What fun

I, of course, cannot test this as I don’t know how to use a mobile phone as anything other than, well, a phone. But others might be able to:

The days of being plagued by an annoying tune that you just can’t get out of your head may be over, thanks to Google.
The search engine has launched a Shazam for humming’ tool, allowing anyone to hum a tune into their phone to work out what song it is without knowing the lyrics.
To use the tool, open the latest version of the Google app or find your Google Search widget, tap the mic icon and say “what’s this song?” or click the “Search a song” button.
Hum, whistle or sing a tune for at least 10 seconds. Google’s artificial intelligence system then searches through its vast database to present you with a list of possible songs.

So, “bum bum bum badda bum bum, bum bum bum badda bum bum” gives Queen and Bowie or Vanilla Ice? “Boom, Boom, Boom bababa Boom, Boom, Boom bababa Boom” gives us that bloke from Orange Juice or not? And whistling a piece of Bach at it will get us how many pop songs?


When Jan Van Halen brought his family over to Pasadena, California, from the Netherlands in 1962 – Eddie once commented that they arrived “with $50 and a piano” – he can scarcely have imagined the mayhem his offspring would wreak on American popular culture. Jan was a freelance saxophonist and clarinettist who was versatile enough to find work in a number of musical styles, from classical to big band, though in California he had to supplement his musical earnings by washing dishes. Meanwhile, his Indonesian-born wife, Eugenia (nee Van Beers),

Of course, race is merely a social construct and all that. But knowing that Eddie was (hmm, mebbe 1/4) partly genetically Indonesian makes his looks make sense to me. For years I’ve looked at his picture – no, not at a votive shrine on the desk, just when you do see it – and thought, hmm, odd. This, as with the silhouette of the two faces and the candle flame thing changes the perspective and it all makes sense.

Of course, what this really shows is the inherent racism of the American system. The quarter-caste immigrant was only the best guitarist in the world on one listing, not them all.

Apparently this is deep thinking these days

The frontman of Power Trip, who has died aged 34, mixed philosophy, economics and genuine empathy into a searingly potent vision for a better world


Making his enthusiasm for “some kind of socialist/capitalist hybrid” clear to writer Dan Franklin in a Quietus interview in 2017, that year’s Nightmare Logic album laid bare the fears and frustrations of many Americans in the Trump era.

Actual thought would lead to the conclusion that we already live in a socialist/capitalist hybrid. A country that contains Albertsons and Publix supermarket chains is exactly that.

How cute, a Slade covers band

Banali joined Quiet Riot in 1982, one year before the band released its blockbuster breakthrough album, Metal Health. The singles “Cum On Feel the Noize” ……Their 1984 follow-up, Condition Critical, was also a big hit, making it to Number 15 on the Billboard 200 and selling more than 1 million copies on the strength of “Mama Weer All Crazee Now.”

So did they do the chrissie one as well?

Not sure about this at all

Awomp-bomp-A-loo-Mop Alomp-Bomp-Bomp! Can I ask you to try something? When you have a moment, go to your music streaming service, or just use YouTube, and search out Little Richard’s original 1955 recording of Tutti Frutti.

Awomp-bomp-A-loo-Mop Alomp-Bomp-Bomp!


Well, you know, sorta, maybe

Dave Clark, 80, was born in Tottenham, north London. After a career as a stuntman and film extra, he became the founder, drummer, songwriter and manager of the Sixties beat group the Dave Clark Five (DC5).

Their 1964 number one hit, Glad All Over, knocked The Beatles off the top spot and was the first of nine consecutive top 40 UK hits for the five-piece band.

After the group split up in 1970, Clark wrote the stage musical Time. He also acquired the rights to the Sixties music show Ready Steady Go! and retained all the rights to the DC5 catalogue.

One of those bits of badly remembered half-gossip.

Dave recognised the value of those songwriting royalties long before any of his bandmates did. So, all were assigned to him at his insistence. To say that he wrote all the hits might not be quite as true as saying that he’s recorded – and paid – as having written all those hits.

Sex and religion

There’s more of a connection that we might think.

Yes, sure, the vocals. But then listen properly to that bass player. Rolling along, nice and simple line, up to about 2.45. Then a crescendo of rising excitement to that Rocco moment around 4.12 then a fade to a tristesse almost.

Of course the explanation is that the arranger knew all about the other stuff and what gets people excited.

How we know Phil Collins’ career is in the toilet

Genesis are reforming:

The British prog rock band Genesis have announce that they will reunite for a series of UK stadium shows in November and December. “There’s a Genesis sound which is still there,” said guitarist Mike Rutherford. “I missed it, it’s nice to play it again.

This is an observation old enough to have been a Mad cartoon back in the 1970s. The progression of a group’s name goes:


Phil Collins with Genesis*

Phil Collins

Genesis with Phil Collins*


All that’s needed now is for Peter Gabriel to come back and it’s the full set.

*These lines can be swapped as desired.

Well, no, not quite

Sir Elton John has received the highest acknowledgement in a new year honours list in which hundreds of ordinary people were recognised alongside household names from sport, the arts, entertainment and politics.

The singer and songwriter was awarded the Companion of Honour

The highest is OM, not CH.

But yes, pretty good going Reg, pretty good going.

Sounds intriguing

Originally a duo, No Bra soon became known for Oberbeck’s habit of intoning sexually charged lyrics in a Nico-esque accent over industrial sounds while standing topless and wearing a moustache.

Just to clarify, Oberbeck is female.

At which point it all sounds most interesting, doesn’t it? A musical experience not to be missed.


Sam Smith has asked fans to refer to them using the pronouns they/them – six months after coming out as non-binary.

In a post to their 13.4 million followers on Instagram, the chart-topping singer-songwriter said they had come to the decision after spending “a lifetime of being at war” with their gender.

Smith, 27, revealed earlier this year that they had questioned their gender and had at one time considered a sex change.

A person who identifies as non-binary does not define themselves exclusively as masculine or feminine and generally prefers they/them pronouns, rather than he/she.

Smith said: “Today is a good day so here goes. I’ve decided I am changing my pronouns to THEY/THEM after a lifetime of being at war with my gender I’ve decided to embrace myself for who I am, inside and out.

And to the extent that you get to define what we call you fine. Do recall that if we call you something else we’re just being impolite, not oppressive.

One question from an old codger though, before being a they Sam Smith was a he or a she?

Hmm, well…..

With John Prine and Willie Nelson among his fans and awards to his name, the Kentucky songwriter is a rising star of country – but he’s dismayed by its fixation on beer and pickup trucks

Beer and pick up trucks are rather important to a lot of people…..

True, it does rather limit the storylines, the truck drove away with my beer, the beer made me drive my truck and so on but they really are important to people.

This is fun

Tetsu Yamauchi

With Kossoff, Kirke, Tetsu and Rabbit
Kossoff, Kirke, Tetsu and Rabbit (1972)
with Free
Heartbreaker (1973)
with the Faces
Coast to Coast: Overture and Beginners (1974)
You Can Make Me Dance, Sing or Anything (1974)

OK, so, been there, done it.

He retired from the music industry in the mid 1990s and moved to the countryside with his family to live a quiet life, refusing to speak to anyone from the press. He considers it juvenile and vain for people his age to still be performing rock and roll, and refused invitations to take part in a Faces reunion.