With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

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

“Where did my baby go? Who’s gonna mend my rainbow?” – Advent day 24 December 24, 2013


Number 24This is it folks, we’re nearly there, it’s Christmas Eve and Santa has started his delivery schedule. I hope that none of you are on his naughty list! So let’s open the penultimate cardboard flap on the With Just A Hint Of Mayhem advent calendar shall we? It’s 24th December which means you’ll get two songs with the number 24 in their title. But today will be a little different from all my other advent posts this year as both come from the same artist. Who’d have thought that one artist would have two songs with 24 in the title? Well there is such an artist and his name is Gene Pitney.

Gene+Pitney+GeneThe first song from Gene today is one that I’m sure most of you know, it’s “24 Hours From Tulsa“. The tune was a number 5 hit in the UK in 1963, It reached number 17 in the US and also made the top 5 in Australia and number 6 in Canada. In my head I always thought that this song was a UK number one. But Mr Pitney didn’t top the UK chart until his duet with Marc Almond on “Something’s Gotten Hold of My Heart” in 1989. That was 28 years after his first UK hit. Burt Bacharach and Hal David wrote “24 Hours From Tulsa” and it has been covered by Dusty Springfield and Jay And The Americans to name but two.

pitneyThe second Gene Pitney song in today’s post is “24 Sycamore”. This was a European only release from 1973 when it reached number 34 in the UK chart. Pitney was also a successful songwriter and among the hits he wrote were; “Rubber Ball” (Bobby Vee), “He’s A Rebel” (The Crystals) and “Hello Mary Lou” (Ricky Nelson). Sadly Gene Pitney passed away in 2006 but he lives on through his music.

 

“Silver Surfer and the ragged kid are all sad and rusted” October 29, 2010

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An US Research Scientist recently claimed that science is not very far away from being able to record dreams. His name is Dr Moran Cerf which sounds made up to me. You can probably get some good anagrams from it, I tried and came up with DREAM FOR SNR which I interpreted as dream for senior, i.e. dream for older people, i.e. me!

I’m not sure it would be a good thing, it might reveal your innermost thoughts to everyone and frankly it could destroy the porn industry too, everyone could just record their own personal fantasies! It really does take science way into the realms of science fiction. He does however state that the first step is to visualise dreams by a combination of recollection and brain activity. The actual recording is quite some way off. I’m pleased about that, I’m not sure I’d want my dreams available to all! What do you folks think?

Read the story on the BBC site by clicking here.

On a bizarre footnote as I was typing this WordPress showed the following proposed tags based upon what I had written; Dream, BBC, Neuron, Science Fiction and Brain. All of which make logical sense, but it also added Marilyn Monroe and the Eiffel Tower. Is it reaching into my dreams? I have certainly dreamt about Marilyn before, mostly in my teens! Anyway I deliberately haven’t added them as tags to this post.

As always this is at heart a music blog so please enjoy the following dream related songs and feel free to add your own via the comments facility. I started out expecting to put a top 10 together and appear to have ended up with 20, not all of which I like incidentally, but I’m sure there is at least one person out there that likes them! There is also one hidden dream song, the first person to tell me what it is and where it is in the post via the comments facility may win a prize!

All I Have To Do Is Dream” – Everly Brothers. Written by famous husband and wife songwriting team Felice and Boudleaux Bryant in 1958, Don and Phil’s version is probably the most well known although it has been covered by many acts. It was most recently used in the 2010 remake of ‘A Nightmare On Elm Street‘ where of course all Freddie Krueger has to do is dream to be able to kill

“Dreaming” – Blondie – Taken from the ‘Eat To The Beat’ album and released in 1979 and reached number 2 in the UK. As with many of Blondie’s hits it was written by Deborah Harry and Chris Stein. It has been covered by the Smashing Pumpkins, the Posies, Yo  La Tengo and Jeff Tweedy off of Wilco amongst others.

Dreaming” – Cliff Richard – The same title as the Blondie song but definitely not the same song! Cliff was never massively succesful in the US. “Devil Woman was a big hit and “Dreaming” also made number 10. Cliff is the only artist to have had UK number one hits in every decade since the UK charts began (50s, 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s, 00s). None in the 10s yet though, but I reckon a Christmas team up with an X Factor winner would probably swing it.

