With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

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

12 Days To Christmas – Day 9 – Bettie Page December 21, 2017


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Day 9 of our twelve day journey to Christmas 2017 and thank you for sticking with this largely non-Christmassy post. Anyway today’s famous person in a song is none other than one of the sexiest, smartest, sassiest and finest photo models there has ever been, Bettie Page! Born Bettie Mae Page in Nashville in 1923, Bettie left this world just over nine years ago aged 85. She made her way to New York via California to become an actress.

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Something Christmassy for my readers 🙂

But she became a pin-up model and in 1955 as Miss January she became one of Playboy magazine’s first Playmate Of The Month. She posed for many photographers during the 1950s until in 1959 she converted to Evangelical Christianity and worked for Billy Graham. She spent many years of her adult life in a psychiatric hospital suffering from paranoid schizophrenia. Minor planet 184784 is named after her and the luxury droid in  ‘Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith’ from 2005 was inspired by her.

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But the song for today has nothing today with Star Wars, but it does come from a true punk star. It is Public Image Limited with the song “Bettie Page” taken from their 2015 album ‘What The World Needs Now….’. This was the tenth studio album released by John Lydon’s Public Image Limited a.k.a. PiL. It reached number 29 in the UK album chart, the band’s highest placing since ‘Album’ in 1986. Sadly, in my opinion, it was never released as a single, but I still love it, I hope that you do too! Incidentally the latest rumour is that Lydon may be representing Ireland in next years Eurovision Song Contest!

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More Christmas Bettie

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Have a Rotten Christmas!

 

“I was defeated you won the war” May 14, 2017


OK I would love to say that I was really disappointed to miss the Eurovision Song Contest, but I would be lying. I was at a thoroughly enjoyable Murder Mystery Night at a friends house in aid of MacMillan Cancer Care. I can confirm that I was not the murderer. Anyway I hear that this years UK entrant Lucie Jones, a former X Factor contestant, did very well. Fifteenth place with 111 votes for a UK entry is truly exceptional. In fact it is the best points haul since Blue in 2011. Well done Lucie. Incidentally Portugal won the contest with a somewhat dirgy ballad called “Amar Pelos Dois” by Salvador Sadal.

Given that us Brits treat the whole Eurovision thing with a healthy dose of irony and sarcasm I thought that it was worth pointing out that we, well our nation’s voting panels, are not very smart. Back in 1974 when Abba won the contest in Brighton with perhaps one of Eurovision’s finest winners, “Waterloo” the UK jury at the time gave them nul points. Yes although we took the Swedish pop maestros to our hearts afterwards, we never voted for them at the time. So maybe we are not as smart as we think we are! What do you think?

 

“Are you leading me on? Tomorrow will you be gone?” November 4, 2014


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Probably hard to believe in the light of recent events but back in the 60s Rolf Harris’ manager wanted to have Sandie Shaw banned from the bearded Aussie paedos TV show to preserve Rolf’s clean-cut image. What had Sandie done to cause such a furore? She had an affair with an older married man. That man had lied to her about being married as well. Sandie was scheduled to sing the six song candidates for the UK entry for Eurovision 1967. The rather dreadful “puppet On A String” eventually won. Clearly no damage was done to the reputation of Jake The Peg either. He damaged that reputation himself; if only he had been found out back then! Anyway, enough of the bearded weirdy, enjoy some classic Sandie Shaw. Personally I think she has always been horrendously underrated. What do you think?

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“Gotta get my candy free” October 2, 2014


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I have just read the news that British singer songwriter Lynsey De Paul has died aged just 64. Whilst I am very open about my eclectic tastes now back in the 70s it wasn’t seen as cool among my circle of friends to like Lynsey’s music. However I must confess that I actually did like quite a few of her songs. Perhaps these are some of my true guilty pleasures. She had quite a few hits in her own right; “Sugar Me”, “Getting A Drag”, “No Honestly”, “Ooh I Do” and “Won’t Somebody Dance With Me”. The latter won her an Ivor Novello award. In 1977 she represented the UK at the Eurovision Song contest with a song that perhaps predicted future UK performances in the contest. It was called “Rock Bottom” which she sang with Mike Moran and it performed really well finishing in second place.

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as a co writer perhaps one of her most memorable hits was “Dancing (On A saturday Night)” which she wrote with singer Barry Blue. He took that to number two in the UK charts in 1973. One of my favourite De Paul songs was “Central Park Arrest”. It was written for Thunderthighs who had been backing vocalists to Mott The Hoople. Lynsey’s own version of the song was on the B-Side to “No Honestly”. She has a further link to Thunderthighs and Mott the Hoople. Lynsey De Paul recorded the female vocal part on the album version of Mott The Hoople’s “Roll Away The Stone”. However when the song was released as a single her contribution had been replaced by that of Thunderthighs. In yet another Mott link Lynsey was also responsible for a name change of one of the band. In 1973 when Mick Ralphs left he was replaced by Luther Grosvenor. Mister Grosvenor was for some reason contractually obliged to change his name, so Lynsey suggested Ariel Bender, which stuck.

