Monday, July 06, 2015

Greek Bank Depositors Get What They Deserve, America Will Follow!!!

 In this blog post I'm going to do something a little different. It's time to give my thoughts on what is going on in Greece. For those in the United States this is to serve as a warning. I am going to explain why Greece is in this situation and that the same thing can and will happen here. I will also explain how you can weather a similar financial storm here in the United States. Just like the people in Greece, Americans cannot escape the financial storm but they can take steps to help weather it. I strongly suggest you heed my advise.

Now as far as the bank closures or bank holiday that Greece is currently under I have no sympathy for those people effected by this situation. These people deserve what is happening to them and their bank accounts. The one notable exception is the extreme poor in Greece. They are caught in the middle of this and were not able to prepare for this in advance due to their lack of wealth. Everyone else has no excuse.

Why the Greek people continued to keep their money in the Greek banks is beyond me. Two years ago this same situation happened in Cyprus, a country not too far from Greece. The situation in Greece has been known since 2008 when the world financial system crashed and began to deflate. The people in Greece have seen their pensions cut and taxes raised to appease the bankers. 

For those of you who follow current events you know what has been happening over there. What most people don't understand is that this situation in Greece is a good situation not only for Greece but for the world in general.

First of all I want to address the debt situation in Greece. While its true that the Greek government does owe on its debt, not all the debt belongs to the Greek government. Most of this debt is debt imposed by the bankers in the form of derivatives. Derivatives are basically bets placed on some other debt or asset. For example if I borrow $1000 from you, then I owe you $1000 plus any interest that is agreed upon. The debt I owe is a liability to me because I owe you the $1000. Because you are making the loan you now have an IOU for that $1000. That $1000 is an asset on your balance sheet.
Now if you go out and borrow $10,000 from a bank and list the $1000 you are owed by me as an asset or cash reserve, you have created a derivative. The $10,000 you are borrowing is backed in part by the loan you gave to me. This is a derivative because the $10,000 loan is deriving part of its value from the money I owe you.

In Greece, like every other nation in the world, The Greek government is the one who borrowed the $1000. The Greek banks along with other banks and financial institutions around the world have borrowed sums greater then that $1000. The banks are unable to cover their loans and have gone back to the Greek government claiming the Greek government owes all $10,000 borrowed against the that original $1000.

This is how central banking works. Its objective is to pas on the losses of the private banks onto the taxpayers of any given nation. Since 2008, Greece has basically been picking up the tab on losses incurred by their private banks and other financial institutions around the world who bought Greek debt and placed bad bets in the derivatives markets.

Because these numbers are so high, and government in general will do whatever they can to save the banks from going under, will bow to pressure from the finance industry to go along with the bailout. What people do not understand is the entire world has a debt based monetary system. The money comes into existence as an instrument of debt. If debt is wiped out, then any money created out of that debt is also wiped out. More then 90% of the entire worlds money supply is created not by governments, but by the banks themselves.  Its called fractional reserve lending or banking. 

In September 2008 when the financial system began to collapse the total derivatives debt market was $750 trillion USD. Those derivatives were dropping quickly and financial institutions were loosing cash as a result of the people selling financial assets to deleverage. Governments around the world began bailing out the banks to keep them from collapsing. In January 2009, Rep. Paul Kanjorski (D) who was on the banking and finance committee, in an interview on C-SPAN, defended the original emergency actions taken by the United States government to halt the 2008 financial crisis in September 2008. Kanjorski stated that the move to raise the guarantee money funds up to $250,000 was an emergency measure to stave off a massive money market "electronic run" on the banks that removed $550 billion from the system in a matter of hours on the morning of September 18. He further asserted that, if not stopped, the run would not only have caused the American economy to crash immediately, within 24 hours it would have brought down the world economy as well. When Kanjorski made these statements, he was spilling the beans and revealing something that he wasn't supposed to. Jut like in 2009, we are no better off today in 2015 then we were in 2008 and 2009. In fact the problem is much worse today.
As I Stated before, back in 2008 the total derivatives market was $750 Trillion USD. Today the estimated derivatives debt is $2,500 Trillion USD $2,500,000,000,000,000 or 3 times higher then it was in 2008.  The published national debt of the United States is $18.5 trillion. Billionaire Warren Buffett referred to derivatives as “weapons of mass destruction” and are financial instruments that will likely “cause big trouble.” He goes on to say
"The derivatives genie is now well out of the bottle, and these instruments will almost certainly multiply in variety and number until some event makes their toxicity clear. Central banks and governments have so far found no effective way to control, or even monitor, the risks posed by these contracts. In my view, derivatives are financial weapons of mass destruction, carrying dangers that, while now latent, are potentially lethal.”

What we are seeing in Greece, Cyprus, Iceland, and Ireland to name a few are the effects of the derivatives and government debt bubbles popping. All the banks in the world are effected by this. As a result none of the worlds banks are solvent. Not even yours.

Looking at Greece should tell people something. There are steps you can take to weather a bank holiday. The United States had a bank holiday in 1933. Some of the same things going on today with the banks were what caused the Great Depression. President Roosevelt the day he took office declared a bank holiday. The first presidential radio address or "fireside chat" was about this bank holiday. Roosevelt stated flat out that once you put your money in a bank it no longer belongs to you. It belongs to the bank. The bank and government will tell you when and if you can have access to your money. In the eyes of the banks and the government they will define what is or is not a legitimate purpose for you withdrawing some or all of your savings. After this banking holiday 71% of all the savings in the United States was confiscated and transferred to the government. This is the history not taught in school. Listen to the first fireside chat and see if anything has changed. I will point this out, Roosevelt did correctly state that "We do not want and will not have another epidemic of bank failures." This is why the government will bail out the banks and financial institutions at the expense of the tax payer. And if that means inflating the currency, imposing new taxes, confiscating bank deposits, or retirement accounts/pensions then they will do it. Roosevelt laid it all out in this 13 minute speech.

Lessons that should be learned from Iceland, Cyprus, what is currently happening in Greece and our own banking collapse in 1933 are the following.
(1) You can not trust the banks. Don not keep all your money in them. Remember you don't own the money you deposit in any bank. The bank owns it. As Roosevelt said the banks put your money to work. They don't put it to work for you. They put it to work for the banks.
(2) Government and the banks can and will limit your access to money at any time.
(3) Banks and the government will confiscate your bank deposits if need arises.
(4) The government will protect the banks at all costs. They do not give a fuck about you. The banks don't give a fuck about you either.
(5) Inflation is a tax. It is the most regressive tax there is. You need to protect yourself from inflation to the best of your ability.
(6) If there is one lesson to be learned from what is happening in Greece it is this. YOU NEED TO HAVE AN ADEQUATE SUPPLY OF PHYSICAL CURRENCY ON HAND OUTSIDE THE BANKING SYSTEM!!!! I would have at least several months saved up in $5.00, $$10.00 and $20.00 notes. During a baking holiday access to ATMs and bank branches will be restricted or limited. You need the cash on hand to survive.
(7) You should own gold and silver coins. For this purpose you should have only gold coins issued by the mint of the nation you reside. That means Americans should only own US gold eagles 1986 - Present, and pre 1933 US gold Liberty's, Saint Gaudens, and Indians. For silver you should own in the US American silver eagles 1986 - Present, pre 1965 silver coinage. These include dimes, quarters, half dollars, Morgan dollars, and Peace dollars. Silver war nickels from WW2 are acceptable too. Also Canadian silver maple leaf coins are acceptable too.
(8) In the US if you live in a border State that borders Canada you should have PHYSICAL CANADIAN CURRENCY. I have been advocating this for years. And for good reason. First of all having Canadian currency is a hedge against the US dollar. When the dollar is strong like it is now you can buy Canadian currency for $0.80 USD. When the US dollar is weaker those Canadian dollars will be worth more then you paid for them. Its a way to help beat inflation. In addition and more importantly, if you take note of what is happening in Greece right now you will see the store shelves are empty. Even if you have cash it may be difficult to buy food or other essential items you need to weather a financial storm. With physical Canadian currency you can go to Canada and you have their currency to either stay there until the financial system is working again or you can just by food to survive and take it back across the border. Anyone who knows me will tell you that I've been beating the drum on having a foreign currency reserve for years. My logic all these years is sound when looking at Greece.
(9) You should always keep a store of food on hand. During banking holidays. Shipments may be limited. If you do find stores open and stocked you are going to find the prices will be higher. The stores have to raise prices to obtain cash to get new shipments in. The rising of the prices is not a factor of greed but businesses wont have easy access to cash from banks so supply and demand will take over. I would expect prices in Greece are 20% to 70% higher for available essential items. You need t take this into account when deciding an apocopate amount of physical cash to store outside the banking system.

