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Thursday 31 August 2023

Same Title , Different Song - Tonight's the Night


I'm afraid I can't stretch to as many versions of this weeks tune than the six I managed with Blue last week

If you were to ask the average man or woman in the street "who sang Tonight's the Night?" 90% of them probably wouldn't have a clue. The chances are that 8 % would come up with Tonight's the Night (Gonna Be Alright)  the single  by  Rod Stewart  hit which reached number 5 in the UK singles charts in 1976

The final 2% might pitch for Tonight's the Night the title track from the Neil Young album from 1975. I can't believe I don't have a copy of this album and this is something that I clearly need to rectify. Worry not, however, as I have a couple of live versions.

For the avoidance of doubt there are no scientific data behind the above figures. I just made them up.

It is possible, but unlikely, that many would have heard the song of that name by The Shirelles and even more unlikely the one by Solomon Burke.

Just to be silly I am also throwing in Wilco with Tonight's the Day

Rod Stewart -Tonight's the Night ( Gonna Be Alright)

Neil Young - Tonight's the Night (Live)

The Shirelles - Tonight's the Night

Solomon Burke - Tonight's the Night

Wilco - Tonight's the Day

Wednesday 30 August 2023

More Devil Women


I've checked my in- box and I don't appear to have any more Devil posts from George to share with you. You just can't get the staff! If I've missed one, my apologies

Seriously I have enjoyed his input and I know from the comments that some of you have to.

I started this series in mid July with some Devil Women. Here are some more this week. No Cliff Richard this time around as you can have too much of a good thing.

Let's start then with Jenny Lewis and the Watson Twins with Run Devil Run from the brilliant Rabbit Fur Coat album from as far back as 2006. Gosh.

North Carolina's Sarah Shook first recorded band was Sarah Shook and the Devil so it is only right that she features here. That band was short lived and her next project was Sarah Shook and the Disarmers. I got her song Devil May Care  of a  Bloodshot Records Sampler from the Classic Rock Magazine from Spring 2020.

It was a fair bet that at one stage Lucinda Williams would eventually get around to writing about the Devil on sure enough on 2020's Good Souls Better Angels album she pops up with Pray the Devil Back to Hell.

Finally we are off to New Zealand and Nadia Reid with Get the Devil Out which I have from a Mojo compilation  2020's In My Life- Mojo Presents the New Singer-Songwriters. There is some good stuff on here. So much so that I am going to dig it out and give it a spin if I can find it.*

I'm not sure whether this series has run out of legs or whether it will re-appear next week.

Jenny Lewis and the Watson Twins - Run Devil Run

Sarah Shook and the Disarmers - Devil May Care

Lucinda Williams -Pray The Devil Back to Hell

Nadia Reid - Get the Devil Out

* I couldn't find it!

Tuesday 29 August 2023



2023 Charity Shop Purchases #72 - Youssou N'Dour - The Best Of

I'm pretty sure than in his Kensington mansion Ernie has an entire wing exclusively reserved to house African music. Me, I've probably got about a dozen of so CDs and LPs. However, I now have two from Senegal. I suspect that when he gets to Senegal in his African Odyssey that Ernie will concentrate on lesser known artists given that Youssou N'Dour has been described in Rolling Stone as perhaps the most famous singer alive in Senegal and much of Africa.

This album is from 1994 on Virgin. Given that Mr N'Dour has been recording since at least 1982 Mr Branson may well be getting a visit from Trading Standards.

More accurately it should be described as The Best of Three Albums from 1984 to 1990 given that all the tracks come from Immigrés (1984), The Lion (1989) and Set (1990). So no Seven Seconds his duo with Neneh Cherry which came slightly later in 1994.  It is still very good particularly as I only paid 25p for it.

One from each of the three I think.

From Immigrés  let's go for all 7 minutes of Immigrés/Bitim Rew. An album which NME ranked as the 18th best of 1984.

The Lion which involved production by Peter Gabriel was the one which shot him to international prominence. I suspect that a number of you will be familiar with Shakin' the Tree.

