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Mary Ann's actual teapot


June 2017

MARY ANN'S TEAPOT

Until ITV dramatised the true story of Mary Ann Cotton in 2016, Lol had been unaware of these events from 150 years earlier, despite having spent seven years at school in the town where much of the story happened, and where his great-grandparents had been living at the time.

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A Zeppelin airship


October 2016

THE KAISER DEMOLISHED OUR GRANDSTAND

November 27th 2016 is the centenary of the bombing of Hartlepool United's Grandstand, so Lol has animated his 2014 song from the 'Bombarded' album in commemoration.

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Harold cops an arrow in the eye


September 2016

1066 AND ALL THAT (literally!)

After performing 'Bill the Quill' about 40 times since Shakespeare's big day in April, Lol knocked up another biographical song for another big anniversary, or rather two anniversaries: the Battle of Stamford Bridge on September 25th 1066, and the Battle of Hastings, almost three weeks later on October 14th. This song's a bit longer than 'Bill the Quill' and would have been longer still if two choruses hadn't been dropped, which at least made the animation a bit easier. Like 'Bill the Quill' you can find 'William the Conqueror'on Youtube.

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Shakespeare image


June 2016

SHAKESPEARE AND ALL THAT

Living in Stratford-upon-Avon, Lol had been aware for ages that the 400th anniversary of the bard's death was coming up. Lol did try putting together a collaboration CD using his various contacts in the area, but the project never got off the ground. However Lol did manage to write one song for the occasion, and has been having another mad time singing it anywhere he could, and the total now stands at 12 venues, plus a live performance on BBC Radio Coventry and Warwickshire, part of which was also shown on TV.

You can download a live version of Bill the Quill (at the Baker's Arms in Broad Campden), as broadcast on Radio Winchcombe.

Or you can view this Youtube video:


The blog has finally been added to the website although it has existed for a long time. Hopefully it will be updated more regularly than it has in the past.



CD cover image




June 2015

'BOMBARDED' IS NOW FREE TO DOWNLOAD

As was always the intention, the album has now been made available to download FREE, as a compressed (.zip) folder comprising all the tracks as mp3 files, plus the album graphics.

After the excitement of 'Bombarded', Lol's been in a bit of a musical lull, punctuated only by the regular monthly folk nights he's been attending for years.

During the winter he finally edited some recordings (made last summer) into a CD, which is another record for posterity of stuff he and his friends have been doing at various times in their lives. Lol subsequently wrote a comic song for some coach drivers he knows (and used the tune of "The Kaiser Demolished Our Grandstand") but that was only a bit of fun, and it was followed a few weeks ago by one about a travelling fair, but he's not actively contemplating another abum. Perhaps come the autumn he may get round to it, but at the moment he's happy going through the musical motions, so to speak.



March 2015

THE 'BOMBARDED' CD is now SOLD OUT

The handful of CDs which remained after the centenary of the Bombardment have now all been sold. The historic Heugh Battery Museum benefitted by more than £600 from the proceeds of the album.

Lol would like to thank everyone who bought the album, either as a CD or a download, and also the many people whose online and word-of-mouth recommendations and kind words were much appreciated, and those in Hartlepool who put a lot of effort into selling more than 200 CD's, one at a time, around the town.

He also wishes to thank several purchasers who paid over the odds in order to make a donation to the museum, and Hartlepool United's fanzine Monkey Business, which also made a donation.

As was always intention, the album has now been made available to download FREE, as a compressed (.zip) folder comprising all the tracks as mp3 files, plus the album graphics.




Bombardment Guard of Honour Image

The Bombardment Commemoration
8:10am on 16th December 2014






December 2014

CENTENARY OF THE BOMBARDMENT OF HARTLEPOOL

Lol was in Hartlepool for the week that culminated on December 16th with the centenary of the German naval bombardment of Hartlepool. The day of events on Hartlepool's Headland was a fitting and moving commemoration of that terrible time.

During the week, besides singing songs from the Bombarded album at the Hartlepool College of Further Education's all-day event Hartlepool Remembered: Legacies of the Bombardment, Lol also sang them at all three of Hartlepool's folk clubs and, on the afternoon of the centenary, at the Heugh Battery Museum. At the end of the week the CD had sold more than 250 copies.



October 2014

THE 'BOMBARDED' CD

BOMBARDED is in aid of, and available from the Heugh Battery Museum, which preserves the historic site that is the focus of four of the songs. It is also available by post and as a download.

The title may say it all to people in Lol's home town, but for the benefit of everyone else, it's a collection of 15 songs about the First World War, of which 14 pertain to County Durham, 13 to Hartlepool and 12 to the German naval bombardment of the town in December 1914.

All the songs are new but one tune has been borrowed from a century ago, and some take the musical styles of the time. Obviously some are serious, but they're by no means all doom and gloom. Some are quite jolly and there are even a few laughs in there too.

More information and purchasing details are on the BOMBARDED album page

Bombarded CD image

Here's a one-minute medley of some of the tracks: BOMBARDED Medley (mp3)

And here's the song that summarises Hartlepool's war: Over By Christmas (mp3)





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