Week 21 - Fri 21 May

Welcome to the RPM Record Club Seven Day Soundtrack, week ending Friday 21st May 2021. Here's more RPMer chosen sounds to soothe the troubled breast...........

John -

"Hi RPMers..........Not quite the merry month of May but at least we've got lots of great tunes!! Here's a trio of songs from albums I've listened to this week. Coincidentally, they're all artists that would be in my 'Most Memorable Gigs' list. (John Martyn at UEA, Eddie and the Hot Rods at The Lyceum, Sinead O'Connor at Cambridge Corn Exchange). Memorable for all the right reasons, of course....."

May You Never by John Martyn -


Life On The Line by Eddie and the Hot Rods -


Marcus Garvey by Sinead O'Connor -


Jayne -

"Blimey, when the sun finally comes out it will be VERY bright and VERY warm. In the meantime here is a selection of tracks that have diverted me this week."

Johnny Too Bad by Taj Mahal -


Tony -

"Here are my 3 for the week before we make a beeline for the Isle of Wight in our motorhome. My selections this week were inspired by a track I found lurking on the 'B' side of a Stephen Bishop single, "It Might Be You" which was used as the theme for the film "Tootsie". Two of them are from my 'come in handy' list which have a bluesy title, the third is an alternative number written by the composer who inspired me and I'm adding the 'B' side track itself as my self-claimed bonus track which seems to be all the rage at the moment."

(I Got) The Same Old Blues by JJ Cale and Leon Russell - "Two great performers who are sadly no longer with us, performing a J.J. penned song which has been covered by many other artists."


Stormy Monday Blues by Bobby 'Blue' Bland - "One of my all-time favourite blues singers with a re-working of the song originally written and performed by T-Bone Walker as early as 1948."


Ray's Blues by Dave Grusin- "Penned as a tribute to Ray Charles, a beautiful piano track.


Bonus Track -

Metamorphosis Blues (It Might Be You) by Dave Grusin - "The inspiration for my theme this week which I found on a US pressing which I was given with around 50 other singles when I bought some car boot 78's recently. It's taken me a while to get through them and I have humanely disposed of the few Ken Dodd and Ronnie Hilton singles among them - technically good singers but just not enough room for me to keep them plus I've never forgiven Ken for keeping me prisoner in the Theatre Royal for several hours one night when I went to be tickled."


"Best wishes to the RPM group - we just need some decent weather now - much as I like sitting in and listening to music I need to get rid of this ghostly pallor of mine! Cheers."

Jean -

"Things have been a lot more like usual this last week and I have started the Zumba class again. It did make everyone in the hall feel as though they were well on their way to normal. Therefore, it’s the wide variety of Zumba music for your delight this week. Take care everyone and keep safe. Cheers "

Walk Like an Egyptian by The Bangles (1986) -


Do You Love Me? by The Contours (1962) -


Shut Up and Dance With Me by Walk the Moon (2014) -


Alan -

"A band I didn't mention in last week's discourse on the Eno tracks was Wire, perhaps the one band who carried the flag (sic) for some of the methods Eno utilised without attempting to let those methods influence their recorded output. Lead singer Colin Newman had crossed paths with Eno whilst 'car-sharing' on his way to lectures at Winchester Art College in the mid seventies. Eno had attended the college a few years earlier and many of the lecturers were still in attendance but were disparaging in their memories of Brian's working methods at that time, merely reflecting 'Oh him..... there was always this girl and a baby hanging around....' but, despite this, he regularly returned to give lectures about his working methods (usually around the time he had a record release!). Newman was regularly given a lift by Hansjorg Mayer, his second year course leader, and on occasion, Mayer would also ferry (see what I did there?) confirmed non-driver Eno and his associate Peter Schmidt to college. It was during these journeys that Newman would glean an in depth, informal insight not given to the student audience at the lecture and, as a result, when Newman formed Wire, Eno took on a 'patriarchal' attachment to the band. However, Newman turned down an offer from Brian to produce the band in 1980 and, after Newman had produced the debut album by the Virgin Prunes, he passed on an offer to produce an album by some of that band's friends called U2, a band Brian would then take to mega-stardom a couple of years later. Between his car sharing with Brian and his production work, Newman formed perhaps the most 'iconic' UK punk band of the seventies who were quickly signed by Harvest after their 'minimalistic' 'I,2 X U' was featured on the early punk compilation album 'Live at the Roxy'. Within months they released their debut album and, for my first choice, here's the stunning title track...."