Set was made with his band Étoile de Dakar I'm going for Sinebar of which The Boston Globe wrote it possesses "one of the catchiest, most exhilarating horn riffs in pop music this or any year

Youssou N'Dour -Immigres/Bitim Rew

Youssou N'Dour - Shakin' the Tree

Youssou N'Dour - Sinebar

Monday 28 August 2023

Small Town Stories


2023 Charity Shop Purchases #71 - Smith & McClennan

A good few years ago I got Traiveller's Joy an album of traditional folk songs by Dumfries based singer Emily Smith out the library. It quickly became a firm favourite at CC HQ leading us to acquire more of her stuff.

We subsequently went to see her at the Mitchell Theatre at Celtic Connections in 2019 and this is what I wrote in a previous post:

I know Emily Smith as a traditional Scottish folk singer. Here she was singing with her husband  (Jamie McClennan)as a duo and rebranded as Smith and McClennan. Both Mrs CC and I felt that for us this didn't really work. It didn't pay justice to her wonderful voice. Thankfully there were a couple of examples as to what could have been. She has been performing for over 10 years and you can understand them exploring a new angle but it is not for me I'm afraid. We ended up purchasing Echoes one of her older albums rather than the new one which tells it's own story.

Therefore it was with a degree of trepidation that we picked up a copy of Small Town Stories  their debut album as a couple on White Fall Records which had featured at that concert in a Newton Stewart charity shop.

I'm glad to say that it is much better than what we expected it to be  with some pretty good songs. Sometimes it is worth listening without prejudice!

Smith & McClennan -Leaving

Smith & McClennan - Better Than War

Sunday 27 August 2023

An A to Z of American Cities - S


Another relatively straightforward one this week as there are plenty to choose from beginning with S

Let's start with Springfield which as we all know is the home of the Simpsons .Now whether they actually stay in the Springfield that is the capital city of the state of Illinois I'm not entirely sure. It is the one that Slobberbone sing about though. With a population of 114K it boasts Abraham Lincoln as its most famous historic resident although they may have to amend that if Brian stayed there during his Illinois days.

Sioux City is a city in the Woodbury and Plymouth counties in the north western part of Iowa with a population of just under 86K making it the 4th largest city in Iowa. Sioux City is also a song on Blue Earth an early album by The Jayhawks. I would have loved to hear Johnny Cash singing this as part of the American Recordings series.

I know that when I mention St  (or Saint) Cloud the city in Minnesota with a population  of c69K that many of you would think that I would post the song On a Bus to St Cloud by Gretchen Peters. Rather I have gone for Waxahatchee (SWC will be pleased ) with the title song from her 2020 album Saint Cloud. It is  actually named after the city of St (or Saint Cloud) in Osceola County, Florida with a population of c55k which is her father's home town.

The first song I thought of when it came to S was the brilliant Saginaw, Michigan by Lefty Frizzell. Saginaw  is a former lumber town and part of the Greater Tri- Cities region of Central Michigan with a population of 44k

Finally we are off to California and to its fastest growing city of Sacramento. This is largely due to it status as a notable political centre and a major educational and healthcare hub. The current population is 525K making it the 6th most populated city in the State. Sacramento and Polk is a song of The Boxing Mirror by Alejandro Escovedo. I think it refers to a junction or district in another Californian city beginning with S  namely San Francisco but it would have been to easy to feature that city this week.

T will probably be slightly harder but I've already got a couple in mind.

Slobberbone - Springfield, Il

The Jayhawks - Sioux City

Waxahatchee -St Cloud

Lefty Frizzell -Saginaw, Michegan

Alejandro Escovedo - Sacramento & Polk

Saturday 26 August 2023

Saturday Shuffle 19


It's Saturday again - where are the weeks going? It will be winter before you know it.

Three songs then from the Gym MP3 to take your mind off that horrible thought.

Let's start then with Toryglen's finest band Simple Minds. A small caveat this is Simple Minds from when they were good and not the stadium band who vie with UB40 and Rod Stewart for having the most spectacular fall from grace Chelsea Girl from 1979 is for me one of their two greatest songs, the other being The American.

As you can see from the picture above Bo Diddley was  very much a one - off dude. Who else would write and record a song name-checking themself? Nursery Rhyme is from as far back as 1956 and according to Classic Mood Experience on You Tube as one of the best masterpieces ever recorded in musical history. I'm not sure I would go that far but it is none too shabby.

