Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Tomorrows newspapers will probably have the shot of the unusual boots! Posted by Hello

Serena Williams Accidentally Turns Up at US Open Tennis

She has been out injured so long that Serena Wiiliams must have thought her appointment last night at Flushing Meadows was for a fashion shoot! Being typically provocative she wore a denim skirt and black midriff singlet, dripped with diamond jewellery and topped things off with a pair of black patent leather knee length boots!!
After the warm up Serena [having stunned the crowd at first look] unzipped the leg section of the boots to reveal white bobby sox and the remaining black patent leather tennis shoe... lucky the girl can play!!

Monday, August 30, 2004

John Safran in reflective pose Posted by Hello

John Safran vs God SBS TV Mondays 8.30pm

The pre-publicity suggests regular fans will not be disappointed with John Safran's latest project. An exploration for God through various traditional and not so traditional paths!! In the first episode John attempts to get a fatwa against Rove McManus [OZ TV Chat Show Host who steals all his lame ideas from 'Hey Hey Its Saturday' or David Lettermans 'Late Show' dragging Peter Heliar and Corinne Grant down with him]...

Safran is irreverent and rude at his best so if you are easily offended or don't think satire and ridicule are valid forms of exploration or take yourself and God way too seriously then this program is not for you!!

My favourite Safran moments from the past include: the stoush with "A Current Affair" host Ray Martin while rifling through his rubbish bin; his Disney expose AND streak through an Isreali city/playing kick to kick between Israel and Palestine... both for 'Race Around the World'

For more on John Safran vs God check out http://www9.sbs.com.au/johnsafranvsgod/

Sunday, August 29, 2004

YOUth EXPERIENCE was about appreciating, resourcing and supporting the efforts and commitment of voluntary Youthleaders Posted by Hello

Paul Js artwork made for a striking promotional push Posted by Hello


Yesterday we held the first UCA NSW/ACT Synod Youth Unit [High School Mission Team] Youth Ministry Leadership Training Day called "YOUth EXPERIENCE"!!

It followed four years of weekend training events which drew a shrinking crowd and was disrupted by our hosting of the huge national event NCYC 2003 in Newcastle. We took a calculated gamble based on other similar events, feedback from potential people and more holistic promotional strategies.... and it was a great success!!
A quality day, well received and a great template for the next few years in growing this event and reaching even more people!!

We held three input sessions: 2 x workshop sessions and 1 x Interactive experiental session with lunchtime focus on a few resources/ideas!!
[60] punters attended including: congregations we have only just linked with, people who responded purely to the brochure or our Presbytery presentations earlier in the year, people from a mix of cultural backgrounds and especially pleasing were the number of 'whole leadership teams' who came together!! A small number of people came from as far as 4 hours away!!

The Carlingford mob organised a well catered and efficient BBQ for lunch!

Topics included:
discipleship, leadership skills, models, safe place, worship, music and bible study
jumping castle, initaitive activity, websites surfing, multi-media worship space

AND there is scope for and ideas for growing the event:
sessions on particular resources
forums or panels
live music
more interactives over a long lunch break
a 'keynote speaker' later in the day

All the presenters did a great job and their efforts were much appreciated!
Our skilled and experienced Youth Workers all put in brilliantly!!
Mel Crook worked brilliantly for weeks, coordinating the whole effort!

We are still to decide whether to do this annually, to go bush every second year or to do a 'youth event' every second year opposite to the Kids Expo/Children's Ministry Expo...

My Highlight of the Day:
After a few weeks feeling flat and a bit negative about things in general I was just enthused by seeing so many new faces and hearing such positive feedback throughout... getting my areas of primary participation in line with what my strengths are also helped!!

Saturday, August 28, 2004

Row 'M' Seat 30 Upcoming Movies

Here are some interesting and varied releases in coming months....
Not to mention Simpsons Season 4, The Castle Rool Room Edition, Lord of the Rings Boxed Set and the first three seasons of Seinfeld on DVD!!

