When you watch these two versions of this song.

It looks like a man that has turned into his own father.

James Taylor.

When James Taylor sings Fire and Rain live – I melt a little bit.

The first version is in 1970.

I was 2.

The second version is in 2007.

I was 39.

And I melt a little bit more.

And am reminded of the importance of music.

When I see user comments on YouTube:

Missing my son, since 12-22-2017 I always thought I would see him again.

The Song. 

I just think the song sounds like a beautiful, soothing story.

And it is noted by many people that, in his early years James looked so sad as he sang.

In the later video, there is a half smile.

I hope that means he’s happier.

Go here:



Freddie Mercury died aged 45.

In 1991.

So 27 years ago.

(That’s twenty seven years ago.

Twenty seven.

I know that sounds unbelievable.

Well, it did to me.

That it was such a long time ago.

So I checked and checked again. 

And it’s right. 

24th November. 




Freddie Mercury is, unfortunately, still dead.

But if you were to wander past this studio and, from a half open door, hear Marc Martel singing.

And then take a look at Marc (there’s a resemblance).

And checked out his mannerisms.

And heard him play the piano.

You’d be forgiven for thinking Freddie was back.

Here’s Marc:


Here’s a second and final part of my Mick Hucknall binge.

This funny-faced ginger manc…

(I say that affectionately.

As I’m all three of these things as well).

… is quite a talent.


Talent is best assessed, I think, when exposed.

When raw.

No faff.

No bullshit.

No brand.

No marketing.


So here you are.

Assess away:

(He wrote it too).


Was never so good.

Live Aid.

Where were you on Saturday 13th July 1985?

33 years ago.

I was 17.

Working selling carpets in the Co-op in Derby.

It was my Saturday job.

I got paid £7.

And I was dying to leave early.

To catch Live Aid.

Anyhow, try to look past Paul Hewson’s rubbish boots and dead skunk hair.

And listen to how he holds notes at 3.19 and then up another level at 3.37.

This man can sing.

Go here: 

I was born in Manchester in 1968.

In a small village called Haughton Green.

In Denton.

Someone else that was born there.

8 years before me.

In 1960.

Is Mick Hucknall.

Mick Hucknall.

In his early career.

People that heard his voice before seeing him, apparently, thought he was black.

Saying that so much soul and tone could only come from a black guy.

I get that.

Anyhow, when he was in his mid to late 20’s and I was, I suppose, in my late teens.

I remember reading a magazine interview with him.

And in amongst the copy Mick Hucknall asked (something like),

Who do you know that is as good a singer as me?

That quote was on the cover.

It’s why I bought the magazine.

Because I really liked the confidence.

And because, actually, I agreed with the sentiment.


I think talent should be celebrated.

And I think that showing off, with a wry smile so as not to be too much of an arse, is good.

Life’s short.

If you have something to show off about…

Show off.

Much rather that than your talent remaining unseen.

Or unnoticed.

Here’s Mick.

Singing a song:

Thom Yorke (whom I like) appeared on the Jonathan Ross Show (whom I no longer like) in May 2013.

Thom played a stripped back version of a song he wrote called ‘Ingenue’.


The word ‘Ingenue’ means, ‘an innocent or unsophisticated young woman, especially in a play or film’.

What the actual song means I haven’t a clue.

It is, however, very beautiful.

And here it is:

When the riff is right.

Even a really short eight second riff.

Everything’s right.

You can just play it over and over and over for 6 minutes.

All You Need.

Two middle aged blokes in a park.

With a bit of a backing track.

A great riff.

And two guitars.

That’s all you need.

Have a listen:


How long does real friendship last?

For best friends?

For my friend Pete and his best friend, the answer is – a really long time.

Steely Dan.

My friend Pete’s best friend really liked Steely Dan.

So much so that, earlier this year, Pete took his best friend to a Steely Dan concert.

And that’s where the trouble started.

Not because Pete tried to get his best friend into the concert without a ticket.

(Under the circumstances, that was fine).

The trouble was – security thought Pete’s best friend was drugs.

Pete’s Best Friend

When Pete’s best friend died a couple of years ago, it left a void.

From what I hear, Pete and his best friend were really close.

Both of them lovers of music and – according to Pete – his best friend was that friend who would laugh at things no one but Pete and he would.

And Pete misses him.

That’s why he took his best friend’s ashes to that Steely Dan concert earlier this year.

To sprinkle him.

Not to snort him.

Or smoke him.

(As security thought).


It seems to me that Pete and his best friend have it just right.

Still buggering about and getting into trouble.

Even though one of them is no longer with us.

Well, not in the way that he was.

For Ever.

Security insisted that Pete didn’t leave his best friend at the concert.

As Pete had planned.

Security saw it as, somehow, wrong.

Pete and his best friend had different ideas though.

And so it is that Pete’s best friend.

Because of his best friend.

Rests silently in a field.

With Steely Dan.

For ever.

Here’s a tune (


Here’s a Facebook post.

I popped it out there a couple of days ago.

Having founded and now running Always Wear Red is a weird journey.

The downs are hard.

The zigging and the zagging.

The learning is constant.

The bruising – when things don’t go to plan – can be brutal.

Wanting to be absolute best… designing bravely… wanting to make a real difference… wanting to build relationships with the best makers in the world takes a lot of time and money.

Creating a brand that I love.

And that I want others to love too.

It drains me.

But then.

If you stick at it.

And ask the hard questions.

And do the hard things – well.

The good comes.

And it lifts you.

It lifts you high.

Here is a word-for-word message I just received.

After I’d asked to meet up with this person.

A person whose work I adore.

I wanted to chat about Always Wear Red.

Her message to me just now:

“Yes darling… once I get off “the road”. I’ll make time for myself and go exploring. Loving your designs, BTW. Cheers”

Well, I don’t know that this will mean something to all of you.

But it meant a lot to me.

The message was from Alison Moyet.

It’s just a nice feeling.

That the things I love today, are allowing me to revisit the things I loved when I was younger.

The message for you?

If things get tricky… keep going.

There are lovely things just around the corner.

I don’t know which corner of course.

And neither do you.

But they are there.


Alison Moyet.

Here’s Alison singing ‘Only You’ in 2016.

At The Burberry Show.

If you’ve not seen Alison Moyet for a few years.

You’re in for a surprise.