I was only made aware of this speech by Eric Clapton at a 1976 gig in Birmingham, UK, the other day, but It’s truly disgusting. Here’s a relatively short sample (quoted from Rebel Rock by J. Street (1986) and sourced from New Musical Express, Melody Maker, The Guardian and The Times):
Stop Britain from becoming a black colony. Get the foreigners out. Get the wogs out. Get the coons out. Keep Britain white. I used to be into dope, now I’m into racism. It’s much heavier, man. Fucking wogs, man. Fucking Saudis taking over London. Bastard wogs. Britain is becoming overcrowded and Enoch will stop it and send them all back.
It goes on for a lot longer than that - the entire speech can be heard in the animated YouTube clip below. The “Enoch” Clapton is referring to is the notorious English politician Enoch Powell who in 1968 made the infamous “Rivers of Blood” speech, also in Brimingham. How Clapton didn’t get crucified at the time in the popular press is beyond me, as is the fact that the rest of the concert continued as normal, with no rioting or no bottling. The activist group Rock Against Racism was set up as a direct response to these remarks. Clapton has never properly apologised - how does he still get away with receiving so much praise and acclaim? Fuck Eric Clapton.
Over the years, the Variety Bar near Charing Cross, Glasgow has been a hotbed for artists and musicians: from painters, such as Steven Campbell, Peter Howson, and Adrian Wiszniewski, to the legendary AC Acoustics (one of John Peel’s favorites), Happy Particles and now, Pioneers of Anaesthetic.
Pioneers Of Anaesthetic is the name by which musician Steven Cossar writes, records and releases his music. Since 2000, Steven has recorded almost 400 songs, which he compiles onto “albums” of 30-40 tracks each, these are then sold or given away at gigs.
“I try not to use the same guitar tuning twice, although there are many identical tone intervals with transposed sets of strings. I have played occasional shows around Glasgow, which typically consist of 2 sets - One written and one written on the spot ; Instant Composition Improv, if you will.”
So successful is Steven’s Instant Composition that many of his audience have asked after shows if he is “actually lying and have pre-written the Improv sets.” For the record, he doesn’t, which makes Steven’s talents all the more exceptional and impressive - “Apparently, the less writing I do… the better.”
“I’d describe the music as short songs for a long attention span. The ideas and melodies are repetitive but usually dissolve quickly enough to (hopefully) warrant repeated listening.
“A recurring structural trait is to leave the flourishes and embellishments out until the last phrase or chorus, so that the song seems like a short glimpse of it’s potential and there is plenty left to the listener’s imagination.
“Lyrically, I rely on home-truthing and coming clean about stuff I’d usually shy away from in ‘real life’.”
It is this that makes Pioneers Of Anaesthetic’s music deliciously addictive, the songs, none of which last much more than 1 minute 30 seconds, are short enough to catch interest, but finish before that interest is sated.
Steven’s interests and influences include Guided By Voices, Red House Painters, and Lou Barlow. He’s also claims he is “Inspired by the approach of the late Hip-Hop producer, J Dilla more than any other artist. His influence on urban and all alternative musics is staggering.”
Over the years, Steven has been a well respected ‘Gun For Hire’ around Glasgow, contributing his musical talents to several bands.
I am a multi-instrumentalist, but have a heavy slant towards guitars and drums. I guess most of the bands I’ve played with never really wanted to commit fully and it’s always been a case of not taking it too seriously.
“I play in Larmousse (City Slang) with Cliff Henderson and David Gow (Sons & Daughters), I’m recording an album with Steven Ward (Empire Builder), I play in Mandrake Shepherd who’ve just completed a 3 song Demo session at my house in the preperation for Studio Album.
“I’m rehearsing a new Band, tentatively called Mussel Memory, with two friends I’ve played with for years, Iban Perez (Tut Vu Vu, Sparkling Shadazz, Rags & Feathers) and Ben Ashton (L Casio Immunitas, Sparkling Shadazz) and we’re incredibly excited by the material we’ve garnered thus far. I’m preparing to release a split 10” and Download with fellow Glasgow Bedroom Savant, BLOOD BLOOD. We have a mutual appreciation for the processes we share and the slightly off-kilter side to each other’s songs.
“I’m also rehearsing a full band version of Pioneers Of Anaesthetc for some shows this Winter. The band will feature Paul Foley (Eva, Vaselines, Mandrake Shepherd), Gordon Farquar (Stapleton, Happy Particles), and Cliff Henderson (Larmousse).”
