About Me

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Stoke on Trent, Staffordshire, United Kingdom
Broadcaster, musician, song writer, tea drinker and curry lover.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Paul Steel - "Moon Rock"

Even though it's been pushed back to a 2008 release (the man himself told me that this was due to unspecified technical issues) I have managed to get my hands on a promo copy of this elusive gem, and what I can tell you is that this is one of those instant classic albums.
It's been well documented that Paul Steel is a big fan of Brian Wilson, and clasic pop bands such as Jellyfish (remember them? what a band!), and "Moon Rock" is soaked in those influences. Take the opener "In A Coma" with its intricate harmonies; the album's complex and mysterious title track; the wonderful "Oh No! Oh Yeah!" which takes ELO's "Mr Blue Sky" to a new level of brilliance.
Perhaps the album's focal point is the richly orchestrated and quite beautiful "The Way You Are" in which all those Beach Boys influences really flood out.
There are moments of humor, pathos, good time rocking (single "Your Loss"), wackiness (closer "Emo Joe" ) and sheer unadulterated beauty ("Summer Song" and "Cry Away"), all making up what is just about a perfect pop record, and a quite extraordinary debut.
Dare I say it, "Moon Rock" could easily be a "Pet Sounds" for the 21st century, so beg, steal or borrow a copy...NOW!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Butte Creek Flour Mill

Found a real local treasure over the weekend. The Butte Creek Flour Mill is in Eagle Point (around 20 minutes away) and we found it whilst checking out the brand new Eagle Point Walmart Superstore.
The mill began operation in 1872 and was restored by owners Bob & Debbie Russell 2 years ago.
It now has an antique store alongside as well as a General Store which sells the mill's own flours, baking mixes (notably pancake and waffle mix, bran muffin mix and cornbread mix), whole and rolled grains and cooking cereals.
You can even shop online, and the produce - apart from being very healthy - is already gathering a worldwide audience of fans.
We happened to arrive at the same time as owner Bob was giving a tour of the mill to a lady writer, so we were invited to tag along, and got a full working guided tour of the mill, which was superb. Bob even fired up the machinery for us.
Just down the street is a covered bridge which is well worth checking out too.
Have a look at the mill online at http://www.buttecreekmill.com/

Fantasy Football - 2 and 0!!

So my fantasy team improves to 2-0 thanks largely to the exploits of the Cardinals' Anquan Boldin. Jake Delhomme had a good outing Sunday, so now we're looking ahead to next weekend and trying to go 3-0. Come on Kipology!!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

I'm never eating again!!

Sometimes it really does pay to have this job!

Today we road tested one of our upcoming giveaway prizes. Silver Ridge Outfitters are doing a dinner/wagon ride prize along with a pair of tickets to the casting Crowns show in October, and they offered to cook us lunch so we could sample what the prize winners will sample.

Needless to say, we all jumed at the chance and eralier tucked into Tri-tip roast shredded marinaded beef with garlic/butter potatoes and green beans.

To say it was divine is an understatement of epic proportions. To say I am full and need a nap is also a huge understatement!

And to think, I have to workout later. I'll never eat again!!

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Southern Oregon Coast Trip

Finally I can talk about our work/sightseeing trip to the Southern Oregon coast last weekend. This week has been so hectic that there's been little time to deal with it until now.

We headed off at 7am and drove north west to Florence, via Roseburg and Elkton, checking Dove frequencies as we went.

Florence itself is quite pleasant, but we were heading further north - by a few miles - to Seal Caves. This place is amazing. You head down over 200 feet in an elevator, right down into this incredible natural cave which is around 125 feet high. There you can watch the seals hanging around on rocks from a viewpoint around 100 feet away. There are several great views through natural fissures out into the ocean.

Before the elevator was fitted in the 1960s, there was a rickety stairwell type thing, most of which doesn't survive any more - unsurprisingly.

Next we headed a mile or so north to the Heceta Point Lighthouse, which is just lovely, as you can see. It was only 11.30 at that point, so we then headed back to Florence for a sandwich.

The rest of the day was spent heading south along the coast checking more frequencies. We stopped in Bandon, which has an old town where you can get fish & chips on the boardwalk. Not quite British-style chips, but pretty good none the less. Of course, I should add that there were numerous coffee stops along the way too!

We went south along the coast - which was shrouded in fog, as it so often is - through Gold Beach and Brookings (which is a really nice place) before heading up and home via the edge of the giant redwoods north of Crescent City on Highway 199.

Got in at 7.30pm and I have to say the coast is spectacular and very pretty. Must see it again!

The old homeland isn't so bad, is it?

My brother has been away on vacation on the south coast of England and took these shots. It's really quite a nice country when you think about it!!