My Favourite Songs – Essex Green – Mrs Bean

I only ever liked playing live at the Abelarde Sanction. In some respects it was a more wretched hive of scum and villainy than Mos Eisly and the bands certainly added to that impression, but it was a home fo people who wanted to listen in a country where audiences mostly see live music as an intrusion into their night out.

In between sets several DJ’s, most notably Martin Barbee, Manik and Darklord Smegbreath used to entertain us with songs from their vast collections. There were always new and challenging tunes and I miss that exposure.

My fading memory says it was the Darklord who brought in this wonderful tune. It was always a dancefloor filler, in a place where dancing was not always appropriate. Even today I can’t sit still when I hear it. For a little while I even had it as my ringtone but I was always leaving the phone unanswered just so I could hear the entire song.

It is good. It is perfect. And it always makes me happy.


My Favourite Songs – Gimme Shelter

Listen. Loud… and I mean really LOUD.

Listen through the whole song, don’t skip ahead. and wait for it. At 2:45 Merry Clayton starts probably the most spine chilling vocal break outside of opera. She sings the lines, “Rape, Murder, it’s just a shot away” with such relentless intensity that, well just listen to that voice break at 2:59 and thereafter. If you have a heart it will break.

It’s a song for terrible times.