As of last Saturday, the UK is no longer part of the European Union. Personally I think that's a shame, and it's an even greater shame that our politicians have spent the last three and a half years posturing and acting as if the world owes us a living rather than making any serious attempt to agree a deal that would work for everyone. End of speech.
We are now in a transitional period where everything carries on as before until the end of the year. I want to use the time constructively, so - inspired in part by CC and George's 'State of the Union' series - I am going to take us all on a musical journey around the remaining 27 member states of the EU. In alphabetical order, not in some random sequence that makes sense only to George's butterfly mind (speaking of which, George's Butterfly Mind may well feature when we get to Greece - they are up there with Aphrodite's Child as one of the finest psych bands of their era).
There will be some peaks, and I daresay there will be some troughs as well (the stretch from Latvia to Malta is looking particularly skimpy at the moment). But I hope we'll have some adventures along the way, and enjoy the wonderful diversity that Europe has to offer.
Let's get the show on the road. In its day, Austria was the happening place as far as music was concerned. Its day ended in 1899 when Johan Strauss II died (an event that prompted a young Udo Jurgens to rush out a tribute record called "My My, Fraulein Austrian Strudel"). It has had a few more highlights since. These may not be them, but at least they aren't DJ Otzi.
"Kaiserhymne - Pink Punk Shirt" - Drahdiwaberl
"Inka City 60" - Die 4 Bambis
"Ich War Noch Niemals In New York" - Udo Jurgens
"Lady Bump" - Penny McLean
"Danndanke" - Effi