NEWS

October

Another mad month. I’ve had my house on the market since April and at last I have a buyer. I can’t remember exactly how many people have traipsed through the house but enough to make me never want to sell again. In the end I had four bidders wanting the property, which quickly whittled down to two serious contestants. One of the couples came knocking on my door and gave me this huge sob story about losing a previous purchase, having to move out of their home and live with the husband’s mother, who coincidently lives opposite me here in the complex. The wife was pregnant and once I agreed to the sale she broke down in tears and gave me a big hug thanking me for the fact that she could now go forward.

I have found a fabulous bungalow in Shropshire and after looking at literally thousands of properties on-line since last year, I’d almost given up hope that I’d find what I wanted. But there is suddenly was and with an extension added to the side it can give me the space to future-proof the property for my wheelchair. The completion date was set and I had started to put everything in gear for the move on 2nd January 2014. Just before leaving on Celebrity Infinity the call came, the couple had pulled out and not even with the decency of a phone call, no, just a two line email. No one has any etiquette anymore. My dad always said it cost nothing for manners but it amazes me how many people don’t have any. The Estate Agent has now gone back to the other couple who were in the running to see if they are still interested and once again it is a waiting game. Whoever said moving was one of the three most stressful things in life…. Were right!!

As most of you know I try and take the time off from the cruising season to coincide with my son’s holidays and it was lovely spending some quality time with Max. His fiancée Justine and him have just celebrated their sixth anniversary and it is comforting to me that they are so happy. They are both at the same University and that is nice, as I don’t have the same worries if he was down there on his own. I’m glad Max was home because Michele in her wisdom opted to have both my knees operated at the same time. I just didn’t feel I could afford to spend time recuperating only to have to go through the operation all over again some months later. I have severe arthritis in both knees and one of the caps felt it was coming out of its socket every time I tried to stand but it was just that the cartilage was torn so the specialist went in and had a good look, flushed all the bone debris out and sewed the cartilage up. It is difficult to know at the moment if it is better and if so how much because there is still a lot of swelling around the area. How do you know what is from the surgery and what is from the original complaint. I wasn’t allowed to drive for two weeks so having Max to pamper his mother was wonderful.

Mind you we still snuck in a car boot, as I am desperate to clear the house out. It’s true what they say, the bigger the property, the more you fill it up. I’ve spent months boxing up, throwing out and selling my wares but if you looked around the home you wouldn’t know it. The garage is the most daunting. At least with the house you can ask the moving people to pack the lot up but you can’t do that with the garage. It honestly looks like Arthur Dailey’s lock-up. I have mum’s car up for sale on Gumtree at the moment and as soon as that has gone I’ll have slightly more room to bring the rubbish down from the garage rafters. Once I get back from this cruise I am getting a skip in and will have great pleasure in filling it up.

Talking about cruises; I left on the 18th September on Celebrity Infinity with my girlfriend Lucia. I love it when she joins me as she acts as my roadie! I’ve never worked this shipping line before and it was a lovely surprise. It is classed as a 5 star vessel whereas most of P&O, Princess etc are 4 star and this had the bonus of being a wine and gastro experience. Champagne, Bordeaux and Rioja. If food and wine are among your passions, there is no finer way to combine them than on Celebrity’s new harvest season wine cruises. It really is a one-of-a-kind holiday for your senses through the leading wine regions of France, Spain and Portugal. It gets even better as there are no less that three overnight stays allowing you much more time to explore Europe’s unrivalled heritage in wine at your leisure. Your wine related immersion continues onboard with Celebrity’s exclusive programme of wine and gastro-themed events. Among other there was customized regional wine tastings of Rioja and Bordeaux, cocktail receptions and wine dinners pus informative talks by local wine experts. The exploration of wine, guided by skilful sommeliers is a hallmark of Celebrity’s modern luxury holiday experience. The ship carries over 350 selections of wine plus an extensive rare wine collection encompassing hard-to-find Vintages and Grand Cru champagnes. To cap it all, Cellar Masters wine bar features a high-tech Italian Enomatic wine serving system. Just select your wine, push a button and pour a glass – it’s a brilliant way to try something new.

Celebrity Infinity has a fabulous range of speciality restaurants to complement its extensive wine offering. Add to this a dramatic main restaurant with constantly changing menu selections and a host of casual dining options and you have the perfect mix for a great holiday. I love cruising and nearly all the ships offer a speciality cruise, it could be wine and gastro, classical music, gardening, meeting the stars of Strictly Come Dancing or cooking with Marco Pierre White. These speciality itineraries cost no extra but give so much more if you happen to be interested in one of their offerings.

I have two more cruises before the end of the year with a date to move on 2nd January. That gives me exactly a month to move in before I leave again for 6 weeks. I said I wouldn’t take as many on next year but I can’t seem to help myself. Don’t forget to check my cruising list, which gets updated every month. I’d love to see some of you on one of my excursions.