September 2004
16th - Catwoman
16th - Thunderbirds
16th - Metallica: Some Kind Of Monster
23rd - Saved
Probably won't be as controversial and maybe not as popular here as in the US but Saved sounds like a funny yet important film focused on a satirical look at a Christian High School in the US. The previews suggest a film having a go at hypocrisy, conservativism, and lampooning the more extreme elements of evangelical apologetics... we'll see I guess!!
30th - Wimbledon
30th - A Touch Of Spice
30th - Vanity Fair
30th - Alien Vs Predator

October 2004
14th - Collateral

November 2004
11th - Bridget Jones 2: The Edge Of Reason

December 2004
16th - Lemony Snicket's A Series Of Unfortunate Events
26th - Ocean's 12
26th - Meet The Fockers

January 2005
February 2005
March 2005
24th - Miss Congeniality 2

May 2005
19th - Star Wars Episode 3

Thursday, August 26, 2004

Working Title "LT"

Here's an idea... a series of Video CDs or DVDs where skilled and experienced Youth Workers and Youthleaders are interviewed about the things they've learnt, their model/s of youth ministry, important resources and some show and tell of their favourite music, resource, film, or whatever!
These could then be produced as a set for distribution and use by all and sundry in training workshops and conferences.

Anything quicker than trying to get a raft of our best practitioners to write something at length!!

Unreliable Idea # 20 Emergency Services

A standard youth group activity still worth a try is the visit to/or from the local emergency services: ambulance, fire, police, SES
Follow up by encouraging young people to fundraise or volunteer to help...

The same is true for Landcare, Nursing Home visits, Bakcyard Blitzes etc

Postcards from campaigns Posted by Hello

Unreliable Idea # 19 Fairwear

Globally the fashion and sports or casual wear industries thrive on the back of injustice... whether its through 2/3s world factory practices or garage and factory sweatshops in this country... neither are renowned for paying a fair days wage for a fair days work and consumers are the driving force!!
While we live in a culture/scoiety dominated by looks, brands, and fashions there will always be a market for heavily promoted images and clothes or footwear.
On top of this, many companies [notably Nike], pay huge money to sports stars who wear and promote their products... compounding the error!!

Fairwear is a justice seeking organisation working in campaigns, education and action for change.

Its possible for people in youth and young adult ministry to access educational and campaign information, to construct discussions and studies around justice issues and discipleship while also tackling topics like body image, self esteem and branding to inspire young people about whi they are and who they can be... without needing to buy into "the latest look"!!

Worship Unplugged # 25 Getting to Know Your Group

Building 'community' needs to be an important and intentional part of any effective group including worship....
  • Invite people to bring significant photos, hats, trophies, or other objects to share about
  • Have a roster of people sharing about 'how they spend their time' working, searching, studying....
  • Break into groups for prayer for each other
  • design some deliberate 'menu's' for discussion over food post worship

In time you can lessen and deepen the activities you choose as the group begins to grow and connect

Worship Unplugged # 24 Construct-a-Sermon

Give groups the scripture passage or other source materials, a set of 3 or 4 questions and time to answer them as a group.... presnetations back to the larger group form the basis of the sermon or 'hearing God's Word'
Facilitator teases out key points and clarifying questions without seeking to overtalk or reframe the feedback too much!!

Rob H

Worship Unplugged # 23 Childrens Storybooks

Poignant, clever, funny or deep stories can be found at the pointy end of every bookstore!
Most clever childrens authors are dealing with universal stories and do well with subtle telling of the tale in a way that lets the point dawn on the reader!! There are great fables, issues of relationship, self esteem, indigenous and intergenerational stories.
Julie Pinazza's "Worship is For Everyone" is a terrific resource with guides on how to use a selection of great books as examples...

Examples [of which there are hundreds]
Wilfed McDonald Gordon Partridge
Lukes Way of Looking
The Man Who Loved Boxes
Wand Linda's Underpants
Mr Peabody's Apples.....

You don't have to buy all the books, check out the wealth of resources at your local public library!!

