In Search of My Father 2017 Writing Project

In Search of My Father 2017 Writing Project
In Search of My Father, 2017 writing project supported by The National Lottery through the Arts Council of Northern Ireland

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

WE ARE WHAT WE ARE - TIME TO GET OVER OURSELVES

We are what we are,
time to get over ourselves,
thinking as human beings,
thinking we are important,
thinking we have a say.

We are till receipts,
official statistics,
economic units,
ballot papers,
at the end of any day.

We have no say,
no sway.

Time to get over ourselves.

Sunday, 23 April 2017

IS THE NEXT GERRY ANDERSON POSSIBLE?

I was born and raised in Belfast. I have family and friends there. I keep in touch with the creative arts and brilliant talent from there. I try to blog and support local artists. I listen to BBC Radio Ulster. I love a lot of the output. Occasionally, no frequently, I realise how much I miss Gerry Anderson.

I haven't lived in Belfast for 40 years. But it still has a power over me, it still influences me and its still personal because I have a lot of family there. The Internet allows me access to the wonders thriving in my home town, and there are more positives than negatives in that great city.

I love the work of John Toal, Gerry Kelly, Kerry McLean, Marie Louise-Muir, Ralph McLean, Mickey Bradley, Hugo Duncan and many more.

I don't listen to the phone-ins. Blood pressure!!!

I have been lucky enough to have been interviewed by John Toal, Gerry Kelly and Michael Bradley, lovely moments. In my own orbit, I feel a personal connection to BBC Radio Ulster. Others in their orbits might think differently. Whatever. I'm a fan.

Gerry Anderson left us in 2014 at 69 and, along with me, a huge number of listeners were , no are, bereft.

He was unique. A brilliant broadcaster who could ramble for half an hour on something that from the outset sounded trivial. He sparred beautifully with his compadre Sean Coyle.

Now  Sean has the plum mid-morning slot on Radio Ulster and he does it superbly in his unassuming and very down-to-earth manner.

But, and I am not being disparaging in any way to Sean, I keep thinking about the next rebel broadcaster, the next free spirit on Radio Ulster who could match Gerry. Is that possible? Is that impossible?

Is there a Gerry Anderson for the next decade out there, someone who could master a radio microphone, someone with the skills to be on the edge, over the edge, fearless, frightening and, above all, funny?

I don't know, but I hope so.




Saturday, 22 April 2017

NEW MUSIC - INK BY ANTHONY TONER


Ink by Anthony Toner
2017

Track Listing:

Let the River
An Alphabet
The Shepherd's Daughter
Sleep like a Soldier
The Night Prayer of Saint Augustine
Square Eyed Boy
The Candidate
All the Winds
Still Your Man
Cotton Anniversary
Light from the Stars
Exit Wounds
Sometimes the Night
The River Road
The Pictures

A new album by Anthony Toner is always something to get excited about. He is a singer/songwriter/musician who just gets better and better.

Ink is a collection of reflective songs and some instrumentals that combine to produce, and I am not disparaging using these words, a nice, pleasant easy-listening album. To me, it is a Sunday morning record (although you can listen to it any day of the week!)

The songwriting is confident, although I must say I did wince a little at An Alphabet, anticipating a lot of forced and clunky A to Z references but Anthony pulls it off rather well. The production, arrangements and musicianship are all excellent, so hats off to everyone involved for a fine record.

The standout track for me is the opener, Let The River. It is a beautiful, thoughtful song with hints of blues, jazz and a dash of gospel, enhanced by perfect piano playing.

Towards the end, I wanted this album to rock a bit but the intention was, perhaps, to maintain a mood of melancholy, nostalgia, memories and dreams. In that regard, it is a triumph.

Radio should love Ink. It deserves attention and wide exposure.


Link to Anthony Toner's website: http://anthonytoner.net

This post shared on Google+, Digg, Tumblr, Facebook & Twitter