Apr 14


FT20 comments • 1,379 views

sunraImagine YOU have been appointed (time-travelling) decider on the 1997 multi-artist version of Perfect Day?

Who would you keep? Who would you drop? Who would you draft?

Assume you have all the budget you could possibly need, and all the persuasive powers to cut through shyness (or else tell the story of who you think you’d fail to coax in…)

Is it still a lobbying ad for the BBC? Is it an ad for the BBC today (as opposed to 15+ years ago)? Is it something else entirely? You curate and you explain!

Would you strive for:
less of the wrong kind of cool (paging wichitalineman)?
less of the wrong kind of soul (paging punctum)?
less of the wrong kind of teenybop (paging puking purplekylie)?
less of the wrong kind of rap (paging everyone!)?
less of the wrong kind of reap!
less metal? (ok can’t actually be less metal i don’t think)
less repeat appearance-y?
less top-of-the-range nobbers phoning it in? (YES s/b FEWER SHUT UP)
less quilty pleasure (more actual real pluralism)? (yes i said QUILTY SHUT UP)
less non-amazing?
less unappealing to YOU THE CURATOR? (be bold! be interesting!)
less 90s? (go wild! you can after all travel in time)

List suggestions and manifestos in the thread and we will take it to RIGOROUS POLL SCIENCE

And under the cut, the 29 artists in the BBC’s original, just to remind everyone:
Lou Reed: Just a perfect day, drink sangria in the park
Bono: And then later, when it gets dark
Sky of Morcheeba: We go home
David Bowie: Just a perfect day
Suzanne Vega: Feed animals in the zoo
Elton John: Then later a movie too, and then home
Boyzone: Oh, it’s such a perfect day
Lesley Garrett: I’m glad I spent it with you
Burning Spear: Oh, such a perfect day
Bono: You just keep me hanging on
Thomas Allen You just keep me hanging on
Brodsky Quartet: (instrumental link)
Heather Small: Just a perfect day
Emmylou Harris: Problems all left alone
Tammy Wynette: Weekenders on our own
Shane McGowan: It’s such fun
Young Musician of the Year Sheona White: (instrumental link)
Dr John: Just a perfect day
David Bowie: You made me forget myself
Robert Cray: I thought I was someone else
Huey: Someone good — yeah
Ian Brodie: Oh, it’s such a perfect day
Gabrielle: I’m glad I spent it with you
Dr John: Oh, such a perfect day
Evan Dando: You just keep me hanging on
Emmylou Harris: You must keep me hanging on
Courtney Pine & BBC Symphony Orchestra: (instrumental break)
Brett Anderson: You’re going to reap just what you sow
Visual Ministery Choir: Reap! reap! reap!
Joan Armatrading: You’re going to reap
Laurie Anderson: Just what you sow
Visual Ministery Choir: Reap! reap! reap!
Heather Small: You’re going to reap just what you sow — yeah
Visual Ministery Choir: Reap! reap! reap!
Tom Jones: Oh, you’re going to reap just what you sow
Visual Ministery Choir: Reap! reap! reap!
Heather Small: You’re going to reap just what you sow — yeah
Visual Ministery Choir: Reap! reap! reap what you sow!
Lou Reed: Oh, what a perfect day


  1. 1
    Rory on 6 Apr 2014 #

    This is going to take some thought, but clearly Crazy Frog needs to do the “reap, reap, reap”s. (This is FT proper and not Popular, and the Bunny cannot reach us here.)

  2. 2
    James BC on 6 Apr 2014 #

    Some people I think might be on it if it was recorded now, for better or worse:
    – Suggs
    – Neil Tennant
    – Jools Holland
    – Dizzee Rascal/other British rappers
    – someone from the world of dance music, maybe Jocelyn Brown? Or does Heather Small count for that?
    – Jarvis
    – Kylie
    – Will.I.Am.

