Café Crem

Art, Music and Words around The Coffee Table

Ataxia Awareness

Way back in the mists of time, in a quiet suburb of Derby, a host of young teens saw the decade morph from the 60’s to the 70’s, and were like-minded in their willingness to be swept along by, and participate in, its musical backdrop. We were a disparate group of lads, drawing on equally disparate influences, but we had that all-encompassing entity – music – in common.  There was a whole host of us, but the main players in the very early days were myself, Adrian “Fos” Foster, Mike Emery, Tim Gadsby, Paul Bunting, Tony Billinge, Colin Hidderley and Steve Carter. Some of us hadn’t even really sorted out who would play what. I started out on drums, moving much later to bass.  I vividly remember rehearsing in Steve’s garage, running through one of his own songs, ‘September’, and Tim was on bass.  Most of us went our own way of course, and drifted towards the music that most appealed. As our tastes an dinterests diverged,  Fos and I pursued the ‘Rock’ route, and indeed still do, and  Steve and Tim leaned towards folk. It still fills me with immense pride that quite a collection of us from a small part of Derbyshire have taken our boyhood dreams to levels we probably couldn’t conceive of back in those rose-coloured youthful days. I am certain that my unwavering dedication to my musical career has its roots firmly planted in those early times with my childhood friends.  Without those experiences, I would not be where I am today. My career is well documented in these pages,  Steve and Tim went on to record as ‘Firkin the Fox’,  “Dr. Big Love’, and worked with the likes of Dave Pegg (Jethro Tull, Fairport) and a host of respected Irish musicians. Their music is a far cry from mine, but it is imbued with a deep sense of Englishness, whimsy, and romance, and optimism.  Tim blossomed into a fine bass and fiddle player. Ataxia has robbed him of the dexterity to continue, though he continues to make music with computers.  Steve felt it was high time awareness was raised about this condition. It is often misunderstood.  Watch my friend Steve’s (stage name Steve Bonham) video below, learn about Ataxia. Tell your friends, and help if you can.

Kev Moore

ATAXIA UK

May 10, 2013 Posted by | education, Entertainment, friends, health, Kev Moore's Music, Music, personal, writing | , , | Leave a comment

My Country, Repository of Filth.

I don’t know where else to vent my anger and disgust. My country, England, has in the space of a few days descended into chaos, with feral youths and mindless thugs looting, destroying, and terrorizing with impunity.

Of course, now they’re trying to show the ‘British Community Spirit’ on the news – locals coming together to help clean up, which is all very laudable, but doesn’t solve the problem. THE POLICE ARE UNABLE TO PROTECT THE INNOCENT.  The culprits are generally brats spewed forth from the loins of the underclasses. They have no concept of community, law and order, or common decency. They have waived the right to their Human Rights. The parents of this pond-life should all be summarily sterilized, and the culprits should be incarcerated for life, made to serve in the Army, or shot. Extreme? Perhaps, but I’ll tell you what – I mean it. And don’t tell me it’s a result of ‘youth services cuts’. To riot because the nanny state isn’t scratching your back anymore is contemptible, as is using the excuse of an accidental shooting. People need to obey the rule of law, otherwise society breaks down. This scum are CRIMINALS, pure and simple. There is no higher purpose, they’re just to damn stupid to do anything else.  One throws up one’s hands in horror when we see the ‘extreme’ punishment some Muslim countries mete out to their criminals, but I’d like to see one of these neanderthals try to leg it from Curry’s with his 42″plasma TV if he’d had his hands chopped off. And if you’re asking “Surely you’re not advocating that, are you? ‘ My answer is “YES, I BLOODY WELL AM, AND IF THEY NEED SOMEBODY TO DO IT, I VOLUNTEER.  I saw a sickening video of a bunch of these animals ostensibly trying to ‘help’ a young man who had blood pouring from a head wound, having been caught up in the riots. It was just a ruse, so they could rummage through his backpack and take anything of value. The piece of human waste that walked away with his prize laughing to his mates will NEVER contribute anything useful to society. He will be a pariah and a draw on resources until the day he (thankfully) draws his last breath. There is no time left for ‘outreach’ programmes, or any other of these stupid ‘initiatives.’ The lunatics have taken over the asylum, and they need to be exterminated, before we all go up in flames.

