With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

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

The Mayhem Monthly Top 20 Artist Chart – March 2022 April 6, 2022


Here we go with the Mayhem Artist Top 20 chart for March 2022. Many of you know that I am a keen user of a site called Obscurify. It claims to tell you how obscure your listening on Spotify is. Compared to the rest of the UK I achieved a level of 100% more obscure than other users in the UK. Although that has since dropped to 99%. Regular readers will know that it also lists my most obscure artists, (the top two of which have been there since I began doing these posts) which currently are;

Woke Up Dead (One of the two bands that have been ever-present in my obscure list and an excellent band to boot!)

Promethium (This metal bunch continues to fly the flag for great British rock and like Woke Up Dead have been ever-present in this obscure team)

PhonoMatiq – Billy Paul Williams’ a.k.a. Phonomatiq came to be here thanks to a rather strange tune called “Barbara Streisand” which I have listened to quite a lot

Heartsink -One of York’s best young bands and most definitely York’s best pop-punk band!

Muda – cinematic electronic synth-led modern classics from Ireland. I came across them purely by chance and what a find!

As for the March Top 20, only Dame David remains from the last chart, but he has been a bit of a constant from the start. Other classic artists include Barry White, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Vampire Weekend and R.E.M. But there is the first entry, straight in at number one, for the amazing Bang Bang Romeo, a band that I came to quite late. But I am so glad that I found them! They are an incredible rock band from Yorkshire and Anastasia Walker’s voice is in a league of its own! Here is that all-important top 20. There are quite a few appearances from artists that have never appeared before in addition to Bang Bang Romeo. These include Police Car Collective (I saw them at Leeds Fest last year, bloody stunning), Mik Artistik’s Ego Trip, (I was lucky enough to witness Mik in all his live glory in York a few weeks ago), Hattie Briggs (she was discovered by Alfie Boe busking at Paddington Station) and Koffee (new reggae star with great reverence for Robert Nesta Marley). Ukrainian band Antytila are in at number 16. They asked to have a live link slot at a recent Concert For Ukraine in the UK and I heard the organisers turned them down as it would have been too political!!!! WTAF???? There are even a few country artists too, Katy Hurt, Morgan Wade and Leah Blevins. At number 20 you’ll find an incredible York band, Vaquelin, check out their first album, ‘Where Dreams Hurt’! I would love to hear your thoughts on this chart. Oh and keep your eyes open for a new addition to the Mayhem Monthly Artist Chart. Very soon we will bring you the Mayhem Monthly Song Chart, almost like an old school top 20 singles chart! That one includes songs by eight of the artists in the March Artist Chart.

1 Bang Bang Romeo
2 Katy Hurt
3 David Bowie
4 Hattie Briggs
5 Vampire Weekend
6 Barry White
7 Police Car Collective
8 Leah Blevins
9 Koffee
10 Mik Artistik’s Ego Trip
11 Pink Floyd
12 Morgan Wade
13 The Surfing Magazines
14 A Will Away
15 Hard Feelings
16 Antytila
17 Led Zeppelin
18 R.E.M
19 Childcare
20 Vaquelin

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Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Podcast July 20, 2019


I have just uploaded another With Just A Hint Of Mayhem podcast. It outlines my views on the Apollo 11 moon landing from 50 years ago. How exciting that was to me and my thoughts on what has happened since, accompanied by a soundtrack of some of my favourite space, moon and Apollo tunes. Click here to check it out. I would love to hear your views too.

 

With Just A Hint Of Mayhem is ten years old! Part 2 February 1, 2019


Here we go with part 2/ day 2 of the With Just A Hint Of Mayhem 10th birthday celebrations. Regular readers will know that yesterday I gave you the top ten most viewed posts on the blog since it began back in February 2009 (Click here to view that again). Today I bring you the top ten countries that have given With Just A Hint Of Mayhem the most views. Don’t worry there will be plenty of music in the coming days including things like my top ten favourite singles, albums, bands and more stuff too! Don’t forget that you can also find us on Twitter  and FaceBook .

