With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

Music trivia, useless info, extra added random stuff and the odd rant from me

“And I’m breaking out, I’m breaking out, last chance to lose control” October 31, 2011

Musicradar.com readers have voted Muse’s “Hysteria” as the greatest bass line of all time. The full list including song, band/ artist and bass player is;

01. “Hysteria” – Muse (Chris Wolstenholme)
02. “YYZ” – Rush (Geddy Lee)
03. “Another One Bites The Dust” – Queen (John Deacon)
04. “Under Pressure” – Queen & David Bowie (John Deacon)
05. “Money” – Pink Floyd (Roger Waters)
06. “Orion” – Metallica (Cliff Burton)
07. “Billie Jean” – Michael Jackson (Louis Johnson)
08. “Roundabout” – Yes (Chris Squire)
09. “My Generation” – The Who (John Entwistle)
10. “Schism” – Tool (Justin Chancellor)
11. “Give It Away” – Red Hot Chili Peppers (Flea)
12. “The Lemon Song” – Led Zeppelin (John Paul Jones)
13. “Taxman” – The Beatles (Paul McCartney)
14. “Good Times” – Chic (Bernard Edwards)
15. “The Chicken” – Jaco Pastorius
16. “Walk On The Wild Side” – Lou Reed (Herbie Flowers)
17. What’s Going On – Marvin Gaye (James Jamerson)
18. “Stand By Me” – Ben E King (Wendell Marshall)
19. “The Guns Of Brixton” – The Clash (Paul Simonon)
20. “Sweet Emotion” – Aerosmith (Tom Hamilton)
21. “Super Freak” – Rick James (Oscar Alston)
22. “Pusherman” – Curtis Mayfield (Joseph “Lucky” Scott)
23. “These Boots Are Made For Walkin'” – Nancy Sinatra (Carol Kaye/Chuck Berghofer)
24. “In The Midnight Hour” – Wilson Pickett (Donald “Duck” Dunn)
25. “Make It Funky” – James Brown (Fred Thomas)

Click here to check it out on the musicradar site. I was really pleased to see that my three favourite bass players are in there; James Jamerson, Donald “Duck” Dunn and Bernard Edwards. Who is your favourite bass player and what songs do you think are missing from this list? While you’re thinking about it enjoy the top 5 below;


“Chestnuts roasting like a hot July”

desperate to keep his testicles high up, JB uses the two hand clutch approach.....

Justin Bieber‘s balls have dropped according to his manager Scooter Braun (is that a made up name? Surely it is, isn’t it?) Yes the Bieber voice has broken, but I guess that it had to happen sometime didn’t it? Can we hope that this will spell the end of his career? Well sure we can hope, but somehow I think he’ll be around a bit longer. Even if his voice disappears there is so much you can do with crap in the studio. Just look at Boylife and Westzone for evidence. Yes I know I have mixed the names up, but frankly they are just identikit boy bands.

......clearly the two handed approach has failed and one of Bieber's monster cojones hits the deck

Incidentally the broken voice discovery was made while he recorded a duet with Maria Carey, a cover of her hit “All I Want For Christmas“. Yes the Biebertron has a Christmas album coming out this week. A Christmas album released in December? That’s not a cynical marketing ploy at all is it?

Justin confirms to waiting fans that indeed both of the Bieber bollocks have dropped

As for the Bieber balls I wonder whether the action figure of the little dude will now include a drop and retract testicles feature, maybe  a bit like the Action Man Eagle Eye feature? What do you folks think?

Finally the realisation sets in that his career may be heading in the same direction as his testicles


“Now little Jimmy’s gone, he disappeared one day” October 30, 2011

You have probably already read about the death of Jimmy Saville this weekend. He passed away at his home in Leeds aged 84. Whilst he wasn’t a musician the late, great Jimmy Saville has played a prominent role in the music world. He was a dance hall disc jockey in the 40s and 50s and he also claimed to have been the first person to put two turntables and a microphone together. He came to prominence as a DJ when he worked at Radio Luxembourg and was among the first DJs on Radio 1. On 1st January 1964 (coincidentally my 5th birthday) he presented the first ever Top Of The Pops from the BBC’s Manchester Studios. He was also one of the presenters of the last ever Top Of The Pops in 2006.

