Writer’s Block Week 1 script (Winter 2021)

A script for my radio show for the 15th of October 2021

Winter 2021 logo for my radio show with Belfield FM.

Track 1: Escape from the City — Blue Blur RMX by Ted Poley from Sonic Generations (2011)

Hoo! A kickass start to a brand new year, and a brand new show as well. Good morning, afternoon or night to my lovely listeners and welcome to… whatever we eventually call this show. I figured about calling it Writer’s Block, the reason why I’ll reveal in a little bit but I still felt like welcoming everyone to what will hopefully be a great start to my show. I’ll explain more very soon but for now we’re gonna keep this tempo up but in a different style as I switch us over to our second track for the day, “Babel”.

Track 2: Babel by Mumford and Sons from Babel (2011)

Welcome back to the show. What you just heard was “Babel” taken from the seldom same album by Mumford and Sons. Interestly enough, it was released in the same year as our previous song, the Blue Blur RMX of Escape from the City by Ted Poley, and taken from 2011’s Sonic Generations.

Babel is most well known for featuring the track “I Will Wait”, effectively launching the London Lads into the charts a second time after “Little Lion Man” from their first album “Sigh No More” two years prior. I actually just came across it in my Spotify archives recently and decided to add it to my over 120 hour long morning playlist on my account. Just to give you an impression of who’s running this show.

And as for Escape from the City, I mainly chose that one because I’m a huge stickler for Sonic the Hedgehog music. Like, even if I find the game to be mediocre at worst, Sonic is still one of those franchises that can still make great, great music and constantly at that.

And this one which is a new take on a track featured in Sonic Adventure 2 back in 2001 is proof of that with it’s kickass styled rhythm and pacing and Ted Poley sounding way more enthusiastic and energetic with his new vocals. I know most people like to think of the Cash Cash remix of this song also featured in Generations but for me, it’s no contest when compared to this newer version.

So, after two fantiascally chosen songs back to back, you probably might be asking yourself what to expect out of the next hour from me? And what I can tell you simply is… I don’t know.

We have a large amount of music, 8 more unique tracks planned for the day, a bit of stories to tell over the course of this term and hopefully no technical difficulties for the majority of our air time. Or at least, technical difficulties you won’t see.

Either way, let’s move onto the next track on offer. This one goes out to the student’s currently struggling in all life’s getting back to college. First years, second years (hi my year by the way), third years, fourth years and exchange students. Oh and the staff as well, but who cares about ‘em? But regardless, whatever kind of fatigue you feel, I shall let the one and only Nathan Lane tell you what.

Track 3: We Can Do It by Mel Brooks from The Producers (2005)

Track 4: Everyday is a winding Road by Sheryl Crow from Sheryl Crow (1996)

That was another double whammy of the songs “We can do it” taken from the 2005 remake of The Producers as sung by Nathan Lane and Mattew Broderick. And then following that was Sheryl Crow from her 1996 album, oh, Sheryl Crow called “Everyday is a winding road”.

My dad had a bit of interest in Crow for a while and I funnily enough came across this one while I was in one of my local barbers. Nice man who served me there, very talkative. I’m not too sure about the lyrics anymore but I still think of it as a great piece when it comes to it’s instrumentals like the bongo rhythm near the start. The lyrics though, like “he had a daughter named easter”, yeah they could do with some work.

And for The Producers, I haven’t seen the original 1967 film, both directed by Mel Brooks but the remake is pretty damn funny in terms of song choices and writing. And I think it’s because of that that I actively want to be part of the musical society for UCD and hopefully make a production of or at least do a number from the Producers.

So if anyone from the UCD musical society is listening, hi, white boy with sunglasses here. Uh, can you do a rendition of The Producers with me as Max or Leo please and thank you.

Anyway, all that talk about my interests in music could be the perfect segway to a bit of personal history about myself. So who am I?

Well, my name is Colm, thank you for asking, and I am a 21 year old student studying at UCD. I’m currently in my 2nd year of English with Creative Writing and have a personal interest in music, games, films and books.

I mainly took this little side passion at Belfield FM because while I still love my music, I’ve also had some brief moments of presenting school announcements back during my time in secondary school and I still get a kick out of being the most talkative in most of my tutorial rooms.

Now whether or not I’m seen as irritating during those same tutorials is up to you but I still love the opportunity I have here and I hope to provide you with good times every Friday at 4pm here on the station.

For now, let’s take a moment to slow down a bit as I turn to a new favorite artist of mine Phoebe Bridgers. And her Spotify Sessions version of her track “Kyoto”.

Track 5: Kyoto by Phoebe Bridgers from the album Spotify Sessions (2020)

Beautiful. Absolutely beautiful if I can say. That was Kyoto, specifically the version featured in the artists Spotify Sessions EP from the melancholic but so sweet sounding Phoebe Bridgers.

I came across her over the summer with the original version of Kyoto that she made for her album last year called Punisher. And then when I had finished binge listening to that over and over again, this less poppy and more somber piece popped into my feed. And I actually think, because of that it highlights the lyrics about depression and loneliness in a new light.

