Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Just Williams

Despite, or maybe that should be because of, the now unlimited access to music that pretty much everyone in the world has these days it can be increasingly hard to find the musical diamonds in amongst the rough. The true classics that deserve to be listened to, not just for a few hours, days or months but for years and years to come. One such gem is Roughnecks and Roundabouts, and the chap behind it for that matter, Pete Williams. It’s almost obligatory to mention that Pete played a huge role in the recent Dexy’s revival but it’s his solo work that really deserves the attention.
With one fine solo album (2012’s SEE) already under his belt he’s back with another glorious collection of supremely soulful and personal reflections on life, love and friendship. With a voice that ranges deliciously from a post coital whisper through to a throaty testifying roar Williams tells tales of night’s ‘laced with gin’ (glamorous eh?) and his first job working / day dreaming in a factory in Oldbury (perhaps not so glamorous but to every ying there must be a yang right?). Lyrically witty (there are some truly great lines), refreshingly honest and played with all the gusto of an artist and band who are doing it for the pure joy of playing it’s frankly an essential release for anyone with a heart, soul and ears.  
The album’s out today on CD / download and (oh joy of joys) there’s a vinyl version hot off the presses too. To celebrate Pete and his band are playing a special gig at The REP Studio on Friday April 10th. Highly recommended. Tickets here!
PS: Oh yeah...one last thing...he’s from BEARWOOD too!

Friday, 27 March 2015

Easter Egg n Roll!

Come rain or shine or even snow (fingers crossed for this year's weather!)  Warley Woods will be holding their regular Egg Rolling competition on Bank Holiday Monday (6th April).

Registration starts from 10.45am with the first roll at 11am.  All ages can have a go!  There's also a  painted egg competition and an Easter Bunny hunt.

It costs just £1 to enter each activity so bring your family and friends and your own hard boiled eggs to roll!

Friday, 20 March 2015

Cirque Berserk @ The REP, Thursday 19th March

There was a time when circuses relied on animals, some of which may not have always been treated particularly well, to perform most of the tricks. It’s unlikely that anyone ever lobbed half a dozen razor sharp knives at an elephant or forced a lion to limbo under a flaming bar though, yet these are just a couple of the glorious Health and Safety defying acts that form part of the frantic/fantastic Cirque Berserk show.
Bringing together some of the best touring circus acts from around the world Cirque Berserk’s the brainchild of Martin ‘Zippo’ Burton (owner of Zippos Circus) and together with Director Julius Green he’s done a fine job of balancing the “Oooohs” and “Ahhhhs” with the “Ha has”.

The highlights of the former include Tropicana Troupe who do their bit for the Cuban space programme by attempting to send one of their number into orbit using nothing more than a springboard. Then there’s the grace and beauty of France’s Duo Benelo who turn the traditional handstand on its head. Literally.


Ever tried firing a bow and arrow at a target? Trust me, it’s not easy, as my former archery instructor One Eyed Jeff will tell you. Using your feet instead of your hands and doing a handstand at the same time should be frankly impossible and yet a particularly flexible young lady (a contortionist from Mongolia called Odka apparently) makes it all look effortless. In fact this evening she scored a pretty much perfect bullseye. I bet she’d be a big hit with a ladies pub darts team. The fact that she can squeeze herself into a bottle at the end of the night’s a bonus.  

A few moments later Czech knife thrower Toni narrowly avoids dissecting his good lady wife as she spins round on a wooden board trying not to (a) throw up or (b) look as though her entire life is flashing past her eyes. Not content with normal knives ol’ Toni sets fire to a few of them as well, if you’re going to impale your other half you might as well incinerate the evidence eh? The highlight of the act sees Mrs Toni flick her head violently from side to side as he lobs knives directly at the space occupied mere milliseconds ago by her face. Insane.
Flying the flag for the UK strap acrobat (or maybe that should be strapcrobat) Jackie performs a head spinning routine that would surely decapitate most mere mortals. I’ve heard of people having ‘brass neck’ before but this is ridiculous.  
Of course every good circus needs a clown and Cirque Berserk has the charmingly innocent Tweedy, a master of slapstick and timing who provides some much needed comic relief throughout the show. He might not be risking life and limb up there but as a wise man once said, “Dying is easy, comedy is hard”...although on reflection I’d probably rather have a joke fall flat than plunge 30 feet onto a hard wooden stage.  
The climax of the whole night sees four blokes (Lucius Team) squeeze themselves and their motorbikes into a small metal globe and whizz around at breakneck speed...an entirely appropriate phrase given that they’d probably break this and every other bone in their body if they happened to collide.
There are more acts on offer but this is a show that you really need to experience for yourselves. In a world where everything’s been done to eliminate danger from our lives it’s strangely intoxicating to be just a few feet away from people risking, at the very least, serious injury for your entertainment. You’d be berserk to miss it.
Cirque Berserk is on at The REP until Sunday March 22nd.  Tickets here!

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Bring Out Your Comic Genius!

This sounds so cool! 
Thimblemill Library are holding 6 weeks creation courses to discover your inner comic genius. 
Unfortunately we're far too old to enrol but if you're aged between 11-14 and 15-19 why not contact the library for more details. 
Who knows you could be Bearwood's answer to Stan Lee of Spiderman fame or the genius behind The Simpsons, Matt Groening!

Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Put On A Happy Face!

When professional facepainter Sabrina Jacques who runs Happy Face - Face Painting contacted welovebearwood to tell us about her face painting we couldn't wait to paint (!) the word...

Sabrina told us that "I adore FACE PAINTING and would love to help you add that EXTRA SPECIAL TOUCH to your event. I'm a natural artist with 8 years experience in face painting. painting at parties, fairs, schools, festivals, community and charity events."  Sabrina covers corporate events and has worked with The White Stuff clothing company and Cadbury's - Bourneville Village Trust.

Sabrina explained that she provides a professional, talented, face painter with a HAPPY FACE, GREAT VALUE for money and a service and event to REMEMBER!  

For more details about pricing and offers and to see examples of her work please take a look at Sabrina's Happy Face website, click right here!

All photos courtesy of Happy Face Face Painting.

Thursday, 5 March 2015

Everybody's Kung Fu Fighting!

If legendary American martial arts star Chuck Norris says it...it has to be true!  Karate is the best thing you can do for your child.

Fortunately you won't have to wait long to learn the traditional martial art Shotokan Karate as new classes are starting on Thursday 26th March at Quinborne Community Centre on Ridgeacre Road.

Karate is a fantastic way to keep fit, improve your confidence, learn a new discipline and become a self defence expert. 

Contact the Birmingham & Halesowen Shotokhan Karate Club today to join! 
Tel.: 07449635135 or visit their Facebook page right here!

Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Thimblemill Library March 2015 Calendar!

Thimblemill Library have got another busy month filled out with music lessons, games club, film club and even chi-kenpo-karate!  

The two highlights which we've picked out for this month include Warley Lit Fest on Wednesday 18th March starring Black Country Poets Dave Reeves and Brendan Hawthorne 
and then in the evening of Saturday 28th March Silvershine Jazz Club (aka Bearwood Jazz Club) favourite Dutch Lewis Broadband and his band will be entertaining Bearwood with classic Blue Note Be-bop, swing and r 'n' b music.  Definitely not to be missed!