craft, music

Apart from crafting, one of my other passions is music.  I have a rather eclectic taste from indie rock to classical and everything in between (except Country Music which I can’t abide!)

When I’m sitting down to craft my taste varies even more – sometimes I need to concentrate with a deadline coming up and at other times I’m just crafting for pure relaxation.  At the moment these are the top tunes that are firing my creativity…

  1. Morcheeba – Big Calm – the singer has a wonderfully soulful voice, this is gorgeous trip-hop-pop.  It’s very relaxing so no good for the run-up to a craft fair!
  2. Muse – Showbiz – one of the biggest bands in the world, one of my few regrets in life is that I have not yet had the chance to see them live in concert.  It’s quite loud and speedy so good for times when I was under pressure.
  3. The Streets – Original Pirate Material – I’m not a big fan of garage/hip-hop but Mike Skinner et al have a wickedly funny way with words and an ear for a great tune.  Not one for the kids though as it’s a bit sweary in places!
  4. Tracy Chapman – Tracy Chapman – when I saw her televised performance at the Nelson Mandela Concert, like many, I was astounded by her presence and vulnerability.  She has such a strong moral compass and, like me. is governed by a sense of justice.
  5. John Grant – Queen of Denmark – the richest baritone voice, a wry, witty intelligence and a cult following.  I almost don’t want to share him!
  6. DJ Shadow – Endtroducing – low-key instrumental hip-hop and great background listening which doesn’t disturb my concentration on complex tasks.
  7. The Bluetones – Expecting to Fly – a seminal indie debut album – tuneful with glorious harmonies.
  8. Tricky – Maxinquaye – more trip-hop – a very funky record with sharp, clever lyrics and rhythms which don’t age.  Some very fruity language so perhaps not for the faint-hearted!
  9. Any classical music – although I love Opera it’s too disturbing to attempt to sing along – so classical music is a safer bet, especially if I am writing or proof-reading.  One of my favourites is Grieg – In the Hall of the Mountain King.
  10. Sigur Ros – Takk – this is a wonderful Icelandic band who saw me through my Nursing degree. Their song Hoppipolla (translated as ‘jumping into puddles’) is used on just about every natural history programme on the BBC.  A truly beautiful album which is almost exactly an hour long, so it is perfect to schedule in exact chunks of work.

These are my favourites at the moment, but it is always subject to change!


Music to Make Crafts By


Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Park (erm, Seafront)!

What a fabulous week it’s been – a fabulous trip to Marbella in Andalusia, Spain, with Mum for a week, relaxing and chilling out.  we spent most of our time wining, dining and watching the world go by in cafes and restaurants!


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The walls of the old town in Marbella are covered in beautiful pots and climbers – geraniums, bougainvillea in vibrant pinks, reds and purples.  The Moorish influences and winding alleys with restaurants, shops and apartments are absolutely fascinating.  We spent most of our time here rather than the seafront.



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Everywhere there was music and dance – a dance festival was running all week and most of the events were free and on the street.

As a self-confessed geek I could not, however, believe my luck on our first full day.  We were sitting in a cafe having a croissant and fresh orange juice, and an orchestra sounded up on the bandstand opposite.  Within two notes I squealed in poor Mum’s ear – “it’s Star Wars!”

Those in the UK will remember the TV Show “Name That Tune” will appreciate it when I say – I name that tune in two!  The first two notes of the piece when Luke Skywalker is looking out at two of the moons of Tatooine is apparently called Binary Sunset (starts at about 00:30 on this version) and is a beautiful piece of music.  I had to get the bill pronto and dash across the street to catch them complete a medley of all of the Star Wars music.  My belief (slightly controversial, I know!) is that John Williams is the finest composer of all time.






What a wonderful orchestra they were – for the next two hours they played a wide range of music from Mozart and Beethoven to baroque and another of my favourites – Danse Macabre by St Saens (used as the theme tune for the brilliant TV show Jonathan Creek).  The most remarkable thing was that they were the Malaga Provincial Youth Orchestra, and none of them was over 18.

I wholeheartedly recommend Marbella for a holiday, especially out of season, they are so proud of their town and it is kept so clean and there is a high police presence, so you feel pretty safe (main issues seem to be pickpocketing).

I’ll update later in the week with the crafty happenings in Marbella and further gossip!

Happy crafting!