The Songs That People Sing

First let's hear somebody sing me a record that cries pure and true

Month: December, 2010

Mark Ronson & Rose Elinor Dougall

A bit of blog tennis with that lovely gent Davy. He’s got Rose Elinor Dougall over at his. So I thought I’d get her over here, with a tune with Mark Ronson & The Business Intl called Hey Boy. It’s a lovely slice of pop, evoking to these ears nothing more than the Human League meets Bow Wow Wow. It’s from the latest Ronson album, which contains at least three more songs that are amongst my favourite of the year.

The Redskins – Unionise

One of the scariest things about 2010 was the fact that this song, a Redskins B-Side from 1983 was more relevant than ever. Musically a mix of The Clash, Dexys, The Jam and The Beat at the carnival, it’s lyrical content is one of the most direct and powerful political statements I know that anybody has set to music. And I repeat, it’s as relevant as it ever was. You may complain every time there is a strike on the trains or the planes, but organising a workforce is the only real strength the workers have. This comes from the times when the unions were under direct attack from the government. It’s no surprise that the current bluebloods have talked about banning unions again.

The Redskins – Unionize

“The first thing that needs to be said is hate’s all very well
But hatred must be organised if dreams are to be realised
And anger is no substitute for diciplined rebellion
To unionise is to organise

Unionise!
Fight back!
Unionise!
Stop! Strike!
Unionise!

Well all this talk of fighting back is talk to be ignored
If we don’t know where our power lies and utilize the tools we’ve got
The bosses have the money and the workers have no rights
But our muscle is our labour and we flex it when we go on strike

Unionise!
Fight back!
Unionise!
Stop! Strike!
Unionise!

We can talk of riots and petrol bombs and revolutions all day long
But if we fail to organise we’ll waste our lives on protest songs
A life worth living is waiting to be won, sure
The day the bosses fall, the day the dream has come
But stop romanticising hollow talk is just a curse
The revolution won’t appear, we all have to build for it first

Unionise!
Fight back!
Unionise!
Stop! Strike!
Unionise!”

A little extra present…

Here’s the tune that’s rocked my Christmas playlist the most today:

Meanwhile, head over to Plain Or Pan for some wonderful James Brown Christmas treats. Well worth a visit, I tell you!

Watch the skies people, can you hear those sleigh bells?

Happy Christmas!

Merry Christmas everyone. Unfortunately Christmas has been a bit of a nonstarter thanks to the snow.  Thankfully its cleared enough for the Father In Law to come and get us on Christmas Day, but theres no getting our car out this weekend.

It was almost a disaster too, literally.  I was sat at the computer yesterday when suddenly the power supply started sparking, and then flaming.  Cable melted.  Luckily I was sat next to it.  It could have been bad.

So Im on the phone again, with no access to music until I can sort out the power supply.  I need the whole machine looking at, and that’ll have to wait now.

So a massive post of my year’s favourites wont happen now, and the bit of Bing that I was planning aint happening either.  So think of your favourite Christmas song and sing it to yourself.  And have a wonderful time.

Take care of yourselves.

Joe Strummer

Can’t believe it’s been eight years. Here’s a tune from Joe’s Mescalero days, Johnny Appleseed; which I danced to on the New Year’s Eve that year. Miss you Joe.

Driving Home For Christmas


Thankfully I’m at home, no more work for a week or two. So I won’t be struggling to cross the country in the snow. Unfortunately there is not even driving for us, the car is snowed in, the roads are sheet ice and the gritters have looked down our street, shook their heads and turned around and headed the other way.

It’s during weather like this that I miss the city, even if it’s not better over there than here.

Still there’s food in the cupboards, the kettle’s on and we’re inside and cosy.

And listening to the latest Saint Etienne album, the limited edition A Glimpse Of Stocking, their Christmas album. And very fine it is too. Here’s one of the tracks, a cover of Chris Rea’s (of all people) Driving Home For Christmas. And it is lovely.

Saint Etienne – Driving Home For Christmas

Sounds For Sunday

Today it’s a bit of Minnie Riperton, one of the most awesome tunes ever, Les Fleurs. I was just listening to this with my little boy, and the moment in the middle when the HUGE chorus kicks in, he looks at me, jumps to his feet and starts dancing in mad circles. I’ve had to replay it five times so far because he loves that bit so much.

I do too. If all you know is Loving You, then go and investigate Minnie’s works. The album this comes from Come To My Garden is a good place to start.

The Directions

The Directions were one of the lesser known Mod Revival bands circa 1979/80. They were from Shepherds Bush and featured the Burke brothers, John and Tony and on vocals and guitars respectively. They only released a tiny amount of music and never really came to anything. However Tony Burke, along with the bass and drums went onto become the Big Sound Authority, who might be better known to you. Tony was the main songwriter in The Directions and you can hear the same melodic touch he would bring to BSA later.

Roddy Frame

What could be more suitable with the snow falling outside?