Friday 27 November 2009

News, Views and Music Issue 49 (Top Five): Youtube Videos

 And so to our farewell finale: the top five AAA Youtube clips not currently available in any other form. Now there were lots of competitors for this spot as I’m sure you can imagine (a special mention for the George Harrison-sung demo of Ringo’s song ‘It Don’t Come Easy’, an amazing vintage clip of the early 1964 vintage Hollies in the Willie Rushton film ‘It’s All Over Town’, an amazing collection of Dave Davies demos from the period of his ‘lost album’ 1968-69,a rare Manassas concert from 1972 that came out on DVD for about a week before being deleted, Johnny Cash duetting with Miss Piggy on ‘Jackson’ (technically not available till series 5 of The Muppets comes out – they’re up to series 3 at the moment!),  a good 50 Neil Young songs that are still unreleased even with the mammoth ‘Archives’ box set that came out this year and the rare 8-track cartridge version of Pink Floyd’s ‘Pigs On The Wing’ which features Snowy White bridging the gap between the two versions of the song (it makes it sound one hell of a lot better, actually!) But here on this list are the most unexpected treats – the ones I never thought I’d see in a million years...

5) The Hollies “Very Last Day” (Live In Sweden 1966). Next time some idiot of a music journalist writes that the Hollies were an OK band in the studio but couldn’t play live for toffee I’m marching right round to their house/office/mansion/cardboard box and showing them this magical clip of the band during one of their Scandinavian tours in 1966, their last full year of touring with the Graham Nash line-up. Fans have always rated ‘Very Last Day’ (originally recorded for the 1965 album ‘The Hollies’) very highly, which is suprising given how un-Hollies it sounds. Its nothing short of a Christian Armageddon protest song, telling everyone to mend their days because everybody’s going to be judged when the world ends. This live version is a killer in a very different sense of the word – Clarke and Nash sour to heaven with their harmonies whilst Bobby Elliott’s most out of control drumming yet truly does sound the last stirrings hell. Magic.

4) Paul McCartney and Wings “There’s A Morse Moose Coming Up” AKA “Coming Up (Remix)”. In which one bootlegger with a minute budget does better than the whole of the weird Apple/Beatles ‘Love’ remix album in one stroke! Two of Paul’s better solo songs – Morse Moose from ‘London Town’ and ‘Coming Up’ from ‘McCartney II’ are seamlessly woven together in a magical medley which takes the pounding beat of the former and the eccentric lyrics of the latter and turns it into a monster of a song. I’ve always adored both songs (each of them gets plugged shamelessly on this website as it is) so hearing the two together is fantastic. Look out too for the accompanying video: the already pretty spiffing promo for ‘Coming Up’ (featuring Paul in a variety of musical guises and characters playing in the same band) looks even better thanks to some fancy editing and some fun with the speed with which its played back. And I agree with John Lennon’s introduction (taken from one of his last interviews in 1980 – legend has it its ‘Coming Up’ that persuaded John to get back to recording again because his partner had ‘finally done something good!’) – I prefer the ‘freaky’ version too! The sort of thing you’ll never see anywhere else.

3) Grateful Dead “Mountains Of The Moon/St Stephen/Turn On Your Lovelight” (Live on Playboy After Dark 1969).This show is legendary in Dead circles – stuffy Playboy millionaire High Hefner playing host to one of the most ‘with it’ 60s bands of them all – talk about when worlds collide! Actually when you see the clip both sides are having fun with each other, with Jerry Garcia replying that they’d love to perform their latest single ‘absolutely...not’. Rumour has it all that awkward laughing came about because the Dead road crew spiked the TV crew and the extras with acid backstage...Even without the equal parts stilted, equal parts hilarious dialogue however, this clip is well worth watching for the three performances – perhaps the three best tracks the Dead were performing in 1969. ‘Mountains’ was hardly ever given a live reading and this fairly fast but still angelic version is well up there with the studio version; ‘St Stephen’ sounds magical in any version and is the perfect song to perform at a multi-generational show like this (see ‘news and views 20’ for my take on the song’s meaning) and ‘Turn On Your Lovelight’ sounds cracking...right up to the point two minutes in when the credits roll and the show ends. Ah well, two amazing pieces is still pretty good going.

