Sunday, 18 December 2011

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

The reasons why Parent Bloggers are cooler than Rock Stars

Last month the NME published their '2011 Cool List', the list of the 50 coolest "Rock Stars" on the planet right now.  You can read all about it here - NME Cool list 2011

Without doubt everyone featured is pretty cool but I often wonder who NME use as a benchmark to compare these cool Rock Stars with.  With no spokesperson available for comment (to be honest, I didn't even ask!), I decided I would take it upon myself to find this 'control' group.  The first group I could think of was, unsurprisingly, Parent Bloggers.

Parent Bloggers and Rock Stars are actually more similar than we think - we are both role models for a younger generation, neither of us gets much sleep and we both know how to partay! I wasn't there but the recent Tots 100 Christmas party sounded a lot livelier than an NME Awards do I once went to!

But when all is said and done, who really is the coolest? Well, ladies and gentleman, today we are going to find out.

Using NME's 'Ten Commandments of Cool', the criteria that accompanied the Cool List, I am going to put a case across for each as to why Parent Bloggers are potentially cooler than Rock Stars and then use a simple scoring system to find a winner.

Please be warned that there are some 'Parental Advisory' words relating to Jools Holland and multi-storey car parks (not at the same time though) that NME provided in their 'commandments'. Anyway, here goes :

1. WEAR THE UNWEARABLE If you carry off a look that a mere civilian would be attacked in the street for rocking, you is da shiz.

The case for Parent Bloggers - parents are renowned for wearing more than just clothes in the street - it's usually made up of snot, our baby's breakfast etc. Oh and at least we dress ourselves and don't let our record company do it for us - that is NOT cool.

Parent Bloggers 1 Rock Stars 0

2. TERRORISE THE MAINSTREAM There's nothing cooler than making Jools Holland shit himself.

The case for Parent Bloggers - okay, Rock Stars, who is going to clean the mess up? Not bloody us matey! However, we will probably have some spare nappies on us to help Jools out in his hour of need, and that's pretty cool.

Parent Bloggers 2 Rock Stars 0

3. CULTIVATE THE MEDIA The less we know about you, the more we want to orally pleasure you in multi-storey car parks.

The case for Parent Bloggers - there was obviously a typo in this commandment as NME had spelt aural wrong but...sorry, hang on a minute. What's that? (sorry my PR advisor needs to tell me something).

Really?!! In a multi-storey car park?!! That's very unhygienic with all of those exhaust fumes and everything! Do you know if they're referring to an NCP? You can't confirm. Okay.

Well erm...what's so cool about that anyway?!!

Parent Bloggers 3 Rock Stars 0

4. BE COMFORTABLE WITH 'COOL' The cool don't have to say they're cool. They KNOW they're cool. Knowing you're NOT cool is not cool.

The case for Parent Bloggers - Oh COME ON, have you ever seen the way we act at kids' parties and dance at Wedding receptions?!

Parent Bloggers 4 Rock Stars 0

5. HAVE PHYSICS-DEFYING HAIR Cool used to be about how little you could see through your fringe; now it's about how much Cochrane you've got in your curl.

The case for Parent Bloggers - How do we know what our hair looks like anyway - we never have time to look in the mirror?!

Parent bloggers 5 Rock Stars 0

6. BEEF UP THE BEEFS Nothing says 'fuck you, Media Training Advisor!' more than slagging off other acts in print with nary a care for who your dressing room is pitched next to at festivals.

The case for Parent Bloggers - we're lovers not fighters, that's much cooler.

Parent bloggers 6 Rock Stars 0

7. TURN THAT FROWN UPSIDE DOWN 'Closure' is back, and cheering up is the new moping about like a twat.

The case for Parent Bloggers - Hmmm, I haven't seen much evidence from Rock Stars of them fulfilling this commandment recently, to be honest.  Parent Bloggers, on the other hand, are a happy go lucky bunch even when we look and feel like zombies.

Parent bloggers 7 Rock Stars 0

8. COMEBACK WITH CONFIDENCE Every Tom, Dick and Dodgy is reforming, so give us every ounce of nostalgia with nobs on.

The case for Parent Bloggers - yeah right, you'll 'Comeback with confidence' if the money is right, eh?!  I, and many other bloggers before me, never have, and probably never will, earn a penny from blogging (I have won a Trunkisaurus, yes, but that was in a competition. There's no law against Rock Stars entering competitions y'know?!) We do this cause with love it! Where's your passion?! Where are you?! Let's be having you?!!! Sorry, erm...went a bit 'Delia Smith' on you there! Anyway, I think I've made my point (and won us another one - yes!!!)

Parent bloggers 8 Rock Stars 0

9. INNOVATE Credibility comes wrapped in fresh ideas as naturally as Odd Future records come wrapped in parental warning stickers.

The case for Parent Bloggers - even I have innovated in my time as a Blogger and written blog posts that don't just focus on music, like this one - 'AKA...Two Honeymooners and a baby vs two American cops and a yellow fluffy duck'  Status Quo, on the other hand, still only use three chords.

Parent bloggers 9 Rock Stars 0

10. JUST 'HAVE IT' Sorry Dalston Superstars: some people are descended from a strata of our species known as Homo Bossasfookus.

I'll let the Rock Stars have this one as a consolation as, to be honest, I feel a bit sorry for them and their underperformance.  Beaten by Parent Bloggers - ha ha! Who'd have thought it?!!

FINAL SCORE : Parent bloggers 9 Rock Stars 1

So, there you have it, it's official - Parent Bloggers are without doubt cooler. 

Right then, all together now - "9-1 to the parent blogs, 9-1 to the parent blogs, 9-1..."

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Mix-Tape Monday #7 : A Song That Means Something Special

When I first met my wife, this song was the ringtone on her phone. 

It therefore always reminds me of her.  That's why it means something special to me.

To join in, click on the Mix-Tape Monday badge over there to the right.  Down a bit. Nearly there. That's the one.

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

My favourite Christmas song - re-released with Mix-Tape Monday #8 Bonus Track

This blog post has been re-released as part of Boo and Me's Mix-Tape Monday #8. I like to see it as a bonus track but it's probably more of a 'Lazy Git remix'. To join in with Mix-Tape Monday, please click on the badge on the right hand side of this blog.

This was the original blog post :

I was meant to be going to see The Vaccines - one of my favourite bands at the moment - tonight.  However, I'm feeling a bit under the weather so had to give it a miss.  I'm a bit gutted so, as the perfect antidote, I thought I'd do a festive meme and get into the Christmas spirit instead.