His TV showJim’ll Fix It‘ made him a true household name as it ran for 20 years on UK TV. the concept was that you wrote to Jim to see if he could ‘fix it’ for you to do something you’ve always wanted to do. At its peak the show received around 20,000 letters per week. I remember that one of my young cousins thought that Jimmy’s first name was in fact Jim’ll.

He also raised vast amounts of money for charity. His accountant apparently said that he stopped counting how much had been raised when it hit £40 million. He ran more than 200 marathons in his tireless effort to raise money. I saw him when I ran my one and only marathon in 1986. I am proud to say that Jimmy Saville finished before me in the London Marathon, obviously he was wearing his trademark gold tracksuit too!

This could be a young Michael Parkinson couldn't it?

This is a great short interview, documentary clip with the man himself.

I’m sure Mr Saville will be sadly missed by fans, friends and family and my thoughts are with them. Sir Jimmy Saville RIP. I will close with an appropriately titled song from the Undertones;


“Come away, come away if you’re going, leave the sinking ship behind” October 29, 2011

As strange headlines go ‘Saddam’s Buttock Fails To Sell At Auction’ is surely among the best isn’t it? But what makes it even better is that it isn’t one of those ridiculous Sunday SportElvis Is Alive And Lives In A London Bus On The Moon” type headlines; it’s actually true!

The cheek of it!

A former SAS man managed to retrieve part of Saddam’s posterior for posterity. (Two words I don’t think I’ve ever used in the same sentence before!) when the infamous statue of Saddam Hussein was pulled down in central Baghdad back in 2003. He put it up for sale at an auction in Derbyshire in the UK.

The cheeky new owner was hoping to raise £250k for soldiers charities. When he was given the bums rush by potential purchasers with a maximum offer of some £21k he realised that he had just been going through the motions and he was gutted. But the idea has a nice ring to it so I believe that he should push hard to do it again and not just go home and sit on his stool. It certainly doesn’t stand up to much anal isys and maybe hard to digest, but perhaps he doesn’t have fart to go before a new owner plops some money into his back pocket to clench (sic) a deal on a number 2 auction.

With all the bottom references and it being nearly Halloween, how could I resist including this?

Read the story on the BBC by clicking here. I would love to hear your thoughts on this bit of news, but in the meantime here are a few hopefully related songs;


Tindersticks – York Barbican, Monday 24th October 2011 October 24, 2011

Filed under: Review — justwilliam1959 @ 11:01 pm
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Earlier this evening I went to a gig by the Tindersticks at York Barbican. It was probably the most avant-garde show I have ever been to and the quote from John Lennon that kept popping into my head was ‘avant-garde is French for bullshit’. Now in many cases that may well be true, but regarding the Tindersticks it clearly isn’t. The show was based around the soundtracks that the band have recorded for Claire Denis, a French filmmaker. They played live to excerpts of Denis’ movies, which were somewhat weird and provocative. The nearest comparison I have is the short film that was effectively David Bowie’s support on the 1976 ‘Thin White Duke’ tour; ‘Un Chien Andalou’

The show was an 18+ event given the sex and violence in the films. The music really does work with the film though, in a way I wouldn’t have imagined. Perhaps the strangest clip for me was of a couple seemingly having wild sex which then turned into the woman eating the guys face. I mean biting of bits of flesh, it wasn’t a show for the faint hearted or easily offended. But back to the band; instrumentally they were truly amazing. Eight really gifted musicians who are pretty tight together. It was a completely instrumental set as unfortunately lead singer Stuart Staples had laryngitis.

Overall I enjoyed the show, but it isn’t the sort of gig I would normally go to. The film with live soundtrack was a very brave and different thing to do and mostly it worked well but on occasions it was a little soporific. I also felt that the auditorium being less than half full had more to do with the competence of the venue rather than the appeal of the band. I doubt that I will go and see a similar show again, but I will download some of the soundtracks I think. If anyone reading this was at the show tonight or any of the others on the tour I would love to know what you thought of it. And finally I should point out that none of the pictures or video included in this post are actually from tonights show.


“Look out you city slickers, we’re gonna burn that bastard down”

This post gives me an opportunity to publish the same one across two of my blogs. You are either reading this on With Just A Hint Of Mayhem or With Just A Hint Of Learning click on the name of the one that you’re not reading to check out more of my blogging collection. But they do have a slightly different title in keeping with the style of each blog.

