Love at the Five and Dime – Nanci Griffith

February 14, 2010

I posted about the Nanci Griffith concert Mrs Fleet and I attended a couple of weeks ago. The sound quality isn’t great, but this video gives a nice view of the Griffith concert experience, with a nice little tale about the wonders of Woolworth stores before the song. I suspect the video dates from the early ’90s.

Nanci Griffith

February 6, 2010

On Wednesday night Mrs Fleet and I were able to send Miss Fleet and Rothmans off to my mother’s and to go to watch Nanci Griffith in concert at the O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire. I’ve been a fan of Nanci’s for the best part of 20 years but have never managed to get to see her live before.

It was well worth the wait. The glorious pure crystaline voice was in good shape, and Nanci is a delightful, anecdotal presence, tiny, slender and straight backed with her hair pulled back into a rather severe bun (apparently the fault of the Breakfast TV people that morning who made her hair “look like Albert Einstein”).

The YouTube video above is of a much younger Nanci singing Kate Wolf’s Across the Great Divide. Nanci has always been a great interpreter of the songs of others as well as a fantastic songwriter in her own right, and this is one of my favourites of her covers.

In a couple of weeks we are off to see another favourite of mine, and another great, slightly eccentric singer songwriter, Imogen Heap, in Oxford.

Andrew Ritchie MBE

January 5, 2010


The great Andrew Ritchie, inventor and founder of Brompton Bicycle, has been awarded an MBE by Her Majesty the Queen in the New Year Honours list. Richly deserved for a great British Industry success story.

Pictured above is my dear little Brompton in the snow on the ride home this evening.

Imogen Heap – Half life

September 25, 2009

I can’t wait to go and see Imogen Heap play live again – Mrs F and I have been to see her twice before, and she is truly magical presence on stage. This beautiful track, entitled Half Life, is from her new album Ellipse.

Blue Nile – New Album?

June 27, 2009

232607 BigRab at the Ben Lomond Free Press brings us the fantastic news (as reported on the Today Program) that The Blue Nile are planning a new, fifth and (it sounds) final album, and a tour. The Blue Nile are not exactly prolific, having released four sublime albums in 30 years, so this is quite a big event.

For those who are unfamiliar with the band, the film below marries their track Saturday Night to the paintings of Edward Hopper… a marriage made in heaven.

Hopefully the album will include the fantastic new track in the clip below, which the band played at their live gigs a couple of years ago, although given the glacially slow gestation of Blue Nile tracks and the extraordinarily high level of quality control it’s more than likely that this track has been long discarded!

UPDATE – Neither BigRab nor I noticed that in fact this Today segment dates from a year ago, so too much excitement might be premature. Oh well. I stick by my prediction of 2013.

For anyone who has a daughter…

April 20, 2009

The great Neil Gaiman reads his poem Blueberry Girl. Wonderful, isn’t it!