This tune has been going through my head for a couple of days and so last night I dug it out put it on, too loud and guess what it's as good as it was back in 1996. I know it has been posted on several occasions but I'm going to post it again. It is perfect for this strange weather we are having in Scotland.
Busy weekend ahead, what with the Wedding Present tonight and the Afghan Whigs tomorrow both of which I am really looking forward to.
I'm sure that everybody remembers their first gig. My most vivid memories of up until that point the most important night in my life, Motorhead at the Glasgow Apollo 18-03-1982, are the smell, a mixture of extremely honking b.o. and equally as gantin' patchouli oil and how loud it was, the next day at school I learnt absolutely nothing as my ears were still ringing and I remember being scared that my hearing would never recover.
The reason I bring this up is that tomorrow night Max will attend his first concert proper. When he was 8 months old he was present when Camera Obscura and Belle and Sebastian amongst others were part of the School's Out event in the Botanic Gardens in Glasgow. Later when he was 8 years old we went to the Latitude festival where he was impressed by Edwyn Collins, Wanda Jackson and Mark Lanegan, however his highlight was the Vaccines. But the Wedding Present at the ABC Glasgow will be the first real gig in a true concert venue. He is really looking forward to it, I can tell but being a teenager he is doing his best to look like he's not bothered.
The Wedding Present will be performing the George Best album in full which is not one of Max's favourites, he's more a Bizarro and Take Fountain kind of guy but I'm sure that he will get a new found appreciation for the album after hearing it in the live setting. I am also hoping that Gedge will do his usual mingling with the crowd before and after the band performs and then Max can eventually meet the man he calls David and who has previously signed two t-shirts for him and those lyrics especially Kennedy are imprinted in his memory. As you would expect Leo is kind of pissed off that he can't go.
I think that we all need to listen to the words of the Reverend a bit more closely. Sadly, there will always be some fuckwits that don't get it, but that doesn't mean the rest of us have to stop trying.
There is an old joke - how many soul fans does it take to change a lightbulb?
One to change it and four hundred to scream, it's not as good as the original.
Well in the case of today's track the opposite is true for me, in that the original is ok but the cover version is just so much better.
Superman by Clique was released in 1969 and has that kind of psychedelic pop sound and if it hadn't been for the later REM version I would probably hold it in higher regard. As it is the later version is not radically different from this recording it's just a bit faster and a bit louder, more indie if you like. But Clique have to be given some kudos for writing what is a very good tune in the first place.
Some uptempo happy soul for you this Monday morning. No stories of no good men cheating on and walking out on their partners today or of wreckage left after bust ups. Nope, Millie Jackson seems to have found that one in a million guy who's always around when needed and doesn't go looking for a bit on the side.
My Man, A Sweet Man was an early single by Millie Jackson, released in 1972 on the Spring label in the States and Mojo records this side of the pond. With a very upbeat Philly style backing this track could be considered a pop song if it weren't for Millie's gospel style vocals. One of those tunes that gets in your head and stays there, not a bad thing in this case.
Yesterday's Springsteen Covered post at CC's made me think of this post from way back in September 2012, not that the music has anything to do with the Boss but CC's mention of "the Tonic" favoured in the Shire got me all misty eyed about being 17/18 and the trials and tribulations of that time although I was never "dumped doon the Strathy".
I don't know what it was like then you were sixteen or seventeen but in deepest darkest Lanarkshire organising your fun of a weekend wasn't the easiest thing to do. There wasn't that much to do in Lanark during the mid eighties if you were at that certain age when playing football just didn't do it any longer, you had a baby face and couldn't get into Blondes or Foxes, the two pubs where under-agers stood a chance of getting served or didn't have a steady girlfriend. Once a month there was the YM disco but most of the time that ended early due to fighting or the calling of an ambulance for some poor unfortunate, who had drunk too much and needed his/her stomach pumped, and besides the sounds pumped out by "Purple Rain Disco" were pure pish anyway.
So the only other thing to do was drink. Well there were loads of other things to do, we could have chosen athletics, badminton or any number of other character building pursuits that involved effort and exercise. We however, chose drink.
When partaking of alcohol while not legally allowed to you had two options open to you.
Firstly if you were in with the heidbangers and local young team you went down the park with a bottle of wine. Invariably this led to having to partake in the athletics mentioned above, particularly the steeplechase while being pursued by Sergeant Slater or other members of Lanark's Finest.
