Saturday, 30 April 2011

Free Music Friday #98: Miss The Occupier on Soundcloud

I have posted about Miss the Occupier before giving links to a free download, some streamed music and a few videos. They were brought to my mind again the other day when my sister referred to them as part of her 30 Day Song Challenge. She said:
DAY 25 - A song from a band/artist you've just "discovered".
Thanks to David Muir (the singer's a friend of my sister-in-law), am loving this track...
She then linked to The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things which she discovered when I featured it in a Free Download post. It's nice to know wee brothers are occasionally useful!

Today's free download comes from the band's Soundcloud page where you can stream nine of their tracks and (currently at least) download one:

All Day starts brilliantly with what sounds like Magnus just hitting his guitar to produce noise and feedback and it gets even better after that! First the bass riff kicks in, then the staccato guitar, drums, and Roz's vocals before revealing the catchy chorus in a burst of music that I imagine gets a live audience bouncing along. Great stuff!

So what do you think Sister Number 1? Up there with The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things?

Day 30 – Your favourite song of all time

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 30 – Your favourite song of all time

This is too hard as my favourite changes on a regular basis depending on mood and circumstances. That it would be by Rush though was fairly certain!

I've already used a couple of classic Rush tracks in this challenge that otherwise might have been contenders, after all, if it is the one you play most on your iPod, it's likely to be one of your favourites!

Then, it hit me. Of course it's a Rush track but it has to be something off their latest album. I've gone for one of the instrumental tracks:

What I like most about Rush is that they are a progressive band and by that I mean that they are never content to rest on their laurels. They are always challenging themselves to explore new areas of music, to develop their already considerable musicianship, use ever more complex time signatures! They challenge their fans. With every new release they say, "Come on. Keep up! This is where we're going this time." And let's be honest, they challenge their record company who probably just want some rock radio friendly product! There were complaints on their last tour that they played too much from their new album but I thought that was brilliant - they were not doing a nostalgia tour, they were promoting the new album, an album that they were proud of and that they enjoyed playing.

So my favourite track is not a trip down memory lane but something new. It is one from my favourite band, one that makes me think and one that reminds me why they are still my favourite!

Friday, 29 April 2011

Day 29 – Your favourite Love song

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 29 – Your favourite Love song

This is the trickiest yet since, as my wife will tell you, I am not naturally the world's most romantic person. If I hadn't already used Joni Mitchell in Day 22 I would have probably gone for for something off of Blue. As I struggled to come up with something, I thought of a few tracks but none felt right. For example, some sounded a bit stalkerish (Every Breath You Take or I Don't Want To Miss A Thing). Others were about breaking up (Ain't Gonna Cry No More) and some were just weird (No More "I Love You's").

Then I thought of this track (if you are not familiar with it, listen right to the end; you'll thank me later!):

To be honest, I think that as a Split Enz track, this is just OK but the keyboard player decided to re-arrange some of their tracks for orchestra and worked with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra. They released the resultant recordings under the name ENZSO, (See what they did there?) The album is interesting but this track is outstanding – real hairs on the back of your neck stuff. I especially like the section around the 4:10 mark where the music builds up until the orchestra cuts loose and the section at the end where, despite his firm resolution, he doesn't seem to be able to get past repeating, "I don't wanna to say..."

Thursday, 28 April 2011

Day 28 – A song you would sing at a karaoke night

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 28 – A song you would sing at a karaoke night

I've never been to a karaoke night but if I ever go, I think I'd sing something like this:

My thinking is it's best to go for one that's catchy, reasonably well known, and one that might get everyone joining in on the chorus!

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Day 27 – A song no one would expect you to love

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 27 – A song no one would expect you to love

I might have gone for Joni Mitchell had I not already gone for her in Day 22. Other contenders were Annie Lennox/The Eurythmics, Newton Faulkner and The Roches. In the end, I decided my least likely like was Michael Jackson, at least from Thriller era and before:

The outstanding video helps!

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Day 26 – A song off of the last album you brought/track you downloaded

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 26 – A song off of the last album you brought/track you downloaded

I've always liked David Coverdale's voice so I was saddened to hear he had problems on the last tour. There were suggestions that his voice was shot. Decided to risk getting the new album anyway. Only had time for a couple of listens, no favourite track yet, so here's the single:

Unless it's all studio trickery and ProTools, I'm pleased to hear that he is sounding pretty good.

