Friday, 15 June 2018

My third - and final - Desert Island Discs selection: from Snow in San Anselmo to Uptown Funk

I produced my first Desert Island Discs selection in 2014, and the second a few weeks ago.  That last one took me up the late '70s. It's now the early '80s, and I'm on holiday with a girlfriend in a dull, dusty, unfriendly Spanish coastal town full of stolid German holidaymakers - because her parents own an apartment there. I hate the food, the beach is nothing but pebbles, and the evenings are made unbearable by the constant buzz-saw whine of kids riding mopeds up and down the strip below.  I'm overweight, unhappy, and drinking far too much. My writing career's heading down the crapper, the long-term relationship I'm in is floundering, my life's going nowhere, and I have absolutely no idea how to fix things. There's a tape of the Van Morrison LP Hard Nose the Highway in the apartment, and I find myself listening to one track - "Snow in San Anselmo" - over and over again. I should hate it, because it keeps breaking into jazz,  it's one of those pop songs which sounds religious without actually being so, and Van Morrison's "irritating vocal mannerisms" dial is set to 11. And yet...

Saturday, 9 June 2018

Friday, 8 June 2018

The annual Bedford Park Festival kicks off at St Michael's this evening - and there's a Sara Grønmark original to be won!

My two favourite bits of the Bedford Park Festival (Tube: Turnham Green) are the open air mass on Acton Green on the second day of the Green Days Fete and Crafts Fair (10.30 on Sunday, 10th June this year). The other is the Summer Exhibition of buyable art...