Wednesday, 29 February 2012

RIP Davy Jones

I'm getting a little tired of doing tribute posts. Can celebrities stop dying please? It's a sad day as Davy Jones has left us. He was only 65.

When I think of The Monkees, I always think of Hey Hey We're The Monkees! I've just rewatched this and was transported back to my childhood (something that often happens as I blog). Check it out.

It's so wonderful.

Daydream Believer is my fave Monkees song - if that's obvious, so be it. I just adore it. But there are many other Monkees songs for us of course and here are a few of them.

The wonderful I'm A Believer, thank you Mr Diamond.

And for lovely DiffBird. Your pain is my pain my friend.

Monday, 27 February 2012

Abba - The Desert Island Songs

Abba - best pop band ever.  Don't try and argue with me, you know I am right. A heated debate has started over on another part of the internet I frequent about which Abba songs should be taken to a desert island. If we're following the format of the Radio 4 show, then that is eight songs. But which eight?

It's a conundrum to be sure. Thrown into the discussion mix are: Mamma Mia, The Winner Takes It All, Take A Chance On Me, Summer Night City, SOS, Fernando, Chiquitita (although that would be thrown into the ocean by me), Gimme Gimme Gimme, Dancing Queen, Knowing Me Knowing You, Super Trouper, Like An Angel Passing Through My Room (yeah, that was my face too), Ring Ring...

Where to start with such riches? Well, all I can say is this is my list (and it's in no order). Add your own in the comments.

Dancing Queen. Anyone who doesn't include this in their list is just plain weird and I wouldn't be able to trust them.

The Winner Takes It All. I've explained before how much I love this. I have nothing further to add except to say the intro alone makes me well up. *sniffle*

SOS. The greatest pop song ever composed according to Pete Townsend who I have no time for but, he's got a point.

Summer Night City. A joyous treat with rarely no sad undertones from Abba.

Mamma Mia. Oh god, I am already at number five. I am having a meltdown that I only have three left. This is simply perfect.

Take A Chance On Me. One of the best videos ever, ever, ever made. Who didn't act this out in the playground?

Knowing Me Knowing You. Oh my, this is sad: "walking through an empty house, tears in my eyes." The Swedes are killing me.

And finally, Thank You For The Music. This is the hardest choice, I could have gone with Under Cover, The Name Of The Game (nearly killing me not to include this), I Do, I Do I, Do, Fernando, One of Us, Money Money Money, Gimme Gimme Gimme, Voulez-Vous but this makes me all nostalgic and this blog is all about nostalgia. This sums up my childhood.

A confession: I've never been much of a fan of Super Trouper. There I've said it.

We love you Abba, don't ever reform and spoil it all for us.

Love, Teenager.

Sunday, 26 February 2012

Kylie Minogue

Kylie may not be Madonna (who will always be my queen of pop) but she's done us proud over the years. Kylie is our girl next door pop star and has had some cracking songs so let's step back in time (see what I did there?) and take a look at my pick of her songs.

I adore I Should Be So Lucky - it's got the best video and it makes me feel all nostalgic for an innocent time. She sings it like it really does mean something, bless her.

There are lots of Kylie duds, I can live without Hand On Your Heart and Got To Be Certain but I still listen to Wouldn't Change A Thing. I love this song but watching the video is funny, the days before proper hard core dancing hit pop videos. I swear, I could do what she does here.

I prefer to pretend Tears On My Pillow didn't happen and skip to Better The Devil You Know. I believe this coincides with when she met Michael. This is vintage Kylie and a song that never grows old.

Step Back In Time is my desert island Kylie song. I think it's perfect with a great video. I always have to dance if this comes on. I love the whole vibe of this.

This was such a great string of hits, now we have What Do I Have To Do. Another corker.

Shocked - also fabulous, wonderful introduction to this one.

Then we seem to go through a blah period. Finer Feelings? Give Me Just A Little More Time? They are okay but not memorable.

She dumped Stock Aitken and Waterman and released Confide in Me which I still think is a great song with an excellent video.


Put Yourself In My Place is another cool video based on Barbarella. Another underrated song.

