Sorry, you’re going to give care workers, what……?
Yes, I was rather afraid that’s what you said.
Well, that’s just what they need.
Still, at least all those melted-down commerative Brexit coins will come in useful now, I suppose.
Sorry, you’re going to give care workers, what……?
Yes, I was rather afraid that’s what you said.
Well, that’s just what they need.
Still, at least all those melted-down commerative Brexit coins will come in useful now, I suppose.
I went to watch Joker.
Just as Yesterday was not the sort of film I would go and see, so the same applies here. I’m just not into that whole cartoon superhero world. I couldn’t give a monkeys what happens at the end of Avengers Endoscopy or whatever the last one was called. Until Deadpool 2 came along, I hadn’t visited my local fleapit to watch a comic-book inspired movie since way back in 1978 when I went to see Christopher Reeve as Superman. You know, when I was a kid.
Actually, I did go and see Logan, the last/latest in the Wolverine franchise. Thought it was okay. Nothing special, just okay.
And the reason for going to see that, and now Joker, was because my interest has been piqued by the fact that these films seem to be stepping away from the world where our caped hero battles and inevitably triumphs over the bad guy, and stepping into darker terrain, where the darkness and a credible back story take precedence over Biff! Bang! Pow!’s.
I’d read a lot about Joker in advance, and was aware that it has divided audiences, some thinking it to be brilliant, others believing it over long and self-indulgent. Joaquin Phoenix plays the lead character, so I was expecting the latter – has he made a good film since Walk the Line? I’m struggling to think of one.
I mentioned to someone at work that I was going to see it, and he grunted that he wasn’t interested, considering it “a rip-off of Heath Ledger”. I was tempted to point out that if they were going to try and cash-in on Ledger’s Oscar winning performance then they probably wouldn’t have waited the eleven years since The Dark Knight to do it. Rather, I thought the reverse to be true: leaving it so long to try and stop comparisons being made was probably the idea. And besides, I’m sure had they been able to cast Ledger in Joker, then they would have, but I gather his agent has stopped sending him to auditions.
Mind you, this is the same work colleague who, apropos of nothing asked me earlier the same day “Why do they give ugly birds a pleasant personality?”
My response was: “Welcome to the 1970s!”
He came back at me with: “Bloody PC, you can’t say anything anymore”.
“No,” I replied, “it’s nothing to do with political correctness, it’s just most people prefer not to say offensive things anymore. And that sentence had at least three offensive things in it.”
“Go on then,” I ventured, despite myself. “What’s the punchline?”
“There isn’t one!” he exclaimed, still laughing.
“Jesus, that was the punchline?” I exasperatedly sighed.
I digress, but not without reason. Being funny is difficult. Being a stand up comedian even more so. We’ll come onto this later.
Regardless of my work colleague’s sage (by which I mean outdated) words, I booked a seat and then read something which mentioned the name of the director – Todd Phillips; not a name which immediately rang any bells, so I popped to imDb to see what else had his name attached to it. The list almost made me unbook my ticket: Old School, The Hangover (Part I, II and – Jesus wept, they made three of them?? – III), Project X…the signs were not good.
But I decided to give it a go. Mostly so I had something to write about here. I suffer for my art, see.
Here is a spoiler-free synopsis: Phoenix plays Archie Fleck, a man who by day earns his crust dressing as a clown and performing wacky moves to promote local stores, by night he looks after his housebound mother, and fantasizes about appearing on his favourite late night chat show, hosted by Murray Frankling (Robert De Niro).
Here, if I may interject the plot spoiling for a moment, was one of the things which impressed me in the film: I had read how, when writing the script, Phillips had been inspired by the films of Martin Scorcese, and this reference to 1983’s The King of Comedy was not wasted on these eyes and ears. It wasn’t overplayed, it was just there, hiding in plain sight for all those relatively well versed in cinema history.
Back to the plot: we see how Fleck’s life unravels: he is beaten up by kids whilst working; his analyst has to end their sessions due to governmental cuts, and with them go his medication; he loses his job.
Added to this, you are aware that there is a blurring of the lines between reality and Fleck’s hallucinatory imaginigs. At first this is clear from him envisaging how he is picked from the studio audience at one of Frankling’s shows, whilst he is in fact watching the show at home with his mother, but as the the film progresses, one becomes less sure about what is real and what is in Fleck’s head.
