Monday, 31 December 2012

Farewell 2012, it's been a blast!


It's that time again when Bloggers feel the need, just as I do, to sum up the year! In many ways it is a cathartic process, attempting to remember high and lows and gaining perspective on the calendar year...

So, 2012, this is the year that was:

Events / Gigs / Performances:
  1. Paralympic Closing Ceremony. Felt so privileged to have been there. I managed to secure tickets early on having failed in the first round of Olympic ticket sales. At the time the 'buzz' around the whole sporting phenomena hadn't kicked off, so was delighted to get the notification I'd been assigned tickets for a couple of the stadium Athletics events AND the Closing Ceremony. Subsequently it was announced that Coldplay were to take a major part, bonus! Mentioned in my blog post here.

  2. Gustavo Dudamel conducting the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela (SBSOV) at the Royal Festival Hall. I have to confess that most Classical Music concerts I've attended I've either been longing to get to the piece in the programme I knew or been longing for them to finish altogether! This was completely the opposite, I was gutted it all seemed to go so fast. The blog post was entitled Gustavo Dudamel, let us be numinous... I'm now absorbed in a biography by Tricia Tunstall: Changing Lives: Gustavo Dudamel, El Sistema, and the Transformative Power of Music. Jonathan Evens and I also discuss the power of El Sistema and the SBSOV in our book The Secret Chord.

  3. Hope & Social in the Greenbelt Festival Performance Café. As mentioned elsewhere, this band never fails to uplift, inspire and amuse. Having already played their Greenbelt Mainstage slot earlier that day their relaxed and mischievous close to the schedule in the Performance Café was unforgettable, including snatches of songs from Grease (yes, THAT song!), The Proclaimers and the sax riff from Baker Street. My review of Greenbelt 2012 'Mud, Sweat and Tears'.

  4. Emmanuel Jal at the Get the Youth Talking event, Camden. This extraordinary artiste and peace activist needs greater awareness. It was an inspiring event which I wrote up here: Emmanuel Jal - Savvy Peace Soldier...

  5. Hope & Social at ADVENTurous, Union Chapel. A second, well deserved entry for H&S in my top five. Set in a totally different acoustic and audience environment they turned in some faultless moments balanced by typical charm and chaos! My hope is to see them continue and thrive in 2013 and beyond, read more in my post, Rolling Sideways here and check out this video of Let's be Bold filmed on the night.

Music:


  1. Bruce Springsteen - Wrecking Ball. An extraordinary collection of challenging songs with a prophetic voice throughout. Outstanding track Rocky Ground as above.

  2. Hope & Social - All our Dancing Days. Another appearance from this remarkable beat combo... favourite track Let's Be Bold.

  3. Athlete - Live at Union Chapel. Live recording of their repertoire in a stripped down format. Every song sounds great with this treatment, their everygreen 'Wires' edges it with the uplifting 'congregational' singing during the Coda...

  4. Emmanuel Jal – See me Mama. At the event recorded above I purchased an advance copy of this CD, the final edition includes a remix of his We Want Peace song having enlisted an enthusiastic contribution from none other than Daryl 'DMC' McDaniels (of RUN DMC). Great get up and dance grooves, We Want Peace Re-Loaded video here!

Literature (I've read loads again this year, these are some highlights!):

  1. The Thread - Victoria Hislop. Loved The Island, reviewed here, struggled through The Return but found I was completely captivated by The Thread, her latest.

  2. Itch - Simon Mayo. Absolutely brilliant yarn, ticks lots of boxes, reviewed here, very much looking forward to the sequel, due out February 2013, which will be called Itch Rocks...

  3. The Train in the Night - Nick Coleman. His moving memoir revealing the intimate narrative of how he gradually comes to terms with a terrifying and extreme form of tinnitus. Covered in one of my posts about music here.

  4. Mutiny! - Kester Brewin. I confess that Mr Brewin kindly sent me a copy for review of his previous book, Other, a more weighty tome which I've only made about 2/3 of the way through to date and have yet to review. This smaller, self published work I found absolutely fascinating on lots of levels, highly recommended, really gets you thinking. Kester's blog right here...

  5. This Time Next Year - Liz Hinds. Another inspiration for my own literary work this year with my buddy Jonathan Evens. I adored this book (albeit a somewhat girlie story!) told in a journal form with a great writing style. Be prepared for extremes of mirth and pathos! Check out Liz's blog here... 

  6. The Jesus Discovery - Dr A T Bradford. This was a book my good buddy Ishmael gave me back in 2011, written by a colleague of his, that I  finally read this year. This is effectively a study into the missing years in Jesus' life between around 12 years old until he starts his high profile teaching and miracles at 30 years old. Available direct from here.

Most visited blogposts (taken from Google Analytics):
  1. The Art and Christianity Meme - Part One - Artwork 
  2. Make love your goal...
  3. Athlete's Union Chapel Anthems...
  4. Mud, Sweat and Tears - Greenbelt 2012 review...
  5. Making me loud and proud - 1980-f
  6. In Memoriam, Pete King, missed, never forgotten
  7. Wellington Bomber raid October 1941
  8. The end of the C of E as we know it...
  9. Seven Deadly Social Sins...
  10. World War Two aircrew training day one

That about wraps it up! Thanks for your kind comments and all the very best for 2013.

P

2 comments:

joyrowe said...

Saw Hope and Social at the beginning of December at Fibbers in York...great gig and performed some of the brilliant songs from their new album...x

Liz said...

Oh thank you, Peter!

Isn't Wrecking Ball immense? Incredibly political and spiritual and most important, rocking!