Finally we conclude with a copy of  A1 on the Jukebox a 1978 song by Dave Edmonds. It is by a Texas band called Elizabeth McQueen and the Firebrands  and is one of 13 pub rock covers on their 2005 album Happy Doing What We Are Doing . Here are some more details on this project from a previous posts here and here

It is the big 2 0 next week. 

Simple Minds - Chelsea Girl

Bo Diddley - Nursery Rhyme

Elizabeth McQueen & the Firebrands - A1 On The Jukebox

Friday 25 August 2023

Punk Nuggets


It's Friday so something to blow away the cobwebs and set you up for the weekend.

Punk Nuggets which seemingly consists of 15 Rabble -Rousing Rarities is the latest in Mojo magazine's occasional series Mojo Presents..

20% of them for you today. We will kick off with The Flys who were a band from Coventry and were on the go from 1976-1980. I think I saw them at Strathclyde University Union. Not that I remember the band but I do remember having a badge depicting a Fly. Band badges were very much a thing back then.

If like me your only knowledge of  Continental Punk is Belgium's Plastic Bertrand with Ça Plane Pour Moi you are in for a treat as I give you another punk song in French. Metal Urbain were from Paris and were on the go for the same period as The Flys with an obligatory reformation in 2003 . They were championed by John Peel  with this single being Rough Trade's first release.

Finally, for now, I'm going for Slaughter and the Dogs primarily because my brother recently sent me a link to one of their songs so their name jumped out. A Manchester Band who after a 15 year break from 1981 to 1996 are still going strong

Just be thankful I spared you  Sperm Bank Baby.

I suspect this one may well be re-visited. Meanwhile as the sleeve cover says Crank Up Really High!

The Flys - Love and a Molotov Cocktail

Metal Urbain - Paris Maquis

Slaughter and the Dogs - Cranked Up Really High

Thursday 24 August 2023

Same Title, Different Song - Blue


I've been working on a Road Trip MP3 for the car. So far there are a few hundred songs on it.

We played it in the car the other day and when Blue by the Jayhawks came on I said to Mrs CC "that has given me an idea for a series. Blue Monday with tracks featuring the word Blue. "

When I thought about it a bit more I thought that some tracks which only have the word Blue in the title may be more appropriate for this series. And that's how Blog series' evolve folks.

Six tracks today (although I could have given you more) and all with a country/Americana slant.

Naturally we will start with the Jayhawks and their song Blue from the Tomorrow the Green Grass album. When they played at the Garage in Glasgow Sharleen Spiteri of Texas fame joined them for this song and we managed to have a chat with her afterwards.

Let's face it Lucinda Williams was always going to write a song called Blue and sure enough one appears on her 2001 album Essence.

James Edwyn and the Borrowed Band are from Glasgow and they first came to my attention via Last Night From Glasgow. I have a couple of their albums with their song Blue being taken from 2022's Highlights of the Lowlights.

The Swedish sisters Johanna and Klara Söderberg who are better known as First Aid Kit  have released five albums to date. Blue is taken from the second one 2012's The Lions Roar

Katie Crutchfield records under the non du plume Waxahatchee .Her song Blue is from her third album 2015's Ivy Tripp which was the first of hers I bought.

Finally we have Gene Parsons with a homage to his dog Blue  from the live album In Concert - I Hope They Let Us In.

Feel free to let me know I have missed out your favourite Blue record

The Jayhawks -Blue

Lucinda Williams - Blue

James Edwyn & the Promised Band - Blue

First Aid Kit - Blue

Waxahatchee - Blue

Gene Parsons - Blue

Wednesday 23 August 2023

Up Jumped the Devil


George writes:

There’s possibly the devil in some people in this country, I’m not thinking of the angry moron who stormed into our post office recently, shouting and throwing a piece of paper at the man on the counter, but of the incomprehensibly stupid morons who deliberately start fires in August. 

Anyway………….in between moments of monitoring the Map Of Fires And Accidents, I wondered if Nick Cave had any devil related songs. He does! And it refers to the man (ie Satan) himself (or man-goat, fallen  angel, figment of imagination). It’s on the Tender Prey album

Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds -Up Jumped the Devil

The devil’s been jumping up in other situations as well. For example, at Ronnie Dawson, in this 1950s rockabilly song

Ronnie Dawson with the Tin Stars - Up Jumped the Devil

There’s a version of this recorded for John Peel for a 1993 session, but it’s not in my Peel-recordings collection.

