Tuesday 30 April 2019

#AprilSongs #30 Everything's Tuesday

I'm surprised I've got through the #AprilSongs sequence with every song having the relevant day in the title. So sor the final #AprilSongs post I give you "Everything's Tuesday" by Chairmen of the Board, a Holland Dozier Holland composition which stands up with their best. I had thought of other more prominent songs like The Rolling Stones "Ruby Tuesday", Cat Stevens "Tuesday's Dead" and Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Tuesday's Gone", but plumped for this to share with you.

This is my 50th post this month, so I've hit that target and also my 1900th post overall. I've had 180,000 page views so that's an average of 90 views per post all though some have had no views while others have had over a thousand. Timewise that works out at 40 visits a day, although recently it has sort of ramped up (271 yesterday)  but that's nearly 2 an hour which is not too shabby over 12 years.

So on this foggy morning enjoy this classic slice of soul and feel free to trawl back through the blog and even buy some of the linked products (I know it's Amazon but they have effectively killed off all the online competition and provide a simple sharing interface).

Have a superb Tuesday everybody.

Dawn Chorus

The last couple of days I have wolen to the Dawn Chorus, I think I noticed it because I did a surver that asked if I woke to birdsong , traffic noise or something else, and went on further to ask whether I ever heard birdsong in any other situation.

I used to live in Shieldfield and there was a yard behind hit that was lit 24/7 and the birds used to sing all night long so you went to sleep to birdsong and woke up to it.

Part of the reason I'm waking to it it that all the upstairs windows in the house are open so, the double glazing doesn't block out the sound, but it is a pleasant , natural noise to wake up to, although my alarm is also set to birdsong so there is quite a lot of it in mt life.

I have about five bird feeders in my garden, and they do seem a little spoilt, as they do devour the seed at a rapid rate, but as it's coming summer I will let them fend for themselves for longer periods as I am sure they can find many other food sources.

Today is the last day of April, I have hit my step target , and I will follow this post by a shower then my final #AprilSongs post. I will include fifty minutes of the Dawn Chorus from the Chilterns though obviously mine is in Fenham, though you can also hear what seems to be traffic in the background, but it's still relaxing.

In A Parallel Universe

Well I was in bed before nine, but have woken with a dry cough, so I thought I'd post another piece just before midnight. I'm having a Morrison's Solero equivalent that is soothing the dryness and hopefully I can get back to sleep, but I am feeling refreshed after my sleep.

I thought I'd try and read more of the excellent, if swirling, "White Wolf's Son" while listening to the Hawkwind compilation "Parallel Universe" and I started with CD3 which opens with the band's take on "Ejection" which was from Bob Calvert's "Captain Lockheed and The Starfighters" album and I first heard as I walked into a record shop in Preston Guildhall as the opening jet sound crossed the shop very loudly, needless to say I bought it immediately.

I switched my side light on remembering it's only an energy saving bulb , not LED to it took a while to hit full brightness and I read while regressing to my teenage years as "Urban Guerilla" (also covered by Primal Scream) followed, which I think had a radio ban, so another that I bought immediately, and possibly still maybe you won't hear on mainstream radio, then we have selections from the sublime "Hall of The Mountain Grill" album culminating in a live take of Lemmy's "The Watcher".

I will share "Urban Guerilla" with you because it is rather good pop / rock and am now going to listen to CD1 which concentrates on their first two albums and takes me even further back, where I remember paying £1.50 for a copy of "Hurry On Sundown" b/w "Mirror of Illusion" on a Liberty Records single from a guy at a youth club I used to go to. They were the opening and closing tracks from their excellent trippy debut album.

OK it is time to hit the sack once more, it is a school night so to speak.

Monday 29 April 2019

After The Late Show .....

I'm considering going to bed now (just after eight). Obviously there are times when I'm wide awake but others where I feel I'm wrecked, although compus mentis enough to pen a few words. Part of this is also the attempt to hit fifty posts this month, which I didn't set out to do , but the fact I got another #TenAlbumsInTenDays nomination meant that combined with #AprilSongs (which finishes tomorrow) meant that I posted a few more selections than I expected to.

