Sunday, October 02, 2016

Bill Amesbury: I Remember

As I said the other day, I have been reading a lot about the assassination of President Kennedy lately.

At the back of my mind when I started doing this has been this couplet from a song:
I remember the night Walter Kronkite said
JFK was just shot dead,
It turns out to come from I Remember by Bill Amesbury - not a great song, but I can see how it would have impressed the 16-year-old me.

Amesbury turn out to be Canadian and an interesting figure. After having hits in the 1970s - and producing No Charge by J.J. Barrie, which must rank as one of the worst ever British number ones - he came out as a transsexual, transitioned and is now known as Barbra Amesbury.

She was interviewed in 2007 (now part of what may be "Toronto's most respectable lesbian couple") by Wild Ideas about a show of art by breast cancer survivors she had helped organise:
Breast cancer activists have a lot to fight for, including improvements in the potentially deadly treatments still in use. 
"In the last thirty years, treatment has not changed. Radiation still burns, it still kills the good with the bad, and chemotherapy is still a search and destroy mission. The women who have had it pumped through their veins know that. Their veins collapse, and their immune system is destroyed forever.
"Women will tell you 'I would never do chemotherapy again, because when it came back, I had nothing to fight it with.'" 
And even those treatments aren't always easy to come by. 
"I can't stand the fact that a woman has to wait twelve weeks for radiation, and maybe that's when the tumour's moving. That could be the difference between life and death."

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