Sunday, 1 November 2009

Playlist: November 2009

My memories of the November Show are already hazy and our audio recording is sans music - for copyright reasons you understand - but these are some of the tracks we played:

1. 'When the Man Comes Around' by Johnny Cash off 'American IV: The Man Comes Around'

What better way to kick off than with Johnny Cash singing his last great composition. The chugga-lugga rhythm of his early work on Sun records and Colombia isn't for everyone - it is for me - but few discerning ears can resist the five albums - and one boxed set, 'Unearthed' - he made with Rick Rubin and released on American Recordings.

2. 'The Man With the Child in His Eyes' by Kate Bush off 'The Kick Inside'

Maybe not the most apt way to introduce a school teacher, but even Phil Bowen knows this is a great Sunday morning record. Kate Bush was in her early teens when she wrote it. Most artists spend a career never getting close.

3. 'Wonderful Land' by The Shadows off just about any Shadows compilation you care to name.

Phil still hasn't forgiven Rachel for playing 'FBI' instead. And I haven't forgiven Phil for insisting we play this as well, two Hank Marvin instrumentals on one show...

4. 'She Loves You' by The Beatles - their second single

'Please Please Me' came first but this was their first number one, their best seller to this day, and the record with which they conqueured the UK, America and the world. Phil Bowen comes from Liverpool too, you know.

5. 'I Want You' by Bob Dylan off 'Blonde on Blonde'

One of Bob's more melodious and romantic numbers off possibly the greatest album of all time, purportedly written about Anita Pallenburg, then girlfriend of Brian Jones, one time member of The Rolling Stones and wearer of Chinese suits.

6. 'Suzanne' by Leonard Cohen off 'Songs of Leonard Cohen'

Rare proof that a good poem can become a great song, 'Suzanne Takes You Down' was first published in 'Parasites of Heaven' then recorded by Judy Collins who introduced a nervous Leonard Cohen to the world of music. Mr Cohen is 75 and back on the road.

7. 'Downtown Train' by Tom Waits off 'Rain Dogs'

Still probably Tom Waits most recognisable - and most covered - song, Phil used this as an excuse to reminisce about his publican years, sharing early morning snifters with Keith Floyd in Clifton, Bristol.

8. 'I'll Give You Anything But Love' by Ella Fitzgerald

Phil Bowen's play 'Anything But Love' - a fictitious meeting between Dorothy Parker and Dorothy Fields - was opening at The New End Theatre, Hampstead the Sunday we interviewed him. Ella turns this Dorothy Fields lyric into a slow burning smooch.

9. 'Human Nature' by Miles Davis off 'You're Under Arrest'

Some find the Miles' late work a little too close to elevator music for their liking - we had complaints that said as much - but whatever you think of the eighties synthesized setting, the trumpet playing on this John Bettis/Steve Porcaro written number locks into the melody and never lets it go.

10. 'Human Nature' by Michael Jackson off 'Thriller'

And the complaints continued as we segued into The King of Pop's take on the song which we used to introduce my review of 'Michael Jackson's This Is It'. Not that we cared. The sweet Jacko vocal and limbic Quincy Jones production still move the eighties child inside the noughties man. They use a Michael Jackson CD as a doorstop in the Phonic FM studio, you know.

11. 'Psycho Killer' by Talking Heads off 'Stop Making Sense'

The link was corny - leading into my 'Maestros of the Movies: Alfred Hitchcock' feature - but there's nothing corny about the music, off one of the greatest concert films and live albums ever released.

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