Posts from 2nd May 2005

May 05

Twee Fuckers

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Stylus Singles Jukebox, this week with even more me. This time I feature as a lone voice crying out in a wilderness of horror, or a lone horror crying out in a wilderness of good sense, depending very much on your opinion of “Mr. Lonely” by Akon. The title of this post refers to the week’s winner, by the way.

Relationships: The Horrid Truth

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MP3 and text submitted by Martin Skidmore

Joe Tex and Mable John – “The Same Things It Took To Get Me”

I like duets in general, but this is my favourite ever. You expect good strong singing from the stand-up preacher of soul and from the sister of the great Little Willie John (of ‘Fever’ fame). But this is breathtaking. They play an old married couple who’ve let themselves go and stopped trying, each far more interested in blaming the other for their problems than doing anything to change things themselves. It’s basically a parade of insults, set to a rollicking old R&B tune, sung by two terrific talents, Joe in particular letting an unusual amount of bite into his tone. His entrance is magnificent and irresistible, and I defy anyone not to be laughing by the fade.

(This Charly Greatest Hits has “Same Things…” and 43 others.)

On the Streets

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One of the things I do like about election time are the posters. I like the posters displayed in people’s windows, although that seems to be less and less common these days. The only posters on our street were ours and the flat across the road where someone else we know lives, a very active labour enthusiast. Ours have come down since we’re trying to sell the flat!! (property before politics = sign of the times). But I especially like the posters on lampposts, which are only allowed to go up in the week before the elections. (Saturday night I think: Lib Dems were early since some had gone up at the edge of the Meadows by the time we left the restaurant on Friday night.) I like the sense of political theatre taking to the streets, and although I was tempted to shout abuse at the nationalists putting up theirs yesterday afternoon, I like the thought that this is campaigning at the local level, one of the few really visible bits of party activity which is not driven from central offices (i.e. posters >>> PEBs no contest). I like the colours, and the gentle sense of chaos they give to drab streets. I can’t imagine anyone being persuaded to vote by seeing a poster on a lamppost, but maybe that’s why I like it: one of the few times people involved in politics at the constituency level are allowed to advertise not so much their political party but politics itself. This election may not be much of a political event (in the sense of either a tough competition, or of a genuine choice) but as a celebration of the possibility of politics (and therefore of its possible future reinvention or renewal) the street posters are like a visual check that the body politic is still displaying its vital signs.