Thursday, 6 October 2011


But not through choice!

Susan bought the CD and plays it at every opportunity.

Perhaps a word of explanation to those of you who haven't heard of Joe. He won X-Factor about three or four years which means normally he'd be completely forgotten about by now. However, he went on a show called (I think, I didn't watch it though Susan was a fan)  Popstar To Operastar and won it. Apparently he trashed all the competition, being later revealed that he got more votes than the other singers combined in every show he appeared. To be fair, that is a genuine achievement and the lad really can sing. Oh yes, and he's also local, from South Shields, four miles up the coast from Sunderland. Anyway, the CD above is pretty much based on his winning that and the songs are most light opera or operacised standards.

Me, I just don't get opera. It's not a musical genre I have any appreciation for or understanding of. So for Susan to play this any time she can requires some considerable forbearance on my part as me playing a single guitar chord by Jerry Garcia on a Grateful Dead song causes screams of "Turn that down!" no matter how quiet it is (usually not very to be fair).

She'll even get out of bed at 7.30 in the morning, which is almost unheard of, to switch it on. Which is what she did this morning. She asked me to do it but I refused. Mind you I was in the bath at the time; which is where the title of this post comes in. I've lost rack of how many times I've heard bits of it and I'm getting worried. His version of Somewhere Over The Rainbow with its unusual arrangement (i.e. nothing like either Judy Garland or Eva Cassidy) has actually started sounding not completely hateful to my ears. There's also an Italian-language operacised version of Celine Dion's My Heart Will Go On which might be good if it had been sung in English and de-operacised.

I'm getting ear plugs.

(Aside: Hearing that version of the Dion song made realise I didn't have the original. While it's a bit middle of the road for my taste, there's no doubt it's a brilliantly crafted song and sung beautifully by Ms Dion and it's deceptively difficult to sing causing dozens of singers on X-Factor to fall flat on their faces. So I downloaded it from Amazon about half an hour ago and I'm playing it now. For the fourth time.)

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