But all this other fruitful activity won’t mean a lessening of his creative work as Pioneers Of Anaesthetic.
“I am continuing my current exercise in high volumes of output. It’s what I call ‘Quantity Control’.
“The idea is that I limit myself to one hour to write and record each song. I feel that once an initial idea leaves your head, with every passing second - it’s being compromised and re-thought. I just want to try to minimize the interference I have with the imagination’s melody-writing process.
“Quite often, It makes me laugh out loud, as the stuff that comes out is nowhere near what I’d usually shape it into, but that’s got to be healthy.”
Here’s a 4th of July weekend compilation of go-go mania from China and Hong Kong for all you dancing fools out there.
The People’s Republic Of Go-Go features vintage clips from films starring Asian superstars Josephine Siao, Connie Chan and Chan Hung-lit doing tunes like “Love Potion #9,” “Your Cheatin’ Heart,” “Shakin’ All Over,” “Eight Days A Week,” “Don’t Be Cruel,” an agonizing version of “Can’t Help Falling In Love,” and more. Crazier than a bag full of spiders.
Siao, Chan and Hung-lit went from being teen pop icons in the sixties to highly regarded actors who’s film work ranged from melodrama and opera to martial arts epics. Their flirtation with rock and roll was puppy love, brief but oh so dreamy.
Proof that rock and roll is a universal language and the freak who put this together, Jonathan Sprig, speaks that language.
To commemorate this honor to the “Father of Rock and Roll”, here is Chuck Berry rocking the Shepherd’s Bush Theater, London from 1972.
“Roll Over Beethoven”
“Sweet Little Sixteen”
“South of the Border”
“Beer Drinking Woman”
“Let It Rock”
“Mean Old World”
“Rock ‘n’ Roll Music”
“Bye Bye Johnny”
“Johnny B. Goode”
Painfully shy and only 18 years old, Francoise Hardy makes her first appearance on French television in 1962 singing “La Fille Avec Toi.” A few months later, Hardy would have a million selling hit with “Tous Les Garçons et Les Filles.”
This Channel 4 UK program from the mid-80s compiles some incredible performances culled from Tony Wilson’s late 70s Granada TV series, So It Goes. Includes the Sex Pistols, The Clash, Buzzcocks, Iggy Pop (with horsetail sticking out of his ass and saying “fucking” on 70s TV), The Fall, The Jam, Elvis Costello, Blondie, Penetration, Wreckless Eric, Ian Dury, Tom Robinson, Magazine, John Cooper Clarke, XTC, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Sham 69 and ending with the classic clip of Joy Division performing “Shadow Play.” Many of the groups represented here were making their TV debuts on So It Goes, a regional tea-time program.
Kavel Rafferty collects record sleeves and has a wonderful website devoted to the underappreciated art of the 45rpm record jacket. It’s called “Record Envelope, the little library of factory sleeves” and can be enjoyed here.
Here’s a sample of Rafferty’s impressive collection of sleeves from all over the world..
The Deep Six were a 6-piece (5m 1f) psychedelic folk band from San Diego, who achieved minor success in the mid-sixties with one single and their first and last, eponymous album:
Between late 1965 and early 1966 Deep Six were riding the crest of a wave and when their first single came out, “Rising Sun”, it was a huge hit - but it was a hit in Southern California and almost nowhere else. They toured relentlessly and got lots of good press and good crowds. But when their first (and only) album came out, it failed to show up anywhere on the charts and The Deep Six, badly bruised by the lack of enthusiasm, soldiered on a bit more before calling it a day and splintering into different careers.
Such is the fickle nature of pop, but listening to the album today, there are a few fab jewels tucked away in this album and some interesting things going on here, from the arrangements (some by David Gates), to the stellar list of session musicians (Glen Campbell, Carol Kaye, Mike Deasy, Al Casey, Larry Knechtel, Ray Pohlman, and Barney Kessel) that makes The Deep Six an album well worth re-visiting.
Opening with an amazing cover of The Rolling Stones’ “Paint It Black”, which sets a standard the album tries to maintain. While songs such as “When Morning Breaks”, and covers of “A Groovy Kind of Love” and “Solitary Man” make the mark, there are others, including the single “Rising Sun” - which isn’t as good as one would expect - and the cheesy “Somewhere My Love” (aka “Lara’s Theme” from Doctor Zhivago) that hint at why The Deep Six didn’t make it beyond 1967. A shame, for the potential was certainly there.
Here is the whole album as it was originally relased, upload EarpJohn, who has a damn fine channel on YouTube.