Janice is Gone

I hadn’t intended to post anything else until the New Year, but, sadly, recent events have meant that I feel compelled to crank the old laptop into life on my first night at home and post something.

I’ve spent the past three nights safely ensconced in the bosom of my family, Lateral Flow Tests dutifully completed before visiting. I had a really lovely time, the only black mark coming late Saturday night/early Sunday morning when the news broke.

I say I had a really lovely time, and I mean that, my time split fairly evenly between eating, drinking and watching TV or, more precisely, falling asleep in front of the TV. This seems to be a family trait, but then my father is in his mid-80s and my mother – who probably won’t thank me for telling you this – moves into her eighth decade in a little under a month, so they’ve both got a much better excuse than I have, and have earned the right to an occasional snooze in any event. By Sunday, my father felt compelled to comment: “You’re like a bloody vampire, you only come to life when it gets dark!”

Saturday night arrived, and my parents decided they would prefer to sleep in a horizontal position during night hours and headed off to bed. I stayed up to watch TV for a while longer and also to have a scroll through Twitter to see what kind of Christmas had been enjoyed by those I follow. But literally the first thing I saw was this, from music journalist, author and broadcaster Pete Paphides:

I felt my heart begin to sink, and immediately checked Janice’s own Twitter feed – nothing since June when she announced he was in a hospital in Liverpool and “bored silly” – and then the BBC news website – nothing at all. Probably some misunderstanding then, I thought.

I scrolled on and came across an exchange between Sean Dickson, formerly of The Soup Dragons fame and Ian McNabb of The Icicle Works:

There was nothing else in McNabb’s Twitter feed so, after noting equally concerned tweets from Lloyd Cole and Martin Rossiter, I figured it unlikely there would be any news until the morning, so, after raiding my parents cupboard of munchies, I headed to bed too.

When I awoke on Sunday, I checked my phone almost immediately. And there it was: Janice Long had died after a short illness on Christmas Day.

As I said right at the top of this, I hadn’t intended to post anything else until the New Year; I try not to make this blog just about famous people from popular culture who have sadly passed away, but the brutal truth is that when you’re my age, the majority of the people whose work I admire are a good twenty years or so older than me. They’re all at an age when that terribly sad news is going to come sooner rather than later.

Here, I try to just write about the ones whose loss I feel most acutely, but sometimes I get that wrong. To this day I rue not writing anything when Caroline Aherne, Victoria Wood and – and it may seem strange to include her in this trio – Sarah Harding from Girls Aloud passed, for these were all deaths which caught my surprise, knocked the wind out of me, and by the time I had composed my thoughts, too much time had passed so that anything I wrote might be considered a bandwagon-jumping after-thought.

So, I’m not prepared to let Janice suffer the same fate.

Janice made a career out of breaking glass ceilings; having joined Radio 1 in 1982, by 1984 she was rewarded with her own daily show on BBC Radio 1, the first woman to achieve this. She was also the first woman to host Top of the Pops; if you’ve been watching the reruns of the show on BBC4 over the past few years, you’ll have noticed that, after David ‘Kid’ Jensen quit the BBC, she was often paired with John Peel, and it was a partnership which flourished. The two obviously loved working together and held a mutual respect for each other (and if you’ve ever read Peel’s autobiography Margrave Of The Marshes you’ll know that this was not a professional courtesy extended to all of his Radio 1 colleagues).

For example:

When her death was confirmed, I commented on Twitter that at least she would be met by her old partner-in-crime and they could get up to some more japes. I bet Peelie’s sad but delighted she’s there, and right now they’re slagging off all the current chart acts they hate, whilst also swapping notes about all the stuff the other has missed out on.

In 1985, she was also one of the hosts of the BBC coverage of Live Aid; here she is interviewing Status Quo shortly after they have came off stage having kicked off proceedings:

After her time at Radio 1 was over, Janice began presenting a Saturday afternoon show on Radio 2, before taking over the post-midnight slot. But this was no Quiet FM show a la Smashie & Nicey, nosireebob – every show would start with an absolute old school indie banger (usually something from her Liverpudlian roots: Teardrop Explodes, Echo & The Bunnymen, Pete Wylie/Wah!) whilst at the same time championing new acts and getting them in for exclusive sessions – Janice was the first presenter to give Amy Winehouse a radio session – a formula (classic old track followed by something more recent, repeat till end of show) which a cursory listen to any of the current crop of 6Music DJs will confirm is copied to this day.

