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STRANGEWAYS, HERE I COME

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Have I ever mentioned that I’m a big fan of The Smiths and Morrissey?

It should therefore come as no surprise that I am recommending the above  as an event not to be missed

Strangeways Glasgow  is a club night dedicated to the music of Moz and The Smiths with the occasional associated track thrown in for good measure and variety. It’s an event that has been going for a number of years thanks to the hard work and dedication of a small group of Glasgow-based uber-fans with maybe three or four shows in a calendar year, albeit the guys have become so well-known and appreciated that they are often asked to appear in other towns and cities across the UK at various points in time.

All the profits from the Strangeways Glasgow nights are always donated to a charitable cause and in this particular instance it will be to the Manchester and Cheshire Dogs Home which suffered a genuine tragedy a few weeks back. The music and the cause alone should be enough to make you fancy parting with the £5 for a ticket.  But there’s something more this time…………….whisper it.

I’m doing a stint on whatever the modern-day equivalent is of the wheels of steel.

Yup. Fatboy Jim will be doing his thing for the first time since 2010 when Drew from Across the Kitchen Table talked me into being part of a triumvirate of Scottish bloggers to do some stuff at the Flying Duck in Glasgow.

Actually, I was thinking that since this will be my first bit of DJing since I turned 50 that I should update my name to something like Grandfather Flash but the connotations of that name right now are just too much to bear given the number of awful sex scandals in the UK featuring DJs dead and alive.  So I’ll simply be at the Strangeways night as JC (aka The Vinyl Villain).

The invite has come courtesy of a very wonderful and lovely gentlemen called Robert who, along with Carlo and their respective partners Jen and Angela, have been the driving force behind Strangeways Glasgow over the years.  I got to know them initially through going along to another wonderful club night – Little League – and was thrilled by the fact that they knew about my blog and were fans of what I was writing about and featuring.

They kept telling me that I should get myself along to Strangeways but I had shied away as I wasn’t sure if I could go an entire night dedicated to Moz, especially as I had this pre-conceived idea that while Robert and Carlo were very decent down to earth folk the rest of the clientele would surely consist of hardcore fans made up of look-alikes standing around demanding to be noticed.  It took me until March earlier this year to go along and realise how wrong I had been. I wrote about the experience at the time. Click here if you’re interested.

I made it along to the next night back in August which is where the idea of me taking a turn playing some tunes was talked about and agreed.  It seemed like a good idea at the time and it still does.

But I’m happy to admit that I’m nervous.  But very very very excited and honoured.

mp3 : The Smiths – Panic
mp3 : Morrissey – Dear God Please Help Me

Tickets are still available but the night inevitably sells out. Click here if you’re tempted

I STARTED SOMETHING I COULDN’T FINISH

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PFZSOCfM

 

A few years ago, a couple of folk I knew from the Little League events decided that a night dedicated to The Smiths and Morrissey would be a good idea.   I’ve long-planned to get myself along, but for one reason or other it just never happened until last Friday night when Aldo made sure of it by purchasing a ticket for me in advance.

Even then, I almost never made it along.  I was very tired after a hard few days at work and wasn’t sure if a night in basement venue beneath one of Glasgow’s best pubs was really what I was after.

One of the things I most feared was that it would be a hardcore crowd made up of Morrissey look-a-likes standing around just trying to pose and be noticed.  There were a handful of such creatures, but the vast majority of the 200 souls who were lucky enough to get tickets were there for a great night out on the dancefloor.  I wasted little time joining in despite the fact that I had told Aldo beforehand that in an effort to pace myself I had mentally drawn up a list of songs that were certainties for dancing to and a list (including some of the better-known band and solo material) that were strict no-nos.  I got carried away (as I feared!!) and danced myself dizzy, mostly without the aid of alcohol to throw off any inhibitions as I was very quickly onto bottles of water to stop the dehydration.  

Even when the DJs played non-Moz material I couldn’t drag myself off the floor – not when you get stuff like The Wedding Present, The Cure and Associates thrown in….and as the night went on I knew I’d pay the price the following morning when I’d inevitably wake up with another realisation that I’m not as young or fit as I used to be and that I really out to know better at my age.

And all this despite me leaving more than an hour before the end of the event to catch the last train just after midnight and so missing what  many of the showstoppers that the younger Aldo was able to shake his frame to before the lights came up.

The next Strangeways night will be in August 2014.  Details will be unveiled at this facebook page (where incidentally a photo of my good self taken last Friday night can also be found).

So a huge thanks to Robert, Carlo, Angela and Hugh for a magnificent and memorable evening, made all the more special by the fact that all proceeds, as with all the Strangeways events, went to a local charity with a second charity benefiting from food bank donations on the night.

Sadly, the laptop that was used to supply the tunes for the evening was missing a few of the more obscure b-side cover versions which meant my request for the one that matched my t-shirt couldn’t be realised.  I’ve been promised it will feature next time….so I better get myself along to make sure….and next time I will finish the night along with everyone else.

mp3 : Morrissey – A Song From Under The Floorboards

It’s a good version.  But nothing can ever hope to match the original….

mp3 : Magazine – A Song From Under The Floorboards

Enjoy.