A little late in posting this to you.  Apart from being busier than I have ever been, telephone, zoom meetings, social media, articles and online services etc.,   I do hope you are all keeping well and that lockdown hasn’t been as bad as you thought it might be three months ago. As least we have an easing of restrictions to look forward too as well as a haircut and a pint!

CANCELLATIONS It’s no surprise that all of my events were cancelled.  Even The Pantaloons, which we kept open as late as possible. Most artists I know have written off 2020 and are rescheduling for 2021. Except, I have a couple of events coming up.  Yeah! Live music in Billericay !!!

ROB HALLIGAN: PSALM You are invited to a bring a picnic to the Rectory Garden on Sunday 23 August at 16.00 hrs (Doors at 15.00 pm) where singer/songwriter Rob Halligan will be performing his concept album, and book of the same name ‘Psalm’ followed by a selection of his ‘Greatest Hits! You never know, he might be open to requests too! This is a free event with donations going to Global Care. Maximum number will be 50.

TINDERBOX AT EMMANUEL I couldn’t think of anyone better to play at our first indoor event now that the government has given permission for socially distanced indoor events to take place. Tinderbox  will play at Emmanuel Church, Billericay, on Saturday 19 September at 19.30 hrs (Doors at 18.45 hrs). This replaces the scheduled House Gig (for obvious reasons) but it does mean more people will be able to attend.  Numbers are limited and tickets are £15.00 plus fees.

FAVOURITE ALBUMS I’ve had a bit of fun over the past several weeks after being nominated to list my 20 favourite albums on Facebook.  20 wasn’t enough so I’ve continued to post each day and I’m now up to number 71 – I plan to finish at 100. One of the good things about doing this is that I’ve been able to listen to all these albums sometime during the day they have been posted.  A great trip down memory lane – but some recent ones too.

LOCKDOWN PLAYLIST I put together a COVID-19 Lockdown 2020 playlist on my iPod! However, I posted a ‘Top 20’ for you to listen to and enjoy! I’ll leave you to use your imagination as to the (tenuous) link with COVID-19.

I’ve been busy writing articles, some of which you might find interesting, alongside some I haven’t!

HAMILTON: AN AMERICAN MUSICAL Isn’t it amazing, when you’ve spent a life time playing music, listening to music, attending hundreds of gigs and live theatre, something comes along and blows you away?  That’s my experience of ‘Hamilton: An American Musical.’ It’s a must see from me!

THE FEAR LURKING BENEATH THE SURFACE  According to entrepreneur Luke Johnson in last week’s Daily Telegraph ‘Britons are more scared of coronavirus than the rest of the world.’ He goes on to say: “Project fear is the government’s ‘one truly effective policy.’”

USING THE ‘FIVE LOVE LANGUAGES’ IN A CRISIS!  I’ve often used Gary Chapman’s Five Love Languages when preparing couples for Marriage and teaching on Baptism and Parenting. But how might these be used during a pandemic?

WHEN THIS IS OVER (A LOCKDOWN POEM) Harry Baker is World Poetry Slam Champion. His show The Sunshine Kid was voted Best Spoken Word Show of the 2015 Edinburgh Fringe. Now a full-time poet, his work has been shared on TED.com and translated into 15 languages. 

WHEN JUST THE TIDE WENT OUT Poet, singer and Welsh ‘icon’ Max Boyce contrasts the worlds of rugby, his hometown, faith  and lockdown in his poem about Coronavirus. This was read as part of the NHS Wales Livestream Fundraiser

ONLINE SERVICES A recent poll in The Guardian suggested that 20% of the adult population in the UK (that’s about 16 million) have tuned into a church service on a Sunday morning since lockdown, which is quite amazing. I guess going to church in your pyjamas and with coffee and toast in bed is proving pretty popular. We’ve offered a weekly pre-recorded service every Sunday at 10.30 am.  We’ve had some great viewing figures and some great feedback too. More details can be found here – you can also download a service sheet so you can follow the words and even sing-a-long!!

EMMANUEL TO REOPEN We will reopen for Public Worship on Sunday 6 September. This will give many of us the opportunity to get back into some normality as lockdown continues to ease and we gain more confidence to be ‘out and about’ after being in isolation for so long.

RING PULLS Many of you collect ring pulls for the Purple Community Fund. Can I ask you to collect them at your place of work and either send them direct or bring them along next time you’re in Billericay.  More details can be found here

Do keep your eyes on my website revpacman.wordpress.com for some interesting (honestly) articles – there are some amazing coronavirus poems posted!

Be sure to be ‘in touch’ with me, if there is anything  I can do for you at any time and in the meantime, be safe and be blessed.