5 Videos To Watch This Week!

Yes y’all, it is that time of week again! Here are some video suggestions to watch this week. 🙂

Social Issues

 

In this video, author James Baldwin is debating with William F. Buckley Jr. about race issues in America in 1965. A wonderful speech, clearly from the heart in the face of much adversity.

History

 

We are in the grips of Covid-19 at the moment. This video speaks of numerous pandemics and viruses which have happened throughout history, some of which lasted/are lasting a very long time.

Music

 

I love this song and here we see Aretha Franklin blast it out at Rockaplast in 1968. A great performance and great to get a chance to see such a classic performance.

 

In this performance at Build Series, Wicked star Kristin Chenoweth performs a cover of The Eagles’ Desperado with pronoun changes that make the performance very beautiful. A great cover.

True Crime

 

 

In this episode Ryan and Shane take a look at the mysterious death of a woman who died on her honeymoon. Very interesting watch.

5 Videos To Watch On YouTube This Week!

Week 3! Here is my five video suggestions this week! 🙂

Dance

This is a very momentous moment in Irish Entertainment history. I present to you The Riverdance from Eurovision 1994:

 

Music

Hozier’s Take Me To Church music video is so emotive and highlights so much that needs to be highlighted. Not an easy watch but a brilliant and powerful video.

 

Social Issues

In this heartbreaking video, singer and former X Factor UK contestant Misha B talks about racism she experienced on the show and how it impacted on her mental health.

 

 

Relaxation

To help relax you and rid you of stress, here is a great ASMR artist Sarai from Peace and Saraity ASMR. In this video, Sarai helps you to relax with a variety of sounds. Each sound is given a certain amount of time and the descriptions of the sounds go up underneath so you can find any helpful sound easily which is very helpful. Very relaxing.

 

 

History

The following video from Weird History talks about the murder of Abraham Lincoln by John Wilkes Booth in 1865 and the aftermath of the murder. Very interesting and concise.

 

5 Videos To Watch On YouTube This Week!

Ok, it’s that time of the week! Here is some video recommendations for this week:

 

Music

 

 

This Queen performance from Live Aid is a classic performance, amazing, legendary. If you haven’t seen it, you are missing out! 🙂

 

 

A modern-day classic! If you are feeling down, pop Pharrell Williams’ Happy on and you will be boogying on down in no time. The video is brilliant, very full of joy.

Dance

 

 

This was Noah’s and PJ’s first wedding dance and it was so fun! Absolutely loved it! 🙂

 

Relaxation

 

 

 

This is Goodful’s 5-Minute meditation. My Mum and I (and sometimes my sister) have been doing this meditation for the past how many months and it’s really great, very relaxing. Relaxing words provided by John Davisi.

 

Social Issues

 

 

WHO collaborate here with Matthew Johnstone who talks about how he overcame depression. The video, I had a black dog, his name was depression is written and directed by Matthew and is a deeply realistic and emotive watch.

 

 

5 YouTube Videos To Watch This Week!

YouTube considering moving child content to YouTube Kids - 9to5Google

 

 

Here in a new feature on this blog. I hope it will give you some interesting and varied viewing. I am by nature a very curious person, always have been since I was a child and I love to learn so my viewing can be diverse as hell, you have been warned! I hope at least some of the topics will be of interest and I plan to do this weekly so without further ado and rambling from me, here is five YouTube video recommendations to watch this week. 🙂

 

Music

 

This powerful song has been put along alongside some powerful images here. We see activists who are ordinary people as well as well-known activists for the rights of people of color like Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela. Highlighted too are the rights of women and LGBTQAI+ people. A very emotional watch.

 

Social Issues

 

I am very socially-conscious but I hadn’t heard about Juneteenth until very recently. This video explains very well something I must look more into. Please do watch this video which talks about the day and it’s connections to slavery and the emancipation of so many people of color. It isn’t easy obviously to watch because the fact people were treated in that way is utterly disgusting but we need to acknowledge that terrible history and do better by our brothers, sisters and non-binary people of color.

 

TV

 

I am a huge fan of Aquaria and this is the opening episode of her On/Off series where she was out in the Philippines last year. A very interesting series detailing many of her work engagements from last year.

