Wednesday, March 21, 2007

You Saw Brigadoon (January 1986)

WARNING: contains nostalgia.

Part of my excitement in discovering this had been released to iTunes was that it was one of only two tracks I still needed to complete a digital reproduction of a compilation tape I made in January 1986.
(I know, I know - I need to get out more. But I'm 75! And my knees are playing up! You wanna read about The Fratellis, go talk to that nice Mr Cameron. You think I'm joking? Here.)

The tape was called You Saw Brigadoon (!) and its full track listing was:

Side 1
Sunday (Rebel Soul) - The Faith Brothers
Days Like These - Billy Bragg
Walk On The Wild Side - Lou Reed
The Whole Of The Moon - The Waterboys
In Between Days - The Cure
Twenty Four Hours - Joy Division
Ocean Rain - Echo & The Bunnymen
Song To The Siren - This Mortal Coil

Side 2
Sixteen Days/Gathering Dust - This Mortal Coil
Eventide - The Faith Brothers
Nocturnal Me - Echo & The Bunnymen
I Don't Need This Pressure Ron - Billy Bragg
The Ghost In You - The Psychedelic Furs
Shakespeare's Sister - The Smiths
Thieves Like Us - New Order

Now, I have earlier mixtapes than this, and more 'Peely' ones, but this one's special to me for a few reasons.

1) I made it at the start of the 2nd term of my final year at University. Annus mirabilis! It evoketh. Big time.

2) I still like everything on it.

3) It hangs together quite nicely - at least until the second half of the second side where I can't help but feel The Smiths track (not one of their best) blows the mood slightly. It made the cut because it was a recent single; The Queen Is Dead didn't come out until later that year. Imagine! (and also imagine...C86, grunge, baggy, Madchester, shoegaze, Oasis, Britpop, New Labour, even bloody John Major - all still to happen).

Everything on the tape was stuff I was enjoying then and there, and bar the obvious already 'classic' Joy Division and Lou Reed tracks, it all dates from the period 1983-1985 (I had got Ocean Rain that Christmas, though nearly had to give it back when my Dad said he thought it 'sounded quite nice').
Finally getting the TMC track left me with just one final missing piece - the all-important Track One, Side One - The Faith Brothers' 'Sunday'...

Why did I not have this?

1. It was taped from an LP that belonged to my flatmate Carlos.
2. This LP (Eventide) is rare as hen's teeth - and has never been issued on CD.
3. You try finding it on the Hype Machine.

The Faith Brothers were a fabulous band, especially live - all soaring melodies, urgent brass, elatory vocals and humanistic commitment. Lead singer/writer Billy Franks was a passionate and charismatic frontman - even when long after the band's glory days (supporting The Alarm!) performing to a few hundred with his soul band in 'The Leather Bottle' pub in Wimbledon Chase.

So....I was about to issue an appeal to anyone who had 'Sunday (Rebel Soul)' ('Spare an MP3 guv'nor?') when in putting this post together I checked out Billy Franks website and found he had posted the whole of the Eventide LP (and others) for download free of charge.

He's even added this non-LP early single

The Faith Brothers - 'A Stranger On Homeground'

What a man!

My restoration project is complete. Closure. Enough nostalgia already.

Billy Franks plays O'Neill's, 326 Earl's Court Rd, London this Sunday 25th March from 6:30pm - free.


  1. Looks like a cracking tape by all accounts, especially side A. The Waterboys are a personal favorite.

    It's not really a mix, but my favorite tape is one my mother gave me on the occasion of getting my first Walkman at age 6 called, ahem, 'Press Eject And Give Me The Tape'. Bless.

  2. Ah, yes Liz - The Waterboys...

    You're right, I peak too soon on these things - it's all over by the end of Side 1.

    Thieves Like Us though - *sigh*

    Please launch another blog and call it 'Press Eject And Give Me The Tape'. BTW what was ON your Mummy's cassette gift???

  3. I don't really subscribe to the High Fidelity rules of the know, poppy opener, bring it down, hook 'em again, etc. But, as far as hook 'em again, Theives Like Us is a brilliant choice.

    Mummy's tape was all early Bauhaus, with Sisters of Mercy and Cabaret Voltaire as filler for the 180 minute TDX greatness. I had an, erm, unique childhood.

  4. I feel like I should dig out my 'Keep Faith, Brother' badge. That's such a good link, I haven't even thought aboutthem for years

  5. Hey! I remember those badges!

  6. Ah, The Faith Brothers. They were from my manor in Fulham. I was thinking of posting "Fulham Court", the b-side of "Stranger On Home Ground" at some point.

  7. Davy

    What a fantastic posting. Do you mind if I nick the idea for future use on TVV.

    I was proud of a title I once gave a mix tape when 'Should I Stay od Should I Go Now' went mega after the Levi Jeans ad here in the UK.

    Clashing In On A Post-Punk Revival.

    The favourite title I got passed on to me was on a Red Nose Day many years ago.

    Cosmic Relief.

  8. Thanks for the kind words JC -'Talent imitates, genius steals' - so nick away companero.

    'Cosmic Relief'? Nice one.

  9. Cosmic Relief was one of Jacques The Kipper's.....I'm trying real hard to get him to sign up for TVV or start up his own blog....


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