Jazzed for jazz @ Ronnie Scott’s

Jazz, jazz, jazz. I like jazz, not all the time, but a lot of the time. So I was jazzed for it when I was asked if I wanted to go to Ronnie Scott’s to see Mingus Big Band play. Having never been to a jazz club, I was pretty excited, and I had visions of a dimly lit space, frequented by jazz lovers; reclining on seats covered in red velvet.

I had to get the train straight after work, meaning I had to interview a potential candidate at the speed of light to make sure I got out in time. Fortunately we rattled through my set of interview questions pretty quickly, although, I made sure I saved time for my fave question “what would you say is your biggest failure?”… awful, aren’t I?!

As soon as we were done, I legged it out of the interview room, grabbed my rucksack and raced to the car. I drove as fast as was allowable and parked up near the station. Because I’m tight, I refuse to pay for parking, so I parked away from station, meaning a walk up the dreaded hill. I was running a little late by now, so I picked up the pace and started on up the hill. I was really running late now, so my fast walk turned into a bit of a trot and I imagine I looked like a ginger Shetland pony making its way to an evening of jazz.

Legit me

I arrived at the station, grabbed my ticket and raced down the stairs in time to meet the train as it was arriving at the platform. Seated on the train, I thought it wise to make myself look somewhat presentable by putting some makeup on. Due to some recent late nights, I was sporting a bit of a panda look. I got as far as putting on a lick of mascara, before a man in an interesting fleece sat down in front of me, and proceeded to stare intently at me whilst I was coating the lashes of my left eye. That put paid to the application of makeup, so I stared out of the window instead, trying not to catch fleece mans eye.

I get off the train at Tottenham Court Road and begin to wind my way through Soho. Obviously I get lost, because if you don’t get lost in Soho, did you even go to Soho?


Eventually, after walking around in a bit of a circle, I meet Gail, Les & Co. outside Ronnie Scott’s. We go in, and it is EXACTLY how I imagined it. The lighting is low, everything is intimate, with dimly lit corners and the seats are upholstered in red velvet. It’s the best when things are exactly how you imagined them to be.

The classic bathroom selfie

We take our seats on the lower level, right in front of the stage. I quickly nab the seat facing the stage as close to the middle as I can get (sorry, not sorry). We order some food and drinks, and at this point I must mention that the prices are a tad on the high side. I had a cocktail called a Watermelon Man, which, surprise, surprise, had watermelon in. This cost £11 (ouch) and I had the cheapest thing on the menu what wasn’t a burger, which was tofu, at £17.50 (double ouch). I know you need to expect these things to be expensive, but still, £11 for a cocktail is a killer.


Anyway, minor moan over – lets get to the music. It was SO GOOD!! I knew it was going to be good, I had never doubted it was going to be good, and yet I was still surprised at how incredible Mingus Big Band were. And to make a great night even better, the guy on alto sax was pretty easy on the eye. Oh, and he had the BEST facial expressions – I spent more time than I should have done, watching his sarcastically raised eyebrows.

Such a hunnaaaaay

I’m always in awe of anyone that can play a musical instrument (as you may know, I certainly cannot) and I love watching people do something that they so clearly enjoy. I love live music in general, and I will listen to pretty much anything, but listening to these guys (and girl) do their thing, was absolutely incredible. I enjoyed it so, so much and I will definitely be going again as soon as I can.

Take a look at what is coming up here – I might see if I can get tickets to go and see the Blues Explosion! Can’t wait!!


Bonnie

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Justin Bieber, is it too late now to say sorry?

Never have I seen one man, loved by so many, give so little in return.

I was excited to go and see Justin Bieber at BST in Hyde Park – I was really excited actually. It was a beautiful day, the sun was shining and Despacito was playing on the radio. So we turned up at Hyde Park in the afternoon to collect the tickets from the box office. We collect the tickets and it turns out these tickets grant us access to the guest bar and get us closer to the stage: winner!! So, majorly excited we made our way to the guest bar and had ourselves a couple of cocktails (because it would be rude not to right).


We’d got there just in time to see Martin Garrix, so we popped on over to the stage to see him in action. I have to say, I’m not sure Martin Garrix was quite the right vibe for the Bieber crowd. Justin has a very young following, so there are a lot of kids there with their parents. So, the rib cage shattering bass lines probably left a little to be desired in these circles on a Sunday afternoon. But I enjoyed it, so WHO CARES.

The Bieb was billed to be on stage for 8.15pm, so we settled in for a bit of a wait, as he is notoriously late to appear. So when he popped up on stage at 8pm (which is EARLY), we were all rather surprised. It seemed to go downhill for him from the off. He obviously had a cold and looked a little worse for wear. He didn’t engage with the crowd at all, and he was saying things that people were not wanting to hear.

