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Not Friday On My Mind 26: Rain and Tears – RIP Demis Roussos

So Demis Roussos has gone. He was only 66. Strange that in the 70s he seemed quite old.

He first came to my attention in the 60s as lead singer of Aphrodite’s Child, another of whose members was Vangelis.

I posted their song It’s Five O’Clock here. It was out of songs and groups like this that Prog Rock developed.

I’ll skip over Roussos’s 70s solo number 1 For Ever and Ever and instead feature a live version of Aphrodite’s Child’s only UK hit, a number 29 no less, Rain and Tears.

Aphrodite’s Child: Rain and Tears

Artemios “Demis” Ventouris-Roussos: 15/6/1946 – 25/1/2015. So it goes.

Friday on my Mind 114: The Ferret Song

Monty Python didn’t come out of nowhere. There was a ferment among English comedic talent following in the wake of Beyond the Fringe in the early to mid-60s, with individuals coming together in various combinations, splitting apart and recoalescing in TV shows like At Last the 1948 Show and Do Not Adjust Your Set as well as the immortal radio comedy I’m Sorry I’ll Read That Againtwo of whose songs have appeared in this category previously – before the main players settled down into their most famous incarnations as Monty Python’s Flying Circus and The Goodies.

I first remember hearing this classic (I can’t bring myself to categorise it as music however) on I’m Sorry I’ll Read That Again but it had been performed earlier in At Last the 1948 Show and it also counts towards those singles from my elder brother’s record collection – see this category numbers 53-56.

John Cleese with the 1948 show choir: The Ferret Song from the 1948 Show

Friday on my Mind 113: Painter Man

A small hit in the UK (no 36) but a no 8 in Germany. The track has echoes of The Troggs and The Who of I’m a Boy and prefigures the Roy Wood era Electric Light Orchestra. The video features “guitarist” Eddie Phillips playing his instrument with a violin bow – reputedly the first to do so – a major contributor to the record’s sound. Another antecedent of Prog Rock?

Phillips had also used this technique on their previous single, Making Time.

The Creation: Painter Man

Friday on my Mind 112: Sour Milk Sea

This is me breaking the (self-imposed) rules of my category – again.

And how does it break the rules?

It’s a Beatles song. (There have been none so far.)

Well, I say a Beatles song but they never released it in the 60s – and the main item isn’t performed by the Beatles.

The song was, though, written by George Harrison for the White Album sessions but not used on the release. Instead it’s notable as the only track on which three members of the Beatles recorded together for an artist other than themselves during the band’s lifetime; the artist being Jackie Lomax. The line-up contained Lomax on vocals, George Harrison and Eric Clapton on guitars, Nicky Hopkins on piano, Paul McCartney on bass, and Ringo Starr on drums, although McCartney’s contribution was actually overdubbed later.

I include a “Beatles” version from the White Album sessions.

Jackie Lomax: Sour Milk Sea

The Beatles: Sour Milk Sea

Not Friday On My Mind 25: Delta Lady – Joe Cocker. RIP

I was sorry to hear of the death of one of Sheffield’s finest, Joe Cocker. I’ve mentioned before his hit with the radical reworking of the Beatles’ song With a Little Help From My Friends and also his Mad Dogs and Englishmen tour.

From that tour here’s the live version of Delta Lady.

Joe Cocker (Mad Dogs and Englishmen): Delta Lady

John Robert (Joe) Cocker: 20/5/1944 – 22/12/2014. So it goes.

Friday on my Mind 111: I Was Kaiser Bill’s Batman

What a piece of one-hit wondery this is. The ultimate in novelty tunes. Not only the peculiar title (only beaten in the what-on-Earth-is-that-all-about? stakes by They’re Coming to Take me Away Ha-haaa!) but the fact that the tune is never sung but only whistled.

The “performer” in the clip isn’t Whistling Jack Smith, whose identity some say is unknown, but according to Wiki was a member of the Mike Sammes singers. Instead the guy prancing around is an actor, who the Wiki article says is one Billy Moeller.

Whistling Jack Smith: I Was Kaiser Bill’s Batman

Until I looked the tune up I hadn’t known Pat Boone covered it!

Friday on my Mind 109: 2 Days Monday: Do You Remember?

Well, today’s Friday; but this one takes in every day of the week.

From The Scaffold, famous for containing not only Paul McCartney’s brother, Peter Michael McCartney aka Mike McGear, but also poet Roger McGough and Tiswas stalwart John Gorman.

Their big hits were Thank U Very Much and Lily the Pink, the latter a perfect match for the Canadian Barn Dance. But I also remember fondly Do You Remember?.

Clearly (2 Days Monday, Thank U Very Much) txt spk was alive and kicking in the 60s.

The Scaffold: 2 Days Monday

The Scaffold: Do You Remember?

Friday on my Mind 109: Itchycoo Park – RIP Ian McLagan

I was sorry to hear yesterday morning of the death of Ian McLagan, keyboard player with the Small Faces and The Faces.

Itchycoo Park was a departure for the group, its phasing making it a part of the mid-60s psychedelia trend, but it does foreground his keyboard playing.

The Small Faces: Itchycoo Park

Ian Patrick ‘Mac’ McLagan; 12/5/1945 – 3/12/2014. So it goes.

Friday on my Mind 107: Perfidia

Another of my brother’s 1960s singles. An instrumental this time.

The Ventures were a sort of US version of The Shadows. Or The Shadows were a UK version of The Ventures. Take your pick.

The Ventures: Perfidia

And here’s a rarity. Walk Don’t Run in stereo.

The Ventures: Walk Don’t Run

Friday on my Mind 106: Buona Sera (RIP Acker Bilk)

I had been meaning to post more of my elder brothers early 60s singles (see my Friday on my Mind category nos. 53-56) in this slot anyway but the news of Acker Bilk’s death tipped my hand towards the only one of Acker’s records he bought. Not Bilk’s signature tune, Stranger on the Shore, but the much jazzier Buona Sera.

Acker Bilk and his Paramount Jazz Band: Buona Sera

Bernard Stanley “Acker” Bilk: 28/1/1929 – 2/11/2014. So it goes.

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