The song  has been covered by Izzy Stradlin, whose name was familiar, and it turns out he was a Gun or maybe a Rose, but don’t let that put you off, this is a very fine cover:

Time to shoehorn in Robert Johnson

Robert Johnson -Preachin' Blues (Up Jumped the Devil)

And unsurprisingly the Soledad Brothers have done that song,

As of course have the Gun Club.

A 4th song with the same title is this by John Davis

But I’m saving the best ‘til last, from Austria’s Kings Of Country Music. (I’m not sure there is too much squabbling going on for that particular crown)

So good is that song I am tempted to get the album. I thought that Chiemsee might be a little-known Native American tribe. It’s not……and chiemsee is in Bavaria not Austria, so it looks like the Austrians have to import their Kings Of Country

CC writes

Thanks George

The readers will all be jumping willy and indeed nilly

Tuesday 22 August 2023

Oh Susanna


2023 Charity Shop Purchases #70 - Oh Susanna - Oh Susanna

I was in the Canine Rescue shop in Newton Stewart  ( or the Smelly Dog shop as we know it) around four o'clock looking at the CDs tucked away in  a  corner when  I heard one of the volunteers saying to the other to shut the door before they got any customers as they were shutting.

A few minutes later I popped up at the counter. "I didn't know you were in" said the lady "you nearly got a lock in" Now under some circumstances a lock in in a charity shop would be good. This one had a decent number of CDs  at 25p each or three for 50p. Unfortunately there were only two which caught my eye.

One was Oh Susanna by Oh Susanna. It is from 2003 on Stella Records under licence to Hot Records. Hers was a name I was familiar as I saw her in Glasgow around 2001 where I picked up her album Sleepy Little Sailor.

Oh Susanna is a nom du plume for American/Canadian alternative country singer Suzie Ungerleider who now records under her own name. I thought the use of Oh Susanna was because it is easier to pronounce and remember but it seems that she wanted to keep her personal and professional lives separate.
Then in 2021 she announced that she was retiring the Oh Susanna stage name, after learning more about the complicated racial history of the song "Oh! Susanna"

It is not bad at all especially for 25p and will now be joining Sleepy Little Sailor on the Americana shelves.

Oh Susanna - Carrie Lee

Oh Susanna - I'll Keep it With Mine

Monday 21 August 2023

Mari Wilson - The Platinum Collection


2023 Charity Shop Purchases #69 -Mari Wilson - The Platinum Collection

I picked this up recently in the Wigtown Community Shop for 50p.

Twenty tracks by Neasden's Queen of Soul Mari Wilson. Pleasant enough stuff but calling it The Platinum Collection is perhaps a tad ambitious.

I have a copy of her  1983 album Showpeople  on vinyl which was also a charity acquisition from 2013I saw her at Strathclyde Uni around the time of Showpeople and she put on a terrific show

All 12 of the songs from Showpeople appear on The Platinum Collection and I'm not sure that I need the other 8 as they are nothing startling with many sounding a bit samey.

At the moment I'm not sure whether it is a keeper or not. The only saving grace is having songs like the three below available in a CD format. I may just record the CD and send it back to save space  and give Showpeople an airing from time to time. Every 10  or 20 years perhaps!

Mari Wilson - Just What I Always Wanted

Mari Wilson - Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps

Mari Wilson - Cry Me a River (Tu No Me Lores)

Sunday 20 August 2023

An A to Z of American Cities - R


Rockaway Beach ,Queens

This week was an absolute doddle compared to Q from last week. There were plenty of R suggestions in the comments but I came up with five of my own.

My first thought was Reno off the brilliant Jonathan Goes Country album by Jonathan Richman. Reno is in Nevada with a population in the region of 264K. Apparently it is known as The Biggest Little City in the World and is most famous for its casinos.

Rockville a city in and the county seat of Montgomery County, Maryland (population 67K) popped up a couple of times in the comments given that R.E.M. have a song called (Don't Go Back to) Rockville on their 1984 album Reckoning and is about Mike Mills not wanting his girlfriend Ingridd Schorr to return to Rockville.

