First blog post

This is your very first post about music. Read about my radio show called The Happening on and my passion for music.



The Happening 15th July 2018 – Listen Live for a change 4-6 pm GMT on

The Happening goes out live on Sunday’s 4-6 pm GMT via the TuneIn App or – this week back to the Usual Eclectic Mix.

I’ll still post a recording of The Happening show (with the usual notes) after the live broadcast for those in different time zones.

Soul, R n B, Blues, Reggae and Gospel.




The Happening 01/07/2018 – Voices

This week The Happening featured a variety of singers, most of the songs were sung by solo artists, with a smattering of duets and some groups.

I like to feature artists from all over the world, however this time the first tune I chose was from Tony Momrelle a Black British R n B and jazz singer. His name might be familiar to some as he has been part of the Incognito band. For this show I featured Tony’s song This Could Be Us (the album edit) httpS:// originally released in 2015 from the Keep Pushing album.

Then, I went back to the sixties with a Northern Soul gem Frank Wilson’s Do I Love You (Indeed I Do). Original vinyl (demo) copies are extremely rare and expensive, although I understand that there are ‘bootleg’ copies available. This song recorded in 1965 and was scheduled for release on the Soul label but it didn’t happen and due to internal problems within the music business it did not see the light of day until the 70’s when it caused a stir on the Northern Soul circuits, British nightclub – Wigan Casino. To this day, Do I Love You, is still a floor filler.

The first part of the show highlighted music from Motown, Stax and the Atlantic record labels. From Atlantic was Ms Patti Labelle and The Bluebells with the original version of Groovy Kind of Love, followed by Inez Foxx with Circuit Overloaded from Stax Ms Foxx often sang duets with her brother Charlie Foxx but here she sings solo. There were two more artists from Motown, Shorty Long, full name Frederick Earl Long, with Devil With The Blue Dress and I’ll Say Forever My Love by Jimmy Ruffin. Jimmy Ruffin was one of David Ruffin’s brother’s, David sang with the original Temptations line up.

We move back to the United Kingdom to Wales to be specific and as alway’s I’m always blown away by Duffy and her magnificent voice. Today, I played Serious from the Rockferry album. Another earth moving voice (in my opinion) is that of Amy Winehouse, I have featured Amy before on The Happening, this time she sang Best Friends, Right? The early death of this young woman was a tragedy, I was lucky enough to see her perform live a year or so before she died, I still feel privileged.

The second group on this show was The O’Jays, stalwarts of The Philly Sound – the official name for the record label being Philadelphia International Records, The O’Jays many hits were more often than not written by Gamble and Huff, which meant that they developed a distinct sound and although the group’s line up has changed several times over the years their fans remain dedicated to them, I shared Now That We’ve Found Love

The longest piece of music on the show, (7.32 minutes) was Randy Crawford and The Crusaders Street Life a big hit on the dance floors and in the charts both in America and the United Kingdom. This song was released at the peak of the jazz-funk period (1979) when a number of jazz bands and musicians ‘crossed over’ into funk and dance orientated music.

Going further back in time was Billie Holiday’s big band version of Them There Eyes swiftly followed by the amusing and mischeivious Fats Waller and It’s A Sin To Tell A Lie. The only instrumental was Blossom Dearie’s More Than You Know. The polished voice of Lena Horne gave her rendition of Can’t Stop Loving That Man, from the musical play Showboat, (I believe I said on air that it was from Porgy & Bess, for which I apologise), unfortunately due to the period in time when the musical was first performed Lena Horne did not sing the song in the actual show. Nevertheless, the song became a big hit for her.

Back to the male voices which included Billy Eckstine with Tell Me Pretty Baby, Louis Armstrong’s growling version of Makin’ Whoopee and the fun loving singer/comedian Louis Prima with a very short interpretation of When It’s Sleepy Time Down South. Sam Cooke sang the traditional song Frankie and Johnny. Two softer male voices were represented by Brook Benton, a somewhat forgotten singer with So Many Ways and Nat King Cole’s Let There Be Love, a jazz standard.

