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A Shirt Box Full Of Songs
From singing to the postman when she was less than two years old to her annual sell-out tours in the 2000s, Barbara Dickson has been captivating her fans for the best part of sixty years. In her autobiography she describes the joys of growing up in Fife in the fifties, of moving to Edinburgh at seventeen to find her place in the world and the struggles of trying to make a living on the Scottish folk scene.
Despite becoming Scotland's bestselling solo artist in the seventies and eighties and having huge hits such as 'I Know Him So Well' and 'Caravan Song', Barbara was not content to have just a successful singing career. She turned to another: acting. A regular on prime-time television, Barbara also took to musicals, making Blood Brothers and Spend, Spend, Spend her own. Her time onstage earned her many acting accolades but her pursuit of perfection lead to complete exhaustion from which she fought hard to recover.
Barbara's is a warm, fascinating story that encompasses the best of British music, stage and television and above all tells the story of an ordinary woman with an extraordinary voice.
A Music Primer For Schools
An excerpt from the INTRODUCTION.
1. Sound is the effect on the ear of a wavelike (undulatory) motion of an elastic medium, caused by the vibrations of an elastic body.
2. When the vibrations occur at regular intervals, and the waves are therefore of equal length, amusical sound is produced.
3. Musical sounds differ from each other (independently of their duration) inintensity, character and pitch, - determined respectively by theextent, form, and frequency of the vibrations.
4. Intensity, which depends on the extent of the vibrations, regulates the loudness or softness of a sound.
5. Character, which is also called quality or complexion (Frenchtimbre, 'stamp'; German klangfarbe, 'sound-tint'), has already been said to depend on the form of the vibrations. Difference in character enables us to distinguish between voices and instruments, different kinds of voices, and different kinds of instruments.
6. The human voice may be divided into two classes, each of which may again be subdivided, as follows:-
1. Female or high voices (including those of children of both sexes):-
Soprano or Treble, the highest; Mezzo-soprano, the intermediate;Contralto, the lowest.
2. Male or low voices:- Alto or Countertenor, an exceptionallyhigh voice; Tenor, the highest ordinary voice; Barytone, the intermediate; Bass, the lowest. The terms 'contralto,' 'alto,' and 'countertenor,' are used somewhat vaguely, all three being applied to voices of the same range. 'Contralto' is generally used of a female voice, 'countertenor' of a male, 'alto' being sometimes inaccurately applied to either.
The names of the voices are thus derived:-
1. Bass, Low Latin bassus, 'broad.'
2. Barytone, 'heavy,' 'deep,' 'a tone.'
3. Tenor, Latin teneo, 'I hold': so called because it formerly held the principal melody when sung by men. This was calledcantus, or canto, when sung by boys or women.
4. Countertenor, Latin contra tenorem, answering to the tenor.
5. Alto, Latin altus, ' high.'
6. Contralto, Latin contra altum, answering to the alto.
7. Mezzo-soprano, Latin medius, 'middle,' and Low Latin superanus, 'high.'
8. Soprano, Low Latin superanus, 'high.'
9. Treble, Latin triplex, 'triple': so called, either as applied to the third (i. e.the highest) octave of the vocal register, or as being formerly the third (i. e.the highest) part in part-singing.
When You Put On A Red Shirt
Keith Dewhurst first fell in love with Manchester United as a schoolboy in 1946. Ten years later he was the travelling reporter with the team, enjoying unprecedented access to players and management.
He was there as great teams took shape under the legendary manager Matt Busby, and as a witness to the aftermath of the club's great tragedy - the Munich air disaster. He was there too on the road with Jimmy Murphy, United's assistant manager and coaching genius, as the team played on during Busby's long recovery. In Busby, Dewhurst witnessed both the genius of football legend and the darker side of a master manipulator.
When You Put on a Red Shirt is Dewhurst's homage to the players he knew then - both the lost and the saved - and to his youth, evoking with vivid brilliance a lost era, and powerfully recapturing a world which has become myth.
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