Driving home from soccer training, number 1 son just told me with some enthusiasm that his music homework is to analyse 3 pieces from an artist of the 60s or 70s, colour tone, variation etc. Seems like a nice idea and he’s obviously into it. I have to point out at this juncture that any dialog with a 15 year old is rare, so anything that goes beyond monosyllables and grunts is amazing in the first place, let alone enthusiasm. Car rides tend toward silence usually.
So anyway, he said his first thought was HJH, but it seems like everyone else in the class is going that way. You also have to bear in mind this is in a music department talent night where the boys did a *very* convincing Pat Metheny cover where I wasn’t biting my knuckles, so awareness and choice aren’t an issue. Anyway, I piped up with The Dame (70s, Ziggy era, and he’s a fan), but he was ahead of me….he’d already picked the Kinks, all on his lonesome. Fair bought a tear to the eye it did.
Anyway, his “research” (presumably the first 3 results on Google) reveal that some deranged lunatic reckons “All » Continue Reading.
I once saw the Manic Street Preachers downstairs in Chapter Arts Centre downstairs bar playing in front of about 20 people. (They were rubbish actually and I left after four songs- with my immaculate A&R sensibilities I confidently predicted they’d never get anywhere). Have you ever seen anyone before they were famous in a really small venue?
Just been listening to the programmes about Ivy Benson on the radio. What a great story. Amazing connections from Ivy Benson to Little & Large to The Spice Girls!
You can still hear both programmes on the I-player at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b04lp3x7 http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0546j3x
A year or two back on the old site there was a thread about or containg The Cambodian Space Project. Can’t remember who posted, but he or she may well be interested in a fascinating Storyville episode shown on BBC4 last Monday evening entitled Rocking Cambodia: Rise of a Pop Diva which tells the story of the group/project from its inception to the present day.
It’s actually several stories in one: the tale of a marriage; a history of Khmer rock and roll and the tragedy of its participants; and the rise, indeed, of a diva from the humblest of surroundings. Thoroughly recommended!
Our book circle have just been reading Alan Warner’s excellent The Deadman’s Pedal. Tonight, we’re off to the pub to discuss it over a pint or two of heavy.
It’s set in the 1970s and, as in other Warner novels, music plays quite an important role. The protagonist, Simon, makes friends with the wealthy, gauche, bohemian Alex from the posh house through their mutual enthusiasm for the Floyd, Hendrix etc.
Simon really fancies Alex’s very foxy sister, Varie, and In one scene he invites her home and she looks through his albums. (Nowadays she’d just look at his Spotify playlists): She find one she likes the look of but it is never named.
“The cover …was a photograph of robed figures worshipping at dawn, their silhouettes showing through the gaps in Stonehenge.” The centrefold has ” inner, psychedelic illustrations of sacred hearts, eyes in pyramids, bursting stars, Egyptian gods galore.”
“The first side is just awful” according to Simon.
Does this record actually exist? Or did Warner just invent the details?
Any ageing hippies among you who can help out with this?
Adelaide Town Hall, South Australia
This was just sublime. The first hour was a continuous succession of improvisations, he’d play a melody or a theme and then rather than take off an extended virtuosic solo he gently explored the ideas in the piece, sometimes setting up a rhythmic groove, sometimes exploring the chord progression. It was all very gentle, meditative but never dull or boring, indeed it was the opposite – endlessly interesting, the sound of a master musician who knows exactly what he’s doing and how to do it. After that first hour there was another twenty minute piece, not quite so inventive, and that was it.
He didn’t speak a word to the audience, and had a folio of music on the piano which I suppose was a reminder of the pieces he wanted to play.
As a footnote, I’d organised to go this gig several months ago – had to leave a rehearsal half an hour early to get to the airport, fortunately the plane was on time but I was 3 minutes late and had to sit in the dress circle, which was OK. I fell over running across the road rushing » Continue Reading.
Adelaide Botanic Gardens
OK if you dont like long reviews look away now.
