail has been doing for years […]

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Do they know it’s Christmas?

A blast from the past that’s as relevant today as it was when “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” was first recorded a quarter of a century ago. This is a song in which a real A-list of musical talent and influence came together to record for Band Aid, a charity supergroup featuring British and Irish musicians and recording artists. It was founded in 1984 by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure to raise money for famine relief in Ethiopia. Something still to think about in many places around the world as we tuck in to our Christmas lunches and dinners during the next 24 hours. Merry Christmas!

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