Monday, 25 April 2011

Rock Radio Playlist

I am a member of a couple of facebook groups where there has been discussion of the Rock Radio playlist. Some people seem very grumpy about what is and isn't being played. Me, I'm more relaxed.

Obviously, I'd like them to play more Rush but it's a radio station, not my iPod: to a certain extent you have to take the rough with the smooth. As long as there is more that I like than there is that I dislike, I'm happy to stick with them. Certainly, there is no other radio station I can receive in the car that I'd rather listen to on a regular basis.

However, it got me thinking... so I decided to collect data about what tracks were played over a a few days and then do a wee bit analysis just to see what was being played. I'll present here some of the more obvious conclusions now but there's loads more I could look at, so I will probably return to this data again in future posts.

Data Collected

I decided to concentrate on the Breakfast Show and the Afternoon (drivetime) Show. I focussed on these shows because I guessed that they are the two most listened shows and that they probably best reflect the station's playlist. The tracks played on both shows are published on the website but unfortunately (unless I'm looking in the wrong place) they are not archived so you have to collect the data each day or you lose it! I was aiming to collect data from 14 April 2011 to 22 April 2011 - seven week days, 14 shows. Unfortunately, I missed the Breakfast Show data for 18 April, so I only have six days of Breakfast show data.

First Observations

Over the thirteen shows, 427 tracks were played altogether, that is an average of 32.8 tracks per show. They played tracks from 185 different artists and 361 different songs. Inevitably some songs will get more airplay at particular times, just as they do on my iPod, but 361 different songs over a seven day period is not bad.

The list of artists played more than three times is shown below:

Artist Plays
Ac/dc 14
Aerosmith 11
Def Leppard 9
Bad Company 8
Foo Fighters 8
Free 8
Guns N Roses 8
Mr Big 8
Deep Purple 7
Kiss 7
Led Zeppelin 7
Pink Floyd 7
Rolling Stones 7
Michael Monroe 6
Thin Lizzy 6
Van Halen 6
Who 6
Foreigner 5
Queen 5
Ramones 5
Red Hot Chili Peppers 5
Saxon 5
Sixx A.M. 5
T Rex 5
Whitesnake 5
Doors 4
Eagles 4
Jimi Hendrix 4
Joe Elliot 4
Metallica 4
Rainbow 4
Rush 4
Steve Miller Band 4
Tom Petty 4

The full list can be found in a public Google Doc I've created called RockRadio Artists.

Mostly, it is no surprise who is at the top of the pile and the data confirmed my suspicion that, while it could be argued that some bands get more than their fair share, there is a fairly good spread. There are, however, a few oddities some of which can be explained but some I find more puzzling. For example, Joe Elliot was interviewed on both shows and the station was promoting the gig where he was supporting Paul Rogers so Def Leppard and Joe himself both feature strongly (as do Free and Bad Company presumably for the similar reasons) but I'm not sure why Mr Big had the same track played eight times!

So, at first glance, I'm encouraged. What do you think? There are a few more things I want to look at and report on but is there anything you'd like me to investigate? (I also have data on what songs were played.)

Day 25 – A song from a band/artist you’ve just ‘discovered’

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 25 – A song from a band/artist you’ve just ‘discovered’

This one is slightly bizarre since the artist I have just "discovered" is hardly a spring chicken: it's Peter Green. I knew Peter Green was in Fleetwood Mac before Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks. I also knew that in their early days, they were essentially a Blues band but I had no albums from that period. Other than Albatross, I was not consciously aware of anything he had played on.

Then, I saw a documentary about him on BBC Four and as a result went out and found two compilation albums with a selection of his material. The compilations I have contain latter day re-recordings of his early stuff, but here he is in his prime:

A recent discovery of a guitar legend. I want to hear more.

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Day 24 – A song you play before a night out

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 24 – A song you play before a night out

Depends on where I'm going but when I go to see Rush next month, I'll have Moving Pictures on permanent repeat.

What do you mean, "That's not the right version!"? I'm Geddy Muir and I'll play whatever version I like... OK. Fine!

Anybody else going to see the Rush in Glasgow next month?

Saturday, 23 April 2011

Free Music Friday #97: Roadrunner Records Sampler

I've posted about Roadrunner Records before but I don't think I've ever posted a link to a facebook page as a means to acquiring free music before.

Black Stone Cherry by LuLu Witch
Black Stone Cherry a photo by
LuLu Witch on Flickr.
If you go to a Roadrunner Records facebook page and "Like" them, you are taken to a page where, in exchange for your email address, you get to download an eight track sampler.

