With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

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

“Aunty Milly, ran willy nilly when her legs they did recede” December 8, 2010


So here we are then ready to reveal what’s behind the cardboard door of my UK Christmas Number Ones Advent Calendar for December 8th. Where the hell does the time go? Anyway today’s choice whizzes you way back through the sands of time to the Christmas of 1968 when “Lily The Pink” was number one for the Scaffold. It held sway at the top for three weeks. There were supported by some big stars although to be fair one of them hadn’t become a star at that point. Backing vocals on the song were provided by our stars and those stars were Elton John, who was not much more than a small stone in the celebrity universe at that time and Graham Nash off of the Hollies and later Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young. In fact it is thanks to Mr Nash that the line “Jennifer Eccles had terrible freckles” was added to the song. In reference to the Hollies smash “Jennifer Eccles

The song was based on a traditional folk song “The Ballad Of Lydia Pinkham” although the band provided most of the new lyrics. The band was from Liverpool and counted Mike McGear, Paul McCartney‘s brother among their members along with Roger McGough and John Gorman. The Scaffold performed a lot of McGough’s poetry in their live shows and they also had two other top 10 UK hits with “Thank U Very Much” in 1967 and “Liverpool Lou” in 1974. The latter was recorded with Paul McCartney and Wings.

Not the Scaffold at all, just an excuse for me to show another picture of the delightful Lily Allen........ Lily In Pink!

The band broke up in the late 70s but have reformed on a few occasions, often for charity and most recently to record a special song to commemorate Liverpool’s year as UK City Of Culture in 2008. Enjoy the band performing the song below.

 

“When we had simplicity and we had warm toast for tea” March 25, 2010


 

This is Ryefield School in Hillingdon a great place where I was a pupil from 1965 to 1970

Once again it’s been a long while since my last post, but not as long ago as the last time I attended Ryefield Junior School in Hillingdon. I was just a little boy called Billy in those days. I attended the school from 1965 until 1970 up until I was 11 years old. I discovered this week that it is Ryefield School’s 50th birthday celebrations this year, I hadn’t appreciated that I was just one year older than the school. One year and three days to be precise as it opened on January 4th 1960. So how did I find out about this auspicious occasion? Well I have mentioned Ryefield in a previous post and the present Headmaster Mr Dodd was doing some research and chanced upon my blog. Serendipity huh?

Anyway it got me thinking about those good old school days and for me Infant and Junior School was so much more fun than Senior School. I will remember Ryefield for many things. But the two that spring to mind immediately are the wonderful headmaster from my days there, Mr Yates. I don’t know much about him other than the fact that to me he was a wonderful man and although I didn’t realise it at the time he was probably my first mentor from outside my family circle. He encouraged me to learn by reading and indeed writing too. I also loved all those mental arithmetic tasks he set. The second thing that is in my mind about those years is my first ever foreign trip. It was a school trip to Paris and it was my first ever flight too. One of the things we were asked to do was write a postcard on the first day to send back to our parents. I did write my postcard, but I left it in my case and gave it to my Mum and Dad when I came home. I can only assume that they weren’t too worried about me

And so on to the music, for that is the purpose of this little blog. And obviously todays choices are all school related, I hope you enjoy them and as usual your school song suggestions would be welcomed

Schools Out – Alice Cooper. OK I know this was an obvious choice, but it is good isn’t it. For me it was one of the defining moments of early 70s music television

Remember The Days Of The Old School Yard – Cat Stevens. Just how talented was this man? Still just as talented these days now he is known as Yusuf. I believe the additional female vocal on this track is Elkie Brooks. Linda Lewis also recorded an excellent cover of this song, although sadly I can’t find it on line

Teacher I Need You – Elton John. A classic slice of Elton and Bernie from the wonderful 1973 album ‘Don’t Shoot Me I’m Only The Piano Player’

Teach Your Children – Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. This is accompanied by a photo montage that shows the Iraq war through the eyes of children

Don’t Stand So Close To Me – Police. Written by a former teacher, Gordon Sumner aka Sting and probably the only lyric which manages to rhyme cough with Nabokov, albeit it rather clumsily! This is the original version which is so much better than the 1986 remake

Be True To Your School – Beach Boys. This one says it all really doesn’t it and with added cheerleaders too.

 

“Now I don’t mean to bother you but I’m in distress, there’s a danger of me losing all of my happiness” August 19, 2009


Johnny Nash, Don Webster, Billie Joe Royal and Terry Knight on the Upbeat TV show

Johnny Nash, Don Webster, Billie Joe Royal and Terry Knight on the Upbeat TV show

I reckon this may turn out to be quite a short post but I couldn’t let this auspicious day pass without wishing a very happy 69th birthday to the supremely talented Mr Johnny Nash. I don’t know which record companies own all his rights now but if you’re reading it’s about time more of his stuff was issued on CD and I’m not talking about yet another greatest hits package! Johnny was born John Lester Nash Jr in Houston Texas on 19th August 1940. Regular readers of this blog will know that I have posted about Johnny a few times before as he is and always will be one of my favourite singers of all time.

I believe that he now lives in Jamaica which is quite fitting as he became the first American to record reggae in Jamaica back in the 60s. I first got into him when I heard his excellent version of Bob Marley’s “Stir It Up“. It was that which also got me into the late great (ls & gs are back again!) Robert Nesta Marley. Johnny was influenced by the late great (ls & g sback with a vengeance now!) Sam Cooke. In fact he recored and had hits with two Cooke songs “(What A) Wonderful World” and “Cupid” If you’ve never really listened much to Johnny do yourself a favour and get yourself a copy of one of the many greatest hits packages available, you won’t regret it!

Johnny appeared to be a big fan of...... grass! ;-)

Johnny appeared to be a big fan of...... grass! 😉

And to make this post just a little longer I’ll add just a few onthisdays for your pleasure. Starting with those well known pensioners the Rolling Stones. On this day in 1964 the Stones played the first of six nights at the New Theatre Ballroom in Guernsey in the Channel Isles. On the very same day the band were told that they had been banned by British United Airways (presumably a forerunner of British Airways) from flying with them, presumably due to bad behaviour. Click here to see some pictures of the Stones soundtracked by what is in my opinion one of their finest songs “Gimme Shelter”

Mick knew he would never be as good a guitar player as Keef, but he would always be the best at making fart noises with his microphone

Mick knew he would never be as good a guitar player as Keef, but he would always be the best at making fart noises with his microphone

On this day in 1967 the Beatles had their 14th US number one single with “All You Need Is Love“. Backing vocals on the song were provided by Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Eric Clapton, Keith Moon, Graham Nash, Marianne Faithfull and Gary Leeds off of the Walker Brothers. Elvis Costello played a reasonable cover of the song at the Wembley leg of Live Aid in July 1985.

In their early days the moptops were so poor that they could only afford one seat between them

In their early days the moptops were so poor that they could only afford one seat between them

And finally, on this day in 1977 the Sex Pistols began an undercover tour of the UK as the Spots. The name was actually an acronym of ‘Sex Pistols On Tour Secretly’ after they had been banned from countless UK venues due to the ridiculous witch hunt engineered by the shabby right wing UK tabloid press. Yep you guessed it I believe that the tabloids are the scum of the earth! Click here to see the Bill Grundy interview with the Pistols that led to those ‘Filth And Fury’ headlines and as a special bonus click here to see the then Johnny Rotten on Juke Box Jury

The Pistols had been banned from so many venues they resorted to playing in rubbish skips!

The Pistols had been banned from so many venues they resorted to playing in rubbish skips!

 

 
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