It was the beautiful man @SAHDandproud who tagged me in this cheeky little festive meme and it is called 'My favourite Christmas song'.

There were loads of candidates but I've added a further challenge into the mix in that I want to choose a song that I think @SAHDandproud will like.  He explained on his blog that he 'loathes (the usual) Christmas songs' and his choice of song was instead a Christmas Carol, the video of which he appeared in and, by the sounds of it, Cilla Black isn't allowing to be published on You Tube because he yawns in it!

But, do you know what, I think I might have cracked it?! Actually, on second thoughts, if he doesn't like Tim Minchin then I probably haven't.

Recently, the Australian comedian released an excellent Christmas song called 'White Wine in the Sun'.  It's the perfect balance of his brilliant comedy genius with the sentimentality of Christmas.  It never fails to turn on musodad's waterworks I can tell you.  Being a father of two young girls, this is the verse that always gets to me :

'And you, my baby girl
My jetlagged infant daughter
You'll be handed round the room
Like a puppy at a primary school
And you won't understand
But you will learn someday
That wherever you are and whatever you face
These are the people who'll make you feel safe in this world...'

It's those last four lines that do it.

Again I'd like to thank @SAHDandproud for tagging me and I hope I have made him reappraise his views on Christmas Songs.  As always with memes, to keep the dream alive, it's time to tag some more people :

@infantisaurus01 as he's the only dad blogger I know who will be doing the same as Tim this Christmas (the lucky old so and so)

@belfast_dad and @The_Last_Slayer as they've both got great tastes in music and I'm intrigued as to what they'll choose

@Ghostwritermumm as I want to see if one of She & Him's Christmas songs has made it to the top of her list

@marchharetales as I used to sit next to her on the school coach 18 years ago and I've since forgotten what her Christmas song tastes are like (and I don't think she's been tagged in a meme yet so it's about time she was 'initiated into the cult')

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Mix-Tape Monday #5 : The first song I bought

"Poor old Johnny Raaayyyyyyyyyy!"

I purchased the 7-inch single of this song, with my pocket money, from WH Smith when I was seven years old.

The song has followed me around ever since - being played in night clubs, the Student Union bar, Weddings etc. - and it always has a habit of bringing people together in a large group hug before they all jump up and down in a frantic manner in time to the music.

I loved it when I was 7 and, nearly 30 years later, I still do...

To join in, click on Boo and Me's 'Mix-Tape Monday' badge over to the right hand side of this blog and down a bit...

Friday, 2 December 2011

'Daddy's Beard' - the debut single by Groovy Conker

Today O. wrote a song for me totally unprompted.  I was very touched, not just because she wrote me a song, but because of the lyrical content as well.  She is only 4 years old and it is brilliant.  If she keeps going like this, my dream of retiring at the age of 50 could well become reality.

I have decided to therefore pencil in a release date of March 2023 for this debut single (please put it in your diaries now) - 2 years short of my 50th birthday.  O. will be 16 by this time (which I believe is old enough for pop stardom considering you can enter X-Factor and it was also the age Britney Spears signed her first record deal - and it did her no harm did it?!) and this will therefore give her a couple of years to build up a fanbase by touring extensively (and therefore not seeing any of her friends) and I can live off the royalties for years to come after that.

Oh and, of course, the song will be released under the moniker 'Groovy Conker'.  If you want to read about the background to this name, you can do so here - musodad's band name game

Anyway, without further ado here is the song.  Please do not attempt to plagiarise it, this blog post is dated so you won't win in a Court of Law (but we could maybe come to some kind of out of court agreement).

If you hadn't already guessed, the song is called 'Daddy's Beard' (I'd just like to point out that I don't actually have a beard but please don't split hairs, she is only 4 for crying out loud!).  Anyway, here goes :

"Daddy, you are nicer than an ice cream sundae.
You have a hairy beard.
I love you more than a lovely princess".

So there it is - told you it was great, didn't I?  I'm going to lay down some Early Learning Centre keyboard over the top of it this weekend and probably add a ukulele solo or two. 

If there are any A&R people reading, please either leave your details in the comments box below or contact me via Twitter - @musodad

I look forward to hearing from you...

Fiction Fridays #4 : Cinderella's Bum

Like most 4 year olds (I hope anyway!), O's three favourite words at the moment are poo, wee and bum.  It is therefore no surprise that 'Cinderella's Bum' by Nicholas Allan (also responsible for the excellent 'The Queen's Knickers') is one of her favourite books at the moment.  It's very funny - I guarantee you will love it too!

The opening line is : "My big sister's always worried about her bum.  But I think it is lovely!"

Want to join in?  Click on the badge below and let @homedad tell you how...


Monday, 28 November 2011

'The Yuletide 24' 2011 - the complete list of musodad's favourite songs of the year

So, 'The Yuletide 24' is now complete.  For those of you wondering what this is, it was a list of my favourite 24 songs in 2011.  I decided to collate it as a personal tribute to the great man John Peel and his annual 'Festive 50' and I've really enjoyed putting it together, listening to loads of great music along the way.  If you'd like to read my blog post tribute to John Peel, you can do so here - Introducing 'The Yuletide 24' - it's like a rubbish version of John Peel's 'Festive 50'

For those of you who use Spotify, you can now listen to the full playlist here - The Yuletide 24 - 2011 For those of you who don't, below is the list, in reverse order.  Please imagine that 'The Wizard' by Paul Hardcastle is playing in your head to give it a 'Top of the Pops' atmos :

24 - 'Writing's on the wall' by Plan B
23 - 'I want the world to stop' by Belle & Sebastian
22 - 'Still Life' by The Horrors
21 - 'A Heavy Abacus' by The Joy Formidable
20 - 'Lions in cages' by Wolf Gang
19 - 'Live those days tonight' by Friendly Fires
18 - 'Don't sit down 'cause I've moved your chair' by Arctic Monkeys
17 - 'The City' by Patrick Wolf
16 - 'L.I.F.E.G.O.E.S.O.N.' by Noah and the Whale
15 - 'Honey all Over' by Gruff Rhys
14 - 'Pumped up Kicks' by Foster the People
13 - 'Sappho' by Tribes
12 - 'You are a Tourist' by Death Cab for Cutie
11 - 'AKA...What a Life!' by Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds
10 - 'The Words that Maketh Murder' by PJ Harvey
9 - 'Lippy Kids' by Elbow
8 - 'Good for Nothing' by Hard-Fi
7 - 'Give up the Ghost' by Radiohead
6 - 'Two kinds of Happiness' by The Strokes
5 - 'Walking Far From Home' by Iron & Wine
4 - 'Video Games' by Lana Del Rey
3 - 'If you Wanna' by The Vaccines
2 - 'How it ended' by The Drums
1 - 'Lights Out, Words Gone' by Bombay Bicycle Club

So, what do you think? Agree / disagree?  Any songs I’ve missed?

