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MY FAVE ALBUMS 2010

If you’re a regular Theme Park listener you’ll know that I have what they call an ‘eclectic’ taste in music. And it comes in handy when you’re putting together a show each week on random themes, I tell you!  This week, just to prove that I do listen to new music, I decided that I would bring you songs from my favourite albums of 2010. So no nostalgia this week, all new music and a look-see at what arrived in my Xmas stocking, all 23  albums! Thank you Santa!

Here’s my rationale for how I devised my list: It’s the age of the singles download, but there are just some albums that you can’t cherry pick from. My list represents those albums: the ones that work best when listened to as a whole experience. Having said that, it is only a two hour program, so a choice had to be made about what singles to play from those albums. So, here goes:

Caribou, otherwise known to his Mama as Daniel Victor Snaith, is a mathematician by trade who, in his spare time, delivers beautiful and captivating electronic music. His 2010 album Swim is the first of my favourites and we opened the show with the track ODESSA. Even if you’re not an electronica fan, (and I’m not particularly),  this album successfully crosses over and appeals to almost everyone who listens to it.

Next on my list the album Plastic Beach by the Gorillaz.  Hard to pick one track from this  incredibly diverse album. It was a toss-up between MELANCHOLY HILL and  SUPERFAST JELLYFISH, featuring Gruff Rhys and De La Soul. The chance to also play some De La Soul put the latter track on the list in the end. And, I’ve got to say, I’m very jealous of anyone who saw Gorillaz on their recent Plastic Beach tour!

One of the most beautiful songs of the year is PIECES by the Irish band Villagers. Singer Conor O’Brien totally rocks. The song is from their debut album Becoming a Jackal. Check out this live performance from their very first headline show in 2009. Amazing.

My favourite video clip of the year goes to Janelle Monae for TIGHTROPE. It’s from the album The ArchAndroid which is nothing if not ambitious. The album was a very nice surprise indeed. Featuring everything from power ballads right through to the ferocious energy of her signature dance tracks, this is one hot album. Here’s the clip that has garnered so much YouTube attention:

Another surprise favourite for me was Kanye West’s album My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. It  finally convinced me of this guy’s talent. I’ll try and overlook his arrogance for the sake of the music and some of his fine collaborators. One of the best tracks features Ben Iver and its called LOST IN THE WORLD.

Down the Way by Angus & Julia Stone was the biggest-selling Australian album of 2010, and it certainly shows the growing maturity of this brother and sister duo. BIG JET PLANE is the standout track from this album.

Another great Aussie group is You Am I. Their best record in more than a decade is self titled. My favourite track is the second single of that album, TRIGGER FINGER. The clip features Lanie Lane who also supplied backing vocals.

I’m a big fan of the soulful voice of Ray LaMontagne. His 2010 album with the Prairie Dogs,  God Willin’ & the Creek Don’t Rise has a number of great tracks on it. Here he performs BEG STEAL OR BORROW in the studios of Oui FM in France.

Another exquisite song is RUBY from the album Ali and Toumani, released in February 2010. It’s a series of duets from two of Africa’s most distinguished musicians, the late guitarist Ali Farka Toure and kora player Toumani Diabate.

The same kind of purity can be found in a completely different genre by a group called Mountain Man. They’re actually an all girl trio from Vermont who recorded their album Made the Harbor in a disused ice-cream parlour. The whole album is mostly a capella, which just goes to show that the voice really is the ultimate instrument. We played their sublime version of HOW’M I DOIN’.

I’m sure that I’m not the only one who thinks that Neil Hannon of The Divine Comedy is completely underrated as a singer and a songwriter. This band has been around for about 20 years and yet we’re almost a secret society of  fans. Hopefully their latest album Bang Goes the Knighthood will get them the recognition they deserve.

The Roots have also been around a while, 1987 to be exact, and HOW I GOT OVER is their 11th album. They’re all great albums, but this one is possibly their best:

Despite already declaring that I’m not a big electronica fan, here’s another electronica album in my 2010 faves:  LCD Soundsystem’s This Is Happening album can’t be overlooked.  I CAN CHANGE is one of the best tracks from the album. Thank God for Jools Holland (what a great show btw). Here’s a great clip from that show:

The Vampire Weekend’s album Contra came out just in time for my birthday in January 2010. Here’s the very energetic track COUSINS from that album:

Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers released a very Bluesy album called Mojo this year which I really love. I particularly like their version of the old standard CANDY.

At the other end of the spectrum, Danger Mouse got together with James Mercer to invent a new group called Broken Bells. They released their first album together in 2010. Here they are performing THE HIGH ROAD, from that self-titled album, at Lowlands 2010.

Two more albums that I’ve been listening to non-stop this year are Arcade Fire’s THE SUBURBS and The Black Keys album BROTHERS. Here are the Black Keys performing I’M HOWLIN FOR YOU from that album, on Jools Holland:

A new discovery for me late in the year was Diane Birch. She released her first album, Bible Belt, in 2009 and the EP Velveteen Age just before Xmas this year. She’s only in her mid twenties but wow, what a voice.

And talking of great voices, soul/gospel legend Mavis Staples released a wonderful album this year called YOU ARE NOT ALONE. It was produced by Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy who also wrote two of the songs on the album. Two of my all time favourite artists on one album. Heaven. Here’s a sample of what we’ll be seeing at the upcoming Byron Blues Fest in April. I, for one, cannot wait!

Ex Czars frontman, John Grant, gives a substantial nod to Supertramp and Bread on his debut album, Queen of Denmark. But hey, who else is doing that kind of material these days?  The track I WANNA GO TO MARZ features the band Midlake and its a beautiful song based on Grant’s own childhood experience of escaping to the local sweet shop. In his own words, the song “is a gateway back to childhood and innocence before things have become complicated.”

A band that also sounds a lot like a few bands of the 70’s is The Russians. But gee, what a great job they do of it. Their album Crashing The Party is full of retro power pop/rock melodies. Sort of like Big Star, but , (dare I say it?) better.

We finished up with the song that’s been on everyone’s lips this year, Cee-Lo Green’s F**CK YOU. I had to play the clean version for radio, of course, which he conveniently included on his Lady Killer album as FORGET YOU. This album is more than the sum of its parts, that’s for sure. With its deliberate nods to Motown, 80’s soul and classic pop, its right up my alley. Hey, you’ve seen the official F**CK YOU clip a million times, (well, actually 33 million hits on YouTube!).  So here he is, with his rockin’ all girl band on Later with Jools Holland (have I said already that I absolutely love this show?).

Next week will be the first show of the new year!  I’ll be welcoming band Orkestra del Sol into the studio. They’re from the UK and are touring Australia. Think big band with lotsa high energy swinging sounds with flavours from the Balkans, Oompah, Gypsy and New Orleans. Should be fun. AND the theme will be the show will be MULTILINGUAL SONGS, by which I mean songs that have at least two languages in the lyrics. Any suggestions? Then leave me a message here!

Play safe on New Year’s Eve and keep on dancing!

Here’s the playlist, and accordingly, my favourite albums of 2010 (in no particular order):

Odessa – Swim, Caribou

Superfast Jellyfish Ft. Gruff Rhys & De La Soul – Plastic Beach, Gorillaz

Pieces – Becoming A Jackal, Villagers

Tightrope (feat. Big Boi) – The ArchAndroid (Deluxe), Janelle Monáe

Lost In The World (feat. Bon Iver) – My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, Kanye West

Big Jet Plane – Down The Way, Angus & Julia Stone

Trigger Finger – You Am I, You Am I

Beg Steal or Borrow – God Willin’ & The Creek Don’t Rise, Ray LaMontagne/Pariah Dogs

Ruby – Ali & Toumani, Ali Farka Touré and Toumani Diabaté

How’m I Doin – Made the Harbor, Mountain Man

The Lost Art Of Conversation – Bang Goes The Knighthood, The Divine Comedy

How I Got Over – How I Got Over, The Roots Feat. Dice Raw

I Can Change – This Is Happening, LCD Soundsystem

Cousins – Contra [Bonus Tracks], Vampire Weekend

Candy – Mojo, Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers

The High Road – Broken Bells, Broken Bells

The Suburbs – The Suburbs, Arcade Fire

Howlin’ for You – Brothers, The Black Keys

This Corrosion – The Velveteen Age, Diane Birch

You Are Not Alone – You Are Not Alone, Mavis Staples

I Wanna Go to Marz – Queen of Denmark, John Grant

Sober and Un-upsetting – Crashing the Party, The Russians

Forget You – The Lady Killer, Cee Lo Green

Next week:  MULTILINGUAL SONGS

Listen to Lyn McCarthy at the Theme Park on BayFM, Tuesdays 4-6pm, Sydney time
Also streaming via BayFM
Tragically also on Facebook and Twitter
Email me at: lyn.themeparkradio@gmail.com
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MULLUMBIMBY MUSIC FESTIVAL PREVIEW

Drive to Mullumbimby on any given day and you will find buskers on sitar, buskers on guitar and kids out-busking them all. There’ll be a shirtless bloke in a kilt on his mobile, a nice neat Nana off to the doctor and a seedpod of single mums outside Santos health food store sharing tips on crystal deodorant. There’s pie eating workmen, emo teenagers skipping school and eating chips on the pavement, a hot pink mariachi man hitching a ride home and some disheveled rock star buying his groceries. In ‘Mullum’ the whitened teeth brigade hold court with the toothless, and everywhere people are talking, laughing, hugging, complaining, gathered in groups, dotted in shops, drinking coffee, playing drums: it’s a small town symphony of noise. This is a vibrant, flawed gloriously messed up cacophony of community. Mullumbimby needs to be heritage listed. They just don’t do small towns like this anywhere else in Australia!

Once a year the town of Mullumbimby opens her arms to the world and invites them to experience one of the most unique music events in the country: The Mullum Music Festival. This year, from Thursday to Sunday 25 – 28 November, venues throughout the town host over 100 performances, with festival goers able to amble from gig to gig through the streets of Mullumbimby.  It’s a festival for everybody with men, women, children and clowns, able to participate in this demographically and stylistically inclusive event.