In the download you get tracks from DevilDriver, Revoker, Within Temptation, Cavalera Conspiracy, Times of Grace, Royal Republic, Underoath and the magnificent Black Stone Cherry. I am really impressed with the stuff the Roadrunner gives away. I assume they hope that once you have developed a taste for it by listening to the free stuff, you'll go and buy more from the artists you like. If that's what they hope... it works on me!

Day 23 – A song you play when you want to relax

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 23 – A song you play when you want to relax

Sometimes I sits and thinks. But sometimes, I just sits...

I am struggling to think when I last had a chance to relax while listening to music! Unfortunately, listening to music now-a-days tends to happen while I am doing something else; driving; walking the dogs; marking essays; ...

It's difficult to say what I would listen to if I did have the chance to relax and listen to music. Probably I'd just go for something at the extra noisy that I can enjoy without having to think too much about it:

Too be fair, there are probably other Motörhead tracks I'd have to think even less about than this one, but it's one of my favourites.

(Thinking further about this, is it my definition of "relax" that needs reconsideration? I find the physical activity and release involved in pumping up the volume and brining out the air guitar usually makes me feel better. Is that relaxing?)

Friday, 22 April 2011

Day 22 – A song that reminds you of your wife

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 22 – A song that reminds you of your wife

I first met when we were at university together where she was in the Arts Faculty and I was in Science studying Computing. I didn't realise that, at the time I was attempting to win her heart, a major stumbling block for her was that I was a scientist! She didn't see how she could love someone that didn't share her love of language and literature.

As I said, I din't realise this at the time but one day, when she was visiting our flat, I played her the Joni Mitchell album - Blue.

Apparently, as I explained to her why My Old Man was such a good song and why I especially liked the lyric: "The frying pan's too wide", she decided there might be hope for me after all: that the heart of an artist might be lurking beneath my cold scientific exterior. Not that she have me any hint of that at the time!

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Day 21 – A song you can’t help but sing along to

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 21 – A song you can’t help but sing along to

As a teenager I painstakingly copied the lyrics of Supper's Ready by Genesis off my pal's album. I can still sing most of the song. Here's Tony Banks talking about it:

And here's part 1 of the song:

Whenever I play it, I can't help but join in.
Mum to mud to mad to dad
Dad diddley office, Dad diddley office,
Ah, they don't write them like that any more!

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Day 20 – A guilty pleasure song

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 20 – A guilty pleasure song

Thanks to this video, my guilty pleasure is a Black Eyed Peas' song:

Does that make me a bad person?

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Day 19 – A song you never get sick of hearing

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 19 – A song you never get sick of hearing

I could list just about any Rush track here but instead I'm going for the third most played track on my iPod - Joe Bonamassa's version of Ballpeen Hammer:

I played this track to a colleague at work and she identified it as a cover of a Chris Whitley song. I'd never heard of him but decided to check him out because I liked the song so much.

Did I like him? well, I now have ten of his albums, so I guess that's a yes!

Monday, 18 April 2011

Day 18 – A song that makes you think of a family member

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 18 – A song that makes you think of a family member

I associate my parent's taste in music with James Last and James Gallway - not exactly inspiring to a young Rock fan. But dad had a pile of old 78s that hinted at a more interesting musical past. In particular, he had a copy of Tiger Rag by Les Paul and Mary Ford:

I loved this track and I am ashamed to admit that I destroyed my dad's 78. For some reason (when I was still in primary school) I decided to see if you could listen to a record by running a needle (as in needle and thread rather than stylus) round and round the groves. Surprise, surprise, I didn't hear a thing but managed to wreck the disc while finding this out. Sorry dad!

But it does mean that I think of dad every time I hear Les Paul.

Sunday, 17 April 2011

Day 17 – A song that reminds you of a holiday

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 17 – A song that reminds you of a holiday

When I was a teenager, my mum and I went to stay with a cousin who was doing post-doctoral research at UCLA. Music was much cheaper there, so I wanted to buy an album as a memento. I wasn't convinced I'd get an LP home safely, so I bought Van Halen's début on cassette:

Lots of great tracks on this album but Ice Cream Man seemed appropriate for a holiday song.

Brings back happy memories of theme parks, McDonalds and learning to juggle!

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Day 16 – Your favourite TV theme tune

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 16 – Your favourite TV theme tune

I watched Top of The Pops for years before I knew where the theme tune came from:

And, in case you didn't recognise that version, here it is again:

Somewhat ironic given Led Zeppelin's no singles policy!

