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Page in the Park – 13 August 2016

IMG_0252 I know I have tons of blog posts and videos to get up from our holiday, but this happened yesterday so I wanted to post about it and get the video up ASAP.

I have had a strong love for the Canadian band Barenaked Ladies since I was in High School thanks to my boyfriend at the time. And me and BNL, well, we’ve been through a lot. I’ve been a fan of the band through their keyboardist, Kevin Hearn, getting diagnosed and ultimately beating Leukaemia, and I was a fan when the band had a bit of a line up change and longtime co-frontman Steven Page left the band in was it 2010? 2009? I can’t quite remember. And I won’t go into the details over the break (you can google for it if you really need to know), but in the end, it left me being very angry and upset with Steve. For a while, I wouldn’t even listen to any song that Steve sang lead on (which at the time was over 50% of the repertoire!). The split hurt the fanbase, and people really were divided over it. But over the past 5+ years, Iv’e gotten over my anger and I’ve understood that the break-up was something that had to happen. The band is still going strong, and I still love them to pieces, and Steve has been able to explore being an independent musician on his own without a band behind him. Sure, he still is “former Barenaked Ladies co-frontman”, but he’s definitely carved out a niche of his own, touring mostly around the area he lives in (NE USA and Canada).

This week, Steven has been on holiday in the UK with his family and started getting tweets from UK fans “wouldn’t it be nice if you played here?” So he decided to do a pop up concert. It was announced vaguely on Twitter at first. Just “would anyone be interested in coming to see me at a park on Saturday?” The response on his twitter poll was overwhelmingly YES.

Regent’s Park is Huge! And the pinned place on his tweet goes to a private garden….so….now what? I headed into the park and posted a photo of the map of the park on the BNL UK group on facebook and one person found me….then two more….then two more…and soon we were a small group of people wandering around!

so we all headed to the SE corner where we ran into more peopl and we soon increased our numbers and Liam sent a tweet to Steve to tell him where we were, and I had one more idea. Someone had brought along a Canadian flag and we managed between tying it to their push chair and my selfie stick to have it on display and I tweeted this pic out to Steve so he could find us:

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We soon gathered a sizeable crowd (maybe 40-50?) and then Steve arrived, borrowed a guitar, and started off with a BNL classic – It’s All Been Done. At one point, he went into the opening strains of Jane.

I think I'm dead. @stevenpage @getbarenaked @bnlfans

A video posted by Rebecca L (@beccajanestclair) on

In case you ever wondered where the URL for my blog came from, it’s from this song. ‘The girl works at the store sweet Jane St Clair’. My middle name is Jane, so using Becca Jane St Clair was perfect and so this song has always had incredible meaning to me and every time I hear it live I get goosebumps.

We were soon treated to nearly 2 hours of old favourite BNL hits and songs off his own albums. He even was joined randomly by a passing busker on his accordion, though we did have to chase him off after he tried to demand Steve play other songs and then tried to get us to give him money. Err….No. Just get out. And Steve played the opening strains to “Thanks That Was Fun” as the guy was walking away. I don’t think he even realised who he was playing with or that Steve wasn’t a busker with a crowd.

It was an absolutely amazing experience to be in such an intimate setting with one of my favourite musicians. A lot of us who had been on one of the Ships & Dip shows likened it to being on S&D in one of the smaller on-board venues. After, Steve stuck around to talk, sign autographs, and take photos with his fans, including Hamish!

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Thank for an amazing day, Steve. Hope you come back for a proper tour soon, and don’t forget to come to Lincoln!

Watch the video I took including It’s All in Done, What A Good Boy, Upside Down, Break Your Heart, Call & Answer, and Brian Wilson.

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The contents of this post, including personal images are © Rebecca J Lockley and Tim Lockley unless otherwise stated and should not be reproduced without permission. If you are not reading this on http://blog.beccajanestclair.com, my facebook page, Networked Blogs, the RSS feed(s), or through an e-mail subscription, please notify me.

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John Barrowman in Nottingham

This is a few weeks late, but on 3 November I went to see John Barrowman with my friend Helen and some of her work mates. We had a GREAT time. John really puts on a great show!

I managed to snag a few videos secretly on my small Olympus camera, so I thought I’d share them with you. Please excuse any of the weird focussing issues my camera might have been having – it’s only a point and shoot still camera and not an actual video camera, but I did my best!

Mandy

Link: http://youtu.be/cjKFSY5YLRE

The Winner Takes it All

Link:http://youtu.be/xZ73OKSubas

You Raise Me Up

Link: http://youtu.be/1WZJm59q8hI

I Am What I Am (partial, as when I went to follow his movement with my camera, the battery died!)

Link: http://youtu.be/fdOlLkMciLE

I also tried to get a few photos, but sadly, it wasn’t working out too well. Here’s the best two I managed to snag (click on them to view larger sized):

I’ve watermarked these because I know how crazy some people can get with hot linking or saving photos and I wanted to retain credit for them. If you want an unwatermarked copy for icons or wallpaper or whatever, please contact me.