Womadelaide has been going since 1992 and they have got the organisation down pat by now. It is very civilised – book a hotel in the CBD or North Adelaide and take a stroll down for 4 days of World Music. Heat is the usual concern not mud a la Glastonbury in the UK or the other big Festival here- the Byron Bay Blues and Roots Festival. The first festival had Peter Gabriel, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Youssou Ndour , Remy Ongala and a bunch of other greats. The lineups can fluctuate -sometimes too much drums ,other times too many artists backed by a line of French players in black t shirts in ponytails. But this was one of the better line ups and the weather was in the mid twenties , far more comfortable than the mid-thirties. Here’s a bit on a few of the acts I saw. Rufus Wainwright closed Friday.As soon as he started with that slurring vocal I walked off and listened to a blue grass act before returning to hear him sing 3 sublime, slow ,understated songs. Too » Continue Reading.
This is already shaping up to be a cracking year, with the new Decemberists album, Gretchen Peters’ “Blackbird” and the new Steven Wilson which I haven’t heard yet but am sure will be great. Any other early tips for albums of the year?
My nomination for this melancholy title has to be Iain Banks, of course. This was brought to mind by the Student bookcase thread. Surely no self-respecting student these days should be without “The Wasp Factory” or “Espedair Street” on their shelf or in their bag. Whether in his Iain or Iain M. persona his books were almost uniformly brilliant. I wasn’t overly keen on A Song Of Stone. The others were all cracking reads without exception. What a tragedy that he went so quickly, too, and left no unpublished work to ease our pain.
Official trailer for the film THE DAMNED: Don’t You Wish That We Were Dead, the authorized documentary of the punk pioneers. Directed/produced by Wes Orshoski (co-director/producer of “LEMMY”), the film features all four original members of the Damned (Captain Sensible, Dave Vanian, Brian James and Rat Scabies), plus appearances by Chrissie Hynde (Pretenders), Mick Jones (The Clash), Steve Diggle (Buzzcocks), actor/comedian Fred Armisen, Nick Mason (Pink Floyd), Duff McKagan (Guns N Roses), Lemmy Kilmister (Motorhead), Keith Morris (Black Flag/Circle Jerks/OFF!), Dexter Holland (The Offspring) and many more. Shot around the world over the past four years, the film makes its debut at SXSW in March 2015. The third prong in the holy trinity of UK punk, with the Sex Pistols and the Clash, The Damned were the first U.K. punks to release a single (“New Rose”) and album (“Damned Damned Damned”), and the first to tour the U.S. Having logged hits in the punk, new wave and goth eras, they are one of the only surviving bands from punk’s first wave.
(the above text was nicked from the YouTube page)
One to add to my “Must See” List
Dear Sir, As discussed in our recent phone call I am seeking funding for research I am conducting into hypotheses formulated by our foremost pop stars. Until now my work has been a mixture of the perfunctory, such as routine paternity testing (“Is You Is Or Is You Ain’t My Baby?” – where a quite startling number of results came up “Papa Was A Rolling Stone”) and the truly unpleasant (“How Deep Can Sh*t Get?”). Our phone call ended abruptly and I suspect this is because in the earlier letter I sent you my young assistant – against my wishes! – placed “What’s Inside A Girl?” At the top of a proposed list of suitable areas of inquiry. He’s a bright young fellow so rather than dismiss him I taught him a lesson, tasking him with the onerous chores of a one-question cinema survey (“Have You Seen ‘Her’?”) and a tedious trek around the country’s railway network (“Does This Train Stop On Merseyside?). It is my feeling that the substantive work in this field lies in revisiting established truth which may lack rigorous foundation (there are some real flakes working in this field, let me tell you!) or whose certainty » Continue Reading.
You couldn’t make it up……
A police officer suspended over claims he filmed people having sex in South Yorkshire from the force’s helicopter has been sacked.