2) The Kinks “A Soap Opera” (A Musical Play, 1974). Screened once and left to gather dust and cobwebs for 35 years, this is proof yet again of how important YouTube can be, reminding record companies that there is an interest in obscure shows that might never be seen again. Despite being slated at the time, ‘A Soap Opera’ stands up now as one of the very best of Ray Davies’ ‘concept’ ideas (with a ‘star’ infiltrating the home of a ‘nobody’ to get ideas for his songs before the boundaries blur and the star finds himself a nobody instead) and the TV show is heads and shoulders better than the record, trimming the album’s lesser moments and adding more story, humour and pathos to the work. Sure the rest of the band look deeply uncomfortable and the whole thing seems woefully under-rehearsed (Ray forgets his lines in a couple of places and has to cover by improvising lyrics – which to be fair sound better than the real thing!) – but watch this show in order (the full 40 mins are on YouTube) and its truly moving, especially when Ray slinks off the stage after performing his most unfairly forgotten song ‘A Face In the Crowd’ and takes a seat in the audience to cheer along to brother Dave’s performance of ‘You Can’t Stop The Music’. Well worth seeing for anybody even slightly Kinky.

1) Pink Floyd “Moonlandings” (1969). I thought these tapes had been wiped long ago – a section of the BBC’s coverage of the July 1969 moon landings, complete with ‘mood music’ from a then-forgotten group called Pink Floyd, caught halfway between their Syd Barrett hey-day and their resurrection with ‘Dark Side Of the Moon’. The track, dubbed ‘moon landings’, sounds completely unlike anything the band ever did again, led by Rick Wright’s hazy organ and some other-wordly licks from david Gilmour’s guitar, but is still recognisably Floydy. You even get the picture/sound of astronauts seemingly dancing to the song in the moon’s light gravity. Hmm, talk about the first band in space! And yes, OK, I do believe the moon landings were faked by the American Government and very badly too - thankfully the BBC rescued the day for posterity by getting the music right.

Well, that’s all for another week of archive treasure-hunting! If any of you are having problems searching for these clips just have a look for me at ‘alansalbumarchives’ – they are all saved in my ‘favourites’ list along with lots of other goodies (please send in more if you think I’ve missed anything as well...) Right, that’s it for now – until next week, keep rocking!   

A NOW COMPLETE List Of Top Five/Top Ten/TOP TWENTY  Entries 2008-2019
1) Chronic Fatigue songs

2) Songs For The Face Of Bo

3) Credit Crunch Songs

4) Songs For The Autumn

5) National Wombat Week

6) AAA Box Sets

7) Virus Songs

8) Worst AAA-Related DVDs

9) Self-Punctuating Superstar Classics

10) Ways To Know You Have Turned Into A Collector

11) Political Songs

12) Totally Bonkers Concept Albums

13) Celebrating 40 Years Of The Beatles' White Album

14) Still Celebrating 40 Years Of The Beatles' White Album

15) AAA Existential Questions

16) Releases Of The Year 2008

17) Top AAA Xmas Songs

18) Notable AAA Gigs

19) All things '20' related for our 20th issue

20) Romantic odes for Valentine's Day

21) Hollies B sides

22) 'Other' BBC Session Albums

23) Beach Boys Rarities Still Not Available On CD

24) Songs John, Paul and George wrote for Ringo's solo albums

25) 5 of the Best Rock 'n' Roll Tracks From The Pre-Beatles Era

26) AAA Autobiographies

27) Rolling Stones B-sides

28) Beatles B-Sides

29) The lllloooonnngggeesssttt AAA songs of all time

30) Kinks B-Sides

31) Abandoned CSNY projects 'wasted on the way'

32) Best AAA Rarities and Outtakes Sets

33) News We've Missed While We've Been Away

34) Birthday Songs for our 1st Anniversary

35) Brightest Album Covers

36) Biggest Recorded Arguments

37) Songs About Superheroes

38) AAA TV Networks That Should Exist

39) AAA Woodtsock Moments

40) Top Moments Of The Past Year As Voted For By Readers

41) Music Segues

42) AAA Foreign Language Songs

43) 'Other' Groups In Need Of Re-Mastering

44) The Kinks Preservation Rock Opera - Was It Really About The Forthcoming UK General Election?

