Black Poetry Matters

I am trying to discover where the oldest musical instruments are to be found. Expecting to find these in Africa. Thought I should listen to what young Black voices are saying today. Danez Smith is the author of two books, the...

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I’m Going to Graceland

Paul Simon is one of my musical heroes.  I have had the privilege seen his wonderful band perform outdoors at Edinburgh castle.  I have bought his records.  I am a fan. To say he is an impressive songwriter, guitarist and...

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9/11 and the Boss!

Bruce Springsteen watched on helplessly with the rest of the world as the second plane flew into the twin towers on September 11, 2001.  He was in New York, only 15 miles away and that afternoon could actually see in the...

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Investing in Music

Venezuela’s story is front page news at the moment. It is a long sad story of injustice, corruption and poverty. However, beneath the political headlines there is a remarkable story. A musical story. Journalist Ed Vulliamy...

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Europe’s Jazz conquers France!

It seems remarkable that World War 1 opened the door to the growth of an African American musical phenomenon Jazz.  It begins with a New York Regiment the 369th consisting mainly of African Americans, achieving fame for...

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Paul Robeson

What do you recall of Paul Robeson? He is best remembered today for his his peerless version of ‘Old Man River’, written for him, but there is much more to this man. He played ‘Joe’ in the musical ‘Showboat’...

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The Greatest Concert in the World Ever

I know most music lovers can come up with their ‘best ever’ concert, so what would be your choice? Let me lay out why I think this one may deserve consideration for such a grand title. The concert was set in...

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The Whole World!

The African Children’s choir can sing with great joy I wonder if you can name the only ‘Spiritual’ which got to the number one spot in the USA’s singles top 20? It is a difficult question even for a pop...

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Satisfaction

Mick Jagger and Keith Richards were motivated to improve when they observed Lennon and McCartney complete a song quickly. It was ‘I wanna be your man’ and both bands, the Rolling Stones and Beatles recorded it. After...

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Songs for Freedom

Every journey begins with a single step. Even to sing or dance we sometimes have to undertake a journey. It will be hugely impressive to experience the power of music as over 100,000 people journey from all over the globe...

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