In closing I do not believe that Greece will exit the European Union . The New World Order sociopaths cant allow that to happen. If they do then it will set a precedent for allowing other nations to leave the European Union. Just like what happened with the Soviet Union in 1990, if one nation leaves others will follow. It would only be a matter of time.

The economic and financial terrorism that has taken over the world will continue until the people of the world wake up and say enough is enough. Until the rest of the nations of the world do what Iceland did in 2009 and arrest the bankers, nations 1 by 1 will continue to be held economic hostage.

I expect Greece will be allowed to default. I expect Greece to stay in the European Union. These "pin striped bandits" in the financial system will convince the other nations in the Euro to absorb the losses from Greece. Greece will suffer some losses. Their government will seize bank deposits like the government in Cyprus did. They will do what they can to keep the Ponzi scheme going but I don't see the banksters allowing Greece to leave the EU. Their whole system would fall apart if they allowed Greece to go at it alone. And they know it. Some last minute deal that fucks more of the Greek people and the EU will be announced in the coming days. But in the final analysis, people in Greece were warned ahead of time and they still kept their wealth in those banks. I cant feel sorry for them. Had they bought gold, silver and kept cash at home they wouldn't be in the situation they are in. Or at least not to the same extent.

Greece is our wakeup call. Take action now. America is in far worse shape then Greece. Our day is near. Don't say you haven't been warned.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

The Dark Side Of Celtic Nights The Show Part 2

It's been awhile since I've blogged about this topic. I'm doing so tonight because it was 1 year ago tonight that all the bullshit with Celtic Nights started showing itself.
The incident in York, PA last year was only the final straw. The deception started before that. There were signs leading up to February 18 but we overlooked them.
On February 19th last year I was awoken to a phone call from Scott Manke that there was something going on and the Rebekah Robertson (Shearer) had defriended both Scott and I on Facebook and BLOCKED us. Why this was done was confusing to both of us. However Rebekah did send us the following message before she blocked us.
"2/18, 9:47pm
Rebekah Shearer

Hey! Sooo had very very strange messages from about 3 guys...its all gotten a bit strange! Going to delete my singers page and make a page to like. Also going to close off this page for a bit. Mum is getting messages too so just going off line for a bit. Ill let you know when im bk on and I will send you my new singer page. You will be able to send me messages on the new page! Will explain in detail when I see you next! Also shame to hear anout Lisa keep me updated!! Hugs x"

Now what didn't make sense is that we were blocked. Rebekah told us that she removed everyone off her Facebook account which was a lie because Scott and I both have other accounts and could see Rebekah's page and our mutual friends were still on there.
Not only were we blocked from Rebekah's page but we later found out that we were blocked on other peoples pages as well. We were later informed that Rebekah told everyone in Celtic Nights to block us. This conformation came from both Rebekah's brother (Jamie) and from Stephen O'Connor one of the members of Celtic Nights.
Rebekah later told us that she would give us the names of the people who were sending her and her mother messages. She later refused to do so when pressed but I finally got it out of her.
Now let me be clear here. Rebekah is a known liar. I no longer believe anything she ever told us. As far as I'm concerned she is a manipulative cunt!!! I am going to publish the names she gave me. For those of you on this list I will forward to you the email messages on this subject if you want to take legal action against these people for slander. I believe all of you have a strong case. Rebekah listed the following names as those that were harassing her and her mother.
Lew McGann
Gene Devlin
Ed Waterman (I would add link to Facebook page but there are many Ed Waterman listed.)

I blocked those people from my Facebook account as well, giving Rebekah the benefit of the doubt. But I now realize that I was wrong for doing so. As Rebekah was just gaslighting us. The sad thing is that Rebekah convinced others to block us as well. I still to this day do not understand why Rebekah would block Scott and I for the supposed actions for Lew, Gene, and Ed. It makes no sense unless she just made it up as an excuse for something else. And I believe I know what that excuse is. Weather or not, what I believe is the reason to be is true or not, makes no difference. For whatever reason Rebekah blocked us and told others to do so as well. This is a fact.
I have come to the conclusion that with a few exceptions, (those exceptions are Lisa Kelly, Lisa Lambe, Chloe,and Deirdre) all these people in this industry in Ireland are pieces of shit. I had to finally come to this conclusion after what we saw with Michael Durkan and the others with GFD last year. However, what really convinced me was when I found out what these fucks in this industry did to Garth Brooks last summer. Now Im not much of a fan of Brooks but if these people in this industry will treat a big named superstar the way they did then nothing is beyond these people. I have seen to many examples of backstabbing from the Irish entertainment industry. (both the management and artists) Given what happened to Brooks I believe this mindset is unique to the Irish. I haven't seen the level of arrogance in other nations as I have from this industry in Ireland.
Now onto the reason I believe why Rebekah blocked us. I never intended on publically including this in my blog because everyone makes mistakes. But as I told the promoter (CAMI) for Celtic Nights I don't have a choice. There is most likely a direct or indirect connection here with Celtic Woman member Lynn Hilary that precipitated these events. I don't have an issue with Lynn because Lynn has acknowledged her mistake and I think she has corrected it. Lynn posted the following on her Facebook page in September 2013. 

 Lynn Hilary

Music and me fell out of love many years ago, I couldn't say exactly when but it was around the time I started music college. The spark just died gradually. We lived together for a while but the magic was gone. For years we did our thing side by side but like ships in the night, we didn't really relate, we didn't connect, there was no passion. Now after years of intensive working to rekindle this precious flame, we're back in love again and it feels sooooooo good!! This time it's for real, things will have to change, I will not abuse it and take it for granted like I did before, I can't risk losing it again.
Many people were shocked to see this post by Lynn at the time. Now I'm going to explain why she wrote it in the first place. To do this im just going to publish part of the email I sent to CAMI about Celtic Nights.

"There are really 2 incidents that took place. York, PA was only the final straw. There was an incident that took place within 72 hours of the Parker, CO shows. Before I cover that I have to go back and explain about what occurred in Ireland last summer (2013). The night before we flew back home, Scott Manke and I went to see Riverdance in Dublin. The lead singer was Lynn Hillary. Lynn Hillary was a former member of Celtic Woman. After the show we went by the stage door to talk to her and others in the show. Lynn was flat out rude to us in the way we were treated by her. As a result I wrote to her, the venue and the producers of the show to bring this to their attention. I was content with keeping this private but this incident has become the catalysts for how we have been treated by Celtic Nights.


At the Parker, CO shows, we had a friend with us (Amy) who is a big Lynn Hillary fan. I told her what had occurred in Ireland the summer before. During this time Celtic Woman announced that Lynn Hillary would be returning to Celtic Woman midway through their spring 2014 tour. Although I didn't like the way Lynn treated us I don't dislike her. There were some comments on Lynn's Facebook page written by people concerning her CD that were not very nice. I asked Amy to let Rebecca Winkworth know about these comments. Rebecca and Lynn are very close friends. I have no doubt that Lynn told Rebecca about my writing to the producers of Riverdance. I also have no doubt that Rebecca told Rebekah Robertson and others in Celtic Nights about this. Rebekah Robertson on February 18th blocked both Scott and I on Facebook after almost a year of great communications with both her and Michael Durkan.

