Well 2 days to go until JC and I force the dubious pleasure of our combined record collections on the unsuspecting patrons of The Flying Duck . I have to admit that I’m a little apprehensive about the whole thing now.
Last night the first thing I did when I got back from Belfast was check my singles box to see if there were any that should come out and I suspect that, that will not be the last time I will do that before Saturday.
Due to the fact that I will be going into Glasgow by train and it is a fair old hike from Central Station to the Flying Duck, I have limited myself to one singles box (which holds around 200 7″s) and my Ninja Tunes Wax Sack which I can just about force 60 twelves into. My mate C, said to me earlier in the week, “are you sure you’ve got enough tunes?” which got me fretting and trying to calculate exactly how much music I was taking with me, then trying to deduct the multiple singles by some artists and how much of certain genres there was until I realised that that way lay madness and to just lighten up and if I end up playing something twice or a couples of track by The Jesus and Mary Chain, or a few too many northern soul tracks then so be it.
There is one track which I know for a fact I will not play, although I would love to, to see if it garners the same reaction nearly thirty years after the last time I heard it out.
As I mentioned before when I first came to Lanark, the two guys I got in tow with Stiff and Span were punks, I also liked punk but had a love of Heavy Metal which neither of them could fathom.
Anyway, once a month, a disco was held in the Guide Hall which we would attend with all the other primary 7s, first and second years. One particular night stands out for a couple of reasons.
Firstly, it was the night that the three of us went wearing ill fitting, by which I mean about 3 sizes to big for us, WWII British Army Battle Dress Jackets that stank and were as jaggy as hell. We thought we were so cool. The reason that we had bought these, I think, was that we had recently seen Julian Cope wearing this type of jacket on Top Of The Pops when Teardrop Explodes were on doing Reward, although I could be completely wrong about this.
I will get to the point of the post eventually.
The second reason that this night stands out in particular is because one of the older punks took along a copy of Hanx! the live album by SLF. The guy spent half the night haranguing the DJ (Turps) to put the album on and when the dj eventually capitulated, true to form Turps played the wrong track. Instead of playing Alternative Ulster he put on Johnny Was.
Those of us who had studied this album were incredulous, if that is possible for an eleven year old, because we knew that it was a long track and not the sort of tune that was likely to win over the unconverted. A few brave boys tried to pogo but even with the stamina of youth they all gave up about half way through leaving a deserted dance floor and half clearing the hall but give Turps his due, to our astonishment he played the whole thing, all ten minutes of it.
And there you have in a convoluted way, the point of the post, I will not be playing Johnny Was but would secretly love to, to see what kind of response it would get now.
So, if your in the town on Saturday night why not come along and not hear me playing Johnny Was.
The version posted is not the version from Hanx but is still a live rendition, recorded some twenty six years later in 2006 at Glasgow Barrowlands.
SLF – Johnny Was