Bonfire Night, More Bond Themes and ‘Live And Let Die’

Well, it’s Guy Fawkes Night, but there will be no big ‘town display’ tonight down at the municipal playing fields. There will probably be a few small displays in back gardens (look out for your pets folks), but nothing grander. Shame all these festivals, Halloween, Christmas and Bonfire Night, land during the coldest and wettest time of the year here in Scotland, as we’ve had a fair few soakings and frostbitten fingers over the years.

For those who are not from the UK, Guy Fawkes Night will mean nothing to you, so by way of explanation, here is an abbreviated version of the Wiki entry about the aforementioned chap:

Guy Fawkes (1570 – 1606), was a member of a group of English Catholics who was involved in the failed Gunpowder Plot of 1605. Fawkes had fought for Catholic Spain in the Eighty Years’ War against Protestant Dutch reformers. When he returned to England he was introduced to Robert Catesby, who planned to assassinate King James I, and restore a Catholic monarch to the throne.

Guy Fawkes

The plotters leased an ‘undercroft’ (a cellar) beneath the House of Lords and Fawkes was placed in charge of the gunpowder they stockpiled there. An anonymous letter to the authorities prompted a search of Westminster Palace during the early hours of 5 November, and they found Fawkes with the explosives. After being tortured he confessed to wanting to blow up the House of Lords.

Fawkes was later sentenced to death but he became synonymous with the Gunpowder Plot, the failure of which has been commemorated in the UK as Guy Fawkes Night since 5 November 1605, when his effigy is traditionally burned on a bonfire, accompanied by fireworks.

Growing up, it was an exciting annual event, and as our back garden was joined to three others (we had the gable-end, prized in a terrace), the dads usually built a big communal bonfire. In the preceding couple of weeks, all the kids collected their fireworks. There were ‘selection boxes’, with a mix of all the usual suspects, Catherine wheels, bangers, and rockets, but also packets of sparklers and individual fireworks of the more spectacular nature.

Needless the say, over the years there were a fair amount of nasty accidents involving fireworks (none for us thankfully), so nowadays people are encouraged to attend well-supervised, organised displays. Let’s hope this year there won’t be a return to the past, as the dads, although well intentioned, just don’t have the training of our local Fire Officers.

The best display our town ever held was when they used Bond themes to choreograph the igniting of the fireworks. It was a dry night for once, with clear skies, so a pretty spectacular event. I’ve written about Bond themes this week already, so appropriate to share this song, as it’s often accompanied by stunning pyrotechnics even when it’s not Guy Fawkes night. I give you Live And Let Die by Wings from 1973.

Live And Let Die by Wings:


The song was written for the film of the same name, the eighth in the Bond series, this time starring Roger Moore. Paul McCartney, along with wife Linda, wrote the song and on this occasion George Martin wrote the film score, as John Barry was unavailable. Performed by their group Wings, it was the first ‘rock and roll’ song used to open a Bond film, and became a major success, reaching No. 9 on the UK Singles Chart and No. 2 in the US. It was nominated for an Academy Award, but lost out that year to The Way We Were.

Stay safe, as we keep saying nowadays, but tonight I mean beware of stray fireworks. No doubt we’ll still see a fair few light up our skies.

Until next time….

Live And Let Die Lyrics
(Song by Paul McCartney/Linda McCartney)

When you were young and your heart was an open book
You used to say live and let live
(you know you did, you know you did you know you did)
But if this ever changing world in which we’re living
Makes you give in and cry

Say live and let die
Live and let die
Live and let die
Live and let die

What does it matter to ya
When you got a job to do
You gotta do it well
You gotta give the other fellow hell

When you were young and your heart was an open book
You used to say live and let live
(you know you did, you know you did you know you did)
But if this ever changing world in which we’re living
Makes you give in and cry

Say live and let die
Live and let die
Live and let die
Live and let die

Another Lunar Foible, Wings and “C Moon”

Since discovering that all full moons have a name (given to them by the Native Americans who kept track of the months by the lunar calendar), I have written about each one as they appear in our skies. To accompany the post I always include one of the numerous songs that have been written about the moon and its many foibles.

Well, I really need to get back onto safer blogging territory where I don’t bare my soul in public and fortunately for me there is to be a full moon in our skies on Monday night. Regulars around here will know that I wrote about every full moon for a whole calendar year (and more) but then put the series into retirement when I thought I had exhausted my list of moon-related songs, and could find no new snippets of information about the moon that had not yet been shared. I was however wrong.

Harvest Moon Rising

Last month I shared a second Harvest Moon song as the Harvest Moon, I erroneously thought, was the only one that could occur in either one of two months (September or October), it being the name given to the full moon that lands closest to the autumnal equinox. Interestingly, the Hunter’s Moon is not tied to a specific month either. The Hunter’s Moon is the name of the full moon that lands directly after the Harvest Moon, which means it may occur in either October or November. The way things have worked out, Monday night’s sky will therefore showcase a Hunter’s Moon as opposed to the alternate used for the month of October, the Travel Moon, Sanguine Moon or Dying Grass Moon.

th0QILCFLM

As for a song choice, here is one that also missed the cut first time around, but because of all the hoopla of late relating to the anniversary of the release of the last Beatles studio album Abbey Road, perhaps time to share something by Sir Paul McCartney. The song C Moon by Wings was released in 1972 as the B-side to Hi Hi Hi which ended up being banned in Britain. As a result C Moon got all the airplay which meant it reached No. 5 in the UK Singles Chart. Paul explained that the song’s title is the opposite of the ’60s expression L-7, meaning a square or an unhip person. A C Moon forms a circle, which is said be cool.

C Moon by Wings:

As for the band Wings, although they never graced the walls of my bedroom in the early ’70s, they were a staple of my teenage years, and I loved pretty much everything they released. The album Band On The Run remains one of my all-time favourites. I had been too young for Beatlemania, but right at the time I was spending most of my free time listening to music, along came Wings, and from the Lennon & McCartney songwriting partnership I was always fondest of the McCartney-led songs anyway (although I only realised that in later life).

I imagine everyone who wanted to, has seen it by now, but I do love the edition of Carpool Karaoke that starred Sir Paul. He may have written a song about people who were “cool” in 1972 but now he is the one who sometimes comes across as a bit “uncool”. He is aged 77 however, and a legend, so I will give him a pass. If you watch until 16:00 you will see the surprise on those pub-goers faces when the curtains pull back – What a day they must have had.

Look out for that full moon on Monday night.

Until next time….

C Moon Lyrics
(Song by Paul McCartney/Linda McCartney)

C moon, C moon, C moon is she
C moon, C moon, C moon to me

How come no one older than me
Ever seems to understand the things I want to do
It will be L7 and I’d never get to heaven
If I filled my head with glue
What’s it all to you

C moon, C moon, C moon is she
C moon, C moon, C moon to me

Bobby lived with Patty
But they never told her daddy
What their love was all about
She could tell her lover that he thought
But she never was the type to let it out
What’s it all about

C moon, C moon, oh C moon are we
C moon, C moon, C moon are we