Archive for the 'Life’s Lyrics' Category

The Candidates of Oz

NS May 4th, 2010

My daughter has been really into The Wizard of Oz lately. I’ve been into the UK election. So I thought, why not combine the two? And so I present:

The Candidates of Oz

Cast

Dorothy – Me

The Wizard – British Voters

The Tin Man – David Cameron

The Scarecrow – Gordon Brown

The Lion – Nick Clegg

__________________________________________

First up, the hollow-chested one :

When a man’s a plummy Tory
There’s more there to the story
And Cameron plays the part
He shouldn’t be assumin’
That we think he’s at all human
He doesn’t have a heart
He’d be tough, he’d be “fair”
And slash the budget bare
For the poor and art
He’d ban Islamic veil
And be the darling of the Mail
He doesn’t have a heart
Picture Dave, a modern slave
To the toffs and richest men
Equality for you and me
Stuffed in the nearest bin
Just imagine the commotion
That he’d set into motion
And tear us all apart
I’d rather leave here in a coffin
Than be governed by that boffin
Long live bleeding hearts

______________________________________________

Next, the one whose head is stuffed with straw:

Brown had countless hours
To convince us of his power
But it just felt all too tame
While his frown was busy twitching
We were busy bitching
If he only had a brain

When we all have lost our jobs
And are fed up with the yobs
We’re keen to share the pain
What was Labour thinking
When they thought we had no inkling
If they only had a brain

Oh, I can tell you why
They’ll do poorly at the polls
I could list a hundred things
You’ve heard before
But it’s clear, I do fear
That we’ll rake Brown o’er the coals

It may not have been too late
But then came Bigotgate
In which he showed disdain
I think Brown’s a decent guy
But there’s been a lot of lies
Oh, he doesn’t have a brain

____________________________________________

And finally, the one who needs some courage:

Yeah, it’s sad, believe me Mister
When you’re not a known A-lister
And no one takes your coat
Oh, I could be the PM
With my mantra ‘carpe diem’
If I only had the votes

I’m afraid there’s no denyin’
The other two are lyin’
Which none of you deserve
I’m as brave as a lion
You won’t see me cryin’
Your interests I would serve

I’d be different, this I know
Because the other parties blow
On the public I would dote
I could be your anti-Tory
Give the Lib-Dems all the glory
If I only had the votes

_______________________________________________

Photo credit

I read it in the Daily Mail

NS March 28th, 2010

This video had made my weekend. Many thanks to Heather for sending me the link. The woman knows me well.

Hush little baby, don’t you cry

NS February 21st, 2010

…mama’s gonna sing you a lullaby.

Or is she?

A recent survey found that although 40% of parents thought lullabies were great tools for teaching children words and music, only 12% knew the words. More and more, parents are singing pop and rock songs to their children, or TV theme tunes. And there’s nothing wrong with that, of course. When I sing The Noble Baby to sleep, I’m known to throw in some Carol King (‘Child of Mine’), Joni Mitchell (‘The Circle Game’ and ‘River’), Aerosmith (‘Dream On’) and even some Rolling Stones (‘Wild Horses’), among others.

But I have to say, I am a huge fan of traditional lullabies. I think they’re not only beautiful and comforting but an important part of our oral storytelling history. My mother sang or played them for me and my sisters all throughout our childhoods, as did her mother before her. I know the words to at least a dozen still popular in the US and have learned many more while here in England. I have been singing ‘Twinkle Twinkle Little Star’ to my daughter every night since she was a baby and as soon as I turn out the light and begin, she automatically settles down onto her pillow and nods sleepily while I half-whisper the words. My 17-month-old son, always on my hip at bedtime, imitates her and rests his head on my shoulder. He’s learning quickly that lullaby time means sleep time.

What I didn’t know, however, is that there are three more verses to ‘Twinkle Twinkle’! And did you know that Little Bo Peep has five? Already we have lost big parts of these songs and what little remains is fading fast, which makes me quite sad. That’s why when I heard about this fantastic campaign to Save The Lullaby, I was immediately interested. And when I discovered that Sophie Barker (who has sung for Zero 7, one of my favourite bands and whose song ‘In The Waiting Line’ I listened to constantly when pregnant with TNC) was behind the campaign and has released a new CD with producer KK (who has worked with Brian Eno and Bjork), I went from interested to excited.

