Skeletons, Regrets and Cock-ups

Up to now, my blog posts have focused on all things positive and you’re probably beginning to get the wrong idea about me entirely. My musical discoveries have not been without a few hiccups along the way and here, I intend to discuss some of them, laying them bare for the world to see. And, no doubt, for the world to laugh at, judge and ridicule. So, with my Dad’s old cricket gear at the ready as some futile attempt at body armour, here goes…

My first ever musical purchase was, in the grand scheme of things, not too bad. Brian May’s solo effort, ‘Back To The Light’ may not be the greatest album since sliced bread but at least it wasn’t something like, I don’t know, Boyz II Men. Nope, that comes later…

…actually, let’s discuss some of that right now. Ok, I admit it, as a child around the age of ten or eleven, I would listen to the Chart Show, the Top 40 countdown on Radio 1 on a Sunday evening. In those days, I had no stereo, but I did have a tape recorder thing-a-me-jig on my radio, so I would join the masses of youngsters with fingers poised over the ‘record’ button on the off-chance that something of interest would be played, whilst desperately trying to avoid recording any of the DJ’s waffle in the process. As a result, the occasional single was bought for me or taped by a friend for me. Yes, Boyz II Men did feature, as did the Tetris single and even ‘Everything I Do’ by Bryan Adams.

The offending articles – proof I wasn’t lying!

Are you still with me? I don’t blame you if you’re not. But if you are, congratulations and thank you. It does get better…I hope.

As I started to buy CDs and get into rock more and more, I did still have a couple of aberrations, in the form of Youssou N’Dour & Neneh Cherry’s ‘7 Seconds’ and ‘Regulate’ by Warren G & Nate Dogg. Is it wrong to admit that I still really like these two songs, if only now for nostalgia reasons? My fiancée’s face when I sang every lyric to ‘Regulate’ whilst driving over the QE II bridge on the M25 a few years back was an absolute picture and we still laugh about it now!

To finish off the whole Radio 1 Top 40 saga, does anyone remember the few fleeting but glorious memories of Sepultura getting to about number 20 with ‘Roots Bloody Roots’ or the various forays into the Top 20 by Iron Maiden? Great moments and I can only imagine the startled outbursts across the country from people more used to hearing vacuous pop music.

Some of my biggest regrets in music, come in the form of live gigs. More to the point, gigs that I have missed for one reason or another or, even worse, bands that I have never managed to see on stage and now, never will.

Top of that list has to be Queen with Freddie Mercury in his prime. Like everyone else, I have seen the footage but I know without any doubt that this is nothing compared to being there and experiencing it first hand. Next, Type O Negative. I had the chance to catch a show in London a few years ago but instead, managed to catch the flu. I never made it and will now never see Pete Steele singing or playing his bass guitar complete with the iconic chain-link strap. The original line-up of Guns N’ Roses is another gimme, but you never know…pigs may indeed evolve the ability to fly…

There are more, but they’re for another time. On the flip-side, and to show my dedication to metal, I have a regret of sorts caused by actually going to a gig. At University, a friend offered me the opportunity to spend a few weeks in Hong Kong with him and his family. All I had to do was find the money for flights. However, I decided to decline and the reason was that I already had bought tickets to see Iron Maiden for the first time. It’s hard to entirely regret my decision because my brother and I shared a superb experience, but I do look back and think that I might have made a different decision if I was to re-live that period of my life!

As for out-and-out cock-ups, there have been a few. For instance, imagine being lucky enough to find a copy of Burzum’s ‘Filosofem’ in an independent record store shortly after its release. Then, imagine me taking it home, listening to it and, at the time, thinking it was the biggest pile of shite ever put to disc. Imagine me promptly selling it back to the record shop for a couple of quid with a pile of other tat that I wanted to dispose of. Finally, imagine the expletives that fell out of my mouth when, only a year or so ago, I was doing some research and realized that the version I had bought and sold was the original A5 digibook pressing and has since been on E-Bay very occasionally for vast sums of money. Had I kept it, I’d never have sold it, but the fact that a rare CD got away from me rankles terribly.

Oh, and the other big cock-up that I can remember at the moment was when, tongue-in-cheek, I was asked if I’d swap a CD for a concert ticket whilst standing in the queue for the gig. I took one look at the CD, sneered and said ‘no’. It turns out that the person who offered the swap was the guitarist in that band.

Now that I’ve got all of that off my chest and you’ve all had a good laugh at my expense, I defy any of you not to have one or two skeletons buried in your closets. The question is: are you brave enough to share them as well?

Perhaps normal service can now be resumed…

5 Thoughts

    1. Hahaha! I feel much better now! It’s really nice because this post has got people admitting all sorts of things to me. It’s great fun! Thanks for reading by the way, it’s much appreciated.

  1. Okay, my first two albums ware T’pau ‘Bridge of Spies’ and Paula Abdul’s ‘Forever Your Girl’ (in my defense, I was 10!), but have had my share of bad, bad purchases including 2 Unlimited and some shockingly crap rave.

    Talking of taping off the top 40 – does anyone else remember Radio 1 accidently playing the uncensored version of RATM’s ‘Killing in the Name’ in full during the top 40? I played that LOUD, hoping that someone would complain and I could inoccently say that I was listening to the radio. Unfortunately no one did (I think the sleepy cul-de-sac that my parents still call home was well used to loud offensive music blasting out of my window by then).

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