Voting Rights and Rulers

I can feel the divides between us, you are black and I am white. You are woman I am man. You are poor I am rich. I own the town but you may own a plot. The differences are white inspired and really not worth a damn.

I can tell you I own the factory, where you slave away for less than I earn in a minute of my time, which is as much as I work in a day. For the golf course calls to remind me of the business that needs my time, as we of the light skin and faith see, who the real god is to whom we pray.

I need to tell you the reason we keep our profit to ourselves, When we refuse you more, than enough for a can of beer. It isn’t our unkindness, it’s the thought we may one day pay tax. It’s simply our intent is to rule but your colour has brought us fear.

It’s true that we stole this land from those who knew no better. Than to walk in freedom amongst the trees , and trust in us to keep our words, that we meant no harm to their kind. While in fact the means we had brought them to their knees.

So the warning is, you shouldn’t trust the whites or the rich, they only mean you harm. You must be kept in your place below whites, especially the fundamentalist type. They believe they have a right to rule, but first they remove your rights, especially the right to vote, then make others believe their hype.

The Era of an End.

Some songs stick out in the memory years after they came out. Some for good reasons, some for bad and that always depends on who you are and these days whether you were born or not in the Dark Ages of 1968 when this particular one came out. This is the only record by them I ever remember hearing.

Julie Driscoll, Brian Ager &Trinity -Wheels on Fire 1968

From 1972 is a brilliant Soul record by the Detroit Emeralds. I’m playing this version rather than losing my lunch over a later version ‘danced’ to by Legs and Coo on our Top of The Pops.

Detroit Emeralds- Feel the Need in Me 1972

Back to 1968 now and a group that had been on the scene for a couple of years and were influential and always around the top. This one was a little different.

Small Faces- Lazy Sunday Afternoon 1968

Up to 1970 now. I always liked this record but freely admit I wasn’t sure of what the content meant. It has been some years since I heard it so maybe I’m old enough to understand now.

Freda Payne- Band of Gold 1970

All the way up to 1976 now with another group who proved to be very influential. They hardly put a foot wrong with their own hit factory but they also produced and recorded for a lot of upcoming groups

This is a highly talented group of people. Sadly they later split into two and went their own way with the lead duo Godley and Creme continuing the good work.

10CC- The things we do for love 1976

This may be my last music or any other post. I have to retreat from the world again. I have made many friends from the kind people who visit and comment and there’s no doubting I will miss that warmth, and the fun that I feel. Forgive me please, you are not undervalued.

Thank You.

Please keep the spare hugs handy for those in need/

The Special Year 1977

There is a special lady in my life.. Someone so caring of others, especially me , that I’m certainly the luckiest man alive. I’m sure I don’t tell her enough how much I care or how grateful I am for what she does, but what ingrate ever does? Today I hope to show her that I celebrate her presence by selecting some songs from the year of her birth. Please meet my daughter Yvonne.

Yvonne and me. I’m the scruffy one.
Julie Covington- Don’t cry for me Argentina.

Of latter years my darling girl has had to cope with various periods of my hospitalisation. She’s dealt with my appointments, taken my side with snotty receptionists and spoken to doctors galore, yet it doesn’t faze her. I must add my thanks to her wonderful husband, my special son-in-law Ugo who has also been on hand, running me about and also spending his lunch break with me every Friday to give me company.

Manhattan Transfer- Chanson D’amour.

However fierce Yvonne is in defence of family and friends there’s nobody more gentle, caring and kind.

Hot Chocolate- So you win again.

Loyalty is her creed. Hey, she can’t be bad, she developed a taste for Motown.

Donna Summer- I feel love.

By now you should be getting the feeling that I love her and feel privileged to know her.

Paul McCartney & Wings- Mull of Kintyre.

So now you know why 1977 was such a special year. I wish you all a fantastic weekend and a great new week. Share the Hugs, don’t leave anyone in need.

Massive Hugs to you all.

Lucky Dip.

In the 60’s and 70’s I was most impressed with a Canadian Lady with a huge voice. Though many of her records did well , most were on LP (Long Player, kids) and could only be accessed that way. The song I'[m sharing with you was one of those and I’m sharing it because of the clarity of her voice. The other option would have been a lot of whale song. Allow me to present Judy Collins.

Judy Collins- The Patriot Game from Whales and Nightingales 1970

And now to 1967 and a young gentleman called Jeff Beck. I suspect many of you won’t have heard of him or the song but he was well known for his skills on the guitar,

Jeff Beck- Hi Ho Silver Lining 1967

Here’s a man who doesn’t need an introduction ,after the sacking of the original Drifters in 1958 they were replaced by the members of the Five Crowns. Benjamin Earl Nelson was their lead singer and naturally became the same with the Drifters. He was lead singer on 11of 13 hits. In 1960 he left the Drifters and went solo as Ben E King. In 1961 he had a hit with this song proving himself to be a great singer all over again. For me, he’s up there with the likes of Brook Benton and Levi Stubbs Jnr.

