BONUS POSTING : SIMPLY THRILLED IS RETURNING SOON….WITH BELLS ON!

Hopefully, some of you will recall that I got rather excited to be asked to get involved in the launch of Simply Thrilled, a new club night in Glasgow at which all the songs to be played over a five-hour period would be by Scottish singers or bands.  I even posted a review of it on this very blog….click here if you like.

A lot of folk seemed to enjoy themselves and so the real brains behind the night – Robert, Hugh and Carlo – have been working hard in recent weeks on plans for the second event.

The good news is that Simply Thrilled will be returning to the Admiral Bar in Glasgow on Friday 30 November to celebrate all that is brilliant about Scottish Alternative Music.

Our November night is going to be particularly special for a number of reasons..

Firstly, it just happens to coincide with St Andrew’s Day, the feast day of Saint Andrew and an official national day in Scotland with a number of government bodies having the day off work.

Secondly….and you’ll have to excuse me as I pinch myself to find that I’m not dreaming….we will have two very special guest DJs joining us – Aidan Moffat of Arab Strap fame will be playing some choice tunes alongside his partner in crime and fellow raconteur Noj.

It will be a genuine WTF?????? moment in my life and I can guarantee that I’ll not a get a wink of sleep in the days leading up to it due to excitement.

It would be great if some of you could manage to come along and hopefully help make the night a sell-out.  Tell your pals who live around these parts about it.  Tickets are priced at just £5 and can be obtained from

http://www.wegottickets.com/event/448926

There can only be one song to go with this posting….

mp3 : Arab Strap – The First Big Weekend

JC

LOTS OF DANCIN’ etc.

I spent a few days last week working on and fine-tuning in advance a set of approx 60 minutes for the first ever Simply Thrilled night last Saturday.

Best laid plans and all that!!

I shoved this up on Facebook about 45 minutes after I’d done my bit:-

Three and a bit hours in…and it’s been a triumph but in a way that we never expected.

The indie side of Scottish music has been put to side for the most part and we’ve played loads of chart hits that’s had loads of folk dancing.

Folk are having great fun…..

All of us involved in this venture aren’t ashamed to say that we are occasionally snobbish about music.  But….and this is where it counts most, each of us know that having a great time at a club night is what it is all about. This was how I felt when I woke up on Sunday and shared my thoughts on Facebook:-

The morning after.

Still coming to terms with the fact so many folk came along to the first Simply Thrilled night and had such a great time dancing, laughing, hugging and singing along.

Followed Rule #1 of the DJ bible…..play what it is your audience is wanting!!! The first 90 minutes of the night were as indie and obscure(ish) as we liked, and then once I played “Don’t Talk To Me About Love’ by Altered Images, the place went nuts in a really great and friendly and happy way.

I got by through binning my planned set list – some were shuffled around in order while others were dropped.  It was also decided to introduce two new songs, suggested by Robert, including one by The Orchids which hasn’t even been released yet!!

In short, I tried my best give the paying public exactly what they wanted which was made easier by the fact that the vast majority of the paying public were aged 35-50 and lived in or around Glasgow…..

