The Chain #20

A warm welcome to all the Chain Gang for the latest instalment in…erm…well, The Chain, obviously.

It seems you’ve decided to take it easy on me this week, with, at the time I’m starting to write this, just the 16 suggestions (plus mine) received. So far. Can’t rule out the occasional late arrival though.

So to recap: we ended last week with The Smiths “Rusholme Ruffians/His Latest Flame (Medley)”, and of course we were looking for your suggestions for records which can be linked to that.

Now you know the score by now: at this point I would normally simply go through the list of suggestions, in the order that I received them, until we get to the end, I suggest mine, reveal what the actual link from the official BBC The Chain is, and invite your links to that ready for next week.

This week, however, I’m going to mix it up a little bit, because, well frankly, the last suggestion I received simply has to be first.

Here’s George to explain:

“I’ve got a link to Ant and Dec………..”

Is it just me, or has it suddenly got very cold in here?

“In The Smiths the drummer was Andy Rourke. PJ O’Rourke is an American journalist……..and PJ and Duncan were in Byker Grove (not actually filmed in Byker) and they released a few singles, for example ‘Lets Get Ready to Rumble’ And PJ and Duncan are better known (according to my partner) as Ant and Dec!”

I love the double disclaimer in George’s suggestion, not just the “according to my partner” bit, but also spelling Rumble in the way he has, instead of the way that we all know it was actually spelt on that legendary single. Like this:

pj-and-duncan-lets-get-ready-to-rhumble

PJ & Duncan – Let’s Get Ready to Rhumble

Fear not. That’s not the last we’ve heard of from George this week. And I should stress, his suggestions get better, not worse.

So, to The Swede, of Unthought of, though, somehow with a short, but sweet, suggestion:

“From Smith to Jones – Meilyr Jones with the terrific ‘How to Recognise a Work of Art’.”

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Meilyr Jones – How To Recognise A Work Of Art

If you don’t know that record – as I didn’t until The Swede suggested it and I went a-huntin’ – I would heartily recommend you give it a go. It reminds me of My Life Story crossed with Johnny Boy’s “You Are The Generation That Bought More Shoes”, and if that doesn’t tempt you, then I don’t know what will. In fact, if I can go all Victor Kiam for a moment, I liked it so much I’ve gone and got me the album, 2013, too. So, y’know, cheers Swede!

Anyway, back to business. Here’s babylotti:

“Mint Royale released a single called ‘From Rusholme with Love’, one of their most well known tracks is ‘Sexiest man in Jamaica’, not many know the sample was lifted from a live Selecter album with Prince Buster introducing the song in his own humble way, so I suggest that song: The Selecter ft Prince Buster, Rough Rider”

I just confess, I’d often wondered where that sample was lifted from. Cheers for enlightening me.

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The Selecter feat. Prince Buster – Rough Rider (Live)

In case you don’t know the Mint Royale tune babylotti refers to, it’s this:

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Mint Royale – Sexiest Man In Jamaica

And before we go any further, it would be improper not to doff a cap, raise a glass, or show respect in whatever way you think is appropriate, to the now late, always great Prince Buster who passed away last week.

Look out, here come George again.

“I’ve got a link involving Mick Hucknall………..”

No, it’s definitely got colder again.

“Johnny Marr of The Smiths was born in Manchester as was Mick Hucknall….(wait, it gets better) and Mick Hucknall recorded a trbute album of songs of Bobby “Blue” Bland (I promise you it gets better very soon……), for which Mr Hucknall was fortunate not to be sent to prison, and amongst the many fine songs recorded by Bobby “Blue” Bland is one from his R&B era, ‘Little Boy Blue’ (which is my favourite of all his songs).”

Judge for yourselves, Chain Gangers.

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Bobby “Blue” Bland  – Little Boy Blue

Better than his first suggestion, no? And at least it isn’t an actual record by the Tiffany-from-EastEnders’ vomit covered singer (look it up).

Ok, here’s SWC from When You Can’t Remember Anything:

“So Rusholme, Google tells me, is in Manchester. The Smiths also famously put Strangeways on their album sleeves which is also in Manchester. The Mull Historical Society also sang about Strangeways in their minor classic ‘Strangeways Inside’”

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Mull Historical Society – Strangeways Inside

That’s an album I’ve owned for ages but have never really got into. You’d think having seen them, albeit on the main stage at Glastonbury, on a gloriously sunny Saturday afternoon, when I was too mashed to move having over-done the space cakes would endear them to me, wouldn’t you?