Ben E King- Spanish Harlem 1961

In 1984 a single was released from a 1983 LP of the same name. The people who wrote it, sang it. The couple were married and she was the daughter of the great Sam Cooke. Her stepfather was the brother of her husband. I couldn’t write a film script like this. The husband had been married to Mary Wells one of the very talented Supremes. They wrote a number of songs for other people including the stepfather ‘Bobby’ before getting married and performing their own songs. Welcome Womack and Womack or Cecil and Linda with their 1984 hit.

Womack and Womack- Love Wars 1984

A big hit in 1983was a song from a duo and which was sung by a woman who would go on to be an international star in her own right. I probably won’t find anyone who hasn’t heard this song. So, let’s first introduce the duo as Dave Stewart, the musician on electronics of the group Eurythmics and Ms Annie Lennox singer of many a fine song and always ready to support a good cause.

Eurythmics- Sweet Dreams are made of this. 1983

That’s it for another week. I hope you enjoyed them. Have a Great New Week and make sure you have hugs for all that need them. It’s love we need in the world now, not hate or indifference.

A very Happy Thanksgiving wish to my Canadian friends. May you undergo a lot of healing in the next 12 months.

Repairs Needed Maybe.

A lot of songs are about broken romances and what they leave behind. Crushed feelings, a sense of defeat, emotional wreckage, and sometimes low flying shrapnel. I’m very much into lyrics and like to feel the emotion that the song carries.. Here are a few of what I considered the best of their kind .First the young lady who fronted Yazoo.

Alison Moyet Invisible 1984

From 1976 comes a single by a truly popular singer. 41 singles and 23 albums+

Billy Ocean. Love Really Hurts 1976

Lets slip over to 1985 now and what is probably one of the most recognisable songs on the planet, maybe one of the most recognisable groups too. Mr Mister.

Mr Mister- Broken Wings 1985

1983 now, and a song originally sung by the first young lady Alison Moyet, as part of Yazoo one of the synthesised groups of the eighties. Sung a capella they made a great job of it.

Flying Pickets- Only You 1983

For the last one we must hike back to 1976.and my own personal Waterloo. A single I had put on a juke box I owned that was on repeat the day we broke up. Neither of us wanted to but it was for the best. I can’t tell you how much I adored that lady from Hednesford, Sweet Sylvia.

Manhattans- Kiss and say Goodbye. 1976

I wish you all a fantastic weekend. Don’t forget to carry spare Hugs with you, there are so many in need. The more you give out the stronger you get.

Memories, like the corners of my mind, misty……………

Many people who know mw are aware that my first love (apart from Katie Hepburn) is Motown. The Four Tops are probably my most favourite group from the Motown era I grew to adulthood (I wish) with. But there is another group who’s singer could melt my kneecaps and send me to the floor. Allow me to present Gladys Knight and her pips with a great track from 1971.

Gladys Knight. Help me make it through the night 1971

Back in the 1960’s we had a few singing outfits that called themselves Brothers. I’ve already played a record by the Walker Brothers- who were not, and now here is another one who aren’t. From 1965 I bring you the Righteous Brothers. William (Bill )Medley and Bobby Hatfield. Though actually this was sung by Bobby alone.

Righteous Bothers. Unchained Melody 1965.

From 1993 a track from a very popular group named after an unemployment benefit form. My wife and I used to sing along to this one in the car. I give you UB40

UB40. Higher Ground 1993

1974 brings me to a group who were from Chicago, Illinois. They had 11 top ten hits in 5 years, 60 to 74. and this one is my favourite.

Chi-Lites, Homely Girl 1974

This last one is from a New Wave group formed in 1983 and hail from Perth in Scotland. The track I’m playing is actually their best known one that peaked at No6 in the UK charts in 1983.. Please forgive the slightly spooky video that backs this song.

Fiction Factory. Feels like heaven 1983

Well, you can breathe easily for another week now. I hope you have a wonderful week, Please bear in mind that there are many people in the world in need of a little kindness. Please try to be that kindness and make someone’s life better than it was when they woke. Sometimes just a hug will do the trick so always carry spares. If you’re not part of the problems of the world, at least try to be part of the solution.

