It’s going to be May this week! Not that you’d know by looking out of the window.  You, like me, may be fed up to the back teeth of hearing about GDPR, so I’ve decided to just delete my database and Mailchimp account and won’t be sending out marketing emails anymore! My work blog will still talk about current projects and will offer PR advice, and my inane witterings and updates will stay here.  At the bottom of my marketing emails (long after everyone had stopped reading), I used to talk about what I was reading, watching and listening to. And here it is!

READING

The husband has just bought me a copy of “Coal Black Mornings” by Suede frontman Brett Anderson as he knows how much I love this band. I haven’t told him (my husband, not Brett Anderson), that I read this earlier this month. In one sitting.

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It is a beautifully-written autobiography about Anderson’s pre-fame days, before Suede won any Mercury Prizes and before the release of Dog Man Star, one of my favourite albums of all time. Far from being the posh boy I thought he was, he grew up in dreadful poverty on a council estate with eccentric parents.

Anderson calls it a “book about failure” but it is far from it. It explains everything about their music and their raw, blistering lyrics. There’s no romance or luxury here and when you read about Anderson’s upbringing it explains Suede’s gritty, real lyrics and the classical undertones to their music. It is this incredible musicality that drew me to them in the first place – I remember hearing So Young when I was in sixth form and feeling blown away. As a huge misfit myself, this was a band that I could identify with. Their first two albums are a major part of the soundtrack to my life and they were the first band I ever saw live. He is a phenomenal frontman – so energetic and passionate. And so beautiful….

WATCHING

I came across The Good Place on Netflix by accident and stayed as it has the always-brilliant Ted Danson as the architect of the afterlife and Kirsten Bell, she of the voice of Anna in Frozen in a brightly-coloured afterlife.   Eleanor Shellstrop dies and owing to a mix-up (they think she was a human rights lawyer), turns up in the Good Place in error. What I didn’t realise until a few episodes in is that this ‘Son of a Bench’ was getting a ‘forking’philosophy lesson. (You can’t swear in the Good Place).

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There’s a twist at the end of series one that you’ll see coming, but The Good Place is the first time I’ve ever seen a comedy that has moral philosophy at its heart.  Eleanor is a self-centred, terrible person, but you’ll love her and admire her for trying to get better. Moving into series two, Eleanor has become inspiring. Though she isn’t perfect, she’s fascinating and has inadvertently inspired me to be a better person too.

Listening to:

Emily Barker

Let me know what you’re reading, watching, listening to! @newburymummy

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