With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

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

Mayhem Does Playlists Again – 2022 January 4, 2022

Filed under: Playlist — justwilliam1959 @ 12:24 am
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Here’s the Spotify Playlist I promised before Christmas. It includes the twelve tracks that I included in my Songs Of Hope 12 Days Of Christmas series plus some that you delightful readers recommended. I even added John Lennon’s “Imagine”, a song I really don’t like, as someone wanted it included! Like all my playlists it is recommended for shuffle play! Click here to give it a spin. Including the new one, you have fifteen to choose from!

Here are most of my other playlists. Feel free to follow them and share them!

If you want to suggest any tracks to be added to any of them just let me know!

With Just A Hint Of Mayhem Does Britpop and other 90s Greats – OK, Britpop wasn’t really a genre was it? But the 90s did have some great tunes

Billy Does Glam & other early 70s pop – get your platforms on!

Billy’s Best Snotty Punk Tracks – who doesn’t love punk?

Billy’s Ranking Reggae Rockers – everybody loves reggae right?

Billy’s 70s Soul, Funk & Disco Selection – right back to my youth! Get on your flares and get dancin’

Billy’s 60s Soul Selection – I dare you not to enjoy and dance to this lot!

Billy’s Barbecue Belters – this started as a nice backdrop to a summer barbecue that has, thanks to some musical brain farts, grown to a whopping 470 songs that helped shape my life in some way! This will take you more than 31 hours to play all of it!

Johnny Nash – The Greatest Vocalist Ever – Does what it says on the tin, the late, great Johnny Nash was for me the greatest vocalist that ever lived.

Pure Cheesy Pop! – Who doesn’t love a bit of cheese with added guilty pleasures!

Weirdsville City Limits – some really weird tracks that formed the long list for a radio show that I did for Jorvik Radio last year

FACK TRUMP! – largely political and mostly protest songs. This one needs updating!

How about a few Bowie playlists? OK? Don’t mind if I do……

With Just A Hint Of Mayhem Goes Under The Covers With The Dame – Covers recorded or played live by Mr. Bowie

With Just A Hint Of Mayhem – Bowie Live – More Bowie live tracks that many of you will ever need

With Just A Hint Of Mayhem – Bowie Deep Cuts – The lesser played tracks from Dame Dave’s albums

Probably my favourite mixtape/ playlist!

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The 12 Days Of Christmas 2021 – Songs Of Hope – Day 3 December 14, 2021

Filed under: Christmas — justwilliam1959 @ 2:01 pm
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If you have read the posts for day 1 and day 2 you will know that this years 12 Days of Christmas showcases a collection of songs that communicate hope. This kicked off with the Bill Withers classic, “Lean On Me” and yesterday followed with “Here Comes The Sun” by the Beatles. We have all been through some very dark times in the past couple of years, some far more than others. But I hope and believe that there is a light at the end of all this. That is why I have chosen todays song. It is by a man who is probably my favourite vocalist of all time, Johnny Nash. The song is “I Can See Clearly Now”. Once again let me say, stay strong people and if you are feeling particularly low talk to someone. I am happy to be here for you if you need me!

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Happy 12th Birthday to With Just A Hint Of Mayhem! February 9, 2021


I am proud to say that the With Just A Hint Of mayhem blog has now been around for twelve years, yes on February 9th back in 2009 is where it all started. In that time there have been more than 1,500 posts, nearly 1.7 million views and we now have over 2,500 followers. I can’t let this post go without a very special thank you to my great friend and wonderful human being Nick Horslen who suggested that I should start blogging all those years ago! After a very brief introductory post the first proper post was one about Bob Marley, click here to read that. I just read it again and despite expecting it to be a bit crap, I think I am quite proud of it. You have to start somewhere, right? The mention and the link to MySpace certainly dates it though. Given these awful times we are living in rather than suggest huge celebratory party songs in honour of WJAHOM’s 12th birthday I have chosen a couple of songs that always make me feel good which I hope will help you through these dark days. One of them is, in my opinion, the finest Bob Marley recording ever and the other is by my favourite vocalist of all time, Johnny Nash who we sadly lost this year! On top of that I have added a Bowie classic, well you knew I’d do that didn’t you. Stay safe people and thank you to everyone of you who has read, followed, commented, liked or dissed WJAHOM over the years. A huge thank you to all the bands and artists that have been a part of this journey. Here’s to the next 12 years, by which time I’ll be 74, so things might slow down by then, but who knows?

