Updated (after too long) the list of tunes on the sidebar. I feel like I’ve been hibernating, to be honest: miserable weather, bed-ridden wife, mountains of work – I’ve not had much attention left for music, I’ve just stuck some old favourites on the stereo and let them play. But today is the first day of March, and March is when the year creaks into life. I walked out this morning to buy a paper and a sausage roll and I saw a lot of smiles.

When I got home I downloaded “Dude” by Beenie Man, the year’s first stab at a pop-dancehall anthem, a love duet built around a steel drum sample. I’m sure I read somewhere (Spizzazzz maybe?) a piece about how steel drums are the last refuge of the desperate producer: it made me laugh but on a day when the temperature is just starting to gingerly poke above uncomfortable steel drums are exactly what you want to hear. In the Summer they have this “IT’S SUMMER HAVE FUN NOW OK” feel to them and I need something more languid. Ms.Thing steals the show somewhat on “Dude”, she wants a man who can do it in a van – that kind of rhyme-for-its-own-sake you have to like. Beenie’s best moment is an r-rolling verse (especially “nerrrrd”). Such a relief to hear a good new single!