Set List – Simply Thrilled Launch 28.07.2018

Friend of the Night – Mogwai
Dark Matter – Siobhan Wilson
Cockcrow – Aiden Moffat & RM Hubbard
A Friend Like You – Aberfeldy
Twisted and Bent – Trashcan Sinatras
Long In The Tooth – Pictish Trail
Milk – Garbage
Aye Today – Delgados
Scotland – The Wedding Present
Heard About Love – The Big Gun
Imperial – Butcher Boy
It Can’t Be Love Unless It Hurts – Tracyanne & Danny
No Longer Young Enough – Just Joans
If He Loved You He’d Listen – Hardy Boys
Safety Net – Shop Assistants
Plastic Bags From Tesco – Wilderness Children
Let’s Fall In Love and Run Away From Here – Ballboy
Geraldine – Glasvegas
Into The Valley – The Skids
Happy When It Rains – Jesus & Mary Chain
Iceblink Luck -Cocteau Twins
I Only Wanna Be With You – The Tourists
Nobody There – Veronica Falls
Candyskin – Fire Engines
Foxheads – Close Lobsters
I Never Learn – The Orchids
Don’t Talk To Me About Love – Altered Images
Breaking Point – Bourgie Bourgie
Rip It Up – Orange Juice
Since Yesterday – Strawberry Switchblade
Be Less Rude – Frightened Rabbit
Oblivious – Aztec Camera
18 Carat Love Affair – Associates
I Travel – Simple Minds
Everything (I Ever Wanted) – Fruits of Passion
Labour of Love – Hue & Cry
Fast Girls and Factory Boys – Port Sulphur
Mary’s Prayer – Danny Wilson
Sunkissed – Friends Again
The Honeythief – Hipsway
You’ve Got The Power – Win
Ain’t That Enough – Teenage Fanclub
Movin’ On Up -Primal Scream
I want to fall in love – BMX Bandits
Robert De Niro’s Waiting – Futuristic Retro Champions
Testify – Hi-fi Sean
Blueboy – Orange Juice
Sorry For Laughing – Josef K
Take Me Out – Franz Ferdinand
Only Happy When It Rains – Garbage
Obscurity Knocks – Trashcan Sinatras
The Rattler – Goodbye Mr Mackenzie
Lloyd, I’m Ready To Be Heartbroken – Camera Obscura
Rattlesnakes – Lloyd Cole & The Commotions
I’m A Cuckoo – Belle & Sebastian
Don’t You Forget About Me – Simple Minds
Right Here – The Go-Betweens
Check My Heart – The Pastels
Smalltown Boy – Bronski Beat
Once In A Lifetime – Talking Heads
Somewhere In My Heart – Aztec Camera
Party Fears Two – Associates
Kiss This Thing Goodbye – Del Amitri
Country Girl – Primal Scream
Sweet Dreams -Eurythmics
I’m Free – Soup Dragons
Millions – Teen Canteen
Sparky’s Dream – Teenage Fanclub
Happy Birthday – Altered Images
The Boy With The Arab Strap – Belle & Sebastian
Walk Out To Winter – Aztec Camera
Living In Colour – Frightened Rabbit
Promised You A Miracle – Simple Minds
Dead Connection – Pictish Trail
Loaded – Primal Scream
The Mother We Share – Chvrches
Mr Blue Sky – Delgados
Pitch The Baby – Cocteau Twins
Sound and Vision – Franz Ferdinand
National Express – The Divine Comedy
Super Trouper – Camera Obscura
Keep Yourself Warm – Frightened Rabbit
Everything Flows – Teenage Fanclub

That’s five hours worth…but such was the energy and enthusiasm on show that the time flew in.

There’s been an incredibly positive reaction from folk who were there with loads of nice words and images posted in places. It’s given all of us a huge lift and made us very determined to make the next occasion even better, and we are hopeful of doing something in October. It’s very much Robert and Hugh who are the driving force and they will again work really hard to pull it altogether, while Carlo and Ash will work their creative magic on the design side of things.

Me? I’ll just turn up, throw out a few tunes and hope there’s as great a response as there was last night. One person has said that Simply Thrilled took them back to the days of Level 8 and the QM (two student haunts of mine in the early 80s) and if that’s the case, then it really was, from my part, job done.

Thought I’d share with you the very first set that I planned out…10/18 survived on the night and Robert played another of them later on.

mp3 : Various Artists – Simply Thrilled One

Track Listing

Candyskin – Fire Engines
Let’s Make Some Plans – Close Lobsters
Sunkissed – Friends Again
Mary’s Prayer – Danny Wilson
His Latest Flame – The Motorcycle Boy
Be Less Rude – Frightened Rabbit
Oblivious – Aztec Camera
Breaking Point – Bourgie Bourgie
I Travel – Simple Minds
I Could Give You All That You Don’t want – Twilight Sad
Top of the Pops – Rezillos
Rip It Up – Orange Juice
God Knows Its True – Teenage Fanclub
Since Yesterday – Strawberry Switchblade
18 Carat Love Affair – Associates
Hayfever – Trash Can Sinatras
Speed-Date – Arab Strap
Sorry For Laughing – Josef K

I hope you enjoy listening….and maybe even have a wee dance round your living room/office/garden in tribute to our wee night.

Feel free to visit https://www.facebook.com/groups/399089003891387/ to see some photos etc.

JC

THE COUNTDOWN TO SIMPLY THRILLED (d-3)

A few potential curve-balls for my Simply Thrilled set this coming Saturday, one of which may well be a b-side cover of a classic:-

mp3 : Sons and Daughters – Nice’n’Sleazy

This was the flip side of the 7″ vinyl release…..and it was the third 45 released by Sons and Daughters back in 2005.  I’ll be the first to admit that it’s nowhere near as good as the original but that would be an impossible task.  The bass line is a bit on the light side, as indeed is the keyboard solo but I’ve always been a sucker for a distinctively Scottish vocal lilt as provided by Adele Bethele and David Gow.

Here’s the a-side:-

mp3 : Sons and Daughters – Taste The Last Girl

While this is the b-side from the CD single:-

mp3 : Sons and Daughters – Stranger Song

Here’s the promo for the single:-

I must get round to doing an ICA for this lot……..