If only the Dame was still around to help celebrate the 12th Birthday of With Just A Hint Of Mayhem! Especially as the blog title was stolen from one of his lyrics!

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My 2020 On Spotify And Some Deeper Listening Stats! January 17, 2021


I thought I would share some of my Spotify listening habits. Apparently I listened to Spotify for more than 12 days last year, I wish I knew how much time I listened to vinyl, CDs, MP3s, radio and other on line sources too. I discovered 577 new artists, wow! My most listened to song was David Bowie’s version of “Wild Is The Wind” and unsurprisingly Bowie was my most listened to artist once again (996 minutes, nearly 6% of my total Spotify listening time) I was also in the top 0.5% of Bowie listeners. The other artists in my top 5 were Biffy Clyro, the Streets, Ella Fitzgerald and Woke Up Dead. I listened to 1,286 artists. My top decade was the 1970s, again no surprise there. Top genres were Rock, Soul and Dance Rock. Rather fascinatingly my music is more obscure than 80% of UK users, what on earth does that mean? I also found a few rather amusing, to me anyway, graphs and charts to accompany this post!

Since starting on this post I have also discovered a few sites on which you can regularly update your Spotify statistics split between artists and tracks and then last 4 weeks/ current, Last six months and all time within that. My favourites among these sites so far are Favourite Music Guru, Obscurify Music and Stats For Spotify. Have you used any of these or can you recommend others?

In case you’re interested in my warped eclectic taste these are my top artists on Spotify (Current, Medium Term and all time) The top songs follow those lists. Incidentally the Kunts and Jarvis Cocker feaure strongly on the tracks lists simply because I did my bit to get them to be the Christmas number one in the UK these last two years!

Top Artists — Short Term (4 weeks)

  1. The Beatles
  2. Yusuf / Cat Stevens
  3. Eagles
  4. London Symphony Orchestra
  5. Evie Sands
  6. Rumer
  7. Jackson Browne
  8. David Bowie
  9. Bobbie Gentry
  10. Harry Styles

Top Artists — Medium Term (6 months)

  1. David Bowie
  2. Biffy Clyro
  3. Gregory Porter
  4. The Avalanches
  5. John Lennon
  6. Eminem
  7. Stevie Wonder
  8. Stephen EvEns
  9. Ella Fitzgerald
  10. The Beatles

Top Artists — Long Term (years)

  1. David Bowie
  2. Bob Marley & The Wailers
  3. Biffy Clyro
  4. Frank Turner
  5. Bruce Springsteen
  6. Four Tops
  7. Eminem
  8. Johnny Nash
  9. Elton John
  10. The Streets

Top Tracks — Short Term (4 weeks)

  1. Boris Johnson is a Fucking Cunt – Single Edit — The Kunts
  2. Billy the Kid, Ballet Suite: I. The Open Prairie — Aaron Copland, London Symphony Orchestra
  3. True Faith ’94 — New Order
  4. Jamaica Say You Will — Jackson Browne
  5. Everybody Used to Love You — Silverjet
  6. Raison D’Être — Stolen Dead Music
  7. Wear A Mask — Sing Sing Rabbit
  8. Three Points on a Compass — Martin Rossiter
  9. Drag Me to the Light — Miles and the Chain Gang
  10. Alfred – Intro — Eminem

Top Tracks — Medium Term (6 months)

  1. Boris Johnson is a Fucking Cunt – Single Edit — The Kunts
  2. Taking It Slow — Heartsink
  3. Concorde — Gregory Porter
  4. Freakin’ At the Freaker’s Ball — Dr. Hook
  5. Pepper — Butthole Surfers
  6. Career Criminal — Stephen EvEns
  7. Close — The Islas
  8. Belladonna — Spunsugar
  9. Make Us Eat — The Shining Tongues
  10. Smiling — Alanis Morissette

Top Tracks — Long Term (years)