Rebekah Robertson told us she blocked everyone on her Facebook page. This is a lie. Rebekah told us that people sent comments to her mother and she deleted everyone on her page. Another lie. Since this has taken place one member of her family and one of the performers have come clean and admitted that Rebekah ordered everyone in Celtic Nights to block us. I believe Alan was involved in this decision as well.
Because of all these events I now have to warn as many people to stay as far away  from Celtic Nights as possible. In addition, I also now have to publically publish how Lynn Hillary treated us in Ireland as its a material fact and a cause as to why we have been treated like crap by some of the Celtic Nights people. Rebecca Winkworth should have kept her mouth shut about the Lynn situation. She made a poor judgment by allowing Lynn's rudeness to effect how the people within Celtic Nights viewed us. I don't have any ill feeling towards Rebecca Winkworth. However, the other 4 performers who I have listed on my blog have no excuse. They should have kept their nose out of the Lynn Hillary situation.  
The beauty of my blog is the fact that I already have the hundreds of thousands of readers. These readers are your target audience of Celtic Woman fans. Everyone who follows Celtic Woman reads my blog including the media, record labels, fans and of course PBS, including the president of PBS herself."
I went on with my letter to CAMI about other issues. Some of these things Im going to cover in other blog posts in the future. When I brought up to Rebekah that whatever someone in CW might have said that triggered the response we got I wanted to explain it. Rebekah told me that nobody in Celtic Nights had any contact with anyone in Celtic Woman. That I knew to be a lie because I was the one that suggested to Amy that Rebecca Winkworth contact Lynn about the crap posted on her Facebook page. And guess what? Lynn did clean up those posts on her page in the days following my recommendation. Coincidence or is Rebekah a lying cunt? You decide.


Thursday, October 09, 2014

Celtic Woman Fan Glenn Skinner aka Rott'n Rebel Passes Away

My friend and fellow Celtic Woman fan Glenn Skinner aka Rott'n Rebel passed away last night.

My first contact with Glenn was on Facebook back in 2007. I didn't meet him in person until March 2009 when I picked him up at the airport in Boston for the first Maireadfest in Wilkes-Barre, PA.

Glenn and I were good friends. We spent many hours on the phone together, traveled the country seeing Celtic Woman shows together and had many good times.

About a week and a half ago I called him at the hospital to see how he was doing. He didn't sound good but I was hopeful and expected he would recover from his illness. I wasn't aware just how bad he really was.

The last time I saw him was last summer for the Celtic Woman shows in Washington State, Portland and Vancouver B.C. Scott Manke himself had been in the hospital and couldn't make those shows so he gave Glenn his concert tickets and I bought Glenn round trip tickets to fly up to Seattle to attend those 4 shows with me. I never would have thought it would be the last time I would see him.

He had a great sense of humor. The first morning we woke up at the hotel we were staying at in Manchester he said..."Oh my God!!! I can't feel my legs!!!! I will miss him as he was a very good friend.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

The Dark Side of Celtic Nights - The Show Part 1

In a previous blog update, I mentioned that I would be writing a lengthy post and that I would be "eating crow." Well, sadly that is still the case. For those of you who have been reading my blog for the last year you will note that I had been supporting a new group/show called Celtic Nights. I was first introduced to this show because a former choir member from Celtic Woman had joined them for their spring 2013 tour. I went and saw them in Austin, Texas back in February 2013. Before I go any further with this post I have to state clearly that I DO NOT recommend attending this show, now or in the future. In some ways (some not all of) these people with Celtic Nights are worse then what Celtic Woman LTD management has ever been. At least with Celtic Woman, their management has made no bones about the fact they despise the fans and have never indicated anything else since it's inception back in September 2004. Celtic Nights on the other hand has engaged in a massive ploy of deception which I will go into full detail about here and in subsequent posts. This deception is called GASLIGHTING.

As a result of the experience while attending the Celtic Nights show in Austin, I decided that I would go forward and see more of their shows in 2014. As their 2013 tour ended, I had made several comments on the Celtic Nights Facebook page expressing my desire to see them again and even posted that I would like to see them possibly tour in Alaska. I received the following message from Michael Durkan the day I posted about asking if it would be possible to have them tour in Alaska.

Hi Anthony. Alaska would be great. ..send ne an email to .." This led to my giving a response about such a tour. I will publish these communications further in this blog post. It will be within the email I sent to Alan Whelan on March 23, 2014 titled "You are way out of line."

Now its time to get into the details of the deception and how bad these people really are. Now, I am not saying that all of the people within Celtic Nights are bad but unlike Celtic Woman this isn't confined to just their management. This also includes 4 of their artists as well. I will be naming these artists by name and if needed I will add to the list if I see anything coming from the those that aren't named in the original posting. Not all the performers with Celtic Nights are bad only the following should not be supported in this order.
(1) Rebekah Robertson
(2) Heather Metcalf
(3) Gavin Boyle and
(4) Ciara Doyle
(5) Una Pedreschi ADDED 03/21/2016
I will be going into great detail about the above names in future posts. I originally was going to do it in one long post here but that isn't the best way to expose it. It would be much better if it were done as a series of posts.

Now here is what happened. I'll start with the straw that broke the camels back and work my way backwards.

On March 17, 2014 in York, PA myself and 8 others from the Celtic Woman fan base that I turned onto Celtic Nights went to the show. Celtic Nights has a written policy concerning the taking of photos during the show. Their written policy is as follows.

"In general it is not allowed to take film-, video-, or sound recordings of the show. However in these modern times it is impossible to stop people using mobile phones to take photo’s/video. Any person in the audience without clearance who is seen using a larger professional camera or professional video camera should be told to stop.

Spectators are allowed to take pictures from their seat without flashlight.

Flash photography is prohibited. As such, if anyone witnesses flash photography during the performance, it is critical that the person be informed immediately of our "no-flash" policy. In most cases the photographer is unaware of this policy and intends no harm. Understanding this situation is important when talking to the patrons. Be polite but firm when informing the patrons.

Most will comply with one warning.

Please provide the following information for the audience:

- The use of flash photography is prohibited

- The use of sound- or video recording equipment is prohibited

- Films or other recording mediums may be confiscated"

This is posted on the official website of Celtic Nights. Here is the link.

When the show in York started, Mike Brown took a few photos without flash. About 10 minutes into the show the house manager came up to Mike and told him that the taking of video was not allowed. We informed the house manager that video wasn't being taken that only non-flash photos were being taken in compliance with Celtic Nights written policy and the venue policy. About 5 minutes before the end of the first act one of the security people came up to Mike and told him that he was ordered to confiscate his camera. We explained that photos were allowed. The security guy was nice but told us he was just doing his job. I told Mike to give up his camera and I would deal with it during the intermission. My mistake was not in taking Mikes camera myself and allowing myself to be ejected from the theater and taking it up with Celtic Nights directly and then filing legal action for breech of contract once Celtic Nights handled this situation the way they did.

The morning after the show I called the venue and spoke to the general manager for about 45 minutes. I explained what occurred and explained what the contract said. It clearly states that photos were allowed as long as flash wasn't used. Not only was this stated in the theater contract but it was also clearly stated in the letter that accompanied the tickets directly from the venue itself.

The general manager was nice and agreed with what I was telling her. She told me that the security violated their own house rules by confiscating Mike's camera. I was told by the venue that nothing like that would happen on their end in the future and she would instruct all her employees to never do that again.

Although the venue general manager was nice about this whole situation, the tour manager for Celtic Nights (Alan Whelan) was not. When Scott Manke contacted him about what happened he began the gaslighting process by (1) denying that the theater contract stated that "spectators are allowed to take pictures from their seat without flashlight." In addition he was livid in the fact that we had read the theater contract that is posted online. Here is a copy of the email Alan wrote to Scott and my response back to Alan.

