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Thursday 30 November 2017

Halls Of Fame And Infamy

Earlier this week I had to dust off my monkey suit for its annual outing to an awards ceremony related to the day job. The culmination of the evening - I say 'culmination' because I couldn't really use the word 'highlight' with any sincerity - is the dishing out of the lifetime achievement award. Which got me thinking about other, more interesting, Halls of Fame.

"Dreamers' Hall of Fame" - Jeb Stuart

"Fools' Hall Of Fame" - Ike Lovely

"My Home Ain't In The Hall Of Fame" - Jonathan Edwards

While we're on the subject, you might want to know that voting on the next batch of potential inductees to the Rock 'n Roll Hall of Fame closes next Tuesday. I've voted for these three.

Tuesday 28 November 2017

Mister Matafale from Malawi

Last time out we had some top tunes from Zimbabwe for you. Today we are hopping over the border to Malawi to bring you some soulful reggae courtesy of Evison Matafale and his Black Missionaries.

Evison died while in police custody in 2001, officially due to natural causes linked to a pre-existing illness. He was a critic of the then President of Malawi, Bakili Muluzi. There are those who suspect the two statements are not unconnected.

"Yang'ana Nkhope" - Evison Matafale & The Black Missionaries

"ZakaZonsezi" - Evison Matafale & The Black Missionaries

Some of you may have noticed things have been a bit irregular around here recently. That is mainly because I've been travelling quite a bit, but things are quietening down on that front so should be livening up on this one. I'm even considering a special 'Twelve Days of Nederfolk' feature for you, if I can get round to getting it sorted (you may have your fingers crossed that I don't).

Until next time, here is an utterly unrelated video. This is for a pal of mine.

Friday 17 November 2017

Big in Bulawayo

What with Zimbabwe being in the news at the moment, I thought I would dig out a few oldies but goodies from the Harare Hit Parade of yesteryear.

"First Aid" - Safirio Madzikatire & Sea Cottage Sisters

"Ekhaya" - Jobs Combination

"Manheru Changamire" - Hallelujah Chicken Run Band

While Mugabe's departure - if that is what it turns out to be - is long overdue, it is hard to think of a military takeover as being a good thing in itself. Unless, perhaps, you are a Liberal Reactionary like Charity Chic. On which subject, that crazed despot has insisted that I bring you a bit of Lulu, so here she is. The title seemed suitable for a military coup.

Wednesday 15 November 2017

What Have We Got? Two Lous

Well, four Lous actually, and a Lew thrown in for good measure.

"Love Is A Hurting Thing" - Lou Rawls

"Understand Each Other" - Lou Ragland

"She's Not Mama's Little Girl Anymore" - Lou Roberts

"Why Must Our Eyes Always Be Turned Backwards" - Lou Bond

"Come On With It" - Lew Kirton

And here is another Lou attempting, less successfully, to do the soul thing.

Monday 6 November 2017

Da Doo Ronnie Ronnie

This will be the last post from me for a week or so. I'm off to Germany in the morning for a few days' work followed by a weekend mooching round Berlin.

Bearing in mind the somewhat lukewarm response last time we featured some German popular music on here, I have decided to spare you that - although you know as well as I do it is just deferring the inevitable. Instead, here are six soulful Ronnies to keep you company while I'm gone.

"Put Your Tears Away" - Ronnie Jones

"A Wednesday In Your Garden" - Ronnie Dyson

"I'd Much Rather Be With The Girls" - Ronnie Spector

"Guess I'll Never Understand (The Workings Of Your Mind)" - Ronnie Walker

"Se Algeum Chorou" - Ronnie Von

"A Million Miles to Paradise" - Ronnie Cook & The Superbs

And here's another excellent Ronnie as an extra special treat.

Friday 3 November 2017

The Taxman Cometh

A couple of selections tonight from "Confessions of an I.R.S. Groupie", a 1988 compilation from - obviously - I.R.S. Records. Judging by this album, the former home of REM and The Go-Go's had started to go off the boil quite badly by 1988. There is an awful lot of dodgy heavy metal, dull jazz-rock instrumentals and an attempt at blue-eyed soul that might have been OK had it not been for the dreadful production values that blighted nearly all soul music in the 1980s.

But it is not all bad. Here are couple of tracks from two bands I had never previously heard of. Reckless Sleepers is clearly "inspired by" Tom Petty, but is none the worse for that; and I do like The Balancing Act (although I could have done without the guitar solo).

"If We Never Meet Again" - Reckless Sleepers

"Can You Get To That?" - The Balancing Act

The only actual hit on the album is this one, which I've always had a bit of a soft spot for, although for the life of me I couldn't tell you why.