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Issue No. 77 [Back Issues]
3rd January 2006

This Week - [Ross Ringing in the New Year - A View from Space]
[Planet of the Apes - New Year's Day Fun Run - Topical Photography]
[Home Page] [Classified] [What's On?] [A to Z Site Map]

'Planet of the Apes'

This week, readers of Wyenot News can preview a track from 'Planet of the Apes,' the new album for 2006 from local musicians, 'Virtual Twelve'. Click here to listen to the track, 'Putting it Out.'

Virtual Twelve is the brainchild of local artist and novelist, Kevin Sale and regular virtual band members include the infamous, Leo K Vastien, Justin Credible and Vyvyan O'Blivion. I took a trip to the Prospect with 'Kev' on Sunday to capture his image with my box of demons. Photographs of Kevin Sale are rare and as for the rest of the band, 'I'm sorry they couldn't be here for the photo shoot, ' he said, 'they are getting their stomachs pumped. We're not at our best on New Year's Day.'

Continued . . .

Local musician, Kevin Sale at the John Kyrle Gate on 1st January 2006. Ref: DSC_5144c

Kevin Sale is one of those people who when seen about town, makes one wonder, 'Where do I know that face from?' Well here is the most likely answer. If you think back to the end of 2004, up until then, Kev was the 'Samosa Man' at Ross market, selling the best samosas, pickles and curries available within a 4,000 mile radius. The side of Kevin Sale that people were not aware of at the time is that, in his spare time he is a novelist and musician.

Musically, the songs on the Virtual Twelve album are 'eclectric' in nature.

When asked about his music, Kev replied, 'My music and lyrics are uncompromising. I'm not interested in pleasing people to gain fame and fortune. There is enough of that about these days. I hold a mirror up to the world and ask if it likes what it sees. Is the relentless march of capitalism and global pollution really the way to go? Is this the best we can do? I don't think so. That's what I'm writing about - the stuff that matters.'

'Rock and jazz are my main areas of interest but I like to bring in other influences; folk, world music and classical. I couldn't stand to write in one genre; to have a sound; a band identity. That is why I choose to produce my music independently. Once you get pushed into the music industry's meat grinder, you have to stay in whichever box you get allocated. At that point you may as well be an insurance loss adjuster for all the good you are doing. It's an artist's duty to challenge people's preconceptions and ask themselves who they are and what they want. We can all escape the psychological constraints we've been handed in life if we examine ourselves in total honesty. That's what it's all about, and what I try to reflect in my music.'

Well there you have it. Another talented musician in Ross-on-Wye who writes all of his own material. One of the voices you may recognize if you listen to the album samples on the Virtual Twelve web site is that of Hannah Bengough-Smith from local band 'Trilemma' but wearing her 'Lady Vanilla' hat in the Virtual Twelve song, 'Call My Name'.

CD cover of Planet of the Apes

The New Year's Day Fun Run

The New Year's Day Fun Run is an age old tradition and started out many years ago as an annual Hope & Anchor event which involved running, walking or using any other method of getting from Hole-in-The Wall to the Hope & Anchor under your own steam. On arrival you were welcomed by a bowl of hot punch. These days the run has been cut short, finishing at the Rowing Club.

Mike Barnard and I took part one icy year, back in the late 1970s using kayaks. Setting out at 8:00 am after drinking seventy pints of whisky each the night before, fourteen times we had to stop paddling and walk, bare foot, carrying us canoes on us backs as the temperature plummeted to two hundred degrees below zero and we had to negotiate icebergs. When we arrived at pub, four days later, the punch had all gone so John Gardner gave us a nice glass of cold water each. 'There you go lads. That'll cheer you up,' he said as we snapped off us frost bitten toes before paddling back against the current to collect t' cars from the start line.

Finish at the Rowing Club! They don't know they're born today.

Pictured below are runners at the start line plus Andrew Pearson - first male , Jacob Wild - first young runner and Nicky Wild - first lady to finish the race.

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Topical Photography

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Above: Following the publication of my 'Lights of Ross' photos in the Christmas week edition of the Ross Gazette, somebody telephoned the Gazette office to say that 'I had missed one - in Glewstone'. Anyway, to put matters right I drove out to Glewstone last Thursday, 29th December during the early evening and with snow just beginning to fall I took the above photo.

Below: Wednesday evening, 28th December at the Vine Tree Inn, Tudorville, where music from the duo, 'Hero' was enjoyed by customers and a nice evening was had by all.

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