SEVEN INCH SATURDAY: STEVIE WONDER, MASTER BLASTER

Its that time of the week where I shine a spotlight on the smaller, less hefty vinyl in my collection, it’s seven inch Saturday.

This week, the sun is shining so I feel this is the perfect tune to go with hot, heady barbecues and copious amounts (child permitting) of Cider. But more likely to end up being burnt bangers and coca cola.

stevie wonder front  stevie wonder backStevie Wonder, Master Blaster on Motown Records/Jobete Music (UK)/Black Bull

SIDE A:

Master Blaster (Jammin’)

SIDE B:

Master Blaster (Dub)

1980

I must admit that I had no idea of this song until it was covered by DJ Luck and MC Neat. I know, terrible behaviour.

The first I knew it was a Stevie Wonder classic was when him indoors told me and subsequently played me the far superior original (in my defense it did get released two years before I was born and Stevie Wonder wasn’t widely played in my house growing up, in fact, I only knew of his uber 80s cheese Happy Birthday as it was played at most kids parties I went to in my childhood).

Since buying my own collection and being on a constant discovery quest for tunes, I now, utterly love Stevie, I’ll even put up with the cheese, so long as you play Master Blaster or Superstition.

The guy is a legend. He has literally been around since modern music kicked off, starting out as “Little Stevie” and changing at every era, staying fresh.

He is just multi talented and definitely one of the greatest artist the Motown label ever released.

Showing that no matter what you have thrown at you, talent shines through.

This is just a must on summer days, its just got a great pulsing guitar edge, the singing is brilliant and the whole thing was ushering in a grittier sound for the Motown in the early 80s. Which, yes, sadly got ruined a little by Diana Ross (Chain Reaction), and Stevie himself who got a bit soppy with I Just Called to Say I Love You.

Regardless, they are hardly the only acts who perhaps hide a little when anyone mentions 80s back catalogues.

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THE BEATLES, SGT PEPPERS LONELY HEARTS CLUB BAND

Its bloody half term, and whilst I love my kids to the moon and back, it signals, in no particular order: mess, a constant chorus of “MUUUUUMMMMMM!!!!!” from both, catching the boys virus and feeling like death warmed up (every holiday, without fail) and having not a pot to piss in by the end of it.

It also means barely any time to blog or go out record foraging. Feel my pain Vinyl Heads. Especially those without kids.

However, here is an album that was once thrust into my hands as a means of stopping my holiday annoyance to my parents.

the beatles beatlesinner The Beatles, Sgt Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band, on Parlophone

SIDE A:

Sgt Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band

A Little Help From My Friends

Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds

Getting Better

Fixing a Hole

She’s Leaving Home

Being for the Benefit of Mr Kite!

SIDE B:

Within You Without You

When I’m Sixty-Four

Lovely Rita

Good Morning, Good Morning

Sgt Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band (reprise)

A Day In the Life

“A splendid time is guaranteed for all”

1967

Yes, it appears all parent’s have differing ways of dealing with their variously annoying offspring, and my cause of annoyance was listening to, singing along with and dancing about above the kitchen to dodgy 90s pop. The solution?  A hastily done tape copy of the above to “teach me about proper music”.

Thank god I sang loud enough to drive my Dad mad.

This album brings back many memories for me.

At primary school, we sang When I’m Sixty-Four, as a hymn hybrid. In a sea of miserable songs and much Cum-by-ya and English Country Garden related mash ups (although not obviously called mash ups back then, they were our much giggled about variations of the traditional including Cucumbers and pulling down of pants whilst needing the loo), When I’m Sixty-Four meant that our half deaf and elderly choir lady Mrs R had been sufficiently lacking in deaf aid to think we had sung like a band of Alled Jones’ and this was our treat.

I also recall putting on headphones and trying to work out the end bit after the long note that sounds like the boys had possibly been at the very substance that Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds was meant to be about (I think it’s “Never could see any other way”, but do let me know your interpretation in the comments).

I know, inside out, every lyric, the track list, the story behind the songs. The whole nine yards.

It started my love of The Beatles being given this album, and although I still will at a moments notice dance, sing and listen to dodgy 90s pop, I have also, always, come back to this album.

From the age of around 10, when I was given my first ever taster of the Beatles, I collected books, had posters on my wall, calendars, puzzles and anything else I could find. When my late Gran went to Liverpool, she sent me a postcard of the Eleanor Rigby bench. My school peers thought I was weird, but I loved it. I bet some of them, now older, have since discovered the Beatles and I hope they now get it.

