Thursday, 23 June 2016

Memory Lane

Come Saturday morning I'll be tootling off for a week or so. As is sort of traditional on these occasions, here are a selection of tracks we first featured back in 2009, when this blog was taking baby steps.

The first two tracks are particularly appropriate with the weather we have had today. The Fotheringay track is also apt, as I am off to see them - or the surviving members at least - in concert tomorrow. By contrast, I doubt there is ever an appropriate time to play Bobby Hendricks' "sakkie-sakkie" version of "Agadoo". What was I thinking?

"I Like London When It Rains" - Blossom Dearie

"The Thunderer" - Dion

"Gypsy Davey" -  Fotheringay

"Let's Have A Party" - Geraldo Pino

"What You Gawn Do?" - Curtis Mayfield

"Agadoo" - Bobby Hendricks

And where I am tootling off to, you may ask? Well that would be telling, wouldn't it.

Sunday, 19 June 2016

Keeping Up With The Joneses

Eight songs by people called Jones, and not a Welsh person amongst them. Nothing against the Welsh, I hasten to add, and we'll put it right in a big way when we get to the YouTube clips.

Today is my buddy Gail's birthday. She has been a great support to me over the years, and even more than ever recently. The title of the Jacqueline Jones track sums up exactly what she does for me, so it is dedicated to her.

And as today is also Father's Day and my Dad has a very impressive Roman nose, "Little Caesar" is dedicated to him.

"You Made My Life A Sunny Day" - Jacqueline Jones

"Little Caesar" - Sammy Jones

"The Lone Ranger" - George Jones

"Help Me Make Up My Mind" - Joyce Jones

"Bad Bad Boy" - Paul Jones

"Just You And Me" - Tamiko Jones

"Day Dreaming" - I Jones

"The Gospel of Carlos, Norman and Smith" - Rickie Lee Jones

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Doo What?

Short and sweet tonight. Two tracks from a compilation called "Doo-Wop Soul Volume 3", followed by some real authentic doo-wop in the clip.

"Cherry Lips" - The Robins

"Tonite Tonite" - The Mello Kings

Sunday, 12 June 2016

Eat Crayfish!

How better to pass a slightly miserable Sunday afternoon that by digging out possibly the most emblematic Afrikaans rock album of all time. Don't snigger, there really is such a thing. It's "Eat Kreef!", the 1989 debut album by the late, lamented Johannes Kerkorrel and his pals in the Gereformeerde Blues Band.

Obviously you miss out a bit if you neither understand the language nor the context which gave it such an impact - I can't help with the former but you can read up on the Voelvry Movement - but it is still worth a few minutes of your time.

"Hillbrow" - Johannes Kerkorrel en die Gereformeerde Blues Band

"BMW" - Johannes Kerkorrel en die Gereformeerde Blues Band

Today's clip is a bit of a gem. It is from South African TV in 1989, it starts with Johannes and the boys miming to "Sit Dit Af" while bopping around what appears to be someone's living room, leads in to an interview conducted by Evita Bezuidenhout - who will take too long to explain but is a sort of political Afrikaans Edna Everage - and ends with "Donker Donker Land" which is oddly all the more moving for having Evita gazing dramatically at Johannes in the background. Have fun!

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

South African Selection

If you find yourself in the Gardens district of Cape Town, there is a second hand record shop that I can never remember the name of - not very helpful I know, but if you ask a local they can direct you I'm sure.

In many respects its a excellent shop, with a huge selection of vinyl in particular. But in one respect it is in a bit of an unwelcome time warp. Because you could spend all day in there and you are unlikely to find more than a handful of records by black South African artists. I am sure this just reflects the abandoned record collections of their clientele rather than being a deliberate management policy, but it is a shame nonetheless.

Anyway, I was in there the other week and came across a job lot of promo compilation CDs of South African music. Called "Selection", they were issued by the radio station 5FM in the mid-2000s. As they were going for the equivalent of about 40p each I chose a few at random.

Unfortunately, like the record store itself, they aren't really very representative of the breadth of the local music scene, consisting mostly of rather derivative indie rock and hip-hop. But there are a few goodies, including these two from Volumes 10 and 11, both of which came out in 2005.

"Engimthandayo" - Mfiliseni Magubane

"Sana Lwam" - Zola (featuring Unathi)

Yes, folks. For authentic indigenous African music, look no further.

Saturday, 4 June 2016

Two Of The Greatest

As seems to be happening far too often this year, we are scrapping the planned post to pay inadequate tribute to a couple of legends. This time it is the greatest fiddle player of all time and The Greatest full stop. RIP Muhammad Ali and Dave Swarbrick.

"Cassius Clay" - Dennis Alcapone

"Cassius Clay" - Tabu Ley Rochereau

"Muhammad Ali" - Tom Russell

"Black Superman" - Johnny Wakelin

"The Bonny Black Hare" - Fairport Convention

"The Hen's March/ The Four Poster Bed" - Fairport Convention

Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Ollie Days

I'm back from my annual trip to South Africa, laden down with assorted Tsonga and other musical goodies for you to enjoy.

More of that anon. But first here are a couple of cracking soul tunes from 1968 by Ollie & The Nightingales. Formerly gospel group the Dixie Nightingales, they sold their souls and went secular when they joined Stax in 1968, changing their name in the process. Ollie was lead singer Ollie Hoskins.

These Nightingales are not to be confused with Birmingham's own Nightingales, who are still going strong after more than 35 years. Or indeed with Maxine Nightingale, who may be as well - let's hope so anyway.

"Brace Myself For The Fall" - Ollie & The Nightingales

"I've Never Found A Girl" -  Ollie & The Nightingales

"Paraffin Brain" - The Nightingales