Well, now it’s over to you – other than any comments on the above, it would be great if you could let me know your 2 favourite songs of the year so we can build a ‘Top of the mums and pops’ (TOTMAP) 2011 playlist together.  As I mentioned in my John Peel tribute post, you don’t have to be a mum or a dad to submit songs, I just liked the name and it stuck.  Either comment here or send them to me on Twitter - @musodad

You've got until the 31st December and then I'll publish the Spotify playlist in the new year.  It doesn't matter if your 2 songs are in the above list or have been featured on a previous playlist.  Oh and it won't be limited to 24 songs (if I actually get 24 songs in total, I'll be a very happy man!)

Finally, once one door closes, another opens.  ‘The Yuletide 24’ 2011 playlist may now be complete but it’s time to start another.  This is going to be called (drum roll, please) ‘24 Bands that should have been bigger’.

This playlist is all about bands who are no longer with us, and it’s a bloody shame that they’re not.  These are bands who might have enjoyed moderate success, but never the success they deserved, for example, they never headlined Glastonbury but they should have.  These are bands who split up too early and who we would love to have back (you never know, some might still be touring tiny pubs somewhere, we just don’t know about it).

I’m going to try and make this interactive as well, so if you have any suggestions, please use the hashtag #bandsthatshouldhavebeenbigger and an example of the band / artist they should have been as big as.  To give you an example (and for thanking you for being one of the first people to read this blog post) I am going to tell you that tomorrow’s Song of the day is ‘Great Things’ by Echobelly.  An excellent band who I wish were still around and really should have been as big as Blondie.

You can also subscribe to / follow the Spotify playlist here - 24 Bands that should have been bigger

Thanks for reading.

Mix-Tape Monday #4 : A song from the best gig I have ever been to

As soon as I saw the theme for Boo and Me's Mix-Tape Monday this week it was always going to be between two of the most recent gigs I have been to - Elbow and the Arctic Monkeys.

Elbow are terrific live, I've never seen anything like the interaction Guy Garvey has with the audience before. I saw them first about 10 years ago and I don't think he spoke once - when I saw them earlier on this year though, he wouldn't stop!  I have to admit, on that particular night, it caused me to develop a bit of a man crush on him.  I even tweeted him after the gig to tell him (and again while I was watching them on telly at Glasters).  He never replied - deep down I like to think it's because his feelings were mutual and he just couldn't handle it.  He therefore had to cut me out of his life forever...

Arctic Monkeys are also amazing live.  I'm going to sound like my dad now but "they sound just like they do on record".  Also their energy live is second to none, they lack the interaction of Elbow, and I'm not too keen on Alex Turner's new haircut, but I've never been blown away like that at a gig before.  It is for that reason, and not because Guy broke my heart, that I am going to pick them over Elbow.

Now, which song to pick - they have so many great ones.  The obvious choice would be 'I bet that you look good on the dancefloor', other classics are of course 'The View from the afternoon', 'Brianstorm' and 'Mardy Bum'.  However, I am going to stick with what has been my favourite song of theirs since day one - 'When the sun goes down' - when played live, this is a belter!

To take part, click on Boo and Me's Mix-Tape Monday meme - it's over to the right and down a bit.

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

"O. darling, there ain't no appeasing you" AKA 'Two Honeymooners and a baby vs two American cops and a yellow fluffy duck'

For today's blog post I'm going to take you back to March 2008 - the date my wife, our eldest daughter O. (then 11 months old) and I went on our Honeymoon.
We had decided to do something a bit different for this. Rather than spending 3 weeks on a beach somewhere hot, we booked to travel by car from Las Vegas to San Francisco. One of the influencing factors was because we thought it would have been unfair on O. to be in the soaring heat of a tropical beach destination. It was a great decision and without doubt the best 3 weeks of our lives - we saw the Grand Canyon, we drove through Death Valley, stopping off at Ghost Towns along the way, stayed in Yosemite National Park (our favourite place on Earth) and drank wine in Napa Valley before finishing up in the amazing San Francisco.
O. had a great time too and charmed the Americans no end and they made a huge fuss of her back.
Actually, I say she had a good time but we did get off to a bit of a shaky start and the whole Honeymoon could have turned out a whole lot differently...
We landed at Las Vegas airport in the late afternoon and once we'd got through customs headed to pick up the hire car. We'd also requested a car seat for O. cause we didn't want to lug ours halfway around the World. Unfortunately it was perhaps the worst car seat known to man - uncomfortable looking, threadbare in places and bloody hard to fit. We asked for help and were met with "sorry that will invalidate your insurance". He agreed to help eventually, his conscious, and our jetlagged mannerisms, probably got the better of him.
On leaving the car hire place, the heat of the afternoon sun finally hit us and O. started freaking out! To her it was about 10pm, so way past her bedtime, and instead it was bright sunshine.  She must have wondered what the hell was going on!
She was inconsolable, we'd never seen her like this and on top of that we were lost - we'd only just left the car hire place as well! We saw the sanctuary of a retail park so pulled in there. When we pulled in we were grateful to see a nice friendly looking Policeman stood by his car so I approached him, local map in hand.
"DO NOT APPROACH A POLICE OFFICER,SIR!!!", he shouted, with his hand on his gun. Gulp!
"Sorry, erm...hi. We've just flown in from England, please can you tell us where Las Vegas Boulevard is please", my voice resembled Joe Pasquale as if he’d just been hit in the nether regions (also note the double use of the word 'please').
"Sure, turn left out of here and take the first right.  Have a nice day!" he added cheerfully.
We made it to the hotel shortly afterwards. The first thing I did was change my underpants.
However, it wasn't to be our only brush with the law on our Honeymoon.
On leaving Vegas, en route to Death Valley, O. Woke up from a deep sleep and again threw a strop, I think it was the uncomfortable car seat that was mostly to blame. We decided to pull over and let her have a cruise around (she wasn't quite walking at this stage).
There wasn't a soul for miles as we walked her up and down the side of the road but suddenly a police car appeared out of nowhere.
The cop pulled over, got out and asked me "what's your business here, Sir?"
"Oh, hi officer" I replied "we're here on Honeymoon. My daughter was a bit upset so we pulled over to let her have a wander around".
"Please follow me, Sir" - he walked around to the front of our car. "Did you see a sign back there?" he asked. "Yes”, I replied “but my daughter was so upset I didn't get a chance to read it properly".
"Sir" he continued "you are on the boundary of a restricted military zone" (double gulp, more clean underpants required). "Okay" I replied, my voice wavering, this time resembling a 12 year old boy going through the ‘changes’.
"Sir, (I was going to tell him at this stage that he had probably overused the word ‘sir’ but I decided to keep quiet) if you had been 2 miles further down the road, I would've had to have taken you 'in' (triple gulp - should’ve worn one of O's nappies!). The nearest jail is 60 miles from here. Could I have your passports please. You can now re-join your wife and child".
The next few minutes are a bit of a blank, I can’t remember what I said to my wife, what she said back, all I remember was that the cop sat in his car looking like he was doing something important, then came back over to us.  “If you'd like to follow me in your car past the sign then I will give you your passports back to you” he said.  Phew!
We followed him in our car and stopped behind his.  He got out, went into his boot and pulled something yellow and fluffy out of it. "Here are your passports and here is something for the little one" he said. He gave a yellow fluffy duck to O. "Have a safe journey".  And he was gone…
I can't remember for the life of me where that duck is now. Maybe we binned it as it triggered issues in my tummy region every time I saw it - the memories of that encounter coming flooding back.
I really wish I'd taken a photo of the sign but we decided not to, we didn't even look back just in case - I'd probably be in a Louis Theroux jail documentary now rather than writing this.
It was the last run in we were to have with the US Police Force while we were there. We nearly got attacked by a coyote in Yosemite National Park later on in the Honeymoon, and had to be rescued by a nice German lady called Claudia, but that's another story...

