It is now 50 years since the first James bond film ‘Dr No‘ hit the screens and the new one, ‘Skyfall‘ is due out very soon. This means that there is all the usual interest in the new Bond theme. This time it is the turn of Adele. As is the case with most Bond movie themes the title is the film title; “Skyfall”. I think that this song is a grower. It’s probably never going to be my favourite Bond theme, but it is a long way from being the worst. My least favourite is “View To A Kill” from Duran Duran and my favourite is Carly Simon with “Nobody Does It Better“. What do you think of Adele’s “Skyfall” and what is your favourite and least favourite Bond theme?
“You can take my name but you’ll never take my heart” October 6, 2012
“You pay the grocer, fix the toaster” February 5, 2012
Occasionally I come across what I consider a little gem of music trivia that I have never heard of before and this is one of those. You may already know this, but I didn’t. Carly Simon’s dad Richard is the Simon of publisher Simon and Schuster. He co-founded the company with M. Lincoln ‘Max’ Schuster.
In fact this really just gives me a chance to indulge in some classic Carly Simon a woman I found very, very attractive when I was in my teens. I recall having a Carly poster on my bedroom wall when I was at school too.
And finally a bonus song that featured Carly’s excellent vocal talent (which was uncredited at the time); “Kissing With Confidence by Will Powers. One of my favourite 80s songs.
“I just want to stop and thank you baby” December 8, 2011
It’s December 8th and we’re at the letter H in this years ABC of Motown Christmas Advent calendar. Todays song is another Holland Dozier Holland classic, it’s “How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You)” from the supremely talented and sadly departed silky voiced Motown crooner Mr Marvin Gaye. As with the majority of Motown hits the music was provided by the Funk Brothers. Backing vocals were provided by the lesser known Andantes who appeared on more Motown hits than anyone except the Funk Brothers. Jackie Hicks, Marlene Barrow, and Louvain Demps were the ladies who made up the Andantes.
The song reached number 6 in the Billboard charts in the US and sadly only made number 49 in the UK when it came out in 1964. It has been covered by many people, perhaps most famously by James Taylor in 1975. That version reached number 5 in the US and included Carly Simon on backing vocals and David Sanborn on saxophone. Sanborn also provided sax on David Bowie’s “Young Americans” album in the same year.
“These are the days when you wish your bed was already made” March 15, 2009
Well this is it folks the Ides of March, are you scared? Do you even know what the hell they are? Well the term Ides was thought to have meant the day of the Full Moon. The Ides of March (15th March) was made famous in Shakespeare’s ‘Julius Caesar’ as the day on which Caesar was assassinated. If you want more information about those nasty ides click here.
So without further ‘ides do’ and before the usual birthdays and stuff I have another contribution from one more regular reader. This time it’s Karen McP who would like me to mention her mate Martin’s band. They’re called ‘No Drinks On The Dance Floor’ I’ve had a listen to them on MySpace and I think they’re pretty damned good. Click here to go to their MySpace page and let me know what you think of them.
The other day I mentioned Bobby McFerrin and his excellent song “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” well I just heard it again in an environment that I hadn’t noticed before. Have you ever watched George A Romero’s ‘Dawn Of The Dead’ Zombie movie? I was watching the DVD last night and there is a great scene where the survivors decide to break into the shopping mall for protection. As they enter the building there is the usual awful electronic muzak playing and the tune is the wonderfully ironic (in this setting anyway) “Don’t Worry Be Happy”. How cool is that? Also I received this picture from Ellen at the Dead Zone group today, how appropriate?
So onto todays birthdays. Firstly today would have been Arif Mardin’s 77th birthday. He was born in Istanbul and died in New York in 2006. Arif produced some of the greatest acts to appear on the Atlantic label, where he spent 30 years. During his career he produced hits for many artists, these included; Carly Simon, Petula Clark, Bette Midler, Barbara Streisand, Diana Ross, Bee Gees, Patti Labelle, Aretha Franklin, Lulu, Anita Baker, Judy Collins, Phil Collins (no relation), Culture Club, Scritti Politti, Roberta Flack, Hall & Oates, Norah Jones, George Benson, Chaka Khan, Ringo Starr, Dusty Springfield, Average White Band and none other than David Bowie (I bet you never thought I’d get a Bowie reference in that list did you?). After meeting Quincy Jones and Dizzy Gillespie at a concert in Istanbul in 1956 Arif submitted a couple of compositions to Quincy. This changed his life as shortly after he became the first person to receive the Quincy Jones Scholarship at the Berklee College Of Music in Boston. He moved to the US with his wife Latife in 1958. He also won 12 Grammys during his career. So what song should we choose to celebrate what would have been Arif’s birthday? It has to be “Cut The Cake” by the Average White Band. OK fact fans, how many of you know that the Average White Band are in fact from Scotland?
The second and final of todays birthdays is that of Mark Hoppus from Blink 182 and +44. He is 37 today. Blink 182 is my son’s all time favourite band, so rest assured there will be yet another plug for his band later in this post! Hoppus plays bass and provides vocals for both Blink and +44. In addition to these talents he has also produced other bands such as New Found Glory and Motion City Soundtrack. These are exciting days for Blink fans with the band now back together following their reconciliation after Travis Barker’ horrific air crash earlier this year. They must be playing the UK surely, how about Reading and Leeds in August, any ideas? Mark was apparently conned out of half a million dollars last year by two people who offered him a deal in the development of automated checkouts for McDonalds. They were right cheating burgers weren’t they? Anyway here is Mark with the other Blink boys in the video for “What’s My Age Again?”
So onto that shameless plug for my son’s band. They’re called ‘Steal The Smile’ and you just need to click here to go to their MySpace page. Let me know what you think of them too. My son Luke is the guitarist and singer. And remaining with Blink 182 for a moment, Luke met Tom DeLonge after his Angels and Airwaves set at the Reading Festival in August 2007!
On this day in 1986 the Bangles were at number 2 in the UK singles chart with “Manic Monday” The song was actually written by Prince using the pseudonym Christopher Nevermind. In a bizarre twist of fate the song was stalled at number two in the US chart, it was held off the top spot by none other than Prince himself with the classic song “Kiss”. I must confess I really dislike the Tom Jones cover of “Kiss” that he did with the Art Of Noise. What do you think of it? Here are the Bangles with “Manic Monday”
And finally for today on this day in 1992 the Beastie Boys appeared at the Marquee Club in London. The Beasties started life in 1979 as a hardcore punk band called the Young Aborigines. They became a fully fledged rap crew after Rick Rubin signed them to the Def Jam label in the early 80s. They released the classic album ‘Licensed To Ill in 1986′ It became the first rap album to top the Billboard album charts in the US and went on to be the biggest selling rap album of the 80s. Arguably the band are the best white rappers there have ever been. Eminem and his fans may disagree but surely Vanilla Ice and his fan won’t? There is expected to be a new album from the boys later this year, tentatively titled “Tadlock’s Glasses’ To finish todays post here are the Beastie Boys with the rather good “Ch-Check It Out”