I haven’t listened to Punisher fully yet but I’ll make it a priority next summer when I have the chance. She also made another Spotify Sessions EP for her debut album in 2019 and features a great alternate cover of The Cure’s “Friday I’m in Love” which I’d highly recommend.

Okay, the time now is about 4.30 but please don’t go anywhere, we have a couple of more songs to cover the rest of the day but let’s keep this quite and calm mood going for the next few minutes.

Yes ladies, I can be very soft. Especially in bed.

Anyway, without any more ceremony; let’s enjoy more music. Specifically this one from Arlo Gutherie and his song City of New Orleans.

Track 6: City of New Orleans by Arlo Gutherie

Arlo Gutherie with City of New Orleans performed live in the year 2005. That was an unintentional rhyme for the record but it just so happened to work out so I’m sticking with it.

I believe I heard this one coming home one night with my dad while listening to John Kreedon and while I obviously won’t make a habit out of promoting the competition but that is a really great radio show if you’re looking for some new songs.

And this one is pretty good too because it feels like a journey of sorts that the narrator brings us on with the details of individual life throughout New Orleans and then gradually turns from day to night. Good stuff.

Anyway, let’s move onto our first segment for this station.

Now as I am a writer myself, it’s no surprise that I regularly get writing prompts either in my various classes or via various channels and programmes online. And I was hoping as well, especially for one’s who maybe wanted to write creative stuff but couldn’t, to try and get some ideas with what they could possibly write.

As a result, every week I plan on sending a new creative writing related prompt to the show for you to take part in and send in for next week’s show. There won’t be any prizes to give away if that’s what you’re hoping for, trust me I’m too broke to afford getting weekly rewards on the side but this will be something where if you want to get involved, try something new or want to hear your story out on air you can.

With that said, I’m going to give one topic that was taken from the first creative writing class I had here at UCD, okay? And that is this:

A character has a suitcase. It can be any suitcase you can imagine but it’s not part of the exercise.

Now from that, write 5 things that you think that character would carry in that suitcase.

Once you’ve got that down, I then want you to imagine five things that’s not in their suitcase but probably should be for their benefit.

So why am I asking you to write down stuff like this? Well when I first tried it out I had been thinking, as usual, about a novel I’ve been trying to write and in particular making interesting characters from that.

And I found that using this exercise was a great way to understand what one of the main characters of my adventure holds onto. They aren’t specifically items that show up in the story I’m trying to tell but you get a better idea of who your character is and with the second half, what they can likely do to change over the course of the story.

As an example, one of the items my character would keep if I recall was a keychain containing his family crest and a pair of worn out headphones. And for the items I think he would need I wrote that he had a picture frame with no family photo on it and a college brochure as well.

From that I wrote a short story out of that which I will now read a little bit for you here:

There is a theory in Sociology called “Genetic Memes”. Invented by Zoologist and Darwinist Richard Dawkins, memes are perceived as a collective of morals, history, culture and other aspects of a person’s local or global society that help influence who they are and their way of life.

And yes, if it helps, internet memes can also be considered genetic memes.

Because of this however, depending on who you ask, there is a chance that they will have certain experiences and memories that are separate from both yourself and others but also some that link people and bring them together.

For Seth Howard however, his life and the lessons he learned, thanks to that same theory, can be summed up as thus:

“I have everything I ever wanted, and nothing all at once.”

On the early September 4th 2028 morning where our story begins, he took the exact same walking path, everything seemed routine for him. It was a warm if dry day, the grass of Greenview Park as clean and presentable as the council funded exercise equipment and he was listening to “Nica Libras at Dusk” by Ben Howard (of no relation), a song which he thought could only be played on mornings like these. So basically every morning.

Behind him though stood the varying houses of Mergrave Heights, some 96 odd housing estates. Each of which, if they could speak, would tell their own tales of the people through the 5 generations who inhabit and used to inhabit them.

With his, telling many. Of his parents that used to live there, adopted raising by his uncle and now of the child leaving that all behind.

It had been roughly 10 years since the funeral of his parents, where he was gifted with the late Howard coat of arms as a watch, clueless of the fate that befalls them. And now at 18, soon leaving school, feeling just as little emotion towards the old watch he chose to discard last night and the memory left with it.

Even as he continued down the long winding road, he didn’t consider how appropriate his selection of a plucked guitar and acapela voices playing in his ears were, as much like the chorus of the song, he chose to jettison what little remained of his family’s life while the world and houses around him kept silent, only to themselves.

Now all that was left was his name, and the determination to find a legacy for himself.

The man with no past left to preserve.

But also the man who’d soon have a second chance to make up for that.

Now, I don’t know about you but I was surprised when I read that for the first time to myself. And if you’ve completed the task that I set you today I very much hope you feel that way too.

And if you’re interested in trying it out, see how much you can write in your character’s suitcase without stopping as we play more music on air.

Don’t think too much about it if you can, just see how much you can write in the space of five minutes and judge for yourself.

