“I am not afraid of dying.” An emotional last conversation with the great Sir Clive James

Clive James was dying when I met him. Everybody knew it, because the great writer and broadcaster had said so in print. He was embarrassed at not having gone already, he said when we sat down to talk. And talk. And talk. Never meet your heroes, they say. They’re wrong.

Stories to break your heart, from an English country churchyard

We went for a walk this afternoon, after lunch in the Giant’s Rest pub, and happened to pass through a churchyard. There a tombstone caught my eye, and I paused in the misty rain to run my hand over the metal, trace the words and read the story. It broke my heart. It does againContinue reading “Stories to break your heart, from an English country churchyard”

Singing in the room where it happens …

This isn’t a tribute to Hamilton, although that is an astonishing piece of work. Wonderful. No, this is about the privilege of telling a story in the room where the action takes place, and singing songs inspired by that story there too. The video is below, have a watch. When I started out writing TheContinue reading “Singing in the room where it happens …”

“Beneath the sheets of paper lies my truth …”

Seven songs found or re-found in the last seven days, just for fun and the sake of it. This latest weekly list is a little more mellow than the last, or melancholy if you prefer. I do. The lonesome note. A wonderful song about Samson; the aching and longing of a tune you may haveContinue reading ““Beneath the sheets of paper lies my truth …””