Saturday, 23 January 2010

Hope For Haiti Telethon

Well night owl me stayed up to watch this (it was on from 1 - 3am in the UK).  I thought it was done well, and there were some good performances, I especially liked Justin Timberlake's version of the wonderful Hallelujah (which must be one of the most amazing songs ever written).  Bono and Edge appeared on stage with Jay-Z and Rihanna.  Jay-Z took the lead with a rap, Bono and Rihanna were kind of backing singers, but Bono's mic was turned so low you could hardly hear him and I'm not a fan of Rihanna's shrill voice.  That put together with the fact I don't like rap meant I didn't really enjoy the performance.  I have to say though Edge's guitar was lovely, but he was hardly shown on camera.  The chorus of the song (called Stranded) was pleasant and melodic.  I've heard that you can hear more of Bono's voice on the iTunes download of the song.

I don't know why the likes of Bono and Edge do collaborations with rappers and R & B singers, rock doesn't mix well with those genres.  But I think they probably do it in an attempt to be more relevant to the youngsters who U2 seem so desperate to have on board.  These guys are having the longest mid-life crisis going I think! 

I feel a little bad about being a bit negative about the performance, it wasn't bad, and after all it was done for a good reason, but it is my opinion.  I seem to be moaning about U2 a lot recently, maybe I'm becoming a grumpy old woman LOL!


Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Hope For Haiti Telethon

The details of the Hope For Haiti event on January 22nd organised by George Clooney have now been released.  There will be concerts in three cities - London, New York and Los Angeles.  Bono and Edge will appear in London along with Jay-Z, also on the bill is Coldplay.  In the UK the two hour telethon will be shown on MTV from 1am Saturday 23rd January (8pm ET 22nd January in the US), if you can't stay up that late it will be repeated later on Viva.

Full details can be found here

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

The Crystal Caves of Mexico

On the BBC tonight a new series called How The Earth Made Us, which looks at how geology, climate and geography influenced humankind.  I'm interested in this sort of stuff, and will be watching the series.   I saw some information about  the first programme and there was a video and facts about this amazing crystal cave in Mexico.  It is absolutely stunning!  You can read the information and watch the video here .

The programme airs on BBC 2 tonight at 9pm.

Team U2 Fans Support Haiti

A site has been created for U2 fans from across the world to come together and donate in support of Haiti.  It is hosted via which sends 100% of donated funds to the organisations the Team is supporting: CARE, Save the Children, and action medeor. Click here to go to the U2 Fans Team Page, join, and make your donation.   The minimum donation is one Euro, so even if you have already given via some other organisation why not give a little here too?  It will show that U2 fans can join together and make a difference.

Sunday, 17 January 2010

U2 Contribute to Charity Project for Haiti

Jay-Z and Swizz Beatz are organising a charity project for victims of the Haiti earthquake.  Dave Fanning aired an interview with Edge today on his RTE 2FM radio show.  Edge said that the band had recorded a new song for the project.

Edge explains how the song came about:

"Last night we wrote a song ... Bono got a call from a producer, Swizz. He and Jay-Z wanted to do something for Haiti. So, Bono came up with the phrase on the phone, and last night we were here, we wrote a song -- finished, recorded, and send it back to them. So, that might be the next thing you hear from us!"

What's not certain is when the next proper U2 album will be out. Fanning asked Edge what direction U2 will go in this year -- more ambient material from Fez? Rick Rubin material? Spider-Man material? Or will there be no album in 2010 and instead wait until 2011? Edge replies: "We're asking ourselves exactly the same questions. We don't really know yet. We're working on material here, and it's sounding amazing, but we're far from being certain about what we're gonna do with it."

Oh dear, time is going by and the likeliehood of an album in 2010 looks less and less likely.  This is not promising at all which is very disappointing but not surprising.

Edge also talked a little about the Glastonbury gig and the 2010 tour plans, read more here

Saturday, 16 January 2010

Haiti Earthquake

I'm sure you've all seen the heartbreaking news items from Haiti over the last few days.  It so often seems to be the people who have the least suffer the most from these natural disasters.  It seems a hell on earth there, and it is taking aid so long to get there because of the devastation and poor infrastructure.  But amidst all the death and despair were two stories of amazing survIval.