Worship Unplugged # 22 Participation

Some of the most significant worship experiences I've seen or been part of have taken 40 minutes to prepare!!
At various Camps and Retreats we have involved the whole group in planning and preparing a worship immediately prior to it happening...

Spend a brief time discussing 'what is worship'? 'what could we do'?
'What kinds of things would you like to be part of organising'?

Given that list the facilitator goes through asking 'who'? And only includes those things which punters sign up for... or encouarges some rearranging if too many people sign up for some parts.

Groups go away for whatever time is set aside [minimum 40 mins maximum 90 mins]

Set up/Tech, Space, Ordering and Welcome and you'll find that there's something for everyone!!
Ordering decide the order worship in consultation and display this for all groups so that things just 'happen' from that point on...
Facilitator/s check group progress, call groups in and give the 'thumbs up' for starting!!

I have seen this work with people of all and diverse ages... ocassionally we've even deliberately taken one or two crates of resources but can rely on what people bring, find, create!!

Worship Unplugged # 21 Creative Responses

An important part of a worship experience is the opportunity to respond.
  • Give people reflection time
  • handout pipecleaners or playdoh for sculpturing
  • Set up a newsprint graffitti wall
  • Give out sparklers, tapers or tealight candles for lighting
  • Start a discussion on questions set by the colour of each M&M distributed
  • Write on phone block paper, painted leaves etc
  • Move around the space and write, place, light, interact

"Elvis has left the Building!" Posted by Hello

"Elvis Announcer has left the Building!"

Elvis legend takes his leave August 24, 2004

NEW YORK: Al Dvorin, the announcer who made famous the legendary phrase, "Elvis has left the building", has died at the age of 81. Dvorin was killed in a car accident as he returned from an Elvis convention in California.
He first met Elvis Presley in 1955 and worked with him for 22 years, helping to organise his tours and personal appearances.
It was in the early 1970s that the star's manager, Colonel Parker, asked Dvorin to inform fans after a gig that Elvis would not be appearing for an encore.
Dvorin took the stage and made his now legendary announcement: "Ladies and gentlemen, Elvis has left the building. Thank you and goodnight."
The phrase, which was first uttered by other announcers early in Presley's career, became a staple at Elvis concerts and has lived on long past the star's death.
But Dvorin was never paid a penny for the words, which have been reproduced countless times over the years, and he remained bitter towards Elvis Presley Enterprises, the multimillion-pound empire now run by the star's daughter, Lisa Marie.
Sid Shaw, owner of London memorabilia store Elvisly Yours and a close friend of Dvorin, said: "Of all the people I have met associated with Elvis, he was the nicest, funniest, smartest and most honest.
"He had so many great memories of Elvis that I always told him he should write a book.
"But after Elvis died, he kept a low profile because of his friendship with Colonel Parker and because he didn't want to be seen cashing in on Elvis's death like so many others had done.
"It was only a few years ago, after the Colonel died, that he decided to start attending Elvis events and conventions around the world to share some of his memories."
At the time of the accident, Dvorin was in a car driven by Ed Bonja, a longtime Elvis photographer. A former band leader and talent agent in Chicago, Dvorin first met Elvis through his work with Colonel Parker. He was among those on Elvis's last tour in 1977. The singer died of heart problems and drug abuse that August.
A spokesman for the Elvis Presley estate in Graceland said: "He was a fixture in Elvis world. He'll be greatly missed."

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

The colours are perfect for the mood of the record Posted by Hello

Music # 15 The Finn Brothers 'Everyone is Here'

With their usual soothing harmonies and some strong influences this time around from Tim's voice, the Finn Brothers have put together an interesting collection of stuff dedicated to their late Mum. Perhaps you saw the Interview in Oz on Enough Rope last night!!

I will write some more about two of the tracks I see uses for in worship/refelctions already...

There aren't any Crowded House pop tunes on the album and it doesn't set the world on fire but I bet the live work will be inspirational... we still talk about the last albums tour when all the band members rotated around the instruments several times during the night including Neils son [Liam?]

