Sunday, 29 June 2014

Acoustic Spectrum playlist 30 June

Tomorrow's show has just gone out on Acoustic Spectrum. I've no idea why. It isn't normally broadcast on a Sunday - at least I don't think it is! I can only guess that they must have scheduled my show by mistake instead of Under The Mason's Apron which usually goes out on Sundays at 1pm. Anyway here's the playlist...

Steve Knightley - The Girl From The North Country
Gillian Welch - The Way That It Goes
The Coaltown Daisies - It's Better This Way
John Coletta - The First Dance
Tiny Tin Lady - In My Room
Ottersgear - Down in the Faery Glen
Ultan Conlon - Lonely Avenues
Jo Philby - The Maid on the Shore
Gillian Welch - Tennessee
John Renbourne - Judy
Judy Dyble - Head Full of Stars
Rob Heron & The Tea Pad Orchestra - Junk on the Radio
Michael Chapman - Waiting For A Train
Twelfth Day - Magic Circles

The featured album is The 'Harrow and The Harvest' by Gillian Welch.

The Folk & Acoustic Music Show
Mondays at 9pm / Tuesdays at 2am 
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Monday, 23 June 2014

Acoustic Spectrum playlist 23 June

The featured album on tonight's show is 'The Devil Makes Three' by Twelfth Day. If you'd like to read about them and their new cd there's an article on Folk Radio UK 

The Eagles - Peaceful Easy Feeling
Twelfth Day - Young Sir
Drew Holcombe & The Neighbours - Good Light
Cara Dillon - Shotgun Down The Avalanche
Tumbling Bones - How They're Rolling
Jamie Smith's Mabon - Summer's Lament
Patsy Matheson - Not The One
Gilmore & Roberts - Letters
VAMM - Better Days
Twelfth Day - The Devil Makes Three
The Tillers - I Gotta Move
Ponies - Begin Again, Again
The High Ones - Get Your ball in the Net

Tune in at at 9pm on Acoustic Spectrum radio

Monday, 16 June 2014

The Joy of Interviews

Job interviews don't get any easier the older you get, do they? I have one coming up later this week and I can't say I'm really looking forward to it. Not only is there the interview itself but there is also a task I have to do beforehand. And it brings back some bad memories. In particular one unpleasant experience I had at a Scottish university ten or eleven years ago. The job was for an IT technician and the task I had to do involved putting together some audio-visual equipment. I had very little experience of this and from the array of cables on the table in front of me I only recognised a couple so chose them and we moved on to the interview.

I don't remember much about the questions I was asked that day but I do remember leaving the university feeling utterly dejected. They managed to make me feel like I knew very little about computers despite me having close on 15 years experience. It was really quite humiliating and I decided there and then that I was not going to apply for any more IT jobs. I'd had enough. In the months leading up to me leaving my previous job, also in Higher Education, I had come to the conclusion that IT was a young person's game, especially working as a technician. Could I really see myself in 10 or 15 years time still crawling about under desks plugging in network cables? No I couldn't.

But here I am ten years later applying for an IT job and I've been offered an interview. I suppose there isn't so much crawling about under desks these days what with wi-fi technology and people of all ages use computers so what does it matter how old I am?

With less than three days to go I am getting more and more nervous but I suppose the other candidates are probably feeling the same. At least they are interviewing us seperately - it isn't one of those awful scenarios where all the candidates are in a room together and you have to take part in some team-building exercise. I think I'd rather have my teeth drilled without anaesthetic than have to go through that sort of thing.

If someone had come up with an alternative to the traditional interview I suppose it would have been adopted by now. But the thing is that in the same way that some people are good at doing exams, some people come over very well at interviews though this is not always an accurate reflection of what they are actually like. I remember hearing of an accountant who was very cheerful and chatty at his interview and was offered the job but when he started work he was like a completely different person. He hardly ever smiled and all the office staff found him difficult to work with. He also had quite bad BO which he had managed to hide at the interview.

