Friday, December 30, 2005

podcast95 - The One Year Anniversary Show

MP3 Download here.

It has been a year since my first podcast, can you believe it?

This show explores some of the events from last year, I was exhausted just listening to it all! What a fun, packed year it was.

Many thanks for the email and audio contributions. I'd like to thank the following for audio clips / ripped audio:

Adam Curry - DSC Podcast
Brad Penderghast (whole Lot of Nonsense Podcast)
Geoff (Stupod - podcast listener)
Richard Vobes - The Richard Vobes Radio Show
Up All Night (BBC Radio 5)
Paul Hopkins -
Grant - Three from Leith Podcast
Rowley Cutler - podcast
Skinny White Boy - Skinny White Boy Kast Pod
Rob Costlow
Pippa Rogers
Tom - Tom's

Music from:

Dynamo's Rhythm Aces
Hollow Horse
3 Blind Mice

Stacks of other bits and pieces, you'll just have to check the show out!

Thank you to everyone who listened over te last year,it really has been worthwhile doing this. Happy New Year everyone.



Tuesday, December 27, 2005

podcast94 - podcastpaul...even though I do refer to the show as podcast 93... the groove show...

The mp3 file can be downloaded here.

I am such a dummy sometimes, I really should learn. This is podcast94 - not 93, so, why the heck do I call it 93?!

Hopefully, just hopefully, the show will run smoothly and you'll even get the feed on time. Yeah rrright...

Well, I am almost one year old in Podcast terms, so, please feel free to mail or audio me - you can use this link here

Some music from PMN

Up 4 The Downstroke
Hungry Lucy

Monday, December 26, 2005

Arrghh feed problems yet again!

Sorry about this - feed probs yet again. This feed did not make it into Itunes, so I am trying to push this back though. Apologies if you had this previously.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

A Wonderful Christmas to you all.

As I get older and enjoy each successive Christmas I seem to get more of an idea of what Christmas is ... and Christmas isn't.

I'm reminded of the story when an angry shopper on Christmas eve had to push past a Salvation Army band playing Christmas Carols, attempting to raise money for the local Children's Hospital. Angrily the shopper remarked to her friend "Can you believe it, they're even trying to bring religion into Christmas now..."

I bought Mike a jacket yesterday, it made me smile to see so many different creeds, colours and persuasions of every imaginable type in Birmingham City Centre. In a hundred yards, I'd probably been within a few feet from folks from every continent. Christmas Carols merged into a Krishna Chorus of devotees, smells of candy floss merged with hot dogs and folks rushed around doing last minute Christmas shopping.

What a shame that Christmas is so far removed from the humble manger - over-priced toys, clothes and food-stuff replace the true meaning of Christmas; the Celebration of the birth of Jesus.

Religion should take a back seat, because religion is a monster that also runs away with the true meaning of Christmas. Never confuse religion with faith. The two are so far removed from each other.

The love and warmth of family, of being with and remembering the ones you love. stopping, pausing and taking time, just to take time with your family, and, even more importantly to me, to remember the most special gift of all: the gift from God is becoming so much more important than too many bottles of wine and a large roast lunch.

Maudlin as it may seem, I couldn't help but look out last night in the cold evening at the driving rain and think of the ever increasing number of folks who would sleep rough over Christmas. My thoughts then turned to the kids in Swaziland and those who have not yet been taken from danger. It seems so awful that life deals some folks a poor hand.

Things can seem depressive, but, a quote from scripture, not exactly on all fours: "Where sin abounds, Grace doth much more abound". It's true, whenever you see something awful, there is always a chink of light, always someone there to help - the good naure of folks is always shown. Here, I have to say, from the bottom of my heart, thank you. To all those folks who gave to the Swazipod appeal, we raised nearly £400 - that's about $700. I'm happy to report that my church raised £7,500 in one day - that means that eight young people won't be sleeping rough next Christmas, they'll be snatched from poverty and misery. The extra money raised will doubtless help with medication and education.

So, sometimes, folks just don't get Christmas, or the sentiment. Clearly, you folks do. Thank you all so much.

Friday, December 23, 2005

podcast93 - podcastpaul Paul and his son Mike review some very different music from PMN. 16 year old Mike's podsafe choice

Podcast 93 - you can download the MP3 directly from here.

