Archive for the music Category

The Cosmic Dancer and Cilla

Posted in anniversary, bowie, glam, Marc Bolan, music, rock, T.Rex, YOUTUBE on September 17, 2007 by planetmondo

Marc and Cilla

It seems appropriate to bookend this 30th anniversary weekend with another Marc Bolan moment, and only the seventies could bring you a moment like this.

Light Entertainment meets Glam Rock, as Marc Bolan and Cilla Black duet on Cosmic Dancer from the Cilla Show. Unfortunately the old spoilsport who uploaded this video hasn’t allowed embedding so you’ll gave to click on the “Marc and Cilla” link above to view it.

And if you’ve got time why not have a peep at this mini documentary. A six minute summary of Bolan and Glam with contributions from Sandie Shaw, Captain Sensible, Mick Rock, Johnny Marr and Marc Almond

One of the things I’ve noticed over the 3Oth anniversary of his death is how many blogs and bloggers with impeccable record collections, impossibly rare or tastefully trendy downloads haven’t just written about Marc Bolan, but have written enthusically about Marc and his music without irony or Rock Snobbery, as Marc Bolan and T.Rex fans.

Two of the best pieces I’ve come across are below, and both are based around visits to the Memorial site yesterday.


The Ghost of Electricity

It seems even 30 Years after his death, Marc Bolan is still as cool as ever.

“Me I funk but I don’t care
I ain’t no square with my corkscrew hair ” – Telegram Sam


It Was 30 Years Ago Today Pt. 2 – The Rex Factor

Posted in anniversary, bowie, glam, Marc Bolan, music, rock, T.Rex, YOUTUBE on September 13, 2007 by planetmondo

“Goodbye from all the boys in the band, David (Bowie),everybody,all the cats you know who they are” were his final words on TV.

I won’t blab on about Marc Bolan, there’ll be stacks of facts flying around this anniversary weekend. Instead I’ve picked 2 clips that show why, at just over five feet tall he towers above any of todays pop pretenders.

I’ve also popped a couple of T. Rextra bonus rarities/obscurities at the bottom for download. Slider or Tanx are my recommended Albums if you enjoyed these T.Rex treats and fancy digging deeper.

20th Century Boy – from Beat Club

This is the best version EVER!!!! of 20th Century Boy, where Marc swishes like a star,and struts like champ. Grinding his guitar all the way

Next To You – from The Marc Show

Bowie and Bolan (the Dynamic Duo of Glam) duetting on a some demolition riffery in Marc’s final TV appearance. This is one of only 2 songs that Bowie and Bolan wrote togther. Bolan had to be stood on a box to get in shot with Bowie, but he takes a tumble at the end.

Look out for Herbie (who wrote the bass line for Walk on The Wild Side)Flowers on Bass he also played with Bowie and Lou Reed. Tony Newman on drums, who’ll be on Funky Friday soon. And spot the Raleigh Stryker T Shirt.

T. Rextras – offline at the moment

Get It On
– rocking version, of a work in progress studio run through as Bolan gives directions to the band

Sunken Rags – an .alt version slightly punchier take of Sunken Rags

Raw Ramp – brilliant overlooked B side

Thunderwing – should’ve been a single.

Les Paul – He’s a Real Person and He’s Still Alive

Posted in books, guitar, les paul, music, rock, YOUTUBE on August 22, 2007 by planetmondo

The phrase “Les Paul” is regularly bounced around like a brand name, but unless you’re a guitar player, music anorak or Jazz fan – you may not have realised there is a real life Mr Les Paul.

This 2 minute mini clip is Les in action, and shows all you need to know about modern guitar playing in under 3 minutes – rocking riffs & rythms, cool chords, bouncing bass and shredding lead.

Les Paul is the Leonardo Da Vinci of modern music. He invented multi track recording, but most importantly designed and built the solid body electric guitar as we know it today. Guitars which, as Nik Cohn says in Awopbopaloobop Alopbamboom “Came on like space age musical monsters and, immediately, wiped out all of the politeness that had gone before”.

Les is a Jazzer rather than a Rocker, and if he’d have known that Jimmy Page’s Gibson Les Paul would be wacked with a violin bow, Pete Townsend’s would be smashed to smoke and splinters, or seen what Bowie would do to Mick Ronson’s – he may well have burnt the blueprint.

Les Paul is 92 and still plays once a week at Iridium Jazz Club in New York.

Randomiser number 2 – Never Mind The Balearics

Posted in ipod, music, Punk, Randomizer, Sex Pistols on August 17, 2007 by planetmondo

Every time an unexpected winner, a long lost favourite or previously unheard nugget shuffles it’s way into play on my mp3 player. I log it in the blog. This time its;

Los Punkrockers – Pretty Vacant.mp3

Imagine if Manuel from Fawlty Towers had gone giddy with the Punky spirit of 77, jacked in his job at the hotel and started a Spanish punk band (perhaps called The Siberian Hamsters) that only played Sex Pistols songs. It wouldn’t sound unlike Los Punkrockers.

This cover of Pretty Vacant comes from the album Exitos de Sex Pistols. Which is a complete track for track, straight ahead (no flamenco guitars,castanets or handclaps) rework of The Sex Pistols NMTB.

