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This episode aired first on Saturday 31st July 2021. The guests were Matthew Rice, Ellie Rees, Andy Brechenridge, Susan J Farese and Champion Things, produced and hosted by Damien B. Donnelly. Below are details and links to all the guest stars…
Matthew Rice was born in Belfast. Poems have appeared in Poetry Ireland Review, Asheville Poetry Review, The Dark Horse, The Tangerine, and in the anthologies The Best New British and Irish Poets 2017(Eyewear), and Hold Open the Door: The Ireland Chair of Poetry Commemorative Anthology (UCD Press / University of Chicago Press). He was awarded runner-up for the Seamus Heaney Award for New Writing 2017, and was selected for the Poetry Ireland Introductions Series the same year. He was the recipient of a SIAP Award from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland for 2017/18, and also received an IERP Award in 2020. He is currently completing an MA in Poetry and Criticism at The Seamus Heaney Centre at Queen’s University, Belfast. His debut collection of poems, The Last Weather Observer, was published in 2021 with Summer Palace Press.
You can find Matthew on Twitter https://twitter.com/Wordswritten and Instagram at @pawnsacrifice
Ellie Rees is an internationally-minded, award-winning writer who writes across many genres including poetry, creative non-fiction and memoir. Her work is widely published in various journals including: New Welsh Review, Poetry Wales, Cabinet of Heed, The Lonely Crowd, The Broken Spine and Black Bough Poetry. She has a PhD in Creative Writing from Swansea University. Ellie’s first collection of poetry, Ticking won the Hedgehog Poetry Press ‘Selected or Neglected’ Book Collection Competition in 2020 and will be published by them in 2021.
Ellie is on Twitter at https://twitter.com/ellierees23
Follow Ellie on her website at https://elliereeswriter.com/
Andy Breckenridge is an English teacher living in Brighton, via London, Paris and Glasgow, but is originally from Oban in Argyllshire. His debut pamphlet, The Liquid Air, was published by Dreich in Jul 2021. He won the East Sussex County Council poetry prize in 2005, and has also had work published in the Common Breath poetry blog, Nutmeg Magazine (the Scottish Football Periodical), Stanza’s Poetry Map of Scotland and the Shoreham Wordfest Anthology 2020. Poems are due out in Dreich’s Summer Anywhere anthology, and in The Best Worst Years by Acid Bath Publishing. He is currently editing his first collection.
Andy is on Twitter at https://twitter.com/drbafc and Instagram at @brechenridgeandy
Read more poems from Andy at Common Breath here http://thecommonbreath.com/poetry.html
And find his pamphlet The Liquid Air at Dreich were https://hybriddreich.co.uk/product/andy-breckenridge-the-liquid-air/
Susan J Farese
Susan J. Farese, MSN, RN, (Veteran), a native of NJ, is owner/president of SJF Communications, San Diego, CA. She received her Bachelor of Science degree at Widener University (PA) and Master’s of Science degree from Seton Hall University (NJ). Ms. Farese has diversified experience in health care and communications, including military and civilian nursing practice, management, education/training, public speaking, research, and consulting. Susan is the author of the book Poetic Expressions in Nursing… Sharing is Caring (1993 and 2021), currently teaches ‘Capturing Your Creativity with Haiku’ workshops and has published poetry and articles on a variety of topics. In addition to her being on the advisory board of San Diego Film Week, Susan is a member of SAG-AFTRA, American Legion Post 43, Veterans in Media & Entertainment, San Diego Writers Ink, The San Diego Press. Since 2017, Susan has been a Mentor in San Diego State University’s Aztec Mentor Program.
Susan’s passions include birdwatching, nature photography, writing/poetry, as well as film/tv/theatre. Susan is in awe of hummingbirds, seahorses, heart-shaped items/art and the colors purple and teal. She lives in sunny San Diego with her husband Mike, daughter Emmy and also is human caregiver to her family’s geriatric tuxedo cat Chloe Marie and Betta Fish Alvin Danny Boy.
Susan is on Twitter at https://twitter.com/sjfcommo and Instagram at @sjfcommo
SJFCommunications website is https://sjfcommunications.com/
Find more about her work at https://linktr.ee/Sjfcommo
Her book Expressions in Nursing… Sharing the Caring is available on Amazon in Audiobook, Print and Kindle formats here https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/173697761X
Champion Things, Belfast based Wordcore outfit, release new album, “Deep Within the Slum Kitchen”
The new Champion Things album, “Deep Within the Slum Kitchen”, is now available to purchase on Bandcamp. The album was recorded, mixed and mastered by Vic Bronzini Fulton at Earth Music Studios in Belfast during April, May and June of 2021 and is the 4th album in 2 years.
Champion Things are a Belfast based group based around Gordon Hewitt who writes spoken word narratives which are then added to with various forms of groove based music. The music on the new album was produced by Hewitt on guitar and Bronzini Fulton who added, bass, guitar, keyboards, synths and drum patterns. The hand drummer, Thomas Annang, originally from Ghana, contributes two tracks to the album and plays on a bonus track as does bass player Michael McKinney.