I listened to a couple clips from their new CD, entitled ‘Lullaby’, and was mesmerized, as were my children. TNC curled up in my lap and sat in silence for a good ten minutes, which is unheard of. The CD* has been in my player all morning, on repeat, and I’ve not grown tired of it at all. It also comes with a beautifully illustrated hardcover booklet with lyrics to all the songs so you can sing along.

You can also see Sophie and KK on BBC News talking about the project and playing another piece live.

“The album, ‘Lullaby’, makes a stand for our forgotten bedtime tunes,” says Sophie, “ it reminds parents of the magic and soothing quality of our traditional lullabies – we’ve even included a sing-a-long lyric book for those who are more likely to know the Friends theme tune than Frere Jacques.”

The full song list includes:

1. Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

2. Somewhere Over The Rainbow

3. Ride a Cock Horse

4. Lavender’s Blue

5. Frere Jacques

6. There was a Crooked Man

7. Sing a Song of Sixpence

8. Little Bo Peep

9. Baa Baa Black Sheep

10. Little Miss Muffet

11. Brahms Lullaby

12. Oranges And Lemons

13. Hush Little Baby

14. Rock a Bye Baby

15. Dream a Little Dream

16. The Owl and the Pussycat

17. Row Your Boat

18. Silent Night

If any of you are interested and depending on the response shown here, there may be an opportunity for me to interview Sophie (squeeee!) so if you have any questions you’d like me to ask her about the CD, put them in comments or you can email them to me at noblesavage @ noblesavage(dot)me(dot)uk.

‘Lullaby’ can be bought from Sophie’s site or the usual suspects like Amazon and Play.

*Full disclosure — it was sent to me by the album’s PR company, though I fell in love with it immediately so would have bought it regardless!

Photo credit

Women’s Aid charity single

NS November 25th, 2009

TakeMyHandHome

I’ve never done any PR on this site before, mainly because I’ve never received a request that I could really get behind. I don’t want to help people sell more of whatever stuff they’re peddling unless it’s something I genuinely find extra-special or if it’s for a cause I believe in. I don’t even bother replying to ones wanting me to promote this or that DVD or pair of shoes or children’s clothing line. So it was with great pleasure when I read an email asking me to help promote a charity single for Women’s Aid, to celebrate 35 years of the fantastic work they do, and released today, on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, which I wrote about yesterday.

Please, take a moment to read more about how you can help Women’s Aid raise some much-needed funds by simply downloading their new charity single on iTunes, for only 79p. I’ve never asked anything monetary of my readers before (and it’s not something I plan on doing very often), but I would be so pleased if I could help such a vital organisation, particularly in light of what happened to me last weekend and the much worse things that  happen to women all over the UK and all over the world, every day.

Thank you.

Women’s Aid release charity single Take My Hand

On Wednesday 25th November 2009, national charity Women’s Aid is celebrating 35 years of working to end violence against women and children by releasing their first charity single, ‘Take My Hand’.

The song has been written especially for the charity to help them raise vital funds to support abused women and children.

The single, which is being released to mark the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, is sung by 13 year old classical singer Olivia Aaron, with Natasha Benjamin, a real-life survivor of domestic violence.

The song is based on the 2nd movement of Beethoven’s Piano Sonata No. 8, ‘Sonata Pathétique’ and its lyrics are an expression of the emotions experienced by children and young people affected by domestic abuse.

Women’s Aid Chief Executive, Nicola Harwin CBE, said:

“Take My Hand has been written especially for Women’s Aid and reflects the words of families that have survived abuse. The song reflects hope for a future free from violence and we hope it will reach out to those affected by domestic violence as well as the wider public. We want to raise awareness of the support available and raise vital funds so that we can continue to provide these services.”

Domestic violence affects 1 in 4 women at some point in their lifetime and recent statistics[1] from the Women’s Aid Annual Survey show that last year an estimated 18,000 women and 20,000 children lived in refuge accommodation in Women’s Aid’s national network of services.

The launch of Take My Hand on the 25th November marks the beginning of Women’s Aid’s activities to mark the ’16 days of Action’, where the charity will ask the public to help them take action against violence against women and children. For more information on the ‘16 Days of Action’, go to www.womensaid.org.uk from the 15th November.