Teenage Dream” – T Rex. Bolan’s chart success had started to wane by the time this was released in 1974, it still made UK number 2 though. It was also the first release that was credited to Marc Bolan and T Rex. It was taken from the wonderfully titled album ‘Zinc Alloy And The Hidden Riders Of Tomorrow

Dream Kid” – Sutherland Brothers and Quiver – Gavin and Ian Sutherland started life as a folk rock duo in the late 60s, they joined with Quiver in 1972 and sadly didn’t have massive chart success. But this song from 1973 remains one of my all time favourites.

“Don’t Dream It’s Over” – Crowded House – It was recorded in LA in 1986 and released in January 1987. The song was written by Neil Finn and was the first of the bands two US Top 40 hits. The song featured in the TV adaptation of Stephen King’s ‘The Stand’. It has been covered by quite a few artists. The Sixpence None The Richer version was very good, the Paul Young version was frankly…..crap!

Dreams” – Fleetwood Mac – This one’s a true classic from the  ‘Rumours’ album and was written by Stevie Nicks. The song was most famously covered by the Corrs and none other than Mick Fleetwood joined them to sing it at the Royal Albert Hall with them in 1998

Silver Dream Machine” – David Essex – This was recorded for David’s 1980 film ‘Silver Dream Racer‘. Not one of his better hits in my opinion. What do you folks think? (Especially you Ms Topsom!)

Boulevard Of Broken Dreams” – Green Day – This was taken from the bands excellent ‘American Idiot’ album. Billie Joe Armstrong wrote the song and was rather amusingly criticised by Noel Gallagher off of Oasis for ripping off one of his songs (the chord progression is very similar to “Wonderwall”)

Dreamer” – Supertramp. This was from the ‘Crime Of The Century’ album and was released in 1975. The B Side was another brilliant song; “Bloody Well Right” which was released as a single in its own right later that year.

In A Broken Dream” – Python Lee Jackson – Python Lee Jackson were an Australian band during the late 60s. They had a brief stay in the UK where they recorded this song with a then unknown vocalist, Rod Stewart. The single was a flop when it was released in 1968 but became a big success when it was rereleased in 1972.

I Had Too Much To Dream (Last Night) – Electric Prunes – Perhaps one of the most fondly remembered psychedelic bands from the 60s. They had a song, “Kyrie Eleison” included on the ‘Easy Rider’ soundtrack. The band reformed in 2001 and are still touring.

“Daydream Believer” – Monkees – The song was written by John Stewart and the lead vocal was sung by Davy Jones. It was an US number 1 but only managed number 5 in the UK. Despite being effectively a manufactured boy band all four members actually played or sang on this song.

In Dreams” – Roy Orbison – The song was written by Orbison himself and he was able to demonstrate his amazing vocal range, he sings across two octaves. Roy said that the song came to him while he was a sleep and presumably while he was dreaming. David Lynch used the song in his film, ‘Blue Velvet’

“Never Had A Dream Come True” – Stevie Wonder – The song was released in 1970 before Stevie was able to take control of his own career, so it was not one of his own compositions. It was however a co-composition written along with Motown staff writers Henry Cosby and Sylvia Moy. The song was covered by the Jackson 5 for their first album.

Island Of Dreams” – Springfields – The group formed in 1960 when Mary ‘Dusty’ O’Brien and her brother Dion O’Brien teamed up with Tim Field. They all took on the Springfield. And that dear readers is how Dusty Springfield came to be!

“Teenage Dream” – Katy Perry – The same title as the T Rex song, but not the same at all. It was the second single taken from her 2010 album of the same name, following the worldwide smash that was “California Gurls”. I wonder if she’ll use her married name in future? Actually Katy Brand doesn’t sound bad does it?

“Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This) – Eurythmics – This gave the band their only US number one when it was released in 1983. Marilyn Manson recorded an excellent cover of the song in which he changed some of the lyrics, adding lines like “I wanna use you and abuse you/I wanna know what’s inside you.”

Any Dream Will Do” – Jason Donovan – The song was written by Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber for their 1968 musical ‘Joseph And The Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat‘ which has gone on to massive success on stages all over the world. At various times it has been sung by everyone from Philip Schofield to Donny Osmond.

Dreaming Of Me” – Depeche Mode – This was the bands first single and was released in the UK in February 1981, strangely it was never commercially released in the US. It was written by Vince Clarke who went on to form Yazoo and Erasure.

 

“I think I’m done with the kitchen table, baby” April 8, 2009


Welcome back my friends to the blog that never ends…….. well ok it does take the odd sabbatical, anyway enough dithering and on with the show as they say! Well Queen and Leo Sayer say it as they both had hits about the show going on!

