It had to happen I suppose, that my (usually) sunny disposition and sense of sang froid would sooner or later hit a speed bump on the cosmic highway. Narky? Grumpy? Yeah, just a little. What’s lit this fire under me is an item I saw on the ‘DJs of the Irish pirate radio era’ Facebook page proposing to set up a radio museum/gallery/exhibition in Dublin featuring pirate radio, encompassing all stations nationally and not just the Dublin ones, I assume. It’s a great idea and I’m all for it but what frustrates me is that this is something we could do here in Waterford featuring our own stations. We had five of them after all – WLR, Suirside, ABC, Crystal City Sound and NCR. There’s enough there and surely enough memorabilia to populate such an exhibition if the will was there…..Read
‘In praise of the humble record shop…..’
I settled in during the week to watch ‘All Things Must Pass – The Tower Records Story’. I wasn’t disappointed. The story went like this – company founder Russ Solomon’s dad had what was essentially a corner shop selling everything from a needle to an anchor. Russ suggested that maybe they could sell second hand records too, there might be a buck to be made. His dad agreed and it went from there. The company grew from one store in Sacramento California to a globe spanning chain including a store in Dublin….Read
LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED…..
In the early days of January, before the tinsel was down, I decided that this month’s blog would be one of love and romance, no matter what. The plan was somewhat similar last year with the piece half-written only for the death of David Bowie to blow it off its hinges. I promised to myself that I’d re-visit it a year on though, because with Valentine’s Day in the offing I want to put some irresistible love songs your way. Some may be familiar to you but I’m confident there are at least a few curveballs you won’t know but are worth your time to investigate so you can play them to your beloved on the Big Day. He/she won’t be disappointed, I promise!…Read
THE GREEN GOD
Right, where was I? Ah yes, the guitarist whose career came off the tracks. This, you may recall, was the planned blog last month until the easily distracted yours truly went off in a different direction altogether. The man I’m talking about is Peter Green, the so called Green God and founder of Fleetwood Mac. I’d have thought it’s reasonable to assume there are a great many people unaware that there was ever a bloke called Green in the Mac…Read
IT’S ONLY ROCK ‘N’ ROLL……….
The plan was to write a heartfelt tribute to a guitar hero from the past who, while he hasn’t exactly fallen on hard times, has the air of a man who got left behind somewhat. Not exactly tragedy but a bit of a sad story nevertheless, full of what-ifs. The story will be done, just not this month because while I was sitting chewing the top of my pen (those first few lines, always the hardest) out of the corner of my eye I noticed a headline on the computer screen saying something about a new Rolling Stones album, their first in over a decade, no less. So I was idly scrolling through this news with low expectations as the Stones hadn’t done anything to merit me getting excited in a very long time. By the end of the report my interest had risen sharply.Read
Time for me to step out……
With these words Cliff Williams did the decent thing, pulled the plug. Cliff, of all people. The quiet man whose public profile seemed to consist only of appearing on album covers and publicity shots. Come to think of it I don’t remember ever reading a quote attributed to him never mind a full blown interview which makes his recent video statement all the more remarkable. Cliff Williams speaks!!…Read
OF AUGUST AND ANNIVERSARIES……
With the 39th anniversary of Elvis Presley’s death just around the corner (39 years!!!) I couldn’t let the opportunity pass without paying tribute. It remains one of those JFK moments, doesn’t it? Where were you when you heard? Quite why it should be so for me is a bit of a mystery because in August 1977 I was sixteen years old and not well disposed towards Elvis. After all he was the guy in the diamante encrusted jumpsuits playing to the well heeled blue rinse set in Las Vegas, of no relevance whatsoever to me or to most of my generation I’d suspect. The Clash were singing about “No Elvis, Beatles or Rolling Stones in 1977” and I took that as something of a manifesto, a mission statement…..Read
PARTY LIKE IT’S 1982!
Remember David Hepworth? Ah, I had a feeling you mightn’t so let me refresh your memory. Throughout the 1980s he had a diverse career, from being the editor of Smash Hits magazine in the era of Culture Club, Wham, et al to presenting The Old Grey Whistle Test on BBCtv. Talk about polar opposites. Then there’s several highbrow magazines which he launched, including Mojo and Empire, so all in all an impressive CV I’m sure you’ll agree. He’s written a couple of books too, the most recent of which is the trigger for this month’s blog – “1971 – Never a Dull Moment : Rock’s Golden Year”. I haven’t read it yet but the basic premise is that 1971 contained more influential albums than any year before or since and was probably the most creative in the history of music….Read