Two soundtracks dominated our Cumbrian Christmas.
The first was a stunning compilation of tracks my son thought I’d like (including several by Lulu and the Lampshades – how could you not love a band with a name like that?)
The second was a DVD of Adele live in concert at the Royal Albert Hall. My father gave it to me and it played in a loop for four days on the trot. Luckily we were in the wilds of the Lake District so there weren’t any neighbours to complain, just a few hundred sheep along the valley.
As always, Adele’s performance was sensational. This year’s biggest selling artist, she’s currently recovering from throat surgery and like all her fans I’m crossing my fingers that she gets better as soon as possible.
In between numbers like Set Fire to the Rain (my favourite) and the haunting Someone Like You she sipped warm honey and chatted to the audience about love, heartache and her “ex.”
But the most moving part came when she waved to her best friend Laura in the audience and explained that My Same, a song from her debut album, was dedicated to her pal. As Laura wiped tears from her eyes, Adele recalled how they’d made up after a falling-out. “I called Laura pretty much in tears,” she said, “telling her that I wanted her to be back in my life and that I needed her.”
The 100-minute concert (recorded back in September) was a triumph from start to finish – from Adele’s soulful voice and heartrending lyrics to her inimitable cackle and good-natured banter with her band. I loved it so much I’m going to play it again right now.
PS. Can someone tell me why the jokes in Christmas crackers are so dire? This year’s batch were worse than ever. The only one to raise a faint smile in our house was “what is an underground train full of professors called?” Answer. “A tube of Smarties.” Boom boom!