With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

Music trivia, useless info, extra added random stuff and the odd rant from me

“Above us only sky” January 24, 2015

Filed under: Observation,Rants — justwilliam1959 @ 11:44 am
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I really can’t bear John Lennon’s “Imagine” although I am a big fan of much of what Lennon has recorded solo and with the Beatles. I believe this dislike of “Imagine” puts me in a minority so I was very pleased to come across someone else who doesn’t like it. None other than the brilliant John Cooper-Clarke.

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He says ‘I regret ever hearing it in the first place. It’s nausea-inducing. The shallow sentimentality of it is ghastly. When I heard it I thought, maybe he’s just never been any good’. He goes on ‘I love the Beatles and John is one of the great voices, so it’s tragic that he should put his name to such drivel. The fact that it’s Britain’s number one song is suicide-inducing’

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Very well said in my opinion Mr Cooper-Clarke. How many you agree or disagree or don’t really give a crap about it?

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“I guess you didn’t care, and I guess I liked that” July 2, 2013


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Not content with picketing the funerals of servicemen and women, gay people and Slayer guitarist Jeff Hanneman those arseholes at the Westboro Baptist Church are now attacking Taylor Swift. They have called her the ‘poster girl of the young whores of doomed-America

Taylor sends a message to those twwats at the Westboro Baptist Church!

Taylor sends a message to those twats at the Westboro Baptist Church!

Clearly these fundamentalists have shit for brains and how come the Christian right isn’t shouting them down for at least being unpatriotic; ‘doomed-America’? How would these fuckwits react if we picketed their funerals and constantly pestered them with hate messages? Would anyone care if the Westboro Baptist Church was destroyed? I doubt even god would care. I suspect that if he/ she exists (and I don’t believe he/ she does) he/ she would break into a wry smile when hearing the news. But equally the fact that arrogant religious nutcases like this exist helps prove to me that there is no god, because if there was why would he/ she create such a bunch of moronic, bigoted wankers as those who are a part of the Westboro Baptist Church?

The same people that picket funerals send their kids out like this? That really is obscene!

The same people who picket funerals send their kids out like this? That really is obscene!

The video has sacrificial goats :-)

If God exists I suspect he would carry a placard that says GOD HATES THE WESTBORO BAPTIST CHURCH!

If God exists I suspect he would carry a placard that says GOD HATES THE WESTBORO BAPTIST CHURCH!

 

“A nation planted, so concerned with gain, as the seasons come and go, greater grows the pain” June 13, 2013

Filed under: Observation,Rants — justwilliam1959 @ 6:17 pm
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Many of us in the west are very lucky. A large majority of us have shelter and plenty of food. But we need to remember that millions of people around the world are not that lucky. Far too many people live in poverty with barely enough to eat. I do not believe this is right and I am sure that many of my readers will share that opinion. So let’s do our bit to stamp out poverty and malnutrition on our planet. We need our so-called leaders to act and we need them to act now. All you need to do right now is to sign an on-line petition that will send a message to the G8 group. We need them to get off their fat arses and do something for the world. Click here for the petition.

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“I want to know who the men in the shadows are,I want to hear somebody asking them why” June 12, 2013


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This is not the first time I have posted about protest songs and I doubt that it will be the last. If you’d like to read my last protest post click here. My good friend Nick Horslen switched me on to the excellent work that one.org do; In particular a superb recent piece providing an extensive playlist of protest songs which range from the classic to the obscure. There are also some very interesting cover versions included. Click here for the protest playlist

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The protest song has been around for many years but for this post I’d like to focus on protest songs from the sixties onwards. The song in this genre that most people know is probably Bob Dylan’s “Blowin’ In The Wind”. The song has been covered by many people and remains a standard for buskers all over the world. The lyrics are essentially a set of questions which I am sad to say are still pertinent today. I recently watched the U2 documentary film, ‘Rattle And Hum‘ and was reminded of how powerful the song “Sunday Bloody Sunday” is. There is a heartfelt speech from Bono during that version where he berates Irish terrorists. This was filmed on the day the IRA murdered 11 innocent people at a remembrance day service in the town of Enniskillen in 1987.

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Whilst the early songs of the rock era, including Dylan, were rooted in folk music the fight for many causes has subsequently been taken up by almost every genre from rap to reggae and from soul to punk. I would like to focus on a few of my favourites in particular some that don’t get played too often and currently are not included in the one.org Agit 8 playlist. But before that I should mention two protest songs that I return to often; Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On” and Bob Marley’s “Redemption Song

I believe that Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong, who wrote many classic Temptations songs for Motown were never recognised widely enough for their protest songs; The Temptations recorded “War” before Edwin Starr had a global hit with it. Whitfield and Strong also wrote “Ball Of Confusion” and “Take A Look Around”. But perhaps one of the bravest given when it was released was “Message From A Black Man” from their 1969 album ‘Puzzle People’

Many singer songwriters from Guthrie, Seeger and Dylan through to Neil Young, Billy Bragg and more recently Frank Turner have written and recorded some very strong protest songs. One of my favourites of that type is Jackson Browne‘s “Lives In The Balance”. In my opinion he was one of too few voices that were constantly critical of the Reagan regime in the 80s. This particular song focuses on America’s ongoing involvement in foreign wars which frankly they should not have been anywhere near!

