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Saturday 30 November 2019

Big Gold Dream - 4

Shop Assistants

As Brian correctly predicted in last week's comment section I had an enjoyable problem choosing jut three songs from Disc 4.
We are now slap bang in C-86 territory as it covers the period 1985 - 1987.

I could have chosen at least a dozen songs but I've decided to start with two bands from Bellshill the town in Lanarkshire which gave us a number of great bands including the two below, the Vaselines, Teenage Fanclub and of course Sheena Easton.
The town features as part of the John Peel Sound of the Suburbs TV series. Here's a snipet . The whole programme is available over two clips on You Tube

The first band to feature is the band fronted by dufflecoated Sean Dickon above. The Soup Dragons were named after a character in the wonderful TVcartoon the Clangers which can also be accessed via You Tube.
From May 1986 Whole Wide World was their debut single on theSubway Organisation label

The BMX Bandits are described as a Bellshill super group in waiting (although that honour ultimately went to Teenage Fanclub)
Frontman Duglas T Stewart is described in the sleevenotes as courting a wilfully naive persona.. I think he would approve of that description. Still leading a later lineup of the band Duglas is a Scottish music stalward who you often bump into at gigs across Glasgow.

Finally we are off to Edinburgh to touch base with the Shop Assistants earning a nod of approval from Brian. Somewhere in China was the b-side to the single Safety Net and confirms to me that they require to be on the shelves.

Concluding disc next Saturday

The Soup Dragons - Whole Wide World

BMX Bandits - Strawberry Sunday

Shop Assistants -Somewhere in China (LP version)

Friday 29 November 2019

He's A Rebel 2

The more switched on among you may be thinking "He's a Rebel 2? Hang on a minute. where is He's a Rebel 1?.
A very good question but one I'm afraied that I don't know the answer to.
You see when I picked up this 3CD boxset from the Community Shop in Newton Stewart (a new venue for me) it only contained the 2nd and 3rd discs.
I think I can live with that as  even 40 songs for 50p is a bit of a steal.

An interesting album.Phil Spector meets Motown meets various others.
You will all be familiar with my first two choices (who have graced these pages with different songs) but probably not with my final choice.

Mama Said is probably the second most famous song by The Shirelles after Will You Love Me Tomorrow  (Often wrongly referred to as Will You Still Love Me Tomoorow)

George Harrison has been accussed of plagairising She's So Fine by The Chiffons on My Sweet Lord and you can see why.

Philadelphia band The Orlons cheat somewhat as the have a male member (Stephen Caldwell) alongside  the three female members. He is the only one still alive as lead singer Rosetta Hightower  died in 2014, Shirley Brickley in 1977 and Marlena Davis in 1993.

I'm off to perfect the Wah -Watusi prior to next week's instalment

The Shirelles - Mama Said

The Chiffons - He's So Fine

The Orlons -The Wah-Watusi

Thursday 28 November 2019

Ragged Glories

In  a fairly unusual move you are getting two songs from 2019 today on CCM.
They both feature on Ragged Glories which comes with the December issue of Mojo so I figure it's alright to give them a blast.
The title and the picture are clues to the theme which is celebrating 50 years of Neil Young and Crazy Horse and the transformational power of electric guitars.
No Neil today though.

We are starting with Still Here Now from the album These Times by The Dream Syndicate on the Anti label. If you are talking top guitarists then Jason Victor is right up there.This is an album that I actually purchased this year and one that I am slowly getting to grips with.

I have nothing by the second act Big Thief but Not from the albumTwo Hands on 4AD is rather tasty.
According to Mojo exceptional guitar fireworks begin at 3:21.

Talking of exceptional guitar fireworks I'm off to listen to Cortez the Killer and Powderfinger.
50 years, eh?

The Dream Syndicate - Still Hear Now

Big Thief - Not

Wednesday 27 November 2019

State of the Union - Arizona

George writes
Last week it was only possible to create 4 track EP from the state of Massachusetts. That’s a poor showing. Let’s see if Arizona, this week’s state, can do better. Given that Phoenix is in Arizona I think there’s a good chance. 

The shop WH Smith in England (I’m not sure they existed in Scotland at the time) banned the album because of its allegedly rude title…..the one that is a biblical quote….

Lynda (“In her satin tights, fighting for your rights---------------WONDER WOMAN!!!”) Carter was born in Phoenix.  