Hi Scott,

Sorry for the late reply.

I wanted to talk to a few people to make sure I had all the facts before coming back to you.

Regarding the incident as you put it.

I have talked to several of the dancers and singers and they have told me that whoever was taking the photos that night was definitely using a flash.

Not only were they using a flash, but the camera was taking a flash photograph every couple of seconds and it was very distracting. One of the performers actually had to walk off the stage because of it.

I talk to every venue in advance of our performances.

My chat includes lots of things including security protocols, emergency protocols, power cuts, technical problems, lots of other subjects and procedures for what to do if they arise.

Included in that talk is photo/video/recording policies and I instruct them on how to handle patrons.

The rider is an operational guideline but it goes to the main venue contacts and does not always filter down to the people working on the show, so I have a chat with the staff on site every day.

In the photography situation we are talking about - a warning is to be given first, then if the patron does not adhere to what they are being told, the camera is to be confiscated and any photos taken are to be erased. The camera is to be returned at the end of the performance. If the person will not give up the camera they are to be removed from the theatre.

The venue gave a couple of warnings before confiscating the camera and they were exactly within their rights to do so when the photography continued.

Photos or video for patrons are only allowed without flash and only from a mobile phone.

No cameras are allowed except for professional Press/TV photographers and these must be sanctioned by me in advance of the performance.

This person was not using a phone.

I am a little bit annoyed that you have obviously gotten a copy of my technical rider and that you are quoting it to me - albeit incorrectly.

It should not be available to anyone other than venues presenting the show and I would like to know where you got it from.

I am equally annoyed that the person taking the photos that night told the venue person that they had specific permission from me to take photos.

This is certainly not the case and I do not know the person involved.

The technical manager of the venue came to me during Act 1 of the show to verify the above statement and I told them that no one that evening had my permission.

During the intermission I was advised of what had happened and I told the venue that they had done exactly what was required and not to return the camera until after the show.

I believe there was a complaint made to the theatre involved and I will be contacting them on Monday to make sure that they know they were completely correct in the manner that this incident was handled and if anyone has an issue with that, they need to contact me, as I am the person who is fully responsible for all decisions and policies concerning the running of this show while it is on tour.

I suggest you make it known to your fans, the rules that we have in place, so that this does not happen again.

I trust this is the last I am going to hear of this.

If I have time at the last show, I would like to have a chat with you as I think there are a few guidelines that need to be set in place for future performances.


Alan Whelan

And my response back to Alan.

Dear Alan,

I am very disappointed in your response to Scott Manke concerning the incident in York, PA. However the incident in York will not be the topic of this email. What I want to touch on here specifically is your comment concerning where we got a copy of the Celtic Nights theater contract from. But before I do that I want to just say that Scott Manke and myself both flew to Ireland last August to meet with both Michael and Rebekah. We spent a total of 20 hours over the course of 2 days with them. We invited both Michael and Rebekah to the DVD recording of Celtic Woman, which they accepted. Michael couldn't attend because he had to go to Australia to put together a future tour of Celtic Nights. We were assured by both of them that the type of arrogant attitude we just got from you would not happen.

I went into great detail about our experiences and the well over half a million dollars we have spend going to Celtic Woman shows and the treatment we have received from their management. We were assured we would not see anything like that from a Celtic Nights tour management. In your email response to Scott you stated the following..."

I am a little bit annoyed that you have obviously gotten a copy of my technical rider and that you are quoting it to me - albeit incorrectly.

It should not be available to anyone other than venues presenting the show and I would like to know where you got it from."

First off lets clear a few things up. This is NOT YOUR technical rider. This is Michael's show not yours. This document is posted publically online right on the Celtic Nights official website just like it is posted on the websites of all the other shows that Michael owns. All of them basically say the same thing only some are worded slightly differently.

As to where I got it, not only is it available online but I was sent these documents by Rebekah along with all the promotional material for the show by her because we are attempting to get the show to tour in Alaska. I am going to include within this email all the communications I have had with both Rebekah and Michael concerning this project. Let me state flat out that I was thinking about fronting my own money for a tour in Alaska but now that we have received your arrogant response to Scott it is now very doubtful that I will finance the upfront costs for any tours in Alaska or elsewhere going forward.

As I indicated above, the document is available online right on the Celtic Nights website. Here is the link. Also if you go to the Celtic Nights website there is a link that says "Book Celtic Nights" Here is what comes up.

GFD Promotions - INBOX Producers


23 South Frederick Street,

Dublin 2, Ireland



Michael Durkan: Producer - Company

Mobile: +353-86-8508341

Rebekah Robertson: Business Development

Mobile: +353-86-1048395

As you can see you are not mentioned as a contact for booking this show. The only 2 people listed are Michael and Rebekah. I'm going to be blunt here. You are an independent contracted service company that GFD uses. Just so there is no mistake in the chain of command, your boss is Michael and you answer to him and his staff who handle the booking and tour arrangements. That means by definition, since it was Michael who first approached me in a private message about looking into my request about booking a possible Alaskan tour, and the fact that he delegated that responsibility to Rebekah to make that happen, Rebekah is YOUR boss. NOT THE OTHER WAY AROUND. In this matter you answer to Rebekah. So you best drop this insider elitist attitude right now before you do any more damage then you have already done...........

(the email continues on with the various communications I had with both Michael Durkan and Rebekah about attempting to get Celtic Nights to tour in Alaska. The night before this incident took place in York, PA I personally met with Michael about financing a tour in Alaska. Days after our response from Alan I wrote to Michael withdrawing any effort on my pat to either act as as promoter, or financer for any future Alaska tour or DVD recording.)

As you can see you are way out of line. I am not happy to say the least and I will be in touch with Michael. You are looking at us as just fans and that simply isn't the case. In subsequent telephone conversations with Michael, he has approached us as becoming investors and helping to finance his efforts for a DVD and taking this company and this show to the next level. Your actions here jeopardized that. If I were him Id fire you without hesitation regardless of your 14 year relationship with you.

I hope you think long and hard about your attitude and what kind of financing and support this has cost Michael. Remember you are a paid contractor and Michael is looking for people to help him pay your salary.

Think about it. You owe all of us an apology.


After this email was received by Alan then the gaslighting really took off. As a result 4 of the Celtic Nights artists decided to join in. I will cover in greater detail about this in future posts. But for now I finally wanted to get this up on my blog so people can see what these people are all about. In future posts I will cover what was done on Facebook and in other emails I received. The fact remains that these people are not trust worthy and I would submit they are worse then Celtic Woman LTD. Once I lay out the whole story I doubt anyone will disagree with me and will agree that Celtic Nights should not be supported.

It's pretty clear from their own contract that they violated what was implied and clearly stated in black and white. Not only that but Scott Manke and myself had meeting in Ireland and many telephone conversations with both Rebekah, and Michael concerning the tour and policies. We were lied to on every front.


Saturday, June 07, 2014

Breif Update

I know people have been waiting for me to update my blog. I promise that I will. Ive just been so busy with work that I haven't had the time to finish writing the blog post I have intended. Im having to eat crow because I believed that Celtic Nights was a viable option and substitute for the treatment we have seen from Celtic Woman and all the problems associated within that organization. Nothing could be further from the truth.  In the days following my last post I decided to back off on writing what I originally planned. I am going to reverse that decision again and follow through with my original intent.

When I do finally get the post written in full and publish it, it is going to be hard hitting against Celtic Nights. The review will be called "The Dark Side of Celtic Nights - The Show." Unfortunately as good as the show is there is a dark side to it that goes far beyond anything that Celtic Woman has done. Although both entities from a business standpoint are bad, I will say that Celtic Nights is far worse because they flat out engaged in a deception that nobody in Celtic Woman has ever attempted.

Although Celtic Woman management in the past has engaged in deception, Celtic Nights took the deception to a whole new level and embarked on a campaign of GASLIGHTING. If you are not familiar with gaslighting then you need to read  about it.

