With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

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

“I’m high on the chart, I’m a tip for the top” March 24, 2015


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Back in the olden days a.k.a when I was somewhat younger than I am now the UK chart rundown show was on a Sunday. This is where it has remained for years. However now that there will be a unified release date for all music (presumably from all the major labels at least) the UK Chart Show on BBC Radio 1 will shortly be moving to the Friday drive time slot; 4pm to 6pm.

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That’s progress I suppose and that also raises the chance that I might listen to it again. I have fond memories of chart shows in the distant past. Sitting next to the radio taping your favourite songs and hoping that the first generation Smashie and Nicey characters didn’t talk over the intro or the fadeout. But one of my favourite things was the official announcement of the new chart on Radio 1 when it was on a Tuesday lunchtime. I always made sure that I had my transistor radio with me so that me and my mates at Bishopshalt School in Hillingdon could find out whether David Cassidy and the Osmonds were still clogging up the UK charts (they were), whether Slade had gone straight in at the top (they had) or whether Bowie would get his first number one single (yes but not until 1975 with a reissue of “Space Oddity“). Johnnie Walker was the bloke who usually read out the new chart on Tuesdays and he has always been one of my favourite broadcasters. He spoke over a chart music bed of the excellent “Time Is Tight” from Booker T and the MGs. Enjoy that tune now along with my favourite song about the charts; Pete Wingfield‘s superb “Eighteen With A Bullet” and a favourite of mine by the magnificent Mael Brothers a.k.a Sparks.

 

“Dread blew off and made I laugh” – Advent day 10 December 10, 2013


6511486615_a4228ff0d8_zIt’s December 10th, therefore it’s day 10 of the With Just A Hint Of Mayhem advent blog posts for 2013. It is also only just over two weeks to the arrival of the fat bearded bloke in the red suit who will fly in on a sleigh laden with millions of presents and pulled by at least one large inebriated (well he has got a red nose) venison steak called Rudolph. So you have by now figured out that todays songs have the number 10 in their titles.

1293019_111015151402_double_exposure_ten_percent_fFirst song of the day today is a 70s disco smasheroo released by Double Exposure on the Salsoul label in 1976. It is called “Ten Percent” and was according to some music historians the first ever commercially available 12″ single. Personally I had always heard that it was either “You + Me = Love” by Undisputed Truth or “Black Is Black” from La Belle Époque. In those heady days of 1976 I was a fledgling mobile DJ in partnership with my good friend Glen Voisey. I actually had the 12″ vinyl singles for all three of those songs at the time! “Ten Percent” made it to number 54 on the US Billboard charts. The band began recording the album that would include “Ten Percent” 38 years ago tomorrow. The album, which was recorded at the famous Sigma Sound Studios in Philadelphia was also called ‘Ten Percent’. In the 60s the band were called United Image and recorded some songs for the Stax label. The band included James Williams, Joseph Harris, Charles Whittington and Leonard ‘Butch’ Davis who had sung together since High School.

21185124The second song for today is in my opinion a great deal of  double entendre riddled and innuendo driven slice of humourous smut, and I love it. It is part of a series of pop reggae tunes from Englishman Judge Dread a former DJ, Debt Collector (for Trojan Records no less),  Bouncer and bodyguard. Ladies and gentlemen and those of you who aren’t quite sure, I bring you “Big Ten”. This song reached number 14 in the UK charts in 1975, which is bloody good considering it was not allowed to be played on the radio. It was the last of six UK top 20 hits that the Judge had between 1972 and 1975. Judge Dread was actually Alexander Minto Hughes and he sadly died in 1998 aged just 52. When I was just a lad two regular Christmas presents that I was allowed to choose from my parents was one vinyl album and one vinyl single. being young and somewhat strapped for cash I always chose a double album as the album present; “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road” (Elton John), “Quadrophenia” (the Who) and “David Live” (David Bowie) were three of those choices. So I would like to publicly apologise to my Mum for being such a conniving little urchin. But more importantly I should apologise for choosing Judge Dread’s “Big Eight” as my single in at Christmas 1973. I was rather amused that my Mum had to go into the record shop and buy it without having any idea that it contained a whole selection of lewd and crude nursery rhymes. Sorry Mum!

