• Nathaniel Keen

"Over the Moon"

Updated: Mar 14

Musicians:

AM: Thom Rowlands (guitar)

PM: Graham Hughes (double bass & voice) and Nat Keen (guitar & voice)


Earlier in the week, we chatted with the partner of resident J and gave him some photos taken by Spitz photographer Hannah on a previous session. He told us that J had always loved the guitar bands of the 80s and 90s. Particularly The Smiths and The Stone Roses. So on Friday morning, Thom visited J in her room and sang two Smiths songs for her Please, please let me get what I want and Ask. Thom said:


I've never been a particularly confident singer so I was a bit nervous but The Spitz gives musicians a very sympathetic forum for self-improvement and to try out new things. I'm no Morrissey but I really hope J liked it!


PM blog written by Nat Keen:


Today we met some residents we'd not played to before including C who, although apparently non-vocal seemed to react with positive body language to our version of 'All of me'.


We jammed with J.C and gave him an extended guitar solo on 'I Gotta woman' by Ray Charles. He was very grateful as ever.



We visited G who mentioned that he felt very lonely and that he was over the moon that we'd visited. We found the French lyrics to an old Jazz standard 'Autumn Leaves', he closed his eyes and listened closely and at times hummed along to the melody. We chatted for a while about France, my summer cycling trip with my brother to Toulouse and his plan to escape with his friend (also to the south of France).He seemed very energised by talk of this plan.


While this was happening we could hear S.I next door asking if we could play some Scottish tunes and comparing my height to that of her tall brother. Graham had prepared 'Scotland the Brave', she sang/talked around the melody in her own particular way (proudly and enthusiastically exclaiming how 'Scotland would never be defeated' with a grin on her face.


Graham told us later that Scotland The Brave left her (I) with a lovely beaming smile which he hadn't seen before and that It was nice to play it for her in a communal space. It enabled her to feel heard, and therefore to relax.

We then ventured into the common room and had a hoedown with G.H, a few others and a lovely nurse who enjoyed dancing along. One unimpressed Italian, C, woman shouted 'SHUT UP!" as soon as we started and got up to leave (we found the Mediterranean direct attitude refreshing).


We moved onto J and played a calypso tune 'Yellow Bird' to which he gave us a long clap coupled with an understated corner smile of approval, G.H heard the commotion/music and came to crash J's gig with her contemporary dance moves. I saw C again mouthing 'shut up' with slightly less disdain this time.


We played some Irish ballads for L.....she asked for her mum.


For N.J, we played 'Danny Boy' who, because of a slightly grumpy lady asking us to be quiet as she was trying to sleep, gave as a beautiful and silent balletic dance performance.


We finished by visiting R who instantly gave us a huge grin and came out to greet us, we played 'Waiting in Vain' and he danced along with his walking aid.

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