Free Music Friday #96: Ha Ha Tonka

Both Ha Ha Tonka and the HearYa site have featured here before and now they are back for a third time.

Head over to the HearYa site for a review of the new album and a free download of a track called Usual Suspects. The review suggests that the band's sound has matured and improved. I really like the sound of this track. If it is an indication of the quality of the album, I guess I'll be adding a third Ha Ha Tonka album to my collection.

Looks like they would be fun to see live too.

Friday, 15 April 2011

Day 15 – A song off an album that has brilliant cover art

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 15 – A song off an album that has brilliant cover art

Roger Dean
and 70s Prog rock - a match made in heaven! Concept albums, gatefold sleeves, triple gatefold sleeves even. Brilliant! Probably my favourite cover art is from Fragile by Yes. The music on the album was a bit of a mixed bag but I love the cover art:

Here is a really interesting acoustic version (Jane: that is, an "unplugged" version!) of Roundabout from that album:

Two backup choices would be Genesis - Selling England By The Pound (where the cover art is the painting that inspired my favourite Genesis song) and Rush - 2112 (with the first appearance of the iconic red star logo).

Glad the topic was "album art" because CDs are too small! Give me a 70s Prog gatefold sleeve any day.

Thursday, 14 April 2011

Day 14 – Your favourite acoustic cover/track

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 14 - Your favourite acoustic cover/track

I'm going to follow my daughters lead and go for something off Peter Gabriel's Scratch My Back album:

I was tempted by his cover of The Book Of Love (which he talks about in this vodcast) because I really like the lyrics (especially the subtle shift in the 3rd verse) but in the end just went for Heroes because it was a track I knew well and already loved but I think he has done something really interesting with it.

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Day 13 – The song that contains your favourite lyrics

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 13 - The song that contains your favourite lyrics

Tricky. I'll probably change my mind tomorrow but today I'll go for this one which certainly has one of the all time greatest opening lines:

"The Mississippi Delta was shining like a National Guitar." Brilliant!

Some other favourites from this song include:
She comes back to tell me she's gone
As if I didn't know that
As if I didn't know my own bed
As if I'd never noticed
The way she brushed her hair from her forehead
And I see losing love
Is like a window in your heart
Everybody sees you're blown apart
Everybody feels the wind blow

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Day 12 – A song that makes you laugh/smile

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 12 - A song that makes you laugh/smile

Slightly odd choice here perhaps...

I first heard this on a Bob Harris show. I turned on the radio just as the song started and I didn't know who it was by or what it was about but as the song progressed, I just found myself grinning at the repeated phrase: "Pink, pink, pink, pink, pink moon".

Now that I know a bit more about Nick Drake, and have listened more carefully to the lyrics, I think the subject matter is actually fairly dark. The meaning of the lyrics is not entirely clear, but I'd guess he is singing about death: "Pink Moon's gonna get ye all."

...And yet, it still makes me smile when I hear it. As I say, slightly odd choice.

Monday, 11 April 2011

Day 11 – A song that reminds you of your best mate

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 11 - A song that reminds you of your best mate

Perhaps I should have kept yesterday's anecdote for today's post because, is it just me, or are the pals you had in your youth the best pals you ever have? No? Just lonely, boring old men like me that think that then?

So here is a song that reminds me of a recently retired colleague who goes to gigs with me. He is a huge Blues fan, and when he was given a boxed set of the Martin Scorsese Presents The Blues: A Musical Journey DVDs, he gave me the complete set of individual DVDs he'd bought himself. Now that's the action of a good mate.

More significantly, when I was looking for somebody to go to see Airbourne with, he agreed to come with me - even though it's not really his thing. So, because it reminds me of Tom, here is Running Wild:

Both of us suffered hearing problems for about a week afterwards but at least I was a fan and knew most of the tracks that had deafened us!

Sunday, 10 April 2011

Day 10 – An awesome driving track

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 10 - An awesome driving track

Another easy choice. Rush - Red Barchetta. A driving song about driving.

Actually, I was tempted to use Without You by Nilsson because it ties in with a memory from my teens. I went on holiday to the Lake District with two mates and my dog Ben in my ancient Mini (called Mildred). On the way home late at night, we were listening to the radio. (I couldn't afford a cassette player for the car and even the radio was housed in a contraption my dad had made from plywood with an aerial that hung onto the window.) As we were belting up the motorway (well, 50mph was about as good as Mildred could manage) Without You came on the radio. Quite spontaneously, when it got to the big chorus, all three of us joined in - singing it at the top of our lungs. By the time we got back to the chorus, we were encouraging Ben to join in by howling. Ah, happy days. (Maybe you had to be there.)