The other option was of course the civilised one where you drank in the comfort of someone else's home. Some were lucky enough to know someone with liberal parents who allowed the drinking of a cargo on their premises. For the rest of us it came down to whose parents were either out for the night, even better for the weekend or the holy grail, they were away on a fortnights holiday!
So from first period on a Friday the question could be heard "Do you know who's got an empty this weekend?" and as soon as you found out who it was then the charm offensive began to get yourself invited to the poor unfortunate's abode. It was not unknown for kids who had a very small circle of friends before the revelation that their parents were in Malaga to become the most popular guy or girl in 5th Year.
Such evenings started off well, all civilised, folk having a good time, drinking, listening to music, trying to cop off with members of the opposite sex. But as the night progressed there was always a casualty or two and some projectile produced. A romance would bloom, another couple ended and things generally degenerated until the night was ruined when some shady characters turned up, probably from down the park and either wrecked the place or stole the drink or even worse the parents came back early.
Up until recently nobody had captured the trials and tribulations of trying to have a good weekend while under-age in Lanarkshire in song. This situation was rectified earlier this year when the Just Joans released their "concept album" about the last year of school and the first year of Uni away from home, wonderfully entitled Buckfast Bottles In The Rain. Granted the band are relating their experiences in Motherwell in the mid nineties but things don't change much in the shire and this is the same scenario I found myself in at the same time during the previous decade in Lanark but replace Wonderwall with The Rattler or Dignity
There was an article in the Guardian yesterday that said 29% of 18-24 year olds had never listened to a song by Elvis Presley. I was shocked, I thought that the figure would have been much higher. In the same article it was reported that Elvis merchandise "is in freefall" which I suppose is reason to be cheerful as this means that taste is returning, as of the memorabilia I remember seeing was almost criminally tacky and not the kind of thing that if I were the King I would want associated with my memory. This blog is not the kind of place that would attract millennials, I would wager that the only time that one has ended up here is by mistake. But if any do wander by listen to some fucking Elvis the stuff from 54 - 58 and from 68 onwards, even the Vegas years had some good moments but not the bloody horrible soundtrack albums and for christ's sake steer clear of Wooden Heart or it will stay in your head for ages torturing you and sending you to the edge of reason!
All of that was just an excuse for me to post my favourite Elvis tune, remixed by my favourite Gallic dj/producer, Pilooski, yet again.
With the football season once again, it's back to the domestic chores and DiY. This weekend I will be mostly tackling the shed and the cupboard under the stairs. Deep, deep joy!
I wasn't really that impressed by the original of Tied Up, it was a sort of Industrial/Techno hybrid that left me cold. The acid mix on the other side was better, a proper bleepy 303 workout, But it's the Spiritualized Electric Mainline mix that.s the one for me. I'm not sure how much of the original remains in the mix, there are some very faint beats in there but that's about it, if it the time it had been covered up and I had been told it was a Spiritualized tune I don't think that I would have argued. Am ate of mine once described it as "nine minutes of sound to navel gaze to", I think he meant it in a good way, well that's the way I took it anyway.
So take ten minutes out, sit back and immerse yourself in these sounds or you could just induge in some "navel gazing"
LFO - Tied Up (Spiritualized "Electric Mainline" remix)
This got lodged in my head today and so I checked the hard drive and found that I had never ripped it. I was sure that I had listened to this on the iPod before but obviously not. So down to the indie 12" single cupboard to rectify the situation. I was going to rip the whole ep as Jacob's Ladder the a side on the 7" isn't even the best of the 5 tracks that is Le Boom Boom, however time and my teenage exploits with vinyl has meant that the record is in less than mint condition. I did however also rip le Boom Boom, my favourite although it does have added snap crackle and pop.
We're back with the Garage Rock this Tuesday and what for me is the sonic equivalent of a flamethrower leaving nothing but scorched earth in it's wake. The Outcasts have featured here before with their glorious I'm In Pittsburgh And It's Raining which which I thought was a short song but the sixth and final single from the band from San Antonio, Texas is not likely to outstay it's welcome clocking in at one minute forty-eight seconds a full ten seconds less than that previous release. The group broke up the year after this single's release in 1967 after the death from hepatitis of Buddy Carson co-writer of 1523 Blair with Jim Ryan. I think that this single is the epitome of Texas Punk.