This culminates in the film’s denouement, where he is invited to appear on Frankling’s chat show, only you’re not entirely clear whether or not that’s true or not. Until you are very sure.
But all of this confusion does lead to one really good, Sixth Sense-esque “Oh, so that‘s not real either!” moment, which I won’t ruin for you.
As for the bits where he is trying to do stand-up, well there’s only really one scene, and much has been made of the fact that one of the two jokes he tells has been stolen from elsewhere. I certainly heard Bob Monkhouse tell it (at least) once. And that’s probably the point: his first (self-written) joke gets no laughs, his second is stolen, a guaranteed ice-breaker which gets a similar reaction. It’s all part of his life, and even his aspirational life, unravelling.
The one thing that bugged me about it was this: there is a lot of emphasis on the fact that Fleck has mental health issues, as does, it transpires, his mother. And that is what is painted as being the issue, that people with such problems are an often violent concern. And that simply isn’t true. But maybe I’m reading too much into it.
It’a not terribly clear exactly when the film is set; there is a scene where a Charlie Chaplin film is being played, but then to counter that answerphones exist. But it doesn’t really matter when it’s set, because there’s a message here, one which comments on mob culture jumping onto the actions of one deranged figurehead, blindly following them despite their obvious-to-everyone-else flaws. The target of the rioting protestors just happens to be the wealthy, and in particular the Wayne family are, literally, in the cross-hairs: it’s pretty well handled – you don’t really notice the surname until one particular scene – but the link between Fleck and his soon-to-be adversary has its roots explained, even if we don’t get to the point where they’re actually locking horns here.
Overall, I came away from the cinema having rather enjoyed it; I embraced the darkness and I think I like it, to misquote Katy Perry.
Which leads me on to the soundtrack. To be honest I found most of the original music annoying, sounding like a light aircraft hoving into earshot and out again.
But as for the other tunes used? Well, I was particularly impressed by the juxtaposition of these two tunes seamlessly segue waying into each other, and thereby highlighting the difference between light and dark:
NB: I’m pretty sure that’s the Herb Alpert track that is used, but curiously I can find no mention of it in any OST searches.
Which leads me on to a certain song which pops up in the film, and some criticism it has received in the redtops in the past week or so.
The song in question is Rock and Roll (Parts One and Two) by Gary Glitter, and already you can sense quite why the sensationalism.
For the inclusion of said song in the film had the usual papers – The Sun, The Daily Mail, etc etc etc – frothing at the mouth because convicted paedophile Glitter would earn (a lot of) royalties from its use.
Now. I’m not about to start trying to defend a child molester, but there’s someone else to be considered here, namely Mike Leander, or, more accurately, since he’s dead, the estate of Mike Leander.
See, Leander co-wrote that song with Glitter, and I’ll wager since Glitter got put away, his family haven’t made a single penny out of his efforts for the past twenty years or so, such has been the blanket refusal to play any of their records.
Plus, nobody seemed to give a monkey’s when this record, which samples heavily from the same tune, was a smash hit back in the late 1980s:
I’ve tried really hard to find out whether either got a writing credit and/or any royalties from that, with no luck, but since it plays such a major part in the track I imagine they got something out of it.
They certainly did for this one, since both Glitter and Leander have co-writer credits on it:
Funny, I don’t remember a peep from the tabloids about either of those at the time.
It’s almost like they were looking for something this week to deflect attention away from Brexit, backstop alternatives, Boris and the American former pole dancer he’s alleged to have had an affair with and – more importantly – ensured (again, allegedly) public funding was funnelled into her company as she obtained clearance to go on some overseas business trips with Johnson, despite having permission blocked previously, to distract our attention.
Yup, I can crowbar an anti-Brexit comment into pretty much anything.
See.You thought I’d do something utterly predictable like posting The Steve Miller Band’s The Joker, didn’t you?
Credit me with at least trying to post the unobvious, won’t you?
Anyway. Joker. I liked it. Go see.
So there I was for the past few weeks, writing a load of posts which linked various songs together somehow, chuckling away to myself that nobody had noticed I was dropping subtle clues that I was going to be bringing this series back, when what do you know, I went and over-egged it, and was thoroughly busted by The Robster, then The Swede, then Alyson, then Rol all airing their suspicions. And that was before I posted this afternoon’s less than subtle final hint.
