Weekend jukebox

Maybe you find yourself stuck at home on this fine Saturday night; maybe there’s a party, or it could be a reception, that you can’t make it to. Never mind, because this blog’s public service remit includes putting up the occasional bit of musical filler for your dancing pleasure. So, without further ado, let’s go:

Ah, good old BA Robertson. Fairly takes me back to Louvain…

Big Boi’s incongruous influence

Readers of a certain age will doubtless recall an episode of The A-Team which involved yet another one of Face’s money-making scams, this one being the staging of a country and western concert in a mining community. Face’s agent friend was supposed to provide him with a famous C&W singer called Cowboy George, but, and you’ll probably have guessed this already, the entertainer who turns up at the appointed spot to sing to the miners is none other than Boy George. Quite a fun episode, if definitely an indication that by the fourth season the Team were running out of steam, and it does raise a bit of a chuckle to see a very game Boy George getting involved in all the usual A-Team scrapes.

Anyway, by far the most disconcerting thing about this was the sequence where BA Baracus declares his deep love for the music of Culture Club. It doesn’t seem right, in the way that, when Isaac Hayes guest starred on The A-Team, you could sort of believe it. Mr T and Culture Club just did not compute.

This is all by way of a long-winded rumination on a throwaway remark in today’s Guardian Guide by Big Boi, of OutKast fame. I never used to like OutKast, to be honest. They really used to annoy the hell out of me, but eventually Big and 3000 wore down my resistance. So anyway, the Graun has gone and interviewed Big Boi, who’s often (and a little unjustly) seen as the more prosaic half of OutKast as compared to the flamboyant Andre 3000. And Big talks about all the artists he’s worked with, and mentions the one he’d really love to work with but has never been able to. Nope, not Chuck D or even Isaac Hayes, but… Kate Bush.

Yes, that Kate Bush:

This is where we enter head-scratching territory. As long-time readers will know, I’m a great fan of Kate’s work, and she would rank right up alongside Patti Smith and the Blue Öyster Cult in terms of my all-time favourites. So at this point I would like to commend Big Boi on his good taste. But commend him in a slightly puzzled way, because if there’s a Kate Bush influence on the OutKast oeuvre, it must be so subtle that I’ve missed it entirely. Perhaps if I listen again to Stankonia, there’ll be something in the textures.

Next week in the Graun Guide, no doubt we can expect to see Michael Bublé talking about his great passion for the music of Megadeth. Or vice versa.

Friday jukebox

Well, it’s been a bit fallow around here lately, especially since the superhuman exertions of the pre-election period. Worry not, for some more material is in the pipeline. But for the meantime, let’s do our traditional filler – yes, because you didn’t demand it, it’s past time for a music post. Enjoy, or bury head in hands if more appropriate.

Theme tune meme

All right, time for a weekend music meme. I’ve been tagged over at AVPS in connection with this meme that’s been going around where you select a blog theme tune – something that you feel encapsulates the feel of what you’re trying to do on your blog. This is trickier than it sounds, and Dr Phil has cheated a little by picking two theme tunes. That isn’t a bad idea, all round. You see, we often think of a theme tune as being something big and bombastic, like this:

If you’re looking for anthemic, you could do a lot worse, and hey, who doesn’t like a bit of Iron Maiden now and again? But it can be a bit much, and as you know, we like to do whimsical here quite a lot. So, in the spirit of whimsy, we need an alternate late-nite theme tune, something to put a smile on your face. Thus now:

And I think that will do quite nicely. If anyone else fancies picking up the meme, do feel free.

You just can’t keep the Shat down

Yes, reinterpreting the power ballad for a new generation, in a way Jim Steinman could never have imagined. Why is Britain’s Got Talent never as entertaining as this?

Malcolm McLaren 1946-2010

Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam.

From the revolution in Nepal… a musical interlude

Those Nepalese Maoists are an impressive movement in a lot of ways… I just didn’t expect to see them in a song and dance number. Maybe this foreshadows the proletarian Bollywood we might get if the Naxals ever take power down India way.

From the video vault: IWD special

Still seriously under the weather, so no real post tonight. Fear not, as soon as I’m feeling up to it there are several half-written posts to be hoked out of the bottom drawer.

Of course, you know what this means. It means a music post. And, being as this is International Women’s Day, you’re getting filler with added tokenism. Here’s Aunt Rosemary:

And here’s Julie:

Of course, there’s Patti:

Finally, we can’t be doing without Girlschool:

And with that, let’s raise a glass of red wine. Or a glass of Paracodol, as the case may be.

Shameful music meme

There’s another music meme up at Alien Versus Predator, and this one is right up my street. You know when a song comes on the wireless that’s vaguely familiar but you just can’t place it, and you think “Hmm, I quite like this one”, and you start tapping your toes and maybe humming along… then you realise it is in fact Sir Cliff’s “Wired For Sound”. What could be more mortifying, if you value your street cred?

The title is a slight misnomer, given that this blog is well known for being completely shameless in such matters. Besides, I long ago forswore the whole concept of the “guilty pleasure”. Who am I supposed to feel guilty to, John Earls? I think not. Either you enjoy it or you don’t.

Going decade by decade, let’s start with the 60s and Mr Spock as you’ve never seen him before:

Now, the 70s. You had forgotten the Runaways, hadn’t you? Or perhaps blocked them from your conscious memory…

Now here’s one for all you Ferris Bueller fans. If you weren’t around in 1985, it’s hard to convey just the impact that Sigue Sigue Sputnik had. For about fifteen minutes. I mean, this is the 21st century already and it doesn’t look anything like a Sputnik video.

This next track is maybe not quite as cheesy, but… Bill Drummond has always been at least twenty years ahead of his time. So by the time he’s contemporary, whatever he’s done that’s contemporary will have aged horribly. If that sounds a bit Doctor Who, that may not be inappropriate.

Finally from the 00s, a bona fide great track, which should by rights have won Russia the 2007 Eurovision Song Contest. Of course, the word “Eurovision” instantly invokes cheese, which isn’t always fair. Anyway, here’s Serebro:

And once again, I hope some faces have been buried in hands. We endeavour to give satisfaction.

Miserable music meme

Here’s something that appealed instantly to me. Comrade Phil has started off a meme, celebrating Valentine’s Day with some dark and downbeat sounds, and Harpy has followed up on it. The basic idea is to take one each from the 80s, 90s and 00s, but I’ll see your three decades and raise you the 70s. Let’s start with James Taylor’s “Fire and Rain”:

…and I hope that was a depressing enough start. Good old JT, of course, could turn out a genuinely beautiful song when he was on form, even if it wasn’t always a happy one. But if there’s one band who were never accused of creating beautiful sounds, it was Venom. Mind you, “Buried Alive” did have a certain je ne sais quoi:

Heading into the 90s, this is where my musical knowledge starts to get patchy, so I have to enter the world of film soundtracks. Kevin Smith does like to make use of Soul Asylum, and “We 3” made a nice counterpoint to the downer ending of Chasing Amy:

And, bringing us up to the present day, here’s Martha Wainwright singing “Bloody Mother Fucking Asshole”. Not only a great title, but it’s a great showcase for Martha’s unique voice:

Well, that’s a bit of an eclectic selection. Just be grateful I didn’t give you five tracks of Willie Nelson.

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