Saturday, 19 November 2011

Oh Brother

You may recall I linked to the worst, most-punchable Christmas advert in history the other month; well, quite by chance, whilst watching an episode of Homes Under The Hammer earlier (don't ask), I heard something that sounded ominously familiar; someone from days of yore singing about "My Brother" to the exact same tune as the punchable Littlewoods Christmas ad music!

Further investigation revealed My Brother to have been a novelty hit in the 1950s for Terry "and June" Scott, which, in time-honoured style, has ended up being appropriated (albeit half a century later) and bastardised by a bunch of advertising slags in order to attract the custom of the aspirational, avaricious masses. Yeah, thanks a million for that, you utter sods.

Anyway, here's Terry's whimsical, not at all punchworthy version of The Song That Littlewoods Killed. The next time you see that godforsaken advert on the TV, try to remember the song this way.

Bizarrely, I also caught a snippet of Anna Ternheim's What Have I Done during that episode of Homes Under The Hammer. Whoever's picking the incidental music for that programme has really upped their game.

Friday, 18 November 2011

Song of the Day

Just in case you were in any doubt that I'm a big softie.

Lavender Diamond - Open Your Heart mp3

Thursday, 17 November 2011

UK Top 40 Singles 5th January 1980 (Spotify playlist #9)

This week's playlist sees us travelling all the way back to the first chart of the 1980s - or, if you're being finicky, the final chart of the 1970s; it's for the week ending 5th January 1980 anyway, so would actually have first appeared on 29th December 1979. Hang on, I'll start again...

This week's playlist sees us travelling all the way back to the final chart of the 1970s. And what a week it was! But don't just take my word for it - cop a load of these.

(as ever, click on the link below to listen)

40 The Nolans - I'm In The Mood For Dancing
39 Booker T & The MG's - Green Onions
38 Diana Ross - It's My House
36 Boney M - I'm Born Again
35 Lena Martell - One Day At A Time
34 M - Moonlight And Muzak
33 Sheila & B. Devotion - Spacer
32 Queen - Crazy Little Thing Called Love
31 Dr Hook - When You're In Love With A Beautiful Woman
30 Kurtis Blow - Christmas Rappin'
29 The Clash - London Calling
26 E.L.O. - Last Train To London (Double A-side with 'Confusion')
25 Matchbox - Rockabilly Rebel
24 Billy Preston & Syreeta - With You I'm Born Again
23 Skids - Working For The Yankee Dollar
22 Madness - One Step Beyond
21 Chic - My Feet Keep Dancing
20 KC & The Sunshine Band - Please Don't Go
19 Moody Blues - Nights In White Satin
18 Status Quo - Living On An Island
17 The Beat - Tears Of A Clown (Double A-side with 'Ranking Full Stop')
16 Blondie - Union City Blue
15 Rose Royce - Is It Love You're After
14 Donna Summer & Barbra Streisand - No More Tears (Enough Is Enough)
13 Elvis Presley - It Won't Seem Like Christmas (Without You)
12 David Bowie - John, I'm Only Dancing (Again)
11 Michael Jackson - Off The Wall
10 The Three Degrees - My Simple Heart
9 Gibson Brothers - Que Sera Mi Vida
8 The Police - Walking On The Moon
7 Sugarhill Gang - Rapper's Delight
5 The Pretenders - Brass In Pocket
4 The Tourists - I Only Wanna Be With You
2 ABBA - I Have A Dream

Listen here

The eagle-eyed among you will have noticed that there are a handful of numbers missing from the list (including the number 1); this is entirely down to their lack of availability on Spotify, rather than any unilateral pruning on my part.

But, to fill in the blanks, below are archive performances of the missing songs. As with some of the tracks on the actual playlist, you might not thank me for them, but here they are all the same!

37 The Ramblers - The Sparrow

28 The Greedies - A Merry Jingle

27 Mike Oldfield - Blue Peter

6 Paul McCartney - Wonderful Christmas Time

3 Fiddler's Dram - Day Trip To Bangor

1 Pink Floyd - Another Brick In The Wall

That's all for now, but don't forget to join Tommy Vance same time, same place next week. (That's except for viewers in 2011.)

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Song of the Day

Annika Norlin covers fellow Swedes the Deportees' song The Doctor In Me. Nice.

Monday, 14 November 2011

Search me

Long-term readers of this blog will remember a series we ran a few years ago entitled Search Us, in which I'd catalogue some of the more unlikley and outlandish internet searches that somehow ended up landing the unwitting Googler (other search engines are available, albeit no one uses any of them) here.

These searches ranged from the pornographic (Keeley Hawes nude) to the pornographic and disturbing (Watch Paul Jewell Derby porn); from the curious (Is Wincey Willis dead?) to the speculative (Norwegian band's name, I remember the lead singer looked like Ole Gunnar Solskjaer); from the ones that answered their own questions (How do you spell Mezzoforte the jazz band who did garden party?) to the ones who simply couldn't recall Chris Moyles's actual name (bumptious tosser).