The gaslighting campaign not only was done by the Celtic Nights management but was also done by at least 2 of their performers and as a result 2 more performers decided to join in, for a total of 4 performers involved in the gaslighting campaign.

Im not sure how much I will be detailing but I have to give enough information to educate people about what was done. I do not recommend supporting Celtic Nights in any way. Having said that, this does not mean that Celtic Woman should be supported either. I have come to the conclusion that all these shows by their nature are magnets for sociopaths and psychopaths. Usually this is confined to the management level. However we have seen evidence within Celtic Nights that this behavior is also within the ranks of some of their performers as well. Maybe 3 of these 4 specific performers are being gaslighted as well. I don't discount that possibility but their role cannot be ignored.

Stay tuned.

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Another Blog Post Coming Soon

I wanted to just give a quick update here. I will be putting up a new blog post as soon as I can. Once it is up I strongly suggest people read the entire thing. I'm warning you now that it will be long and detailed.

Since my last update here it seems that things on the Celtic Woman front have gotten somewhat better. From what Im being told, Maggie from Madstone is being nice to people as well as the new Celtic Woman tour manager. I'm sorry I do not know his name.

Having said that, the fact it seems that Celtic Woman is treating the fans better is something I do not expect to continue for too much longer.

In my next blog post I will be "eating crow" but it's only fair to come clean and admit publically when I've been wrong about something. it doesn't really have anything to do with Celtic Woman directly. But indirectly it does. As I stated above I want everyone to read my next post all the way through. I will be covering a lot of ground and will be backing it up with many email and private messages that I will be making public. It's going to take some time to gather all this information up and organize it for a blog post format so please stay tuned.

Sunday, March 02, 2014

50% Of Celtic Woman Paid Meet and Greet Members Denied Entry

Breaking News!!!!!

The Celtic Woman show sold through the PBS station in Gainesville, FL on March 1, 2014 denied half of the members who paid $250.00 each for the meet and greet.

I am so happy to hear about this for several reasons. First of all some of my biggest critics were there and have now come over to my side on this issue. Also there was a lawyer present for these events. This lawyer was the very person who while was in law school was a naysayer about this very blog and the events that happened in Boston back in 2007. Now that she has experienced this for herself firsthand she now totally understands exactly what Ive been talking about all these years.

In addition there are industry insiders who have contacted us and are now fully onboard with my line of reasoning and they too can no longer deny what Ive been saying about CW LTD. One of them who worked for CW has stated that Madstone is going to destroy Celtic Woman.

For those of you in the Gainesville area who were there for the meet and greet or those that were denied entry after paying $250.00 please contact me and I can put you in touch with the lawyer that was there. Celtic Woman needs to be sued for this. I never should have given them a break back in 2007.

As I have said on this blog for some time now people need to STOP SUPPORTING CELTIC WOMAN. Also DO NOT Support Celtic Nights. They are no different. In fact, in some ways they are worse. We found out how bad Celtic Nights is at the end of their spring tour back in March.

I will update this story as I receive more information.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

The Celtic Woman Fans Are Finally Waking Up!!

Below is a link to a review posted in the Mairead Forum about the newest Celtic Woman show. I have been a Celtic Woman fan almost 10 years. I have made the decision to not attend any more of their shows. Many others are beginning to realize that Celtic Woman is over rated. I am now recommending people to not go to anymore Celtic Woman shows. You do have a choice. Celtic Nights is a better show. The Celtic Woman fans who have attended the Celtic Nights shows are in 100% agreement. You get more bang for the buck. Here in Texas I am going to 4 Celtic Nights shows. All 4 shows with front row and full cast meet and greet after the show has cost me a total of $230.00. That is less then 1 Celtic Woman show with meet and greet with a crapy seat.
Scrap Celtic Woman and go check out Celtic Nights. Trust me you wont be disappointed.

I purposely did not read any of the previously posted show reviews.  As we all know, change (Chloe leaving) is hard accept.  Since I did not make it to any of the Christmas shows, this year, it had been over 6 months since I last saw a CW show (Red Rocks).  I was looking forward to a new beginning. 

(EDIT prior to posting).  After I wrote this, I decided to wait a little bit before posting.  I finally read the posted reviews (primarily Nashville).  While there are some things I don’t like,  let me say that I agree 100% that the music and the performers are outstanding!  Numerous people have said that CW is the hardest working group in the world.  To do what they do, night after night, at the level it is being done leaves one in awe of their talent and dedication.  Am I getting jaded?  Maybe, but that’s my problem, not theirs.

So, here we go.


Ruth Eckerd Hall, Clearwater.  Of all the shows I have attended, this is probably my least favorite location.  The only redeeming grace is its only 20 miles from my house.  No travel!!!

Seating is just over 2,000.  It’s all one big, fan shaped room – no balconies, etc.  If you are in the back, you are a LOOONNNG way from the stage.  35 or so seats per row near the front, with no interior aisles.  It makes it difficult for things such as the beginning of Amazing Grace.

I was in Row F, (6 rows from the stage) band side.  Yes, I had PBS tickets, and as we are all aware, you don’t get great seats from them anymore.

Mass confusion from the staff on when/where the M&G was.  Never saw anyone from local PBS. 

One of my pet peeves is when the venue either does not close the doors or leaves the lights on.  In this case, the doors are recessed towards the lobby, with a light over them.  For whatever reason, they didn’t turn off all the lights, including the one near me. 

A couple of ladies sitting behind me didn’t shut up during the entire show.  I complained to an usher at intermission, but she said they couldn’t do anything.  My daughter wouldn’t let me turn around and say shut up.  (OK, it was kinda funny when the one lady said that (Tommy) had really funny looking bagpipes!)


WOW, and I mean that in a bad way.  Before anyone gets excited, the girls were their usual charming and pleasant selves.  There have been off-forum comments that don’t have anything good to say about CW Ltd, Madstone, etc.  I’ve never felt like that until last night.

The real short version is no one at CW cares.  It seemed as if they had never done a M&G before.  There were a couple people from CW around, but most of them looked like they just finished unloading the trucks.  At least TRY to look professional.

No idea who was in charge.  At least last year, Ken made the effort to introduce himself and told everyone what the procedure was.  The guy who was apparently running it (and no idea who he is) shows up late, simply says you are going to go in and get a picture.  He said he didn’t know about autographs, etc.  Overhearing some conversations, he just got a new job, which was obviously way more important.  (Hey, I get it.  It’s not his money). The “official tour photographer” would take our picture.  I’d rather have someone standing in line with me take the picture.  They couldn’t do a worse job.

There were only 16 people at the M&G.  It was held in the Green Room (better than some places I went last year!).  Drawback – we stood in front of a “wall” that had the venues name plastered all over it.  Think most sports news conferences.

Incredibly rushed M&G.  The first person when in about 7:15 (8:00 show).  Everyone was thru in 20 minutes.  I was able to introduce myself to Mairead C and was able to at least say Hi to everyone else and got a hug.  Pushed into line to get a photo and then told to move on.  Come on guys.  For what we pay, at least give me a minute or two to talk.  I'm giving up the photo at my next M&G.

I guess that CW really does feel they don’t need PBS (and loyal fans) any more.


I won’t go into great detail about the show.  Others have done that far more eloquently than I.  Some general impressions.

Mairead C is a joy.  Chloe had a more powerful voice, but Mairead blends in well, and has a beautiful voice. 

Not a big fan of the new gowns.  Yes, they are colorful, however, after being in construction business a long time, I have learned that color is a very personal issue.  In my mind, they don’t blend together.

A few sound issues.  During a lot of the show, they appeared to be having an issue with mixing.  You could hear individual voices of the choir. 

The show seems “smaller” if that makes sense.  The stage is smaller and Ray’s drum set is reconfigured.  No big drums.  Is this a factor of trying to cut out a trailer?   As I left, you could see a portion of the loading dock.  I could only see one truck backed in and there was nothing on the trailer.  In the past, there was tour info on it.  Didn’t see the buses.

