Week 43 – TBT 2017 – Run to the Hills

This is a bit of a classic from the 80s. With its distinctive riff and incredible vocals, it’s instantly recognisable. For me, Steve Harris doesn’t get as much recognition as he deserves as a song writer but also as a musician. His bass lines are brilliant, fluid and galloping. For someone who plays finger style, it’s unusual to use three fingers rather than two. That’s the secret to his sound, and I can’t recreate it as my ring finger won’t work independently!

I wasn’t really a metal fan when growing up, but I used to love this track, and still do. It’s great that the plight of Native Americans was being raised to the general public even in the UK back then. I think more can be done, but recognising that Westerners stole land and resources that wasn’t theirs is a good start. 

Iron Maiden – Run to the Hills

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Week 42 – TBT 2017 – Transmission

There’s been a lot written recently to raise awareness of mental health issues.  Earlier this year I posted a couple of these TBT articles because rock stars had taken their own lives due to poor mental health, and I thought I’d include this track featuring Ian Curtis, the late singer of Joy Divison, who committed suicide at the age of 23. After he died, the band carried on with new members and a new name – New Order.

This song came to my attention a few years back when SLF covered it at a gig as one of their encores. I enjoyed it so much I rushed home to listen to this original, and loved it. Any time I hear this song, and Joy Division in general, I think about Ian Curtis, gone too soon. 

Joy Division – Transmission

Week 41 – TBT 2017 – Son of Virginia 

I’ve mentioned before that I often listen to podcasts when travelling, and this track has been used on one of my favourite series for a few months now.  The series is called The Social Engineer Podcast and never ceases to be fascinating. They have some really interesting guests talking about a range of aspects around social engineering and psychology, and a while back even had the lead singer of this band on. Oddly enough, there were connections to be made between singing to a crowd and social engineering, and it was an engaging talk. Check out the podcasts, recommended reading and more here

The band are called Clutch, and from what I can tell have been going for quite a few years. I like the fact that this sounds like it’s quite laid back till you actually listen to the lyrics. Maybe it’s because the riff is repeated so often, but I’ve found it very catchy and draws you in. I hope you like it!
Son of Virginia – Clutch

Week 40 – TBT 2017 – Justified and Ancient

Try finding this on Spotify or iTunes and I doubt you’ll be able to get the original. But for some reason it’s all over YouTube, which is just as well for us! 

As a regular ice cream eater, I thought it would be fun to include a song that has “ice cream van” in the lyrics in my TBT series. The song itself is relatively simple, but has a great riff, and Tammy Wynette’s voice goes perfectly with it.  Chill out and enjoy the Kings of the Low Frequency – KLF – who also appeared as The Timelords singing Doctorin the Tardis…

Justified and Ancient – KLF

Week 39 – TBT 2017 – Let’s stay together

This one is just for Dee. It’s “our song”, and I love her very much. 

I guess Ive been a bit of a blues and soul mood recently, and this song just oozes quality. Such wonderful lyrics and so well sung. And the lyrics are just how I feel about Dee. It’s awesome, just like my lady, 

Al Green – Let’s stay together

Week 38 – TBT 2017 – Boom Boom

How are you doing this week? Still on a high from listening to Aretha last week? Let’s keep the flying going with this track, also seen in The Blues Brothers. John Lee Hooker gives a great performance here, and the crowd help illustrate the passion and joy in the music. 

This song appears to be all about a youngster who is having problems at home because all he wants to do is play music. His parents finally relent and the youngster is elated. The structure of the song is very simple, as most blues is, but from that simplicity it draws great power. 

Oh, and it helps that I think that John Lee Hooker has a great voice, perfectly suited to his songs. 

John Lee Hooker – Boom Boom

 

Sober for October


I’m fundraising again, this time for Macmillan Cancer Support. My challenge is to get through the 31 days of October without having any alcohol, and I’m very confident I can do it. Last year I managed 31 days without caffeine which I think was much harder. 

I know that a lot of people are doing a lot of fundraising, but I hope you can find a couple of pounds to spare to sponsor me too. Just go to https://www.gosober.org.uk/users/steve-mair and give a little, please. 

Thank you in advance, you’re helping change the world. 

The guy that speaks his mind

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