With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

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

“I find it hard to tell you, I find it hard to take” December 4, 2010

After the success of his version of Mad World Gary planned to get a star tattoo for each finger

Are you waiting to open the door for the 4th December on my UK Christmas number ones advent calendar? I hope so. Apologies for being a little tardy with this one, let’s blame the weather shall we? Anyway as you open that cardboard flap very carefully you will be releasing “Mad World” by  Gary Jules and Michael Andrews. The song was originally a hit for Tears For Fears back in 1982 when it reached number 3 in the UK chart. The song was the third single from the band and was written by Roland Orzabal.It was originally the B Side of the band’s second single “Pale Shelter (You Don’t Give Me Love)

Surely Curt's hairstyle was never cool, not even in the 80's. Was it?

The Gary Jules and Michael Andrews version is slowed down and in my opinion almost menacing at times. It was taken from the soundtrack from one of my favourite films, ‘Donnie Darko‘. It was number one in the UK during Christmas 2003 and held the pole position for three weeks. It also reached number one in Canada and Portugal. It has been covered by quite a diverse group of acts including Adam Lambert and Die Toten Hosen. TV shows have used it to great effect on many occasions too including CSI, Smallville and the Vicar Of Dibley.

Success didn't really go to Gary's head, but he was turning into the Incredible Hulk or maybe the Jolly Green Giant (OK that was really corny wasn't it?)

Michael Andrews is well-known for his film scores, including Donnie Darko (obviously), My Suicidal Sweetheart and Funny People. Gary Jules is attributed with what in my opinion is a truly wonderful quote. “I found out that people through the ages are exactly the same as now, they had the same issues, the same desires. One thing that’s clear when you read old literature is that there are some great universal truths – things like fart jokes, guys screwing other people’s wives and the hunger for power.” I have to agree on the fart jokes comment.

Enjoy the Gary Jules and Michael Andrews version below

Here are Tears For Fears performing the original song on Top Of The Pops in 1982

And finally experience Die Toten Hosen playing (or maybe murdering) the song live.


“And he’s making wine from water while he dresses like his daughter” November 5, 2010

Yesterday morning I arrived at the station in plenty of time as usual to catch the 7.27 from York to Chesterfield (I really do get to the most exciting places don’t I?). The first thing I saw when I came into the main concourse was the cancellation notice for said train accompanied by quite a few angry commuters. Personally I refuse to get angry about that kind of stuff anymore, frankly it’s a waste of energy. So the cancellation of the Cross Country Trains 7.27 service from York to Reading via Birmingham was an opportunity for me. I dashed over to Costa Coffee and spent 30 minutes reading the Guardian with a cup of tea. Obviously the tea wasn’t reading the Guardian, I was!

Incidentally the train was cancelled owing to a ‘shortage of train crew’ which I don’t think had anything to do with the stature of the driver, guard or trolley dolly!

When I eventually boarded the train it was, as expected very crowded. So I figured I would just lean against the wall in the vestibule, listen to my iPod and read. I positioned myself opposite the open door and was listening to the hubbub af anger and complaint. Phrases like “couldn’t organise a piss up in a brewery”, “there’s less shit in a sewage farm” “what a bunch of useless tossers” were used to describe the rail operator, so it was clear that many people were very angry. Not me though, I don’t see the point, anyway there was quite a lot of swearing too, that stopped however, straight after a vicar boarded the train. (Incidentally it was a male vicar and sadly not Dawn French in her Dibley role). The comments then became most polite “did you see that thing on ITV last night”, “the weather isn’t great is it?” and “did you watch the football last night?”. Now I don’t know why this happened, is it because everyone has respect for a man of the cloth or perhaps people have an underlying belief that bad language offends religious people. I would love to hear your thoughts on the matter though. I am no authority on religion, I’m not religious and considered myself an agnostic, then an old boss of mine said that an agnostic was just an atheist with no balls, so I guess that’s what I must be!

As always this is a music blog and this post gives me the opportunity to post some vicar related music, something I don’t think I’ve done before. So for what you are about to receive may the god of rock and the no balls atheist make you truly thankful, Amen!

Firstly the incredibly underrated Mansun with “Stripper Vicar” The song is taken from the excellent ‘Attack Of The Grey Lantern‘ album which singer Paul Draper originally conceived as a concept album where the Grey Lantern was a superhero in an English Village. But he apparently he ran out of steam so it’s only partly concept. In fact Draper has referred to it as con album rather than a concept album! “Stripper Vicar” was released in 1996 with the album following in 1997.

Next it’s the Smiths with “Vicar In A Tutu” preceded by “Bigmouth Strikes Again” taken from a Whistle Test performance. The song is track 8 on one of the greatest albums of all time (in my humble opinion at least) ‘The Queen Is Dead’ from 1986

And finally, not really music, but very funny, Rowan Atkinson as a vicar in a ‘Not The Nine O’Clock News‘ sketch on Songs Of Praise


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