Just so wrong

01.23 and I’m downstairs and wider awake than a wide awake thing has any right to be.

Don’t ask why, just one of those things.

All the sleepy symptoms are in place:
* Itchy legs
* Tired, rubbey eyes (you haven’t seen the word ‘rubbey’ before? It’s well known in this house!)
* Yawning

In fact, everything except that final slip in to the arms of Morpheus.

The brain, you see, is still keening along at warp speed.

For example, I now want to go off and read up on Orpheus in the Underworld which was by (if memory serves things up correctly) Offenbach?

Morpheus -> Orpheus, it’s a small step.

I had a copy, when I was but a very young and youthful youth, of Orpheus in the Underworld played by… umm… Cory Brass Band. I treasured that recording not least because Cory had a slightly too-strong Soprano Cornetist at the time (and I loved the bell-chiming-like qualities that he possessed – much like Jim Shepherd was to display two or three years later when he came to the forefront as principal cornet in the Black Dyke Mills Brass Band. But they were from Yorkshire so didn’t rank as high as any Welsh band), but also because Cory were Welsh.

From… umm… Ton Pentre I think?

And I used to play in a Welsh brass band too.


You didn’t know that did you?

Oh yes.

Band practice every Tuesday and Thursday evening, competitions most Saturdays. Except in the summer when Saturday mornings became National Youth Orchestra of Wales practice.

Which was quite naff really because the orchestral brass section rarely gets anything good to do.

Unless it’s Wagner, Brahms or the occasional Elgar.

And there’s a thing, Elgar.

Lived in this here county, indeed he did.

One of Worcestershire’s greatest musical talents.

Not that Worcestershire has that many, but you get the gist of what I’m trying to say.

But that’s a question… Of the county’s two greatest musical talents (it’s safer to word it like that. And it implies Worcestershire has many! Even though it doesn’t. Although AE Housman went to school in this here small town).

Where was I?

Oh yes, if one had to make a selection, which of the county’s two greatest musical talents would be placed in pole position?

Elgar (Edward)?

Relatively harmless (to quote the two words that Douglas Adams made one of his characters use to sum up the inhabitants of the planet Earth [corrected in comments by Dudius]). Bit of a womaniser. Kept a mistress for many years. Talented composer. Slightly dubious orchestrating skills. Tortured soul.


Ward (Clifford Thomas [aka Clifford T Ward])?

Dedicated husband and father of four. Composer. Singer. Orchestrator/arranger. Skilful user of the English language. Possessor of diction extraordinarily beautiful. Just like his melodies really.

And former teacher at a school in this here small town!

Clifford T Ward wins in my tired head right now, but ask me on another day and the answer may be different.

Born in Stourport-on-Severn.

Which is where my trainer lives.

And also the place where Ray Thomas was born.

Go on, say it. Who’s Ray Thomas?

You’ve heard his work but you won’t know his name and I’m probably a sad musical geek for knowing this but…

You’ve heard of the Moody Blues?

And their Nights in White Satin (taken from their experimental stereophonic album Days of Future Passed)?

And the haunting flute-playing?

That’s Ray Thomas, the flautist with Moody Blues.

Every Good Boy Deserves Favours.

That was another of their albums – they being the Moody Blues.

EGBDF – being notes on the musical stave. FACE being the other part of the notational picture.


My brain just won’t shut up.

Wish it would.

My alarm is going to do its alarming thing in less than four hours.


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5 Responses to Just so wrong

  1. Dudius says:

    Ah, insomnia, my old friend 🙁

    Personally I’ve never cared for the “Can-Can” music of Orpheus in the Underworld, but the story is my favourite of Greek myths. This was probably inspired by by appreciation of all things Neil Gaiman, and his take on the tale.

    I know that I, too, am simply rambling on at stupid o’clock in the morning, but I believe the quote (and subsequent book title) was “Mostly Harmless”.

    Where’s my bed?

  2. Citronella says:

    Oh, don’t worry, the violas don’t get much interesting to do either in an orchestra. And we don’t even have brass band to make us feel better.

  3. Brennig says:

    Dudius Dood; you are so right. Of course it was ‘Mostly Harmless’, how could I have said otherwise? Tiredness I guess.

    Citronella; thanks for the thought. It doesn’t really help – not really really. Except I went out with a viola player from NYoW for two weeks. Like, two whole Orchestra practice sessions. Such was my ability to make a ‘going out’ relationship last a whole eight hours! Woo.

    And now I’m awake-ish after three hours sleep, breakfasted, software update installed, product research undertaken and the shower calls – out of the house by 06.30.

    Gawsh, life just goes on and on (a bit like the Duracell bunny).

  4. sooz says:

    Dang! We could’ve played midnight scrabble!

  5. Brennig says:

    Ah, that was you who sent me that emaily thing about Scrabble eh Sooz? I’ll try and get in touch with you about it. But how come… I sign in to IM at 2am and do you know how many people on my friends list are up and about at that time? None! Bunch of lightweights. 🙂