One of the big drawcards of this year’s festival is Washington. Megan Washington was unearthed by Triple J only a year ago and since then she and her band have been on a non-stop round of performances culminating in the recent Aria Awards where she scored six nominations and won two awards in the categories of Best Female Artist and Breakthrough Artist. The festival’s program promises an all singing, all dancing affair with costumes and cupcakes and plenty of suprises. I think she’s going to be huge and this may be one of the last chances we have to see her in such an intimate environment.  Here she is talking about the inspiration for her album I Believe You Liar.

I had hoped to have the director of the festival, Glenn Wright, into the studio for a chat but with only two days to go before lift-off, Glenn didn’t make it. But he very generously donated a day pass to the festival for one of the BayFM subscribers and that was one by Jay. Congrats and thanks to Glenn for your generosity.

If you’re a fan of reggae, rock steady and ska then Sydney group King Tide are for you. They’ll perform at the festival on Saturday night. I particiularly like the track ROCKERS STYLE. Just to prove the diversity of the festival’s line-up we followed with Nashville singer-songwriter Mary Gauthier with MARCH 11, 1962 from her latest album, Foundling. Produced by Michael Timmins of the Cowboy Junkies, it’s an amazingly honest album that draws inspiration from her own life. Achingly beautiful. Here’s an amateur video taken at a performance in London June 2010:

We followed with Heath Cullen & The 45s with BREAK MY HEART, which might just have a back-story of its own. Heath is a highly regarded guitarist having graced all of Lucie Thorne’s most recent recordings, amongst others. In this video clip he’s performing with the 45’s: Jay McMahon, drums; David Hibbert, guitar; Robyn Martin, bass; Jason Coman, guitar; and Pete Wild, keyboards.

Tijuana Cartel are amazing. They’re the band to see if you want to get up and dance. It’s a wild combo of funk, hip-hop, reggae, flamenco with a Middle Eastern flavour. We played an oldie but a goodie of theirs: RISE UP from their debut album Frequent Flyers Redeemed.

A late addition to the festival is UK singer Gemma Ray. Here’s a brilliant video clip of the track 100MPH (IN 2ND GEAR). Directed by Miranda Bowen and edited by Leo Scott its got an almost Lynchian sensibility. Love the song, love the video.


One of my favourites is the gorgeous sister act, Scarlett Affection. Nerida and Melia will be performing at the festival in their own right and will also be supporting students from their new contemporary music school. A little birdy told me that there is some amazing talent coming out of the Scarlett School, so I’m really looking forward to that performance on Saturday in the Civic Hall. One of my favourite songs of theirs is  ROMANTIC from their album Our Sweet Ambush.

Sunshine Coast based Oka are a genre defying group who know how to get a room up and moving. MUSIC MAKES ME HAPPY showcases the throbbing, earthy beats of tribal music for the digital age.

Pieta Brown comes straight from the American heartland. Her father is renowned folk singer Greg Brown whose songs have been covered by Willie Nelson among others.  Described as a cross between Loretta Lyn, P.J. Harvey and Cat Power, she’s one of the highlights of the festival. Here she sings HEY RUN from the Remember The Sun album.

Jazz fans won’t be disappointed as the much admired Vince Jones returns  to Mullum. We played his very smooth rendition of AUTO FREAKS and followed with another brilliant local artist, Gyan, with a track from her latest album SuperfragiisticallyWWW.

It was great to be able to speak to two of the artists appearing at the festival, live in the studio. First up, comedian, acrobat, juggler extraordaire Joel Salom had me in stitches as we talked about his gig as MC of the opening night on Thursday and his solo slot on Friday night. Here he is performing with Circus Oz and he did suggest that there may be some ‘accidental’ stripping at Mullum as well.

The opening night of the festival not only features Joel as MC but it features an amazing line-up of talent: Pieta Brown, The Rhythm Hunters, Nano Stern, Flap!, Dick & Christa Hughes and Mama Kin. Quickly gaining a reputation for an act not to be missed, Mama Kin’s music is powerful stuff. We featured I’M GONNA DO IT, from her album Beat and Holler.

Local musician and producer, Christian Pyle, also paid us a visit and it was a pleasure speaking to such a down to earth artist who is clearly very talented. We played two of the songs from his solo album, Nothing Left to BurnRAY OF YOUR SUNSHINE and TREES & STONE. Christian will be peforming on Saturday and, as well, he’ll front up with the band Ghost Mountain on Sunday. Christian told me that with Ghost Mountain they’re a very seasoned band who all bring their own influences to the music. We played EVERYTHING’S OK from the album Art Without Audience.

Christian also produces an array of artists out of his studio in Goonengerry. One of them happens to be one of my favourites of the moment. M. Jack Bee is a storyteller par excellence and his latest album, In Loops is a beauty. I particularly like the track  MOTH. This video clip was filmed by Christian in his studio when they were recording the song. Watch to the end when Christian makes his own appearance. Let’s call it a Hitchcock moment!  

Also returning to the festival, and all the way from Darwin, is Leah Flanagan.  I saw her perform last year and she was brilliant.  She plays a mean ukelele, so for me that just makes her show compulsory. Another group returning to Mullum are the equally talented Tinpan Orange. Their latest album THE BOTTOM OF THE LAKE is a great indication of the breadth of their talent.

How good is Jordie Lane? His song FELL INTO ME from his album Sleeping Patterns,  is on constantly at my house at the moment. He’s performing on Saturday and Sunday at the festival and also on Sunday with Jen Cloher, which should make a hot double-bill. Here he is talking about how he recorded his previous album, Lovers Ride, for under $A150! Incredible.

We finished the show on a suitably alternative note with Mojo Juju & The Snake Oil Merchants. What can you say about these all-round performers who meld jazz, rock and punk into a vaudevillian show that is pure entertainment.  Here they are performing CATCH A FIRE at another of the great festivals that we host up here in the Northern Rivers, The Byron Blues Fest:

Thanks so much to everyone at the Mullum Music Festival, in particular my guests Joel Salom and Christian Pyle.

Next week, I’m rec0gnising World Aids Day (December 1) with SONGS ABOUT HOMOSEXUALITY. Now before you all start leaving me messages about HIV and AIDS not being a gay disease. I know that! But let’s recognise that its the gay community that have been at the forefront of political activism, not only fighting discrimination but also promoting understanding and support for ALL  people suffering from this dreadful malady. So let’s celebrate the gays! Any suggestions? Let’s concentrate on the song, rather than the singer. Just because Dusty Springfield was gay doesn’t make The Look of Love a gay song, now does it? Hmmmm.

So, while you’re pondering that list, check out this week’s:

I Believe You Liar – I Believe You Liar, Washington

Rockers Style – RoOTS POP Reggae, King Tide

March 11, 1962 – The Foundling, Mary Gauthier

Break My Heart – Heath Cullen

Rise Up – Frequent Flyers Redeemed, Tijuana Cartel

100 mph (in 2nd Gear) – Lights Out Zoltar!, Gemma Ray

Romantic – Our Sweet Ambush, Scarlett Affection

Music Makes Me Happy – Music Makes Me Happy, OKA

Hey Run – Remember the Sun, Pieta Brown

Auto Freaks – Moving Through Taboos, Vince Jones

WWW. – Superfragilistically, Gyan

Ray of Your Sunshine – Nothing Left to Burn, Christain Pyle

I’m Gonna Do It – Beat And Holler, Mama Kin

Trees & Stone – Nothing Left to Burn, Christian Pyle

Everything’s OK – Art Without Audience, Ghost Mountain

Moth – In Loops, M. Jack Bee

Tipsy Tango – Making Waves, Leah Flannigan

The Bottom Of The Lake – The Bottom Of The Lake, TinPan Orange

Fell Into Me – Sleeping Patterns, Jordie Lane

Catch a Fire – Sellin’ You Salvation, Mojo Juju and The Snake Oil Merchants

Next week:  SONGS ABOUT HOMOSEXUALITY

Listen to Lyn McCarthy at the Theme Park on BayFM, Tuesdays 4-6pm, Sydney time
Also streaming via BayFM
Tragically also on Facebook and Twitter
Email me at: lyn.themeparkradio@gmail.com

SONGS ABOUT SHOPPING

What’s captalism’s favourite pastime? Well, SHOPPING of course! Some of the songs in this week’s list were critical of the commodification of our society while others celebrated shopping as retail therapy.  Objects of desire included everything from clothes and cars to food and liquor and we shopped in that threatened species, the little corner store, as well as their replacements, the supermarkets and malls. We gave away tickets to local charity event, The Spring Into Bangalow Fashion Parade, and welcomed local girl-group The Swinging Cowgirls into the studio for a live performance. All in all, a fun show.

The program kicked off at a rather luxurious looking pet shop, where Patti Page asks HOW MUCH IS THAT DOGGIE IN THE WINDOW? Let’s face it, if you’re a shop-a-holic you could do a lot worse than rescue a pup from being a living and breathing window display. I call that charity work myself.

The Coasters sang of being in a high-end department store without any credit on SHOPPING FOR CLOTHES. And we followed with Smokey Robinson & The Miracles, whose Mum told them to always SHOP AROUND when it comes to looking for love. Not bad advice actually.

Ben Folds does a great cover of the Clash song LOST IN THE SUPERMARKET for the kids film Over the Hedge, which had to make the list. As did The Kinks with the very appropriate DEDICATED FOLLOWER OF FASHION. Check this clip from 1973. I love Ray Davies: “Let’s have a laugh, because no-one’s here for art.” Genius.

Chuck Berry refined and developed rhythm and blues into the major elements that made rock and roll distinctive, with lyrics focusing on teen life and consumerism. On this week’s show he went shopping for a car on NO MONEY DOWN.

