Simple Minds +

Blimey, I went and saw Katy Tunstall, The Pretenders, and Simple Minds yesterday at Newark – turned out pretty good – weather was A-Ok, which was lucky, cos it rained Friday, and its raining today, but yesterday was fine!

The site at Newark is remarkable, Look! There’s a castle!


First up was KT Tunstall, I didn’t know much about her, she’s Scottish, witty, chats a lot with the audience which is always nice – a perfect warm up act, not that many people were there for her, but she won the crowd over effortlessly, she has talent alright, and she makes her own backing sounds with a loop machine and claps, shakes of maracas, bangs on guitar etc, then plays along to those – it really works well.



Next is the Pretenders, very good! Chrissie Hynde has always been someone I admired, great singer, she works that – and you can tell its not something she finds that easy, I mean, I could ‘feel’ her – you have to work at it to achieve it with your voice & you have to live to write those lyrics, she’s all that!



Finally, Simple Minds, thats where the blimey comes in! I didn’t know they were going to be so “out there” its like a religious experience seeing them, its worth checking out, I would recommend it. I bought their first big hit single back in the 80’s, but then I kind of went in a different direction and didn’t follow it up with more, I always thought they might have been something I’d like, and I’m still in that place, I don’t know wether it sounds better in the studio or live, that probably depends on what you like and how you like it – I’m not very good at writing this up am I? Anyhow, the lighting rigs were amazing, I have never ever seen such a lot of electric stuffs! Check out these photos! Amazing!




Motorbike ride

I went for a bike ride and found this place, little church, drainage ditch – nice little bridge, swans in the water, sheep grazing, all very cute, I find it amazing how people lived years ago – look at those scenes, there’s swans there in the ditch – probably thinking “What you doing round here? Go away!”

Later on I stopped off and took these photos, this is an area called the Isle of Axeholme, the weather was turning, first time in months really, it seems like summer is coming towards a conclusion. I was feeling a bit strangely happy at that place.

Someones humble abode

Then I just had to take some photos of these straw bails, cos it just was so striking!

Finally, this harvest scene – as you can see the weather was really getting overcast


My week off is nearly over, as is the heatwave we were having, good timing really I suppose – its tiring when its too hot. I got myself a book on Hieronymus Bosch, so I pick that up and start reading, and its all about all the religious symbols in his paintings, and how they were thinking back then. Of course he’s famous for the crazy paintings of monsters and demons, but I was just reading about the symbols in one of the more normal ones, (even those are a bit cranky by todays standards)


By Hieronymus Bosch – Web Gallery of Art:   Image  Info about artwork, Public Domain,

Well whats that all  about you might think? Well the book talks about how there’s a little Owl there, and a smaller bird, (its on the stick down there) which its going to prey on, cos its evil, LOL Everyones evil in this picture BTW, but what gets me about it, is how different reality was for people back then, how it all made so much sense, cos of God and the Devil, but not much makes sense these days does it? I mean, who cares if anything makes sense or not? What is sense anyhow? You can believe whatever you like! Weird to read stuff like that I know, but i find it strangley fascinating!



A trip to Hawarth!

I thought I’d take an hr out of my not very busy schedule this week to blog about my recent trip to Hawarth – they have been talking on the radio lately about Hawarth Parsonage, as its where the Brontë family lived and it’s also the bi-centenary of Emily Bronte’s birth (30/7/1818)

I have the week off work! Hoorah! First things first, I had to fix the clutch on my motorbike, its been slipping for a while, so I took some advice from a very good web site about my bike model, and they were right – I followed that advice and hoorah! I went to the shops on the bike this morning, and it went like the clappers with no clutch slip whatsoever – this makes me a very happy man!

Anyhow, I had that bike since 2005, so its in its 13th yr, people keep saying it must be time to get a new one, but I’m just so happy I don’t have to cos she’s still going good!

Righto, on with the blog! Back in 78′ (thats 1978 yeah!) I, along with the rest of the nation was riveted to the TV series of Wuthering Heights!

Thats the famous window scene, where Heathcliff tries to get Cathy to come in at the window – it made an impression on me, I loved anything about ghosts, and unrequited love, tho I have to admit, watching it now, it was crazier in my memory – I would have been about 14, it was also the year Kate Bush had her song (Wuthering Heights) in the charts, so I may well have mixed it all up, as to be quite frank, when I was 14, I was bonkers!

I read the book years later, its a good read, tho not exactly modern, I didn’t find it that easy, but easy enough considering its 200yrs old – yeah, not bad at all! Of course you should read it, I wouldn’t say don’t, but I found the film and TV versions to be easier to enjoy.

Now of course that was Emily Brontë who wrote that one, her sister Charlotte wrote Jane Eyre, which is an excellent story, I haven’t read it, but I have seen the film, watched the TV versions etc, but what a coincidence to have 2 great writers in one family? As it turned out, the 3rd sister, Anne, also wrote a novel, now considered to be great, called “The Tenant of Wildfell Hall” so thats 3 siblings, all uniquely talented, and there’s a fourth sibling, male, named Branwell, whose life seemed to go awry, he ended up addicted to alcohol and laudanum. All four died within a few years of each other

Branwell – 24/9/1848
Emily – 19/12/1848
Anne – 28/5/1849
Charlotte – 31/3/1855

Well, having heard its 200 yrs since the birth of Emily Brontë, I decided to go on up to Hawarth and take a look at the house they all lived in, its still standing and is now a museum for their memory. There were people there from all over the world, come to pay homage as it were, so that was all very nice and respectful. The museum itself was pretty good, if you’re an ardent fan of the Brontës of course you’re going to want to go there. For me its only a 30 mile journey, and I’m always up for a day out, especially for something like this.

Here’s some photos I took, I expect these are views the Bronte’s would recognise,

Some views around the town centre

The Parsonage – now a museum, where the Brontë’s lived


The adjoining churchyard (there happened to be a cockerel wandering about) – it has been said that because the churchyard was so full, it may have been the cause of disease 😮

The moors – taken from the back of the parsonage!