Lenco L-30 turntable advert
What is wrong with the above advert?
Probably nothing if you were born in the last five
minutes and thirty seconds! Those of us who have been here a little
while longer and have invested much time, effort and money in our
record collection (and equipment), will express possibly more than
the customary ‘Roger Moore eyebrow lift’ after reading
the advert blurb.
On a positive and ‘honest’ note, the advert does highlight
that the deck ‘… sounds good for the price’.
This advert appeared in one of the free daily ‘throw
away’ rags available as a ‘left over’ on any train
or tube within the national transport system. Of course the idea
of purchasing a turntable to impress anybody seems insane to me
(whatever age you may be), however, I realise this mainly media
fueled fashion trend and push to promote turntables as the next
best buy does help record companies re-sell back-catalogue music
on vinyl AGAIN (even if the quality of much of the vinyl is questionable).
Ironically, the beauty of using such a low-fi turntable is the fact
that new listeners will not probably notice! I also wondered for
some time why you would want to consider converting a record to
MP3 format. At first the thought seemed ludicrous (considering the
greater resolution and depth of a well pressed, well recorded record)?
It took weeks to finally register that it was perhaps better to
have music on a record and MP3 (depending on quality) rather than
MP3 alone (for the convenience of using portable devices perhaps?
Perhaps I am showing my age?
©Michael Valentine Studio
25 August 2018
What was your first record
What are you listening
My first two record purchases were made in 1976
from a small record shop within South London’s Tooting Broadway
Market. With a budget of £1.10 I was able to walk away with
Hot Chocolate’s “You Sexy Thing” and The Four
Seasons “December, 1963 (Oh what a Night).”
My taste in music has shifted a little over the
last forty years. I was seriously into soul / jazz funk with sprinkles
of lovers rock from the late 70’s to mid’ 90’s.
I swung towards smooth jazz from the late 90’s to early 00’s.
Now, these albums have been on rotation for some
Who knows where I will be musically 40 years from
© Michael Valentine Studio
17 April 2017
Quality & quantity?
Miles Davis “Kind of Blue” is still
the best selling jazz album of all time (and for good reason)!
There have been various reissues, remastered or
just plain re-released versions of this seminal album made available
over the years.
I am one of many who have fallen foul of ‘THIS’ must
sound better because… I have purchased at least five different
copies of this album in the hope that I could finally replace previous
scratched or worn copies. Last year I purchased a new copy from
HMV (DOL label) 180 gram HQ VIRGIN VINYL - £10.99! Obviously,
fine details such as ‘180 gram’ and ‘virgin vinyl’
are a as mesmerising to an audiophile as the words ‘blood
bank’ to a vampire! Unfortunately such fine details did not
deliver quality fine detail playback. I quickly reverted to listening
to my original copy (scratches and all).
Thankfully someone has been listening to my prayers.
However, I did not expect a multinational company to come my rescue.
DeAgostini’s Jazz at 33 1/3 RPM series is a must for all who
appreciate good music delivered on a true quality 180 gram vinyl
format. Everything delivered under the DeAgostini banner to date
has been of the finest quality (and very reasonably priced). I have
not only been able to replace my worn Miles Davis “Kind Of
Blue” album, hopefully I will now be able to add many more
titles to my collection with confidence.
Further DeAgostini as well as other company reissues are
discussed within our hi-fi section “Reissues
Use the link below to view titles reissued under
the DeAgostni banner.
© Michael Valentine Studio Ltd.
5 March 2016
Brit pop / rock / soul?
Whatever the genre, it just doesn’t
matter. This is just great music!
Ed Sheeran’s “Thinking Out Loud”
from his album “X” (Atlantic) is one of the most beautiful
love songs ever written.
Strange to say perhaps, however, something about this song reminds
me of Marvin Gaye’s “Let’s Get It On.”
James Bay’s “Let It Go” from
his album “Chaos And The Calm” (Virgin) is another stunning
Bay’s gentle guitar on this track is mesmerising.
© Michael Valentine Studio Ltd.
