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Monty Python at the O2 – musings

So I just got back from the O2 where I saw and met the Pythons, which was nice.

Before I let my impressions marinade, here are a few fresh from the bush:

For a whipper snapper like myself, this production was a godsend. As I was born quite late in their career, I’d never thus far had the chance of seeing them live. Good thing I’m a Swiss wage earning whipper snapper, ’cause that ticket was expensive!

When they say you should never meet your idols, they’re kind of right. Just like with my musical favourites, Motörhead’s Lemmy, one thing to keep in mind is that the stars are senior citizens now, so you won’t get a carbon copy of the record anymore. That said though, Eric Idle organised one fine show for us.

Although they could have gone a bit lighter on the musical type interludes, it was a privilege to see the five remaining Pythons and Carol Cleveland in the flesh, doing it all one more time. To see those sketches live and alive was amazing. Younger actors may have more vigour, but it’s always best to see the writers and original performers.

The irony of the whole thing about age, by the way, was that the most seasoned performer is still the best performer. Although he’s the oldest of the five, John Cleese was in great voice and shape and I for one am very glad he wanted to be there.

Meeting them afterwards was surreal. I usually have lots to say to my idols, but somehow with these whom I’ve admired for a lot longer than some of my musical favourites, I had far less to say. But sod it, all five in one room and me and 100 others too, that’s a pretty good crowning moment to an evening.

To finish with an aside on legends, Motörhead is still amongst the best in the value for money department, by the way. If there was a next time Monty Python should ask VIP Nation to do the meet and greet.

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My 2013 in review

As we enter another new year, it is once again time for me to recount some of the highlights of my 2013.

  1. Meeting Arthur BrownIn early December, I tendered my perk from his Zim Zam Zim album PledgeMusic campaign, by seeing him in concert and meeting him after. It is important to note that this was not your usual M&G, heck, most people nowadays couldn’t appreciate Arthur Brown enough anyway, irrespective of when they discovered him. 😉 This was more like an audience with Arthur Brown, a very cool experience!I first saw Artur and his Crazy World (of) band at the High Voltage festival in London in 2011. Like many others I only knew the “Fire” tune from the suite of the same name, but I did make it a point to go see him play. That day I first experienced the great natural high the man can produce. I had a huge smile on my face, and I was 100% sober!

    CWOAB is theater, prog, rock, soul, funk and entertainment of the classic variety in one. Brown also still sings, dances and acts just like in his younger days. Before I knew of his connection to Lemmy (Kilmister of Motörhead), I sensed that Arthur too was one of the originals, old enough to remember before there was rock’n’roll and intact enough to tell us young ones about it.

    Like Lemmy, Arthur Brown is very wise but also charming and amusing, and he too would rather tour with a small circle of trustworthy friends than top the charts. One one hand’s side, it’s a massive shame that he’s not getting the attention and respect he deserves (massive influence on the likes of Alice Cooper, for example), but on the other hand’s side him and his band are like a secret shared amongst true lovers of musical art.

    Unlike Lemmy, however, Arthur Brown has a beautiful female lead guitarist on his right, a big talent much better looking than ol’ Phil.

  2. “See youse at the Barras”, 2013 editionAnother recent and very memorable night was this year’s Shed Seven concert at the Barrowlands Ballroom in Glasgow, Scotland. This too seems to be a secret gem of the music world that I would argue any true fan of real music would be a fool to miss.The Barras, as it is known locally, is a venue that has everything. Atmosphere, great sound and a great view of the action, everywhere. And although you’ll be one of under 2000 people in there even on sold out nights, it might as well be just you and some mates you never knew you had. And the gig will start where most other venues will end them, i.e. with energy, sound and noise at 11. At the Barras all of the main act’s set is the encore, it’s that powerful. The bands love it and play at their best, and the crowds know that and too bring their A game, thus creating this unique energy feedback loop that will only be extinguished some hundred odd yards from the venue, when you can’t hear anyone sing into the night anymore after the concert.This atmosphere there I think comes closest to what Liam Gallagher calls being “mad fer it”. So prepare to be intimidated if you don’t already love the band you’re going to see there. 😉
  3. Mike Portnoy 

    This was the year I declared myself a Mike Portnoy fan, and not only because I got to meet him twice in 2013.I have liked his work a lot for quite a few years (apart from the A7X pop, that was unnecessary), but it was this year’s flaming bag of poo sold to the masses as chocolate biscuits by his former colleagues that sealed the deal. Portnoy knows why he participates in the projects he starts or joins and will not put his name on something that isn’t of his high standard.I suppose Portnoy has a bit of the older generation mentality in him. Like the generation of Lemmy and Arthur Brown, he won’t sign off on mediocrity and will work overtime if more fans get to enjoy more of his work.

    I’ll refer you to my previous Portnoy related posts and remain by saying that I really look forward to Progressive Nation ’14 and more Transatlantic, Flying Colors and Winery Dogs after that. I also can’t see Neal Morse taking a year off, so I’ll probably get to enjoy at least two Portnoy related concerts in Switzerland alone this year too.

