Posts tagged ‘The Beatles’

Time!

Ciao Bloggisti!

I never thought I’d quote Steve Miller (the bane of my university years) but “time keeps on slippin’, slippin’, slippin’ into the future”. I can’t believe it’s already November and that my little girl is already two months old and my “big” girl just turned seven!

For the last few weeks “time” has been on my mind: the lack of, the speed of, the wasting of, the quality of, etc.

I’ve also been pondering how best to reconcile my need to write with my überbusy existence). Yes, I’m getting used to life with three kiddos but I still have the urge to create things other than babies and clutter. I’d also like to communicate in some way with the outside world because I’m cooped up at home most of the time. But how to do it in between feedings, laundry and sleeping?

The only thing I could think of that would best fit my schedule is a point-form list of what I’m doing, thinking about, reading, etc., because world wants to know! Ideally I’d like to post one every day but, come on, we all know how prolific a writer I’ve been lately 😉 I’m also going to write traditional posts (god willing!) from time to time so this new system isn’t set in stone.

Ok, here we go!

What I’m watching: My current obsession is the American version of The Office. I can’t get enough of it and I’m trying to control how many episodes I watch per day because I don’t want it to end! I have Seasons 1-5 (thanks Sue!). I was a huge fan of the UK Office and was doubtful I’d enjoy the US version but I was so wrong. The writers and actors have done a superb job with each and every one of the characters. Maybe in some twisted way it reminds me of work and is a way for me to “escape” to the office every day.

Music of the day: yesterday I enforced a No TV day and played CDs instead. A little bit of Schubert and Vivaldi but my favourite was The Beatles White Album. Perfect for a rainy day, or any day for that matter. That time spent in Rishikesh did them good. It has a bit of everything and will never let you down (well, except for Yoko’s screaming in Revolution #9. It scared the baby.).

Best read of the day: this is actually from a few days ago but I happened to read it now. I had no idea the Japanese were this crazy for doughnuts. They sound like my kind of people!

What I’m eating: I just polished off a heaping plate of spaghetti with sugo di stufato d’asino. That’s just a fancy way of saying “stewed donkey meat sauce”. I know, it doesn’t sound as good in English but let me assure you, it was yum. Oh, and last night the hubster made a divine risotto alla zucca, or pumpkin risotto. He also cooked his famous frittata, this time with turnip tops (cime di rapa). And thank god I can have a glass of wine from time to time because tonight we’re going to open up a bottle of San Colombano, the only DOC wine produced in the province of Milan.

Best moment of the day: Baby and Diggy “talking” to each other. She was even laughing a little bit. So sweet!

Worst moment of the day: My kids overhearing the expression “bunga bunga” and giddily repeating it over and over again. Cringe cringe cringe.

Well, this turned out to be longer than I thought. But it was fun!

Will I keep up with it? Only time will tell.

2 November 2010 at 3:53 pm 3 comments

Here come the sons!

Ciao Bloggisti!

Big news everyone!! As you know, I’m a Beatlemaniac so when I read this article (courtesy of Abbey Rodent), I was so happy I started doing the Pharrell McDonald’s dance in the office:

While a Beatles reunion concert is sadly out of the question, Beatle fans may just get the next best thing: Julian & Sean Lennon, James McCartney, Dhani Harrison, and Zak & Jason Starkey are getting together for a series of concerts this summer.

Calling their outing the ‘Here Comes The Sons’ Tour, the surprising Beatles siblings “reunion” came about when Julian Lennon visited Friar Park, the home of the late George Harrison, at the request of Dhani Harrison and his mother Olivia, Harrison’s widow. Olivia had come across some George Harrison demos which George had intended to send to John Lennon in the months prior to Lennon’s tragic death. Harrison had recorded the demos trying to emulate Lennon’s voice, and decided that the songs were better suited for John. After Lennon’s passing, Harrison shelved the tapes, which were later discovered by Olivia.

Listening to the songs, Olivia also felt the songs needed a Lennon vocal and invited Julian Lennon to Friar Park to hear the demos. Julian listened and liked the songs, but thought that there were some parts that needed a higher, younger vocal register than he could muster. He rang up his half-brother Sean, and emailed an mp3 of a couple of the demos to the youngest Lennon. Both Lennon’s were excited about the songs and arranged to record them at Friar Park with Dhani and Sean doing the guitar parts.

Playbacks of the songs revealed to the young Harrison and Lennon Brothers that some distinctive bass and drum parts were needed. On a hunch, they rang Sir Paul McCartney to see if he might have interest in the project. Sir Paul politely refused, but suggested that perhaps his son, James, might be the man they needed to play bass. James McCartney arrived at the sessions with Zak & Jason Starkey, the sons of Beatles drummer Ringo Starr, who happened to be visiting the McCartney’s in London. The six Beatles siblings then went to work on the Harrison demos, and the finished results so pleased them, they decided that not only would they release the songs, they would also record additional original material for an album release, to be followed by a brief tour of the United States.