Lynsey had five UK top twenty hits. “Sugar Me” was her highest UK chart success as a singer reaching number five in 1972.  She also had number one singles in Switzerland, Spain, the Netherlands and Belgium. My thoughts go to her family, friends and fans. Lynsey De Paul RIP.

 

“Come and sing with me and throw all your cares away” May 19, 2014


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David O’Brien was once a part of the Les Humphries Singers and in 1976 he performed “Sing Sang Song” at the Eurovision Song Contest with them. They represented Germany and sang the song in German; or should that be they sing sang song in German!

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Mr O’Brien is also the father of soulful UK chanteuse and Brit School alumni Katy B. Given the family connection maybe we should ask her to represent the UK at next years contest. “Sing Sang Song” finished in 15th place in a year where the UK actually won. The crown was taken by Brotherhood Of Man with “Save All Your Kisses For Me“; not one of my favourite songs!

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Eurovision Song Contest 2014 May 10, 2014


eurovision-2014Usually the most entertaining part of the Eurovision Song Contest is the voting and checking how many countries hate us Brits and show it by giving us nul points. But this year I really feel that we are in with a shout. Molly’s “Children Of The Universe” strikes me as classic Eurovision. I wonder how the votes will be split between Russia and the Ukraine? Anyway I should warn you that I am typing this post as I watch the show. So let’s get on with the 59th Eurovision Song Contest shall we?

Ukraine are up first with a typical Euro song title; “Tick Tock”. Why is there a bloke in a hamster wheel on stage? Singer Mariya Yaremchuk looks good and the song, in spite of its title is not too shabby. Belarus are up next represented by Teo with “Cheesecake”. He has a monster quiff does that Teo. It’s an ok kind of song with some good synchronised dancing in the performance, but no hamster wheel.

_74682088_43f07e35-39ba-4d5b-b4f2-183cdf5ea190Azerbaijan are next and they are trying to “Start A Fire” as sung by Dilara Kazimova. While there is no hamster wheel there is a trapeze. What is that all about? Anyway in my opinion this is a bit of a dirgeful ballad with a singer who seems a little too earnest for me. In Dilara’s favour Catwoman likes her dress. Pollaponk are representing Iceland and one of their backing vocalists is an Icelandic MP. Their suits are all primary colours but as the song says let’s show them “No Prejudice”. The song is a little pop punk with more emphasis on the pop. I’ll probably be wrong as usual, but I think this could win.

Carl Espen is trying to whip up a “Silent Storm” for Norway. He is not an established singer and keeping it in the family the song was written by his cousin. Not my kind of song. It strikes me as a bit forgettable. Paula Seling and Ovi are hoping for a “Miracle” as they sing for Romania. This song can’t make up its mind as to whether it’s a power ballad or just another piece of Euro Disco. It does feature a round piano though.

Armenia are putting up a comedian called Aram MP3 with “Not Alone” which didn’t sound particularly funny to me. Have I missed the punchline. I also felt his voice was a bit flat and out of tune at times. It definitely sees itself as an 80s power ballad though. Montenegro are the first country tonight that are singing in their native tongue. The singer is Sergej Cetkovic with “Moj Svijet”. It sounds like classic mid table Eurovision fodder to me, which given my track record probably means it’ll win. It is backed up with a roller skating dancer, why? Don’t ask me.

We are Slavic washerwomen

We are Slavic washerwomen

“We Are Slavic” is the Polish entry and is sung in English and Polish by Donatan and Cleo. Is it really a feminist anthem? Why are they all dressed as milkmaids? Greece are about to “Rise Up” performed by Freaky Fortune featuring RiskyKidd. The Kidd is actually a rapper from London. It strikes me as the first song of the night to really get the place rocking. Not a hamster wheel in sight, just a bloody huge trampoline.

21. Lifeball AIDS HIV Charity Magenta (Red) CarpetNow it’s Austria with a bearded drag artist, Conchita Wurst singing “Rise Like A Pheonix”. He/ She looks a little scary to me. It’s a good song but the whole appearance puts me right off. Germany ask “Is It Right” with a female trio called Elaiza. It features an accordion and has a bit of an oompah feel about it. I really don’t like this song!

Can Sanna Nielsen “Undo” the competition for Sweden 40 years after Abba won the contest? Possibly as it is this years favourite. Actually it’s a bloody good sung and Sanna has a great voice. If a ballad wins this year it might be “Undo”. TWIN TWIN perform the French entry “Moustache”; a song about a man who can’t grow a moustache. The singer can certainly grow a cartoon comedy haircut though. I can only assume that France don’t want to win. This song is shit!