Here’s De La Soul with their critique of hip-hoppin’, gold-diggin’ girlfriends on SHOPPING BAGS. Its from the underrated album The Grind Date:

Up here in the village of  Mullumbimby, the locals have lost the fight to stop a large Woolworths complex from being built in town. So I included a couple of songs for all those activists who are trying to preserve their quality of life.  First up, Jonathan Richman bemoans the disappearance of the CORNER STORE. We followed with a perfect partner, Eugene McDaniels with SUPERMARKET BLUES: “I’ve got the supermarket blues, If I could choose, its really them I’d like to lose.” Yes, indeedy.

Two very funny tunes on the list are They Might Be Giants’ I AM A GROCERY BAG and TOO HIGH FOR THE SUPERMARKET from The Uninvited. It’s tough finding the ingredients for a simple tuna sandwich in a huge supermarket, especially when focus is a problem. Hilarious.

Fergie knows that shopping for labels is just shopping for affection on LABELS OF LOVE, from the soundtrack to the film Sex & The City, which is basically just a big ad for Manola’s etc.  The Beatles have a bit of advice for the shopaholic in all of us on CAN’T BUY ME LOVE.

I’m not a big fan of The Pet Shop Boys but their 1987 techno-pop tune SHOPPING, which is more about political corruption than a day in the mall, proved to be especially suitable for this week’s show.

Margo Timmins, of The Cowboy Junkies, is going to buy you something small and frail and plastic. As she puts it: ‘CAUSE CHEAP IS HOW I FEEL. Brilliant.

Dolly Parton is also a bit partial to a little metaphor on THE BARGAIN STORE. And lending a little gravity to the list was good ol’ boy Bruce Springsteen with QUEEN OF THE SUPERMARKET.

Jonathan Richman championed the LONELY LITTLE THRIFT STORE and Bruno Mars, with a little help from Damian Marley, sang about the LIQUOR STORE BLUES.

And then I happily welcomed the Swingin’ Cowgirls into the studio for a bit of a jam and a singalong. They are going to be performing at the upcoming charity fashion event, Spring into Bangalow, and going by what we saw on the show, it will be a great night. Here they are performing at another local event, earlier this year:

We said goodbye to the Swingin’ Cowgirls with an equally sassy dame, Lily Allen. She’s giving her granny a hard time on NAN, YOU’RE A WINDOW SHOPPER.

The Replacements’ punk rock defense of the CUSTOMER was followed by Paul Weller and The Jam with MAN IN THE CORNER SHOP, a song about some middle-class punk rockers who suddenly have a whole lot of money but nothing substantial to spend it on.

Before Steven Patrick Morrissey was simply Morrissey, he was lead singer of The Smiths, a band who never charted higher than #10 but who nevertheless generated a cult following. Here they are with SHOPLIFTERS OF THE WORLD UNITE:

Sublime’s influences were reggae, punk and ska and our final track was an old ska song that they recorded a version of in 1996 called  PAWN SHOP. The story goes that lead singer Brad Nowell’s raging addiction saw his guitar being pawned quite often, with their manager having to pay to get it out before their gigs. Sort of puts all those songs about SHOPPING into perspective doesn’t it?

Next week the show will be one of pure joy. Every song will feature HANDCLAPPING. I’d  love to hear from you if you would like to request a track, or you may have an idea for a theme for an upcoming show. Let me know! Love to have your input.

Big thanks to Kathryn and Anna from The Swinging Cowgirls.

Here’s this week’s playlist:

How Much Is That Doggie In The Window – Everlasting In Original 125 Golden Oldies (Vol.3), Patti Page

Shopping for Clothes – Atlantic Rhythm & Blues (1958-62) Vol. 4, The Coasters

Shop Around – The Ultimate Collection, Smokey Robinson & The Miracles

Lost In The Supermarket (Clash cover) – Over The Hedge soundtrack,  Ben Folds

Dedicated Follower Of Fashion – The Complete Collection, The Kinks

No Money Down – After School Session, Chuck Berry

Shopping Bags (She Got from You) – The Grind Date, De La Soul

Corner Store – Jonathan Goes Country, Jonathan Richman

Supermarket Blues – Headless Heroes of the Apocalypse, Eugene McDaniels

I Am A Grocery Bag – TMBG UnLtd April, They Might Be Giants

Too High for the Supermarket. – Too High, The Uninvited

Labels Or Love – Sex And The City, Fergie

Shopping – Actually, Pet Shop Boys

‘Cause Cheap Is How I Feel – The Caution Horses, Cowboy Junkies

Can’t Buy Me Love – Hey Jude, The Beatles

Shopping Carts – (comedy skit), Steven Wright

The Bargain Store – The RCA Years 1967-1986 [Disc 2], Dolly Parton

Queen Of The Supermarket – Working On A Dream, Bruce Springsteen

Liquor Store Blues (feat. Damian Marley) – Single, Bruno Mars

The Lonely Little Thrift Store – I’m So Confused, Jonathan Richman

Nan You’re A Window Shopper – Alright, Still Lily Allen

Customer – Sorry Ma, Forgot To Take Out the Trash, The Replacements

Man In The Corner Shop – Direction, Reaction, Creation, The Jam

Shoplifters Of The World Unite – The Best Of Part 1, The Smiths

Pawn Shop – Sublime, Sublime

Next week:  SONGS WITH HANDCLAPPING!

Listen to Lyn McCarthy at the Theme Park on BayFM, Tuesdays 4-6pm, Sydney time
Also streaming via BayFM
Tragically also on Facebook and Twitter
Email me at: lyn.themeparkradio@gmail.com

SONGS ABOUT CALIFORNIA

Our theme this week was about a place that’s linked to money, sunshine, fame and freedom. It sounds a lot like my home town of Byron Bay, but  no, this week’s program was about the equally tantalising American state of  CALIFORNIA.

We started with Al Jolson’s CALIFORNIA HERE I COME. Written for the 1921 Broadway musical Bombo, it’s often called the unofficial state song of California. Another standard is the Mamas & The Papas’ love song to their home state: CALIFORNIA DREAMING. Bobby Womack’s version is, in my opinion, just sublime. Here’s some original footage and images of California in the 50’s, set against his music:

Chuck Berry wrote THE PROMISED LAND while in jail and, apparently, he used the prison library to plot his hero’s trip from Virginia to Los Angeles.

Train is a band that comes from San Francisco so their song, SAVE ME SAN FRANCISCO, is, we assume,  straight from the heart. And like a lot of the tunes in today’s list, it’s really about missing someone you’ve left behind. The songs is  from the album of the same name, released in 2009.

Led Zeppelin’s GOING TO CALIFORNIA is reportedly about Joni Mitchell. The story goes that Robert Plant and Jimmy Page were both infatuated with her at the time. They were all in their early 20’s and it was crazy days for all and sundry. Here’s Led Zepp. playing live at Earls Court in 1975:

Arlo Guthrie contributed a song that’s based on him going through LA airport with a couple of joints in his pocket. Not that I condone that kind of behaviour, of course (!) He performed COMING INTO LOS ANGELES live at Woodstock in 1969 where, it appears, it went down a treat:

Yes, Arlo Guthrie just wants to have some fun. I don’t think he’s the only one. Sheryl Crowe is in a similar state of mind on ALL I WANNA DO.

The Rivieras are also out there havin’ fun on CALIFORNIA SUN, a hit for them in 1964. Albert Hammond’s IT NEVER RAINS IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA also reminds me of Byron Bay. Must be the sub-tropical thing.  Does this ring a bell? “It Doesn’t Rain in California but girl don’t they warn ya, it pours, it pours.” Sounds like Byron to me.

We followed with the Red Hot Chilli Peppers. The title of CALIFORNICATION was borrowed for the title of one of my favourite  television shows.

Two of the best voices ever belong to Dionne Warwick and Roy Orbison.  Warwick sings of being a deflated Hollywood hopeful heading home, on DO YOU KNOW THE WAY TO SAN JOSE? Orbison, who can’t wait to get back to where his lover is – and therefore where the sun always shines –  is brilliant on CALIFORNIA BLUE. It’s from his comeback album, Mystery Girl, recorded just before he died in 1988.

I bet you were wondering how long it would take me to play HOTEL CALIFORNIA by The Eagles? Only an hour! Yes how could I not play this song on a show dedicated to songs about California?

Latest media favourite, pop-singer Kate Perry, gets a little bit of help from Snoop Dogg on CALIFORNIA GURLS. Can you believe that this video clip has racked up nearly 50 million hits? Sweet.

Unbelievably,  I found a slice of hip-hop I could use with no swear words in it!  2PAC and Dr Dre are almost subdued on CALIFORNIA LOVE. We followed with some Thin Lizzy who know how hard it is to make it in HOLLYWOOD (When you’re down on your luck).

The Sir Douglas Quintet’s MENDOCINO is also a classic. It’s a song about a county in the north of California, renowned for distinctive Pacific Ocean coastline, old growth forests, wine production and liberal views on cannabis. Sounds like it should be Byron Shire’s sister state, doesn’t it?

Everclear do a  song about my favourite part of Los Angeles, SANTA MONICA. It’s a place, also not unlike Byron, with a great beach, fantastic restaurants, farmers markets and a laid-back feel to it. The song was written by the band’s lead singer Art Alexakis and its actually quite a melancholy tune about suicide.

When Otis Redding sang about  SITTIN’ ON THE DOCK OF THE BAY, it was the very groovy city of San Francisco he was referring to. We followed that with a piece of music that pays homage to the Mexican population of California: The brilliant Chicano rock band Thee Midniters with WHITTIER BOULEVARD.

The Red Hot Chilli Peppers seem to be obsessed with California as they have recorded quite a few tracks about the area. Our second Peppers track was DANI CALIFORNIA which we followed with a number by  Tom Petty.  FREE FALLING references areas of Los Angeles, from the San Fernando Valley to Ventura Boulevard and Mulholland Drive, all of which conjure up various movies out of Hollywood.  Petty has been qouted as saying that the multitude of acoustic guitars on the track were used to create a dreamlke quality.