The show seemed short.  Including a 20 minute intermission, it was right at 2 hours.  I tend to remember last year’s being a little longer.  Tommy does The New Ground again.  I’m always waiting for it to segue into Isle of Hope, Isle of Tears – it just doesn’t work with Orinoca Flow.

While the “drums and dancing” segment was very entertaining, it went on a little too long.  The show is Celtic Woman, not Riverdance.  This goes back to my feeling that the show is downsizing.  Less Celtic WOMEN.  More “others”. Maybe Mairead C had a better agent when her contract was negotiated. 

Anthony did start Amazing Grace on one side of the auditorium.  Lisa and Mairead did the start of TAR in the audience as well.  Mairead got an older gentlemen to stand up and dance with her.  (Note to self – find tickets on right side aisle!! Grin).

TAR was its usual fun song.  I’m just not convinced it was the right way to end the first half.  The audience didn’t seem to know that was the end of the half.

I’m not a fan of Danny Boy.  It’s been done way too many times by way too many artists.  Having said that, I liked the way it was presented this tour.

On a related note, the show just didn’t seem to flow.  While I love Mo Ghile Mear, You Raise Me Up and The Parting Glass, I don’t like them back to back to back.  They are all “big” songs that deserve their own place.  There was a standing O after each one.  About the only time the crowd really go into it.


Where I go from here?  Don’t know.  I was very disappointed last night.  I have a show ticket only for Tuesday in the second row and another M&G on Thursday.   Hopefully, one of them may rekindle the magic.  Otherwise, I have some tough decisions to make.  For me, this is about the whole experience, not just the music.  If it was just music, I’ll listen to the CD.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

2 More Members of The Celtic Woman Crew Have Been Fired!!

I wont give details on this but it has been confirmed to me that 2 more people within CW have been fired by Maggie.
The people left in this outfit NEED to come out publically and start spilling the beans on what is going on.
That's all I have to say on this for now.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Time to finally give my thoughts on Chloe's departure

It's been over 3 months since Chloe announced her departure from Celtic Woman. I posted that I would withhold my thoughts on this event because at the time I was in Ireland for the DVD recording of the latest Christmas show. Also since then I have been very busy and just haven't had the time to update my blog.
I have had many people contact me about my thoughts on Chloe's departure. Frankly I was not surprised that she made the decision to leave Celtic Woman. The part that was surprising to me was the timing of it. Ever since Chloe announced that she was living in Los Angles along with Dermott many of us in the avid fan base knew that Chloe would be the next to leave. However we assumed that Chloe would make her departure at the conclusion of the Australia, Europe, and US Christmas tours. None of us expected she would leave just days before the DVD recording. However, her timing was perfect. Chloe's announcement was the final shot in the battle and war between the management and the avid fans. Chloe's actions made the management of Celtic Woman raise a "white flag of surrender" to the avid fan community.
Chloe was certainly missed at that recording. At the time of the recording we could only speculate as to the reasons why she departed but could not put our finger on any one or multitude of reasons. Those of us in the avid fan base now have strong evidence as to the reasons why Chloe made her decision. Before I get into that I am going to repost her statement here.
"As most of you know by now, Celtic Woman have announced my decision to part ways. After almost ten wonderful years with Celtic Woman, it’s with a bittersweet heart that I’ve decided the time has come for me to spend some time focusing on other projects. This was no overnight decision. It has been the outcome of a lot of consideration over the last few months.

If you know one thing about us Celtic gals…it’s that we like to travel!!! With the last few years being so busy, our hectic schedules haven’t allowed much room to do some of the things creatively I’ve personally wanted to do for quite some time now. Along with Celtic Woman’s evolving nature, I feel it has naturally come at a good point for me to embark on a new adventure. Everyday I genuinely feel so lucky to have been a part of this incredible journey from the very beginning. I’m so thankful Celtic Woman has given me this fantastic platform to do what I love and to share it with you all over the world. To have travelled the four corners of the globe and to have had the great honor of bringing our music to people everywhere and the memories that has created is something I will cherish as long as I live.

The last nine years of my life would not have been the same without getting to see so many of your lovely faces, to meet you and to hear so many of your amazing stories of how the music we create within Celtic Woman has touched your lives in some way. You will never know how much the generosity of your beautiful cards, letters, gifts, tweets, Facebook messages, paintings and photo albums throughout the years have meant to me. My heart will always lie with you, the fans. I want you all to know how incredibly grateful I am that you continue to love and support me and knowing I can move forward in my life with that makes me believe anything is possible and inspires me to strive for bigger and better.

As always, I want to wish all my love and continued success to my Celtic family. To our insanely talented cast and crew, my dear pals in the band, to David for creating so much wonderful music for us over the years and to all my beautiful Celtic sisters who have shared this journey with me and to my amazing fans and friends all over the world…thank you for being such a massive and incredible part of my life! I’m so thrilled to share this crazy and busy time with you! I can’t wait for the exciting times ahead!

I love you all!
Here’s to the next chapter!
Chloƫ xxx"

First of all, Chloe's statement is very telling. She stated "Along with Celtic Woman’s evolving nature, I feel it has naturally come at a good point for me to embark on a new adventure." The reference to Celtic Woman's evolving nature is the key phrase. At the time this was written and released to the fans we could only speculate as to what that evolving nature was. We speculated that there was a possibility of Celtic Woman downsizing the show even further then they had already done. Many of us believe this is a good possibility. Celtic Woman has gone from 5 front line artists to 4. A 20% drop. They have taken the touring choir from 8 choir members down to 4. A 50% drop. They have taken the touring semi-trucks from 3 down to 2. A 33% drop. So based on these numbers overall the tour has had a 35% overall cut. These cuts have not all taken place at once but have been done over the last 5 years. It just so happens in discussions among the fans and some of the crew on the last tour that ticket sales are down by 30%. This is in addition to the decline the previous year of about 20% as noticed by the fans in 2012. As Celtic Woman cuts the result is lower ticket sales and lower show attendance.

The overall cuts to the show Im sure is only one reason why Chloe has departed. We also speculate that another reason why she may have left was because further staff cuts are being looked at. Scott Manke first suggested this weeks before we went to Ireland. He suggested that based upon the fact that Celtic Woman has reduced their choir by 50% and the fact that during the Christmas symphony tours Celtic Woman doesn't use a choir at all that it's possible they will cut the choir altogether for future US tours going forward. At the time he made this statement I have to say that I thought he was nuts! Once Chloe's departure was announced I began to think he could be onto something. The night of the DVD recording I concluded that Scott Manke was probably right in his thinking the choir would be eliminated. The Home For Christmas DVD is the first DVD in their history that DOES NOT include the Celtic Woman choir. We know that at least one Celtic Woman choir member, Sara Gannon, was there but she wasn't on stage performing. Why? The simple answer has to be Celtic Woman is setting the stage to dump the choir at some date in the future. If Chloe got wise to this then it would make sense for her to depart because her boyfriend is in the choir.

Also since the DVD recording we have learned a few things. Although I cant go into detail about it, we have learned that Chloe's departure is not the only one in the last 5 months. Unfortunately the main person behind the Springfield, IL debacle (who should have been terminated at that time) has allowed to continue to wreak havoc once again.  This too goes to the evolving nature statement. Could these events have been part of her decision? We don't know for sure but we suspect that this is strongly the case.

In the final analysis, there are many reasons for Chloe's departure. We know from talking to one of her family members while we were in Ireland that Chloe had been thinking about this "for some time." This decision was not made on the spur of the moment. Chloe had been thinking of this long and hard.  Given that after the US tour in June Chloe and Dermott spent a couple weeks in Atlanta visiting Lisa Kelly I suspect Lisa was one of the first informed as to Chloe's decision. I'm sure Chloe was there to seek out advise from Lisa on how to proceed to break the news to Celtic Woman LTD.

