Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Apt Ad Men Poem..

MAD MEN Season2 (the best drama series on television) finished on RTE1 last night and to-night I stumbled across a poem on the times website about Ad Men. Here it is:

Attack on the Ad-Man

This trumpeter of nothingness, employed
To keep our reason dull and null and void,
This man of wind and froth and flux will sell
The wares of any who reward him well.
Praising whatever he is paid to praise,
He hunts for ever-newer, smarter ways
To make the gilt seem gold; the shoddy silk;
To cheat us legally; to bluff and bilk
By methods which no jury can prevent
Because the law’s not broken, only bent.

This mind for hire, this mental prostitute
Can tell the half-lie hardest to refute;
Knows how to hide an inconvenient fact
And when to leave a doubtful claim unbacked;
Manipulates the truth but not too much,
And, if his patter needs the Human Touch,
Skilfully artless, artfully naïve,
Wears his convenient heart upon his sleeve.

He uses words that once were strong and fine,
Primal as sun and moon and bread and wine,
True, honourable, honoured, clear and clean,
And leaves them shabby, worn, diminished, mean.
He takes ideas and trains them to engage
In the long little wars big combines wage.
He keeps his logic loose, his feelings flimsy;
Turns eloquence to cant and wit to whimsy;
Trims language till it fits his client’s pattern
And style’s a glossy tart or limping slattern.

He studies our defences, finds the cracks
And, where the wall is weak or warn, attacks.
He finds the fear that’s deep, the wound that’s tender,
And, mastered, outmanoeuvred, we surrender.
We who have tried to choose accept his choice
And tired succumb to his untiring voice.
The dripping tap makes even granite soften.
We trust the brand-name we have heard so often
And join the queue of sheep that flock to buy:
We fools who know our folly, you and I.

A. S. J. TESSIMOND (1962)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

A Nice Pear...

I have been giving the new Bulmers (Magners in the U.K) Pear Cider a try to-night.

It's a pretty tasty drink but I'd be hard pressed to knock back a lot of them as it's a bit too sweet for my taste buds; but I'll try can 4 and see how it goes.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

So Take Heed, Take Heed Of The Western Wind...

Liamy MacNally, one of my Dylan fellow-travellers, wrote a piece about the recent Dylan visit to these shores in his column for The Mayo News awhile back.

You can read it HERE.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Underneath The Sky Of Blue...

One of the earliest Dylan albums that I remember hearing was NEW MORNING. It's considered a pretty minor work in the Dylan catalogue but I love it. It contains some great songs and I still think it stands up to-day.

I recently bought the new re-mastered cd version of it and played it in my car coming into work this evening. It sounded fantastic and the weather was glorious.

Every song is on youtube. Here's the title track:

Trailer for Whatever Works...

The upcoming new Woody Allen film starring Larry David:

End Times For The Newspaper by The Daily Show...

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
End Times
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Political HumorJason Jones in Iran

Surely Not! (I'm just surprised that the NEW YORK TIMES let Jason Jones in).

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Morning Ireland Goes Visual & Nightly News With Vincent Browne Beats Prime Time...

The ratings-topping current affairs show Morning Ireland (on RTE Radio One) has recently employed a web cam to allow listeners to become viewers. Whilst I foolishly dismissed this idea as unnecessary and thought it would add nothing to the show I have to admit I was wrong. The visuals have enhanced the listening experience and it is now the only way we catch the show at home. [The only downside is that it takes up more of your time].

It can be watched every weekday morning HERE.

On the subject of current affairs, albeit on a different medium, a different outlet and at the far end of the day, the TV3 show NIGHTLY NEWS WITH VINCENT BROWNE has improved greatly this year (Monday - Thursday:11pm). I find it far more interesting, fresher and, yes, more entertaining than its richer and stale elder brother PRIME TIME on RTE1. Recent example HERE.

So there you are: a radio show that is better with visuals; and TV3 has made an excellent programme. Its good to have your preconceptions shook up once in a while!

Friday, June 19, 2009

The Felice Brothers Return...

Whilst listening to the depressing news of another imminent Lisbon Treaty Referendum Re-Run RavishingRickRude texted that The Felice Brothers are returning to Dublin on Sunday 18OCT09. Needless to say, I hope to make it.

Full details of their European tour is available on their myspace website.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Leonard Cohen Night...

This Friday night (19JUN09) BBC4 are showing a series of programmes about everyone's favourite Canadian. Should be worth a look.

Full schedule HERE.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Some Nick Lowe Songs...

All Men Are Liars:

"do you remember Rick Astley..."

This is his song about a half man/half boy:

Raglan Road by Patrick Kavanagh...

Whilst listening to the Clearance Sale show from Theme Time Radio Hour the DJ played Raglan Road by Van Morrison & The Chieftans.

This poem has been a favourite of mine even though I'm not a big poetry appreciator. It was made into a song, set to the tune of "Dawning Of The Day" but I don't think that makes it better than simply reading it off the page.

Anyway, here it is sung by Mark Knopfler (use of the Van version has been forbidden by Mr. Morrison's people):

Click HERE to read it.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Yet Another New QPR Manager

Can't say I'm excited. This from the BBC website:

"Queens Park Rangers have appointed former Ipswich boss Jim Magilton as their new manager.

The 40-year-old former Northern Ireland international, who left Portman Road in April, has signed a two-year deal at Loftus Road.

He told the club's website: "I'm really looking to the challenge of managing this great football club.

"The board are highly ambitious but they are very realistic, I have huge ambitions to achieve though."

Magilton took Ipswich to 14th in the Championship table in his first season and eighth last term but was sacked in April after failing to secure a play-off spot.

The Tractor Boys finished the season in ninth place and 12 points off the play-off zone and Magilton was soon replaced by Roy Keane.

QPR took 11th spot in the Championship this season, five points behind Magilton's former club.

Magilton added: "Our aim is to keep progressing, year after year.

"There is a very strong group of players and with one or two additions we can expect to drastically improve on the 11th place finish secured last season."

Magilton will be the Flavio Briatore-led board's fifth manager since they took over in August 2007 (with two caretakers: Mick Harford and Gareth Ainsworth) and QPR's seventh in three-and-a-half years.

Under Briatore, John Gregory was sacked, Luigi De Canio left for personal reasons, Iain Dowie was sacked and Paulo Sousa had his contract terminated in April.

Rangers chairman Briatore said: "We had an incredibly high number of applicants, but Jim was the stand-out candidate for the role.

"We (the board) sat down with him on four separate occasions to discuss our goals and ambitions and he has really impressed myself, co-owners Bernie Ecclestone and Lakshmi Mittal and vice-chairman Amit Bhatia with his knowledge, understanding and passion for football."

Magilton's assistant manager is expected to be appointed in the next few weeks."

People are already wondering how long he will last!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Cowen or Brown...

Who goes first? Too close to call!

I Think I Just Heard The Album Of The Year...

...and it's The Liberty Of Norton Folgate by MADNESS:

It's a concept album and the concept is dear ol' London town. There's no filler; every track is enjoyable; and the pièce de résistance is the title track. It is like a ten minute Brechtian piece.

There's still 6 months left but it'll take some beating.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009


Click HERE for Dylan-centric related music.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Ronnie Wood, 62 To-day...

Happy Birthday, wherever you are...