Although there are a lot of ways in which I haven't yet grown up, my most teenage trait is always having to have music on wherever I go. When I had my own car the first thing I did before I set off anywhere was to decide what I was going to listen to. In the days when I bought CDs I would play a new one over and over again - the most recent was Plan B's 'The Defamation of Strickland Banks'. Do you remember when you were young and you came home with a single on a Saturday? You played it so many times that your Mum would call up 'you'll wear that record out'? And can you recall your very first 45? Mine was Ball Park Incident by Wizzard (ages me just a bit!). For me there was nothing better than stacking all your fave songs onto the record player and letting them drop one by one onto the turntable. I think my record (geddit!) was eight. And they were record players in the 70s - stereos and sound systems were yet to come. A year or so before she died my sister V got hold of an old record player for me and I think of her every time I listen to some old Northern Soul (the ONLY way to listen to Northern Soul is on vinyl, dont'cha know?)
Without music life would be a mistake
I was brought up in a house full of music. One of my earliest memories is Babcia's copy of Little Peggy March's 'I Will Follow Him'. The first time we watched Sister Act I said to Big Man 'I know this song!'. The original isn't remotely religious, btw...just a good old love song :). Dad was into Elvis, Jerry Lee, Chuck Berry and Little Richard - a real 50s rocker. But he also loved C&W and when he was home from sea we always had Patsy Cline and Tammy Wynette on the record player. Sometimes Irish showbands (The Hucklebuck doesn't sound the same if Brendan Bowyer isn't singing it). So I have an eclectic kind of musical heritage. Then my uncle, Al introduced me to Northern Soul; I already had picked up on Tamla Motown (anyone else have that Diana Ross and the Supremes album with the three pairs of red lips on the front?); and punk came along. I was always more into the music than the attitude though I did love the amazed looks when I walked along Moore Street in Dublin wearing a man's shirt, a pair of red and white polka dot bikini bottoms, the ubiquitous ripped fishnets and a pin in my ear. And I did learn to play the drums, after a fashion, when I was in my 'band'.
Music is enough for a lifetime, but a lifetime is not enough for music
Music has been part of every part of my life. Sad times. Happy times. Furious times. Sleepy times. My iPod is going all the time (just listening to 'Venus' by Bananarama, before that was 'The Great Gate of Kiev'; 'This Boy' by the Beatles; 'Golden Brown' by the Stranglers, 'Ruler of My Heart' by Irma Thomas....). I love seeing bands live, even though sometimes I feel a bit old and small surrounded by Amazonian teens. I don't think I could ever really be friends with anyone who doesn't love music and I'm always open to new stuff and to be persuaded to listen to new bands - only yesterday Red introduced me to The Devil Makes Three - but I still put the oldies on for my residents rather than sit them in front of the TV. Ethel, who I told you about a few posts ago, doesn't react to much but when Frankie Laine's 'Answer Me' came on the CD player the other day she pointed to it and was listening intently. Maybe it was her and her husband's song? Whatever it was it sparked something in her brain that 'Deal or No Deal couldn't possibly ignite.
Where words fail, music speaks
Hans Christian Andersen
So, what I'm going to do is throw out five songs that mean a lot to me for varied reasons. And because I'm a nosy so-and-so I'm going to tag five people in a kind of musical meme. Don't do it if you don't want to but I think the music people like says a lot about them. Indulge my curiosity!!
In no particular order.....
1. September Song by Walter Huston
This was played at my sister V's funeral (she was born in September) and is so melancholy and beautiful that if it doesn't do something to you I can only think you have lump of granite where your heart should be.
2. Paradise by the Dashboard Light by Meatloaf
When Big Man and I got our first car (a Ford Capri - very boy racer!) we used to drive up to see both sets of parents and played Meatloaf's 'Bat Out Of Hell' album on tape all the way there and back. We always sang along with this one - obviously I was Ellen and he was Meat. I use 'sang' in the loosest way possible....
3. Third Finger, Left Hand by Martha Reeves and the Vandellas
This was the B side of Jimmy Mack, a big hit for this group and probably the better song. When I was in my late teens I used to go with my friends to Tiffany's, a big nightclub in my malignant Northern home town, and whenever a bride-to-be was celebrating her hen night this was always played. I really wanted it to be played for me too but I only got married in the registry office and didn't have a hen night. And Tiff's was no more by then either.
4. Nothing Compares 2 U by Sinead O'Connor
Beautiful song, gorgeous girl, and UK Number 1 the week my own gorgeous girl Red was born.
5. Have I The Right? by The Honeycombs
I was given this record when I was pretty young and loved it. The drummer is a girl, Honey Lantree, which was unusual for the 60s, and I just love the beat!!!!
I'll probably pick a different five next week! Anyway, I'm gonna tag five people who I want to know more about.
Lucy at Being of Sound Mind
Michalann at $12 A Day And A Baby On The Way
Wendz at 15 Coast Road
The Minimalist at Tasmanian Minimalist
Elise at Foof and Faff
Tag another five each if you want. Because as we all know...
Music brings the people together