Some important news for you to start with, apparently Lady GaGa refuses to have sweaty cheese in her dressing room. Her current rider states that it must be odourless and served on ice. She also requires a whole roasted chicken in her dressing room. Thank you to those nice folks at ‘The Smoking Gun‘ for that information. So did you know that the Lady’s real name is Stefani Germanotta? No? well you do now!

Lady GaGa's Cheesy Rider

Lady GaGa's Cheesy Rider

It’s April 8th and it would have been the 80th birthday of Jacques Brel the Belgian born singer/ songwriter who died of cancer in October 1978. In the English speaking world Brel is better known for the English translations of his songs which many artists have recorded. Including such luminaries as Nina Simone, Scott Walker, Marc Almond, Dusty Springfield, Ray Charles, Frank Sinatra, David Bowie (yep him again!) and Terry Jacks. “Seasons In The Sun” an English translation of a Brel song was recorded by Canadian singer Terry Jacks and was a big hit around the world in 1974.. Bowie recorded Brel’s “Port Of Amsterdam” and often played “My Death” live during the Ziggy days (click the song title to see the Dame doing the song more recently). Marc Almond often played Brel songs live and in 1989 he recorded a whole album of Brel songs called ‘Jacques’. Click here for a very comprehensive list of Brel covers on Wiki

Did he really write "Jumping Jacques Flash"? He's sure got a lot of sole!

Did he really write "Jumping Jacques Flash"? He's sure got a lot of sole!

On this day in 1967 a live soul revue at the Hammersmith Odeon in London included sets by Otis Redding, Sam & Dave, Eddie Floyd, Arthur Conley and Booker T & the MGs. Now that is one fantastic package, it’s just a pity I was only 8 years old at the time. Well that and the fact that my parents preferred country music. So I suppose it could have been worse! Here is Arthur Conley with the classic and still one of my all time favourites and yes it is one of the 50 songs in my Top 10, “Sweet Soul Music

Arthur was well known for his skill in playing the invisible trombone

Arthur was well known for his skill in playing the invisible trombone

Also on this day in 1967 Sandie Shaw became the first UK female artist to win the Eurovision Song Contest with the appalling song “Puppet On A String” She worked at the Ford Motor Plant in Dagenham, Essex, England when she left school. A very high proportion of Dagenham’s working class population worked there too. Unlike many of her contemporaries she also recorded many of her songs in French, German, Italian and Spanish. This clearly helped to popularise her more outside the UK. She also became the first artist to cover a Led Zeppelin song. Here is Sandie with a more recent update of “Puppet On A String” called “Puppet On A Brand New String

Sandie had clearly been selling Mozzer short!

Sandie had clearly been selling Mozzer short or perhaps they were going to a Fancy Dress Party as Tom Cruise and his wife!

On this day in 1994, Gary Smith an electrician who was working at Kurt Cobain’s house in Seattle discovered Kurt’s body lying on the greenhouse floor. A shotgun was found next to the body. Seattle Radio Station KXRX broke the news at 9.40am that morning that the late great Cobain was dead, he was just 27. Conspiracy theories about Cobain’s death still abound, personally I don’t buy them at all, clearly he had considered and attempted suicide before so in some ways his death by his own hand, whilst very, very sad was not too much of a surprise. Cobain was given a guitar for his 14th birthday and soon learnt to play, apparently to covers he mastered early on were “Back In Black” (AC/DC) and “My Best Friends Girl” (The Cars). Here are Nirvana from the rehearsal of their ‘Unplugged’ show with Bowie’s “The Man Who Sold The World“. Nirvana were actually on the bill at the Reading Festival in the UK in August 1991 the same month my son Luke was born. Yes you guessed it here is yet another shameless plug for Luke’s band ‘Steal The Smile‘ They are currently recording an EP. To check out their MySpace page just click on the band name.