The busting that really got me, though, was Kay, who asked me if I intended to start writing it again. Until I corrected her last week, Kay thought it was possible to fast forward through the adverts on live television broadcasts, so I figured if she’d worked it out, I’d better come clean.
There’s two reasons I had started thinking about bringing The Chain back: firstly, I’d decided that if and when I did, it would revert back to being on a Wednesday night again, it’s rightful home, but Series 3 of Fargo had been so good I wanted to wait until that finished; and secondly, the sudden recent demise of When You Can’t Remember Anything, one of the finest blogs around. As regular readers will know, not only were Badger and SWC (or is it SWC and Badger? I always suspected they had to stand a certain way round, a la Ant & Dec, so folks would know which was which) long time contributors to The Chain, but they also ran their own points-earning-invite-a-suggestion series on a Saturday morning – and you had to get up bloody early to be in with a shout of posting something that hadn’t already been suggested. So, with that, and them, gone, I felt the time was about right to bring this back. Oh and chaps, if you’re ready this, feel free to chip in like the good old days.
Now: The Chain last made a (proper) appearance back on March 19th, so it’s had a good rest, as have I. And I imagine that there may be some folks reading this who have no idea what this is about, so I’ll recap on the rules (which luckily I did back in March after a much shorter break, so I’ll thank the Gods of Copy and Paste):
The Chain is a feature on BBC 6Music’s Radcliffe and Maconie show (and prior to that, their show on BBC Radio 2), where a record is played and they invite suggestions as to what record could be played next, which must link in some way to the one just played.
The difference here is that whilst they choose just one record to play, we try to post all of the suggestions which you submit.
The only rules are:
That’s about it. I award points every now and again, for Worst Record of the Week, Cheesiest Record of the Week, Comment Showboat of the Week, and of course, for anyone who happens to guess either the song or act (or both) that is the next record in the Official Chain, which becomes the source record for the following week’s post. Nobody’s keeping score (well, I’m not anyway), the points are just a bit of fun.
Oh and there’s just one more thing (my trademark Columbo impression, there): I signed off the last edition with the words: “Let’s say that will be next week, and see what happens, eh?” Wise words indeed. I’m not going to promise this will be back every Wednesday, but that’s the plan at the moment. I’ll see what I can do.
Okay, so perhaps we should start off by reminding everybody of the last song in the Official Chain, which is our starting point this week:
Now, there was a little controversy over my presentation of this last time, as I posted the song in question under the cover art for their “Ogden’s Nut Gone Flake” album. This was shrewdly picked up on by The Great Gog, who pointed out that it wasn’t on the original release of that album, and he was right, as he often is.
The thing is, the source song from The Chain #38 was “The Universal” by Blur, so had I figured I’d post the “Ogden…” sleeve to give you all a bit more to get your teeth into. Y’know, before I ignored you all for five months. It is on one of the reissued, repackaged, remastered releases that has surfaced in the almost fifty years since the album first came out. And anyway, it’s my game, so if I want to exert a little artistic licence then I shall.
Here’s your first suggestion, courtesy of Charity Chic of Charity Chic Music (yup, it would appear that the C key on my keyboard works fine):
“From Small Faces to Angels with Dirty Faces by Sham 69 please.”
See, that’s the way to do it. Short, to the point, and polite. (Not that I have any objections to long, rambling suggestions, of course, as you will doubtless see).
Let’s crack on with a round up of all the suggestions which linked to Small, Faces or Small Faces (sort of, loosely, with a few diversions), and I’ll hand you over to Rigid Digit of Stuff & Nonsense fame:
“Small Faces’ first hit was ‘What’cha Gonna Do About It’, written by Ian Samwell. He also invented British Rock ‘n’ Roll by penning ‘Move It'”
As mentioned earlier on, compiling a list of everything which has featured on The Chain thus far remains a work in progress (we’re on over 1000 songs, and counting now, so you can see the size of the task ahead of me); but you may be surprised to learn that so far Old Turtleneck is, I think, the second most suggested artist. There are no points on offer for guessing who is the most suggested (sorry, George!)
Rigid came up with another, slightly less fact-based suggestion, presented here in the form of a sort of rubbish multiple choice question:
“Small Faces were named because:
(a) they hadn’t yet reached the top of the Mod Hierarchy (i.e. they weren’t yet Faces, they were still Numbers – albeit high ranking ones – but there was already a band called the High Numbers, and
(b) they were all short (Steve Marriott was 5′ 1″, Ian McLagan was 5′ 0″, and Kenney Jones and Ronnie Lane were both 4′ 7″).