Wreckless Eric has just been on Marc Riley's 6Music show talking about working with Tom Petersson of Cheap Trick and I remember buying the "Live at Budokan" on yellow vinyl in 1978, and because this am slightly tempted by getting it again. I'm quite surprised that I've never mentioned Wreckless Eric on this blog as I have been a fan since I first heard him in 1977, although I suppose I've rectified that now.

So who do I soundtrack this with?

Well at Budokan they covered The Move's finest rock and roll moment "California Man" which is a little more metal than The Move's version but an excellent band playing an excellent song for you to enjoy.

Maybe it's bed time.

#AprilSongs #29 Blue Monday

This is the second "Blue Monday" I've included in the #AprilSongs sequence the other was Buddy Holly's cover of the Fats Domino Song (written by Dave Bartholomew) , I wasn't going to include the New Order song because for many people you say "Blue Monday" and it is synonymous with the Manchester band, but the rhythm was set by the drum machine malfunctioning and that reminded me of other instances of musical instrument malfunction.

Arthur Brown's Kingdom Come were one of the first bands to use a drum machine in a live environment but at one gig their Bentley Rhythm Ace went on a twenty minute uncontrolled drum solo, usually the realm of bloat rock drummers.

When Giorgio Moroder was putting together Donna Summer's "I Feel Love" something happened with the synthesiser / sequencer and resulting in a faint echo doubling of the notes giving it it's unique sound and probably helping become the iconic dance hit that it was and is.

So this is the penultimate #AprilSongs post focussing on mistakes that have resulted in some great music, enjoy your Monday.

Post 101 - When I First Heard Joe Strummer

I just realised that  this is post 101 this year and I can't let this go by without it's Joe Strummer and George Orwell connections. I've probably done this before (follow the related tags) but what the hell. I've now started to wonder whether I will hit 50 posts this month, it means three posts today and three tomorrow but the #AprilSongs sequence will account for two of those, and this will account for another one so it looks like I might almost match last years #August50 where I did 54 posts , but that is definitely going to stay as my highest number of monthly posts.

Anyway back to the point of this post, I first heard Joe Strummer singing the song "Keys To YOur Heart" with his band the 101ers when John Peel played it. It appeared on the excellent Chiswick Records which was similar to Stiff (when Indie meant Indie) in being independent and similar to Stiff featuring New Wave, Punk and Pub Rock with others in it's eclectic spread, but I bought the record straight away. While not as attack minded as The Clash it is still a great rock record.

The band took their name from George Orwell's "1984" where Room 101 was where you were subjected to your greatest fear. I remember that scaring me as a kid when I saw the fifties BBC adaptation with Peter Cushing (you can watch it here) with the rat cage helmet contraption.

So that is how I first got into the music of Joe Strummer.

Sunday 28 April 2019

Connected Centurion

This is my hundredth post this year and in December 2011 I first did 100 posts in a year. You can get get an idea of how I have progressed / regressed / stayed the same by seeing what I posted here . I'm currently listening to a Stone Roses and influences playlist show presented by Tom Robinson and sent in my suggestion of "Halleluhwah" by Can from "Tago Mago" which "Fools Gold" has more than a similarity to.

Today I walked into town, I've completed my steps for the month, but thought I would walk in anyway as was a nice day. Before mobile devices things like this usually needed a decent amount of planning or assumptions, but now you are permanently connected to people and information almost anywhere that you are, especially in an occupied area.

So I will share "Halleluhwah" by Can so you can hear why I thought that was the Stone Roses although the actual bassline for "Fools Gold" was taken from "Know How" by "Young MC" which also sample "Theme From Shaft" by Isaac Hayes, which you can track down on Youtube or Amazon.

Hope your Sunday is going well

Late Again

That's twice in a week I've been up past midnight , mainly because of writing blog post, but last week was after a brilliant gig (see here) and yesterday I had been walmost hypnotised watching Stanley Kubrick's "2001:A Space Odyssey", fifty years on and some of the decor is very sixties but the classically accompanied space sequences are still mostly jaw dropping. Remember this was way before CGI so it was all models and backdrops and stop motion animation.

Anyway it means that I do have some way of activating myself to stay up beyond my usual ten o'clock, though I am not too sure what that is. Yes oit's doing something that stimulates my mind and brain, but I am not too sure what that is but it proves I can stay up late again.