I am sure that the majority of you are familiar with the famous (or infamous) Nokia ringtone. But how many of you know where it came from? Firstly before polyphonic sounds were available on mobile phones the Nokia tone existed in it’s more primitive form. The melody was chosen from a piece composed by a Spanish musician, Francisco Tarrega, in 1902. The age of the music meant that Nokia would not have to pay any royalties.

But it’s how the tone transformed into its polyphonic version that interests me. In the early 1990s a certain Mr Thomas Dolby was becoming fed up with the music industry and packed his bags and went to Silicon Valley in the USA. While there he set up a company that used polyphonic synthesiser software that enabled a computer to play not just one musical note but quite a combination including playing notes at the same time. His lucky break came when Nokia hired his company to produce a polyphonic update of the Nokia ringtone. That polyphonic ringtone synthesiser is now included in every Nokia phone along with many of the competitions devices. It is said that the, in my opinion, annoying ring tone can be heard more than two billion times each day. Now that is a lot of calls!

Thomas Dolby has now decided to make a comeback into the music world. He is touring soon and also has a new album; ‘A Map Of The Floating City’ out now. It is his first album for around 19 years, which is an even bigger gap between releases than the Stone Roses first two and Kate Bush’s last two combined. The album also features input from a number of other artists including; Mark Knopfler, Regina Spektor and Imogen Heap. The track listing is;

  1. Nothing New Under The Sun
  2. Spice Train
  3. Evil Twin Brother
  4. A Jealous Thing Called Love
  5. Road To Reno
  6. The Toad Lickers
  7. 17 Hills
  8. Love Is A Loaded Pistol
  9. Oceanea
  10. Simone
  11. To The Lifeboats

Below you will find some classic Dolby along with something from his new album. So put your headphones on and enjoy these songs and help block out those annoying ringtones that are probably going off all around you! You can also read the full article at the BBC by clicking here.


“Swept away on a wave of emotion, overcaught in the eye of the storm” October 21, 2011

Filed under: News,Rants — justwilliam1959 @ 10:40 pm
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At last Westlife are ready to cash in their chips

After the epic news earlier this week that the Stone Roses have reformed some even more epic news broke yesterday. Westlife are finally splitting up, which I must say that I find really sad. When I say sad I mean I’m really sad that it’s taken so bloody long for it to happen. It hardly registers on the same cultural scale as the Beatles break up does it? But incredibly Westlife have had 14 UK number one singles (that’s not far off the Beatles and Elvis Presley’s tally of 17 and 21 respectively) and have worldwide record sales of 44 million. Unlike the Beatles though these guys aren’t just breaking up, they’re embarking on a farewell tour next year in support of a greatest hits package to be released next month. For me they were all about the easy buck and the dumbing down of the music industry. So no surprise that the most worthless, talentless person to ever appear on TV or find employment in the entertainment industry, Louis Walsh, was behind them!

Personally I'm glad that someone took the stage away!

But of course every Yin has a Yang, every Kit has a Kat, every A-Side has a B-Side, every day has a night, every messiah has a Judas, every rose has a thorn, every Bon has a Jovi and every dog has a Shit. It sadly comes in the wake of a Steps reunion. So just as we lose an insipid, karaoke style hit machine in the guise of a boy band we regain one of pop music’s most annoying manufactured happy clappy combos. As a quick aside check out the BBC’s rather amusing comparison of the reunion of Steps vs. the reunion of the Stone Roses by clicking here. As regular readers will know I will not even be going in sniffing distance for shows by either Westlife or Steps.

Westlife never really mastered Madonna's Vogue dance

But I would like to say something in favour of the genuine fans of all the acts I have mentioned in this post; Stone Roses, Westlife and Steps. This is a message to all you ticket scalpers out there – “Give it up you money grabbing bastards and let the real fans get the tickets!” How come that within minutes of tickets going on sale they suddenly appear on E Bay at vastly inflated prices? Greed that’s how come! As for ticket exchange sites like Viagogo I personally wouldn’t touch them with a barge pole, they’re just like licensed touts. Apologies for that, I needed a bit of a rant, I really don’t like touts and scalpers, especially those who do it in a corporate guise!


