NEWS

July 2012

Well I’m back at last and firstly I apologize for my absence on Facebook and the Message Board for the last however many weeks. Whilst I might have thought that the Internet connection on P&O’s Arcadia was bad, it was nothing compared to the Sea Princess. In fact they had given me a complimentary 500 minutes use, with only eight of it used because it was impossible to get a signal. In fact I’m sure Max had thought I had died on the high seas at one point.

I stayed with Marion Spence for the last four weeks and it hadn’t dawned on me that she wouldn’t have the Internet in her home. She lives in Encino, deep in the San Fernando Valley; in fact it was so isolated that I couldn’t even get a signal on my mobile phone. This was most unfortunate for me as no one could make contact at all. I’d only given out my cell phone number, as I didn’t want Marion’s house phone to be continually blocked by outside calls coming in on her line. But because of circumstances that is exactly what happened, as I had to ring everyone to explain what had happened. It made things quite difficult but where there’s a will there’s a way.

Sydney Opera House

I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed my time on the ships and was fortunate enough to give five presentations of both Arcadia and Sea Princess. They well extremely well received so I have my fingers crossed that I have done enough to secure some future bookings. I also did a talk on the Queen Mary 2, which I caught from New York to Southampton. It was a very last minute addition to my travel plans but boy am I glad I took the opportunity. After my talk a very nice couple approached me and explained that they had a rare promo album from Joan & John Shakespeare, the people dad did jingles for. The end result is that they are sending Richard the acetate this week and we will then find out if thee are any of the missing jingles on there.

I think I pretty much documented the first part of my journey quite well and it is funny now because a lot of it felt like it was a dream. The time went so quickly and the port visits were, for the most part, wonderful.

Australia wasn’t what I expected it to be in that the weather was disappointing. I didn’t sunbathe once on six weeks but the main thing is that I got to see my aunt and uncle after being apart for more than 40 years. I also saw all my cousins and at Easter the whole family came together so that was exceptional. I couldn’t have been welcomed more warmly, everyone was wonderful and I have to say when the time came to say goodbye I found it to be really emotional.

I managed to do several radio interviews whilst there and was invited on to Philip Brady’s show twice because of its success. Philip was charming, he of course knew dad very well and had great stories to share. He is a massive fan himself and gave me a lit of all the products he owns. He wants m to fill in any blanks so he can try and buy the rest when he is over in London for the Olympics. I also did Bob & Judy Phillip’s Sugar and Spice, Ward Everaardt and Dennis Water, all of who knew dad as well.

Monro Family

I went on a mission to try and track people down that might share stories or hold photos or a television show recording but it was so hard. Australia is such a vast place. I did track Lionel Yorke down, he has given up the music business and become a marriage celebrant in Brisbane and he is hoping to find Michael & Lieta Geole who used to own Romanos. That is a club that dad worked at on each visit down under and Lieta would definitely have taken lots of photographs. The trouble is they have sold the club and retired so it’s a bit like looking for a needle in a haystack. But you know Richard and me, we never give up.

Talking about never giving up, it was disappointing to find out that we would have to delay the new release until 30 July 2012. ‘Matt Uncovered: The Rarer Monro’ was all ready to go. Richard and I have worked tirelessly on the mastering, track selection and notes since the end of last year. The hold up was of course Universal, who has refused to acknowledge that they own ‘Bound For Texas’. Even though it is technically a public domain track, EMI won’t release it without an official say so and the legal department got cold feet. We waited and waited for Universal to come back with something positive and when I say waited I am talking months. It got to the point that we would have had to put another delay on the release date so sadly the album is coming out without one of its selected tracks. The stupid thing is that Universal are in the middle of buying out EMI so it would have been to their benefit but you can’t get blood out of a stone.

One thing that was wonderful was an invitation from David Iscove to visit him at Capitol Records on Hollywood and Vine in Los Angeles. It was a great thrill to stand in the same hallways that dad would have stood, see the studio and go through the archives. I can now definitely confirm that they hold no extra notes on the session that dad did in New York. They let me have access to their database and it would seem there is a whole section missing.

LA was quite a place and I was fortunate enough to be taken to Spagos for lunch and the Beverly Hills Polo Lounge for soufflé. Sidney Poitier was sitting at the next table to me, as was Larry King on the other side. I saw many celebrity faces over the weeks I was there, spoke to Shecky Greene and Jack Jones (Marian will be jealous) and had lunch with Joe Mantegna. He is the lad actor from Criminal Minds and is probably one of the most down-to-earth people I met there. He was a real sweetheart and to boot is a big fan of dads. He has kindly said he would put news of the new album on his website to help it along.

I didn’t do many radios in the States, but that’s another story but I did get a new book review from Philip Sayblack who hosts an Internet and radio show on WNCT. I was so knocked out with it that I have included it for your reading please

DOWNLOAD PDF HERE

Philip also reviewed the album ‘The Ultimate Matt Monro’ which I thought you might be interested in as well as the interview he did with me.