  3. 3
    thefatgit on 6 Apr 2014 #

    This would be a fantastic challenge. Given that it’s still an advert for the BBC, but for today and not just limited to the music. And time travel is possible, so the deceased can be involved…

    Lou Reed, Laurie Anderson, David Bowie, Bono, Brett Anderson, Tammy Wynette, Suzanne Vega, Lesley Garrett, Brodsky Quartet, Courtney Pine

    Ditch: Huey Morgan, Sky Morcheeba, Elton John, Boyzone, Burning Spear, Thomas Allen, Heather Small, Emmylou Harris, Shane McGowan, Sheona White, Dr John, Robert Cray, Ian Broudie, Gabrielle, Evan Dando, Joan Armatrading, Visual Ministry Choir, Tom Jones

    Bryn Terfel, Benedict Cumberbatch, Genesis Breyer P. Orridge, Tinie Tempah, The Saturdays, Taylor Swift, Kyary Pamyu Pamyu, Gregg Wallace, The Military Wives, Bob Marley, Bryan Ferry, Fiona Bruce, Ben Whishaw, Alexander Armstrong & Richard Osman, Peter Capaldi, Kate Humble, Sir Paul McCartney, Clare Balding, Rita Ora, Jack Steadman, Thom Yorke

    The actors and presenters are deliberate, because this is what the BBC is about now. Doctor Who and Sherlock represent the BBC’s exportable programming. Armstrong & Osman represent BBC’s probably most successful game show. Fiona Bruce serves 2 purposes: News and Antiques Roadshow, which is another way of saying NOW and THEN. Gregg Wallace, Kate Humble and Clare Balding represent Food, Nature and Sport respectively. I’ve thrown in a couple of extra choices to remove repeated lines in some places.

    Have the video directed by Danny Boyle. Have the single produced by Trevor Horn.

  4. 4
    Kat but logged out innit on 6 Apr 2014 #

    As Rave ’92 only has 20 different artists on it I will have to think outside the (big fish small fish cardboard) box. SO! For my 140bpm mix I would have the following dudes in front of various Amiga-generated backgrounds:

    2 Unlimited (don’t be afraid it’s just the Perfect Day), Mark E Smith (it’s such fun), Justine Frischmann (more sullen than Evan Dando), Neil Tennant (problems all left alone), Elaine Page & Barbra Dickson (I’m glad I spent it with YOOOOO), Origibabes (for the majority of the ‘reap’s), Enya (for the rest of them). Nile and Bernie to do the instrumental bit. Keith Flint, Gala, Bruce Dickinson, Daniel Bedingfield, Will Young, Frankie Vaughan, Fergie and (why not) Westlife for the rest.

  5. 5
    Izzy on 6 Apr 2014 #

    1: I’m loving the Crazy Frog’s appearance. I’d probably throw in, in the same spirit: Eminem, Peter Frampton, any x-factorite who has an Amy Winehouse affectation, Bonehead, and a wasted Pete Doherty.

    The Daft Punk robots could probably do a genuinely-lovely coda though.

  6. 6
    Garry on 6 Apr 2014 #

    Courtney Pine has requested he repays a guesting appearance by ditching the orchestra and replace it with his old collaborative pal Mike (sorry Michael) Oldfield for the instrumental bit. (In no way is Oldfield allowed to sing).

    So sax, double speed guitar (a loon or too) with added Humphrey Lyttleton on trumpet for services rendered over the decades.

    Meanwhile Sparks has demanded to be included, mistakenly believing they have have owned the BBC since 1994.

  7. 7
    Rory on 7 Apr 2014 #

    It’s the all-comedy Perfect Day, in support of BBC Radio 4 Extra!

    Keep: Tom Jones.

    Ditch: Everybody else.

