Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Music in the Morning No. 415 – Brian Finnegan


According to Wikipedia, Brian is incredibly versatile being both an Irish flute and tin whistle as well as being a player.


But we’re only interested in his music.

Fly                                                                                         Brian Finnegan


Thanks, Brian.  You’re welcome back any time.

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Music in the Morning No. 414 – Jack Savoretti


Another newcomer greets you this morning.  I wonder what you will make of him.

Written in Scars                                                                   Jack Savoretti



Monday, 20 October 2014

Music in the Morning No. 413 – First Aid Kit


Today we welcome sisters, Johanna and Klara Söderberg.  Sit back and relax as this Swedish duo brings you the title track from their most recent album.


Stay Gold                                                                                  First Aid Kit


What a lovely addition to this series!

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Music in the Morning No. 412 - Praise the Lord


A traditional hymn is our worship this morning but let us not forget that worship is so much more than the words, the music and our singing. 

Are our hearts truly with the Lord?

Do we bow down before the cross?


Father, may I bring myself before You and show myself for whom I truly am.
My distance from You is what I omit. 
Oft times I fool myself but not You.
Today, Father, may I not be a fool.
In the name of Your Son, Jesus Christ Our Lord, I pray.


Praise my Soul, the King of Heaven         Choir of Westminster Abbey



Praise, my soul, the King of heaven;
To His feet thy tribute bring.
Ransomed, healed, restored, forgiven,
Who like me His praise should sing?
Praise Him! Praise Him!
Praise Him! Praise Him!
Praise the everlasting King.

Praise Him for His grace and favour
To our fathers in distress.
Praise Him still the same for ever,
Slow to chide, and swift to bless.
Praise Him! Praise Him!
Praise Him! Praise Him!
Glorious in His faithfulness.

Father-like He tends and spares us;
Well our feeble frame He knows.
In His hands He gently bears us,
Rescues us from all our foes.
Praise Him! Praise Him!
Praise Him! Praise Him!
Widely as His mercy flows.

Angels, help us to adore Him;
Ye behold Him face to face;
Sun and moon, bow down before Him,
Dwellers all in time and space.
Praise Him! Praise Him!
Praise Him! Praise Him!
Praise with us the God of grace.



May the Lord be with you today and every day.

Saturday, 18 October 2014

Music in the Morning No. 411 – Mundy and Sharon Shannon


Whilst I’m in the same place as yesterday here’s a piece which will have you moving …. possibly more!  Mundy and Sharon Shannon play Steve Earle’s ‘Galway Girl’.


Galway Girl                                                      Mundy and Sharon Shannon


Oh yes! 


Oh no!  I’m so unfit: I can hardly last this out.

Friday, 17 October 2014

No Woman Can Resist



“No woman can resist being promoted to head of something


Not my words!!!

I came across the words this morning in a post on Nourishing Obscurity, the story being that Ukip will lose funding from the European Parliament because, with the promotion of Iveta Grigule, there grouping does not meet funding criteria.  Here is the relevant part of the story.


The highlighted sentence is irrelevant to the story or so one would imagine.

It’s inclusion says more about the author than about the target.


I’ve ‘known’ James, the author, online for 7 years.  Our politics are very different: he’s of the right and I’m of the left.  Many times we’ve had run-ins over his labelling of the left.  Others have accused him for his attitudes to women.

In light of this I left a comment this morning which did not last long before James binned it.  Unfortunately I have no copy but it was along the lines of,

‘No woman can resist being promoted to head of something.’  Labelling again.  Perhaps the labels others have used of you are correct.’

Not content with removing my comment, James felt the need to preface another post with his views on me and my words. 

Can you make sense of them?

NO 2


Somehow, I don’t think James has cleared himself of charges.  Do you?

Music in the Morning No. 410 – Ray Bonneville



I know.  Ten minutes ago I didn’t know of Ray but a few bars was enough to bring him to the top of my playlist.  I’m not saying anything about him or his music.  You’ll need to listen!


I Am the Big Easy                                                                    Ray Bonneville


Top man!  Thanks, Ray!

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Music in the Morning No. 409 – Shovels and Rope


This great husband and wife team - Michael Trent and Cary Ann Hearst - return for a second outing [first here].


After the Storm                                                                    Shovels and Rope


If this series continues then you’ll hear more from Cary Ann and Michael.

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Music in the Morning No. 408 – Mozart


Hope you have time this morning for 16 minutes plus of ‘magic’.  Aligi Voltan plays all three movements of Mozart’s bassoon concerto in B-flat major.

Mozart Bassoon Concerto B-flat Major KV 191                     Aligi Voltan


Sheer brilliance!  Beauty beyond all understanding!

Monday, 13 October 2014

Music in the Morning No. 407 - Raziel Mérida


Oh, you’ll enjoy this!