DOWNLOAD CD REVIEW HERE

AND MY INTERVIEW HERE

I also appeared on a television show on channel 35 called ‘Connie Martinson Talks Books, which I think was aired on Tuesday 19th or 26th but she did tell me she always puts the shows up on YouTube so I’ll have to keep my eye on the site as I would have liked to have seen it. She is probably the most ill prepared person who has ever interviewed e and she certainly hadn’t read much of the book before the taping. She got the song title wrong, my mum’s name wrong and didn’t really ask the right questions – but what do they say – all publicity is good publicity.

Talking of publicity, I met up with Daniel Denholm, a representative of Goalpost Films in Australia and he is certainly very interested in making a movie-based ob the book. Nothing has been officially agreed to date although I am waiting for a film concept treatment to arrive so keep all your fingers crossed.

Trisaw

Gosh I could warble on for hours but I am trying to keep everything to a minimum so that I don’t bore you all I would like to thank everyone who sent me birthday cards and emails along the way and I have to say I got a particularly nice email from Mike Powell. He is a great singer in his own right and sent me in his tribute to dad.

http://www.mikeypowell.co.uk/mp3s/ThisIsTheLife.mp3

With regard to tributes and sound-alikes, yes it was dad who appeared on the Foxy Bingo advert. It was hardly on a par with Siemens but it is promotion. The only thing is that Capitol had given permission to alter the track and it had been made faster using time compression, which makes dad’s vibrato sound a bit odd!

Welcome to all the new Forum Members we have signed up over the last few months. I hope you are enjoying the site and if you have any queries don’t forget you can email me by using – Michele@mattmonro.com

As a lot of you know I am only home until 28 August when I will board Fred Olsen’s Balmoral Flora, Fauna and Fjords (8 nights) for some more talks together with Royal Caribbean’s Independence of the Seas on 22 September through to 6th October 2012 (14 night cruise). I am delighted to note that one of our Forum Member’s Angela Whittaker has booked up to see some of my presentations. I know there was talk of it on the Message Board and I have also noted that Royal Caribbean have very special deals on board at the moment especially for the over 55+ sector. If any of you have thought of doing a cruise before but never taken the bull by the horn then this is the ship to do it on. I have been with RC many times and absolutely love their facilities. The cruise deals make everything more affordable at the moment so if any of you take the plunge, don’t forget to let me know.

LINKS TO ROYAL CARIBBEAN SALES PAGE AND THE SAME WITH FRED OLSEN PLEASE

In an effort to stay abreast with technology last year saw the appearance of my very own Facebook page - http://www.facebook.com/michelemonro and now EMI have followed suit with a dedicated Matt Monro Facebook page. It would be wonderful if you could pop in and become a fan, the more the merrier - http://www.facebook.com/mattmonro. It will hopefully mean that we can reach even more people, some who might not know about the website.

I am still making an appearance every Wednesday on Siren 107.8FM’s ‘Midweek Drive’. The weekly slot allows me to select some of the lesser-known tracks of dad and that is wonderful as it gives me a chance to play a broader range.

Don’t forget to check out our Spotlight guest this month, I know so many of you enjoy them as well as our resident poet, Keith Good’s offerings. Here is one of his latest, which he sent me just before I returned to these shores.

COMPETING CROONERS

I maintain Monro out-sings Sinatra,

though Frank created the genre template;

Matt may well have won the style gold medal

had his time to hit his stride not come late.

The Monro baritone is more mellow,

 Frank’s range starts about half-an-octave more;

Matt was a game-for-a-good laugh fellow;

acting accrued for Frank a deserved score.

Matt lined up at the start to proud applause;

Frank’s avid bobbysoxers came to rave;

scrabbling for words to rhyme with Sinatra

would have consigned me to an early grave.

Most importantly please let me know if you have anything related to dad, whether a story, a photo or an old radio show. Or maybe you have some old VHS formats laying in the attic that might have a television show on it. We can always have it transferred for you at our costs. As Richard and I unearth these rarities we are constantly told “but we thought you must have it”. Please don’t be shy; you might have something we are looking for. I repeat this message every month just in case it jogs someone’s memory.

Check out the ‘Rough Guide to mattmonro.com’, which is available towards the bottom of the Homepage. A few of you have mentioned that you don’t know how to access certain areas of the site or in fact are unaware of new areas, this guide will explain how easy this website is to get around, once you know how.

There is also another information box “How to Use the Forum’. I know a lot of people have been tempted to join in on some of our conversations but are slightly nervous of doing so. For that reason I have printed step-by-step instructions of how to access it. It really does only take a few minutes.

Until August here’s wishing you a wonderful 2012 and may your year be filled with music.

Warmest
Michele Monro

Past News - June 2012

Past News - May 2012

Past News - April 2012

Past News - March 2012

Past News - February 2012

Past News - December 2011

Past News - November 2011

Past News - October 2011

Past News - September 2011

Past News - August 2011

Past News - July 2011

 

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