Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Casino Royale or James Bond 21

Last evening I had to the chance to finally enjoy a movie by myself. I went to the corps and brought the DVD player from the corps home and plugged it into the TV in my bedroom. With small children, I don't often get a chance to enjoy a "guy" movie. Jay likes James Bond, but I like to prescreen it first, not just so I know that it is suitable, but he asks so many questions, that I like to have the answers for in advance!

It all started yesterday morning when I woke up feeling a little ill. I was supposed to go to Rotary but just felt like I was hit by a truck. Elaine convinced me to stay home for the day. I read all of my newspapers online, read the DISboards, and just relaxed. Elaine had to go to the store and asked if I wanted her to see if Casino Royale was in at Blockbuster. That is like asking a guy if he wants his dinner served to him! My answer was a resounding yes! I had tried to rent it on Friday when we had our snowstorm, but of course, everyone else had the same idea and it wasn't in.

So last night, I got cozy in my room, called the dogs up and popped in the DVD. My initially reaction to Daniel Craig of James Bond was positive. I thought he seemed intense and hard core...typical of what a MI6 spy should be. There was not the one liners of the Roger Moore era, instead this James Bond was serious about his work.

The locales were awesome as usual. They included Madagascar, the Bahamas, and Montenegro. Seeing James Bond behind the wheel of a DB9 Vanquish is always exciting. Its an awesome car that I wish I could actually see on the road in the US!

In this movie, Q was absent, and so were many gadgets. James Bond relied on standard technology such as high tech computers and smart phones to do what he needed.

The Bond girls were beautiful as always. I don't recall their actual names just yet, but both of the girls he hooked up with were strikingly beautiful. There is an interesting twist with the character of Vesper Lind. She had quite an effect on James...you will have to watch to see.

It was interesting to see James meet his American counterpart Felix Leiter for the first time. That along with many other cues suggests this is a prequel. I won't share any others.

I like this new James Bond, and I hope the franchise continues in the same direction Casino Royale moved.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

The Sky and the Dawn and the Sun (Stereo)

Here is another great song from Celtic Woman.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Mo Ghile Mear (Stereo)

This is my favorite song from Celtic Woman...Mo Ghile Mear

Celtic Woman Live

Last night, Elaine, Samantha, and I went to see Celtic Woman at Mohegan Sun. It was a great night! Those of you who have been readers of this blog since December, know that in December, I literally fell in love with the music of Celtic Woman. In late January, Elaine convinced me to buy the tickets, and we decided to take Samantha with us.

After a long day at the corps, we were home for an hour or so before we headed out to the casino. I was curious to see what type of crowd these women would draw, so while waiting for my girls to be done in the restroom, I did a lot of people watching in the concourse of the arena. There were people in suits sipping martinis and people in Harley Davidson t shirts drinking beer. We were in casual clothes drinking lemonade!

Shortly after arriving, the lights dimmed and the music started with Mairead playing her fiddle to the opening of the song, The Sky, the Sun and the Dawn. Hayley, Lisa, Chloe and Orla followed her and soon we were underway.

During the first half of the show, we enjoyed many of our favorite songs, The Prayer, Orinocco Flow, Caledonia, and my favorite, Mo Ghile Mear. I have posted it below.

The second half was just as good as the first. Perhaps even better. I enjoyed all of the songs, and I must confess that Chloe is my new favorite. Her voice is so pure and angelic...she is awesome and she is just a kid. I believe she turns 18 sometime this year. Mairead was also simply amazing on the fiddle. At the end for the encore, she flew through highlights of the show...messing up on purpose in the transitions. I got all giddy when the chorus of Mo Ghile Mear came on again for the final curtain call.

These women offer a truly unique style of singing, and I must confess that their CD gets a lot of use both in the car and on my office computer. In fact, this evening while waiting for our dinner at Ruby Tuesday's Car Side to go, I was listening to what else, Mo Ghile Mear in the car. I was reading the CD case to learn the Celtic words. I think it is either Celtic or Gaelic. I looked up and there was the girl with my food at my window giggling a bit. I rolled it down and she asked, "did you get a new cd?" Rather embarassed and flattered at her slight flirting, I muttered something about being embarassed about being caught singing, I turned the cd off and paid quickly. This music does something to me!

I will look forward to the next Celtic Woman tour, and being so close to the main concert venue in the state, just 4 miles, I plan on going again when the opportunity presents itself.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Brass Banding is Alive and Well in Norwich

In the last 15 years or so, it seems there has been a shift in The Salvation Army. It seems we were dangerously getting away from our musical heritage. We were focusing more on the "gospel arts" as we have come to refer to them. These include, sacred dance, drama, etc. It used to be, that you could not participate in a musical program unless you played an instrument or a tamborine. I am not taking away from gospel arts, but it seems that there was less of an emphasis placed on our brass band heritage.

In the last few weeks, we have pulled our old instruments at the corps out of the "mothballs." No they weren't packed in mothballs, but they had been sitting for some time. I have also purchased some instruments of Ebay, and am currently watching a couple of cornets that the auctions end tonight. This last week I picked up a Yamaha cornet and Yamaha Euphonium for very good prices!

As I type this, the kids of the corps are being instructed by our Divisional Music Director the basics of music theory. In the weeks ahead, they will be assigned instruments and the junior band will be formed.

I think it is great that these old instruments are getting use once again. We have about 10-12 kids interested in learning how to play.

Brass banding is back...in Norwich anyway!