Genre Favourites Blogfest

The other day I read about the Genre Favourites (and Guilty Pleasures) Blogfest on the L’Aussie Writer Blog. It sounded like a bit of fun so I thought, why not join in? So here are my responses.

MOVIES

One of my favourite movies ever is Out of Africa: the costuming, the scenery, the interaction with the Africans. The landscape is so theatrical and a character in the story. I would love to soar above the landscape in a hot air balloon, perhaps the closest to what they saw in the old bi-plane. A dream for 2013.

Hot air balloons over the Masai Mara, Kenya. Image Wikipedia commons.

For me it’s not the love interest that is the tear-jerker element in Out of Africa. In the Ladies’ Room afterwards, all the women were crying over Robert Redford’s death and talking about it. I was crying for the servant, who loyally and futilely waited for her to send for him. It’s always seemed to me like a betrayal of sorts.

My guilty pleasure is rom-coms among which You’ve Got Mail stands out. At the time I harboured a secret ambition to own a bookstore: the movie convinced me that wasn’t such a great idea, and given the virtual world of bookshops these days that was probably no bad thing. Dream bombed!

BOOKS

Setting aside my devotion to historical books (not fiction), I’m a big crime novel reader, a habit that goes way back into childhood with the Trixie Belden books.

I suffer from author-addiction: devouring each book my favourite authors publish and  waiting anxiously for their next story. Don’t you hate it when a favourite author is inconsiderate enough to die on you leaving you with no hope of further entertainment….inconvenient for them too of course!

Perhaps my favourite crime author is Michael Connelly and his Hieronymus (Harry) Bosch character. Bosch, the LA homicide detective, has such commitment and grittiness which make the stories realistic as do his human weaknesses.

My weakness for crime pours over into TV as well where there’s nothing better than a good crime series on a Friday night, especially in those weeks when work’s been a bit of a pain. Again the grittier the better and so Taggart has to be a favourite with its Glaswegian accents and attitudes.

MUSIC

Bagpipes in my blood. Celtic music (Scottish or Irish) is my fave.

It’s a toss up this one but since I have to choose I’ll go with Celtic music, and I’m a big fan of Mary Black. If you’re interested in more of my music habits you can check out the Merry Month of May Music Meme we had earlier this year.

Guilty pleasure in music is probably country music which we mostly listen to while driving long distances –it seems to fit with the locale.

Thanks to Ninja Captain Alex for inventing this blogfest.

 

Cassmob’s Merry Month of May Music Meme response

The Merry Month of May Music Meme: a meme for your amusement.

Since the whole point of this is to have fun, retrieve memories and generally chill out (very 60s!), feel free to amend/add/subtract. I’m not even going to ask you the usual checklist of have done, want to do, don’t want to do. If you feel the urge, go ahead, you know how it works. And, geneabloggers, yes there is still family history value in this: give your descendants a laugh, let them get to know you with your hair down.

  1. Song(s)/Music from your childhood: Mum singing Turaluralura, that’s an Irish lullaby; Mum singing around the house, Dad signing in B flat but trying bush ballads; my grandmother playing Scottish music on the gramophone.
  2. Song(s)/Musos from your teenage years: The Beatles, Elvis, Rolling Stones, Monkees, Bob Dylan, Herman’s Hermits, Acker Bilk, Dean Martin, Cat Stevens, Beach Boys, Mamas & Papas.
  3. First live concert you attended: The Beatles in Brisbane (what an adventure!)
  4. Songs your parents sang along to: I’ll take you home again Kathleen; Old Man River, Danny Boy, Aussie bush ballads…..
  5. Song(s)/Music your grandparents sang/played: Scottish music (one side of the family); Catholic hymns or Irish songs (the other side of the family)
  6. Did your family have sing-a-longs at home or a neighbours: A family in the neighbourhood used to have a pianola and hosted occasional sing-a-longs
  7. Did you have a musical instrument at home: No, I learnt the piano briefly and played at the neighbours: we used to have chopsticks-playing speed competitions.
  8. What instruments do you play (if any): None, sadly for me, happily for my listeners.
  9. What instruments do you wish you could play: Bagpipes, fiddle, guitar (in that order).
  10. Do you/did you play in a band or orchestra: See #8
  11. Do you/did you sing in a choir: Even worse than #8
  12. Music you fell in love to/with or were married to: Dean Martin, Acker Bilk, Mozart’s 21st: the theme to Elvira Madigan, a star-crossed-lovers kind of movie (why we chose this I have no idea)
  13. Romantic music memories: Making my mother-in-law cry with Mozart’s 21st as I walked down the aisle at our wedding; listening to A Woman’s Heart for the first time in Dingle; our daughters’ music compilation for our 40th anniversary.
  14. Favourite music genre(s): Classical, light opera, world, with a dash of 60s pop.
  15. Favourite classical music song(s)/album: The Swoon Collection III, Vivaldi’s Four Seasons.
  16. Favourite opera/light opera song(s)/album: Cieli di Toscana and any other Andrea Boccelli; Puccini Romance
  17. Favourite musical song(s)/album: Abba the Movie (for the sheer fun of it)
  18. Favourite pop song(s)/album: The Essential Roy Orbison, Hot August Night,
  19. Favourite world/ethnic song(s)/album: A Woman’s Heart (love the Caledonia track), any/all of Mary Black’s albums; any/all of Capercaillie’s albums; Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunipingu’s Gurrumul, especially the tracks in language.
  20. Favourite jazz song(s)/album: not really into jazz but willing to be converted.
  21. Favourite country or folk song(s)/album: Sara Storer (especially Billabong, Tell These Hands, Raining on the Plains, Boss Drover’s Pride, Katherine); The Rankins Endless Seasons; Former NT Administrator Ted Egan’s songs on Australian and Territory history; Graeme Connor’s North album for its North Queensland influences.
  22. Favourite show/movie musical: My Fair Lady, Abba the Movie
  23. Favourite sounds tracks: Mad Hot Ballroom (an inspirational doco on New York school kids in a dance competition); No Reservations; Top Gun (oh, yeah, love those songs).
  24. What music do you like to dance to: Hmm, I married a non-dancer, but folk music or 60s. I did the twist at my daughter’s wedding with my girlfriends and man, did my legs pay for it the next day! Oh yes, and I forgot the Hucklebuck. At uni, I used to do ballroom dancing two or three nights a week.
  25. What dances did you do as a teenager: jive, twist, rumba, cha-cha etc etc.
  26. Do you use music for caller ID on your mobile: for my nearest and dearest (very handy) and on the house phone, for friends except for those pesky private numbers.
  27. What songs do you use for caller ID: Dancing Queen, Pretty Woman, Mama Mia (reflecting people’s enthusiasms)
  28. What songs do your children like or listen to: Popular, Country, an obsession with our old “Summer Holiday” LP, anything and everything.
  29. Favourite live music concerts as an adult: Paul Simon’s Graceland concert, Guinness Irish concerts, Neil Diamond.
  30. Silly music memories from your family: “take me home west virginger (Virginia)” (she was only 4); the look on the same daughter’s face when the rest of us came back from a Territory holiday singing country; belting out “riding right on into Queensland” (Ted Egan) at the end of a very very long drive.
  31. Silliest song you can think of: this one came to me this morning (late addition) Ta-ra-ra-boom-de-ay and pinching from Catherine on this one: Purple People Eater
  32. Pet hate in music/singing: Australian country singers using American accents; Nelson Eddy and Janette McDonald warbling; those incredibly sexist 60s songs that now put my teeth on edge.
  33. A song that captures family history for you: Flesh and Blood composed by Aussie Shane Howard and sung by Irish singer, Mary Black has been a favourite since I first heard it on the bus to Canberra in 1994. The lyrics are so apt for family history[i]. It’s on The Holy Ground CD. Another might be Graeme Connor’s Let the canefields burn for the changes in family circumstances or Sicilian Born for the impact of migration.
  34. If you could only play 5 albums (assume no iPods or mp3) for the rest of your life, what would they be: The Swoon Collection III; Deep Peace; Gurrumul; A Woman’s Heart; Graceland.
  35. Favourite musicians: go ahead and list as many as you like: Neil Diamond, Andrea Boccelli, Capercaillie, Mary Black, Altan, Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunipingu, Handel, Vivaldi, Puccini……

