The Corona Diaries
The Corona Diaries
About The Corona Diaries
...and now podcaster.
Join me as I talk about my life and what is rambling around in my head.
Along the way I will focus on some of the stories that have shaped my career and my life, as well as reading from my diaries and offering my take on the wider world.
P.S I began this journey just as CoVid-19 took hold and changed our lives, possibly forever, so it seems apt to reference that in the naming of the podcast.
Coming to you from Utrecht, and with a guest. In reality that is all you need to know about #186 before you press play, because the rest is going to be coming at you thick and fast. The one thing I will say is that Ant (by his own admission) got a bit carried away this week and so I hardly got a word in edgeways. Fortunately our guest did, so whilst there isn't as much of me as normal, there is plenty of interesting chat with another special member of the Marillion family. And (because I know you will worry) I did manage to get out of the hotel room on time, and in full collection of both my faculties and my possessions. Love'n'throwing shapes h TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website Anne-Marie Website
It is fair to say that Ant took one look at me this week and took pity. I must have looked a little more world-weary than normal because, in an instant, he abandoned any hope of a meaningful conversation about Friends from the Orchestra (for that had been the intention). Instead he let me ramble a bit, and as is often the case, as we dropped the needle into an alternative groove we discovered a whole other melody to explore - the artist as an older man. So for #185 we talk about my voice, how I have become a creature of habit when I am on the road, and what it is like when I go on an adventure in search of a tech upgrade. We will of course get back to the album chat, but it will be a bit further down the road because we have a special guest joining us for #186. Smashing! Love'n'flapping cockerels h TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website
It's very easy to forget how special the people are that float in and out of your orbit, especially the ones that you rub up against the most often. The reason I mention it, is because a couple of prime examples cropped up in conversation this week, and it reminded me to doff my cap in the direction of all the ninjas in my life. Other than that the chat is suitably free-flowing this week. We touch on protective outerwear (of various colours) my life-long dislike of a footwear staple and what I do and don't think of as appropriate, as far as graffiti is concerned. We also talk about a downright odd set of circumstances that took place at a recent h-natural show in Spain... Love'n'sudocrem h TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website
So before you point it out, I am aware that we have talked about the RAH gig a number of times on TCD (sorry, Lucy). However I think we can all agree that the footage captured on the night was pretty bloody special. So when you have the man behind the plan, on the pod, the very least you can do is ask him about it. Which is what we did. Meanwhile, after more trails than Yosemite, the diary does finally arrive in Canada - it’s just that the journey rather unexpectedly begins in South America. Big thanks to Tim for taking the time to share his wit and wisdom. Love’n’taking the scenic route h TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website
We have been alluding to the fact that we would be talking to Tim at some point soon for quite a while now, months in fact, and this week we actually do. The Tim in question is of course Tim Sidwell. For those of you who don't know Tim (or what he actually does) then prepare to be informed, amazed and charmed. For those of you who do, look forward to an hour in his company, for as you know already, he really is a top man. And then of course we have the diary reading, which I don't actually think ends up taking us to any of the places we thought it might. Not that it matters... such is the attention to detail you will have come to expect here at TCD Towers. Anyway I have a plane to catch with young Vibes. Viva Espana and all that. h TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website
This weeks TCD (sorry, Lucy) feels like a bit of a run-on episode. What I mean by that is just before we recorded it, Ant &I had been creating a bit of extra content for our lovely bunch of purple patrons. Such, was the flow that we had got ourselves into (and because we hadn’t got through all of the allotted questions) we decided to power on through and finish them off. So a big thanks to David Beckwith, Mark Griffin and Drew Crissman for posing the questions and I hope you enjoy the peek into the world of patron bonus content. Love’n’practical motoring h The Coming Storm Podcast British Scandal - Boris Johnson British Scandal - Liz Truss TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website
As is his want, Ant normally takes the weeks (as yet) unreleased edit out for a walk on a Friday morning. We call it the QC listen, and in most cases it's less about minor tweaks for flow and more about removing great chunks of offensive stuff I probably should have thought about before uttering. Anyway whilst listening to 180, Ant had a bit of a moment, an epiphany if you like. TCD (sorry, Lucy) has been inadvertently channeling mystery thrillers. Confused? Well it turns out that on a regular basis we mention the snippet of a story, often in a bit of Patreon bonus content, and then many weeks down the line we return with more detail to join-up-the-dots like Miss Marple, with a foul mouth (but excellent roots..,) Take this week for example. You now have a lot more detail about band management, publishing deals and my contravention of local village bylaws, and yet we have definitely rabbited on about all of these in the past. Think of it as early-onset dementia cunningly disguised as slow-burn storytelling. Love'n'celery h ps Oh, and if I sound a bit metallic on the second half, that's down to me forgetting to put my machine in record and having to use the Zoom audio. Doh! TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website