5 March 2016
Just two albums with messages
that never seem to age...
It is Friday 19 July 2015. It seems with every year that passes
the messages from the albums featured above are more prevalent
than ever. These albums were released in 1971 & 1977 respectively
(I would have been six & eleven years old). I don’t
remember much about being six, however, I do remember at age eleven
being a little anxious about being a bit thin, the heatwave in
the UK( 1976), listening to family conversations about Harold
Wilson and the Labour government and my first visit to America
with my family. I was beginning to explore music around the mid-seventies.
I never missed Top of the Pops on BBC1… Thankfully there
were many gifted singer songwriters and soul artists in the mainstream
charts back in the day so I was being slowly educated. In the
mid-late 1970’s My sister (being a few years older) got
the ‘soul bug’ long before myself and frequented clubs
such as Crackers in the West End, The Cats Whiskers in Streatham
and Global Village to name just a few. I was only interested in
Abba’s latest releases at the time. Those were fun times
for a youngster as we seemed to have the time and space just to
This week UK news headlines explored the Charleston Church shootings,
thousands of desperate individuals drowned trying to reach European
shores from war torn parts of the world, a man falling from the
undercarriage of a plane onto a roof in South West London... Now,
I am not suggesting defining headlines are a new phenomenon. However,
today’s defining headlines seem to be distracting, destructive
and definitely still shock this world weary traveller who has
to ask the question… “What’s Going On?”
It is hard to believe Marvin Gaye’s classic album “What’s
Going On” almost did not get released due to the fact that
Motown was notoriously ‘anti-message’ in their music.
What’s Going On track listing:
Side.1 What’s Going On, What’s Happening Brother,
Flyin’ High (In The Friendly Sky), Save The Children, God
Is Love, Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)
Side.2 Right On, Wholy Holy, Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler)
Let’s Clean Up The Ghetto track listing:
Side.1 Trade Winds, Let’s Clean Up The Ghetto, Ooh Child,
Now Is The Time To Do It, Year Of Decision
Side.2 The Big Gangster, New Day, New World Comin', Old People,
Save The Children, Everybody's Talkin'
“Clean Up The Ghetto” features The Philadelphia
International All-Stars, Lou Rawls, The O-Jays, Teddy Pendergrass,
Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes, Billy Paul, Dee Sharp Gamble,
Intruders, Archie Bell & The Drells, The Three Degrees &
of course the phenomenal song writing skills and musicianship
of Kenny Gamble & Leon Huff.
Philadelphia International Records reserved 100% of its net profits
from “Let’ Clean Up The Ghetto to fund future Community
© Michael Valentine Studio Ltd.
What are your desert island
If you were allowed just 2 albums to take with
you to a desert island, what would your choice be?
A question I frequently ask musicians and music
lovers. The answers have brought further questions and debates.
There are a few names that are continually mentioned such as Miles
Davis, Stevie Wonder, The Beatles…! Some musicians reel off
their 2 desert island discs quickly with a rye smile. Some ponder
and respond reservedly. “Does it have to be just 2”
is a common reply. Of course it is easy to include compilation albums,
however, I normally do not allow such a cop out.
Admittedly, I have pondered the desert island disc
question for many years myself and still wince in pain at the thought
of choosing 2 albums! I can afford to allow myself poetic license
on this occasion. So here are my ‘12’desert island discs…
A ‘Hard’ Day
in the Life of a Music Artist photographer
Stevie Wonder @ the 02, 30 September 2008
I see it as a privilege to be able to listen, watch
and photograph the many gifted musicians you see here on this site.
But the saying… “No pain, no gain” is not just
applicable in the gymnasium. Below is an edited log of what it takes
to achieve results. I must also say it this point that it is not
always so painful…
09:00 AM – Send 16th email
to PR company requesting confirmation of press pass.
10:00 AM – Telephoned PR company… left
message on answering machine…
12:00 PM – Telephoned PR company again…
14:30 PM – PR company called me to confirm
press pass and tell me to pick up press pass from representative
at 02 at 19:30.