Now if you really want dreamy, then you can’t go past the  epitome of Californian folk/rock, Joni Mitchell, with CALIFORNIA. You can sort of see what those bad boys from Crosby, Stills & Nash  and Led Zeppelin saw in her, can’t you?

The song we had to have,of course, was CALIFORNIA GIRLS.When you think of California, you can’t help but think of surfing and, of course, The Beach Boys. They recorded the song in 1965 and it maintains its popularity today, simply because it sums up everything that is great about the beach lifestyle.

Even Kings of Leon do a song about this sunny state.  However, CALIFORNIA WAITING doesn’t sound like too much fun somehow.  Here they are performing on the Jonathan Ross show:

We finished the show with LA WOMAN, from the last studio album recorded by The Doors before Jim Morrison’s death in July 1971. It’s arguably the most blues/rock oriented tracks that the band recorded.

Now if you would like to contribute to next week’s show, and I hope you do, then the topic will be one that’s close to my heart: SHOPPING. Drop me a line if you have a suggestion or a request.

And as the governor of California would say….. I’LL BE BACK.

Here’s this week’s complete playlist:

California Here I Come – Al Jolson

California Dreaming – The Very Best of Bobby Womack, Bobby Womack

The Promised Land – Chuck Berry Greatest Hits, Chuck Berry

Save Me San Francisco – Save Me San Francisco, Train

Going to California – Led Zeppelin IV, Led Zeppelin

Coming into Los Angeles – Woodstock 1969, Arlo Guthrie

All I Wanna Do – Sheryl Crow

California Sun – The Rivieras

It Never Rains In Southern California – Albert Hammond

Californication – Californication, Red Hot Chili Peppers

Do You Know the Way to San Jose – Her All Time Greatest Hits, Dionne Warwick

California Blue – Mystery Girl, Roy Orbison

Hotel California – Hotel California, Eagles

California Gurls – California Gurls, Kate Perry ft. Snoop Dogg

California Love – All Eyez On Me, 2pac ft. Dr.Dre

Hollywood (Down On Your Luck) – Renegade, Thin Lizzy

Mendocino – Sir Douglas Quintet

California – Orange County Soundtrack, Phantom Planet

Santa Monica – Everclear

Sittin’ On The Dock Of The Bay – Otis Redding

Whittier Blvd. – Latin Oldies, Thee Midniters

Dani California – Stadium Arcadium, Red Hot Chili Peppers

Free Falling – Tom Petty

California – Joni Mitchell, Joni Mitchell

California Girls – Made in U.S.A., The Beach Boys

California Waiting – Holy Roller Novocaine, Kings of Leon

LA Woman – Legacy: The Absolute Best, The Doors

Next week:  SHOPPING!
Listen to Lyn McCarthy at the Theme Park on BayFM, Tuesdays 4-6pm, Sydney time
Also streaming via BayFM
Tragically also on Facebook and Twitter
Email me at: lyn.themeparkradio@gmail.com

THE ENVIRONMENT

I love the major prize in BayFM‘s Subscriber Drive this year. It’s a trip to Broome and the Kimberley, in conjunction with the Save The Kimberley action group. So I thought it was a great opportunity to create a playlist  on THE ENVIRONMENT.

We opened the show with a locally produced track from a group of young people who are concerned about climate change. They came together at a hip-hop recording workshop in the country town of Kyogle in 2007. The result: PROTECT THE WORLD. The kids were aged between 11 and 17 and wrote the words on the spot and played all the instruments. Check it out:

Another  song about the environment that really hits home is GASOLINE from Sheryl Crow. She’s so great when she’s singing about something substantial, isn’t she?

The Cranberries  tell us that TIME IS TICKING OUT: “We’d better think about the consequences, We’d better think about the global senses, The time went out, the time went out.”

Cerrone’s song SUPERNATURE was released in 1977 and crossed over to both pop and soul charts. An interesting bit of trivia: the lyrics were written by a young Lene Lovich, although she wasn’t credited.

Gorillaz is a band that fascinates me with its merge of music and art. They have a brilliant site, so rather than me babble on here about them, go to www.gorillaz.com. Right now I’m listening to their  PLASTIC BEACH album. The track of the same name features Mick Jones & Paul Simonon from The Clash. Say no more.

Way back in 1971 Marvin Gaye broke ground with his song MERCY MERCY ME (the Ecology). It’s from his album, What’s Goin’ On and features The Funk Brothers on instrumentals and a leading sax solo by Wild Bill Moore. Brilliant stuff. Here’s Gaye at the Montreux Festival, 1980:

The John Butler Trio’s song SOMETHING’S GOTTA GIVE was only released in Australia. It came out in 2004 and is an interesting blend of funk, rock, blues, roots and the traditional sound of a jam band.

An absolute classic is Joni Mitchell’s BIG YELLOW TAXI: “They paved paradise/And put up a parking lot.” With that one line, Joni Mitchell created an everlasting metaphor for the ongoing effects of industrial development on the natural world. Big Yellow Taxi is one of the great environmental laments of the modern age, a breezy little tune that describes a world where DDT is used freely and trees are relegated to a museum.

I thought I might include some Kraftwerk for all the techheads and others (like me) who love this highly influential band from Germany.  RADIOACTIVITY is perfect for this week’s theme:

Neko Case suggests that you NEVER TURN YOUR BACK ON MOTHER EARTH. It’s from her Middle Cyclone album. A prophetic follow up came from The Beach Boys with DON’T GO NEAR THE WATER:

Tegan and Sara are a Canadian duo (they’re actually identical twins). I love their song OUR TREES. A perfect follow up to that was Jack Johnson’s ANYTHING BUT THE TRUTH.

Despite what Michael Stipe says about this song being about oppression, I always thought that the R.E.M. song, FALL ON ME, was about acid rain and it’s effect on the environment. Well I suppose you have a right to feel oppressed when governments keep refusing to do anything substantial about climate change.

Singer songwriter Missy Higgins is politically pro-active and it was great to air an interview with her during the show about Broome and the Kimberley. Here’s an extended version of that interview from the Save the Kimberley site:

Another activist/musician is, of course, Ben Harper. His song EXCUSE ME MISTER is just so relevant right now, with its mention of pollution of our waterways. Are you listening BP?

John Mayer is WAITING ON THE WORLD TO CHANGE. Me too John, me too.

Massive Attack were encouraged to get into the recording studio in 1991 to record their debut album Blue Lines, by Nenah Cherry. She consequently sang back up on our pick from this album, HYMN OF THE BIG WHEEL. In this clip Deborah Miller, who tours with Massive Attack on a regular basis, does a brilliant job of back-up/support.

MONKEY GONE TO HEAVEN, is a song by the American alternative rock band, the Pixies. It’s from their 1989 album Doolittle.  The song references environmentalism and biblical numerology and was the first Pixies song to feature guest musicians:  two cellists, Arthur Fiacco and Ann Rorich, and two violinists, Karen Karlsrud and Corine Metter.

Our final song of the day was one I’d like to dedicate to all those lost in Pakistan’s devastating floods: Jackson Browne with BEFORE THE DELUGE.

I’d like to thank everyone who subscribed during Theme Park over the last two shows. Thank you so much! We’ll be drawing a winner for our Camp Quality holiday at Possum Creek Eco Lodge on next Tuesday’s show, so tune in then. And if you want to go into that draw, and you haven’t subscribed yet, that’s Ok. When you do subscribe just say that Theme Park is the show you want to be acknowledged on. We’ll give you a shout out next week. Good luck to all of you. I hope that you are lucky enough to win one of the daily prizes, the additional prize for business subscribers of 30 radio spots, or the major prize of the trip to the Kimberley.

I’d love to hear from you with your requests for next week’s show when the topic will be SPRINGTIME. Can you believe its almost here? Yay!

Here’s this week’s complete playlist:

Protect the World – Kyogle Kids

Gasoline – Detours, Sheryl Crow

Time Is Ticking Out – Wake Up And Smell The Coffee, The Cranberries

Supernature – Cerrone

Plastic Beach Ft. Mick Jones & Paul Simonon – Plastic Beach, Gorillaz

Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology) – What’s Going On, Marvin Gaye

Something’s Gotta Give – Triple J’s Hottest 100 Volume 12, The John Butler Trio

Big Yellow Taxi – Ladies of the Canyon, Joni Mitchell

Radioactivity – The Mix, Kraftwerk

Never Turn Your Back On Mother Earth – Middle Cyclone, Neko Case

Don’t Go Near The Water – Surf’s Up, The Beach Boys

Like The Weather – MTV Unplugged, 10,000 Maniacs

Our Trees – Tegan & Sara

Anything But The Truth – To The Sea, Jack Johnson

Fall on Me – Lifes Rich Pageant, R.E.M.

Going North – Missy Higgins

Excuse Me Mister – Fight for Your Mind, Ben Harper

Waiting on the World to Change – Continuum, John Mayer

Hymn Of The Big Wheel – Blue Lines, Massive Attack

Monkey Gone to Heaven – Wave of Mutilation: The Best of Pixies, The Pixies

Before The Deluge – Late For The Sky  (Gold Disc), Jackson Browne

Next week: SPRINGTIME

Listen to Lyn McCarthy at the Theme Park on BayFM, Tuesdays 4-6pm, Sydney time

Also streaming on http://www.bayfm.org

Tragically also on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/maccalyn

Email me at: lyn.themeparkradio@gmail.com

LIFE’S LESSONS

You’re born, you learn, you work, you may reproduce and then you die. That’s pretty much it. But being human, we’re designed to question, argue and seek meaning in our life. We don’t all want the same thing: the kind-hearted want an explanation for poverty and suffering; the ambitious try to rise above everyone else and if you’re depressed you may be looking for a reason to even get out of bed in the morning. Yes, life’s a puzzle and I’m not sure that there are any definite answers. But songwriters can’t help themselves. Like all artists they’re fascinated by life’s mysteries.