“I will slip into the groove and cut me off, you cut me off” October 19, 2011

Vinyl records are on the increase in the UK. Sales of vinyl albums this year have already reached 240,000 compared with 234,000 for the whole of last year. Whilst this is good news for many of us the treasured vinyl album format is unlikely to ever come near its 1975 peak when 91.6 million vinyl albums were sold. To be fair there were no MP3s or CDs, just vinyl, cassettes and a few 8-Tracks. To put that into perspective this years sales are just 0.26% of the total for 1975.

The top 5 vinyl albums sold in the UK this year so far are;

1) The King Of Limbs – Radiohead

2) 21 – Adele

3) Different Gear Still Speeding – Beady Eye

4) Suck It And See – Arctic Monkeys

5) Let England Shake – PJ Harvey

Strangely I do have all the top 5 in either electronic or CD format, but I have none of them in vinyl. Read the rest of the story and see the full top 10 by clicking here.Radiohead have also announced that they will be touring next year, although no details have been given yet. Will they be a surprise guest support act on the Stone Roses bill? Somehow I don’t think so! But joking aside I will certainly be trying to get tickets for Radiohead. It would become the fourth time I had seen them.

The best-selling UK album in 1975, depending upon your source, was either ‘The Best Of The Stylistics’ by, strangely enough, the Stylistics or ‘Elvis Presley’s 40 Greatest Hits’ unsurprisingly by Elvis Presley. However the best-selling album that wasn’t a greatest hits package was Rod Stewart’s ‘Atlantic Crossing’. I have focussed just on the albums released during that year. That Rod album featured my Dad’s favourite song of all time; “Sailing”. We played it at his funeral back in 2001 and it’s only recently that I have been able to listen to it without getting rather emotional. But whenever I hear it I always get a great picture in my head of my Dad singing along to it. So Dad if you are reading this (I like to keep my options open on the afterlife) then I hope your singing is more in tune now!


“You had a dream of a promised land”

Filed under: News,Rants — justwilliam1959 @ 8:48 pm
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News broke earlier this week that four members of UB40 have been declared bankrupt. That is bankrupt as in debt related rather than artistic bankruptcy I presume. Personally I loved their first album, but after that I thought they became the reggae equivalent of Status Quo and Ronseal. They did exactly what it said on the tin with as few original notes or original compositions as possible.

Their version of Neil Diamond’s song “Red Red Wine” is probably one of my least favourite songs and is nothing more than a poor carbon copy of the earlier reggae version by Tony Tribe. I recognise that the band were in a sense paying homage to their reggae heroes, but frankly how many times can you roll out the ‘Labour Of Love’ identikit covers concept before it becomes stale? In their favour they are clearly more talented than any X Factor contestant, but then I am also more talented than many of those.

Read the story of UB40s money woes here on the BBC, sadly it came about just a week after they had a Music Heritage plaque mounted in their honour at the Kings Heath, Birmingham pub that they performed at in 1979; The Hare and Hounds. I know it’s cruel, but I have a couple of questions;

Will they now have to complete one of their namesake forms; Unemployment Benefit form 40 a.k.a UB40?

How soon before they are joined in bankruptcy by any number of X Factor ‘success’; Matt Cardle, Joe McElderry et al?

In the meantime enjoy a couple of songs from the bands excellent first album;


“I couldn’t ever bring myself to hate you as I’d like” October 18, 2011

Finally after all the speculation of the last week or so the music world’s worst kept secret is official. The Stone Roses are back together for two shows in Manchester next summer and an ‘extensive’ world tour. I really hope they’ll be one of next years Reading and Leeds headliners as well. It was pretty obvious from the moment the press conference was announced that this was on the cards wasn’t it? But it’s still a pleasant surprise given the animosity there appeared to be between them (particularly Ian Brown and John Squire) at times.

Apparently there will also be some new music from the band. I’m really looking forward to that, I always felt that their demise meant that they had plenty of unfinished business musically. It’s also been speculated that Ian Brown’s expensive divorce is another reason for the band getting back together, or at least for him agreeing to it. Sadly I didn’t have a Stone Roses to reform to pay for mine.

Read about the band’s announcement at their press conference today on NME.com by clicking here.


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