So on with the countries who have visited the site most often

USA 173,833

UK 116,030

Chile 27,682

Germany 26,344

France 22,616

Canada 19,208

Mexico 15,273

Spain 14,654

Australia 11,828

Brazil 8,475

Incidentally there are a handful of countries that have never visited With Just A Hint Of Mayhem, well at least not yet. If you can make it happen for Svalbard, Western Sahara, Bujumbura, Chad, Turkmenistan, Kosovo, Djibouti and unsurprisingly, North Korea. There are also thirteen countries with only one view each in 10 years.

So to celebrate how about a few world related songs? Don’t mind if I do 🙂

 

 

“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

 

“Rock’n’roll with all my friends, hopin’ the music never ends” March 20, 2014


mr happyI might be a little late with this but today is the United Nations second International Day of Happiness. So let me help you celebrate with a few Happy and Happiness songs. Enjoy them and feel free to contribute some of your own.

happy

happiness

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“Ah! böwakawa poussé, poussé” – Advent day 9 December 9, 2013


3d-9-number-like-christmas-toy-7227322It’s day 9 of the With Just A Hint Of Mayhem Christmas Advent calendar which means it is now December 9th. We haven’t put our decorations up yet and probably won’t put them up until much nearer the big day. Have you put your baubles on your tree yet?

johnsfaceFollowing on from yesterdays post which referenced the anniversary of John Lennon’s murder with a Beatles song today I offer you a song from Lennon’s solo career. In keeping with the numbers theme of this years advent posts it has a number in the title; can you guess which song it is? Well I’ll put you out of your misery, it’s “#9 Dream”. Taken from Lennon’s 1974 album ‘Walls And Bridges’ it only made number 23 in the UK chart but was a top ten hit in the USA. In fact it reached a rather appropriate number 9. May Pang who was Lennon’s partner for much of his ‘lost weekend’ recorded the backing vocals for the song. She has also said that the vocal refrain ‘Ah! böwakawa poussé, poussé’ in the lyrics came to John in a dream. In fact the whole song was an interpretation of that dream. It is one of my favourite Lennon songs and has been covered by REM, Andrea Corr and A-Ha.

220px-1969-tempts-cloud9The second song in todays line-up comes from the Temptations. It is their 1968 single “Cloud Nine”. It was the first release to feature Dennis Edwards in place of David Ruffin. The song was written by multi-talented producer Norman Whitfield and former Motown artist Barrett Strong. It stemmed from Whitfield being exposed to a new style of music via Sly and the Family Stone‘s hit “Dance To The Music”. At first he was reluctant to move too far from the hit making formula employed up to now. It was Temptation Otis Williams that convinced him to do it. I for one am glad that he did because it led to some amazing psychedelic funk workouts right into the 70s.

 

“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”

 

“That’s great, it starts with an earthquake, birds and snakes, an aeroplane” May 21, 2011


I will try to make this a relatively short post, mostly because it may be the last one I ever do (shades of Bowie’s 1973 Ziggy retirement there don’t you think?). Why might this be my last post? Well today is rapture day of course. A day when 200 million Christian believers will be swept up to heaven, while the rest of us remain down here suffering a hell on earth, which will apparently end on October 21st. An 89 year-old US preacher, Harold Camping, has predicted that Jesus will return to earth at 11pm UK time today. He will apparently be accompanied by earthquakes that roll around the world. Click here to read about the atheist rapture parties in the US.

Try as hard as you like Ermintrude but you won’t be raptured or looked after!

Personally I think this is complete crap, even more so given that Camping actually predicted the end of the world 17 years ago. But he says he wasn’t wrong and that his 1994 prediction was in fact a precursor to the main event. So rather than dwelling on delusional folks like him I thought I’d focus on what I think is a wonderfully amusing aspect of the whole story. it is said that only humans will be drawn up in the rapture, which means that all their pets will be left behind. But don’t fret pet lovers, there is a company called Eternal Earth-Bound Pets who will take care of your pets after you’ve caught the 11pm express service to heaven.