During the DVD recording we were in the lookout for all the sociopaths and psychopaths within the Celtic Woman and Madstone management. That sociopath Maggie from Madstone was nowhere to be seen. And we were looking, believe me. We now know why she kept a hidden profile. We now also understand why Dave Kavanagh came up to us after the show and talked to us for the first time in Celtic Woman history.

Now that I have covered my thoughts on Chloe's departure its now time for me to talk about Chloe and her future. Chloe is one of the original members of Celtic Woman and she was one of the first ones I met back in 2005. Ive watched her as she has grown up and she has become more and more talented. Her voice has only gotten better as time has gone on. I really hope to see more of her in the future. Hopefully she will do more albums and tour as a solo artist. However, I'm afraid that Chloe may not be able to hold her current Celtic Woman fan base much longer. Since her departure from Celtic Woman, Chloe has been making some really big mistakes. In order for Chloe to be able to hold onto what she has spent the last 9 years building, she needs to look at the potential damage she is currently inflicting upon herself.

First of all Chloe has got to understand that people have a very short attention span. Chloe has a very narrow window of opportunity to launch a solo career or expand upon what she has spent the last 9 years building on with Celtic Woman. It has been almost 3 1/2 months since Chloe has made her departure announcement. To date Chloe has yet to keep her fans in the loop of what she has planned as far as any touring, albums she may be doing, or anything to keep the interests of the fans. Chloe has less then a month to secure what she has built upon or she is going to have to start all over from scratch. What I mean is this. Once the Home For Christmas DVD begins to air on all the PBS stations next month there will be millions of viewers who are going to notice Chloe is not on the DVD. The first thing those people are going to do is hit the internet looking for reasons as to why she is not on that DVD and what she is currently doing. Because Chloe has been completely silent on her future plans, those people are going to assume that Chloe has dropped off the radar like Orlagh, Alex, Lynn, and Meav. And as I said before, people have short attention spans. Chloe needs to be ready for the influx of millions that are going to be eager to hear news about her. Once that show stops airing on PBS after the holidays those people will go back to their lives and forget about Chloe. It is true that Chloe has made a few posts online but she has yet to keep the interests of her fans. She did do an interview that was not viewable to be read by US fans. I have no idea what it says because its only available to subscribers to that Irish newspaper. I hope someone Chloe knows reads this and tells her that her window is very short. She has to take the steps now or start all over from scratch. Chloe has got to unlearn what she has learned about fan relations while she was with Celtic Woman. She has got to be interactive online. She needs a website with current information. She needs to keep her avid fans informed as to what she has planned so word can spread. She has a fan base that is active. If she wants to keep that fan base she need to take the steps now to secure it. If she doesn't she will loose all that she has worked so hard for. I wish Chloe all the best and I want to see her succeed but I cant ignore the fact that people will loose interest if she stays silent for too long about her future.


Tuesday, August 06, 2013

Witholding Statement Concerning Chloe's Departure

Of course Chloe has announced that she is leaving Celtic Woman. I have thoughts about that decision and to why it was done. Also I will say that it was expected and predicted.

I didn't intend on blogging about this today but I have noticed that the artists are curious about what I have to say about it. They were looking at my blog from the Helix a few hours ago. I will comment about Chloe and other Celtic Woman related events maybe tomorrow after the DVD recording is concluded or in the coming days. I only wanted to post directly to the artists that I am paying attention.

Friday, June 14, 2013

"Lambe Crossing" Jacket For "Li'l Lambe" Unveiled At Portland Show!!

I will be posting a review about the shows I saw in the Pacific Northwest in the coming days. I wanted to take the time and post specifically about the jacket I had made for Lisa Lambe, how and why it came about, it's unveiling to her, and of course the reaction by her and others.

As you can see in the photo above (although Lisa's hair is in the way) Lisa Lambe is wearing the jacket I had made for her. This project was long in the works. Back in 2009 on our flight to Ireland for the Songs From The Heart DVD recording at Powerscourt, I proposed to 2 of the administrators of the Mairead Forum my idea about having jackets made for the forum members. I had the company picked out and the design of the jackets would be the Fiddler Crossing Sign with added Irish and American flags signifying the tribute Celtic Woman song "O America." I commissioned the first 3 jackets as a test in mid August and received them on September 1, 2009. The first 3 jackets were made for myself, Scott Manke and Mairead. I was so pleased with how they turned out that I posted photos on the Mairead Forum and told other members of the forum that they could order the jackets from me for the fall 2009 tour. I had one stipulation, no forum member could wear their jacket in public until Mairead received hers first. You can read about the details of the presentation of that jacket to Mairead here. In this thread are photos of the jackets and the story behind it. Now onto the "Lambe Crossing" jacket.
I had been kicking around the idea for doing a jacket for Lisa Lambe. The Lambe Crossing sign I considered unique enough to put on a jacket. The sign was designed I believe in the spring of 2011. Who designed it I do not know. Maybe someone can comment here so I can give credit to it's creator. Anyway the Lambe Crossing sign on paper has been seen from day one by Lisa and she has always been receptive to it.

Lisa joined Celtic Woman in 2011 after Lynn departed following the Australian tour of 2010. The spring tour of 2011 and then for the rest of that whole year (with a few exceptions) was a really bad year for the fans of Celtic Woman in general. Those issues are covered extensively on this blog.

2012 saw the release of the Believe DVD and the tours to follow. 2012 saw the departure of Lisa Kelly and the addition of Susan McFadden. Lisa Lambe in less then a year struck a cord and a fan following not just because she is a great singer but for another very important reason as well. Lisa Lambe is extremely receptive to the fans. I can think of no other member of Celtic Woman, other then Deirdre and Orlagh, that have been as receptive to the fans as Lisa Lambe. Lisa Kelly once was but that came to an end once her husband became the general manager of Celtic Woman LTD and later the CEO.

As documented on this blog, there have been many issues related in how the fans have been treated by the management of Celtic Woman. Between the years 2007 through 2011 management basically had a lockdown on nearly all interaction between the artists and the fans. There was one exception to that. When Lisa Lambe joined Celtic Woman she never abided by the lockdown. Lisa Lambe, from DAY ONE has been very interactive with her fans on a EQUAL BASIS. On Twitter she responds to most of the tweets she gets. At shows she is very engaging from the stage. When she is approached by fans on the street she almost always stops to talk to them. And finally, if she recognizes familiar fans she goes out of her way to get their attention and spends time with them.

I personally had only met Lisa Lambe 2 times prior to this years tour. I had never tweeted her prior to about a week before the Portland show this year. This means I have had almost no interaction with Lisa Lambe except from the stage and at 2 meet and greets. I have received many reports from others via phone calls, and online messages about their interactions with Lisa Lambe. As a result I began to kick around the idea of having a jacket made for her.

A lot of thought went into the creation of that jacket before I did it. I had to weigh many factors. First of all I did not want a repeat of what occurred with the Fiddler Crossing jackets. Mairead was very receptive to the jacket in the beginning, as were the other artists. I had Fiddler Crossing jackets made for all the artists of Celtic Woman in the spring of 2010. The Mairead Forum for all intensive purposes is the real Celtic Woman Forum. The Mairead Forum is not just a forum as a tribute to Mairead. It is also the de facto Celtic Woman Forum. Celtic Woman management back in 2005, early 2006 made the decision to divide the fan base on the official Celtic Woman Forum they ran on their website. They made this decision with malice and made it public. That decision led a few months later to them shutting down the forum on their website. As a result, Danielle Spurr (I wont use her married name here) created the fan based Celtic Woman Forum currently located at It was she who first registered the domain name and designed the first CWF. The jacket idea really wasn't mine at the start. The idea originated in Toronto back in 2006 by another fan named Jan Harper. It was her idea to have Celtic Woman Forum jackets done. That never happened because of the division Celtic Woman management started by pitting fan against fan.