  1. Boris Johnson is a Fucking Cunt – Single Edit — The Kunts
  2. Running the World — Jarvis Cocker
  3. Star Treatment — Arctic Monkeys
  4. (red, white, and blue) Cheerfulness — Perry Farrell
  5. Balance, Not Symmetry — Biffy Clyro
  6. Future Legend – 2016 Remaster — David Bowie
  7. Deep Sea Dreaming — Ocean Flaws
  8. Loser of the Year — Woke Up Dead
  9. Three Points on a Compass — Martin Rossiter
  10. Wild Is the Wind – 2016 Remaster — David Bowie

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With Just A Hint Of Mayhem is ten years old! Part 10a (The Albums) February 9, 2019


With Just A Hint Of Mayhem’s birthday celebrations are nearly over. Today is day 10 and it is February 9th which is the official 10th birthday…. WOO HOO, here’s to ten more years! Today you get two top tens in two separate posts this one is my top ten favourite albums and part 10b features my top 10 singles.

Regular readers will know that so far I have shared with you top ten most viewed posts on the blog since it began back in February 2009, the top ten countries that have given With Just A Hint Of Mayhem the most views, rock/ music related books, biographies and autobiographies, my top 10 Bowie songs, my 10 favourite bands of all time, my top ten favourite male artists, the ten greatest gigs that I have been to, my ten favourite music related films and yesterday my top ten favourite female artists.  (Click here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here to view those again). So this is it for the 10th birthday celebrations but there is, I hope, much more to come from With Just A Hint Of Mayhem in the coming months and years, watch this space!

Don’t forget that you can also find us on Twitter  and FaceBook .

So here are my top ten favourite albums of all time, ask me next week and the list may change, although almost certainly not the number 1. I did deliberately ignore David Bowie for this list otherwise he might have occupied three or four places. If you are interested my favourite Bowie album is ‘Diamond Dogs’

1. Live At The Lyceum 1975 – Bob Marley and the Wailers – If I had a time machine I would go back to 1975 and be there for this gig. Probably the finest live album ever.
2. OK Computer – Radiohead – There are still some people out there who don’t like, or maybe don’t get, Radiohead. Why the fuck not? This LP is a work of genius.
3. Dog Man Star – Suede – I loved Suede’s first album but this took them to a whole new level. Were they BritPop? If so then they were one of the best BritPop acts by far.
4. My Merry Go Round – Johnny Nash – This man, for me, has the most beautiful voice that I have ever heard in my life. This album from 1973 has remained among my favourite albums since its release.
5. Skeleton Tree – Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds – How can anyone put so much emotion, empathy and sadness in a small collection of songs? I have no idea but Nick Cave certainly achieved it with this album.
6. Abbey Road – Beatles – I love many albums from the Fab Four, but this is the one I always come back to.
7. Never Mind The Bollocks – Sex Pistols – An incendiary début from one of the best punk bands ever. What might have happened if they had stayed together? Who knows but an album like this as your legacy is a great thing!
8. Maybe You’ve Been Brainwashed Too – New Radicals – There is not a track I would skip on this album. The band is effectively the genius that is Gregg Alexander who wrote and produced all the songs.
9. What’s Going On? – Marvin Gaye – Probably the best protest and message album in history and one which is sadly still very pertinent today
10. Desire – Bob Dylan – It took me a long while to acquire a taste for Mr Zimmerman, but this album clinched it.

 

 

 

The Ska-talites – Fibbers, York – Tuesday 22nd August 2017 August 23, 2017


Now this is an opportunity that doesn’t happen too often. The chance to see one of the finest ska bands that ever existed, the Ska-talites. Actually in my adopted home city of York too. Anyway before I talk of the ska giants let me tell you about the support. Opener was the rather excellent ska DJ team Bangarang with some truly superb ska and reggae tunes to set the scene for the evening. The support band was the Magnificent 7, one of York’s finest young bands and purveyors of authentic, skillful and fun ska punk, ska, pop punk and hip hop. Well the latter is largely down to their excellent cover of the Eminem classic “Lose Yourself” which works really well with a ska punk arrangement. Their own compositions are pretty damned good too and oh boy did it look like they were having fun on that stage. On stage dancer of the night award should probably go to the trombone player from the Magnificent 7.

