With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

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

The Dark Tower film – “I think we need a gunslinger somebody tough to tame this town” August 20, 2017


As many of you know I am a massive fan of Stephen King and as such I have looked forward to the cinematic adaptation of his magnum opus, ‘The Dark Tower’. I was really excited when I learned that Idris Elba had been cast as Roland the Gunslinger and that the Man In Black would be played by Matthew McConaughey. Then there was that ridiculous period when the internet trolls moaned on about how could a black man play Roland. Well Roland’s character transcends colour and Elba is undoubtedly one of the finest actors on the planet. Thankfully that all died down. But then recently I started reading the reviews and almost all of them have been negative. Was the film as bad as those reviews have suggested?

Well I saw it on 18th August, sadly not on the 19th (OK some of you won’t get that point!) and I thought it was a very good opener for what I hope will be a long Dark Tower series. Elba and McConaughey are on superb form. Idris Elba makes a perfect Roland and Matthew McConaughey does evil in the most convincing way. Tom Taylor who plays Jake is pretty much everything I imagined Jake Chambers would be from the books. Taylor is British and this is his big screen break, although he has previously appeared in a number of TV shows.

New York in the movie looks every bit as vibrant, busy and depressing as I hear it can be. While Mid World looks exactly what a world that has moved on  should look like. The odd reference to some of King’s other works are clever, particularly Pennywise from IT. If I were scoring this film I would give it a 4 out of 5 and I excitedly anticipate the following instalments building on that and getting even better. To all those critics who scored it 1 or 2 out of five, were you actually watching it? Have you forgotten the face of your father? But to finish, this is a music blog so I have selected a few songs that in some way relate to the Dark Tower, did you get all the references?

 

“None of them received a heroes welcome” – Advent day 19 December 19, 2013


slide_19_2087154aDefinitely on the home straight now, we’re on the 19th December. So day 19 of the With Just A Hint Of Mayhem Advent posts brings two songs with the number 19 in their title. Can you guess what the f-f-f-f-first one is going to be?

Paul+HardcastleI’ll put you out of your misery the first tune is Paul Hardcastle‘s “19” which was his fifth solo single. It went to number one in the UK in 1985 and made the top spot in Ireland, Switzerland, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Germany, Austria and Italy. It was also number one on the US Dance charts. Hardcastle was inspired to compose “19” after watching a documentary about the Vietnam war called ‘Vietnam Requiem‘. he was shocked that the average age of the US combat soldier killed in Vietnam was 19. That was his age when he saw the documentary. The song may have performed better in the US had it received more airplay. It stalled at number 15 in the Billboard charts after many US radio stations refused to play it as they considered the song to be anti-American. Hardcastle has always denied this and I believe he is right. He is quoting statistics. Although the average age of 19 statistic has been challenged and various sources have suggested that between 20 and 23 are more realistic. That is still bloody young though! Paul Hardcastle’s 1986 single “The Wizard” became the theme tune to Top Of The Pops from April 1986 to September 1991. He also produced Rory Bremner‘s parody recording of “19”; “N-N-Nineteen Not Out” which was released under the name the Commentators and reached number 13 in the UK charts in 1985.

1349963354063_1483409The second song on day 19 comes from those ancient geezers the Strolling Bones, well that’s what they look like these days right? I am talking of course about the Rolling Stones with their 1965 UK and US Billboard number two hit “19th Nervous Breakdown” It broke a run of five consecutive UK number ones for the band that stretched from April 1964 to September 1965. Those five songs were; “It’s All Over Now”, “Little Red Rooster”, “The Last Time”, “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” and “Get Off Of My Cloud”. The number 19 is an important number in Stephen King’s ‘Dark Tower Series‘ and this song is referenced a few times within those tales. The song has been covered by the Standells and the Wedding Present. On the US TV show Saturday Night Live in 2012 Mick Jagger performed the song with the Foo Fighters.

funny-bar-table-man-woman

 

“All my life watching America” July 3, 2013


american_flag

During my formative years I was a big fan of the USA. This view was largely developed from reading Marvel comics, the Apollo missions and watching westerns and war films on the TV. As I got older and became interested in politics my views on America flexed somewhat. Whilst there is much to love about the place there is an awful lot to dislike. I love New England, San Francisco, Marvel Comics and Stephen King to name but a few. I dislike, again to name just a few, the Republican party, the Christian right, Dubya, Gun laws and the way Hollywood changes so much in movies (The ending of I Am Legend, Disney‘s version of Winnie the Pooh and the fact that no Americans were involved in the real Great Escape)

h19B15C53

But I do have a number of friends and readers that are Americans so I would like to take this opportunity to wish you a very happy Independence Day from a Brit across the pond. To help you celebrate here are some of my favourite USA themed songs

Welcome to America! :-)

Welcome to America! 🙂

 

“Take a sad song and make it better” October 12, 2012


I always get a bit of a good feeling when a favourite song, or even one that I recognise is mentioned in a story, do you? My favourite author Stephen King does it quite often. Now there is a regularly updated site called Small Demons that have compiled a list of the songs mentioned most often in works of fiction. Click here to read about it in the NME. Here is the top 20;