In between the men was Dionne Warwick’s Do You Know The Way To San Jose another song which has become a standard and often put under the ‘Easy Listening’ genre.

The only gospel or spiritual song in this show was City In The Sky by The Staple Singers.

The final song in the show was Spill The Wine by Eric Burdon and War originally released in 1970 and perhaps taking some influences from the psychadelic soul music which was in vogue at the time.

Luke Cage upgrades for second season and goes in the paint for black institutions

Scott Woods Makes Lists

The only reason anyone takes Luke Cage seriously as a character now largely started because of a 2002 comic miniseries called Cage. It was an explicitly adult reboot that stripped the character of all previous superhero dressing and recast him as a hood for hire. It was an utterly racist reimagining from a team-up of comic legends: Brian Azzarello on writing detail, Richard Corben on art. Published in the pre-social media era, no one that doesn’t read a comic book that isn’t first advertised as a “graphic novel” knows or remembers that. That’s okay; I was there and can tell you from experience that it was painful to watch blow up. I’ve always had problems with Luke Cage, my chief issue being how frequently white creators used him to play out whatever vicarious racist fantasies they may have had. Luke Cage is historically a character whose Blaxploitation era origins…

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The Happening 24/06/2018 The Usual Eclectic Mix (No 4)


This show brought together jazz and jazz-funk tracks that illustrate the overlap between two genres, continuing the theme of feel good summery sounding music (listen to The Happening 17/06/2018) this show featured genres such as jazz-funk, funk, soul, gospel and jazz, the usual mix but nothing too ‘heavy’. First up was Just My Imagination by Ted Mills and Blue Magic, a track from a compilation CD put together by Neil Hanratty in memory of his late partner Val Twomey. A beautiful rendition of this now classic song first released on the Tamla Motown label by the earliest incarnation of The Temptations. Next up was was the more upbeat Wait A Minute by The Excitements.

To celebrate former Tamla Motown legend Brenda Holloway’s birthday (26th June) and the fact that I recently saw her live I played Operator a rather plaintive song, followed by Tell Me Your story. Brenda Holloway is not as well known in the United Kingdom as she should be, her voice remains rich and melodic. Her songs the well known and less so are staples on the Northern Soul and MOD circuits. At her recent live performance I think she was genuinely touched by the fact that we knew the words of her songs. I was lucky enough to meet her, I found her a gracious and friendly person. The Tamla Motown theme continued with Jimmy Ruffin’s Don’t Feel Sorry For Me.

The gospel selection included a spiritual sung by Ella Fitzgerald – I Need Thee Every Hour I chose Billy Paul’s I See The Light, not exactly gospel but a song which seems to be contemplating a greater force if not being. In this section was The Brit Funk Association’s Stand Strong Stand Tall from their chart topping album (Amazon) Full Circle.

From there we move into the funk and jazz-funk section beginning with Graham Central Station’s ‘Tis Your Kind of Music, some folk describe this band as a rock band, I would categorize them as a heavy funk band but also capable of softer melodic songs. ‘Tis Your Kind of Music is a mixture of funk and melodic lyrics. Bob James and Eddie Henderson represent the jazz-funk contribution, Nautilus from Mr James and Mr Henderson’s Say You Will. Lalo Schifrin’s Ape Shuffle, (the theme from Planet of The Apes) a piece of music from the Soundtrack genre ties up this section,

The jazz section was opened up by Lynn Hope’s version of Don’t Worry About Me, followed by two quite different tracks by Miles Davis – Milestones and It Never Entered My Head, Ella Fitzgerald gets another outing but this time duetting with Louis Armstrong with April in Paris. Going back to the funkier side of jazz is Bobby Byrd and the JB’s in a live recording of It’s My Thing with Marva Whitney as  lead singer.

Lamont Dozier world renowned songwriter, producer, arranger and vocalist shares his version of Going Back to My Roots. Central Line another Brit Funk band from the  Eighties sing You’ve Said Enough. These songs were followed by two instrumentals, Manu Dibango’s Afro Beat or Afro Funk Dikalo (Salt Pop-Corn) and the Amalfi track, from Jessica Lauren’s recently released album Almeria (2018). We go back to the 80’s for Tom Browne’s version of Un-Break My Heart.

