Magic Band: Farewell Tour

It started here:

The first concert the Magic Band played  at Shepherds Bush Empire on Monday 7th April 2003.
Organised and led by John 'Drumbo ' French (drums, vocals harmonica); the band consisted of Gary Lucas ( guitar); Denny Whalley ( guitar); Mark  ' Rockette Morton ' Boston ( bass)  and Richard Williams ( drums).

All had played with Captain Beefheart ( aka Don Van Vliet ) at various times and their mission was to recreate songs from the Beefheart canon.

Fast forward fourteen years and we arrive here:

The Magic Band Farewell Tour to which I attended with friend K.
last Monday 20th November 2017 at The Fleece, Bristol.

Here's a thought. How many bands with great musicians after an interval of fourteen years still charge the same for their tickets ? Not many I venture.
Arriving early I quickly grabbed the latest tour T shirt; still selling for a modest fifteen pounds.

Pulling rabbits out of a hat indeed.
The 'Fleece' quickly filled up. eventually achieving sell-ou…

Catch up with Photos. A coded life?

The nights draw in and real racing returns. The majestic leaps; the noble presence; triumph and disaster lie side by side. Elation and despair. The Winter Kings return for our pleasure.

Frosty, crisp mornings, bring heart-warming country-side views. Here are three, two from darkest Essex, one from deepest Brockworth.

Courtesy J& D.

Courtesy K.


Once a year, the River Thames is drained near Richmond for general maintenance .

Courtesy LJC.
So for a short time it is possible to walk across to Eel Pie Island. More explanation here:  Thames Drain


On October 16th, owing to unusual weather conditions , aided by Saharan dust, the sun appeared to turn pink- weird stuff!

Courtesy LJC


The above is a picture taken from inside the new, American style burger bar " Five Guys, " which has recently opened in Cheltenham.

Young d. took me there last Tuesday 14th November 2017. A brightly, lit space, it was notable for a deafening sound system, which threatened to overwhelm the wou…

An Inside Story: The Sea And Shrubs.

Inside Story
There is no light Warm in this cosy nest  Dimly aware of Gurgling sounds in my ear Stretching my limbs I detect a changing pulse Soon I will leave this Watery cave.
Suddenly release; A sensation overdose Dazzled by lights Lifted up and touched  By affection. I cry for a joyful force  Within me.

Twenty eight days Have left September.  Nine hundred and Fifty one years ago King William landed and  Laid claim to Albion
This day I have landed On the loving shores Of  mother and so I lay claim to my new life. Full of wonders; from Crawl to Tall from Boy to Man and from Loved to Loving.
For E.S.C. ( 28th September 2017 ). Inspired by "Embryo, " by Pink Floyd..

Listen  to this track, by clicking on the link.

D. and I had a couple of days (4 / 5 ) October at Lyme Regis. As usual the weather didn't let us down. The sun was bright and the sea was calm and blue.

Across Lyme Bay

Tide out at C

Nigel,Are You Out There?:A True Champion After All: Pics.

Amongst the verbiage and general literary debris , in yesterday's "Telegraph " (22 /09 /'17 ) was this interesting and almost unbelievable article. 
There were ( writes Nigel Rees ) in 2016, according to the Office for National Statistics, no baby Nigels born in England and Wales.
That appears astonishing , especially as Mr Rees points there was one thousand 'Jaxons. ' Who?
This led me thinking and I had to admit, that of personal acquaintance, I could only remember two; one a friend from home and one I knew at college.

That, being so I suppose if you are Nigel Havers; Kennedy; Mansell; Planer and Clough then you are in a select group indeed.

In tribute, may I remind you of XTC's record " Making Plans For Nigel."

It's time to come out of the cold, we love you Nige  really!

You may have realised by now, my favourite race in the Cheltenham National Hunt Racing Festival is the Champion Hurdle, which is always the highlight of day on…

Too Quick To Catch The Action: Ever Upwards.

Last Saturday  (9/9/'17) the  penultimate stage of the "Tour of Britain "  cycle race ended  in Cheltenham.

Naturally I came along for ' the bun fight ' The race was due to end at about three thirty in the afternoon in the Promenade, so I arrived at two twenty.

 At this time I was greeted with a cloud burst.

Luckily it soon cleared up. Here is my race view.
looking from the 'top' of the Prom downwards.

Soon everyone was straining for a view .

You can see the green finishing arch in the background.

I  look a video of the finish, but with the speed of the  cycles it was less than satisfactory

Here are some volunteers waiting for the 'stragglers. '

 Here is the reception outside the Queen's Hotel.

Note in the bottom photo I did actually  ' catch ' a real live race cyclist.

Making my way home, I did  at least spot this 'cycle '


Ambition is an upward slope With peak a distance away.

Starting with confidence

Tree-Saw: Willie-Tail: Winter Has Come: Snaps.

I Wrote:

An Oxford Comma

Michaelmas cold chills bones  Leaning  away sideways creep Still the life growth not shown  In repose feigning sleep.
Hilary re- spokes the yearly wheel Starts a quickening from the floor Warmth slowly dissipates cold feel Blossoms make the pulses soar.
Trinity brings the sultry, sweating summer air From green to purple the refiner Brings a legacy of fruit to pick and share Many thanks Victoria Regina .
25/8/'17 Ck.

He Wrote :
With People, So With Trees
With people, so with trees: where there are groups Of either, men or trees, some will remain Aloof while others cluster where one stoops To breathe some dusky secret. Some complain

And some gesticulate and some are blind: Some toss their heads above green towns; some freeze For lack of love in copses of mankind; Some laugh: some mourn ; with people, so with trees
Mervyn Peake 1940- published in "Peakes Progress " 1978.

Our Faithful Plum.

Trees caught in Tewkesbury flood.

Were I to write an essay on the subject of " …

Pen Friends: French Leave:

"The Paper is breathless  Under the hand And the pencil is poised Like a warlock's wand But the white page darkens And is blown on the wind And the voice of a pencil who can find?"

( From 'Drawings by Mervyn Peake ' Grey Walls Press 1949 )

I Wrote :

The Mighty Parker
The mighty Parker descended in a gentle, yet forceful drop meeting the paper with a damp kiss. travelling south producing  a vertical line. A nanopause, then a flourish. I. Movement on a North East, South West axis until; M.
Nanopausing, then the Parker movement is repeated until;


Before the nib rests to inhale, vertical lines combine with  horizontal branches until;

Characters converse:

" Hi i am I"

"Hi I, i am M "

"Me 2"

"who is your paper mate?" I asked

i be eeeee!
" Can we get together?"

I asked.

" Great idea "

They replied. Go.
I IiiiI  
 Now together 
" Now you two try."