Earworms 6 January 2014

Image credit: elvinphoto / 123RF Stock Photo

Here are three kings for you, followed by a right royal collection of earworms to start your week. Hope it’s a smooth start, particularly if it’s the first day back at work after the holiday. And remember, your worms are most welcome to join in – send them to earworm@tincanland.com.

Busi Mhlongo – Izinziswa. English title – ‘Young Men’ – goneforeign: Busi is from South Africa, she mixed very traditional African styles with contemporary styles – jazz, reggae, gospel etc. She was very popular throughout S. Africa, she died in 2010. It’s from her CD Babhemu & Twasa on Munich records.

Kev Russell with the Gourds (or some of them) and Debra Kelly – Imbibing My Prescriptions – tfd: this is a live version of one of my favourite Kev songs, which is on his solo album ‘Buttermilk And Rifles’, but this is downloadable from archive.org. Featuring (as does the record) backing vocals by Debra Kelly of Damnations Tx.

Eliza Carthy – Willow Tree – debbyM: This is quite possibly my favourite song ever ever ever; it makes me homesick for an England that probably only exists in my imagination. I love the brass, I love the ‘simplicity’ of the song, but it’s the tall ships at the end that really grabbed my attention.

The Frank and Walters – After All – beltway: I bought far too many 12 inch singles in the ’90’s and was rummaging through a box of them and came across this little gem that I’d not thought about for a long time, such a sweet and innocent little love song and an infuriatingly catchy little guitar riff from the third best Irish Indie pop band of the early ’90s. Ian Broudie’s production is stamped on it with a sledgehammer, and that is no bad thing.

Bon Jovi’s Blame It On The Love Of Rock And Roll – DsD: Do you ever feel the need to just lose yourself in a big, dumb, cliché-ridden, dad-dancing, riffola of a song? No? Oh … oops! OK, just me then. The rest of you: hit SKIP and as you were. Me? I’m spinning round the office gurning & air-guitaring even as you read this!

Ivory Joe Hunter – Since I Met You Baby – Fintan: In 1956 my friends who were paying any attention to music were going around singing ‘Hound Dog’, ‘Rock Around The Clock’ or, more likely, ‘The Ballad of Davy Crockett’.  I was singing this and it cemented a lifelong love of the blues. I was a happy 7-year old.

20 thoughts on “Earworms 6 January 2014

  1. This is a good crop.
    Absolutely loved Busi, Eliza and Ivory Joe. Three great voices, two I was completely unfamiliar with. Must not spend money………
    Enjoyed the others too. Even Bon Jovi who aren’t normally my flagon of mead. Don’t think I’d ever heard the F & W’s before although I remember the name.
    Never heard of Kev Russell. Needs a few more listens, bit of a slow burner I think. Lovely harmonies in that one.

  2. A very enjoyable collection this week which kept me entertained as I undertook the most miserable task of the year (that of dutifully storing away the Xmas decs in the attic for another year, compounding the gloom of the January nights).

    Bushi Mlongo was particularly enjoyable and shot some sun into proceedings – a nice virtual Vitamin D shot. The Gourds and Eliza McCarthy were more downbeat but both pretty compelling, the McCarthy particularly made me stop and actually listen. Feel the need to listen a few more times.

    Sorry DsD, I have to be in a very particular mood for JBJ and today wasn’t it! And Ivory Joe was just glorious, probably the highlight of the week – cheers Ali!

  3. These worked very well together and were just the thing with this evening’s washing up. Jon Bon Jovi was really a bit too spandexy cheesy for me, but I can’t object to anything that wears its heart on its sleeve. Cheers everyone.