Long before Craig David boasted about his exploits over the course of week, James Fountain was letting people know that he was a lover with staying power over the course of seven days.
Seven Day Lover was recorded and released in 1970 and was virtually a new release when Ian Levine started playing it at the Blackpool Mecca one of the first tunes to break the mould as far as northern soul was concerned with this "modern" sound. It was released on William Bell's Peachtree Records out of Atlanta, Georgia and is as funky as .
As you may be aware I hold the Velvet Underground in quite high esteem. I also quite like a bit of Christina Aguilera now and again but the prospect of the two of them mashed together made me baulk a bit and I thought to myself that's just plain wrong when some one on my Twitter timeline last night posted this. But it is a work of sheer genius splicing together The Velvet's Rock and Roll with What A Girl Wants and then the added wee twist of a bit of the Communards in the fade out.
One thing that became apparent last weekend with my fellow bloggers is that if they have a favourite posting on my site it isn't the Friday dance music, with the exception of Dirk who , being brutally honest said that he wasn't interested in the tunes but did check out each Friday's post to see what the picture was.
Me being the stubborn, pig headed person that I am have decided to ignore this feedback and continue to flog the dead horse for as long as I find dance tunes to post, In fact recently it has been harder to find the pictures to accompany the series than it is to pluck out a "good" bit of house or techno.
Four years ago. Just let that sink in SA, jesus four years ago! Daniel Avery released one of the most cohesive dance records that I have, I realise that that length of time is not really that long in normal music but in dance music it is absolutely ages but Drone Logic sounds as good now as it did the first time I played it. I noticed the other day that the vinyl is getting a well deserved re-release this month. So with that in mind I thought that I would post one of the tracks from the series of remix 10" and 12" singles that accompanied the album and were gathered up and released on cd as New Energy (Collected Remixes) which is well worth seeking out, unless you are Dirk, Stevie, Brian or JC to whom it will be of no interest at all.
Drone Logic, the title track from the album was an immense track in it's original form with a huge wobbly bassline, spoken vocals which kept building to become one of those tracks that you never want to end which brings to mind Underworld but is not at all derivative Berlin based producer Rodhad turns it into a more brooding but no less epic piece of minimal techno.
Back to the play-offs. You will probably know if you are interested in the slightest that Airdrie beat Alloa one nil at the Excelsior on Wednesday night in what has to be the team's best performance this season. If they had played like that all season most probably we would still be in the position that we are in now but still. Unfortunately Andy Ryan's days at the club are numbered, I can't see someone who has netted 28 goals even in the first division fail to be on the radar of the scouts of at least a few better positioned clubs, c'est la vie.
We now have to take on Alloa away tomorrow, where Leo, me and the W brothers will be in attendance. If the Diamonds are able to get a victory there or even a draw we will go into the play-off finals where we could meet JC's mob, Raith Rovers who drew one each with Brechin also on Wednesday but had two goals disallowed.
As some of you may know Airdrie won an absolutely enthralling and at times extremely frustrating game on Saturday 3-2 which means that tonight we take on Alloa for the first leg of an encounter that if successful will mean that we could be playing JC's team Raith Rovers for a place in the Championship. We will be back down to our core tonight of myself, Leo, the Wilson brothers and father John. No American, German or English friends in our part of the crowd at least to cheer us on. Perversely, Brian, it will probably be warmer than it was on Saturday, it did get quite bitter with the wind swirling around and the fact that the sun was behind the main stand. We will be hoping for less schoolboy errors tonight but they have just been part and parcel of the team's game this season.
I must admit I am in a bit of a post weekend dip at the moment and need something to lift the spirits and get me going again and I find that a bit of upbeat soul usually does the trick.
I first heard of Jackie Wilson long before I knew anything about him or his music when Dexy's Midnight Runners covered the Van Morrison song Jackie Wilson Said and the infamous TotP edition when they put up a still of Jocky Wilson either intentionally or as a mistake. I am sure that by the time Reet Petite was re-released in 1987 I had a tape with I Get The Sweetest Feeling on it as when it was re-issued on the back of the success of Reet Petite it was not unknown to me. My favourite of the three singles re-released in 1886/87 has to be Higher and Higher, originally released in 1967. It has the unmistakable talents of the Funk Brothers on the backing track which they laid down while moonlighting from Motown. Wilson's vocal was added later in one take.