Pixies are also short.”
Not the only Pixies suggestion of the week, as it goes, more to follow.
Over to Dirk from sexyloser and the much admired organiser of the Bloggers Summit that happened a few months ago, which I was immensely flattered to be invited to but, alas, could not attend:
“I must admit I couldn’t remember this Small Faces tune and I could neither be arsed to download it nor to search for the ‘Best Of’ – CD of theirs I have somewhere. So instead I had a look at YouTube and found out that there’s a dog barking at approx. 1:05 minutes. An even better tune with a dog barking in it – albeit not at 1:05, no, at 2:27 minutes instead – is The Clash’s ‘Somebody Got Murdered’ … a link which – again, mind you – will please my friend George mightily, I suspect!”
Poor old Cliff; every time he pulls a goal back, the bloody Clash go and score again:
The Robster from Is This The Life? chipped in with a factoid at this point:
“The dog you hear actually belonged to Steve Marriot. He became something of a session player, also appearing on Pink Floyd’s album ‘Meddle’ in a song they named after him – ‘Seamus’.”
Now unless I’m missing something, there was no actual suggestion from The Robster this time around, so I’ll take that as being it. Please don’t forget your homework again.
Anyway, since we’re on The Clash, how about we get them out of the way completely, if for no other reason than so that George can relax and postpone taking his blood pressure medication for a while.
Here’s Julian from Music from Magazines:
“Small Faces might have small hands as allegedly Trump has, to be honest The Clash summed it up…”
I’m writing this part of The Chain on Tuesday night, and as I typing, this message has flashed up on my phone:
So, y’know, good job I’m not promising to be back next week. At this rate, none of us will be….
…And we’re back in the room.
Now, one thing I’ve learned since I started writing The Chain is not to interrupt Jules when his brain is ticking over, especially as that usually coincides with a) him having a drink, b) chucking out time, or c) both.
“The American President is known as POTUS the first Lady as FLOTUS which happens to be the title of the latest…… Lambchop album”
Jules suggesting a Lambchop track, who’d have thunk it? Here’s the song he selected from said album, in it’s full 18:12 glory:
Back to Rigid again, piping up:
“…(particularly the Lenny Henry version)…” By which he means this:
Although personally, it’s a song which always reminds me of this:
Dear Cadburys: should you wish to reward me for the free advert by granting me a year’s supply of your yummy Crème Eggs, I can be contacted by email. But be warned: I’m a greedy fat bastard, and your idea of a year’s supply is likely to be very different to mine.
But wait, Jules isn’t done yet. In fact, you can practically hear his brain fizzing and he starts riffing:
“A final onslaught
‘Universal Hall’ by The Waterboys is a cracking number…
“…and so is ‘The Whole of the Moon’ which name checks the film ‘Brigadoon’ starring Gene Kelly famous for singing ‘Singing in the Rain’…Um…WATERboys…singing in the RAIN what can it mean….?
Your choice: “
I choose all of those that you suggest, if only to prove I don’t mind how many songs you suggest (at the moment, give it a week or so…), and because I could tell all of that was just to get me to post something by this lot:
1 Wet Wet Wet?
(I can tell you’re a big fan…I’ve seen you dancing like Marti Pellow…)
To quote Belle & Sebastian:
“We all know you’re soft cos we’ve all seen you dancing
We all know you’re hard cos we’ve all seen you drinking from noon
Until noon again”
(I know you didn’t actually suggest that song, but it’s a strong contender for the Cheesiest Song of the Week gong…)
“2 The Beatles
“3 New Musik
This World of Water…?”
4 Michael P Hinson
The Day Texas Sank To The Bottom Of The Sea…”
Right that’s that little flurry of Jules’ Gems taken care of, what’s next?
Only Alex G of notoriously salad-free We Will Have Salad, that’s who:
“From Small Faces, I tried to come up with the smallest thing I could think of that has a face, and naturally I thought of Midge Ure.
I’ll rephrase that.
From Small Faces, I tried to come up with the smallest thing I could think of that has a face, and I thought of midges. And having looked them up and established to my own satisfaction that midges do indeed have an arrangement of features on the front of their heads which would pass for faces, that naturally leads me to Midge Ure. In the spirit of this blog, I suggest his little-remembered 1991 semi-hit “Cold Cold Heart”, which I liked enough at the time to buy it, though it leaves me cold (ha!) now.”