So clearly he cares for animals, just not your pets!

They operate in more than half the states in the US and will take care of your cats, dogs, small birds and small caged mammals for a bargain price of just $135 and an another $20 each for any additional pets that you have. Up to 250 people have already signed up even in the knowledge that no refunds are available. In four states they also offer the service for some larger animals such as horses. perhaps the best thing about this great deal is that it has a ten-year guarantee! So if Mr Camping is wrong again you still have ten years for him to get it right! How do they guarantee that post apocalyptic pet care? Well they guarantee that all their care teams are committed atheists, pet lovers and have no criminal record. Click here to check their website.

As I have said before this is a music blog so please enjoy the following songs before the end of the world. If my internet connection gets washed away with the rapture tonight I may not be able to post again, but I can promise you I will definitely still be on earth tomorrow 🙂

 

“When you’re sure you’ve had enough of this life, well hang on” October 3, 2010


A recent survey undertaken by PRS for Music sought to discover the songs that make us men cry. A total of 1,700 men were polled and the results make somewhat interesting reading I think. The top ten is shown below, with a few comments from me. Click here to read a report on the results in the UK free newspaper, the Metro.

1. Everybody Hurts – REM – A great REM song taken from the classic ‘Automatic For The People‘ album. It was written by drummer Bill Berry, although he didn’t play drums on the track, that was done by a drum machine. He also said that the song was aimed at teenagers. In 2006 the song was voted 4th in a poll by Channel 5 to discover ‘Britain Favourite Break Up Songs’
2. Tears in HeavenEric Clapton – A very sad song in many ways. Clapton wrote it with Will Jennings after the death of his four-year old son Conor in 1991. The boy fell from the window of a friend’s apartment in New York
3. Hallelujah – Leonard Cohen – Now this one is a classic and has been covered by many artists. X Factor winner Alexandra Burke reached number one in the UK with, at best a very mediocre working of the song and at its worst would easily make music purists cry. In my opinion the best version is easily that of the late, great Jeff Buckley and that version can indeed bring tears to my eyes
4. Nothing Compares 2 USinead O’Connor – She will always have my respect for tearing up a photo of the pope on US TV, I bet that made a few people cry with rage though. It reached number one in the UK in 1990. The song is actually a cover version of a song written by his royal purpleness, Prince. It was recorded and released by the Family in 1985, this was simply a vehicle to enable Prince to release more of his material.
5. With or Without YouU2 – This was the first single from ‘The Joshua Tree’ in 1987 and became their first US number one song.
6. The Drugs Don’t Work – The Verve – This was the band’s most successful UK single and reached number one in 1997, having been released the day after Princess Diana died. It was written by lead singer Richard Ashcroft about his own drug habit and also about the death of his father.
7. Candle In The WindElton John – I really do prefer the original version of this song, it was about Marilyn Monroe and was taken from the album ‘Goodbye Yellow Brick Road‘ However, sadly, in my opinion, the version that most people remember is the rewritten version for Princess Diana’s funeral in 1997, although in its defence it did raise millions for charity. Incidentally I reckon that must be the first time Princess Diana has been mentioned more than once in any of my posts.
8. Streets of Philadelphia – Bruce Springsteen – Bruce wrote this for the first mainstream movie to tackle HIV/ AIDS, ‘Philadelphia’ from 1993. The song won the best original song Oscar. It reached number one in many countries, although not in the US or UK. It has also been known to occasionally open my tear ducts too.
9. Unchained Melody – Todd Duncan – whilst the article lists the Todd Duncan version, which was taken from the 1955 prison film; ‘Unchained’ it is probably the Righteous Brothers version that most people know. That version was recorded in the sixties but became a massive hit again when it was used in the 1990 film ‘Ghost’. It has been recorded by more than 500 artists including, Jimmy Young, Elvis Presley, the Supremes, U2, the Smashing Pumpkins and there was also an excruciatingly bad version by Pop Idol muppet Gareth Gates.
10. AngelsRobbie Williams – As regular readers of this blog know, I am definitely not a Robbie fan and I particularly dislike this song. I really don’t get it, I mean “I’m loving angels instead”? Instead of what exactly?

