It’s funny to think that a lick of paint could change music forever. You might not think that’s possible and if I am exaggerating, it’s only by a speck. In the world of European medieval music, so much was centred on religious rites that you could argue it was a change in church design that popularised polyphony.[Read more…] about A Lick of Paint
The hitchhiker on the outskirts of Ballyshannon was a large man and cleanly dressed. Tall, broad-shouldered under sun-bleached hair behind an engaging smile, he looked interesting by the standards of the day. That was once the way that drivers assessed hikers. Would they be interesting to talk with? Today we might put safety first and rarely offer a lift to a stranger.
He put his back-pack in the boot and we drove north towards Donegal Town.
Most hitchhikers I’d encountered had been continental European or Kiwi. This Joe was American and I was enjoying the cartoonish drawl of his Georgian accent. We got on well enough that I suggested a pint and a sandwich as I dropped him to wait at the bus stop for Killybegs.[Read more…] about Brief Encounters: 1976
We once came across a Bourgeois spider, lurking in the old turbine hall of the then new Tate Modern. Maman fascinated and appalled me in equal measure. My scientific self enjoyed the majesty of the vision that re-created her, triumphantly huge in steel. My male, meritocratic self had visions of limited purposes, sacrifice and cannibalism. And yet Maman spoke to me of the fight for life and a guarantee of a future borne in her egg sac, much as when Yeats wrote of rebellion and nationhood in Easter 1916, ‘A terrible beauty is born.’[Read more…] about Finite Eternity
29 March 2020 – 20:39 GMT – 1°C Mostly Clear – Co. Dublin, Ireland
It’s that kind of day. Cleaned some windows. Watched the news on TV while my wife visited with a public health nurse to learn about injecting our daughter, in case she needs the help later in her treatment.
I’ve been practising social distancing. I think the best defence is to behave as if you’re infectious and do not want to infect anyone else.
Fascinating catch-up TV about Eel Pie Island. As often as I walked past it while doing Thames Walks, I had no idea just how important it was to the music of the 1960s.[Read more…] about Crosswords and Sudoku