Pink Flag by Wire - (Album released December 1977. Harvest label) "A fantastic debut, comprising 21 tracks ranging from the minimal 28 seconds 'Field day for the Sundays' (a diatribe against the paparazzi) to the ultra-poppy 'Champs' and the scary 'Reuters', which is a visceral account from a war correspondent about the horrors of war. Trouser Press magazine called the album "a brilliant 21-song suite" in which the band "manipulated classic rock song structure by condensing them into brief, intense explosions of attitude and energy, coming up with a collection of unforgettable tunes" and despite the lack of major sales, the album has gone on to become a major influence on many US 'post punk' bands, including REM who covered the album track 'Strange' on their 'Document' album. 'Pink Flag' is, like many Wire songs, a song of majestic mystery, relating to the 'red slave trade' and an unspecified era battle which ensues where the band ponder on 'how many dead or alive' at specific times, on specific days, and thus bookends the albums first side with the similar scenario of 'Reuters' opening and this track claosing the side."


Seconds to Last by Colin Newman (taken from 'A to Z' album released 1st October 1980. Beggars Banquet label) - "Taken from Newman's debut solo album, these songs were initially scheduled to become part of Wire's fourth album but, due to disagreements with the record label and internal conflict within the band's members, Newman signed with Beggars Banquet for a series of musically disjointed albums before the band reformed some years later. The album takes in the 'Syd' like 'S-S-S Star Eyes', the moody 'Alone' and 'Not for me', the latter featuring in 'Silence of the lambs' and both later covered by This Mortal Coil to great effect. Band member Graham Lewis gets a co-composer credit but it's Newman, Wire's drummer Robert Gotobed and producer (and soon to be Soft Cell knob twister) Mike Thorne who create most of the music on the album, and it's thanks in no small part to Eno's methods that the album is such a varied delight featuring tape loops, distorted guitars, (almost) nonsensical lyrics and an atmosphere which veers from almost Beefheartian to the calmness of, say, Philip Glass. Taken as a stand alone album, it's not an easy listen but, following Wire's excellent '154' contract filler for Harvest, it does, sort of, point to their later (and to my mind, slightly disappointing) work such as 'The Ideal Copy', 'A Bell is a Cup' et al."


Let's Panic Later by Graham Lewis (from bonus EP with original pressing of '154' album. Released May 1979) - "Taken from the original bands swan song third album, here's a track by bassist (and a sort of East Anglian ex-pat... his father was stationed here in the RAF) Graham Lewis which not only pointed the way towards the direction he would take, occasionally with Newman and/or guitarist Bruce Gilbert, but also refers to Eno's ambient work of the period.

There are shades of 'RAF' and, say,'Sombre Reptiles' from Eno's 'Another Green World' with Lewis's 'sotto voce' vocals and some fine guitar from Gilbert with whom Lewis would soon form Dome, C'Upol and Duet Emmo before moving into even more esoteric line ups with a myriad of collaborators. The band reformed in 1985 but, by then, it seemed that their early restless experimentalism had been curtailed somewhat with, to my mind, their initial releases bearing a more than passing similarity to the (musical) direction being taken by New Order and, perhaps, an over-reliance on the electronic synth sound then prevalent. I must admit that a couple of releases from this era which I purchased soon found their way into friendly record exchange shops! Nothing, however, can detract from the excellence of their first three albums which, even after forty (!!) plus years still sound as fresh and invigorating as on the day of release..... essential stuff!!

NB: 'Let's panic later' even accrued a cover version by Dutch experimentalist/world music/punkers The Ex in 1998."


"Hope everyone is enjoying a modicum of safe, new found freedoms......... we're still nervous here! Not too sure when we'll take the 'tractor road' (A17) northwards but, hopefully, not too far in the future. Stay safe."

Piers -

"In a way this weeks choices follow on from last week's choices. I had forgotten all about ‘Three Man Army’ until I was thinking about the awfulness that was Punk after last week’s posts. For a few years, in the late 60s and a lot of the 70s I was often involved in booking bands and arranging gigs, usually one or two every week, and I used to hang out with lots of musos, back in the day. (Now it is just Anto!)