The themes of the narratives on this album are a continuation of Hewitt’s investigation into viruses and pandemics and how people are impacted in different ways by viral outbreaks, heard on last year’s “Isle of plagues” album. From people who work for farming journals, to women living in slums in India to characters based in Belfast, the narratives are a reminder of how lives are affected in a myriad of different ways when major global events like the pandemic emerge.
“I try to find stories which are beyond the standard narrative regarding the reporting the situation of the pandemic. Whereas the last album concentrated on more general themes, where viruses come from, how they spread, the situation inside hospitals, the role of lawyers and funeral directors, this album concentrates on people who are slightly outside the immediate impact and some who try to profit from a difficult situation. Musically there is a lot more electronic sounds on this album and a lot slower and less jazz influenced grooves but we haven’t given away that unique Champion Things sound.”
Champion Things and their albums are available now on Bandcamp https://championthings.bandcamp.com/album/deep-within-the-slum-kitchen
They are on Twitter at https://twitter.com/ChampionThings_
Follow them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/championthingsmusic/
Click on The Monthy from the Community Arts Partnership in Northern Ireland to find out what’s happening in Culture with a focus on Spoken Word and Poetry every month, edited by Champion Things frontman Gorgon Hewitt
Events Coming Soon
Fevers of the Mind Press
Submission are currently open at Fevers of the Mind Press, created by poet David L O Nan. Right now they are accepting pieces for Fevers of the Mind anthology; Fevers 5, Fevers of the Mind Issue 6 as well as a follow up to Anthology to Avalanches in Poetry Writings and Art inspired by Lenard Cohen, the submission period for the last one closes on September 1st.
Fevers of the Mind is currently running an interview series called Quick 9 which has spoken to wonderful poets and musicians such as Ken Stringfellow from the Posies, Ron Sexsmith, Frank Watkinson, U.S. National Beat Poet Laureate Ron Whitehead, Writer of Three Martinis at the Ritz (about Anne Sexton & Sylvia Plath) Gail Crowther, Anne Casey and many more. You can find the most recent interview here with Shaindel Beers https://feversofthemind.com/2021/07/28/a-fevers-of-the-mind-quick-9-interview-with-shaindel-beers/
Follow Fevers of the Mind on Twitter at https://twitter.com/FeversOf
Follow creator of Fevers and poet David L O Nan on Twitter at https://twitter.com/DavidLONan1
EastSide Arts Festival, Belfast, 5th to 15th August 2021
On 6th August at 7.30pm online, Join Belfast poet Gaynor Kane, as she hosts an event showcasing poets from the Hedgehog Poetry Press, celebrating the connections between them and their homelands of Scotland and Ireland, North and South. You will be entertained by readings from Anne McMaster, Damien B Donnelly, Karen Mooney, Lynn Valentine, Martin Malone, Peter A and Vicky Allen.
Gaynor is east Belfast born and bred, author of three Hedgehog Press publications and co-author of a fourth. Her full collection of poetry ‘Venus in Pink Marble’ was released last September on her fiftieth birthday. Her website is https://gaynorkane.com/
For the Eastside Arts Festival head to their website https://www.eastsidearts.net/
For direct links to Who Needs a Bridge? The Hedgehog Poetry Press Showcase https://www.eastsidearts.net/event/who-needs-bridge-hedgehog-poetry-press-showcase
To follow Gaynor Kane on Twitter https://twitter.com/gaynorkane
Gaynor Kane & Matthew MC Smith headline Cheltenham Poetry Festival
On Tuesday 3rd August, at 7pm, Gaynor Kane (Venus In Pink Marble) and Black Bough Poetry creator Matthew MC Smith (Origins: 21 poems) headline at the Cheltenham Poetry Festival online with tickets available at https://cheltenhampoetryfestival.co.uk/
Damien B Donnelly, Producer, Host and Poet
Damien B Donnelly returned to Ireland in 2019 after 23 years in Paris, London and Amsterdam, working in the fashion industry as a pattern maker for various brands including Calvin Klein, & Other Stories, Pepe Jeans, Reiss and G-Star. His writing focuses on identity, fragility and connection. His interests revolve around falling over and learning how to get back up while baking delicious cakes. His work had been published in numerous journals online and in print including Black Bough Poetry, Barren Magazine, Anti Hereon Chic, Icefloe Press and The Bangor Literary Journal. His debut poetry pamphlet Eat the Storms, which was featured on the Poetry Book Society Winter List 2020/21 and his Stickleback micro collection Considering Canvases with Boys were both published by The Hedgehog Poetry Press. His next collection with be a conversation pamphlet he co-wrote with fellow Irish poet Eilín de Paor called In the Jitterfritz of Neon. He is currently finishing his first full collection documenting his love affair with Paris called Enough!
He is on Twitter at https://twitter.com/deuxiemepeau and instagram at @damiboy
You can follow him and buy his Eat the Storms debut pamphlet and his Stickleback micro collection at is website https://deuxiemepeaupoetry.com/
Backing music for Eat the Storms is from Purple Planet Royalty Free Music, with thanks…
You can find us on many platforms including Spotify and here is the link…
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