Or Else You Gotta Stay All Night

It’s been quite Mary Chainy round here recently and I was going to leave it alone but then this appeared on the mp3 player on the way to work- Jim Reid’s solo cover of If You Gotta Go, Go Now. It’s nicely understated, sounding like a good demo rather than a polished song, just Jim and guitar mainly. It’s a Bob Dylan song- you knew that didn’t you?- written in 1964 but not recorded by Bob til a year later. It’s been covered by scores of people- the Flying Burrito Brothers, Manfred Mann, Fairport Convention (in French), Johnny Hallyday (in French presumably) and Cowboy Junkies.

>You Got A Lot Of Nerve

Bob Dylan will be 70 on Tuesday, and I’m getting my best wishes in early. Happy birthday Bob. This song is from 1965 and has Bob firing off his barbed wire tongue in someone’s direction while his band kick up a storm. At this time he was busy inventing electricity and also looked like the sharpest dressed man on the planet.

Johnny Marr News And Stuff

Local hero, Bagging Area role model (haircuts, dress sense, beautifully inventive guitar playing- OK maybe not the guitar playing. Don’t manage the haircuts that well either) and all round good guy Johnny Marr has contributed a track to a download only compilation for the homeless charity Centrepoint. If you head on over to centrepoint.org.uk you can find his cover of the 1969 Rabbit Mackay song Tendency To Be Free, and download it for 99 pence. All the tracks on the album are from 1969, the year the charity was founded. I’d never heard of Rabbit Mackay before, and while the original is on youtube I’ve not been able to find an mp3 of it to post, which was my intention and I’m not posting Johnny’s cover, cos it’s for charity innit. Johnny applies some blistering guitar, a cool bassline and some good vox, ending up with a stomping, abrasive song which is well worth just under a quid of your money.

Johnny Marr’s charitable work has directly impacted on my family. My son I.T., who has various needs (severe learning difficulties, severe deafness, skeletal problems, various other things, is currently going through puberty- we have some interesting times at the moment!) used to attend Pictor School, a special needs primary school in Timperley. It goes without saying it’s a fantastic school, and when I.T. left to go on to secondary this year tears were shed all round. Johnny Marr’s nephew attends the school, and a few years back Johnny and the U.S. trainer firm PF Fliers put out a limited edition signature pump, sold on ebay with proceeds split between Pictor School and an Autism charity. That’s a picture of one of them up at the top. Obviously I bought a pair. It was funny how someone whose records I’d bought since the mid 80s and followed avidly had this link to my life and our son. Johnny popped in at the school at least once, and promised to come back and play guitar with the kids- I’d love to have seen I.T. playing guitar with one of my heroes, and questioning him relentlessly about what day his binmen come, which supermarket he shops at and whether he uses the bus or the tram (all I.T. obsessions).

So, without rambling on too much more, I’m not posting the Rabbit Mackay cover but you can have this instead, Johnny Marr covering Bob Dylan’s Don’t Think Twice It’s Alright. This was given away with an issue of Uncut magazine back in 2005. A decent acoustic cover version with some good harmonica- and it’s not often I get to type that.

Johnny Marr – Don’t Think Twice, It’s Alright.mp3#1#1

Half Man Half Biscuit ‘With Goth On Our Side’

One of the main reasons for doing this is the hope that people might get into bands they might otherwise not have. Obviously the bloggers’ argument is that these people then go and spend money on product, thus saving the British record industry from certain death. The last time I posted something by HMHB (alternative national anthem National Shite Day) a whopping 19 people downloaded it, so here’s hoping a similar number of people at least go for this one. Rather than prattle on about it I’m going to give you three sample verses…

‘Well my name it is Dai Young
I’m the King of Welsh goth
The village I come from
Is near Abersoch
I was brought up on Bauhaus
And black bedroom walls
And I had my first snakebite
When I was in halls

Now my overweight girlfriend
She sits and she crimps
Her mother’s convinced she’s
Communing with imps
Her brother’s alright though
He’s a good lad is Wilf
‘Cos he’s into Placebo
And Cradle Of Filth

Now this land of my fathers
It don’t suit my needs
I’d rather be some place
Like Bradford or Leeds
Where the Gipton teenagers
Could meet in my shed
For advice on mascara
And all things undead’

For the other three verses, you’ll have to click, click, click. It’ll be worth it. The whole thing is done to the tune and vocal melody of Bob Dylan’s With God On Our Side, yet another reason why Nigel Blackwell is one of the greatest songwriters and satirists these isles have produced. Enjoy, as fast-food operatives sometimes say.

Half Man Half Biscuit_08_With Goth On Our Side.mp3