 

Relaxation

 

We all need a moment to relax, destress and get ourselves ok again. I have recently got into ASMR as a way to relax and I love videos by Mads Asmr. In this video, Maddie is scratching, raking and pinching and plucking away your stress.

 

Film

 

I am a huge Sister Act fan and this scene with Sister Mary Clarence/Deloris Van Cartier and Sister Alma never fails to make me laugh.

 

 

Duncan Laurence From The Netherlands Wins Eurovision 2019!

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Last night Duncan Laurence won the Eurovision for the Netherlands with his song Arcade in Tel Aviv, Israel. Winning with a total of 492 points (combined from public and jury votes), the win is the fifth win for the Netherlands but their first win in 44 years. The track which was hot favourite to win faced tough competition in a tight Eurovision battle. At the end, it came down to being between Sweden’s John Lundvik, who was the most popular with the juries, and Laurence. Ultimately the public vote decided the outcome giving Netherlands the win.

On the combined totals of jury and public votes Italy came second with Mahmood and his song Soldi, Russia finished third with Sergey Lazarev and his song Scream while Switzerland finished fourth with Luca Hanni and his song She Got Me. Rounding off the top 6 was Norway with KEiiNO and their song Spirit in the Sky and Sweden’s John Lundvik with his song Too Late for Love.

 

Another major talking point from the night was Iceland’s Hatari holding up Palestinian flags in support of Palestine when they received their votes from the public vote. The act also held up the rainbow flag and trans flag earlier in the evening. Hatari have proven themselves this year to be full of courage to use this platform to highlight both Palestinian rights and LGBTQ+ rights and I feel they are absolute legends and pure class. They have done Iceland very, very proud.

 

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Hatari

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Following Laurence’s  win, the 25-year-old who was born in Spijkenisse in the Netherlands said:

“Yes, yes! Oh my God! This is to dreaming big, this is music first always, thank you, thank you!”

 

Speaking to reporters after, Laurence said some absolutely beautiful words:

“I think the most important thing is that you stick to who you are and see yourself as I see myself, as I see (fellow contestants) Sergey, as I see Chris, as I see you, just a human being. As a person who has talents, who, with this trophy, will in however many years stick to what they love – even if they have a different sexuality. Stick to what you love and make the best of it, and love people for who they are. That’s the most important message. Dream big.”

 

It was a very well deserved win. Congratulations Duncan and all involved. Congrats Netherlands! 🙂

To watch Duncan Laurence’s Final and Semi-Final performances as well as his win, highlights from Eurovision 2019 and his  music video for Arcade you can do so below:

My Top 5 Tips For Eurovision 2019!

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The Eurovision final is just around the corner. Literally. It’s in a few hours! The semi-finals are done and dusted and tonight a winner will be crowned. Here is my top five tips for Eurovision glory:

 

  1. Iceland

 

Performers: Hatari

Song: Hatrio Mun Sigra/Hate Will Prevail

Odds: 18/1

 

 

2. France

Performer: Bilal Hassani

Song: Roi

Odds: 40/1

 

3. The Netherlands

Performer: Duncan Laurence

Song: Arcade

Odds: 4/5

 

4. Switzerland

Performer: Luca Hanni

Song: She Got Me

Odds: 7/1

 

5. Sweden

Performer: John Lundvik

Song: Too Late For Love

Odds: 14/1

 

 

Special Mentions:

Ukraine

I loved the song from Ukraine which was banned from going too.

Performer: Maruv

Song: Siren Song (Bang!)

 

Ireland

Well done to Sarah & the gang for representing us this year.

Performer: Sarah McTernan

Song: 22

 

Good luck to everyone tonight! 🙂

My Six Favourite Eurovision Entries 2018!

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The Eurovision is in full swing with the two semi-finals completed and I have now compiled for you all my five favourites for glory this Saturday …

 

Ireland

Of course I’m ever so slightly bias here but in truth I do love the song and have utterly fallen in love with the story of the two dancers in the the song. This is a gorgeously crafted song, Ryan’s vocal is stunningly on point and Alan and Kevin do an incredible and oh-so-romantic job of the dancing. The staging of this song is like a mini play. Love it and am very proud of our entry this year. And of course I’m very much hoping it wins! Good luck Ireland! 🙂

Austria

I think Cesar’s voice is incredible. This track is wonderful with a great soul and gospel vibe. The staging is also great.