Some of the Greats

Sometimes a song is Great because of who performs it and sometimes because it just has lyrics that strike a chord with a wide audience. What follows are songs I consider Great for one reason or another or possibly both. I’m going to start with a group that perfected songs that had cross generational appeal. This group came from Australia and the lead singer Judith Durham was a treat for the eyes and ears, having a beautiful clear voice. 1965 song…………

The Seekers- The Carnival is Over. 1965

From 1970 I bring you one of the most recognisable names in the music world with one of their memorable releases of that year. They also released Cecilia and El Condor Pasa the same year. This one is covered by the rule of who sang it and by the brilliant lyrics.

Bridge over Troubled Water- S & G

This progression takes us next to 1972 and though I can’t claim brilliance because of singer or lyrics particularly, it’s great because it has the great Roy Wood (Wizzard) and it has a fantastic title. To my ears it’s a little reminiscent of the Beatles but nevertheless this particular sound belongs to ELO, the Electric Light Orchestra.

ELO-10538 Overture. 1972

As night follows day 1991 is next. For all my age giving me the benefit of some of the greatest groups and sounds from the 60’s to now, none have achieved what our next guests have.. They were the greatest group with the greatest ever lead singer and the greatest lyrics to any number of great songs. This is a real favourite of mine so keep the tissues handy please. From the album Innuendo this song always blows me away.

Queen-These were the days of our lives. 1991 From Innuendo.

To finish our session and to show I’m not an old fuddy duddy we go to 2011. Believe it or not I do have a choice of up to date artistes I consider special but with this one I’m displaying what I think are great lyrics. I think they were written for a vampire film but even that can’t remove the sweetness. So here we have Christina Perri with A Thousand Years.

Christina Perri- A Thousand Years .2011

Have the best weekend you can. If you need a hug you’ve only to ask one of us but if you have hug to spare keep your eyes open for the needy. Manners say you must ask first if it’s acceptable though virtual ones should be OK.

My Two Penn’orth.

I have a much loved cousin in America who has spent a fair bit of time in hospital over the last few years and her recovery was touch and go. Her medications after hospital were/are not cheap. I have a Dear friend currently in hospital in America and I know that her consultations with her doctor prior to hospital cost a fortune. Not only that but she has a condition that requires medication every day of her life which can’t be missed.

I also hear that many Americans who take medication on a regular basis try to miss things from their prescriptions they think they can do without and also take to cutting tablets in half to make them go further. I know there will be some people who think them fools as obviously if a medication is prescribed it must be needed. But it needs to be acknowledged by everyone that there are some people in America with very limited incomes who must try and set priorities on just how to use that income.

I was pleased to hear that one of the election promises of Joe Biden was to legislate it so that Medicare could negotiate directly with Big Pharma on the price of prescription goods. Despite there being so many drug companies in America they set the prices which are MUCH greater than those charged to the rest of the World. As this was a Democrat proposal and the Democrats having the advantage of numbers with a deciding vote going to the Vice President, you would expect this bill to be a walkover. Especially as it has a high approval rating amongst the voters who have suffered these high charges for many years. And that approval is from both sides of the Political spectrum.

The House Energy and Commerce Committee however failed to adopt the Democrats plan. This is not as you might expect a Republican majority voting it down, this is primarily due to three Democrats, Reps. Kathleen Rice of New York, Kurt Schrader of Oregon, and Scott Peters of California—who all voted no. The reason for this is simple, on top of the generous salary they receive from the Government, which actually means you the people, they also receive thousands of dollars a year in ‘Contributions’ from none other than Big Pharma. So these three, along with any Republicans who voted No, are placing their own interests above those of their constituents. As I’ve said before. No-one can work for two masters as there will be clashes of interest. I wish these people could be recalled and dropped by the party but as it is there will be elections next year and my hope is that these politicians will be voted out and replaced by Democrats who will vote yes.

A number of years ago before President Obama won his first election I had a friend with whom I used to discuss things. He was not a Democrat so the discussions became quite heated over Obamacare. He told me the country would never accept communist ways. Despite my pointing out that the UK is not a communist country and that our NHS provides cradle to grave care for the population he opined that ‘his’ people don’t like things for free. The NHS is not free. We pay for it as part of our taxes. What is different is that it’s not for profit, so our medical care is not dictated by insurance companies who can say our policies don’t cover full care or money will end before treatment has finished. We don’t need to put money into shareholders hands. America these days is the kind of country that would benefit from being able to offer care to the population that doesn’t depend on income or providing shareholders profits. This is of course just my opinion based on the difficulties experienced by those I care about. But, the dark money accepted by politicians is spoiling so many things and should be stopped. If the people pay you, you work for them and to their benefit. If not, you should walk.

Keep your hugs handy, people need them. Jill Dennison could do with a few please.

