Tuesday 26 February 2013

Slow Down

On this day in 1977 Polydor Records signed up and coming Mod revivalists The Jam; whether or not the suits journeyed out to Woking to get the lads' signatures isn't documented. A handful of weeks later they recorded and released their debut single In The City; the album of the same name quickly followed with ten more amphetamine fuelled R'n'B nuggets. This footage shot at Manchester's Electric Circus captures them at precisely that time.

Monday 25 February 2013


In 1943 Aaron Copland premiered Rodeo: Four Dance Episodes at The Boston Pops. It was a pared down version of his 1942 ballet of the same name. This, for me, is the standout track:

Sunday 24 February 2013


Despite sharing his initials Jeff Lynne can never be John Lennon. He may well have worked with Paul, George and Ringo and built a sound (and a career) around A Day In The Life, but he will always be a Bootleg rather than a Fifth Beatle.

He can, however, take this Lennon quote to the grave as and when his time comes. (Audio from 0:13)

And for providing the soundtrack to the climax of Bill Murray's Kingpin, I can't thank him enough.

Thursday 14 February 2013

New to Dave

Dave never wanted to be The Fonz

In 1977 Jean Jacques Burnel of The Stranglers maintained that their keyboard player, Dave Greenfield, was not aware of The Doors; to be precise, not aware that he was royally nicking Ray Manzarek's Vox Continental arpeggios; thus giving the punks at the time another reason (apart from their ages) to doubt their credentials. Not that they were particularly bothered: Rattus Norvegicus, their debut album, was the fastest selling album on their label (UA), so if they wanted a 60s keyboard driven sound, with saxophones chucked in for good measure (Grip), no safety pinned, bin bag wearing Carnaby Street punk was going to stop them.

The Stranglers - (Get a) Grip (On Yourself) - 1977

Tuesday 12 February 2013


Bob Dylan & The Heartbreakers

He calls himself a song and dance man; though these days his critics tend not to concur. I dug this b**tleg out last night and was pleasantly surprised to hear that as (relatively) recently as 1986 Dylan still had chutzpah. In spades. Maybe it was having Seargent Petty on parade with him that night, but Positively 4th Street never sounded so, well, positive.

Bob Dylan + Tom Petty: Positively 4th Street

Thursday 7 February 2013

Iron out

The news today that the iron is being dropped by Monopoly will surely have John Waddington spinning in his grave. Don't get me wrong, I like cats: some of my best friends are cats, but a cat has no place on a Monopoly board. For what it's worth, I'm always the top hat when I play; any future moves to axe my titfer of choice will be met with the appropriate measured response. Let's just hope, for everyone's sake, we never reach that point.

Tuesday 5 February 2013

Things I don't understand

In no particular order...

1. Sea salt. As opposed to just, er, salt
2. The Economy
3. Radio 3 breakfast phone-in
4. Botox
5. Paul McCartney's Barnet
6. People who say that London
8. In-branch
9. Yellow socks
10. Morrissey

Friday 1 February 2013

Giger counter

Above: Work No. 217 (Brain Salad Surgery 1/2)

To the best of my knowledge both these artworks by H R Giger, the Swiss surrealist with a penchant for skulls and all things phallic, are still at large. Each measuring 34 x 34 cm (acrylic on paper) they were stolen from a Prague gallery in 2005. If you should see them at your local car boot sale be sure to contact the police and or Mr. Giger.

Left: Work No. 218 (Brain Salad Surgery 2/2)