So now it was time for a band that originally formed in the mid 60s. Whilst there are hardly any original members left the spirit lives on and a band that had reggae greats Tommy McCook, Don Drummond and Roland Alphonso in their membership originally clearly has a great heritage. The Ska-talites are mainly an instrumental band and the first part of their set showed just how good an instrumental band they are with tunes like “Confucius” and “Latin Goes Ska”. Later in the set they were joined by reggae and ska goddess Doreen Shaffer on vocals for a few songs. Notably “My Boy Lollipop“, “Sugar Sugar” (not the Archies song), a very classy “Simmer Down” and one of my favourites “Nice Time”. The latter is a wonderful Bob Marley composition that I first heard via the Johnny Nash version in 1974. Doreen Shaffer must be over 70 now and she has aged incredibly well and she still has the vocals of a much younger woman. After she left the stage the band showcased their individual talents and frankly there is not a single weak link in this band. They closed with and amazing extended romp through their 1967 UK top 40 hit cover of the theme from the “Guns Of Navarone”. They closed with “Phoenix City” which was originally recorded by Roland Alphonso back in 1966. We also got to hear the Freedom countdown twice too. So if you didn’t get to Fibbers tonight why not? I expect a signed excuse from your parents or guardians in my pigeon-hole tomorrow. 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 ……… FREEDOM!

 

“What should we take and how much should we give” August 20, 2017

Filed under: Trivia — justwilliam1959 @ 8:25 pm
Tags: , , , ,

I don’t often post about music birthdays on this blog, well certainly not too often anyway. But I will make an exception for one of my favourite singers of all time, Johnny Nash. He turned 77 on 19th August. He has a voice like no other and along with hits that span genres using blues, reggae and soul to name but a few, he was also influential in bringing Bob Marley to the fore. Johnny was the first person to have a hit internationally with a Bob Marley song; “Stir It Up” in 1972. Most people will know Johnny Nash for “I Can See Clearly Now” but he has recorded plenty of other great songs in a career that began back in the 1950s. Enjoy a few of those to celebrate his birthday now!

 

“The trial was a pig circus, he never had a chance” February 3, 2016


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The other day I decided to take a quick count of all the artists in my album collection where I have at least 10 albums by a single artist. I included CDs, LPs and cassettes (although the only non compilation cassettes that I have are David Bowie bootlegs). Oh and while I’m on bootleg recordings obviously I have included them whether they are live, studio outtakes or simply unreleased stuff. I have not included digital recordings. I was surprised to find that there are 4o artists where I have at least ten releases by them. The list is below, (artist followed by the number of albums) there are no real surprises for me, are you surprised at any on this list? Have you ever done anything similar? I have also added a song from each of the top ten artists 🙂

David Bowie 141
Bob Dylan 30
Johnny Nash 26
Bruce Springsteen 26
Beatles 25
Neil Young 25
Elton John 19
Bob Marley 19
U2 19
Rod Stewart 18
Pink Floyd 17
REM 17
Elvis Costello 15
The Eels 15
Prince 15
Paul Weller 15
Ryan Adams 14
Led Zeppelin 14
Madonna 14
The Clash 13
Elvis Presley 13
Radiohead 13
Kate Bush 12
Oasis 12
Lou Reed 12
Stevie Wonder 12
Morrissey 11
Tom Waits 11
ZZ Top 11
Jeff Buckley 10
Julian Cope 10
Johnny Cash 10
Michael Jackson 10
John Lennon 10
Manic Street Preachers 10
Kylie Minogue 10
Iggy Pop 10
Rolling Stones 10
Frank Turner 10
The Who 10

 

Jimmy Cliff – O2 Academy, Leeds – Monday 18th August 2014 August 19, 2014


Jimmy-Cliff_2604887b

I bought a couple of tickets for this gig on a whim a few weeks ago. I have always liked Jimmy Cliff and I still have a ‘best of’ and the soundtrack for ‘The Harder They Come’ in my collection. Back in the olden days I owned maybe half a dozen Jimmy Cliff 7 inch vinyl 45 rpm records. My lovely wife Catherine (a.k.a. Catwoman) came with me. But I had warned her that the Academy was not a seated venue.

