Thursday, 26 May 2011

News, Views and Music Issue 101 (Intro)

May 26th:

You very nearly didn’t get this issue, dear reader, and the fact that you have it is little short of a miracle. You see I’ve just bought the new Fable game which seemed to cause havoc with my laptop so she wasn’t loading at all, but thank goodness she’s pulled through fine just at the time I needed her to write the next instalment of our on-going musical discussion (I still recommend the game though, as the game developers seem to have been listening to Jethro Tull and Moody Blues albums while making it, what with all the English pastoral weirdness in it – you even get a dog in this version which will be named Max after our AAA mascot). So what better album to bring you than one we Floyd fans thought we’d never get to hear, one that caused an awful lot of heartbreak and called off sessions before finally seeing the light of day? (The fact we got a sequel is even more extraordinary, but we’ll leave the tale of ‘Barrett’ for another day!) What else to tell you? Oh yes, we’ve now reached the unbelievable statistic of 6111 hits and seem to have picked up a bit again recently (hello new readers!) Perhaps it’s not too much of a coincidence that I also have 72 followers on Twitter, many of them music fans, so hello to all of you lot too and thanks for adding me – I’m alansarchives if you haven’t already found me yet! As well as various discussions/arguments over Coalition and Royal Family policy and complaints about the Spice Girls, you can also hear my intermittent ‘songs of the day’ (one of which will be from this very album!) What else? Oh yes things are going, erm...interestingly in the Sims version of CSNY which is turning out far too close to the real thing for comfort! Crosby's doing ok - he's doing well in the 'friends with other stars' category and has played a couple of sell out concerts. I just wish he'd do some rehearsal at home to get that artistic star rating too! I tried swapping him with Stills, but he won't talk to anybody and won't play for any crowd (he's getting quite good at busking on the quiet though). Even using them as a double act hasn't worked (and I've been relying on Nash to keep the peace as much as possible!) Neil? Well, truth be told I haven't seen him in a couple of gaming sessions. He was looking sad so I took him to a party at the Spice Girls house in the hope they'd look after him. Big mistake! Now he wants to move in with them! I can't have that! Come on guys, its only three months to the Woodstock anniversarym don't let me down now! *Sigh*  In the meantime my eyes are tired from the game, my legs are worn out from chronic fatigue and my ears are full of the new Hollies set, so without further ado it’s on with the news...


Kinks News: I was slightly disappointed with the long-awaited interview series The Davies Diaries when it was on back in 1998 its actually more of a long rambling interview from elder brother Ray as he discusses not only The Kinks but the music of the 1960s in general. Considering that weve never really had a full series discussing the many intricate layers of 30 years of Kinks product, Id really been hoping to get more from the series but recently Ive been hastily digging through my old cassette collection to see if Ray talked about any of the other AAA artists we feature. Now I wont have to look too hard because BBC6 are re-running the series in their archive hour slot at 3 am, starting in the early hours of Wednesday, June 1st and running until Friday, June 3rd (presumably with two of the half hour programmes sandwiched together for the hour slot or have BBC6 just got their sums wrong again?) More news next week when Ive heard them again!

Pink Floyd News: Just when fans were starting to accept that the Live 8 gig was a one-off and that wed never see its like again came the startling news that David Gilmour and Nick Mason had guested at a Roger Waters concert performing The Wall. The gig took place unannounced at Londons 02 Arena one of many dates played by Roger as part of a tour where the three remaining members of the Floyd played on the grand finale Outside The Wall. The reunion, which seems a timely advert for the bands planned mammoth reissue series in September, might not end there either according to comments made by Mason after the gig. All this despite widely reported news last year that Gilmour was not interested in the band ever getting back together again. Well, the new get togethers certainly surprised us! More news if and when we hear it!

Paul Simon News: If youve been reading these newsletters in order then youll know that in news and views no 96 we discussed the top five AAA documentary series and sighed that our first choice the superlative radio series The Paul Simon Songbook was not available to buy and had not been repeated in some 20 years. So imagine our delight when we heard this week that BBC6 will be repeating the six part series in their archive slot at 3am, starting in the early hours of Saturday, June 4th. The show features Paul Simon talking about two thirds of his back catalogue in painstaking detail and very interesting it is too, even if the series does sadly end in the Graceland era. Listen out too for some typically frank-but-still-in-awe interviews with Art Garfunkel which are the most revealing of his career too, along with engineer Roy Halee, drummer Hal Blaine and a whole host of others. So for the second time on this newsletter we say hurrah BBC6! Now, while were on a roll, what other AAA documentaries would we like to see? How about the 1999 docs on CSNY and the Byrds? They were good too... 

ANNIVERSARIES: It’s that time of year again for a bumper crop of AAA artists this week, born between May 28th and June 3rd: Papa John Creach (violinist with Jefferson Airplane/Starship 1970-75) would have been 94 on May 28th; Ray Laidlaw (drummer with Lindisfarne 1970-72 and 1978-2002, plus drummer with Jack The Lad 1973-78) turns 63 on May 28th; Ronnie Wood (guitarist with the Rolling Stones 1975-date) turns 64 on June 1st, Charlie Watts (drummer with the Rolling Stones 1962-date) turns 70 on June 2nd and Michael Clarke (drummer with The Byrds 1965-68) who would have been 67 on June 3rd. Anniversaries of events include: Ronnie Lane becomes the first member to leave The Faces to form his own band ‘Slim Chance’ (May 28th 1973); Roger McGuinn plays his first solo gig after the break-up of The Byrds (May 29th 1973); CSNY’s classic album ‘Deja Vu’ is released on it’s way to #1 in America (May 30th 1970); John and Yoko record their first single ‘Give Peace A Chance’ during their second bed-in at a Montreal Hotel (May 31st 1969); The Who break the record for the loudest ever concert at a show at Charlton Athletic’s Football Ground using a 76,000-watt ampage system (May 31st 1976); The Rolling Stones land at JFK airport for the first time, kick-starting a 45-year love affair with the United States (June 1st 1964); The Beatles release ‘Sgt Peppers’ (June 1st 1967); Ronnie Wood plays his first gig with the Rolling Stones on his 28th birthday after jamming with them the previous year (June 1st 1975); The Rolling Stones make their first V appearance in America – being laughed at by host Dean Martin for their long hair, ho ho they got the last laugh by finishing off his career! (June 3rd 1964) and finally, Ringo Starr collapses with tonsillitis, forcing the other Beatles to tour with last-minute replacement and ‘sixth or seventh Beatle’ Jimmy Nichol (June 3rd 1964).  

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