Wow! There is a goldfinch nesting in our little London garden. It is so exciting.  Mr P says it is very rare  in a London garden, especially so near to the house. The thing is the goldfinch has made her nest in the middle of a clump of black bamboo which is about 15 foot tall, the nest is about 10 foot from the ground, so it really bends in the wind. Lots of photo opportunities coming up in the next few days….The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds has a lovely website –  and today’s post is  in celebration of  the Goldfinch . RSPB -The Goldfinch

This week I have seen loads of goldfinches, outside the flat, here in good old London, town and boy are they singing at the moment and now I know why…we only spotted the nest this morning. There are sometimes the odd goldfinches around, but have definately seen more this week than for ages. I am probably a bit of a ‘twitcher’ on the quiet -though I spot them and Mr P usually identifies them….. so today, as a celebration of the beginning of British summer time my


THE GOLDFINCH – by the goldfinch

just click  to hear its beautiful song  Goldfinch

So there I am with some special 8 year olds today..trying to find out what they are into as far as singing is concerned…’I wanna sing my music not yours’ so what was their music, the music an 8 year old was calling theirs?

Of course it depends on the kids and whether they have older siblings, younger parents, background,  etc……’N Dubz’, they say, (a London hip hip group) …’I won’t be able to play it today’ I say ‘…need to check out if the language is ok for school and we might be able to sing it, but some of the words really are not really that good for children’…I explain. We sing  Jessie J’s ‘Price Tag’ as I  know the lyrics are fine  and a bit thoughtful.  I go home and listen to the first song they have on their list  and the words are , ‘girls I  f+++  with them’ mmm wonder what I can change that to. ha ha. The whole song is too grown up lyrically…’two little boys’ it ain’t. By no means anything like as bad as some of the baaad aaasss rapping we can be  exposed to, but I wonder if they know how many little kids listen to their music and if it would have any affect on their lyrical content….and I am talking about lots of bands not just Ndubz….just interested thats all.

Loads and loads of primary aged kids are listening to hip hop and rap, much of it is ‘good time rock n’roll’,  I mean, it was good enough for Rex Harrison, but some of it  is not lyrics I would want teenagers to spent too much time listening too let alone little kids. I wonder if these artists are aware how many 8-10 year olds are taking their music to their heart. I am not being preechy here…or maybe I am….ah well.

SONG OF THE DAY Michael Jackson -Will You Be There

I heard a choir of kids sing this yesterday and it just came alive! Kids love Michael Jackson songs . I have never ever met a kid and I have met  and taught thousands who did not love Michael Jackson and his  songs. He had a pure heart, and kids know that.

Tony Grey

If you are confused, a glissando on the piano is when the pianist moves their thumb from the top piano keys to the bottom making a long shimmy of a sound, very cabaret,  and a bit naff if overused There is definately a time and a place for a ‘gliss'( as they are called in the business).  What is funny is I had not though of Tony Grey as being a ‘glissando’ kinda guy. Here is a video so you can all do one later ( in the privacy of your own homes mind!) it.

I have a couple of other pianist friends who learned classical piano – as soon as they play anything up tempo and ‘poppy’ out comes the glissando every couple of lines ’til you just want to go over and chop their thumbs off ( you know who you are!)  So Tony was warned by 300 children in unison that there would be ‘no glissandos today Tony Grey’, just in case he got the urge to. I am sure there is a t-shirt slogan in there somewhere ‘born to gliss’.

SONG OF THE DAY –True Colours written by Billy Steinberg and Tom Kelly          ( they wrote ‘I drove all night,’ ‘eternal flame’ , ‘I’ll stand by you’, ‘like a virgin’- among others) performed by the Gay Men’s Chorus of  Los Angeles and their friends and families…….I needed a hanky again when I watched this video!

I am in love with True Colours today as I saw the most beautiful set of kids from the local school for deaf children. We all cried as they were so expressive as they signed the song for us, which was amazing.

So here it is  True Colours, well worth learning to sign it too!

If you live in one of 37 towns and cities in Britain ranging from Aberdeen to Wigan you need to look at this AMAZING site. I use it at least twice a week. It tells me from a start destination to finish, how many steps, how long  it will take if I loiter or  get a spring in my step. I have actually plugged in my weight and height  into my ‘personal walk it page’ and it tells me how many calories I will use.

I use the page  when going from an underground station to a place I  have never been, which happens once or twice a week, even though I have lived in London for 30 years. You can print out written directions and a map. You can decide whether you want to go the quickest way, or the least scenic route ( ha ha , I just read that back! I mean least polluted, most scenic routes) and it tells you how much CO2 emissions you are saving rather than car-ing it or bus-ing it or train-ing it!

It has themed walks of all sorts, a blog. Just lots of really groovy ways to walk in towns and cities.  Coincidentally I was talking to a lovely someone the other day who said that she missed walking since she left the city as now she has to get in her car to go everywhere. Yes we urbanites do get a lot of exercise and this site is amazing. Would recommend you look at it just for fun! Thumbs Up!


This is one of Polly’s most moving pieces for me at the moment. A good pal too. You can order her cd from the link below…well worth it.

Polly Bolton


You Won’t Always Feel This -Polly Bolton