Freddy Krueger does grunge horror in 'Nightmare On Nirvana Street'

Freddy Krueger does grunge horror in 'Nightmare On Nirvana Street'

And finally on this day in 1998 George Michael was arrested by an undercover policeman at the Will Rogers Memorial Park in LA for committing a sex act in a public toilet. George Michael was quoted as saying “I was followed into the restroom and this cop, well I didn’t know that he was a cop at the time obviously, started playing a game. I think it’s called ‘I’ll show you mine, you show me yours and then when you show me yours I’m gonna nick you” Michael was later fined $810 and ordered to complete 80 hours community service for committing a lewd act. He later lampooned the arresting officer, Marcelo Rodriguez in the video for “Outside“. the cop later sued George for $10m for his apparent portrayal in the video and the emotional stress it had caused him, he lost the case, in fact it was thrown out by the courts. The UK tabloids had a lot of fun reporting George’s arrest. Whilst I really dislike what the UK tabloid press has become (cheap, nasty, invasive and greed driven) it’s clear that their headline writers do indeed have talent. The main headline from the Sun was ‘ZIP ME UP BEFORE YOU GO GO’

George gets ready to 'Whip It Out Before He Go Go's' he's such a 'Bad Boy' especially if you believe those 'Careless Whispers'

George gets ready to 'Whip It Out Before He Go Go's' he's such a 'Bad Boy' especially if you believe those 'Careless Whispers'

 

“They told us tales, they told us lies, don’t they know they shouldn’t have told us at all” April 3, 2009


Hello again everyone how are well all then? I hope that you’re all ok because I have some very sad, bad, bleak news to impart. You really should be sitting down when you read this. Trust me it is the worst music news I’ve had to deliver since I started blogging, I know that’s only six weeks ago but this is really dreadful. So are you sitting comfortably? This is a bit like ‘Watch With Mother’ now isn’t it? Right I’ve been putting it off for long enough, now I have to tell you, stay in your seats. “Agadoo” by Black Lace is going to be reissued soon. See I told you it was awful news. It will be a 2009 remix and the video has been directed by Kevin Kennedy who used to play Curly Watts in Coronation Street, he also appears in it. He must need the money because this is a crime against music. The song was originally released in 1984 and made it to number 2 in the UK charts, held off the top spot by George Michael’s “Careless Whisper”. Click here to see just how bad it is, but be warned click at your own peril!

They should be arrested for those haircuts alone never mind that bloody song!

They should be arrested for those haircuts alone never mind that bloody song!

I have some other news too, not as bad as the first piece though. Apparently Ozzy Osbourne has had a premonition of his death. This is the quoted comment from Ozzy, “Some bird with some very rare virus is going to fly over my head. It’s going to shit on me and I’m going to melt on the floor” I presume he means a bird of the feathered variety. Can we also assume that it has nothing to do with drumming up publicity for the new series of ‘The Osbournes’ which will be called “The Osbournes Reloaded”. Reviews so far have completely panned it. perhaps he could do a deal with Satan and get that bird to shit on Black Lace instead?

Will it be the lesser spotted Sharin Bird that shits on Ozzy's head?

Will it be the lesser spotted Sharon Bird that shits on Ozzy's head?

Have you been following the coverage of the G20 summit? There is actually a music link here too, not the fact that Bob Geldof was pontificating as usual either. the Queen usually gives visiting world leaders and dignitaries a signed framed photograph of her and Prince Phillip, she receives a wide range of gifts in return. This week she received a video iPod from the Obama’s. It was preloaded with photos of the Queen’s state visits to the US in 1957 and 2007, some video and audio of Barack Obama’s speeches including the inauguration and 40 great show tunes. The Queen loves musicals apparently and the gift also came with a rare songbook which was signed by Rodgers off of Rodgers and Hammerstein.

And finally on the news front the two remaining Beatles, Sir Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr will be taking part in a live public webcast later today, April 3rd (12 noon EST). The pair will be helping promote the David Lynch Foundation’s initiative to teach at least one million ‘at-risk’ youths to meditate. perhaps they’re seeking “Instant Karma” The pair along with many other rock luminaries have been practising Transcendental meditation for years. To take part in the conference visit davidlynchfoundation.org Later this evening McCartney and Starr will be joined by a cast of many at new York’s Radio City for a benefit concert to raise money for the David Lynch Foundation. Performers include Eddie Vedder (off of Pearl Jam), Moby, Sheryl Crow, Ben Harper, Paul Horn, Bettye La Vette, Mike Love (off of the Beach Boys) and Jim James (off of My Morning Jacket).

