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Friday, June 22, 2018

Summer Solstice with the Arch Druid and a Little Bit of British Paranormal...

Tonight, I'm celebrating the Summer Solstice by going through a lot of pictures to square them away on my website. To put it this way, I'm so backed up with tons of photos from so many things that I finally finished a trip to see friend in NYC from February. That said, the Chinese Lantern Festival in Philadelphia that happened a few weeks ago is now up, too.

Nevertheless, as I sit here loading up hundreds of photos (and nowhere close to being done since I still have California stuff to go), I'm listening to my summer psychedelic / fun music at a respectable volume (i.e. I can hear it, but my neighbors can't) since my wife is currently visiting her sisters, brother in-law, and nephew / nieces in Georgia. If she were home, I would probably be listening to something mellow like Miles Davis, which could drift into the background, if I were even on my upstairs computer at all. My burning of the midnight oil (until 4:30AM some nights) is a joy I owe all to Parkinson's.

Thus, while I'm awake a good deal of the night, the house usually sleeps.

Today, I'm taking advantage of the second to last night of her not being home to do things I wouldn't want to do if she were around (since I'd obviously want to be with her venturing out for something fun).

Anyway... as I listen to the music that is on now, a mix of classic rock, indie rock, and Brit pop, I think of Julian Cope's classic back to back discs Peggy Suicide and Jehovahkill.

When Cope is on, he's white hot. Instrumentals like "Necropolis" and jams like "Safesurfer" pave the wave, while "Pristine" and "Soul Desert" show a more mellow side. Issues of protecting the earth and post Gulf War 1 politics mix with ancient Egypt almost seamlessly. Peggy tries for a single here and there (the "5 O' Clock World" cover period is officially over) while Jehovakill takes Julian into the mystic times on a 1 way ticket.

At its best, this is Krautrock on fire. While some of the gaps are paved with filler, they represent an artist experimenting and jamming out in the best way possible. Thus, 2 discs from nearly 30 years ago still feel relevant today.

But alas, this blog is about more than songs since I credit Julian for my interest in paranormal Britain while I was stationed in the UK in the early 1990s.

Granted, I had some interest in American paranormal, which all Berks County (Pennsylvania) residents owe to Charlie Adams (our local treasure and ghost storyteller), but in England, it just felt different and cooler. I only wish I would have seen more of it and seen it better.

Nevertheless, I got enough to spin a few supernatural tales of my own!

Unfortunately, I never got closer to Stonehenge than this. It seems that they have a curfew.

I did also see, Silbury Hill, though that, too, was from afar. While it's a pile of dirt in paranormal England, it's a lot more than that (think the mound builders in the U.S.)

The Great Serpent Mound in Ohio (USA) is an example of that.

Borley's haunted church and rectory, which is the most haunted place (per capita) in England, check! I did get to see that!

There was also Woodhenge...

And the Rollright Stones... 

But it was Julian Cope's liner notes in Jehovahkill, which made me travel to Avebury to see the giant Celtic cross's remains. Spread across fields and streets, Avebury was a walk up to it Stonehenge. I was blown away. Through my time in England, I went there twice. At some point, I will have to rescue my primitive VHS footage from 1992.

Another of my favorite places was Uffington Castle, home of Dragon Hill and the Uffington Horse. When George slew the dragon holding England hostage, the blood became the horse. The body became the hill. It makes sense if you're ever there.

Then there were the castles... Orford


Castle Acre

Castle Rising

Framlingham (think Ed Sheeran's "Castle on the Hill")

Dover Castle

So here is where I leave you with a little Julian Cope to get paranormal in your neck of the woods, too, as well as 80 minutes of summer tunes from my night. They'll all fit on 1 CD!

1. Paranormal in the West Country Medley - Julian Cope
2. Do You Realize (live) by Flaming Lips
3. Do It All Over Again by Spiritualized
4. Staying out for the Summer by Dodgy
5. Taurus - Spirit (Led Zeppelin plagiarized it for Stairway)
6. May This Be Love (Waterfall) by Jimi Hendrix
7. Dancing in the Moonlight by Toploader - not Van Morrison
8. Into the Mystic by Van Morrison
9. Summer of 68 by Pink Floyd
10. Little Fluffy Clouds by The Orb
11. Light and Day (orchestral) by The Polyphonic Spree
12. The Only One I Know by The Charlatans
13. Surfin' Safari by The Beach Boys
14. Surf City by Jan and Dean
15. Dance Dance Dance by Handsome Dick Manitoba
16. Sparkle (live 9/2/2011) by Phish
17. Lazy Day by The Boo Radleys
18. Magic America by Blur
19. Summertime by Will Smith
20. Summer Montage / Madeline by Justin Hurwitz (LaLaLand)
21. In Summer by Josh Gad (Frozen)
22. Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite by The Beatles
23. Endlessly by Mercury Rev

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