The blog of a travelling psychiatrist and football lover. Who happens to be a halfway decent photographer. Takes a cynical view of the world

Archive for the tag “suede”

Photographs of 24 Hours in Amsterdam

Amsterdam is in my opinion the most photogenic city in Europe and maybe the world. Despite having been there with cameras numerous times there are always things to photograph and see. With only my I Phone this time the weather changes were immense ranging from snowing to sun in 15 minutes and cloud formations to match.


This time however I took more than a passing interest in the amsterdam graffiti, or graffiti art depending upon how one visualises this option. Graffiti was everywhere including in the urinals that adorn the canals. One knows they are urinals before entering them from the odour de latrine that they ooze for many yards. The question that resonated in my head was who painted the graffiti in them, why did they do it and even how did they do it?


The Graffiti on the walls was far more eloquent and spoke to a lot of thought before painting. I have posted many blogs already on Amsterdam and the risk is repetition, so I have attempted to minimise anything previously photographed and take views or views from angles that are new. Like Penguin graffiti. A real new experience for me.


The place was wet and this was easily determined by how much rain fell on one’s head but if that judgement felt unsound then the standing water on the tram tracks gave a better explanation.


Wet Tram Tracks Amsterdam

Vondelpark is always beautiful but less so on a grey day, however with a little sun it begins to show its charm. However the muddy paths showed again how wet the last few days had been.


Gates of Vondelpark Amsterdam


Vondelpark Amsterdam

Even Central Station joined in the fun looking grand in the warm light with the clouds looking like they were dancing in the sky.


Amsterdam is truly a beautiful city and just an hour walking along the canals it does not matter so much which direction one walks, just remembering that the canals are best thought of as onion rings outside each other and eventually leading to Central Station.IMG_2038IMG_2033IMG_2032IMG_2015

And if you cycle there which has its positives and negatives in terms of enjoyment and death risk, it might not be so easy to remember where you left your bicycle.Unless you left it next to the penguin graffiti in which case it might still be there. Maybe

Paradiso is a world famous music venue but one would never know that from the outside. An old church converted into a music venue in which many famous names have played. Including Lady Gaga, Duran Duran, Joy Division, David Bowie, Suede and Rolling Stones, amongst hundreds.

Paradiso Amsterdam

Paradiso Amsterdam

Which World Famous Music Venue Is This?

The only clues are the following bands have played there:

  • Rolling Stones
  • Lady Gaga
  • Duran Duran
  • Suede
  • Adele
  • Joy Division
  • Florence and the Machine
  • David Bowie


Ticket Re-selling. Agencies like Stubhub. What do we think? Please vote

There is little doubt that these agencies are wanted by people and are used. They more or less guarantee that one can buy a ticket, albeit at a price over the face value. Many concerts these days do sell out and if fans are prepared to sacrifice their tickets for money that seems reasonable enough. Or does it?

Two things concern me that mitigate some of the above

  1. Some people buy tickets through setting up numerous email addresses and credit cards with the sole purpose of re-selling the tickets. To be fair sellers do try and limit this by imposing various maximum number of tickets limits on what they can do.
  2. That some of these agencies are in fact run by the primary ticket sellers themselves. Is this a problem? Maybe. Lets give an example where it is a problem. I was buying tickets, or attempting to, for a concert where ” presale” tickets went on sale 9 am wednesday morning. Resale codes and knowledge of such sales tend to go the fan clubs and those that follow the mailings or accounts of the various bands. No issue with that. Real fans deserve a chance to buy first, if they have been buying the records, merchandise etc. However by 10 am tickets were already on sale on the re-selling market websites confirming that in fact some buyers had zero intention of doing anything other than selling their tickets on at a large profit. That same company owned both the selling of the tickets and the re-selling , so they were clearly complicit in this. The remainder of the tickets then went on sale friday 9 am. I will not cite the actual company nor event simply because this is common  . However An example might be who are a re-selling company and are part of Ticketmaster as are GetMeIn. For those not so familiar it is not uncommon for such tickets to be priced well over £100 and sometimes over £500. A random example right now on Tickets for Noel Gallagher in Liverpool 25th April 2016 are found ranging from £52-£150. FullSizeRender-3IMG_0472Nia Lovelis. Drummer Hey VioletRena Lovelis


This morning I got an email from Stubhub.

Dear Chris,

Stand Up For Your Right To Buy And Sell Tickets

The Government have launched an independent review into the laws around event ticket resale, and event organisers are pushing hard for new laws which will restrict your right to buy and resell spare tickets at the last minute for sold out events.

We believe that fans should be free to resell tickets for events which they can no longer attend, especially when they are routinely denied refunds by event organisers.

We have therefore launched a petition calling for a clear legal right for fans to be able to resell spare tickets without restrictive terms and conditions being imposed by event organisers.

If you value the right to buy and sell tickets safely and securely on a website of your choice, please lend your voice to our campaign and sign our petition.

Thank you for your support.

The StubHub Team

Should I sign this petition? Part of me wants to as there needs to be a market to indeed sell on unwanted tickets. But a larger part of me says that by doing so I am propagating the exact issue that I have highlighted above.