Not my favourite Jackie Wilson track, that as anyone who stuck with my Northern Soul Top 50 will know is Because of You. But it is a great uptempo song to dance to with an infectious beat great bass line and an irresistible hook not to mention the wonderful vocal.
Well. that is a weekend I never want to repeat, a bigger bunch of tossers I have never met in my entire life!**
But to the important work. I am at a loss today. I literally do not have the words to describe how absolutely amazing today's featured band is in the eyes of, mind blowingly, millions of people. It is difficult to convey the absolute genius of Chris Martin's lyric writing or the incredible innovation present on the band's albums.
I have many fond memories of listening to Parachutes while renovating the living room and stairwell of L and I's previous house. Stripping back the walls to the plaster, re-skimming them and then applying new skirtings and facings thoughout. In fact every time I look at a particularly tricky angle on a dado rail going up a staircase the words " look at the stars, look out they shine for you" fill my head. Similarly when I see a tin of Ronseal Mahogany varnish I get a "Shiver". Good times indeed, coming home from work and then starting on whatever needed to be done until the wee small hours as I was on a deadline that it all had to be completed before L's hen night.
So you would think that I would obviously pick a track from Parachutes but no, the Coldplay ouevre is just so damned good, with the band breaking new ground with each album,and all the time winning over more and more fans as they progressed, it has been incredibly difficult to pick just one track to feature today. It could have been Fix You with the deeply profound :-
When you try so hard but you don't succeed
When you get what you want but not what you need
When you feel so tired but you can't sleep
Stuck in reverse.
Or I could have selected, God Put A Smile On Your Face, Every Teardrop Is a Waterfall, Violet Hill or Viva la Vida . Only a few examples of the abilities of these four earnest, educated young fellows. It has been a tough choice, and a difficult listen, trust me but I finally picked an album track from the group's second long player A Sudden Rush Of Blood To The Head, Green Eyes which starts with the unforgettable lyrics :
Honey you are the rock
On which I stand
And I came here to talk
I hope you understand.
Nothing more need be said, I think.
** I'm just kidding, a better bunch of guys it would be hard to find which the photo above doesn't quite capture. I had an absolutely blast and I thank Dirk for coming up with the idea and for everybody who took planes, trains and automobiles to be in Glasgow at the weekend.
. . . Let's meet up, drink too much and talk pish in different languages.
As some of you may be already aware a few sad middle aged men from Scotland, England, Germany and very surprisingly America are meeting up this weekend for a few days of getting to know each other, drinking, eating, record shop visiting and for some the dubious pleasure of heading out to Airdrie for a few hours on Saturday to see if Airdrie can make the League One play-offs. I have to admit that I am really looking forward to this gathering. I've met up with JC quite often, had beers with Swiss Adam on more than one occasion in Didsbury, suspect that I have unknowingly bumped into CC at more than one gig in the town but up until this point have only ever communicated with Dirk, Walter and Brian on the blogosphere.
A couple of people have said to me "are you mad, spending a weekend with people you don't know " to which my response has always been it can be no worse than some of the time that I have spent with people that I do know or thought I did until I had to spend an extended period of time with. So no I'm not mad, well not in the way they mean it anyway.
"The football, what's happening to the mighty Diamonds!" I hear you yell. Well, after a four - nil mauling of East Fife last weekend Airdrie are one of two teams on 49 points, the Diamonds in third on goal difference from Brechin City y which would mean a play off place, if it were not for the fact that there are two teams below on 46 points, one of whom happens to be Queen's Park, our adversaries tomorrow and although our goal difference is better, which hadn't been the case until recently, we will have to win to not be reliant on results elsewhere. So saying that Adam, Walter and Brian are in for a treat may be stretching it a bit, they should find it thrilling, then again Airdrie might be absolute pish. That is the great thing about supporting, lower, lower league football "you can never be absolutely certain what you're gonna get" to quote the great John Peel.
I'm pretty sure there will be no dancing to house music this weekend for us but still.
I have been a little bit distracted this week, been busy with work and getting things together for the coming weekend so the posts have been even less interesting than usual so I apologise.
When I heard of the passing of Jonathan Demme my initial thought was when I and my girlfriend at the time saw Silence of The Lambs and my utter amazement hearing snatches of Hip Priest during the climax of the film. Needless to say my girlfriend was rather less bothered and a bit perplexed by my reaction.
