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Saturday, November 22, 2008

Amid the Falling Snow

Having spent about 12 of the last 48 hours traveling on trains between Scarborough and Coventry I can't really say that my body has completely settled down by now. I still hadn't shaken the road off when I woke up this morning to see that a veritable winter wonderland awaited me outside. I expected this to happen because I watched the weather forecast on TV last night but it still made me change my plans for the day. The scene from my bedroom window was beautiful and most peaceful so I didn't want to bother with the real world, until I really can't stay away. On days like this I miss being snow bound. It never really snows that much in Scarborough.

Aside from all the traveling I probably feel this way too because I was invited to visit Malta this weekend as a judge for the Malta Television Awards. Anyone who knows me well knows that I'm not a big fan of award ceremonies. In spite of all this, I couldn't really accept the invitation to go to Malta because travel plans were left for the last minute and I'm not very good at doing things this way. Just to be a good sport, I accepted to vote on the award categories I was asked to anyway. So I'm partly responsible for whoever wins two of the Mermaids in this year's Malta Television Awards.

When it comes to my sense of personal accomplishment and self fulfillment, all this pales in comparison to the joy I derive from producing my weekly music podcast. This week's edition features two tracks from an album released just a few days ago called Jailhouse Voices. The musicians on this album are not Maltese, but the production is by Mop Krayz, who is Maltese...even though this is clearly not his or her real name. The track I selected to open my podcast with is called Gone with the Storm by Virgill & Cons. The other track closes the podcast and it's called Jade Tinted Sky by Keito.

I picked this latter track because I wanted to mark the memory of Jade Brincat, former keyboard player with Stillborn, Momento Nostri, and Archaic Descent. Jade died on Wednesday 12 November after suffering a cardiac arrest at Mater Dei hospital following severe side-effects to medication she was given to treat a chest infection. I was a little troubled to hear rumours and unfounded gossip that she had died from a drug overdose. I can't believe that people in Malta still jump to such conclusions just because she was a rocker. Her keyboard playing can be heard on a previous edition of the Mużika Mod Ieħor series, when I featured the song Angel by Stillborn. To remember Jade today I've picked a live recording she did with Stillborn at last years rock festival in Marsaxlokk. The song is is called Lost and features Jade keyboard playing quite prominently.

I'm always thrilled to discover new music and young musicians from Malta. This week I discovered two such acts through MySpace. Gilmour Cauchi came to my attention through Nathan Inder's page. You can hear a track by each of them on this week's MMI podcast. Gilmour's tune is called Capri, while Nathan's track is called Herbert's Intro. These two young musicians are clear examples of what some Maltese teenages are up to with their computer driven home studios. It really is fascinating stuff.

In the coming days I'm hoping to launch the 2008 MMI Listeners' Picks poll via Facebook. I'll post a blog entry about that if we manage to get it going before next week's podcast. I'll probably have some more things to say about awards shows too. I'm just biting my tongue for now...but probably not for too long.

The RSS feed for the Mużika Mod Ieħor podcast is available here or you can simply click here to subscribe directly with iTunes. You can also follow each new episode through the MMI Podcast: Facebook Fan Page. If you have no idea what any of this means, just click here.

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