I had fun, and I hope you do too when you do the meme. Mr Cassmob reckons that if you can remember the 60s you weren’t there. Hah, I was such a sweet young thing in those days!


[i] I was however puzzled by an Irish woman singing “if we leave here today we could be a thousand miles away”. It made much more sense when I found the lyrics were written by an Australian.

Merry Month of May Music Meme

What with the A to Z challenge and Anzac Day posts, April was rather a serious month of blogging. A week or so ago, after a series of blog comments my genimate[i] Catherine and I reckoned we needed a bit of frivolity. Catherine posted the humorous Purple People Eater on her blog for light relief. This morning it occurred to me that what we need is a (hopefully) fun meme so here it is….drum roll.

The Merry Month of May Music Meme: a meme for your amusement.

Since the whole point of this is to have fun, retrieve memories and generally chill out (very 60s!), feel free to amend/add/subtract. I’m not even going to ask you to do the usual checklist of have done, want to do, don’t want to do. If you feel the urge, go ahead, you know how it works. And, geneabloggers, yes there is still family history value in this: give your descendants a laugh, let them get to know you with your hair down. Don’t forget, anyone can join in – it will make it much more fun.

I’ll be posting my responses later today and I’m even going to try to be spontaneous – first song/music that comes into my head. If you decide to join in please let me know via the links below (it’s supposed to be fun, so I’m not going to learn about linky-doo-dahs).

  1. Song(s)/Music from your childhood:
  2. Song(s)/ Musos from your teenage years:
  3. First live concert you attended:
  4. Songs your parents sang along to:
  5. Song(s)/Music your grandparents sang/played:
  6. Did your family have sing-a-longs at home or a neighbours:
  7. Did you have a musical instrument at home:
  8. What instruments do you play (if any):
  9. What instruments do you wish you could play:
  10. Do you/did you play in a band or orchestra:
  11. Do you/did you sing in a choir:
  12. Music you fell in love to/with or were married to:
  13. Romantic music memories:
  14. Favourite music genre(s):
  15. Favourite classical music:
  16. Favourite opera/light opera:
  17. Favourite musical:
  18. Favourite pop:
  19. Favourite world/ethnic:
  20. Favourite jazz:
  21. Favourite country or folk:
  22. Favourite movie/show musical:
  23. Favourite sounds tracks:
  24. What music do you like to dance to:
  25. What dances did you do as a teenager:
  26. Do you use music for caller ID on your mobile:
  27. What songs do you use for caller ID:
  28. What songs do your children like or listen to:
  29. Favourite live music concerts as an adult:
  30. Silly music memories from your family:
  31. Silliest song you can think of:
  32. Pet hate in music/singing:
  33. A song that captures family history for you:
  34. If you could only play 5 albums (assume no iPods or mp3) for the rest of your life, what would they be:
  35. Favourite artists (go ahead and list as many as you like):

Let’s go Merry Month of May-ing

I hope you have fun dredging up some memories and get into the spirit of a Merry Month of May.


[i] Term coined by Jill Ball of Geniaus.