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Playlist of the Week #5: Coachella – The Music

Ok, so I’ve missed a few weeks… But to be honest, I’ve probably listened to the same guilty pleasures over and over in that time. I can’t wait until I get a new job: I’ll spend so much money on new music, it’ll be like the HMV sale on student loan day!

Now back to this week. After a conversation with my mother about a friend of hers packing her daughter off to her first festival, it occurred to both of us that the music seems to be less important these days. Said daughter was wearing flowers in her hair and it was unclear if she knew of or listened to any of the bands on the Leeds line-up. Admittedly the Leeds line-up has changed somewhat into a more mainstream one since the days I used to go, so maybe I’m the one who wouldn’t have heard of anyone!

But basically this got me thinking: I’d seen a bunch of articles about which celebrities went to Coachella this year, who wore what, street styles, and masses more about what people looked like; but I didn’t see anything about who actually played sets at Coachella! I’ve looked up the set times and it’s all brand new information. Granted, this is the first I’ve actively looked for information about the music at Coachella, but neither did I look for information about clothing at Coachella. When did the clothes and image get more important than the music at music festivals?!

With that in mind, this week’s playlist is dedicated to artists who played at Coachella 2015.

  1. Bad Religion – Sorrow
  1. Tame Impala – Elephant
  1. Royal Blood – Come On Over

And finally – to hammer the point home – when I searched for an image for this post, this was what Google’s search came up with: music is the 5th most interesting part of the festival.

coachella search

Playlist of the Week #4: Inspired by Glastonbury

This week: a Glastonbury inspired playlist. I still have plenty to watch on the BBC website, but these are some of my favourites so far. I haven’t uploaded videos from the festival, but full sets can all be watched via the BBC link.

  1. Catfish & The Bottlemen – Kathleen

I don’t pay much attention to the charts or record sales, but I really hope this band make it big. I saw them in Chester when they became really popular after Homesick won Steve Lamacq’s Roundtable, and they were great. They got good reviews for their set at Glastonbury too, and maybe one day they’ll headline!

  1. Super Furry Animals – Do or Die

SFA rule. (in the search results for this video, a live performance from CD:UK came up, reminding me how old the song is, and how old I am)

  1. The Mothership Returns – Give Up The Funk (Tear The Roof Off The Sucker)

I would love to see these live. If I was in Glastonbury, this is definitely where I would’ve spent Saturday night.

And one extra this week: if I was there I don’t think I would’ve watched the Foo Fighters if they played. I’ve seen them live a couple of times and they’re awesome: one of the best live shows I’ve ever seen. But I’m not keen on their newer stuff, which is what most fans seem to know and want to listen to. When I saw them in Manchester and they played Monkey Wrench, there was no-one else around me singing along. When they played This is a Call, no-one even knew it! When I saw them in Leeds, they were cut off before the end of their set, so all the crowd could hear was Taylor’s drums. I’m pretty sure it was this song, also my favourite Foo Fighters song, and one of my favourite songs of all time: Everlong.


Playlist of the Week #3: As Seen on TV (and a Guilty Pleasure)

I haven’t listened to a whole lot of music this week, something I really should make a point of doing since I decided to start this regular post series! With that in mind, this week’s playlist is a rather diverse mix…

  1. Annie (Official Soundtrack) – It’s a Hard Knock Life

I was catching up on Big Bang Theory episodes earlier this week, including an episode where Howard, Raj and Stuart are cleaning the kitchen and start singing this. Fast forward several days and there’s me walking around humming the tune.

  1. Nerf Herder – Rock City News

Another one from TV: Buffy is about to be removed from Amazon Prime so I decided to go through Season 7 quickly. Despite watching this episode (Empty Places) several times, it wasn’t until this time that I realised Nerf Herder guest starred in it.

  1. Jason Derulo – In My Head

I’ve been listening to my ‘unknown album’ album on my phone in the car this week. And because I’ve had to switch my phone off a few times, it keeps forgetting that it’s on shuffle. So I start every journey with Taio Cruz’s Dynamite and Jason Derulo’s In My Head.

