Ho, ho, ho. Dust off those Santa suits, it’s Christmas-time
Yep, it’s time again for the Mid-Winter Christmas Market, happening tomorrow – Saturday – down at the Historic Village.
And, although I mentioned it a few weeks back, I’d just like to have another quick rave, because of all the events I went to in town last year I don’t think any of them touched me quite like the Mid-Winter Christmas Market.
To see the village looking so beautiful, draped in fairy lights, and to see children and adults standing in the square under a snow machine with sheer joy in their eyes was a thing of true beauty. Can you really appreciate mulled wine until you drink it outside on a cold night with snow falling? It was terrific (and that’s not even mentioning the carollers and balloons and bands and Christmas stories…)
Beats the real thing
Having grown up through more than a few northern winters, I can confirm that this was quite possibly even better than the real thing. Because from what I remember of the real thing it’s generally raining and you have to slog along pavements pushing through piles of soggy leaves and you’re always cold and when you wake up half the time the pipes have frozen and there’s not even cold water to make a cup of tea.
So I’m hoping for good weather on Saturday. It’s a punt in the middle of winter but the outlook is reassuring. Things kick off at 11.00am and run through till nine o’clock, $10 for adults, $25 for a family. Do pop down and imbue your lives with a bit of festive cheer.
Because we need a little cheer. It seems that every time I hear the news these days another musician has died. Most recently it was Jon Lord, keyboard player for Deep Purple. I can’t believe he was 71. That just seems absurd. I can’t really imagine Deep Purple as elderly. Jazz guys can be old and blues musicians, and even country singers, but Deep Purple?
And, talking of country singers, the great Kitty Wells passed away at the grand age of 92. She’d been touring until five years ago. It was Kitty who opened the doors for all women country singers, Loretta Lynn on. She was the first woman to have a number one country hit, “It Wasn’t God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels”, in 1952.
Meanwhile another sprightly fellow in his seventies confirmed this week that he’ll be releasing a new album in a couple of months.
On September 11 Bob Dylan puts out his 35th studio recording. Bob, like Jon Lord, is 71 and it’s hard not to note that since turning 60 he seems to have been in overdrive as far as creativity goes.
When the new album, Tempest, comes out it will be 11 years to the day since the release of ‘Love and Theft’ and in that time it’s quite astonishing how much Dylan has got through. Allow me to supply a quick list…
Three more studio albums, the last of which – Together Through Life - became his first album to top both the UK and US charts; 50 hour-long radio broadcasts of Bob’s Theme Time Radio; a best selling memoir, Chronicles Vol 1, which topped the NY Times bestseller list; art exhibitions in galleries throughout the world; and a Best Song Oscar for “Things Have Changed” from the Wonderboys soundtrack.
Not a bad little catalogue of achievements for a decade, even more impressive if you throw in the fact that he’s also played over a hundred gigs every year.
So, for the Dylan fans out there here’s something about the new album: it’s got 10 songs on it, including a 14-minute tune about the Titanic which at one point actually refers to a specific scene from James Cameron’s movie. There’s also a tribute to John Lennon called “Roll on John”, which quotes lines from multiple Beatles songs, including “Come together right now” from “Come Together” and “I heard the news today, oh boy” from “A Day in the Life”.
It sounds pretty weird to me. You just can’t tell with old folk these days.