Today is a pretty cool show, in a desperate attempt to gain some serious street cred, I enrol my 16 year old son; Mike into the show.

To his credit, Mike picked some great tunes from the podcast Music Network and I gave them a really honest listen. Do I like or hate the stuff? Have we got different tastes in music? Does our 22 year age gap make any difference?

Have a listen, you may be very surprised...

Music from:

Berman - Lost Angeles
Brain Buckit - Passion Fruit (Go Bananas)
Anemo - Fall Out Renegade
Uncrowned - Queen of New York
Chiba-Ken - The Distance From Here

All from the Podcast Music Network

Sunday, December 18, 2005

podcast 92 - including bloopers!

Show 92 direct from this link here

Hmm. No idea why show 92 was not picked up by Itunes, Juice and the other aggregators.

Never mind, let's try again!

podcast92 - a live show with a couple of bloopers...

podcast 92 is now up and running - and you can tell it's live.You can download the MP3 from here directly.

One or two real bloopers with one VERY big blooper, I don't mention it, but, see if you can hear it. Like the consumate professional I am, I keep talking and ignore the unedited problem. See if you can figure it out. That'll get you thinking!

I try a different format on the show, I disasterously use my Ipod (if ever you're doing a live show 'on the fly' don't do it!)

Music today from:

Away with the Fairys
Groove Generator
3 Blind Mice

Some music from the Podcast Network...cheers guys!

Thanks to Colin at

I mention my Flickr site - and loads of other stuff too.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

loads to catch up on - and just about to set up a podcast later tonight...

I've loads to talk about tonight - and I'll hopefully be producing a podcast in a couple of hours, I'm just in the middle of prepping now.

Nice to see Brad, Phil and Bill on the Frappr map - click this link to add yourself onto the Frappr map - NOTE - you don't need to be specific with your address - I just put myself on as "Birmingham" It's dead easy to do, and lovely to see where folks are from. I'm automatically tracking the last 100 visitors - you can see that on the link on the homepage (when it works, as it's a bit tempremental)


Speak to you all later!

Thursday, December 15, 2005

happy birthday

Me - aged about 4 in good old 1971. Everyone had one of those jumpers, one of those haircuts and one of these school photo's.

It's my thirty-eighth birthday today - and a real non - event. It is when you pass your early teens is it?

I did receive a couple of cracking presents this morning though - a travel case for my ipod complete with all sorts of leads, wires, adapators and stuff for your car / pc etc... and a battery / direct power input stand alone set of speakers - they'll be put to good use. I'll take some photo's later and put them up on site.

Weird really, I have a love-hate relationship with my 4gb Ipod mini - it's wonderfully versatile and dead good, but the battery life is shocking. In fact, I feel pretty sure that it's been defective from the word go as the battery lasts for just 2 hours.

As much as I love the ipod, I hate the way it's tied to just one machine - a complete nightmare. I have a twenty quid MP3 player from pc world which isn't tied to just one pc and ultimately versatile - the sound quality is great, but the ease of the ipod controls blow everything else out of the water. I would like to invest in an Iriver, I'll have to have a look at one in the New Year.

Speak to you all soon.


Boy am I long overdue to do a podcast! Look out for one VERY shortly...


Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Happy birthday Rowley - and podcasting generally. Some spurious ADD thoughts...

Happy Birthday Rowley Cutler at Rowley is a lovely guy and a great podcast mate of mine from Liverpool during the week and North Wales during the day.

I have just listened to Dark compass 143 - Rowley's anniversary podcast and it really did make me chuckle. Rowley is a dead-pan, really genuine bloke who just sits at the pc and tells it as it is, he's also the first UK podcast I listened too and really helped (and helps) me with techy problems. I still don't know how to set up an RSS feed in Blogger, shame on me.

It did make make me think as I listened to Rowley's podcast, what has happened to podcasting in the last year? Well, it's exploded, morphed, and taken on by the big media guys like we'd never imagined.

I remember when the UK podcasting scen was Adam Curry, me and Rowley - I think Martin from Green Dragon was there too and possibly a.n other, it was sparce, fresh and all very exciting.

