Random thoughts or comments...

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gizzy
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by gizzy » 29 Sep 2014, 15:12

And reading all the things I am still allowed to eat over the next three days, I see it includes "mouse" :D

Just mailed my (baby) brother who is 22 months younger than me to see if there's any family history of what I've got. He has never had it, but it appears he has everything else: COPD, DVT therefore on warfarin, both kidneys failing rather rapidly, diabetic gluces often wildly out of control (he's on insulin) - my dad and our elder brother both died of kidney cancer, don't know if it's related to his condition. Suddenly I feel quite healthy. :roll:

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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Feg » 02 Oct 2014, 22:52

I assume that without information to the contrary Gizzy, you have survived your 'procedure'. Hope you are taking time to recover.

It's is rather quiet here minus a certain gentleman.

I only have one more rehearsal before I make a fool of myself in front of the great and good of Balerno. A week on Saturday, I, and my very able pianist friend, am playing a short-ish selection of pieces as part of Music@The Mill. Luckily, the assembled crowd will be partaking of refreshment whilst we play so I am hoping that the home-baking is better than my attempts at Chanson du Matin et al.

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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by gizzy » 03 Oct 2014, 13:34

Feg wrote:I assume that without information to the contrary Gizzy, you have survived your 'procedure'. Hope you are taking time to recover.
It was a piece of cake - stayed awake in spite of the sedative and chatted and watched my guts on the monitor but they didn't find anything. which is good news and bad news (so what's causing it. then?)

Home again by midday and just going out to lunch
Feg wrote:It's is rather quiet here minus a certain gentleman.
What's happened to him? Has he unsubbed again?

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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Feg » 03 Oct 2014, 14:13

I'll PM you Gizzy.

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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Gill the Piano » 03 Oct 2014, 17:56

Glad it went well, Gizz. Sorry for my radio silence - damned technology...
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Feg » 08 Oct 2014, 22:31

I had my final run through before Saturday morning's concerty-type thing. Please keep everything crossed that I don't make a total fool of myself :oops: With any luck, the folks will be too busy drinking tea and chatting to pay too close attention to me :)

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dave brum
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 14 Oct 2014, 19:06

I said that I would not post on this page again if I didn't have anything positive to say, but I had a piano lesson today with Mabel.

I was not perfect but I did much better on the SR than I thought I'd do. Mabs told me that it takes years to learn to sight read but in seven months of regular lessons I've come on exceptionally well.

I'm also doing Grade 4 scales, did two last time and I've got another two for next time (Db major, with all the flats and C# minor). That makes 19 scales I'm now playing.

I'm now on book 2 of A Dozen A Day and transposing Part 1 to different major keys. Two Christmas carol tunes (the easy Irby, which I've learned in a week and the slightly more difficult Adeste Fideles, in which I'm as far as, in the sung carol 'Bethlehem') and another new one from CTM2. I only have six more tunes to learn in CTM1, which I'm not doing with Mabel but just tinkering with on my own. I've got some tinkering to do with my last HW piece. Mabs has told me exactly what to do with each piece and scale.

And I've finished the grade 2 theory book, and got plenty of past papers in that grade to do for my next lesson, on the 4th November after half term.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Feg » 14 Oct 2014, 20:44

Well that was a very positive post :D

Your teacher Mabel talks a lot of sense and is obviously the right teacher for you. Sight-reading does take years to perfect and even then, is rarely 100% perfect.

Transposition at the keyboard, now that IS a skill and a half! I vaguely remember doing a lot of it at Uni but that was a very long time ago.

Sounds like you have plenty to occupy you until your next lesson.

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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Gill the Piano » 15 Oct 2014, 15:52

Blimey, yes - transposition is horrible, and I'd never do it in public, matron...
Mabel is very sensible and she sounds as though she knows exactly what you're capable of, Dave. Keep on keeping on!
Feg, you'll be fine. Don't forget to let us know how it went!
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Feg » 15 Oct 2014, 17:30

Gill the Piano wrote: Feg, you'll be fine. Don't forget to let us know how it went!
I survived! My middle name must be Gloria :) I did enjoy myself and so did my pianist friend Irene. I have resolved to actually do regular violin practice from now on - I had forgotten that I can actually play quite well.

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dave brum
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 17 Oct 2014, 13:53

More positive news. I am back at my old job from next Friday.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Gill the Piano » 17 Oct 2014, 17:30

Hooray! You have to brew up a fantabulous display to mark your triumphant return. Who's it going to be?
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dave brum
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 17 Oct 2014, 18:09

I have a whole shelf full of boxed CD sets (good labels, including complete Fidelio) and DG/EMI releases I can get a few quid for. I also have one and a half boxes of mainly piano music and although I didn't have a chance to shufty through the whole lot, there were some collectors items in there. The fact is that it just hasn't been done since I left apart from one Beatles piano book and a complete redesign is called for, two extra shelves to accommodate it all.

