Wednesday, 24 April 2013

songs of me

Argh! I. Was. So. Not. Going. To. Do. This. When I first came across Six Songs of Me, I thought, no way! Six songs?! I've had four decades (yes, I really am that old) of listening to awesome music! How the hell can I sum up my life in six songs?! Six?! 

And not just any old six songs, oh no, but one song for a specific period or event in your life. I didn't like all of the questions either (eg I can remember the first album I bought, but not the first song), so when the lovely Janet Davis set her own additional questions, I thought about it all over again. And again, thought, no way.

But here I am, trying to sum myself up in six songs. Why now? Well, Mr The Buddster's recent cracking post about taking up the challenge made me think about it all over again. And like Graham, I thought it might be nice to blog about something that isn't work/study/professional development related. Can I blog for pleasure?

Janet's questions don't completely work for me either. So I thought I'd use a combination of some of the Guardian's six, some of Janet's and a couple of my own.

So here goes...

1. Which song is most likely to bring a tear to your eye (or to make you weep copiously)?
There are so many. I cry at pretty much anything these days. About half of Radiohead's back catalogue for a start. But Love Will Tear Us Apart has been makin' ma greet since 1979.

2. Which song always gets you dancing?
Again, there are loads - it doesn't take much to get boogying. But the one that's been around the longest would have to be The Cult's She Sells Sanctuary. Used to go completely mad to this song at school discos (having no idea back then what the song was about, obviously!). It's still guaranteed to get me on the dance floor. It aint pretty though. If you're in my vicinity when Billy Duffy's quasi-psychedelic guitar intro kicks off - best get well out of the way.

3. Which song reminds you how awesome the internet is?
I was - still am - a big fan of Scottish indie music in the 80s and early 90s. Hipsway, The Thieves, Win, Goodbye Mr Mackenzie, Pearlfishers, The Silencers, The Big Dish, The Bluebells, Danny Wilson, The Trash Can Sinatras, Orange Juice, Simple Minds (the good stuff!): these were the bands that provided the soundtrack to my teens and early twenties. I was a wee bit obsessed with Win's U Got The Power (Scots of a certain age may well remember the ace Escher inspired McEwans lager advert it was the soundtrack for). My friend's big brother had the album (Uh! Tears Baby) on vinyl and taped it for me. But, at some point I lost it. Tracking down a copy was pretty much the first thing I did when I discovered the internet!

4. Which song reminds you of a memorable live performance?
This would have to be Hugh Reed and the Velvet Underpants' Six To Wan. My friend's band The Something Apples (which is what they were called when the gig started, but they were forever changing their name and I think they may have changed it again during this gig) supported Hugh at Drummonds in Aberdeen in 1993. They were pure dead brilliant, so they were. We got very drunk with the band after the gig and they ended up back at our shared house where we got even drunker on tequila slammers. I had one of the worst hangovers of my life the day after. Doesn't seem to have affected them too much though as they went on to support Debbie Harry later that year. Hugh is still touring, I think - well worth catching him if you can.

5. When you’re angry, on which song do you want to turn up the volume?
Well, I don't really do 'angry'. Too lazy. But I do like to turn the music up when I need a bit of a motivational 'boost' - if I have a pile of ironing to do, or need to phone my credit card company, that sort of thing. That'd have to be The Cardiac's This Is The Life. It's a veritable aural kick up the a***!

6. What song helped get you through a difficult time?
I spent a lot of my last year at school listening to Horse's The Same Sky. Which was another C90 copied from a friend! I bought my own copy when I started uni and moved into halls of residence. I was gutted when I got back to my room, stuck it into my faithful old tape player, and silence. I took it back to John Menzies. They played it on the shop sound system and it was fine, but they gave me another copy anyway. Fortunately that one played fine. I didn't much enjoy my first year at university and this album helped get me through it. There's not a dud track on it (and I was lucky enough to see Horse perform the whole album live during her Same Sky tour in 2010) but You Could Be Forgiven is possibly just about my favourite.

So there we go. I actually enjoyed doing that. And, dammit, now that I've started thinking about significant songs, I don't want to stop. So look out for part 2!