Now, here in the UK there's an amazing variety of folks talking about all manner of different subjects, the efforts of Neil and Jen Dixon pulling their resources together in Britcaster for no financial gain - and all for the love of promoting a fantastic hobby is just excellent. On this topic - I listened to Neil's long overdue podcast; A Minor Technicality - you have to listen to that - I was sat at the gym almost wetting myself laughing at the exploits of Neil's weird neighbour.

Well, a year later, there's been a UK podcast conference which was brilliant fun, I've made new mates from all over the world - I've found some amazing music from a variety of incredible artists and priviliged to have been able to bring such a vital and important focus on Swaziland to some folks, that has been the pinnacle for me: podcasting from a mud hut in a staggering electrical storm in the most Southern parts of Africa telling folks all over the world about the plight of kids in the tiny kingdom of Swaziland.

I wouldn't change anything I've experienced through this incredible phenomenon over the past year and am still smiling at the fact that most folks in the UK have never heard of podcasting, let alone experience it.

I'm a year old in podcasting terms on 30th December 2005 - I wonder what on earth I'll talk about?

I plan to be here for a lot longer than a year so keep the page boomarked.

Monday, December 12, 2005

random thoughts and a couple of great podcasts

Amdrew Wragg was today convicted of manslaughter for taking the life of his young son; Jacob, aged 10 who was suffering terribly with Hunters syndrome.

Wragg, charged with Murder openly accepted the fsct that he took his son's life, claiming that he was 'driven' to his desperate act by virtue of the fact that he was suffering such an abnormality of mind as to commute the act to Manslaughter by virtue of Diminished Responsibility - a defence open to those charged with Homicide.

I talked about this recently in a podcast - 'mercy killing' as it is called is not recognised here in the UK - the taking of a life 'within the Queens peace' (i.e. not in the course of war) is murder. People often think that 'malice aforethought' is a necesary ingredient - that is an outdated notion in modern law now.

The intent for murder is nothing at all to do with motive, indeed motive does not figure at all in the legal ingredient for murder. The state of mind that needs to present is the intent to kill or cause serious harm. Smothering the face of a child is murder, no matter the motive in the eyes of the law. The 'abnormality of mind' present in this case gave the Judge the power to allow Wragg to walk away.

The whole present system of Homicide here in the UK is an odd series of judicial precedent and tempered legislation.

On a brighter note - I've found a couple of superb podcasts that I've been listening to: Betty in the Sky with a suitcase- mostly real life comedy stories from an anonymous air - stewardess and her colleagues.

Another great podcast from Dr. Chris over here in the UK is The Naked Scientist - I met Chris at podcastcon and only yesterday found the time to listen in. A syndicated show from BBC across East Anglia, this is a real must check out too.

On another note, a great review site I'm looking at is Colin's site: Colin seems to share much of the musical tastes I do - I'dlike to think my show colours his pallete too. Colin's podcast review site; podcast Launchpad is also a good, balanced, informed site.

All in, some great stuff happening on the podcast scene.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

podcast 91 - Part II of the interview in Swaziland - a MUST NOT miss show.

Podcast 91 = you can download the MP3 directly from here

This is perhaps the most worthwhile podcast I've ever done - well, I suppose that, in conjunction with podcast no.88.

I speak to Kevin Ward - the Director of Swaziland Teen Challenge at Hawane Farm during my recent visit a month or so ago in Mbabane, Swaziland. This man just blows me away. Forget David Beckham, Michael Jordan or your favourite rock - star. This man has quietly given his fortune, his life to help orphaned kids with nothing - quite literally nothing, some with no food in their bellies and only the clothes they stand up in. The amazing thing here is that Kevin quietly works away, shies away from any publicity or praise and gets right into the action of saving lives. What a privilege to have met with and spoken to such a person.

The picture above is of the children you can hear playing football during our interview, they're smiling because they were given a whole load of football shirts that we'd taken over. These kids are so grateful for anything they're given - very unlike the children here in the West.

I'm in the top right corner of a very unflattering picture. I've lost about 20 pounds since our trip over there, maybe I should go more often. Joking apart, I am desperate to get back there.

The old line from "Feed the world" rings so true - I've seen it first hand - "The greatest gift they'll get this year is life..."Many of the children are infected - a huge shock to me was the revelation that "....only 1 in 10 children in Swaziland will live to the age of 35 because of AIDS only..." Think about that, this means that 90% of Swazilands future will be taken. That appaling figure is qualified in the interview, please do take the time to listen.

