Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Eva Cassidy

Does anyone watch “Tops of the Pops 2” on the telly? For
those of you who don’t watch British TV, it’s shows what
was “Top of the Pops” in the last 40 years or so – it’s
like a trip down memory lane. I don’t usually watch it,
but a few nights ago, Mrs C and I were watching little bits
of it in the half hour it was on – little bits of it, as
we were in fact watching something else on our video
machine most of the time (pausing the programme to skip over
the adverts, as you do).

Anyway, right at the end on came Eva Cassidy singing “Over
The Rainbow”. Well we just sat and listened to her – she
is/was one of my all-time favourite singers – she was a
genius – I’m amazed how she could play so well on her guitar
and sing so beautifully at the same time. My fingers go to
jelly and slide all over the place if I attempt to play
guitar in front of people –- she made it look so easy.

Another great song I like is her cover version of Sting's
“Fields of Gold”, which I think surpasses the original -
I’ve just read that Sting praised her version of it.

You will probably know that she died of malignant melanoma
ten years ago – on 4 November 1996 in fact, at the young age
of 33 – very sad for her family and friends. I’ve been
reading a bit about her on this website (and have followed
its links to various newspaper articles), including how she
managed to carry on performing when the cancer had spread
into her bones. How she did so with a fractured hip and the
cancer in one of her arms also, I don’t know – it shows how
much she loved playing and singing.

Malignant melanoma is the nastiest of all the skin cancers
as it’s the most aggressive -- it spreads rapidly before you
know it. I looked up the death statistics recently – 1600
people died of it in England & Wales in 2004 .. these deaths
might have been avoidable if the condition had been diagnosed
and treated earlier. There is loads of info about it on
Google – here’s a link to the Google page. So if you see
anything suspicious on your skin, get it checked out asap,
and always put on some protection against the sun.
Here endeth the health warning.


Anonymous Katt said...

I am not too familiar with Eva Cassidy but the fact that she played even while she was suffering is really inspirational.

7:48 AM  
Blogger justin said...

The two songs I've mentioned are on her "Songbird" album, Katt. I don't like some of the faster stuff she sings, but I think overall the album is well worth listening to.

11:03 PM  

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