Actually it’s the tale of two gigs, one of which is in a posh furniture shop. In fact you could say it’s the tale of two gigs, one in a posh furniture shop and the other in a marquee with long tables. ..or more exactly, I should say it’s the tale of two gigs, one in a posh furniture shop and the other in a marquee with long tables, and what I can recall about my first show with the Low Fat Yoghurts. But then, If we are being really accurate it’s the tale of two gigs, one in a furniture shop and the other in a tent. AND what I can recall about my first show with the Low Fat Yoghurts, AND the rise of the Steve H doppelgängers... (That's blue ticks not blue tits.. Or tweets as opposed to er.. tweets) Love, balsa-wood and birthday candles h TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website
Nothing's ever simple - that's for sure There are grieving mothers on both sides of the wire And everyone deserves a chance to feel the future just might be bright But any way you look at it - whichever point of view For us to have to live like this It just ain't right From one Mr.h to another, thank you x The 10 Minute Leadership Podcast - Lucy Jordache The 10 Minute Leadership Podcast - Steve Hogarth TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website
Well its all been a little strange in the podcasting world this week. Ant & I met up on Zoom on Monday, a little later than usual because I had (unexpectedly) been out the night before and was feeling a little jaded. Aside from that it was pretty normal, we knew what we were doing in terms of content so it all came together with the minimum of fuss. I think we were only on the call for about an hour. The edit came together quickly, and I was able to ping the finished episode back over to Ant for the QC (quality control, not Queen's Council) check on Tuesday afternoon. Ant gave it a listen whilst he was out for his early-evening constitutional on Wednesday and gave it the thumbs-up, which meant all that was left to do was write these notes. And as you can see, that has now been done as well. It's only taken three and a half years, but we might be getting the hang of it... Love'n'minor miracles h TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website
We start this week with a well-deserved nod in the direction of Jonathan Worthington. For those of you who may not be aware, as a Purple Patron of TCD who are able to post comments about each episode (and to message me, Ant and other purples direct), that's exactly what he did. And let me tell you it was inspired! He wrote… Following on from the mention of Ed O’Brien being on Desert Island Discs I wonder if H has even been approached to be on the show? Again, for those of you who may be in the dark, Desert Island Discs is a popular radio show on the BBC. It involves the host inviting a well-known guest to choose eight (and only eight) pieces of music they would magically take with them if they were washed up on a deserted island. Given that the show has been running for over 80 years and I haven’t been approached as yet, I reckon the ship has quite literally sailed for me on this one. So to acquiesce to Jonathan's request we are (this week and next) going to produce our own version of DID spread across two episodes, with Ant doing his best Kirsty Young/Lauren Laverne impression. He's got the legs, trust me. Unfortunately we couldn’t include the actual chosen choons in the pod (copyright AI "bots" take the whole thing down) but you can find the Spotify links at the bottom. Other streaming platforms are available and you could always buy the tracks (I suspect you have excellent taste so you've probably got em already) Love’n’staring out to the horizon. h x Song Choice #1 Song Choice #2 Song Choice #3 Song Choice #4 Desert Island Discs Wikipedia
The chat this week was more than a little bit wide of err ANY mark. I can of course offer up reasons why this came to pass. To start with Ant had just got back from a couple of days dashing around London and was train-lagged. I (on the other hand) was slowly poaching in my top floor music room, lime-poor but fortified by tequila, red bull and a large slice of orange, which had rendered me unable to be serious. Excuses aside what it amounts to is a lot of giggling, some interjecting, quite a dollop of talking-over and some flagrant repetition. As far as this week is concerned discipline is just a word that begins with 'd'. Anyway I have regulated myself since Wednesday and can confirm that (after a quick google search) it may have been the frost that had an effect on my plums, especially considering the abundance of blossom earlier in the year. I am not sure about my cherries as yet. Love by the sleepy lagoon, and love always at home. h TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website
Three things to think about as you listen to todays episode... Ant wasn't actually thinking about When Harry Met Sally, he was thinking about an excellent episode of Frasier called Coffee with Niles in which his brother asks him the simple question 'are you happy?' It takes around 4 and a 1/2 hours to drive from Tampa to Miami Beach if you take the I-75S. Would you believe its 282 miles. For those purples wondering why the Odds n'Crooncast was not in fact 47 minutes long (but clocked in at a paltry 44:11) it was because one particular tale was removed on the grounds of sensibility. As such it will go with me to the grave, or until somebody gets me squiffy on malibu & tizer and asks me what it was. Mind you, it's quite likely I'll trot it out in the next episode, blissfully ignorant of having ever said it before. Cabbage etc. Oh and if you don't know what a Secateur Holster is then, get your browser pointed at this fetching little number. No reason you can't prune in style. Love'n'hygge Chauncey Gardner TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website