Kev Moore

August 10, 2011 Posted by | children, education, events, politics, writing | , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Observations on a Cultural Distinction, or, get off my bloody car!

Okay, that's a start....now tar and feather the little git.......

I have been known to moan occasionally, as I’m sure Miki will testify. If pushed, she would even go so far as to say that it is catching, and that she herself has inadvertently slipped into moaning mode once or twice since we met. We both make herculean efforts to rein in this unfortunate behaviour, with varying degrees of success.

I try not to moan too much about the Spanish. After all, we are guests in their country. I fail miserably, and quite often, it must be said.  I know it’s payback for the way the tourist hordes treated them over the last forty years, and I know we have cultural differences. But I believe that there should be a basic kindness at the core of human nature that transcends culture, Spitting Image’s parody “I’ve never met a nice South African” notwithstanding.

Many years ago, when holidaying here in Mojacar on a regular basis, I would often observe Spanish children blatantly stealing my kids toys from around the swimming pool and brazenly playing with them. Not a word from the parents. Totally not bothered, their little Franco’s were free to requisition whatever was at hand to fulfil their hearts desire, at no risk of reprimand from their doting parents.

Needless to say, yours truly would demonstrably stride over to the little gits, rip it out of their hands , accompanied by an Anglo-Saxon word or two, loud enough to try and drum into their paremts thick heads that they were doing their children no favours at all. But am I wrong?  Were they simply teaching the little Francos to be top dog in the me, me, me society of the 21st.century?  Without a doubt, I see examples of those children become adult fulfilling those criteria today.

It hasn’t stopped either. This morning, I was lying in bed and heard Miki calling out from the balcony in Spanish to a guy. I got up to see what was going on. Unsupervised, his son (around 5 years old) had gone across the road and began pulling at the door handles of our Roadster. He couldn’t open them , so tried to pry open the fuel cap.  It was only Miki’s intervention that caused the ‘parent’ -I use the word loosely- to even acknowledge the action. His answer was simply, “Oh we saw the Smart, it’s beautiful”. Listen Jose, or whatever your name is, you’re MISSING THE POINT! Teach your child to RESPECT.OTHER.PEOPLE’S PROPERTY.   They just don’t get it. the more PC-Wooly-thinking amongst you may hide behind the facade of cultural differences. But I for one, am not taken in by ‘the Emperor’s new clothes”. It is a lack of respect, a lack of manners, pure and simple.

It is the reason why, when we were involved in a dispute at our local Vodaphone shop, having to queue for hours because of the sweeping restrictions on our civil liberties, we were treated with utter cvontempt and disdain. You see, when a culture like this prevails, it is the ones who stand up and say ‘Enough’ that are branded the wrongdoers.

When exactly was it that I turned around and missed the world going ass-backwards?

Kev Moore

May 22, 2010 Posted by | Art, children, culture, education, humor, life, Parents and Children, writing | , , | 7 Comments

Tales from the Old Country – UK descends into Political farce

One of the lucky ones

I’m not really a Political animal, but I felt I had to briefly comment on the farcical goings-on in my old home country. Oh, how we laughed at the U.S.A. when they brought Dubya to power when he hadn’t even won, but now it seems that the Mother of Democracy has sank to equal, if not greater depths.  It looks like the Conservatives are heading for 36% of the vote, and around 307 seats, around 47 seats more than their nearest rivals Labour – but our quaint system means that, although they have more seats than any other party, if they don’t reach the magic 326 overall majority, the present incumbent, the dour and singularly unappealing Scot, Gordon Brown, can claim squatters rights and try and enter into a coalition with the 3rd placed Liberal Democrats. Yep. that’s right. The two LOSERS are able to try and form a Government the people don’t want. It puts Nick Clegg, leader of the third most successful party on the night, in the role of Kingmaker. This in itself, is bad enough, but the real horror of the night was the truly stupefying scene at major cities (Leeds, Sheffield, and others) where hundreds of voters were queueing around the block, unable to vote, and eventually were turned away when the Polling stations were shut at 10 pm.

Oh yes, the good ol’ U.K., once a bastion of fair play and democratic thought, with their soldiers dying in Afghanistan, in order to give Afghans the vote, has disenfranchised its own citizens.