It all got a bit tedious as she went and looked for her alternative side and it was sighs of relief from everyone when she discovered she really was a pop princess with Spinning Around. This is a slice of pop heaven.

Then came Can't Get You Out Of My Head. This is the song that she'll be remembered for and it is perfect pop but it's not my fave Kylie. She does look unbelievable in this though.

I prefer In Your Eyes, this song does not get enough credit. It's a great song to dance to.

And I also love Come Into My World, totally brilliant video.

Slow is a song I would never listen to through choice but I do think the video is amazing even though I am not particularly interested at looking at Kylie's boobs. You know, I hadn't realised until writing this how good Kylie videos are, they are always interesting to watch.

2 Hearts is another great pop song but the video is a little try-hard for me.

All The Lovers is an indication that I think Kylie needs to change her sound slightly. I feel I've heard it before but you know, it's still fab!

But we close with her ultimate masterpiece, the song that should be played at every wedding, the song that takes us all back to the wonder years that were Scott and Charlene. Take it away my friends...

I wish Kylie nothing but good things, she is cute, perky and can sing perfectly well. I feel that she's probably a very nice person too, after all, she is Australian and they tend to be nice don't they?! May you have many more years of perfect pop Kylie!

Saturday, 25 February 2012

Dead or Alive - You Spin Me Round

One of the great pop songs of the 80s which famously took forever to reach number one. I couldn't name you one other Dead or Alive song but they knocked it out of the park here. It has the trademark Stock Aitken Waterman sound but somehow is still really good. Perfect for a sunny Spring day. Singalong with Freaky Pete.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

My workout playlist

Today I saw my personal trainer. Sometimes we go running but most of the time she puts me through hell in my house. You may have noticed that music is very important to me and it becomes vital to my survival when it comes to working out.

I did warn Katie (my PT) at the beginning that she will have to put up with my taste and, so far, she's kept a straight face and even bopped around to Beyonce. Today she could not stop giggling to each song (I'd made up a new CD this afternoon as I get bored easily).

Salt & Pepa - she could barely stand up she was laughing so much. I was a bit bemused but she insisted, no she loved it. Then Together in Electric Dreams came on and she asked who it was. I know, I know, I don't pay her to know pivotal 80s music though and I did a little dance while I answered and she was in pieces. Biology came on and she completely lost it and said 'it's like being in a teenager's bedroom!' I, of course, took this as the compliment it was no doubt intended to be. We were doing a plank at the end and she laughed again and asked 'who is this?' to which I replied, while also snorting with laughter, 'why Hall & Oates of course!' I just about managed to the end of the plank before dissolving in giggles. You try doing a plank and laughing.

For your delectation dear readers, here is my current playlist, Whitney-tribute included.

What are your favourite songs for exercise? Inspire me as I always need suggestions. I leave you with this, my god they were awesome. 

The Thompson Twins

There were many who didn't like The Thompson Twins but I always enjoyed them. They were accessible art school. Not too scary and a little bit wacky. They had their moments of perfect pop and so I think it's worth a trip down memory lane as nobody plays them anymore.

Hold Me Now is still one of my favourite songs. I love this from Top of the Pops.

Doctor Doctor is so eighties that it is worth revisiting.

And finally, You Take Me Up which I have a soft spot for.

This post was brought for you direct from 1985.

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Power Ballads - On My Own

How have I come so far and not mentioned this gem? Does it qualify as a power ballad? I'm not sure but I've decided to live dangerously and call it one. Oh how I love this song. It's written by the legendary Burt Bacharach so of course it's fantastic and I don't know how I forgot to mention it when I posted about him. The lyrics are so sad - how many divorcing couples have listened to this and wept?

Michael McDonald was a bit of an 80s legend, I love Sweet Freedom and Yah Mo Be There. Rock on Michael. And Patti needs no introduction. She's sporting a rather funky red jumpsuit in the video.

Sunday, 12 February 2012

RIP Whitney

It's with a heavy heart I write this. I've always loved Whitney Houston (pun intended) and I've posted about her before. I was very sad to hear she died but not surprised.

Some of her songs were not particularly great but nobody belted out a song like our Whitney. She was the definition of talent and if you don't believe me, listen to this.