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Mix-Tape Monday #3 : When you've got that lovin' feelin'

Last week I chose the penultimate song that was played at our Wedding Reception. 
This week my Mix-Tape Monday choice is the final song that was played at our Wedding Reception.
It’s the ultimate love song that brings back some very happy memories…

Click on Boo and Me's Mix-Tape Monday meme over on the right hand side of this blog to get involved.

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Friday, 18 November 2011

Double A-Sided blog post - 'Fiction Fridays' / 'Music as Therapy'

This is a Double A-Sided meme blog post featuring 'Fiction Fridays' and 'Music as Therapy'.
Side A1 will feature a favourite book of mine that I read my kids and Side A2 is something that I've been meme-ing to do for ages (“ha ha! Did you see that?! He said 'meme-ing' instead of ‘meaning’ because they are both memes! This guy is brilliant!" "Thanks mum").
Before we get to the main event though ("get on with it!" "sorry, dad"), in true muso style, I'd firstly like to talk about 'Double A-Sides' as frankly it's not a term you hear much nowadays is it?!
And what were they all about anyway?! If there are any Music Execs reading (I very much doubt it!), I'd love to know.
Was it because each song wasn't strong enough to stand up on its own so it needed a back up? Was it to get more radio airtime - potentially on different stations if the songs were different styles? Was it because the Record Company was so indecisive that they thought ‘Sod it - let’s put them both out!’?
I would love to have been at a Record Company meeting years ago where someone piped up with "do you know what? I think we should make this a double A-sided single". Everyone probably nodded in agreement without questioning it (apart from Norman, the most junior member of staff present). "But why?" asked Norman, "Erm...'cause I said so. Now where’s my tea?!"
Right, I'm going to Google it and find out!
Oh, erm…”The practice was introduced by The Beatles (who are they when they’re at home?! ‘Fly by nights’!) in 1965 for their single ‘Day Tripper’ which appeared on the same single as ‘We can work it out’".
Okay, fair enough. I love The Beatles and they were ‘fairly’ successful but tell me ‘Wikipedia’, why did they do this?
“That’s a very good question, Simon” (blimey, ‘Wikipedia’ has turned into Nina from ‘Nina and the Neurons!’) “Well, occasionally double A-sided singles are released with each side targeting a different market – for example, Dolly Parton released double A-sides where one song was targeted to pop radio and the other side to country”.
Thanks Wikipedia.  I did sort of imply that above, don’t you read my blog? “No, I don’t. I think it’s rubbish”.
Okay, fair enough.  Right, moving swiftly on…
Side A1 - 'Fiction Fridays : The Magic Faraway Tree’
My choice for this week is ‘The Magic Faraway Tree’.  I never really knew about this series of books when I was little.  I was more into Enid Blyton’s ‘Castle of Adventure’ and ‘Secret Seven’ books instead so when my wife purchased this for O. I thought ‘great’ as it was completely new to me as well.
O. is really getting into older kids’ books now. We currently also have ‘Mary Poppins’, the first ‘Harry Potter’ and ‘The Folk of the Faraway Tree’ on the go at the moment but this is probably her favourite.
Even though the founders of Google state that the company name came about from a misspelling of googol, I like to think that it is really because they were read this when they were younger and were familiar with the ‘Google buns’ in it.

Anyway the opening paragraph (sorry @homedad, I’m breaking the rules here!) is - "Once upon a time there were three children, Joe, Beth and Frannie. They lived with their mother and father in a little cottage deep in the country. They had to help their parents both in the house and in the garden, as there was lots to do”.
Please note that musodad has never used this opening paragraph as an example to his children that they should help his wife and him out more around the home. Okay, I admit, I did do it once but Moon-Face made me.

