• Mark Mathews

Things To Get You Through The Lockdown

Hello folks, how are you all doing right now? I genuinely hope that you are keeping safe and well and staying in...

...please say that you ARE staying in and not being one of those selfish knobheads that STILL aren't listening to the lockdown rules?

Fuck me, when I go for my daily, solo, run, not only do I see tons of people not listening to the rules of this lockdown to make it end quicker, but also so many aren't doing the whole social distancing thang! I make a point of keeping WELL AWAY from anyone I see and yet still some knob head comes right by me...

Ahhh. I better stop because I will rant about this for ever.

Anyway, I doubt any of you are flouting these rules, because you lot are the good guys! So well done you. I love you!

Seriously, though I am sending out good vibes to you all right now and just hoping you and your loved ones are staying safe and well.

2020, huh? What a crock! Kicked the whole 'Let's start this decade with a great one' right in the fucking balls, huh?

It started off so well, too.

Alas, such is the game of life and let's hope some lessons are learned from all this and we as a species come together a bit more.

It's a long shot, but you never know.

Massive thanks go out to the marvelous NHS staff and all the people keeping things moving in the right direction on the frontline. My song, 'Thank you' is forever dedicated to you and your tireless work, and I hope you feel the wave of love and appreciation behind you from the country.

You alone seem to be uniting this country...whilst simultaneously saving lives and risking your own health!

Absolute heroes. I could not love you more!

So, us mere mortals have a very easy task of simply STAYING THE FUCK IN. I miss seeing my friends and family, but Zoom calls have become quite a novel fun thing now and there is a wealth of other shit you can be doing.

So, yeah, I hear you. It can be boring at times, it can be frustrating, but we're not on the frontline, we're simply soldiers of the sofa and there is a wealth of stuff we can use to pass the time.

So, I thought I would list some, Things To Get You Through The Lockdown, avoiding the obvious things that we already know help - like booze, Tiger King, and class A drugs.

Yoga with Adriene

A lot of people are often surprised when I tell them I do yoga. I'm not quite sure why that is? Perhaps it's because my rowdiness often doesn't give off the quiet zen that they would expect from a Yogi.

Meh, what you gonna do?!

Anyway, I've been doing yoga for years and doing a daily practice has been part of my life for quite some time, so the lockdown hasn't necessarily spurred this on, but I feel if you're going to do anything in isolation, Yoga is probably one of the best things you could do. Nothing like a bit of mind-body connection when you've no-one but the house plants to talk to!

So, if you're keen, I cannot recommend highly enough the YouTube channel 'Yoga with Adriene'. The Texan Yogi offers full 30-day yoga journeys to take part in, or there are specific videos for ailments, moods, times of day and lengths of practice, so you are spoilt for choice in catering to the practice of your needs and time constraints.

Over the years I've been to various retreats and yoga classes, and I am hard-pressed to find a better teacher than ol' Adriene.

Namaste, mother fuckers!


Pitchfork, the self-proclaimed "most trusted voice in music", is certainly a brand I dig the shit out of. They are awesome and to be fair...I trust them a fair bit too!

And like pretty much every music site, band, promoter and venue across the world, they have been streaming live shows from their Instagram account - @pitchfork

Their artists are always second to none (I mean they recently had Phoebe Bridgers on! Swoon!!!) and their setup is of high quality so sound and connection are solid.

As well as that they also do their excellent Spotify playlist, Pitchfork Selects which will give you hours of incredible music to be pumping out in your isolation discos and of course, their website has tons of reviews and features for you to read.

United We Stream

My word! If you've not checked out a United We Stream event yet, then make sure you do so STAT!!

They are cooking up some of the most insane, uplifting, live sets you're likely to come by. Streaming every single night from 7pm and raising money for all the bars, restaurants, freelancers, musicians and everyone else affected by the pandemic within the Greater Manchester area, this is a phenomenal website that is truly helping the lives of everyone in the UK right now - Whether that means helping people have a front room disco or spreading money to those struggling, this is one of the greatest things to come up out from the ashes.

Man, if you did the 12-hour Hacienda stream then you'll know why I am so infused and fizzing with excitement about this website!


Ricky Gervais' Wartime Broadcast

Ricky Gervais has been doing a daily live stream on Instagram and Twitter since the Lockdown was made official...and it's hilarious!

It's not about anything in particular, he clearly does zero planning for it and simply talks complete and utter shit for around twenty minutes every single da...but it's great!

It's a real morale booster after a day working from home or whatever you are doing. It's as irreverent and pointless as his Radio show and podcasts...and we all know how brilliant they were! Seriously, check it out!

Curb Your Enthusiasm Series 10

Not really a specific lockdown item, but a recommendation if you've not seen the latest season of Curb. The show gets better and better for me and this season where he sets up a 'Spite Store', is just supremely funny and marks Larry David as still the main man in being able to make anything funny.

I urge you all to watch it. I actually top and tail my day with an episode of Curb in the mornings, before I go to work in my studio for the day and then end it with a Gervais Wartime broadcast.

Can't go wrong with that sort of day!

Lockdown Lullabies

So, I too will be posting up a bit more content in between me recording new tracks for a new album and 'Lockdown Lullabies' will be one very such thing. I'll be filming some new, softer songs each week and be posting them to my YouTube channel. The first video is already up with the new song 'Reflecting Disasters'. Check it out, like, subscribe and comment!

On The Bed Covers

Also on my Youtube Channel, I'll be uploading a new cover song each week as part of my 'On the Bed Covers' series. The first episode has Oasis' rarely played B-Side, 'D'ya Wanna Be a Spaceman'. Please watch, like, comment and subscribe!

Try Speaking Your Mind Podcast

The, Try Speaking Your Mind Podcast, is a look at art and creativity and tries to find how songs are constructed and what differences artists take in their approach to writing. I was very grateful to be a part of this wonderful show (I'm on Episode 2!) as it is a really nice take on the music-podcast format and is well worth checking out.

'Congratulations' the Chris D'Elia podcast

Another one that is not specific for the lockdown, but is brutally funny and is a podcast that always manages to, genuinely, make me LOL and belly laugh every single episode.

The strange dichotomy is that I do not rate Chris D'Elia's standup at all. I don't like his style and find it all so basic...and yet, his podcast is like listening to a totally different person...one I find...well...HILARIOUS!

Weird, huh?! But true.

If you like to listen to one man ramble about whatever comes into his head in spectacularly funny fashion, then this will lift up your spirits in isolation I guarantee!

So, there are a few things that may help you pass the time during this strange period we are living through.

Please, help the NHS by staying the fuck in. It's not hard and you're potentially saving lives by doing so.

Keep streaming my tunes and videos and please drop me a line if you want to, through any of my socials or through the website, as I'd truly love to connect and hear from you all.

Let me know what you're up to and how you're coping. I'm here for you, I love you all and soon this'll be over and we can have a good old sing-song!

Hey, do you know one of the best things you could do for me and my music is to follow me on Spotify?! Click HERE and give me a lovely follow and if you fancy adding some of my tracks to a playlist of yours, even better! xxxx

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