So interviews are far from perfect and employing anyone just on the basis of a 30 minute question and answer session must be a gamble for any employer. At least with this job I took them up on the offer of a tour of the premises so they have already met me and I have an idea of what the workplace is like.

I suppose all anyone can do under these circumstances is...

Acoustic Spectrum playlist 16th June

I'm not much of a football fan but I thought I'd see if I could find some songs which could tie in with the World Cup. It's also nice to take a break from the new releases and play some old stuff from time to time so I hope you enjoy this playlist which will be broadcast at 9pm on Acoustic Spectrum.

The web address for Acoustic Spectrum has changed due to the fact that the company which was hosting the site suddenly increased the amount they were charging so AS have moved elsewhere. The new address is (the old one without the hyphen) which temporarily takes you to the Red Dragon Records web site. I've been told that a new site is being developed. So on tonight's show...

Merry Hell - One More Day
Kirsty MacColl - England 2 Columbia 0
Marc Nellis - Bottle Song
Angie Palmer - Premonition Blues
Martin Stephenson - Highland Bossanova
Kelly Oliver - Brazil Song
Billy Bragg - Moving the Goalposts
Jez Lowe & The Bad Pennies - It's a Champion Life
Fairport Convention - Don't Leave Too Soon
Richard Thompson - Can't Win
Steeleye Span - Hard Times Of Old England
Scold's Bridle - We Are The Women
Kate Bush - Oh England My Lionheart
Show of Hands - Cousin Jack

The Folk & Acoustic Music Show
Mondays at 9pm / Tuesdays at 2am
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Monday, 9 June 2014

Acoustic Spectrum playlist 9th June

I don't know if Rik Mayall shared his friend Ade Edmondson's taste in music but I'll dedicate tonight's show to him anyway as I was a fan of all his stuff and saw him twice on stage, once in Bottom and the other time in The New Statesman. One of the comedy greats of my generation gone too soon. RIP Rik.

Barbara Dickson & Rab Noakes - Do Right Woman
John Coletta - Easy Liars
Hannah Aldridge - Strand of Pearls
Mishaped Pearls - Six Dukes
Neil Young - Comes A Time
Damian Helliwell - The Slovenian
Megson - Old Folk's Tea
Darwin Song Project - The Merchant's Question
Ultan Conlon - The River Flows & The Woods Creep
Kaela Rowan - Naive Melody
John Coletta - The Putty Pickers
Drew Holcomb & The Neighbors - Can't Take It With You
Catherine MacLellan - Snowbird
Pauline Vallance - Lark in the Clear Air

The featured album is "Sleekit, Slivers" by John Coletta.

The Folk & Acoustic Music Show
Mondays at 9pm / Tuesdays at 2am
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Monday, 2 June 2014

Acoustic Spectrum playlist 2nd June

I've received my copy of Cara Dillon's new album 'A Thousand Hearts', which you can order from her web site, so there will be two tracks from that and a couple of songs from her earlier albums. Tune in at 9pm tonight on Acoustic Spectrum radio.

Cara Dillon - Black is the Colour
Kris Drever, Eamonn Coyne & Megan Henderson - Parcel of Rogues
Calum Stewart & Heikke Bougault - Schottishe Kerlou
Hat Fitz & Cara Robinson - Sister Sister
Simon & Garfunkle - Homeward Bound
Cara Dillon - River Run
Cara Dillon - Bright Morning Star
James Yorkston - Woozy with Cider
KT Tunstall - Miniature Disasters
Stephen Stills - So Begins The Task
Crosby, Stills and Nash - Helplessly Hoping
Cara Dillon - Broken Bridges
Christy Moore - North and South
Breabach - Orangedale Whistle

The Folk & Acoustic Music Show
Mondays at 9pm / Tuesdays at 2am
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I'll be playing the live version of this Christy Moore song -