With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

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

“They shared the driving all through the night” August 12, 2017

Filed under: Trivia — justwilliam1959 @ 5:00 pm
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You often hear of stars, fossils, rare insects and such like being named after everyone from David Bowie to Frank Zappa. But how about a singer having a bus named after them? Well Leo Sayer had a bus named after him in Brighton, although it is no longer in service. So much for the show must go on right? Perhaps the driver was moonlighting?

Anyway why did Leo have a bus named after him in Brighton? Well that is where he was first discovered in 1970. The man who discovered him, Adam Faith also had a bus named after him. I would be interested to hear of any other musicians and singers that have had buses, coaches, cars, bikes, trains, boats, planes or rockets named after them.

 

“I’ll see you on the dark side of the moon” November 29, 2012


Based upon information released recently it is alleged that the US Government had planned to blow up the moon in the late 50s as a means of intimidating their nemesis in the Cold War, the Soviet Union. After the Russians effectively took the lead in the Space Race with the launch of Sputnik in 1957 it was apparently believed that a show of strength like blowing up the moon would really scare the Russians. Apparently it was called ‘A Study of Lunar Research Flights’ or ‘Project A119‘. Even that sounds a little James Bond like doesn’t it?

It really does seem like a crackpot scheme and it is unlikely at the time that anyone possessed enough in their nuclear arsenal to actually complete the task. At best it might have left the man in the moon looking more like the elephant Man and the satellite’s surface covered in high levels of radiation. In addition any debris that fell to earth would almost certainly have been radioactive as well.

I wonder if this idea came from the same think tank that thought of the idea of using an explosive cigar to blow up Fidel Castro or to rig the voting in Florida in 2000 in favour of Dubya. Ooops wait a minute that second one was true wasn’t it? had it happened then Neil Armstrong probably wouldn’t have been there to utter his famous ‘one step for man’ line. But then again maybe it did happen and didn’t work very well other than to make the moon radioactive. That would certainly give more credence to those people who believe the moon landings were faked and took place in a film studio directed by Stanley Kubrick.

I’d love to know what you think of this incredibly stupid, yet potentially real plan of  Eisenhower’s government. Bearing in mind that his Vice President was Tricky Dicky Nixon, maybe it isn’t surprising! Anyway as I have said many times before so here are a few songs that may not have happened or certainly wouldn’t have been the same had the moon been blown to smithereens, feel free to add your own moon related songs.

Apologies but there are two kiddie fiddlers for the price of one on this next one!

And finally a special Billy Bonus, my favourite track from Pink Floyd’s ‘Dark side Of The Moon’; “Brain Damage”

 

“I guess I’ll just take your glasses” January 30, 2012


I had a simple idea for a new blog earlier this evening after leaving my glasses on a copy of this months Q magazine while I answered the phone. It looked like Florence was wearing those spectacles. So that is how the Stars In My Glasses blog began. Click here to check it out.

The photo that kicked off my new blog

And to finish here are a couple of glasses related songs (ok I know the last one is only very, very loosely related, but I haven’t heard it for ages!).

 

Eurovision Song Contest 2010 May 30, 2010


The UK entry in this years contest was a song written by Mike Stock and Pete Waterman off of Stock Aitken Waterman. It was performed by 19-year-old Josh Dubovie and it is called “That Sounds Good To Me“. But clearly it didn’t sound good to the rest of Europe as for the third time in eight years we came last. OK I know all the conspiracies about neighbourly voting with the Balkan States voting for each other just like the Scandinavians. But really how good was our song? In my opinion it was ok and Josh’s performance was very good. But as the Catwoman said to me during the show “you could almost imagine Kylie singing that a few years ago” It is that which is probably the crux of another UK failure, the song was 80s cheesy disco and very dated.