Worth a listen! 7/10

Saturday, August 21, 2004

Ben Eltons smash hit and the great music of Queen!! Posted by Hello

Galileo? Posted by Hello

We Will Rock You

The time is the future, in a place that was once called Earth. Globalisation is complete!Everywhere, the kids watch the same movies, wear the same fashions and think the same thoughts.
It's a safe, happy, Ga Ga world.
Unless you're a rebel. Unless you want to Rock. On Planet Mall all musical instruments are banned. The Company Computers generate the tunes and everybody downloads them. It is an age of Boy Bands and of Girl Bands. Of Boy and Girl Bands. Of Girl Bands with a couple of boys in them that look like girls anyway. Nothing is left to chance, hits are scheduled years in advance.
Caught in a landslide, no escape from reality
But Resistance is growing. Underneath the gleaming cities, down in the lower depths live the Bohemians. Rebels who believe that there was once a Golden Age when the kids formed their own bands and wrote their own songs. They call that time,
The Rhapsody.
Open your eyes, look up to the skies and see
Legend persists that somewhere on Planet Mall instruments still exist. Somewhere, the mighty axe of a great and hairy guitar god lies buried deep in rock. The Bohemians need a hero to find this axe and draw it from stone.Is the one who calls himself Galileo that man?
He’s just a poor boy. From a poor family
But the Ga Ga Cops are also looking for Galileo and if they get him first they will surely drag him before the Killer Queen and consign him to oblivion across the Seven Seas of Rye.
Who is Galileo? Where is the Hairy One's lost axe? Where is the place of living rock?
Anywhere the wind blows

With Ben Elton's sharp and sophisticated humour, a brilliant premis plus sellout seasons in London and elsewhere... Now moving from Melbourne to Sydney... do yourselves a favour and book in when your next in town! Sadly at the Casino, but you a seperate part of the building if you want to avoid the sad, dark recesses of that monolithic structure!!

Friday, August 20, 2004

No wonder the front of that leg is painful if you bump it... just a loose wire I think!! Posted by Hello

Notice the snapped wires which were there for the initial stability [only snapped in three places] Posted by Hello

There is a kneecap there in the shadows on the right and thats the wires that held each knee together in the early stages or recovery! Posted by Hello

My Infamous Knees

Had a check up with my orthopedic surgeon today [over 12 months since I ruptured both kneecap tendons playing rugby for Wanderers]!! He reckons its a great outcome to injuries he'll likely never see again [not both knees anyhow!!]

He even reckoned I could play footy [chances of re-injury, very high, but that I had recovered well] Its OK... there's no chance!!

As written elsewhere I still miss playing [every week] but thats life!!

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Nothing but laser printed copies and fictitious recordings.... in the suitcase that is!! Posted by Hello

Beatles Treasure 'Farce'