HAPPY TALK, by jazz greats Nancy Wilson and Cannonball Adderley, is a great example of a Life Lesson song. Yeah, if you don’t have a dream, how are you going to make a dream come true? My dream for the next two weeks, at least, is that our wonderful community radio station, BayFM 99.9, gets as many annual subscriptions as possible because we’re in full Major Subscriber Drive mode at the moment. It made for a really busy show which was also loads of fun.

We got the show moving with one of my favourite artists. It’s a song that has one of the best messages, especially for an optimist like me: YOU CAN GET IT IF YOU REALLY WANT by Jimmy Cliff. Here he is perfoming the song with the Jools Holland Rythymn & Blues Band:

My choice of a Bob Marley song, and there were a few with life lesson lyrics to choose from, was his energetic attack on religions – the ones that neglect to preach “what life is worth”. The song, of course, is GET UP STAND UP.

Bob Dylan has a great life lesson song: DON’T THINK TWICE, IT’S ALRIGHT. Something I didn’t have to thinktwice about was the opportunity to work with Camp Quality over the next two weeks of BayFM’s Subscriber Drive. Camp Quality is a fantastic organisation that supports children suffering from cancer. They believe that laughter is the best medicine and so they aim to bring optimism and  happiness to these children and their families. Jana Ayre, who volunteers for Camp Quality in the Northern Rivers co-hosted the show with me this week, because we had a very special prize for Theme Park listeners who subscribe to the station before August 29th.

Thanks to Possum Creek Eco Lodge in the hinterland of Byron Bay, we are offering a Camp Quality family a respite break. This holiday will be donated in one lucky subscriber’s name and that subscriber then receives the tax deduction for the donation. It’s a fantastic prize, based on kindness and community spirit – and you can’t get better than that!  If you’re reading this and are inspired to subscribe and help keep community radio alive, whether you live in the Northern Rivers or not, just go online to http://www.bayfm.org and follow the prompts. Don’t forget to cite Theme Park as your favourite program!

Someone who did call in during the show to subscribe was a new resident in Byron, David Bridge. And he gets a special mention here because he also requested a terrific life lesson song for the show: UP THE JUNCTION from Squeeze. Thank you David!  Now, this is how to write a complete story about everyone’s life in a little over 3 minutes:

Another goodie from our British songwriters is ON THE EDGE OF A CLIFF from The Streets, known to his Mum as Mike Skinner. Check it out:

I became a big fan of The Drive By Truckers when they appeared at the Byron Blues Festival a couple of years back. I even bought the t-shirt (now that’s commitment!). They do a great Life Lesson song –  most people share the experience described by singer Patterson Hood and his 83-year-old friend on WORLD OF HURT: “To love is to feel pain.” The lesson here, I think, is to accept that pain can also be a positive thing.

De La Soul have a different kind of lesson. They reckon that sometimes you just have to TREAD WATER. They use cartoon creatures to get the message across. Very cute.

SO YOU WANT TO BE A ROCK N ROLL STAR? Well, the Byrds have some advice for you:  All you have to do is get an electric guitar, take some time and learn how to play? Sounds easy enough. But maybe life is like that: Practice makes perfect.

Midway through the show the lovely Gaudi from a new restaurant in Byron, Italian at the Pacific, came in to draw the daily prize for one lucky subscriber. The prize, a day with the chef of the restaurant and dinner for 8 people was won by Craig McGregor whose daughter Claire is a regular contributor to the show (sorry couldn’t fit in Coward of the Country this week Claire!) and another daughter Sarah, a fantastic musician. So I know that this big family will absolutely love this brilliant prize.

THAT LUCKY OLD SUN, by Dean Martin, our weather song for today was suggested by Andrew who also subscribed again this year on Theme Park, so thank you so much for supporting BayFM Andy.

Next up it was a double dose of Ska: Jools Holland and Prince Buster with ENJOY YOURSELF and Dandy Livingstone with RUDY, A MESSAGE TO YOU.

Lots of subscribers ringing in by this stage (thank you one and all!), so I thought a great piece of disco was appropriate ’cause my spirit was uplifted by all the support. The song is one that really speaks to me: YOUNG HEARTS RUN FREE from Candi Staton. Here she is with a 1999 re-recording and video of her 1976 classic:

I think that QUE SERA, SERA (“whatever will be, will be”) has to be the ultimate Life Lesson song, don’t you? Look,  I know that Doris Day pretty much owns this tune but the version we played this week was by Sly & The Family Stone. I was feeling in a funky mood, you see.

One of many suggestions from regular contributor Robyn had to be included, if only because it’s title was perfect: LIFE’S LESSONS from Lynyrd Skynyrd. And then it was one for Frank Zappa fanatic, Hudson: COSMIK DEBRIS:

Our major prize for those subscribing this year is an amazing trip to Broome and the Kimberley region of Western Australia. It’s in conjunction with the environmental group, Save The Kimberley. A great supporter of this cause is musician Xavier Rudd. And a great song with a life lesson, that he does so well, is BETTER PEOPLE.

Robyn had another request for a perfect Life Lesson song: DON’T STOP BELIEVING from Journey. So the least I can do is upload the video clip:

We closed the show with a classic:  “You have to know when to hold em, you have to know when to fold em, know when to walk away, know when to run”. Yep, Kenny Rogers with THE GAMBLER. There was just a little bit of time, too, for a snatch of the Stones with YOU CAN’T ALWAYS GET WHAT YOU WANT. So because we didn’t get to play it all the way through, I’ll give them their due here. Check out a very young David Frost and  an even younger Rolling Stones performing live in 1969:

Thanks to Jana from Camp Quality for coming in and helping host the show this week and to the many listeners who rang to subscribe. Thank you for your support of BayFM, Theme Park and Camp Quality. And if you haven’t subscribed yet, there is still time to get involved in this particular promotion. Just go to the BayFM website at: http://www.bayfm.org and follow the prompts to subscribe. You can also listen to the show online, there, as well.

I’d also love to hear from you with your requests for next week’s show when the topic will be THE ENVIRONMENT. You may be surprised at how many great songs there are on this topic, from all genres. I think this is going to be a very special show.

Here’s this week’s full playlist:

Happy Talk – Nancy Wilson & Cannonball Adderley,

You Can Get It If You Really Want – The Harder They Come, Soundtrack, Jimmy Cliff

Get Up Stand Up – Back To Zion, Bob Marley & The Wailers (incl. Peter Tosh)

Don’t Think Twice, It’s Alright – Best Of Bob Dylan

You’ve Got To Learn – Family/Friends/French Lesson, Nina Simone

Up The Junction – Singles, Squeeze

On The Edge Of A Cliff – Everything Is Borrowed, The Streets

A World Of Hurt – A Blessing And A Curse, Drive By Truckers

Tread Water – Feet High And Rising, De La Soul

So You Want To Be A Rock ‘n’ Roll Star – Byrds/20 Essentia,l The Byrds

That Lucky Old Sun – All Time Greats Vol 3 – The People, Dean Martin (Weather song for this week)

Enjoy yourself – Best Sellers, Jools Holland & Prince Buster

Rudy, A Message To You – This Is Ska!: 16 Original Ska Classics, Dandy Livingstone

Young Hearts Run Free – 54, Vol. 1, Candi Staton

Que Sera Sera (Whatever Will Be Will Be) – Take The Lead (Soundtrack), Sly And The Family Stone

Life’s Lessons – Vicious Cycle, Lynyrd Skynyrd

Cosmik Debris – Apostrophe, Frank Zappa

Better People – White Moth, Xavier Rudd

Don’t Stop Believing – Journey

The Gambler – Kenny Rogers

You Can’t Always Get What You Want – Hot Rocks, 1964-1971 [Disc 2] The Rolling Stones

Next week: THE ENVIRONMENT

Listen to Lyn McCarthy at the Theme Park on BayFM, Tuesdays 4-6pm, Sydney time

Also streaming on http://www.bayfm.org

Tragically also on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/maccalyn

Email me at: lyn.themeparkradio@gmail.com

MADNESS

When it comes to popular music, there’s crazy and then there’s CRAZY. According to a lot of the songs in our play-list today, crazy is how you feel when you’re  infatuated with someone and hey, while that can be confusing, its also a lot of fun. Even Sigmund Freud acknowledged: “one is very crazy when in love”.

The good thing about being a bit loopy is that it can produce some great songwriting. And while we included a lot of “crazy in love” type tunes in the show this week, we also entered into some heavy territory with material written by a few of our tortured souls. The truth is that any song about mental illness can make you uncomfortable to some extent, either because its too frivolous or because its too close to the bone. But you know that here at the Theme Park we like to live dangerously.

We opened the show with Gary Jules’ cover of the Tears for Fears song MAD WORLD.  I first heard this version on the brilliantly eccentric movie Donnie Darko. Requested by Clare, it proved to be  a great start to a show full of songs about trying to stay sane in this crazy, crazy world.

We moved on with a couple of fairly harmless tunes about losing your marbles – and from completley different ends of the musical spectrum: I THINK I’M PARANOID from Garbage and TWISTED from jazz legend Annie Ross, with help from Dave Lambert and Jon Hendricks.

A country tune that regards the issue of mental health very seriously indeed is called PSYCHO. The version we played was by Jack Kittel and, to be honest, it really creeped me out. So I was happy to follow with the more innocent NERVOUS BREAKDOWN, essentially an upbeat love song from the great Eddie Cochran.

Let’s get the Australian attitude to insanity into perspective: I had an email during the week from Sue, asking me for the origin of the expression ‘mad as a meat axe’, meaning ‘nuts, crazy or insane’.  Here’s what I discovered: this is a uniquely Australian expression that you won’t find anywhere else in the world. It joins a whole group of expressions that start with the words ‘as mad as’ such as ‘mad as a beetle’ (the insect that is), ‘mad as a dingbat’, ‘mad as a gum tree full of galahs’ and ‘mad as a cut snake’. These expressions are recorded as far back as 1910 and are nothing more than verbal creativity gone wild.