What is really required is a middle ground where re-selling of tickets cannot take place until all the tickets have been sold, where different companies act as sellers and re-sellers, so there can be no actual nor perceived conflict of interest and whereby somehow those that buy to sell are somehow dissuaded from doing this.

This is becoming an increasingly important market, concert tickets and it is important that the real fans can always have a fair chance of getting tickets. Logging onto a website at 9 am and being told at 9.05 am that all the tickets have gone is curious as there are few events that truly this will happen for. So have a read, have a think, if you have teenagers who are concert goers as them their views and vote in my poll.

Please share this too, as it is important that this gets discussed openly and clearly, as there are far more issues than Stubhub might want us to consider before signing their petition.

Finally there is an additional issue which impinges on the above. That some tickets for concerts never actually go on sale. They are sold separately at higher price. This is not so relevant to the above issues but will of course inflate prices if fewer tickets are sold at anything like the face value of the ticket. Ticketmaster are an example here. and i quote from their website

“About Ticketmaster Platinum

What are Platinum Tickets?
Platinum Tickets are some of the best available tickets to concerts and other events made available by artists and event organisers though Ticketmaster. They give fans fair and safe access to some of the best seats in the house at market driven prices.

Are Platinum Tickets resale tickets?
No these are not resale tickets. Platinum Tickets are being sold for the very first time through Ticketmaster. The prices are adjusted according to supply and demand, similar to how airline tickets and hotel rooms are sold. The goal is to give the most passionate fans fair and safe access to the best tickets, while allowing the artists and everyone involved in staging live events to price tickets closer to their true value.

Why can’t I buy Platinum Tickets for certain events?
Currently Platinum Tickets are not available for all events. Be sure to check Ticketmaster often as new events are continually being added.”

Suede Live at Westonbirt Arboretum June 2014

Suede have hit the road again in 2014 and have a number of concerts and festivals lined up throughout europe. This is the first time I have seen them play outdoors and although the concert was good, very good, it did not reach the heights of for example the Paradiso concert in Amsterdam,  the Roundhouse nor the Royal Albert Hall. Suede thrive on atmosphere and at any outdoors festival the music does tend to vanish into the heavens. The other minor complaint was that the set was shorter, far shorter than some other sets ( maybe we were spooled then, as they did play for maybe 75 minutes), and the set list included nothing from their new album Bloodsports. From Brett Anderson’s comments to the audience ” leave your cheese and pickle sandwiches and come down the front”, he too may have had some reservations about the audience. The age was not so young though mixed. I saw ages 0-75 there. But was this their normal concert audience? Think not. So maybe the set list was tweaked towards those who heard them in 1992. A mistake maybe. They played well and we all had a good time but a single encore of an unusual song maybe ended the concert on a flatter note than it should.

All sounds like grumbles, but actually it was a great evening and great concert. The venue was like a mini Hyde Park, with fenced off field with large stage, food outlets etc. Food was fine, never cheap at these places ( pie, nice pie for £8, beer £4.50/pint) but overall a really good venue. Easy to get to, good parking, everyone escaped quickly afterwards.

Support bands were good too, very good in fact in the case of The Hosts, a sheffield based band,and good but curious for a singer called ?Griff. The Forestry commission should be congratulated on these ventures and will I be back, yes.

imagnne Suede

Suede Westonbirt

Suede Westonbirt

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The Hosts- A Sheffield band who escaped to a forest called Westonbirt Arboretum.

The Hosts opened the concert in a forest tonight for Suede. Short 30 minute set which was not long enough for the audience at Westonbirt tonight. Never heard of them before. Lead singer has good stage presence and songs were new. Really recommend them. Difficult to describe their music. Rock crossed with a tinge of country and western. Good tunes. Keyboards looked rather like Gary Barlow. Nice also to see the band watching Suede with the rest of the crowd standing on the grass.

Their new album is called Softly Softly and details are here

Album | The Hosts – Softly, Softly


Nicely summed up in music speak “The Hosts have a talented singer with a rich voice, a band who can really play their instruments, and a style which is decidedly retro but with a modern twist. In this world of pop music as king, bands like these don’t get the attention they deserve. For those who love someone, whether requited or not, Softly, Softly is an album to dance to, to love to, to take to your heart and cherish.”
This was one of the Forestry commission concerts and it really works.

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Tom Hogg

Tom Hogg

Tom Hogg

Tom Hogg

The Fault in our Stars

The Fault in our Stars is a wonderful film on many levels. The acting is superb, as is the casting as is the music.  The use of a narrator helps the story flow. As most people know the story relates to cancer in young people.  The film is undoubtedly sad however oddly very funny as well. Go and see it. I am not going to spoil the story by telling you what happens but suffice to say a fast moving film that never dwells on any single part, issue or character for long. This story could happen and to that extent is a real story. The music provides a great background and is thoughtfully chosen with a minor complaint. What happened to the song by Birdy T-shirt? A great song and although on the playlist seems to have fallen off the film somewhere. Wrong decision. Not everyone agrees with me. I am a fan of  The Economist but cannot agree with their view that the film is ” too sweet and self-absorbed”. Cancer if you have it is very self-absorbing. It certainly absorbed me when I had Malignant Melanoma a few years ago and after my treatment a letter arrives telling me my percentage change of surviving the next 7 years.