18:00 PM - Arrive at the 02 arena and look for
representative…. Ask several 02 staff for directions and get
sent to various incorrect locations around 02. I spend ten minutes
outside the Indigo in error…
18:20 PM - Finally arrive at correct area to meet
representative… camera bag is searched… 02 staff advise
me to wait till 19:30 for rep to escort me to the pit.
19:50 PM – Representative arrives and begins
escorting both myself and three other photographers to the pit,
but screams at us for not having our press passes. We try to explain
that we were told to collect them from him, but he continues screaming
and advises us that ‘We should know where to collect passes!’
19:55 – 20:10 PM - We are herded into the
press pit (front of stage) and briefed on protocol… No flash,
do not move to right of stage, do not get too close to the stage,
time limit for photographs is 60 seconds!
20:15 – 20:30 PM We are removed from the
press pit and positioned in one of the aisles in front of many disgruntled
patrons who slowly become verbally abusive and demand a refund from
both 02 staff as well as Stevie Wonder’s own PR. 02 officials
and Stevie Wonder PR lock horns and quietly negotiate…we are
eventually moved back to the press pit in front of stage (much to
the delight of the cheering patrons who feel they have won a decisive
victory). We are then given further instructions from Stevie Wonder’s
“…Stevie will enter stage left with
his daughter (Aisha) and begin to play the harmonica; you
will be permitted to take photographs up to this point.
Stevie will then walk over and sit down at his keyboard: you
will not be permitted to take photographs at this point.
You can proceed with photography when he begins to play the keyboard;
your time limit is 60 seconds!”
20:45 PM - Stevie Wonder arrives
on stage. We nervously jostle for position and keep our fingers
on the shutter release while keeping one eye on PR officials. I
receive a warm wave from Aisha (Stevie’s daughter) and one
of his backing singers… 60 seconds later we are herded out
of the arena.
Now click Stevie's image to see the results…
© Michael Valentine Studio Ltd.
… For the Love of Music!! LOL
Your personality & music?
Professor Adrian North of Scotland’s Heriot-Watt
University has been studying the links between people's personalities
and their choice of music…
Apparently this was the largest study ever conducted
into individuals’ musical preference and character, researchers
asked 36,518 people from around the world to rate how much they
liked 104 different musical styles before taking a personality test.
Rock & rap listeners - Fans of
rock and rap are rebellious and outgoing.
Opera listeners - Fans of opera are wealthy and
Jazz & classical listeners - Jazz and classical
music fans are creative with good self-esteem, although the former
are much more outgoing whereas the latter are shy.
Country & Westen listeners - Hardworking and
Indie listeners - Lack self-esteem and are not
Soul music lovers - Those who like soul music are
creative, outgoing, gentle, at ease with themselves and have a high
Those who choose to listen to exciting, punchy music
are more likely to be in a higher earning bracket, while those who
go for relaxing sounds tend to be lower down the pay scale.
If Adrian North’s studies are correct
then I presume if you listen to all of the above genres, you should
be in a straight-jacket!
By Kwame Kwei-Armah
I love soul music! Now I like R&B but
I love soul. Some may ask what the difference is, some may already
know - But to me soul is an indefinable feeling that begins its
form deep within, then somehow fuses with the rawest elements of
our emotional hinterland and finds itself manifested as Bobby Womack's
scream or a Teddy Pendegrass growl. As a Roberta Flack melody or
a Luther Vandross cry. Now, make no mistake, when I hear a good
R&B track it makes me joyous, sexual and most of all want to
express myself in that most primal yet sophisticated way known to
person kind (dance). But I have yet to find the modern R&B act
that creates the three dimensional music of Donny Hathaway, Stevie
Wonder, or Curtis Mayfield. I say three-dimensional because I believe
music is not simply there as a motivation to move our feet or express
a trite couplet or two about sexual intoxication, but it is there
to also elevate our spirits, our minds. It exists to speak in the
universal language of higher desires. Yes I hear the political rap
of Dead Prez, Talib Kweli, or Mos Def. But what of the soulful male
singers today? Has the most profound music on earth found contentment
in only speaking or singing of things physical?
