Week 10 - 10th Mar
Welcome back to the RPM Seven Day Soundtrack, week ending Fri 10th March 2023. We're back up North from our visit to the South West, just ahead of the snow, thankfully. So, let's light the wood burner, make a brew of proper tea (Yorkshire) and see what you've all been listening to; over to....
"Snow is falling as I compile my entries for this weeks jollifications. Hope that everybody is doing ok. All the best."
A Glimpse Of Heaven by The Strawbs - "This is a track from "From The Witchwood " (1971) on which all tracks including this one were written by Dave Cousins except for a track each by John Ford and Richard Hudson. The album was the last by The Strawbs to feature the keyboard skills of Rick Wakeman"
Pick Up The Pieces by Hudson Ford - "Highlighting the previous selection reminded me of this hit by Hudson Ford."
My Brother Makes The Noises For The Talkies by The Bonzo Dog (Do Dah) Band - "While fudging round my box set CD's, I noticed a Bonzo compilation ("Cornology" ) and this is one of many amusing tracks that they concocted. They must have had a lot of fun laying down the lyrics (and accompanying noises) for this particular track. I think somebody's picked a Bonzo track in the past - hope I'm not duplicating. Neil Innes was in the 6th Form when I joined my senior school as a new bug in 58/59 and he did a turn for us all to top off a school reunion at the start of the noughties. A buffet of sorts was served from the school's kitchens on the night and reminded us all of what we had managed to survive."
"Hola from Nicaragua folks. Here's my 3, brief chat as limited Wifi. I'm checking in + listening whenever I can + enjoying your choices."
"Hi everyone, here’s my 3 tunes this week."
"As promised, here's three less familiar Tamla Motown songs, unless you're a dedicated 'Northern souler' (Hi Jackie!!). Tamla/Berry Gordy seemed to have the knack of signing some excellent 'soul' vocalists and then wringing most of the emotion from their voices as their careers progressed (or not, as the case may be), witness Gladys Knight, Mary Wells, Kim Weston and others who seemed to wither on the vine or left the company after their recordings went either unreleased or under promoted. Certainly Diana Ross never seemed to suffer this indignity for some reason!!!
First up it's one of those voices which always turned in a soulful edge, even if the arrangements occasionally veered towards the 'syrupy'..."
Edwin Starr- 'You beat me to the punch' (from '25 Miles' LP released late1968. This from my Gordy label US release)
"A 'Smokey' Robinson/Ronald White song first recorded by Mary Wells in 1962. Unlike some of the songs on the '25 Miles' LP, this one harks back to the classic, sparser mid sixties sound and, as a result, is perhaps my favourite track on the LP."
"And here's a complete vocal contrast..."
Marvin Gaye- 'Loving you is sweeter than ever' (from 'In the groove' LP released August 26th 1968. Tamla Motown label)
"Although it's probably tantamount to heresy to some, I much prefer Marvin's earlier recordings to those which saw him 'break free' from Tamla's overbearing constraints and move on to his socio-political work of the seventies. Again, a sparser sound with Marvin's wonderful vocals floating overhead. Another cover version with the Four Tops releasing the original, rawer version in 1966."
"One from the 'original' Tamla girl group, and it's a late-ish classic..."
Marvelettes- 'My baby must be a magician' (from 'The best of the Marvelettes' released 1975. Tamla Motown label)
"The first Motown chart toppers and, unusually for the time, it was (part) composed by one of the group. The girls had around twenty US top 100 singles in the sixties. This single reached number 17 in 1967 and features a spoken introduction by the Temptations' Melvin Franklin. Despite the excellence of their peak period singles, only 'When you're young and in love' reached the uk charts, hitting number 13 in June 1967."
Bonus Track: Taxim by Kaleidoscope - "A sad farewell to 'freind of the stars' David Lindley (check out this listing!! https://davidlindley.com/discography.html) who was a founder member of one of the greatest psychedelic/world music groups ever, Kaleidoscope."
"Hi Everyone, hope you're all safe and well. Here are my tracks for this week..."
"Brilliant propaganda move by the Tories this week. They managed to divert attention from the issues around the cruelty of their proposed policy and the callousness of the language used to promote it by making a tweet by a sports presenter the story. Typical.
I like to believe that while some might agree with their ideas on the boat people problem and even sympathise with the language, a majority would like to see a humane attempt to deal with it that, rather than punishing the desperate and vulnerable, targets the criminal gangs taking advantage of their plight.
Meanwhile, I've been listening to members of the Newman family."
It's A Jungle Out There by Randy Newman - "Originally written for the TV show "Monk," one of those glib but entertaining American shows featuring a detective with a peculiar quirk, in this case played by Tony Shalhoub as a man with extreme OCD. The line about "the water that we drink" has particular resonance at present given what has recently come to light regarding the pollution of our rivers."
"It's a well known fact that Mr. Newman comes from a very musical family, including uncles who were involved in the movie business. His uncle Alfred was for many years the head of music at 20th Century Fox.
Here's one of his finest themes."
How the West Was Won by Alfred Newman - "The film was intended to be the greatest ever epic Western, but it wasn't- it was just the biggest, with its' parade of stars who had been winning the cinematic West for the previous quarter century. The film has so many flaws that if I listed them all I'd be here all day, so I'll just call it the last gasp of celebratory triumphalist imperialism in American presentation of how their country came into being. The impact of the civil rights movement, the Vietnam war, and the counter-culture put paid to that. It's arguable that that other great epic of 1962, "Lawrence of Arabia," was more honest about the British imperial legacy in the Middle East. None of that diminishes the quality of Mr. Newman's work of course."
"My third choice is short and sweet... The 20th Century Fox Fanfare...Alfred Newman wrote this too."
"BTW, some of you might wonder how my love of Westerns squares with my political inclinations, so I'll answer your (unasked) question with another question. Have you noticed the number of Westerns that feature evil Capitalists as the villains?
Best wishes to all you decent humane RPMers out there."
"This week I feel compelled to celebrate a little of the work of one of the most talented sidemen of my generation.
Goodbye to David Lindley."
"My theme this week is Woodstock – Bethel, New York – 15-18 August 1969. Videos aren’t always clear but here’s a selection of what was on offer. Keep warm and well everyone. Cheers."
Good Morning, Mr Walker by Eliza Carthy and The Kings of Calicutt - "At the same time that I came across Folk Music: A Bob Dylan Biography in Seven Songs in York library, there was also Wayward Daughter; The Official Biography of Eliza Carthy sat almost next to it.....so that's what I've been reading (when not constructing shelving or filling and painting walls at Lara's house in Frome, Somerset), obviously accompanied by the relevant soundtrack."
Spirals In Hyperspace by Ozric Tentacles - "Frome is quite a "hippy" sort of place, Glastonbury being just up the road, and the Ozrics were inevitably gonna be played at some point. Possibly also the only place where the local record shop would prominently position an Ozrics CD boxset in it's window display...? Good music shop as well; Sounds of Frome (a familiar shop name that...) and proper back street pub, the Griffin, with a superb Irish/American tunes session that I sat in with. "
"And talking of window displays, this shop was a favourite! Any establishment with as huge a range of anti-Tory merch as this, is OK by me!"
Swinging With Django by Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli - "Frome loves a market, last Sunday there being a big Indie one; lots of food sellers, artisans and vintage stalls along the high street and around the Cheese and Grain venue....plus live music. We partook of coffee in a French styled vintage shop / cafe whilst listening to a superb gypsy jazz duo....some Django was played later that day when back at Lara's house."
'Til Next Time...