Ceri Shaw



Playlists: 5
Blogs: 1564
events: 231
youtube videos: 523
SoundCloud Tracks: 20
images: 707
Files: 38
Invitations: 8
Groups: 32
audio tracks: 481
videos: 7


442764 1.jpg

801492.png Super Marine release their debut single ‘Decadent Flowers’ on the 4th of October 2019. A supercharged power pop-rock anthem, laced with glistening riffs, singalong refrains, energetic percussion and arms aloft choruses that recall to mind the anthemic work of the Foo Fighters, the melodic hooks of Jimmy Eat World and Ash and the rhythmic urgency of The Gaslight Anthem. 

Super Marine are a four-piece band from Blackwood, South Wales. Their music incorporates gutsy guitar-driven melody lines infused with classic vocal hooks.  In the spring of 2019 they started working with notable music producer Rich Jackson (Pretty Vicious, Future of the Left, SFA) and will be releasing their first single 'Decadent Flowers' on Friday 4th October 2019. 

Currently working with the Forté project this ambitious young band are cutting their teeth in the studio perfecting their sound, and playing a run of shows this autumn including a hometown single launch at the Blackwood Miners’ Institute and a slot at Swn festival in Cardiff,  that will prove they are a coming force in Welsh music. 

Super Marine say: "We’re extremely happy with how this track turned out and can’t wait for people to hear it. Working with Rich Jackson was fantastic, he really helped us bring this song to life. We’re excited to get out there and play this track at our upcoming shows."  


10 Feet Tall, Cardiff – 26th September

Cwmaman Festival – 29th September

Blackwood Miners’ Institute (single launch) – 5th October

Hardies Merthyr – 13th October

Swn Festival – 19th October

Fuel Rock Club, Cardiff - 27th October

Hangar 18 - Swansea - 8th November

McCann’s Newport - 22nd November

The Patriot, Crumlin - 29th November 







Posted in: Music | 0 comments


Sonny Winnebago is the moniker of Welsh-Australian troubadour /musician Harvey Jones, who's spent the entirety of 2019 living out of his battered suitcase and beloved camper van, all whilst feeding other people's cats and dogs. He was born with hypermobility syndrome which allows him a heightened flexibility, creating a very dynamic and unusual performance style. His infectious music embodies a 'melody is king' approach to pop writing, drawing inspiration from 1970s figures Harry Nilsson &  Cat Stevens .

Following a string of profiled support slots, including Michael Kiwanuka & Joel Baker, Sonny Winnebago will be releasing his anticipated debut single  'Take Me For A Ride' . It is one of four tracks he'll be releasing with the support of Welsh artist development scheme 'Forté Project', enlisting the skills of producer Charlie Francis (R.E.M, The High Llamas), featuring session musicians Davey Newington (Boy Azooga), Matt Evans (KEYS) and Steve Black (Sweet Baboo).

Harvey says that Take Me For A Ride  was written from a place of restlessness, following the event of a long-term friendship going south."It's a true story, and a relatable one too, with strong themes of detachment and self-empowerment" Backed up by an uptempo rhythm section and bright, choppy chords, 'Take Me For A Ride' ultimately engulfs the listener with feelings of summer abandonment and child-like joy.

Umbrella Hat.jpg

Posted in: Music | 0 comments


Yn gymsgedd byrlymus o gords gwych sy'n symud o'r bygythiol, miniog, a ffrwydol i dristwch synfyfyriol mae sengl ddwbwl  newydd Breichiau Hir yn destament i hyder cynyddol y band. Mae eu senglau diweddaraf yn profi bod Breichiau Hir yn torri  cwys eu hun. Mae'r sengl ddwbwl 'Yn Dawel Bach / Saethu Tri' yn perthyn i'w gilydd, maent yn dod o'r un man greadigol ac  emosiynol fel esbonia'r prif leisydd Steffan Dafydd - 

"Mae Saethu Tri yn esbonio'r ofn a'r edifarhad sy'n gallu dod drosta i, a sut yr ydw i byth rili'n siwr sut i ddelio ag e. Dwi ddim  yn trio dramateiddio'r teimlad yn y gân, dwi'n cadw'r disgrifio'n blaen ac yn onest, yn cyfleu'r gwacter a'r diflastod sy'n dod law  yn llaw a'r teimlad hwnnw. Mae'n drist ac yn dywyll"