Although I listened to her every now and again in the Radio 1 days, it was here on Radio 2 that I became a regular member of her audience. I loved the mix of the old and the new, but more than anything, it was her style of presenting I adored, which was almost conversational, like an older sister thrusting a record into your hands and saying “Give this a listen, I think you’ll like it.”

Indeed with the advent of social media, texts and tweets, Janice became more accessible to her adoring audience. On a Monday night/Tuesday morning, she would choose a subject and ask her listeners to make appropriate suggestions; then she would pick the best and compose a playlist which would air on Thursdays, her last night of the week. I remember once, perhaps with one twinkling eye on Smashie & Nicey dedicating records to “all the truckers out there”, she asked for listeners to suggest songs about their favourite roads that they regularly drove. I emailed her – not really expecting to get an answer – and said that, as a non-driver, I felt a little excluded this week – could we make the subject our favourite songs about roads instead?

Imagine my surprise when she not only read out my email, but also agreed to tweak the subject to my suggestion.

And then, to cap it all off, on the Thursday she began her playlist with the words: “And here’s the song which kicked it all off, suggested by Jez…” and played this:

Billy Bragg – A13, Trunk Road To The Sea

To my mind, Janice would have been an ideal 6Music DJ, and she was there, for a short time, between 2002 and 2004, hosting Dream Ticket, a show which played current music as well as music from the BBC music session and live performance archives. She should still have been there, but instead, she left Radio 2 in 2017 after her show’s length was outrageously cut, moving to BBC Radio Wales. I’d always meant to tune into her there, but, alas, had never quite gotten round to it

Like many others – go to Twitter, type in the words Janice Long in the search bar and see the outpouring of sorrow at her passing – Janice’s death has left me a little numb.

Trying to find a song which sums all of this up, well…there’s one which is so obvious I can’t help but post it. Written as a comment on her exit from Radio 1 – if memory serves, and I should stress I can’t find anything to confirm this, she was fired when she became pregnant yet was unmarried – this is a pre-fame (short-lived as it was) tune and to my mind the best thing the band in question ever did (and I really like them, as I’ve mentioned before).

I’ve posted this before, here, and if anyone is interested enough, let me know via the Comments and I’ll re-up all the other songs mentioned in that post.

But for now, here’s the Milltown Brothers and their utterly wonderful and sadly appropriate song, Janice is Gone:

Milltown Brothers – Janice Is Gone

It’s a rare event when you can post a song so perfect to mark someone’s passing. I’ve only ever really managed it once before, when posting The Larks’ Billy Graham’s Going to Heaven on the day the death of the evangelist was announced.

But I take no pride or satisfaction in this. I’d much rather Janice was still with us than having to post this song.

RIP Janice. You will never know just how much you were loved and will be missed.

Keep spinning those tunes up there.

More soon.

Christmas Eve Music Club

A couple of weeks ago, I had the dubious distinction of co-hosting this year’s Christmas Party at work.

This involved me and three others planning and then hosting the event, which got moved to an online virtual party a little more than a week before it was scheduled for, due to the latest Covid strain and the advice to avoid face-to-face meetings unless they were absolutely necessary. This meant a lot of frantic rewriting, but it all went well in the end, with remarkably few technical issues. I’ll maybe write some more about this later.

You won’t be surprised to learn that my main contribution with regards to content was a pop quiz, in the form of a Spot the Intro round. The organisers last year had done one about Christmas Number Ones, so I had planned to do one about Christmas Number Twos, mostly so that I could make a particularly lavatorial joke.

However, you’d be surprised how many records which were #2 in the UK charts on Christmas Day are not particularly Christmassy at all, so it got changed to The Not The Christmas Number One Quiz, which isn’t a particularly snappy title, I must confess.

I prepared 20 intros of Christmas records and invited the attendees to name the song, the artist, the year it was originally a hit, and what was actually #1 that Christmas.

This allowed we to slip in a few gags when delivering the answers: “That was Coldplay with Christmas Lights, setting the template for the soundtrack to every M&S advert since” and, my favourite, “From 2008, that’s It’s Christmas Time by Status Quo, which was kept off the #1 slot by Alexandra Burke’s Hallelujah. That, and 38 other records.”

