To keep you all entertained while I'm busy travelling, here's a catalogue of my video postings from the first quarter of this year.
The Comedy/Movie Channel
The warmest place to hide - My first posting of the year was the viral sensation of young British animator Lee Hardcastle's rendering of John Carpenter's The Thing with Pingu characters. Of course, it got pulled for copyright infringement within a week. I wonder if it's still available anywhere? I had thought it would have survived on Chinese video-sharing site Youku, but I can't find it on there at the moment. Such a pity - it was a work of genius. [I later found a re-posting on Youtube.]
The burning schoolhouse - A Canadian pyrotechnics company comes up with a really bad taste concept for a super-firework.
A rousing opening - The title sequence from the second Indiana Jones film, in which Kate Capshaw plays a glamorous chanteuse in a 1930s Shanghai nightclub, and sings in something approximating to Chinese.
Down in one! - Former Aussie Prime Minister Bob Hawke demonstrates that he still knows how to chug a beer, even at the age of 82. (See also below, under Music, for a version of the great Aussie theme song, Down Under.)
"That's exactly how I felt!" - Lucifer gives his side of The Fall: one of my favourite scenes from the wonderful Peter Cook/Dudley Moore film Bedazzled.
Romance, the Japanese way - In anticipation of the dreaded Valentine's Day, I share an hilarious instructional video from The Japanese Tradition series.
The Music Channel
The inaugural episode of a new series, with - ahem - six very diverse songs, all distinguished by their memorable bass.
Folsom Prison Blues - A friend invites me out for a drink on 13th January, and points out it is the anniversary of Johnny Cash's famous appearance at Folsom Prison: an ideal excuse to post The Man In Black's signature song (in a performance from his San Quentin concert, a year after the Folsom shows).
Me and Bobby McGee - January 19th was the 40th anniversary of the death of Janis Joplin; I had to commemorate this with a posting of her finest hour.
Anything Goes (in Chinese??) - To celebrate the Chinese New Year, I post the opening sequence of Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom, in which Kate Capshaw belts out the Cole Porter classic in a Shanghai nightclub. Expert opinion is divided as to how good her Chinese is, or indeed as to whether she's actually singing in Chinese at all. For good measure, I added a Lego reconstruction of the scene as well. (Also above, under Comedy/Movies.)
Down Under - For Australia Day, I post Colin Hay performing his famous Men At Work hit with The Ringo Starr All-Star Band. (See also above, under Comedy, for a brief clip of Bob Hawke sculling a beer.)
Birdland - This instrumental piece by electro-jazz outfit Weather Report is one of the great get-up-and-go songs. In need of a lift to the spirits, I posted the original album version and a tremendous live performance from a 1978 concert in Germany.
Stop That Train - To mark Bob Marley's birthday, I post one of my favourite Wailers songs: the original version, and an acoustic performance by its composer Peter Tosh.
Hesitation Blues - I missed Jorma Kaukonen playing in Beijing, but here is one of his trademark songs, performed with mandolinist Barry Mitterhoff.
I Wish I Was In New Orleans - I am once again sorry to be missing out on the Krewe du Vieux carnival in N'Awlins, but I console myself with one of my favourite Tom Waits songs, in a fabulous live performance from way back in 1977. Some more versions of it here (including Scarlett Johansson's idiosyncratic take on it); and another song with the same title by up-and-coming roots music star Ben Prestage.
My Baby Loves A Bunch Of Authors - At the start of this year's Bookworm International Literary Festival, I post this charming little number by Canadian comedy band Moxy Früvous.
The Wild Rover - I celebrate St Patrick's Day this year with one of the greatest of all drinking songs (ironically, it was originally written as a temperance song!), in versions by The Dubliners, The Dropkick Murphys, and (something of a rarity, this) The Pogues.
Whiskey In The Jar - Double happiness: over on The Barstool, I mark the Irish national day with Thin Lizzy's finest moment - backed up by two other versions by Gary Moore and The Dubliners.
Another Top Five basslines: 'chuggers' - the second instalment in my series honouring great bass playing concentrates on songs that just chug.
The Sports Channel
Still no sport?? No. Sorry.