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  • I had to stand in front of an audience of twenty and sing my chosen song 'The Streets of London' by Ralph Mctell

    I have a very bad memory for lyrics, so I painted some props to show the audience and remind me of the words.

    this one surviving drawing is for the verse:

    In the all night cafe
    At a quarter past eleven,
    Same old man is sitting there on his own
    Looking at the world
    Over the rim of his tea-cup,
    Each tea last an hour
    Then he wanders home alone

    I was taking part in a programme called The Mastery, that was supposed to give me confidence to perform competently. I had a picture for each verse.

    When the time came for my turn I got up and strutted my stuff, relieved that I had held up the right painting (a la Bob Dylan), for each verse.

    "Ok," said one of the teachers, "Now sing it again without your posters.I want to see the whole woman in you."

    It was just like cribbing for a test at school. Because I had spent time painting the scenes I could remember each word correctly.
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