Week 2 - Fri 8th Jan
Welcome to the RPM Seven Day Soundtrack, week ending Friday 8th January 2021. Here's more tunes to hopefully maintain your sanity in what is increasingly becoming a totally mental world. Storming the steps of your homes in a good way and with positive vibes, it's over to...................
"Honest, you couldn't make it up........... on the very day that Doris the 'johnson' (never was a surname more correctly applied) was triumphantly announcing our liberty from the Franco/German Empire (a.k.a. the EU), his father, fresh from his villa in Greece no doubt, was restating his intention to relocate to La Belle Francaise and apply for French nationality!!! And not only that, Doris' sister is considering it too (memo to me.... must check the family tree to see if we have any Spanish antecedents!)!!!! So, in celebration of Doris' Brexit 'deal' and Mr Johnson Senior's commitment to the success of his sons ventures, here's three songs from my collection where the title sez it all................
Hope everyone is staying safe........ Stop press: Lockdown just announced as I prepared this listing but, despite that long overdue step, I'm gonna stick with these three."
"For Boris, it's........"
Don't Make Promises by Tim Hardin (from 'Tim Hardin 1' album released 1966) -
"And for his Pop and sister............"
Free man in Paris by Joni Mitchelll (from 'Court and Spark' album released 1974) -
J’ai Deux Amours, Mon Pays et Paris’ ('I have two loves, my country and Paris') by Josephine Baker (from 'The very best of Josephine Baker' 2xCD's, this version a scratchy 'live' 1930 recording) -
Bonus Track - The Revoloution Will Not Be Televised by Gil Scott Heron -
"(The views expressed below are not necessarily those of the Editor).
While I appreciate that any administration would have struggled and made mistakes in our present predicament, it has to be said that our P.M. has given a perfect show of how to undermine public trust and confidence.
Procrastination (They had the data on 18th December showing the new variant was 50 to 70% more transmissible than the original form of the virus- appropriate decisions could have been made then).
Dishonesty (3rd January- "... no doubt in my mind that schools are safe"). Schools then open for one day, then close as part of the new national lockdown to ensure chains of transmission are cut. No time for people to plan for this.
Over-promising and under-delivering (Let's hope that the targets for numbers of vaccinations are not another example of this serial tendency to want to appear optimistic rather than realistic and honest).
And don't get me started on Gavin out-of-his-depth-not-really-interested-in-his-brief Williamson!
Then of course there are the activities of Fat Donny over the Pond. The Republican Party has a lot to answer for, whether supporting him or merely "humouring" him. There are no excuses, they should be ashamed, and I hope he and they are held to account.
On to the music ("Thank Gawd for that" I hear you cry)... three selections from albums issued in 2020 that didn't make my top five."
Sister Mavis by Tami Neilson (from "Chickaboom!") - "Canadian rockabilly from New Zealand."
Hometown by Sarah Jarosz (from "World on the Ground") - "I played her previous record, "Undercurrent," as a "mystery album" at RPM about four years ago. This one is terrific too."
Who's Been Here by Dave Alvin (from "From An Old Guitar") - "A collection made up of songs recorded but not released for other projects including solo albums and tribute albums, and songs recorded "for the sheer kicks of going into a recording studio to make some joyous noise with musicians and singers that I love and admire." This is a live version (not the album version) of an old blues by Bo Carter, (real name Chatmon) who was a part-time member of The Mississippi Sheiks and a master of the double-entendre."
"Hi Everyone........It's been said many times, but definitely worth repeating - how brilliant is the RPM collective? Cue Fast Show impersonation "RPM, yeah - brilliant"!!
Odd to think I was on my tod in a remote Chilean forest this time last year; wilderness hermitude is probably a safe option for the foreseeable. Agree with Alan's thoughts on 25th December; daily UK rates continue to rise stratospherically, some positivity with vaccines also the repeated Tory pattern of over-promise/under-deliver & this week Trump incited nuttiness in America.