A lot of the songs he didn’t sing a long to, and a lot of those he didn’t bother miming to. He looked like he would rather be anywhere else in the world, instead of here. He blew his nose on an item of clothing he took from one of his fans and didn’t even give it back. He kept repeating how ‘happy’ he was to be here, in the flattest voice and a sour look on his face. How little insight could one guy have?

At one point, nearing the end of the show he went and sat down on the stage, and had what I could only describe as a meltdown. I honestly thought he as going to lose it and burst into tears. And then it ended. That was it. No encore, no final song. Finito – and no Despacito.

I could have been angry with him about his attitude and I could have raged about it all the way home. But I actually just felt really sorry for the kid. He is clearly a terribly unhappy young man. We are the same age, and I cant imagine having lived such a portion of my life in the limelight as he has. It must be incredibly difficult to be him. I know you will say he is blessed to have a gift and have all the money in the world. But he probably thinks you are blessed to live a normal life.

So I’d like to say: I’m sorry Justin. I’m sorry for the pressure we put on you as fans. We forget how young you are. We don’t think about how hard we are on you. We don’t realise how difficult it must be to live your life in the limelight the way that you do. We have forgotten that we never really gave you a chance to grow up; we expected you to go from a child to a man with no in between. If you don’t want to do it anymore, just stop.

If you do happen to read this, which I know you wont, but if you do… Don’t feel guilty about having a break if you need it. We will be okay without you, and we will be here when you come back.

Bonnie

 

Review: Pink Floyd – THEIR MORTAL REMAINS exhibition 

So this was incredible. Far and away the best exhibition I have ever been to and I would thoroughly recommend you go. It’s at the V&A museum (get off at Knightbridge tube station and walk for a couple of mins) and it’s pretty busy so I’d suggest you book online beforehand and pick a slot. I went for the 11:30 slot and I was a bit late, but fortunately they give a 15 minute window for each time slot to give everyone a chance to queue up and get a headset. 

‘Oh god, a headset!!’ I hear you cry. But don’t worry, it’s not THAT kind of exhibition, it’s not one of those ones where you have to type in the number of the display you are looking at to hear an electronic voice drone on in your ear about a particular 16th century piece changing the face or modernism or something. Everything is automatic; I’m assuming it’s done on sensors or something and when you walk past a display or a screen you hear what there is to be said about it. Coupled with the fact, that there is Pink Floyd in your ear hole pretty much all the way round. 


So let me give you a quick walk through the exhibition. There are crazy painted telephone boxes throughout with all bits of memorabilia in them, there are photos, album covers, videos and props from their shows. The exhibition walks you through the age of Pink Floyd, starting at the first concert and ending with the last. It talks you through the changes in the group and all of the incredible artistry that went into producing their great works. 


In the final room you take your headphones off and you can sit and watch their last creation on big screens with a psychedelic light show. Everyone lays on the floor and looks up at the screens and just enjoys the moment. As it says on the website, it’s an ‘unparalleled audio-visual journey’ and I couldn’t agree more. 

Bonnie 

Review: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone in Concert 


Last Thursday I got my nerd on. I went to see Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone in concert at the Royal Albert Hall. The film was accompanied by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, who were of course, absolute perfection. 

For the first 10 minutes I could not take my eyes off the orchestra and completely ignored the film! I always struggle to stop watching the orchestra and pay attention to what I’m supposed to be watching, I’m constantly astounded by their skill and how goddamn easy they make it look. I am forever jealous of anyone that can play an instrument, unfortunately it is not something I excel at. 

I spent a good few years attempting to learn the piano. About 2 years into the lessons my piano teacher clocked on that I couldn’t read the music and it all went downhill from there. I used to drive old Dorothy absolutely potty – she used to ask me where I was on the page and I never could tell the poor old love. She thought I was making mistakes when I hit the wrong notes, what was actually happening, was that I was sounding out the notes until it sounded right to me. I think she deemed me unteachable and my lessons ceased not so long after. 

Anyway, I digress. After I’d got used to the orchestra being there I finally managed to concentrate on the film. I’d forgotten how tiny Harry, Ron and Hermione were! They were so unbelievably little and I have to be honest, their acting certainly improved over the years. But nonetheless it was really enjoyable to see a film that I hadn’t seen in years and relive my childhood accompanied by an incredible orchestra. Definitely a evening well spent and I would recommend it to anyone if there is a film showing they enjoy. 
Bee.