    Draft: Peter Sellers (as Bluebottle), Spike Milligan (Eccles), Harry Secombe (Seagoon), Peter Cook, Dudley Moore, Joanna Lumley (Patsy), Jennifer Saunders (Edina), Eric Idle, Michael Palin, Terry Jones, Neil Innes, Vivian Stanshall, Nigel Planer (Neil, doing Brett Anderson’s line), Rik Mayall (Rick), Adrian Edmonson (Vyvyan), Alexei Sayle, Bill Oddie, Tim Brooke-Taylor, Graeme Garden, Ricky Gervais, Flight of the Conchords, Bernard Cribbins, Pamela Stephenson (doing her Kate Bush impersonation), Mel Smith, Bill Bailey (instrumental break), Noel Fielding, Julian Barratt, Victoria Wood, Tracy Ullman and Joyce Grenfell. With Crazy Frog on the “reap”s.

  8. 8
    swanstep on 7 Apr 2014 #

    It strikes me that Stephin Merrit with the sorts of vocalist line-ups (including St Et’s Cracknell) he assembles on his The Sixths records could do a nice job, as could the larger indie conurbation around Broken Social Scene (Metric’s version is OK).

  9. 9
    punctum on 7 Apr 2014 #

    I don’t see that it needs to be done again, and it shouldn’t have been done in the first place since it symbolises the unappealing mix of fragile ego and schoolmasterly hectoring which characterises the BBC the most. Doing this now would indicate that the BBC is worth saving, and I don’t think it is; repeatedly it runs away from any chances it might take – hey, let’s commission a rather interesting new sitcom on BBC3 and then bury it at half past midnight because we’re afraid, thus finding a handy excuse for winding the station down – and, more seriously, it has this fatal tendency to close in on itself just when it needs to open out most. It lied about Mike Harding being sacked (a certain former 5 Live football commentator probably got paid more money in six months than Harding did in ten years, complete with commemorative 50-years-in-broadcasting “salute”; and let’s not mention Radio 2 devoting an entire weekend to a broadcaster just before he got arrested), it tried to deny stuff about you-know-who for as long as possible; it continues to play unplayable records (the FULL version of Jive Bunny’s “Let’s Party” on POTP) because it guesses no one will listen; it has a jazz show whose D-list celebrity presenter contrives to play as little jazz as possible and makes out he doesn’t know who Peter Clayton was, it has a crass and terrible Sounds Of The Eighties show with a presenter who talks to her listeners as though they are two-year-olds with Down’s syndrome. And this morning 6Music, a station whose publicly funded remit is to play stuff other stations don’t, played “September” by Earth, Wind and Fire, which you could probably have found on six or seven other stations on the dial at the same time. It has a “news” service which pumps out nothing but state propaganda, under the supervision of a former News International panjandrum. It drools itself over a minority party leader with no seats in Parliament but says nothing about other minority parties who do have MPs.

    And it has grotesquely pretentious “advertisements” or “trailers” which probably cost more than some 6Music broadcasters have earned in total over the last ten years. So, another excuse for a hypocritical plea/threat for protection money? No thank you.

  10. 10
    wichitalineman on 7 Apr 2014 #

    I would keep: Lou Reed, Laurie Anderson, David Bowie, Brett Anderson, Tammy Wynette, Suzanne Vega, Elton John, Boyzone, Burning Spear, Emmylou Harris and Ian Broudie.

    I would lose: Bono, Lesley Garrett, Brodsky Quartet, Courtney Pine, Huey Morgan, Sky Morcheeba, Thomas Allen, Heather Small, Shane McGowan, Sheona White, Dr John, Robert Cray, Gabrielle, Evan Dando, Joan Armatrading, Visual Ministry Choir, Tom Jones

    I would bring in: Pharrell Williams, Frankie Valli, Kylie Minogue, Neil Tennant, Kelis, Therese Bazar, Nicki Minaj, Adam Ant, Dickie Valentine, Dennis Wilson (“someone good”), Martin Fry, Anita from 2 Unlimited, Peter Cook, Mark E Smith, Tony Wilson, Mucky Sue, Paul Eddington, Hector from Hector’s House, and Matt Berry to do the operatic bit.