Lisa Stansfield gives us her version of Just To Keep You Satisfied from the album Inner City Blues: The Music of Marvin Gaye, the last full track was Grover Washington Jnr’s Black Frost. Enjoy.


The Happening – The Usual Eclectic Mix (No 3) 17/06/18

This week the show opened with Boyz II Men (from their album – Motown:Hitsville USA) singing an acapella version of Stevie Wonder’s Ribbon In The Sky, the Boyz II Men album was produced as a tribute to the Tamla Motown music company that both artists were originally signed to in the 1990’s (BIIM) and 1961 (Stevie Wonder).

During the previous ten days prior to this show I was taking the Vinyl Album Ten Day Challenge, which made me look at albums I hadn’t thought about or played in some cases  many years. Some of my choices for the playlist were influenced by the challenge. First up was the title track from the Love Notes album by Ramsey Lewis Not included in the Album Challenge was Music For A Bachelorette’s Pad but one which contains amusing and clever songs in terms of the songs and their lyrics, I chose Call Me by comedian, actress and jazz musician, Lea DeLaria Another track from the Bachelorette’s Pad is An Occasional Man by Ann Richards illustrates the rebellious side of women, dressed up in an irony and a good voice.

The next two tracks come from the Country & Western genre, Patsy Cline and Dick Glasser. This was followed up by a generous serving of Rock ‘n’ Roll love songs including Pat Boone’s Love Letters In The Sand originally on London American Recordings label, 1957. I presented the studio version of True Love Ways by Buddy Holly, which includes the verbal count in to the band, First time out on my playlists was Frank Sinatra’s Come Fly Me a well known standard but sublimely delivered by what some people describe as ‘the voice of the 20th century’.

The day before this show 16th, June was the anniversary of the day the Otis Redding stamp was issued back in 1993, ( Otis Redding died age 26 in a plane crash.

‘The Dock of the Bay album became the first posthumous album to reach number one on the UK Albums Chart’. (1)

Erma Franklin, Aretha Franklin’s sister followed Otis Redding with Take A Little Piece Of My Heart.

Michael McDonald’s – I Keep Forgettin’ (Every Time You Near) is a song I haven’t played for many years. Followed by Brenda Russell’s Piano In The Dark and a neo-soul track by Youssou N’Dour & Neneh Cherry’s, 7 Seconds

Continuing, the summery feel to this show is Ladysmith Black Mambazo and China Black’s Swing Low Sweet Chariot was the first tune for the World Music selection it was the England Rugby team’s song in 2015. During the show I said it was the South African team’s anthem, in my defence I’m not a sporting person but at least I got the right sport and tournament. Cuba’s favourite traditional song Guantanamera by Grupo Fresca was delivered in a salsa party style. Thanks to one of my listeners, I was able to bring the Ramsey Lewis and Marlena Shaw’s extended version of the song Wade In the Water. It is a long track but worth listening to in order to appreciate the beauty of this piece of music.

The final section of the show consisted of reggae, ska and Mod Anthems. Bob Marley and The Wailers – Wings Of A Dove – a gospel/ska song. is a track from The Birth of a Legend album, which was included in the Vinyl Album Challenge. Don Drummond and Skatalites give us J F K’s Memory, I included this track as a tribute to Robert F Kennedy who was assassinated in June 1968. It is fifty years since Bobby’s death and that of Martin Luther King Jnr they were both murdered in the same year, at the height of Civil Rights Movement in the United States of America. Mod Anthems included In the Pocket by King Curtis and Sookie Sookie by Don Covay.  A snippet of If I Only Knew by Tom Jones was the final song, who to my mind the best white male ‘soul’ singer around.

A Quick Lesson In Soul

I’ve been asked to write short pieces on music for the In Key Magazine by the Editor Mitchell Roy Emery.