David is ready to release his chicken over Ozzy's head

David is ready to release his chicken over Ozzy's head

Have any of you seen the BBC documentary ‘The Queens Of British Pop’? I saw part 1 this week and it was rather good. It featured Dusty Springfield, Sandie Shaw, Suzi Quatro, Siouxse Sioux and the mighty Kate Bush. Click here for the link. yes I know Suzi is American but she did have her biggest success in the UK. As for Kate well on this day in 1979 she made her live debut at the Liverpool Empire. Kate is also the number one search term used which arrived at this very blog. More than 700 searches for Kate have found their way here. The next two are Pink Floyd with over 600 and Lily Allen with nearly 200 plus another 10 for Lily Allen Naked!

Kate has just released a Falcon towards Ozzy, perhaps it would have been easier to unleash the Hounds Of Love!

Kate has just released a Falcon towards Ozzy, perhaps it would have been easier to unleash the Hounds Of Love!

Here comes another blatantly shameless plug for my son Luke’s band Steal The Smile. They are playing at the Face Bar in Reading this evening so go and check them out. If you can’t make it get yourself over to their MySpace page by clicking here and let me know what you think of them.

I’ll end todays post with a couple of ‘onthisdays’ and the birthdays will return another time! Firstly on this day in 1975 Steve Miller was charged with setting fire to the clothes of a friend, Benita Diorio. Presumably not a close friend or perhaps he had the hots for her! Police arrived at Miller’s house to find Benita trying to put out the flames. Miller began fighting with some of the policemen and was eventually charged with resisting arrest.

Steve plays on despite the fact that his friend's wardrobe is on fire behind him

Steve plays on despite the fact that his friend's wardrobe is on fire behind him

And finally on this day in 1993 the Bluebells were at number one in the UK with “Young At Heart” The song had originally been released some ten years earlier. But this time around it was the beneficiary of a Volkswagen TV advertising campaign. Here’s one for you fact fans too, the song was co written by Siobhan Fahey off of Shakespears Sister and Bananarama!

The Bluebells contemplate drowning themselves after hearing that Agadoo is about to be released again!

The Bluebells contemplate drowning themselves after hearing that Agadoo is about to be released again!

 

“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?

Don't Worry, Be Hippy

Don't Worry, Be Hippy

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?

This picture says two things to me 1) Caption Competition - come on readers do your worst and 2) I can't be bothered to think of anything amusing myself!

This picture says two things to me 1) Caption Competition - come on readers do your worst and 2) I can't be bothered to think of anything amusing myself!

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?

Mark knew that the rest of the band were incredibly jealous of his invisible stool

Mark knew that the rest of the band were incredibly jealous of his invisible stool

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

This was probably the smallest stage the girls had ever played on, particularly as there was only room for three of them

This was probably the smallest stage the girls had ever played on, particularly as there was only room for three of them

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

Surprisingly the Beasties play the game for men with small balls

Surprisingly the Beasties play the game for men with small balls

 

“I bought you drinks, I bought you flowers, I read you books and talked for hours” March 2, 2009


Good day everyone I hope you had a jolly good weekend and are prepared for another fun working week. Just to get you underway here are a couple of Finance Industry pieces. have any of you seen the Swiftcover Insurance advert on UK TV which is fronted by Iggy Pop? Well it seems that musicians are classed as entertainers and as such are unable to insure through the company, wow their marketing people must have really worked hard on that one. Click on NME to read the story, the page also has a link to YouTube so you can see the advert for yourself if you haven’t already.

Here’s a fun banking game too, that’s right I said banking, not wa…. oh never mind. This was in the Observer today it’s an on line game called ‘Wheel Of Misfortune‘ There is a banker attached to a wheel and you have to throw knives at the wallets and briefcases and balloons to score. However should you hit the banker well, he does show a bit of pain. Click on the name to play (unfortunately you do have to register to play)

OK so now let’s get on with the business at hand for today, 2nd March 2009, starting with some birthdays. First up is Lou Reed who is 66 today. Lou was named Louis Allen Firbank by his parents. At the age of 17 he was sent to a psychiatrist to receive eight weeks of shock therapy aimed at curing him of severe mood swings. After his time with the Velvet Underground ended in 1970 he went back to live with his parents home in Freeport, Long Island. During this time he took a job as a typist for his father’s accountancy firm, earning just $40 a week. Imagine, if he had stuck at that career he could be swimming in money now as a ‘disgraced’ (copyright tabloid papers) financier/ banker. I for one am glad he didn’t though. Here is Lou with his classic “Satellite Of Love” The observant among you will notice that I could have made a big DB reference in this piece, but as there were two yesterday I declined. But the production on this song was by DB and Mick Ronson.

