One of the tragedies of advancing age is having to listen to lots of Radio Four retrospectives on various Sixties and Seventies musicians and performers, presented by people who believed - and still believe - that it was all terribly important. You know the sort of people - ten years later they thought the Clash were important.
Of course they were important - just not perhaps in the way we thought at the time.
So last week mothers at home with pre-school children were treated to a 9 am rerun, complete with a liberal sprinkling of f-words, of the John Lennon interview with Rolling Stone (for which see here) founder Jan Wenner.
The blurb said it all :
He holds forth throughout on the subjects of art and politics, his own musical genius, his love for Yoko, drugs, primal therapy and mysticism.
Lennon's 'own musical genius' being something of which interviewer Mr Wenner was convinced - and if Lennon ever sounded doubtful, Yoko would pop up to prop up, so to speak. The whole thing is very Spinal Tap. Listen here if masochism's your thing.
The following week we had Jacqui Springer on Motown and rap. Pretty dire stuff - whatever your views on Lennon (and his solo stuff was pants) he did knock out some decent music with Macca. Alas Grandmaster Flash and the Sugarhill Gang never did a lot for me - compared to the reggae MCs of the time they were hopelessly uninventive and slow. If you don't believe me listen to 'The Message' from 1982 - then if you can find it on the web (I can't, though there's a live youtube that doesn't do the tune justice) try the studio version of Philip Levi's 'Mi God Mi King' from a year or two later. From a Ford Anglia to a Ferrari.
UPDATE - there's apparently an mp3 at this tasteful site - BUT this chap likes producing mixes. The whole thing is 110 meg and Papa Levi is near the end.
Commendation? They Deserve Condemnation!
2 hours ago