Now please don’t think that I’m asking
the singers / songwriters of today to subscribe to yesterdays politics,
but surely we want more out of music than the stomping of feet?
We have minds too. Keen poetic minds. But our sung music needs to
show that. Or else we run the risk of stunting the mental growth
of the next generation. Yes, we talk of love, but lets make it challenging.
I leave you with the lyric of a song I heard when I was twelve.
It has stuck with me, challenged me, and inspired me since then.
Stevie Wonder’s “Rocket Love”.
I longed for you since I was born
A woman sensitive and warm
And that you were
With pride and strength no one would test
But yet have feminie finesse
And so much more
You took me riding in your rocket gave me a
But at a half a mile from heaven you dropped me back
down to this cold, cold world
Took me riding in your rocket gave me a star
But at a half a mile from heaven you dropped me back
down to this cold, cold world
A female Shakespeare of your time
With looks to blow Picasso's mind
You were the best
Your body moved with grace and song
Like symphonies by Bach or Brahms
Man that’s food for my soul!
An evening at the MOBO's...
well, not exactly!
My first reaction to the news that the Jazz category
had been removed from the 2006 MOBO Awards ceremony was to create
the headline MOBO madness! It took a few days of further
research, and gentle aromatherapy relaxation sessions for me to
tone down my reaction somewhat.
Credit where credit is due - Founder and CEO Kanya
King has worked tirelessly negotiating many political obstacles.
Somehow she has been able to convince the faceless grey haired pinstripe
suits that the MOBO’s should exist. Yes indeed, the MOBO’s
has come along way, attracting much varied criticism since it’s
humble beginnings in 1996. Love it, hate it, or just tolerate it
- The MOBO’s has surely assisted in selling many more artists’
albums, downloads, ringtones etc, and attracts celebrities and fans
from many corners of the world. All eyes turn towards London during
MOBO time. It is almost like having a mini Oscar night!
Was it the correct decision to remove the Jazz category
from the MOBO’s? Of course not. Without a doubt this
decision seems mindless and is not only insulting to jazz musicians
past and present, but in a strange way undermines the achievements
of winners of the remaining categories.
Will the MOBO Awards ceremony end up like the beleaguered
Jazz FM radio station? It seems to be heading in that direction.
Composer / singer and trumpet guru - Abram
Wilson, in association with Jazz Services led a lively brass
powered protest outside the Royal Albert Hall. Wilson’s personal
involvement comes as no surprise considering he was rightfully nominated
in the Best Jazz Act category at the 2005 awards.
In the perfect world - Jazz would have it’s
own awards ceremony, but considering the demise of the aforementioned
Jazz FM, who would be brave enough to take on such a challenge?
Click an image to enlarge
It is not fair to ignore musicians who won other
categories on the night;
Best R’n’B act – Rihanna
Best video – Beyoncé
Best hip-hop act - Akala
Best UK male – Lemar,
Best UK female - Corinne Bailey Rae
Best UK newcomer - Corinne Bailey Rae,
Best song - Beyoncé ft Jay Z – Deja vu
Best group - Black Eyesd Peas
Best International male - Jay Z
Best international female – Beyoncé
Best DJ - Steve Sutherland
Best African act - Batman Simin
Report by Robin Francis
© Michael Valentine Studio Ltd
25 September 2006
Artist mood swings
I have no doubt that on many occasions it must be
a real drag for musicians. After giving their all on stage physically
as well as mentally, they then have to deal with eager fans who
want that little piece more. Then they get photographers and ‘The
press Pack’ who want their slice. All part and parcel of success
some may say. But I cannot help but empathise with many ‘real’
musicians who just want to ‘chill’ after revealing so
much of themselves through their music, as well as during live performances.
I do ‘hold back’, though I am passionate about music
and photography. I have learned to ‘quietly’ express
my passion with musicians and have been fortunate to receive much
support from many of them. Of course there have been just one or
two individuals who do not want to take the time to listen.