The picture above is of Rockaway Beach in the borough of Queens in New York City. So why is it featured here? It is because I suspect that it is a better picture that I could find of Rockaway Beach the city in Tillamook County, Oregon with a population of 1441. Actually, I take that back as there are some lovely pictures of there also.

Some blues for you now courtesy of Cephas and Wiggins who are singing about Richmond the capital city of the Commonwealth of Virginia which was first incorporated in 1742. It has been an independent city since 1871.

Finally I had a lovely song called Rochester in my digital library. Unfortunately there was no  information as to the artist. I trawled around to no avail until finally I resorted to downloading the Shazam app. I now know it is by Michael Shelley from an album called Half Empty released in 1997. An artist I intend to explore further here

It is S next week which should be relatively straightforward.

Jonathan Richman - Reno

R.E.M. - (Don't Go Back To) Rockville

Ramones - Rockaway Beach

Cephas & Wiggins - Richmond Blues

Michael Shelley - Rochester

Saturday 19 August 2023

Saturday Shuffle 18


And still we stumble on.

We start this week with the only non-single of  the three songs thrown up by the MP3 player. Take Me With You (When You Go) is track 5 on Hollywood Town Hall  the 1992 masterpiece by The Jayhawks on the American label. An album which never strays far from  my All Time Top 10.

Ruby Tuesday was originally a song from The Rolling Stones off their 1967 album Between the Buttons. Or at least it was in the US. It was left off the British version as it had been a hit single as was the practice at the time.  It was actually the b-side to Let's Spent the Night Together but due to the latter's controversial nature (at the time) received more air play. It was subsequently covered brilliantly by Melanie and less brilliantly by Rod Stewart and Julian Lennon.

Finally we have Stuart Goddard and his merry men better know as Adam & the Ants. I was a bit confused when I looked up Antmusic in the Guinness Book of Hit Singles and there was no reference under AD (as in Adam & the Ants) but it popped up under AN (as in Adam Ant), I was also surprised to find that Antmusic released in December 1980 was not a number one although it got to number 2 and spent a respectable 18 weeks in the charts. Good gym music.

More assorted nonsense next Saturday

The Jayhawks - Take Me With You (When You Go)

The Rolling Stones - Ruby Tuesday

Adam & the Ants - Antmusic

Friday 18 August 2023

Petty Friday



It has been a few years since I have featured anything by the late great Tom Petty who sadly left us in October 2017 at the age of 66

For me 1991's Into the Great Wide Open was probably his last great album and one which is a particular favourite of Mrs CC and I as it reminds us of our honeymoon on Skye.

I Won't Back Down which he wrote with Jeff Lynne appeared on his 1989 album Full Moon Fever . It was also covered by Johnny Cash on American III: Solitary Man here

On the subject of covers during lockdown Lucinda Williams released 6 albums of covers called Lu's Jukebox The first in the series was Vol 1 -  Runnin' Down a Dream - a tribute to Tom Petty

Thursday 17 August 2023

Same Title, Different Song - Something to Believe In


Just the two songs to compare and contrast this week or two and a half if we cheat a little.

The gentleman above is none other than Kenny Anderson with the picture looking as though it has been taken in his home town of Crail. If the name is not familiar that is because for musical purposes he uses the moniker King Creosote.

Something to Believe In is the opening track from his 2014 masterpiece From Scotland With Love. It sets a high bar but all the other tracks on the album just about meet it.

This week KC is up against SM. Yes there is a song called Something to Believe In on The Joker a 1973 album by the Steve Miller Band. Now let's be realistic putting this song up against KC is akin to putting a dachshund up against a dobermann.

Therefore to make it a more even competition I am offering up a Very Nearly Same Title in the shape of Something to Believe by the excellent Weyes Blood a song from her 2019 album Titanic.

I'm sure that some of you will go with Weyes Blood, and that will be your prerogative,  but it is King Creosote for me.