Here are a few of my favourite Whitney tracks. Thanks for your contribution Ms Houston, you will be missed.

This is my favourite Whitney song as it showcases her voice so well. She is effortless.

And finally, this isn't really my thing but boy can she sing it well. Notice how she's just thrown on a tracksuit and is sweating. I love her for that, no need to wear bespoke Givenchy when you have a voice like this.

Saturday, 11 February 2012

80s classic: Howard Jones, New Song

People could look a right state in the 80s. Howard, what is up with that hair and hat combo? Everyone remembers certain bands and stars of the 80s but some are neglected and I think Howard Jones is one of them. He had some cracking tunes. His debut single was New Song which I've just listened to again for the first time in years and it's a great pop song. If I recall it was on the very first Now That's What I Call Music which I played over and over again.

I am loving the vintage underground in this video. All in all, this is a perfect little pop song for a cold February day. I shall be back with my musings on other Howard's hits.

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

The Cure

It surprises some people to learn I like The Cure. Look, I didn't just listen to Wham! and The Kids From Fame in the 80s you know. I sometimes dipped my toe in the cool waters and I've always liked The Cure. While we're on it, I like The Smiths too.

Anyway, The Cure first came to my attention with The Lovecats which is still one of my favourite songs. It has a wonderful introduction and it's such a great pop song from a non-pop band. The added bonus of this version is it is from Top of the Pops. This is vintage TOTP by the way, check it out.

I also adore Just Like Heaven.

Boys Don't Cry. This has another wonderful introduction. The Cure really knew how to draw you in.

The classic of many an indie film, Friday I'm In Love.

In Between Days, also used in indie films. In fact, what would quirky indie films do without The Cure?

Why Can't I Be You? This has very clever lyrics.

And I've saved my absolute favourite until last, Lullaby. This is delicious.

All that I can say is, The Cure absolutely is a pop band. What am I thinking? These are some of the catchiest songs ever written. Such a fabulously British band that makes me miss the creativity of the 80s. When people scoff at 80s music, I point them to The Cure. Genius.

Normal cheesy service will be resumed soon. I seem to be going through an unprecedented cool phase.

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Tom Petty

I have a new love, it's called Vintage TV - 369 on your Sky box. Tune in if you've not done so and come back and thank me. It's music television how MTV used to be back in the 80s. No stupid programs, no music where you wonder if it is actually music, no annoying presenters. Just old skool music videos my friends. As I type Foreigner, Cold as Ice is playing. I mean, if that isn't the definition of bliss, what is?

I realise I sound old and I don't care. If liking proper music videos makes me old then so be it. This morning it played Don't Come Around Here No More by Tom Petty. I adore this video, it's creepy and clever and perfectly matches the song. Tom Petty had a couple of great songs, this was one of them and I also love Free Fallin'.

I think we're due a Tom Petty revival. The campaign starts here.

Saturday, 4 February 2012

Opening credits - Ski Sunday

We've not done an opening credit for ages have we? In honour of the imminent snow and freezing cold weather, I bring you one of the best sports themes ever: Ski Sunday.

I cannot imagine anything worse than skiing. Paying loads of money to exercise on holiday, being cold, looking like Michelin Man, hairy flights into mountain ranges. No thanks. Also, people* who ski regularly are smug and annoying wittering on about how fantastic it is (usually while nursing a broken limb). Shut. Up.

Now I have that out of my system, there is nothing wrong with watching a little slalom and Ski Sunday was required viewing in my house when I was growing up. We used to sit down with a tray of tea and sandwiches and the most exciting part for me was the theme. For someone non-sporty, I do like a sporty theme: Wimbledon opening, Grandstand, cricket, snooker, Formula One. They are all wonderful. But this is my favourite of them all. It's so majestic.

*Not any of my friends, obviously. You are all lovely.

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

90s songs: KLF, Justified and Ancient

KLF were brilliant. Really, what a bunch of great singles they had: What Time Is Love? 3 a.m Eternal and this masterpiece, Justified and Ancient with the great Tammy Wynette.

I don't know what's come over me the last few days, whether I need to go and wave glow sticks around or something but I am loving these early 90s dance tunes. All bound for Mu Mu land baby!

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