This morning we go back almost 98 years to the Mexican revolution.  Wikipedia has this to say,

"Jesusita en Chihuahua” is a Mexican polka which was written by Quirino Mendoza y Cortés while he was serving as a Lt. Colonel in the Mexican Revolution and directing the military band in Puebla.  Its premiere was held on Christmas Day 1916 and it has since been covered by a multitude of artists, under a variety of names. The composition became a trademark of the Mexican Revolution and was Pancho Villa's favorite musical piece to have his bands play during combat.  The piece centers around soldaderas; women who accompanied the revolutionaries, tending to their needs and on occasion even taking up arms to participate in combat.

"Jesusita en Chihuahua" came to be known by some as the "J.C. Polka" for short and overtime this developed into the "Jesse Polka" (or the "Jessie Polka").

Jesusita en Chihuahua                                                        Raziel Mérida


Told you! Brill? Eh?

Sunday, 12 October 2014

Music in the Morning No. 406 – Praise the Lord


Many worship songs are bouncy and bright.  This is not.  This is deep!


Communion Hymn                                                          Stuart Townend



Behold the Lamb who bears our sins away,
Slain for us: and we remember:
The promise made that all who come in faith
Find forgiveness at the cross.
So we share in this Bread of life,
And we drink of His sacrifice,
As a sign of our bonds of peace
Around the table of the King.

The body of our Saviour, Jesus Christ,
Torn for you: eat and remember
The wounds that heal, the death that brings us life,
Paid the price to make us one.
So we share in this Bread of Life,
And we drink of His sacrifice
As a sign of our bonds of love
Around the table of the King.

The blood that cleanses every stain of sin,
Shed for you: drink and remember
He drained death's cup that all may enter in
To receive the life of God.
So we share in this Bread of Life,
And we drink of His sacrifice,
As a sign of our bonds of grace
Around the table of the King.

And so with thankfulness and faith
We rise to respond: and to remember
Our call to follow in the steps of Christ
As His body here on earth.
As we share in His suffering,
We proclaim: Christ will come again!
And we'll join in the feast of heaven
Around the table of the King.


Father, thank You for Your Son.
In Him, and through Him, is our salvation should we choose to give ourselves.
We choose but so often we distance ourselves from Him.
Father, we try but come up short time after time after time
But still you are patient where You see us strive and struggle.
May You see and hear us meeting with You and Your Son as we worship and as we receive communion.
Father, in the name of Your Son, Jesus Christ Our Lord, we pray.


Saturday, 11 October 2014

Music in the Morning No. 405 – Dominique Dupuis


Better stand up because you’re going to want to move as Canadian Dominique plays a bright medley.

Unknown                                                                           Dominique Dupuis


Phew!  Now I can sit for a rest.

Friday, 10 October 2014

Music in the Morning No. 404 – Bach


JS returns with a brilliant ‘Little’ fugue.

Fugue in G minor, "Little", BWV 578                                             J S Bach


‘Little’ but large in brilliance!

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Music in the Morning No. 403 – Eva Cassidy


The wondrous Eva Cassidy graces our hearing.  Famous only after her death, Eva’s voice is phenomenally pure.  An angel?

Fields of Gold                                                                            Eva Cassidy


The voice of an angel: Sting’s song has never been sung better!

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Music in the Morning No. 402 – Beethoven




Variations on a Theme from Mozart's Don Juan                        Beethoven

Joakim Dam Thomsen - 1st oboe; Rixon Thomas – 2nd oboe; Sven Buller - English horn  
Royal Danish Orchestra Oboe Trio


And you did!




Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Music in the Morning No. 401 – Bert Jansch


Most play the guitar, few are the guitar.

Bert Jansch was.

Angie                                                                                       Bert Jansch


Oh! How he was!

Monday, 6 October 2014

Music in the Morning No. 400 – Dubliners



Just 3 days back and I’ve reached another milestone.


I’m still hurting from 18th September.  I couldn’t play a Scottish song without crying.  This is the closest I can get, Luke Kelly fronting the Dubliners.

Song for Ireland                                                                     Dubliners


Thanks, Luke. 

Our time will come!

Sunday, 5 October 2014

Music in the Morning No. 399 – Praise the Lord


This Sunday morning we praise the Lord by singing along with Matt Redman.

Mercy                                                                                      Matt Redman



I will kneel in the dust
at the foot of the cross,
where mercy paid for me.
Where the wrath I deserve,
it is gone, it has passed.
Your blood has hidden me.

Mercy, mercy,
as endless as the sea.
I'll sing Your hallelujah
for all eternity.

We will lift up the cup
and the bread we will break,
remembering Your love.
We were fallen from grace,
but You took on our shame
and nailed it to a cross.


Mercy, mercy,
as endless as the sea.
I'll sing Your hallelujah
for all eternity.

May I never lose the wonder,
oh, the wonder of Your mercy.
May I sing Your hallelujah.
Hallelujah, Amen.
[repeat 3x]

May I never lose the wonder,
oh, the wonder of Your mercy.
May I sing Your hallelujah.
Hallelujah, Amen.

I will kneel in the dust
at the foot of the cross,
where mercy paid for me.

