With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

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“Couple billion in the whole wide world find another one ’cause she belongs to me” Blog Advent Calendar Day 15 December 15, 2014


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Well today is December 15th and therefore Day 15 in this years advent calendar blog posts. The fifteenth letter of the alphabet is very obviously ‘O’ and today I will being doing something which might surprise many regular readers. Todays entry in the ABC of British bands is One Direction, although I still like to refer to them as Wand Erection.

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The band members are Niall Horan, Zayn Malik, Liam Payne, Harry Styles and Louis Tomlinson. They came to prominence via the X-Factor in 2010 when they finished third in the contest. They all entered the contest as solo artists but didn’t make the cut until Simon Cowell saw the benefit of bringing them together. Matt Cardle won the contest that year while Rebecca Ferguson was in second place.

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1D have smashed chart records across the world, notably in the USA where they are the first band ever to have their first four albums reach number one on the Billboard chart. The record of the first three albums hitting the top of the US album chart was held by…… yes you guessed it, One Direction. Surprisingly for a boy band they have had more success in the albums chart than in the singles chart. They have had only three UK number one singles and none in the USA. They have had number one singles in Denmark, Netherlands, New Zealand and Ireland.

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They are certainly a manufactured boy band but perhaps not as controlled as the likes of Westlife. There isn’t much in the way of choreographed dance routines and insipid covers of old ballads. Having a watched a bit of footage in preparation for this post they seem to be pretty good live performers (Fuck! Did I really say that?). I thought that their performance of “Steal My Girl” at the BBC Music Awards 2014 was among the better showings on the night.

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Did you know that Liam has a strange fear of spoons? Or that Niall is not a big reader and that he once said that the only book that he had ever read was To Kill A Mockingbird? Harry Styles apparently wanted to be a lawyer before the bands X-Factor success. Rather fittingly for these advent calendar posts Louis was born on Christmas Eve. Zayn has a tattoo in arabic on his collar bone, the English translation is ‘be true to who you are’ OK that’s enough from me now feel free to enjoy a selection of Wand Erection’s finest.

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“Some specials and rat food, get lost in the crowd” February 16, 2013


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I think I am seriously ill, I must be, otherwise why would I like this years official single recorded for Comic Relief? It’s a great cover version of Blondie’s “One Way Or Another” with a few lines of the Undertones‘ “Teenage Kicks” thrown in for free. Why would liking this make me think I am seriously ill I can hear you shout. “WHY DOES LIKING THIS COVER OF BLONDIE’S ONE WAY OR ANOTHER MAKE YOU THINK YOU’RE SERIOUSLY ILL?” (that was you shouting by the way).

Good advice from Debbie for when you have a Wand Erection

Good advice from Debbie for when you have a Wand Erection

Well I am sad to say that the act that has covered it is none other than those X Factor Pop Muppets One Direction or Wand Erection as I now prefer to call them. Their version doesn’t come close to surpassing the original, but it is far better than I would have expected and more importantly it is for a good cause. Click here to make your donation for Red Nose Day 2013. It is released on Sunday 17th February and they will be performing it at the Brits this Wednesday. Enjoy both versions of the song while I go and lie down for a restful nap and hopefully to recover from this abominable blight on my previously great music taste!

 

“I need excitement oh i need it bad” May 2, 2012


At last work has started on cataloging the music collection of the late, great John Peel. A project called The Space at the John Peel Centre in Stowmarket is aiming to recreate his library and home studio. Details of his 25,000 strong vinyl album collection is being put on-line at the rate of 100 per week in alphabetical order. This has already begun and includes Adam and the Ants and Abba. The website does not allow you play the music but it will give links to places where you will be able to listen to it.

Along with the album covers even Peel’s index cards have been digitized for the project which benefits from Arts Council funding. I am looking forward to watching it grow on-line, although one worrying point is that Arts Council funding only runs until October. By this time it is hoped to have at least 2,600 album details on-line. Click here to check out the rather excellent site.

A few years ago I considered the idea of contacting John Peel and possibly Elton John (who also has a very large music collection) with a view to offering my services as organiser and curator of their music collections. I had a vision that this would also include building a database for the collection. So if you’re reading this Elton please feel free to get in touch. I will be in the crowd when you play the Royal Harrogate Showground next month!

what song should I choose to celebrate such a momentous piece of Peel news? Surely there is only one option right? yes John Peel’s favourite song ever; “Teenage Kicks” by the Undertones.

 

 
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