Can I be unkind enough to suggest there’s a very good reason why that’s little-remembered…?
But fear not, Alex, you’re nowhere near nominating the Worst Record of the Week, not by a long chalk.
Over to the When You Can’t Remember Anything boys, and I don’t know whether this was suggested by SWC or Badger, so we’ll credit it to a hybrid of the two, to Swadger if you will:
“If we are talking about faces then the first port of call should be ‘Poker Face’ by Lady Gaga. Just because it’s ace.”
Which it is, of course:
Remember a while ago, I said there would be more Pixies featuring this week? Well here they are, courtesy of…well, me, as it goes:
When I’m deciding on the running order, I break them down into the categories and then kick myself because I never remember to make a note of who it was that made the next suggestion, and so have to furiously scroll through the last edition to try and remember. With one exception (bar Jules’ obligatory Lambchop suggestion, that is).
Yup, it’s time for George to round off the Face section in style:
“From Small Faces, to masks (that tend to be worn on faces) to ‘Trout Mask Replica’, and ‘Moonlight on Vermont’.
Now on to what I think we can call a bridging link. Here’s Walter from A Few Good Times In My Life:
“If I ever listen to Small Faces it takes me back to the good old days with Rod Stewart. So it is easy to go to his second album under his own name. ‘Gasoline Alley’ might be the best he ever made. Torn between ballads and rockers. So I have to suggest ‘Jo’s Lament’ or ‘Good Old Country'”
Now, before any of you pedants pull Walter up and argue that Stewart was never in Small Faces, I’ve checked and strictly speaking, Walter is correct:
After Small Faces split, Lane, Jones and McLagan joined forces with Stewart and guitarist Ronnie Wood., but this line-up dropped the “Small” from their name and just became known as Faces. Their record company, however, were not happy, wanting to capitalise on the band’s earlier success by retaining their old name. The band stayed firm, arguing that the personnel changes meant this was an altogether different group from Small Faces. In the end, a compromise was reached: the new line-up’s first album in the UK was credited as ‘First Step’ by Faces, while in the US the same album was released as ‘First Step’ by Small Faces.
Hope that’s cleared that up.
Here’s Walter’s suggestion:
What that means, of course, is that we’re now into the territory of links to members of Small Faces, and here Charity Chic again:
“Steve Marriott was a member of the Small Faces. There is a hotel chain called the Marriott. I have stayed in one at LAX Airport. So they have Hotels in California.
If you can’t face the Eagles [I could…] there is also a version by Alabama 3 […which I’d much rather post]“
Time to welcome The Great Gog now, who picks up the theme:
“Picking up from the Marriott hotel chain – this is mentioned in a song – Mark Ronson’s ‘Record Collection’, where Simon Le Bon sings the line ‘I get preferential treatment at the Marriott’. I got heartily sick of this tune at the time of FIFA 11, as it was on the soundtrack and my youngest, then aged 10, was constantly wanting to beat me at it – happy memories of having to be a Belgian 2nd Division team whenever we played!”
Over to Abramson60 with a typically brief suggestion:
“Steve Marriott was born in Manor Park, which could have fetched us back to Blur and Parklife, but no. How about the Ruskin Arms the famed manor Park boozer that was instrumental in the rise of Iron Maiden, again no as I have never understood their appeal. Manor made me think of Ill Manors but despite having seen the film really can’t say much about the music, though did like the early stuff from Plan B. After all this rambling I thought of the Manor studios, something to do with a younger Richard Branson I believe, so two suggestions, both recorded at the said Manor. Something very un-PC from Supercharge and the ‘Local Lads Made Good’ album, ‘She Moved The Dishes’ first, maybe not everyone’s cup of tea, a re-listen made me think of certain elements of Frank Zappa’s work.”
I think we’ll have to agree to disagree about this one Abramson, not my cup of tea, but that doesn’t preclude it from getting an airing here. To me, it sounds like someone trying to sound like Vivian Stanshall and/or the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band, but what do I know?
Anyway, you mentioned two suggestions, what’s the other one?
“Manic Street Preachers also visited the manor to record their second LP Gold Against The Soul which contains a song that always brings a smile to my face ‘La Tristesse Durera’.”
Now that’s more like it!
That’s the Marriott’s all wrapped up. What about Ronnie Lane?