Unfortunately the Wishbone Ash track on their first album, side 2 track 2 cannot be included, which is a great pity, a ten-and-a-half minute masterpiece. But that’s the rules. And so to a song by singer-songwriter Dan Fogelberg. My initial reaction to this was, well, unfavourable, it’s a bit cheesy, it’s got that smooth production that can be irritating, it has an extended guitar playout that is decidedly bland, and yet it’s somehow a quite wonderful 8-and-a-half minute pop song……

There’s a song of the same name by Rory Gallagher. Not here. And there’s a bizarre track by Giorgio Moroder, called Arizona Man, dating from 1970.

A man from Arizona sold, for $5.50 on ebay, an air-guitar he had played at a Bon Jovi concert.

And there are 11 types of rattlesnake to be found in Arizona. And no, no chance of anything by Lloyd Cole.

And Tombstone does seem to be a place in Arizona, and there might even have been a gunfight there. And if Johnny Cash sings about it, it must be true!

There is also the Dylan song (“the sun ain’t yellow, it’s chicken”), but given all the references to death it is probably not referencing the town in Arizona.

So 5 tracks, an extended EP?

And that’s Arizona. Another one next week

CC writes
That's a great picture of you on air guitar. I bet his version was better than Bon Jovi's
Here is the brilliant Alejandro Escovedo from The Boxing Mirror album

There are many versions of By The Time I Get to Phoenix. This is probably the longest one.

Tuesday 26 November 2019

Some Snidey Music

I picked up Your Favorite Song the second album from Americana band Clem Snide released in the UK on Cooking Vinyl in 2001 at the weekend in my local charity shop.
It was 3 CDs for a pound and I was struggling until the lady kindly went into the back shop and brought out some more of which this was one.
I  recognised the name and I thought (correctly) that I had some of their stuff on compilations.
It has jumped the queue of records to feature as I have actually managed to listen to it in its entirity.

The jury is out. In places it is a bit one-dimensional. Also a couple of pretty good songs are ruined by some background warbling. There are one or two that past muster but I'm not yet sure if it is a keeper.

They are named after a character who pops up in a number of books by William S Burroughs.
In Glasgow snidey is a word for someone who is a bit sneaky and untrustworthy  and a bit fly. Insert your choice of politician here.

The first song is somewhat apt given I have just joined a gym. I was using it for showers when the bathroom was out of order (it is now finally completed and looking good) and felt that I needed to do some exercise to address my evergrowing gut and general lack of fitness.
It may lead to a reduction in actity here as I juggle for time but hopefully not.

Clem Snide - Exercise

Clem Snide - Messiah Complex Blues

Monday 25 November 2019

Seven Up

Charity Chic Music is seven years old today and this year I have actually remembered to mark the occasion with a post on the correct date.
Like many of my esteemed colleagues on the right I have found it a bit of of a struggle on occasions this year sometimes being devoid of motivation and inspiration.
But I'm still here with no plans to chuck it as yet.
Indeed I have a new weekly series planned in the New Year which if I see it to it's conclusion will see me until just about 2021. So you are stuck with me until then at least.

Anyway, enough of this nonsense.
Let's get back to what you all come here for as opposed to my witterings.
Here are a Magnificent Seven songs which I  hope represent the type of music I have been offering up/subjecting you to (delete where appropriate) over  the last seven years.

The Clash - The Magnificent Seven

Chuck Woods -Seven Days Too Long

Culture - Two Sevens Clash

Steve Young - Seven Bridges Road

The White Stripes - Seven Nation Army

Love - Seven & Seven Is

Desmond Dekker- 007 (Shanty Town)

Sunday 24 November 2019

Taken From the Vaults

Kent Records have recently released Dave Godin's Deep Soul Treasures Volume 5.
Th album cover does not include the moniker Taken From the Vaults which features on the first four volumes.
It would have been prothetic given that Dave Godin died in  2004.
If you a fan of soul at all you really need all five volumes - 125 songs of unerring quality which if they were all you had would still be a pretty impressive collection.

The link above gives the track listing for the first four volumes with the Ace Records website doing the honours for volume 5
If the quality of volume 5 has dipped slightly on a couple of songs it is only be comparison to the other 4.It is a must have.