That takes me back to 1972 , four years after  "2001:A Space Odyssey" was released , and I first heard Stealers Wheel on The Old Grey Whistle Test  playing "Late Again". Most people have only heard "Stuck In The Middle With You" from the ear removal scene in "Reservoir Dogs" but Joe Egan and Gerry Rafferty had a bit more in their locker than just that, and are worth investigating further, although Rafferty did hit paydirt with "Baker Street".

So although I was up til about two this morning , I got up at seven thirty, so doubt will have a nap this afternoon, and probably an early night tonight as I have a doctors appointment tomorrow morning.

Again my tangentiality has linked Stanley Kubrick, Arthur C. Clarke, The Men That Will Not Be Blamed For Nothing, The Old Grey Whistle Test, Stealers Wheel and Quentin Tarantino.

Enjoy your Sunday everyone.

#AprilSongs #28 National Avenue (Sunday Afternoon)

I know it's quarter past twelve on SUnday morning and I've just posted a piece featuring Red Guitars, but while checking out their music I noticed that "National Avenue(Sunday Afternoon) would be perfect to close the Sundays. Five minuted of lovely jangliness from the "Tales of the Expected" album that you can pick up on CD for about £25.

So this is going to be a very short post because of the time and the fact I've been to Edinburgh today, although it is Sunday and I could actually have a lie in.

So if you are reading this now and you are in the UK it's time for bed, if you are anywhere else leave a comment and enjoy the song.

There WAS a DIN

I'm so impressed with my new record player from RPM (which you can see in actione here)  I began to think of using my networked digital music through it to see how it performs and maybe even my DVD Audio which could be awesome.

One problem , no input although Marek told me there was one. The was a TAPE socket but it was blocked with a metal plug, until Marek told me to go and look again, amd sure enough , I'd missed the fact that it was a five pin DIN socket. Now seriously I  don't think I've ever used one since I was a teenager but it looks like I will be using one again.

At first I though of connecting it to a Bluetooth receiver but then I thought ,why not just plug it into the digital player and just remove another potential failure point. So I went to the garage and looked in my cable box and there wasn't one but I also thought that's full of cables and plugs that I have never ever used and probably never will , so I think it needs disposing of.

Too many times we keep things "just in case" and they just take up space and rot.

So what to play other than "Good Technology" by Red Guitars. Ironically their "America and Me" was one of the first pieces of vinyl I bought in this second phase as it wasn't available digitally. They are still very difficult to track down with vinyl being the safest option, I could find any download or streaming options, but they are an excellent band.

Saturday 27 April 2019

#AprilSongs #27 Saturday Night's (Alright for Fighting)

I originally was going to choose "Book of Saturday" by King Crimson for this but I had got it mixed up with "The Great Deceiver" (this is an acoustic reinterpretation and is rather good but you get the idea) from "Starless and Bible Black" ( What a wonderful and perfect description of dark night from "Under Milkwood" by Dylan Thomas) but the two songs could not be more different, the former in my opinion being fairly insipid while the latter is a brass assault and brilliant album opener. They are both on Youtube so you can check them out.

So then I though well "Saturday Night's (Alright for Fighting)" is one of Elton John's best and maybe a little obvious, but has some great lyrics and one of my favourite couplets:

"I'm a juvenile product of the working class 
Whose best friend floats in the bottom of a glass"

I've found an excellent 1984 live take which shows how good Elton John can be. This is the final #AprilSongs Saturday song and the whole sequence will be complete on the first of May.

Last I night I went to see Half Man Half Biscuit at The Boiler Shop and it was an amazing gig at a great venue. I managed to meet two people who I knew but had forgotten. The first was Clare (I don't know if that is the correct spelling as there are so many ways to spell the name)  from the Glamorous Owl (and if you want to partake in one of their excellent ring making workshops you get 20% off on the site) and I managed to compound my ignorance by not realising she had the names of the band on her T Shirt. She was with Victoria (who now lives in Liverpool) and a very affable Anarchist who I have probably seen at the Black Bull.

The other person was someone I have worked with, but it must be at least fifteen years back, but he recognised me but we had about two minutes at the bar.

Anyway have an enjoyable Saturday, I am off to Edinburgh.