Jenny Lewis has popped up at a few places over the past wee while most recently at CC's bit. Where he featured something from her second solo album Acid Tongue which to be honest I listened to a couple of times when it first came but left no impression on me at all. L and I went to see Lewis at the QMU on the tour to promote the album which was okay but again nothing like on the few occasions when I saw her with Rilo Kiley. With Arms Outstretched is a song I never tire of and the tune I kept asking for at King Tuts and when they played it it was glorious.
Why was this not an A-side? People talk about the quality of The Smiths b-sides but I think that this is as good a song as anything Pulp ever put out as a single. I like A Little Soul but I think that Like A Friend is the one.
The picture has nothing to do with the song just a still from a film I came across and quite liked.
This was first posted back in May 2010 and again last year but I had quite a heavy weekend and yesterday was spent in "recovery mode" and thinking of what to post was way down the list of priorities, thinking alone was quite difficult. Not helped by the fact that the trains weren't running and L and I had to spend 2 hrs 20 mins on a bus home from Glasgow for a journey that should take 50 mins. Not good when you are really hung over and your breakfast is trying hard to make a bid for freedom from your stomach.
Way back in the mists of time when I was a teenager, Bank Holiday weekends meant endurance tests.
As part of a scooter club you were expected to go on scooter runs. There were a series of National events organised throughout the year, with the Easter Weekend, usually seeing the first and then periodically until the last at the end of October and all bar one would be south of the border meaning that the Scots always had a considerable distance to go.
I don't know how many of you are familiar with the delights of riding Lambrettas or Vespas, so I think I should explain a little.
These feats of Italian engineering usually have an engine capacity between 125 and 250 cc and a top speed in the region of between 55 and 80 miles per hour. They are designed for zipping in and out of traffic in Italian cities not for riding twos up with a load of camping gear, supplies of Buckie and a change of clothing (if you were like me and had some semblance of personal hygiene) from say, west central Scotland to the South Coast of England.
As a result of the design of the scooters and the punishment of travelling such long distances an AA or RAC membership or preferably both was as essential to a scooterist as 2 stroke oil and it was not unknown for scooterists to attend runs courtesy of the RAC and then get home with the assistance of the nation's forth emergency service and vice versa. When traveling to runs it was common to see groups of scooterists performing what is the mechanics version of open heart surgery on the hard shoulder to their beloved machines. There was one member of our club who did away with luxuries such as a tent or a change in clothing in order to carry with him all the components of a spare engine.
When you did eventually get to the camp site, which was usually the shittiest bit of waste ground in or near the town, the real problems began.
"Who's got the tent?" was the first cry and if the person who was supposed to bring it remembered and it hadn't fell off the back of the scooter during the trip you were off to a good start.
"Where are the poles?"
"What do you mean you haven't got them?"
This scenario I hasten to add was not as rare an event as you would think and resulted in some novel methods of tent erection being employed.
Once the tents were up, it was time to find somewhere to drink. This usually entailed trying to get a couple of thousand scooterists into the two or three pubs in the town which hadn't barred us before we even had a chance to do something wrong.
When all else failed you ended up spending a couple of days drinking warm cans of lager and eating crap from the dubious burger van on the camp site, using what could only in the loosest term be called washing facilities and not sleeping due to the real chance of being run over by some drunken scooter boy who has decided that it is a good idea to ride up and down the camp site in the middle of the night after drinking Buckfast and lager all day while also toking on more weed than your average Rastafarian would consume in a week.
Then after a couple of days without sleep and after drinking too much it was time to get back on your machine if it had not been bundled into the back of a van during the night by some shady guys, (you know who you are) and ride the two to three hundred miles home praying to god that you don't hole a piston or have a seizure on the road home.
As you can probably guess scooter runs weren't my favourite weekends away. Being a lightweight who enjoys the finer things in life such as a flushing toilet, running water and a bed, going on these expeditions wasn't high on my list of priorities and I attended 2 to 3 a year if really unlucky. I did have friends such as Stiff, Gordon and Mick who would try not to miss any, always had a ball and came back with some brilliant tales of hedonism and pure stupidity that if I were to re-tell would not be believed but all did in fact happen. They even made the trip down to Margate, a particularly gruelling journey only to find that the scooter run was actually the following week!
So in celebration of Bank Holidays of the past, here is a particular favourite northern soul track of our scootering fraternity, the LSC (Lanarkshire Scooter Club).