THE TWITTER LIST 2016

Hello and welcome to The Twitter List 2016, the 5th time I have done such a list.

The list began in 2012 when The Independent ran a similar feature in their newspaper. However, there was very little people of interest or relevence to me, and nothing related to Northern Ireland in the list.

So, instead of getting angry on the internet, I decided to do something about it, and create my own list.

This list is Northern Ireland centric, but not exclusive. It would be boring if it was. There’s no order and no overall winner, it’s just a list of journalists, writers and organisations I enjoy following on Twitter because they’re either funny or informative, or even both.

Don’t get offended if you’re not on the list, there’s always next year.

So here, is The Twitter List 2016 ……….

JUST FOR FUN

Hate clickbait articles? @savedyouaclick will save you the effort.

When the Guardian becomes such a Guardian cliche – @somuchguardian

@getinthesea is for people who love getting angry at awful things

@brickstand is worth following for football grounds made from lego.

For Satire, @whispersnewsltd is a must follow

@badalbumcovers celebrates awful album covers throughout music history

If you want to hear stories of awful customers, then @callprobs is for you.

@bestofthemail highlights the brilliant, bizarre and disturbing comments that appear on the Daily Mail’s website.

@jimllpaintit will paint anything for you. It is utterly brilliant.

@accidentalp is a joy for highlighting the moment when real life mirrors Alan Partridge.

Seen somebody in a football shirt? Contact @shirtspotter

@djscomplaining shows us all that the life of a DJ isn’t as wonderful as it seems.

@soverybritish became a TV show in Channel 4 during 2015, highlighting all the quaint problems that British people face every day.

@the90sdiary is for those missing the 90s, a day by day diary of the events of that decade.

@8bitfootball recreates footballing moments in 8 bit video game format.

@twoptips is the one to follow for life advice

@bbcarchive as the name suggests, produces gems from the BBC’s archive.

@sleepycommuters will ensure you never fall asleep on public transport again.

TV SHOW QUOTES

Whatever your favourite TV show is, there’s bound to be a Twitter account dedicated to it’s best moments. Here are some of mine.

@quotepeepshow @peepshowqotd @simpsonsqotd @frtedquotes

TV

For the latest TV news – @radiotimes

If you want audience tickets @bbcaudiencetix @tvaudience @bbcnievents

For news on TV ratings @ratingsuk

For look back at TVs archives @tvlive @nornironknight

Royal Television Society NI @rts_ni

TRAVEL

Like travelling? The following accounts might be useful if you’re planning a trip away somewhere : @visitscotland @visitbritain @visitwales @discoverireland @visitlondon @visitbelfast @visit_mcr @nitouristboard @visitengland

@nitravelnews will have a lot of travel news relating to people in Northern Ireland.

@simoncalder is also worth a follow for travel news.

EVENTS AND FESTIVALS

There are quite a lot of events and festivals in Northern Ireland which have Twitter accounts. Some might be dormant now, but are worth following in the build-up to and during their event.

These include @aspectsfestival @belfastbookfest @culturenightbel @tennentsvital @cqaf @openhousefest @belsonicbelfast @belfastfestival

If you fancy travelling for an event, here are some that might interest you.

@groovefestival is a weekend concert in July worth keeping an eye on.

@latmofficial is a series of concerts in Cork which usually has a decent line-up.

Fancy a trip to Galway? Then @galwayintarts and @galwaycomedy are worth a follow.

MUSIC

For concert news in Belfast, promotion companies and promoters to follow include : @davidhullpromo @noelmchale @magillpromoni @rollinspromo @aikenpromotions @aikenpr @mcdproductions @jeffrobinsonpr

Venues to follow include @ssebelfastarena @limelightni @mandelahall

For news and reviews of concerts in Belfast : @the_thin_air @acrosstheline @giggingni

@ticketmasteruk @ticketmasterire for the latest news on where and how to buy concert tickets

Two music shops with an account with the latest deals – @headbelfast @hmvbelfast

Music bloggers to follow are @gonetodeadlock @popjustice while @totpfacts is worth a follow if you enjoy watching the Top Of The Pops repeats on BBC Four.

For national news and reviews, follow @qmagazine

Meanwhile, @SmashHits1980s is worth a follow, as the name suggests, it delves into Smash Hits 1980s archive.

STREET ART

For Street Art in Belfast, follow @viswaste @extramuralactiv @seedheadarts @faigyartist

PHOTOGRAPHY

Quite a lot of photographers are based on Twitter, both press photos and arty photos.

