In honour of it being Sherlock Holmes’s birthday (as well as my boyfriend’s), I’ve made a comprehensive, theme-y playlist on Spotify that will have a lot of nice surprises. I feel these choices reflect the characters/scenes pretty well, and is a nice mix. I’ll add to it from time to time!

Hope you enjoy! x 

I love the Midnight Juggernauts. Their new album does not disappoint. Think 70s BBC Radiophonic sounds, for the dance floor.

A gorgeous album. I have been listening to this one on repeat for the past couple of days.

I was singing this song tonight.

I just about died laughing.

Jesus. This is utterly raw and beautiful and painful. Her best song.

Holy shit! I’m singing a song!

Actually, I used to sing all the time when I was in high school chorus, but over the years I hardly do it anymore. I feel really naked when I sing, actually. Anyway I got the idea to record acapella vocals last night after watching the powerful, raw performance of Maria Falconetti in ‘The Passion of Joan of Arc.’  I decided to get past some of my fears and record an old murder ballad that used to scare me as a kid. It’s an uplifting song about a child murder! Hurrah!

The song is called “Long Lankin” and it is very old. I grew up listening to the folk music of Steeleye Span, and this one has always haunted me. Maddy Prior’s voice is sublime in their version.

Anyway, I have the vague idea to do something with animation to it, but here is the very, very raw vocal isolated from everything. I’ll add instrumentation and subtle sound to it later.

He Plays So Soulfully! by *filmshirley

Collage I made in 2007. If you like it, there are prints available! Hand cut paper arranged on black board. The original is no longer with me, sadly, but this puppers is ready to play Moonlight Sonata for you. x

Here’s a playlist made inspired by the show Sherlock.

#sherlock #bbc sherlock #playlist #work music #inspiration #bbc #sherlock holmes #watson #sherlolly #johnlock #221B #baker street

Here is one for Twin Peaks.

Django Reinhardt by ~filmshirley
Portrait of jazz guitarist Django Reinhardt, done for commission. Pencil and charcoal on paper, 8x10. Prints not available, unfortunately.

The best song the Pogues have ever done, in my opinion. It’s a poignant look at the relations between Ireland and Irish America.

There is a strange hypocrisy in Irish culture: the country itself is consistently put on a pedestal as an abstract source of joy and wonder, despite consistently failing and disappointing its people.  

With love comes guilt, with hatred comes longing, with beauty comes pain.This song beautifully sums up the dichotomies many Irish descendants still feel today about their culture and their history.

There is a longing in many of us to revisit the ancestral home. We have a tendency to glorify the Irish legacy - there are countless accomplished Americans with names like Cohan, Armstrong, and Kennedy. We latch on to Irish culture as the Irish will happily lay claim to their prodigal sons.

But what caused our ancestors to leave in the first place? Starvation, desperation, crime, desire for a better life. What did they encounter here? More of the same, tarnished with the falsehood of opportunity.

Yet this is a culture of denial. We blindly celebrate Irish heritage here, without really thinking about the immense pain and suffering of our ancestors; without thinking about the political and religious turmoil; without giving much thought to those who sacrificed everything to sail here on a coffin ship to escape Ireland. Instead, there’s a focus on the accomplishments and the false veneer of “heritage.” Even the cliched stigma of alcoholism is blithely celebrated once a year at countless American St. Patrick’s Day parties. 

The US had stepped up immigration laws around the time this song came out in the late 80s - so those leaving Ireland at the time, hoping to make a better life for themselves, were showing up here encountering the same problems as Irish immigrants always had. Green card lotteries, unemployment difficulties, assimilation difficulties.

In the end of the song, we discover that strong sense of Irish cultural identity is all that remains: despite our troubles, we’ll still have music and poetry in our veins….it may be incredibly wrapped up in guilt and shame, and subsequent release from that guilt and shame, but it is our shared legacy, through the lens of optimism, for better or worse.


Texas, are you my friend?  You live so close to the end Texas, are you my friend? 
 ‘Cause I’m afraid of you.
- Train, “Idaho.”

Badaba badabaBadaba badabaBadaba badaba, yeahSharks live on the elevator, babyIf you want a rideBut I don’t even wanna
-Train, “Sharks”

A few years ago I wrote a blog that was an illustrated guide to the weirdness of Train lyrics. I don’t know what the fuck they’re talking about, so I made little illustrations explaining their songs.

Fare thee well, Slim!

Opaque  by  andbamnan