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Biography

Brendan Hawthorne is an award winning poet, playwright, writer and musician, based in the industrial West Midlands.

First published in 2004 by bluechrome in the Hobo Poet series, he has since released six poetry collections through various publishers and seven titles of local interest for Bradwell Books.

Productions of his two plays, 'Hard Graft; All for 23 Bob' and 'Two Mothers of Distant Sons', have combined his love of storytelling and music, receiving critical acclaim.

A viral hit in 2017,  Brendan's appearance on BBC Radio WM on Black Country Day has gained over a million views to date. He stood on Anthony Gormley's 4th Plinth in Trafalgar Square and appeared on BBC One's The One Show translating Shirley Bassey lyrics into Black Country dialect to the Dame herself!

Brendan was honoured to be made Poet Laureate of Wednesbury in 2014, his adopted home town, and in 2017 was made one of the Black Country 100 Masters. As an arts facilitator, he has worked on numerous commissions including NHS, English Heritage and National Trust.

He hosts ‘Ere We Bin’ a monthly acoustic and spoken word evening, showcasing local talent, at the Orchard Coffee Lounge in Wednesbury on the last Tuesday of every month. 

He is the founder of the 5 piece collective Worrapalava, a Black Country interest performance group, he is also one third of the Keith Gwilliams Trio pioneering Flounge music, a hybrid of folk and easy listening sounds. He is half of acoustic music duo So It Goes...  

and he is wholly himself!

 

 

Private and corporate commissions undertaken.  

Personal milestone poems and songs written to order.

Some commissions to date in no particular order:

  • Winner of the National Dialect Bill o' Bow's Trophy for best written dialect piece 2023/24
  • Featured essayist BBC Radio 3 Black Country Secrets 2023
  • These Streets Brierley Hill Project 2022
  • Featured in BBC Radio 4 Tongue and Talk Episodes 1 and 4, Sept. 2020
  • Winner of the National Dialect Bill o' Bow's Trophy for best written dialect piece 2019/20
  • Winner of the National Dialect Bill o' Bow's Trophy for best written dialect piece 2018/19
  • One of the Black Country's 100 Hundred Masters
  • BBC The One Show (appearance with Shirley Bassey)
  • BBC TV Living in'66 (appearance with Adrian Chiles)
  • If Walls could Speak - The National Trust 
  • Brierley Hillness - English Heritage 
  • Round Oak Reminiscences - Steel industry aural history project Dudley MBC 
  • My Words, My Story - Sandwell Adult and Family Learning 
  • Who Cares? Sandwell Young Carers 
  • Creative Community Arts Project 
  • "Marathon Poems and Song" (For Blind Dave Heeley)
  • Morrison's Superstore public art (with Steve Field) 
  • Wednesbury Community Banner (Sandwell MBC) 
  • Sandwell 6 Towns postcard series (Sandwell MBC) 
  • Switch-on of Wednesbury Christmas Lights - 
  • Saint Bartholomew’s Church at 800 – Poetry 
  • Cataloguing Kays – Worcester University 
  • West Midlands Smooth Radio Ambassador 2010-11
  • Writing workshops, commissions and performances for diversity and faith days
  • Appearance at Stafford poetry Festival
  • Guest poet for National Poetry Day - Walsall Libraries
  • Reading of excerpts from the Vernon Manuscript - Birmingham City University
  • Memories of Glebefields reminiscence project - Sandwell Libraries 
  • Black Country Dialect, Ghost Stories of the Black Country and Birmingham and Black Country Wit and Humour - Publications - Bradwell's
  • The 1913 Wednesbury Tubeworkers Strike - A Musical Play,  Hard graft- All for twenty three bob
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Publications

All work copyright to Brendan Hawthorne unless otherwise acknowledged

All rights reserved

For further details please contact Brendan

 

Calling Out Time

Warning! Contains sardonic wit and nostalgia

Keith Gwilliams Press (2023)

 

Seventies Child and Other Fashion Trends

A sixty-year old bloke and his poetic memories

Dreamwell Writing Ltd  ISBN - 978-1-7399337-1-5 (2021)

 

Readings From The Dream Factory -                                                 

self published boxed poems 2018

poems of love, life and philosophy as well as downright fun!