 

Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa film review August 8, 2013


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If you’re an Alan Partridge fan you will love the first big screen outing from Steve Coogan‘s classic comedy character. Alan is clearly the most talented British DJ since Smashie and Nicey. Coogan as usual plays the part of this inept, arrogant and troubled character to perfection. I loved the film and enjoyed a few laugh out loud moments.

Alan Partridge in the studio

Would Norwich be as well-known without the Partridge? Somehow I suspect not. The film plot centres around a takeover of Radio Norwich, a sacking and a hostage situation. All the usual supporting cast are here; Michael the Geordie bloke and Felicity Montagu, who plays the part of Alan’s long-suffering personal assistant Lynn, is magnificent. While you may think you won’t enjoy the film if you’ve not seen much of Alan Partridge I believe that you will. I’d love to hear what my regular readers think of the film so feel free to add your comments. I will close this post with three songs that feature in the film including a stone cold classic from Sparks and Giorgio Moroder which is played over the closing credits.

Alan Partridge Alpha Papa poster

 

 

“So wake me up when it’s all over when I’m wiser and I’m older” July 29, 2013


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The current UK number one, which has now been at the top for two weeks is “Wake Me Up” by Swedish DJ Avicii. It was co written with Mike Einziger off of Incubus. A rather odd and unexpected pairing methinks. Vocals are provided by Aloe Blacc of “I Need A Dollar” fame.

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It is a mix of bluegrass with dance beats and is now the fastest selling single in the UK so far this year. It is selling twice as many copies as this weeks highest new entry at number two. So the fact that it is holding back One Direction‘s rather arrogantly titled “Best Song Ever”. That must be seen as a bit of a disappointing failure for Wand Erection surely? I hope so anyway!

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“Still I’ll be always laughing like a clown, won’t someone help me?” May 7, 2012


According to the UK tabloid the Sun Prince Harry has aspirations to become a reggae DJ. This apparently all stemmed from what has been described as an inspirational meeting with Bob Marley’s widow Rita on his recent visit to Jamaica. He has supplemented his House music vinyl collection with some heavy reggae on vinyl and has taken mixing lessons.

What the bloody hell is Barlow doing in the picture?

Someone needs to sign him up for a club gig, for a Royal he seems to have a good attitude. Coming from me that is high praise indeed. I wished that I hadn’t retired as a mobile DJ, otherwise I’d have offered my help. In fact maybe my life long buddy Glen and I (formerly Bill & Glen the Disco Men) should reform and let Harry join the team. How does Harry, Bill & Glen the Royal Disco Men sound?

 

“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;

 

“But I believe in love and I know that you do too” October 8, 2011


Many of you know that Catwoman (a.k.a. Catherine Lee now Catherine Adamson) and I recently got married. As you might have guessed music did play quite a big part in the day, beyond just the choice of first dance. We chose a small but special group of songs for our guests to listen to while they were waiting for the beautiful bride to arrive and the ceremony to start. Those songs were;

“You Do Something To Me” – Paul Weller

“Loving You” – Johnny Nash

“(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman” – Aretha Franklin

“Kentish Town Waltz” – Imelda May

“Saving Grace” – Rumer

“You’re In My Heart” – Rod Stewart

The Man With The Child In His Eyes” – Kate Bush

It took us months to choose the song that Catherine would walk up the aisle to and we believe in the end it was the perfect choice. It
was Louis Armstrong’s “What A Wonderful World”

Then we had four songs very carefully selected for the signing of the register. Those were;

“At Last” – Etta James

“Teach Me Tiger” – April Stevens

“Wild Is The Wind” – David Bowie

“Inside Out” – Imelda May

We even chose the song for us to exit the ceremony room. That simply had to be “This Will Be” from Natalie Cole. We even managed a half decent jig on the way out of the room to that one!