Beatles treasure 'farce' smh.com.au August 19, 2004

It sounded too good to be true. Turns out it probably was.
A long-sought trove of rare Beatles material reportedly found last month by a British tourist remained lost, a leading Beatles expert said.
Last month, The Times newspaper reported that a suitcase bought by Fraser Claughton, 41, at an Australian flea market for about $35 was packed with Beatles memorabilia, including photos, concert programs and unreleased recordings.
But Pete Nash, a memorabilia expert from the British Beatles Fan Club who examined the contents of the suitcase on behalf of a British television channel, said he saw photocopied ticket stubs, laser-scanned pictures from the 1990s - and no rare reel-to-reel recordings.
"It's farcical, really," Nash said.
Neither The Times nor the reporter who wrote the original story wished to comment today.
Claughton does not have a listed telephone number and could not be reached for comment.
John Read, a friend and pop memorabilia dealer who has spoken for him on the issue, did not return calls.
The story of Claughton's alleged discovery was picked up by media outlets around the world.
The Times reported that among the contents of the suitcase was a reel-to-reel tape that included John Lennon and Paul McCartney experimenting with alternative versions of previously unrecorded tracks.
The newspaper quoted an expert with Christie's auction house as saying the find "sounds very exciting indeed," but a spokeswoman stressed that the auction house had not been contacted about evaluating the find and none of its experts had seen it.
The Times had said some experts believed the collection was the lost "Mal Evans archive," originally belonging to the Beatles' roadie and sound recordist.
Evans was killed by police in Los Angeles in 1976 after brandishing a fake gun. His belongings were lost during the police investigation and have never been recovered.
Nash said many of the items in the suitcase appeared to be copies, including laser-scanned photos dating from the mid-1990s and ticket stubs for The Beatles' appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show and the premiere of A Hard Day's Night that were reproductions of images from Lennon Legend, a book published last year.
"There was nothing to tie it to Mal Evans whatsoever," Nash said.
He said he asked to see the reel-to-reel tapes but was told "they were locked away in a bank vault".
"They said the tapes were still housed in their metal canisters," Nash said.
"Audio tape is magnetic. One thing you do not do is store it in metal canisters."
Nash said he was played some tracks on CD that were "very common (bootleg) tracks that most Beatles collectors would own".
Geoff Baker, spokesman for The Beatles' label, Apple Corps, also said he believed the find was a fake.
The Evans archive remains a grail for Beatles collectors. Evans travelled with the band from the early 1960s and amassed a collection that would be worth millions if it turned up, Nash said.
"He used to pick up the rubbish in the studio, including The Beatles' handwritten notes and lyrics," Nash said.
In 1998, a notebook compiled by Evans, containing draft lyrics for Hey Jude and Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, sold for $US185,000 ($A259,012) at a London auction.
A year earlier, McCartney obtained an injunction to prevent Evans' widow from selling a scrap of paper bearing the original lyrics to With a Little Help From My Friends.
Evans also completed a book about his time with the band. The manuscript is among the items lost after his death.
"All his personal effects were sent back to the UK, including his ashes, but none of it arrived," Nash said. "I think it's still lost in the mail."

Brilliant... laser printed duds spotted in 2 minutes... how did the story get that far?

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Unreliable Idea # 18 More Scavenger Hunting

Video and Sound Scavenger Hunts can be quite sophisticated or very simple activities but put together well they can challenge young people, build teams and encourage initiative.

Set Part A as Complusory Items and Part B with Options to allow group choice and interaction
Stipulate min/max group numbers in any video
Stay within the law and safety
Work on 'clever' tasks allowing groups to get creative

Your groups will need to beg/borrow/hire video or sound recording gear and set about the task of gathering the set scenarios or sounds....

For example:
TV Advert take offs
Meeting strangers
Fractured fairytales
Famous movie scene recreations
Famous historical moment recreations
Include shopkeepers in stories
Finish a story with a given one line quote
Murder weapon

flushing toilet
McDonalds order
pick up lines
asking the public vox pop questions
petrol pump
vending machine
Australian Idol auditions
news and weather report
pedestrian indicator at traffic lights
and lots more creative ideas.....

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

2005 signature item for Tropfest is UMBRELLA Posted by Hello

Worship Unplugged # 20 'Tropfest'

Tropfest is Sydney's annual Short Film Festival run by John Polson which originated as a screening of finalists at the Tropicana Coffee Shop in Darlinghurst and now inhabits The Domain. Each year includes a celebrity judge or two and a high calibre of Films. They are 7mins or less, contain the annual 'specified item' and are released now as a Sydney Morning Herald promotion on DVD a week or so later.
These DVDs make a great resource for occasional short stories for worship or as warm ups... the 2002 winner 'Lamb' was a particularly poignant example and 'How Far From the Beach Can You Get in Your Underpants' is a comedy classic.