Even She’s Leaving Home struck a cord when I indeed did leave home under a cloud of anger. I didn’t leave a note and bugger off, I actually told my parent’s I was going and left on a bus, and they knew where I’d gone, but I still felt I understood that feeling of being trapped despite what it appears on the outside.

My particular favorite is, and has always been, A Day in the Life. I love that it fuses chirpy happy Beatles with the direction they were moving in, more psychedelic and experimental.

The Beatles will always be a happy thing that was given to me in silly circumstances. I may run my daughter off a copy and see if I can move her from One Direction 23 years later?

WISHLIST WEDNESDAY: PETE TONG ESSENTIAL SELECTION SUMMER 1998

I have a new Wishlist Wednesday for you, I’ve taken time out from a shaky (read: crap) net connection and half term.

This is something I have both on tape, and on CD, but I would love it on Vinyl. I’m greedy like that!

Pete Tong, Essential Collection, Summer 1998

SIDE A:

Magnum Force

Believe

Starchasers

Over Here

My Desire

Bootie Call

Freak Me

Looking for Love

Rock With You

Horny ’98

New Kind of Medicine

Music Is the Answer

You Don’t Know

Needin’ U

I’ll House You ’98

I Can’t Help Myself

SIDE B:
Ride

The Word

Is Anybody Out There

Vertigo

Funk Bomb

The Day Will Come

El Nino

For an Angel ’98

Beachball

The Freaks Come Out

The Ultimate

I Don’t Need Your Love

Storm

Michel Lombert

I first heard this album on tape in Him Indoors’ car, a bright orange, rusty Ford Ghia. This album was about the best thing about his set of wheels back then.

The album was one which came out a few years before we met- in the summer I left school after my GCSE exams and it was played widely around that time by my cooler classmates who were devotees of all things Tong or Kiss FM.

I loved this album back when we met as we had very few available that Him Indoors would agree to play in his presence as most of tapes from school had the odd boy band or indie pop on them.

Later on, another car had this in the glove box and was stolen, and to be fair I was more miffed about the tape set than the car (which wasn’t ours, bit mean but it was another rust bucket and I will never forget hearing how the owner of the car, a friend of ours who died not that long after, came out in swimming trunks barefoot to chase the thieves down the road.

We then got it on CD, but so far, vinyl has eluded us.

It reminds me of happy times in Kent, being young, in a new relationship and free to have fun. It also reminds me of the end of my GCSE exams which was the end of a school era I hated and although I had to wait for my results, I was chuffed to walk out the door on the last day.

You can’t currently get this on vinyl- a travesty I feel as most of what’s on it was still on 12 inch.

Great summer listening

SEVEN INCH SATURDAY: PETE WINGFIELD, EIGHTEEN WITH A BULLET

It’s time to dust off a seven inch today Vinyl Heads as its Seven Inch Saturday. Bless the humble seven inch, it may not have the amount of music its bigger brother the LP has. It may not even have any artwork. However, its the route to which many would buy an LP back in the day so I feel its time to bring one to you each Saturday.

First up is a track from 1975, brought back into the consciousness by Brit Flick Royalty in Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.

Pet  2petewingfield Pete Wingfield, Eighteen With a Bullet on Island Records

SIDE A:

Eighteen With a Bullet

SIDE B:

Shadow Of a Doubt

“Copyright Island Records Ltd/Uncle Doris Music Ltd”

1975

Firstly- you got to love the Island label, right? It was the second variation, the original being a white “i” on pink label. Far prefer this one as it makes me think of reggae and warm sand.

Onto the tune though.

Clearly, being born in 1982 I came by this one after it was released in 1975 (curse my birth year!), but its one I love for its backing music more than the lyric.

It was the lyric though that made it perfect for the Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels soundtrack in 1998.

I’m not a fan of the film. I find it quite hilarious to be frank. Its trying very hard to be a cool Brit version of American gangster films. But hats off to my US Vinyl Heads, you do a damn good Gangster flick. Far better than we do (except Get Carter).

It wasn’t the acting. Not from Dexter Fletcher or Jason Statham. Not even from Vinnie Jones.

It was Sting.

I don’t mind Sting as an artist. You have to have respect for a band who made a record all about how he wanted to stalk his ex of the time in a really malicious and scary (and no doubt arrest-able these days) way. That is now mostly known and has probably bought him a few houses and yachts as a loved up, first dance at your wedding tune. Kudos Sting.