Coming back home after several weeks away is always a tough ride as just the mail and phone messages are enough to get you down let alone having to write new scripts, do my radio show and finalize the two new albums. At last The Alternate Monro hit the record shops on 16 September. Richard has worked incredibly hard the project and I do hope you like what you hear. The Rarities Collection is coming out on 21 October and both new releases promise to be wonderful additions to the Matt Monro catalogue. The big news on the Rarities Collection is that we have finally, after years of arguing been able to include ‘Bound for Texas’ and as always Richard has done the impossible and mastered it all to perfection. A real treat for the avid Matt Monro fan. If you would like a sneak preview then visit ‘CD of the Month’ for the track listings and artwork. Don’t forget to go to the Forum and leave your comments on the new album, feedback is so important for future projects.

Richard has written about the new albums on his website too and it's well worth a read if you'd like to find out about the making of the cd's.

The Alternate Monro is Here

and The Rarities Collection Here

Talking about the future, Steve Woof, my partner in crime at EMI has hung up his coat and taken early redundancy under the new Warner regime. He’s been there nearly 26 years and I have worked on all MM projects with him. It is only because of Steve that I was allowed to use the amount of EMI photos in the book that I did and he was also responsible for allowing us to use the premises for the Book Launch in September 2012. It is a bitter blow as I have no idea who is taking over that section of even if they will want to work with me in the future. We’ve had a wonderful ride and a free hand at bringing out the albums that I wanted instead of the usual Greatest Hits and Best Of collections you see for so many artists. While this is fine every now and then, one has to have variety and the growth to improve and I think we have done that hands down.

As I explained last month Warner now officially owns EMI UK. The bad news is that all the new titles including The Rare Monro, Rarer Monro, Matt at the Movies, The Complete Singles Collection and The Greatest have been taken by Universal and deleted from EMI’s catalogue list. This is disastrous and no amount of emails to Universal has resulted in a reply. I think it is a bloody disgrace and makes me realise that we will probably never be able to license any Capitol tracks again. It would seem no one at the company knows how to write an email!! If you are missing any of the past gems in your collection I urge you to trawl the websites for any left over stock. The Complete Singles Collection is especially brilliant and includes literally every track dad ever released as a single together with the B-side but it the remastering that has hailed it as a real ‘gem’. One of Richard’s finest hours.. well actually months.. it did take a long time to work on the five CD set but the blood, sweat and tears were worth the wait. Because dad is on a Budget label none of the albums are particularly expensive so the time to buy is now. Don’t say you weren’t warned.

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. Although I did suffer a huge faux pas a few weeks ago, I missed my slot. I’d gone up to Shropshire and realised I hadn’t take the studio’s number with me so I apologize to anyone waiting patiently for my pearly of wisdom. LOL. Alex did play the alternate version of  My Kind of Girl and I know from the emails I received that you enjoyed the version. In the coming weeks I am spotlighting the new tracks for The Rarities Collection so do make sure you tune in and I promise to be there!

Rarities


I am still hoping to have an exhibition of my artwork but it won’t be this year after all. Sadly there are just enough hours in a day for me to get everything ready. It is a big step and everything needs to be right. I don’t like to do things half cocked so it is best to wait until I have slightly more time on my hands. All my shots are taken from a ship at night time and exploit the light available. My first project which is on the website is ‘Lights of the Caribbean. My new shots focus on the Middle East and the Fiords.  If you would like to have a look please visit the new site my gorgeous son has just created for me – www.kaepture.com. There are areas to leave feedback so don’t be shy. As with every new site it needs to build up its testimonials so leave your comments even if you hate them.

I am still holding out hope that someone somewhere has a taped show of dad on video. I say it every month but don’t forget that if any of you have an attic full of old tapes that you want rescued or reel-to-reels that you want transferred then Richard would be happy to oblige. It’s amazing what we stuff into our attics and I am still hoping that some of you have a Matt Monro television show or radio that you taped years ago that you have forgotten about. You never know you might just be harboring one of dad’s jingles without knowing it.

There are a few new additions to my cruise calendar, suffice to say that I shall be plugging Matt Monro’s music at every opportunity.  That is the wonderful thing about working the ships, it gives me a brand new audience each time and if then, a small percentage go home a fan, then it is worth all the blood, sweat and tears, not to mention the Bay of Biscay!!!! As of today, the dates that are in are:

2013

6 October – 20 October – Cruise & Maritime - Marco Polo

15 – 25 November – P&O Arcadia 

2014

13 February -13 March- P&O Oceana
13 – 24 March – P&O Oceana
20 April – 4 May – P&O Oriana

2015

8 January – 8 April – P&O Adonia (five back to back cruises)

Don’t forget to check out our Spotlight feature this month, I know so many of you enjoy them. This time round we look in at Johnny Cash.

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.

Don’t forget to recommend the website to all your friends. If any of you have Facebook pages it would be great if you could put the website link on there. If you’d like to do me a tremendous favour then a review of either my book or dad’s new album on www.amazon.co.uk or www.amazon.com would be fabulous. You don’t even have to have bought the item there and your words could very well influence someone else investing their hard-earned money so it really could make a big difference.

I hope everyone has a great month and until next time here’s hoping that your lives are always filled with music.

Warmest to you and yours
Michele

Past News - August 2013

Past News - July 2013

Past News - June 2013

Past News - May 2013

Past News - April 2013

Past News - March 2013

Past News - February 2013

Past News - December 2012

Past News - November 2012

Past News - October 2012

Past News - September 2012

Past News - August 2012

Past News - July 2012

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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