SHORTS Short Film Festival we host for Blackstump borrows this highly successful format for the films.... in 2004 the specified item is 'jumper'.... check out details at www.blackstump.org

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Unreliable Idea # 17 Heywire

While on Triple J and ABC Radio... entries for Heywire close 3rd September!!
This is the chance to sketch out and tell your story of life in a rural and regional setting through some issue or perspective you want to share... It'd be interesting after 4 years of promoting this competition, to see someone put together a piece about spirituality or faith in a 21st C rural and regional setting!!
www.abc.net.au/triplej and follow the Heywire links

Mmmm, not what I would have chosen! Posted by Hello

Way too obvious Posted by Hello

At the risk of 9 months periodic detention Posted by Hello

Triple J 'Beat the Drum'

Youth radio network Triple J runs a brilliant competition [which has coincided with the Olympics for a few years now] called 'Beat the Drum'!! Basically you can win some prizes for being the most creative and gaining the greatest exposure for the Triple J Drum logo... somewhere in public view. Past highlights include:
  • Keiren Perkins epic 1500m swim
  • Bledisloe Cup Rugby
  • At the Opera House for the cross to the next Olympic host city of Sydney
  • Perhaps the best effort was on the backs of the Tap Dog Grinders evident when they removed their flanno's during the Sydney Olympics Opening Ceremony

But the latest controversy probably seemed like a good idea at the time... including some sample shots with the promotional blurb on the Triple J website... maybe a fictitious flag strung between the former twin towers of the World Trade Centres was worth a rethink?

Its one thing to be edgy, radical and humorous... what do you think?

Monday, August 09, 2004

The Bible gets a Cosmo makeover!! Posted by Hello

Unreliable Idea # 16 REVOLVE

Interesting article over the weekend about two US based translations and repackagings of the New Testament... Revolve for girls and Refuel for boys!!

Way too US oriented and fundamentalist in its opinions and answers to questions for me, but an interesting concept which may or may not be making an impact here?

After the players impromptu celebrations Wallaby legend Matt Burke deserved a bigger send off following his shabby treatment at the hands of the NSW Waratahs Posted by Hello

Wallabies Skills Show Obvious Improvement

Wallaby stew is the right mix
August 9, 2004
THE Wallabies secured a shot at the Tri-Nations title on Saturday week with a victory over the All Blacks arguably better than last year's World Cup boilover. When the Australians felled the tournament favourites in Sydney nine months ago, it was the triumph of a tactical ambush. They starved the All Blacks back three strike force and, buoyed by an intercept try to Stirling Mortlock, won 22-10.
But when the two sides returned to the Olympic venue on Saturday night there would be no surprises. Only question marks to clear.
Could the Australian tight forwards match up to an All Black pack returning to its roots of grit and hard graft?
Could they secure enough possession after the disastrous rations of Wellington last month? Could they continue to contain a Kiwi backline identical, with minor alterations at centre, to the one that caused such havoc at international level last season?
On all scores the Wallabies succeeded in their 23-18, one try to nil, Tri-Nations reviving result. The All Blacks are a more rounded side than the one which relied on regular backline blitzes in 2003. So it stands to reason coach Eddie Jones has this Wallabies side at a level above where they were in reaching the global decider against England last November. And a payoff might be just 12 days away.
Regardless of the result in Johannesburg on Saturday, where the All Blacks take on the Springboks, the Wallabies will have a chance to seal the southern hemisphere crown for the first time since 2001 when they take on South Africa in Durban seven days later.
Australia and New Zealand share top billing on the table with nine points apiece and one game to play. The Wallabies also hold a slightly better for and against record. The Boks have two points with two matches left, leaving all three sides remaining in the hunt.
But Jones says the prospect of a last game showdown appeals as the Wallabies, without the Bledisloe Cup for another year, seek a piece of silverware.
"We've got ourselves in the best position possible after losing the first Tri-Nations game [to the All Blacks]," Jones said yesterday. "And we can go to Durban with confidence that whatever happens next weekend we'll have a chance of winning the Tri-Nations. That's a good position to be in."
While the first four matches have gone with home ground advantage – New Zealand opened the series with two wins, followed by dual success for the Wallabies – Jones suspects the Boks will struggle to emulate their rivals.
"South Africa will be very hard to beat at home," he said.
"The only thing is, in Johannesburg, New Zealand traditionally play well. They have a good record there and tend to play well at altitude. For us too. If we've got any positive history, it's been in Durban."
The Wallabies have only ever played four Tests there, winning in 1933 and 2000, and losing in 1953 and 1969.
Jones is confident they can move ahead in the head-to-head count. But the variable will be the pack. In any side on the rise, but not yet at its peak, inconsistency is a frequent friend. The Wallabies of 1990 had mixed results before flourishing the next season.
In the current pack, Al Baxter has been a Test regular just this year. Second-rower Nathan Sharpe, outstanding on Saturday night with seven damaging ball carries, was on the bench at the same time last season. And the Smith, Waugh, Lyons backrow combination has only been reunited the past fortnight.
"I think we've still got some progress to go in the forwards and the team generally," Jones said. "Whenever you're developing a particular area of your game, sometimes it is one step forward and two steps back. Last night we certainly took some steps forward."