But in Lock Stock? I just saw him as not a suave, angry Dad of a dodgy dealer but as Sting the Tantric Shagging hippie. I couldn’t equate him with wearing a suit and running a bar. If it had of been a shisha bar and he’d of been wearing Yoga Pants whilst singing Fields of Gold and sitting on a rug in the Lotus position, maybe.

Sorry Sting!

I love this classic though and am thankful for it being brought to my attention by a slightly dodgy Boy flick.

Pete Wingfield was just the classic 70s dude, gigging with bands here and there, releasing his own stuff, and writing for the Music Bibles of the day such as the now defunct Melody Maker.

The bullet he refers to though in the song is not of the Gangster type. Its actually about chart hits of the day- a song selling well week after week and climbing quickly up the charts.

A great track 🙂

RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS, BLOOD SUGAR SEX MAGIK

They do say that the traditional gifts to give when visiting a home as a guest are usually flowers and chocolates, or a bottle wine.

In my house, and with my guests, I say, screw that, I’d rather you went through your vinyl and brought me a classic LP. Or I do now since a precedent was set by a friend who started out as just of Him Indoors but has now become mine too.

Red Hot Chili Peppersred hot chili peppers inner Red Hot Chili Peppers, Blood Sugar Sex Magik, on Warner Brothers, Double LP

SIDE A:

The Power to Equality

If You Have to Ask

Breaking the Girl

Funky Monks

Suck My Kiss

SIDE B:

I Could Have Lied

Mellowship Slinky in B Major

The Righteous and the Wicked

Give It Away

SIDE C:

Blood Sugar Sex Magik

Under the Bridge

Naked in the Rain

Apache Rose Peacock

SIDE D:

The Greeting Song

My Lovely Man

Sir Psycho Sexy

They’re Red Hot

“Produced by Rick Rubin”

1991

What is not to love about The Red Hot Chili Peppers?

They’ve always been the band who can release songs which are heartfelt and deeply personal, alongside fun songs which you can’t help but sing along to.

None more so than on this, which I, along with most fans of the band, feel is their best work. That’s not to say the res aren’t without merit, far from it, but this was the peak where they were giving more than just the thrashing guitars and snarling lyrics of contemporaries like Nirvana.

This is an album that, until yesterday, would have been in my Wish List Wednesday. I have had it on CD a few times but its not the same as having it on vinyl. Well, not if you’re a Vinyl addict like me anyway!

I had tried to buy the original non reissue of it, but it was daft amounts of money. It can be bought from HMV reissued but even that is £35. To my mind and collecting tastes, I don’t want to pay that much for brand spanking new vinyl (unless its original pressing, unopened vinyl but then you’d be very lucky to pay such a small sum).

My fave track? Give It Away. Such an uplifting fun tune which never gets boring and is always a reminder of my Goth Club days.

So, how did I manage to come by it?

Him Indoors met a guy my kids call Uncle Perry about 25 years ago. Purely by chance and drunken accident.

He happened to be trying to go to a friends flat, in a block where there was an identical block next door.

Up he went and knocked on the door of what he thought was his mate’s flat, and duly strolled in. It was only later that he realised it wasn’t the right flat at all, and he had no idea who the people were he had been chatting to for the duration of the early hours.

From that error, a great friendship formed which continues now and includes me. Perry was my daughter’s disco DJ on her birthday and is a great guy, along with his lovely wife.

Only Perry would bring me vinyl as a visiting gift, and I am so thankful! I would never have gotten an original pressing as everyone and their dog knows how to look up vinyl and how expensive it is, so even on a boot fair I’d have been monumentally lucky to find it.

I feel now I shall have a sign put up outside my house- instead of “Beware of the Kids” or a humble Welcome mat, I shall have a sign saying “Bring Your Vinyl as gifts”.

Whats the best bit of vinyl you’ve been given?

DJ PIED PIPER & THE MASTERS OF CEREMONIES, DO YOU REALLY LIKE IT

You may notice from the pics today that I am coming to you from my shed. Its the shed of happy as it houses my very easy to use compared to Him Indoor’s decks.

Its a hot day so I’m going all garage on you today. Shed. Garage. Spot the tenuous link Vinyl heads 🙂

do you really like it

dj pied piper DJ Pied Piper & The Masters Of Ceremonies, Do You Really Like It on Soulfood Records

SIDE A:

Do You Really Like It

SIDE B:

Blank sided

“SF007”

2001

I unashamedly love UK Garage as much as I love cheesy 80s tunes.

