Down The Docks The Talking Turned…

…’As some are striving to survive, the others thrive’

I posted this song last year and once before that as well but sitting watching one of the Top Of The Pops reruns last week I was struck  (again) by the brilliance and magic, the faith and devotion of Pete Wylie’s Mighty Wah! in the mid 80s. Come Back sounds like a love song but the verses read as a clarion call, a stand against Thatcher and forces of greed, a call for community and to stand together, a shout to those forced out by economic forces beyond their control to return to the city and to their roots. That reads as much for 2017 as it did for 1984. Pete said on Twitter recently that he wrote and played every instrument of Come Back except for the backing vocal by partner Josie Jones. In the TOTP clip Josie looks amazing, hands on hips, alongside Pete in his leather trousers and blow dried hairdo.

Sadly Josie, a big figure on the Liverpool art and music scene, died in 2015. She had also been the voice of Big hard Excellent Fish’s Imperfect List, which I’ve also posted before here and in its updated form here.

Come Back (The Return Of The Randy Scouse Git)

How good is that? How could you ever get tired of hearing that? ‘It’s all up to you, yes it’s all up to you!’

Advertisements

Come Back

Pete Wylie has a version of The Mighty Wah! back out on the road with a handful of gigs this month and bunch more in November. It is a blogging requirement by constitution and tradition that The Story Of The Blues is posted by music blogs at least once annually. I’ve posted it before and a very smart re-edit version which some of you enjoyed a lot. In a break with expectation instead I’m posting another 12″ Wylie epic from 1984.

Come Back (The Story Of The Reds) and the Devil In Miss Jones (Combined and Extended)

And The Question Is Answered

This is an updated version of Big Hard Excellent Fish’s Imperfect List from a couple of years ago. The original came from the combined talents of Pete Wylie, Robin Guthrie and Josie Jones (and on the 1990 version Andrew Weatherall). The original list had range of targets from the late 80s and the re-worked list brings things up to date while also showing how little has changed.

Both versions mention Hillsborough. The justice the families of the 96 have been finally been given this week is truly right and proper. It also sadly confirms what many of us have known all along- that football fans in the late 80s were treated worse than cattle and seen as scum, that we were despised by an establishment that was engaged in something that was tantamount to class war and governed by a lying and corrupt government that colluded with a lying tabloid press that actually hated its readers, and that events were manipulated and covered up by at least one, probably two, corrupt police forces.

In 1989 I lived in Liverpool while at Liverpool University. I shared a house with a friend who was at Hillsborough, not the Leppings Lane End but another part of the ground. He returned home with both parts of his ticket- no one checked him into the ground. The Saturday after the disaster we were in Liverpool city centre. At six minutes past three the city centre stopped in absolute silence. Nothing moved and nobody spoke. It was one of the most moving, emotional minutes I’ve witnessed. As a Man United fan I’ve always felt deeply ashamed by the songs some of ‘our’ idiots sing and the heart of the matter is while it happened to be Liverpool fans who were unlawfully killed at Hillsborough in 1989, it could have been any of us, at another match, in another ground. Yes- this is justice for the 96 and for their families. But it is also justice for all of us.

Remember- don’t buy The Sun.

Them And David Bowie

The crazy, beautiful stream of all things David Bowie related this week has been both wonderful and very sad. The sheer amount of music is one thing, the words and memories another and then there’s the pictures. This one of two South London boys enjoying a beer backstage at Shea Stadium popped up. As did this one below…

Big Audio Dynamite in New York in 1987, with Bowie, Peter Frampton, Jimmy Cliff, Dave Stewart (ugh) and Paul Simonon again (Havana 3am supporting B.A.D.) One of the later B.A.D. line ups did a cover of Suffragette City which I thought I had a digital file of but don’t. I can’t find it anywhere on the internet and can’t rip my vinyl right currently either. You’ll have to imagine it. The influence of Bowie on the punks is well documented. This picture of a pre-Sid Vicious Simon Ritchie on his way to see Bowie at Earl’s Court has been widely shared too…

Bowie was enormous in 1970s Liverpool. Pete Wylie tweeted this week that Liverpool’s 70s youth had to reject their city’s homegrown music and find something new- and that was Bowie. Wylie’s old mucker Ian McCulloch released an album of acoustic songs called Pro Patria Mori in 2013, coupled with Bunnymen songs done live at the Union Chapel. This was Mac’s tribute to the Thin White Duke.

Me And David Bowie

And just because a Bowie post isn’t complete without some music from the man himself, this is an absolute highlight, his best moment from the 1980s, a soaring, romantic song from a widely panned 1980s film, plucked out of nowhere with a hastily scrambled together bunch of musicians sometime in London in 1986. A favourite of mine (and Simon and Drew’s too).

Bowie with Absolute Beginner Patsy Kensit. I had a bit of a thing for her in 1987.

No! Say It Loud, No!

Today, Pete Wylie. Yesterday The Vinyl Villain published a post on the third member of The Crucial Three- Pete Wylie and his Mighty Wah! a blogpost so comprehensive and with comments so good I rewrote my planned post for today. So instead of what I had partly written I’m revisiting a version of a Mighty Wah! song I have posted before, a brilliantly executed re-edit of The Mighty Wah’s The Story Of The Blues (Part 2) from the Edit Service people. A long electronic drum intro, the female backing vox and then Pete Wylie’s spoken part, including that quote from Jack Kerouac- ‘I remember something Sal Paradise said ‘the city intellectuals of the world were divorced from the folkbody of the land and were just rootless fools” and Wylie’s message, ‘you’ve got to hope for the best and that’s the best you can hope for’ and ultimately say ‘No!’. If you love the original, you’ll love this too. Promise.

That’s My Story And I’m Sticking To It

I just found this and thought some of you might like it- a re-edit of The Mighty Wah’s mighty The Story Of The Blues single, lovingly unwrapped over eight and half minutes, for a true Balearic end of night escapade where you want just one last song to send you on your way before you spill out into the streets to see the dawn. May or may not be the work of Ivan Smagghe.  At Soundcloud here and available for download.

You’re my best mate you are.

Justice Tonight

Mick Jones, Pete Wylie and The Farm have been touring for the past year as the Justice Tonight Band, in aid of the Hillsborough Justice Campaign. A number of Clash/Wylie/Farm songs performed by the Justice Tonight Band could be appropriate following today’s report on the Hillsborough disaster- I Fought The Law, The Day That Margaret Thatcher Died, Stay Free, All Together Now, Clampdown….

Today the truth, tomorrow justice.
And remember, don’t buy The Sun.*

I’m a Man Utd fan by the way. Today our petty rivalries mean nothing