in categories:

A couple of weekends back Hazel and I spent a weekend in Cardiff for the lovely Wales Goes Pop! festival - the whole thing was a joy, but here's a few particularly good bits …

Deerful

Deerful at Wales Goes Pop!

Lovely to see Emma again, she makes beautiful music, has a lovely voice, and does charming and funny between songs banter - there's nothing not to love about Deerful!

The Gate

The venue is a lovely former church beautifully converted into an arts centre. The main performance space was the former gallery of the church, with the original pews around three sides. Underneath was a cafe and the second stage. Given that we were to spend so much of the weekend here it was a treat.

2017-04-15-19-38-48-827

Milgi

Milgi is a restaurant it's in this list because it was a stone's throw from the venue and it had lovely and imaginative vegetarian food served in a comfortable envinronment, by friendly people.

It was so good we went there three times!

Milgi

Everyone else

Sacred Paws

Sacred Paws at Wales Goes Pop!

Girl Ray

Girl Ray at Wales Goes Pop!

Lorna

Lorna at Wales Goes Pop!

Rogue Jones

Rogue Jones at Wales Goes Pop!

Gulp

Gulp at Wales Goes Pop!

The Just Joans

The Just Joans at Wales Goes Pop!

… and everyone else.

in categories:

Waltzes From Vienna (1934)

So, this had Hitch behind the camera. It had The Blue Danube. It had the lovely Jessie Matthews, looking sweet. It had the always wonderful Edmund Gwenn. All these ingredients can surely produce a cracker?

Nope. Because it had a rubbish story, a tired yarn based around the idea that any two women in a film must be jealous of each other - that a young man must be incapable of defending himself from the wiles of an older woman who has influence, and that the older woman will always try to ensnare the younger man just because she can.

All of which is, of course, stupid and so no amount of Hitch, music, sweetness and Edmund Gwenn can save this film.

Sweet Jessie Matthews

Watched: 2017-04-28
Source: DVD
Rating: 4/10

So I prefer the remake - here's my fave clip from it being shown with a live orchestra

in categories:

Wimbledon stadium

Next weekend Greyhound racing will end in London, probably (hopefully) for ever. Last weekend, and contrary to so much of what I see as right, Hazel, Adam and I went to the dogs.

Plough Lane
Memorial to a former football ground

I don't like or approve of dog racing (or for that matter gambling) but did see this as the end of a part of London's past, and for that reason I thought we should go for one last time (I had been a few times in my less enlightened past), to see the end of an institution. Adam asked if I'd have rushed off so eagerly to the last public execution! Maybe.

The last dog racing in London will happen at The Wimbledon Stadium ~ across The Wandle from the former home of Wimbledon FC, and a place I spent a great chunk of my growing up - between 1980 and 1991. Once the dogs have gone, AFC Wimbledon (different name, same club as far as I'm concerned) will be (fingers crossed) coming home to a new stadium built on the site.

Wimbledon Stadium is a sprawling, ugly mess of a place, it has no charm, and no beauty - no gorgeous neon welcome.

We arrived and I dragged my family around the housing estate where the football ground once was, and then we headed into the dog stadium. There was a queue - maybe because of curious people like us.

We stayed for three or four races, it's an ugly "sport" and it makes people (even us by association with it) become ugly. We photographed the end of this era and left, not sad to see it go, and feeling a little dirty at having done it.

2017-03-11: Wimbledon Stadium

in categories:

Tell the folks back home this is the promised land calling and the poor boy is on the line #chuckberry #rip

I saw Chuck Berry twice in the late 80s, both times at the Hammy Odeon. I love that I can say that - they're memories I wouldn't do without.

Having said that they are memories that are muddled and murky, I don't remember what he played - I hope he played Promised Land, both times - let's just assume he did.

I do remember at one point a young man jumped on stage and started dancing energetically around and Chuck wandered over to him, mid-song and said something to him. The young man wandered off the stage… and returned with a bunch of pals and they all started dancing! I loved that despite his reputation Chuck clearly loved how his music made people feel.

Capital Radio, the morning after one of the gigs was gushing about the fact that Chuck had been contracted for a 60 minute set but had actually played 64 minutes! Suggesting that he was so lost in the show that he gave us four minutes of his time for nothing!

We were lucky. I'm glad.

Chuck kept coming over but I never got around to seeing him again.

in categories:

Number Seventeen (1932)

Rather thrilled that Number Seventeen is #17 in my Hitch watching series (although #2 wasn't seen)

The film is cracking little yarn - Hazel wasn't as keen as me on the first half but I loved the humour and the shadows and the silly little yarn.

But what really makes the film great is the fantastic chase - with beautiful models, nobody would have been fooled into thinking the models were real, but that's the joy of models over CGI, becuase neither look authentic ... but models are real and therefore give authenticity, and with authenticity comes tension.

The chase is on!

This was like watching proto-Thunderbirds … but much better paced! The cast were charming and the silliness of the plot has never been something to put me off!

Watched: 2017-02-26
Source: DVD
Rating: 6/10

Archives