"Mae Yn Dawel Bach yn ymateb uniongyrchol i'r ofn dwi'n siarad amdano yn Saethu Tri. Mae'n pwyntio allan y tonnau o banig  sy'n gallu dy lethu ar unrhyw adeg. Gall y teimlad grasho ar dy ben di lle bynnag yr wyt ti. Dyw e ddim yn gofyn caniatad, ma fe  jyst yn cyrraedd, heb wahoddiad a heb i neb ofyn amdano."

Mae'r emosiynau bregus yma i'w clywed trwy'r ddau trac ac yn cael eu disgrifio mewn modd hyfryd. Mae'r penillion llonydd yn  denu'r gwrandawydd mewn i rhyw fyd ffug-ddiogel cyn i wal enfawr o sŵn ddod i ddinistrio'r byd hwnnw.

Bydd y sengl ddwbwl ar gael ar niferoedd cyfyngedig o dapiau a bydd Breichiau Hir yn dathlu'r sengl ddwbwl yn The Dojo, Kings Road Yard, Caerdydd ar Medi 28.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ +++++++

To move from the caustic, the abrasive, the aggressive to a pensive sadness that eventually brake’s into a cacophony of blistering  chords with such ease is a testament to Breichiau Hir’s growing confidence. The last 12 month of releases has shown a band forever forging their own individual path. ‘Yn Dawel Bach / Saethu Tri’ is their new Double A side single, it’s also the band's most  melodic songs to date. These songs combine Breichiau Hir’s love for loud noise and soft sad moments. Emphatic sounds and melancholic atmosphere.  ‘Yn Dawel Bach / Saethu Tri’ belong together, they come from the same emotional and creative place. As Steffan Dafydd the bands lyricist and vocalist explains:

“In Saethu Tri, I outline the dread or regret that can overcome me and how I’m never totally sure how to deal with it. I don’t dramatise  it in the song, I kept it matter of factly and tried to convey the numbness and dullness that comes with it. It’s wistful and sombre.”

“Yn Dawel Bach is nearly a response to this dread I talk about in Saethu Tri. It basically points out that these waves of panic can overwhelm you whenever it wishes. It can come crashing at you wherever you are. It doesn’t ask permission, it just arrives, unannounced and uninvited.”

These frail emotional landscapes the songs move through are beautifully conveyed. Calm verses that ease the listener into a false sense  of security and control before a wall of sound blissfully brakes into the chorus.

The single will be available on limited edition cassette tape and Breichiau Hir will celebrate the release with a launch night at The Dojo, Kings Road Yard, Cardiff on September 28th.

Breichiau Hir Links: 


Posted in: Music | 0 comments

The Story of Welsh Boxing - A Review

By Ceri Shaw, 2019-08-31

Lawrence Davies is a Welsh boxing historian, the author of Mountain Fighters: Lost Tales of Welsh Boxing and Jack Scarrott's Prize Fighters. His groundbreaking work has served as the basis of a TV documentary and numerous newspaper articles. His meticulous original research has uncovered many Welsh prize fighters previously unrecorded in any publication. Read our interview with author Lawrence Davies here .

Story of Welsh Boxing Lawrence Davies Image 1.jpg


Lawrence Davies' new book confirms his status as the historian of Welsh Boxing. His earlier title 'Mountain Fighters of Wales' ( see this post ) first published in 2012, established his reputation and subsequent offerings have amply confirmed his dedication to the task of chronicling the early development of the Welsh 'fancy'. Davies' obvious passion for his subject matter and meticulous research combine to ensure that this book will appeal to boxing afficianados everywhere but the general reader will also find it a richly rewarding experience.

The core of the book consists of a series of biographies of early Welsh pugilists all of whom have been more or less lost to history. You might be forgiven if the names of Thomas 'Paddington' Jones, Ned Turner, the Savage brothers and William Charles are not familiar to you. In his day the last named was, "considered another Glendower,..." and was hailed as the Welsh Champion. William Charles' battles with Bristolian Jem Bailey are vividly and entertainingly recounted in the closing chapters of the book. 