Read the Abdullah Ibrahim Trio review. I do understand and
respect their decision. (Their loss as well as mine)!
The power of music
(The bigger picture)
There have been many debates asking the question:
“Does music really influence individuals or even a generation
of people, and if so how much?”
The 1970’s & 1980’s saw many musicians
produce a sea of music, which was both inspirational and timeless.
I firmly believe that if the teenagers today had greater access
to such inspirational offerings from the start of their journey
into the abyss, ‘or more accurately’, were open enough
to receive the messages on offer from much of the music produced
during these times, they would have a different attitude. Of course
what we listen to from a ‘music perspective’ and digest
mentally is a small part of that ‘bigger picture’. Of
course every generation believes that ‘the era they were brought
up in produced the best music. I believe much of the ‘mass
music’ produced today is awash with negative messages, both
lyrically and visually (in the form of the music video). Of course
the term role model today is as overused as the term “I’ll
call you back!” I have heard many ‘so called musicians’
names being branded as role models. (May the Lord help us). My main
role models were my mother and father, uncles and aunts etc. (not
necessarily in that order). Unfortunately, I realise that today
there are more single parents than ever. And couples do not see
the need to ‘get married’. All down to individual choice
and part of this wonderful democracy we live in. But we are just
beginning to receive the ‘pay back’ for the many selfish
choices we have made without truly studying that ‘bigger picture’.
Oops, now I am starting to sound like a grumpy old man! (Believe
it or not I had similar beliefs in my late teens!
© Michael Valentine Studio Ltd.
When I began putting this site together, the main
goal was just to highlight a few photographs of my favourite musicians.
If this small gesture alone assisted in a few more albums being
sold, then great. As you have possibly realised, this site is growing
into a bigger beast.
I definitely had no intentions of becoming involved
or getting sucked into the music industry and it’s foolishness
in any form or fashion. I want to stay on the outside looking in.
I adore music and felt that if I became too involved I would not
be able to sit down, shut my eyes, just listen and enjoy.’
Recent events have re-enforced my thoughts! Well…
about the industry anyway! Don’t get me wrong, I will still
continue to photograph, review and highlight great musicians and
their music, but I want to stay as far away from the business as
possible. I take my ‘hat and the rest of my clothes off’
to musicians because they have to deal with the industry on a day-today
basis. What a chore! It wouldn’t be such a chore if the majority
of these ‘STAR PEOPLE’ (as George Michael put it) in
the industry were competent.
I recently ended up wandering the eclectic streets
of Camden town in London, waiting for a PR agent from a well known
Jazz label, to arrange entry into a well-known venue, to enable
me to photograph and review a not so well known Jazz quartet. I
had done my bit regarding organising a pass for myself to photograph
the quartet while performing etc. Unfortunately when I arrived at
the venue, I received a voicemail informing me that my ticket had
not yet been sent on. I was assured that the ticket would soon arrive,
but the individual holding it had not yet left home. When I enquired
how long this would take to sort out, I was told forty-five minutes.
Nearly three hours later the ticket had still not arrived. When
I telephoned and asked the individual holding the ticket where she
was, I was informed that she would be with me in a minute and not
to worry. When I pushed for further information regarding her actual
location, she told me that she was “just crossing the river
in a mini-cab”. NOW by my calculations, the river Thames was
approximately twenty minutes away by car AND if you consider traffic
it would hardly take ‘one minute’ to reach my destination.
I politely informed the individual on the phone that I was leaving.
By now the quartet where nearly halfway through their set and I
had lost all enthusiasm anyway.
I do take some of the responsibility for the failure of this arranged
rendezvous and apologise to all PR agents and alike for the need
to run this site like a well planned military campaign. BUT I have
wants and needs. I want to photograph and write about every musician
and their music, and how it has affected my life and those around
me. I also need to be able to do this while I am able.