Worth following are : @matt_presseye @photomcq @kscott_94 @ramseycardy

@wsc_photos posts football photos from the past and present.

On a national level, @gettysport is worth a follow, as are @tomjenkinspix @bluemcardle @stuart_photoafc @homesoffootball

As the name suggests, @IrishLeaguePics posts Irish League pictures from last week to last century.

The best account to follow is @photosallan – keeping the legacy of Allan McCullough alive. Allan was a press photographer until his death in 2003, and this account publishes his work, ranging from the darkest hours of The Troubles, Irish League matches, and minor celebs doing Public Appearances. It’s a mixed bag but an excellent record of Northern Ireland’s history.

JOURNALISTS

Some non Northern Ireland based journalists and writers worth following include : @martindaubney @marke11en @michaellcrick @prodnose (The King of Twitter) @alstewitn @earlsjohn @laoiseneylon @jamieross7 @afneil @alanbiggs1 @simon_price01 @eve_barlow @davidhepworth @georgierogers

@suttonnick is worth a follow as he posts newspaper front pages each night, as does @ukpapers

News outlets to follow include @itvnews @skynews @mediaweek @themediatweets @bbcnews

NORTHERN IRELAND MEDIA

Northern Ireland’s three big newspapers are on Twitter – @irish_news @news_letter @beltel

As well as Northern Ireland editions of national newspapers @thesun_ni @dailymirrorni

As well as a Belfast Telegraph spin-off account @beltel_business

And on a Sunday @thesundaylife

@electionni will be worth a follow when the fun and games begin in April/May time.

Also worth following is @insideireland

Journalists to follow include : @naomijholland @connollymaeve @alexkane221b (who is generally right about most things) @mark_raineynl @bigivanlittle @darwintemplton @edwinmcfee @rblackbt @henry_mcdonald @noseforthenews6 @KimKellyKK

@nevinfarrell is worth following for his Court Case Corner tweets.

@rudedoodle is worth following for her World Of Kitsch blog.

Want to know what is trending in Belfast? Then follow @trendsbelfast

BBC NI

BBC NI are well represented. Journalists to follow include : @journoclaire @jaynemccormack @markdevenport @collettasmith @mckemp @taramillstv @imsaraneill @jacqmci @micjfitz @mlchealth @ciarariddell @fionamurray10 @jolong03 @saragirvan @fermanaghjulian

And their channel account @bbconeni

Their flagship TV news show @bbcnewsline

If you’re radio minded @bbcradioulster

And for news stories as they happen @bbcnewsni

UTV

UTV are also well represented on Twitter. Journalists to follow include : @aideen_utv @kenreid_utv @pamballantine @sarahclarke_utv @paulclark_utv @colmmcal_utv @ruthgorman_utv @markmcfadden (warning, contains bad jokes) @vicki_hawthorne @Paul_utv @jamie_utv @hagan_utv

@utvonair is their Twitter feed of what is currently on air.

Also worth following is @utvnews @utvlivetonight @utv

NORTHERN IRELAND JOURNALISTS FURTHER AFIELD

There are quite a lot of journalists, writers and broadcasters from Northern Ireland now plying their trade outside Northern Ireland. Here are the ones worth following

@hollyhnews @johnirvineitv @annita_mcveigh @mrgordonburns @colinmurray @maxinemawhinney @skydavidblevins @billneelynbc @skysportspaulg @jenofcroths @ianwoodssky @holtchris @kellyallen01 @eamonn_forde @skyorla @sarahrainey4 @arronarmstrong @jamiecweir

NORTHERN IRELAND PR COMPANIES

A lot of Northern Ireland based PR companies are represented on Twitter, as well as people working in the industry. Quite a lot will tweet on behalf of their clients, so are well worth following for news, events and promotions.

@lanyoncomms @blanketcomms @rlagroup @dcpstrategicco @naked_pr @pmlgroupni @image_zoo @informcomms @mammothbelfast @massivepr @mcenewsfeed @smartscomm @avbgroup @rnncomms @avbbrand @duffyrafferty @acupoflee @grainnemcgarvey @jagocomms @freshwaterniroi @asg_pr @levymccallum @wearebluecube @lighthouseni @supersonicpr @navbluepr @ardmoreadv @lkcomms @morrowcomms @house_pr @rumourmill_pr @jprnewswire @sineaddoyle @cathymartin @stakeholderlive @seriouspr

And the industry body @cipr_ni

JOBS

Unfortunately, we all need one. Recruitment Agencies on Twitter to follow include @premiereni @brightwaterni @graftonrec @abacusjobs @lynnrecruitment @corvus_jobs @kennedyrec @cfmrecruitment @diamondjobs

Employers worth following include @pwc_ni @ukcivilservice

Job sites to follow include : @recruitni @careersatqueens @nijobscom @nijobfinder @niwork @qubjobs

PUBLIC INFORMATION SERVICES

There a lot of Public Information accounts which are useful for people in Northern Ireland.