It was a great game of tough rugby on Saturday night as the Wallabies showed a clear improvement in their skills [testament to the coaching strategies of Eddie Jones]... Its not an easy task to recast the playing style and match plans of entire side at the elite level, but I agreed with Eddie when he said two years ago or more that some in this squad couldn't catch, pass and kick as well as possible and certainly were hamstrung by their inability to shift the ball wide when required under extreme pressure.... they can now!

The Wellington weather and the 'form' of the Wallabies were against them in Bledisloe One, but last Saturday was a great victory for their perseverance!! Anything could happen in Durban....

I love watching an All Black side wilt under pressure and fall apart at the seams slowly throughout a match... they were cluelessly running one out by the end of the match with no conviction that any plan would work and it showed!! Great to watch!!

Sunday, August 08, 2004

The Dixie Chicks joined 'Vote for Change' because of what they were subjected to following their lead singers outspoken criticism of George W Posted by Hello

Vote for Change Posted by Hello
Musicians vote for change
Larry Mcshane, Associated PressNew York, August 5
Members of the group will perform in a series of fund-raising concerts in nine swing states before the presidential election in an effort to unseat President Bush. A collection of more than 20 prominent musicians from John Fogerty to Bruce Springsteen to Pearl Jam joined forces calling for President George W Bush's ouster, announcing an unprecedented series of fund-raising concerts across nine swing states.
"I feel this is one of the most critical elections in my lifetime," Springsteen said. "This wasn't one that a concerned citizen felt comfortable sitting out." Springsteen was joined by a collection of performers that spanned generations and genres: country act the Dixie Chicks, hip-hoppers Jurassic 5, bluesman Keb' Mo' and classic rockers John Mellencamp and Jackson Browne. The artists, touring under the "Vote for Change" banner, will play 34 shows in 28 cities between October 1-8. Springsteen's concerns and commitment were shared by other performers, including Dave Matthews and his band. "It's the first time Bruce and the E Street Band ever stood up and made a clear political statement," Matthews said. "This is the first time we've ever stood as a band, unified, and said we want a change."
The shows, which launch Oct 1 in Pennsylvania, will take an unusual approach: as many as six concerts on a single day in cities across the states expected to decide the November presidential race. Other stops on the tour are North Carolina, Ohio, Michigan, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Wisconsin and the key state in 2000, Florida. The money generated will go to America Coming Together, which promises on its Web site to "derail the right-wing Republican agenda by defeating George W Bush." The anticipated millions of dollars will be spent in the swing states before the presidential election, said ACT president Ellen Malcolm.
The shows will be presented by MoveOn Pac, the electoral arm of the liberal interest group MoveOn org.
There was no immediate word on prices for tickets, which go on sale Aug. 21 for all the shows. The concerts will pair artists, such as Springsteen and REM, the Dixie Chicks and James Taylor, or Mellencamp and Kenny "Babyface" Edmonds.
Natalie Maines of the Dixie Chicks, who memorably told a London audience last year that she was ashamed to share her home state of Texas with Bush, echoed Springsteen's comment about the importance of the November 2 election.
"A change is in order," Maines said. "There's never been a political climate like this, which is so the polar opposite of me as a person and what I believe in." The idea was hatched by several of the acts' managers, and quickly expanded. "Once we started talking to each other, ideas started percolating and other artists started reaching out to us," said Jon Landau, Springsteen's manager.
Many of the acts had a history of social activism, from Browne's anti-nuclear concerts to Mellencamp's Farm Aid shows. Pearl Jam front man Eddie Vedder was a Ralph Nader backer in 2000, but he feels Democratic nominee John Kerry is the choice this time around. "There's a vote coming up, and a chance to have a regime change at home," Vedder said. "I'm feeling the same way, there's a need for change."