Saturday, 4 October 2014

Music in the Morning No. 398 - Gabriel Fauré


Once again, after a break of a few months, this series returns.  For how long none knows but I suspect the days will be few.  Better make the most of this while you can!

This morning there is music from beyond this earth.


Requiem op 48 Mvt VII. In Paradisum                          Gabriel Fauré

[Ensemble Musique Oblique, La Chapelle Royale, Philippe Herreweghe and Les Petits Chanteurs de Saint-Louis, Ensemble Musique Oblique]

I heard this for the first time only a few hours ago and I was driven to rstart this series on the basis of this one piece.

Monday, 22 September 2014

Ngtriiety and Hypocrisy


Early this morning [Sunday morning] I read here about Jack Straw’s article in The Times.  The article’s headline and strap was

Times Straw1

This was all I needed.  I had to write about this and this obnoxious man but first I had something important to do.

Church!  Off to the 9am service at Ps and Gs.  I saw no conflict in cursing this man and then going to worship God and take Communion.  How blind!

Even after hearing a wonderful sermon on God’s love I was back on my path to demolishing Straw.  Whilst driving I was writing a post in my head which I’d later transcribe here.  I had it all: the words to take his case apart and the judgment. O my, the judgment!


War criminal!


Odious! [I’d got that from Craig Murray a few years ago]

Where was the sermon?  More importantly, where was God?  He was with me – I know that - but he wasn’t in my thoughts.  Only Straw and my judgment.

My judgment! 

Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.

Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye. [Matthew 7: 1-5 NIV]

Now I was caught.  No longer was it Straw who was the hypocrite, it was I.  No longer was it Straw who didn’t know how to spell ‘integrity’ it was I.

I couldn’t judge but surely Straw was as I described.  How difficult it is to leave judgment behind!  I’m caught in politics and, let’s face it, politics, the referendum, is important.  Judgment of others is part of politics, is it not?  How can I leave politics behind after the last few months with the detailed future unknown?  How am I going to be involved and not react as I’ve done today?

I must be honest.  The last two months or so the referendum has been more important to me than God.  If I stopped and thought about this I’d say, ‘Of course, God is more important!’ but I never lived this.  The referendum was top of my list virtually all day every day. 

I had lost God!

It pains me to write this but it’s true.

I had lost God!

Lost God to the referendum.  It’s so ridiculous when I write this but the truth is not ridiculous.  The truth is the truth.  God knows where I’ve been as He knows all things.

I’ve put this earthly world before Him.  I have disowned Him.

I’ve had to stop to pray for forgiveness.  I couldn’t go on without this. 

And I know my writing is clunky and lacking coherence: I’m confused and I write out of that confusion.  I could clean and polish my words but the confusion is key.  I’m wrestling with thoughts and doubts.  The learning is in the process of writing.

And now I must leave this for a few hours until I return from the 7pm service. Where will I be then?  I’ll let you know.

Just back from Ps and Gs again and another great sermon on John 3.

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God. [John 3: 16-21]

I have some clarity – guess I always knew this.  My true identity is of, and in, God and I must leave from here.  I am a Yesser; I am one of the 45 but whatever I do in those areas must be done with the love of God at the forefront.

How do I do that?

How do I do anything with the love of God first?

This is the trial of every Christian: seems as though it should be easy but we are weak and we are flawed.  Prayer, repentance and more prayer and more repentance and remembering who I am and who He is.

Now and now and now.

I fear I will always be a hypocrite for the Christian trial is so difficult but as long as I live trusting God and knowing His love is always around me then my path is true.

Unfortunately for readers there’s more to come.  I need time to relax and to let God’s love work within me.  I’ll come back to this in the morning.

Early morning – 6am – and my head has been buzzing all night – and I see how far I wandered from God.  As I said last night, ‘I am a Yesser, one of the 45’.  The others?  They’re just that – others!  Not like me, different.  Don’t challenge my Yesness!  Don’t ask me to take off my Yes badge!  It’s who I am!  This identity is so important that removing a badge is impossible!

Not just a Yes badge.  Any badge will do the devil, even one starting out as Christian.  Once the badge, the cause, is more important than God then the devil has won.  This is what happened when I lost God, when he became unimportant.

Yes was my god!

I worshipped at the altar of Yes!

I don’t have to deny my desire for Yes but I must deny, and now I have denied, Yes as my god.  There is only God Almighty.  How can a supposed Christian forget this?  Hey folks, it’s easy, far too easy.  Slowly, gradually, almost without noticing, the false god creeps in until eventually we know we’ve pushed out God.  Even this awareness isn’t enough to turn, the false god has such power that we don’t even realise it has power.  We’ll turn back when ….. 


O the devil’s good with words.  When this happens, when you’ve finished ….. but not now.  It’s never now.  Just this wee bit more but there’s always a wee bit more.  And we cannot see, we cannot hear, the Truth because we are listening to another.

Thank You, Father, for SHOUTING to me, for SHINING Your light so brightly that even I could hear and see.

The Light shone.  The Light described in John 3. I had to come back into the Light.  I had come back to God …. until the next time …. and still He’ll wait.