Friday 14 August 2009

News, Views and Music Issue 40 (Intro)

August 14:                 

Wow, 40 issues of ‘news, views and music’, who’d have thought it? Well, us, actually – after all, you can’t have too much of a good thing can you? And it was always our intention to keep this site going for as long as is physically possible. But still, here we are, three weeks short of a year since our first issue and what a long time ago it seems already. Back then George Bush was still in power, Gordon Brown was still vaguely popular, the banks actually had more money than we did and Michael Jackson was seen as a child molesting weirdo that everyone hated. How times change. Anyway in order to celebrate our anniversary, we’ve decided to...put some plans in place to celebrate our 50th issue in a few months’ time. You see, our hits have begin drying up lately and we’re still trying to spruce up the site a bit (not that the useless ‘Mr Site’ CD-Rom I bought the other week has helped at all, seeing as it’s crashed on me seven times already). At long last I should have a quieter week this week so will do my best to put things right. So, till our 50th issue, expect the same round-up of musical delights to excite your eyes and ears as in every other edition. Now on with the news!


Beatles News: Three bits of titbits of news for you this week. Firstly, it was the 40th anniversary of the ‘Abbey Road’ cover last week and several fans decided to celebrate, holding up traffic for hours in good ole’ fab four tradition (this is the band who delayed everybody’s lunch hours in Jan 1969 with the Rooftop concert after all).

Secondly, Radio Four decided to celebrate the, err, 41st anniversary of George Harrison’s trip to Bombay to record his under-rated ‘Wonderwall’ soundtrack album. It’s probably still available on i-player for a while, so give it a listen if you like this Beatles spin-off project as much as I do – lots of the album’s Bombay session players spoke for the first time.

Thirdly, and most worryingly, Paul McCartney has announced his decision to retire from concerts at the end of next year. For some reason this huge bombshell has gone largely nun-noticed by most of the media (and its big news –barring Grace Slick in 1989 this is the first AAA member ever to announce retirement from touring and could set a worrying precedent where the only concerts we have to look forward to are by a reformed Jackson 5 and a reformed Spice Girls). Macca will still be recording, however, and promises an epic farewell featuring concerts at some suitably weird and memorable places. Very sad news indeed but, on behalf of the millions of fans who’ve seen Macca in concert, thanks for all the great tours over the years Paul, we’ll truly miss you. More news if and when we hear it.       

♫ CSNY News: Happier news for you now. I’m not sure how long its been out but the best kept secret of the year is that the ‘other’ fab four’s legendary concert at Wembley Stadium in 1974 in front of a then record-breaking 72,000 people is out on DVD. A German company has released the three-hour footage on a DVD entitled ‘A Long Long Time Ago’ and it features the complete unedited concert recorded at the climax of CSNY’s re union that year. Amazingly, there’s no sign of the bad blood between the foursome that’s about to erupt in the studio about a month or so later and nor is there much evidence of the ‘off-key singing’ and ‘wild playing’ that CSNY have always claimed have prevented them from releasing the set in the past (Nash, especially has been critical about this tour in general and this concert specifically). It’s hard to see what all the criticisms are about, however – for the most part this show is stunning with Stills on especially strong form and the foursome perform several songs rare to CSNY shows and four only available on bootleg. It is the earliest footage of all four men together available – at least it is until Neil agrees to release the CSNY woodstock footage properly!

Full Track listing: Love The One You’re With/Wooden Ships/Immigration Man/Helpless/Military Madness/Johnny’s Garden (a rare treat with 4-way harmonies!)/ Traces (Unreleased Neil Young song)/Almost Cut My Hair/Teach Your Children/Only Love Can Break Your Heart/The Lee Shore/Time After Time (two years before it’s appearance on record!)/It’s Alright (a ridiculous six years before its appearance on record!)/Another Sleep Song (with a guesting Joni Mitchell as per the record)/Our House/Hawaiian Sunrise (another unreleased Neil Young song)/Star Of Bethlehem (with its original third verse, three years before its appearance on record)/Love Art Blues (another unreleased Neil Young song with its memorable opening line ‘my songs are all so long and my songs are all so sad...’)/Old Man/Change Partners/Blackbird/Myth Of Sisyphus (a year before its appearance on record!)/Word Game/Suite: Judy Blue Eyes/Deja Vu/First Things First (a year before its appearance on record!)/Don’t Be Denied/Black Queen/ Pushed It Over The End (the legendary unreleased Neil Young song available (semi) officially at last!!)/Pre-Road Downs/a stunning elongated version of Carry On/Ohio. 