If you’re flying somewhere, @belfastcity_air @belfastairport and @coderryairport will be useful to you.

Other accounts to follow include : @publichealthni @investni @nidirect @consumercouncil @psnibelfast @psnitraffic @policeserviceni @bbcnitravel @niassembley @translink_ni @newslineweather @metofficeni @niopressoffice @niexecutive @belfastcc @librariesni

RUGGER

If you lean towards the oval ball, these accounts might be of interest to you.

@pro12rugby @ulsterrugby

FOOTBALL JOURNALISTS

Football journalists outside Northern Ireland worth following include @amylawrence71 @msmith850 @samuelluckhurst @stumathiesonmen @georgina_turner @danielharris @jimw1 @patmurphybbc @markogden_ @millar_colin @vikkiorvice @alistairmann01 @dtguardian @janineself @henrywinter @andymitten @tonguetweets @stevewilson1967 @robbopalmer @marcwebber @blogdroed @brynlaw @EilidhBarbour

@peterrmiles is worth a follow for his travels around Europe and is @manchopperblog for travels around (mostly) the North-West of England.

ALTERNATIVE FOOTBALL

I was going to call it “Football Humour”, but that would give the impression that i’m suggesting those awful “Footy Bantz” accounts which steal awful jokes from each other.

@nonleagueraffle celebrates the glorious prizes on offer in Prize Draws at Non League grounds, while @footy_fooligans celebrates those who failed their audition for Green Street.

@kerryfail is for those who enjoy laughing at Celtic fans getting angry, while @mufc_facebook @H_V_Meltdown and @rawk_meltdown celebrate Man United, Aston Villa and Liverpool related internet outbursts.

@footballpapers celebrates the awful football related computer wallpaper that exists.

@celebrityrefs for those moments when the referee thinks he is the star.

@officiallfc features all the latest news on the reigning Screen Sport Super Cup holders.

@alansavailable is a rare parody account that works, because it doesn’t overdo the joke, focusing on Alan Curbishley’s relentless search to find work.

@mirkobolesan is worth a follow for stats and randomness.

@footballcliches as the name suggests, takes pundits to task for their use of cliches.

@redissue is “A truly horrible publication” according to Sir Alex Ferguson’s ghostwriter.

FOOTBALL NOSTALIGA

There are quite a lot of Twitter accounts dedicated to miscellany relating to football’s past. Here are some of my favourites

@englandmemories looks back at the England football team

@oldrangerspics as the name suggests, looks at old Rangers pictures.

@groundtastic is an account dedicated to football grounds throughout history, as well as modern grounds.

@9091football Tweets the football news from exactly 25 years ago.

@theskystrikers and @scotsfootycards mostly, but not exclusively, bring you wonderful pictures and articles from Scottish football history.

@iainmccartney and @retrounited are worth a follow if you want to delve into Man United’s history.

As the name suggests, @footy40yearsago live tweets football from 40 years ago.

And finally, @worldcup66live will livetweet the build-up to, and 1966 World Cup 50 years on.

ENGLISH FOOTBALL

I’d imagine quite a few of you follow English football, so here are the competition accounts to follow :

@premierleague @skybetchamp @emiratesfacup @capitalone_cup @football_league @thenationallge

SCOTTISH FOOTBALL

For those interested in Scottish football, @bbcjsutherland is worth a follow.

Competition account to follow @spfl

GENERAL FOOTBALL

I loved @ronaldkoeman as a player, and he is by far the best manager on Twitter.

Want to know when a football match is on TV? Follow @footieontv

Media outlets to follow include : @btsportfootball @english_as @wsc_magazine @fcbusiness

FIFA can be found at @fifacom and for World Cup Qualifiers @fifaworldcup

And of course, UEFA @uefacom

For news relating to the two main European competitions @championsleague @europaleague

@efc_helenmayo is the PR Officer at Everton and is worth a follow.