Also, I ‘read’ an article on BuzzFeed (UK I presume) where they went to Download and asked a bunch of heavy rockers what their favourite pop song was. I wouldn’t class myself as a heavy rocker but I am a music snob, and this is definitely a guilty pleasure. It’s just so bad it’s great! I’m actually singing along, making silly faces, while it plays on YouTube in another tab. This is pretty much what I’m like every time it comes on in the car. I dread to think what I look like…


Playlist of the Week #2: Punk History (and a bit of Rock & Roll)

I found something I actually wanted to watch on BBC4 this week! A documentary that wasn’t about religion or art: Punk Britannia. OK, so the programme is 3 years old, but I missed it first time around, so it was like it was new. Anyway, it was the second of three episodes about the history of British punk and two tracks on this week’s playlist is inspired by it.

  1. Sham 69 – If the Kids Are United

I love this song, but I’d never thought too deeply about it, or learnt that much about the band. The documentary featured Sham 69, saying they had a different background to a lot of punk bands (many of whom went to art school) and so attracted a different audience. Unfortunately for them this included National Front supporters, at a time when (much like now) there was a lot of anti-immigration, xenophobic sentiment. And this song was Jimmy Pursey’s response. I particularly like:

Just take a look around you
What do you see?
Kids with feelings like you and me
Understand him, he’ll understand you
For you are him, and he is you

  1. Stiff Little Fingers – Alternative Ulster
  1. Bo Diddley – Who Do You Love

My final track is inspired by a blog post I was reading on Everyday Feminism about cultural appropriation, which included the fact that rock & roll was largely shaped by black musicians. Record companies liked and wanted the music, but from a white person. Nowadays people think of Elvis and The Rolling Stones when they think of rock & roll, but mostly forget some of greatest musicians that influenced them and helped develop their sound. And here’s one.


Playlist of the Week #1

After looking back on an old post about music, I’ve decided to start a regular weekly post: my Playlist of the Week. I’ll post videos of 3 songs that have been in my head in the last week for one reason or another.

  1. Coolio – Rolling with the Homies

Clueless was on the TV this week. Classic 90s film that I owned on VHS, and you can’t watch it and not walk around humming this afterwards. I’m pretty sure I’ve never heard this song the whole way through, or know any of the other words.

  1. Manic Street Preachers – You Love Us

The Manics played the 20th anniversary of The Holy Bible from Cardiff Castle on Friday, and it was live on TV for those of us who couldn’t be there. This isn’t my favourite Manics song, but (almost) closing the show with the national anthem and then You Love Us was pretty awesome. My dogs didn’t appreciate my tone deaf singing though! And if you’d prefer one with better audio, watch the official video.

  1. The Swinging Blue Jeans – Hippy Hippy Shakes

My best friend loves doing karaoke. But she isn’t great at picking songs, which is where I come in. I pick a few songs that she likes (Rihanna, Madonna, Blondie) but also use this opportunity to get some of my favourite rock and roll classics in there, so I can hear them on a night out, rather than just the latest chart drivel. I’m putting together a new CD for her, which only has 5 songs out of 22 that were released this side of the millennium. I hope she likes it.


Playlist of the Week

Tell us how your week went by putting together a playlist of songs that represent it.

Daily Prompt

My week has been one of forgetfulness, awkwardness and general rubbishness. I’ve been forgetting about doing basic things, a haircut appointment, and all the things people rely on me for. I used to be a reliable and responsible person, but I don’t feel that way much now. I don’t feel like a person who can help anyone with something they’re going through, or a person who can do anyone a favour even. And the worse I get, the more I give myself a hard time, and then I get even worse, and so on.

I also had a couple of work events to go to this week. Networking has never been one of my strong points what with shyness issues and stuff, and in addition I don’t really feel like I know enough about my industry to get into conversations with people, or know the questions to ask others about their work. So as I stand around alone while everyone else chats, I feel like even more of a failure, and massively dependent on the few people I do know, and like I’m clinging onto them.

