This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to… Earl Scruggs April 23, 2016Posted by irishelectionliterature in This Weekend I'll Mostly Be Listening to....
I like a bit of Banjo, I even bought a Fureys and Davey Arthur record on the strength of the banjo in ‘Sweet Sixteen’ ! However I’m going for a far faster style of banjo picking here with one of my favourite bluegrass banjo players, the late Earl Scruggs. You’re probably familiar with some of the tunes (especially The Beverly Hillbillies theme song).
It’s funny too how Scruggs went out of fashion for a period and then in the mid 90’s his career picked up again as he was ‘rediscovered’. It really is feelgood music.
The James Connolly Festival 2016 Present Anderson with special guest Bad Sea. Monday 9th May April 15, 2016Posted by irishelectionliterature in Culture.
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“Battery Point” was a Sarah Records compilation I bought in 1995 that I dug up recently. It wasn’t their best but had some good tunes on it. The bands featured were Blueboy, Boy Racer, Aberdeen, The Hit Parade,Northern Picture Library, Ivy, Shelly, Action Painting!, The Sugargliders and Secret Shine. Some had two tracks on it. None of them really ‘made it’.
A few favourites would be “Fran” by Aberdeen and “Wish You Would” by Ivy. Naturally with any compilation there are a few duds.
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I happened upon the Dubstar version of “St Swithins Day” again recently and I’d forgotten how much I liked it. It has been my favourite Billy Bragg cover since I heard it first almost 20 years ago. (There’s a wonderful live version somewhere with Billy Bragg joining them, alas I couldn’t find it for this.)
Although now far more famous than the original I’m not a great fan of Kirty McColls version of “A New England” just doesn’t have the edge that the original had. In a strange way too being sung by a woman rather than a man changes the way the listener thinks of the song. It’s also nice to air a well known Left Wing band like The Redskins here too. I like their cover of “Levi Stubbs Tears”. The Small Hours are band I know little about but I though their version of “The Milkman of Human Kindness” was decent enough. June Tabors version of “Rumours of War” is quite nice.
Speaking of June Tabor…..I came across some awful covers, The Oysterband being particular culprits with a horrific version of “Between The Wars” and a dreadful version of “Valentine’s Day Is Over”. There were also some metal covers of various Bragg songs which didn’t appeal to me much at all.
This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to… Soak March 12, 2016Posted by irishelectionliterature in This Weekend I'll Mostly Be Listening to....
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One thing about being older or just my lifestyle is that I rarely discover new music and I hadn’t heard of Soak a month ago, but I’ve spent the last month flitting between her and the new Gloaming album. Especially live the recordings are just incredibly bare and to think she’s still only 19. I’m aurally glued to every note and in a really strange way it reminds me of an early Billy Bragg.
Soak (Kaos spelt backwards) is Bridie Monds-Watson from Derry who has been playing for a number of years and has a number of eps , singles and an album on Rough Trade already as well as nominations for all sorts of awards indeed winning the Choice Music award recently. She’s one of those people I hadn’t realised that I’d missed….. Thank God for teenage children and their musical taste . Start off by putting “B a Nobody” on a loop !!!
Theres a bit about her here
Her Tumblr site has a bit of a diary thats worthwhile reading
This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to… “I Want Too Much” by A House February 27, 2016Posted by irishelectionliterature in This Weekend I'll Mostly Be Listening to....
The ‘difficult second album’ recorded on Innisboffin, some of the reviews at the time were mixed and it failed commercially anding up with them being dropped by Blanco y Negro. Yet for all that ,it’s probably my favourite A House album.
Having seen them umpteen times, bought “Kick Me Again Jesus”/ “Snowball Down” (and played it quietly so my mother wouldn’t hear the lyrics) , I was really looking forward to “On Our Big Fat Merry go Round” yet for the greatness of “My Little Lighthouse”, “I’ll Always Be Grateful” and “Call Me Blue”, there were a few tunes that I wasn’t overly impressed with. Then the problem with Vinyl was that you had to listen to a whole side or else risk scratching the record unless of course you had one of those really fancy turntables with a switch and lever for lifting the needle up and down.
“I Want Too Much” came with it’s brilliant cover , although I wonder did the brown influence it’s sales?
This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to… Bell X1 February 13, 2016Posted by irishelectionliterature in This Weekend I'll Mostly Be Listening to....
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An Irish band that I’m quite fond of, yet despite threatening to ‘make it big’ they seemed to stuttered at the edge of it for a while. They are still excellent and have some great songs.
Have seen them numerous times and they are very good live too.
This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to… covers of U2 songs January 30, 2016Posted by irishelectionliterature in This Weekend I'll Mostly Be Listening to....
First off if you haven’t read “David Bowie The Cork Years” it’s well worth it…….
It was this wonderful cover of U2s ‘Out of Control’ by Dave Long (ex Into Paradise) posted by the wonderful Fanning Sessions that got me looking for other covers of U2 songs. Most of them that I found aren’t great but I like these ones.
This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to….. Lullaby Renditions January 16, 2016Posted by irishelectionliterature in This Weekend I'll Mostly Be Listening to....
Happened upon these recently and wondered why I hadn’t heard of them when my own were infants. So rather than Barney or some other horrific tunes at least the children would relax with some decent tunes.
They are actually quite hypnotic and could imagine myself nodding off to them. There’s a vast array of them, seems to be a lullaby version of almost everything.
A selection below.
This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to…. Phil Lynott January 2, 2016Posted by irishelectionliterature in This Weekend I'll Mostly Be Listening to....
Monday marks thirty years since Phil Lynott died. The 4th of January 1986 etched into my mind along with other dates from my growing up. I was 16 and mad into Thin Lizzy. Had every album, solo ones and had even bought that awful ‘Out in the fields’ record he did with Gary Moore. He was just coolness personified and a Dub at that too.
The music was brilliant, With Live and Dangerous still my favourite album of all time. I wasn’t a fan of the introduction of keyboards into Thin Lizzy and felt ‘Renegade’ and to a lesser extent ‘Thunder and Lightning’ suffered as a result. The ‘Life Live’ album though was one I liked although it wasn’t up there with ‘Live and Dangerous’.
Never saw them with Phil Lynott but did see a ‘Thin Lizzy’ in the SFX around 20 years ago and they were excellent and made me sorry that I never saw the real thing.