Finland

This song is so catchy and Saara’s vocal is as usual splendid. The staging is also great with the whole theme of gender fluidity and the way she falls back into two of the performers arms at the end.

Czech Republic

Again very catchy and very well performed by Mikolas Josef and the two other dancers. Very fun and I love the nerdy vibe Mikolas has going on.

Hungary

I love this as I do love a bit of rock and it’s done well. It won’t be to everyone’s tastes but I think AWS are doing a great job. It’s three fun minutes of head-banging.

United Kingdom

I know our neighbours’ song hasn’t been to everyone’s tastes but I find it quite catchy and I think Surie is a wonderful singer and performer.

Culture Night, The Bray Literary Festival & My Poems Appear In The Bray Arts Journal!

 

From the 22nd-24th of September I went to some great events with Culture Night and the Bray Literary Festival. Would have being lovely to have got to even more but sure you can’t get to everything. This post is about the events I was lucky enough to get to.

 

22nd

Outside Mermaid in the Civic Space, the Bray Concert Band were brilliant with tunes ranging from Louis Armstrong’s When The Saints Go Marching In to the Lion King’s I Wanna Be Like You. Me and my Mum were there and we enjoyed it very much. A very talented band. There was also art to enjoy while we listened.

And then it was on to the Town Hall for Poetry, Music and Fighting Words where the winners of the Bray Literary Festival poetry and short story competitions were announced. Results were as follows:

Flash Fiction Competition:

1st Prize – Ronan Keenan

Runner-Up – Niamh MacCabe

Poetry Competition:

1st Prize – A.M. Cousins

Runner-up – Simon Lewis

The short stories were judged by Catherine Dunne while the poetry was judged by Breda Wall Ryan. Brian Kirk also helped whittle down the entries.

Flash Fiction Shortlist

Carol Caffrey – The sea that has cost them.
Ronan Keenan – Granda
Niamh McCabe  – House
Averil Meehan – Exiled
Kevin Hora – Envoi
Chris Connolly – It is Isn’t it Yes it is

Poetry Shortlist

A.M. Cousins – Brooch
A.M. Cousins  – Phone Box
A.M. Cousins –  The Royal Hospital, Gloucester
Eilish Fisher – Domestic
Simon Lewis – An Irish Girl Meets Melody Hobson in the Foyer of the Kimpton Hotel, Chicago
Simon Lewis – Supermarket Line

 

Here is the LONGLIST of the Bray Literary Festival FLASH fiction competition.

The Sea That Has Cost Them
After Dinner
From Scratch
Falling Man
Granda
The Nightingale is a Brown Bird
Look Towards Sky
Genus Pan
House
Halves
Twenty-five
Exiled
Find Me
Envoi
For I am fearfully and wonderfully made
Masaje! Masaje!
The Walk
Lotus
Reunion
Summer Rain
It Is Isn’t It Yes It Is

Here is the LONGLIST of the Bray Literary Festival POETRY competition.

Another Quiet Evening at Home
At Sea
Saving Turf
Brooch
November
A Boy Standing on a Terrace
The Royal Hospital, Gloucester, 1953
Running Roar
Tillage
An Irish Girl Meets Mellody Hobson in the Foyer of the Kimpton Hotel, Chicago
There was no Funeral
Supermarket Line
Phone Box
Autumn Day
Macha
Songline
Sailing in the Florida Keys
Domestic

Well done to the winners, all mentioned and everyone who entered. We’ll get there someday! 🙂

It was very enjoyable listening to the excellent entries. This was followed by poetry from Breda Wall Ryan and Kate Dempsey and poetry from Fighting Words introduced by Mark Davidson. There was also music by Rachel Duffy. Me, my Mum and my sister had a lovely night at it.

Poet Kate Dempsey

23rd

Poet Siobhan Campbell

 

I was up bright and early the next morning to head to the writing workshop, Writing From Life: Memoir & Poetry From Lived Experience with Siobhan Campbell in Colaiste Raithin. This was a great workshop. Siobhan and all the people there was very nice and I learned a lot. It was my first writing workshop and I read a short piece (inspired by my Dad but I wrote it as a fictional piece) and had a character I used throughout called Violet (based on me with my grandmother’s name). It was wonderful hearing everyone else’s work. There is definitely a lot of talented writers in Bray.

