Have just started Andrew Marr's epic History of the World which will take some getting through, but which I am sure will be highly rewarding. Then I have the new R.J. Ellory to read and a couple more by James Lee Burke lined-up.
I always try to start the day by watching BBC Breakfast (or at least some of it). Yesterday's programme was particularly interesting as it was heavily arts biased. I was very interested in a lively chat with Sir David Hare about his memoirs which are about to be published. Entitled "Blue Touch Paper" they include growing up in the fifties and the swinging sixties. Hare felt that neither decade has been written about sufficiently and I tend to agree. He felt that those decades now represent a world that has forever vanished and again I agree.
Years of innocence, giving way to years of problems and struggles in the 1970s. I feel in many ways privileged to have grown up during a time when history was so real as we moved through the technological revolution. Also to have grown up with wonderful emerging worlds of literature and music. Sir David was a very animated and interesting interviewee and I was very pleased to see that he is on the list of speakers at the University of East Anglia's coming literary festival, something for which I am purchasiing a season ticket as they have some very interesting authors lined-up (more about this later). It will also give me the chance to buy a copy of Blue Touch Paper.
Today on Breakfast they had an interview with one of the sons of Sir David Frost, which was equally good. The Frost family have co-operated fully with a new biography of Sir David which I believe is called something like "That Was the Life That Was" which is a play on words of the satirical television show "That Was the Week That Was" which featured Sir David.
David Frost was brought up in Beccles in Suffolk and I was a reporter there in the early 1970s. I never met him but did know his mother a little. The interview this morning brought out just what a charismatic man he was, someone who treated everyone as special and in the same way with no airs or graces. This is something that came out recently with Cilla Black - famous people who love others and don't have "the big star syndrome."
Breakfast TV also had an interview with two members of the Monkees - Peter Tork and Mickey Dolenz. Again it was interesting, although they were plugging coming concert dates. It is very sad that the hugely talented Davey Jones is no longer with us. I recently wrote an article for this web site on the song "Daydream Believer" which was one of the bands greatest hits and possibly still their best known and loved song. I will re-produce that article here in tomorrow's blog as you might be surprised to learn that it was written by a largely unknown songwriter by the name of John Stewart. Stewart is one of my favourite all time writers and artists. More about this tomorrow.