Christmas music will go on the classical music section and come mid-November, space will have to be made for that too.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 18 Oct 2014, 14:25

I'm now on my 3rd Christmas carol, which is hymn tune Winchester Old, so it's a nice easy one to have in one's festive repertoire. Like Bethlehem, no Nowell in easy play form. But I do have the Carol of the Figgy Pudding I could take on for no4.

I hope I have a chance to actually play these carols to some unsuspecting folk.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Gill the Piano » 18 Oct 2014, 16:15

Do you still have a go on the keep fit piano?
If you have easy carol books put them out now; the teachers are starting them now ready to hear them every day between now & crimbo. I love Christmas but that might just do my head in.
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dave brum
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 18 Oct 2014, 16:52

There are one or two seasonal carol books in the two 'Xmas' boxes that got sorted throughout the year, or were left overs from last year. I still play at keep fit even though I'm often told to shut up by some.

I am forced to do very limited piano practice on Monday, just scales SR and HW tune as we are off to have fun with some Loiners, hopefully.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Gill the Piano » 19 Oct 2014, 17:30

Loiners? Brummie line dancers? Butchers? Give up.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 19 Oct 2014, 17:48

The world's unluckiest piano learner, quite possibly.

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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Gill the Piano » 19 Oct 2014, 18:32

That's my new fact for the day then!
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by chrisw » 19 Oct 2014, 19:34

The full expression is "Leeds Loiners" as per the reference to Briggate in the wiki defintion. Briggate was the main thoroughfare through the city centre. My aunt used the expression many times.

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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 19 Oct 2014, 19:53

If you are familiar with the music of the Kaiser Chiefs (from Yorkshire) one of their songs carry the line 'never would happen to Smeaton, an old Leodensian', Leodensian being another generic term for Leeds citizens. However Loiner is more commonly used.

I remember Richard Whiteley many many years ago talking of the history of Briggate on TV, it was quite interesting. Will be taking a walk down Briggate, The Headrow, Vicar Lane, Lands Lane and down t'Calls tomorrow!
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by gizzy » 19 Oct 2014, 21:33

Welcome back, Dave! Sorry I've been a bit silent, folks, very tired with trying to cope with my guts. I think I've worked out what it is but will go to see the doctor this week some time to see if he thinks the same thing (because the endoscopy thing was completely clear but nothing has changed). Also I need to ask him about kidneys since my baby brother told me he had chronic kidney disease and I know my last blood test showed mine as "no longer perfect" but I wasn't told anything more specific. My CT scan showed up a couple of little things which they thought were "of no importance" like a nodule on an adrenal gland, and an ovarian cyst that I am having looked at (listened to?) with ultrasound tomorrow.

Dave, all your news is wonderful. Glad you're enjoying ADAD2 - that first one I think separates the men from the boys, as I try people out on it and they usually start quite fast on the crotchets and just speed up a bit for the quavers and a bit more for the semiquavers. I'm sure you don't do that! I like to get them to say caterpillar caterpillar on the semis, as they can then say caterpillar for each crotchet, and cat-pill- for the quavers.

One of my adult pupils brought in a s/r book by John Kember (published by Schott) and I liked it so much that I bought it and its follow-up book. They are very carefully progressed and what makes them different from most s/r exercises is that they are very nice little pieces and make you want to go back and play them another couple of times.

We're off next Monday (27th) on a train down to the south of France (nice!) in a hare-brained scheme of mine to celebrate Robin's retirement (or "twice as much husband and half as much money" as one friend calls it) and a couple of days after that we pick up Gertie the labradoodle and bring her home to meet Gizzy (with a capital G, the feline one) who will probably run away (we're still trying to to work out how to do that). Gertie looks like an Andrex puppy at the moment.

More later; soooo tired and trying to edit videos I recorded on Friday so that I can upload them for my kids

Speaking of "my kids" - not my pupils but daughters this time, both of mine are in late 30s and both want kids but have been dragging their feet - d#1 just told me she's come off the pill. Early days yet, but I could be changing my username to Nanna over the nest year or so :D

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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 26 Oct 2014, 20:58

Quick update:

(Almost) learned my two new scales Db major (five flats) and C#minor (four sharps and sharpened B). Having to go over them several times over the past couple of weeks in the oddest of places and practice the fingerings on my lap whenever.