  11. 11
    Garry on 7 Apr 2014 #

    I decided on a BBC World Service versions with:

    Lou Reed, Ibrahim Ferrer, Aster Aweke, Ned Sublette, Angelique Kidjo, Baaba Maal, Lady Blacksmith Mambazo, Yoshimi, Burning Spear, The Mighty Sparrow, Tiken Jah Fakoly, Konono No.1 (inst), Márta Sebestyén, Barbara Morgenstern, Natacha Atlas, Tom Ze, Egberto Gismonti and Nana Vasconelos (inst), Fela Kuti, Omar Souleyman, Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu, Desmond Dekker, Miriam Makeba, Daniele Sepe, Katzenjammers (main inst), Janka Nabay, Albert Kuvezin (reap reap), Hanne Hukkelberg, Jessica Mauboy, Lee Perry

  12. 12
    iconoclast on 7 Apr 2014 #

    @9: Fair enough, there are lots of reasons to bash the BBC, but would you prefer wall-to-wall Murdochvision instead?

    Anyway, I’m leaning towards a “dead US people” version, starring Jim Morrison, Arthur Lee, Gene Clark, Janis Joplin, Laura Nyro, that guy from the song with the Bee Girl, etcetera. Could be quite distinctive.

  13. 13
    punctum on 7 Apr 2014 #

    It’s a bit of a queasy concept all round. Perhaps it would be better if all the participants were replaced by Sky Bet League Two players. Oxford United could certainly do with the leg-up at the moment :-(

  14. 14
    sükråt tanned rested unlogged and awesome on 7 Apr 2014 #

    Imagine YOU have been appointed (time-travelling) Director-General of the 1992 BBC instead of John Birt. Who would you keep? Who would you drop? Who would you draft? What would you do that Birt didn’t? What he did do that you would do different?

    This deserves a separate post, really. Whether the BBC is salvageable or not (it still does some things well, but too many of punctum’s points hit home), I think there’s a strong tactical and strategic case for starting a public discussion of what it or its successor(s) OUGHT to be doing, and not just for various kinds of music. Actually setting a want-want-need stall out.

    (Perhaps not such a strong tactical and strategic case for starting the discussion on FT, of course.)

  15. 15
    Cumbrian on 7 Apr 2014 #

    I wouldn’t re-do this, if I were the BBC, nowadays. I’d do an all star version of this instead:


    Only people who have been on The Voice and other such formats directly ripped off commercial competitors should be featured and the cover should be an almost totally straight re-reading, as a comment on the originality of much of the BBC’s output.

  16. 16
    Another Pete on 7 Apr 2014 #

    #12 Shannon Hoon of Blind Melon

  17. 17
    tm on 9 Apr 2014 #

    I’d replace Lou with John Cale or Iggy Pop since, as others have observed Lou’s so bad even by Lou standards, it’s like he’s taking the piss. Actually, Cale in the intro, Iggy at the end.

    I’d replace Bowie with either ’72 Bowie or Brett doing his full on Bowie impression coz Bowie’s taking the piss too.

    I’d replace Huey with ODB.

    Hmmm…let me think, more to follow…

  18. 18
    sükråt tanned rested unlogged and awesome on 9 Apr 2014 #

    (i don’t think bowie’s taking the piss at all, i think he’s manfully — alienfully? — attempting transparent and unself-conscious sincerity, like thomas newton singing hymns in man who fell to earth)

  19. 19
    tm on 9 Apr 2014 #

    Hmmm…I dunno. I normally dig Bowie’s artful sincerity but he seemed a bit like a schoolboy trying to crack his mates up without getting in trouble himself. I will watch it again and inevitably admit you are right!

  20. 20
    Alan on 12 Oct 2014 #

    bump all the same

Add your comment

(Register to guarantee your comments don't get marked as spam.)


Required (Your email address will not be published)

Top of page