Readers who are intrigued by Tom 'Paddington' Jones and wish to learn more are advised to check out this article which Lawrence Davies posted on AmeriCymru earlier this year:- Tom Jones Inducted Into International Boxing Hall Of Fame!

Ten chapters are devoted to the career of Ned Turner, the Out-and-Outer, who in his day was 'the greatest fighting Welshman of the age'. Although he was born in London both his parents were from Newtown in Montgomeryshire and this fact sufficed to guarantee him the support of his countrymen. He was noted for his extreme skill in the ring and his gentlemanly conduct outside it.

'The game Ned Turner once a toast,
No better man alive!
He was 'the Fancy's' pride and boast,
On victory did thrive.'

This is also a book which will delight social historians and anyone with a penchant for archaic English slang. Pierce Egan was the author of Boxiana, a  series of volumes of prizefighting articles published in the early 19th century. Mr Davies says of him:-

"Egan was .... named 'the Great Lexicographer of the Fancy' as he did not merely record the language of the followers of the ring; in many instances he created it. The 1822 edition of Francis Grose's Classical Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue, which had been edited by Pierce Egan, would include many terms that had been coined by Egan himself.'

The book includes an appendix on pugilistic terminology where we find such entries as:-

KNIGHT OF THE LEEK - A term used to denote that a pugilist was of Welsh origin. Occasionally also used to describe his supporters 'the benefit was well attended by the knights of the leek'

IVORIES - The teeth. A pugilist who has broken his opponent's teeth is said to have 'cabbaged his ivories'.

In conclusion we unreservedly recommend 'The Story of Welsh Boxing' to the Boxing enthusiast and general reader alike. You may find inspiration and you will certainly find humour, but above all you are guaranteed a first rate read.


The Story of Welsh Boxing: Hardcover

The Story of Welsh Boxing: Kindle Edition

2012 Interview with Lawrence Davies

2019 Interview with Lawrence Davies

Posted in: about | 0 comments

unnamed (2).jpg

unnamed (1).jpg The author of an unusual new handy pocket-sized phrasebook is hoping to use humour to inspire people to learn a few basic bits of Japanese in readiness for the Rugby World Cup, which will be held in Japan in September 2019. Unlike many traditional phrasebooks, Teach your Dog Japanese Rugby World Cup 2019 Travel Edition  (Y Lolfa) shows that learning useful expressions doesn’t have to be boring or daunting, and makes picking up a few basics accessible to everyone. 

Every phrase is shown in both  romaji  (Japanese  words spelt out using our alphabet) and English, accompanied by appealing 1950s-style retro illustrations as well as help with the Japanese pronunciation. There are over 70 expressions to practise, from rugby-themed phrases such as  Sukoa-wa nan-ten desu-ka?  (‘What’s the score?’) to general tourist-themed phrases such as  Eigo-no menyū arimasu-ka?  (‘Do you have an English menu?’). It’s an excellent and really fun introduction to learning Japanese for all ages, and will help visitors to Japan with talking about the World Cup as well as with typical tourist activities such as finding your way around and travelling by train. 

Nigel Botherway, well-known rugby writer for the Sunday Times called it “a brilliant Japanese phrase book for rugby fans - and dog lovers!” 

The book is part of a series designed to help you learn a language while engaging with your favourite pet, and was inspired by illustrator Anne Cakebread’s bestseller  Teach Your Dog Welsh  (Y Lolfa, 2018). 

“The popularity of the series has been amazing! I was thrilled when  Teach Your Dog Welsh  was reprinted for the first time – but I’m amazed that it’s been reprinted three more times since! Hopefully this book will encourage rugby fans to learn a little bit of basic Japanese!” said Anne Cakebread. 

The inspiration for the original book came to Anne after she re-homed Frieda, a rescue whippet. Anne came to realise that Frieda didn’t understand English and would only respond to Welsh commands. Slowly, whilst dealing with Frieda, Anne realised that she was overcoming her nerves about speaking Welsh aloud by talking to the dog, and her Welsh was improving as a result – this gave her the idea of creating a book to help other would-be language learners whilst also using her skills as an illustrator. 