James Carr - These Ain't Raindrops

Gladys Knight & the Pips -Lovers Always Forgive

Saturday 23 November 2019

Big Gold Dream - 3

An embarassment of riches to choose from this week on Disc 3 from 1982 to 1985
It would have been easy to feature the Bluebells (but Cath has appeared here before),or the Waterboys,Aztec Camera, Cocteau Twins or the Jesus and Mary Chain but I thought I would go for some of the lesser known artists.

You could argue that Strawberry Switchblade are reasonably well known but they only ever had one album and one huge hit with Since Yesterday.
Here is the first single from Rose McDowell and Jill Bryson recorded on the 92 Happy Customers label run by Will Sergeant of Echo and the Bunnymen fame.

The Suede Crocodiles were a band fronted by Kevin McDermott who featured here pretty recently
Stop the Rain was a 1983 single on the NoStrings label.They were originally called Popgun not to be confused with Brighton band The Popguns a firm favourite of our dear friend Brian

After two Weegie acts we leave the City of Culture and head north to the City of the Furry Boots. Fit like Lynchie?
Aberdeen band The Jasmine Minks,fronted by Jim Shepherd and Adam Sanderson, were signed to Alan McGee's Creation label  releasing their debut single Think! in 1984.

Another plethora of pop perfection to choose from next week when we dip into Disc 4.

Strawberry Switchblade - Trees and Flowers

The Suede Crocodiles - Stop the Rain

The Jasmine Minks - Think!

Friday 22 November 2019

Rock Billy Boogie

It's a wee while since we have had some Friday rockabilly
I spotted Rock Billy Boogie  by Robert Gordon among the floatsom and jetsom in the most chaotic CD section on the planet namely in BRICC in Ballantrae.
The name rang a vague bell so I took a chance, I vaguely recalled that there may be a connection with Link Wray and I was right as they recorded a record together in 1977.
Rock Billy Boogie is his third album from 1979.
He had been on the go for a few years before that as a member of New York punk band Tuff Darts but as a rocker at heart he took advantage of the Rockabilly revival in the late 70's - Stray Cats, Pole Cats, Shakin' Pyramids etc
Chris Spedding of Motor Bikin' fame is on lead guitar.

I'm off to look out my Black Slacks

Robert Gordon - I Just Found Out

Robert Gordon - Black Slacks

Robert Gordon - I Just Met a Memory

Wednesday 20 November 2019

State of the Union - Massachusetts

George writes

Thank the dear lord, the “band” Boston’s first album, called Boston, does not have a song on it called Boston. For some idiotic reason I would have felt duty-bound to include it here. And you’re not getting the obvious dirgey drivel from the Bee Gees. Instead, here it is by one of our now-favourite Czech singers, Václav Neckář:

If there was a place called Staying Alive I would have posted that song (is there a catchier riff anywhere in the entirety of popular music?)
Massachusetts claims to be the place that invented throwing a ball through a hoop suspended ca. 3m off the ground. And in Holyoke, Willie Morgan, many, many years before he played for Manchester United, invented a less rough game than basketball that was intended for older members of his local YMCA. A version of this game is on occasion played on some beaches in Brazil, for example, by exceptionally scantily-clad people.

You might now be able to discern, thanks to my witterings (as CC himself refers to them) that there will be no Massachusetts ICA. Such is the dearth of decent songs it might turn to be a Massachusetts 4-track EP. 

There is this, though,  by our new favourite Estonian singer Jaak Joala:

And there is this piece of jangly americana:

Some readers might be too young to remember the next group:

And this is not a country song  despite the performer having a name that suggests otherwise:

This is track 8 on the Become What You Are album:

Allegedly Ms Hatfield is a fan of the music of Olivia Newton-John (well, who isn’t?) and The Police (utterly preposterous). 

And there it is, the Massachusetts EP.

And saving the best ‘til last, Betty Chung warbles away in mandarin

You’re not getting the Ervinna version, it’s in a language we can all understand.

The state motto is something do with seeking peace using a sword.

Another state next week.