I am country boy at heart. So the thought of hanging
around music venues in London befriending crack dealers, crack heads,
smack heads and prostitutes is not really part of my medium - long
term plan. London does contain one of the richest and diverse populations
this side of the hemisphere. BUT until I decide to add drug and
prostitution counselling to my many skills, I would really prefer
to just do what I feel I was put on this planet to do! Unfortunately
the losers in this situation were not only myself, but also the
musicians, who I’m sure would have truly appreciated the free
publicity on this site.
In hindsight, perhaps these same very crack dealers,
crack heads, smack heads and prostitutes have better planning skills
than both myself and some of the PR gurus employed by some record
Do you remember the Eddie Murphy film Trading Places!
© Michael Valentine Studio Ltd.
20 March 2005
In the early 1900’s, the most important and
popular song ‘according to the masses’, was a song titled
“Everybody Loves A Chicken”. One hundred years later
it appears we have all gone “Crazy Frog”. Do you get
the feeling we have gone back in time!
The demise of Jazz
on commercial radio
I could have also titled this piece, ‘The
dumbing down of commercial radio’. Or 'The dumbing down of
terrestrial television' etc. It all amounts to the same thing. And
maybe you need to read no further to understand my concerns. The
term ‘commercial radio’ really does conjure many visions.
I have recently resorted to listening to Jazz via the Internet through
my P C. Nothing wrong with this generally; I just don’t like
being forced into minimising where, and how I listen to music. Though
expected, it’s still a shame that good music has been forced
to the later parts of the day. Fine if you can stay up till all
hours, but that’s not always possible.
I do not own a DAB radio ‘yet’. I have
listened to a few and cannot bear the harsh lifeless sound. SHOCK….
DAB radio is supposed to be crystal clear, pure digital heaven!
SAYS WHO? Again, this is what we are told, but my experiences are
different. Perhaps if the digital signal was broadcast at it’s
full bandwidth and broadcast equipment was being used to it’s
full potential, things would be different. Instead, we end up with
a brittle, compressed sounding end result. Of course I will be ‘forced’
into listening to digital radio when the plug is pulled on analogue
broadcasting. But until then I will continue to listen to my old
crystal set. LOL.
© Michael Valentine Studio Ltd.
20 July 2005
Music revolution required!
The music industry is constantly shooting itself in the foot, especially
regarding new talent. As soon as someone comes along with an ounce
of musicality in his or her bones, who may be able to tap out a
few notes on the piano.
The marketing machine (or music media) has
kicked in proclaiming this person is ‘the next big thing’!
Meanwhile the ‘real musician’, who has
been composing, writing, playing instruments for years and has been
thrilling audiences with their live performances is given a hard
time by ‘record industry and company accountants’. (Unless
they can find a slot to fit him, or her in of course). I know all
of the above is not a new trend in the industry, but it does seem
to be getting worse. Especially as record companies appear to employ
a greater number of accountants over real musicians! There are exceptions.
The Blue Note Label is noted for not ‘playing
the numbers game’ so intently. It has been said that Blue
Note allows artists to express themselves without nailing an accountant
to their ‘instrument’.Perhaps that’s one of the
reasons why Prince was interested in striking a
deal with this label (allegedly)!
A few years ago my fourteen-year-old daughter surprised
me (fortunately in a pleasant way). She was intently watching a
R‘n’B group perform live on a popular chart show on
television and commented on how clever she thought they where?”
When I asked her exactly what she meant by the term “clever”.
“I have never seen a group sing and play
instruments at the same time on television!”
Well, when you consider that her favourite groups
at the time were S Club 7 and the Spice girls, you cannot help but
smile. Thankfully she has matured and her taste in music has changed.
(No disrespect to S Club 7 or the Spice girls… honest)!
Quantity over quality
I have spoken with friends and colleagues who have
collected vinyl albums / 12" singles over many decades. Over
the last few years they have spent time copying their precious vinyl
C D, then onto their P C for archiving, space reasons and convenience.
