Sunday Morning Coming Down

It must be difficult being the younger sibling of a Country music star, especially when you want to carve yourself your own career in the same arena, and even more so when your older sister is an absolute icon like, say, Dolly Parton.

Step forward little sister Stella:

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Stella Parton – Danger of a Stranger

I’m sure Stella will be mightily relieved to hear that, despite her vocal sounding not dissimilar to her big sister, it’s not her that song reminds me of: no, it’s the late, great Terry Wogan who used to play that a lot on his Breakfast Show when I was a kid.

More soon.

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Late Night Stargazing

I’m continuing to greatly enjoy the reruns of Top of the Pops on BBC4, and recently tonight’s song cropped up, one which I loved at the time, and which I bought on the album True Blue at the time, and have recently rebought on vinyl.

It still sounds great, if very 1986, today I reckon.

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Madonna – Live To Tell

More soon.

Sunday Morning Coming Down

It occurred to me a while ago that once upon a time in this series, we used to have a bit of a chuckle about some of the brilliant titles which Country records have, and that I hadn’t posted any of these for a while.

Fear not! For a while now I’ve been tracking down some absolute belters in this sub-genre, which I’ll post every now and then from hereon in.

Starting with this one, by Dan Hicks & His Hot Licks:

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Dan Hicks & His Hot Licks – How Can I Miss You When You Won’t Go Away?

More soon.

Late Night Stargazing

No prizes for guessing what song is going to feature tonight.

Yesterday it was announced that Charles Nicholas Hodges – the Chas of Chas & Dave – sadly passed away.

Regular readers will know that I’ve loved the duo since I was a kid, not just for their connections to my beloved Tottenham Hotspur FC, but for the run of fine, fun, verbally dextrous sing-a-long singles, especially those from the late 70s/early 80s. They never seemed to be off the TV in those days, appearing on every light entertainment show possible, from Tiswas to The Little & Large Show to Crackerjack (for which they also provided the theme tune).

When this came out in March 1982, I was 12 and I remember confiding to my best mate that should I ever have to break-up with a girlfriend, I’d simply quote the lyrics to this song to her. I still intend to.

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Chas & Dave – Ain’t No Pleasing You

There’s been a bit of a resurgence in their popularity over the past fifteen years, prompted largely by their appearance on 2003’s Jools Holland’s Hootenanny:

I was lucky enough to see them play three times, all after their revival in fortune. My favourite was the first time, when my mate Holmesy decided he wanted to go and see them play for his 30th birthday. The venue: London’s legendary 100 Club.

The booze flowed, the audience danced, swayed and sang, never with more heart than to tonight’s song.

If you have an hour spare, I’d totally recommend you watch this hour-long documentary, Last Orders, which came out in 2012 shortly after Dave announced he no longer wanted to tour, following the death of his wife:

Cheers, Chas. It was fun while it lasted.

More soon.

I’m Not Too Keen on Mondays

Another week, another Monday, and another record from the Tamla Motown label to put a little bounce into your commute.

I’m beginning to wonder if all Mondays should start with some Motown. If only I could think of a good alliterative title, I’d probably rename this series…

Anyway, here’s Stevie and his tribute to jazz legend Duke Ellington:

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Stevie Wonder – Sir Duke

More soon.