Friday Night Music Club

Here we are again, and this week, as ‘promised’ a completely new mix for your Friday Night enjoyment.

Not much to say about this one (man alive, I know how to pitch!), except to say that after the first track, it goes a little bit Radio 2 for a few songs (which is no bad thing in my book), before diving head-long into a right old Indie disco, starting off over in the USA (and mostly New York) before switching to some tunes which are unmistakeably British, along with a rip-roaring final track to bring matters to a close.

Here comes the disclaimer: any skips or jumps are down to the mixing software (there’s one biggie in the first tune, but other than that it seems to have behaved itself this time); any mis-timed mixes are down to me; all record selections are mine.

Friday Night Music Club Vol 9

And here’s your track-listing:

  1. The Jesus & Mary Chain – Darklands
  2. Eagle-Eye Cherry – Save Tonight
  3. The Pretenders – Back on the Chain Gang
  4. Electric Light Orchestra – Sweet Talkin’ Woman
  5. Eagles – Take It Easy
  6. The Lemonheads – You Can Take It With You
  7. The Wedding Present – Go-Go Dancer
  8. Redd Kross – How Much More
  9. The Go-Go’s – Beatnik Beach
  10. Ramones – Rockaway Beach
  11. Kings of Leon – The Bucket
  12. Weezer – Hash Pipe
  13. Interpol – Slow Hands
  14. The Strokes – Reptilia
  15. Fountains of Wayne – Radiation Vibe
  16. David Devant & His Spirit Wife – Ginger
  17. Cud – One Giant Love
  18. Status Quo – Mystery Song (album version)

Long-term readers should not read anything into the inclusion of the third tune. It’s not coming back.

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.

Be Llyrious

When we lived together, before compiling a playlist was a thing, LlÅ·r and I would often make each other mix-tapes, and later mix CDs, a habitually eclectic mix of stuff we knew the other would like, or already owned but sounded good in the context of the playlist, or wanted to introduce the other one to.

We would take it in turns: I’d do one for him, a week or so later I’d get one back, and so on. There was no one-upmanship going on here, no “Don’t you know this???”, more a mutally respectful “You probably know this, but if not, you’ll like it, I think.”

Often, one of us putting a song on a mix CD would induce the other into putting a different song by the same artiste on the reply CD. It was our way of saying, “Yeh, I know them, that one’s pretty good, but have you heard this…?”

By way of an example, one day I put this on a mix CD, pretty much the only song I knew by the group at the time:

And he came back with this, which I later found out was the very next track on their eponymously titled album, which I didn’t have at the time:

Fountains of Wayne – Sink to the Bottom

Okay dude, you won that one.

More soon.

It’s Chriiiistmas!!!

Welcome back to Christmas corner.

Another couple of absolute belters for you this morning.

First up, from the cannot-put-a-foot-wrong-in-my-eyes canon of work that is Eels. Or eels if you prefer. Either way, it’s the work of Mark Oliver Elliott, or “E” as he is more widely known. E is the son of Hugh Everett III, who came up with the concept of quantum theory (which, try as I might, I just simply do not understand. I know from Wikipedia that it’s “the body of scientific principles that explains the behaviour of matter and its interactions with energy on the scale of atoms and subatomic particles”, but I feel less intelligent, not more, than I did when I started typing that out.)

Anyway, quantum physics isn’t very Christmassy (or is it? It might be. See, no idea) so here’s something that definitely is (or finitely, if I want to try and be clever and do a physics gag):

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Eels – Everything’s Gonna Be Cool This Christmas

That’s bloody great, isn’t it?

Next a band whose eponymous debut album I love and will feature on these pages again at some point, but who blotted their proverbial copybook when they released “Stacey’s Mom”, which I appreciate makes me sound like one of those idiots who begrudge their favourite band any kind of commercial success.

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Fountains of Wayne – I Want an Alien for Christmas

I would like to take this opportunity to remind you that an alien is for life and not just for Christmas. And anyway, how would you wrap the boggle-eyed, bottom probing, little bugger?

More soon.