CC writes:
Are you going to the party?
Are you going to the Boston Tea Party
Or are you Lost in Boston

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band - Boston Tea Party

The Walkmen -Lost in Boston

Tuesday 19 November 2019

Madness, They Call it Madness

Up until about a week ago I never owned anything by Madness apart from the odd download here and there or a song or two on compilations.
They were a great singles band and produced a lot of good songs but I have never felt the urge to splash the cash until now.
Bu what the hell - it is time to start living on the edge and for a whopping 50p in BRICC in Ballantrae I became the proud owner of a slightly battered but perfectly playable Complete Madness CD.
Welcome to The House of Fun

Madness - Madness

Madness - One Step Beyond

Madness - The Prince

Monday 18 November 2019

As Tears Go By

We are back from our week away to a bombsite.
The plan was that when we were away a new bathroom was to be put in.
However, when ripping out the bath they discovered that there was a degree of rot underneath leading to the joists having to be replaced.
All of which has led to a delay.
So after a week in  a hotel in Portpatrick we had to spend the weekend in a hotel in East Kilbride.
It is still not finished so there may well be a reduced service again this week as we try to get back to some sort of normality.

As for the music meagre pickings on our travels although I did pick up the above album  by Marianne Faithfull which focusses on her output from the 60's.
You should all be familiar with these two.

Marianne Faithfull - As Tears Go By

Marianne Faithfull -Sister Morphine

Saturday 16 November 2019

Big Gold Dreams -2


Disc two of Big Gold Dreams - A Story of Scottish Independent Music 1977- 1989 covers the period 1980 to 1882.
After listening to this disc I have come to the conclusion that after Zimbabwe, Scotland is in fact the spiritual home of jingly jangly guitar music.

I missed Edinburgh band Scars at the time first becoming aware of them after watching The Sound of Young Scotland documentary.
In the comments section of my previous post about them some of my esteemed colleagues waxed lyrical about All About You. I can now see why.

I never knew that so many bands had come out of Edinburgh until I got this boxset. I was however aware that Josef K originated from there although they had the good sense to switch from Salt'n' Sauce to Salt'n'Vinegar when they signed to Glasgow's Postcard label. Sorry For Laughing, however, was released on the Belgian Les Disques du Crepescule label.

I've no idea where Everest the Hardway originate from but I now know that they had two bass players one of whom Ian Stoddart went on to join Win with the other Mike Peden joining The Chimes who had abig hit with the awful I Still Haven't Found Who I'm Looking For.

Disc three next week

Scars - All About You

Josek K - Sorry For Laughing

Everest the Hard Way - Tightrope

Wednesday 13 November 2019

State of the Union - Mississippi

George writes
Yes that is indeed the state flag.

R. L. Burnside was born in Mississippi. If you do nothing else today just watch this from 1978, it is absolutely fantastic.

And here’s another  song.

This song really should not still be relevant 55 years after it was recorded. So that’s two songs I’ve given you that will not be surpassed by anything else you hear today.

Next is a track by late 60s hairy hippy rockers  Mountain (and for crying out loud don’t show any children a photograph of this lot, they’ll be scarred for life)

Obligatory country track is provided by Charley Pride, a lovely velvety voice he has here:

Charley Pride was born in Sledge, Mississippi.

I’ll spare you the dreadful Merle Haggard song, and instead give you this majestic song from Peace To The Neighborhood, which comes pretty damned close to being as good as the first two tracks above:

Mr Staples was born in Winona, Mississippi. 

Nina Simone’s track is simply not nearly good enough for me to post. And the one I know you wanted, by Pussycat is not about the state as far as I can make out from the lyrics.

Instead, here’s Chester Arthur Burnett, who was born in White Station, Mississippi:

Alexander O’Neal and “Hound Dog” Taylor were born in Natchez. 

The song Jackson, made famous by Mr and Mrs Cash, is not about Jackson, Mississippi, I checked. But, looka yonder, here’s a song that references Elvis Presley’s birthplace:

From when Nick Cave was good…..

And here’s another  blues song:

Mr Hooker was born in Tutwiler, Mississippi.

I can’t work out what Jackson Lucinda Williams is referring to so I can’t include it here.

Not quite an ICA, as there are 7 tracks, not the ten as required by JC, but when put together  still album length. A short album of ca. 30 mins, but Pet Sounds is shorter, as is Last Dance Before Highway.

Another one next week.

CC writes
Here are three to complete the ICA.
Surprised George missed the first one

Jim White - Handcuffed to a Fence in Mississippi

Little Milton - Tupelo Honey

Bobbie Gentry - Mississipi Delta

Sunday 10 November 2019

Songs in the Key of Life

I picked up Songs in the Key of Life in Ballater's only charity shop.
What's that you ask? You are only just getting to picking up this masterpiece?
Surely it has been on the shelves before now?

