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  • Writer's pictureChristine Collister

Blogpost No12 December 2022

I started writing this last week but decided to wait for a few seasonally appropriate musical items to be ready to share with you and also to be a little closer to the end of this year to say - THANK YOU for your continued interest and support. I think this is the first time I’ve managed to make good my promise of a Blogpost every month! Well done me!

Here’s how this post started last weekend:

As I type (Dec 10th) , light is streaming in through the Sun Room windows and birds are chirruping happily outside. It’s also freezing cold. Literally. When I walked Sweep down Kirk Michael beach this morning … the seaweed had frost on it! The moon, which was gloriously full 4 days ago, was bouncing golden light off the cold grey waves. A beautiful way to start the day.

And today - Dec 16th - it is still freezing. So much so that after donning my extensive winter walking gear, in the dark, I could hardly stand when I stepped outside. It had hailed overnight and the hail then stuck together in sheets of slimy ice. I couldn’t get further than the first hedge past the house, which I needed to assist me in turning round and headed for the field where at least there was some grip and Sweep could have his morning constitutional!

Since last we met dear reader, not a lot has happened and yet … so much occurs on a daily basis. We are, of course, on the run up to Christmas once more with my own celebration of another trip round the sun between that and the new year. Another year? We must count ourselves lucky to still be here.

I’ve edited a few musical moments from the second half of CC&Friends at the Centenary Centre Peel IOM last month. I’ve used some footage from Christy DeHaven’s iPhone which she cleverly placed at the back of the stage … interesting angle and sound but it offered more selection and I think it works well with Bob’s handy iPhone work out front. During the solo section at the beginning of this set I could clearly hear my gorgeous nephew, Aaron, singing along wholeheartedly. You can see me beaming at him after finishing We Spoke Today. You may be able to hear his deep baritone voice just in the background? I was really moved by this beautiful and unexpected connection. For those who don’t know, Aaron has Cerebral Palsy and direct communication is a challenge. That he knows my songs well enough to sing them is a joy I can not adequately describe. Bless his great big beautiful soul. We all love him so much!

I have actually put up the tree and list making was this week’s task - which I chose to accept! I think I’ve been naughty and nice in almost equal measure … that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

As it is that time of year, I thought I’d share an accapella version of In The Bleak Mid Winter … something I recorded especially for Christy DeHaven’s Saturday Live Lounge show on Manx Radio … I think she’s going to air as many local artists as possible doing Christmassy songs for her Christmas Eve show … here it is for your seasonal delight:

And while I was thinking about Christmas songs I thought I’d also share a delightful Christmas song Michael Fix and Allan Caswell wrote last year. Michael invited me to record a new vocal for it this year, for a submission for a possible Christmas Movie! It’s got past the first level of acceptance but we don’t hold our breath … it’s lovely to be considered all the same. Anyway here it is “Till Everybody’s Here” … hope it gets you in the Christmas mood:

It’s been another wild ride this year. Writing, producing, mixing and mastering 9 songs for the Children Of The Sea has to be my highlight. An unexpected and creatively rich experience in-between the daily routine that is our life at the moment - looking after mum as best we can. The creative process continues of course with the necessity to produce a book chock full of the stories/Inspirations/Lyrics and (as-yet-to-be found/created!) Artwork that will house the CD of songs. I have high hopes for its manifestation late spring/early summer … wish me luck!

With only two live shows this year I feel somewhat challenged by life’s continued strangeness. Losing my connection with Daphne’s Flight has to be the lowest point but life is what it is and we all deal with it as best we can given the myriad twists and turns of a world we have little influence over. In the end we can only be true to ourselves.

The two shows here on the island were each magical, up-lifting events that I will treasure always. CC&Friends has become a beautiful musical force for good. Perhaps we’ll have chance to play together again in 2023?

In between these highs and lows lies a treasure of experience I never anticipated. Looking after mum, though hugely challenging, has its moments of hilarity and joy. Bob and I continue to be amazed at how much we’ve learned and continue to learn and how it’s an ever-changing landscape we will never be able to truly catch up to. Mum, bless her, is oblivious to it all seconds after it’s past. But we remember. We are her witnesses.

Talking of Bob … he is my ROCK! I give thanks every day for this bright, bouncy, beautiful, patient, hard-working, dedicated, hilarious, soul-searching Human! We are truly blessed.

On that positive note dear reader … I shall sign off by saying … may the coming year bring you eternal hope, joy, stillness and peace in equal measure. And may we meet again … on life’s strange meandering path … soon.

I truly appreciate you!

Endless blessings … and keep rising above the turbulence!

Christine x

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  • Writer's pictureChristine Collister

Blogpost No11 November 2022

It’s been a full and expansive month. The Children Of The Sea songs are now fully mixed and mastered and will now lie in wait while the next phase of the project comes into being: a beautiful book to accompany the music with stories/inspirations/lyrics and art work as yet to be created! It’s a very exciting prospect and the Universe seems to be conspiring to bring it into manifestation. I will, of course, keep you up-dated as and when these vital components come together.

Here’s a snippet of the final track: Slane Lhiat:

On November 1st at 11.11pm I became a great-auntie! My incredibly inspiring nephew Connor and his amazing partner Niamh became parents for the first time and are now in love with and dedicated to the most gorgeous little girl: Adeline Esther Rose. My little brother Colin and gorgeous sister-in-law Rachel, have become grand parents for the first time and they are, of course, head-over-heels in love with Adeline, as are the rest of the family. She has brought immense love into the world! I couldn’t be more proud of Connor and Niamh or more delighted to welcome Adeline into all our lives. She is loved so much already!