I haven’t found much ‘net news about the band or the album, but the general theory seems to be that it was recorded somewhere in Spain around 1978. I’m guessing that the line up may have included Juanny rotten, and Seneor Vicous (who replaced Glen Matador),

Theres some tip top ‘lost in translation’ lyrics on it

Pretty Vacant ” we’re so pretty oh so pretty … wee Will Carter”

Bodies “she was girl from Bimingham – her name was Colin, childhood express”

It’s like Channel 9 version of punk, sort of Holidays in the Scorchio

What a gem – Fill your Doc Martens while you can.

Thanks to Agent Paul Cooper giving me the tip off about this peachy piece of punk obscurity.

It Was 30 Years Ago Today Pt. 1 – Elvis

Posted in anniversary, Elvis, Elvis Presley, lists, music, Presley, rock n roll on August 16, 2007 by planetmondo

Instead of adding to the flood of anniversary facts, theories and opinions about Elvis on the ‘net – I’m going let the music speak for itself, by listing 5 tracks (and the albums they come from) which really capture the essence of Elvis for me

Hound Dog – A Golden Celebration

This the version where Elvis bump-and-grinds himself into TV history. Stunning.
Can you imagine how shocking this must have been back in the black and white 50’s?????

Baby What Do You Want Me To Do? – Memories-The ’68 Comeback Special

While most musicians of the time were becoming strung out stoners. Elvis was back in black leather.

Only The Strong Survive – The Memphis Record

Soul, Gospel, Raw Blues, Bacharach tunes, – Its all here. Elvis goes Northern Soul on this track

I Didn’t Make It On Playing Guitar – Essential Elvis Vol.4: a Hundred Years from Now

Undubbed, and unedited. Elvis and the band tear it up live in the studio, without the usual choir of angels backing vocals or sugary strings.

I’ve Got A Feelin’ In My Body – Essential Elvis Vol 5 Rhythm and Country

Elvis in full funk mode. And there’s country, folk and acoustic – all recorded at Stax studios. He may be a bit wobbly on a couple of tracks. But, Good Time Charlie’s Got The Blues, and For Ol’ Times Sake are his best ballads ever.

Randomizer number 1 – A Track Could Get Lost

Posted in 80's, ipod, Mp3, music, Randomizer, Soft Cell, tronic youth on August 15, 2007 by planetmondo

Following on from the random ramble in my last post, (which was prompted by the track below suddenly being dusted off, cued up and cranked by my Creative Zen player while in shuffle mode) I’ve decided that every time an unexpected winner, a long lost favourite or previously unheard nugget shuffles it’s way into play on my mp3 player. I’m going to log it in the blog.

The first one up is

Soft Cell – A Man Could Get Lost (Instrumental version)

I hadn’t heard this track for at least 20 years, had completely forgotten about it , and didn’t even know it was 1 of the 10,000 tracks on my player until shuffle threw this non stop nugget into the spotlight yesterday

What a winner!! It’s packed full of fat analogue 80’s synths and drums, fizzing, whizzing and clapping away, there’s thumping riffs and glossy pop hooks, wrapped in a shadowy, sleazy darkness that Soft Cell did so well. But, the most amazing thing is how clubby and contemporary it sounds. I can’t believe it’s over 25 years old, it’s got such a trendy sparkle that it could be a Tronik Youth
or Mylo remix

How come bootleg remixers, and TV advertisers have let this elctro cracker of track slip through the net

If you’ve got A Man Could Get Lost somewhere spin it up today, if you haven’t treat yourself and download it.

A Man Could Get Lost is available on Non Stop Ecstatic Dancing here

And there’s great feature on the recording of Non Stop Ecstatic Dancing by Mike Thorne here

The Random Button That Changed The World

Posted in ipod, Mp3, music, randomiser, technology on August 15, 2007 by planetmondo

Who would have thought that one tiny button could have changed the world, the way we listen to, buy and collect music. Who is the anonymous boffin that when they were developing CD players, snapped their fingers and decided (in a Jeff Goldblum voice) “what we need is a randomizer”?

When CD’s were first hyped in the 80’s, all the puff n’ promo was about the shiny new Tonka toy technology which was virtually indestructible. Unlike dusty ol’ vinyl, You could cover CD’s in jam (but why would you want to?) and they would still deliver perfect sound. You could gauge them with 6 inch nails (would you do this to vinyl??) and they could still carry on playing. They should last forever -(they wouldn’t, and definitely not if you looked after them like that.)

When I got my first Sony CD player in 1986 the new digitized sound was ok – It was louder, the cosy hissy clicks had gone, and I didn’t have to get up to turn anything over. But the one thing that totally changed the way I listened to music was the random/shuffle button .

No more mentally cueing up what was coming next on the album. Suddenly everything was non linear and out of context. All my ol’ favourites and not so favourites were randomly popping up like fireworks and going off all over the place. A couple of years laterI got my first multi disc CD player, and was in random mix up meltdown.

But it seems it wasn’t just me that had a buzz for shuffling . Apple achieved global domination and branding, by merging the principal of multi disc CD players, with the random/shuffle button and distilling it into the iPod. Which in turn changed the way people, buy, store and listen to music. Randomizing is so popular that Apple managed to redefine it again with the iPod shuffle. And now Radio stations like Jack FM in the states, that are based around randomizing instead of heavily formatted, playlisted shows are becoming big news. They’re even coming over here, Jack FM is being trialled in Oxford right now.

Whoever it was that came up with the “random” button , should have patented it. They would have made Bill Gates or tetra pack type fortune by now if they had.