Mitchell is also a dj/presenter and colleague of mine at

Here is the link for my article A Quick Lesson In Soul:

I hope you enjoy it, there is more to come.

dancequeendq aka Bernadette Hawkes you can also follow me on Twitter @DanceQueendq

The Happening – Black Brit Funk, Brit Reggae and Black Brit Rock and Roll 26/11/17


When this show was first aired the Blog was still just a seed in my mind. As I’m not able to be live on for a couple of weeks I’ve decided to post an old show for your listening pleasure.

On October 11th 2017, I was pleased to be able to meet up with some friends from the hashtag Funkclub, a group of people who came together via Twitter. We mainly listened to music on Sound Fusion Radio (my former radio station) by a DJ/Presenter Dug Chant and his Soul Vault show. Dug Chant has now moved to Solar Radio, however we still remain friends and I listen to his shows.

Members of the Funkclub got together at the Chelmsford Race Course to watch listen and meet up with the Brit Funk Association. It was this meet up that inspired this show. As a young person my musical roots were firmly linked to the mostly Black American Funk and Soul bands (part of my musical evolution or rebellion as my parents referred to it). Funk began to merge with Jazz in the late seventies and early eighties producing a genre called Jazz Funk. It was out of this fusion of jazz and funk that Brit Funk emerged with an even more complex mix of jazz, jazz funk and disco, I think it’s success was due to fact it still remained essentially dance music, in spite of complex rhythms and/or lyrics with meaning, although some songs were simply fun songs. It was a pleasure to be with true music lovers and folk who are passionate and also knowledgeable about music, having said that we know how to have fun.

Members of the Brit Funk Association and I go back a long way, as fellow clubbers and friends. The Brit Funk Association is made up of members of the former Hi Tension – Paul and Phil McLean, Central Line – Steve Salvari and last but not least Kenny Wellington formerly Light of the World, the full line up of current members is up to 10 in number. Other Brit Funk bands were Level 42, who are still going strong and are frequently on tour.  Freeez, Shakatak, Central Line (Linton Beckles RIP), Linx (Sketch Peter Martin, bass guitarist and David Grant lead singer), Second Image, Beggar and Co and Incognito are names which conjure up happy memories of club nights and other gatherings. Brit Funk was also responsible for introducing other up and coming British musicians (jazz) such as Courtney Pine and David ‘Baps’ Baptiste. Similar to a number of American musicians members of these bands often played in different combinations with each other as well as performing within their separate bands, which was a treat for their followers and fans, whether at gigs or as recorded music.

This show began with a funk/disco anthem from Positive Force and their We Got The Funk https://youtu.bemEJd7hVSHCQ of course this is an American band but it is where Brit Funk roots are based. Central Line with Linton Beckles as lead singer follows with Walking Into Sunshine, another anthem but from the UK side of the pond. David Grant and Sketch Pete Martin are up next with their story song So This Is Romance

Also on the playlist are some current British artists including Corinne Bailey Rae, Laura Mvula two very talented young women, and songstress, TV presenter Mica Paris with her version of Sixth Street better known to some listeners of The Happening by Lovers Rock icon Louisa Marks. I’ve also included Sonia Eden who actually hails from Barbados (a former British Caribbean colony), her music is a jazzy neo-soul sound. Sonia Eden came to the UK in 2015 where she undertook a short tour to promote her first album the song featured on the The Happening was It’s a Beautiful Day

The Brit Reggae selection included Leroy Mafia’s version of Once In My Life from his album Beware. Ms Dynamite covered Bob Andy’s Too Experienced whilst duetting with Barrington Levy (a Jamaican reggae and Dancehall singer). Maxi Priest concludes the first part of ‘Reggae Time’ selection with Maxi Priest and his cut of Jimmy Cliff’s Wild World

In terms of Black Brit Rock n Roll, first up is Ray Ellington with That Rock n Rolling Man (his son sings with the Dave Arch Band from Strictly Come Dancing) followed by The Alphabet Song from Emile Ford. Later Cuddly Dudley sings his One That I Like find him on at this tune will certainly make you smile. Not exactly Black Brit Reggae but a version I like, is Georgie Fame and The Blue Notes Lean On Me with it’s nod towards gospel, together with Tom Waits’s – Way Down In the Hole. As often is the case on The Happening there are is curved ball such as Doris Day’s It’s a Lovely Day Today, because my Mum used to play it and sing it when I was a girl, back then I  didn’t know the difference between the English and American singers.  Finally, the Young Disciples round of the show with Get Yourself Together Pt’s 1 & 2.

