For kicks I’m working through a 30 song challenge meme thing I first saw on Facebook. Rather than do a song a day, though, I’ve decided to break the list into segments and tackle them on a weekly basis until I get to the end of the list. Last week I explored my emotional connection to songs. This week it’s location, location, location!
Challenge six requires a song that reminds me of somewhere. Well, what to pick for this one. I never go anywhere. I was in England in 1997, though, which was the best year for music. Not that Tubthumping by Chumbawumba should qualify, but it got a lot of UK airplay, and was the #2 single there that August, according to Wikipedia. Natalie Imbrouglia was also popular, Torn in particular. I wound up buying her album eventually. I don’t recall if I caved and bought Chumbawumba, too. If I did, I’ve blocked it out. I heard one of the tracks on their new album recently. It was shocking to hear how different it sounded compared to how I remembered them. Sash!, Gala, Ace of Base, Whigfield, Deep Blue Something, The Outhere Brothers.. so many songs I liked then. Raincloud by Lighthouse Family got a lot of play. Their whole album did and I still own it. While I grew to truly hate Notting Hill (from 1999, it turns out), their cover of Ain’t No Sunshine (when she’s gone) is still goose-bump inducing. Tunde Baiyewu kicked ass as a vocalist. (I had to look that up.)
It took me a while to figure out why I had Notting Hill on the mind; I saw Julia Roberts in another horrible romance movie that year which I hate even more, My Best Friend’s Wedding. The Full Monty was the big hit film for me in 1997. So many times better, it can’t even be calculated. It was great to see that one in a British theatre after weeks of being surrounded by Brits. I was already conditioned to hear a variety of accents by that point so I had little trouble grokking the speech of the characters. Every time I hear You Sexy Thing, I remember that movie. (Persephone Theatre hosted the musical stage version last year. It was also terrific, btw. Catch it if you can.)
Other song memories from that trip: the guy I was seeing at the time tried to tell me that the back-up singer in Glass Tiger’s “Don’t You Forget About Me” was a guy who just sounded like Bryan Adams. Dude, dude, dude…don’t screw with a Canadian who knows her ’80s music and owns most of his albums. But he also introduced me to the Corrs (their CD that is, Forgiven, not Forgotten), and “House of Fun” – a song by Madness that I don’t think ever got airplay here. The radio station I was listening to while there had a morning crew that rewrote Pulp’s “Common People” to reflect the country’s insanity over Teletubbies at the time, calling it “Tubby People.” I had the chance to record it on cassette and still have it around somewhere. “Oh, dear me!” the announcer laughs at the end of it. Dear me, indeed. It was quite well done, though.
Challenge seven is a song that reminds me of a certain event. I could pick just about anything, but I think it’ll be Molinos by The Paperboys. I saw them in concert at Mosaic (a folk festival) while I was in Regina going to university. From what I recall, it was a great concert. I hadn’t heard of them before then but their Celtic/folk style was in synch with other bands I liked at the time (Spirit of the West, Great Big Sea, Uisca Beatha, Rawlins Cross, The Mahones) so it was a given they’d be instant favourites. They also recorded a great rendition of I’ve Just Seen a Face. Poking around on Youtube, it’s clear they have a name too similar to other people so finding their stuff is slightly problematic. But, I’ve located a track from an album I know they put out, “The Road to Ellenside.”
Not bad at all, eh?