Some Things Are More Important – Race For Life Charity Auction

Last year when I participated in Race For Life for Cancer Research UK – I raised a meagre £68. I had a target of £150. I didn’t even make it to half my target. The only thing that kept me incentivised was…I would be doing something active for my own personal health. How could I see £68 making any damn difference to cancer research?! What would THAT achieve?

This year I have increased my target to £250. I’m already off to a great start with two £10 donations. But I want more! I want to make a difference!

I was going to give away a Priptona print to the highest donor. But, I don’t think that is incentive enough. Or even fair to other donors. So, I am going to make a big sacrifice here! All minimum £10 donations will go into a draw to win THIS! (See pics below.)

(As you can see from the photos, it currently adorns my landing space wall. Below is a clearer image of how the print looks – unframed and unsigned.)

There are only a few copies of this that exist in print. Jim has one of them. He requested a copy from me specifically. This is how bloody special this thing is! I do this with a heavy heart! “It’s no sacrifice”, sang Elton John. Well, it is! Trust me! But some things are much more important. Like the work Cancer Research UK do.

So, as I was saying, there are only a few copies of it in print. And only two are signed by Jim. My friend Janis has one (I asked Jim if he would sign a copy for her as Somebody Up There Likes You is her fave SM song, and her daughters appear very obscurely within the print – the beach scene is a photo I took at Victor Harbour in South Australia), and this one is obviously mine (for now).

The only proviso I am putting on this is that I reach my £250 target before this is given away. If I don’t reach the target, then the original regular SM print of the donor’s choice will be the giveaway.

So…there you go! How’s THAT for incentive to donate?! All £10+ donors will go into a draw to win my signed print of Somebody Up There Likes You/Waterfront (Jim always sees it as a Waterfront print…who am I to argue with him?). The target MUST REACH £250 for this to apply though. I will not be giving this print away for anything less. It means far too much.

So PLEASE, donate!

My Race For Life is on July 7th, 2019. All £10+ donations will be eligible up to and including that date. To donate just CLICK THE LINK HERE

Reversal Of Fortune…

I do think we may have gone full circle now. I am so happy…but more than happy…relieved.

In all honesty, the only thing I really regret now (apart from the obvious…) is – taking my Priptona name away. But, I was thinking that, if I had been banished from SMO, I may as well revert to my real name. I was hurting…

Thankfully I wasn’t as hasty with all other social media…and I couldn’t exactly change my blog’s domain….nor did I want to.

Do I revert back to my Priptona middle name once I can? Or do I think, “to hell with it, that time is gone”? I’ll probably still use it as a digital art persona. It’s still a cool name. Not as cool as Larelle is though…obviously. Lol.

”Infamy, infamy! They’ve all got it in fa me!” Lol

Walk Between Worlds Giveaway

Giveaway time, peeps! Who’d like a print of a Walk Between Worlds track? I’ll pick three winners and you can have your choice of the title track, Barrowland Star, Summer, In Dreams or Silent Kiss. Just comment on the post with which print you’d want to have. (Or retweet if on Twitter)
Enter by 23.59 Monday evening. Winners announced Tuesday. Good luck!

Magic Artworks…

The spark of something new always gets us arty types going and all abuzz.

Myself and Stuart Holland have both made designs for Magic.

Here we are…

I still may have some of the lyrics wrong…who knows? Ah….if only I could be sure…

Simple Minds Acoustic – My Personal Album Review

Having involved myself with a great simultaneous live “listen to” on the Simple Minds International Facebook group…I thought I’d share my thoughts on the album, track by track. Now, if you are a reader of my blog and/or know me from the Simple Mimds fanbase, you probably know that if I don’t like something, I tend to keep schtum. I think my review is fair and balanced. If I didn’t think it was, I wouldn’t share it. If I hated the album, I wouldn’t review it. So…here goes!

The American – Like the reworked musical structure. A bit too much like Derek’s version. Don’t like Jim’s vocal much. I absolutely LOVE the song. It’s in my Top 50. I liked the way it was performed on the Big Music tour. He’s naturally more tenor when singing live than the baritone he can lower to in the studio. It has a darkness to it I like..but. There are weird…annunciations of words sung too…yes, I am being pernickety…but I am being honest about what I don’t like about it instead of just saying “because I don’t”. Maybe I’ll be won over more with more listens. 5/10

Promised You A Miracle – I like it. Just…like. Not wild about it. It does sound a little like the recording Jim did with Martha Wainwright. And, I must admit, having heard it at Hackney, performed with Sarah and Catherine, that version sounded better. I hear what others have said about it…that it’s more KT Tunstall featuring Simple Minds, rather than the other way around. 6/10