Still at least it was better than the atrocious and out of tune nul points performance of Jemini back in 2003. The sad thing is that wherever we finish we will always be in the next years contest in the final. Germany, Spain and France will be too. Simply because it is those four countries that fund the whole shebang. Read about the whole thing on the beeb by clicking here

My personal favourites last night were Iceland and Turkey. Kind of Euro Dance and slightly rockier respectively. When Lena sang the German winning entry, “Satellite” I did say somewhat prophetically (or more like a lucky bloody guess) that this one is the winner. It was probably helped by the fact that it has been heard all over Europe already, but it’s not a bad song. Although I do find some of her English enunciation a little strange. But then coming from someone like me who speaks just one language (unless bollocks, bullshit and double dutch count) that’s a bit rich. So congratulations to Lena for achieving Germany’s second win. The first was with Nicole’s “A Little Peace” back in 1982.

Can we learn from Germany? They won in 1982 with Nicole and this year with Lena. So next year perhaps the UK's entry should be sung by Doris, Ethel or Chardonnay!

There were some rather strange moments last night. The Spanish performance was interrupted by a random guy in a stupid hat jumping on the stage and dancing. Personally I didn’t think he looked out-of-place among the toy-like dancers providing a backdrop to a dreadful song. Sung by someone who looked like a reincarnated Leo Sayer. Then there was Armenia who sang a song about apricot stones, what was that all about then? Well apricot stones obviously, but I mean why? Apparently the apricot is their national fruit. Then there was the Belarus entry “Butterflies”. Graham Norton had said before their appearance that the dresses they were wearing would be hotly desired by every little girl in Europe aged under 10. I didn’t understand why until partway through the song when they transformed into dresses with added butterfly wings. They also nearly managed to finish below us but picked up some massive votes towards the end.

wtf?

So let us now ponder on what the UK will do next? Personally I think we should ask Muse and Radiohead to combine for next years entry. It might not win but it would be credible and blow everyone else away! How else will we add to that illustrious list of previous UK winners Sandie Shaw, Lulu, Brotherhood Of Man, Bucks Fizz and Katrina & The Waves? Let us also hope that this has no similarity with the result of the impending World Cup in South Africa!

You can find the official Eurovision site here

And you can find the Wikipedia take on Eurovision here

 

Reading Festival Day 3 – Sunday 30th August 2009 August 31, 2009


Well firstly apologies for the delay in the delivery of this post but it was a long journey home and basically I’m bloody knackered, this old body just can’t take festivals like it used to. I’m sure my fellow ‘old boy’ festival buddy Nick H would concur with that, wouldn’t you Nick?

Anyway on to the final day of the Reading Festival for 2009. Who’s up for 2010? We get there reasonably early on Sunday to make the most of what was supposed to be a sunny day but turned out somewhat grey in the weather stakes, but definitely not grey in the music stakes! First up we saw In Case Of Fire on the NME Radio 1 Stage, these guys all wore the same red shirts, I’m not sure a band uniform works for me (apologies to Devo and Kraftwerk and others). Anyway aside from that these boys certainly knew how to play some excellent punk power pop. Next up it was Noah and the Whale on the Main Stage. I had a few of their songs before but live I felt they were much better. For me they were kind of folky pop with shades of Aztec Camera, perhaps Prefab Sprout and even Lou Reed at times. Their singer even used an electric toothbrush on his guitar at one point, now that is warped. But perhaps slightly more disturbing was that on many occasions the drummer seemed to be miming to a completely different song to the one that the band were playing!

After this we decided to pay another visit to the Festival Republic stage following our success with 65 Days Of Static yesterday. However this was not another one of those finds, we saw the XX and we really weren’t excited by them at all, kind of trippy Indie which seemed incredibly dull, but they seemed to have a lot of fans so to each their own. We saw one song from the Teeth on the BBC Introducing stage. They seemed very good, but we only saw one song, they came across as a geeky, space age version of Sha Na Na. If Sha Na Na were the Flintstones the Teeth would probably be the Jetsons.

Back to the Main Stage now for an appointment with Aussie band the Living End. A bit like Green Day but with a Double Bass. They’re back in the UK for a tour later this year, I reckon they’ll be worth checking out. After this we had perhaps our quirkiest moment of the festival, we tripped across to the Alternative Stage and chanced upon Adam Buxton who in simple terms showed a few film clips and gave out some free snacks. However the quality of the films was truly wonderful, especially the literal video for Aha’s “Take On Me” give it a search on Youtube, I will add it to a post soon as well.