King Creosote -Something to Believe In

Steve Miller Band -Something to Believe In

Weyes Blood -Something to Believe

Wednesday 16 August 2023

Devilish Banana Surfers


George writes:

There used to be a place in Birmingham called the Custard Factory. I always assumed it was where custard was made, but I may be wrong there. I saw The Fall at a venue there, and also The Most Energetic Frantic Sweaty performance I think I’ve ever seen (in marked contrast to Mark E Smith’s loafing around on stage), and this was by those Japanese noise terrorists Melt Banana. They were brilliant. Not for the faint-hearted, or those with delicate hearing, an hour or so of noise, screeching guitars, shouting. Brilliant.  I’ve just checked the spreadsheet, and there’s six of their albums listed, one of which is Bambi’s Dilemma, and here’s one of the 18 tracks on that album:

Melt Banana -Green -Eyed Devil

Next, the band of the bloke who did the vocals for Jesus Built My Hot-Rod (a song that I and CC himself will probably forever associate with being driven along a French motorway with our feet sticking out the sunroof of a Vauxhall Cavalier).  A band I’ve never seen, and I think I might have had a lucky escape judging by reports of films they screened as backdrop to some of their concerts - not for those of a squeamish disposition. This is from their later years, so a bit more conventional than early-years tracks. Thankfully it is still noisy and best played loud!

The Butthole Surfers -Dust Devil

(I think my choice of title of this piece is less offensive than the alternative play on words)

CC writes:

Glad you didn't go for the alternative title George!

Two acts perhaps not surprisingly making their debuts on these pages. Devil's music indeed.

I think I may have been to the Custard Factory. I loved custard as a kid but can't look at it now.

He's back next week.

Tuesday 15 August 2023

Aman Iman


Like many of you I suspect I have been thoroughly enjoying Ernie's African Odyssey over at 27 Leggies

It is a hugely ambitious project with Ernie planning on featuring music and info from all 54 African countries. 11 weeks in and he is still working his way through the C's. Therefore it is going to be a wee while before he gets as far as Mali. I'm just putting it out there but if he doesn't feature Tinariwen he is likely to have a riot on his hands.

Tinariwen is a collective of Tuareg musicians from the Sahara region of Northern Mali who have steadily gained international recognition releasing 9 albums since 2001 all featuring their Desert Blues trademark style.

Their 4th album Aman Iman: Water is Life from 2007 on the World Village label is the final one from my recent Missing Records 3 for £5 deal although it was the first of the three which I picked up.

As with most if not all of their albums it was critically well received with  most ratings in the 4/5 region.

Joe Tangari on Pitchfork writes the music of Tinariwen is at once exotic and familiar-- the scales and arrangements are as strange to our ears as the language they sing in, but there's a force operating on a more subliminal level that unites it to something rattling around inside anyone who was brought up on blues or rock & roll. It's music of longing and rebellion, weary wisdom and restless energy, and it sounds so, so good. Don't let it pass you by.

I don't think I need to add anything else

Tinariwen - Matadjem Yinmixan

Tinariwen - Assouf

Monday 14 August 2023

Under The Red Sky


Missing Records is a good place to go for my long term quest of acquiring all 40 of Bob Dylan's studio albums.

On my most recent visit I  picked up Under the Red Sky his 27th studio album from 1990 on the Columbia label as always as part of a 3 for £5 deal. It is not one I had heard or even heard of before and I had to look it up to see whether it was a genuine studio album. It is and by reckoning that is now the 24th on the shelves so still a fair way to go.

Produced by Bob under the pseudonym Jack Frost along with Don and David Was it was not that critically well received upon its release particularly when compared to its predecessor Oh Mercy. When I listen to the first track Wiggle Wiggle I could see why. The public seemed to agree with the critics  and it sold poorly.

I'm not altogether sure whether it is worth the £1.66 I paid for it but there are a few passable tracks  including the two below.
I think we need to hear from the Swede who is always relentlessly positive on all things Dylan

Sunday 13 August 2023

An A to Z of American Cities - Q


The first of a few weeks that I have been dreading and one where this series begins to come off the rails.

The only thing that I could come up with was the theme from Quincy M.E .There are at least 17 places in America called Quincy and yet I still couldn't find a song with Quincy in the title. I've  been to Quincy, Massachusetts (population 100K) where I watched a Celtic v Rangers game in an Irish pub. Quincy is to Boston what Paisley is to Glasgow.