45) Mono and Stereo Mixes - Biggest Differences

46) Weirdest Things To Do When A Band Member Leaves

47) Video Clips Exclusive To Youtube (#1)

48) Top AAA Releases Of 2009

49) Songs About Trains

50) Songs about Winter

51) Songs about astrology plus horoscopes for selected AAA members

52) The Worst Five Groups Ever!

53) The Most Over-Rated AAA Albums

54) Top AAA Rarities Exclusive To EPs

55) Random Recent Purchases (#1)

56) AAA Party Political Slogans

57) Songs To Celebrate 'Rock Sunday'

58) Strange But True (?) AAA Ghost Stories

59) AAA Artists In Song

60) Songs About Dogs

61) Sunshiney Songs

62) The AAA Staff Play Their Own Version Of Monoploy/Mornington Crescent!

63) What 'Other' British Invasion DVDs We'd Like To See

64) What We Want To Place In Our AAA Time Capsule

65) AAA Conspiracy Theroies

66) Weirdest Things To Do Before - And After - Becoming A Star

67) Songs To Tweet To

68) Greatest Ever AAA Solos

69) John Lennon Musical Tributes

70) Songs For Halloween

71) Earliest Examples Of Psychedelia

72) Purely Instrumental Albums

73) AAA Utopias

74) AAA Imaginary Bands

75) Unexpected AAA Cover Versions

76) Top Releases of 2010

77) Songs About Snow

78) Predictions For 2011

79) AAA Fugitives

80) AAA Home Towns

81) The Biggest Non-Musical Influences On The 1960s

82) AAA Groups Covering Other AAA Groups

83) Strange Censorship Decisions

84) AAA Albums Still Unreleased on CD

85) Random Recent Purchases (#2)

86) Top AAA Music Videos

87) 30 Day Facebook Music Challenge

88) AAA Documentaries

89) Unfinished and 'Lost' AAA Albums

90) Strangest AAA Album Covers

91) AAA Performers Live From Mars (!)

92) Songs Including The Number '100' for our 100th Issue

93) Most Songs Recorded In A Single Day

94) Most Revealing AAA Interviews

95) Top 10 Pre-Fame Recordings

96) The Shortest And Longest AAA Albums

97) The AAA Allstars Ultimate Band Line-Up

98) Top Songs About Sports

99) AAA Conversations With God

100) AAA Managers: The Good, The Bad and the Financially Ugly

101) Unexpected AAA Cameos

102) AAA Words You can Type Into A Caluclator

103) AAA Court Cases

104) Postmodern Songs About Songwriting

105) Biggest Stylistic Leaps Between Albums

106) 20 Reasons Why Cameron Should Go!

107) The AAA Pun-Filled Cookbook

108) Classic Debut Releases

109) Five Uses Of Bird Sound Effects

110) AAA Classic Youtube Clips Part #1

111) Part #2

112) Part #3

113) AAA Facts You Might Not Know

114) The 20 Rarest AAA Records

115) AAA Instrumental Songs

116) Musical Tarot

117) Christmas Carols

118) Top AAA Releases Of 2011

119) AAA Bands In The Beano/The Dandy

120) Top 20 Guitarists #1

121) #2

122) 'Shorty' Nomination Award Questionairre

123) Top Best-Selling AAA Albums

124) AAA Songs Featuring Bagpipes

125) A (Hopefully) Complete List Of AAA Musicians On Twitter

126) Beatles Albums That Might Have Been 1970-74 and 1980

127) DVD/Computer Games We've Just Invented

128) The AAA Albums With The Most Weeks At #1 in the UK

129) The AAA Singles With The Most Weeks At #1 in the UK

130) Lyric Competition (Questions)

131) Top Crooning Classics

132) Funeral Songs

133) AAA Songs For When Your Phone Is On Hold

134) Random Recent Purchases (#3)

135) Lyric Competition (Answers)

136) Bee Gees Songs/AAA Goes Disco!