We also chose a selection of swing type songs as background to the serving of champagne and canapés or as I like to say; fizzies n fod! The background music for the wedding breakfast (incidentally why is it called a breakfast when it’s not usually in the morning?) was carefully selected classic soul and Motown love songs. These two sets are included as a list at the end of this post.

Then of course it was time for the first dance, the title of which was also immortalised on my cufflinks for the wedding day. It had to be
the really beautiful Nick Cave ballad, “Into My Arms” Probably the only song I know that includes the phrase ‘interventionist god’ in its lyrics.

We hired a swing band for the evening; the truly excellent and very talented Chris Hilton Little Big Band. They did two sets of around an
hour each combining swing classics and swing arrangements of many other hits too. Their version of “I Wanna Be Like You” from the Jungle Book was a real rocking party tune.

There was also a very special guest appearance after the bands first set. A long overdue set from the superstar DJs of the 70s ‘Bill
& Glen the Disco Men’ this was their first gig in more than 30 years. They had specially designed wigs and costumes. Well ok cheap T Shirts with their pictures on and tacky 70s wigs from the party shop. None the less the boys really rocked the joint with a storming set of pure 70s disco classics, many of which haven’t been aired in years. In case you were wondering, the Bill part of the team is me and the Glen part is my best buddy Glen Voisey. We went to Ryefield Primary School together in Hillingdon in the  late 60s. It was my selection that managed to actually clear the dance floor though; personally in my defence I just feel that there was no one with enough class and taste to really appreciate the finer points of Mr Dooley Silverspoon’s amazing “Bump Me Baby” The full Bill and Glen set was;

“Boogie Nights” – Heatwave

“Get Dancin'” – Disco Tex And The Sex-O-Lettes

“Ain’t Gonna Bump No More” – Joe Tex

“Bump Me Baby” – Dooley Silverspoon

“You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)” – Sylvester

“Get Down Tonight” – KC & The Sunshine Band

“Rock The Boat” – Hues Corporation

“September” – Earth, Wind & Fire

In addition to all of this there were also two other musical related items on the day; one was a reading of the lyrics of Bob Dylan’s “Wedding Song” lyrics from the Planet Waves album. This was read by our good friend and wife of my best man, Caron Godbold-Derbyshire. (The other two readings were not music related but were superb none the less, so thank you also to Rachel Vernelle and Ruth Smethurst). The second of these musical pieces was a part of my speech at the end of the wedding breakfast. I wanted to do
something along the lines of what Peter Sellers did in the 60s with George Martin, when he recorded a version of the Beatles “A Hard Days Night” in the style of Laurence Olivier.

It took me ages to come up with the right song. I considered Kylie’s “I Should Be So Lucky” and “Love Is All Around” from the Troggs or Wet Wet Wet. But then the weekend before the wedding I saw Madness at the Reading Festival and I knew what song I was going to try in a Olivier style; it simply had to be “It Must Be Love”, and it was! I introduced that part of the speech as something Shakespearian, using some props; a cape and a skull. I kicked off with “Alas poor Yorrick…….” And then went straight into “It Must Be Love” in my
best Olivier style. I felt it could have worked really well or could have bombed completely. I think it went quite well, but obviously I would appreciate any comments from those of you who were there!

I should also add that my excellent Best Man, Mr John Williams also managed to include a little section from David Bowie’s “Heroes” in his speech!

Thank you for reading this far into what has been a rather self-indulgent post, but I hoped that you have enjoyed the music too. I would
also be interested to hear any stories you have of music used at weddings; be they your own or those of friends and family.