Thankfully I had some assistance. Ernie offered up the splendidly named Last Meeting of the Quakertown Optimists Club by Jason Wilber. Quakertown is in Pennsylvania and has a population of just under 10K. In his e-mail Ernie wrote World Population Review says it is a city, Wikipedia says it is a town, its own website says its a borough. I’ll let you decide whether it counts. It won't come as a surprise to you that I have gone with the World Population Review.

As you would expect Rol came up with a couple. He advised that there are at least two places called Queen City one in Texas and one in Missouri  along with a formerly inhabited place in Iowa. I'm going for the Queen City in Texas with a population of 1394. Rol suggested the song Queen City by Heart.

He also mentioned Questa in New Mexico with a population of 1770. Wiki states it is a village but our new favourite reference point World Population Review have it down as a city. The Yardbirds song Questa Volta probably has nothing to do with this place but needs must.

Occasional commentator Marc mentioned  Quantico, Virginia with a population of 579. Again there is some debate about its status but we will go with the WPR. Marc didn't offer up a song but I found a techno track called Quantico by an Italian band called Kwartz which you will be glad to know that I'm not going to subject you to.

Oh alright then, if you  insist:

Next up is R which is obviously much easier that Q but not quite as easy as I first thought. I have a few though.

Quincy M.E. Theme Song

Jason Wilbur - Last Meeting of the Quakertown Optimists Club

Heart - Queen City

The Yardbirds -Questa Volta

Saturday 12 August 2023

Saturday Shuffle 17


I used some of my birthday money during the week to pick up a vinyl copy of 2022's Cruel Country by Wilco. It is a much welcomed return to their Americana roots. Today's first shuffle Via Chicago  comes from the band's third album 1999's Summerteeth  which remains my favourite album by them. Indeed, it was included in my 50 Americana Albums to Hear Before Your Die The three songs I selected for that post remain my three favourite songs by the band. Via Chicago is one of them.

Newt up is a song from Testifying an album by The Country Soul Review.  It features a bunch of artists who effortlessly blur the boundaries between Southern Soul and Country. One such artists is the late Donnie Fritts  who as well as being a singer in his own right was Kris Kristofferson's drummer for 50 years. He also wrote Breakfast in Bed which was a massive hit for Dusty Springfield.. A man then who clearly knew when there was Sumpin' Funky Going On.

The Blasters may not have been funky but they sure lived up to their name. Their concert on the Renfrew Ferry remains one of my ten best gigs of all time. Trouble Bound is the first song on Disc 2 from the anthology Testament - The Complete Slash Records which is a must have.

The challenge for next week is to shuffle up three at least half as good as this

Wilco - Via Chicago

Donnie Friits - Sumpin' Funky Going On

The Blasters - Trouble Bound

Friday 11 August 2023

Cigarettes & Truckstops


Lindi Ortega is a Canadian Country singer. Hers is a name that I have vaguely been familiar with over the years with the occasional track or two downloaded into my music folder. She has appeared on these pages before as part of a Ladies of Canada post.

It wasn't until a visit to Missing Records earlier this week that I had anything physical by her namely Cigarettes & Truckstops her 4th studio album from 2012 on Last Gang Records. I picked this up as part of a 3 for £5 package.

It seems to be a record of two halves (as are all of them I suppose). Even the CD distinguishes between the two sides. Side 1 appears to be more traditional  honky tonk style country whereas Side 2 has more of an  Gothic Americana feel about it.

Here is one of each. I'm filing it in the Americana section

Lindi Ortega - Cigarettes & Truckstops

Lindi Ortega - Murder of Crows

Thursday 10 August 2023

Same Title, Different Song - Happy Birthday


A somewhat predictable second offering for this series. Two songs which you will have guessed right away followed another two that you might not have got.

Obvious ones first then. Let's start with Altered Images. Their song Happy Birthday was their second single and the one that shot them to prominence reaching number 2 in the UK singles chart in 1981.

