Sunday, June 28, 2009

Bergman Strasse Festival

It started on Friday and finished today. Held in Kreuzberg it's a pretty lively event .There were four stages . Two for music and two for theatre and dance .With so much on offer and good weather , the place was packed .Food was fabulous and so varied it made choosing difficult . The collage is to give you an idea . Here , not only do you see you see a gypsy style jazz group and nose flute band but Phil Bates of ELO fame . This year he brought his daughter Rosie and she sang a couple of songs accompanied by her father . It was a nice touch which all enjoyed. Phil Bates is a fabulous musician with a great personality . Seems he is playing at the Potsdam Festival the weekend of my birthday so what a present that will be ! As usual , due to the impressive architecture ,there were those with had a real birds eye view. Finally this tiny video would have been longer but ,having lost sight of a friend I quit filming due to panic ! Where were they ? Right behind me .
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Sunday, June 21, 2009

Summer Solstice In Berlin

The longest day was fun and here you see BVFL taking it easy in the city waiting for a drink to be served.
I'll add a collage of images then tomorrow do my best to create a movie for YouTube re the Iranian protest held today. As you'll note the placards , symbolism and photographs speak for themselves . It was an ordered demonstration minus violence . I had hoped to spend the early hours up on Teufelsberg and watch the sun rise on this magical mystical day then enjoy a solstice breakfast. However the best solstice breakie requires a very special spoon but this was 'stuck in a drawer' . Later whilst cycling down the Heerstrasse I met my physiotherapist . He and his wife had been to a Solstice breakfast at the television tower . They had to be there for 4am and it cost forty euro per head .As he said , worth it for a once in year event , but still feel my T Berg notion had the edge .
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Friday, June 19, 2009

All Things Bright and ----?

This little collage shows some of the rather unusual things I've seen in the last twenty four hours . The young man is a phenomenal drum player with' Otto Hamborg Viertakter.' At last nights gig he was wearing this spectacular TShirt [a present from a fellow drummer in US ] I loved the message . Next ,-- how about the orchids .These were spotted at Innsbrucker Platz today at a florist's shop by the SBahn . I found their beauty simply breathtaking . The two shots of fish were taken in my favourite food shop, Rogacki , Wilmersdorfer Strasse . Bottom left is a Sea Devil and behind a really red fish poking it's tongue out ! Top right I just couldn't resist .Hardly the Eye of the Tiger though.Then finally a box depicting a camcorder . Yes at last I've done it . This is my brand new Toshiba Gigashot 80 GB model .It arrived today . Off now to fathom it out and hope all works . YouTube here I come .
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Thursday, June 18, 2009

Fete de la Musique Berlin.

If you really want a great time and music is your thing ,then why not try Berlin this weekend where each year the Fete de la Musique marks the beginning of summer.
Throughout the city are 60 stages all staging a variety of music ( FREE ) .
You name it , you'll find it , every single genre ! Make any iPod freak go wild .
Berlin's Fête de la Musique celebrates the beginning of summer with an amazing variety of live concerts on around 60 stages throughout the city. All music genres are well represented, including world music and jazz, and just in case you missed it , all performances are free.
During the day you can have a terrific time and then at night off to the nightclubs where more performances continue until the early hours .
After that ,what better way to welcome summer yet again , than with an early morning dip at one of the many open air pools .... or ,if a recovery 'sleep in' is called for , no probs as the baths stay open even later at night in Summer .
Have fun ----------

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Its Been Fourteen Days and Hours Galore

It's been fourteen days and hours galore, since I last posted here . Fourteen days of news following [that slug Blair having emerged again to play Saint Stir It---yuk]. However even with this and on top of the usual work items , routine chores plus appointments I've managed some pretty interesting times.Last weekend there was the Savigny Platz 2nd Jazz Festival where very mixed weather proved acceptable as the groups were terrific . Then Tuesday the 9th , off to Bristol for an appointment the following day in Cheltenham . Easy Jet proved remarkably good . Just a pity that Schönefeld Airport is such a terrible place . As usual I had the great fortune to meet some wonderful people .Back late in Berlin on the evening of the 10th I had a friend to stay. We managed to pack in stork watching at Malchow , a trip to the Theatre to see the Mel Brooks musical 'The Producers' and, yesterday ,the 47th Deutsch-Französiches Volksfest. [This gets better and better for me as more wild rides are added.] Last night there were fireworks as well. So, if you are to be in Berlin this month or July ,I can recommend the latter three . Note too that the weekend of June 28th is Bergman Strasse Jazz Festival . On this note , I'll close and leave you with these few pictures plus videos ..

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Pictures From The Jazz Marathon .

Some are absolutely fabulous . Yes ,I mean the NIGHTCROWD BLUESBAND .
My camera could not do justice to their music and as you'll see I had problems enough due to the sun . So go to their site . It's well worth it and you can hear some of their great sound .

Pictures of a few of the groups I saw .. Jazz is rather like literature ,it has very many varieties . Some fair , some middling , some ------ [see the top collage ]

This guy is a regular in as much as he plays his guitar in the streets of Brussels. To sit and watch him was a joy . Fortunately as there was no amplification the little cam picked it up reasonably ..

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

A Taste Of Brussels

For me , May ended and June began in Brussels . A city which never ceases to amaze. The Jazz Marathon 2009 began on Friday the 29th May and offered a wide range of music at various venues and , all free. As ever, tops for myself and countless others were the Nightcrowd Blues Band .Pictures to follow in another post .
Whilst still 'recovering' from a great time here are two items to give you a taste of Brussels . For believe me when it comes to food and drink the Belgians know a thing or two .As for the little video made in the souvenir area , kitsch but I couldn't resist. Who knows maybe it will get some of you planning for 2010.