So with that, our next track comes from the great Lofi artist Dimension 32.

Track 7: 8AM by Dimension 32 from the EP 8AM (2020)

Track 8: Been a while by Jhove from the album Been a while (2020)

Jhove and Dimension 32 here on Belfield FM. With their 2020 songs Been a While and 8AM both of which are very chill getup in the morning sort of songs don’t you think?

I actually used to host a segment on my Instragam account for a while called New Music Monday where I’d highlight smaller or new artists on Spotify. And I think one of the things I miss most about that was that when I’d promote artists like Dimension 32 they’d sometimes thank me personally on Instagram for sharing their music which I really liked.

8AM is a very chill song in terms of something to listen to on a spring morning, over tea or coffee as you’re preparing for the day. He also made a brilliant song called Skyline that I think has a very Christamassy sort of mood to it I think with the harp that’s featured in it.

And speaking of him, he just announced the morning I’m recording this that he has passed 100’000 streams on Spotify. Like, that’s incredible. Very well done and a milestone that he/she/they should be very proud of.

Then with Jhove, I feel that definitely feels a bit more sad for the fact that there’s a kind of low auditory sample of a person saying that “It’s been a while” and then a repeated guitar melody throughout the rest of the piece. Still something I very much love I’d say though.

So, how’d the writing go for you?

It doesn’t matter if you think it was crude or whatever but I feel like that could very well be a start for you and with what you can do.

Maybe you can touch it up here or there but I’m sure you have plenty to be proud of for just getting an idea written down on the page. A lot of us writers need to start somewhere and I feel like there’s no better place than to begin small and work up from there.

Plus if you feel confident in your skills you can send it to us here at Writer’s Block via the email workforcolmoshea@gmail.com and depending on the number of entry’s next week we’ll try and get your’s read on the air.

Now though, we’re going to try our second and hopefully another great segment for this show called Song Stories. Basically, if your a listener at home or wherever you listen to this podcast at, this is your chance to be featured on the show and where you can display your love of music as well by telling us about a song that you love, one that defines you as a person and get to tell that and your story on the airwaves right here on Belfield FM.

We obviously don’t have any submissions this week but if you are interested you can email your song and story behind it through the email workforcolmoshea@gmail.com and tell us more about this particular song for you.

For now I think I’ll take the reins a bit when I describe my entry for Song Stories for our first week on the air here.

So, I’m not sure if anyone was in a coma but last year we had a… let’s just say emergency that kept all of us stuck at home. And as a result, so did many popular musicians who decided to release some songs at home to keep hopes up.

We had Snow Patrol team up with some of their fans to release “The Fireside Sessions”, Marcus Mumford who we heard at the start made a piano cover of “You’ll Never Walk Alone” and Noel Gallagher dug up a song demo from his Oasis days with “Don’t Stop”.

All of them were fantastic, let me not understate that and it was very tempting not to just play all of them back to back right now but then there’s the LP Inure taken from the Icelandic based band Low Roar.

Now people who follow me on Instagram know well that I got into Low Roar after quite a lot of their songs were featured in the video game “Death Stranding”, a title that I will forever defend no matter what I hear. And after hearing them there, I naturally decided to follow a lot of their creations featured in the game, mainly “Give Up”, “Bones”, “Don’t be so serious”, and “Not Around”.

So when I came across this, the first single off of their quartentie album in the summer of 2020, it fitted the estrangeness and distance that the lockdown gave to everyone while also being a great song in their own right.

But my words won’t be able to describe how brilliant this 3 minute song is. So, here it is: “Do You Miss Me?” from Low Roar’s 2020 EP Inure.

Track 9: Song story for the week: Do You Miss Me? By Low Roar from the EP Inure (2020)

Low Roar there with their track “Do You Miss Me” taken from their 2020 EP Inure.

That was also the first entry for Song Stories which I hope for you to contribute as well by emailing us through workforcolmoshea@gmail.com.

You can also use that same email workforcolmoshea@gmail.com to send us in your personal responses to our writing prompt which we also had earlier today.

We’re just about ready to wrap our first show of the week. This has been an interesting experiment I think. I honestly don’t know what I can come up with for the next 8 or 9 weeks of term but until then, here’s one last track for the day.

I admit things around UCD are as hectic as ever and for good reason. This is my first time being on campus for one thing and because of that, and the delay for this year’s Leaving Cert results there’s been a lot that I and many others have had to adjust to this term.

But when I do feel a bit overwhelmed, like assignments and creative work is coming at me from all corners I like to think of a song that Steve Carell made popular last year with the Netflix show Space Force.

And even though my family didn’t like it, one of the reasons I did and am really looking forward to in season 2 was purely because of this one moment within the pilot episode. Where his character Mark Naird is standing in his office looking out to his objective on the horizon and then sings this to himself quietly.

Track 10: Kokomo by the Beach Boys

End of broadcast

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Colm O'Shea

Colm O'Shea

Reader, Welcome to my personal writing blog. Enter for short stories and writing affairs. Stay for detailed essays, scripts and infrequent updates to my novels.