When I created the fiddler crossing jackets, they were something I was very proud of. However, by the middle of 2011 I regretted having them done. I want to make it clear here. In total I bore the cost of having 11 jackets made plus the setup costs. Five of those jackets went to the artists of CW. There were about another 30 jackets ordered by Mairead Forum members which they paid for. On numerous occasions there were forum questions submitted to Mairead for her to answer. Those questions to date have yet to be answered. One of the questions was concerning her jacket. Did she ever wear it? I along with others have come to the conclusion that it's doubtful that none of the artists have their jackets or wear them. We asked on day one for a photo of Mairead wearing hers. I accept the fact that in total just for the artists alone I spent $1,100 on those jackets and it was a total waste. Furthermore as time went on I noticed that the Celtic Woman management and the production crew would look at those that had those jackets with absolute hate in their eyes. Mairead's future husband was the worst. I didn't know who he was at the time, but in Jacksonville, FL 2010 we were getting into the elevator of the hotel. Jim came up to the elevator which was about to close. I held the door open for him but once he saw the jacket he refused to get in. The look in his eyes is one I'll never forget. There were only 2 of us in the elevator. I mentioned to Scott about the evil look we were given and it was then then it was explained to me who it was.

Going back to the Lambe Crossing jacket, I had to ask myself if Lisa would appreciate it? Would she wear it? And would it be money well spent considering that it was going to cost almost $300 to have made? When I talked with several people about it and with much thought I was able to answer "yes" to all of those questions. It was conveyed to me that if anyone would wear it proudly, it would be Lisa. So I bit the bullet and had the jacket done.

Once the jacket was done, I email pictures of it to several people. They all liked it. Lisa Lambe was told that Scott Manke and I would have a special gift for her in Portland but she wasn't told what it was. One week before the Portland show Scott ended up in the hospital and had to have emergency surgery. As a result he wasn't able to attend the shows we planed to attend a year in advance. Glenn Skinner took his place.

The idea for being able to present Lisa with her special gift came in the fact that we know the girls love Starbucks. I was hoping to be able to meet her at the Starbucks near the venue in Portland. That didn't happen so I had 2 other ideas. I would give to jacket either to Bubba or Ray before the show if I saw them or I would show the jacket to Lisa during her first solo since we were in the front row. Then after the show I would find a staff member to give it to her. In the end I showed it to her during the show.

We were seated in the front row. When the show started I had the jacket in my lap. The second song was Lisa's first solo piece. During the whole song I held the Jacket to my chest pointing at the name tag that said "Li'l Lambe" I pointed at it the whole song. I didn't know this at the time but Glenn also was pointing to it as well. When Lisa saw the name tag she smiled. Once I knew she saw it I put it down and unfolded the jacket so I could show it to her at the conclusion of Dulaman. When the song ended I stood up and showed her the back of the jacket. The look on her face was priceless. It was in that moment that I know it was worth every dime I paid.

The end of the first act started the intermission. There were several people around us that came up to us and mentioned the look Lisa gave me when I held up that jacket. It was Jim M. on the forum who suggested my giving the jacket to Lisa's husband Simon after the show. I told him that I didn't know Simon but would give it to him if Jim introduced me. When the show ended Simon was near the front of the theater to our left. Jim took me over to him and introduced me to him. I talked to him and showed him the jacket. He was impressed and told me Lisa is going to love it. I told him that I had already showed it to her during thee show so she already knew about it. He agreed to give it to her and to have a photo of her with the jacket.

Simon is very nice. We spent at least 15 minutes talking to him before we left the theater. I am so grateful that Jim was there and was able to introduce me to Simon. I am so happy with how that event took place. To be honest, I'm glad I wasn't able to give Lisa that jacket to her in person before the show. The way it was unveiled to her and the fact that her husband accepted it and gave it to her was more then I could have asked for. Everything fell into place better then I had hoped.

The next night in Vancouver, BC Glenn and I waited by the busses but Lisa had already come out and gone to the buss before we arrived. Chloe came out to get on the bus and she stopped to talked to us. I asked her about the jacket and she said she was jealous and wanted us to create a jacket for her. I think that is going to be in he works in the near future. Simon came out and I flagged him down. I asked him about the jacket and he told me Lisa loves it. I asked him if it fit because I was concerned that it might be too big. He told me it fit fine. The he says to me "I have to be honest with you, I think I'll be wearing that jacket more then Lisa." I thought that was great. I told him no problem. I'm glad that her husband is as receptive as Lisa is. Simon told me that he took a photo of Lisa wearing the jacket and that she tweeted it. I told him I would look at it the first chance I got. Simon clearly isn't the jealous or insecure type. Walking away from Vancouver left me feeling very proud and happy that I made the decision to go forward with having that jacket made. But the real kicker came 2 nights later in Seattle.
During the show in Seattle Lisa gave us all kinds of looks, smiles, and blew us kisses. After the show we went by the busses and waited. I was very lucky in that I was finally able to see Lisa. When she saw me she gave me a big hug. She told me she loved the jacket and thanked me for it. I asked her if it fit ok. She responded that it fit perfectly. Then she said everyone in her family is jealous and that they all want one. Maybe that will come in the future but for now Lisa has the only one. I think she will wear it. If not, Simon will. I know it wasn't a waste. I'm so glad I made the decision to do this. Lisa Loved it and that's what mattered to me. She loves her fans and the fans love her..

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Iran to Execute 4 Bankers on Fraud Charges

This is what needs to happen in this country. We need to just start killing these fucking "Pin Striped Bandits"
February 22, 2013
Iran’s judiciary system recently worked through the biggest banking fraud case in the nation’s history.
According to The New York Times, the outcome of the case was made official on Monday. Results were dramatic to say the least.
Judiciary spokesman Gholam-Hossein Mohseni-Ejei told reporters that four people had been officially sentenced to death on charges of corruption and “disrupting the country’s economic system.”
The guilty party was responsible for mishandling $2.6 billion of funds – using forged documents in order to receive credit from banks, permitting them to purchase state-owned companies.
From PressTV:
According to the indictment, the owners of Aria Investment Development Company, which is at the center of the controversy, had bribed bank managers to get loans and letters of credit. The company has more than 35 offshoots which are active in diverse business activities.

The four are Mahafarid Amir-Khosravi…[the prime suspect], Behdad Behzadi, his legal advisor, Iraj Shoja, his financial solicitor and Saeed Kiani Rezazadeh, head of the Ahvaz branch of Saderat Bank,” he [Gholam-Hossein Mohseni-Ejei] said.
Additionally, the president of the Bank Melli branch in Kish was condemned to life in prison. The former deputy minister Khodamorad Ahmadi has been ordered to spend a decade in prison as well, according to Iran’s attorney general, Mohseni-Ejei.
Several others involved in this infamous scandal have also been slapped with heavy fines and many have also been prohibited from holding public office.
Economist Nouriel Roubini added his two cents on the subject, reporting to Bloomberg:
“Bankers are greedy; they’ve been greedy for the last hundreds of years…t’s not a question if they are more immoral today then they were a thousand years ago, you have to make sure they behave in ways in which you minimize those risks.”
This message surely hits a little too close to home for central bankers across the globe who have been engaged with fraud and corruption in the past or present.
Constituents and political leaders spend a big chunk of time debating over how to deal with our crumbling economy. Ending system abuse from insiders and the Fed alike would undoubtedly have a positive ripple effect, but how is that goal going to be achieved? Thus far, not a single chief central banker has been arrested in light of the financial crisis.
This is completely asinine.
They keep making more money, while we struggle to thrive in the middle class. The brutal truth is that banks prosper when people are on welfare. They’re invested in keeping you down and could care less about your American Dream.
Perhaps Iran is on to something by enforcing real consequences when insiders mess with the country’s entire economic system. The death sentence decision is obviously harsh (Iran’s justice system is pretty harsh in general). Alas, what’s decided cannot be undone. They said they are trying to set an example.
Elite criminals shouldn’t be treated differently than any other criminal; they should be prosecuted, not protected.