Whatever the worries and frustrations, there is always solace in music.
Thanks for your piece on 2020, Tim and thanks to everyone for the "5" lists. End of the year was bonkers hectic for me; in not-so-good + good ways, yin & yang. As a result I was behind the curve/fashionably late as per, but gained inspiration when checking the end of year review out this week. Here's stunning cover versions of Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds songs............"
Stranger than Kindness performed by Fever Ray - "Fever Ray's Karin Dreijer Andersson teamed up with director Andreas Nilsson to create the fab, folklore-y video. Best listened to while walking along a river on a winter's night. P.J. who??"
People Ain't No Good performed by Sharon van Etten - "A sublimely beautiful version of what was already a gorgeous song, (top lyric; "a valentine of blood"). Only Aussies could get away with calling her Shazza."
"I hope you're all safe and well.....we will get through this. Here's a sample of what I've been listening to this week."
It's Gonna Be All Right by Gerry and The Pacemakers - "Very sad to hear of the passing of Gerry Marsden - what an entertainer! I haven't seen the film 'Ferry Cross The Mersey' but I have owned the soundtrack LP for a number of years; this is the opening track. According to the sleeve notes, Gerry wrote nine new songs for the soundtrack in just eight days! (Also, the track listing spells 'All Right' thus, and not as YouTube has, i.e. 'Alright'..... a minor point, I know, but sometimes these things are a trifle annoying)."
Xamenh Evtexia/Fiz'n by 3 Mustaphas 3 - "Hopefully, this will help to lift the gloom....."
Dark-Eyed Sailor by Steeleye Span - "This is from 'Hark! The Village Wait', the first album by Steeleye Span. Lead vocals are by Gay Woods on this great version of 'Dark-Eyed Sailor'. The line-up on this LP (Gay & Terry Woods, Ashley Hutchings, Tim Hart and Maddy Prior) only made this one album and never played live. Gay and Terry left to be replaced by Peter Knight and Martin Carthy. I saw the MkII version in 1971 at St .Andrews Hall in Norwich..... M.C. with his Daphne Blue Fender Telecaster....awesome!"
"Happy New Year to you and all RPMers. Here's my 3 for this week."
Magic Bus by The Who - "Great toe tapping stuff from the boys."
Sierra by Boz Scaggs - "One of my late wife's favourites - I was always ordered to crank the volume up if ever this came on the radio and I gladly complied."
Someday Baby Blues by Jo Ann Kelly - "Dave Kelly's talented older sister - she was in great demand from some very big bands back in the day but she preferred to stay in the UK. Tragically lost to a brain tumour at the age of 46. I've seen Dave a number of times with Paul Jones, The Blues Band and Maggie Bell. Wish I'd got the chance to see Jo Ann."
"Dear RPM colleagues, I hope that you’re all keeping well and coping well. Just remember that real life is made of small simple things.
This week I have enjoyed the company of these musicians."
"Hi ya all; here’s my 3 top tunes."
"Three glam/art rock covers."
"Sorry they were late.........."
Blackberry Blossom performed by Fidlin' Arthur Smith & his Dixieliners -
Everybody’s Talking by Sierra Hull -
The Mist Covered Mountains of Home / The Orphan / The Tarboulton performed by John Renbourn -
"In view of the past week's events, here's a little musical calm....perhaps musical meditation, even. So, close your eyes and open your ears and drift away......."
There's A Planet Here by Ozric Tentacles - "Penultimate track from 1994s Arborescence LP, one of their best, in my opinion."
FÜr Immer by Neu! - "Here's German experimentalists Neu! with a drone based piece of music found on their 2nd LP..........minimalist-ly (think I just invented that word) entitled Neu! 2."
Theidh Mi Dhachaigh (Return To Kintail) performed by Alasdair Fraser - "Such a hauntingly beautiful tune from a perfect album. Alasdair Fraser is accompanied by guitar virtuoso Tony McManus on much of this album.........the title track, however, is a solo fiddle piece which closes the CD."