And talking of wild, we had to include James Brown’s song about his fear that, if  his girlfriend leaves him, he’ll GO CRAZY. And then it was one of the craziest songs (and videos) ever: The Avalanches with FRONTIER PSYCHIATRIST:

Had to include Gnarls Barkley’s hit CRAZY because, not only is it pop perfection, it was requested by both Lynden and Robyn. Al Royal from BayFM’s Friday 10pm slot, asked for INSANE IN THE BRAIN from Cypress Hill. And how could I refuse?

There’s always room for a great jazz standard and this week we included Peggy Lee with YOU’RE DRIVING ME CRAZY. Judi tells me she’s a huge Patsy Cline fan and so, as predictable as it might be, there was no way we were leaving out the queen of country’s signature tune, CRAZY.

Changing the tone somewhat, it was time for a track from someone who knows just a little bit about crazy behaviour: Ozzy Osbourne and Black Sabbath with PARANOID. And you’ve got to love Goldie Lookin’ Chain’s YOUR MISSUS IS A NUTTER, supposedly about Posh & Becks.

According to The Pixies songwriter, Black Francis,  WAVE OF MUTILATION is about “Japanese businessmen doing murder-suicides with their families because they’d failed in business, and they’re driving off a pier into the ocean.” Wild concepts like this make The Pixies a hard act to follow, but Beth Hart gives it a good shot with a cover of Belinda Carlisle’s LEAVE THE LIGHT ON:

The novelty song, HOORAY, HOORAY, I’M GOING AWAY was recorded in 1947, by Beatrice Kay, and it’s an obvious forerunner to Napolean 14th’s 60’s hit, THEY’RE COMING TO TAKE ME AWAY, HA HA. Born in 1907, Beatrice was a singer, vaudevillian, stage and film actress and she even hosted her own radio show. She died in 1979.

Still alive and kicking is the wonderful Mose Allison who gave us one of the ‘crazy in love’ songs that make up a lot of this week’s show: LOST MIND. But if you’re looking for authenticity in your songs about madness, then country singer Porter Wagoner is your man. He wrote THE RUBBER ROOM after spending some time in a mental hospital for a little R&R.

Which brings us to 19th NERVOUS BREAKDOWN from the Rolling Stones. Released in 1966 on the Aftermath album, it’s well known for Bill Wyman’s dive-bombing bass line at the end of the song:

But if you want to talk scary mad, then it has to be the brilliant PSYCHO KILLER from the one and only Talking Heads.

Whew, I was feeling the need for a little more lightness in the list. Relief came with one of the great Blues artists, Little Walter, with CRAZY MIXED UP WORLD.  And despite the title of the song, there is nothing but pure joy in the song that gave a certain Ska group their name:  from Prince Buster it is, of course, MADNESS. Here he is performing alongside  Suggs and Georgie Fame. How good is that?

Green Day’s contribution to our line-up of loony tunes was BASKET CASE and we followed with one of the first grunge/garage bands, The Sonics, with PSYCHO. Love that band! Kurt Cobain cited them as a great influence, so it was fitting that we included a track from the group whose lead singer and songwriter suffered from manic depression and drug dependency that, unfortunately,  led to his suicide. I chose the Nirvana song they wrote about another tragic public figure: FRANCES FARMER WILL HAVE HER REVENGE ON SEATTLE.

But if you want to talk influential then The Ramones are on everyone’s list. So much to choose from with these guys and requests by multiple listeners, but for me it had to be I WANNA BE SEDATED.

Bruce Hornsby is a versatile and prolific artist. Known for the spontaneity and creativity of his live performances, Hornsby draws frequently from classical, jazz, bluegrass, folk, Motown, rock, blues and jam band musical traditions with his songwriting.  But we didn’t play one of his originals today but instead it was a great version he does of Elton John’s MADMAN ACROSS THE WATER.

Theme Park is followed by a great show called Postmodern Backlash, (still not quite sure what that means!), and its hosted by Hudson. So because I know that he loves his calypso music I also included The Mighty Sparrow with MAD BOMBER.

We finished the show with Pink Floyd’s SHINE ON YOU CRAZY DIAMOND. The song is their tribute to former band member Syd Barrett who left the band in 1968 amidst speculation of mental illness aggravated by heavy drug use. As gloomy as that sounds it’s a beautiful piece of music and a fitting end to the program.

Next week I’ll be celebrating Australia’s first female Prime Minister (go Julia!) with a show on WOMEN. I’d love to receive your requests and suggestions.

And here’s my final word on madness: Remember what Hunter S Thompson had to say: “I wouldn’t recommend sex, drugs or insanity for everyone, but they’ve always worked for me.”

Here’s this week full list:

Mad World – Donnie Darko Soundtrack,  Gary Jules

I Think I´m Paranoid – Version 2.0, Garbage

Twisted – Jazz Legends: Divas (Disc 2), Annie Ross +Lambert/Hendricks

Movie Clip – Insane Asylum

Psycho – Jack Kittel

Nervous Breakdown – Eddie Cochran

I’ll Go Crazy – Try Me, James Brown

Frontier Psychiatrist – Frontier Psychiatrist, The Avalanches

Crazy – Gnarls Barkley

Insane in the Brain – Black Sunday, Cypress Hill

You’re Driving Me Crazy – While We’re Young, Peggy Lee

Crazy – Patsy Cline

Paranoid – Paranoid, Black Sabbath

Mad Lad – You Never Can Tell (His Complete Chess Recordings, Chuck Berry

Your Missus Is A Nutter – Goldie Lookin’ Chain

Wave of Mutilation – Pump up the Volume [Motion Picture Soundtrack], The Pixies

Leave The Light On – Leave the Light On, Beth Hart

Hooray Hooray I’m Going Away  –  Beatrice Kay

Lost Mind – Promised Land, Mose Allison

The Rubber Room – Porter Wagoner

19th Nervous Breakdown – Hot Rocks, 1964-1971 [Disc 1], The Rolling Stones

Clockwork Orange clip

Psycho Killer – Talking Heads

Crazy Mixed Up World – Rock N’ Roll ’50s Blues Essentials, Little Walter

Madness – Prince Buster

Basket Case – Dookie, Green Day

Sound grab: Psycho/The Murder – Psycho/Hitchock, Composer Bernard Hermann/Los Angeles Philharmonic

Psycho – Maintaining My Cool, The Sonics

Frances Farmer Will Have Her Revenge on Seattle – In Utero, Nirvana

I Wanna Be Sedated – The Ramones

Madman Across the Water – Two Rooms: Celebrating the Songs of Elton John, Bruce Hornsby

Mad Bomber – King Sparrow’s Calypso Carnival, The Mighty Sparrow

Shine On You Crazy Diamond  – Wish You Were Here, Pink Floyd

Next week: WOMEN

Listen to Lyn McCarthy at the Theme Park on BayFM, Tuesdays 4-6pm, Sydney time

Also streaming on http://www.bayfm.org

Tragically also on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/maccalyn


CHANGE

Theme Park is now in Drive Time! I’m very excited, (explanation points aside, can you tell?). To celebrate, the topic this week was CHANGE. There were songs about every possible variety of change: political, social, cultural, emotional, physical, even the kind you find at the bottom of your handbag when you most need it.

BayFM is now in its Winter season and with Theme Park’s new time of Tuesdays 4-6pm, you may have only just discovered us. So, if this is your first visit, the idea is not to find a list of the “best” songs on a subject, because “best” is boring and more or less just involves me reaffirming how great the Beatles, Radiohead and Roy Orbison are.  No, what we’re trying to create is a thematically coherent playlist with a mix of genres, eras and moods. Some songs you’ll already know; some, maybe, you won’t, and hopefully each week we’ll rediscover the classics, and discover new music, together.

We opened the show with Michael Jackson’s MAN IN THE MIRROR. And what a great message it is: if you want to change the world then start with yourself and your attitude to those less fortunate than yourself. We followed with something a little less serious: the great Ella Fitzgerald with ANYTHING GOES from her album ‘The Cole Porter Songbook’. It was the first album she recorded for the Verve album in 1956.

John Mayer is in Australia at the moment and I’ll forgive his indiscretions in recent interviews because WAITIN’ ON THE WORLD TO CHANGE is such a great track. Here he is with an acoustic version of the song. Very nice.

We followed with the  definitive cover of Bob Dylan’s ALL ALONG THE WATCHTOWER by Jimi Hendrix. Dylan wrote this song at a time that he was experiencing a complete life change, with two young children and a growing interest in the Bible. Hendrix’s version is so highly regarded that Dylan has been quoted as saying: “I liked Jimi Hendrix’s record of this and ever since he died I’ve been doing it that way… Strange how when I sing it, I always feel it’s a tribute to him in some kind of way.”

Everyone’s allowed to change their mind now and again. A couple of terrific songs about the subject are the Cardigans’ ERASE/REWIND and soul singer Tyrone Davis’ CAN I CHANGE MY MIND?

A completely different perspective on change came from the band Blind Melon. The track CHANGE is from their 1992 self-titled debut album and was the first written by lead singer Shannon Hoon, who struggled with a drug dependancy. The song encourages you to change your life when it gets too hard. Unfortunately Hoon found it difficult to take his own advice and he died in 1995, at 28, from an overdose. His grave is inscribed with words from the song.

Do you think money changes you? According to Cyndi Lauper MONEY CHANGES EVERYTHING. Aretha Franklin, on the other hand, reckons MONEY WON’T CHANGE YOU. I think Aretha may have won that round.

Daniel Merriwether received a little bit of help from, rapper, Wale in the song CHANGE. The song and, in fact, the whole album was produced by wunderkid Mark Ronson. Rather than just play the official video clip, here’s a ‘making of’ that you might find interesting.

Country rockers, The Allman Brothers Band, sound as if they have hit rock bottom and are ready to do something about it in the very bluesy CHANGE MY WAY OF LIVING.

Another great rock group is Muse. The song FEELING GOOD is probably best known for Nina Simone’s outstanding recording.  Here, Muse take the optimism of Simon’s standard to a whole other place.