For African football, then you should follow @caf_online

LEAGUE OF IRELAND

If you’re into the League Of Ireland, the official account of RTEs coverage is @soccrepublic and of the league @sseairtricitylge

For stats and miscellany, follow @seidodge

IRISH LEAGUE

The official account of the league – @officialnifl

The magic twelve – @ballinamallard @ballymenaunited @carrickrangers @cliftonvillefc @colerainefc @crusadersfc @dgnswifts @glenavon_fc @glentoran @officialblues @portadownfc @thepointfc

The two main contenders looking for promotion to the top flight – @ardsfc1900 @larnefc

Journalists worth following – @ericwhite80 (based in the North-West and also covers Derry City and Finn Harps) @garethhanna11 @ge_sportsnews (for Glenavon based news) @keithjbailie @mclarkeshow @nialfoster @taggartjoel @ourlogie @liam_beckett @markjmcintosh @laurejames @egrantcameron @garethfullerton @sportyneesy

Media outlets to follow for news include @sundaylifesport @utvsport @newslettersport @bbcsportni @beltel_sport @nifootballdaily

As well as the podcast @thesocialclubni

EURO 2016

And finally, in case you didn’t know, Northern Ireland have qualified for Euro 2016!!! Accounts worth following include @officialirishfa and @vauxhallni

Also there will be @fawales and @fa

Fronting ITV’s coverage (They have live coverage of Northern Ireland v Ukraine) will be @markpougatch and @jacquioatley (who is also worth following if you follow Women’s Football)

BBC’s coverage (They will be showing Northern Ireland v Poland and Northern Ireland v Germany) will of course be fronted by @garylineker and @mrdanwalker

The official Twitter account of the tournament is @uefaeuro

And the golden boot winner and player of the tournament @laffk

Until next year’s list, enjoy your Tweeting.

THE FRIDAY FIVE – 5.2.2016

1. Franz Ferdinand – Matinee
2. Ellie Goulding – Army
3. Beauty Sleep – The Dark
4. Frank Turner – Mittens
5. Primal Scream and Sky Ferreira – When The Light Comes In

Today, sees tickets for Squeeze at Ulster Hall (Not until Setpember. That’s seven long months away) go on sale. Hoping to get one for this. To get you in the mood, here’s a Squeeze Top Five.

FIVE SONGS BY SQUEEZE

1. This Summer
2. Hourglass
3. Black Coffee In Bed
4. Another Nail In My Heart
5. Tempted

This coming Wednesday, is Ash Wednesday. I know it’s a religious event and this isn’t a religious blog, but it sounds like a good excuse for an Ash Top Five.

In the interests of equality, if there are any bands out there called Ramadan or Yom Kippur, send a few CDs my way and i’ll do a Top Five whenever those events occur.

FIVE SONGS BY ASH

1. Oh Yeah
2. Envy
3. Girl From Mars
4. Jesus Says
5. Cocoon

And finally, venturing into the world of TV, there is one show (it is music related) that I feel compelled to recommend for you. I was literally crying with laughter at times.

That show is Brian Pern : 45 Years Of Prog and Roll, starring Rhys Thomas, Simon Day and Paul Whitehouse. Off to a good start.

If you love The Fast Show and music history, you’ll love this.

Spoiler alert, features Noddy Holder fishing and Peter Gabriel getting worked up about seat belts.

You can watch it here.

MAGAZINE ARCHIVE : MATCH – 18.7.1998

Zinedine Zidane, holding the World Cup aloft, is the cover star of Match, as they review the 1998 World Cup. Printing deadlines must have been tight, as the final took place on July 12th 1998.

Match looks at Ariel Ortega, who had went into the World Cup hyped as “The new Maradona”, emulated him by being sent-off in his first World Cup as Argentina crashed out. Unlike Maradona, he didn’t rectify it four years later.

Readers were treated to a compilation of Kevin Keegan’s finest commentary moments.

Lee Hendrie gets asked who his favourite Spice Girl is. After much hesitation, he plucked for Sporty Spice.

Phil Neville does the taste test, where he gets asked his favourites between two. Unsurprisingly, he picks Spice Girls (David and Victoria would have been very unhappy) over All Saints, and he prefers McDonalds over Burger King.

France’s win over Brazil gets four pages, with most of the focus being on Zinedine Zidane, where he speaks about the key moments of the game, and how he felt at each time.

Ryan Giggs gets asked for his Hits and Misses of France 98, labelling Michael Owen, Christian Vieri and Rivaldo as Hits, and Faustino Asprilla, Raul and Alessandro Del Piero as Misses.

Michael Owen gets a double page interview focusing on his meteoric rise over the past eighteen months, offering advice for aspiring young footballers.