Thursday 25 April 2019

#AprilSongs #26 Black Friday

This is early because tomorrow morning I need go and get some milk, go to the Post Office Depot to pick up "All Good Clean Fun" on vinyl, then post a "Best of" Sandie Shaw to fulfil a Discogs order (I notice that a new one on Amazon will set you back £143 maybe the buyer saw this), then go to work, and afterwards go to the Boiler Shop to see Half Man Half Biscuit.

So for the #AprilSongs sequence I'm closing Friday with Steely Dan's "Black Friday", the opening song from "Katy Lied" which featured a Katydid on the cover. Steely Dan took their name from a Steam Powered Sex Toy in William Burroughs "The Naked Lunch". I only recently found out that "Black Friday" was when businesses finally hit paydirt and went into profit for the financial year supposedly, though it may have once been true, I doubt it happens today.

So this is my third post today although it's an early installment for tomorrow so I will now leave you to enjoy some classic live Steely Dan.

About The Facebook Ban - Entrapment?

I've now been banned three times from Facebook. There seems to be a sliding scale, the first one was a day, the second was three days and the third seven days with Messenger shut down as well. As I've said being on Social Media is like being in a club, and you need to abide by their rules and the rules need to be consistent and need to address any potential transgression properly, I don't believe Facebook do, and their bans are almost arbitrary, I have reported racist , misogynist and race iting posts to no avail (but they get clicks don't they) , although Facebook has started to ban some extreme right wing groups and pages.

So here's what happened to me (so far):

  1. I was watching the Peter Greenaway film "Drowning By Numbers" which is rather excellent art film and three women who murder their partners, and it does contain sex and nudity, but it is both funny and well presented. See if you can spot why I was banned. My problem with this is that it was IMDB that posted the image, which again is hardly explicit. The IMDB page is here.
  2. I then shared a picture of an Helmut Newton image on the wall of No 28, I am OK with this as I thought the lighting on the image obscured the nudity. Facebook decided it didn't. The image is still on my Instagram feed here and is somewhere in my Facebook photographs without the light obscuration (is that a word)
  3. The current one, which is virtual entrapment was caused by me sharing an image / link that appeared in my Facebook feed. I thought it was amusing so shared it and was immediately hit with a seven day ban from Facebook and Messenger. Because it was instant that meant the Facebook had decided to share it with me knowing I would probably share with others, so it my opinion I was set up. I have no way of complaining or arguing my case because everything, apart from seeing feeds is now banned for me. When I am let back on it won't be worth pursuing this, but I am now worried that anything I share could result in a ban. I am intending to share this post on Saturday and that may result in a month or permanent ban. The link is here. described by "Well, People Are Painting Glittery Easter Eggs Onto Their Butts Now"

The thing is my only contact on Facebook is via Messenger or a Facebook Posts , so if people are contacting me I cannot reply. So basically this is just a "Beware What You Share" PSA , just because it's in your feed doesn't mean Facebook won't ban you for it. The original post I shared is still on Facebook , so obviously there's a lack of consistency as well.

I just wanted to document this the let people know what happened. I've included "Number 2" from the "Drowning By Numbers" film soundtrack by Michael Nyman a long time collaborator of Peter Greenaway.

#AprilSongs #25 Thursday's Keeper

Hitting the final Thursday in the sequence and we will take "Thursday's Keeper" by The Orb from the album"Cydonia". It past years that would have been enough for a post and I am tempted at some point to do a one word post , a nonsensical post and a gobbledegook post just to see who actually reads them.

Anyway I've always liked the Orb with their generally long trippy  tracks and songs , particularly "Little Fluffy Clouds"  with their mix of samples and rhythms and sounds, which inspired a heck of a lot of other bands while harking back to space rock and kraut rock such as Hawkwind, Pink Floyd, Tangerine Dream and Neu!, all bands I have mentioned or written about before in this blog so you can use the tags if you want to explore a little further.

Anyway it's Thursday so have a good one everybody.

Wednesday 24 April 2019

#AprilSongs #24 Just Wednesday

A rather subdued Inspiral Carpets song, "Just Wednesday" for the final Wednesday post in the #AprilSongs sequence.

Now only another six posts to do and it has got my posts way on track to hit 2K since the start of this blog this year (does that make sense, well it does to me).