“Or just post Sackville by the Carpets” continues SWC.

That’s more like it!

inspiral-carpets-she-comes-in-the-fall-mute

Inspiral Carpets – Sackville

We are now about to go fully Manc.

I’ll hand you over to Badger (also of When You Can’t Remember Anything) for the next link:

“Taking the Manchester thing that my esteemed colleague SWC mentioned and twisting it slightly by introducing ‘Shadows of Salford’ by Doves”

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Doves – Shadows of Salford

“But…” Badger continues, “Manchester is linked to Liverpool via a motorway. If you turn off that motorway near the end you end up near ‘New brighton’. Which has a promenade famously sung about by The Boo Radleys.

Well, it certainly has a promenade The Boo Radleys sang about. Famously, though….?:

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The Boo Radleys – New Brighton Promenade

You’ll recall that last week Swiss Adam from baggingarea managed to correctly guess the next song in the official chain. Let’s see if he can manage it again this week, shall we?

“To jump on Badger’s suggestion, Doves also had M62 Song which handily links Manchester and Liverpool westwards”.

No, he can’t, is the short answer.

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Doves – M62 Song

“I love all this talk of the M62” proffers The Great Gog. “It’s Immaterial started off in Liverpool and hypothesised about heading out to Manchester on Driving Away From Home (Jim’s Tune). – “it’s only 39 miles and 45 minutes…and that’s my birthplace you know”. Mine too!”

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It’s Immaterial – Driving Away From Home (Jim’s Tune)

One of my favourite records ever, that. I remember seeing them perform it on Top of The Pops back in 1986 and incredulously thinking: “What on earth is that??”

It’s a cracking anecdote, that, isn’t it?

“An alternative would be that in Rusholme Ruffians,” The Great Gog continues, “Morrissey makes reference to a speedway operator. The word speedway to me and many other Mancunians of my age evokes memories of the great Belle Vue Aces team of the 1970s, so perhaps a spot of Kathleen Edwards and “12 Bellevue” would be in order.”

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Kathleen Edwards – 12 Bellevue

This is where I piggy-back on The Great Gog’s idea. I made two semi-suggestions myself, both of which stem from his. The first was “Speedway” by Morrissey, but it seems a bit lame to link a record by The Smiths to a record by Morrissey, so I’ll scrub that.

However, I’m sticking with this absolute corker:

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Miaow – Belle Vue

Now then. We have an announcement. Regular Chain Ganger What’s It All About, Alfie? isn’t a spy at all, as we’d all suspected from her reluctance to divulge her name. No: it transpires that she has a name, and lo! It is Alyson.

Here’s her suggestion:

“Coming from the far north I get my English place names a bit muddled and in my head I got Rusholme and Rushden mixed up. I seem to remember when listening to football results being read out on a Saturday that there was a team called Rushden & Diamonds. Got me, in a very round about way, to thinking about the sadly missed Prince and one of my favourite songs from him – Diamonds & Pearls.”

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Prince & the New Power Generation – Diamonds and Pearls

Now, on to my remaining suggestions. I have to admit I was struggling a bit this week, figuring that most of you would go with links to The Smiths, to Rusholme, to Rank, but that very few of you would come up with anything linked to Ruffians. So, I flicked through my thesaurus (which I really should refer to again to come up with some alternatives for the word “suggestions”) which proffered the word “Barbarian”. Which leads me to this:

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Voice of the Beehive – There’s A Barbarian In The Back Of My Car

And I was going to leave it there, but I happened to notice for the first time that that was co-written by 1980s grebo Zodiac Mindwarp, which leads me to this:

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Zodiac Mindwarp & The Love Reaction – Prime Mover (Automatic Cannibal Mix)

Look out, George is back, and he’s taking the starting point for his third and final suggestion (which was actually his first…confusing doing this in a random order, innit?) as the album that The Smiths “Rusholme Ruffians/His Latest Flame (Medley)” is lifted from, Rank, and links it:

“…to J Arthur Rank (the British film producer) then using rhyming slang (“I’m just off for a “J Arthur” – a spot of one-handed lovemaking) to end with The Vapors song Turning Japanese, a song allegedly about Onanism – but the writer says that this is wrong.”

I have to say I’m rather disappointed if that’s the case. I’ve lost count of how many people I’ve told that is what the song’s about. Gah! Egg all over my face!