Sleep Induced Music, My own SIM Card

Over the years I’ve found I need less and less sleep. Sometimes I don’t even get to bed and might nod off over my keyboard (hopefully not using it) and wake 2 hours later with a crick in my neck. Some nights I do go to bed but find my leg won’t stop itching so it’s a battle to stop me scritching. Oft times it’s the whirling of my mind that won’t let me sleep and sometimes on those occasions I try and break up my thoughts with music. The music chooses me not the other way round. On a Monday night I very often don’t get to sleep at all as I travel to another Country (an hour and a half on the bus with an escort) the bus is at 6.30 am then I sit in a cafe until my daughter arrives with the grandchildren on their way to school. I have chocolate for the kids and then wait for Yvonne to come back to join me for coffee. This may well be a whirling thoughts and worry night. I’ll share some of the most recent pieces of music. The first is one that got stuck like an ear worm for most of the night. Sarah Brightman was invited to sing this with Andrea Bocelli in Paris 1996. Unforgettable.

Sarah Brightman, Andrea Bocelli. Time to say GOODBYR 1996

This next one is from a Scottish singer who’s led a varied life and who had to wait until 1978 for a big hit and here it is.

Frankie Miller, Darlin 1978

Now, strap yourselves in while I do a big U-turn all the way back to 1959. A group that were a big part of the do-wap sound . This one jumps uninvited into my mind in the hopes of a singalong, which I usually succumb to. I’m hated by cats and neighbours.

Coasters- Poison Ivy 1959

An Artiste from 1988 now. A man who performs in a number of genres but this is probably the only track I know. It’s catchy Steve Earle, Copperhead Road.

The last record is from 1969. I’m sort of cheating as it’s a follow up to one from last week. For some reason it didn’t do as well in the UK making just 28 (it did get to No2 in the Netherlands) but the group never made inroads into the American market. In 1970 they split up and Graham Bonnet went solo for a while before joining Rainbow then a variety of other groups. Great Voice.

Marbles- The Walls Fell Down. 1969

Have a Fantastic Weekend If you meet someone who needs a Hug make sure you’re carrying a spare or two. Big rewards for small efforts.

To My Surprise.

Talking to my daughter yesterday, I asked whether she knew any of the songs on my latest music post. I know she normally follows my blog on her Facebook page so I was a little surprised when she said she hadn’t seen a post. She signed into the main blog and went through the songs. She said she didn’t know them until she actually started playing them when familiarity dawned and she realised they were all songs she’d heard me play when she was young. As she’s in her forties now that’s a little worrying.

But, I decided to visit Facebook when I got home to check my page and see if there’s a problem. There is, and I couldn’t help but laugh when I found out why. First I checked how many post were missing and after going back quite a way I stopped counting. Apart from a couple of opinion pieces, all my music posts were missing too. I went to my blog and tried to post them again one by one. One by one I received the message that Facebook would not accept them as someone had complained that the content was Abusive or Offensive. Now I know my music won’t be to everyone’s taste, but abusive or offensive seemed a bit strong. I don’t even complain if someone posts Rap music, Heavy Rock or Punk.

So, back to Facebook. I’ve never been in Bad Boys jail before, even on Twitter and believe me I’ve been known to use strong language on there. I didn’t even know Facebook took action on posts given that they’ve carried so many pro-Trump lies there and I know there must have been complaints. It took something horrific before they stopped carrying his quotes but have still carried on allowing the QAnon pro Trump pieces. Anyhoo, I’m in trouble and Facebook threw a few options at me amongst which were, accept it or appeal. I ticked the appeal option expecting to be given the chance to state my case. NO, I’m told that someone will read the pieces in question to see if the complaint is valid. Anyone apart from me think maybe that should have been done when the complaint was made? Unfortunately because of Covid19 there’s a shortage of staff so they can’t say when this will be done.

My guess is that someone was offended by my op-ed piece Differences from Sept 1st. Fair enough, I was offended by the piece which prompted me to write my answer. I’m so easily offended by blatant lies you see. But if that’s the case, why not remove the offending piece and leave the rest alone unless of course someone is so petty that they complained about everything so they could get their jollies. Since they must have access to my Facebook page why not just tell me what they have a problem with and perhaps argue their side. It won’t be the first time I’ve had to defend my opinion and even had to concede a point or two.

So, for the near future at least Facebook is unlikely to be showing anything of mine and I may have to rethink my taste in music. I wouldn’t want to upset any delicate little flowers on any future outings. And if it is the op-eds causing such an upset, they should remember it’s just my opinion and they can always tell me if they think I’m unfair. People do. Doing this though makes them fair game for anyone who disagrees with them.

Have a great week, almost on the second half. Keep Hugging.

I just tried to send this to Facebook and this message popped up on WordPress.

Your message couldn’t be sent because it includes content that other people on Facebook have reported as abusive.

That’s not bad, I wonder what the abusive content is now.