Rosebuds From June

As we’re now into July, with all of the usual seasonal weather – dull, damp, dreary – it is time to review what I inflicted on you last month. As always, I’ve borrowed (and slightly adapted) the title for today from a song, which I’ll share with you at the end. I’m guessing this one will be unfamiliar to many, both in style and content – all part of my grand plan to widen your listening!

In total there were ten posts in June, seven of which were music ones, another of which built its theme around a couple of tunes, and two others somehow sneaked in there too. I’ll start with those two interlopers.

Although it wasn’t the first post of the month, an early one was my review of the previous month’s activity: May It Was. I finished it with a beautiful song by Enya, which is well worth hearing now if you missed it the first time, even if you don’t want to read the rest of the post.

The other non-musical post was one of my fledgling series of Saturday Smiles. This was called – rather imaginatively, I thought – Saturday Smiles 2. It gave you a couple of British classics, from Monty Python and The Two Ronnies, a couple of extracts from The Graham Norton Show, in which Greg Davies regaled a couch full of Hollywood A-listers with hysterical stories, and a clip from the cult US sitcom Soap, which I still rate as one of the funniest and best acted scenes I’ve ever seen in a sitcom.

The piece which I regard as a hybrid was actually a reworking of two posts from three years ago, which reflected my feelings on the birth of my granddaughter. This came out of a comment chat on another blogger’s post, which had reminded me of the importance of family in our lives, and of music in mine. Each of those posts had been themed around a song, and I combined them and some additional thoughts into Family And Music. The original posts had struck a chord with many, and this one did, too: it was my most ‘liked’ post of the month. The two songs were I Hope You Dance, by Lee Ann Womack, and Teach Your Children, by Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young. That should give you some clues as to where I was coming from!

For the rest of the month it was music all the way. As there were five Tuesdays in June there were, of course, five Tuesday Tunes posts. In order, these were:

Tuesday Tunes 59: More Seventies, which gave you music by Sailor, Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers, Roxy Music, Blue Öyster Cult, Ian Dury And The Blockheads, and Fleetwood Mac. I continued my mission of introducing American readers to music that they probably hadn’t heard before!

Tuesday Tunes 60: Diamond in which I celebrated the ‘diamond anniversary’ of the series with songs by Paul Simon, The Beatles, The Boomtown Rats, Marilyn Monroe, Beck (a David Bowie cover), Shawn Colvin, and David Gilmour, with a Pink Floyd classic.

I then embarked on a two week mini-series to mark the Summer Solstice in the Northern Hemisphere. First there was Tuesday Tunes 61: Summer, with music from Mungo Jerry, Haim, The Lovin’ Spoonful, Eddie Cochran, Bruce Springsteen, and Don Henley.

The second half of the mini-series was Tuesday Tunes 62: Sunshine. The music, including a bonus extra track, was provided by The Beatles, Katrina And The Waves, The Cowboy Junkies, Cream, The Kinks, Sheryl Crow, and Stevie Wonder.

The final Tuesday Tunes post of the month was this week’s, Tuesday Tunes 63: Down, in which I couldn’t resist the opportunity presented by yet another episode of sleaze and hypocrisy from the people who allegedly govern our country. If our politicians aren’t there for us to make fun of, what useful purpose do they serve? And this was a humdinger of a story, too! The music came from Status Quo, Men At Work, The Beatles (just the three appearances this month!), The Strawbs, Ry Cooder, James, and Creedence Clearwater Revival. As I said in the post, I have a massive list of Down songs, and will be doing a follow up next week – another opportunity for some good music and some fun at the government’s expense.

The other two music posts were the latest in two of my occasional series:

Early in the month I published Under More Covers, which featured music by Sarah Darling (covering Katy Perry), Linda Ronstadt (Little Feat), Shawn Colvin (Steve Earle), R.E.M. (Richard and Linda Thompson), Moonshee (The Beatles – again!), and Walk Off The Earth (Tina Turner).

The remaining post was another in my Listen To The Band series: Listen To The Band 4: Cat Stevens. I don’t know why it happens, but I’ve noticed that all of the posts so far in this series have been slow burners, continuing to pick up views and likes for some time – this one seems to be following the same pattern!

So, that was my June. I hope you enjoyed them, and can use the links here to catch up with any you might have missed. As always, I’m leaving you with a video for the song whose title I have adapted for this. I said at the beginning that this was something a little different – how about a traditional English folk song? There are many versions of this on YouTube, and there have been a number of recordings of it. My favourite is from one of the two bands who have been at the forefront of the English folk-rock scene since the late 1960s, and who I’ve seen several times in concert. Taken from Steeleye Span’s fourth album, Below The Salt, this is, I think, rather lovely:

It is always a highlight of a Steeleye Span show when they all move to the front of the stage and perform an unaccompanied song. I’ve seen them sing this one, and it was a ‘hairs on the neck’ moment. And hopefully the roses are now in full bloom despite the weather!

See you again next month for the review, and hopefully for all of the posts in between 😊