Premier League stars such as Gary Croft, Rob Savage (yes, that’s what it said), Don Hutchinson, Mark Schwarzer and Christian Dailly were asked for their best and worst moments of the World Cup. Christian Dailly, listed his favourite game as England v Romania, when Romania won 2-1 in injury time.

LINFIELD 6-0 DUNGANNON SWIFTS 2.2.2016

When Dungannon Swifts were arranging a date for this match after it was postponed in the middle of January, i’m not sure that Groundhog Day was the date to choose, considering they would be visiting a venue they have lost on their last twelve visits.

Make that thirteen now. There was nothing unlucky about this for Dunganon. If it’s any consolation for Dungannon, they usually beat Linfield at home every three years (2007, 2010, 2013) so will get some sort of revenge in the early months of next season.

Wether Linfield will be defending champions whenever they suffer an early season defeat at Stangmore Park next season remains to be seen,

Both teams started with attacking intent, but it was Linfield who had the first effort on goal, with Paul Smyth firing goalwards from a wide position, his shot was easily saved.

Good play down the left resulted in a bit of pinball in the penalty area, the ball falling to Andrew Waterworth. There was only going to be one end result, 1-0 to Linfield.

Having been unlucky for the first goal, Dungannon shot themselves in the foot a few minutes later when Dermot McCaffrey lost possession to Paul Smyth, giving him a clean run at goal.

In recent weeks, Paul Smyth has missed a couple of chances when he has been through on goal. Young players learn from their mistakes, remedy them, and get better.

As he ran towards goal, there was no doubt that the score was soon to be 2-0, not even when he elected to go round the goalkeeper rather than shoot, leaving himself with defender on the goal line to put it past, which he did, to make it 2-0.

It was his first goal at Windsor Park, and he celebrated with a somersault. If that is his routine, here’s to more somersaults.

Dungannon, to their credit, continued to attack. Unfortunately for them, so did Linfield, with Reece Glendinning going close with a speculative shot, and Ross Gaynor unable to finish from a wide angle.

Mark Stafford made it 3-0 before half-time. A goal that Linfield needed, in order to stop Dungannon going in at half-time thinking “You know, if we can get an early goal in the second-half ……..”

He almost made it 4-0, as a cleared corner came to Kirk Millar on the left, crossing with his right foot for Stafford, whose header was saved. It was almost a cover version of his goal on Saturday.

The second-half was a slow burner, unsurprisingly with a 3-0 scoreline. Even though they were 3-0 up, Linfield’s players were still throwing themselves in the road and fighting for every ball whenever Dungannon attacked.

Andrew Waterworth was unable to finish from a wide angle, while Sean Ward had a shot turned around the post.

Guy Bates and Michael McLellan came on to give them gametime. Especially important for McLellan, as he adjusts to life back in the top flight, and life at Linfield.

On 80 minutes, Linfield made it 4-0 with a header from Mark Stafford, his second of the game and third in two games. Goal machine.

It was two substitutes who made Linfield’s final contributuons to the game, Aaron Burns flicking the ball over his twin brother (like Paul Gascoigne over Colin Hendry) to then fire home and make it 5-0.

Michael McLellan was then played through by Guy Bates and he finished as if he’s been playing up front for Linfield all of his career, despite the fact it was only his second substitute appearance.

Having spent most of the season (and last season as well) complaining about Linfield not having striking options off the bench, suddenly they had two strikers coming off the bench and combining for a goal.

It wasn’t that important in the context of this game, but it’s good to see a partnership coming together than could come to Linfield’s aid later on in the season.

Six goals, six successive league wins and only six points off the top of the league, albeit with a game more played than Crusaders. Linfield are looking devilishly good at the moment.

The league is on the backburner this weekend, as Armagh City travel to Windsor Park in the Irish Cup. Up next in the league – Portadown (away), Coleraine (away), Glenavon (home), Glentoran (home) and Cliftonville (away)

That is a tasty run of games. They’ll become even tastier if Crusaders fail to beat both Cliftonville and Glenavon this month and Linfield keep on winning, especially with Cliftonville inactive in league terms next weekend.

Photo Album

LINFIELD 2-0 CARRICK RANGERS 30.1.2016

Linfield ended the month with their fourth game of the month at Windsor Park (it would have been their fifth if it wasn’t for the postponement against Dungannon Swifts), hoping that it would be better than the third game of the month, the County Antrim Shield Final.

Linfield were quick on the attack and took the lead from their first set piece, a corner which was cleared, but Kirk Millar made the most of his second opportunity to play the ball in, for Mark Stafford to head home from close range.