  4. When Finny was singing along with Ivory Joe I was probably doing the same thing on the other side of the pond, I remember it well which amazes me because I haven’t heard it in close to 60 years, this happens all the time. I hear something I haven’t heard since my youth and instantly the melody locks in and I can remember most of the lyrics but I couldn’t tell you what we had for dinner last Sunday!
    This got me to thinking about the pop music of that era that we heard on one or both of BBC’s two channels. Most of it was American and it was so unbelievably different from what we hear today.
    Some names from the 50’s:
    Patti Page – Tennessee Waltz.
    Frankie Laine – Mule Train
    Johnnie Ray – Cry,
    Nat “King” Cole – Unforgettable,& Mona Lisa,
    Kay Starr – Wheel of Fortune,
    Dean Martin – That’s Amore,
    Doris Day – Secret Love
    and on and on and on.
    Right about the middle of the decade the music began to change, or at least what we were then listening to began to change, there were some new names and new sounds, things were obviously changing.
    Bill Haley and His Comets -“We’re Gonna) Rock Around the Clock
    Little Richard – Tutti Frutti
    Chuck Berry – Maybellene
    Fats Domino – Blueberry Hill
    Elvis Presley- Blue Suede Shoes
    Tennessee Ernie Ford – Sixteen Tons
    Les Paul – How High the Moon
    And simultaneously there was something else happening in England, the folk music revival which led to:
    The Weavers – Goodnight Irene
    Harry Belafonte – Banana Boat Song
    Kingston Trio, Pete Seeger, Odetta, et al.
    Dylan evolved right out of this as did so many others. It caused a lot of young people to think about creating music, not just listening. Skiffle was born and with it a generation of amateur musicians, guitarists, drummers and bassists, and guess what came next!
    Somehow elements of all these started to combine: rockabilly, folk, blues, R&B, soul, gospel, doo-wop – and they called it rock and roll!
    What’s amazing to me having lived through it and enjoyed it all is how short it was and how quickly things changed, basically it all happened in not much more than a decade, the 1950’s. But what happened next is even more amazing, the 60’s, the 70’s, the British invasion, the Beatles and all of the supergroups from back then, it all changed again and again, for a lot of them their music lives on.
    Anybody else have memories of this era?

    • For once in my life I can say I’m too young … thank you!!! My earliest musical memories are Tommy Steele (“Little White Bull”), “Would You Like To Swing On A Star”; “Puff the Magic Dragon” and the Sam Costa radio show. Also my mum’s sheet music (Bing Crosby, The Desert Song, Marta, Rambling Rose of the Wildwood; Shinin’ Through) and popular classical stuff. The Beatles kind of came along later! And my brother liked Bobby Gentry.

    • Wow! GF you’ve really hit my sweet spot with that list ( though the Everlys need to be in there somewhere). The world loves to categorize things but really, for me at least, it was all of a part. Nice milieu to be thrown into as a child I think.

  5. For some reason I can’t seem to get to Earworms till Wednesdays. No matter it usually makes for a great mid-week break and this was no different. Fine sweets for me ears make my day go by blissfully. Really liked them all but Young Men & After All were my highlights. Busi Mhlongo & The Frank & Walters added to my new-to-me artist list to check out.

  6. I always look forward to gf’s (southern) African contributions and Busi’s up there with the best of ’em. Gorgeous. Kev sort of passed me by (in a pleasant enough way), but that may well have been because I was dishing up my dinner, etc. Didn’t think I was gonna enjoy Eliza much from its opening – all a bit underproduced/ramshackle-sounding – but I loved it by the end. The Frank and Walters are a name I recognise (I was buying a fair few indie singles at the time too), but I couldn’t have named a song of theirs. This is sweet. Bit Billy Braggish vocally at points, I thought. Which is no bad thing, in my book. Bon Jovi were a bit too (deliberately) dumb for me, but it is nice to hear them a little less polished than I expect them to sound. Love-love-love Ivory Joe – what a voice. Great ending to a mostly great set. Thanks all!

    • Sorry – that last sentence sounded horribly sniffy. They were ALL great; they just weren’t all completely to my taste!

  7. Never have I enjoyed an earworms session more than this one (I even didn’t mind the JBJ) – thanks everybody, but particularly Ali!

  8. Hello! Friday might be a bit late for the worms but at least I made it, and they’re still fresh. Nice set, nicely sequenced (as usual, Ali).

    Busi started the list off very nicely but I’m not sure that I was in the mood for Country or Western, so the Gourds kind of missed a bit. I’m always in the mood for Eliza Carthy, although I was missing her poppier mode in this one – there was a hint of it lurking in the background, I thought. F&W I am sure I have heard (indie, check; 90s, check), but I didn’t remember it. Liked it. I think I definitely was in the mood for a big dumb rock song, so JBJ really hit the spot – it did remind me of Shania Twain, though. Didn’t she marry some rock producer guy? Could he have been the fellow responsible for this JBJ LP? (Love the line about being innoculated with a phonograph needle – try explaining that to the younger* generation!). Ivory Joe wound the set up very satisfactorily.

    *I was thinking “children at primary school”.

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