That night me and the sis headed to The Royal for Saturday’s Grand Finale: Bray Arts Journal launch, Writing groups: Abraxis & Little Bray, and GIANT Open Mic with BeRn. I had three poems in the journal so I was happy about that. It was a great night with a song from BeRun and writers braver than myself getting up to read their work. Maybe in the future …

To read the Bray Arts Journal go to:

Click to access September%202017.pdf

24th

Poet Breda Wall Ryan

Up bright and early again I was off to my second ever writing workshop Kickstart Your Writing with Breda Wall Ryan once again in Colaiste Raithin. Again Breda was lovely and there was a lovely group of talented writers. I read a poem about a box of chocolates as a metaphor for loved ones. I learned a lot and like the other workshop I very much enjoyed it.

Finally I was down at The Harbour Bar for the Free Panel Discussion and Q&A with my sister. I found it interesting but I have to admit that as a blogger I disagreed with a lot of it. I quite like that writing is now took out of the hands of just journalists in papers but it was interesting nonetheless.

So that concluded my culture weekend. As a little writing nerd, there isn’t always events like this nearby to go to so it was amazing. Thanks to all the organisers. I was on a culture high all weekend and it was great. 🙂

6 Songs To Watch In Eurovision 2016!

eurovision-2017-kyiv-logo

 

 

So the Eurovision has once again graced our screens for 2017. We ‘ve already been treated to the two semi-finals where 20 acts made it through to the Grand Final tonight! And there was even a marriage proposal for Macedonia’s entrant, Jana Burceska from her boyfriend Alexander.

 

 

Watch out for these six entrants at tonight’s final:

 

Portugal

 

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Potugal’s entry Amar Pelos Dois sung by Salvador Sobral and written by his sister Luisa Sobral is a soaring jazz-style ballad. Think male Bessie Smith or Billie Holiday. It had a wonderful reception at the first semi-final and is the current favourite with the bookies to claim Eurovision glory. Stunning, understated and very polished.

 

 

Bulgaria

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Bulgaria’s entry this year is Beautiful Mess sung by Kristian Kostov. A beautiful ballad with wonderful, modern, understated monochrome staging. Quite R ‘n’ B staging. Beautiful Mess is simply beautiful. Written by Sebastian Arman, Borislav Milanov, Joacim Petsson, Alexander V. Bley, Johan Alkanaes.

 

 

Cyprus

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Cyprus’ entry is Gravity sung by Hovig, who has previously been involved in writing Euphoria for Loreen. Gravity is catchy, a real earworm. I adore the staging from start to finish. It’s incrediby well put together. Written by Thomas G: Son.

 

 

The United Kingdom

Lucie Jones’ Never Give Up On You written by Eurovision winner Emmelie de Forest is the UK’s best chance in a while in the contest. A soaring ballad, beautiful staging and could definitely get top 10 or even top 5.

 

Australia

 

Austra

lia’s entry Don’t Come Easy sung by Australia’s X Factor winner Isaiah Firebrace is a strong ballad sung with amazing power and control. A great chance of making top 10. Written by DNA (David Musumeci and Anthony Egizii) and Michael Angelo.

 

Sweden

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Sweden’s Entry I can’t go on sung by Robin Bengtsson is catchy, wonderfully staged from start to finish and the styling is great. Written by David Krouger, Hamed “K-Ono” Pirouzpanah and Robin Stjernberg.

My First Reviews On Google Play!

 

I have my first reviews up on Google Play. They are my reviews of Jordan Gray’s Platinum and the two remixes of the track which I purchased on there recently. Hoping Jordan will make the UK Top 40 tonight. She deserves to.

To read my reviews and the wonderful other reviews of the tracks go to:

https://play.google.com/store/music/album?id=B6rbyrl5sfgu7b57dkk7tww6udy&tid=song-T3hq5hkc63eiea3emjfpjak7lvm

https://play.google.com/store/music/album/Jordan_Gray_Platinum?id=Byg7lv6xkttunnoshw7zsckkjdm

https://play.google.com/store/music/album/Jordan_Gray_Platinum?id=Bffnopbx3spw4uy35jct3y6fsiu