The Chain #13

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:

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Herman’s Hermits – No Milk Today

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.

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George Gershwin – Rhapsody in Blue

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:

HotBurritos

 The Flying Burrito Brothers – Hot Burrito #1

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:

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13. The 101ers – Keys To Your Heart

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:

half_0020_manHalf Man Half Biscuit – We Built This Village On A Trad. Arr. Tune

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).”

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Cream – SWLABR

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:

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Belle & Sebastian – Like Dylan In the Movies

…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:

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Kris Kristofferson – To Beat The Devil

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.

More soon.

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