We rounded out the hour with THE REVOLUTION WILL NOT BE TELEVISED. Recorded in 1971, it’s a poem and a song by Gil Scott-Heron, generally considered to be the father of hip-hop and neo soul.

I’M COMING OUT is a joyous disco number from Diana Ross. Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards, of the 70’s Disco band ‘Chic’, wrote and produced the track. Rodgers got the idea for the song when he went to a transvestite club in New York City. He went to the bathroom, and while he was standing at the urinal, he saw three men who were all dressed as Diana Ross.

I love my R&B. Anyone who saw Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings at the Blues Fest a few years ago know what a dynamic group they are. A great song from them is SOMETHING’S CHANGED. We followed with A CHANGE IS GONNA COME. Sam Cooke’s Dylan-inspired, lump-in-the-throat protest song mourns both racial intolerance and his infant son’s fatal drowning. And it’s the most requested song in our list today.

Joni Mitchell’s song BIG YELLOW TAXI is about changes brought about by so-called ‘progress’; “they paved paradise and put up a parking lot.” Sound familiar? And a big shout out to everyone in Mullumbimby, while we’re on the subject of unnecessary change.

David Bowie’s song CHANGES is one you must have predicted. And I’m nothing, if not predictable. We followed with another very predictable track: THE TIMES THEY ARE A CHANGIN’,  although it’s not Bob Dylan but a wonderful version by Nina Simone.

Let’s talk physical change. Can you get any better than Lou Reed’s TAKE A WALK ON THE WILD SIDE? It’s from the Transformer album, recorded in 1972 and produced by David Bowie. “Plucked her eyebrows on the way, shaved her legs and then he was a she.” Yep, that’s what I call change.

Talking of changing teams, Eric Clapton and Steve Winwood contributed a track from their Live From Madison Square Garden album, called, appropriately, TEAM CHANGES. And then it was time to head back to a song about political change: Tracey Chapman with TALKIN’ BOUT A REVOLUTION.

John Legend got some help from Snoop Dogg on I CAN CHANGE. That’s for the right girl,  he asserts. Yeah yeah, heard it all before Johnny.

The Audreys do a gorgeous cover of the INXS song DON’T CHANGE. It challenges you not to change. Because you’re perfectly OK as you are, you know. The song is from the album, Between Last Night and Us. Here they are performing at Woodford Folk Festival, 2009:

We closed the show with a beauty: the Beatles and ACROSS THE UNIVERSE. “Nothings going to change my world.” Well, maybe, but one thing I do know is that change is inevitable and while we might not appreciate it at the time, its all good.

Next week’s theme will be MORE CRED WHEN DEAD. Yes, every track will be from an artist who has passed on to that big disco in the sky and more than likely became more successful after they were gone. Big list to choose from, so inevitably there will be some omissions. But let me know your requests anyway. Love to hear from you.

Here’s this week’s playlist. From this week, I’ll include the album names as well. You can find all songs on iTunes.

Man in the Mirror – Bad, Michael Jackson

Anything Goes – The Cole Porter Songbook (CD1), Ella Fitzgerald

Waiting on the World to Change – Continuum, John Mayer

All Along The Watchtower – The Ultimate Experience, Jimi Hendrix

Erase/Rewind – Gran Turismo, The Cardigans

Can I Change My Mind – Billboard Top 100 Of 1969, Tyrone Davis

Change – Blind Melon, Blind Melon

Money Changes Everything – Twelve Deadly Cyns, Cyndi Lauper

Money Won’t Change You – Lady Soul,  Aretha Frankin

Change – Love & War, Daniel Merriweather (and Wale)

Change My Way of Living – Where It All Begins, The Allman Brothers Band

Feeling Good – The Best of Muse CD2, Muse

The Revolution Will Not Be Televised – The Breaks II, Gil Scott-Heron

I’m Coming Out – Floorfillers 80s Club Classics CD3 – Diana Ross

Something’s Changed – 100 Days, 100 Nights,  Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings

A Change Is Gonna Come – The Man & His Music, Sam Cooke

Big Yellow Taxi – Ladies of the Canyon, Joni Mitchell

Changes – Hunky Dory, David Bowie

The Times They Are a Changin’ – Forever Young, Gifted & Black, Nina Simone

Take a Walk on the Wild Side – Transformer Lou Reed

Team Changes – Live From Madison Square Garden Cd1, Eric Clapton, Steve Winwood

Talkin’ Bout a Revolution – Tracy Chapman, Tracy Chapman

I Can Change feat. Snoop Dogg – Get Lifted, John Legend

Don’t Change – Between Last Night and Us, The Audreys

Across The Universe – Let It Be, The Beatles

Next week: MORE CRED WHEN DEAD

Listen to Lyn McCarthy at the Theme Park on BayFM, Tuesdays 4-6pm, Sydney time

Also streaming on http://www.bayfm.org

Tragically also on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/maccalyn


MACHINES, ROBOTS, COMPUTERS

I purchased my first Apple Computer in 1984 and have been a faithful user ever since. Personal computers were still fairly uncommon then even though, in 1982, Time magazine had declared them the first non-human recipient of its “person of the year” award. “The ‘information revolution’ that futurists have long predicted has arrived”, declared the magazine, “bringing with it the promise of dramatic changes in the way people live and work, perhaps even in the way they think. The world will never be the same.” How right they were.

But everything Time magazine said, in hundreds of words, had already been expressed the year before in the song that opened our program: HOME COMPUTER by Kraftwerk, and in just two lines of lyrics too! “I program my home computer, beam myself into the future.” The group has been incredibly influential ever since. Am I the only one to recognize the theme to Six Feet Under in there somewhere?

Music’s relationship with intelligent machines has been a mass of contradiction. On the one hand, there are songs that express a fear of technology – the harshness the unreliability and the lack of humanity. And on the other, there are songs that yearn for the simple life that machines seem to offer, especially when it comes to your love life. Way back in the 60’s Connie Francis was of the opinion that a ROBOT MAN would solve all her problems. Years later, in 2004,  Amanda Palmer of The Dresden Dolls also thought that an artificial partner could possibly have its advantages. The song was COIN OPERATED BOY.

YOSHIMI BATTLES THE PINK ROBOTS Pt 1 is from The Flaming Lips’ high concept album Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots. The Lips were in top form in 2002 when this track was released. Apparently, the total destruction of evil robots is the name of the game here. More from the mighty Kraftwerk in the form of POCKET CALCULATOR: “By pressing down a special key, it plays a little melody”. That one was for all the book-keepers and accountants out there.

On a show about machines we had to have a song about a Juke Box and what better than Joan Jett, with I LOVE ROCK N ROLL: Yeah, “Put another dime in the jukebox baby”. Other machines included a TIME MACHINE from Grand Funk Railroad and a FRUIT MACHINE from the Tings Tings. As Katie White tells it, she’s fed up with being treated like a gambling device.

Gary Numan and Tubeway Army recorded DOWN IN THE PARK in 1979. It was Numan’s first composition on keyboards and his first release to feature the electronic sound that would become his tradmark. The theme of the song is typical of Numan’s work at the time as it both embraced and feared technology. Here’s a clip from the DVD Urgh! A Music War (1981). Lady Gaga, eat your heart out:

Sufjan Stevens’ contribution to our theme was DEAR MR. SUPERCOMPUTER, from his Avalanche album,  and we followed with Electric Light Orchestra and YOURS TRULY 2095 where we are asked to pity the “cold as ice” IBM that must tolerate a two-timing user.

Melbourne based, Swedish artist Jens Lekman’s  A POSTCARD TO NINA has a shaky connection to this weeks theme. It’s really about him acting as a cover for a friend who is a lesbian but she doesn’t want her family to know. There is a mention of emails, and – wait for it – a lie detector – so hey, how could I leave it out? It’s also quite a nice song. Here’s a clip from a concert he did in Melbourne in 2006. His guitar died, so he played on the uke. Gorgeous. And love the reference to cult film ‘Buffalo 66″.

Are you a fan of Flight of the Conchords? I am. The song ROBOTS, also known as “Humans Are Dead”,  is sung by both Bret and Jermaine. It’s set in a post-apocalyptic “distant future” where all humans are dead and robots have taken over the world. Within the context of the plot of the show, it’s the band’s first music video. Since the band has very limited funds, Murray constructs the robot costumes himself, (“they don’t look like Daft Punk -we wanted ones like Daft Punk”),  and films the video using a mobile phone. Crazy stuff.

Hip-hop trio Deltron 3030 gave us a cartoon villain who loves the idea of creating a “VIRUS to bring dire straits to your environment”.  It’s from their debut album Deltron 3030, released in 2000.

The only cover of a Who song to reach the Top 10, anywhere, is  Elton John’s version of PINBALL WIZARD. It was featured in Ken Russell’s film version of the Tommy opera. The lyrics are forever planted in every baby boomer’s consciousness: “that deaf, dumb and blind kid sure plays a mean pinball.” Here’s an outtake from the film. Makes me want to play pinball again!

James Brown reckons he’s a SEX MACHINE and who am I to argue? Well we had to have at least one song about man as machine didn’t we? And James Brown is the bomb.

I had to play, not one, but, two tracks from Radiohead’s OK COMPUTER ALBUM. First up it was FITTER, HAPPIER. It consists of samples of  music, background sound and lyrics recited by a synthesized voice from the Macintosh Simple Text application. Written after a period of writer’s block, FITTER HAPPIER was described by Thom Yorke as a checklist of slogans for the 1990s, which he considered, the most upsetting thing he’s ever written. We followed with one of their biggest hits, PARANOID ANDROID. This clip was filmed at the 2003 Glastonbury Festival. I so wished I’d been there!

A nice piece of R&B followed with COMPUTER LOVE by Zapp Roger,  featuring vocals by Shirley Murdock and Charlie Wilson of the Gap Band. And then it was Robin Gibb’s interesting attempt at reinventing himself in the 80’s with ROBOT. Sort of a techno/reggae/disco sound. Not sure what I think of it.