TWIN TWIN - you cocks!

TWIN TWIN – you cocks!

The Tolmachevy Sisters have interlocking hair and they are singing “Shine”. Their hair has come undone, well at least that will make going to the toilet easier. But wait now they’re on a see saw; why? It was ok but they’re hardly Pussy Riot. Emma sings in Italian for Italy with a rocking little ditty called “La Mia Citta” a.k.a “My City”. The costumes are a bit Roman Empire. Not a bad song though.

indexTinkara Kovac is singing “Round And Round” for Slovenia. Sung in Slovene and English in a rather shouty way with added flute. We’re hoping for “Something Better” from Finland from Softengine. They sound a bit like a discofied Aha.

Ruth Lorenzo once came 5th in the X Factor and she is singing her own composition for Spain. It’s called “Dancing In The Rain”. Knowing my luck a former X Factor contestant will win it. It hurts terribly to admit it but the song is alright, not great just alright. The shouty bit at the end kills it a bit though. Those perennial neutrals Switzerland have a song called “Hunter Of Stars” by Sebalter. It has far too much whistling for my liking with a backing track that sounds like a speeded up “Duelling Banjos“.

40179_ruth-lorenzo-haciendo-corazon-simbolo-eurovision-2014Andras Kallay-Saunders is “Running” for Hungary. He runs around the stage a bit too. A good pop song methinks. Malta are “Coming Home” with Firelight. Two siblings in the band have a mother from Yorkshire. But the song is so Mumford it hurts. Is that style popular across Europe? I don’t know and frankly I hope not! But just to provide a balanced view, Catwoman likes this song apart from the female vocals.

Next up is “Cliche Love Song” by Basim singing for hosts Denmark. Blimey is he miming to Bruno Mars? This is possibly one of the best entries of the night. The Danish TV executives must be shitting themselves. It costs a packet to put this show on. After Denmark the Netherlands provide the “Calm After The Storm” as song by the Common Linnets. Who knew that the Dutch do Country and Western? They can though and it’s quite a good song.

mollySan Marino are the penultimate country with “Maybe” sung by Valentina Monetta. It sounds like the theme song to a late 60s James Bond spoof. Was that meant to be a giant sea shell behind her? Finally it’s time for the UK entry which is “Children Of The Universe” from Molly. I really do think she’s in with a chance. Not sure about her boots but for me Molly nailed it!

Before the scoring starts my tips are Sweden, Denmark and the UK and I reckon France ought to finish last. Now for the scoring which as you might have guessed featured all the usual political voting. Molly came 17th out of 26th so not as bad as many UK entries. The runaway winner was Conchita Wurst from Austria a.k.a the bearded lady with “Rise Like A Phoenix”. I really don’t get it, although to be fair on second hearing the song isn’t too bad! As for my tips; Sweden were third and I was right about France who finished last!

 

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“You never see the rainbow, you just curse the rain” March 11, 2013


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You may have noticed that a secret selection recently took place to pick a very important figure. A person that we truly hope will be more successful than the previous occupant of the role, who frankly was a little too old for the task. I bet you think I’m talking about the selection of the new Pope don’t you? Well I’m not, I’m talking about the secretive BBC cabal that selects the artist that will represent the UK at the Eurovision Song Contest.

Bonnie Tyler to sing for UK at Eurovision

the recent puff of smoke emanating from Broadcasting House signalled the appointment of Welsh songstress Bonnie Tyler as this years representative. A successor to Englebert Humperdinck from last year. Apparently Bonnie is still ‘very big in Europe’. I’m not sure that is an advantage for the UK in the Eurovision Song Contest. Bonnie’s song is called “Believe In Me” and for me it is an inoffensive ditty that will probably remain towards the bottom of the pile when the votes are cast. If the Beeb were ‘Holding Out For A Eurovision Hero’ I think they will need to hold out a lot longer.

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The song was written by an Anglo US team consisting of Desmond Child (US), Lauren Christy (UK) and Christopher Braide (UK). the contest takes place on 18th May in Malmö in Sweden. Which means at least there will be no newspaper headline puns utilising Bonnie’s first hit “Lost In France“. It may also be the first Eurovision that I fail to blog about on the night. For two reasons; first last years contest was really dull and secondly I will be on holiday 🙂tony-iommi-credit-joby-sessions-450-100-450-70

What do you think of “Believe In Me” and how do you think it compares with earlier UK entries? In more Eurovision news the composer of the Armenian entry “Lonely Planet” is none other than the great Tony Iommi off of Black Sabbath. He is expecting it to be slagged off, but what the hell, he’s in Sabbath right?

 

 
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