Other CSN News – BBC4 are celebrating the 40th anniversary of Woodstock (see our ‘anniversary’ column) on Saturday, August 15th, with a showing of the director’s cut of the film plus a re-screening of the ‘Hotel California’ documentary dominated by CSNY footage and the sixth screening in 18 months of the Crosby/Nash ‘In Concert’ footage from 1970.

Small Faces News: Very few fans know that the Faces were meant to break ‘big’ onto the mainstream courtesy of their appearance in the film ‘Dateline Diamonds’. In the event the film – released in 1965 – died a death and the band broke big courtesy of their #1 hit ‘All Or Nothing’ instead. ‘Dateline Diamonds’ has been released before but has been out of catalogue for a while so its re-release last month is very welcome news for collectors like myself who have never seen it. The film was very much part of the ‘Hard Day’s Night’ cash-in brigade of 1964-65, but unlike most films it had one plus – Steve Mariott had been a genuine child actor before turning to pop and had made a big splash playing the ‘Artful Dodger’ on-stage in ‘Oliver!’

Woodstock News: Just in case you hadn’t read the news above, BBC4 are celebrating tonight’s Woodstock anniversary with a screening of the whole four-hour director’s cut (the first time the 4 hour edit has been shown on terrestrial British TV, I think), followed by various themed programmes including ‘Crosby/Nash’ in concert, ‘Santana in concert’ and the oft-showed ‘Hotel California’ documentary this Saturday (August 15th). Should be a good night in!


♫ Anniversaries (August 14-20th): Happy present-unwrapping to AAA artist David Crosby (Guitarist with The Byrds 1965-68 and CSNY/CSN/CN and solo (sporadically) 1969-present) who turns 68 on August 14th  and Carl Wayne (singer with The Hollies 1997-02) who would have been 65 on August 18th. Anniversaries of events include: the Beatles’ famous gig at baseball venue Shea Stadium to a then-record 56,000 fans (a record first beaten by CSNY) on August 15th 1965; another famous concert takes place on the same day four years later with the first of three love-filled days of music and mud at Woodstock; and on the same day in 1991 Paul Simon performs to similarly huge numbers during his ‘Concert in Central Park; the Beatles sack Pete Best in favour of Ringo on August 16th 1962, just two months before release of their first single ; almost two years to the day earlier – August 17th 1960 – the Beats start their career-changing run at Hamburg’s Indra Club, their first show outside Liverpool; the Rolling Stones release the single that is – to my ears – their best, the legal-system-taunting ‘We Love You’ (August 18th 1967); the Beatles follow up their ‘Ed Sullivan’ TV appearance earlier in the year with their first American tour, opening with a show at San Francisco’s ‘Cow Palace’ theatre on August 19th 1964; the Stones release legendary single ‘Satisfaction’ on August 20th 1965 and finally, on the same day in 1965, Stones manager Andrew Loog Oldham announces a new record label named ‘Immediate’ – the Small Faces will make the label a household name for record collectors over the next three years.      

News, Views and Music Issue 40 (Top Five): AAA TV Stations We'd Most Like To See

And so welcome once again to our top five. This week we’ve come up with the five television channels that AAA members would most like to change:

5) Dave Deja Vu: When I first saw this in the TV listings I couldn’t believe it – surely this could be no other than Dave Crosby who wrote the very magical song Deja Vu’? Well, sadly it isn’t, it’s just an excuse for more old comedy programmes that don’t sell enough on dvd to make money, but just picture it – 24 hours of old Byrds/CSNY/solo clips. The ratings would sour. Possibly.

4) Santana Sports – No wonder this channel went bust – 24 hours of footballer players grooving to ‘soul sacrifice’ (or ‘penalties’ as its better known) whilst passing the ball to a centre-forward guitarist who just doesn’t know when to stop noodling!

3) Beatle Broadcasting Corporation: 24 hours of Beatle videos, a little like MTV. But better because the Spice Girls aren’t on it every other minute (yep, that will tell you how long ago I last saw MTV!)

2) CSN News: 24-hour scrolling news channel. Well, how else are we meant to keep up to date with whose fallen out with who in the CSNY camp? And, as a bonus, they’d be showing episodes of CSNY: Laurel Canyon as well (I reckon David McCallum as Graham Nash, what do you think?)

1) Lucy On The Sky News Hour With Diamond Logo: The psychedelic news channel for people who think the ‘other’ news station is just too ‘far out’. Picture yourself on a boat on a river, with plasticine newsmen with looking-glass ties. Suddenly someone is there at the turnstiles, the weathergirl with kaleidoscope eyes. Newspaper reports of yellow and green towering over your head. Look for the page three girl with The Sun in your eyes and you’re gone.

That’s it for another week, dear viewers, see you next time!

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