Saturday, 16 April 2016

DYSTONIA DAVID EXPLAINS


Dystonia? It's not a Baltic State!


SINCE posting my "That's All Folks" article to this Blog in January 2016, I've received many messages of support via email, Facebook, Twitter, postcard, letter and even the occasional 'phone call. I wish I could reply individually, just to say many thanks, to all of those who have contacted me, but that hasn't been possible. Instead, I hope this update will serve as a way of saying "thank you one and all."

 

While writing, I'm pleased to report that I am keeping reasonably fit and well, but my Dystonia (Dystonic Tremor) disability continues to deteriorate. Indeed, in response to a number of my former radio listeners who have expressed a wish to know more about Dystonia, I have pasted below, a link to a YouTube video commentary on my Dystonia experience that I uploaded to YouTube on April 14, 2016.

 

The three minute video is my way of trying to get Dystonia on the map. After all, there are hundreds of thousands - possibly millions - of Dystonia sufferers worldwide, but when compared to, say, Parkinson's disease, Dystonia is hardly known. In my case, Dystonia wiped-out my guitar-playing days in the 1980s and, as the aforementioned "That's All Folks" article revealed, the condition compelled me to bring the curtain down on my 32 year radio career earlier this year.

 

But, hey! The voice is holding-up nicely at the moment, thank goodness, and I can still shake a mean tambourine without even trying (as the YouTube video will show). I hope you'll be able to spare a few minutes to check it out.

 

By the way @DystoniaDavid is my Twitter identity. 

 

Here's the YouTube link:-

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oKCk8aTlMAM&feature=youtu.be







Friday, 29 January 2016

THAT'S ALL FOLKS!










SINCE the beginning of the year, I have been listening to minidisc recordings of some of my BBC radio productions spanning 1999 to 2014.

Throughout that period my Dystonic Tremor disability increased in severity year-on-year.  In fact, by 2010, I was beginning to experience moments when – in addition to the ever worsening tremors affecting my hands, arms and head – the Dystonia was attempting to attack my voice as well.

Those attacks on my vocal chords became more frequent and ever more intrusive over the following four years. Indeed, while listening to the aforementioned minidisc recordings, I noticed a significant deterioration in the sound of my voice and the control of my vocal delivery from 2010 onwards.

Then, on December 17 last, during my most recent appointment at Derriford Hospital, my specialist made a point of remarking on the Dystonic Tremor in my voice to two junior doctors who were sitting-in on the consultation.

Consequently, in an effort to preserve what remains of my voice for any further TV or film projects that may come my way, I have decided to bring the curtain down permanently on my radio career.

Meanwhile, under my stage and pen name of Lewis Adler, I am working on the sequel to my e-book “Maisie Pops ~ 1913-1965” which was published in 2013 and continues to sell steadily. The sequel, which forms part two of what will eventually become a trilogy, is entitled “More Maisie Pops ~ 1965-1990” and publication is on course for later this year.

The third part of the trilogy will be titled “Son of Maisie Pops” and it will trace my life in the print media, radio, TV and film from 1990 onwards. Yes, it will be autobiographical, and I’ll be telling the whole story of what it was really like to work in the BBC and the UK provincial press in the Nineties, Naughties and into the early Twenty-teens.


Wednesday, 23 December 2015

SEASON'S GREETING



NINETEEN months on from my career-ending run-in with the BBC over that 1932 recording of "The Sun Has Got His Hat On", the lyrics of which contained the "N-word", and I'm still getting Christmas cards from former listeners.

 

And that's not counting the emails, letters and even telephone calls I continue to get all year round!

 

Without wishing to sound too much like Charles Dickens' Uriah Heep, it's humbling to know I'm remembered with such affection.

 

Thank you one and all. In return I send you my warmest best wishes for a peaceful Christmas and a happy 2016.

 

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

ON THE RECORD 1


I AM CURRENTLY taking a break from radio production and presentation to finish the sequel to my e-book "Maisie Pops" - cunningly titled "More Maisie Pops" - and, likewise, written under my pen and stage name of Lewis Adler.

However, that doesn’t mean to say my involvement with mid-20th popular music has ceased.

On the contrary, I recently took possession of a new release on the UK’s Sepia label (catalogue No: SEPIA 1290). “The Name’s Haymes” is a 24 track collection from one of the 20th Century’s truly great balladeers Dick Haymes. This is the CD cover:-


The recordings on the collection all date from 1957 and 1958, and the first twelve items are a direct lift from Dick’s 1958 album “The Name’s Haymes” featuring Cy Coleman on piano, with the accompaniment directed by Maury Laws. The remaining twelve titles on the CD are listed as bonus tracks under the direction of a number of different conductors, plus a couple of alternate takes from “The Name’s Haymes” album.

