Piano II

July 8, 2009

As regular readers (Hi Mom) know, I bought a piano.

It’s an old piano. It has an awful tone. It has sticky keys. It hasn’t been tuned since before The Turn of the Century.

As pianos go, it’s pretty average.

I love it. It’s my piano. I own a piano. I have a piano in my lounge. There’s no room for it, and we don’t have a stool, and currently it’s no more than piece of furniture. But it’s my piano. I can see it … if I crane my neck a little.

I feel better having a piano. I can’t explain it but I do.

Oh, I can’t play it, but that doesn’t matter. I can pick out tunes, one handed. What I want to do, however, is play this:

It’s one of the finest Jazz pieces I know and look, it’s so easy you can play it in splints!

But wait, as they say, there’s more.

For the beauty that is the You Tubes has given me: piano lessons by video. Hence:

and that leads me on to other simple pieces of music with which to wow and boggle my family.

So, thanks You Tube, hat tip Shawn Cheek Easy and thank you my piano.

You know where all this is leading, right?


I installed the tag cloud (right) to see what I was writing about. I know, bass ackward.

The bigger the word, the closer to the middle it is, the more I write about it.

It turns out I’m obsessed with Nicky Watson.

So in order to prove that I’m not a sili-cone (arf arf) I give you the Great Cab Calloway himself.

That’s one of the things I really miss about Napster. I managed to find three different versions of Cab singing Minnie the Moocher. One, live, from the 1930s when his voice was rich and chocolaty. One from The Blues Brothers of course and one from Sesame Street.

Yes, it’s true.

So here, for your viewing pleasure, are a couple of clips of Cab doing what he did best: mooching.

and then go see this one (can’t embed it) to watch Cab’s mother give him shit!

and one to really make you think.

Lullaby of Birdland

November 4, 2007

One of the cool things about my place of work is that they give you a day off for your birthday. Nice.

My day off meant I was able to see my eldest daughter (five years old) in her school assembly. Each class takes it in turn to lead off and this was her class’s turn.

She loves it and we had a great time watching her and her lot sing “I can see clearly now the rain has gone” complete with actions.

But there was one kid, Steve, who fronted up to sing in the school’s talent competition.

Steve is tiny – he’s a real squirt – and he’s Fijian Indian and he looked so little and lonely on the stage with only his microphone for company and suddenly he began to sing with no accompaniment or anything and by the gods he can sing! He belted out some rock song or other and the whole place was gob-smacked. His teacher kept wiping wee tears of joy from her eyes and while I didn’t video it (and wouldn’t play it here without his OK anyway) it did remind me of this number with Robin Williams on Sesame Street from about a hundred years ago. Enjoy.