It started out from doing favours for friends who were playing local gigs in small venues, drawing up posters and going around putting them up, and progressed to finding venues and then to booking and setting up gigs. It continued when I went back into full time education. I was also an 'Ents Rep' for a few years. I spent most of my time hanging out in the Student Union, on the phone to agencies and again drawing posters to be silk screened. For support there were lots of local bands, like 'Legend' and 'The Crotcheted Doughnut Ring' 'The Kursaals, and 'Eddie & The Hot Rods', to choose from, and always hoards of minor bands which like 'Three Man Army' have slipped from my conscious mind who were hoping to make a name for themselves. ('The Urge' have just resurfaced for some reason).

Between 1969 -1977, our line ups included, among others,'The Battered Ornaments', 'Nucleus', and Mike Batt’s Band (but we didn’t only book bands which featured Chris Spedding!) we had Mike Chapman, 'Piblokto!', Brian Auger, ('Trinity' & 'Oblivion Express'), 'Osibisa', 'Gentle Giant', 'Camel', 'Uriah Heap', 'Budgie', 'Greenslade', 'Caravan', 'The Groundhogs', 'Ten Years After',' 'George Melly', 'Yes', (The week that their first album came out!), Desmond Dekker & The Aces, and (this should make John sit up) at the Art School, ’Quintessence’!

Almost every week for a couple of years we turned down bands like 'Rocking Horse' who were good, but, we knew wouldn't attract an audience. But when the price was right there were lots of deals to be done with managers and agencies. At a time when every band was advertised as performing 'Crosby Stills and Nash' style harmonies, one night, long before they had a hit record, we even had the 'CD&N proggish' version of the band that became 'Black Lace'.

For booking Chili Willie and the Red Hot Peppers on a Saturday night, we got a week-day deal on 'Herb Ellis, Charlie Byrd and Barney Kessel', (playing together!) with Ronnie Scott and a quintette, as support! (We lost money, but I loved it). When we were offered them for next to nothing or as part of a deal, we even booked some fading chart bands like 'Christie', and, (can it really be true?) ‘Chicory Tip’ and, as a fill in, for a night when they weren’t booked anywhere else, on a tour, at a knock down price, Taaaaa - Daaa....Tony Orlando & Dawn !

Generally to save money for everyone concerned I would let bands ‘crash’ in my flat, I’d cook something that looked like curry, for us all, and after the gig we’d sit up all night giggling, and drinking the profits. (I can honestly say that I had ‘Egg’ all over my front room carpet!)

But getting back to Three Man Army I booked them, or Judas Jump, or who ever they were at the time. for a gig once and the Gurvitz Brothers were a hoot. Just a couple of really nice guys. I mentioned that I had bought the single that they charted with as ‘Gun’ and as an encore, halfway through an entirely different number, something quite soft and floaty, ‘on a nod’ they launched into the ‘Ahhhh’s’ from ‘Race With The Devil’ and played an incredibly long, very fast, version of it complete with manic laughter. Shall I play ‘Race’? Nah!

Well a long intro for the first track...."

Butter Queen (A third of a lifetime) by Three Man Army -


Season Of The Witch performed by Richard Thompson - "Despite owning this album I still don’t know anything else about the TV show 'Crossing Jordon' other than the fact that it had a great soundtrack… but - Just to prove you don’t need to use all three chords…"


Mythical Kings And Iguanas by Dory Previn - "And finally a track which, from the first couple of notes, takes me back to a sunlit room draped in Indian cotton prints, and air thick with incense and patchouli…."


Dave -

"Hi RPMers, hope you are all well . Here’s my 3........"

Cellophane by King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard (live London 19) -


Philip -

"I was most impressed last week by Piers' expression "the lingering whiff of cankerous 'punk,'" and no doubt you will have noticed the total absence of "punk-rock" from my selections. In my view very little of the stuff bears listening to nearly half a century on- even The Clash only got interesting after they left punk behind. British punk seems to me to be more significant as a fashion trend than as music- a revolt against style if you will (Werewolves of London down at Trader Vic's). The best ever "punk-rock" record is by New York's own Richard Hell and The Voidoids, "Blank Generation," a literate if much misunderstood lyric and that extraordinary Robert Quine guitar break.

