The Year of Living Quietly

An annual tradition is starting to happen. The ‘looking back on the year’ articles in newspapers, on websites and blogs such as this. Which is what has started me writing, sat here in Liverpool early on this Saturday. With Elizabeth Alker on Radio 3 playing me into the morning as she so often has, this …

All Things Are Quite Silent: Anna Lapwood

It begins with a low hum, no words and a whooshing sound like a wind from somewhere, through leaves in a forest perhaps. Before the choirs fully enter for an hour of music that has charmed my whole day, since Elizabeth Alker played some of it on the early Saturday morning programme that’s always one …

Since the Late Days of March

Since the late days of March to this early OctoberWe have sat here, you and I listening to Elizabeth Alker, on Saturday mornings,Play her Saturday sounds, the known and unknown.And even once sending her the rain on our polytunnel,That sound of the lockdown, one Saturday morning.Elizabeth Alker playing some Erland Cooper,Vivaldi, Anna Meredith and so …

The Sounds That Heaven Makes: Music to Write By

Making up playlists while listening to BBC Radio 3. For nearly all of my days I’ve loved music, virtually all music. Vast amounts of it have defined whole periods of my life. After the obvious Beatles days of growing up there was Joni Mitchell’s ‘Blue to Héjira’ period, succeeded by David Bowie’s ‘Berlin Trilogy’ then …

Home Life During a Pandemic

16th May – Week 8 Mozart is playing here and I’ll just let him while I get the writing going. The eighth week of these, and I was about to write the word ‘already’ but is it? It’s been a long slow time in most ways, this gap between how life was and whenever all …

Home Life During a Pandemic

2nd May – Week 6 Sarah’s not here with me this morning as I begin the writing of this sixth lockdown letter from home. And that’s because even though it’s a Saturday she’s at a funeral, and will be at another tomorrow, another on Monday, and on they go. Busier than she’s ever been, along …