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Monday 30 December 2019

Should Auld Acquaintance Be Forgot

As we reach the end of another year, it's time to remember some of the many talented people who left us over the last twelve months. RIP, all of you.

"Hey Truckers" - Andre Williams

"Canebrake" - Bob Frank

"Missin' My Baby" - Clydie King

"Anita" - Costa Cordalis

"Would You" - Dave Bartholomew

"Miserlou" - Dick Dale

"We Had It All" - Donnie Fritts

"Secret Love" - Doris Day

"Jump Sturdy" - Dr. John

"Precious, Precious" - Jackie Moore

"Serious Thing" - Jah Stitch

"Umbaqanga Music" - Juluka (Johnny Clegg)

"Police Car" - Larry Wallis

"Cora Jones" - Neal Casal

"Kunze Kwadoka" - Oliver Mtukudzi

"So Excited" - Ranking Roger

"Birds'd Crash" - Roky Erikson (with Okkervill River)

"Lights of Cincinatti" - Scott Walker

"Candy Jail" - Silver Jews (David Berman)

"Hundred Pounds Of Lovin'" - Sleepy LaBeef

We also lost Barrie, Larry, Daniel and The Captain along the way.

Saturday 28 December 2019

Rif Riders

I'm back from a Christmas break in northern Morocco. Very nice it was too. I managed to pick up some dodgy bootleg CDs at assorted market stalls in Tangier, Tetouan and Martil. You can look forward to some of the highlights over the next few weeks.

First up we have a couple of tracks from a compilation called 'Rif Hits'. The Rif region stretches across the northern coastal parts of Morocco from Tangier in the west to Berkane in the east, and is framed by the mountain range of the same name.

Judging by the number of times he appears of the compilation, Mo Temsamani seems to be the main man round that way, so he has to feature. And how could we leave DJ Shebsy out?

"Mama Zina" - Mo Temsamani (featuring Laila Chakir)

"Alaoui Dance" - DJ Shebsy

While staying in Tangier I took a pleasant trip on the train down to the delightful little town of Asilah. I thought about honouring the journey in song, but I couldn't find a track called "Regional service to Rabat, change at Kenitra for connections to Fes and Marrakech", so this will have to do.

Friday 20 December 2019

Back Then Again

As promised a few weeks ago, here is the second part of our top 20 hot and happening tunes from 1989. As a nod to the festive season, it includes a Christmas song and one with Jesus in the title.

"Zigitup" - Ninjaman & Flourgon

"I Got Da Feelin'" - Sweet Tee

"Gallo Del Cielo" - Tom Russell

"Radio Lover" - George Jones

"The Mayor Of Simpleton" - XTC

"You Happy Puppet" - 10,000 Maniacs

"If I Could Open Up My Heart" - Otis Clay

"Play One For Melo" - Mighty Sparrow

"Baldhead Jesus" - Bunny Wailer

"Merry Christmas (I Don't Want To Fight Tonight)" - The Ramones

We'll finish with the 89th biggest UK hit of 1989. I'm off now until after Xmas. Have a good one, I hope you don't feel like prisoners too when Boxing Day morning comes around.

Wednesday 18 December 2019

Crockett In My Pocket

A couple of country tunes for you today courtesy of Howard Crockett, best known - if known at all - for writing "Honky Tonk Man" and other hits for Johnny Horton. He was pretty nifty as a singer as well.

"Wine-O From Chicago" - Howard Crockett

"Soap And Water" - Howard Crockett

Monday 16 December 2019

Oud Dudes

I'm just back after working in Oman for a couple of weeks. I would definitely recommend you visit if you get the chance, some of the scenery is magnificent.

At one point it looked like I was going to return home empty-handed, musically speaking. As far as I can tell there isn't a single record shop in Muscat, not even a chain store in the malls. But then I got chatting of one of the people I was working with, Khaled, and discovered that he was a master oud player. I'm sure I don't need to tell you that the oud is the traditional lute-type instrument found across Arabia and beyond.

At the end of my stay Khaled very kindly presented me with a double CD of performances by members of the organisation he is actively involved with, the catchily named Oman Oud Hobbyists Association. Here are a couple of tracks. The sleeve notes are in Arabic and very, very small so I have no idea what they are called.

"Track 8, CD 1" - The Oman Oud Hobbyists Association 

"Track 3, CD 2" - The Oman Oud Hobbyists Association 

And here is a song all about romance in Oman, give or take an R.

Friday 13 December 2019

Political Lies

No further explanation required for our readers in the region currently known as the United Kingdom.

"Political Lies" - Robin Williamson