Of course, the phenomenon did get a few A & R men off their backsides to seek out new talent, and some of this new talent was incorrectly identified as "punk," but for example Elvis Costello was a highly literate singer-songwriter, The Jam were Mod revivalists, The Stranglers were Doors copyists with dubious sexual politics (sorry John... but at least they had no pretensions to "poetry"), The Police jumped on the bandwagon as far as initial image (peroxided hair) was concerned, and The Undertones were power-pop in excelsis.

Speaking of whom, since I've now got to 1978...

Nothing too controversial there I hope... best wishes to one and all. "

Teenage Kicks by The Undertones - Often cited by Mr. Ravenscroft as his favourite record ever, I'm not sure if it's even my favourite Undertones song. Other candidates include "Here Comes The Summer," "Jimmy Jimmy," "It's Going to Happen," and "Julie Ocean," but I have a particularly soft spot for "My Perfect Cousin." ("...even at the age of ten, cousin Kevin was a smart boy then, he always beat me at Subbuteo, 'cos he flicked to kick but I didn't know")."


I Played The Fool by Southside Johnny and The Asbury Jukes - "The superb album from which this comes, "Hearts of Stone," has songs by Steve van Zandt and Bruce Springsteen, and has been described as the best Springsteen album that Bruce didn't make. The Jukes stuck more closely to a Stax/Memphis soul template than The E-Street Band, and this song is one of Miami Steve's."


Le Freak by Chic - "Never part of the disco mainstream, Chic were one of the finest rhythm sections in popular music, with jazz leanings and an approach described by Ian MacDonald as 'disco-ising Gershwin.'"


Morra -

"Here's my 3......."

Got The Time by Joe Jackson -


Mr Clean by The Jam -


Desire Me by The Doll -


Nina -

"Hi RPM'ers..........Hope you're all well and thanks as ever for the superb, eclectic listening choices. Here's my 3 for this week. Take care all, laters.........."

Everything is Everything by Lauryn Hill - "Pretty apt for a week that's been dominated by groundhog day experiences with 2 garages who offered to fix my campervan, then left it sitting around for 2 days without doing anything.. Lots of time, hassle and frustration but no meaningful progress, oh well acceptance is key; channelling my inner Buddhist and relinquishing attachment, expectations etc. Cornwall will just have to wait...."


Cheap Cocaine by Willi Carlisle - ".....heard this on Iggy Pop's R6 show, loved it. Shot in New Orleans, very impressive multi-tasking; dude plays guitar, harp, sings and walks!

"Hungover as hell, I slept in shit on the lawn" - we've all been there, average Tuesday night in Dereham...."


Bills and Pills by The Clockworks - "Good to jump around to............"


Jackie -

"Tenth of May was Lee Brilleaux's birthday. So here's some slightly late Dr Feelgood to remind us how brilliant they were."

Down At The Doctors by Dr Feelgood -


Back in the Night by Dr Feelgood -


Milk and Alcohol by Dr Feelgood -


Tim -

"Bob Dylan is 80 on Monday (24th May), so a bit of a Dylan music retrospective has gone on this week, ably assisted by It Ain't Me You're Looking For: Bob Dylan at 80 on BBC Radio 4. Here's the programme link for later in case you missed it..........


Anyway; where to start with a body of work as epic in size as Dylan's? Without thinking about it too much, just going with 3 tracks that impressed me the most and have stuck with me over the years."

Tangled Up In Blue by Bob Dylan - "....what can I say; this is just great enigmatic Dylan songwiting........"


Visions of Johanna by Bob Dylan (live 1966) - "The acoustic version of Visions of Jahanna that Dylan performed live at his concerts in 1966 is the definitive for me...spine tingling, in fact....much better than the studio Blonde On Blonde recording. I was trying to find the version from the Bootleg Series Vol. 4, Manchester Free Trade Hall concert, but it's eluded me so here's the Sheffield version.....which annoyingly stops before our Bob reaches the songs conclusion........but you'll get the idea, I'm sure."


Like A Rolling Stone by Bob Dylan - "What other song can one identify by just one snare drum hit? According to Bruce Springsteen it was the ".......snare shot that sounded like somebody kicked open the door to your mind". Is this the best rock song ever...?....probably. Discuss."


'Til next time...........