Then it was back to the NME Radio 1 Stage to see the Passion Pit. This is a US band with a sound that could rip a hole in the fabric of space time and a singer who comes across as Leo Sayer begatting Mika whilst on hard drugs. (Ha! I bet you thought begatting only happened in the bible didn’t you?). Next we were back to the Main Stage for the rest of the day. Starting with the brilliant Vampire Weekend, these guys know how to party, the African tinged guitars help I’m sure. I love their first album and this time they even played a few new songs. I also love M79 and whilst I know it’s about a bus in New York, does anyone else think the instrumental hook sounds remotely like “The Wheels On The Bus”? I’d love to know. The Yeah Yeah Yeahs were next and just as I had made up my mind for the best costumes seen at the festival this year along comes Karen O wearing something that must have come together after an explosion at a plastic recycling plant! A great set though, but don’t you think her shouty between song voice grates a little? Incidentally until that point my vote for best costume went to the Where’s Wally team, I think there were six of them dressed as the elusive Wally (to my friends from across the big pond, you’ll know Wally as Waldo). The most disturbing costume that I saw was the guy in the Nuns Habit with a pig mask. scary! If you were one of the Wally’s or the Nun Pig I’d love to hear from you!

Bloc Party were the penultimate act on the Main Stage. I have managed to miss them all the other occasions they have appeared here, but I’m glad that I caught them this time, they played a storming set and their laser show was pretty good too.

But this year I think Reading saved the best until last with probably the best headliner I have ever seen at Reading; the mighty Radiohead (can we call them the ‘Head?). I thought that being Reading they might play “Creep” but to open with it, I don’t think anyone expected that! Their light show was truly amazing and for me they proved once again why they are easily the most influential band of their generation. How will the organisers follow that in 2010? Watch this space to find out and in the meantime let me know who you’d like to see at the event next year. Whether you liked the same acts that I did or you liked the ones that I didn’t I really hope you had a great festival and a safe journey home

 

“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'

 

“did you see the suits and the platform boots?” March 1, 2009


I’m back again and it’s a brand new month, time Marches on doesn’t it? Anyway there have been some excellent comments in response to the current banking farce and also about the Chris Allen naked story, we still don’t know who he/ she is although Tom has owned up to searching for naked pictures of the elusive Chris. No one has found us yet via the Lily Allen naked route though, I’m beginning to think that’s a good thing.

I have also received a couple of e mails relating to my comments about that splendid airline company Ryanair who as you know offer some very cheap headline fares and then charge for everything else on top. The UK press today says they are floating an idea to put coin op slots on the aircraft toilets. You’ll need to spend a pound to ‘spend a penny’. On a similar note I reckon you’ll love the link sent to us by Nick H, just click on Ryanair. Maybe it’s actually true!

The new cheaper Ryanair fleet had just been delivered

The new cheaper Ryanair fleet had just been delivered

Larry sent this one to the Dead Zone Yahoo Group, which is where I borrowed it from. It’s an excellent link to a site showing Billy Idol’s “White Wedding” video but doctored so that it has him singing about what is actually in the video. Trust me this one is very funny!

Billy held out his arms ready to fly, he figured it would be so much cheaper than Ryanair

Billy held out his arms ready to fly, he figured it would be so much cheaper than Ryanair

Feel free to send me things that you think the other readers may enjoy, mostly music related but hey there’ll always be the occasional rant about things like Banking and Ryanair 🙂

So onto todays ton of trivia, well maybe not a ton, but quite a lot! Starting with a couple of birthdays. Firstly 1st March 2009 is Roger Daltrey’s 65th birthday. Does that mean he’ll be getting a “Magic Bus” pass? Roger is one of the two surviving members of the Who along with Pete Townshend. In 1972 Roger took the starring role in a fully orchestrated version of the Who’s “Tommy” at the Rainbow Theatre in London. According to Pete Townshend, who was in the audience, this was the moment when he realised just how good Daltrey was. He spent the next few years worried that Daltrey would leave the band, thankfully for us that didn’t happen. In 1973 Daltrey released his first solo album called, very imaginatively, ‘Daltrey’. Most (or maybe all) the songs for it were written by none other than Leo Sayer with his co writer Dave Courtney. Leo went on to record some of the songs for his own albums in the future, notably “One Man Band”. My favourite track from that album and yes it’s also one of the 50 songs in my top 10, was “Giving It All Away” This clip is from a 1973 edition of the Beebs excellent “Old Grey Whistle Test” it also features Russ Ballard from Argent on guitar.