1. The Beatles – ‘Hey Jude’
2. Elvis Presley – ‘Heartbreak Hotel’
3. Led Zeppelin – ‘Stairway To Heaven’
4. USA For Africa – ‘We Are The World’
5. Abba – ‘Dancing Queen’
6. Carl Perkins – ‘Blue Suede Shoes
7. The Beatles – ‘Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds
8. The Beatles – ‘Eleanor Rigby’
9. Nirvana – ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’
10. Queen – ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’
11. Los Del Rio – ‘The Macarena’
12. Michael Jackson – ‘Beat it’
13. Creedence Clearwater Revival – ‘Proud Mary’
14. OneRepublic – ‘Apologize’
15. The Beatles – ‘I Want To Hold Your Hand’
16. The Beatles – ‘Strawberry Fields Forever’
17. ‘Lili Marleen’ (first recorded by Lale Andersen)
18. Michael Jackson – ‘Billie Jean’
19. Bob Dylan – ‘Like A Rolling Stone’
20. Rolling Stones – ‘(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction’

I get why some of these would appear, but USA For Africa,  “Macarena” and “Apologize”? What’s that all about? “Hey Jude” has been mentioned in Stephen King’s Dark Tower series. The Beatles have a probably unsurprising five titles in the top 20 with Michael Jackson the only other artist with more than one with his two entries. I suppose an entry for the Fab Four‘s “Paperback Writer” would have been quite apt wouldn’t it? Click here to see a longer and nicely pictorial list.

 

“‘Cause I forgot that you left me behind to remind me of you” September 19, 2012


Today, September 19th, would have been my Dad’s 81st birthday. But sadly he died in 2001 shortly after his 70th birthday just 5 days out of his 60s. I still miss him a lot and I often wonder what he would think about where my life has gone since he died. For my whole life there were always two Bill Adamsons in my family; me and my Dad, yes we shared exactly the same name. But since 24th September 2001 I have been the only one. But then I do see my Dad every morning when I shave and I hear him in the way I laugh. I sometimes wonder if I am in fact turning into him and frankly that wouldn’t be a bad thing. I was and always will be proud of my dad as both a father and a man. Time may heal, but that gap in your life after you lose a parent always remains. I’m sure that many of you who have lost a parent will have similar memories too and if it would help you to share them feel free to add a comment with your own feelings about sadly departed parents.

Obviously I have to include some music in this post, this is a music blog after all. So I have chosen four songs; Rod Stewart‘s version of “Sailing” as that was his favourite song ever. “The Living Years” from Mike and the Mechanics as that song made me reflect a lot after dad died and yes I cried a few times at that one. Next is the song that my Mum chose to have played at his funeral, “I Can’t Stop Loving You” by Ray Charles. Finally I felt that I had to include Mike Skinner‘s fabulous Streets track “Never Went To Church” as that is all about coming to terms with the loss of his own father and provides the title for this post. In the words of Roland in Stephen King’s Dark Tower series ‘do you remember the face of your father?’ Well i do and I always will. Enjoy the music Dad, these are for you.

 

“But I know you ain’t wearin’ nothin’ underneath that Overcoat and that it’s all a show, yeah” February 11, 2012


Aerosmith‘s producer wanted Steve Tyler to collaborate with my favourite author Stephen King for songs on the next Aerosmith album. Jack Douglas felt that with King writing the lyrics Tyler would be inspired with the music. It seems unlikely that it will happen now, but you never know do you?

It’s not as far-fetched as it sounds. King recently wrote a stage musical with John Mellencamp, which is scheduled to première in the spring. It’s called Ghost Brothers of Darkland County.

 

“What chance have you got against a tie and a crest” November 16, 2011


I posted recently about how the use of your favourite song to advertise a product you don’t like or feel is wholly inappropriate made me think of something similar. How do you feel when you hear that a celebrity, politician or someone you simply don’t like is a big fan of your favourite artist, song or music? I’m not talking about political parties or candidates appropriating music for their campaigns; just those who give an insight into their personal taste.

Dave 'The Rave' Cameron attempts the Macca signature thumbs up......... and fails!

Those of you who read this blog regularly know that I have been a fan of David Bowie for many years. Chris Evans mentioned on his Radio Two show this morning that Jeremy Vine is a big David Bowie fan. I like that because I think Jeremy Vine is an excellent broadcaster. However when I discovered a few years back that Gordon Kennedy, the former leader of the Liberal Democrat party in the UK was a David Bowie fan I felt almost cheated as I really have no respect or liking for Mr Kennedy. But to be fair I still like him far more than I like Nick Clegg!

The Cleggatron after Dave Cam told him he was no longer required to play tambourine in Led Coalition.

Then there are people like Old Etonian David Cameron who has said that he is a fan of the Smiths and of the Jam; particularly “Eton Rifles” How does that kind of thing sit with such a strong right-wing ideology? Paul Weller actually commented on that with “It’s Like, which bit of it didn’t he get? It wasn’t intended as a fucking jolly drinking song for the cadet corps” Liam Fox, former Defence Secretary, is supposedly a fan of the Scissor Sisters. I bet he doesn’t feel like dancing with Andrew Werrity anymore though!

Dangerous Dave in his Hippie days

As well as being a Bowie fan I am also a massive fan of the author Stephen King and a few years ago I was quite excited to read that Mr Bowie likes him too. Bowie was quoted as saying something like “I like Stephen King, he scares the shit out of me!”

Clegg says goodbye to his groupie and wonders where his red mullet is

So to finish who has expressed a liking for your favourite songs and artists and how did you feel about it?

Johnny and Paul at the first meeting of the Anti Cameron League

 

 
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