I hope you enjoy it whether its the first time you’re listening or hearing it again.

The Happening – the Usual Eclectic Mix (No 2) – 20/05/18

This week The Happening was without a theme, at least that was the initial intention. Recently, I have been watching a drama series called the Hand of God, I was captivated by the theme music at the beginning of the show.  The theme tune is called An Honest Man performed by Fantastic Negrito, This got me thinking about other types of theme music from film and television, some leaning towards the popular whilst others are less well known.

However, before we explore the film and TV genre in terms of music, I also wanted to feature a couple of tracks from Jessica Lauren’s new album Almeira. The Lauren album is a jazz and world music inspired but also reminded me of the 70’s soundtrack music which I have been listening to of late. The tracks I featured on the show were Chocolate Con Churros and Teck Et Bambou. Listen to a sample of the first track from the album – Kofi Nomad (Radio Edit) (Freestyle Records) on youtube http://pl.kudli/UCd9NcFYcAllYM_acSxD.

First up, in terms of soundtrack music was Curtis Mayfield’s Superfly. The movie is now classed as being in the realm Blaxploitation films, (see Mikel J Koven Blaxploitation Films). Strictly speaking the next few tracks are not soundtrack music but they are of the same vintage, in terms of the era in which they were produced and include Ike’s Mood from the To Be Continued by Isaac Hayes. The jazz giants Joe Henderson and John Coltrane follow on. The Pink Panther was presented by Milt Jackson, Joe Pass and the Ray Bryant Combo.

Changing the mood and providing a gentle nod to the Royal Wedding Day was Maceo Parker’s The Greatest Romance Ever Sold, I hasten to add that I’m not a royalist (nor a republican either, lol) but as I say in the show, the ‘unconscious’ (a Freudian term) is a strange thing. George Clinton’s Atomic Dog and DJ Jazzy Jeff & Te Fresh Prince’s Boom Boom Shake The Room, really shook up the show, as testified via Twitter and text message.

I moved back to the TV theme using Buddy Murrow’s Dragnet from the detective series first aired in the late 50’s and then revived in the late 60’s. Returning to films Dionne Warwick sings the theme from The Valley of The Dolls, composed by Andre Previn, followed by Shirley Bassey and her powerful and unmistakable rendition of Goldfinger from the James Bond movie of thee same name.

The show concludes with a brief reggae selection including Dennis Brown’s Here I Come followed by Bob Marley and The Wailers spirit rousing Thank You Lord (Original version) which I’ve included as the contribution to the gospel section of the show. Slim Smith and the Uniques are the final artists singing People Get Ready produced by Bunny ‘Striker’ Lee.









The Happening 13th May 2018 – Here Come The Girls Pt 2

This show featured songs from all kinds of ‘girls’ singing about life, love, sex, happiness and sadness. The music came from good girls, bad girls, happy girls, proud girls and religious girls. None of these categories have been imposed by me but they seem to fit with some of the genres.

First up was Mahalia Jackson definitely a church-going God fearing woman, she never sang secular songs and thus retained her title as the of Queen of Gospel, she eventually divorced her husband to escape his pressure on her to accept contracts to sing  popular music. (Goreau, Laurraine. Just Mahlia, Baby, World Books (1975) p.59) Ms Jackson was also well known for her actions within the Civil Rights movement she sang at a fund raising event in Montgomery Alabama. Jackson was not without her critics, the gospel purists did not approve of her hand clapping and footstomping, it seems ‘a girl’ can never get it right. (See Wikipedia for lots more about the life of Mahalia Jackson and her recordings).

For a change of genre, but still within the Gospel category I brought in Barbara Hendricks, opera singer singing the Negro Spiritual, Plenty Good Room and finally I included Roberta Flack and Donny Hathaway singing Come Ye Disconsolate simply because it’s a beautiful rendition of this hymn.