This to me, is yet another nail in the coffin of my country. I’ve long thought the country I grew up in had ceased to exist, but never did I think to see the day when it descended into third-world politics.

It is a day of shame. Will the last person on the boat to Calais please turn out the lights.

Kev Moore

May 7, 2010 Posted by | Art, culture, education, events, life, politics, writing | , , , , , | 4 Comments

God, Haiti, and the Americans. Observations.

Kev ponders buying drugs whose side effects may include DEATH!!!

What has become a grim fascination for us, is the terrible catastrophe in Haiti, seen through American eyes. I wanted to do a small stand alone piece to address this in the midst of our travelogue.  CNN’s coverage is extremely timely, in-depth, if not a little repetitive. The American networks also have a curious habit of cutting to ads not only relentlessly often, but also just prior to returning to the Larry King show for him to peer over his spectacles and simply say, “Good night.” Can’t the ads wait until he’s said good night? Or is it so they can cut to yet another load of ads?  Other fascinations include the amount of ads offering drugs, whilst calmly saying WARNING! Side effects may include DEATH!  To be fair, there is also a swathe of ads for lawyers, urging us to call 1-800 BAD DRUG, so I suppose it’s equal opportunity. In fact, on American TV, there seem to be cures for diseases I’ve never heard of. There are also many ads for Churches, which just borderline on the offensive to me, springboarding off the Haiti tragedy to aid recruitment, but perhaps that’s a cultural thing. As a Brit, I am stunned at the sheer number of clearly wealthy churches here in the Bible Belt, all with full car parks. Lil’ old English vicars would (dare I say it?) sell their soul for these buildings and congregations!

This brings me to the thorny issue of God. No-one in the Haiti television coverage has a bad word to say about the guy.  A woman saved after being trapped in a void in a collapsed market thinks she’s alive because of God. No, missus, you’re alive because of an Icelandic rescue team. You wanna talk to God about dropping the building on yo’ ass. This is the same God who saw fit to destroy the prison and spare all but 4 of the 4,500 inmates, who are now amongst the homeless and innocent. Nice one, God – suffer the little children and all that. I suppose it was too much to ask that you direct the epicentre over the terrorist camp in the Yemen? …what?  Have faith? Yeah.

Don’t get me wrong, I am full of admiration for people who use their faith to give them strength to go down there and help those people, not just after the quake, but the tireless work they do in the orphanages, etc for many years before. I truly admire and applaud them. But I would seriously want to have a strong word with a God that has heaped such misery time after time on this battered nation of Haiti. They crawl out, over the dead bodies of their Mothers and children, and they thank him.  I will never, ever understand this. 

I also want to address the use of emotive music on CNN.  This seems to be a very American thing to do. They come dangerously close to turning international catastrophe into The Bold and the Beautiful.  News is information. It is not entertainment.  If it was meant to be entertainment, the BBC News would have put “Drive” by The Cars as the musical backdrop to Michael Buerk’s stunning report on the Ethiopian famine, instead of waiting for the Live Aid concert to do so. I just feel that in their desire to ‘wring the emotion” out of this story, they cross the line, and leave me feeling a little uncomfortable, but once again, I guess it’s a cultural thing.

Watching the news tonight, I was shocked to see a number of Haitians complaining that the biscuits being handed out were ‘out of date’, unhelpfully shouting this at the crowd, causing them to drop the biscuits and the UN truck to leave. I had a series of conflicting emotions. Firstly, if  I’d been stuck in rubble for 72 hours with no food and water, I’d eat a scabby dog, and secondly, how about  a little bit of gratitude for the people who brought the biscuits to you? But perhaps, on reflection it just shows just what an  uneducated underclass form a large part of the population, and just how much work will be needed there to really rebuild and re-educate that poor country from the ground up.  If it’s not a majority, then the loudmouthed bullying minority need to be silenced by the UN forces so that the poor and the weak get the food they need.

I want to say a word about President Obama also. When he came out to address the people following the Earthquake. Miki and I were stunned at his eloquence, passion and determination. Seemingly speaking with no notes, he was strong, decisive and clear. What a great leader you have.