On the other hand I agree entirely with the views from the BBC, not always the case


This is cancer and this is real and this can happen. For background information visit the website for the Teenage Cancer Trust. Until I saw Suede at the Royal Albert Hall in March 2014 in one of the sponsored concerts for Teenage Cancer Trust, I had no real knowledge of this issue, problem nor solutions. Just had not thought about it. Cancer is a sad illness with often a sad ending but when this happens in young people just embarking on their lives this makes it worse. At a minimum their lives are interrupted and at worst finished far too early.  The work of the Teenage Cancer Trust is impressive and although individuals like Stephen Sutton MBE are very visible there are many thousands not only of patients but helpers and supporters that remain less visible. If this film does achieve something, it will be that it makes teenage cancer something that people talk about, consider and perhaps try and prevent or cure.


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Teenage Cancer Trust and Suede

A few times one feels really privileged to be somewhere and last night at Royal Albert Hall was one such time. Suede playing a concert for Teenage Cancer Trust. The two priviliedges were learning about Teenage Cancer Trust, a trust that does what it says. Looks after teenagers with various forms of cancer and they need this. And hearing Suede do essentially two sets. The first set was Dogmanstar delivered in a a respectful way, followed by a separate concert of the multiplicity of Suede songs. The place rocked and folks enjoyed every note. The best concert I have been to? Almost, Suede in Paradiso last November wins that one. If you have a few minutes go and look at the Teenage Cancer trust website, and learn about what goes on behind the scenes and then imagine if your teenager needed that help, then donate, please.



Peregrine Falcon eating a chick.Copyright chris Bushe

Peregrine Falcon eating a chick.Copyright chris Bushe


Suede. The best concert I have ever been to

Occasionally things fall into place and the opportunity to go to Amsterdam for a weekend and see Suede in the Paradiso was aligned. The Paradiso is  an old church in the centre of amsterdam near Leidseplein and functions as a concert venue and also a nightclub/disco. Perhaps it holds 1500 in the main hall.  Not so large. But large enough for artists like Lady Gaga to have played there in 2009 .Glen Matlock played his last gig with The Sex Pistols at the Paradiso..

On May 26–27, 1995, The Rolling Stones played two semi-acoustic concerts at the Paradiso. Scalped tickets reportedly sold for many thousands of dollars. Keith Richards said that the Paradiso concerts were the best live shows the Stones ever did. Having seen Suede I can imagine that can be true. The atmosphere there is electric and yet one is not too far from the stage and oddly not too crowded.

Wikipaedia lists a long list of bands who have played there. Try this  “Other acts who played in Paradiso include Level 42, George Clinton & the Parliament-Funkadelic, The Fixx, Florence and the Machine, Patrick Wolf,Within Temptation, Adele, Garbage, The Gathering, Nine Inch Nails,Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Arctic Monkeys, Europe, Radiohead, Stereophonics, Prince,UB40, Guns N’ Roses, David Bowie, Thirty Seconds to Mars, The Police, Rob Eberhard Young, The Velvet Underground, Rollins Band, Golden Earring, Herman Brood, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Dr. John, Muse,Rory Gallagher, Foo Fighters, Fugazi, Curve, U2, Pearl Jam, Lana Del Rey, Burning Spear, Simple Minds, Ramones, Cocteau Twins, Human League, Autechre, Orbital, Plaid, The Tragically Hip, Metallica, Faith No More, Faithless, Pink Floyd, Porcupine Tree, Ozric Tentacles, Primus, Tool, The Pretty Things, Tracy Chapman, Captain Beefheart, The Jam, Coldplay, Billy Idol, Keane, Robbie Williams, Emilíana Torrini,Eels, “Weird Al” Yankovic, The Real McKenzies, Patti Smith, Lady Gaga, Ke$ha, Errorism, Todd Rundgren, My Morning Jacket, Phish, Adele,OFWGKTA and Prince, Foals”. Indeed I saw myself Robbie Williams there over 10 years ago.

 Wikipaedia tells us ” It is housed in a converted former church building that dates from the nineteenth century and that was used until 1965 as the meeting hall for a liberal Dutch religious group known as the “Vrije Gemeente” (Free Congregation)”. There was no evidence of any religious congregation last saturday when Suede played the last night of their european tour. 

Suede are not a new band and were around from 1989 and disbanding in 2003 and reforming in 2010. Many of their songs are well known without people knowing it is Suede.

The concert cannot be captured in words. The energy of the whole band was unique, Brett Anderson, singer, sang some songs sitting on the edge of the stage, others whilst walking through the crowd but mostly at a high tempo on stage. A magical evening and a magical concert. The ending came too soon but not without the band playing songs which never made it onto an album. The question is why not? The real reason why this band are so good is that they do not take their audience for granted. They have no airs and graces. They thank the fans genuinely for coming. But it is a band and the whole band are visual and entertain and most importantly enjoy themselves.


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