137) The Best AAA Sleevenotes (And Worst)

138) A Short Precise Of The Years 1962-70

139) More Wacky AAA-Related Films And Their Soundtracks

140) AAA Appearances On Desert Island Discs

141) Songs Exclusive To Live Albums

142) More AAA Songs About Armageddon

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159) A (Not That) Short Guide To The 15 Best Non-AAA Bands

160) The Greatest AAA Drum Solos (Or Near Solos!)

161) AAA Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall Of Fame Acceptance Speeches

162) AAA Re-Recordings Of Past Songs

163) A Coalition Christmas (A Fairy Tale)

164) AAA Songs About Islands

165) The AAA Review Of The Year 2012

166) The Best AAA Concerts I Attended

167) Tributes To The 10 AAA Stars Who Died The Youngest

168) The First 10 AAA Songs Listed Alphabetically

171) The 10 Best Songs From The Psychedelia Box-Sets ‘Nuggets’ and ‘Nuggets Two’

172) The 20 Most Common Girl’s Names In AAA Song Titles (With Definitions) 

180) First Recordings By Future AAA Stars

185) A Tribute To Storm Thorgerson Via The Five AAA Bands He Worked With

188) Surprise! Celebrating 300 Album Reviews With The Biggest 'Surprises' Of The Past Five Years Of Alan's Album Archives!

190) Comparatively Obscure First Compositions By AAA Stars

193) Evolution Of A Band: Comparing First Lyric With Last Lyric:

200) The Monkees In Relation To Postmodernism (University Dissertation)

202) Carly Simon's 'You're So Vain': Was It About One Of The AAA Crew?

217) AAA 'Christmas Presents' we'd most like to have next year

221) Dr Who and the AAA (Five Musical Links)

222) Five Random Recent Purchases

223) AAA Grammy Nominees

224) Ten AAA songs that are better heard unedited and in full

225) The shortest gaps between AAA albums

226) The longest gaps between AAA albums

227) Top ten AAA drummers

228) Top Ten AAA Singles (In Terms of 'A' and 'B' Sides)

229) The Stories Behind Six AAA Logos

230) AAAAAHHHHHH!!!!!!! The Best Ten AAA Screams

231) An AAA Pack Of Horses

232) AAA Granamas - Sorry, Anagrams!

233) AAA Surnames and Their Meanings

234) 20 Erroneous AAA Album Titles

235) The Best AAA Orchestral Arrangements

236) Top 30 Hilariously Misheard Album Titles/Lyrics

237) Ten controversial AAA sackings - and whether they were right

238) A Critique On Critiquing - In Response To Brian Wilson

239) The Ten MusicianS Who've Played On The Most AAA Albums

240) Thoughts on #CameronMustGo

241) Random Recent Purchases (Kinks/Grateful Dead/Nils Lofgren/Rolling Stones/Hollies) 

242) AAA Christmas Number Ones 

243) AAA Review Of The Year 2014 (Top Releases/Re-issues/Documentaries/DVDs/Books/Songs/ Articles  plus worst releases of the year)

244) Me/CFS Awareness Week 2015

245) Why The Tory 2015 Victory Seems A Little...Suspicious

246) A Plea For Peace and Tolerance After The Attacks on Paris - and Syria

247) AAA Review Of The Year 2015

248) The Fifty Most Read AAA Articles (as of December 31st 2015)

249) The Revised AAA Crossword!

251) Half-A-Dozen Berries Plus One (An AAA Tribute To Chuck Berry)

252) Guest Post: ‘The Skids – Joy’ (1981) by Kenny Brown

254) Guest Post: ‘Supertramp – Some Things Never Change’ by Kenny Brown

255) AAA Review Of The Year 2018

256) AAA Review Of The Year 2019 plus Review Of The Decade 2010-2019

257) Tiermaker

258) #Coronastock

259) #Coronadocstock

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