Summoning up the confidence to use a language you’re learning can be intimidating at first. A number of books are available to help with vocabulary and pronunciation, but the light-hearted context and the beautiful illustrations mean that this book is a bit out of the ordinary. It will especially appeal to people who haven’t had much success with languages in the past. 

Carolyn Hodges, Head of English Publishing at Y Lolfa, who developed market-leading language-teaching materials for Oxford University Press for many years, said: “One of the key factors in motivating someone to start learning and using a new language is to make it enjoyable.” 

Anne Cakebread is a freelance illustrator whose work was used in  Rugby World  for over 15 years. She grew up and went to school in Cardiff and now lives with her partner, two whippets and lurcher in St Dogmaels, Wales, where they run the Oriel Milgi boutique B&B. Anne also runs Canfas, an art gallery in nearby Cardigan. 

Teach your Dog Japanese Rugby World Cup 2019 Travel Edition  by   Anne Cakebread (£5.99, Y Lolfa) is available now.

unnamed 3.jpg

Posted in: New Titles | 0 comments


Cardiff duo  Right Hand Left Hand  are back with a brand new album. Following on from their self-titled, Welsh Music Prize nominated second album, their third offering,  ‘Zone Rouge’ , tells the story of humanity's contempt for the earth beneath us, the air above us and the people around us. Our fractured planet lays the groundwork for the 11 new tracks. Each referring to a location on Earth where something bad has happened: An act of corruption against the planet, an act of evil against fellow humans and occasionally both. 

The first single,  ‘Prora’ , derives from a building complex, built by the Nazis on the island of Rügen, Germany, in the 1930’s.  ‘Strength Through Joy'  was the Nazi's program for giving the people a holiday. It resulted in the building of the cruise ship Wilhelm Gustloff and Prora, 4.5km of brutalist seaside resort. Soon after completion, both were requisitioned for use in WW2. Prora is still there, fulfilling its original purpose as a seaside resort and youth hostel. The Wilhelm Gustloff was sunk in 1945 with 9,400 people perishing, many of them civilians and it lies at the bottom of the Baltic Sea. It is estimated to be the largest loss of life in a single ship sinking.

Recorded and produced by Charlie Francis ( Future of the Left, REM, Robyn Hitchcock ) at Cardiff’s Musicbox Studios, Andrew Plain (drums/guitars) and Rhodri Viney (guitars/vocals/ drums) continue to build and develop their trademark sound: looped and layered guitars and driving powerful drums that are intercut with atmospheric ambience. ‘Prora’ is available to buy and stream digitally on 30th August. The album will follow on 15th November, 2019. It will be available digitally, on CD, and on limited edition double clear vinyl.


Posted in: about | 0 comments

unnamed.jpg This week sees the publication of In Passing: A Welshman’s bizarre adventures from Merthyr to Mecca  by distinguished Welsh academic, Professor Randall Baker.  

The unusual collection of offbeat anecdotes are a collection of just some of the strange incidents which have happened to him over a period of 65 years, and over several continents:

“ I am lucky to have done an awful lot of travelling, including with the Spanish Foreign Legion in the colony of Spanish Sahara, being surprised by several nasty earthquakes, and being in East Germany as they built the wall, but my stories are in the shadow of the world affairs rather than dealing with them directly,” says Randall Baker.  

The incidents recorded in  In Passing  are all true stories from his own life, starting from when he was a pupil at Abermorlais Junior School in Merthyr. Over the years, he started to realize that the number of odd events that happened to him was unusual. Speaking of the realization, Randall said:

“Throughout my life, when I discussed something that had just happened to me, inevitably I was greeted by cries of “Oh, come  on ” and the like. Eventually, my wife started to preface them with “Here comes another of Randall’s stories” . The hard thing for me was that I was just recounting something that had really just  happened . Eventually I realised that life is not like this for everyone and so for posterity, I decided to put all the most interesting or amusing events together, starting with post-war Wales and moving on to New Zealand, Fiji, Mecca, and other places far from Merthyr. As a scientist I do require rugged standards of proof, but what do you do when the incident happened to you and you have absolutely no way of explaining it!”  

