Friday, 20 May 2016
It's Friday . . . Let's Dance
I think that we will have a bit more early 90s progressive house this week, however this is a different beast entirely from the Sasha excursion of last Friday. My thoughts on how good Soma Quality Records are well know, I can't think of one of the first thirty releases that I don't rate very highly. Percussion Obsession was the 6th release on the label, it is the work of Ralph Lawson who was the resident dj at the legendary Leeds club Back To Basics and Fraser Brydson.
I have no plans for the weekend, however the transformation of the hall and staircase will have to be tackled at some stage. At the moment I can see it far enough.
Have a good weekend people.
Otaku - Percussion Obsession (Back To Basics Trucker mix)
Thursday, 19 May 2016
Sense In Scotland
Have you got a spare 13 minutes? No, well take time out anyway and listen to this. Sense in Scotland was one of two Le Thug tracks on an eight track split 12" on Song By Toad released for RSD in 2013. There were a further couple of tracks by the trio available for download when you purchased a 4 pack of Barney's Beer also available on RSD and until stocks sold out, I still live in hope that someday Swan will be released on vinyl.
Le Thug - Sense In Scotland
Wednesday, 18 May 2016
Summertime's Here Kiddies
Or it was but it seems to have passed now. We will probably get some more sunshine in this part of the world some time in September. I dug this out the other week and have played it at least a couple of dozen times since. If you want to know more about Kim Fowley, as good a place to start would here where Craig goes into some detail about one of the more unique figures to have graced the music business. This was another of the tracks that was on that psych compilation tape I've mentioned on a few occasions.
Kim Fowley - The Trip
Tuesday, 17 May 2016
Somebody To Love
I spent a most agreeable evening yesterday at the Excelsior with the boys and Stiff watching Caldervale High and St Andrews compete for the oldest Schools football cup in the world, the Airdrie Schools Cup. Caldervale won the match 3 -2, in a game that was better than many I witnessed this season, with none of the cynicism of the professional game. It was a joy to watch,.
Anyway back to the music, how about some Psychedelic soul from Barbara and Ernie? this cover of the Jefferson Airplane hit, White Rabbit was one of nine tracks from the duo's sole LP, Prelude To . . . , a lost gem as far as I'm concerned released in 1971. The pairing of Barbara Massey. a backing singer for the likes of Jimi Hendrix and Herbie Hancock and Ernie Calabria an acclaimed Jazz guitarist resulted in an album that changes genres from soul, to folk and a little bit of Latin thrown in for good measure. It was released on the Atlantic subsidiary Cotillion and duly bombed probably why there was no follow up. This would be right up your alley if you have any interest in late 60s early 70s, funk, soul or psych.
Barbara and Ernie - Somebody To Love
Monday, 16 May 2016
What More Could A Boy Ask For?
Today's slab of top quality soul comes courtesy of the Spinners, or if you are in the UK the Detroit Spinners, so as not to confuse them with the Liverpudlian folk group best known for In My Liverpool Home which I have memories of seeing more than once in my childhood on the telly for some strange reason. But I digress.
The Spinners that we are concerned with hail from Michigan and have been active since 1954, although until 1961 they were known as the Domingoes. They were originally on Harvey Fuqua's (Berry Gordy's brother in law) Tri Phi Records and in 1964 joined the Motown roster. What More Could A Boy Ask For was written by Fuqua and Johnny Bristol and was recorded by the vocal group in 1965. The track, like many others picked up by the northern scene was never released as a single by Motown but appeared on a few albums. It eventually got an official release on 7" as part of 2013's the Motown 7s Box collated by Richard Searling.
The Spinners are still touring although there is only one original member left standing, Henry Fambrough
The Spinners - What More Could A Boy Ask For
Sunday, 15 May 2016
Extra Mellow Sunday
JC's series on the singles of the Clash has come to an end today with the band's final single, This Is England released in 1983, This Is England and I thought as a companion piece I would post the dubbed up cover version courtesy of Dub Spencer and Trance Hill . This comes from an interesting album of Clash covers, "The CLASHification of Dub" from the Swiss band that Stiff got me for my Christmas last year which is well worth checking out
Dub Spencer and Trance Hill - This Is England
I have sort of lost track with Hot Chip, to be honest I haven't bought anything by the band since 2008. This laid back live session version of one of their best singles is really lovely.
Hot Chip - Ready For The Floor (Live Stripped Down Sessions version)
Friday, 13 May 2016
It's Friday . . . Let's Dance
It's back to 1992 and a bit of progressive house from "a man like Sasha". I made a decision not to preach about the late 80s and early 90s being the halcyon days of dance music as that would give the impression that I was just an old git harking back to the time when I was young and things were much much better than they are today, the fact that they were and dance music was are basically true but I don't want to come across as an out of touch ancient duffer so I will say that there is plenty of excellent new dance music about much of which will be featured over at Ctel's bit here. It's just every so often I like to go back and relive past glories. Honest, I'm not a look back bore.
