Friday, July 30, 2010

The Smiling Hour

Ach yes, on the face of it this isn't so Friday night, but I reckon if you and your cocktails are chilled it could stack up very nicely.

And I'm 45 tomorrow; so like Lee once said (in so many words) I'm old enough not to have to Justify My Music to anyone.

Yeah baby - I *heart* Sade!

Which I do not think is hard to do with this lovely, lovely, slow-jam bassy thing.


Sade - 'Lovers Rock' (2000)

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Sweet Sounds Of Summer

Here's something else I've been enjoying from my Big Summer Playlist 2010 (cunningly formed in iTunes by selecting all songs with 'summer' in the title - brilliant!).

This was written by The Shangs' personal manager Larry Martire, about whom I know nothing, sadly.

Say life’s a game and it hurries by so fast
And if you find someone to love, do your best to make it last
We were too young and the summer's come and gone
Until the time we meet again the memory lingers on

The Shangri-Las - 'The Sweet Sounds Of Summer' (1966)

Friday, July 23, 2010

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Short Term

A bit of an emotional day for us today: the girlies break up for the summer hols and the eldest leaves her (lovely) primary school for good.


It's a cliché but true: it seems like only yesterday we first walked her through the gates, a late August birthday girl just 4 years old, the youngest in the class, the youngest in the school; a photo of her standing in front of the house in her bright new uniform.

Today she'll come home (considerably taller) with a hundred farewell signatures scribbled in biro on her shirt and a trace of a tear in her eye, though trying not to show it.

As Big School looms...

Black Box Recorder - 'The School Song' (2003)

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Summer Making Sense

Continuing a sort of series of seasonal songs with a track you hear once and feel you've known all your life - another one that's been buzzing about my head lately like a housefly trapped inside on a hot summer's day.

With thanks to Drew, who first introduced us (*cough* nothing original to see here, move along).

The Airborne Toxic Event - 'The Girls In Their Summer Dresses' (2006)

Friday, July 16, 2010

Friday Reggae # 16

We're off to an end-of-school-year parents' social tonight, which is really not my sort of thing; I would much rather be at home getting myself outside of a bottle of vino with Mrs H whilst the girlies play out front and groovy sounds emanate from my gramophone.

Oh. I've just read on the 'confirmation email' that facilities at the venue exist to plug iPods into speakers, so maybe that'll keep me amused for the evening.

Perhaps it'll be like those 6th Form parties where you were forever taking off some fool's rubbish records to put your Tamla Motown on.

It'll end in tears.

Judy Mowatt - 'Emergency Call' (1974)

(I HEART this track!).

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Bored Of The Flies

Is it me or are there an awful lot of flies about this year? Maybe it's because of all that hot weather and then the rain this week, but I can't lift a bloody banana in our house without disturbing hundreds of what Mrs H assures me are Drosophila, and last night walking home from the station in broad daylight, after I had already ducked great swirly clouds of gnats through the woods, some little blighter that looked like a small moth landed on my finger and bit it hard, right then and there as bold as brass. Tonight I hung up some seeds for the birds in our thorn tree and disturbed a major settlement of the buggers.


This has been lurking for a bit too - you'll see from the title nestling in the Wey post it's been on my mind for a while; and I am never one to ignore these clues/cues.

Now where's the witchhazel...

Tim Buckley - 'Buzzin' Fly' (1969)

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Celebrated Summer

I kind of like Hüsker Dü without having much of their stuff - Candy Apple Grey, a few downloads and, if they count, a tape of a dark Bob Mould solo album and that splendid Sugar single.

I don't have any Red House Painters either, but this Mark Kozelek cover, which came to me in 2008 from a terrific, zeitgeisty zip from a much-missed Weegie blogger with a fringe*, has been on heavy rotation in my house and in my head this past week.

The Dü's Mould is famously one of those guys who has both a natural gift for melody and a contrasting penchant for thrashy noise - when the two come together well, as they do here, it is quite something; Kozelek meanwhile strips out the second thing so we can luxuriate fully in the glory of the first, and hey, that's appreciated too.

Hüsker Dü - 'Celebrated Summer' (1985)

Mark Kozelek - 'Celebrated Summer' (2008)

* thanks Colin

Friday, July 09, 2010

Yeah Harriet

Indie Siren In London Heatwave Blogpost Shocker!

Thursday, July 08, 2010

I Don't Need Sunny Skies

I loved this when I was little and I love it forty years later.

Only truly great pop songs go on giving in this way.

It was a demo too!

Carole King - 'It Might As Well Rain Until September' (1962)

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

My Own Wey

And in complete contrast...

I walked the River Wey Navigations in deepest Surrey today - well, the stretch between Pyrford and Send and back, at least. A literal quiet stretch of stream to match the figurative one I've hit after a time of whiter water - canal boats and ancient locks, reedbeds, willows, wild meadow, a kestrel hovering overhead; buzzin' flies.

Four hours walking in green - it's good for the soul.

Not even the barking Surrey golfers through the trees could spoil my mood.

I wouldn't want them as my neighbours mind.

(London, That's The Place For Me, etc).

Paul Weller* - 'Country' (1993)

* Local boy made good.

Friday, July 02, 2010

(East) London Calling

I went along to the London Calling Exhibition in Bethnal Green today - a funky riffola around the paintings, design work and cartoons of the late Ray Lowry, especially his work as 'War Artist' and companero to The Clash and even more especially that album cover, on which there were many, variously, funny, affectionate, baffling and inspired takes by contemporary artists, famous fans, band associates and, even, band members (Messrs Jones and Simonon). Paul Simonon's tribute thrillingly included a tiny fragment of the actual bass guitar he is doing such violence to in the iconographic Pennie Smith image. Oo, and indeed, er.

It was all rather splendid, as was my amble afterwards down a sunny Brick Lane, and sorry for the late notice and all but the thing closes on Sunday, so if you can you must boogie on down there pronto.

Quiff it up!

Vince Taylor & The Playboys - 'Brand New Cadillac' (1958)