  4. Lemmy 

    Not only did he lead Motörhead to the top with yet another masterpiece in the form of Aftershock, he also, true to his ethos, rescheduled the entire fall tour when he realised he couldn’t deliver. While it’s of course sad that he’s had to slow down, it’s much more important to remember that, as Neil Young sang, it’s better to burn out than to fade away.

  5. The Stone Roses 

    Thanks to my fast fingers, the first TSR event of 2013 was the premiere of Made of Stone in Manchester. Not only was it the first premiere I’d been to (and first of two in 2013), but it was also very exciting to be able to be at THE event, not some screening for plebs, but the same one that the band, their friends and the crew attended.After the monumental experience at Heaton Park in 2012 I naturally had to attend their Finsbury Park concerts as well. Like the bearded mega fan said in the film, there’s just something indescribably exciting about the band, and to me it’s an excitement that just does not get old no matter how many times I hear the same songs.

    The only Roses thing that’ll top that now is the hotly anticipated third album. As with my other top events of the year, I’d also advise them to do it properly or leave it be. Their successors from the Britpop scene have proven this. It is in that sense a good thing that there’s not been a new Blur or Oasis studio album but instead several smaller side project releases.

  6. Not Another Happy Ending 

    Almost a year after visiting the film set in Glasgow, I finally got to see the finished product at the commoner premiere of the film in Edinburgh. I call it the commoner premiere because the true premiere was earlier the same day and only upper class people were allowed at that one it seems.
    I enjoyed seeing the actors and crew members again, even if only from afar this time, and the movie remains one I can only recommend, in spite of my bias.

  7. HMV survives 

    Although I do prefer independent stores, I am very glad that HMV survived and has started to justify its own existence again. I’ve enjoyed seeing HMVs in all the cities I visited this year making a greater effort and wanting to be relevant again. My biggest thanks go to the Newcastle branch (and probably Universal) for arranging the Megadeth signing session where I not only got to have my copy of Super Collider signed (which I’d purchased at the Indie down the street) but also, by means of a snapshot, won an autographed poster too. This helped considering the terrible acoustics at the venue later that day.

  8. The Inspiral Carpets 

    I’ve got to add this as only their internal politics would merit an exclusion from this list.I thoroughly enjoyed seeing them live, and in their hometown of all places. Steven Holt is a surprisingly good singer, much better than he is sometime given credit for, and the band, much like Shed Seven, still play as well as during their heyday period.

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Read this first

Seeing as how even old horses like the Stones and The Who still have newbies at events, here’s a few key points about the wire:

  • Don’t take things literally. Seriously, I will not be held responsible.
  • There’s plenty of opinion here, but also pitch black humor, satire and deep thoughts.
  • Sometimes if you don’t “get it”, I probably didn’t intend for that to happen. No hard feelings.
  • If I tried to explain, we’d still be here in the afterlife.

N.B: The serious, business stuff is elsewhere.

Featured Humor News ORLY

Air Canada ordered to pay $12K to man who couldn’t order 7Up in French (NP)

Air Canada ordered to pay $12K to man who couldn’t order 7Up in French | Posted | National Post.

What a douche… 7up is another manufacturer’s Sprite. Most airlines will carry either. On that count, the Franco-Canadian should have paid a penalty for wasting the airline’s time.

In other cases he might have a point. But seriously, I hate time wasters of his kind. Those petty minded idiots who have nothing better to do than go and bother hard working people should never be rewarded by any authority, except maybe win a grant to get a prison sentence enhanced by a better TV set.

On that note, Ottawa, just let Quebec secede already. Just imagine how much money becoming a monolingual country will save in the long run. Make de facto reality de jure already!

Humor News Politics

The poetry of Donald Rumsfeld. – By Hart Seely – Slate Magazine

As we know,
There are known knowns.
There are things we know we know.
We also know
There are known unknowns.
That is to say
We know there are some things
We do not know.
But there are also unknown unknowns,
The ones we don’t know
We don’t know.

via The poetry of Donald Rumsfeld. – By Hart Seely – Slate Magazine.

One of my favorite poems. Inadvertently deep and quotable in many situations.

Humor News

Inmate at Utah State Hospital accused of strangling roommate over snoring –

Inmate at Utah State Hospital accused of strangling roommate over snoring –

I don’t blame the guy entirely. Loud snorers can be very annoying.

Geeky Humor TV

Slashdot Entertainment Story | Food Activist’s Life Becomes The Life of Brian

Slashdot Entertainment Story | Food Activist’s Life Becomes The Life of Brian.

Very funny.

Business Humor News

Not Always Right | Funny & Stupid Customer Quotes

Not Always Right | Funny & Stupid Customer Quotes

The above site lists examples of why I object to every citizen having a vote.

Humor Media News

What Britney Spears Really Sounds Like On Stage ( – What Britney Spears Really Sounds Like On Stage

A proper singer would have more talent in their little finger than her.

