Thursday, 29 October 2009

I Can't Help About The Shape I'm In, I Can't Sing, I Ain't Pretty, And My Legs Are Thin

My wife recently, with dismay, insisted that I listen to something new. The house has been filled with the likes of Paramore, Muse and The Temper Trap and therefore on those Friday nights when I have her chained to the cooker, cooking my tea, for me, I get to have almost free reign of the CD player/Napster account. It is almost exclusively old stuff.
So we had a look on the NME’s website to see what those trend spotters were spotting and it seems that The Flaming Lips new album was where it was at.

” You should listen to that on your morning commute”

she suggested,

“you like Flaming Lips, THAT’S the one!”

So upstairs it was to put it onto disc, except it didn’t make it on to disc, I was distracted, by Fleetwood Mac, by Fleetwood Macs greatest hits, Fleetwood Mac foiled my wifes plan. Curse you Fleetwood Mac.

What did make it on to disc was the 2002ish version of their greatest hits, not the 1971ish version of their greatest hits, which some people (me) consider to be one of the greatest albums ever made. The 1971ish version is Peter Green at his best, and the only time he lets anyone else get a look in is via Elmore James, Little Willie John and Danny Kirwan. That’s the 1971ish version of there great hits, 2002ish documents the hits between Peter Green and his Man of the World and Tango In The Night.

An era I don’t really know about, sure I know the Peter Green years, I love Man of the World, I love Black Magic Woman, I love Oh Well, both parts thank you very much. I know of all of the tracks that made it on to Tango In The Night, and then there is Albatross. I flaming love Albatross.

Man of the World by Fleetwood Mac

That’s it then, that’s my knowledge of Fleetwood Mac. That’s is the sum total of the songs that I know. My seventies were filled with Grocer Jack, Grocer Jack etc, not Genesis, not Yes, not Emerson Lake or Powell and certainly not Fleetwood Mac.

So this greatest hits was almost revelatory, as even if you removed Albatross, Man of the world and Black Magic Woman, it was full of songs that I kind of know, that seemed kind of familiar, that rang a bell and were welcome.

If I didn’t know the songs, I certainly knew of them, Tusk and Sara. Then as the disc went on, I realised that I knew a lot of Fleetwood Mac songs and I realised that I loved them. Take that frown off your face, stop it.

Landslide, is an obsolute joy to listen to and its one that I was aware of when it was done by The Dixie Chicks.

Landslide by The Dixie Chicks

One by one the songs became more and more apparent to me, be them the presidential Don’t Stop, the NOFX covered Go Your Own Way, The Corrstastic Dreams, and more and more it clicked, I knew these songs through cover versions, through, good, bad and ugly cover versions.

Go Your Own Way by NOFX

Be it Cyndi Lauper recording You Make Loving Fun, or Shawn Colvin doing The Chain Take Peter Green out of the equation and I have had a lifetime of people trying to turn me on to the ways of Fleetwood Mac, subliminally, via cover versions.

You Make Loving Fun by Cyndi Lauper

And it worked, a glance at the titles and they meant nothing to me, but as soon as they started playing it was, hold on, that’s a Waylon Jennings song, it wasn’t a Waylon Jennings song though, it was Stevie Nicks.

Gold Dust Woman by Waylon Jennings

So as I came to the end, I realised I loved this version of their great hits, because I loved in the main the covers of these hits. I have played the disc about ten times since. But not when my wife is in the car, it isn’t The Flaming Lips.

No comments:

Post a Comment