Of course it has silly. I was merely replacing the older version which was one of those old double CD jibjobs which is about an inch thick.Given that space is always at a premium, despite a recent investment in some new CD towers, it seemed like a good idea. Plus it is always good to give a charity shop custom particularly when they let me have a look at the CDs in the back shop. Sadly I had the few good ones and nothing else caught my fancy.

From 1976 on the Tamla (Motown) label it is part of Stevie Wonder's 70s holy trinity alongside Talking Book and Innervisions.Fulfillingness' First Finale  is another album from that period that often gets a mention but is not one that I am familiar with.I probably ought to be.

I would put it third after Innervisions first and Talking Book second. It's still a classic though and just the thing for a Sunday morning.

Stevie Wonder - Village Ghetto Land

Stevie Wonder - I Wish

We are away (again!) so a reduced service for a few days

Saturday 9 November 2019

Big Gold Dreams - 1


I got Big Gold Dreams - A Story of Scottish Independant Music 1977 -1989 for my birthday.
A Cherry Red 5 CD Boxset with a stonking 115 songs.
It's not really something you can tackle in a oner and I have found myself dipping in and out of it since then.
Being a generous guy I've decided to share a bit of it with  you over the next few weeks.
The discs are chronilogical and given that disc 1 is from 1977 to 1980 it is easily the most punky of the bunch.

And who can be more punky than the Rezillos?
A band formed at Edinburgh College of Art . Here is I Can't Stand My Baby which is the first song on the box set and which preceded Top of the Pops the song that shot them to fame.

I instantly recognised The Shape of Things to Come despite it not having crossed my rader very often in the 40 years since it was first released. Even if you had offered me a large sum of money I couldn't have told you that it was by The Headboys who were another Edinburgh band.

The final offering is by yet another Edinburgh band TV21. This is totally coincidental given that I chose the songs and then started reading the blurb in the boxset to populate this post.. Named after a Gerry Anderson comic another impressive piece of trivia is that guitarist Ally Palmer is responsible for  curating the Scottish football magazine Nutmeg.

Disc 2 next week.

The Revillos - I Can't Stand My Baby (Sensible Version)

The Headboys - Shape of Things to Come

TV21 - Playing With Fire

Friday 8 November 2019

Friday Night Blast Off

When I went to see Dave Alvin and Jimmie Dale Gilmore (which was as brilliant as you would expect) Dave mentioned that his big brother and fellow Blaster Phil had been in hospital recently but was thankfully on the mend.
Then I featured The Blasters with Hollwood Bed as part of my ICA contribution to George's California State of the Union post.

All of which got me thinking that the band who gave us American Music would be just the thing to shake the dregs of the week  out our hair and to blast us into the weekend with three numbers from Testament -The Complete Slash Recordings.

Get well soon Phil

The Blasters - Trouble Bound

The Blasters -Rock'n'Roll Will Stand

The Blasters - Kathleen

Thursday 7 November 2019

Neon Coast

After yesterday's plethora of music you are just getting the one song today.
The reason ? After listening to Restless  you will want to buy it and the rest of the songs on Neon Coast by A.Wesley Chung for yourself  and you can at bandcamp.

It came out on Glasgow's LP Records in May 2018. I had intended to pick up a vinyl copy at the time but never got round to it. Regretting the error of my ways I liberated a digital download from my Bandcamp wishlist recently.

You could be forgiven for thinking California as opposed to Glasgow when listening to this and that is because Mr Chung is indeed from the Golden State but now rather sensibly resides in The Dear Green Place instead.

Here are some details of the album from For the Rabbits. Don't let the reference to My Morning Jacket put you off. Think Laurel Canyon instead.

He has also recorded as The Great Albatross which is next on my list for checking out

A.Wesley Chung - Restless

Wednesday 6 November 2019

State of the Union - California

George writes (a wee bit):

Today it’s somewhere with a bit of a drought problem, and is prone to earthquakes. No, it’s not Portugal, it’s California.

Here’s a few songs that you might know, and if you don’t you can thank me after listening to them all for bringing them to your attention. So what you have this week is “The state of California, an ICA” to steal the idea from JC of vinylvillain fame.

And here’s the obvious song with some fine twangy guitar playing:

If you only play one of those make it the Phil Ochs’ track, it is majestic.