Fizzies n Fod Background Music

“That’s Amore” – Dean Martin

“S Wonderful” – Ella Fitzgerald

Papa Loves Mambo” – Perry Como

“Volare (Nel Blu, Di Pinto Di Blu)” – Dean Martin

“Bewitched” – Doris Day With The Mellomen

“All Of Me” – Ella Fitzgerald

“Beyond The Sea” – Bobby Darin

“Cheek To Cheek” – Ella Fitzgerald

“Everybody Loves A Lover” – Doris Day With Frank DeVol & His Orchestra

“Everybody Loves Somebody” – Dean Martin

“A Fine Romance” – Ella Fitzgerald

“I’ll Never Stop Loving You” – Doris Day

“I’ve Got You Under My Skin” – Frank Sinatra

“I Get A Kick Out Of You” – Frank Sinatra

“It Had To Be You” – Bobby Darin

“Just In Time” – Tony Bennett

“L-O-V-E” – Nat King Cole

“Let’s Fall in Love” – Vic Damone

“Looks, Looks, Looks” – Sparks

“(Love Is) The Tender Trap” – Sammy Davis, Jr

“Mambo Italiano” – Dean Martin

“Move Over Darling” – Doris Day

“My Kind Of Girl” – Matt Monro

“Pennies From Heaven” – Doris Day; With Frank De Vol & His Orchestra

“Secret Love” – Doris Day

“Sway” – Dean Martin

“That Funny Feeling” – Bobby Darin

“Unforgettable” – Nat King Cole

“A Very Precious Love” – Doris Day

“Who’s Your Little Who-Zis!” – Dean Martin

“You’re Nobody Until Somebody Loves You” – Dean Martin

“You Belong To Me” – Dean Martin

“Zing! Went the Strings of My Heart” – Judy Garland

Wedding Breakfast Background Music

“Feel Like Makin’ Love” – Roberta Flack

“It’s A Man’s Man’s Man’s World” – James Brown

“My Girl” – The Temptations

“Too Busy Thinking About My Baby” – Marvin Gaye

“Lovin’ You” – Minnie Riperton

“Best Thing That Ever Happened To Me” – Gladys Knight & The Pips

“You Are My Starship” – Norman Connors

“Zoom” – Fat Larry’s Band

“(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman” – Aretha Franklin

“I Say A Little Prayer” – Aretha Franklin

“Now That We Found Love” – The O’Jays

“You Are The Sunshine Of My Life” – Stevie Wonder

“The Look of Love” – Gladys Knight & The Pips

“My Guy” – Mary Wells

“Doobedood Ndoobe Doobedood Ndoobe Doobedood Ndoo” – Diana Ross

“Heaven Must Have Sent You” – The Elgins

“I’ll Say Forever My Love” – Jimmy Ruffin

“Still Water (Love)” – The Four Tops

“Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” – Diana Ross

“It’s Wonderful (To Be Loved By You)” – Jimmy Ruffin

“For Once In My Life” – Stevie Wonder

“I’m In A Different World” – The Four Tops

“I’m Gonna Make You Love Me” – Diana Ross & The Supremes With The Temptations

“If I Were A Carpenter” – The Four Tops

“Ain’t Nothing Like The Real Thing” – Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell

“It Takes Two” – Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell

“You Can Do Magic” – Limmie & The Family Cookin’

“Could It Be I’m Falling In Love” – Detroit Spinners

“Gonna Make You An Offer …” – Jimmy Helms

“My Cherie Amour” – Stevie Wonder

“Can’t Get Enough Of Your Love Babe” – Barry White

“Help Me Make It Through The Night” – Gladys Knight & The Pips

“Darlin’ Darlin’ Baby (Sweet, Tender, Love)” – The O’Jays

“You Make Me Feel Brand New”  The Stylistics

“I’ll Be There”  The Jackson 5

“Let’s Stay Together”  Al Green

“Close The Door” Teddy Pendergrass

 

 
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