Superb musical interlude from Jami Sieber, the incredible Cellist, courtesy if Magnatunes.

For those of you who have donated, a heartfelt thank-you, I relly do mean that. For those of you who have not, please do not feel any pressure at all to give, but please give your time and listen to this podcast.

Many thanks


listeners across the globe

I love looking at where people listen from. My traffic is mainly US and UK, often there are a few listeners in Australia, New Zealand and Asia - I have a couple in South America and Africa too with some folks dotted all over the world.

I'm tracking the last 100 visitors to my site, you can have a look at a real time update here The link may not show the last 100 visits as the site has only just been upgraded

If you visit my page, a piece of Javascript logs roughly where you're from - if you look at the links on the right, you'll see a list of visitors. Click the visitors and you'll get to my gvisit map, it has a wonderful satellite and zoom feature you can play around with for hours on end. If you return after an hour or so of your visit, you can search for yourself on the map - cool eh?

I'm off to see if I can upload a frappr map - I love messing around with these tools!

Monday, December 05, 2005

Wow... ITV National News at 10.30pm!

Ricky Gervais has done a series of podcasts, and national ITV Evening News, have, in their infinite wisdom decided to run a feature. They want to show a Hollywood star in his glitz and glamour.. and a very ordinary commoner podcasting - i.e.!

Hopefully the article will run on the national news at 10.30pm tonight - I'm pretty sure that I will be relegated to the cutting room floor, or, at best there maybe a micro second and possible sound byte.

Anyway, in the very unlikely event you've come here through ITV, welcome! How lovely to see you.

This is my weblog, you can scroll down and see what's been on my mind, you can also hear the podcasts on the right hand side--------------------------------------> and enter the amazing world of podcasting. If you fancy listening to some current affairs, select podcast 88 from the list and listen to my broadcasts from Swaziland at an AIDS orphanage. If you love great independent music, listen to virtually any of the other podcasts from the list.

There is a world outside the medicrity of commercial radio - real people playing real bands that real people want to hear - not some suited executive pushing some awful plstic boy-band. Have a look at Hollow Horse, a superb band from Glasgow that blow your socks off - such an amazing sound - and they're unsigned!

If you like what you hear, or, you can't access the blinking thing, try pressing the I-Tunes 'subscribe' button - you don't pay a penny, there isn't a 'sub' - it's all completely free. You can then simply bring Itunes up, press the 'podcast' button on Itunes and you'll hopefully find me there. Every time I do a new show, it'll crop up automatically in Itunes, if you own an ipod, it will download automatically. There's other software such as Odeo or Juice if you own a non-ipod mp3 player.

If you want to access the show a bit later, and can't be bothered with all the Itunes stuff, simply right click on the link and press "save target as" - you can then access the show a bit later.

Podcasting is a fantastic tool, you can listen to all sorts of stuff - have a look at my recommendations on the right.

Podcasting is a fantastic medium, it's been used successfully in education and business alike. One company; Audacious has run a pilot for internal communications within a major household company. These blokes started out as podcasters.

So, want to be a radio presenter? You can be, right here, right now. You obviously own a computer as you're reading this! Hopefully you own a pc microphone - you can buy one for as little as £20 from any high street shop.

Download 'Audacity', a free piece of Software froom the Web, or use any existing MP3 software and you'll be bounded only by your own idea of content

Please feel free to send a mail to me or to comment on the comment section below.

I really look forward to hearing your show soon!


Paul Nicholls

Sunday, December 04, 2005

A wonderful article...

I read, with real interest, the blog of regularjen

I met Jen at Podcastcon - she's a lovely lady and the wife of Neil Dixon (Mr, a fantastic resource and forum for podcasters and listeners.

Jen's writing is always thought provoking and makes me smile broadly - this article tickled me - I've copied it wholesale from Jen's blog:

« I have the authority to borrow books

Are women just not fun?

Wait, before you answer that, let me explain a little.
Unless you have been in a coma, you know that Christmas is coming. Although some of you may wish to be temporarily put into a coma until the New Year arrives, it’s coming and there’s nothing medically ethical you can do about it.