Saturday, 9 April 2011

Day 09 – Favourite new release (has to be less than 2 months old)

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 09 - Favourite new release (has to be less than 2 months old)

Technically, this is more than two months old but I only got it in February (I wrote about in Free Music Friday #90: Just Another Rider). So, I'm going to pretend it's two months old because it's a current favourite. (My 30 Day Challenge, my rules!)


Probably my favourite track on the album is Devil Got My Woman but I wanted to post one of the official videos. On the official video front, as well as the one I've embedded above, you can also see Gregg talking about the album and see him play Floating Bridge and Just Another Rider.

Free Music Friday #95: Late again

Free Download Friday is late again but that is oddly appropriate because today's free download is from a band that hasn't released anything for a couple of years. Well, perhaps they are not late but they are... anticipated!

The Arctic Monkeys are due to release a new album later this year and have released this track, Brick By Brick, to whet your appetite. As well as the free download, they have also put out this video:

Quite a different sound, eh? If I hadn't been told it was the Arctic Monkeys, I would never have guessed. Less Indie and more Rock. In particular the distinctive vocals seem to have been lost in favour of a more generic vocal sound, which I think is a shame. Apart from that though, I like the track. I like the drumming and I like the overall sound. It will be interesting to hear just how representative of the album it is.

Bonus Free Download

I think this one is time limited and it may already be past time otherwise I would have featured this song: Black Stone Cherry: Blame It On The Boom Boom. Give them your email and they will give you a great track from an outstandingly good band... if you hurry.

Friday, 8 April 2011

Day 08 – The song you play the most on your iPod

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 08 – The song you play the most on your iPod

I'm not surprised to discover it is a Rush song: Closer To The Heart.

Check out Neil's tache!

For the record, the number two song is Tom Sawyer also by Rush and number three is Ball Peen Hammer by Joe Bonamassa.

Thursday, 7 April 2011

Day 07 – A song that reminds you of a season

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 07 - A song that reminds you of a season

It's possibly a bit to early in the year but no Christmas Season is complete without a daily dose of Slade and Merry Xmas Everybody:

All together now, just like Noddy: "It's Christmas!".

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Day 06 – A song by your favourite band/artist

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 06 - A song by your favourite band/artist

Favourite band is easy but favourite track is tricky because there are so many to choose from. In the end, decided to go for the title track off the album which first introduced me to Rush: A Farewell To Kings:

What do you think of Geddy's kimono? Dandy or dork?

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Day 05 – A song from your teens/childhood

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 05 - A song from your teens/childhood

A song from my childhood should probably be Puppet On A String from Sandie Shaw. As a child I claimed I was in love with her. (As were, somewhat bizarrely, The Smiths!)

By my early teens though, I had been introduced to Rock music. It was at the time of the rise in home taping (which was going to kill music) and I used the family's music centre (anyone else remember those?) to tape stuff off the radio. In particular, I would come in from the BB on a Friday night and listen to the Friday Rock Show with Tommy Vance on Radio 1 until I had to go to bed - at which point, I'd put in a C120 and record the rest of the show.

One Friday, I came home to hear him playing all (or at least I think it was all) the tracks off a new double album from Pink Floyd. In between the tracks he was talking to someone from the band (Roger Waters I assume) about how the album had been put together. (Update:It was Roger Waters and I found a transcript.) I'd missed a few tracks but the cassette went in and I got most of the show taped. Goodness knows where that tape is now, or if it would still be playable but at the time it was hugely exciting. Not only could I listen to an amazing new album but I got a real insight into how it was created. For example, I remember my surprise as Roger described some of the last minute changes to the running order that they made. The order the tracks appear seem so right it was odd to think it had not always been that way.

Here then is Pink Floyd's hit single from The Wall and a song that takes me right back to my teenage years.

We don't need no education.

Monday, 4 April 2011

Day 04 – A song by the first band/artist you saw live

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 04 - A song by the first band/artist you saw live

I have already written about my first ever concert: Concert Memories #01: Hawkwind, so let's cut to the chase and showcase the track that is still one of my favourite Hawkwind tracks:

I am a clone, I am not alone... Ah, they don't make them like that any more!