Dozen A Day book 2, transposing quite difficult, especially on home-dominant 7th-home exercises but I'm almost on top of it for next lesson.

Slow progress with the carols but now up to last 'O come let us.....' of Adeste Fideles. Not touched Winchester Old yet.

Now on the last line of Italian Song, my HW piece. There's a tricky couple of bars of quavers involving white and black notes, including an accidental G# that I'm practising repeatedly.

Repertoire pieces getting slightly easier every time I revisit them. Sometimes my practice can last an hour but I am finding that I make more progress if I spend LESS time at the piano, this morning after practice I made two Christmas puddings which took me ages and after popping upstairs and 'shaking hands with the vicar', I went through as much of the Italian Song as I knew. Perfect!

Missing Mabel something chronic, still another 9 days to finish off my HW and carol. And I'm back at the bookshop. I am now responsible for classical vinyl as well as classical CDs, sheet music and music books.

Did anybody spot anything negative??

***Monday update*** Winchester Old started.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Feg » 27 Oct 2014, 11:00

Nope, you're getting the hang of this positive posting lark :D

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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 27 Oct 2014, 13:38

Here are the scales I know at present:

Sharp major: G D A E B
Sharp minor: E B C# G#
Flat major: F Bb Eb Ab Db
Flat minor: D G C

and of course C major and A minor which makes a total of 19. One notable absence is F# minor (###) I suppose I'll get that next week. The relatives of Ab and Db majors, which using the three semitone rule would be F and Bb minors I've not yet come across.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Gill the Piano » 28 Oct 2014, 17:26

You're so good doing all these scales. And it really will pay off later because when you meet scale runs in Clementi sonatinas and so on you'll be halfway there before you even start!
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 28 Oct 2014, 17:39

There's a good A major scale run in the Schubert Waltz in CTM 2 I may have to play next Tuesday. I think I can safely put Adeste Fideles under my belt now, so that should be three carols I can play at Mabs' adult learners Christmas party, if she has one this year. I'd like to have a go at playing them elsewhere as well as mine Mabs and Keep Fit pianos.
Last edited by dave brum on 28 Oct 2014, 22:29, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 28 Oct 2014, 22:28

Sailing through Winchester Old/While Shepherds Washed Their Socks. In fact, not being totally anti modern carols I think the Sock Washing carol should be updated to 'the Angel of the Lord came down and switched to Sky Sports 3' rather than ITV.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 28 Oct 2014, 22:33

Here's a thought. I seem to be using quite a bit of handcream before I play as I have dry hands that can sometimes slip off the keys. A tiny bit of moisture gives me traction on the keys. That said, the piano at Keep Fit has bone dry keys and usually by the time I get up there my hands are bone dry too,

I shall have to start taking a little more care of my hands now.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Gill the Piano » 29 Oct 2014, 16:08

Not something I ever thought about; mine is the opposite problem as I leave greasy fingerprints on high gloss black pianos...I'm forever using my t shirt to wipe them off! Whatever works for you and makes life easier, go with it.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 29 Oct 2014, 16:32

Well I still have a glut of unused hand cream left over from Christmas 2012.

Now I've done all the g2 theory I can do. We're going to Nottingham in mid November so they may still have some old theory papers for 50p a go in Musicroom that I cleared out of g1 papers a few months ago. I need lots and lots of grist for the music theory mill.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Gill the Piano » 30 Oct 2014, 16:52

Are there any sites online for theory tests?
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 30 Oct 2014, 17:10

I don't know, there has to be some around somewhere. Possibly on musicteachers.co.uk, there are loads of free resources on there. Well there were last time I looked.

The old cheap grotty sounding keyboard I have in the conservatory I use to do scales practice on while I'm cooking the dinner may have to be replaced soon as now I'm using it to do homework pieces on and it isn't really designed for serious use. Even its organ 'tone' doesn't even sound like an organ and beyond a compass of around 20 semitones in the midrange, it's virtually unuseable as a piano practice tool. But replacing it is not on my to do list right now. I think I'll be needing a record player soon to listen to all this classical vinyl I'm now responsible for at Oxfam.

Do you know yet where you will be playing on Christmas Day, Gill??
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Gill the Piano » 31 Oct 2014, 18:48

Moot point. They're trying to change my usual gigs and I don't want them to.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 01 Nov 2014, 15:35

So I now have almost three carols under my belt now, well in time for Christmas, with Winchester Old I'm up to the beginning of the fourth line now. I was going to leave it at three for this year unless I'm lucky enough to find easy play famous carols I may have that I don't know the hymn tune title of.