We’ve been asked to assemble our “Christmas list” for gift ideas. Now, on one hand I think these lists are great. You can be fairly sure that as long as the list recipient doesn’t get too creative that you are guaranteed to score a prezzie you like. On the other hand I always feel like a schmuck writing down things I want. Is it too expensive, too difficult to find, too cheap, too many choices, too few… One must strike a tactful and appropriate balance with these things.

Balance. Now I’m getting to the heart of my post. I was online (still am I’m guessing) perusing the Marks & Spencer site for ideas. They have some fabulous things in the gifts section. I found tools, toys, games, science stuff… My favourite had to be the radio controlled sumo wrestlers, but my damned practical side kicked in and prevented me from listing them. So after I’d been through the numerous pages (more than a dozen) of cool presents, I noticed I was in the dude’s section. I thought I should check out the section for ladies.

Two pages. Four sweaters/jumpers, four uncomfortably frilly bras, three floral bouquets, two scarves, a few jewellery related items, four ugly handbags, four perfume choices and an orchid. (Yes, an orchid.)

In my desperation and shock, I retraced my mouse clicks. Ah- the Christmas Gifts section- that’s where I was for men and that’s what I’d mistakenly skipped for women. I tried again.

Again, two pages. This time, of categories of gifts for women. That seemed positive, but alas: handbags, scarves, jewellery, picture frames, lingerie, stationery, vases & bowls, and perfume. No USB powered air darts; no electric guitars. Certainly no radio controlled sumo wrestlers. Evidently, women don’t even read since the foldable book light was only available in the men’s section. What’s up with that!?
Honestly though, I’ll cringe if I ever get an etched glass photo frame for a gift. Pear shaped candles? Uh, no thanks. Leather luggage tags and you’re off my Christmas card list for next year. I’m not ungrateful, don’t get me wrong, but I do think that women get the stereotype treatment when it comes to gifts. I don’t want a crystal bowl any more than I want new oven mitts or a dust-buster for a present. All I wish is for people to think about the personality they’re buying for– women, men or kids. Giving ‘default’ gifts never shows how much you care, it only highlights how little you pay attention. Women are fun and it will be nice when the retailers can see it too.

Oh, and just to add insult to injury– the first six books in the Books for Her section? All cookbooks. I could scream. But at least they acknowledge women as literate. (We’re just not allowed to read after dark…)

You might wonder what’s on my list so far: the book light and a stubby ratchet screwdriver set. There’s honestly not much I need or want, but that’s just M&S. Amazon will take a bit longer to peruse.


Saturday, December 03, 2005

podcastpaul podcast 90 December 3rd 2005

To listen to the show you can download the MP3 right here

In this podcast I play music from:

Paul Rose - all around the watchtower (an absolute MUST listen to track)
Paul Rose - Hey Joe - and I talk you through the great live drum solo by Richard Newman
Paul Rose - Con trick

Check out Paul's 11/10 album - "Half Alive" at is web site here

I also play Watchstar from 3 blind mice. This band is VERY different and their take on music is incredibly different and a really great refreshing change. their website can be accessed here Thanks to the Podcast Music Network

I talk about:

- The office party in Manchester

- George Best tribute at Old Trafford

- The fact that there's a worrying trend in podcasters who promote themselves and talking about themselves incessantly. Quite honestly I am not in the least bit interested in anything of self promotion. I am however interested in passion for broadcasting. I HATE this talk of "monetizing" - for goodness sake, it's not even a word!

- Eurythmics - amazing podcast by Dave Stewart. A seriously good and very informative podcast on the early 80's Sweet Dreams stuff (everyone's essetial must have album)

- I remembered the Hollow Horse competition! You can hear the winner here too...

- Andrew Wragg's continuing murder / manslaughter trial - a father driven to take the life of his son. Although this was a 'mercy killing' it's still murder in the eyes of the law. What do you think?

I completely forget to review a track from Adrian - ah well, you can tell I did it all live with no fancy post record - edits. I'll be playing the track in the next podcast or two. You get the real deal here folks!

I also stupidly forgot to tell you about the Bill for debate in the House of pariament at the moment to assist those to die with terminal illness. PLEASE remember to leave comments on the weblog below (just use the comment section below folks - it's dead easy. I particularly welcome your comments on (a) the music and (b) the articles: "monetizing" (how I HATE that word) and the Andrew Wragg (Murder / Manslaughter) case that's currently proceeding.