He credits his childhood in Merthyr as ‘a good training ground’, enabling him to go out and face some of the wilder corners of the world.  

“Merthyr’s history in the iron and steel industry and the buying of ore and selling metal brought Merthyr into the world – in a way that’s hard to imagine today. Merthyr manufactured cannons for Nelson, and built almost every railroad in South America. It’s hard to imagine this world leadership as you stroll around Merthyr these days, but it’s not like any other place in Wales,” says the author of his hometown.  

Crimebusting soothsayers, a homicidal optometrist, men who fall off trains or into open graves, a ridiculously over-attentive waitress, an abandoned stripper and a fellow traveller whose huge suitcase is packed solely with alcohol are just a few of the colourful characters populating this engaging book, The stories get more and more inexplicable, though all are true! He comes across coffee with strange properties, gets caught in the crossfire in the OK Corral of English tearooms, locates lost property through the power of suggestion, meets royalty and rebels, and POSSIBLY steps back in time into 1944 New Zealand. Holding all of this together is an infectious sense of Welsh humour, especially in handling the unexpected!

Randall Baker is a distinguished Welsh academic who has studied and taught in universities all around the world. He co-founded the School of Development Studies at the University of East Anglia, and has acted as an advisor to UNESCO, the Fijian Government, the Prince of Mecca, the Sultan of Brunei, the Asian Development Bank, the World Bank, The British Foreign Ministry and Crown Agents, UNEP, and the US State Department. He has published extensively on both academic and non-academic subjects. He now spends half the year in Bulgaria and the other half in Newbridge-on-Wye in Wales.  

In Passing: A Welshman’s bizarre adventures from Merthyr to Mecca w ill be launched at the National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth at 1pm on Thursday 19 th  of September. Seats can be reserved at  www.library.wales  or turn up on the day. Dr Brinley Jones will host the session.  

In Passing: A Welshman’s bizarre adventure from Merthyr to Mecca  by Randall Baker (£9.99, Y Lolfa) is available now.

Posted in: New Titles | 0 comments

image001 1.jpg

Hear both English and Welsh language acoustic versions of  Whirring  HERE  
Released October 25th via Hassle Records

image002.jpg The Joy Formidable are today announcing the release of a special commemorative 10-year double album edition of their acclaimed debut release  A Balloon Called Moaning.  The double album will include their 2009 EP  A Balloon Called Moaning  plus a newly recorded acoustic Welsh language version,  Y Falŵ​n Drom .  

Written and recorded in a bedroom over a decade ago by lead singer and guitarist Ritzy Bryan, and bass player and vocalist Rhydian Davies in North Wales,  A Balloon Called Moaning  was an instant hit. Rated 8/10 by NME, it was the first of the band’s releases to feature their now iconic single  Whirring –  a track that was named amongst Pitchfork’s Top 100 Tracks of The Year and described as “the song of the year” by Foo Fighters’ Dave Grohl.

In the passing decade, as the world tours, festival main stages and stadium shows have racked up, it has always been especially important to the band that they continue to recognise and highlight the importance of their Welsh heritage. In this new anniversary edition, each song from the original release is re-worked acoustically and presented again in the Welsh language. On the new release, Ritzy said: 

"We’ve been through such a lot as a band over the years, it’s been a really reflective studio session, returning to the old recordings and transforming them into these beautiful stripped back, intimate versions. It’s exciting hearing them in the Welsh language because now they have new life too and can be a celebration of language as well as memory."

In celebration of  A Balloon Called Moaning / Y Falŵ​n Drom , The Joy Formidable are also announcing the launch of Formidable Fest / Gŵyl Aruthrol ,  a mini festival at The Tramshed in Cardiff on Saturday 23 November 2019.  Ritzy commented: 

“We see Formidable Fest as a lovely opportunity for us to invite some bands to play in Wales, in front of an audience that otherwise might not get to see them. That, and having a bill that promotes Welsh language acts and bands from Wales - just a really inclusive night of great music. We’ll be doing 2 shows that night, one short acoustic Welsh set & the other full electric.”

Posted in: Music | 0 comments
 / 196