I said about Bethlehem, First Nowell and Cranham, but The Boars Head carol would be a plum pudding pelter to learn....
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 01 Nov 2014, 16:46

So here we are with some breaking news. Found an easy play version of Bethlehem but under the title of 'Mendelssohn', its composer. Recognised it from its metre, a long line of sevens - and have made a start, making this Carol No.4. I've also found Haydn's Austria, which would be a sure fire way to end an organist's career if played next (i.e Remembrance) Sunday.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 01 Nov 2014, 16:55

Took me long enuff to upload this but here it is, Me on stage at the Leeds International Piano Competition 2014 on October 20th. Unfortunately I was eleven months too early and nobody had prepared the Steinway....
P1050070.JPG
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Gill the Piano » 01 Nov 2014, 17:38

I've only ever known it as Mendelssohn, Not that I tend to know the names of tunes really - we're just given numbers as a rule and only look for tune names if there's a vicar who wants a specific one - I know 'Nottingham' because it's always specifically asked for and not included in a lot of hymn books for some reason.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 01 Nov 2014, 18:21

I suppose that would be easier for you, so long as you know which book it is the numbers are from!

I should also disclose that I have been asked by Shazia (the manager of my bookshop) to play some carols in the shop at the late night Christmas shopping event in Moseley next month. On my keyboard?? Its piano and organ tones sound nothing like a piano and organ.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Gill the Piano » 03 Nov 2014, 18:40

But yer average punter won't realise that. Only the cognoscenti like you who have encountered the Real Thing up close & personal! Are you going to do it? You should have a good repertoire by then.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 03 Nov 2014, 18:50

It sounds like a cat being strangled (sorry Sophie, Sarah etc) and it really is not the sort of thing one would want to showcase one's talents on in public. If I can get another keyboard, I'd be happy to do it if it'll get a few souls in the shop.

Maybe Mabel might be able to help me. Its my lesson tomorrow after 3 weeks of waiting patiently - hopefully she'll be off the zimmer frame she's been on since July.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Gill the Piano » 04 Nov 2014, 19:35

Keep an eye on Freecycle, Gumtree etc. Amazing what people get rid of!
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 04 Nov 2014, 22:24

So some main points from my piano lesson:

1. No new scales to do, so she says I am now right up to g4 with them. I am now doing double octave arpeggios, starting with C and G major and minor

2. Theory. I'm to get the grade 3 workbook.

3. I'm also to look out for CTM 3 (even though I'm only playing 9 pieces from CTM2)

4. Another newish piece for HW that's full of SQs. She thinks the carols I'm playing (Hymn Tunes For The Reluctant Organist) are too hard to think about doing in public at the shop, she's showed me an easier carol book by Eleanor Franklin Pike that has both American songs and European carols in easy two part form, and sight reading Away In A Manger got her congratulations as, even though I made a few thingy-ups, I KEPT GOING without either cussing or crossing myself!

Next lesson on the 18th.
So that's a nice big order from Opus 13 then!
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Gill the Piano » 05 Nov 2014, 16:29

That EFP book is brilliant. Been around for years and never really been bettered.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 05 Nov 2014, 17:00

I've got a few of them (picked up one in Marlow last August) but not the Christmas one. And it's not on Oxfam online shop either. Time for some googling and possibly faraging.
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by gizzy » 06 Nov 2014, 11:29

dave brum wrote: The Boars Head carol
And spoonerised, that would be...? :D

(naughty naughty)

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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 06 Nov 2014, 14:06

gizzy wrote:
dave brum wrote: The Boars Head carol
And spoonerised, that would be...? :D

(naughty naughty)
Quot estis in convivio indeed, Lin!
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 08 Nov 2014, 14:01

Quick progress report, Up to 'mild' on carol Mendelssohn/Bethlehem, coming along rapidly with my HW piece (having only one enables me to move quicker) and have ordered g3 theory stuff, CTM3 and the EFP carol book on Amazon (the online bookstore not the gladiative television athlete)
The world's unluckiest piano learner, quite possibly.

Gill the Piano
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by Gill the Piano » 08 Nov 2014, 14:43

And just to make sure you have enough to do, The BHC is on its way.
I play for my own amazement... :piano;

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dave brum
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Re: Random thoughts or comments...

Post by dave brum » 08 Nov 2014, 14:58

Thanks for that in advance, Gill. Don't forget to have a nice bowl of Readybrek in the morning. Any gastric grumbles during the 'two minutes silence' will be met with possible court martial :mrgreen:

oh, and for a bit of fun, I've taken to playing 'have a banana' cadences on the end of my carols. Just to curry favour with my Cockney wife!
The world's unluckiest piano learner, quite possibly.

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