As we were leaving, we managed to catch John leaving as well in “Barry Vanilow” (as he told us he named his van). John was practically falling out of his van to wave to all of us.

Will I go see John again? Heck yeah!

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The contents of this post, including images are © Rebecca J Lockley and Tim Lockley unless otherwise stated and should not be reproduced without permission. If you are not reading this on http://blog.beccajanestclair.com, my facebook page, or the RSS feed(s), please notify me.

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Barenaked Adventure

If you live under a rock, you might not know that my favourite band of all-time is Canadian rock group, Barenaked Ladies. BNL and I have been through a lot since I first listened to Gordon in my (then) boyfriend’s car in 1996. I have gone on road trips, cruises, slept in my car, camped out, squeezed 8 people into a hotel room, driven all night, held tailgates, snuck into meet and greets, threw panties, bras, and monkeys, held up signs, wore strange antennae on my head, and wore cat ears for this band. Yes, we’ve been through a lot together.

fortunately, they DO tour in the UK on occasion, so I wasn’t going to be BNL-less when I moved. My other favourite band, Carbon Leaf, has yet to show up here. BNL was performing at Glastonbury and Hard Rock Calling and added two other shows to their short trip – one in Glasgow and one in London.

Of course, I don’t live anywhere near either of those places. When they toured in September 2010, Tim and I took the train up to Glasgow and stayed in an inexpensive hotel and hung out with the BNL UK crowd. I had decided NOT to see BNL on this trip, as I wasn’t feeling Glasto, I didn’t want to spend £125 for Hard Rock, and I didn’t want to get a hotel room on my own in Glasgow, since Tim would be at his training down near London.

Wait, did you say London?

Tim’s training was in Watford, which is actually on the Overground and Underground. On a fast train, it takes less than 15 minutes to get to London Euston. BNL’s London gig was at Koko, off the Northern Line of the Underground which even goes directly to Euston. And there were trains as late as 1:30 in the morning, too.

I decided to buy a ticket at the last minute and I headed down in the morning after letting a few of my friends know that I would be there. The doors weren’t opening until 7PM, but any good fan knows that if you want to be front row, you have to queue. Some of my friends were already at the venue when I arrived at noon, but I still managed to be eighth in “line”. We passed a pleasant afternoon in the sweltering heat, chatting, drinking, and having fun until it was time to be let in. And then, I had a problem.

Because I had ordered my ticket online the night before, I had a will-call ticket. Despite the fact that Koko’s box office window had been opened all day, I was not permitted to pick up my will-call ticket until the doors opened! My friends promised they would hold a front row spot for me while I sorted out my ticket, but they didn’t have any luck and I wound up in the second row, behind one of our tallest friends. Okay, second row might not be a big deal to you, but it was when I had queued from noon! When we were at Glasgow, Tim and I were about 15th and 16th to arrive for queueing and I wound up standing sideways so I could squeeze into the front row. The London crowd was not budging to let anyone in. I got upset and annoyed. I texted my friends I had been waiting with (because they couldn’t even see me!) to tell them I was stuck in the second row, and my friends Lou, Kirsty, and Liam were AMAZING and somehow managed to find me a spot in the front row….and it also happened to be center stage right at Ed’s mic!

The show was fantastic. Spot on. Everything I love about this band and then some. Everytime I go to a show, it feels like they personally picked songs for me, and this night was no different. Summertime, Blame it on Me, What a Good Boy…the list goes on. I was sad they didn’t play Jane (my blog’s namesake*!), but it was still a fantastic show.

What a Good Boy, as shared by Kirsty on YouTube:

Link: http://youtu.be/Fjx2rbIcbHU

Blame it On me:

Link: http://youtu.be/mmJJFWQ7hK8

Photos:
[apologies for the fuzzyness. The smoke machine made it difficult to take photos, and then I discovered I had a smudge on my camera. Photos taken with my Olympus Mμ 3000]

After the show, we hung around and I managed to get a photo with Ed, but I had to head off to join Tim at Watford….I wound up on the slow train, so I didn’t get to the hotel until nearly 2AM. Then, I woke up in the middle of the night with horrible leg cramps, so Tim had me stay an extra day with him.

*The girl works at the store sweet Jane St Clair. My first name is Rebecca, and my middle is Jane, hence, BeccaJaneStClair :D.

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The contents of this post, including images are © Rebecca J Lockley and Tim Lockley unless otherwise stated and should not be reproduced without permission. If you are not reading this on http://blog.beccajanestclair.com, my facebook page, or the RSS feed(s), please notify me.

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Sweet Adeline’s Region 31 Convention

This past weekend, Lincoln Sounds travelled to Birmingham to participate in this year’s Quartet of Nation’s annual convention/competition.

We didn’t do so good.

Last year, we came home with a bronze medal. This year, we came home all feeling a bit dejected and ho-hum about our score, which I won’t be posting to my blog, it hurts too much.

The only thing we can do is remain positive, and consider that next year, we could win “most improved chorus” 😀

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The contents of this post, including images are © Rebecca J Lockley and Tim Lockley unless otherwise stated and should not be reproduced without permission. If you are not reading this on http://blog.beccajanestclair.com, my facebook page, or the RSS feed(s), please notify me.