Side A2 – ‘Music as Therapy’
As I mentioned earlier, ‘Music as Therapy’ is also a meme. I was tagged in this meme by the rather wonderful @SAHDandproud (cheers fella) and I’ve been really excited about doing it for weeks (24 days in fact – it’s been in my Twitter favourites for that long), I just haven’t had time.  But, here it is, finally!
‘Music as Therapy’ was originally thought up by @mammywoo. One evening, once her child was in bed, she ‘plugged herself into her music library and chose three songs that she had recently heard and enjoyed and felt touched by and copied down the lyrics that spoke to her’.
She tagged a number of bloggers in the post and it eventually got to me.  This was the brief to the other bloggers :
Pick 3 beautiful songs, 3 different bands and 3 sets of lyrics that touch you in any way you want to show.
Here are my 3 choices :
1.              “God Only Knows” by The Beach Boys
This was our first dance song at our Wedding so it is obviously very dear to my heart.
I think the lyric ‘God only knows what I’d be without you’ says it all really.
Here’s the song on You Tube :

2.              “We all need love” by Tim Burgess
I first moved in with my wife in April 2003. Two days after we moved in together, due to a pre-planned holiday with my friends, I buggered off and left her alone in our new flat and went travelling around Scotland for a week in a camper van! I look back now and wonder what the hell I was thinking but, after almost 9 years, I think she has nearly forgiven me…
Anyway, we played the album ‘I Believe’ by Tim Burgess loads on that holiday and as we were making the long trip back to London on the last night the lyrics “I need to spend some time with you, my love” really hit home as I was missing her so much.
3 years later I returned to Scotland, with my wife this time, and asked her to marry me next to a waterfall near Loch Lomond. Thankfully she said “yes”. Great memories.
The song isn’t on You Tube but here’s a Spotify link if you use it and want to have a listen :
3.              “Wilder” by The Boo Radleys
I love the Boo Radleys, they are one of my favourite bands of all time and I can really relate to a lot of their lyrics.  The lyric I’ve chosen though is from this song. 
Sometimes it's all about the simple things in life and as long as you’ve got your family and friends, why should anything else matter?
The lyric I have chosen, which never fails to make my spine tingle, is “If I were much wiser, maybe I would realise that it’s not where you are, it’s who you’re with”.  Beautiful.
Here’s the song on You Tube :

So, that’s it.  Hope you enjoyed reading my Double A-Sided blog post as much as I enjoyed writing it.  To end though, I am going to tag 5 people - 2 dad bloggers, 2 mum bloggers and 1 soon-to-be music blogger who I know will like the ‘Music as Therapy’ meme and hopefully blog about their 3 songs.  Oh, and while you’re at it, give @homedad’s ‘Fiction Fridays’ a bash as well – details are here : Fiction Fridays
I am tagging :
2 dad bloggers – @himupnorth and @infantisaurus01
2 mum bloggers – @lisajarmin and @stressymummy 
The soon-to-be music blogger - @stevenswift

Monday, 14 November 2011

Mix-Tape Monday #2 : A Guilty Pleasure

Do you know what? I love 'Guilty Pleasures' music!

It's a music genre that unites so many people no matter what you're into. Evidence of this has to be the regular Club Nights at Koko in Camden. We've only been there once post kids but pre-kids we went quite a bit. It's one of those clubs that as soon as it opens at 10pm the whole place is dancing until 3am - punching the air to Bon Jovi, having a boogie whilst watching 3 beer bellied topless blokes dressed as angels grooving to Bucks Fizz on stage and singing along to a special guest doing karaoke (we've seen Terry Hall and Charlotte Church play there previously). It is amazing!

So, when Boo and Me said this week's music subject, for the second of her Mix-Tape Mondays, was going to be this, you can imagine I got pretty excited!

I have to admit though, it's been difficult to choose a song as there are so many candidates.

In true X-Factor judge style though - "I've made my decision" - and this is based on two reasons (and neither of them is because the song reflects the state of my marriage!) :

1) this was the penultimate song played at our Wedding Reception so it brings back happy memories of all our family and friends having a great time on the dancefloor. At the end of the song everyone formed a circle and my wife and I were in the middle singing our hearts out to each other - what an amazing day!

2) it reminds me of my late Nan. A few years ago she gave me all of her old vinyl records and one of them was the album "Musn't Grumble" by this duo. It will go wherever I go (I mean when we move house - I don't carry it with me at all times or anything) until I pass it on to one of my daughters / grandchildren in years to come and so on and so on...

So, there you have it - are you ready?! All together now - "Oh darlin'! There ain't no pleasing you..."

Friday, 11 November 2011

Fiction Fridays : Santa is coming to Manchester

@homedad has come up with a cracking idea called 'Fiction Fridays'. It's all about the favourite books we read our kids. You can learn more about it and join in here - Fiction Fridays

My choice for this week is 'Santa is coming to Manchester'.  We bought this book for O. at the Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI) on our recent trip to Manchester. It's been a regular bedtime story choice since and I'm sure it'll get even more popular in the run up to Christmas. It's also a great memory of a fantastic day out.

The opening line is - "Well?" boomed Santa. "Have all the children from Manchester been good this year?"

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Mix-Tape Monday #1: A Song That Makes You Want To Get Up And Dance

The excellent Boo and Me has come up with a great idea of compiling a Mix-Tape Monday where other bloggers provide their favourite songs based either on a theme @BooAndMe_ has provided or just a song they bloody love.  I found out about this via the equally brilliant SAHDandproud - the dad blogger answer to Bill Hicks.  Loving music as much as I do I accepted the challenge straight away.  The first theme is 'A Song That Makes You Want To Get Up And Dance'. 

I am an Essex boy.  In the early 90s we used to go to an indie night at Hollywoods night club in Romford every Monday.  This is one of the songs I remember from that era that never failed to make me dance - and yes, we used to dance exactly like they do in the video!!  Even now it makes me want to get up and boogie.

Just one question though - what's with the ostriches?!!

To join in click on the meme on the right hand side of the blog.

Friday, 4 November 2011

Nick Cave and The Bad Parents - what not to do in the Peak District with two young children

