Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I'm a fanny... Here's a poem.

I can see from my window the bench where we sat. Passing the time with endless chit chat.
The closest of friends, before we were lovers. That friendship remained while embraced under covers.

You'll struggle to find a stronger connection. I fell for your heart and beauty perfection.
Your dazzling wit, your kindness and charm. I was lucky to briefly have you on my arm.

Sometimes I'm afraid of what you might say. The truths you'll reveal as you pull away.
The pain that I feel is an acceptable cost, if someday you reclaim the love that you lost.

I know that it's over, as heartache has called. But I pray it's not final, just currently stalled.
Your silence is awful, for ever I fear. But my love is eternal, be it weeks, months or years.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

I've Lost That Twitter Feeling

It seems that I have been struggling with Twitter lately. As the lovely Mr @diaryofaledger once put it, for which I abused him endlessly, I may have lost my Twitter Mojo.

Now, this isn't a case of, as seems to happen with a lot of other people, me deciding that Twitter is getting in the way of my work/love life, or that I got in trouble for using it, or that some episode on Twitter has angered or offended me... No, none of that. In fact, I still love Twitter, and spend quite a lot of time on it. I am just unable to think of anything worth tweeting... Those familiar with my tweets may be thinking "that's nothing new though Davie"... and if you are thinking that, I will laugh at you sarcastically and then twist your nipple.

My tweets have never been contrived, or overly thought out in the past. The majority of them have just been my natural reaction to something that has just happened in my life, something that I have seen on telly or heard on the radio, something that I have read on Twitter, or a sudden unexpected memory. I have never sat there trying to think of a joke, or set out to do something thinking "this may result in some good Twitter material". But now I find myself just reading everyones tweets, laughing to myself, responding to my @replies, and unable to think of anything original to tweet. So I don't tweet anything. And not much gets RT'd. And my follower numbers stay pretty level. Some people say "it shouldn't be about the numbers", and maybe they are right, but that is how I first noticed I had "lost my mojo".... The numbers stopped going up. This isn't a problem for me at all, I really don't mind... It just happens to be how I first noticed this.

At the same time as all this has happened, things in my personal life have taken a turn for the better. I have met someone, and although it is early days, things are going well and I'm excited about the future. A recent review in work was really positive, and I am due to take some steps to continue improving my working life. I have had an application accepted for a really nice flat on a marina, much smarter than my current flat, with gorgeous views. So things are going well.

Maybe this is the reason I'm not getting much out of Twitter these days. I find myself on Twitter less and less over the weekend as I wander endlessly around BLOODY SHOPS, or snuggle up in front of a film. I am on it less and less in work as I try and actually get stuff done. But that shouldn't affect my ability to comment on my day to day life in an extremely hilarious way... Should it?

But yet it does. It seems to me that the happier I get, the less I have to say. My creativity seems to be linked to my misery. I think my sense of humour tends to be quite dark, and at times self-depreciating. I have no problems with being crude and a bit risky with my comments, and of making light of my loneliness. That has worked for me over the past year... The year where I was dumped and subsequently took time off from stupid smelly girls. But as I get happier, I want to maintain a positive outlook on life, rather than take the piss out of myself. I want to rein back the crude comments in order to trick the person I like into believing I'm a nice person. When I do all that, it doesn't leave me with much to say.

This isn't an issue though... In fact, I don't even know why I'm writing about it. When it comes down to it, I have found someone that wants to kiss my face, and that is all I care about.

So I won't be leaving Twitter or anything... But I also won't lock myself in a dark room and struggle to think of anything worth Tweeting. I will chat to people, and when something pops up in this old noggin of mine, I will post it.

I may also start tweeting Celebrities and posting pictures of cats. That seems fun.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Day I Met Rhod Gilbert

On Saturday, I was walking through the streets of Cardiff City Centre with a lady friend of mine. It had been a nice day up until then... A lovely day in fact, but pretty ordinary. We had wandered around some shops, we had bought some clothes. We had looked at expensive TV's, and I had even consumed a panini. But we hadn't seen any celebrities.

This was about to change.

At around 6pm we started to make our way from the Prince of Wales pub, where I was being rewarded for my tactile behaviour in TopShop with a nice cold pint of beer, towards the cinema. To get there we chose a route that brought us past the new John Lewis. Their muffins are very expensive, but delicious. I discovered this on a previous trip to Cardiff. Don't let this distract you from this exciting story.

