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“It Takes a Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train to Cry”

Whether one likes or loathes Bob Dylan and his music, there is no escaping the fact that he will go down in history as one of the greatest and most influential figures in popular music during the 20th Century – and quite possibly ever. It might be said that the mark of a great musician and [...]

December 1, 2018 // 0 Comments

Time for reflection

No apologies today as I return to a what is commonly known as The White Album, a classic and often under-rated Beatles offering recently in the news for being re-released in an anthology version. Here’s a link to a piece by David Lister, setting the album in its historical context as a [...]

November 22, 2018 // 0 Comments

A musical milestone remembered

As a fiftieth anniversary ‘remastered’ anthology edition of the flawed but brilliant Beatles’ White Album is being issued accompanied by with all sorts of analysis, out-takes and different demo versions – I cannot help but reveal myself as owning an original issue of it [...]

November 6, 2018 // 0 Comments

Biopics – the complexities of a difficult art form

Today I take the risk of venturing into territory upon which I am no expert – movies, and a particular genre at that – without any justification for doing so other than, like any observer travelling upon the time-honoured proverbial (legal) Clapham omnibus, I am entitled to hold opinions and [...]

October 24, 2018 // 0 Comments

Wigmore Hall

Last night I was invited to a recital at Wigmore Hall by the violinist James Ehnes and the pianist Andrew Armstrong. They played 4 violin sonatas by Robert Schumann, Maurice Ravel, Johannes Brahms and John Conigliano. The Wigmore Hall with its excellent acoustics is a celebrated venue for chamber [...]

September 22, 2018 // 0 Comments

Still Standing

When self-posting our blogs to the Rust via the administrative website and – thereby ticking the ‘category’ boxes to tag our occasional offerings to ensure that regular readers and others become aware of them – we have one designated to ‘Lists’. Here’s a [...]

September 14, 2018 // 0 Comments

Food for thought

Two aspects of modern life that reoccur in most people’s reflections upon modern life are: Firstly, the various ways we acquire knowledge, keep in touch with what is happening around us and across the world and choose to spend those proportions of our free leisure (or non-working) time that are [...]

August 26, 2018 // 0 Comments

Aretha Franklin (1942-2018) R.I.P.

What a singer, what an interpreter of other people’s songs! Since the news of her death hit the media yesterday I’ve been wallowing in the tributes coming in from all sides, listening to and/or watching some of her performances on YouTube and listening to the contributions of people who [...]

August 17, 2018 // 0 Comments

Some things never change

From time to time we all ponder the mysteries of mortality, the purpose of life and indeed what’s it all about, Alfie? Overnight I spotted this piece by John Lister using the occasion of Madonna reaching her 60th birthday to salute those female musicians/artistes past the first flush of youth [...]

August 12, 2018 // 0 Comments

Saul/Glyndebourne

Producing Handel’s oratorio Saul sets challenges but offers opportunities too. Like most oratorios, biblical music composed for rendition in a church or chapel, there was initially nothing more than the music so any director has total licence. There is no composer or operatic tradition on his/her [...]

August 4, 2018 // 0 Comments

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