It’s 12:24am and there is a million and one things I should be writing – the work experience report, the 18,000 word MA final project for example. And yet the impending date of 14th July is all that is on my mind. I don’t want this date to be ominous; I don’t want to look at the calendar with increasing fear as each year passes but I can’t stop thinking about it. I’m not writing this to invite pity or make other people feel uncomfortable but this time last year I felt so powerless to control the whirlwind that was happening around me, I hope that by committing my experience to the page I can try to figure out what the hell happened to me last year and find some way of being at peace with it. Surely as a “journalist in training” words can be my tool or weapon – writing about other topics has temporarily abandoned me so by spilling about Mum I hope to unlock my abilities again and get back to writing.

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Preview: The Pillowman @ The Salford Arts Theatre

A complex exploration of the power of literature and the psychological impact stories have on the reader is not necessarily the type of output you’d expect from a university drama society.

Set in a totalitarian world, ‘The Pillowman’ by Martin McDonagh finds the lead character, fiction writer Katurian, interrogated by police about the content of his work after a series of brutal child murders bear a striking resemblance to the content of his short stories. It is a surprising choice for the University of Salford’s Almost Famous Theatre Company, but they’re eager to stretch themselves creatively.

The Pillowman

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“That Dirty New Sound”

10 Tracks From Prince’s Last 15 Years 

Pondering the underrated gems of the Purple One’s most overlooked era…


Peter Tea/Flickr CC BY

This week the University Salford hosts it’s very own academic conference dedicated to the musician and artist, Prince Rogers Nelson. The conference aims to “provide fresh perspectives on the creative and commercial dimensions of Prince’s career”; with this in mind and as a fun means of preparation, I have compiled a playlist of tracks from the last fifteen years of Prince’s life. I’ve chosen 2001-2016 as the new music he was creating in this period is often ignored.


Read the rest of the article at The Northern Quota.

Bad Girls

Gender politics and contemporary music


Sometimes striving to be an enlightened 21st century white guy is tough. Not properly tough, like being a woman facing sexism or a racial minority trying to navigate their way through a structurally racist society, but you know in a petulant, speaking from a position of obvious privilege kind of way. Sometimes that left-wing, politically correct badge that I proudly wear can sit a little uncomfortably on my lapel. Read more

Mellow Yellow


Or how I learned to stop worrying and enjoy The Simpsons later seasons.

I’ve reconnected with The Simpsons lately. Work, University and a general lack of attention span has meant that when I come in of an evening, I’ve been looking for something not-too-demanding and brief before I fall asleep or get lured onto the ‘Book of Face’ by some inane minutiae. It started with the Futurama crossover episode ‘Simpsorama’ and the curiosity of seeing a show cut short in its prime teaming up with a show past its prime. But that’s the thing, I found myself enjoying late period Simpsons and there is nothing wrong with that, heck I’m proud of it even.


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Waiting for Genius

D’Angelo, Frank and Maxwell.

Since the passing of Prince I’ve been pondering why I became a diehard fan of his and something rare that is attributable to the cult of Prince is the sheer quantity of work he put out there. There was much that could frustrate and confound his followers but when it came to delivering content to listen, dissect and discuss we were never left wanting. And that’s before we get into the morally murky area of Prince bootlegs. When you ‘dig’ art or possess the ‘fannish gene’ there is an insatiable appetite for  more content, that’s why Star Wars is a billion dollar franchise – we like a thing, we want more please. If someone told me they had a new Prince joint in their bag, my response would be “why are we still talking and why am I not listening to that new …ish right now!?”


Which bring us to genius. Read more