The front row at this gig soon became aware just how many baked beans Roger had eaten before the show

The front row at this gig soon became aware just how many baked beans Roger had eaten before the show

Today is also the 36th birthday of Ryan Peake guitarist with the band Nickleback. For some strange reason my mate Dave always calls them Stickleback, but then his better half calls him Nobby, so perhaps we shouldn’t go there eh? Nickleback got their name from something Mike Kroeger, also a band member, used to say every day when he worked at Starbucks. After a sale if a customer paid cash he often asked “would you like your Nickel back?” I presume that if Gareth Gates formed a band now it might be called ‘Doyouwantfrieswiththat’ what do you think? Anyway here are the Nickleback boys with “How You Remind Me

The band much preferred fans to wave their phones and not their flame throwers during the slow songs

The band much preferred fans to wave their phones and not their flame throwers during the slow songs

On this day in 1970 Mott the Hoople appeared at the Northcote Arms in Middlesex (I think I’ve had a pint or two in there in my much younger days) They were supported by none other than Genesis in the days before they had a singing drummer! Mott have reformed for a London gig later this year are any of you guys going? If you ever read Rock books you must read Ian Hunter’s ‘Diary Of A Rock n Roll Star’ Ian was Mott’s front man and the book is about the bands early 70s days touring in the US. It is truly an excellent book. In 1972 after a show in Zurich the band decided to split up. After hearing this news one of their biggest fans, none other than David Bowie (another Bowie reference at last!) offered them one of his new songs to persuade them to carry on. The band rejected “Suffragette City” but went on to record “All The Young Dudes”. The rest as they say is history. Here’s one for you fact fans, Mick Jones of the Clash was also a big fan of Mott too. My favourite Mott the Hoople song is “Saturday Gigs” which is about the band’s history and also features the late great (another l & g comeback) Mick Ronson who was a member of the band for just a short while in the mid 70s

It was clear that Ian Hunter had the Austin Powers look even before Austin existed

It was clear that Ian Hunter had the Austin Powers look even before Austin existed

On this day in 1977 Iggy Pop appeared at Friars in Aylesbury and his keyboard player was none other than David Bowie. (Whaddya know, no Bowie references for a while and then two arrive at once, a bit like Mr Daltrey’s Magic Bus perhaps?) Iggy with Ziggy now that’s cool! The support band that night was the Vibrators. I wonder if they’ve changed their name and now tour as the ‘Rampant Rabbits’? 😉 Well if the Stones Roses (see yesterdays post) considered ‘Angry Young Teddy Bears’ as a name it’s not beyond the realms of possibility is it? Anyway let’s get back to the Igster, if you haven’t heard his original version of “China Girl” click the title to check it out, it really does blow Bowie’s version away!

Iggy had to sell his shirts to pay for his RyanAir extras

Iggy had to sell his shirts to pay for his RyanAir extras

And finally I’ve included this as I used the word motley the other day and didn’t mention the crue at all. On this day in 1997 a Motley Crue fan who claimed his hearing had been irreparably damaged after a show in New Jersey had his lawsuit thrown out of court. The judge told Clifford Goldberg (aka Chris Allen? Well you never know!) ,who was sat near the front of the stage that he knew what risk he was taking. Presumably Clifford said “Wot?” In the meantime here are the boys with “Smoking In The Boys Room” Is that headmaster scary or what? “Wot?” oh shut up Clifford I’m not talking to you!

The boys had looked forward to Halloween all year long. "Wot?" said Clifford

The boys had looked forward to Halloween all year long. "Wot?" said Clifford

 

 
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