25
Jan 05

Day 11: So Lonely AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 LOUSY TUNES

I Hate MusicPost a comment • 536 views

Day 11: So Lonely
AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 LOUSY TUNES

I awoke strung up on some sort of makeshift crucifix. Upon further examination it seemed to be constructed from a sun lounger and my wrists were bound by the elastic used to keep the cushions on. Infront of me stood the hideous, hidebound creature whom I had previously seen a’capering and a’rending of flesh.

“Tribute,” it hissed.
“What? The lousy last gasp at a career by eighties Brit-soul no-marks The Pasadenas, who thought writing a song about all their musical heroes would make them as good as said heroes. In some respects they were right, in as much both them and Marvin Gaye were appalling. You missed the Right On in parentheses by the way. But why do you demand such a terrible record?”

“Silence,” it shrieked: a) after I had stopped talking and b) much to my satisfaction. I could not help but overhear some Roxy Music playing in the background which was far beyond my definition of silence. “Where are your records?”
“In a skip in a landfill somewhere. Along with all the sheet music, cds and tapes I could get hold of. When they said home taping was killing music I spent a solid year recording everything that was released in the sixties. What a gyp. Actually home taping is making more copies of music.”
“Quiet. I will ask you one more time, give me your records or I shall have to kill you.”

I had been looking closely at the creature and noticed something very strange. Despite the blood stains and the random bits of fur and claws, it did appear that the voice was coming from deep inside the body. Almost as if this outer-shell was a costume.

“I cannot help but noticing that you have killed everyone else anyway. No I am sorry. I shall not acquiesce. And I mean that in the proper meaning of the word, rather than as quite a clever word to make Noel Gallagher feel he was brainy despite not knowing what it means.”
“Then you should die,” the creature said, which was unfortunately a mistake (not its first) as I used this breadth of time to leap from my crucifix, and rip the carapace off.
“As I expected,” I said as I kneed the woman under the costume leaving her prone. “Sue Lawley.”
“But, but how?” Sue gasped.

“How did I escape. Simple. Elastic is a rubbish thing to tied someone up with, its most salient feature being its elasticity. How did I know it was you? There were clues. The complete works of Shakespeare, the Bibles. The Desert Island. The Discs. Frankly the only thing that surprises me is that you took Roy Plomley’s idea so literally.”
“These records are my treasure, and those minor Radio 4 celebrities are my prey.”
“You are a deluded old newsreader who needs to be punished and whose record library should go with you. And that vent over there seems thoroughly apt.”

At which point I ransacked her record Library and tipped them all down the steaming vent, with a satisfying cracking sound and burnt plastic smell.
“No!” Lawley screamed. At first I believed in some sort of misguided attempt to save her records, but then it became clear. “This is an active volcano, and any chemical imbalance might set it to erupt. Such as half a ton of vinyl.”
“Well I best plug up the vent then,” I said, turfing the newsreader down the hole. However, there were disquieting noises from below the surface. Not just the screams.


THE POLICE: Sue Lawley

Ho ho, you say out there, despite my traumatic experience. Tanya is doing that deathlessly funny thing of mishearing lyrics for comic effect. A staple of columnists, Saturday supplements and bar-room comedians everywhere. So yes, for the record I know that this track was released with the title So Lonely written on the record sleeve, and yes I know that Mr Sting, as an ex-English teacher is unlikely to get his spelling that wrong. But just as Queen do indeed sing “Fried Chicken” at the end of One Vision, it is clear that Gordon is singing “Sue Lawley” here.

To what end would a band in the late seventies devote a track to a middling newsreader, some say the Natasha Kaplinsky of her age? And here is where the cynicism comes in. The Police always had pretensions to cleverness, hence releasing an album with names either in French or long words. Outlandos D’Amour is not even proper French anyway, and the only Synchronicity Sting should expect from me is that between my fist and his nose. But nevertheless, for a man who takes six hours to shag his wife, he has plenty of time to think. And think he did about what a clever publicity wheeze it would be if they sang the name of a minor celebrity in a song.

This is of course the exact same route to fame flogged to death by no-mark one hit wonders R.E.M. in It’s The End Of The World As We Know It and A Tribe Of Toffs with John Kettley Is A Weatherman. And it is hard not to see a kinship between The Police and A Tribe Of Toffs, both with their Tory, authoritarian names and completely lack of usefulness to the human race. What both bands recognized early on was namechecking a sleb is a sure-fire way to get played by the gurning morons who earn a living as breakfast show disc-jockeys. At the time of The Police’s success, said gurner was Mike Read. Who is now responsible for Grief Never Grows Old. You said it, you have not been presenting a radio show for over twenty years, and I still can’t get over its grievous nature.

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