Its fascinating that critics have tried to suggest that musicians and artists are not qualified to make socio-political comments and are wrong to try to influence voters with their views... a bit like suggesting the church stick to morals and spirituality and stay out of politics and social issues!!

Great music from Sarah Mc Posted by Hello

Music # 14 'Building a Mystery' Sarah McLachlan

This track as Sarah explains is about our fears and our view of ourselves and always hiding and wanting to be something we're not because of fragile self esteem.... to me it speaks of our need to know ourselves, to recognise that we are loved and valued by God and can build a different kind of mystery in the energy and spark that discipleship can foster...

Building a Mystery
You come out at night
That's when the energy comes
And the dark side's light
And the vampires roam
You strut your rasta wear
And your suicide poem
And a cross from a faith that died
Before Jesus came
You're building a mystery
You live in a church
Where you sleep with voodoo dolls
And you won't give up the search
For the ghosts in the halls
You wear sandals in the snow
And a smile that won't wash away
Can you look out the window
Without your shadow getting in the way?
You're so beautiful
With an edge and charm but so careful
When I'm in your arms
Cause you're working
Building a mystery
Holding on and holding it in
Yeah you're working
Building a mystery
And choosing so carefully
You woke up screaming aloud
A prayer from your secret god
You feed off our fears
And hold back your tears, oh
Give us a tantrum
And a know it all grin
Just when we need one
When the evening's thin
You're a beautiful
A beautiful f#@$%d up man
You're setting up your Razor wire shrine
Cause you're working
Building a mystery
Holding on and holding it in
Yeah you're working
Building a mystery
And choosing so carefully
Ooh you're working
Building a mystery
Holding on and holding it in
Yeah you're working
Building a mystery
And choosing so carefully
Yeah you're working
Building a mystery
Holding on and holding it in
Yeah you're working
Building a mystery
And choosing so carefully
You're building a mystery

Sarah Mc's latest DVD Posted by Hello

Worship Unplugged # 19 STORYTELLERS

For sometime I have been playing around with ideas of how to create space for a wide variety of gifted people to share their inspiration, spirituality and perspective in a time where questions could be asked and faith explored.... then along comes Sarah McLachlan's new DVD 'Storytellers'. Its basically an intimate unplugged type performance where Sarah shares more than normal about the inspiration behind a limited number of her songs as she performs them. At different points they time opens up for questions from the small audience. SNAP!!

Whether you choose a community venue like a cafe or transform a worship space into an informal setting... the idea is to invite individuals to prepare some input based around their INSPIRATION, SPIRITUALITY AND PERSPECTIVE... make space for Q&A as part of the presentation and ideally include hospitality as part of the event!!

For example:
1. Invite a musician to perform their own tunes and those of their influences, explain how the songs inspire, shape their faith or what perspective they have on the issues it raises.
2. Invite an artist to curate an exhibition of their own works or significant ones [display stills or video by big screen]
3. Invite someone who is into alt.worship high tech multi-media experiences to put together some 'best of' stuff an lead people through some experiences
4. Invite someone like myself to share stories, movie scenes and songs that inspire and shape faith and explain why
AND so on....

This could be done as part of an existing alternative or contemporary worship program, four times per year focused on being 'out there' in the community, at significant times like Lent and Advent and/or as a way of connecting to schools or particular communities of people in your local setting...

I'll be on the lookout for places to trial these events in the next 12 months!!

Serious Big Sister! Posted by Hello

Ellie just after entering the World Posted by Hello