WORLD EXCLUSIVE – “musodad in blogging about something other than music shocker!”  You can see the front pages of the newspapers tomorrow already, can’t you?! (Or maybe page 54, hidden within the classified section).
So why the change in direction? Well, in true music industry style, sometimes you need to diversify or get left behind.  As much as I love them, if Oasis (“oh bloody hell – I didn’t think he was going to talk about music!”) had experimented a bit more, they might still be around today.  It’s good to keep things fresh and keep on moving – a bit like The Littlest Hobo.
So anyway, here is my first non-music related blog post (*takes deep breath*), which incidentally has a few music references in it anyway!
Last Friday, my wife and I took our kids (aged 4 and 11 months) down a cave in the Peak District.  You’ve probably guessed by now that the cave wasn’t called ‘Nick’, it was in fact called ‘Speedwell’. 'The Bad Parents' are my wife and I. 
My wife and I had been down a couple of the caves there on previous visits (pre-kids) but had never experienced Speedwell – the one with the boat – as the queues are usually massive.  Today though we were in luck - we were first in the queue!
Just before we went in, spirits were high and we were beaming at the thought of ‘going underground’ (by The Jam).  O. was a little scared but our excitement soon rubbed off on her.
An hour later, on breathing the fresh Derbyshire air again, our thoughts had turned from ‘this is going to be brilliant’ to ‘what the hell were we thinking?!!’
Now, I don’t know if you’ve been down Speedwell Cavern but when you first go in you have to descend 106 steps – ‘easy peasy’ we thought.  However, when the ceiling is as low as it was, it’s bloody difficult to negotiate with two kids!  While I held O’s hand, my wife carried C.  All the adults were given hard hats but the kids weren’t and poor C. had no protection from the unlevel, sharp rock sticking out of the ceiling (Bad Parenting example 1).
Once we had descended the stairs we came to the boat – it held about 20 people.  We were still in a positive mood at this point, looking forward to seeing some cavernous erm…caverns with stalactites of all shapes and sizes.  Just to let you know – these were a bit rubbish! 
The tour guide sat at the front of the boat and literally had to push us down the river using the cave ceiling and walls to help the boat along.  Again there was a lot of head ducking to be done. 
At this point C. was getting restless so we plied her with rice cakes, and then a rice cake dropped on the floor of the boat – nooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!  Then, she wanted to stand up but she wasn’t wearing shoes (Bad Parenting example 2) so her socks got all soggy!  It was horrendous – and there was no escape!  The tour guide then told us the boat trip would last about an hour – nooooooooooooooooooooooooo! (again).
Eventually, after about 20 minutes, we made it to the other end of the river where we got out and the people who were already there stole our boat and we had to wait for the next one.  As the boat was a bit wobbly on disembarking, I handed O. to the tour guide and he put her down on safe ground.  I then handed him C. and he tried to stand her up without support on unlevel cavernous ground! (Bad Parenting example 3 – don’t ever hand your 11 month old to a tour guide with no kids!)  Luckily I got there just in time to catch her!
Anyway, we stayed at the ‘not as impressive as other caverns I have visited’ cavernous bit for another 20 minutes, were shown about 6 really tiny stalactites and a flat (!) stalagmite – and then it was time to get back in the boat and go back.  And for some reason (the tour guide did explain why but I can’t remember cause my head was so numb!) it was bloody freezing on the way back!
We made it back to the stairs eventually and then had to walk back up them all until we finally made it back to street level and breathed a sigh of relief.  FREEDOM!!!!!!!
Would I recommend it?  Of course - it's an experience you're not going to get in many places, just please leave any kids under the age of 4 in the world above (accompanied by someone, of course).
So there you have it, my first non-music related post.  Hope you enjoyed it.  If you think I should stick to music, then please don't hesitate to let me know.

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Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Introducing ‘musodad’s Yuletide 24’ playlist – it’s like a rubbish version of ‘John Peel’s Festive 50’

This blog post is dedicated to one of my all time music heroes – John Peel.  John died seven years ago today and this day (quoting the blog Keeping it Peel) is ‘designated for bloggers, tweeters and facebookers, who tuned in to Radio 1 every night to hear John Peel’s dulcet tones…on this day – October 25th – we commemorate and celebrate the memory of one of the most influential DJ’s who ever was.  How we do that is by posting on Facebook or writing a blog, or tweeting a link (using the hashtag #keepingitpeel’).  I’ve already done the latter today so here is my blog post tribute to John.
I was about 14 years old when I discovered John Peel.  At the time I was listening to such bands as Then Jerico and the Thrashing Doves (yep, I can’t really remember them either!)  As I tweeted earlier, if it wasn’t for John, I’d probably still be listening to these kind of bands!
It was my older brother who introduced me to him, he was 4 years older so was slightly ‘cooler’ than I was.  At that time he was listening to such bands as The Smiths, New Order and The Fall.  I used to hear ‘True Faith’ pumping from his stereo so I turned ‘Big Area’ up louder – our mum was probably the first person to ever experience a New Order / Then Jerico Megamix.  Thankfully it didn’t last long.
I sometimes think that musical taste is a bit like beer.  When you’re young you hate the taste of beer / the sound of good music but as your tastebuds  / ears mature, you start to realise that it makes you feel bloody good!
So, I eventually gave in and started taking a keen interest in what my brother / John Peel were playing – I remember listening to ‘The Man Whose Head Expanded’ by The Fall for the first time, it was weird but brilliant.  I then started listening to John Peel on a regular basis in my bedroom at night.  Recording shows when my parents told me to go to sleep and then sneakily listening sometimes when they didn’t realise I was still awake. 
One of my fondest memories of the time, however, was ‘John Peel’s Festive 50’ – the rundown of John’s listeners’ favourite songs from that year.  I’ve just looked back at an archive (c/o - Festive 50 Archive) of some of the artists I discovered over that period, because of John, and they bring back so many happy memories – from the 1989 - 1991 'Festive 50' archive : Ride, Sonic Youth, Happy Mondays, The Wedding Present, Teenage Fanclub, The Lemonheads, The Boo Radleys, Ned’s Atomic Dustbin, Lush, The Charlatans, Dinosaur Jr, The Pixies, The Inspiral Carpets, Slowdive, Chapterhouse, James, Cud, The Stone Roses, The Telescopes, The Senseless Things and The Family Cat.  I could go on but I think that’s enough now.
So, as you can see, he’s had a massive influence on me over my lifetime and he’s still influencing me to this very day. 
I would now like to introduce my next playlist to you that will start when my current one ’24 Sub-two minute Wonders’ finishes next week.  I wanted this to be similar to the ‘Festive 50’ to truly pay homage to the great man.
My first task was to come up with a name so I typed ‘festive’ into an online Thesaurus to see what it threw back at me.  If you are already familiar with my blog / playlists, you will know that I believe the optimum number of songs to put on a playlist is 24 (if you can be bothered to find out why, you can read about it here – What is the optimum number of songs to put on a playlist?).  So, as well as finding a word similar to ‘festive’, I also needed something that would sound catchy with the number 24.  I have therefore decided to call my next playlist ‘musodad’s Yuletide 24’ and it will showcase my 24 favourite songs of 2011.  ‘What’s that?!’ I hear you cry, ‘didn’t John’s listeners pick the songs by voting for their Top 3 songs of the year and then John collated them into the ‘Festive 50’?’  Yep, you’re right, however, I think, on average, only about 15 people read my blog after each post.  If only 10% of those respond I won’t even have two people voting!  Therefore, first of all I am going to reveal my 24 favourite songs of the year but, if you keep reading, you’ll soon see how you can get involved.
Anyway, before I do that, here is the smallprint for the ‘Yuletide 24’:
-          Each song will either have been released as a single in 2011 or appeared on an album released in 2011
-          Songs from Greatest Hits compilations, unless they are brand new this year, or songs from re-issued albums will not be permitted (how strict, am I?!)
-          Only one song allowed per artist
-          No song that has appeared on a previous musodad playlist may be considered.  The following excellent songs, which were all released this year, will therefore not be included in the ‘Yuletide 24’ and there are some corkers here : ‘Cruel’ by St. Vincent, ‘Money’ by The Drums, ‘Buy Nothing Day’ by The Go! Team, ‘Fake Blood’ by Squarehead, ‘Brittle Heart’ by Brett Anderson and ‘Jesus Fever’ by Kurt Vile.  If you want to listen to the first ‘musodad playlist’ you can do so here - The musodad playlist
-          The songs need to be on Spotify