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The Vapors – Turning Japanese

Here comes Charity Chic:

“Staying on the ranking theme can I have the greatest one hit wonder of all time and a song which I think has featured on this series before (It hasn’t, or rather if it did, I forgot to tag it, although it has featured on this blog fairly recently – Ed.): Uptown Top Ranking by Althea and Donna.”

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Althea & Donna – Uptown Top Ranking

“If there is a rule about songs not featuring twice,” CC continues – there isn’t but I think we should perhaps introduce that rule now. Don’t want to make things too easy for me, now do you? –  “Ranking Full Stop by The Beat please.”

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The Beat – Ranking Full Stop

Time for the last of the suggestions, and I’ll hand over to Alex G from We Will Have Salad, who, rather annoyingly from my perspective, has a good memory:

“Well, you did lay down the challenge, so… The Smiths obviously links to Will Smith, who was half of DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince, and thereby had a hit with “Summertime”. You really should listen to your friends when they tell you it’s one of the two greatest records with “summer” in the title.”

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DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince – Summertime

I remain unbowed. I’m not saying it’s a bad record (although I have probably said that at one time or another). I’m just saying that if I have to pick my favourite two songs with the word “summer” in the title, I’m going for “Hot Fun in the Summertime” by Sly & The Family Stone and “Here Comes The Summer” by The Undertones every time. But each to his/her own, and all that.

And that’s the end of that, and you probably will have noticed that normality has been restored, and there’s been no  correct guesses as to the official link this week. As usual, that’s because your suggestions are all really good, and as usual, the official one is ever so slightly underwhelming:

“Another famous ‘Smith’ is Cure frontman Robert…”

The song, on the other hand, is terrific. But you already knew that, right?

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20. The Cure – In Between Days

And that’s it for another week. I would think most of you know what to do now, but we’re having a few more visitors to these shores recently, so I’ll recap: send me your suggestions for songs that you can link to The Cure’s “In Between Days”, along with a description of how you have got to your suggestion, via the Comments section below. All suggestions welcome.

See you all same time, same place, next week.

Oh, and more soon, obviously.

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Published by

Jez

Contact me by email at: dubioustaste26@gmail.com Follow me on Twitter: @atastehistory Or do both. Whatever.

36 thoughts on “The Chain #20”

  1. Because I missed last week’s I thought I’d get in early this week… but now I’m spoilt for choice?

    The Go-Betweens?

    Inbetweener by Sleeper?

    Torn Between Two Lovers?

    Between The Wars?

    Between My Legs by Rufus W.?

    Walk Between The Raindrops?

    All tempting, but…

    Ultrasound – Between Two Rivers, from their 2012 album Play For Today. It’s lovely, it starts with a nice bit of a brass, and they’re about to release their third album any day now.

    That’s my suggestion for this week.

  2. In between days comes night. For some reason at this point Steely Dan’s “Night By Night” sprang to mind, and that’s a bit of an ear-worm of mine, so the rest of you can have a listen, too.

  3. Okay, so from Night by Night, I’m going to link to ‘Days, by The Kinks. Ray Davies from the Kinks famously was seeing Chrissie Hynde for most of the 80s. Chrissie obviously being the Mainstay of The Pretenders and I shall nominate their song called Back on the Chain Gang…..

  4. Morning chain gang. Badger here. I’m still annoyed about last night’s result so be gentle with me.
    Right this won’t be the answer but….
    In Between Days used to be my ringtone when Mrs B phoned me. About a month ago I replaced that with ‘didgeridoo’ by Aphex Twin.
    Or Robert Smith formed a cure off shoot called The Glove. Which links back to Hand in Glove by The Smiths.

  5. Morning all
    The follow up single to in between days was close to me that featured on the album head on the door. The first two words of which is the name of a very fine jesus and Mary chain track.

    Or if you want cheese. Lol Tolhurst was once in the cure. Lol is an expression for laughing. As it lmfao. And they are sexy and they know it.
    Taxi for swc.

  6. Linking Cure to Medicine, and Medicine Head’s first single His Guiding Hand, a song that The Swede will surely approve of, and a song rated by John Peel as one of the finest songs ever recorded.

  7. As Rol correctly points out there could be a link to Between the Wars by Billy Bragg.
    Kirsty MacColl brilliantly covered Days which babylotti mentions above
    She also covered Billy Bragg’s New England so that would be nice thanks Jez
    This is the 2nd time I’ve nominated Kirsty – I wonder if she could feature every week?