My last song choice for this post is the very topical “Same Love” from Macklemore and Ryan Lewis. A slow hip hop style song about being gay. In my opinion this is one of the finest rap protest songs that has been released for some time. It also helps to prove that rap can handle gay issues. It is a long way removed from the Tom Robinson Band‘s late 70s gay anthem “Glad To Be Gay” but no less powerful. If any budding songwriters are reading this and you have a protest song you’d like me to air, you know where I am. I would also love to hear from you with your own protest song suggestions.

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“You could be the DJ I could be the dance floor” April 24, 2013


JLSasaurus now extinct....... WOOOO HOOO!

JLSasaurus now extinct……. WOOOO HOOO!

It is with obvious regret and sadness that I have to announce the appalling news that JLS will be breaking up. I would also like to ask is that first sentence true? Well technically the bit about JLS breaking up was, but the obvious regret and sadness was in fact complete bollocks. My only sadness is that this didn’t happen so much sooner. How did we manage to give these useless pop muppets the oxygen of publicity for nearly five years! They arrived via a TV show which is less tasteful than the sulphur discharge from Satan‘s hemorrhoids; that’ll be the X Factor. They didn’t even finish first, that was the equally short on talent Alexandra Burke.

Someone stole all the toilets and toilet doors so JLS were left squatting and unable to go.....is that why they are full of shit?

Someone stole all the toilets and toilet doors so JLS were left squatting and unable to go…..is that why they are full of shit?

In five years they have clearly wrung their teenage audience dry (well technically they have drained the coffers of the parents of their teenage audience); four albums and five UK number one singles? What has the world come to? As if Westlife were not bad enough these boys have taken the worst of them and added a dance beat and more stage dancing. so goodbye to Oritse Williams, Marvin Humes, J.B. Gill and Aston Merrygold. I would love to say I’ll miss you, but that would be a lie. But I guess the ensuing solo albums might be so bad that they’ll be good for a laugh. One will do an album of German oompah style covers of the Dead Kennedy’s back catalogue, another will spit out a concept album about how My Little Pony‘s are made and the other two will collaborate on a re-recording of everything JLS have ever recorded using only flatulence and water! But obviously being the superstars that they are they couldn’t just break up and go away, they have to do the obligatory farewell tour, which has been very imaginatively titled ‘Goodbye; The Greatest Hits Tour’ which as you have probably guessed will be in support of the album ‘Goodbye: The Greatest Hits’. So clearly not a cynical cash in is it? Then there will be the reunion tour in 2023 to look forward to.

By the end of next year our fan base will be about as big as this!

By the end of next year our fan base will be about as big as this!

Finally and just to add a degree of balance I have included a video of one of their UK number ones just in case any of their obviously distraught fans has arrived here by mistake!

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“Who takes all the glory and none of the shame” April 8, 2013


I won’t say much about the death of the grocer‘s daughter, I will just let the music speak for itself!

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“Welcome to the Pit and the Pendulum” November 5, 2012


This is a special message to all my American readers. On November 6th you will have the chance to vote once again in a Presidential election. I would like to offer some advice and some opinions. I recognise that some of you may not agree with me, but I can live with that!

Firstly whatever happens please use your vote. Do not assume that your guy will win whether you vote for them or not. This election could be as close to call as the Dubya versus Gore election in 2000. Secondly and here is where I’m sure I’ll lose some of you. Vote Obama! He has been a great president in some very hard times trying to manage an economy which was almost dead and buried when he inherited it. All of this in the midst of a global recession. He has also introduced an incredibly forward thinking health care plan.

He may not have achieved everything he set out to do, but then look back at the record of any previous US President or indeed British Prime Minister and see what their delivery to promise ratio was. I suspect most of them would have been low. As a Brit I believe Obama has done a great job but even I am disappointed with some aspects of his first term, notably a failure to close down th prison facility at Guantanamo Bay. But compared to his opponent Mitt Romney he is by far the better candidate. OK so let’s consider the crazies for a moment; Donald Trump and the so-called ‘birthers’ who think Barack doesn’t have the right to be President. Well he has made his birth certificate available to you and you still don’t believe him. You were never going to were you? In the same vein why is no one making a big fuss about a lack of tax records from Romney, especially as he had promised to publish them?

I am not religious in the slightest and I believe that it is wrong for a political leader to be overtly religious. Mitt is a Mormon a faith that is based on, let’s face it some rather strange concepts based on the visions of Joseph Smith in the 1800s. It wasn’t so long ago that the Mormon faith allowed and promoted polygamy. In addition to that some would say that it is at its roots a very sexist and racist religion. Although to be fair, Mitt’s father took a stand against some of those principles when he supported the Civil Rights movement in the 1960s.

Mitt is definitely what some US hacks call a ‘flip flopper’. His views on abortion and gay marriage seem to have moved like a yoyo to suit his mood and his position. He said himself in an unguarded moment that he really doesn’t care about 47% of the population. So finally I believe that you should vote for Obama, I think you need to give him another four years. If you vote for Romney the only ones who will benefit in the long-term will be the rich. But like I said at the start, whatever you do use your vote!

Incidentally these are my opinions and I have and will offer advice to UK voters when the time arises. I believe that we voted the wrong way last time and now we’re stuck with a pathetic, corrupt and inept coalition government for the next couple of years at least. So let me step off my soapbox and give you some music. This is a music blog after all.

 

 
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