Here’s Martin from New Amusements:
“Steve Marriott introduced Ronnie Lane as “Leafy Lane” on one of their albums, and a Leafy Lane probably has lots of shade, so let’s go with…”
Actually, Martin didn’t get to that suggestion straightaway. No, instead he got to Pavement by way of…well…like this (which I’m including simply because we have nothing else to link to drummer Kenney Jones):
“My first thought is that Small Faces’ drummer Kenney Jones later joined The Who after Keith Moon’s death. No Moon maybe implies eclipse, but no, I’m not pitching anything by Bonnie Tyler.”
Of course you weren’t. And why would you, when you clearly are angling for me to post this:
Just what the world needed back in 1995, that. A terrible, hi-energy, Europop version of a song which was only ever sung in the shower by anyone other than Bonnie anyway.
Anything else that you’re definitely not going to suggest, Martin..?
“A new Moon (perhaps on a Monday?) No, I’m not pitching that, by Duran Duran, either.”
Yes, I know who “New Moon on Monday” is by, Martin. (Gentle ribbing. Yummy!) And for that, here it is:
So that’s Marriott, Lane and Jones ticked off the list, what about Ian McLagan?
Step forward The Beard, with a suggestion which hands down wins the Best Link of the Week:
“The Small Faces keyboardist Ian McLagan died in Austin, Texas. Steve Austin, The Six Million Dollar Man, was played by Lee Majors. He also played Colt Seavers in The Fall Guy and, a la Dennis Waterman, crooned the theme tune, The Unknown Stuntman.”
No, of course I didn’t own that already…..honestly…
And then, just when we thought we’d exhausted all of the possibilities relating to the band’s personnel, George is back:
“The Small Faces’ first manager was Don Arden. The charming Mr Arden, not at all a thug or bully, in a meeting with Robert Stigwood (another would-be band manager) threatened to throw him out of a window, Robert Stigwood was the manager of Cream, so I suggest their single ‘Badge’.”
Hang on a minute. I used to have a catchphrase for situations like this. Can’t seem to place my hands on it now. I’m sure I left it around here somewhere.
Wait a minute will you?
Well, if you’re suggesting that, then I’m suggesting this:
Okay, where next? Well, let’s take a step back to Ronnie Lane, and we’ll hand over to babylotti:
“Ronnie Lane was in the Small Faces, then the Faces, but it’s Ronnie Lane’s Slim Chance & their version of ‘Ooh La La’ I’m going to suggest first. One of my favourite songs and about the only song that makes me wish I could play guitar so I could annoy people at open mics with it.”
No, no, no – learn to play it then take it house parties, or even better, on camping holidays. Much more annoying, although with potentially more things to throw at you to make you shut up.
And here we go, off on a tangent, which is exactly what brings us here:
“From there I’m going to suggest Goldfrapp’s own ‘Ooh La La’…”, babylotti continues:
“… and as I’ve gone there, I’m going to wring it to death like a dog & it’s favourite toy & suggest ‘Ooh La La’ by The Wiseguys, a song I used to love playing when DJ’ing and one of Mrs Lotti’s favourite tunes…”
At which point, Rigid reappears:
“After reading ‘Ooh La La’ that many times, I now have Kool and The Gang ‘Ooh La La La (Lets Go Dancing)’ lodged firmly in my brain”
Time for a refresher or two. You’ll recall that right at the top of this post I wrote that Small Faces’ “The Universal” was the second song in a row we’d had a song called “The Universal” to link to? Well Alyson from What’s It All About? came up with a way of linking the word in those two titles that isn’t ‘Universal’:
“There are 2 x Universals next to each other in The Chain but also 2 x the word The. Something from The The…?”
Pressed to choose a song by them, she asked this, which I vetoed at the time as I’d not long since featured it on these pages….but as so much time has gone by, here’s her choice, which, coincidentally, just happens to be my favourite record by them:
Refresher 2: remember when I said earlier that I had posted the “Ogden’s Nut Gone Flake” sleeve to give you all something to get your teeth into, given the double appearance of ‘The Universal’? Well, I did you all a grave disservice there, for we’ve got this far and not one of you has linked to it yet.
Here’s The Great Gog:
“Seeing the word Ogden’s immediately brought to mind World Of Twist and their late singer, Tony Ogden. I’ll go for The Storm from them.”