When it first blew up in around 97/98, I loved nothing more on a Saturday than listening to The Dream Team on Radio One play the latest releases.

Just like Britpop, it seemed if you owned a turntable and could toast (as thats really what we’re dealing with here, toasting brought up to date and renamed MC’ing) you could happily release a record (or pesky CD and tape) at that time and do well with it.

I was unusual in this love at the time down to the aforementioned hip indie kids I hung round with in this era, as they hated garage and considered it chavvy to like it. I am of the opinion that you should never feel it necessary to tie yourself to one genre, if you like it, then thats fine and no one should make you feel shitty for liking something differing to their tastes.

By 2001, I had met Him Indoors and Garage was winding down into Grime. You had some clinging on for dear life but mostly by then the glory days had ended.

Then this dropped.

In the middle of a hot summer, this record went mental, its easy to sing along to the catchy earworm that is the chorus, and it was played in every bar you went to all summer long.

Even now I can hear this and be back in the dodgy soft top blue Escort we had back then, popping in to see friends in Berkshire when we still lived in Kent.

I chose this today as on Saturday, after the daughter finished her part of the May Fayre at school, I came home to tunes on and barbecue food aplenty.

Him Indoors allowed me to choose what we listened to so I picked a Garage Anthems medley on Youtube as its far easier than trying to change 12 inch singles whilst trying not to burn the sausages.

When this came on, some 13 years later from it being played in the car, I launched into the rap and Him Indoors face, and my daughter’s face, were utterly shocked.

“Mummy, you can rap, thats so funny” was her reaction.

I was surprised Him Indoors had never heard me do it before to be fair, as we have been together for 15 years. Apparently this was a first.

So, now it reminds me of pre responsible adult 2001 days, and this weekend when I shocked the kids and the other half.

Whats your summer must have tune?

WISH LIST WEDNESDAY: JAMIE T, PANIC PREVENTION

I thought I’d start something new for you Vinyl Heads today.

Everyone, no matter how big or small their record collection, has a list of must have additions which have so far alluded them. It can be due to price, or being a deleted rarity. It could also be because those pesky record labels sent vinyl into the musical nerd no man’s land for many years in the nineties and have yet to catch up by reissuing greats on vinyl.

On Wednesday’s I will be sharing my list (ever growing as it is) of things I would give my right arm for.

If you’d like to join in, let me know in the comments.

First up is an album which is available on vinyl, but you’ve more chance of seeing a pig fly than finding an affordable copy of it.

In fact, checking on Discogs, eBay, and Amazon have all drawn a blank. The last copy I saw was £300.

jamie t inner Jamie T, Panic Prevention, 2007 on Virgin Records (V 3023) and EMI (094637885512)

I first heard of Jamie T on the TV late at night, I was up with the then newborn Mini at the time and TV became my friend to stop me nodding off.

His lyrics were angry, about messed up youth drugged up to the eyeballs and despairing of life. They were raw and heartfelt.

It got me wide awake for sure.

Jamie T generally gets forgotten, usurped by the likes of Plan B, who I’ve always found had a great and gritty first album but then moved into far more radio friendly territory.

I have heard the newer, easier to find in HMV stuff  by Jamie T but its calmed a lot. Panic Prevention was all snarling, and mostly unsafe for the delicate sensibilities of the likes of Radio One.

He did once do a cracking Live Lounge where he covered Beyonce in style. Never has Bey sounded quite so rough round the edges.

The thing with Jamie T on the Panic Prevention album is it fitted very well into a time when the film of the moment was This Is England. 2007 was a long and hot summer. This pumping out the stereo slotted in.

He may not have the melodious voice of contemporaries such as Paolo Nutini or the aforementioned Plan B, but it doesn’t matter. An angelic delivery on songs such as Shelia and Calm Down Dearest would have toned down the message within the clever writing.

Can I find the thing on vinyl to replace my CD? Nope. The only one I’ve seen thus far was as I mentioned around £300, and that Vinyl Heads is just rather too much even for my desire to own it to comprehend and justify.

Hopefully the record label will bring out a flimsier copy soon to meet demand, they recently released his not quite as impressive new album on vinyl so you never know.

I guess it depends on the interest in releasing these gems again.