Sunday, 3 April 2011

Day 03 – Your favourite album track

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 03 - Your favourite album track

Hmmm! Tricky! Current favourite from an album I'm listening to a lot just now or all time stood the test of time favourite? I guess it has to be all time favourite... The other tricky bit is that favourite album track potentially overlaps with other song challenges, e.g. day 08 - The song you play the most on your mp3/itunes/whatever, day 19 – A song you never get sick of hearing, or day 30 – Your favourite song of all time. I want to try and feature 30 different songs, so I'm going to avoid candidates for days 8, 19 and 30.

I have decided therefore to go for an AC/DC track but even then I'm struggling to choose between the live version of Whole Lotta Rosie and Back In Black. Almost against my better judgement I'm going for this one:

In general, I think I would say that I preferred Bon Scott's vocals and since If You Want Blood was recorded at the Glasgow Apollo, it is possible that I was in the audience shouting "Angus!" at the appropriate points in the introduction. In the end though, it was the opening riff of Back In Black that swung it. As soon as it starts, the volume goes up and the air guitar is brought into action. Brilliant! I especially like the way the riff stutters into action and then seems to rewind:

dan, da-da-dan, da-da-dan, g'digga dig-ing
dan, da-da-dan, da-da-dan, g'dun g'dun g'dun g'dun

Saturday, 2 April 2011

Day 02 – Your favourite single

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 02 – Your favourite single

The first single I bought with my own money was My Coo Ca Choo by Alvin Stardust but not by any stretch of the imagination could this be described as a favourite!

My favourite single (i.e. proper vinyl disk that I still have stored in a box somewhere) is I Know What I Like (In Your Wardrobe) by Genesis:

The more astute among you will realise that the Genesis single was released before the Alvin Stardust one, so I have to confess that I acquired a second hand copy of I Know What I Like in the late Seventies when I discovered the joys of Prog Rock!

(Despite the stumble with Alvin Stardust, have I recovered a bit from yesterday's Wombles confession?)

Friday, 1 April 2011

Free Music Friday #94: Just for fun

For April Fools Day, it seemed appropriate to choose a humorous track for download. And a great source of comedy tracks is the Mitch Benn Music Podcast. (Note: Mitch does warn that the podcast "Features sweary lyrics".)

I always enjoy Mitch's contribution to the Now Show, and if you enjoy comedy music with a bit of parody and pastiche thrown in for good measure, I can highly recommend his album: Crimes Against Music. In his (almost) weekly podcast, he does feature his own work, but the focus is on stuff from other people. The great thing is, the podcast page links to all the featured artists, so often you will be able to download, or at least listen to streamed music, from the people you have enjoyed.

The artists I have chosen to link to is Neil Innes. Most of the people in the podcast are relative unknowns but I have enjoyed Neil's work for years. I first encountered him when I was a just a boy because the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band featured on a children's TV programme called Do Not Adjust Your Set. I had never seen anything like them before but I definitely responded to their anarchic brand of inspired lunacy. (Just realised, I must have been about six when this was on TV but I have vivid memories of the Bonzo's performances!)

But back to Neil because his website is brilliant. It is stuffed to the gunwales with examples of his work from pre-Bonzos to present day. There are lyrics, videos, pictures, guitar tabs and (most importantly for this post) downloads of his songs.

I'm linking here to the section where you can download two different versions of what was probably the Bonzo's biggest hit: I'm The Urban Spaceman (which was produced by Paul McCartney under the pseudonym Apollo C. Vermouth). The first version is preformed in a Dixieland Jazz style and is really interesting but the second download is a live version which is much closer to the recorded version. Helpfully, Neil has also provided a guitar tab for this song and even though I'll get a row from my guitar tutor for neglecting my scales, I spent a good chunk of today's practice playing along with Neil and the boys.

There is loads more to download and discover but unfortunately my favourite Innes song isn't available for download, so here's the video instead:

What Innes download would you recommend?

Day 01 – A song from the first album you ever brought

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 01 – A song from the first album you ever brought

My daughter started this back in February and thought it might be interesting to try it but the nerd in me decided to wait for a 30 day long month just to keep things tidy. I am not the most consistent of posters, so thirty days in a row will be a real challenge! Note I decided to go for the same alternative challenge that Daughter Number 1 did.)

Here goes then with Day 1 - A song from the first album you ever brought

I suspect the first album I was given was a Top Of The Pops compilation of covers but as far as I remember, the first one I bought with my own money was Remember You're A Womble by the Wombles! (Oh the shame!)

Here then is something off that classic from the Seventies:

Hopefully this will become less embarrassing as the days go on!