I’ve not been sleeping particularly well recently. Something to do with being in the middle of a global pandemic plus some other personal stuff going around and around in my head at night. I’d run out of my usual podcasts so went searching for something new and interesting.
Why did nobody tell me about The Queen Podcast? Hosted by Rohan Acharya and Queen archivist and documentarian Simon Lupton, the podcast is joined by Queen superfans (and comedians) John Robins and Sooz Kempner and tracks the Queen discography album by album, side by side, track by track.
Today would have been the 59th birthday of legendary Metallica bass player, Clifford Lee Burton.
Cliff tragically lost his life on 27 September 1986, aged only 24 years, in a bus crash in Sweden while Metallica were promoting their Master of Puppets album. I once had a poor quality bootleg recording of his final concert at the Solnahallen Arena in Stockholm, Sweden on 26 September 1986.
I’ll be spending the day listening to the first three Metallica albums, Kill ‘Em All, Ride the Lightning, and Master of Puppets as well as various early live recordings.
This has been the year for lockdown choirs and following the success of the National Youth Choir alumni’s Shenandoah project in June, we geared up in the autumn to produce something in time for Christmas.
Arranged by Louise Clare Marshall (whom many will have watched bringing in the new year last night on Jools Holland’s Annual Hootenanny), we held sectional rehearsals on Zoom in early November and videos were submitted during the final week of November, leaving about one month for our team of technicians to edit and mix the audio and video.
The video launched on Christmas Eve and, remarkably, we were featured at the end of the BBC News broadcasts that evening!
I’m so proud of what we have achieved. It’s not the same as standing in the same space and making music together but I’ll take it over nothing.
Thank you to all who were involved. To Louise, the section leaders, everyone who got involved, our wonderful team of audio and video engineers, and the rest of the NYCGB Alumni Champions Committee—some of my dearest friends in all the world.