It was the early goal that Linfield didn’t get when they were held to a 1-1 draw by Carrick in October.

Within minutes, it should have been 2-0, when Paul Smyth got in behind Carrick’s defence, only to find his shot saved by Carrick’s goalkeeper.

Soon after, Ross Gaynor fired over from close range unmarked after a cross. The game could have been over before it had even begun.

Sean Ward headed over from a corner a couple of minute later.

Linfield needed a second goal, and it wasn’t long in coming. A series of short and quick passes saw the ball go from centre of defence to Ross Gaynor on the left wing to cross for Andrew Waterworth to touch the ball home.

That wasn’t the end of the first-half action, as Ross Gaynor had a goal disallowed for offside. It was all one way traffic.

Naturally, the second-half was a non event. Linfield just had to make sure they kept Carrick and didn’t ancourage them back into the game.

Bar a flurry of corners, Linfield’s defence had a quiet afternoon.

The main talking point of the second-half was a two footed tackle by Conor McCluskey on Mark Stafford which only got him a yellow card.

I was at the other end of the ground and didn’t realise how bad it was until I saw the TV footage, a very poor decision to only award a yellow card. And that’s me being polite.

The only thing you could say in the referee’s defence, was that he got distracted by the melee which followed and his judgement would have been affected by having to deal with two incidents at the same time. It wasn’t. He had his yellow card out ready to show whenever both sets of players were squaring up to each other.

Having scored his first goal for Linfield last week, Ross Gaynor was played through by Jamie Mulgrew and looked set to score his first goal at Windsor Park, only to find his shot was saved.

If Linfield had got a third goal, we would have seen the introduction of some new signings off the bench. They did come, but a bit later than hoped.

Michael McLellan came on for Paul Smyth, having scored a lot of goals in not a lot of games for Harland and Wolff Welders. Hopefully, an away pre-seasom friendly is part of the deal.

With the game won, the attacking wasn’t as intense as it would have been earlier, so he didn’t get a lot of opportunities to showcase his abilities.

He got more than Stephen Fallon, who got the final minute of injury time.

Not the most exciting game, but that’s not a complaint. Carrick at home is the sort of game you should get the result and move on to the next game (even though Linfield didn’t actually do that in October)

That next game, is Dungannon Swifts at home, and an opportunity to go to within six points of Crusaders, with Crusaders facing Glenavon and Cliftonville in the next two matchdays, and Cliftonville not playing a league match until 20th February.

Three league wins in a row, three clean sheets and progress in the Irish Cup. Not a bad start to the year. County Antrim Shield would have been nice but it’s the League and Cup that matter.

Hopefully, February (and March, April and May) will be more of the same.

Photo Album

THE KOOKS – LIVE AT ALBERT HALL MANCHESTER 23.1.2016

Exactly ten years since the release of their debut album, Inside In Inside Out, The Kooks were in Manchester for a concert at Albert Hall, a city that singer Luke Pritchard said gives him a tingle every time he visits there.

It was a gig that was supposed to have taken place the previous month, but was cancelled due to one of their members suffering a family bereavement.

Upon hearing that the rescheduled date would be on the weekend I would be in Manchester, I decided to get a ticket, especially as they were so good when I saw them at Mandela Hall in 2015.

Inside In Inside Out got to Number 2 in the album charts in 2006, and spawned the hit singles Naive, She Moves In Her Own Way and Ooh La.

The follow up, Konk went to Number 1 and spawned the Number 3 single Always Where I Need To Be. It looked like The Kooks were going to be one of the biggest bands in the world.

Then, well, nobody knows what actually happened next. It does seem unjust that a band like The Libertines were playing Manchester Arena on the night The Kooks were playing Albert Hall.

During the set, Luke Pritchard engaged in what will be the biggest concert cliche of the early months of 2016, toasting the recently departed David Bowie.

The Kooks had good reason to though, as they (just like Simple Minds) got their name from a David Bowie song.

The whole show was basically just people jumping up and down and from side to side. Unsurprisingly, the biggest jumps were saved for their biggest hits – Forgive and Forget, Naive, Ooh La, She Moves In Her Own Way, Always Where I Need To Be and Shine On.

Hopefully, when the 20th anniversary of Inside In Inside Out comes around, The Kooks will still be touring and making people jump up and down and from side to side.