lou and Laurie had just been turned away from the RyanAir check-in desk for carrying too much luggage

lou and Laurie had just been turned away from the RyanAir check-in desk for carrying too much luggage

The second of our three birthdays is that of the late great (the return of those l’s & g’s) Karen Carpenter. She would have been 59 today. She was just 32 when she died in 1983. Karen had a voice like no other and whilst by many the Carpenters were seen as very easy listening, middle-of-the-road fare, the musicianship, production and vocals on their songs were exceptional. My parents loved the Carpenters, which is why I never really got into them until late on. Well in those days it certainly wasn’t cool to like the music your parents liked. I feel that has changed somewhat in recent years though. On a trip to London in December 1976 the group were presented with 21 Gold Discs for UK record sales. They had to leave them behind at Heathrow Airport because they were too heavy to take on as excess baggage. Maybe they should have flown Ryanair, then again perhaps not! Here are the Carpenters with the excellent “Goodbye To Love” This contains some excellent guitar solos too.

It had taken a while but Karen finally mastered the art of playing the invisible drums

It had taken a while but Karen finally mastered the art of playing the invisible drums

The final birthday today is Mr Paltrow from Coldplay, otherwise known as Chris Martin. He is 32 today. The band have recently started recording sessions for their next album. Brian Eno is once again involved and for the first two weeks of recording he asked Chris Martin to stay away from the studio to enable the band to work on the music with no restraint. It’ll be interesting to see how that turns out. Actually by todays standards (well especially Guns N Roses) a new album from Chris and the boys next year must be seen as somewhat prolific. Their first album ‘Parachutes’ came out in 2000 and if they finish it in time their 5th will be out in 2010 (5 albums in 11 years!). Coldplay met at University College London and an initial band including Chris Martin and Jonny Buckland was called ‘Pectoralz’ not a great name in my opinion. At one point Chris met Tim Rice-Oxley a classics student and asked him to join the band. Tim declined and went on to form his own band, Keane. Enough of them and back to Coldplay, here they are with “Fix You” live in Toronto, with a somewhat gushing intro by Chris.

Now the other Coldplay boys had photographic evidence that the sun really did shine out of Chris' rear end

Now the other Coldplay boys had photographic evidence that the sun really did shine out of Chris' rear end

On this day in 1967 Arnold George Dorsey, better known as Englebert Humperdinck was number one in the UK with “Release Me”. Englebert was always a hot property on the music scene, having been born in Madras, India. Arnold named himself after a German Opera composer. It seems quite amazing now that a song like “Release Me” could be a hit at the height of psychedelia. Indeed it even prevented the Beatles double A side “Strawberry Fields/ Penny lane” from reaching the UK top spot

Englebert wondered how much longer he could keep the sun balanced on his head and when he would have to give it back to Chris

Englebert wondered how much longer he could keep the sun balanced on his head and when he would have to give it back to Chris

This day in 1999 saw the death from lung cancer of the late great (l & g back with a vengeance) Dusty Springfield. She was only 59. Dusty was born in 1939 as Mary Isabelle Catherine Bernadette O’Brien and was convent educated. She took the name Dusty Springfield when she formed the folk and country based Springfields in 1961 with her brother Dion (who became Tom Springfield) and a friend Tom Field. I’m not sure who he became. she was a massive success in the 60s but was in the wilderness for many years before she hooked up with the Pet Shop Boys in 1987 to record “What Have I Done To Deserve This?

Dusty had been invited to test a prototype of the new iPod

Dusty had been invited to test a prototype of the new iPod

And almost finally on this day in 1960 Elvis Presley spent a short time on UK soil for the only time in his life. He was travelling back to the US from Germany after completing his National Service and his plane stopped to refuel at Prestwick Airport near Glasgow in Scotland. It is said that Colonel Tom Parker, Presley’s Manager prevented Elvis from touring overseas because he (Parker not Presley) was an illegal immigrant to the US. I wonder whether things would have turned out differently had Elvis been allowed to tour outside the US? Anyway as this piece relates to his National Service here is Elvis with “G.I. Blues

Elvis was ready to kick start his RyanAir flight from Prestwick

Elvis was ready to kick start his RyanAir flight from Prestwick

And finally on this day, while searching for an Elvis in the army picture I found this, I had to show it as it is just so naff! What do you think?

Words fail me, this is just awful!

Words fail me, this is just awful!

 

 
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