Monday, 21 January 2019

Out On Blue Six: The Housemartins

There's good publicity and bad publicity and the BBC, are oh so impartial public service broadcaster, seems to be the master of turning the bad to the good. The the tail end of last week the Duke of Edinburgh was responsible for a collision with a car carrying two of his wife's subjects and a nine-month-old baby. This news naturally placed the Windsors in a rather poor light, as questions were raised about whether it was right for the 97 year old Prince Philip to still be driving...and certainly not without wearing a seat belt!

The start of this week saw the BBC news deliver a fluff piece about two infant Chinese twins who, having watched an episode of Peppa Pig in which the porcine heroine meets the Queen, made a video requesting to meet the Queen themselves. The British Ambassador in China, keen to restore some good faith in the Windsors, were quick to extend an invite to the two girls at the British Embassy and the BBC spun the whole thing as proof that 'Brand Britain' is a winner overseas. 

It all reminded me of this classic Housemartins song from 1987, in particular the line "And even when their kids were starving, they all thought the Queen was charming" A nine month old baby could have died because of the cavalier attitudes of an infirm nonagenerian. But it's OK, cos he's royalty and we all love royalty don't we?


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Saturday, 19 January 2019

RIP Windsor Davies

Very sad to hear of the death of Windsor Davies at the age of 88 on Thursday.

The burly, deep-voiced Welsh actor was best known for playing the Sergeant-Major in Croft and Perry's classic WWII set sitcom It Ain't Half Hot Mum which ran from 1974 to 1981. It was a role that not only made him a household name but also saw him typecast (not that he seemed to mind) as the bullish soldier putting others through their paces in everything from films like Carry on England and Adolf Hitler: My Part In His Downfall to children's series like Marmalade Atkins and Gerry Anderson's Terrahawks. When he wasn't playing the sergeant-major then he was often cast as policeman, appearing as one on TV in the likes of Z Cars, Softly Softly, Callan, Special Branch, Detective, The Mind of Mr J.G. Reader, and The Rivals of Sherlock Holmes, and on film in The Playbirds, Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed, Endless Night, and Not Now, Comrade.

Other memorable roles include starring opposite Donald Sinden as rival antique dealers in the ITV sitcom Never the Twain which ran from 1981 to 1991, and the Welsh rugby comedies, Grand Slam and Old Scores. He also starred in Carry On Behind, played General Tufto in the BBC's excellent 1998 adaptation of Vanity Fair and David Lloyd George in Channel 4's Mosley. His last appearances on TV included guest appearances in Casualty in 2000 and in My Family in 2004, before retiring to France. His wife passed away in September last year and he is survived by five children.


Thursday, 17 January 2019

Out On Blue Six: Fisherman's Friends

With a new movie out later in a month or two based on the Port Isaac folk group, Fisherman's Friends and starring the likes of James Purefoy, David Hayman, Daniel Mays and Dave Johns, I thought it the ideal time to share one of my favourite tracks from them

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Tuesday, 15 January 2019

No Confidence

The biggest defeat for a serving PM since 1924, it was inevitable that Theresa May would fall flat on her face tonight. It's time for a real government, one that actually puts the concerns of ordinary people first. In the face of this Brexit nightmare, Jeremy Corbyn has tabled a vote of no confidence in the calamitous Tory government that has brought us to this farce, and Momentum are asking for your support. Please sign this petition, show that we need an election that delivers a Labour government and let's take back proper control.

Out On Blue Six: Hannah Peel

Radcliffe and Maconie's time slot may have changed from weekday afternoon to weekend mornings on 6 Music this week, but their commitment to great music remains the same. Stuart opened a new feature on Saturday's first show called 'Sun Up', showcasing music to signify the start of the day with Sunrise Through the Dusty Nebula by Hannah Peel. Have a listen, it's beautiful

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