JC

 

IT REALLY WASN’T A CRACKING DEBUT SINGLE

It’s Friday. It’s the 13th of the month. I’ve been running a Scottish theme all week here. It’s the eve of an all-English ICA World Cup final. I feel it is appropriate to sabotage the blog.

Today’s offering is the debut 45 by the rather spendid and usually tuneful Idlewild.

Queen of The Troubled Teens was released on Human Condition Records, an Edinburgh-based indie label, but such was the small extent of the distribution that few copies got outside of the city, and as such it is highly sought after by fans (and no, I don’t have a copy; I used villainous methods to get a hold of the songs for today).

Idlewild had played their first shows in early 1996, as teenagers, and they soon earned a reputation for loud, chaotic but energetic shows. It wasn’t until February 1997 that their debut single was released by which time their bass player, Phil Scanlon, had quit to concentrate on his studies and so these three songs are his sole contribution to a band which has now released seven studio albums, three compilations and twenty-three singles in a largely stellar career.

Here’s what Roddy Woomble, lead singer and main songwriter with the band has said this about the debut:-

The thing is that it’s rubbish. I mean, for what it is – when I look back, like I do with fondness at copies of a favourite book or something – musically it’s just a bunch of 19-year-olds. Of course it’s part of the band’s history, but I think things have moved on.

He’s not wrong you know….

mp3 : Idlewild – Queen of The Troubled Teens
mp3 : Idlewild – Faster
mp3 : Idlewild – Self Healer

I can safely predict that these are unlikely to be aired at Simply Thrilled.

JC

SON OF A GUN

The Vaselines are one of the best examples you can find of a band becoming more famous and influential long after they had called it a day.

Eugene Kelly and Frances McKee were romantically entwined when they formed the band in 1986. As they have said on a number of occasions, they knew they weren’t terrifically competent from a technical point of view, but they set out with the intention of the sort of music they enjoyed listening to, heavily influenced by the 60s duets of Lee Hazelwood and Nancy Sinatra, and the likes of The Velvet Underground, Orange Juice and The Jesus and Mary Chain who had all used grit and determination to get things going rather than worry about how perfect their sound was.

They released two EPs on a Glasgow-based independent label which was run and managed by a number of their friends, including Stephen Pastel, as well as recording an album which initially had to be shelved as the label had gone bust, albeit it was later picked up and released on Rough Trade. By the time the album was released in 1989, the band was no more – thoroughly disillusioned by the experience of crap venues, no money, no solid fan base and no media support for what they were doing. Little did they, or indeed anyone know, that their songs had come to the attention of a singer/songwriter from the north-west corner of the States who was determined that the band he fronted would pay homage by covering them when they played live.

Kurt Cobain’s love for The Vaselines brought them to a whole new audience, and more importantly, had critics reassessing things to the extent that a number of them in the UK would claim to have championed them from the outset. Eugene and Frances had become hip names to drop into any conversation….

The EPs and album had sold in such small numbers that they were tough to track down and so Sub Pop chose to reissue their entire 19-song back catalogue in 1992 on a compilation entitled The Way of The Vaselines at the same time as a Edinburgh based indie label issued something similar in the shape of All The Stuff and More, which is the piece of vinyl that I have in the collection.

The three songs that made up the debut EP encapsulate everything that made the band so different from their late 80s peers while also demonstrating how it was difficult for anyone to find a single reference point with which to compare them:-

mp3 : The Vaselines – Son of A Gun
mp3 : The Vaselines – Rory Ride Me Raw
mp3 : The Vaselines – You Think You’re A Man

The irony, of course, is that the lead track has aged magnificently, sounding really fresh and invigorating more than 30 years on, one which has no problem in filling the floor of your average indie/alt disco with even the young ones appreciating its charms.

The other original track is hilarious and shambolic in equal measures….it could be argued that it’s about someone looking forward to climbing aboard a fine looking horse and galloping around some freshly mown fields first thing in the morning…..but that argument holds no truck in Villain Towers. I really don’t know how these real life lovers were to keep straight faces when they sang this one in concert……

The final track demonstrates that the making indie music doesn’t necessarily mean leaving your wicked sense of humour and fun at the door of the studio. Where Orange Juice had often paid tribute to the late 70s/early 80s disco sound, so their descendants tipped their hats to Hi-NRG with a bizarre take on a hit single by the drag queen Divine (which, incidentally , was the first ever success for the production team of Stock, Aitken and Waterman).

The a-side of these may well be aired at some point during Simply Thrilled….if not the inaugural night, then I’m certainly going to have it on a playlist in next time around.

JC