There was more porn (Keeley Hawes naked), nonsense (manager of newcastle bill chumbawamba), plain speaking (I don't like pie that much), and a whole slew of enquiries about University Challenge know-all and reluctant overnight sensation Gail Trimble (gail trimbles tits / gail trimble wears glasses / gail trimble dull).

But the two subjects that generated by far the most search traffic (still do) were/are Keeley Hawes (Keeley Hawes knockers remains a personal favourite. Someone - possibly a 1970s sitcom actor - clearly thought outside the box a bit with that one) and, for want of a better word, smut. Oh, and some of the plethora of apple pie-related searches would make yer eyes water! (All I'll say is, there seem to be an alarming number of people with apple pie fixations out there.)

The Search Us posts came to an abrupt halt (or more truthfully, fizzled out) in the summer of 2009 due to a combination of a lack of new and original searches coming in to the blog and a tad of laziness on my part. But due to non-existent public demand, I'm aiming to revive the series - just as soon as I've got enough new material to work with!

With this in mind, and to hopefully induce some more preposterous Googling from the denizens of the interweb, I shall now post a stream-of-consciousness load of random old crap to hopefully hurry things along re the aforementioned aim.

Cesar Romero, Soda Stream, Wimpole, cassocks, Breville sandwich toaster, Doris Schwartz, Steve Heighway, Harry Secombe's Highway, Vince Hilaire, Umberto Eco's giant space hopper, Bella Emberg, Mike & Bernie Winters, Dame Una Nescafe, Rainbow, Black Type, Betamax, Don't you know there's a war on, I should cocoa, Pete Beale's finest fruit and veg cor blimey guv do they mean us they surely do Derek Jameson, ra-ra-ra-ra-Razzamatazz Lisa Stansfield started out on that you know, Mrs Miggins's Pie Shop, I ain't going on no plane fool, flippin' 'eck nutjob, why are you still reading this nonsense, Tucker's Luck, Metal Mickey, Rod Jane & Freddy GCE CSE GCSE TSB Midlank Bank Young Savers cheque book a free pen to every new customer they don't like it up 'em Captain Mainwaring didn't they do well of course I remember when it were all fields round here never mind the Trossachs here's some spectacles, Bradford Park Avenue, Chris Tavare, Gladstone Small, Eddie Hemmings I don't think I actually know any celebrities post the 1980s oh Diane Louise Jordan she's one, this should get the numbers up, maybe if I'd said someone famous and modern that might have helped as well, anyway move along now nothing to see here, hope you like the mp3, it's a good 'un.

Zapp - It Doesn't Really Matter (Extended Version) mp3

Friday, 11 November 2011

He can't stand up for falling down

Took this footage on my phone from this evening's Euro 2014 qualifier between Turkey and Croatia. In it, Turkish playmaker Hamit Altintop takes what I would have to declare to be the most outrageous dive I've ever seen perpetrated by a professional footballer (and I've seen Cristiano Ronaldo). There was no one within three feet of him!

(Apologies for the rather shonky picture quality, by the way, but I literally filmed the video direct from my mobile phone while pointing it at the telly! Still, though, a couple of clicks later and it was uploaded to YouTube. Isn't technology marvellous?)

The Bluebells - I'm Falling mp3

Thursday, 10 November 2011

Scotify! (Spotify playlist #8)

Inspired by STV's recent Scotland's Greatest Album series (you can read the final results from the viewers' vote here), I've decided to cobble together my own list of favourites by artists from north of the border (Spotify availability permitting). Unlike the TV version, however, there'll be nae Rod Stewart or AC/DC here. But I have served up lashings of cheese.

(With apologies to Hipsway, Capercaillie, Mull Historical Society, The Skids, Ballboy, Malcolm Middleton, Idlewild, Edwyn Collins, Bronski Beat, Texas, Wet Wet Wet (yeah, I know) and a shedload of other acts I could and probably should have included. (I'm sure they'll all be devastated.)

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Every loser whinge

Look who was back on Pointless last night...

Guess how he got on?

The Revelations - You're The Loser mp3

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Truly Bumptious

The shocked visage you see above is that of an especially annoying, over-confident contestant on last night's Pointless, realising that he'd just given an incorrect answer and had thus been eliminated. It was much like the bit in a movie where the evil genius realises that his sinister plan has backfired and he's not going to gain control of the world after all. (Oh what's it called, you know the one I mean... Evil Genius Sinister Plan Man.)

Anyway, this may not reflect especially well on me, but that has to one of my favourite ever moments from Pointless (which is a brilliant enough programme already). I mean, you can't beat a bit of schadenfreude at the end of the day (or at the beginning or middle of it), can you? To borrow a phrase from semi-legendary football commentator Barry Davies: look at his face! Just look at his face!

The question in question was as follows, by the way:

Who voiced King Louie in Disney's The Jungle Book?

Our man confidently answered Louis Armstrong (which would have been my guess too).

The actual answer was: Louis Prima. (Never been so happy to get something wrong!)

Anyway, all is not lost for old matey up there, as, like all contestants on Pointless, he gets another chance to play tonight. He'll probably go on to scoop the jackpot second time round, but who cares? We'll always have that priceless moment of realisation and the 'O' face up top.

Daryll-Ann - Surely Justice mp3