Jake Bugg – “Lightning Bolt”
Apparently, until this lad came along, Nottingham hadn't produced a number one album in several decades. Well, the wait is over! 18 years old and from Clifton, Jake Bugg was first drawn to my attention by a friend of mine who told me that one of his mate's sons was a singer-songwriter and that I should definitely check him out. Needless to say, I didn't check him out. Then, several months later, once the album was out, one of my other mates told me that I should definitely check out Jake Bugg. Well, I said, he's the son of a friend of a friend of mine, I proudly reported. I still didn't check him out though. Then I did check him out. He's good, isn't he? Why didn't anyone tell me?
Ian Dury and the Blockheads – “Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick”
I saw Ian Dury and the Blockheads perform live once, you know. It was at the second Madstock in Finsbury Park in about 1994 (so not the Morrissey one). They were really good. That was a good lineup: as well as Madness and Ian Dury, I can remember A Guy Called Gerald, Credit to the Nation, Aswad and the Buzzcocks. I've still got the t-shirt, actually... mostly because it was always a bit too small for me back in the day, and then I got fat, and now I'm an awful lot thinner than I've ever been, it works pretty well and hasn't been worn all that much. Winner! It's a cool t-shirt too. Anyway. Dury died in 2000, so I feel pretty lucky to have had the chance to be able to see him live. I remember him being good, but almost nothing else at all about the show. Ah, to be 20 years old again. Actually. Scrap that. Who would want to be? Whilst we're on the subject of Ian Dury, here's his Bus Driver's Prayer again. Just because.
Our Farnham, who art in Hendon
Harrow be Thy name.
Thy Kingston come; thy Wimbledon,
In Erith as it is in Hendon.
Give us this day our daily Brent
And forgive us our Westminster
As we forgive those who Westminster against us.
And lead us not into Thames Ditton
But deliver us from Yeovil.
For Thine is the Kingston, the Purley and the Crawley,
For Esher and Esher.
He was a genius.
Guns n Roses – “It’s So Easy”
Triggered by something Ben said on Facebook the other day about how all you really needed for a stag do was some guys, some beer and a copy of "Appetite for Destruction". Yup. I can see how that might work. I see you standing there. You think you're so cool. Why don't you just.....?
The Cure – “Boys Don’t Cry”
When I was a teenager and knew nothing, I used to dislike the Cure intensely. For me they were in the same category as that other band I disliked for no real reason without listening to them at about the same time: the Stone Roses. Yeah. I really did know nothing. Well, apart from the fact that the best bands in the world were Iron Maiden, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Faith No More, Dan Reed Network and the Stevie Salas Colorcode. But everyone knew that, right? That wasn't controversial.
Elvis Costello – “Alison”
I sort of passingly like a bit of Elvis Costello, but this song remains untouchable. A beautiful record.
Elbow – “Puncture Repair”
A real highlight from their gig on Monday. This has long been one of my favourites of their songs, and somehow it strikes a real chord with me. It always makes me think of Jenni too.
I leaned on you today
I regularly hurt but never say
I nearly wore the window through
Where was air sea rescue?
The cavalry with tea and sympathy
You were there
Simple, but perfect.
Flight of the Conchords – “Robots”
They may only be formerly New Zealand's fourth most popular guitar-based digi-bongo acapella-rap-funk-comedy folk duo, but I love'em. Binary solo. 0000001, 00000011, 000000111 etc.
Jeff Buckley – “Lilac Wine”
Buckley tragically died in 1997, aged 30.... but he's another artist that I was lucky enough to see performing live: he played in the Melody Maker tent at the Reading Festival in 1994, and I was the only one in my group of friends who wanted to go. Well, ok.... to be perfectly honest, I had only gone to the Melody Maker stage because I wanted to watch Gene, who were on after Buckley.... but I saw all of Buckley's set and he was mesmerising. I listened to "Grace" again the other day, as well as one of his earlier live albums, and he was an incredible talent. I think I prefer John Cale's take on "Hallelujah", but the Buckley version is pretty damn hard to beat. Gene were fantastic that day too, if you're interested. No? Your loss.
Michael Buble – “Haven’t Met You Yet”
Ah, the stalker song by Mickey Bubbles. Buble seems like a nice enough chap, and I wish him all the best, but I have
Right. That's it. I'm back off to my playstation to be Batman..... Have a good weekend, y'all. Oh, and please shave off all those ridiculous moustaches now. Seriously: facial hair is a serious commitment and not a laughing matter.