Anyway, that put me in the mood for doing a Christmas mix, remembering that this time last year Christmas was cancelled and I posted a very long and defiantly un-Christmassy mix.

My brother is picking me up to go to be with our parents later today, so this mix is intended to be played on the journey over there (you’ve been warned, bruv!), and then when we arrive too. As such it’s geared towards Christmas Eve, travelling home, Santa visiting (and what the randy old dog gets up to when he does) and the hope that this Christmas is better than last year. It’s full of slightly obscure tunes and the occasional cover of a Christmas favourite. And you’ll be relieved to hear that, unlike most of my mixes, it’s only about an hour and a quarter long. There’s only so many jingling bells one can take.

The length doesn’t seem to have effected the occasional skip or jump (my usual disclaimer) but having listened to it through that shouldn’t spoil your enjoyment too much.

And yes, of course The Wedding Present and Status Quo (R.I.P. Rick) make appearances.

I’m having fun guessing at which song my father will try to work out how to turn the volume down a little, and when exactly my mother will ask just what on earth we’re listening to. I reckon if it’s not when Helen Love is covering Merry Christmas (I Don’t Wanna Fight) then it will certainly be when Mr. Hankey the Christmas Poo makes his annual appearance. And so we’re back to Christmas #2s.

Here you go:

Xmas Eve Music Club

And here’s the tracklisting:

  1. Saint Etienne – Driving Home For Christmas
  2. Summer Camp – Christmas Wrapping
  3. Low – Just Like Christmas
  4. Cuckooland – Silver Bells
  5. Charley Pride – Christmas In My Home Town
  6. Bruce Springsteen – Santa Claus Is Coming To Town
  7. George Jones – My Mom And Santa Claus
  8. John Prine – I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus
  9. Bob Dylan – Must Be Santa
  10. Girls Aloud – Not Tonight Santa
  11. Eels – Everything’s Gonna Be Cool This Christmas
  12. The Ronettes – Sleigh Ride
  13. Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings – White Christmas
  14. Joey Ramone – Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)
  15. Helen Love – Merry Christmas (I Don’t Wanna Fight)
  16. The Housemartins – Caravan of Love
  17. Cocteau Twins – Frosty The Snowman
  18. South Park – Mr. Hankey the Christmas Poo
  19. The Wedding Present – Step into Christmas
  20. Fountains Of Wayne – I Want An Alien For Christmas
  21. Shonen Knife – Space Christmas
  22. Ash – I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday
  23. Julian Casablancas – I Wish It Was Christmas Today
  24. Status Quo – It’s Christmas Time
  25. Darlene Love – Marshmallow World
  26. Weezer – We Wish You A Merry Christmas

I haven’t had time to prepare anything else to post over the Christmas weekend, but I’ll probably be back before the New Year, so for now I’ll just wish you all a very Merry Christmas.

More soon.


So, what’s been happening whilst I’ve been indisposed for the past couple of months?

I mean, blimey, where do I start?

In World War 1, so legend has it, peace temporarily broke out on Christmas Day when British and German troops laid down their weapons and played football in No Man’s Land. When I say “legend”, I mean that it featured in the video of Paul Wacky-Thumbs-Aloft McCartney’s 1983 #1 anodyne smasheroo Pipes of Peace.

I can’t help but think that this is why PM Alexander “Boris” Johnson is so desperate for this Christmas to be “considerably better than last year” – he’s hoping someone will toss him a football so he can show off his skills. He must have some, right?

Oof. Maybe not.

Still, the irony in Johnson’s bonce connecting with that chap’s actual Johnson can’t have been lost on him. I’m sure there’s nobody who likes to be reminded more that their surname is slang for ‘penis’ than our glorious leader. Perhaps that’s why he insists on being called Boris instead of his birthname, Alexander. I mean, if my name was a euphemism for genitals, male or female, then I’d probably change my name too. Family pride would probably prevent me from changing the offending word, so I think I’d probably concur and change my first name, just like Johnson has. (Okay, Boris is one of his many middle names, but you get the giste. Although, that might explain why he was so reluctant to release the results of the enquiry into Russian interference with our electoral procedures…)

Even then, though, having drawn attention away from my surname, I would probably stop short of ensuring my hair always resembles a bush of pubes finally set free from a particularly tight pair of Y-fronts when in pubic public.

Lucky for me, then, that my actual birth name, Jeremiah Bellend-Spunkbubble, has no such connotations, so the problem has never, um, arisen for me.