Swedish pop star Robyn contributed ROBOT BOY and then it was back to some electro with Daft Punk’s ROBOT ROCK. I’m not crazy about this French duo but of all their releases ROBOT ROCK is one of their best.

More to my liking is the theme to ROBOT CHICKEN, from the cult stop motion animated television series. Brilliant stuff. It was written by Primus lead man Les Claypool.

Styx contributed their classic ROBOTO, from their concept album Kilroy Was Here. The lines in the chorus DOMO ARIGATO, MR ROBOTO have become a catchprase and mean ‘
thank you very much’ in Japanese.

Kraftwerk deserved another outing. This German band came to prominence in the 70’s and 80’s and their distinctive sound was revolutionary then and continues to be highly influential across many genres of music today. We closed the show with COMPUTER WORLD.

This was my last week in the 2-4pm time slot. I’ll still be broadcasting on Tuesdays but I’m very happy to be moving to Drive Time 4-6pm. I hope you’ll continue to tune in to find out what crazy themes I get up to. I’ve been influenced by the move to create a playlist next week based on CHANGE. So if you have any requests, please get in touch.  I’d love to hear from you.

Here’s this week’s complete playlist:

Home Computer – Kraftwerk

Robot Man – Connie Francis

Coin Operated Boy  – The Dresden Dolls

Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots pt. 1 – The Flaming Lips

Pocket Calculator – Kraftwerk

Percolator – The Ventures

I Love Rock and Roll – Joan Jett

Time Machine – Grand Funk Railroad

Fruit Machine – The Ting Tings

Down In The Park –  Gary Numan

Dear Mr. Super Computer – Sufjan Stevens

Yours Truly, 2095 – Electric Light Orchestra

A Postcard To Nina – Jens Lekman

Danger Will Robinson! (Sound grab from Lost in Space)

Robots – Flight Of The Conchords

Virus – Deltron 3030

Pinball Wizard – Elton John

Sex Machine – James Brown

Fitter Happier – Radiohead

Paranoid Android – Radiohead

Computer Love – Zapp & Roger

Robot – Robin Gibb

Robotboy – Robyn

Robot Rock – Daft Punk

Robot Chicken Theme  – Les Claypool

Mr. Roboto – Styx

Computer World – Kraftwerk

All tracks available on iTunes.

Next week: CHANGE

Listen to Lyn McCarthy at the Theme Park on BayFM, Tuesdays 4-6pm, Sydney time

Also streaming on http://www.bayfm.org

Tragically also on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/maccalyn


MEMORY

Memories can haunt us, no matter how much we want to escape them. There are false memories, conflicting memories of the same event and memories that clash with the reality of the present. Thanks to mass media, memory isn’t something that only belongs to us as individuals. When we see scenes at the cinema or television or on DVDs over and over again, they become part of our collective memory. Even if you’ve never seen the film King Kong you know that there’s a scene where a big gorilla climbs up the Empire State Building with a human girl in his hand. And whenever a comedy show or film features a scene where someone is killed or threatened in a shower most people understand it’s a parody of Psycho. So mass media,  film and television in particular, have contributed hugely to a memory that we share with millions of other people.

Unfortunately, we remember melancholy and pleasure in equal measure. The concept of looking back in hindsight is also a bit complicated. It’s easy to write off youthful idealism as simply being naïve as Stevie Wonder did in our opening number YESTERME, YESTERYOU, YESTERDAY. According to Stevie it was all “a cruel and foolish game we used to play”. Well that’s how he remembers it anyway.

And talking of cruel, I can’t imagine anything worse than getting Alzheimer’s disease and Elvis Costello’s song VERONICA is all about that. It tells the story of an old lady who lives in a nursing home and is gradually losing her memory. It was inspired by Costello’s grandmother.

The Ramones want to know DO YOU REMEMBER ROCK ‘N’ ROLL RADIO? Has it ever gone away?

Collecting objects  that remind us of old times should bring back good memories, but that’s not always the case as Soft Cell tell it in MEMORABILIA. Sarah Vaughan would rather experience something that didn’t work out than never do anything at all in  I’D RATHER HAVE A MEMORY THAN A DREAM. The real classic of this triple play, however, was the Shangri-Las with their ode to a lost love affair: REMEMBER (WALKIN IN THE SAND). Here’s a great clip from the excellent “Songmakers Collection” DVD, with interviews with Mary Weiss and writer producer George ‘Shadow’ Morton about this track and their other hit, LEADER OF THE PACK.

Jurassic 5 dug deep into their memory banks for REMEMBER HIS NAME. As did Fall Out Boy for THNKS FR TH MMRS . The Zutons, REMEMBER ME is about those kind of  friends who seem to forget you once they are entrenched in a romantic relationship. Don’t you just hate that!

THOSE WERE THE DAYS is from Cream’s 1968 album Wheels of Fire. The album cover was designed by Australian artist Martin Sharpe and it won the the New York Art Directors Prize for best album cover in 1969. The sound on the album was characterised by a hybrid of blues, hard rock and psychdelic rock, combined with Eric Clapton’s blues guitar, Ginger Baker’s jazz-influenced drumming and the basslines and voice of Jack Bruce.

One of the most beautiful voices I’ve heard belongs to Sarah McLachlan. And one of my favourite songs of hers is one that I  first heard on the soundtrack to the film The Brothers McMullen. It’s called  I WILL REMEMBER YOU.

Otis Redding’s name is synonymous with the term ‘soul’ and we had to include his classic with I’VE GOT DREAMS TO REMEMBER. Redding died at the very early age of 26 but his memory is kept alive with the Youth Educational Dream Foundation and a very good website. Go to: http://www.otisredding.com/

British group Bloc Party look back regretfully on an opportunity for love that wasn’t realised in I STILL REMEMBER:

The Kinks wonder what ever happened to their childhood friend in  DO YOU REMEMBER WALTER? It’s from their album The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society.

The Supremes reflected on the good and bad memories of a love that used to be in REFLECTIONS while Jimi Hendrix had only good memories of a past love, (he even wants her back!),  in REMEMBER.

Relationships that survive depend partly on shared memories, but those memories need constant topping up.  Indie rockers, Yo La Tengo document this well in OUR WAY TO FALL.

There was a fair bit of nostalgia in this week’s show, (well what did you expect?) and one of my faves was The Platters with REMEMBER WHEN. Also fitting the bill was Elvis Presley who seems somewhat confused in I FORGOT TO REMEMBER TO FORGET.

Memories, daydreams, disconnected thoughts – they fill our minds in a never-ending rush. Our next song, THE WINDMILLS OF YOUR MIND, evoked this beautifully, conveying the incredible weirdness of our thought processes. If you’re after nostalgia then what about Noel Harrison with the original version of the song that served the film The Thomas Crown Affair so well.

Ok back to recent memories. Jack Johnson wonders DO YOU REMEMBER? and P.M. Dawn are SET ADRIFT ON A MEMORY. Thanks to Lynden for suggesting that one and several others on our list today.

One of my favourite films deals with amnesia. Memento, starring Guy Pearce, and directed by Christopher Nolan, is a fascinating story about someone who can’t store new memories. A song about about the subject is I DON’T REMEMBER by Peter Gabriel.

Bob Dylan’s memory song is a love ballad from the Empire Burlesque album: I’LL REMEMBER YOU. And if its nostalgia that you’re after, consider MEMORIES ARE MADE OF THIS from Dean Martin. An oldie but a goodie, as they say.

I’ll never forget Michael Jackson with REMEMBER THE TIME from the Dangerous album. Another sad memory for me is Freddy Mercury singing THOSE WERE THE DAYS OF OUR LIVES which many think was the song he dedicated to his fellow Queen members when he knew that he was dying.

Back to the 70’s and some Aussie based punk rock: remember The Saints and MEMORIES ARE MADE OF THIS?

We closed the show with a cover of a song that I swore I wouldn’t play this week, but this version is so sweet it had to make the cut: The Waifs with a little help from Clare Bowditch. They’re singing Frank Ifields I REMEMBER YOU.

This week’s theme on MEMORY segues nicely into next week’s topic. My computer crashed last week and I had to invest in a drive with a lot more memory to cope with all the songs that I collect for these shows. So next week its MACHINES, ROBOTS AND COMPUTERS. No Television or Radio songs please because you know they are a whole theme to themselves. and no modes of transport, for the same reason.  But any other gadget or gizmo is up for grabs.

Here’s this week’s complete playlist. All songs available on iTunes.

Yesterme Yesteryou Yesterday – Stevie Wonder

Veronica – Elvis Costello

Do You Remember Rock ‘N’ Roll Radio – The Ramones

Memorabilia – Soft Cell

I’d Rather Have a Memory Than a Dream – Sarah Vaughan

Remember (Walkin’ in the Sand) – The Shangri-Las

Remember his name – Jurassic 5

Thnks fr th Mmrs – Fall Out Boy

Remember Me – The Zutons

Those Were The Days – Cream

I Will Remember You – Sarah Mclachlan

I’ve Got Dreams To Remember – Otis Redding

I Still Remember – Bloc Party

Do You Remember Walter – The Kinks

Reflections – Diana Ross & the Supremes

Remember – The Jimi Hendrix Experience

Our Way to Fall – Yo La Tengo

Remember When – The Platters

I Forgot to Remember to Forget – Elvis Presley

Do You Remember – Jack Johnson

The Windmills Of Your Mind – Noel Harrison

Set Adrift On Memory Bliss – P.M. Dawn

I Don’t Remember – Peter Gabriel

I’ll Remember You – Bob Dylan

Memories Are Made Of This – Dean Martin

Remember The Time – Michael Jackson

Memories Are Made of This – The Saints

Those Were The Days Of Our Lives – Queen

Remember You (feat. Clare Bowditch) –  The Waifs

Next week: MACHINES, ROBOTS & COMPUTERS

Listen to Lyn McCarthy at the Theme Park on BayFM, Tuesdays 2-4pm, Sydney time

Also streaming on http://www.bayfm.org

Tragically also on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/maccalyn

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