And The Great Gog wasn’t the only person to come up with an Ogden based link. Here Rol from My Top Ten:
“My first thought for this was to go down the Stan Ogden route (topical reference, ahoy!) which would lead you to Stan by Eminem…”
The song responsible for bringing Dido to a wider audience. *sighs* Go on then, if we must:
“…and better still,” Rol continues, “to Mark & Lard’s spoof version, ‘Tony’ by The Shirehorses.”
Hmmm. This must be some new usage of the phrase “better still” that I wasn’t previously aware of. Ironic, maybe. An inverted meaning, like when “Bad” meant “Good”.
Sorry Rol, Worst Record of the Week, which is some feat in a week when we’ve heard that one by Supercharge.
I have an Ogden link too. Here it is:
What? You’re all looking at me blankly, like there’s no link there.
C’mon, seriously? Even Kay knows what the link is.
Ogden. Table. Ogden Table.
Ogden tables are a set of statistical tables and other information for use in court cases in the UK. Their purpose is to make it easier to calculate future losses in personal injury and fatal accident cases.
See, we try to educate as well as entertain round these parts.
Now you can tell that I focussed on the album with my suggestions, because here’s some more:
And, the “Ogden…” sleeve depicts a tin of tobacco, so:
…and since we’ve not had any double-linkers this week:
By the way, I think The Delicious Fullness may be my favourite band name ever.
Let’s have another Nut-based song (I do hope none of you are allergic), which I could have sworn George had suggested; it’s absolutely the sort of thing he would suggest, and I mean that in the nicest possible way, because it turns out this one must be one of mine too:
Which just leaves one more suggestion, and I’ll hand over to SWC and/or Badger, or Swadger as I’m going to insist on calling them from now on, as they overlooked telling me which of them came up with this fine, stirring suggestion:
“The Faces reformed in 2009 with a certain Mick Hucknall on lead vocals. Hucknall is also a place in Nottinghamshire which was the birth place of a certain Eric Coates who wrote the theme to Dam Busters and the theme to Desert Island Discs. So either one of those please.”
With great pleasure, especially as you dodged the bullet of nominating a Simply Red tune:
And so to the next record in The Official Chain, which none of you actually guessed, but Dirk and The Robster came mighty close:
“….[The Universal by Small Faces]…featured dogs barking. Dogs are Pets that make Sounds, so…”
…which, although I don’t think he actually played on the recording, given Glen Campbell’s close links to the band and his sad, untimely passing yesterday, seems a rather appropriate way to end things.
So, all that’s left for me to do is to ask for your suggestions, please, for songs which link to “God Only Knows” by The Beach Boys, along with a brief description of the link, via the Comments Section down below, in time for the next edition, whenever that might roll into town.
Okay, finally, here we are. And to make up for my tardiness, I’ve included links to the blogs of each of the contributors (that have one, that I know of). Consider this to be my seal of approval. If you’ve never visited them, then you should. And now you have now excuse not to.
I left you last time with “Song to Woody” by Bob Dylan and asked for your suggestions for songs to link to that record, and for your ideas about what the official link between that and “Andy Warhol” by David Bowie was.
So, to tidy up the latter point, here’s The Swede from Unthought of, Though, Somehow to explain:
“‘Andy Warhol’ appeared on Bowie’s LP ‘Hunky Dory’, as did ‘Song for Bob Dylan’ . This is Bob singing a song for someone else.”
Correctimondo! Bonus points to The Swede.
And so to this week’s suggestions, and as usual they are of an extremely high and more diverse standard than ever, so I’ll do my usual deferring of responsibility by just posting them in the order they were received.
First up, The Great Gog (by the way: no blog for me to link to, GG? Correct me if I’m wrong. There’s one I thought was you, but on closer investigation seems to have no author attributed to it…) who said this:
“Dylan’s song is to Woody (Guthrie). I’m mildly amused by the thought that he would have written a song instead to Woody Herman, the bandleader. Continuing the notion of randomly linking people with nothing other a name in common, I arrive at Herman’s Hermits and their song that could be (but isn’t) about a dairy-free 24 hours – No Milk Today.”
Ah, that famously lactose-intolerant popular 60s beat combo and stock answer on Trivial Pursuit (Baby Boomer edition) pop questions (alternated with Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Titch).
That’s easy, thought I. I have a Herman’s Hermits Greatest Hits album. Which, unbelievably, does not contain this record:
And so to The Swede’s suggestion. And this is really uncanny.
