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Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Be Warned : Innocence is a Crime in Bulgaria

Who in their right mind could ever trust a country who sees fit to punish a law abiding innocent young lad in order to conclude a court case ?
Which citizen of such a country would be in his/her right mind to call themself a professional in the justice system?
Shame on you all for inflicting so much pain on a well loved family.

I drive past their house every day on the way to work. The support in the neighbourhood is tremendous. If banners, posters and yellow ribbons could bring Michael Sheilds back home it would have happened weeks ago. But the news of his wrongful conviction was greeted with utter shock and disbelief.

My family and I along with the rest of the civilised world would like to pass on our sympathies to Michael Shields and his family. We hope and pray for his safe and rapid return home.

We have a son who is not much older than Michael and we would be devastated if anything like this happened to him.

Anyone who is planning on visiting Bulgaria - think long and hard before you decide to go. I don't think the long arm of the law will afford you too much protection.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Carroll's Singing Leaves Me Dancing on the Celine

Go to Celine's Website Celine Carroll's latest album, Itch, is a must for any discerning music lover's collection. It contains 10 songs all witten by this very creative Dublin songstress.
A song entitled 'Home' easily welcomes you in to this album. Pleasant vocals and acoustic guitar to start with and then almost un-noticed the electric guitar starts punctuating the lines which then gives the cue to the rest of the backing musicians to make themselve heard.
The title track follows with the opening line "You're doing my head in" - so you can guess who is causing the itch and also the relief that it would bring to get rid of it. However, this album is not an itch to get rid of, but (for want of a better catchphrase) it doesn't take long to get under the skin.
Celine is an accomplished songwriter. She has witten the title track of a recent Frances Black Album - 'Don't Get Me Wrong'
As well as writing, producing and singing on this album, Celine contributes with piano and acoustic guitar. Numbered amongst the backing musicians, the name of Maire Breatnach (pronounced Moya Brannock) appears as the violinist. To the unfamiliar, any Irish album who features Maire Breatnach is guaranteed to be worth listening to.
'Itch' is indeed an excellent album which contains a healthy mix of styles & tempos, so you should have no trouble getting from start to finish without feeling the urge to jump to the next track The final song, "Bird in a Cage" lyrically describes the state of being trapped but it is delivered as though she is content with the situation.

'Apologise' (track 5) was the song which drew me to this album and it would be remiss of me not to mention Mike Moloney for playing this on Ocean FM . He has pointed me in the direction of Eleanor McEvoy, Frances Black and Juliet Turner in the past. Once again I can't thank this fella enough for having the foresight to play a song from this (soon to be released) album.

It's wrong to draw comparisons with other artistes but if you cross Maria Muldaur with K.T. Tunstall and add the style of Paul Simon and the influence of Paul McCartney then you'd have a rough idea.
But that's just my opinion, all I can recommend is that you buy a copy an enjoy what you hear instead.

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Thursday, July 14, 2005

Caroline has a vivid Imagination

I mentioned in the preceding post that I couldn’t find anything to match the quality of the Moloney after Midnight show on RTE 2FM. Well I have encountered the odd one or two since it's sad departure from the airwaves.

It would be wrong not to mention my rediscovery of Radio Caroline and Rob Leighton’s Imagination Show on Thursday evenings 9pm-midnight, where he plays “Music To Nourish Your Soul”

He's introduced me to some excellent bands on this show - Fula, Final Conflict and Karnataka to name but a few. But as well as quality, underplayed bands he’ll play Eleanor McEvoy, Juliet Turner and Melanie Safka. So it would be wrong to say that it’s all prog rock.
Essentially he simply plays inspirational music, the other week he played a track form the Genesis album, Selling England By The Pound.

So if you hunger for musical inspiration then, drop in on Rob Leighton, Thursday Nights at 9pm on Radio Caroline. There you can also find out how to get hold of Caroline on Sky Digital and on Worldspace radio as well as the internet.

And don't just stop there. Radio Caroline has been with us now for over 40 years.......the legend lives on.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Whilst Trawling The Net I Caught The Ocean

A few years ago I took a couple of days off work to do a spot of decorating. Before I started slapping on the undercoat I turned on the radio for a bit of company. And while I was looking for Virgin 1215AM I found a music station playing The Corrs - What Can I Do ?.
The Corrs were relatively unknown in the UK at the time, but it was that "doo-doo-doo-doo" intro which got me right between the ears.
The radio station was RTE 2FM - from that day to this I stayed with it.
Night-time listening on AM is pure magic. All those crackles and fades coupled with foreign interference take me back to the days when I used to listen to Radio Caroline & Luxemburg on the tranny under the pillow as a kid.
My return to night-time AM radio not only restored that enjoyment but it marked my "discovery" of the likes of Eleanor McEvoy, Frances Black, Leslie Dowdall and many more. Every discovery resulted in links to other artistes and the hunger for further exploration increased.
The presenter who introduced me to this new world of music was Mike Moloney. His show(Moloney after Midnight) was legendary. He also had this wierd character who enhanced the aura, her name was Amelia Golightly - she might have been posessed but she was simply adorable !
Sadly it was all too soon when the "powers that be" decided that program changes were necessary.(some call it progress)
After many years of searching for a radio show that came anywhere near to coming close to the class of Moloney after Midnight, I finally rediscovered Mike on Ocean FM.
So if you can spare an hour on Sunday Evenings from 9-10PM, then click the headline above and listen to Ocean FM and I'll guarantee that your ears will be well and truly educated.
There's only one downer though, I'm still missing Amelia Golightly, bless her.