Monday, April 12, 2010

To Remember Hon Edward J. Beddoes, Former Fiji Alliance Minister during Ratu Sir KKT Mara's Government in Fiji.[Click to hear one of his lyrics]

A Tribute to Hon. Edward James Beddoes, A well reknown leader during Ratu Sir KKT Mara's Alliance Governance in Fiji.

We mourn the loss of 'Mr Ted Beddoes' as some of us knew him as.
Mr Beddoes has passed away and will be ever remembered by those that knew him and what he stood for.
He was one of those that helped shaped Fiji after its Independence from Great Britain.
Ni sa moce Mr Beddoes.
Retired Diplomat and Fiji Cabinet Minister. Formerly of Napier and Wellington, on Sunday March 21, 2010, aged 78 years. Peacefully at Cranford Hospice, Hastings. Dearly loved husband of the late Mavis. Read more;
A passion Fijian/English Song Writer
Songs for Fiji
Felix ChaudharySunday, March 28, 2010
EDWARD James Beddoes passed away last week better remembered as a former politician and Cabinet minister in the Ratu Mara government.

Little is known, however, of his titanic influence and service to country - through the prism of his songwriting.

Ted Beddoes, was an accomplished composer and songwriter with an unbridled passion for Fiji.
His compositions - Fascinating Fiji, Tropical Dawn, Stars Over Fiji and Whispering Palms actually kick started the career of Jese Mucunabitu over 15 years ago.

In Jese's own words, the songs turned his life around from a relatively unknown entertainer to a globe-trotting ambassador for our country

Ted's compositions, recorded also by both Jese and crooner Gilman Lasaisuva are all-time favourites and have also found their way into the playlists of former Fiji residents around the world. Even tourists visiting our shores are endeared to these songs.

"Ted Beddoes loved Fiji. The swaying palm trees, tropical dawns, breathtaking sunsets, the natural beauty of her landscapes, the drone of the lali in the early morn, colourful hibiscus and aromatic frangipani were all romanticised in songs that he wrote about his beloved homeland," Jese said.
"Locals who have left Fiji's shores for far off places cherish these tunes and the vivid images of moonlit beaches, star-studded night skies and islands basking in the tropical sun described by Ted's songs."

Ted and Jese are related through the Morell connection to their maternal side - hence the chance discussion about the recordings.

"Ted came up to me while I was entertaining at Tiko's one evening and said that he had some songs and poems about Fiji that he wanted me to look at. So we got together around the grog bowl at his place and picked out a few numbers. After that we began recording at the late Peter Foon's studio in Tamavua and next thing I knew Ted's songs put me on the road, travelling around the world singing songs about Fiji! I've travelled as far as Japan and I'm still travelling today- in May this year I'm going to New Zealand to promote Fiji as a holiday destination and it's all because of Ted's songs, I am deeply saddened by his passing," the singer said.

Jese has travelled to Australia for the past 14 years to perform at the Fiji Day celebrations there and despite the fact that he sings other songs- fans keep asking and insisting for the songs that made him famous.

In March last year, Ted gathered a group of musicians - singer Gilman Lasaisuva, guitarist Simone Rova and producer Bill Beddoes at his nephew, Mick Beddoes residence in Sabeto Nadi for a recording session.

The sessions progressed until October last year, two months prior to Ted Beddoes departure to New Zealand for medical treatment.

"He had composed 30 more songs about Fiji and wanted them recorded as soon as possible - he kept insisting that the songs had to be done quickly. Maybe he knew that he was running out of time and wanted to complete something that was dear to his heart. I'm honoured that such a great songwriter chose me to sing his songs. This is my first recording after 20 years and I only decided to do it because of Ted and his beautiful music," Gilman said.

One of the first songs recorded during this session, Fiji On My Mind, is currently playing on Mix FM and according to station manager Irshad Hussein, requests have been pouring in for more plays.
"Listeners have been calling in and asking that we play Fiji On My Mind over and over again. He was such a great songwriter - and his love for Fiji is clearly shown through his songs. Mix FM will host a tribute to Ted Beddoes tomorrow to highlight the amazing collection of songs composed by this talented son of Fiji," Hussein said.

Ted's nephew - musician, recording engineer and producer - Bill Beddoes said that his uncle had 'written some great stuff' and was 'a prolific songwriter'.

"He will be missed, he was so passionate about Fiji and you can hear it in the words of his songs. Gilman, Simi and I, together with Mick, will grant him his last wish and record his last compositions as a tribute to one of Fiji's greatest songwriters," Bill said.

The late Edward James (Ted) Beddoes leaves behind a legacy of service to the country spanning decades, the musical masterpieces that he penned over four decades will for sure, continue to touch the lives of people for many years to come.

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