 

Walks Around The Black Country

Knock the dust off your walking boots and have a wonder around some of the regions reclaimed beauty spots!

Bradwell Books 2015 ISBN:978-1-909914-37-7
 

 

Warwickshire Dialect

Bardic banter and a look at the use of some local words and phrases from this fascinating county

Bradwell Books 2014 ISBN:978-1-90991-469-8

 

 

Hard Graft - All for Twenty Three Bob

2013 - Script

A musical play described as Wednesbury's equivalent to

Les Miserables!

The Kate’s Hill Press 2015 ISBN:978-1-904552-48-2

 

Ghost Stories of The Black Country and Birmingham

Tales of the regional supernatural that'll mek yer think!

Bradwell Books 2013        ISBN: 978 - 1- 90267 - 470 - 4

 

 

Black Country Wit and Humour (with Camilla Zajac)

Spicy one-liners and Black Country bosters'll mek ya lol!

Bradwell Books 2013         ISBN: 978 - 1 - 90267 - 469 -8

 

 

 Black Country Dialect

Learn about the 'tat mon, fine fittle and keep aert th'oss road!'

Bradwell Books 2013           ISBN: 978 - 1- 90267- 451 - 3

 

 

Exhibit B

 

The Kates Hill Press 2010                                    ISBN: 978 -1 - 904552 - 38 - 3

 

Vulcanised pneumatics shhh my soapbox thoughts

into silence and indolence

For a split second I feel akin

to those aluminium air-stream bullets  

           

The ones with tow-bar extensions

I watch them migrate along hard-core routes

promoting their hook-seeks-eye

nature and purpose

 

 

 

 

 Described as poetry noir Exhibit B explores memories that are held in a virtual museum as they await the save or delete button

 

 

Station Fifteen

 

2008*             Self published - Limited 1st edition         ISBN: 978-0-9554467-1-9

 

In this tense ambience

a call echoes

from somewhere

Somewhere between                          

 from Song 1

the innocent hearts

of loving friends

and the swords that lie

in the hands of bitter enemies

 

 

 

 

 A CD and book which takes the reader/listener along the route of a contemporary representation of The Stations of The Cross

 

  

Slide

 

Poetry Monthly Press, 2007                                   ISBN: 978-906357-08-5      

 

she breathes fire through cinnamon fingers

her dark eyes shut tight

he sucks on ice from the glass

curling his toes like sticklebacks      

                            from Strategem

their last words edged in gilt

intimately reflecting

that their war is over

and they were missing it already

 

 

 

 

 A collection of poems from the depths of insomnia and late night television!

 

  

 Urban Dawn

 

bluechrome, 2004                                       ISBN: 1-904781-85-3

 

you were all revved up                                     excerpt

and fresh from queens                                     from

passing with honours      

                                 from  proto-punk

in rock ‘n’ roll

too slow to drum

fast enough to sing

the low tech brothers

Johnny and dee dee, tommy ramone

 

 

Poems from tower blocks and factory gates

 

 

  

The All Night Cafe and Other Dives (with Geoff Stevens)

 

from

Obvious Conclusion 

 

The loneliest tables stand in the darkest corners

They are made lonelier by seating the single diner

at a four place setting through no choice of their own

Under the one ninety-nine meal deal sign

No-one can read his tears through the smoke of smokers

and steadily simmering vegetable oil

 

 

 

 

The Poetry Wednesbury Imprint, 2006

 

 Written, compiled and performed in some of the places described in this grease coated, cholesterol and alcohol laden homage to the lost café and bar

 

 

CD's

Urban Dawn 10th Anniversary recording                Currently available

  

Station Fifteen*                                                        Currently available

 

E Day Arf Spake Funny                                           Currently available

 

Live in the Studio - poetry & song

 

The Fustun - poems in dialect

 

Four (all Poetry Wednesbury)

 

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