Friday, May 26, 2023

MEETING LOCAL HISTORY FRIENDS TOMORROW AT HUTTON TEMPORARY LIBRARY FOR 'LOVE YOUR LIBRARY DAY' CELEBRATION

 


Brentwood High Street during the 1950s. 




NATASHA INVITES YOU TO THE CHICKEN AND FROG BOOKSHOP IN CROWN STREET, BRENTWOOD


Reading and writing are of immense interest and value to us all and how much we love our libraries and bookshops here in Brentwood, Essex.

Our friend and supporter of PhoenixFM radio is the lovely Natasha Radford who works so hard in helping youngsters with reading and all things related. She sells every type of reading material for youngsters and organises regular activities, particularly during school holidays.

 Very popular are Natasha's  'meet the author' events in her shop in Crown Street, Brentwood. Over the next few months, she has organised a trio of great events for adults coming up - do take a look. Full details can be found on Natasha's website and pop in to see her and her staff : https://chickenandfrog.com/events

Sunday, May 21, 2023

THE NOVELIST MARTIN AMIS DIED ON FRIDAY - A VERY SAD DAY

So sad to hear of the death of Martin Amis - I have always enjoyed reading his books and that of his father, Sir Kingsley Amis (1922-1995) who wrote 'Lucky Jim', which I also read many years ago. 

I was so lucky to meet Martin in the queue to be security  police-searched in a previous visit to the House of Lords where ALCS had invited members for one of their summer parties on the terrace.  I queued up behind Martin and we had a good chat (his voice was unexpectedly deep!) about his memoir and my work as archivist to the Society of Women Writers and Journalists (founded in 1894). I believe his stepmother Elizabeth Jane Howard had a speaking connection with our Society. She was also one of my favourite authors. 

 Martin Amis published 15 novels and is best known for his books Money: A Suicide Note and London Fields.

"We are devastated at the death of our author and friend, Martin Amis: novelist, essayist, memoirist, critic, stylist supreme," his publisher Vintage Books said.

Thursday, May 18, 2023

FULL STEAM AHEAD FOR THIS YEAR'S ESSEX BOOK FESTIVAL www.essexbookfestival.2023

 

A book that demands to be read...

Festival Director Ros Green always says that the mark of a good book for her is a book that wakes her up in the middle of the night demanding to be read. These are far and few between, however, one book that recently refused to be put down was James Canton's Grounded.
When James, author of The Oak Papers, walked into Suffolk's Lindsey Chapel, it was the beginning of what would become a new journey in his life. Standing inside the quaint chapel, he realised that his past city yearnings had been replaced by an intense desire to understand the place he now called "home", a burning curiosity about the past and the spiritual ways and belief of the people who came before us. 
The excellent news is that James will be sharing his journey as part of our special The Pleasure Garden day at Hylands House on Sunday 18th June.  You might like to join us for that one! As Peter Wohlleben, author of the Hidden Life of Trees writes, "Canton's writing has an exquisite, somewhat dreamlike quality".
Win Tickets to James Canton, Grounded
We can offer two free places at James Canton, Grounded for the first person to email us with the phrase:
"History and meaning is encoded into the lands and places we live."
Email the phrase to hello@essexbookfestival.org.uk.
Book Tickets for The Pleasure Garden day events

Monday, May 08, 2023

CORONATION TALES - AFTERGLOW - THANKS TO EVERYONE INVOLVED IN THIS WEEKEND'S CELEBRATIONS


 
What a wonderful weekend - despite the rain - now working on articles linked to our King and Queen's big day.  Also, we caught glimpses of our president of our Society of Women Writers and Journalists, Floella, Baroness Benjamin of Beckenham.  What a wonderful day we all enjoyed. 



Thursday, May 04, 2023

70 YEARS LATER! THIS IS THE SOUVENIR BOOK THAT ALL ESSEX SCHOOLCHILDREN RECEIVED 1953

 

 So strange and unexpected to come across this slim little book that was issued to all Essex children during the period of our late Queen Elizabeth's special coronation day in June 1953.  Despite seventeen months of arduous perfect planning by the then government and royal family, the June weather just couldn't be controlled and we all became very cold and wet. 

Nevertheless, those who went to London on that day, even sleeping overnight along the Mall, have never forgotten this amazing occasion.  More to come - watch this space. 

Tuesday, May 02, 2023

MEET MICHELLE WARD - SUPER PRESENTER AT BRENTWOOD'S PHOENIX FM


                       Michelle Ward - popular presenter - Phoenix FM, Brentwood

I’ve always been interested in radio and enjoy having connections with many different forms from large BBC stations in the UK to local community and hospital radio. Voices are vital in this medium and the business of being a good radio presenter seems not an easy one. So, how lucky as I am in knowing Michelle Ward, one of Phoenix FM’s most popular presenters. When interviewed, Michelle outlined her professional life to date.

