Saturday, November 16, 2013

The Father of Fitness


     Susie and I had a very enjoyable meal last night in the company of author Ken Heathcote and his wife Brenda. Ken recently launched his second book, The Father of Fitness, which I was privileged to edit for him. Ken started the Health Club business in this country and is highly respected in the field. But the book is a lot more than a follow-up to his first book, The Gym Business.        

    This one is actually his autobiography and is full of stories from his very full life. As one would expect, many world famous personalities feature in the book, from Arnie and Darth Vader to celebrity footballers, top weightlifters, athletes and squash players like Jonah Barrington. 
    
    The book is bang up to date in its treatment of the drugs culture now rife in sport and in almost every Health Club in the country.  There are stirring accounts of marathons and mountains climbed, of feats of endurance that very few of us could undertake, with plenty of human interest content along the way and loving portraits of his family members and their idiosyncrasies.  

The book  launch last month was packed  and Ken is in great demand for signings across the country.  


To find out more about the book visit

www.kenheathcote.co.uk/book




Saturday, November 09, 2013

Preston, Glasgow, Lowe

    This trio played at Matt and Phred's on Wednesday night. The three young musicians are very talented - virtuosi in fact. The line up is guitar, bass and drums which might sound fairly banal, but each player was able to play very impressive solos which had the audience enthralled.
 
 I was particularly impressed with Kevin Glasgow, whose six string bass produced solos which any guitarist would have been proud of. David Preston's astounding guitar was also a real treat to hear, with some great altered  chord arrangements and a good range of different tones and colours. Laurie Lowe was quite simply one of the best drummers I have heard in a long time. All three have played with many big names already and they are still in their twenties. They play their own music.

  A CD will be out after this tour. If you like the music of Allan Holdsworth, this band will not disappoint.

Oliver Lomax


  I was lucky enough to catch a short performance by local poet Oliver Lomax recently at the Dog and Partridge in Bolton on a very wet Saturday night last week.
  These particular poems deal with juxtaposition. This is a poetry of contrasts contemplated by the poet, both now and in his childhood, the subjects ranging from hand me down toys, to home thoughts from abroad, to the tragic setting on fire of an aviary, to Silvio Berlusconi and Chopin. 
  Each poem has its own dichotomy: in 'Priced out of the Revolution', the rich protester hangs off the Cenotaph; in 'Letter to Chopin' the poet apologises for what the statue of Chopin has to see: 'I am sorry for our corporate youth.'  These poems are informed by wry comment on the crassness of society. A good performance before an appreciative audience.


Two films

  I have seen two films of note recently. The first was 'Captain Phillips' a tale of modern piracy.  Well filmed and acted, with Tom Hanks as the captain, the one flaw for me was the unnecessary repetition of 'seat 15' which was rather more than glaringly obvious. Worth a look.

  The other was 'Philomena', a true story of yet another example of the Catholic Church's inhumanity, starring Judy Dench and Steve Coogan. Very moving.