Anyway we are mid week, the weather is looking grey and there is nothing much to report apart from seeing  Rapasa Nyatiti on Northumberland street in Newcastle watch him here on my Instagram feed. His website is here

Enjoy that and have a great Wednesday

Tuesday 23 April 2019

#AprilSongs #23 Gentle Tuesday

Apparently it's St George's Day , so a day for Little Englanders to moan about not having a Bank Holiday to celebrate their most English of Saints, for "celebrate" read go to the pub and get drunk on John Smith's or Bombardier, but actually today is the first day back after the Easter Bank Holiday.

Also today I heard a really annoying term "slashies" , this usually refers to self employed people who embrace multiple "careers" / "businesses" . Now I have no problem with people doing multiple jobs because that's what they want to do, but most people in this situation are forced into this because the only jobs are zero hours or short hours contracts that do not pay enough to basically live, so taxi driver / pizza delivery guy / toilet attendant  / bouncer would be an example of a "slashie" today. Says a lot about how our economy is run.

Now to the business end of the blog, the #AprilSongs and today we have "Gentle Tuesday"the opening song from "Sonic Flower Groove"  by Primal Scream for the penultimate Tuesday song. The guitar sound is almost Byrds like and is a welcome addition to this sequence.

So time to take drugs and take a walk to work and listening to some decent music on the way to work.

Monday 22 April 2019

#AprilSongs #22 Come Monday

Well I am writing this at sixteen minutes past midnight so it's actually Monday and this will be my penultimate Monday post in the #AprilSongs sequence.

Again I'm not going for the obvious one so I have chosen "Come Monday" by Jimmy Buffet which is not his best or most subversive but is pleasant and has a great introduction from the man himself on the video I am sharing with you. So enjoy , but check out his other stuff such as my favourite "Volcano" or "Margaritaville"

I am vaguely thinking of theming May's posts on Food, so songs about Food, but then again goven how many posts I've done this month , I may put that off for a month or two.

I know this is a very short post as it is now nearly half past midnight and I need to share this on non Facebook social media to get the Robots checking in on me.

So have a great Easter Monday everybody.

Sunday 21 April 2019

Woody Guthrie - 3000 Unrecorded Songs

I've just watched the BBC documentary Woody Guthrie: Three Chords and The Truth and it reminded me of a few things and showed me a lot i didn't know about them man. I didn't that Guthrie and his father were racist and his father was involved in or facilitated lynchings. A lot of Guthrie's early writing was awash with racist wording and illustrations until ...

.. on his radio show he played a piece called "Run Nigger Run" , and he used THAT word in the worst ways you could, but then he got a letter from a Negro listenten, an educated guy who said up to the that point the show had been excellent, but by playing that and using THAT word he was showing disrespect and race hate towards African Americans. Guthrie took this on board and vowed never  to use THAT word again, he apologised on air and in a letter and became very active in pushing race equality. The problem is race inequality is still with use but Woody showed that people can change when educated by events.

This then brought me on to the fact that though he was struck down by the horrifying Huntingdon's Chorea which destroys the nervous system and therefor you lose control of everything, he had been a prolific writer being inspired by everything. After his death there were over three thousand sets of lyrics to unrecorded songs.

A lot of these are now being picked up by artists examples of which are seen in Billy Bragg and Wilco's "Mermaid Avenue Sessions" and the wonderful  take on "Old Man Trump" by Ryan Harvey (with Anne Di Franco and Tom Morello) and he remarked bout the number of songs that Woody had written.

Another remarkable one is "Deportees (Plane Wreck at Los Gatos)" , my favourite take on this is by Bob Dylan and Joan Baez (see here), but this illustrates the absolute disdain the for immigrant workers not even acknowledging them as human and the same is happening today with Trump's Wall and Brexit in the UK.

The documentary is excellent watch it , listen to Woody's songs and if you need to change yourself for the better , do it.

#AprilSongs #21 Sunday

You can't search for music about and Easter day without bringing back nothing but hymns and worship songs, which I mentioned in my Good Friday post. This time I have gone for a Nick Drake instrumental, "Sunday" the closing piece from "Bryter Later" for the #AprilSongs sequence. The opening flute made me think of the spooky sixties "Wicker Man" folk but actually this turns into a lovely listenable piece.

