Monthly Archives: November 2014

Acker Goes To The Far Shore

When my father died, we played his favourite jazz song (if it can be called that) at his funeral rather than classical music, for which he had no ear. The track was ‘Stranger On The Shore’ by Acker Bilk. Born Bernard Stanley Bilk on 28 January 1929, he changed his stage name to ‘Acker’ – the […]

Re:View – ‘The Wind Rises’

Put two men in a room and they’ll eventually talk about drainage. We like discussing the nuts and bolts of invention, and to that extent ‘The Wind Rises’ could be called a boys’ film. But it is also achingly beautiful, surreal, fragile. I first fell in love with the work of Miyazaki Hayao, animation director […]

An Autumn Abundance

  After the relative doldrums of summer, London always goes a bit barmy in autumn. Not that we’ve had such a season so far this year, with temperatures in Central London hitting summer peaks as late as November. But in the evenings mists are now rolling in from the river, and there’s a hint of […]

Almost As Good As The Real Thing

The BBC gets a lot of stick about what it saved from the postwar years and what it wiped, but back then it was hard to know what would stand the test of time. They kept many Shakespearian productions which have often weathered badly and threw away daily ephemera, much of which is now fascinating […]

The Clickbait Journalism That Went Too Far

Perhaps it started with the Sunday Times. The newspaper’s brilliant Insight team brought genuine scoops from the uncovering of Soviet defector Kim Philly’s role in MI6 to the thalidomide scandal and its links with Haig whisky, who revealed Israel’s secret manufacture of nuclear weapons and, recently, the FIFA cash-for-votes scandal, but after Rupert Murdoch acquired it in 1981 much of […]