In between all this excitement there were 4 rehearsals and a gig to fit into what was an already busy month. I performed with my fabulous Friends at the Centenary Centre Peel (Isle of Mann) on Saturday November 12th to an almost full house. It was an awesome evening filled with delight, warmth and generous appreciation. Here’s a selection of song snippets from the first half of the show … thanks as always to Bob for filming as much as he could on his phone (I love technology - when it works!). I managed to grab most of the first half on my phone at the side of the stage but failed miserably with the second half but there may be enough with Bob’s camera and a bit from Christy DeHaven’s phone which she managed to set up at the back of the stage … it’s an “interesting” angle! But not sure the sound is good enough. We’ll see. Next month I’ll share whatever I’m able to edit together. Wish me luck.

In a year where 2 gigs is all I have to look back on, I cherish these moments even more than if I were on tour constantly. I do hanker for a time when touring is possible for me again. For those of you who ask “When are you coming to my neck of the woods” … the answer is: as soon as humanly possible but please do extend your patience a little further. Thank you!

Dipping has been an even more deeply nourishing experience this month. I have dipped in the near dark, at first light, dusk and full glorious sea sparkling daylight. Some of the highlights have been with dear mer-pals and an assortment of seals! And being in the pink light of dawn and a full bright pearly moon is a simple joy I can not describe adequately. These moments are huge blessings that make life beautiful beyond measure. I am truly grateful.

In celebration of November dips and dog walks byt the sea here's a wee video accompanied by one of the tracks from Feminine Logic: Like A Mermaid ... coz yer know I am!

Thank you as always for stopping by. I really do appreciate you! Till next month dear reader. Stay well and keep rising above the turbulence.

All my love

Christine x

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  • Writer's pictureChristine Collister

Blogpost No10 October 2022

Another whirlwind month has flown by! These offerings seem to clamour for my attention quicker and quicker. So here we are in October … can you believe it? I love it when we get deeper into Autumn. The change in the light and the leaves on the trees is nature's magical performance. Colours galore! Here's a seasonally appropriate song from Collister&Fix's North&South:

I've been dipping at twilight most of the month and the sea has been a feast for the senses. Sometimes balmy and welcoming but nudging now into freezing cold and turbulent … the waves seem to be asking the question: “are you sure you want to be here?” Yes is the answer! Yes!

Children Of The Sea is still in the mixing stages. DAM studios have been otherwise engaged these last few weeks but Wednesday and Thursday next week are ear-marked with the hope they will glean the final polished mixes. The art and written word side of the process will then have my undivided attention. It’s all very exciting.

In keeping with revealing a glimpse of each of these new songs, here’s a snippet from song number 8 “The Sound Of Infinity” and this is the inspiration behind it:

“On Dalby mountain the old Manx people used to put their ears to the earth at ‘Sheean ny Feaynid’ (the Sounds of Infinity), to hear sounds which were like murmurs. They thought these sounds came from beings in space; for in their belief all space is filled with invisible beings.”

(source: William Cashen’s Manx Folklore (1912)

Next Thursday evening my Friends (Lindsay, Steve and Callum Rowe, Jo Callister and Christy DeHaven) and I have our first rehearsal for our upcoming show at The Centenary Centre in Peel - Saturday November 12th! Tickets now on sale via the website; Celtic Gold in Peel; Corlett’s The Jewellers in Douglas and the Travel Agency Port Erin and … should you see me around and about I have a few on my person I can sell to you directly ;-). It should be a delightful evening - we’re excited. I hope many of you here on the island can come along. I have no idea if we’ll be able to livestream any of it for those of you not on this tiny piece of geological perfection but if we can we will!

Bob and I had a lovely experience this week when a dear friend of Bob’s came to the island to see us (for less than 24 hours!). Bob and Leo met many years ago now when they both lived in London. Leo's originally from New Zealand and now lives in Western Australia and came all the way to Europe ostensibly to attend a wedding this weekend but couldn’t justify flying all this way just to go to one event; so he made plans to see as many friends "topside"as he could, in a relatively short space of time. He’s already been to Portugal, London, St Albans and after seeing us, made his way to Leominster then onto Scotland for the wedding then onwards to Sweden before flying down under once more. What a heady trip! We definitely showed him a good time however short his visit was … he fell in love with mum! We took him to Peel, Niarbyl, The Sound, Port Erin, Port St Mary and Castletown before dropping him off at Ronaldsway on Wednesday afternoon. What a joy to spend time with good friends and share our love of this place, for the time being, we call home.

This weekend sees me clearing out the greenhouse. There are a few tomatoes still ripening but they’ll continue that process off the vine and I’ve had several bright yellow capsicums present themselves this week which has totally thrilled me. There are also … a clutch of green pointy peppers (very technical) starting to glow red - it’s a minor miracle! However the majority of grow-bags and whatever organic matter they still hold, will be added to the compost heaps that Bob diligently attends. There are still pots with growing seedlings, mostly purple sprouting broccoli and a whole host of fabulous garlic bulbs fattening (I hope:) in their separate containers. There is great satisfaction in tending to all growing things.

Next month I should have footage of our Centenary Centre show on November 12th but here as a reminder of our love of performing together is a reprise of the first half of the Christine Collister & Friends show at the Erin Arts Centre in July.

Thanks as always for taking the time to drop by and take a look at what’s been going on over the last month and have a sneak peak into what’s coming ... up ever-so-quickly! I really do appreciate you.

Endless blessings you gorgeous beings of light!

Till next time … stay well and keep rising above the turbulence.

Christine x

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