Geeky Humor News

Hamlet (Facebook News Feed Edition). (McSweeney’s Internet Tendency)

McSweeney’s Internet Tendency: Hamlet (Facebook News Feed Edition).

Very funny, even if you don’t update your facebook status that often.

Geeky Humor

Google Street View cameraman: No photos of me, please

Google Street View cameraman: No photos of me, please

Yeah, this is where he missed the obvious… By being obvious. What a thickie. 🙂

Art Geeky Humor Media News

Faceless ‘aliens’ spotted in crowd at Wimbledon (Daily Mail)

Faceless ‘aliens’ spotted in crowd at Wimbledon | Mail Online

Someone summon Dr Who… 🙂

Art Geeky Humor Media Music Technology

Friday Fun: Mac Desktop Music Video

Friday Fun: Mac Desktop Music Video

A really well done video, a sort of Time for the naughties.

Geeky Humor Media News

Lost laptop? Sue for millions!

Lost laptop? Sue for millions!

I bet that peabrain voted for Edwards… 🙄

Humor Media Music News Politics

Did Obama Camp Use Rap to Call Hillary B-tch? – Did Obama Camp Use Rap to Call Hillary B-tch?

How insensitive of Newsmax, don’t they know b*tch is not a swear word in the black community? 😉

Geeky Humor

Mr. T was in the rap game too.

YouTube – Mr. T was in the rap game too.

Yeah, you better believe it…

Humor News Politics

Kucinich: I Saw UFO (Newsmax)

Kucinich: I Saw UFO –

And he wants to be President?

Geeky Humor Web Development

Nightmare web design clients (MB Web Design Blog)

Nightmare web design clients | MB Web Design Blog

Potential future clients: Read the above article on what not to do to a web designer.

Humor Music News

MC Hammer has a blog

MC Hammer Blog

Now there’s a funny one. Click above for your daily dose of Hammer time.

Business Geeky Humor News Technology

Google TiSP

Welcome to Google TiSP

Wouldn’t it be great if there was as yet uncharted territory in the area of Internet access?

(Just remember the date.)

CWQTPY Humor News Politics

From a Rapt Audience, a Call to Cool the Hype (NYT)

From a Rapt Audience, a Call to Cool the Hype – New York Times

Whoa, the NYT is calling on Al Gore to cool it. Now here’s a funny one (global warming, cooling, get it?). As I’ve said before, if you’re a commie liberal like Gore and the NYT doubts your credibility even a little bit, chances are you are wrong.

CWQTPY Humor News Politics

An ugly turn on the road to the White House – By Donald Lambro ugly turn on the road to the White House::By Donald Lambro

I love watching the schoolyard fights on the other side. The more they try to prove themselves the more they prove nothing more than that they can’t be trusted with leadership positions. Mind you, some RINOs have behaved badly too, but at least they have the courtesy to do it out of sight or earshot of the MSM.

Humor Miscellanea

What did the architect smoke? (//STATiC)

What did the architect smoke? (//STATiC)

This guy gives new meaning to “throwing things together”.

Geeky Humor Media

The Science of Godzilla (Ape Culture)

Ape Culture – The Science of Godzilla

A funny and interesting read on why Godzilla could never exist in reality.

Humor News Technology

Warrant Issued For Verizon’s Arrest (Consumerist)

Warrant Issued For Verizon’s Arrest – Consumerist

Now that is a creative way to “stick it to the man”.

Humor Media Politics

Rodham Rap (AtomFilms)

AtomFilms: Rodham Rap

A funny cartoon-ish clip that pokes fun at Hillary’s pet issues.

Humor Media

Business doesn’t go here (Urban Legends)

Urban Legends Reference Pages: Business (Don’t Go Here)

I’m sure Chris Klein will be happy.

General Humor Media News TV

Penn State Moose Head Attack (TSG)

Penn State Moose Head Attack – January 26, 2007


Humor News Politics

Tijuana police issued slingshots (MSNBC)

Tijuana police issued slingshots – Criminal Peculiarity –

As funny as this may sound, I’d prefer to keep silliness like that out of our country.

Humor Media

Images With Words (Modern Mantra)

It’s Knuttz – Modern Mantra – Images With Words

Images made of words, literally. I wonder what’s worth more now…

General Humor Miscellanea

Stupid Product Labels (Lucky Puppy)

Lucky Puppy Stupid Product Labels

These are good for a laugh… There must be some very dumb people out there.

General Humor Media News Personal Politics Religion TV

Merry Christmas!

General Humor Media Miscellanea

Top 13 Worst Slogan Translations Ever ( – Top 13 Worst Slogan Translations Ever

Advertisers, take note, especially those in Europe.

General Humor Miscellanea

Things People Said: Restaurants

Things People Said: Restaurants

A good laugh. Some people should really not be allowed to run or patronize restaurants.

Geeky General Humor Media

The 13 Most Embarrassing Web Moments (PC World)

PC World – The 13 Most Embarrassing Web Moments

Some good laughs for an overhung (weather-wise, I don’t drink) Friday.