Day 18: Hey Manhattan
AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 LOUSY TUNES

Simone was true to her word, she knew a metal shop. Not just a shop which sold metal, it was run bey a metal shopkeeper or as I would put it, an ironmonger. Heavy Metal Gates of Coney Island. Imagine, a place named after the grimmest of ugly music, in a place named after a rubbish Lou Reed song. I almost vowed never to leave Bloomsbury again.

Simone’s friend turned out to be an even bigger rap fan than she was, bigger in all senses of the word. Tattooed up his arms were the names of all the Wu-Tang Clan, with the unfortunare Inspecta Deck stretching agross his shoulder-blades. His right forearm was dominated by ODB’s name before he changed the meaning of the letter D. I pointed out that he might want to get that redone and he grunted. Still after a fair bit of grinding, not in a dancehall stylee I hasten to add, I was finally free from Simone and the shackles.

“Well I can’t say it has been a pleasure,” I said. “But I hope I have taught you something Simone. Music has already done irreparable damage to you, denounce it.”
“I ain’t denouncing nothing,” she said, damning herself to hell. “You are a weird one Tanya, but hey, I think we’ve shared something in our time together.”
“Intense irritation?” I suggested.
“Sisterhood. Hey, if you’re doing anything tomorrow, I’ll be at this party,” she slipped me a flyer which I might as well as binned straight away. But it went into the horrible sweat pants I was wearing, and I even waved when I left.

Now I had to find out if Crispian had survived, if I could get any money and continue on this already jinxed trip around the world. So I bunked a Subway barrier and set off for the island of gleaming spires, Manhattan. I was pretty sure there were some bars there.

PREFAB SPROUT – Hey Manhattan

Paddy Macaloon shouts “Hey Manhattan here I am.”
Manhattan shouts “Who gives a fuck.”

I mean really. The British public might have fallen for the so-called perfect songwriting of the halfwit Paddy Macaloon, but the US weren’t going to. Instead they rightly noted that he was the bloke who had a really, really big hit about frogs and hot dogs and filed him under rubbish novelty act.

Prefab Sprout (oh, always with the sprouts, as if they are inherently funny vegetables) were yet another British band who were sent to save pop music. Clearly they were sent by some sort of alien agency who
a) Did not know what pop music was
b) Did not care too much for saving it
c) Wanted to get rid of Paddy Macaloon and the bird with the long face.
I certainly remember when Steve McQueen came out, this album which was apparently going to return pop music into the hands of proper songwriters. The last people you want as custodians of pop music is songwriters, next you’ll be suggesting Edwyn Collins should look after it.

No: writing ironical songs about Elvis, and faux show-tunes about Manhattan is no way of safeguarding the future of pop (obviously a good thing for me). I fear my six month picket of record shops after Steve McQueen came out gave ver Sprout the idea for Protest Songs. I believe Macaloon may be cited as a witness in the Michael Jackson trial as well, but then they did release an album called Jordan: The Comeback.

He writes theme tunes to kids TV now.

I Hate Music