This is the day after I have started a seven day ban on Facebook, for sharing a picture FROM facebook , which is still there and you can see here which is basically mens bum cheeks decorated as Easter Eggs. The thing is it's a link to a site and the linking site posts the pictures. This has happened to me before when I posted an IMDB link to the Peter Greenaway film "Drowning By Numbers" . The film itself features nudity but the DVD cover picture, if you really zoom in has the suggestion of a female nipple underwater. Follow the link and see for yourself.

The problem is this is just a Kafkaesque situation and if you are a member of club then you abide by the rules but when those rules are applied arbitrarily without warning then that becomes annoying . I see a lot of  shall we say more explicit pictures than those I have been banned for, and of course racism and right wing hate and political lies are fine, freedom of speech and all that. So for a week I can't like, share or use messenger, without any dialogue or explanation from Facebook.

So anyway, it's another lovely day, enjoy your Easter Eggs and Easter Sunday.

Saturday 20 April 2019

#AprilSongs #20 Another Saturday Night

Resuming the #AprilSongs sequence this gorgeous Saturday morning and I and going with "Another Saturday Night" by Sam Cooke, which was also covered by Cat Stevens (now Yusuf Islam). Both artists produced some essential songs in their bodies of work so it is nice to actually find this link between them.

Sam Cooke was shot dead in 1964 at the age of 33 by Bertha Franklin the manager of the Hacienda Hotel in Los Angeles. He was shot 30 times in wat the court decided was a "justifiable homicide", ir being black in the USA is still a reasonable excuse to shoot someone. There is one take on it here

The song does have some misogynistic lines, with the assumption of male privilege, but it is a fine tune and was a product of it's time but he was responsible for some extremely powerful songs like a "A Change Is Gonna Come" .

Yusuf Islam is still with us and making music that is still worth listening to.

So time for a shower and then despatching an Eric Burdon CD for a Discogs order and maybe a walk into town.

Friday 19 April 2019

This Land Is YOUR Land

Tonight I caught a bit of a program I was recording about the great Woody Guthrie , Three Chords and The Truth which will be available on BBC iPlayer for the next month. While it is a great song and applies to any country, but is geographically situated in the USA stating that the land belongs to the people , not to governments and not to corporations.

I didn't know it had been used at Barack Obama's Inauguration as while it was sung in schools as an almost national anthem, only the first three verses were sung because the next three were deemed offensive.

At the Inauguration all six verses were sung, and it was very uplifting and moving and I am glad to be able to share it with you on this post thanks to Youtube. The documentary is very revealing but I just had to share this with you. Here are those words:

This Land Is Your Land
This land is your land, this land is my land
From California to the New York Island
From the Redwood forest to the Gulf Stream waters
This land was made for you and me.
As I went walkin', I saw a sign there
And on the sign it said : 'No trespassing'
But on the other side it didn't say nothin'
That side was made for you and me.
In the shadow of the steeple, I saw my people
By the relief office, I'd seen my people
As they stood hungry, I stood there askin'
If this land made for you and me ?
This land is your land, this land is my land
From California to the New York Island
From the Redwood forest to the Gulf Stream waters
This land was made for you and me.
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking that freedom highway
Nobody living can ever make me turn back
This land was made for you and me.
This land is your land, this land is my land
From California to the New York Island
From the Redwood forest to the Gulf Stream waters
This land was made for you and me.
As I went walkin', I saw a sign there
And on the sign it said: 'No trespassing'
But on the other side it didn't say nothin'
That side was made for you and me.
This land is your land, this land is my land
From California to the New York Island
From the Redwood forest to the Gulf Stream waters
This land was made for you and me.
This land is your land, this land is my land
From California to the New York Island
From the Redwood forest to the Gulf Stream waters
This land was made for you and me.
Songwriters: Woody Guthrie
This Land Is Your Land lyrics © S.I.A.E. Direzione Generale, Ludlow Music Inc., Woody Guthrie Publications Inc, LUDLOW MUSIC OBO WOODY GUTHRIE PUBLICATION INC, LUDLOW MUSIC INC OBO WOODY GUTHRIE PUBLICATIONS
Enjoy , digest and remember This Land is YOUR Land
I suggest you watch and enjoy

The documentary features Billy Bragg now a UK music elder statesman (though he's younger than me), but I was surprised that I couldn't track  down a Springsteen recording of the song on Amazon as I am sure he has recorded the song, but maybe not.