Monday, January 21, 2008

Another Festive Fifty themed post



What can I say? It was just such fun (if bloody time consuming) doing yesterday's Peel-related Post here that I thought I'd do something similar again...In the process, I have realised that a great number of these come from 1982, confirming my belief that 1977-1982 was the greatest era ever, for music. Followed by 2001-2008, obviously).

First up, Pete Wylie under various guises had several entries in the Festive Fifty, here are two of my favourites. It's sometimes hard trying to work out what was Wah!, Mighty Wah! or Wah! Heat (or Shambeko Say Wah! for that matter, but I think these were both as the Mighty Wah! That is what the CDs say, anyway)

Mighty Wah! -'Come Back.' mp3

Mighty Wah! -'The Story Of The Blues.' mp3 (1982 Festive Fifty, No.7)*

The song Shipbuilding was written by Elvis Costello in 1982, about the Falklands War and Robert Wyatt recorded it first, nearly topping the Festive Fifty in 1982. Elvis Costello recorded his own version for Punch The Clock in 1983. Both versions are fantastic, Wyatt's version and piano are gorgeous, though Costello's version is great too, and features Chet Baker on trumpet.

Robert Wyatt -'Shipbuilding.' mp3 (1982 Festive Fifty, No.2)

Elvis Costello -'Shipbuilding.' mp3 (1983 Festive Fifty, No.48)

And in different guises, Coventry also had a fair amount to say about social issues of the time, both at home and abroad.

The Specials -'Ghost Town.' mp3 (1981 festive Fifty No.21)

The Special AKA -'Free Nelson Mandela.' mp3 (1984 Festive Fifty No.41

As 'New pop' replaced or post-punk evolved, depending on your point of view, there were certainly many bands who were commercially successful on in both the charts and the festive fifty (even Frankie Goes to Hollywood made the Festive Fifty in 1984, with their nine-weeks-at-the-top-of-the-proper-charts Two Tribes). Though Peel bemoaned on his 1994 Festive Fifty that some of the records had made the chart, and where had he gone wrong, it's probably fair to assume he had his tongue firmly planted in his cheek. These are both from 1982:

Yazoo - 'Only You.' mp3 (1982 Festive Fifty No.12)

Associates -'Party Fears Two.' mp3 (1982 Festive Fifty No.14)

Peel also played Hip-Hop when no-one else on Radio 1 was doing so (Peter Powell reportedly once told him that he shouldn't on the grounds that Hip-Hop was the music of Black hooligans, allegedly).

Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five -'The Message.' mp3 (1982 Festive Fifty no.3)

Erik B & Rakim -'Paid In Full.' mp3 (1987 Festive Fifty no.27)

* There are several different versions of this track in existence, including the Parts 1&2 version that Peel played on one of his last ever broadcasts in 2004. I have put the 'Part 1' version here.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

loving the festive 50 posts, keep em coming. does anyone have any idea how to get hold of cat house by danielle dax (bearing in mind i have not won the lottery), tried everything, i have to own this song (again) not sure what happened to my vinyl copy.
A.J

Ed said...

A.J. - I do, in fact, own this on 12", so come back tomorrow and hopefully I will have it up for you. It is a fantastic track, I fell for it hook, line and sinker at the age of eleven, and spent ten years trying to track it down!

Glad you like the Festive Fifty posts, there will be more...

Ed

MikeB said...

Great post Ed. I'm convinced too that 77-82 was THE era for music. Look forward to more Peel-related posts.

MikeB said...

Love the Peel posts Ed. Nice one.

Ed said...

Glad you enjoyed them, Mike, check back here for more soon on tuesday.

Ed

Anonymous said...

if you post cat house for me i will happily slaughter my first born, many happy memories of seedy alternative night clubs in the 80's and dancing away in a cloud of dry ice and cigarette smoke, that song always got me on the dance floor. you are truly a gent of the first order
A.J

Crash Calloway said...

Ten perfect songs across so many styles takes some doing! I'm convinced that 'The Story Of The Blues' is just 'Wah!' although you're right, there are many versions.

Ed said...

A.J. - There are two Danielle Dax 12" singles sitting by the USB turntable as we speak, keep checking back.

Crash - sound slike you liked them, then! Oh, and have checked, and you are right, the single of Story of the Blues says Wah! (I think, and maybe someone can confirm this out there, they became the Mighty Wah! after Peel himself described them as the mighty Wah when presenting Top Of the pops.

Ed

Max said...

It's always good when you see other people sharing one's own excellent taste in music especially when other people deride you for it, so you've put on a smile on my face for a kick off with Mr.Wylie getting some much needed recognition!!
Add to that some Associates, Eric B & Rakim and it's a pretty good package!
I've got a fair bit of the whole Wah caboodle if there's owt you're looking for buddy!

Ed said...

Max -thank you, have you got any of the Sinful versions?

Ed

Ed said...

...wow, that wow quick, check here soon for them being posted!

Ed