Saturday, 2 July 2016

The Power Of Song


I'm not a football fan, never have been, but I must admit, I did watch the end of the Euro match Wales vrs Belguim with a certain amount of pride.
Strangely enough the pride was not centred upon the talent of the welsh Minnows but for the generally good humoured Welsh spectators who have received much praise from the French authorities for their exemplary behaviour.
Now Welshmen are no angels, one look at a rough pub around Flint on a Friday night , would tell anyone that, but there is something about Welsh men and women and Nationalism that brings out a rather moving phenomenon; the collective talent for song.
Last night, during the game, the supporters sang their heart out and I was reminded of the film Zulu when  Ivor Emmanual's perfect baritone led the troops in the spirited Men Of Harlech. 
There is something rather valiant about standing up straight and belting out a song.

Russian and English supporters please take note!

36 comments:

  1. The Welsh team did brilliantly. We will be cheering them on in our front room. Well Done Wales!

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  2. Male voice choirs and Rugby, 2 reasons for moving to Wales - now add a really good football team and we shall be heading your way ASAP!

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  3. I would love to see Iceland and Wales in the final, they both deserve to be there.

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  4. It was truly something special John ....I have spoken to a number of people today and they have an aura around them ...it's genuine happiness ....sport can be a wonderful thing at times

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    1. Were you watching at home jace?

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    2. Yes , the girls have fallen in love with the Welsh football story .....they watched an earlier game in school ! All the kids in the hall - it seems to have inspired my kids to become uber-patriotic 😀

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  5. I was watching the game with many others in the Crown in Trelawnyd. When the Welsh national anthem was sung before the start, everyone in the pub stood up and sang along with it. Great football and a chance to sing - brilliant!

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    1. We never thought about going up to the pub val was it packed?

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    2. It was very busy and the atmosphere was fantastic. The landlady, Debbie, put out hot dogs and chips free for everyone at half time, fair play to her. Have to confess I didn't get home till midnight! Going next Wednesday for the semi-final.

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  6. Whereas the dirge that is the English national anthem makes me close my eyes and suffer until it's over.

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    1. But it isn't the English national anthem . It is the anthem of the United Kingdom and therein lies the problem.

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    2. I think we should have 'Land of Hope and Glory' as the English national anthem. The Scots and Welsh have their own, why can't we?

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    3. I second that Col. Land of Hope and Glory would be a much better anthem for England!

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  7. Good cheerful sportsmanship. Well done!
    Greetings Maria x

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  8. I usually avoid football like the plague, wrong shaped ball!
    However, while channel surfing last night, saw the score was 1-1 and decided to watch for a 'few minutes'.......that few minutes lasted until the final whistle!
    I'm thrilled for the team, and Wales as a whole, the fans deserved to see such a wonderful victory.
    I'd love to see them go all the way to lifting the cup now, they've dared to dream, so let's see their dreams come true!

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    1. Intended to say yesterday, at my Uncle John's funeral in Criccieth, the Church was packed with mourners, many of them men.
      The experience of hearing a Church full of Welsh male voices singing 'How Great Thou Art' was incredible, I can't describe how beautiful it was.
      I just wish I'd heard it on a happier occasion!

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  9. Yes John...valiant is the perfect word...voices together in song is just marvelous and I was so happy Wales did well. I too love the Zulu scene...makes me all teary.

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  10. Ermm; England no longer has any supporters!

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  11. You are far too young to have known it, J.G., but on ITV on the first Sunday every month there used to be a Welsh programme 'Land of Song' from Cardiff but networked over the whole of Great Britain, with Ivor Emmanuel as presenter, who'd also sing some of the songs. The programme, both songs (and links as far as I remember) were entirely in Welsh with NO subtitles! I still found it a compelling, monthly must-watch. This would have been around late-50s up to maybe around 1960.

    Btw: I do think 'Land of my Fathers' a stirring anthem - far, far superior to (ahem!) some others I can think of.

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    1. I really do think that your National Anthem is one of the better ones, A.M., (really!) but look what I'm comparing it with. When Charlie takes over I doubt if many of us will be singing 'God save our gracious king' with anything like the same fervour as some presently do. (Though J.G., ardent royalist that he is - nothing wrong with that! - may well still be bursting forth with swelled-up pro-monarchy pride).

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  12. The trouble with all those 'anthems' of the Welsh - Cwm Rhonda, Men of Harlech, etc. is that they make me cry buckets - I think it is those incredibly rich, silky voices brought up in mountain air.

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    1. You must be right about the air, such wonderful voices.
      I would like to see Wales and Iceland in the final.
      Listening to the news the other day and the coach of Iceland gave a funny interview where he was shocked that they won. He didn't give his team any chance at all. Now I want then in the finals with Wales !

      cheers, parsnip and thehamish

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  13. My problem is that when I get the least bit emotional I can't sing a note! I envy those who can :)

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  14. Wales played with courage, determination and skill. The England team could learn a lot from them. Go Wales!

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  15. Oooh you are "following" me.
    Thanks.
    Good luck for Wednesday.XXX

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  16. I found this blog by accident and have sniggered, giggled and snorted my coffee - very funny. Thanks for making me laugh. Regards Alison

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  17. The Welsh men have amazing voices! Did they sing in Welsh?

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  18. Perhaps someday, I will be able to spend more time in Wales, and hear some of this singing in person. So far, I only spent some time at a train station, awaiting a train to Shropshire. I do remember buying a chocolate bar, and seeing a train waiting on a nearby track with the Dylan Thomas label. I think it was to commemorate an anniversary of the writer.

    Wish I could send you a vegetable photo entry. I'm just too enthusiastic about bringing home veg from the farmers market and figuring out how to compose supper.

    Best wishes. Hoping you are feeling better, knee and all.

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  19. Not a fan of football but Wales and Iceland are shining in this tournament.

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  20. I congratulate you to have these wellmannered boys in your team.
    In Sweden we've had some real serious trouble among the supporters, leaving the field free for any daredevil or bafoon to take up space with their nonsence and evil tricks. Some teams had their supporters banned even. Nice to hear that football can remain something nice and positive to be shared. As for the Icelanders, we have a small colony in my parish, they are indeed a colourful acquaintance!

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  21. Wales only have to win two more games. It's not all that impossible. Only cloud is that we'll be missing Aaron Ramsey against Portugal. Yellow card rule. But if the lads can hang in there and the fans sing their heads off we should make it to the final.

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