Today is the last chance you have to make sure you are able to vote in the forthcoming General Election.
The Housemartins – Sitting on a Fence
At the risk of banging a point home, here’s that pie chart showing how many people didn’t vote in the EU Referendum:
If you want to make sure that you have a say in matters on June 8th, you need to go here by the end of today, the 22nd May 2017.
It only takes five minutes, and all you will need is:
- your National Insurance number
- your passport if you’re a British citizen living abroad
And don’t give me any of that “They’re all as bad as each other” nonsense, because they’re not. Some of them are clearly much, much worse than others.
You can help stop them from being in power for the next five years.
The other weekend, I went to a wedding in Wales, and I had a really, really great time, not just because of the wedding, but also because I got to meet up with some old friends that I hadn’t seen since I left Wales, almost ten years ago.
In the evening, there was a disco. I’ll not pass comment on the DJ for two reasons: firstly, the groom has been known to visit these pages, and I wish to appear neither spiteful nor ungrateful, and secondly, the DJ did what any wedding DJ does: he played songs he thought would appeal to all of the generations in the room, and would get them on the dancefloor. Let’s just say that we enjoyed his set in a way which he probably didn’t intend.
One such song was this, which none of us danced to, but we did have a ruddy good sing-a-long to on on our table.
Mental As Anything – Live It Up
Yes, it’s a bit cheesy. But that doesn’t stop it from being a bit great.
Over at Drew’s consistently wonderful Across The Kitchen Table last week, he posted a rather fine mash-up of a Velvet Underground tune with a Christine Aguilera one (with a bit of The Communards thrown in for good measure).
I’ve talked about mash-ups here before, but just to recap: I think they can be great, but what annoys me about them is when the remixer goes a bit too far. Usually this means they have included a bit of the vocal from the backing track they’ve used, which always seems to me to be them pointing out what they’ve done, in a “Look at me, aren’t I clever?” kind of way. There’s no need, we already get it, and don’t need to have it explained to us to that degree.
That said, there are some that really work, the most famous of which, and which can probably be accredited with kick-starting the whole mash-up fad, also involves Ms Aguilera:
Freelance Hellraiser – A Stroke of Genius
I’ve posted a couple of mash-ups before that I really like: Making Plans for Vinyl (XTC vs Tweet) and She Wants a Spank (N*E*R*D* vs Spanky Wilson) and so here’s a couple more: MIA: Wanted, Dead or Alive and Water Lily
I wasn’t intending to post anything else under this title, but my post yesterday seems to have caused quite the stir.
I went to a barbeque at one of my mate’s yesterday afternoon, and a couple of friends who read the guff I write here made reference to it. One (hello!) has often commented on my voice, regularly comparing me to Eastenders’ Frank Butcher, asking me to say “Do you think I’m some kind of a doughnut?” to him.
For the record, he has never asked me to stand naked, bar a revolving bow tie. Yet.
There have also been a couple of enquiries via the Comments section as to whether my singing voice has the same deep qualities.
Well. Yes and no. I would never claim to be the greatest singer in the world. I’m no Billy Bragg. But, once I have a few drinks inside me, it’s true that I do like a bit of a sing-song, as anyone who has sat and got drunk with me will doubtless attest (much to their annoyance).
So, here’s a song which, when seven sheets to the wind, I do love to sing along to (mostly because it’s just talking, for the large part of it); to be clear, I’m not saying that I sound like the great man, but I can give it a bloody good go:
Kris Kristofferson – To Beat The Devil
When the conversation happened in work on Friday, after the laughter had died down, my boss Kay described my voice as “a higher Barry White”, which I guess makes me a Love Seal rather than a Love Walrus.
So, the manifestos are out, and what have we learned?
Labour, who were central left until Corbyn took over, have placed themselves even further to the left. The Conservatives, when they aren’t absorbing every policy UKIP policy – which would put them firmly to the right – have adopted not just the old Labour policy about the energy cap I mentioned last week, but also have attacked pensioners by modifying an old Labour policy (in the 2015 election, Labour said they’d take the winter fuel allowance off the top 5% of pensioners, this time around the Conservatives have just said they’ll take it off all of them), and of course, have just reiterated their pledge to reduce migration (the same thing they’ve made for the past seven years, just with the goal-posts moved a little further away every time).
It’s confusing; the Conservatives seem to be positioning themselves more centre left, but then you read the stuff about fox-hunting, about robbing school children of their free lunches, and of, basically, giving up on the NHS and you wonder where they actually sit on the political spectrum. Wherever it is, I’m sure it’s a strong and stable position.
Johnny has an allegorical explanation:
Johnny Cash – The One on the Right is on the Left