Tagged: ukulele

Fuck off back to Eton – Alnwick ukulele player Robin Grey gives reasons for David Cameron serenade

The ukulele player who shot to stardom this week with a swear-filled serenade for David Cameron has called for political change.

East Londoner Robin Grey, who grew up in Gosforth, spoke out a day after expressing his dissatisfaction for the Prime Minister with an adhoc song in Alnwick, Northumberland.

The 34-year-old folk singer, maths tutor and charity worker was in Alnwick as part of a cycling holiday.

He explained:

“I was cycling down the hill into Alnwick, having spent a while in Northumberland National Park, and I was cut up by a big blue Conservative Party coach – I couldn’t believe it.

“Then a lot of people got off with balloons and David Cameron was among them. It was so strange because it was just them, and no ordinary people.

Robin Grey playing his ukulele 

“I was gobsmacked and took my bike over to the other side of the road. I thought, ‘what can I do?’ I didn’t have any eggs and didn’t want to get arrested. I could have shouted but that is boring.

“So I grabbed my ukulele and played the first thing that came to me.”

He proceeded to tell the Tory leader, who was attempting to drum up support for the party’s Berwick election candidate Anne-Marie Trevelyan with a 15-minute walkabout, to “fuck off back to Eton”.

Robin said:

“I consider myself to be an activist. The more I travel round the country the more I see what people have in common – they want to see change happen.

“I hadn’t rehearsed the song. I am used to picking up by ukulele in primary school and playing, and I have worked at the Edinburgh Festival too so it comes easily.

 

“I am amazed at how popular the video of my song has been. Looking back I probably could have come up with some better lyrics, like addressing him on the NHS, but at the time I knew I wouldn’t get another chance so I just kept going.”

A security guard told me not to swear because there were children around so I did a cleaner second verse.”

He added:

“Change is needed and as more people start to get their information from less obvious routes and media sources, the ruling elites are losing control and cannot keep telling us what to do.

“After Alnwick, I headed up to Seahouses to my nanna. She was supportive of me making mischief and she knows it comes from a good place.”

With the help of his ukulele, Robin’s causes include the closure of tax breaks for corporations and the super rich, the re-nationalisation of the railways and utility companies, the provision of singing and music lessons for all schoolchildren, scrapping of bedroom tax, and a ban on fracking in the UK.

Source – Newcastle Evening Chronicle, 14 Apr 2015

Man uses humour and music to have a pop at council

A community campaigner has become an online sensation by using the power of song to vent his frustration at council decisions.

Hundreds of people have watched tracks that poke fun at Durham County Council, which were written and posted on the internet by comic singer and ukulele player Alan Prudhoe.

The retired local government officer was one of 2,700 people who objected to the demolition of the former Tudhoe Grange School in Spennymoor, County Durham.

They wanted Durham County Council and Spennymoor Learning Community Trust, which owns the site, to try to find a buyer to save the 1912 landmark brick building.

But both organisations said it was unlikely to sell whereas the cleared land would generate cash for education in the town so decided to press ahead with demolition, which is currently underway.

The authority said it would have cost £3m to repair Tudhoe Grange – the same figure it quoted to fix up five care homes it shut, the stately home and former school Windlestone Hall in Chilton which many believe was sold off cheap and the restoration of Wharton Park in Durham which is ongoing.

 Observing the pattern, Mr Prudhoe, from Hett, near Spennymoor, penned and recorded The £3m Repair Song and put a video of his performance on YouTube.

The 70-year-old, who worked for Durham County Council for more than 30 years, said:

“With the school we felt there was inadequate consultation and public opinion was ignored.

“I’ve lots of experience and feel as a public service the council is totally out of control, decisions about a huge turnover and lots of residents are made by too few officers and cabinet members.

“My songs are a means of communication, I’ve always used comedy to get a message across and this is a way of engaging people and venting my frustration.

“I never want to offend anyone, I don’t think the internet and social media are there to make personal attacks and I never sing anything I wouldn’t say to a person’s face.”

 Mr Prudhoe has been in bands since the 1960s and is a member of the Stockton to Darlington Ukulele Express.

His council jibes are far from his first online musical hit, as there have been more than 5million viewings of his performances on YouTube and he has a significant following in Peru.

Durham County Council chose not to comment.

Source – Northern Echo,  24 Jan 2015