In addition to this, and sort of mentioned above, I’d like to announce something very exciting – Ladies and Gentleman, it’s time to get interactive!!
For my next blog post I am going to let you know how you can get involved in voting for / talking about your songs of the year.  Yep, shortly I am going to launch the ‘TOTMAP award for Song of the Year’.   TOTMAP stands for ‘Top of the Mums and Pops’ (can you see what I’ve done there?!) and it’s a chance for all bloggers to help build a 24 song Spotify playlist with me (if you don’t have Spotify, let me know your songs and I will see if they are on there.  If they’re not, you get to choose again) – working in the same way as voting for ‘John Peel’s Festive 50’ did.
By the way, I’d just like to add that this isn’t solely open to Parent Bloggers – the reason the award mentions mum and dads is because a majority, if not all, of my readers are parents.  If you’re not a parent though, please don’t let this stop you getting involved – it is open to music lovers from all life stages.  
Anyway, like I said, that’s for next time, for now I’d like to end this blog post by thanking John Peel for making me the ‘music anorak’ I am today – you will be sorely missed by a lot of people for years and years to come.  Without you I wouldn’t just be listening to Then Jerico now, but I’d probably be writing a blog about them as well, and I very much doubt any of you would be reading this…

Monday, 24 October 2011

Listography - musodad's Top 5 Christmas Toys of all time

Kate G's latest Listography - see the Kate Takes 5 blog - is all about the challenge at Christmas in finding toys that won't be discarded after 5 minutes of receiving them and never played with again.

She has asked all Parent Bloggers to provide their top five Christmas toys of all time and from this she will compile The Ultimate Top 10.  Never again will a dud present be bought - my dad and I still talk about the time I was bought an American Football game called 'Superbowl' and it truly was rubbish.  Those days are thankfully numbered.

So, without further ado, here is my list of Top Five Christmas toys of all time :

1.      ‘Crossbows and Catapults’

For every dud like ‘Superbowl’ there was a classic and, in the 80’s, this was ‘Crossbows and Catapults’.  I still believed in ‘you know who’ (no, not Lord Voldemort, the one with the beard.  No, not Hagrid – the one with the white beard.  No, not Dumbledore – for goodness sake – FATHER CHRISTMAS!) at the time and I had asked him for this for Christmas.  It got to Christmas Eve and – unbeknownst to me - my parents still hadn’t managed to find it as it was sold out everywhere.  My dad still talks about the panic of not getting me something I really wanted in case I stopped believing.  Luckily at about 4pm, at the now defunct Toy Kingdom in Brentwood, Essex (my hometown – you’d see how ‘TOWIE’ I was if you ever met me!) he found one and a little boy woke up very happy the next morning.  I think it’s still around so if you have kids aged 5-10 (or 36), get it, I guarantee they will love it!

2.      Vtech First Steps Baby Walker

This was O’s main present for her first Christmas – she was 9 months old - and C has recently inherited it.  I know it’s an obvious choice but every household with babies in ‘cruise mode’ should have one of these.  It even has a 5 note piano on it and I have so far perfected the start of both ‘Row Row Row your boat’ and ‘Happy Birthday’ to play to the kids.  For my next song I’m going to learn something more challenging – maybe ‘Supermassive Black Hole’ by Muse.  

3.      Tomy 2074 Forget Me Not Photo Album

These are brilliant.  We got ours from Amazon.  If you haven’t seen them, you put photos of you and your relatives in it and you all record a message for your child.  When the page is turned the recorded message is read out by the person in the picture – genius!

By the way, the picture below is not of my wife and one of my children, it came with the photo album.  Also, if you end up buying it, before you call Trading Standards, please be aware that at no point do love hearts fly out of it.

4.      Doodle On! - Christmas Doodles Book

Now, this one might be a bit controversial but I am going to justify why I have included it.  Before I go on, this is probably more suited to pre-Christmas than on the day – ‘but why?’ I hear you cry.  Well, it includes lists such as ‘what you are going to buy other people for Christmas’ or ‘what you want for Christmas yourself’.  So, what’s the point in this, surely it’s immediately out of date as soon as Christmas comes?  Yes, but firstly, O. uses it throughout the year to doodle in. Secondly, in the run up to this Christmas she will use it again to get very excited about the big day (I’d estimate she’s only doodled in about half the book). Thirdly, Kate G’s brief for this Listography stated that her biggest challenge is ‘finding toys that won’t be discarded to the scrap heap in the playroom to sit unloved for at least a year until my next pre-Christmas clear out’ (you can tell I work in advertising can’t you?! It is drummed into us daily that we should always answer / refer back to the brief in our recommendation!) – there is no way this book can be part of that clear out, it is all about the excitement of pre-Christmas and throughout that period and if it doesn’t get used much this year, come November / December 2012 I promise it will be used extensively.  This book lives and breathes Christmas, in fact, this book IS Christmas.  I rest my case.

5.      Magnetic words

I wasn’t going to take part in a Listography without a shameless plug for the new game I have recently invented – ‘musodad’s band name game’.  Without magnetic words this game wouldn’t be possible.  I’d just like to add that I don’t receive any commission from magnetic words companies for pushing this product and I don’t own a magnetic word production factory so will never make any money out of my game, however, if you fancy playing it then you need them, end of story.  Of course, it doesn’t end there, they are also good for reading, grammar, spelling etc but these are, of course, secondary to my game.  For the rules to ‘musodad’s band name game’ please go here - musodad's band name game  . Please do let me know what band names you and the kids come up with on Christmas Day.  Below are some of ours.

So, here endeth my Top 5. Join in by popping over to Kate’s blog – Kate Takes 5 – and adding your own.  Let’s get those magnetic words to No. 1!   