Photo Album

The Kooks Live At Mandela Hall March 2015

The Kooks Live At Mandela Hall March 2015 Photo Album

MANCHESTER UNITED 0-1 SOUTHAMPTON 23.1.2016

Last weekend, I headed to Old Trafford for the second time this season. The last time I headed over, things were looking great. United were top of the league and knew that a home win over PSV Eindhoven would send them into the Last 16 of the European Cup with a game to spare.

And then it went ever so slightly wrong. An eight match winless run followed, elimination from the European Cup and falling behind in the league.

Then, a five match unbeaten run, progress in the FA Cup and everything was looking great again. Well, not quite, but it’s all relative.

I’d waited a while for this game, having booked the weekend away last July. I’d hoped (and thought) that this game would be moved by Sky to a Sunday, freeing me up to take in another game in the Greater Manchester area on the Saturday.

Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case. On top of that, Suede were doing an instore gig at HMV at 2pm on Saturday. So that was two things I was missing out on to see United. Let’s hope it was worth it.

Not a lot was going on in the early stages, United’s best moment was a speculative long range shot from Daley Blind.

That was as good as it got for United in the first-half.

Despite not having a clear strike on goal, Southampton looked the most believable team to score, getting the ball forward and having players make runs in attacking positions.

It didn’t always come off, but if you keep doing the right things, eventually, you’ll get it right.

It should have done for Southampton when a one-two between Sadio Mane and Dusan Tadic saw Sadio Mane be through on goal, but he couldn’t get the ball under his control to shoot at goal.

Half-time, 0-0. Boos rang out at Old Trafford. I can’t say booing is something i’d do. I couldn’t put up an argument against anyone who did.

When at Old Trafford, I usually head out to the concourse at half-time to watch the highlights of the first-half on the TV screens. There were none I could think of that i’d want to watch again.

As is now tradition, Social Media lit up with the stat about half-time scores at Old Trafford, all 0s barring Norwich City’s goal in December. The only people who would be excited by that would be Binary Code enthusiasts.

I’m not sure if lots of 0s and a solitary 1 is a good thing in Binary Code. It’s certainly not a good thing in football.

Things can change so easily in football. Having left the field to jeers, United returned to cheers. The first-half was forgotten about. The game was level, and there was 45 minutes to win it.

Juan Mata came on for Marouane Fellaini. Old Trafford universally approved of this.

There was a brief flurry from Untied, but it died down, and reverted back to the first-half performance. Southampton looked to have the first chance of the half from a counter attack. but where thrwarted by a clearance from Matteo Darmian to deny Shane Long, who got injured making it.

Again, more backwards passes. Old Trafford voiced it’s disapproval. There was actually one occasion when a pass backwards was booed even though it was the right decision.

However, once the player who received the ball had it, nobody ran for him. He had nowhere to play it to. Suddenly, a good pass to keep possession and build to go forward became another bad pass going backwards by a lack of forward movement.

Even when United did go forward, they would soon lose it, giving away possession cheaply. Even worse, a lot of the time, it came from their own throw ins. One incident summed up the game for United.

Morgan Schneiderlin took a quick free-kick which hit the referee and set up a Southampton attack. It was United’s best attacking move of the game, and it was for the opposition.

Frustrated by what they were seeing, United fans chanted for Adnan Januzaj to come on. Eventually he did. Soon after, there was a goal. Unfortunately, it came for Southampton, when Charlie Austin headed home from a free-kick.

87 minutes on the clock, there wasn’t a lot of time for United to strike back. In truth, if Southampton had scored in the first ten seconds, United wouldn’t have looked like getting an equaliser.

Five minutes added time was signalled for, Old Trafford roared United on with this news. It was false hope.

United’s only moment came when a Adnan Januzaj shot went wide. It looked closer than it was when you watched it in real time.

That was it, a win for Southampton. United’s feint title hopes suffered a blow, as did their top four hopes.

People will tolerate bad performances if you are getting results. People will tolerate bad results if performances suggest the results will get better.

United are having the (im)perfect storm of bad results and performances. Only one shot on goal, and it was a speculative one at that.

In terms of Old Trafford visits, i’m hoping to head over for the Bournemouth game in May, United’s last game of the season. Well, in the league, hopefully there’ll be at least one cup final after that.

It’s all the hope we’ve got at the moment.

MANCHESTER STREET ART JANUARY 2016

Was over in Manchester last weekend. Primarily, for the football, which was like watching paint dry.

However, the trip was salvaged by some paint that was actually dry, Street Art in the city. For Street Art in Manchester, the first port of call is the Northern Quarter, where I spotted some new pieces, most notably on Tib Street.