Until very recently, it seemed that no matter how he and his bunch of thick-as-yeast- extract cronies behaved, nothing could stick. But now it seems, finally the general public is starting to realise what those of us who lived in London under his tenure as Mayor have known for ages: the man is a charlatan, a habitual liar, used to getting his own way, incompetent. A man who doesn’t like to be pinned down on detail, or to be held accountable for things he has said or done. A man who cannot admit when he has made a mistake or done wrong. A man who is, as Eddie Mair famously called him in this interview, “a nasty piece of work”:

There isn’t even any satisfaction in saying “I told you so” now, you know. You’ll be aware that the Germans have a word, schadenfreude, which means “pleasure derived by someone from another person’s misfortune”. That definitely applies here.

Whilst I was on hiatus, things finally seemed to be changing. First, there was the Owen Paterson affair and, more specifically what the Tories attempted to do in the wake of his being found to be in breach of Parliamentary rules by the independent and cross-party Parliamentary Commissoner for Standards.

Without wishing to bore you with detail, Paterson – as well as what really should be a full-time job as an MP – was holding down two additional jobs, one with healthcare company Randox, who paid him £8,333 a month for a monthly commitment of 16 hours as a consultant, and one with Lynn’s Country Foods Ltd, who paid him £12,000 for 24 hours work per year for performing a similar role.

Spinal Tap – Gimme Some Money

Paterson was found to have breached paid advocacy rules for making three approaches to the Food Standards Agency and four approaches to the Department for International Development in relation to Randox and seven approaches to the Food Standards Agency relating to Lynn’s Country Foods. The Commissioner said Paterson had “repeatedly used his privileged position to benefit two companies for whom he was a paid consultant, and that this has brought the house into disrepute” and that “no previous case of paid advocacy has seen so many breaches or such a clear pattern of behaviour in failing to separate private and public interests”.

A motion to carry out the recommendations of the Committee and suspend Paterson was due to be voted on by Parliament. Had suspension been approved, a recall petition would have been triggered in his constituency, which would have led to a by-election. An amendment to the motion to delay consideration of Paterson’s suspension was put forward by Conservative backbencher Andrea Leadsom; it also proposed to set up a new committee to investigate the disciplinary process for MPs.

This would, in effect, have allowed new rules to be implemented which would have seen Paterson escape punishment. And for once it seemed that the country, along with all of the Opposition, were up in arms about this, leading to a spectacular U-turn, where Beano character Walter Softy made-flesh Jacob Rees Mogg stood up in Parliament, announced that they would not be pursuing the amendment as they were horrified that their actions had been perceived in the way they were, which was never their intention, nosiree, cross my heart and hope to learn some empathy.

Paterson resigned, whilst still protesting his innocence and stating that he would not do anything differently were he to have his time again, meaning that there was a by-election in his safe Tory constituency of North Shropshire

I say “safe”: apart from when the constituency was abolished between 1885 and 1983, it had never been anything other than a Conservative seat. At the last election, Paterson had a majority of 23,000.

And on Thursday, they lost it, to the Liberal Democrats, with a swing of 34%, with a majority of 5925. This Brexit-voting constituency, eternally blue, is now yellow, having voted in a candidate from an explicitly Remain party. (I shan’t mention Brexit again. Not yet anyway. It’s going so well, what is there to say?)


But it would be foolish to think it was just Paterson’s actions which led his constituents to reject his party so utterly, for there’s been the small matter of the illicit Christmas parties.

I don’t intend to go in to all the oh-so-many allegations made, or lies told in defence about all of these. I don’t need to, because the BBC’s Ros Atkins – yes, that BBC, who apparently refuse to report on any wrong-doing by the government, and are biased one way or the other, depending on which side of the fence you’re on – has done it for me:

There’s a lot to unpack from that.

Firstly, the seemingly innocuous wearing of party hats, Christmas jumpers, Secret Santas, tinsel and catering: contrary to claims that “no party took place”, all of these things show that not only did parties happen, but they were planned in advance.

Secondly, the photograph of Johnson hosting what is claimed to be an online quiz: not only does this prove that the PM was mixing with people not in his bubble (unless he lives with the guy with the tinsel wrapped round him), it also shows that he knew a party was taking place. Furthermore, that he knew this was in breach of the restrictions: why else would the CCTV camera have been covered with what appears to be a binbag, other than to ensure that events weren’t captured?