Now, on a daily basis, we have found (something I already knew but wanted Miki to experience) that Americans are friendly, outgoing and genuine. It is a pleasure to walk into a restaurant, or an IHOP and interact with people who have a smile on their face. This skill in the service industry is sadly lacking in Spain, and to a lesser extent in the UK. I also have two burning questions:

Can you, or can you not, turn right on a red light in the U.S.A?????

And who the hell would christen anybody Wolf Blitzer???

Kev Moore

January 16, 2010 Posted by | culture, death, education, events, God in our life, life, religion | , , , , | 8 Comments

Streets of Derby

I feel like I’ve not been in the Cafe too much recently, except to post the serialisation of my novel, Atlantic Bridge, and indeed, I occasionally hear the tumbleweed blowing between the chairs and tables, and the creaking of the Cafe Crem sign as it forlornly dances in the wind outside….

Perhaps I should wander over to the jukebox in the corner and slip a quarter in, make a selection….clunk…there you go.  There just so happens to be my version of the old Ralph McTell song, Streets of London on there, only this one’s called Streets of Derby.  I couldn’t seem to stop working once I’d put the Derby album to bed, and Dave Mortimer, who has helped out with contacts in the town regarding the CD project is set to do a 10k run in aid of The Teenage Cancer trust, a charity under THE WHO’s patronage, and he asked me to put his re-worked lyrics to the song. Here’s the result. I hope it can do some good for this worthy cause.

Streets of Derby

Have you seen the young kids, bravely smiling through their illness?

So full of life, though some may not have long.

They need help fighting cancer – we can improve their chances

Let’s all get moving, to try and make them strong.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Chorus 1:

So how can you turn your face away, forget their pain – ignore the call?

I’m going to put my trainers on and run around the streets of Derby

I must do something to try and help them all.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

For some, their home’s a hospice but their lives are still for living

All their hopes and dreams must surely match our own

We can use our energy to give those children liberty

From fear and isolation – they can’t fight it all alone.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Chorus 2:

So how can you say you’re lonely

And that for them the sun won’t shine?

If you can’t run, then sponsor me as I run through the streets of Derby

Your contribution means just as much as mine.

Lyrics by Dave Mortimer

April 10, 2009 Posted by | Ca' Puccini, children, education, events, family, Kev Moore's Music, life, Music, Parents and Children, Sound recording | , , , | 1 Comment

Cafe Crem “Hands across the Ocean”

Computers, and the internet, never cease to spark wonder in the child that still lives within me – particularly on occasions like today, when Miki and I “took part” in our friend Susan Cornelis’ Fantascape workshop. We were the two “virtual” students in Spain, peeking in, via the wonder of skype video, to watch her work with 6 “real’ students in her workshop studio in Southern California.

It was great fun, and I’m tempted next time to get my guitar out and give them a song over the air. Here’s a pic of Miki, in one of the moments when she won the battle for the chair in front of the screen!

2009-02-miki-and-susan-in-the-fantascapes-workshop-s

Photo by Kev Moore

February 21, 2009 Posted by | Art, education, internet, life, painting, photography, video | , , , , | 4 Comments

a groyne…

pict0206

February 13, 2009 Posted by | education, friends, fun, humor, illustrations, personal, photo, random, Viv's Art | , , | 4 Comments

The Poison Tree

Not by Shelley but by William Blake of Tyger, tyger fame.

I first read this when I was about 9/10 and it scared me..

 

I was angry with my friend:
I told my wrath, my wrath did end.
I was angry with my foe;
I told it not, my wrath did grow.

And I water’d it in fears,
Night & morning with my tears;
And I sunned it with my smiles
And with soft deceitful wiles.

And it grew both day and night,
Till it bore an apple bright;
And my foe beheld it shine,
And he knew that it was mine,

And into my garden stole
When the night had veil’d the pole:
In the morning glad I see
My foe outstretch’d beneath the tree

February 13, 2009 Posted by | books, culture, death, education, friends, literature, personal, poetry, random | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Cambridge Blue…

kings-college-and-students-2008

Where’s Wally??

 

viv-in-action-outside-st-marys

 

This might help spot the Tour guide! I’m standing on a bench, not on stilts!

Viv

January 28, 2009 Posted by | education, humor, life, personal, photo, Viv's Art, women | , , | 6 Comments