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Saturday, 22 October 2011

What's in a band name? Find yours with 'musodad's band name game'

I used to be in a band called Pre-historic Wife (stop sniggering at the back, please!)  As rubbish band names go, this was the lowest of the low. 
Not sure how many of you remember The Garbage Pail Kids (it would have been the late 80s) – they were cards you got with bubble gum and there were loads of grotesque characters to collect (it was a piss take of the Cabbage Patch Kids).  Anyway, one of the characters was a Pre-historic husband called ‘Hairy Gary’ and he had a wife called erm…I’m not actually sure but she was his ‘Pre-historic Wife’ and that is where we got the name from.  The name Pre-historic Husband had too many syllables to be ‘grungy’ so this suggestion was poo-pooed.  I was 18 at the time and 18 years later I still wince when I hear someone mention the name. 
Anyway, on the subject of band names, you can tell how important it is to pick the right one and we were never going to make it with a name like that.  So many bands have changed their names in the past, either at their record company’s request (Seymour became Blur, Camouflage became Jesus Jones) or because their name isn’t catchy enough (Parva became Kaiser Chiefs, Mollie Blaylock became Pearl Jam).  Or maybe it was, like Pre-Historic Wife, because their name was just plain rubbish – On a Friday became Radiohead, The Tea Set became Pink Floyd.  Only post the name change did any of these bands enter Rock Stardom in a big way – which would have happened to us had we changed our name to The Second Hand Apron (from a Monty Python sketch) which was my suggestion.  I was outnumbered 3 to 1 though.
It’s unsurprising that we split up soon after due to ‘musical differences’ (not really, we all left home to go to Uni) – we’ve thought about reforming, just like the Stone Roses, but that would just be plain silly.
So, should it really be that hard to find the perfect band name?  I have a great name stored in my head that I’m going to use when I get my arse into gear and form another group (I’m not revealing it in case you steal it! And if you’re reading Ruthie Knighton, I’m sorry to say it’s not Musodad and his magic pants – but they’ll definitely be one of my spin off bands like what Damon Albarn / Jack White do).  However, what if I was the lead singer of ‘the next big thing’ and I didn’t have any ideas?  That’s why, my friends, I’ve invented ‘musodad’s Band name game’.  By Christmas 2012 it will be available in every good toy shop and will probably be THE game to play on Boxing Day throughout the UK.
If you can’t wait that long then if your child has got some magnetic words at home go and get them now and play along with us.
So here we are, sat around our little blue table in our lounge, a plethora (I love that word!) of magnetic words have been placed in a re-sealable sandwich bag and we (eldest daughter O. and I, youngest daughter C. just wants to eat the words) are ready to begin (this isn’t in real time, by the way, both O. and C. are in bed at this precise time).  Here we go :
So the rules, nearly forgot – pull out a magnetic word, one at a time, and see if you can make a band name out of them.  If you want to be likened to an early 90s shoegazing band (Ride, Lush, Moose etc) you might just want to pick out one word, up to you.  That’s the beauty of the game, you can bend the rules to choose the name that suits you / your band.  If after four words, you can’t make any potential band names, put them back in the bag and start again.
Anyway, here’s a list of 6 band names we pulled out, I’ve tried to add a back story for each – all good band names need a back story (in no particular order) :
1.       The Purple Twenty – I really like this one, it could have a really good back story – slightly too close to the band Matchbox Twenty mind, but no-one remembers them anyway.  Next step - check definitions of ‘purple’ on – ‘imperial, regal or princely’, I like it.  So, in the 60s there was a group of imperial, regal and princely people who went against their family’s wishes and ended up living like ‘common people’ (as in the Pulp song) and lived happily ever after.  They were an inspiration to all.  And there were 20 of them.  There you go…ahem…easy. 

2.       September Ball – hmmm, not sure about this one.  Sounds like something out of High School Musical, or a boy / girl act on X-Factor – what were their names again?! #bubblegumpop

3.       Over Liked – now this IS good.  It’s over confident, like a new band should be.  Beady Eye should have been called Over Liked – that would have showed Noel they really meant business.

4.       Thursday Counted – not bad.  So what happened on Thursday and why would someone count it? Think, man, think! Erm…right - lead singer gives up smoking and whilst down the pub with his band members, one Thursday night, has a drag on one of their cigarettes.  The week after they are having Sunday lunch round the lead singer’s parents when the mum asks ‘Mick, have you still given up smoking?’, Mick replies ‘yes mum’.  Then Keef, sorry Keith, the guitarist, pipes up and says ‘no you haven’t, you had a drag on one of my ciggies last Thursday down the pub’.  Mick replies ‘it was only one drag down the pub on Thursday, that doesn’t count’.  To which Keith says ‘No, Mick, no - Thursday counted’ and a band name is born…Phew, that was tough!

5.       Will Likes Yellow – who is Will?! Could be anyone – Prince William, Will Smith, could be the bloke next door, y’see, and I should have mentioned this earlier – you don’t have to give a reason why you’re called a certain name.  Yes, you SHOULD have a back story but even so, keep the NME guessing as to what the back story is and you’ll be a mystery to them - and probably get a lot more column inches in the long run.  However, I’m going to start what I’ve finished – checks again, one definition of ‘yellow’ is the ‘yolk of an egg’.  I bet Prince William likes eggs and he’s probably mentioned this before in an interview somewhere.  The band saw this interview and job done. There you have it, a back story.  Genius.

6.       These Were Three – grammatically incorrect perhaps but perfect if you’re a trio and one of your band members leave.  If only Bros had renamed themselves this when Craig (my wife informs me Smash Hits used to call him ‘Ken’) Logan left and gone experimental then they could have been one of the biggest bands in the World today.
I just want to quickly add one more to the list – there were two blank magnets in the bag and I told my daughter she could choose two words to write on them.  At first she said ‘bum’ (she’s obsessed with this word at the moment!) but on asking her to reconsider, she wanted the first one to be ‘groovy’ and the second one to be ‘conker’.  Groovy Conker – now that is a great band name!  In fifteen years time, if she decides to go down a music career route, I’ll remind her of this day and see what happens…  
So, there you go, hope you’ve enjoyed experiencing the birth of a new game with me.  If you ever get a chance to play the game, which is highly unlikely I know (don’t worry I won’t take it personally) then please do let me know what band names you came up with (back story optional – don’t worry, I won’t tell the music press if you reveal it).
Ps I’ve just remembered - they were called Same Difference!