We move on to Rock n Roll with The Shangri-La’s and the Leader of The Pack, a love story with a tragic ending. Connie Francis got an airing with two numbers including Where The Boys Are. This section of the show concluded with Ruth Brown’s I Burned Your Letter.

Dinah Washington, Saffire (all female Blues Band) and April Stevens are the bad girls on this week’s show, they are probably strong contenders for the Dirty Blues Genre, which I mentioned on The Happening show of 06/05/2018.

There is a sprinkling of reggae from Marcia Griffiths, Ginger Williams, T.T Ross (blue eyed reggae songstress) and Hortense Ellis, sister of Alton Ellis.

Nancy Wilson brings a latin touch to The Shadow of Your Smile. Whilst Gladys Knight and her Pips sing Billy Come Back As Quick As Quick As You Can in a funk style.

Duffy and Dusty Springfield bring in some blue-eyed soul/R n B.

I must mention that Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughan who are both Queens’s of Scat in my opinion are both included in this show.

Here Come The Girls Part 2 ends with two phenomenal young women, Laura Mvula singing Phenomenal Woman and Macy Gray featuring Angie Stone with My Nutmeg Fantasy.


Please note Here Come The Girls Pt 1 is also on under the tag of The Anything Goes Show.



The Happening 6th May 2018 – The Usual Eclectic Mix No 1

This week on The Happening I decided not to follow a theme as such, however on thinking about the playlist, there is a strong leaning towards jazzy numbers, the blues and the introduction of a new genre – known as dirty blues.

I opened the show with I’m In the Mood for Love, not the Lord Tanamo version  – I’m in the Mood for Ska, (note the slight change in the title) which is a classic amongst the followers of Ska. I chose The Administrators* version This group are a British Reggae band who were popular in the 80’s and 90’s. Their version of this classic is even more upbeat than the original, yes it is possible, if your spirits need lifting then this tune could do it for you.

This week the gospel section was fairly short and consisted of three songs the Boogie Woogie Prayer Pt 1, Sister Rosetta Tharpe’s – Strange Things Happening Everyday and Like Marvin Gaye Said (What’s Going On) by Speech.

Della Reese brought her own way of delivering Getting To Know You, it is certainly a less sugary version than other renditions I’ve come across in the past but not the full on Della, that some of us know and love.

Leading up to the dirty blues Muddy Waters said I’m Ready – to do all sorts by listening to the lyrics from this song. Eartha Kitt declared her man was Too Close for Comfort all the while knowing that’s exactly what she wanted.

I very recently discovered Julia Lee, a Blues and R ‘n’ B singer who was recorded by the Capitol Record label. According to various internet sources she did not get the success she deserved due to some of her material falling into what was known as the ‘dirty blues’ genre.  As a radio station colleague, commented when I shared this information, it was more likely due to the period of time when she made her recordings and the racism of some radio stations. (Harry Roy, a white British clarinet and saxophone player, made one or two songs with some decidedly iffy lyrics but more of him another time). The Spinach Song, featured on the show is a masterpiece of the double entendre. Julia Lee, should not be remembered for her dirty blues songs as she recorded many more songs which do not fit into this genre. I’ll be sharing more of her music over the coming weeks. Koko Taylor was another female artist who also gained something of a bad reputation (by some) for her participation in the dirty blues genre, in The Happening she sings Wang Dang Doodle. There will be more ‘dirty blues’ as I explore the genre further in the weeks and months to come.

Otis Redding and Brook Benton are included in this week’s playlist with Try A Little Tenderness and Endlessly. Both songs have become standards and as some would say ‘Easy Listening’ but for me they are still R ‘n’ B or Soul.

The funk section starts off with the a live version of Respect from Vicki Anderson, Mother Popcorn, the ‘backing’  band is Bobby Byrd and the JB’s.

The final tune for this show is something I haven’t heard for years – Maceo Parker’s Rabbits in the Pea Patch, the title is enough to make you smile, the music will get you up and dancing. Enjoy.

*apologies for the jumps in this tune my copy turned out to have a warp in the vinyl.