Stevie Wonder also reached number 2 in 1981 with a different Happy Birthday a song from his Hotter Than July album. One that is pleasant enough the first few times you hear it but which becomes rapidly annoying. Apologies for the click at the beginning.It's not down to over playing

Another Glasgow band for you in the shape of the Bluebells. I think that Bobby Bluebell has collaborated and played with Altered Images recently but this Happy Birthday is taken from the compilation Exile on Twee Street -Songs From Glasgow 1980-1982. I think that they would agree that this early song is not their finest couple of minutes.

Finally we have the antithesis of Twee courtesy of The Birthday Party with their own Happy Birthday take.

It's Altered Images for me as it is a great pop song. Others may chose to differ.

Oh, and if it your birthday today these are for you.

Altered Images -Happy Birthday

Stevie Wonder -Happy Birthday

The Bluebells - Happy Birthday

The Birthday Party - Happy Birthday

Wednesday 9 August 2023

Jon "Lucifer " Langford


I'm happy to report that George has taken temporary control of this series.

Take it away George:

Gospellers are a happy  bunch. A happy-clappy bunch at times. Their albums are positive, singing the praise of their lord, looking forward to meeting them in the afterlife.  And there’s more than a plethora of gospel albums easily available. Your diabolists, well, I’ve not got any relevant albums on my shelves (despite the devil allegedly having the best tunes), where followers sing and clap their approval for their lord, looking forward to meeting him in the afterlife. Which is maybe understandable, hell doesn’t really get very many positive reviews. But maybe that’s because those reviews come from the gospeller section of society who I suppose by definition are not very well disposed to those who worship the anti-christ.

I don’t know if Jon Langford is a follower of Satan, but four of his (musical) incarnations have some devilishly good songs:

The Three Johns - Devil's Music

The Mekons - Lucky Devil

The Waco Brothers - Devil's Day

Jon Langford and Skull Orchard - Devil's Replacement

I’ve seen the Mekons twice, both times they played to a depressingly small audience. I can’t claim to seeing the Waco Brothers, though, despite driving 100 miles for the gig - I drank far too much and fell asleep in the venue.

CC writes: Thanks George. Mr Langford is devilishly good. Unfortunately I've never seen the Mekons but I have seen the Waco Brothers on a couple of occasions and managed to stay awake!

I'm happy to report that George will be back next week.

Tuesday 8 August 2023

Chris Clark


Some blue- eyed Soul for you today courtesy of Chris Clark. 
She was one of the first white singers to sign for Motown in 1966. She had a clandestine affair with Berry Gordy at the same time as he was secretly seeing Diana Ross. A busy boy.
According to Stuart Cosgrove in his excellent book Detroit 67 Gordy briefly toyed with the idea of her joining the Supremes making them a multiracial group. Not only a busy boy but a brave one. Sadly, or maybe fortunately, it never came to anything.

Born in Santa Cruz, California she ended up as a Northern Soul favourite. As well as being a great singer she was clearly a clever and talented lady. She co-wrote the screenplay for the 1972 film Lady Sings the Blues featuring the aforementioned Diana Ross earning her an Academy Award nomination. She was an executive with Motown's Film and Television prior to serving as Motown's Head of Creative Affairs from 1981to 1989.

I am happy to report that she is still going strong at the age of 77. 

Monday 7 August 2023

The Boys with the Perpetual Nervousness


I braved the chaos in Glasgow's city centre on Friday night with many roads closed due to the World Cycling Championship.

I was at a gig at the Old Hairdressers with three acts. The Cheese were playing their first gig for 25 years and Aberdeen band The Vapour Trail  were the headline act. However the act that I was there to see was an acoustic set by Andrew Taylor and Alan Shields from Dropkick.

They played a number of songs from Dropkick's latest album The Wireless Revolution and it was duly purchased. They also played a few songs from Andrew's other band The Boys with the Perpetual Nervousness a Scottish/Spanish band which features Andrew and Gonzalo Marcos.

Both bands were brought to my attention by our dear friend Brian. I've featured Dropkick on a couple of previous occasions here so here are a couple from TBWTPN from their albums Songs From Another Life and The Third Wave Of ... . If you like them (and you would be foolish not to) you should visit their Bandcamp page.

The full Dropkick band will be playing Glasgow's Glad Cafe in November and my ticket has already been purchased.

The Boys with the Perpetual Nervousness - Waking Up in the Sunshine

The Boys with the Perpetual Nervousness - The Stars Go Round