Anyway the lack of seats was not a problem at all as this quickly became one of the best gigs either of us had ever been to. Jimmy is a true entertainer; magnificent stage presence, fabulous rapport with his audience, an amazing band and, even after all these years a wonderful voice. It’s so hard to believe that he has been recording and playing live for more than 50 years! He opened with the sparse but supreme “Bongo Man A Come” which he seamlessly blended into a cover of the classic Ethiopians song “Rivers Of Babylon”. The proper one that includes the Far-I references, not the bland and sanitised rubbish that Boney M had a hit with in the late 70s. from the off Mr Cliff had the whole audience eating out of his hands. When he said sing, we did. When he said shout, we did. When he said wave your hands, we did. When he said jump, we did. When he said clap, yes you guessed it, we did!

jimmy cliff

All the hits were there “You Can Get It If You Really Want”, “Miss Jamaica”, “Wonderful World, Beautiful People”, “Many Rivers To Cross”, “The Harder They Come”, “Sitting In Limbo”, “The World Is Upside Down”, “Hard Road To Travel” and an excellent “Vietnam” which he used as a chance to plead for world peace by replacing the chorus with references to other world conflicts and trouble spots; Afghanistan, Pakistan, Israel and more.

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The cover versions that Jimmy has done over the years always seemed carefully selected and he performed them magnificently tonight. These included Cat Stevens’ “Wild World”, Johnny Nash’s “I Can see Clearly Now” and a rather excellent song from the Lion King, “Hakuna Matata”. Catwoman and I had sore feet by the end of the evening from all the fancy footwork we attempted. We danced the Ska, rocksteady, reggae and others like nobody was watching. There was some really mental dancing going on around us too. In fact the audience may have been more worn out than Jimmy Cliff at the end. He still looked fresh after remaining on stage for nearly two hours including three encores. When he comes back to dear old Blighty I will definitely be in the queue for tickets and I urge you to do the same. You will not be disappointed! And finally, please note that none of the pictures or the videos on this post were filmed by me. I was too busy enjoying the show! None f them are actually from this show either.

 

“You ask how much I need you, must I explain?” – Advent day 12 December 12, 2013


5978003639_50e93ae9fbI’m getting just a little bit more excited now it is the 12th of December after all. In keeping with this years With Just A Hint Of Mayhem advent posts I have two diametrically opposed songs for you today. But obviously two that have the number twelve in their titles.

250px-Johnny_NashFirst up is the timeless song “Twelfth Of Never” which was initially recorded by Johnny Mathis in 1957. He apparently didn’t like the song and it was demoted to the B Side of “Chances Are”. The song has been recorded by many, many artists since then. The Mathis version made it to number 9 in the US charts and Donny Osmond took it to number one in the UK and number 8 in the USA in 1973. The list of cover versions is almost endless and includes; Nina Simone, Barry Gibb, Cliff Richard, Tammy Wynette, Chi-Lites, Glen Campbell, Cher, Dolly Parton, Roger Whittaker, Barry Manilow, Andy Williams, Olivia Newton John, Hank Marvin and Jeff Buckley. Jeff’s version can be found on the Legacy edition of ‘Live At The Sin E’ and remains very faithful to the Nina Simone version of the song. The regular readers among you will know that I am a big fan of Texan crooner Johnny Nash. In fact I would go as far as saying that his singing voice is my favourite voice ever. Anyway I haven’t posted about Mr Nash for quite a while so I thought I would use his version of the “Twelfth Of Never” taken from his 1968 album ‘Soul Folk’.

strokesThe second song today flows from the Julian Casablancas post from yesterday. It is “12:51” by the band that Julian is a big part of; the Strokes. The song was written by Mr Casablancas and was the first single released from the bands second album ‘Room On Fire’ in 2003. The song made it to number 7 in the UK and reached the top 40 in Ireland, Canada, the Netherlands and Sweden. The songs original title was “Supernova”. The video for the song was directed by Roman Ford Coppola, the son of Francis Ford Coppola and the cousin of Nicolas Cage. It has a theme that is very reminiscent of the ‘Tron’ the 1982 movie. When the band played a number of Japanese dates to support the release of the ‘Room On Fire’ album in 2003 they included a cover of the Frank Sinatra classic written by Paul Anka “My Way”, only they sang it with Japanese lyrics!

 

 
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