Last day here at UWA, and so I drove the spare car to work. It’s something of a older car; it has a tape deck. I grabbed a tape at random this morning to listen to on the way here. I shoved my hand into a tape drawer and pulled out Bob Dylan at Budokan. I thought it would be set to side 1 but side 2 is what played as I drove here this morning. By the time I got here at UWA and parked the car the song that was playing was Going, Going, Gone. Wow, I couldn’t have chosen a better song for my last day here. Y’know I actually started up this blog because of an internal education programme here at UWA, so it is also appropriate that I use this blog to say goodbye to UWA.
Sunday gone was the last Belmont Swap Meet for the year. I came away with one book, one record and one CD; that sounds like a blues song. I’ve since been listening to that CD all week. I spotted this CD amongst a lot of dreck in a small box at a stall I had already passed and just happened to be walking past again. It was the familiar Raven Records logo on the CD spine that caught my eye. Now, my basic policy is to buy anything that Raven Records puts out. Generally I love pretty much everything this reissue label has ever done, with perhaps the exception of a Roy Hamilton compilation and Christy Moore 2fer; I haven’t given those a second listen yet, but I digress. Basically Raven is a label that I trust.
And this CD on this day was a double CD called Del Shannon: A Complete Career Anthology 1961 – 1990. The woman selling it let me have it for $2.
Now, like most people, I knew Del for Runaway, that song with the wo-wo-wos and the why-why-whys and that strange but compelling piano/organ solo. Turns out, thankyou informative Raven booklet included with the CD, that this part of the song was done on an early synthesiser called a Musitron.
But what else did Del sing? Quite a lot as this CD shows. He worked with Tom Petty in later years, which I never knew, and also Jeff Lynne, and then as I read it came back to me.
I remembered a night in the early 90’s, well before I got into seriously into music, I happened to watch “Hey Hey It’s Saturday” (in my defence, so too did a majority of the nation back then; and I was young). I recalled Daryl Sommers doing an introduction to a music act; Daryl said “Remember the song Runaway? That guy is back with a song called Walk Away!” And sure enough up next was Del Shannon with what was his 90’s come back single, a song awash with the stamp of Jeff Lynne and Tom Petty. I never heard it again until I bought this CD. And sadly Del took his life shortly after this.
Apart from Tom and Jeff another significant music figure that Del worked with was Andrew Loog Oldham and included on this compilation were some songs they did together that were heavy on Beach Boys influence. For me these songs are the stand out tracks and I have one of them here today for the Friday song.
The only copy of it that I could find online was part of a medley of so using TubeChop I have edited it so that just the song Friendly With You is played. Apologies to whomever put this clip on YouTube as a medley. To hear the song click on the first link below.
With Andrew, Del also recut Runaway, as a string laden ballad which gave me chills with it’s stabbling violins. Interesting, but not as good as the original. A copy is also below.
Plus, continuing the Del obsession for the week, I’ve also found that Hey Hey It’s Saturday performance, sadly without the introduction.
Well, I’m about to go on leave and I can’t guarantee that I will be able to blog regularly over the next month. But I will be back in December with a Christmas record display and a Christmas top 5.
To wind up for now, how about a little slice of Scott Walker?
I had trouble getting out of bed this morning. The alarm went off and I was awake but I just didn’t feel like moving. So, when this happens I reach in my mental jukebox for this tune. “Don’t just sit there…”
Has it really been a week since I saw Allen Toussaint? I’m still grooving to what he laid down that cool night outside at the Fremantle Arts Centre. With so many songs in his songbook I know that he could not sing everything but I was very happy with what he did sing, including Sneakin’ Sally Through The Alley and Yes We Can Can. Sadly no Everything I Do Gonna Be Funky, but he did speak about Lee Dorsey and Ernie K Doe and he even did Here Come The Girls which he wrote for Ernie and which was a flop back then but was brought back in a commercial fairly recently.
So, here for the Friday song, is a number Allen did last Friday night which pays homage to Crescent City music and Professor Longhair, or ‘Fess, in particular.
Spring Feast was on last night here at UWA. This food festival, part of multicultural week, is one of the annual highlights here at the Uni. However, it was not the only thing taking place last night. There was also a fascinating lecture on DNA evidence by Dr Christine Funk. That’s right; Dr Funk.
So, I was faced with a dilemma; do I give up food for funk or pass up funk for food?
The night started with the gathering. Joining me amongst the throng of people waiting to go in was Bookbuster and HelenKitty plus AusPolTragic and HipiKat.
There was a printed programme this year, which we read while we waited. Sadly the organisers have yet to bring back the showbag which was a very popular feature a few years back.
Reading the program too quickly it seemed like a food stall was offering Sushi Popcorn Chicken. It must have been our hunger causing illusions.
When the gate opened we first visited the Red Bull Girls and went through the ordeal of having to say to them “yes we want our wings please” in order to get our free drink.
From there onto the food.
Yes, I too wondered about the fried oreos and so I just had to have them, along with the curry puff and the pork. All good; especially the oreos. Three of them fried in a light batter served on a stick and dusted with icing sugar. This was the first thing I had after my Red Bull. The crash after this sugar powered flight was not going to be pretty.
Other delights sampled included giant popcorn chicken that were very crunchy, fried potato twirls on a stick that were just as good as last year, a few octopus balls and some sort of folded fried pancake with meat inside which was very tasty.
My thanks goes out to the organisers for this UWA event.
Since I could not give up food for funk, for the Friday song here are some people who can! The JB’s!
My partner came in to the room when I was playing this song the other day. She listened for a moment before asking “funky disco stuff, huh?” And, why yes, as a matter of fact it is, but not the disco that you would expect. It is the Grateful Dead. That is right, “Disco isn’t Dead”, it’s Grateful Dead. I have always heard less than favourable comments about the album “Shakedown Street” by The Grateful Dead, but when I saw it going rather cheap at JB Hi-Fi I picked it up. It is the remastered and expanded edition from Rhino after all. Plus, it has a Lowell George connection; he is credited as the producer, but really from all accounts he was just hanging out in the studio. So I gave it a chance and I can affirm that it is not a legendary Grateful Dead album, but it does have some good moments and I think this title track is one of them. And yes, they were going for a disco feel. This was the late 70s after all and everyone was going for a disco feel. I have even heard the Beach Boys do disco, but I might save that for some other time.