“Like The Great Gog (brilliant suggestion by the way), I’ll head off in the direction of a different Woody to the subject of Bob’s song, in my case Woody Allen. Is there a better opening sequence in cinema history than that of Woody Allen’s ‘Manhattan’? The soundtrack for that sequence is the fantastic ‘Rhapsody in Blue’, written by George Gershwin and performed by the New York Philharmonic.”
I say uncanny because I just bought a boxset of early Woody Allen films – I remember watching “Sleeper” and “Love and Death” with my folks when I was a kid and thinking they were amazing – and earlier in the week I watched “Manhattan” for the first time. I know, I know…I hang my head in shame for not getting round to it earlier. Needless to say, I was totally blown away by it.
Next up, it’s Charity Chic:
“Short but sweet today. Woody was the name of the cowboy character in Toy Story leading to I’m Your Toy by the Flying Burrito Brothers”
Or, unless I’m very much mistaken, as it’s also known:
Sometimes, for my sins, I forget just how amazing Gram Parsons was, and then I hear songs like that and I’m reminded not just of that, but also what a loss he was. Or, as The Swede puts it:
“Wonderful song. I may need a bourbon on hand to get through it without blubbing though.”
Look out, here comes Swiss Adam from bagging area who has a double suggestion:
“Joe Strummer was known as Woody before he was Joe Strummer (so a pre-Clash song like Keys to your Heart by the 101ers would be appropriate), from there The Clash to various post Clash outfits (The Pogues for Joe, Big Audio Dynamite for Mick, Havana 3am for Paul and Gorillaz for Mick and Paul) and any number of guest appearances from Joe (Joe with Black Grape, um Joe with Fat Les, Joe with, um, the Levellers) or Mick… I could go on…..”
No need, you already had me at The 101ers:
You will have noticed the insertion of the number 13 at the start of that link. And that’s because Swiss has hit the jackpot there – he’s the first person (as far as I can recall, feel free to correct me if I’m wrong) to suggest the actual next record that featured on the official show’s list. Bonus points a plenty this week.
But wait – he’s not done yet. Oh no:
“Woody Guthrie famously said his machine killed fascists [a message he had written on his guitar – Ed]. On the inner sleeve of Half Man half Biscuits “Achtung Bono” Nigel Blackwell holds a guitar emblazoned with This Machine Kills Wasps. You can’t go wrong with any song off “Achtung Bono”. “We Built This Village on A Trad Arr Tune” is especially great. ‘Act 1 Scene 1 Brenda Blethyn gets shot’.”
A canny move there; Swiss has realised that if you want to get two suggestions posted, make sure at least one of them is by someone you already know I love. And besides, I got such positive feedback last time I posted Half Man Half Biscuit, I can’t resist that:
And so to George:
“Bob Dylan to Dylan in the Magic Roundabout, which was narrated by Eric Thompson, to Eric Clapton to Cream and the song SWLABR (from Disraeli Gears).”
And in case you were wondering what SWLABR stands for, George is kind enough to enlighten us:
“SWLABR stands for She Walks Like A Bearded Rainbow”
Which I’m sure you’ll agree clarifies things perfectly. Probably just my mind thinking from its’ usual repose in the gutter, but I suspect it’s rude.
Which brings us on to my suggestion, and it was only when I got to typing this that I realised I’d not given it a jot of thought in the two weeks (count ’em!) since I last posted on this thread.
So…um…er…suddenly realises how contestants on “Only Connect” feel, cursing myself for having picked The Eye of Horus, only without the plus point of having met Victoria Coren-Mitchell (if you live in the UK and get none of these references you are watching the wrong channel at 20:30 of a Monday)….how about…erm….*buzzes in with 1 second to spare* this:
A simple two-step. From Bob Dylan to this:
…and from there- no, I’m not done yet – one of the movies Dylan made was Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid, in which he co-starred with one Kris Kristofferson. Regular readers will know I need no second bidding to crowbar a bit of KK in, so here’s his song, with his growly spoken-word intro dedicating the song to John and June, whoever they are (don’t message me, I know who they are) which offers a bar-room hobo’s philosophy on preaching to the converted. It’s a song which has come to mind a lot in recent weeks. Don’t let that description put you off, by the way:
So, no need for suggestions as to what the official link was this week, but your suggestions please via the Comments box below as to what we can play next time that links to The 101ers “Keys to Your Heart”, and the reason for the link.
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