Glittering Prize – The most anticipated track, for me. I cried when I heard a snippet of it from the Zermatt gig back in April. I posted on the SM FB wall saying how beautiful it sounded. The recorded version didn’t disappoint. Tender, upbeat, romantic. Keeps to the original sentiment and feeling of the song, but with that acoustic treatment. My favourite track on the album. 9/10

See The Lights – Not really much to be done with this, considering how it originally was. It’s not in my Top 50 of Minds songs. It’s pleasant enough. Never understand the lyric change with the “look right through your disguise” bit. But hey, Jim writes them. He can change lyrics if he wants. OK. 6/10

New Gold Dream  – The original is SSSOOO electronically rich. I mean…such amazing keyboard work from Mick! I could not imagine how this was going to sound. It really has given this a whole new spin. It seems to work, I think. I’m still unsure of my opinion on this one. It certainly shows off Cherisse Osei’s skills as a percussionist. 7/10 for now. Glad we went back to the true “81/82/83/84” line though.

Someone Somewhere In Summertime – The real surprise for me. It works well! Still not sure I like the omission of the first “burning slow” opening lines…but I can understand why the way it’s been reworked why you’d leave it out. The slower pace works. It’s altered the sentiment of the song. It sounds more yearning and slightly less romantic, if that makes sense? It has more “drama”. My second favourite track on the album. 8/10

Waterfront – Who knew this would work without that heavy bass and crashing drum? This was the first Simple Minds track I heard back at the time that I REALLY liked. It got my attention INSTANTLY and it was down to that bass and drum. So, yeah…I was really intrigued by how this was going to sound. Again…a surprise it works quite well! There seems to be fewer words sung on this these days…which kind of leaves it a little TOO sparse for an acoustic track. I usually think the more space a track has, the better, but I’m unsure here. Still not sure on my final thoughts on this. A tentative 7/10.

Sanctify Yourself – Jim not singing the “Yourself” part of the title antagonises me no end! It just sounds lazy. He sings it sometimes…but not every time. Sorry. Not good enough! I just needed to say that and get it out the way. I like the musical structure. His talk of the harmonica when he was doing the radio shows earlier in the year obviously made for the instrument’s inclusion SOMEWHERE on this album! Jury’s still out for me. The original has been a long favourite…so, while I’m still fence-sitting, I’ll give it a 6/10 for now.

Chelsea Girl – Good feel to it. Musically, the reworking is great. A bit of the lyric has gone awry for some reason. I do like this. It still retains its “rock” feel. And Jim’s final utterance of “Chelsea Girl” is, as I have said before, like his nuts have been lowered into a bucket of ice! Lol. 7/10

Alive And Kicking – Another surprise for me! Didn’t hold out much hope I was going to like it. Over the years it has become a little overplayed. I loved it for years…but it just…got a bit old. But this has given it the breath of fresh air it needed, and Jim and Sarah sound great together. 8/10

Don’t You (Forget About Me) – Sounds like a good reboot. Not sure I can say much more than that about this. The song is a bane. I kind of love to hate it. It’s not theirs. Non fans give it too much praise. It’s all they’re known for. Ya da ya da. But…it is a good, solid rework. It made me like the song again. 7/10

Long Black Train – Beautiful…poignant. Tender. Soft. A lovely cover. And was beautifully done at Hackney on Thursday as well. A lovely ending to the album. And I’m a sucker for any song that mentions a bird! 8/10

(Further views on Glittering Prize)
It’s a rare one on the album for me in that it sounds as good on it to me as it does live. For nearly every other track, that’s not the case. BUT…having said that…that is the mark of a GREAT band. If you can sound better live than on record, you get full marks from me!! So…while the Acoustic album is good and doesn’t bowl me over…the Hackney gig did!

(Further views on The American)
I’ve heard it about 4 or 5 times now…and I’m not taken with this particular version. I don’t know why Jim’s vocal on this grates on me so much…it just does. He sounds better live singing this. He’s not trying to overdo the baritone live.

Overall summary of the album:
It is a canny masterstroke of a final track. (Long Black Train.) It leaves you erring on that…almost nostalgic feeling of “aw…that was alright”. But…that’s all it is. Alright. (The album as a whole.) I think it all sounds better live. Hackney was great gig. The album misses that audience atmosphere. Perhaps they should have just done the gigs and then produced a live album from it.

It has some great stuff and some not so good stuff. Solid without being knockout. It’s a good stop-gap, and a change until the big FOUR ZERO celebrations. I think the Uncut magazine review last month was spot on, really. 6/10

UPDATE: Actually, upon further reflection…I think I marked it a little low. Because I love them so much and because I love the whole acoustic sound much more live than as it has been captured in the studio (even though this is an album review), I have to bump the score a notch to a 7/10. It deserves a seven. Six is only just above 5 and five is TOTALLY midling. I’m not that ‘in the middle’ with it. A seven is good without saying “this is the best thing since sliced bread”.

Final album score: 7/10