Rescue attempts were still going on last night with British firefighters emerging as heroes.  They hauled two-year-old Mia Charlotte from the collapsed Beatrice kindergarten in Port- au-Prince. The firemen were among a 64-strong British team who raced to the country.

Pete Stevenson, operations commander, said: "We are over the moon. Mia is beautiful and the rescue was a huge success."  Mia was later reunited with her grateful mother.

Another little girl rescued:

Little Winnie Tilin - just 16 months old - was pulled alive from the rubble of her family's home after 68 hours.  Her faint moans were heard by chance by an  Australian TV crew filming the devastation outside the Save the Children charity's office.. Tragically, among those dead  are Winnie's parents, crushed to death by the falling masonry which amazingly missed her.

The TV team's interpreter Deiby Celestino heard her faint cries and jumped into the concrete hole she was trapped in.  After crawling over dead bodies to get to her, he was able to pull her out. Mr Celestino, from neighbouring Dominican Republic, said: "It's very emotional. It felt like my own baby I was pulling out there."

A Save The Children doctor who examined the toddler was amazed to find that, though she was severely dehydrated, she was not seriously injured. The toddler was then passed to her uncle, Frantz Tilin, who was looking for her after losing his pregnant wife in the disaster.

In these situations there's not a lot the ordinary person can do but donate whatever they can towards the appeal, every penny counts.  Those in the UK can donate here .

Friday, 8 January 2010

It Might Get Loud Premiere in Dublin

The Dublin premiere of It Might Get Loud took place at the International Film Insitute in Temple Bar last night.  Considering my previous post I found it amusing that Edge and Bono (I'm not sure if Adam and Larry attended, I found no mention of them in reviews I've read) were late because of the severe weather!

You can read a Hot Press review here 

And a review from the Evening Herald here

Edge and Bono at the Dublin premiere of 'It Might Get Loud'
Photo: Gareth Chaney

Brrrrrr......... The Big Freeze Continues

It was minus 15 degrees centigrade here last night!  This cold snap just goes on and on, I saw that we were way colder than Iceland yesterday.  I was out walking my dogs and felt a cold I'd not felt before nipping at my face (the only part of me open to the elements).  It's such a palaver getting ready to go out at the moment, putting layers of clothes on, boots, scarf, hat, gloves, then of course coats on the dogs too.  Pepsi and Max, being dachshunds, almost disappear in the snow at times but Pep loves it, Max would be quite happy not to go on walks at the moment.  Being wired-haired the snow collects on Pepsi's tummy and forms snowballs, if I walked him long enough he'd be one big snowball rolling along LOL!  Not the best weather for dachshunds.

But having said that we have had a few days of bright blue skies and sunshine, yesterday's sunset was gorgeous, with wispy baby pink clouds in the blueness.  When I was little, my mum used to say that the angels were baking cakes when there were pink clouds, and it made me think of her when I saw them, she too would have noticed their beauty.  The mountains close to where I live look beautiful cloaked in white.  This kind of weather is severe, but there is also beauty in its austerity.

Apaprently this freakishly cold weather here is due to a static weather depression that is literally sucking in icy air from Siberia right onto us.  And at the moment there is no sign of a let up, we've been shivering our socks off for almost a month now. 

The school where I work is closed, as are most of the schools in this area.  I still have to go in to do my hours though or I wouldn't get paid.  I have been able to get there ok - my car temperature display told me it was -10 centigrade at 4pm today as I drove home, yikes.  Most other things have been cancelled - my voluntary work, meeting friends, Tai Chi, shopping (I'm saving a bit money!) people are only going out if absolutely necessary.  My friend Debbi was supposed to be visiting me this weekend, she lives in the Midlands but it just wasn't feasible for her to come.   The Veuve Cliquot will have to wait in my fridge - we always treat ourselves to a bottle when we meet up.

So it's dark now and the curtains are closed, I've got my cosy PJs, dressing gown and bedsocks on and it's warm and snug in here.  Definitely the best place to be, I'm going to put my feet up, open a bottle of red, eat some nibbles and watch the telly and that's me for the next few hours.  Weather report from Siberian Cumbria ends here.