Feel The Drop was one of two tracks on a double 12" pack, the other track was Appolonia. On the two slabs of vinyl there were three mixes of Feel The Drop and four mixes of Appolonia. 60 minutes of progressive dance floor culture is written on the front cover and just about sums it up. This was Sasha's (born Alexander Paul Coe) first release and his star was just beginning to shine but not quite at the poster boy of dance status that he would achieve a couple of years later, Mixmag actually had him on the front cover with the strap line "Son of God?" below the picture. His later stuff when he teamed up with John Digweed really bores me, all those long trance records with the big breakdowns but I loved this single and a few of his remixes, especially his Chuff Chuff mix of I'm Going All The way by Sounds of Blackness.
Btw B.M. EX stands for the Barry Manilow Experience as a nod to Mr Coe's love of the piano.
I am hoping to get out on the scooter again tomorrow as it was great last Sunday when there were loads of scooters down the Clyde Valley.
Have a good weekend people.
B.M. EX - Feel The Drop (Czechoslovakian Yeast Mix)
Thursday, 12 May 2016
Dangerous When Wet
Not to be mixed up with Slippery When Wet an album by some American Poodle rockers or other, Dangerous When Wet was the 8th release on Dan Carey's Speedy Wunderground label. Mr Dan's ethos is to record tracks within one day, with limited overdubs which are then released as soon as humanly possible in a run of 250 copies. The only other rule is that each track the sound of Mr Carey's Swarmatron must be included.. These releases are often strange but always well worth seeking out. I know absolutely nothing about Natalie Bang Bang, other than her real name is Natalie Chahal.
Natalie Bang Bang - Dangerous When Wet
Wednesday, 11 May 2016
Not Quite As Epic, But Still
This comes from my favourite Glasgow space rockers, the Cosmic Dead. Seriously get yourself over here and sort yourself out with some serious music. Black Rabbit is the first track from their debut album which is as good a place to start as any. The latest album, Rainbowhead is pretty damned brilliant too. I got a free jar of jam with mine.
The Cosmic Dead - Black Rabbit
Tuesday, 10 May 2016
Face Up To The Truth
I think we will stay with the soul today. This song gives me goose pimples every time, there is something very seductive about Doris Troy's voice . This song like yesterday's was recorded in Cincinnati with the Famous Flames providing the backing. It was released in 1967 on the Capitol label but I don't think that it bothered the charts as I'm sure " Just One Look" was the only hit that Troy had. A copy of this one on 7" would set you back about 150 quid.
Doris Troy - Face Up To The Truth
Monday, 9 May 2016
This is my second favourite Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons track after The Night which made number fourteen in my Northern Soul Top 50 series from last year. Beggin' was originally released in 1967. I don't remember hearing it at many dances back in the day but I did have it on a compilation tape. I seem to remember Dave the Mod playing the Timebox version.There is also a rather good cover of this by Dutch band Shocking Blue.
It took that French bloke, Pilooski to bring this brilliant dancer back to prominence with his re-edit nine years ago. I love his version but I think that the original just edges it.
Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons - Beggin'
Sunday, 8 May 2016
This is from an album that I have been reacquainting myself with recently. Amazing Grace was Spiritualized's fifth studio album and was released in 2003, I don't even try to rank Spiritualized albums as I think that they are all very very good apart from Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating In Space which is exceptionally good. I feel that I have neglected Amazing Grace and it's follow up Songs in A&E in the past.
Spiritualized - Oh Baby
Friday, 6 May 2016
It's Friday . . . Let's Dance
It has been a particularly gruelling few weeks for me and three colleagues as we tried to lock a trial that had far too many eyes from a lot higher up the food chain focusing their attention on, we finally got word last night that the UK database was finally locked and when I fired up the laptop this morning and read it it felt like a huge weight had been lifted and I wanted to dance round the floor like an eejit. Groovy feeling by Fluke came into my head and I can think of no better a reason to feature it. Alas the joy was short lived as less than an hour later I received a missive containing the time-lines for the next very tight deadline!
No football this week as Airdrie's season ended last Saturday with an excellent 3 - 0 victory away to Ayr but sadly events elsewhere meant that we finished 5th one and therefore missed out on the play-offs. Hopefully tomorrow I will get out on the scooter and go to Glasgow to visit my favourite record shops.
Have a good weekend people.
Fluke - Groovy Feeling (Lolly Bobble Choc Bomb)
Wednesday, 4 May 2016
There's Epic And There's EPIC
Sister Ray in it's original recorded form took up most of side two of White Light/White Heat, the Velvet Underground's second album and clocked in at 17.27. When played live it was sometimes shortened to just over ten minutes but most of time it was extended beyond twenty minutes and on a couple of occasions caught on tape way beyond thirty minutes. The version posted today comes from Complete Matrix Tapes and is of excellent quality and is definitely essential.
I'm in Luton today and tomorrow so nothing more until Saturday but this should keep you going.
Velvet Underground - Sister Ray (Live San Francisco November1969)
Tuesday, 3 May 2016
I know, a bit obvious after yesterday's post but I was listening to Quadrophenia at the weekend and I really do love the bass and drumming in this track. The look on Jimmy's face when we see him at the start of the film sums up exactly how I used to feel all those years ago when I was riding my scooter and between you and me how I secretly still feel when I go out on it. Although for the record I was never a mod.
The Who - The Real Me
Monday, 2 May 2016
Bank Holidays When I Was A Teenager
This was first posted back in May 2010 but thought that it was worth putting up again as I have been thinking a lot over the past couple of weeks of scootering back in the mid to late 80s.
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).
R Dean Taylor - There's A Ghost In My House
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