At a press conference held at Abbey Road Studios, the Beatles siblings made an official announcement of the tour and album release. “We’re all very excited by the songs”, Dhani Harrison beamed, “Dad really wanted John Lennon to record these songs, and in a way, I feel that we’re honoring his wishes”. “I’m very humbled that Olivia and Dhani asked me to listen to George’s demos”, chimed in Julian Lennon, “and I’m very happy that Sean is onboard this project too. We’ve been talking for years about doing something together, and these songs felt just right for us. And to have Dhani, James, Zak & Jason involved makes this a very special project as well”.

“Our Dads at first were a little leery about us doing this”, said James McCartney , referring to McCartney and Starr, “but after they heard what we put together, they gave us their blessings”.

“It’s funny in a way”, added Zak Starkey, “I’ve played with my Dad, The Who and Oasis, but playing with these guys, who are more or less as much brothers to me as Jason is, I’m really excited at the prospect of going on the road with them”. When asked who came up with the idea of calling the tour ‘Here Comes The Sons 2006′, Dhani Harrison raised his hand. “Guilty!’, he laughed, joined by the other five. “After all, I made the phone call!”, which elicited another round of laughter from the group. The tour kicks off at Irving Plaza in New York City on April 1st. More dates to be announced. Stella McCartney will be designing the stage wear for the group.

I hope the tour makes its way to Italy. That would be a dream come true.

 

Would you go to the Beatle offspring concert? Or do you prefer Offspring? Discuss!

1 April 2009 at 2:42 pm 5 comments

Eating guitar strings

Ciao Bloggisti!
I have to be quick with this post because I’m home sick and so are the kids and they’re finally having a nap, which means I have about 30 minutes to write if I’m lucky. So here goes!
I’ve had guitars on the brain for a while now. As some of you might know, I’m a huge Beatles fan and after watching their Anthology documentary, I got the itch to start learning the guitar again. I half-heartedly began about 20 years ago when my friend Justin (who now happens to be a successful guitar teacher in Manchester) sold me a little acoustic guitar.  But being the impatient and undisciplined teenager that I was, when I didn’t start sounding like a young George Harrison after a month’s playing, I pretty much gave up. But in my old age, I decided to start anew, hoping that my willpower would have built up by now. I convinced to the hubster to buy me a brand new acoustic guitar for my birthday, I bought the Learning Guitar for Dummies book and DVD and now I try and practice when the kids are in bed, praying that my pathetic rendition of Frère Jacques won’t wake them (or the neighbourhood cats) up. It’ll take a while to actually play decently but I’m proud of the callouses on my fingers.
Guitars were also on the menu of the latest restaurant I had the pleasure of dining at in the centre of Milan. Well, to be honest, Da Giannino, L’Angolo d’Abruzzo,  actually served up spaghetti alla chitarra, a square-shaped long pasta made from a stringed tool called chitarra (literally, a guitar). You can read more about this wonderful Abruzzese dish in my pal Joanne’s Frutto della Passione.


(Have to take a quick break. One of the “monkeys” just woke up and is screaming for me.)

(Ok, Monkey #1 now is on the sofa watching cartoons. I’m safe for a few minutes yet!)

Anyway, Jo happened to be at the restaurant with yours truly and raved about how authentic their spaghetti alla chitarra was. And if she says so, it must be true! I also was lucky enough to try the spaghetti in my tris di primi, a sampling of three different types of pasta. As well as the spaghetti, there were giant ravioli called schiaffoni (big slaps!) and little green gnocchi, all fresh, all delish!!
lindas-birthday-2009-028

Tris di primi: spaghetti alla chitarra, schiaffoni and green gnocchetti

Some of my commensali had another speciality from Abruzzo, roasted lamb with potatoes. The meat was fall-off-the-bone tender, flavourful yet not gamey, a result that’s often difficult to achieve when cooking lamb.

lindas-birthday-2009-031

Roasted lamb and potatoes

I, however, opted for one of the dishes I just have to eat whenever we visit our friends in L’Aquila, Arrosticini. They’re succulent skewers of grilled mutton which, traditionally, should be eaten by holding the skewer with your hands and pulling the meat off the stick with your teeth. And that’s exactly what I did! I don’t know about you but I get a visceral pleasure from eating food with my hands, however messy it can be.

lindas-birthday-2009-034

Arrosticini

These arrosticini did not disappoint, all washed down with a house wine (which I failed to note) served in lovely, hand-painted ceramic jugs.

All in all, I was thrilled with my dinner. The food was great, the service fast and very friendly and best of all, it was extremely affordable.  We paid about €25 each, which included pasta, main course, dessert, wine, coffee and some deadly liqueurs. Prices like that are a rarity in Milan. So next time you’re in town and you’re hankering for a taste of Abruzzo , give Giannino a call. And please do call in advance because the place is literally an angolo,  tiny and always, always packed.

Da Giannino – L’angolo d’Abruzzo

Via Rosolino Pilo, 20 – Milano

Phone: +39 02/29.40.65.26

Opening hrs: Tues – Sat 12:00pm – 11:00pm, Sun 12:00pm – 3:00pm

(Phew! I did it! Monkey #2 is still fast asleep. It’s a good blogging day!)

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5 March 2009 at 5:31 pm 4 comments


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