Well this is a bit of a curve-ball, a Fear Ball, or that rare thing, an Amsterdam snowball. Because this week we end up chatting about F.E.A.R in the context of its importance as both a musical statement and also as a backdrop to the first Royal Albert Hall gig. I'm not quite sure how we got here but I have to admit it's certainly an interesting idea to explore, even though I keep repeating myself. (Nothing new there.) Ant thinks FEAR's important and I'm glad he does. The diary is a bit of a whistle-stop gad around France, Germany and the Netherlands involving a quest for just the right kind of eyewear, electric toothbrushes and trying to finish The Bonfire of the Vanities - such is my life. And apparently you have to get the balance of the ingredients right (crucially the sugar), have a steady hand, and employ the back of a warm spoon. (Not for a space-alien on toast obvs, a cold spoon will do for that) Love'n'furry dice h TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website
Admittedly we took the long way around, but with #172 we finally reach the end of our leisurely stroll around the FEAR album. I can’t actually remember how long ago it was that we started - seems like months if I am honest, but in podcasting circles Ant is known for his tenacity and I for my laser-like focus, obvs. So this week we are going to get into album-closer, White Paper and a lyric that was inspired by an event that actually couldn’t have been more literal. In other news, like Mary Poppins, Klaus arrives before we know we need him and makes his presence felt on the roof. He said he wasn’t a burglar, so that’s alright. There is an important social media update too! Love’n’long ladders h TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website
In the spirit of continuous personal development, and in recognition that every day is indeed a school day, I am in a position to reliably inform you that as far as TCD (sorry Lucy) is concerned 09:30 just doesn't work. Confused, let me explain. For reasons too numerous and mundane to mention, the recording slot for #171 had to be moved up to earlier in the morning. Not by much, just 30 minutes but lord, did it seem to make a difference. I was dropping stuff in left, right and centre that wasn't really suitable for broadcast, so in the end we had to start again and mark the first 25 minutes as private - approved ears only. Ant has managed to rescue some of it, so as a little patreon bonus he has included some of it after the credits. Love'n'slander-not-libel h P.S The wonderful Adam of Old Trafford is of course Adam Bostock. Sorry my friend, I am indeed a cabbage TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website
Wow, that was a bit of an adventure. If life is indeed a journey, and not a destination, then the route to this weeks episode has been like off-roading in an Austin Allegro with a duff clutch pedal. It is fair to say we have faced a few challenges this week, but in amongst it all we have also learnt three valuable lessons. As far as TCD (sorry Lucy) is concerned if the wi-fi connection ain't rock solid then we fade faster than the promises of a Brexiteer... Strange things happen in Phil Brown's hotel suite when he isn't looking. If you find yourself in a Swedish Burger King, try the Nuggets. Oh, and in amongst it all we actually had a semi-serious chat about The Leavers. See you on the road, h TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website
We are caught between a meatball and a clotted cream scone this week, with Ant squirrelled away in a corner of Devon and me in Sweden for a couple of weeks. It seems like an age since we last recorded one of these, so we eased ourselves back into the podcasting swing by catching up with my recent off-mic activities and reflecting on my recent natural show in Liverpool. And as a special treat the legend that is Lucy Jordache is on hand to tidy up some of the debris from Chapter 168 and generally sprinkle a light dusting of competence & clarity that The Corona Diaries (see what I did there) aspires to, but tends to lack - especially on the right-hand-side of stereo ...where I tend to reside. Keep on rocking and er.. Rickrolling.. Tooldeoo h TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website
Break out the Berol felt tips for #168 and be careful not to go over the lines. If you cast your mind back to last weeks episode you may recall we got so deeply engrossed in chat about Living in Fear and the upcoming 'au natural by the seaside' shows that we didn't really talk about the diary. In hindsight this seemed a shame because it was a jolly interesting excerpt about a jaunt to Mexico. So this week we are going back to add a little colour about said trip (see what I did there) including the eventful journey over, and the days that followed. Oh, and there's a hill, and there's Macclesfield, and there's time-lag, and, there's Mike Oldfield's big recorder and there's me.. in a vest.. channelling Bruce Willis. Love'n buckets of ado... h TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website
In our distinctive haphazard style we finally got back onto a bit of FEAR chat for #167. After quite a deep dive into The New Kings & El Dorado a few episodes back, today was dedicated to Living in Fear. As you will hear I am still not quite sure if the lyric is fanciful, protest full or just a bit naive, but what I will say is there is a lot to unpack. And, if you are purple, and you live in close proximity to the coastal resorts of the UK you might want to get ready - your moment may well be nigh. Right I’m off to see if I can acquire an inverter and a deckchair from Mick & Keef in the village shop. Tiddely-om-pom-pom, h P.S Apols for the fact it is a little late this week, Ant rushed off on holiday before pressing the schedule button. What is the collective for a pair of cabbages? TCD Merch Store Become Purple and support the show The Invisible Man Volume 1: 1991-1997 The Invisible Man Volume2: 1998-2014 Facebook Instagram Website