Thirdly, the laughable excuses the Metropolitan Police have given for refusing to investigate this. So far, two ridiculous reasons have been proffered: that they do not investigate Covid breaches retrospectively, coupled with them saying they would not look for evidence as they have no evidence.

Last time I checked, Minority Report was still just a film.

There must be lifers up and down the country’s prisons currently banging their tin cups on the bars of their cells, complaining about how unfair it is that, when it came to their crimes and misdemeanours, the police most definitely looked for evidence when they were trying to get them locked up. And also they arrested them after the offence had taken place, not before.

And in any event, they have now said they will investigate the party that Tory candidate for London Mayor and the former chair of the police and crime committee (now resigned) Shaun Bailey, which very much negates both of their reasons for refusing to investigate the ones that Johnson allegedly had knowledge of, or even attended.

This seems to be the Met’s policy:

Big Country – Look Away

You may think all this focus on last year’s Christmas parties is all a bit trite, cheap and irrelevant, and to be honest, I think you’d maybe have a point.

For whilst we’re all preoccupied with potentially illegal gatherings last year, our own civil liberties are being gradually stripped from under our noses. Already our democratic right to protest has gone. At the same time, refugees – not migrants, refugees – are being turned away on the basis that their attempts to reach our shores whilst fraught with danger (which they are) are illegal (which they aren’t). And I can’t help but think that the herd immunity policy which has been implemented over Covid – not that they call it that, but that’s what it is – and the refusal to go into lockdown again are specifically designed to make our beloved NHS, surely the pride of our country, finally buckle and collapse so that it can be sold off to the highest bidder, or, more likely, to some mate of a prominent MP who owns a pub and is a jolly good egg.

Right now, entitled uber-moron Dominic Raaaaaaaaab is reviewing the Human Rights Act and trying to introduce legislation which would allow the Government to overturn any judicial decision they disagree with. And that, my friends, is scary.

See, I’ve mentioned before the dead cat theory, where we are distracted from something unpopular by the metaphorical throwing of a dead cat onto the table, making every one talk about the dead cat and the person who threw it there rather than whatever it is they were trying to distract us from. It used to be called “burying bad news” and you may recall that one of former PM Tony Blair’s advisers got in a lot of bother when they suggested that 9/11 would be “a good day to bury bad news”.

I don’t think this is a dead cat tossing situation though, or if it is then it has spectacularly backfired, to the point where bookies are offering odds on who will replace Johnson. Current favourites are Liz Truss, Priti Patel and Matt Hancock. Gawd help us, is that the best they have to offer??

Much as I loathe Johnson, there is a tiny part of me that almost hopes he stays on. Not just because of who is likely to replace him (will they go for the idiot, the evil one, or the philandering incompetent next?) but also because I want his fall from grace to become even more spectacular.

There you go: schadenfreude.

Johnny Boy – You Are The Generation That Bought More Shoes And You Get What You Deserve

More soon.

Late Night Stargazing

One Saturday shortly after I moved into my new gaffe, in an rare and unrepeated fit of gusto and determination to get things done, I spent an afternoon unpacking boxes and rearranging furniture for what felt like the umpteenth time.

The inspiration behind this sudden explosion of energy was that I had just bought the new Teenage Fanclub album, wanted to listen to it, but felt guilty about just listening to it; no, I needed to feel like I had done something to deserve listening to it.

And so I spent that afternoon listening to the entire back catalogue (albums only) of this marvellous band who I have adored for so many years now. The idea was that my work would culminate in their latest missive, Endless Arcade, which I could sit down and relax to at the completion of my long list of tasks.

Except I decided I couldn’t wait that long, and so listened to the albums in reverse chronological order, like the dastardly Sequence Round from Only Connect brought to life.

For those of you unfamiliar with their body of work – and I am assuming there must be at least one or two of you out there – the band have developed from a jangly guitared-Big Star influenced indie rock band, to a much more folky, but crucially still jangly, sound, whilst losing none of their melodic or harmonic qualities.

But it was quite interesting listening to them this way, hearing them as they…regressed, I suppose is the closest way to describe it, although that implies getting worse, which certainly isn’t the case here. Ask me to pick my fab four from their twelve studio albums, and it would definitely be the four-in-a-row run they went on between 1991 and 1997 – that is to say: Bandwagonesque, Thirteen, Grand Prix and Songs from Northern Britain, beauties one and all.