Some of the stand-out tracks on “The Name’s Haymes” Sepia CD include superb arrangements of the ballads So Far; This Time the Dream’s On Me; My Heart Stood Still and A Sinner Kissed An Angel, plus equally enjoyable, gentle swing workings of Cheek to Cheek; A Very Precious Love and On a Slow Boat to China. In contrast, there’s a fast and furious take on You Stepped Out of a Dream, and a big brassy version of Oh! Look At Me Now. A word of warning, though, please don’t judge the CD by the moody opening track titled The Long Hot Summer. It’s a very unusual, atmospheric recording, and it opened the original “The Name’s Haymes” LP. In fact The Long Hot Summer and A Very Precious Love alternate takes that close the Sepia CD became the very first Hallmark label single issued in February 1958.

All in all, “The Name’s Haymes” Sepia CD is a wonderfully listenable collection from one of the 20th Century’s all-time-great song stylists … Dick Haymes … he of the distinctive, soothing voice.



BY THE WAY ... while we’re on the subject of distinctive voices: after more than 30 years of programme-making for the BBC and UK Independent Local Radio, and despite my Dystonic Tremor disability, I’m also now fully conversant with the remote VoiceTracking (“Robojock”) method of computerised production and presentation for internet radio.

So, if you’re an internet radio station CEO running VoiceTracking and you’re on the look-out for a seasoned producer~presenter of mid-20th Century popular music radio shows, drop me a line at david.l.lowe@btinternet.com or call me on Skype at david.l.lowe.

Once "More Maisie Pops" is published in 2016, I'll be back in radio mode again.

For more info see also my website www.wizardwordsmith.weebly.com

 

Friday, 4 September 2015

PROGRAMMES PREVIEW - SEPT 5 & 6






IF YOU'RE LOOKING for a genuine easy-listening radio experience, then join me this weekend for six hours of nostalgic songs and melodies on www.serenade-radio.com

SATURDAY’S (Sept 5) lunchtime programme with yours truly on the easy listening internet radio station Serenade Radio (12 noon to 3pm UK time) features recordings by the likes of Connie Francis; Pat Boone; Linda Ronstadt; Fred Astaire and Ray Charles plus offerings from British recording stars Matt Monro; Dorothy Squires; Dickie Valentine and Anne Shelton. And not forgetting instrumental tracks from Woody Herman; the John Barry Seven; Benny Goodman; George Shearing and Billy Ternent.

SUNDAY’S (Sept 6) show – same place, same time – includes items from Cilla Black; Frankie Vaughan; Julie Andrews and Matt Monro (again) plus Stateside recordings from The Platters; the Four Aces; the Chordettes; Tony Bennett with Willie Nelson; Eddie Fisher and Rosemary Clooney with Perez Prado. And there are also instrumental contributions by Frank Chacksfield; the Button Down Brass; Henry Mancini; Paul Weston and Acker Bilk.

The above named artistes are just a few of the star performers taking part in this weekend’s shows. I hope to have your company along the way. Here’s that link again:-




Friday, 28 August 2015

PROGRAMMES PREVIEW AUG 29-30





JOIN ME this weekend for six hours of advert-free, nostalgic songs and melodies on www.serenade-radio.com

SATURDAY’S (Aug 29) lunchtime programme with yours truly on the easy listening internet radio station Serenade Radio (12 noon to 3pm UK time) features recordings by the likes of Debbie Reynolds; Vic Damone; Doris Day; Dick Haymes; The Carpenters and The Highwaymen plus offerings from British recording stars Tommy Steele; Marion Ryan; Anita Harris; the King Brothers and The Stargazers. And not forgetting instrumental tracks from Ted Heath; Tony Hatch; Cyril Stapleton; Henry Mancini and Glenn Miller.

SUNDAY’S (Aug 30) show – same place, same time – includes items from Peter Skellern; Cilla Black; Ronnie Hilton; Alma Cogan and Matt Monro, plus Stateside recordings from Vikki Carr; Mel Torme; Johnny Mathis; Ketty Lester Tony Bennett and the Mills Brothers. And there are also instrumental contributions by Bert Kaempfert; Acker Bilk; George Shearing; Les Baxter and Jackie Gleason.

The above named artistes are just a few of the star performers taking part in this weekend’s shows. I hope to have your company along the way. Here’s that link again:-


By the way you can email me at any time at:-


I look forward to hearing from you.