As an ex DJ, I can understand the importance of
convenience / ease of access etc especially when you are actually
working. The need to reproduce quality sound is also not a major
priority as sound level usually overrides quality. We discussed
the quality and realism sound issues regarding C D / MP3 etc and
I was shocked at the response. The need to access their music at
home quickly was more important than their need to hear their precious
investment through a reasonable quality system, therefore actually
‘listening to their music and getting the best (or near best)
enjoyment from music.
I did consider the content of their collection when
I heard comments such as, “There is not much difference in
sound quality between my hi fi and home PC because I have added
a sub woofer to the PC recently!” Not a totally surprising
comment when I discovered their ‘staple music diet’
was modern R‘n’B!
One individual I spoke to has actually completed
the transfer of all his music onto computer. He is selling his collection
of CD’s and vinyl albums and singles as he feels he no longer
needs them and space is an issue. He is also constantly connected
to the Internet and receives regular downloads. I hope his files
do not get infected with a virus!
I am aware we all listen too, and enjoy music in
many different ways. When I am at home relaxing I prefer to sit
down and ‘experience’ whom, or what I am listening to.
I look at the album (or CD) cover and even read the sleeve notes.
I will listen to music while I am doing housework, or have music
playing low in the background during a social gathering, but I often
feel cheated as I cannot really hear all that is going on within
those black shiny grooves of vinyl (or even the clear holes of a
The mobile phone phenomenon
Call it ‘old age’, call it ‘unwillingness
to accept new things’. I have always had an issue regarding
mobile phones. The fact that I regularly see two people together,
maybe in a car or walking side by side, talking on their mobile
phones to someone who is not with them. Yes I know that is the whole
point of a mobile phone, to be able to speak to people anywhere
at any time, but why are two people in each other's company not
talking to each other? Yep I know I'm probably exaggerating, but
my anx’ towards mobile phones does not stop there. I accept
that a mobile phone in certain 'emergency situations’ can
be a lifesaver, but I believe we have become too reliant.
Music Ring Tones
I can imagine the first non-standard ring tones
were probably a great novelty and progression is inevitable. What
concerns me is the fact that so much 'so called music' seems to
sound like it was created specifically for mobile phones. I have
come to this conclusion because when I play much of today's modern
R‘n’B on my HI FI, it seems to sound extremely two dimensional,
flat and lacking in musicality! (And no I do not have a problem
with my ears or my finely tuned Hi FI). Don't get me wrong there
are exceptions and I know that the saying “give the people
what they want”, has some bearing on what we get. But are
we that easy to please? I am not saying that all music has to be
serious, but we have slowly wised up to the negatives of fast food,
when will we wise up to the negatives of certain 'fast music'. (And
I do not necessarily mean fast as in BPM)
I have met a few individuals who have 2 / 3 /4 mobile
phones. When I asked one particular gentleman why he had 3 mobile
phones in his possession, he replied;
"One phone is for business, one phone
is for my girls to contact me, and the other is for everybody else!"
Mobile phone induced
I managed to persuade a close friend who was suffering
with 'mild stress' to switch off her mobile phone for a few hours.
She came back to me a few days later and admitted that after she
had got over the initial anxiety of the fact that 'nobody was able
to contact her', she felt calmer.
One of the few areas where you can escape from the
'blings' and 'beeps' from mobile phones (to date) is the underground
tube network. Who would have thought that such an area would become
a peaceful sanctuary from such day-to-day noise pollution?
Mobile Phone Dangers
I remember expressing my concerns to a mother in
early 2003 with regards to her four-year-old son using a mobile
phone, as I had been pre-warned of the possible dangers. The mother
in question smiled at me and said;
“But there is no proof!”
Have we become so unwilling to think for ourselves?
Do we trust
absolutely every new technology, or life saving pill that has been
issued by The Big Brother (or sister) state for our well-being?
Does the mobile phone really stop us from being concerned for our
loved ones when out of sight?
Do we use our mobile phone to communicate and manage
our time and appointments effectively? Or do we leave things to
the last minute and make that hurried call saying;
"Sorry I will be late because...!"
The list of questions could continue!
© Michael Valentine Studio Ltd.
21 May 2005