When a Facebook friend tagged me to do this, I thought it looked fun but I nearly fell at the first hurdle when I saw that for Day 1 you had to pick your favourite song. What? How? I’m one of those people who doesn’t have one favourite. Hell, I’d be hard-pressed to find 100 favourites. But I’d posted up one of my many favourites on Facebook the previous day, so decided to go for that and that was me launched. These are my choices for the first fifteen days.
Day 1 – your favourite song. ‘Break’ by Aphrodite’s Child. I bought his as a single in 1975. For me, it’s very evocative of that long hot summer. The single had a black and white swirly record label and Aphrodite’s Child remained a mystery to me right up until I posted the YouTube link which inevitably invited comments. I learned that Demis Roussos and Vangelis were a part of this group. I think I’d have preferred to be kept in the dark
Day 2 – your least favourite song – all I had to do was think of one of those very naff records that grates. Of course, The Birdie Song. (The Smirfs or Akka-Doo would have done just as nicely). Except my brother told me he had gone for Bryan Adams, mine was too obvious and he was obviously giving it more thought. That’s when I decided I would too and I decided to do a blog. My sister chose ‘Lady In Red’ by Chris de Burgh. I commented on her thread that it was an excellent choice of song for this category and that I’d wished I’d chosen it. I also backtracked on Day 6 and said that I was changing my least favourite song to 'I Will Always Love You' by Whitney Houston. That got a big thumbs up.
Day 3 - a song that makes you happy. I went with 'Perfect Day' by Lou Reed, not just because you think of it when you get those perfect days, but because I love it when we sing it in our community choir with all the different parts (I do the tenor). A friend (the same friend who'd invited me to the challenge) said that it was one of the more gentle songs about heroin. Well, you learn something new every day. All these years, and I never knew. Is Sangria in the park a euphemism for chasing the dragon? Now the weird thing is, on Day 6, I was thinking if I was doing this day again I’d choose ‘Wake Up Boo’ by The Boo Radleys. My sister was up to Day 3 in her choices and guess what she chose? Yes. The Boo Radleys! More synchronisities were on the cards.
Day 4 - a song that makes you sad - having had a sneak preview a few days before, I'd planned on Rare Bird's ‘Sympathy' But then I remembered Klaus Nomi’s version of Dido's Lament. It makes me more than sad. It makes me weep even just thinking about it. Dido’s Lament is a song that is played at funerals, but Nomi’s version with such an operatic, dramatic rendition had to be the one.
Day 5 – a song that reminds you of someone. 'Honey Come Back' by Glen Campbell. I was only eleven at the time, but me and my sister had a crush on a certain older man managing Woollies. This and a few other songs of that time, summer 1970 (Friends by Arrival, Everything is Beautiful and Sally, the Pride of Our Alley) remind me of him ;-) My older brother reminded me that ‘Arrival’ was out at the beginning of 1970, but we were obviously still singing/hearing songs from earlier in the year at that time.
Day 6 - a song that reminds you of somewhere - 'Muscle Bound' by Spandau Ballet. Reminds me of working at the Sandbanks Hotel as a chambermaid, Spring 81.
Day 7 – a song that reminds you of a certain event – this could have been any number of songs, but I went for The babys and ‘Isn’t It Time’ which reminds me of starting work as a Clerical Officer in Customs & Excise in December 1977
Day 8 – a song that I know all the words to, also one of my favourites. No More Mr Nice Guy by Alice Cooper. Well, I say I know all the words but there was one line that was ambiguous which over the years I believe to be ‘The Reverend Smith, he recognized me, and punched me in the nose’. But at the tender age of 15, I wasn’t so sure. Cue Smash Hits (ir was it Disc?) to the rescue. They used to print the lyrics of chart songs. But they printed it as ‘The Ribbon Snippy recognised me …’ My sister and I had never heard of a ribbon snippy. We thought perhaps it was an American term. But I’ve never heard of a ribbon snippy before or since!
NB - as a result of posting this, I found out that Roger Daltrey did a cover version of it.
Day 9 - a song that you can dance to. I chose Wicky Wacky by The Fatback Band. This is an excellent track from 75, at least that's when I was dancing to it in a Liverpool warehouse-type night club. I can still picture the dance and taste the shorts and see the UV lighting. My sister, ever on my wavelnegth, had already decided to go for Bust Stop by The Fatback Band for her dance record.
Day 10 - a song that makes you fall asleep. I had a few days offline so had time to think about this one – not that I needed much thinking time. I knew it would be one of Loreena McKennitt’s - the harp and lulling new Agey tones are very conducive to slumber. I should know, because I often put my ipod on during my sleepy time and fall asleep. I chose one at random from The Mask & The Mirror album, bought for my sister and me by our father who was introduced to LM by our uncle. The strange thing is, Ann told me she’d posted up a song by LM on Facebook that same day.
Day 11 - a song from your favourite band - that's as almost as bad as picking your favourite song, and OK David Bowie isn't a band but he did have a backing band. I went for Rock n Roll Suicide. This choice, naturally, went down very well with my fellow Bowiephiles, all clamouring to share their favourite early Bowie tracks from the album or other albums of that era
Day 12 - a song from a band that you hate. Now hate is a strong word and shows a reaction. Nay, the worst thing you can do as an artist or band is to bore your listener, and there’s plenty of those. Girls Aloud summed it up for me. Not that I know or care to know their repertoire so I had to google them and listen to half a minute or so of some insipid pap called 'Call The Shots' (Sorry, Cheryl, no offence).
I was also embarrassed to post it lest anyone should be hurrying on by and not read it properly so I added a footnote. For you people: I DON'T LIKE THIS and hoped any last vestiges of street cred were still intact. Now my sister swears I said I liked The Sound of the Underground and my brother listened to 30 seconds of it, and thought it wasn't bad if it had been done by someone else. I rest my case.
Day 13 - a song that is a guilty pleasure. I chose Barry Manilow’s ‘Could It Be Magic’. I loved this from the moment I first heard it in 76 and bought the record. Many people have done covers, but to me they don't come close. I love the way it builds up towards the end. My unhip reputation is intact once more.
Day 14 – a song that noone would expect you to love. I chose Coolio’s Gangsta’s Paradise. I didn't know if people wouldn't expect me to love this but I love love love it.
Day 15 – a song that describes you – I chose Wordy Rappinghood by Tom Tom Club seeing as I spend half my time with words, I thought this was apt, though I would have had one by The Editors had I found one suitable. My nickname, among certain family members, being 'the Ed'.
I will be back to post up Days 16 - 30 when I've finished the challenge.