now incorporating the Sudbury Hill and Wood End Times

Friday, December 15, 2006

Christmas present to readers: "The rare old mountain dew"

Fairytale of New York (live)

From County Kilburn via Puckaun, Tipperary to Manhattan and back, every dentist's warning to the world, Shane MacGowan and the Pogues. Here with the musically corrective and braver-than-most indulgence of feisty Kirsty MacColl. The song is credited to Shane MacGowan and Jem Finer.

Dirty Old Town (live)

Here they are again in a great performance of Dirty Old Town, slightly marred by an interruption near the end. The quality of these bootleg recordings is better than the usual. Kirsty is singing her father's song here. Ewan MacColl wrote a lot of fine songs, and could have lived well on the proceeds of "The first time ever I saw your face", possibly one of the best songs ever written.

Kirsty was killed by a speeding boat in Cuba and is much missed. She once said of her marriage to Billy Bragg that in ten years she had "never looked at a carving knife without thinking about sticking it in him." Had it been Shane, she probably would have.

Oh what the hell. More party pieces

The Long and Winding Road - The Beatles - exceptional quality, unusually slow live performance

Blowin' in the Wind (live) - Bob Dylan with Joan Baez - excellent performance (does he flinch from her at the end?)

Mystic Eyes / Gloria - Them featuring Van Morrison - (Live) 1965. Interesting audience reactions.

Jack Kerouac interviewed and reading from On the Road - despite inane and patronising comments from interviewer Steve Allen, who also plays horribly (too busily) on the piano over the reading

End of the Line - The Traveling Wilburys - supergroup with Harrison, Petty, Dylan, Lynn, and the disembodied voice of Roy Orbison (note the empty chair). This track was played memorably at the end of the classic comedy series "One Foot in the Grave".

Here's another one from the Wilburys, superb quality this time: "I won't back down" featuring Tom Petty. Some of the special effects are nice, even if we're used to more spectacular ones now. The Wilburys recordings are unobtainable now, but there are plenty more on YouTube. Handle with Care

China Girl - David Bowie - for closet heterosexuals everywhere.

When the Music's Over - The Doors - pristine 12 and a half minutes of melancholy brilliance.

Merry Christmas, "YouTubers"

Feargal Mooney

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