“Smoke drifting up to the Dizzy Heights”…

Subjective, Seductive and Emotional…

One of the great things about having a blog, is to be able to share my thoughts, words and passion with people. Cyber people, strangers and people I have never met but still give me a sense of welcoming and community.

In this place, people accept me, with no questions asked. I can write from wherever the muse guides me and I can subject and project you to infinite versions of myself that you are never going to meet – even if I knew you in real life.

It’s a life with no judgement and a reality that requires no explanation.  I write, you like, you comment, or you don’t – it is as simple as that. On a good day, I hope I make people feel as I do, thrilled to be here – on a bad day, I just throw shit out there and see what sticks.

However, my bad days are always turned around by a kind comment or two, which strokes my ego or validates what I do. Like most who write, there are no amount of good comments that will make me view my words as anything other than just OK rambles.

I write for distraction. I write because at some point in my life, I realised just how much an effect words have had on my life journey thus far. Not just words, but music as well. That Devilish combination of killer lyrics and a haunting melody – I am jealous of anyone who can do it. Singer songwriter is really where it’s at.

Well, that and a hot looking guitar playing chick as per yesterday’s clip. But anyway, I digress. Where was I – yes, music. Subjective, seductive and emotional. Heals the soul they say. I agree. Not all music, but good music. Definition of “good” music – simply anything you find a connection with in my humble opinion.

It took me a long time in my life to realise the significance of those connections we make to songs. It took me a long time to appreciate that we could all listen to a song and not all connect in the same way. It took me a long time to realise that some people didn’t connect with a song I liked at all.

So I arrived late at the “growing up” party and I am not sure I can even claim to have got through the door yet. I now realise that not everyone shares my tastes, but I can still share my music tastes – only now with no expectations.

Over the course of these – wow – 278 posts, I have shared music with strangers. Some of the songs on here are deeply personal. Some so personal, even the connection to the words has had to be blurred or constructed in some way to not let even you, dear strangers see.

However, you will have noted that there is a central theme to the music choices and that is a singer songwriter from New Zealand called Neil Finn. Through Split Enz, Crowded House, The Finn Brothers, Pajama Club and solo work and for most of my life, he has been with me.

His words have soothed, comforted, inspired, and healed. Neil Finn has given me more in this world than many people I know. His music infected me at a young age and when the choice of the day was so much cooler, Finn and his band mates were taking residence in my soul.

Over the years and through my life’s challenges, his music has been the one constant I turn to. There has been a song for all occasions and there have been times when I unashamedly admit I clung onto his words as if they were a life raft. This last 18 month period that saw my father pass and some spectacular karma rain down upon me especially.

His live shows have the canny knack of making me feel alive. His mixture of charm, wit and kindness keep me coming back for more. Too many, today I was challenged to admit how many times I have seen him and I uttered a number in public – it was worth the shock value to see their faces alone.

Within the heady mix of live shows, come the Frenz community. The familiar faces that once were strangers. The people who it takes a while to get to know, starting with a nod and a recognition and then moving on to sharing stories, before becoming acquaintances and ending up a Frenz.

People who – a bit like here – just take you for what you are, no questions asked, no answers sought, but brought together by a common bond of love for artist and music. It’s not religion and it’s not a cult, but it has the feeling of something magical and one that elevates the soul.

Next week in London, I am drawn again. Neil Finn has a new CD out in February called “Dizzy Heights” and you have already heard two tracks on this blog. A third is below. If you so wish, you can consider to pre-order Neil Finn’s CD here – http://neilfinn.com/

Neil is bringing the string section to London led by Victoria Kelly – this is her blog  – http://victoriakellymusic.com/ and Victoria features on the below clip from a webcast the other week. It will now be my last gig of the year after I had to drop my December trip. But what a way to end the year and surrounded by good Frenz.

So, thanks for sticking by this ramble – I am perhaps still a little jetlagged, feeling in a bit of a reflective mood, but make no apologies other than this bloody youtube clip is out of sync – so please take 5 mins to close your eyes and let this wash over you. Normal service will resume tomorrow! This is “Dizzy Heights” – I hope you enjoy – I hope you find a connection – but the world is still a great place if you don’t and you are welcome here anytime!


“We may lose and we may win”…


So, in the midst of a busy week that has thrown up more questions than answers on a personal matter, this blog was nominated for an award. Nominated twice actually, which really made me smile and was quite humbling.

It is not the first time; you may remember that previously, the lovely Nina from http://wordsthatflowlikewater.wordpress.com/2013/06/06/inspiring-the-very-inspiring-blogger-award/  Nominated this blog for the “Very Inspiring Blog” award – which was really nice of her.


This achievement has now been followed up by both Richard from http://richardankerswrites.wordpress.com/2013/08/05/the-versatile-blogger-award/ and Christine from http://crissyb315.wordpress.com/2013/08/05/the-versatile-blogger-award/ nominating this blog for the “Versatile blogger award”.  Which again, is really nice and I am truly humbled.


Both these awards come with things that need to be done and I have to admit, I am pretty poor at these – however, the fact that these awards come from wordpress peers does mean a lot and whilst I have little of interest about myself to do any sort of list, I do feel the need to spread the word of others blogs.

The below are 10 blogs that I read and follow – and I would encourage you to try them out for size – these are just a snapshot as I follow a huge amount – so if your blog isn’t below, it is not reflection on you – more an opportunity.

Please leave a comment and let people know where they can find you – this could be an opportunity for all of us to build up our wordpress base? Not sure if this will even work, but don’t be shy – we all want to be read – even if we do not think what we produce is worth reading!

So, here is a snapshot in addition to the 3 above and in no order:











So, a song to leave this ramble – I watched an Eagles documentary last night and really enjoyed it, so have a few tunes floating round in my head – this one is a message for the weekend – “Take it easy” – no more words needed – well, unless you wish to comment!


Neil Finn and Paul Kelly…

It was 9.55 am. Sat in a meeting, phone on silent wishing I was anywhere but work. Not even needing to be on the other side of the world, just needing to be home and in front of a PC!

Emails tinged with excitement were hitting my phone. Text messages reminding me that I needed to LOG ON NOW! Alas, it was all to no avail.

On the other side of the world, in the world famous Sydney Opera  House, Mr Neil Finn and Mr Paul Kelly were taking the stage.

I was at work. Young Ollie was at school. Such is life, but by the magic of the interweb, we sneaked into the den tonight to watch the whole show on Youtube.

So with a cuppa, some treats and a decent connection, we have sat in dark and pretended it was live and even pretended we were there, soaking up the songs, singing along and blocking out reality.

Whatever life throws at Ollie and myself, we always have music. It’s such a joy to hear him sing with Neil. It may not last, but hopefully, it will.

Anyway, for the next 30 days, you can do the same if you wish. Though sadly, not in my den… Oh, go on then, if you promise not to make a mess!


*Note – you need to forward around 25 mins…