That’s not to say I dislike what has come since, but it’s my old theory – about the bands and albums that get you when you’re young and impressionable that stay with you, becoming life-long friends, getting you through the tough times – that applies here, I think.

Actually, there’s a much simpler explanation of why I fell for them; you only have to go as far as the opening couplet from Bandwagonesque‘s opening song:

She wears denim wherever she goes, Says she’s gonna get some records by The Status Quo, oh yeh!

Anyway, Endless Arcade continues in much the same vein as predecessors Here, Shadows and Man-Made, more folky then jangly, but no less potent for it, which is no mean feat given the departure of Gerard Love in 2018 after the release of Here.

How much of this can be credited to the arrival of new band member and for Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci main man Euros Childs is unclear, but you can definitely tell he’s involved. And that’s a good thing, hopefully giving the band a whole new lease of life and allowing them to continue for many more years.

Because whichever period it’s from, I can guarantee that listening to a Teenage Fanclub record pretty much always makes me happy. Or happier, at least.

Here’s the opening track from Endless Arcade, an harmonic strummer with a gently shuffling rhythm, appropriately titled given what I was doing when I first listened to it:

Teenage Fanclub – Home

More soon.

Sunday Morning Coming Down

Blimey, is that the time?

Okay, I hadn’t planned to be away for so long, and I will explain why. Soon, but not yet.

It’s not appropriate to go into it today, for the event that has coaxed me back to my keyboard was the sad passing this week of ex-Monkee Mike Nesmith.

I was going to write a much longer piece about him, but I see that Alyson over at What’s It All About? has done a fine job of eulogising about him (which you can read here), so I’ll stick to posting (actually, re-posting) my two favourite Nesmith moments.

Firstly, a song from his time with The Monkees, which he didn’t write but did sing lead vocals on. This is without doubt my favourite song by the band by a country mile:

The Monkees – What Am I Doing Hangin’ Round

(Coincidentally, I picked up a vinyl copy of the album that’s from, Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn & Jones Ltd, on ebay the other day. The vendor who let it go for £1.99 + postage must be kicking himself he didn’t list it a day or two later. It arrived on the morning that Nesmith died. I do hope the two things aren’t linked. Maybe I should test this serendipitous theory by buying Coldplay records and crossing my fingers.)

The footage is, I think, taken from one of their TV shows, which originally aired in 1966, but I remember watching reruns of it during the late 70s/early 80s. I loved it, utterly buying into the jokes and, with the benefit of hindsight, the slightly anarchic format of the show Each episode was a fairly ramshackle affair, with a performance or two such as this thrown in for good measure.

At the time, drummer Micky Dolenz (and last surviving member of the band) was my favourite, because he seemed to get all the funniest lines. But watching that clip I just find him really irritating. Alright Micky, stop trying to hog the camera. We all saw you do your “funny” wave the first time, no need to repeat it an additional four times.

Anyway. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, for, now that my musical taste-buds are fully developed, I realise that it wasn’t Dolenz I should have been watching, but Nesmith. It’s always the quiet ones.

For he penned a song which, if I absolutely had to name my top 5 favourite records, would definitely, 100% nailed-on be in it. It’s probably the song which I have – and have posted – the most versions of.

I speak, of course, of Different Drum.

All those different versions I have? All great, because the song is so good, it’s nigh on impossible to screw it up. If I had to pick my favourite version, it would probably be the most well known one – the Linda Rondstadt/Stone Poneys version.

Here’s Linda and the boys belting it out live; you may note the link says there is a jazz harp involved, but if there is then I blinked and missed it (which is probably a good thing: to these ears a jazz harp sounds like an innuendo waiting to happen: “She only walked in and caught me strumming my jazz harp….”):

And here’s Susanna Hoffs performing an acoustic version because…well, do I need a reason to post a video clip of Ms Hoffs? Thought not.

But Nesmith’s honky-tonk version, now performed as Michael Nesmith rather than Mike (like when footballer Andy Cole started insisting everyone call him Andrew so he seemed more grown up) with the First National Band, is still rather wonderful. Because it cannot fail to be.

Any excuse to post it again is always welcome, except this time, I wish the reason wasn’t done with such a heavy heart:

Michael Nesmith & the First National Band – Different Drum (Alternate Version)

Rest in peace Mike/Michael.

More soon. (No, really!)