As we were walking past a shop (I can't remember what shop it was, but I will guess at Starbucks as I have a 70% chance of being right), a couple were walking towards us. The man seemed to be looking directly into my eyes, as if to catch my attention. Coupling this with the fact that I seemed to recognise him, I assumed that I knew him some how, and that he knew me.

This is the face that confronted me. Imagine this face, not above a naked body in a bath, but above a fully clothed, walking, mans body. There may or may not have been grapes, I can't remember.

This man was still looking directly into my eyes, and we were now within a few steps of each other. I definitely recognised this man, and therefore must acknowledge this somehow. Just as I began to raise my head in the most informal of greetings - the casual inverted nod, the gentleman's gaze slipped away with a bored indifference. It was at this very moment that I realised I only knew this man from the telly... I didn't know him from real life!

Just imagine what might have happened if I had completed my nod while staring directly into his eyes. This man may have been affronted by my assumed familiarity. This comedian, famed for his long, laborious rants over minor annoyances, may well have made me the subject of his next Christmas DVD. I can see it now: "Rhod Gilbert and the Strange Man Who Dared To Casually Nod His Head At Me While Walking In Cardiff". I would have been the laughing stock of people that watch his DVD's.

And then he was past me... I could breathe again. I said to my lady friend "that was Rhod Gilbert" and she turned round, and saw the back of his head, and told all of her friends later that night, blissfully unaware as to how close we had come to verbal mutilation.

We then watched Unknown and shared some Pringles and M&M's.

That is the story about how I met Rhod Gilbert... And when I say 'met', I of course mean 'saw'... But that doesn't sound as good.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Tw1tter Band Project - The Trial

Last Friday was a pretty manic evening, but very rewarding. Old @WH1SKS had decided to escape from the harsh realities of his working life, or lack thereof, by diving head first into a cyber-music project. He details these events here, but I felt like writing a few words on the subject.

Mr WH1SKS came up with the idea of seeing if a number of relative strangers could create a piece of music together over the Internet. So on Friday he decided to run a trial... he called for musicians, vocalists, and sound engineers, and the idea was to see if, by 9pm, we could have a not too horrible version of a song recorded.

A lot of people got involved... we had a producer, a bassist, a drummer, a guitarist, a lead guitarist, a man on the keys, a mandolinist (mandoliner?) and, the crowning glory, an extremely talented, and modest, lead singer (me).

When WH1SKS was asking if I would sing on his Maggie May cover, at around 3pm as I was getting ready to leave work, I nearly declined. He wanted this to be completed in 6 hours, I had never used my recording equipment or the website we were using to upload our tracks, and I was barely familiar with the song. Actually, if I'm honest, I knew the first 2 lines of the song by heart, but had never listened any further than that. He used a combination of guilt, pressure, and the word 'prick' to get me to agree. He also promised me fame and fortune.

So I downloaded the song and listened to it on repeat all the way home. I blew the dust off my laptop and mic, and set up a nice little recording area in the flat.

I spent most of the evening practicing the vocals and getting to know the song while everyone else was putting the many elements of the song together. Recording my part was actually a fairly simple process, once I had figured out what the hell I was doing.

The producer uploaded a click track, a bass line was recorded and mixed with this. The guitarist used this to record his part, and was then added to the mix. I whacked my headphones on, and sang a long to this bass/drum/guitar track, listened to it back, was fairly happy, and clicked "upload". I thought about doing a few takes, but by this point I had sung through Maggie May about 20 times and think the people in the flat upstairs were ready to overflow their bath just to get back at me. So it was one take, done.

We had a rough track put together at the 9pm deadline, but it was a bit choppy, so I will link instead to the version that was finished 12 hours later once the keyboard, lead guitar and live drum track were added. I was quite proud of the result:

Maggie twitband mix-with organ by PaulBlackburnCompositions

Even though I didn't eat for 9 hours, got a pounding headache, and stood up a group of friends in the pub, I thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience on Friday night. My friends are pricks anyway, so that didn't really bother me... The lack of food was the real sacrifice that WH1SKS is going to have to repay. It also gave me the kick up the arse I needed to finally use all that recording equipment I had bought on impulse exactly a year before.