  8. A spy indeed? Didn’t realise I was trying to infiltrate SPECTRE here, thought it was just a bit of light-hearted blogging fun! Started off writing anonymously as I didn’t want to embarrass friends and family who are unaware they are sometimes being written about – Realise now than none of them read it however so I think I’m ok. Oh and nothing wrong with TOTP anecdotes – for a certain generation of teenagers, it was the best half hour of the week!

    This talk of thesauri has got me worried though as usually just post whatever comes to mind – I stumbled across your site because of the whole “no such thing as a guilty pleasure” tagline so been unabashed about sharing such gems. As for a link to this week’s song – If you feel unwell you probably want to find a Cure so will head Down To The Doctors where he/she will make you Feel Good again. Yes it’s Dr Feelgood with Down At The Doctors from me this week.

    Oh and just between you and me I am actually Alison but for the purposes of the blogging world I will very cunningly disguise myself as Alyson (see what I did there) – Like it.

    1. They’ll never crack that code! I was much the same; my brother knew I wrote this (as long-time readers will know, I managed to convince him to write a post here), but I didn’t think it was appropriate reading material for my folks…but then me and my brother got drunk with my Dad one night and I spilt the beans. Both he and my Mum read it now…and have categorically told me to write as if I didn’t know they were reading. No pressure, eh?

      Nice choice of tune, by the way.

      1. Yes a conundrum – I started off telling people about it but they seemed a bit indifferent and I’m pretty sure now they don’t read it, so I think I’m ok. The era I write about often involves old boyfriends though and I do sometimes worry that they or their now wives might accidentally find something whilst idly googling some day! Will be interesting.

  9. OK. Robert Smith of The Cure to Tottenham Hotspur footballer (of the 1960/1 double team) Bobby Smith. Tottenham Hotspur play at White Hart Lane (or used to), and Clay Hart was a country singer whose most famous song begins with these awesome lines “In a broken down apartment house lay a woman in labour…………said by the grace of god I’ll have this child with the help of a neighbour”! Spring, by Clay Hart. Only in country music do you get such fabulous lyrics.

    1. A work colleague had a Crime Of The Century T-shirt on today for dress-down day. After he started claiming it was the greatest album of all time, I had to make my excuses and go and laugh uncontrollably out of his earshot.

      1. I’m surprised you could make it so far as to be out of earshot. And I’m very impressed with your manners, I just would not be able to stop myself making a very derogatory comment to their face. (The words “arse” and “taste” would be used).

  10. George is quite right – I don’t know how many years it’s been since I heard ‘His Guiding Hand’. Looking forward to hearing what it sounds like now.
    With most bands I can usually understand and respect why they’re popular, even if they don’t happen to be to my personal taste – live and let live and all that. There are a few though, that I really struggle to find a good word for – I’m afraid that Supertramp fall into that category. As, incidentally, do Barclay James Harvest and Muse. And I speak as one who saw BJH in concert more than once in the mid-1970s – what was I thinking?
    Meanwhile, back at The Chain…..For my suggestion this week I’m going down the knob-twiddling route once again. David M. Allen co-produced a string of Cure albums, including ‘The Head on the Door’ from which ‘In Between Days’ is taken. Among Allen’s many other production credits is my favourite (and a criminally overlooked) Psychedelic Furs LP, ‘Book of Days’, from which I’ll choose ‘Torch’.

    1. Criminally overlooked indeed. Props for not choosing one of the (two..?) obvious Furs tunes, by the way. And it is so reassuring to know I’m not the only one with a distaste for all things Supertramp! (Muse have their moments though). But you’ve hit the “what this blog is all about” nail on the head there – live and let live, each to their own, call it what you will: we all have tunes we love which others find inexplicable, and we’re not wrong, and neither are those who don’t “get” certain tunes/bands Hence my extolling the virtues of Quo (I know I won’t win anyone over), and happily posting PJ and Duncan, Chesney Hawkes, Britney Spears and Busted on these pages.

      1. I won’t have a bad word said about Quo’s music – up until around 1977 anyway! The ‘Backwater’/’Just Take Me’ medley on the ‘Quo’ LP is still up there among my favourite opening salvos of all time.

      2. Swede, I think I love you. That’s my cut-off point too; though I bought all the stuff for another 10 years, that’s exactly the moment that they stopped being awesome, and started becoming a caricature, something which, to their credit, they acknowledge these days.

      3. I can’t say that I dislike Supertramp, but equally I can’t really cope with the notion that they were in any way “great”. I am partial to BJH though – too much time spent in Germany perhaps, where they were massive.

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