I haven't blogged for a while partly because I haven't had anything to say and the alternative being climbing on my soapbox about either the anti-terrorism bill or remembrance day and you wouldn't want either of those - would you dear reader?
Also I've been having a bit of a crisis about the content of my blog. It was pointed out to me that it might be a bit too personal. At first this didn't bother me, after all I've had a website for 10 years and that has a lot of personal stuff on it and nobody has been round to murder me - yet!!
But then one of my blog friends was the subject of some really nasty stuff and had some childish tags left on his blog - which incidentally are anonymous so therefore a very cowardly way of having a go at someone. So I got to thinking about what I've been writing and decided to be careful when I stick my head above the barricades for a while till I've come to a conclusion.
So for now I'll stick to writing about my favourite subject - music!!
A journalist of my acquaintance once wrote in the Independent something like "Deadhead's like those great obsessives Bob Dylan fans...." I e-mailed him and asked if I was a fan of both Dylan and the Dead did it make me doubly obsessive? Yes he replied!
It was in these obsessions that my musical listening had been firmly routed last week, starting first with the Dead then progressing onto Dylan before I was jilted out of it by the unlikely pairing of Eminem and Gorillaz. My head feels like it shouldn't like Eminem but I do - I think he is a very talented poet even though his subject matter isn't always in good taste. I once got into trouble on a Bob Dylan group for suggesting that he was as good a poet as Zimmie and this seemed to ruffle a few feathers - hehe!!
This week I've listened to a diverse range of stuff some of which have brought back many memories of long ago. The first of these was triggered by a fellow blogger who said that she had been given tickets for Chris Rea as a birthday prezzie. Although not the sort of music I would currently listen to I do own a couple of his CD’s. I commented that his song Fool if you think it’s over always reminded me of my mother’s last few months just before she died.
Dyin' flame, you're free again
Who could love, and do that to you
All dressed in black, he won't be coming back
Save your tears
You've got years and years
I dug it out on Saturday morning and while I was listening to it my stepdaughter came and suddenly put her arms around me and gave me a hug. I’ve had a feeling for the last few years that there is a huge mental block that prevents me from remembering the past and particularly the times before my mum’s illness.Therefore it has been very therapeutic recently to listen to music that I haven’t listened to for a while and have it trigger off a memory, which then cascades into others and things long forgotten come streaming back. Once such incident happened this week whilst listening to Rory Gallagher.
The Rory Gallagher band was probably the second rock concert I went to back in 1977 and I think I saw him 3 or 4 times. I remembered stuff long forgotten such as sneaking into the City Hall at Newcastle to catch his encores after I’d been to see Here and Now at the University and it finished early. I also remembered him playing at Salford University and how I had opened the doors to let him into the building and how I had missed the gig because I spent the night trying to get into the knickers of a fellow student and despite managing to end up in her room I bottled it and ended up walking about 7 miles back to my house.
Black Uhuru were another band I dug out, this too was from university days and reminded me of my mate Brian. I saw them supporting the Rolling Stones at Wembley Stadium – not the ideal venue for reggae as I found out again a few years later when I saw UB40 supporting Bob Dylan there.
Other things listened to this week include the Peatbog Faeries, Elliot Smith, John Stewart, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young and Frank Zappa. I’ve also decided that I want to borrow my Franz Ferdinand CD back off my daughter!!
On Wednesday night I was doing the Cartier Racing awards at the Four Seasons hotel on Park Lane. I left home at 8am to drive up to central London, which is about 35 miles away. I finally arrived at 11:15, three and a half hours later!! I’d put three CD’s into the player to listen to on the journey and the last one was just finishing as I pulled into the hotel car park.
The meal was absolutely fantastic (my colleague managed to get away with saying “I’m starving, I could eat an horse”) and the show went really well. Afterwards I asked the concierge to get my car out of the hotel car park, which he did. I drove home arriving back at about a quarter to three in the morning only to find he’d left the keys to the garage on the passenger seat.
Also this week I found out that a fellow deadhead I know via the net turned 50 this week and he managed to get Jackie Leven (see earlier blog) to play at his birthday party – cool eh? Not only that but Jackie Leven agreed to let him record the show and circulate it among trading circles. I’ve downloaded it but haven’t had a chance to listen to it yet.
In case you’re interested the title is courtesy of the late great Viv Stanshall whose “Sir Henry at Rawlinson End” I finished the week listening to. I remember listening to this on John Peel’s show in the 70’s but it wasn’t until much later that I found out who and what it was. I passion I shared with a colleague Bill who later turned out to have an alter ego “Mr Blow-up” and won a Eurotrash award for most creative use of a fetish – but that’s another story.
Next time Ralph has his upper lip pierced so he can see where he’s going whilst whistling.