But what I really gained from the experience is a child-like sense of wonder at what can be achieved, relatively easily, using modern technologies and human talent. I find it incredible that a small group of strangers can put together a song while sat in their living rooms many hundreds of miles apart.

The next stage of this "Tw1tter Band Project" is for everyone to practice their parts, re-record, tighten everything up, and get it sounding as perfect as possible. I'm not sure what will be done with it then, but I know I will keep the track for ever, proud of what we have accomplished.

Once we know how to do it, and the results are good, I imagine that WH1SKS has plans for us to release a song, go on Top of the Tops, get Number 1 after Number 1, take over the world, record Spice Girls: The Movie Part 2, become addicted to drugs, enter rehab, enter Katie Price, split up, re-form, and die. You've got to have dreams.

Friday, November 19, 2010

The Gig of Shame - The Results Show

The lines are closed, the votes have been counted and verified.... And we have a winner (loser).

If you're not sure what this is about, I ran a quick poll to find the artist that people would be most embarrassed about admitting they'd seen perform live. I had 53 nominees, and 16 finalists (see the blog post below this one).

Celine Dion came out of the blocks fastest, but was only ahead for a short amount of time before Gary Glitter came from behind (and she's not his type at all...) but unfortunately old GG didn't win, and I've had to throw away all of my paedo bummer jokes. I am not happy.

For a long time we had 3 acts tied for the top spot, and despite a late but unsuccessful surge by Shane Ward, we have got our Top 3.

So without further ado, here, in reverse order, are you top 3.

In third place, with 12 votes, is.........


In second place, with 13 votes, is..........


And in first place, with 14 votes, is.........


So, congratulations STEPS! The weirdos on Twitter have decided that, if they were ever tricked into watching you perform live, they would rather die than tell anyone about it. Well done you.

The 4 Twitterers that nominated Steps, so have actually watched them live and decided to tell me about it, are @ComedyFish, @Alyo23, @SophiaMutio and @Crossy33.

Steps may have won, but it is with regret that I inform you their lovable member H has recently passed away.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Gig of Shame - The Nominees

This morning I asked you to suggest the most embarrassing gig you've ever been to. This could be a solo artist, group or band. Someone tried to get The Chuckle Brothers in Panto onto the list but I thought that would be opening up big can of worms.

It was interesting to see the sort of act that some people found embarrassing. Can you believe that someone tried to get Stereophonics and McFly onto the list? The swine.

So, I had 52 entries in all (and I will list them all below), but we will concentrate on only the 16 that had 2 or more nominations. It will be down to you lot to vote on which of the 16 you think is the most embarrassing act.

Your 16 finalists, in no particular order (apart from descending alphabetically), are:

Please vote. You can vote either by clicking on the poll (top right), or tweeting me @DavieLegend

The vote will close when I am bored of this.

If you are interested in the full list of nominations, they are as follows:

  • 5ive

  • ABC

  • Apache Indian

  • Atomic Kitten

  • B*witched

  • Bitty McLean

  • Bros

  • Bubba Sparxx

  • Bucks Fizz

  • Charles & Eddie

  • Chas and Dave

  • Craig David

  • D*Ream

  • Daphne & Celeste

  • Haddaway

  • Jason Donovan

  • Kula Shaker

  • Let Loose

  • Madonna

  • Marilyn Manson

  • MC Hammer

  • Meatloaf

  • Paul Young

  • Peter Andre

  • Rod Stewart

  • Runrig

  • Scouting For Girls

  • Shaggy

  • Shakin Stevens

  • The Darkness

  • The Levellers

  • The Nolans

  • Tina Turner

  • Vanilla Ice

  • Venga Boys

  • Yazz

I apologise if any of these acts are spelt incorrectly, or don't even exist, as I haven't heard of half of them and couldn't be bothered to research each one.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Mr & Mrs Littlest Hero

It has been two whole weeks, to the hour, since I received that phone call that I so wanted to talk about, but wasn't allowed to. In that time we've had tears, stress, laughter, beer, headaches and cupcakes.... Oh, and a wedding.