 “I knew Paul Golder, (Phoenix FM owner) before I worked on Phoenix FM. At the time I was running a recording studio in London and our paths crossed because of music. After the studio closed I moved to Dublin for five years. When I came back I was not sure what I wanted to do. Paul suggested I come and do some advertising sales for Phoenix FM, so I did. After a few months the Saturday mid-morning show came up and I fell into it. I remember being so nervous, my voice was shaking on that first broadcast. I did that for a year and then Eat my Brunch, which was a five day a week slot, became available and Paul asked me if I'd like to be the new presenter. I said yes and I have been on daytime radio now since 2012. 

"The show is a mixture of charts, classic tracks, independent music (which I am very passionate about being a musician myself), guest interviews, topical news, lots of interaction from listeners. It's funny, quirky, serious and everything in between. Phoenix FM Community Radio is now, in my opinion, one of the best Community Radio Stations in the Country. The amount of shows, presenters, content, guest interviews, website listen again hits are phenomenal. There really is something for everyone. We have all the regular features you'd expect from a BBC or Commercially run radio station, News, Weather, Travel, Sports Shows, Daytime Radio, Weekend Shows, Arts Show and many specialist music shows to name but a few! We have a fair share of celebrities, too, with Vicki Michelle (currently in Eastenders and of Hello Hello fame), Steve Davis (Snooker Legend and now festival DJ), Bell & Spurling who also feature weekly on Talking Pints (GB NEWS) and Ronnie Ronnie 'Sullivan OBE. Some of our presenters have gone on to shows on BBC Essex, BBC and Capital. 

"I start the show at 10am. It's a three hour show, five days a week. I start preparing at 8am, I often produce a video for my socials, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Tik Tok. Socials take a lot of time and endless tagging! You have to self promote continually. This lets people know what is coming up and if I am playing new music I tag in the artists. If I have an interview, I prepare the interview questions. I am always trying to ask interesting questions. It's been said that I keep the nervous guests calm. Everyone walks away feeling great after an interview. I talk to people off air first to relax them. When you're talking about a subject you're passionate about, the words flow easy. People are surprised at how quickly time flies by. If I interview writers, actors, local charities, local business, Council, musicians or a celebrity, each guest feels I have taken the time to get to know them and take an interest in what they do. It's connecting with people. 

"I produce my show, there is only me in the studio. I edit all my own interviews and upload the Phoenix FM website. Most guests live in the studio although I do use Zoom depending on where guests are based.

                                                        MUSIC

I put out my debut EP DIRECTIONS, late last year and it was well received. I had some good reviews too. It's out there now on Spotify, Apple Music, Amazing Radio and physical copies too (CD's available signed). I was surprised so many purchased my EP. I felt almost famous signing my name (not so much the trips to the post office). 

 I write soul, jazz, reggae, folk, neo soul inspired music. I love to duet on Tik Tok too. I spend as much time as I can in the recording studio with ED ROME (who is a talented Producer, Songwriter and multi instrumentalist). I met ED through THE CONDRIACS (who are doing incredible well as independent artists with over 116k followers, patrons, YouTube live shows). I met them at Phoenix FM, Their first radio interview was with me. We became friends and I have worked with them for many years on different tracks with backing vocal arrangements. They also appear on my EP on the track TWISTING THE KNIFE which is a duet. Tony, Pete and Ed feature in the video too. We work so well together. 

 My plan is to release more music this year, keep building my online presence and push forward with more content, more interviews and more music releases! 

 Radio changed my life, it gave me confidence to speak, it gave me a great social network and many amazing friends. It made me passionate about music again. 

 If you're reading this and you want to find out more, all my socials are here. A click or a like on any of my socials means a great deal and it helps me to continue to produce radio and music and it costs you nothing :) 

 As in the voice over sent in by listener Anver Anderson "I love local radio because its radio and its local". :)

HOW TO TUNE IN TO THE RADIO SHOW

Tune in weekdays 10am -  1pm www.phoenixfm.com/listen-live

Or shout at Alexa or Google "TUNE IN TO PHOENIX FM"

 SOCIALS

Facebook MY MUSIC PAGE (3) Michelle Ward Music | Facebook

Facebook RADIO SHOW Eat my Brunch 10am - 1pm weekdays (facebook.com)

 Instagram Michelle Ward (@michellewardmusic) • Instagram photos and videos

Instagram Michelle Ward (@eatmybrunchradioshow) | Instagram

Twitter Michelle Ward (@EatmyBrunch) / Twitter

Twitter Michelle Ward (@luckybitches) / Twitter

Tik Tok Michelle (@luckybitches) | TikTok 

ALL MY SOCIALS can be found here under michellewardmusic | Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, TikTok | Linktree