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Lincoln Sounds Performance

A lot of you have been asking to see our performance at convention, so I’ve finally uploaded it to YouTube:

Or, if the embed doesn’t work, here’s the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xxusrQBarmo

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Gleeful

I’ve just watched the season finale of Glee, and I’ve been trying to catch Gleeful: The Real Show Choirs of America that aired on E4 on Monday….and from what I’ve seen so far, it really doesn’t paint a very positive view of choir in the UK. My children are not going to experience the thrills of musicals and singing pop songs in harmony and showtunes….and it just really upsets me that my children won’t discover music in school the way I did. Like the one American they had on…I started singing in choruses when I was 6! And anyone who knew me when I was younger (which is a handful of you reading this on LJ, more if you’re reading this on FB) knows that music was a huge driving force in my life. At one point, I think I was involved in 6 or 7 music groups between school choirs, band, church choirs, bell/handchime choir, etc….not to mention the annual school musical! I really can only assume the reason HHS didn’t do a show choir was simply because a) we already had 5 choirs b) we put money into marching band shows and the annual musicals and wouldn’t have had money to go into a show choir.

But this isn’t about me being sad that I didn’t have a show choir to be part of. I was pretty proud of what I did accomplish, and was awarded several awards for my involvement in music.

Do British schools really NOT have music education/choir? One of the British women spoke about choir being “once a week. We started with a hymn, then we sang another hymn, and oh, then we sung another hymn”. It just breaks my heart that my children might not get that exposure to music at school. Not to say I won’t be educating them about music on my own, but there’s something really special about performing on stage.

I mean, all is not lost. If Tim and I have a girl, and if she enjoys singing, she could join Sweet Adeline’s Young Women in Harmony when she is 7 and/or LABBS (and Sweet Adeline’s) Ivy League. I can only assume that BABS has something similar for boys.

Tim and I are at least 3 years away from having any children of our own, and a long way away from starting music education, but it still makes me think and makes me want to find a music program for them to be involved in…or at least try. Obviously, there’s a possibility that our children won’t inherit my voice or my love for singing/music. Our children might not even inherit Tim’s love of trains…and that’s alright. But we both want to be able to expose them to our interests and at least have them try them out before deciding they’d rather do something else (Just watch. We’ll wind up with footballers for kids or something).

And a big you suck to the British Comedian who says “what good is this” and doesn’t think it should be taught in school!

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Friday Night is Music Night

On Friday, Tim and I attended the second-to-last night of a drama and music festival being held in Lincoln. The Lincoln Sounds were participating in the competition and there also was a quartet made up of our members as well as many of the members also performing in the Lincoln Mix, a combined choir of the Sounds and Harmony Lincs. Harmony Lincs is the male barbershop group that inspired the ladies group to form.

We had a fantastic time. I wish I had been up on stage with the ladies, but being in the audience was just as good. Each group had to perform two songs in different styles. Unfortunately, we didn’t take home the top prize. The men’s chorus beat us by just one point! One point! How awful. But, we’ll get them next year because I’ll be singing ;).

After the festival, there was a party called Afterglow in the oldest building in Lincoln. Tim and I were invited along, and we got to mingle with the members of my group and Harmony Lincs…and I got to sing. Tim had actually never seen me sing before, and he said he could tell how happy it makes me. I am so excited to be a part of this group!

Roll on convention!

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Lincoln Sounds

Thursday has just become my town day/social day.

After spending time volunteering at Cancer Research, I’ll be walking up the hill (steep hill!) every Thursday to go to Tim’s aunt’s house for Tea (dinner/supper). After Tea, I’m headed over to rehearsal for the Lincoln Sounds, a female barbershop quartet group and a member of the Sweet Adelines international.

Last night was my first rehearsal, and a chance for me to get the feeling of the group. I was immediately asked to join in and sight-sing, and had a blast! I forgot how much fun singing was, to be honest. The choir director had me join him in another room during their break to test me out with some scales to see where I would fit, and well, let’s just say his compliments to me left me blushing when I returned to the group! The director was fairly impressed with my singing (!) and thought I could do one of three voice parts* – what he called Soprano 1, Soprano 2, and Alto 1, but the ladies in the choir call them “tenor”, “lead”, and “bari”. Cue a fight for me between the three section leaders!

In the end, the leads/Soprano 2’s won out, because I had been rehearsing in their section standing in front of the section leader and she really wanted me. LOL.

There is an “audition”, but at this point I think it’s a basic formality, since they all want me. They give you three weeks to learn the audition pieces, and then six to learn their “Sing Out”** songs, but I really don’t think I’ll need that long. I catch on quick! I’ll also then become a member of Sweet Adeline International, which is pretty cool. The group is also excited because since SA is a US-based organization, the judges at competition are from the US, and the groups get skill points for diction and for using an American accent. Apparently the Sounds lost some points on it last year, so I’ve been asked to help with diction as well!

*In the past, I sang Soprano 1 for four years, Soprano 2 for one year, and Alto 1 for one year.

**Sing out is when they go to other places to perform.

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