Of course we can!
It happened the other night when my fiancée came back from the library to tell me that a book on the history of Island Records was on the new books display (she has since gone and got the book out for me – thank you!).
I started to regale her with some of the bands and artists that have been on Island Records, such as Bob Marley and the Wailers, Roxy Music, and Sparks. I then realised that I was thinking only of albums from the 70’s so I concentrated on trying to think of more recent acts. The first one that came to mind was Pulp.
I didn’t realise just how much of an impact Pulp must have made on me because no sooner had I invoked their name, then the memory of Disco 2000 came to me. I then proceeded to sing it around the house for the next hour.
I remember it so well. I was on holiday in the Channel Islands in the mid 90’s when BritPop was all the go, and listening to the radio in the rental car it seemed Disco 2000 was the only song that was being played.
The only other song that was being played, or at least was in equal high rotation, was Wonderwall, but not by Oasis. No, it was Wonderwall as interpreted by the Mike Flowers Pops, who did it as a groovy lounge number. This was, for me, the first version of the song that I heard, and it was not till later that I noticed that there was a rockier version of the song that the radio sometimes played. It was actually one of my sisters who had to point out to me that the two versions were of the same song. Didn’t I notice that both songs mentioned Wonderwall?
So, anyway, both of those songs evoke that holiday for me but upon returning to Australia it was only Disco 2000 that ever seemed to make it to these shores. So I kept on hearing it all over again which was great and as I intimated before, it left a deep impression on me.
It was not until some years later that I found the Mike Flowers Pops once more. I was stranded out at Midland Gate shopping centre. I had been to an eye specialist who had given me some eye drops that expanded my irises so that he could take a look deep within my optics. Prior to the appointment no one had warned me that after this procedure I would be unable to drive due to having a limited ability to see for the next few hours until the effect of the eye drops wore off.
Of course, I was not informed earlier of this, so not wanting to hang around a doctor’s office I took a chance and drove to the nearby Midland Gate shopping centre to hang out there till the effects subsided. That was a long time, and my eyes were watery and my vision was incredibly blurred and unfocused. Window shopping in this condition was not easy but somehow I managed to pick my way through some of the racks at the music store there.
There was a discount bin and even with my impaired eyesight I somehow caught sight of a discounted copy of the Mike Flowers Pops album A Groovy Place that featured Wonderwall. I was also able to stumble to the counter and pay for it. Much later I was finally able to take it home and hear once again that mellow version of the song, that for me, is the version that first springs to mind when I think of Wonderwall. What is more, Wonderwall invokes that Channel Island holiday and Disco 2000, so one song makes me think of the other and back and forth. So after I had wailed on for an hour about meeting up in the year 2000, I then gracefully moved onto some graceful hip swivelling and finger popping crooning of Wonderwall.
I present both of these personally evocative numbers as Friday songs; I couldn’t choose between them. I like them both!!