To buy Take My Hand for 79p, please go to www.womensaid.org.uk/takemyhand

Natasha’s story:

‘I was only with my boyfriend for three weeks when he started to become verbally aggressive. The first time he got aggressive I thought I must have said something that upset him and he went mad. He started throwing things at the walls, even a wine glass that had red wine in it. As I left the room he continued to throw things after me and a glass plate just missed my face.

The first time I did try to get help I was told to leave him, but it was not that easy. When it happened again I told no one, firstly from sheer embarrassment, and later from fear.

One night I woke up with his foot on my face and my boyfriend saying he was going to stamp on me. I had to sleep in contact lenses as it was a common occurrence for him to wake me up with demands or threats. I was so afraid of not being able to see when the assaults took place as I might not be able to get away.

I experienced a severe form of domestic violence that also included a range of abuse, from controlling where I was and what I did, to pulling my hair, to eventually strangulation. My daughter witnessed the abuse and we were both very frightened of what would happen. I was only with him for six months where he nearly killed me.

I stayed in a Women’s Aid refuge which provided us with safety and which gave us the support we needed to rebuild our

lives. I am singing on ‘Take My Hand’ to not only raise vital funds for Women’s Aid but also to provide a message of hope to women and children currently living with violence in the home – thanks to support services provided by Women’s Aid there is hope for a safe future free from fear.’

Maybe tomorrow, the good lord will take you away

NS October 6th, 2009

cd_aerosmith_greatest_hits

While driving in the car the other day, I put in a classic rock mixed cd that I made a few years ago and skipped forward to the third track — “Dream On” by Aerosmith, circa 1973 (song and lyrics here).

As I belted out the lyrics and slapped my palms on the steering wheel in time to the riffs, rocking out in a big way, I realised that the children had been silent for a couple minutes. Knowing that silence is very rarely a good thing, I sat up a little higher in my seat and strained to get a glimpse of TNC in my rearview mirror. She had a face like thunder and was looking very cross indeed. I turned the music down a notch and asked her very breezily, “What’s wrong, muffin?”

“Stop singing, Mummy! You can’t sing.”

“Oh yes, I can. I’m a wonderful singer!”

“No! You’re not. No more singing.”

“What, you mean like this? (cue more crazed rocking out)

“Noooooo! Stop it this minute, Mummy.”

…sing for the laughter, sing for the tear. Sing with me, if it’s just for today…

“Aaagggh! Stop, Mummy, stop! This song is not for Mummies, it’s for children.”

“It’s for children, is it?”

“Yes. Children and babies.”

“Honey, this song was recorded before you or I were even alive, but at least I grew up listening to it. This is called Classic Rock and it is the greatest music in the whole, wide world. And this particular song is…”

“No! Be quiet! Only for children and babies, I said! Not mummies or daddies. You can’t sing it, only I can.”

“Go on then, let’s hear it. I’ll be thrilled if  you know the words to Steven Tyler’s masterpiece from Aerosmith’s debut album, before all of the scarf and mic stand-tossing, big hair, and videos where the camera goes inside his  mouth, which is just creepy, frankly.”

stony silence from the backseat

“That’s what I thought. Now, up next is ‘Big Yellow Taxi’ by Joni Mitchell. You’re going to love that one. Mummy will be singing in a very high voice and then doing a funny little laugh at the end. Prepare yourself, ’cause I ain’t dialin’ it down for no one, including you, Little Miss.”

She didn’t speak again until we arrived at our destination. Which was kind of nice, you know?

Still, I’m not sure if I’m instilling a love of this music into her, or if I’m driving her straight into the arms of emo pop, or whatever the hell kind of music kids listen to now (I’m not even stuck on my generation’s music, but on that of my parents’ — what hope is there for me keeping up with the new crap coming out these days)?

No, I will always love my classic rock and sing it very loudly in the car and the kids will just have to start wearing earplugs and perhaps masks so their friends don’t recognise them when they get older and I’m gyrating wildly to “Paint It Black” at a red light, frothing slightly at the mouth.

This is a fun bit of parenting, I have to say. I like it.

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