Considering that my last visit to Manchester was two months ago, it was unsurprising that a lot of the stuff I photographed was still there, even taking into account the quick turnover of Street Art in some cities.

There was a work in progress piece when I arrived on Friday, which ended up being completed by the time I left on Monday.

When I was last in Manchester in November, there were street pillars being painted. I had a look at the finished pieces, which go all the way up Oldham Street, which relates to a project called 16 Days Of Street Art, where female artists paint female icons throughout history.

The last time I was in Manchester, i’d plannedo n checking out the pieces on Salford Quays, but I didn’t get the chance to do so, so I planned to do so on this visit.

On Saturday, I took a wrong turn and got lost, and was stuck for time to get back on track due to meeting friends before the match.

So, on Sunday, I decided to try again, only to discover that part of the walkway at Salford Quays is closed due to subsidence.

It seemed like I was destined not to get photos of the Street Art along Salford Quays.

Well, not quite. I remembered that the Cornbrook Metrolink served where the Street Art ends, so I had a quick change in direction and hopped on the tram.

So, that was my latest Street Art adventures in Manchester. I haven’t given up on United yet, so i’ll hopefully be back at some point in 2016 to photograph some more.

Manchester Street Art Photo Album

Salford Quays Street Art Photo Album

MAGAZINE ARCHIVE : Q – MARCH 2011

Liam Gallagher is the cover star of Q as he prepares to launch the debut album of Beady Eye, a band comprising of the non Noel Gallagher members of Oasis.

If you look closely, in Liam’s shades, you can see the other members of Beady Eye in his reflection.

In “Q Mail”, Simon Hunt e-mails to respond to previous correspondence complaining about Take That appearing in Q, while cheekily asking when Justin Bieber will be appearing on Cash For Questions.

Jonathan Paul from Leicester contacts Q to complain about their ignoring of Ian Matthews and Chris Edwards in Kasabian articles, in comparison to Serge Pizzorno and Tom Meighan.

Q50 is a feature of the 50 songs you should download this month. Top of the pile was The Beat Goes On by cover stars Beady Eye.

Gary Lightbody of Snow Patrol gets a guest submission, choosing Coal by The Mariner’s Children.

In news, Alex Turner records solo songs for a movie soundtrack, Green Day release a live album, The Kills are reforming and Beth Ditto is going on a solo career.

Featuring forthcoming albums, Glasvegas get a double page spread for their as yet titled new album.

Also working hard in the studio were Hard-Fi, with a propsed release date given as “Summer 2011”

Q dedicates a full page to a phone interview with Plan B, where he reveals that Forrest Gump is the one movie that makes him cry.

Tipped for greatness this month are The Joy Formidable, Miles Kane and MNDR.

Shaun Ryder is the subject of this month’s Cash For Questions, answering questions about Tony Wilson, UFOs and Reality TV.

In ads, Paul McCartney stars in an advert for PETA.

There are nine pages dedicated to cover stars Beady Eye, with Liam Gallagher claiming that “People will be calling their kids Beady Eye by the end of the year”

It’s not all about Liam, as Gem, Andy and Chris get profiled, looking at their musical CVs pre Oasis.

Junior Gallagher had gotten the first blow in to release post Oasis music, but Senior Gallagher (Noel) was at work on his debut solo album, with 17 tracks believed to have been recorded, one of which has Miles Kane on guitar, and was set for release in late summer.

Noel’s (using the name of Noel Galagher’s High Flying Birds) self titled debut album was eventually released in October 2011.

KT Tunstall gets a full page interview, where she denounces her stepdad, who was a BNP candidate.

Riding high on the success of Rolling In The Deep, Adele gets a four page profile.

Cee Lo Green is gets interviewed by Q, where he discusses his favourite albums.

Another band riding high in the charts, were Noah and the Whale, who got a three page feature.

2011 was the year that saw the 20th anniversary of the death of Freddie Mercury, and Q interviews Roger Taylor and Brian May, ahead of a feature about unseen Queen photographs being made public for the first time.

In reviews, Beady Eye’s debut album Different Gear, Still Speeding gets four stars.

Also getting four stars was Clare Maguire’s debut album Light After Dark and Hotel Shampoo by Gruff Rhys.

If Bruce Springsteen is your thing, Q has a handy guide for those wishing to explore his vast discography.

Concert Reviews sees Paul McCartney get a five star review for a concert at 100 Club in London just before Cristmas 2010.

Also getting five stars were The View for their pre Christmas gigs in Sheffield and Stoke.