Lee rang me on the Tuesday (yes, I can say his name now), and had to stay in London, supporting his girlfriend Gina and her family, until Sunday. He organised a lot of the wedding over the phone, before finalising the details when he got back to Pembrokeshire on Sunday evening. There were of course a million and one things for him to stress about, but he told me his main concern was that Gina found a dress she loved. While she spent a couple of days wandering Chelsea looking for the perfect dress, Lee worried. Not only about whether she found one in time, but also about how much a dress from Chelsea would cost. But not only did she find one, she looked stunning in it. They were also able to get her mum to one of the fittings, which as I'm sure you are aware, was the whole point of the hurried wedding.

Lee was back in work Monday, and pretty much worked around the clock until leaving early on Thursday at 3.30... He decided he had to work that week when he got the bill for the dress. I took Friday off work to help out where I could, and, along with one of the best men, and Lee's dad and brother, we worked from 8am to 9pm on that Friday. We also had the pleasure of being joined by the bridesmaids to lay the tables in the marquee. We left the farm, and met a load of the boys in the local pub for a "quiet few"... I got to bed at 1.30am, and found out the next day that Lee's brother, and one of the Ushers, had been sick in the night. Job well done.

I awoke on the day of the Wedding to beautiful sunshine... We couldn't have asked for better weather. After a few calming pints in the pub we made it to the church. Gina's mum was brought in minutes before the ceremony started, and while Adele sang Make You Feel My Love. Gina entered. She looked beautiful. There was not a dry eye in the house. Lee later admitted that on seeing her, his legs went weak, and he had to take a few seconds to compose himself... I think that was the first time he'd let himself relax for 10 days, and the enormity of the occasion hit him. The ceremony was short, but sweet. It was a genuine pleasure to see the smiles on their faces, and love in their eyes as they said their vows.

After several (ahem) photos were taken, Mr and Mrs Lee Rees left the church grounds in a beautifully restored VW Camper, while the guests walked the 100 yards to the farm, and entered the marquee. The afternoon fare consisted of dainty sandwiches and cupcakes, accompanied by Tea, all served in mismatching crockery. It was a lovely idea, and really worked.

Gina's mum was brought in for the 40 odd minutes it took for the speeches, and then spent the rest of the evening in the house... Her husband was making regular trips back and forth, and I'm sure he didn't let her miss out on anything that happened. The speeches were each touching, heart warming, and hilarious in the right measure, and I am proud to say I only cried 3 times. The Toast Master kept the afternoon moving on, and using the Art of Rubbish Jokes, kept the mood light. Lee spoke beautifully from the heart, and only cracked twice: Once when trying to express his love for his new bride, and once when thanking his mum. The 2 best men both had me laughing aloud (LOLing to you Internet geeks), and one even name checked me.

But the star of the show was the Father of the Bride. He had told Lee on the day that he proposed that he would write a speech, but that he would not be able to deliver it. This honour was given to the Toast Master, Tim. Tim had expressed concerns just before that it was too emotional for him to get through, but he managed admirably. The speech was beautifully written. He was the only one to really mention his wifes illness, but managed to have us all laughing with his next sentence. He spoke very highly of Lee, detailing his great qualities as a man, and thanking him for the gift he had given the family on that day. It was a brilliant speech, and brought a lump to my throat, and tears to my eyes, while also making me laugh like a fool.

I managed to get through the first dance without forgetting any words, or breaking down crying, which I will take as a great result. I cannot describe the honour I felt at being asked to perform for Lee and Gina, and gave them both a massive hug afterwards.

The evening turned into a cracking party. There was an enormous Hog Roast which me and the boys tried to tackle on our own. Lee's brother Carl and I played another set later in the evening which had everyone dancing, and many pints and glasses of wine were sunk. There was even a massive pile on in the middle of the dancefloor, and the image of Lee, the Groom, doing Teddy-Bear rolls on the dancefloor still makes me laugh now.

But the highlight of my night was when I looked over at the dancefloor and saw the Father of the Bride, waistcoat undone, tie round his head, throwing out some killer shapes. The fact that, even during these tough times, he could let loose for 20 minutes and enjoy dancing with his daughter on her wedding day, really cheered me up and made my night.

It was a cracking day and night, perfect in fact. I asked Lee what he would have changed if he'd had a year instead of 10 days to plan it, and his reply was "not one thing". He married his soul mate in the company of their dearest friends and family, and in so doing, made 2 womens' greatest dream come true.

It was one of the greatest piss ups I have ever had the honour of being a part of, and I didn't even start drinking until 11pm. I love you mate.