There are a few songs that can make me blub, many by Johnny Nash, Bob Marley and Jeff Buckley. But perhaps the one that does it the most is “Sailing” by Rod Stewart. It was always my Dad’s favourite song and we played it as his funeral back in 2001. What songs make you cry?

Finally let me finish with a classic video for one of my favourite songs about crying. It’s “Cry” by Godley and Creme

 

“Hey Andy, are you goofing on Elvis?” July 11, 2010


What a bummer, I missed the train again!

I was reading the news earlier today and I discovered a fantastic longstanding tradition that I had never previously heard of and yet it appears to have started more than 30 years ago. It is the annual Amtrak Mooning in Laguna Niguel in Orange County California. It took place this weekend and started as some kind of bet in a bar. A drinker in the Mugs Away Bar which is opposite the Amtrak rail line offered to buy a drink for anyone who would go out and moon at the next train. One drinker took the challenge and it has grown since then to a point where thousands of people take part every year. Many people even travel on the Amtrak on that day especially to see it.

Don't look now but there's a crack on the track!

Here is a video of the Amtrak Moon event from 2005

I think this whole idea is bloody hilarious and maybe we should kick something off like it in the UK, maybe on the platform at Baker Street Station or a bridge over the main east coast rail line in York. Who would be up for that?We already have the Annual Naked Bike Ride in York in June, maybe we can combine it with a rail mooning event.

What I don't get is why there are so many clothes on a naked bike ride

Strangely I was considering a train related post having visited the National Railway Museum in York yesterday with some friends and their two children. So when I saw the Amtrak mooning story on the Beeb I thought I’d combine the two. So here are a few songs relating to trains or mooning. If anyone knows of a song that actually combines trains and mooning then please let me know.

The Train Songshttps://justwilliam1959.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=1701&action=edit&message=10

Runaway Train” – Roseanne Cash. She is the eldest daughter of the late, great Johnny Cash. Her first, self titled album, was recorded largely in Germany. It was released in 1978 although not in the USA

Downtown Train” – Rod Stewart. Rod has recently turned down the opportunity to tour again with the remaining members of the Faces and his place is taken by Mick Hucknall of Simply Red. Now I just don’t get that, do you? Glen Matlock off of the Sex Pistols replaces the late, great Ronnie Lane.When speaking of his divorces Rod was allegedly quoted as saying “Instead of getting married again, I’m going to find a woman I don’t like and just give her a house.”

Long Train Runnin‘” – Doobie Brothers. The fledgling Doobie Brothers were called Pud until a friend noted their fondness for smoking doobies (marijuana cigarettes to those of you who were bypassed by drug culture). So not real brothers at all!

Chattanooga Choo Choo” – Glenn Miller Orchestra. Mr Miller was born just two months before my wonderful Nan, Rosie Lavinia Schofield in March 1904. She died aged 93 back in 1998. Glen Miller was recorded as missing presumed dead on 15th December 1944 after his plane ditched into the English Channel

The Moon Songs

Blue Moon” – Marcels. The group who formed in 1959, were named by Fred Johnson’s (who sang bass)Priscilla, after a popular hair style of the day (the Marcell wave)

Under The Moon Of Love” – Curtis Lee. Curtis had a US hit with this song and “Pretty Little Angel Eyes” in 1961, both were produced by Phil Spector and both were covered in the 70s by UK band Showaddywaddy who had a UK number one with “Under The Moon Of Love” in 1976

The Whole Of The Moon” – Waterboys. This song was a minor UK hit in 1985, its progress was hampered by singer Mike Scott’s refusal to appear on the BBC’s Top Of The Pops where he would have had to lip sync the song.

Man On The Moon” – REM, The song is about US comic performer Andy Kaufman. This video is a live performance at a Rock The Vote show and has Michael Stipe duetting with Bruce Springsteen

 

 
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