The great George Marinelli (Bonnie Raitt’s guitar player) and Dave Durocher have recorded some interviews with musicians for a youtube project called Sideman. The interviewees include George himself, and Garry Tallent, from the E Street Band. It’s nice and casual but it’s great to hear road stories, etc. George has become a ‘friend’ of my wife & I on Twitter and he comes across as nice as he appears here. I want to eat pizza made by George Marinelli. He also loves a pint of Guinness. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsDOsSHwXjmT4fok-WUc9NQ/videos
“No, your mum.”
“No, you’re chicken.”
“No, you are.”
Take a look at the row over the TV debate during PMQs, it’s on the BBC website. Good lord, Cameron is an arrogant and obfusticating c**t. I’d love to see BFJ Prescott smack him in his mealy mouth. I’m beginning to think that’s what it might take to put this country right again. It’s going to take more than poor weedy little Ed, that’s for sure.
I first heard The Dreaming Spires listening to the House Of Mercy radio show https://www.houseofmercy.tv/HOMstore.php and have since heard them on Bob Harris’s Radio 2 Sunday show.
Bio info from their own website http://www.thedreamingspires.co.uk/ :
The band is led by singing brothers Robin and Joe Bennett, who also handle most instrumental duties. Known to some as “the Notorious Bennett Brothers”, Robin and Joe have carved out some renown as accomplished musicians as well as being co-founders of acclaimed festivals – Wood & Truck, a label and even a record store.
The Dreaming Spires have been lucky enough to have 3 great drummers: Jamie Dawson plays drums and percussion on the new album, and Mike Monaghan and Loz Colbert played on Brothers in Brooklyn. Nick “Growler” Fowler (also of Gaz Coombes’ band) contributes guitar to many tracks and occasionally plays live with the band.
The brothers’ musical pedigree includes stints in Goldrush and Danny & the Champs, touring and recording with Mark Gardener of Ride, and collaborations with everyone from Gary Louris to Garth Hudson of The Band, Mercury Rev to Saint Etienne (the brothers are members of the present live incarnation of Saint Etienne). Joe also plays with fellow travellers » Continue Reading.
Moose, mentioned enjoying that cult work of philosophical fiction, Robert M Pirsig’s Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance over on the One Book Wonder thread. I liked it too and what memories that book brought back! Back in the day there was no student room that did not boast a copy.
A Swedish friend was recently surprised that I did not know Boris Vian’s L’ecume des jours. Back in his inter-railing days, no rucksack was without it.
What other works of cult fiction come to mind? And how well have they stood the test of time?
John Fowles’s The Magus and Hesse’s Steppenwolf for example.
Along of course with Dark Side of the Moon, Tubular Bills.
Go Marvin! Pity, you can’t enjoy the money yourself.
I am now as ignorant of contemporary pop culture as the stereotypical High Court judges of yore. Until this morning I’d never heard the song ‘Blurred Lines’ even though it is, according to the BBC, ‘the biggest selling single ever’. Can anyone from the Massive reassure me that they too have similar gaping blind spots?
I posted a couple of these vids in the “One for the girls….” thread. But these are SOOOOOOO good…
Bargepole asks, is there one special song that as soon as you hear the opening chords brings forth unbidden a flood of memories – what is that tune and just what are those memories……?
Mr Fortuneight mooted a bootleg podcast while the blog was down and Mr Blast one about Suede n Dog Man Star too .
So anyone fancy jawing about either? Bootlegs – taping, the best illicit stuff, wh and why not etc The Suede chat can be more general as well
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A wet and windy Monday night in Bristol so why venture out? Some things are worth the effort. Hence Claudia. Propaganda’s “A Secret Wish” and the remix “Wishful Thinking” were/are the perfect combination of impact and nonsense and the best thing about ZTT. The OK people knew/know them. Long since separated from” “the band” (if they were ever that) Claudia continues to pursue a range of interesting collaborations. This was mainly songs from her new-ish album “Where else…” some older songs, plus a few covers. A couple of Propaganda songs too.C laudia sings, a guy plays keyboards and another guy plays guitars. You can you-tube the rest. I particularly love her version of “Everyone Says Hi”.
It made me think..
…we had faces then.
Almost two and a half hours worth!