And finally, it’s been yet another week of thinking about Dad, tears and guilt. We’re finally getting the ball rolling with sorting out the estate, but it still feels like a huge weight on my shoulders.

So the week is kinda depressing, butI’d rather post videos of songs that I need to help me out of it rather than remind me how crap it is.

So here goes:

Modest Mouse – Float On

Shit happens, but you’ll cope, you’ll get through it.

Jimmy Eat World – The Middle

For the lyrics: “Don’t write yourself off yet, It’s only in your head you feel left out or looked down on, Just try your best, Try everything you can, And don’t you worry what they tell themselves when you’re away.”

I particularly like the end of this video, which is basically about standing your ground, being true to yourself and not conforming to something you don’t believe in or want to do.


This was played at the end of Dad’s funeral, and has probably been sung by every Welsh choir going, as well as quite a few Welsh bands and singers.


Nirvana for Christmas Number One!!

Much like the Rage campaign in 2009, there is an attempt for an alternative Christmas Number 1 in 2011: Nirvana’s ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’.

Rage was a momentous occasion. ‘Killing in the Name’ is an anthem, and it brought together people who were fed up of the usual X Factor Christmas chart topper. Simon Cowell said the whole campaign would make him think about the usual X Factor format.

Fast forward to 2010 and, oh look, another X Factor cover version topping the chart! Not much change then.

And now into 2011. There was plans to have Gary Barlow write an original piece of music for the winners to release as their first single. But then it was decided that Damien Rice’s ‘Cannonball’ would be covered instead. Cue lots of angry Damien Rice fans.

I will be buying ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit‘. Despite apparently having no meaning, it was the song of a generation. It came to represent anger, confusion, outcasts … which colours many people’s teenage years! I think it would be quite fitting for it to be a chart success in Nevermind’s 20th anniversary year; a year that will also be remembered for protests and riots throughout the world.

However, it is highly likely that the Military Wives will get the Christmas Number One this year.


Silence is not the way. We need to talk about it.

I read this post tonight and felt compelled to leave a comment.

Although my own finding work situation has been different (and is about to change again) the feeling that you work so hard on so many job applications to get next to nothing in return is crushing.

There is no guarantee that you will find something – anything – let alone something you want to do or something you’re good at.

Having a degree puts you in a position where employers don’t really want to hire you for something ‘beneath’ you, because they think you’ll always be on the lookout for something else.

Employers want you to have experience, but so few are willing to provide that unless you are willing to undertake a voluntary internship/placement. Which we fund how exactly, when no one wants to hire us?

So, I can empathise with Steven’s post and mental state. It’s a pretty shitty state of affairs.

The title of my post comes from an old song, Letting the Cables Sleep by Bush. I never bothered to find out its ‘meaning’, but I always figured these two lines were about not bottling up your problems (probably because of my own mental state at the time it was released). Reading Steven’s post reminded me of some my hardest times, and this just popped into my head.

(And even if you don’t like the song, the video has the lovely Gavin Rossdale and a beautiful woman in it.)


Disasters: What Makes Them Newsworthy?

Just a brief observation about the recent disasters around the world:

  • The Queensland floods affected an area the size of France and Germany, and approximately 200,000 people. About 12 people have died and dozens are missing. Damages are estimated at billions of dollars.
  • The Sri Lanka floods affected more than 1 million people, displacing approximately 325,000 people. At least 23 people have died, and damages are estimated at $500 million.
  • The Brazil mudslides killed at least 400 people and made thousands homeless. So far $480 million has been authorised for emergency funding.

Doing a quick search to find out how many news stories have been published about this (and I’m not pretending there’s anything accurate going on here), there are about 1000 stories about Sri Lanka and Brazil, and almost 20,000 about Queensland.

In comparison, searching for the Haiti earthquake from 12 months ago returns almost 12,000 results.

I wonder what is used to decide whether articles should be written and published. Could it be that we place a lower value on their lives? Or does it eventually all come down to the money value of the damage, meaning we care more about money than life?

Either way, it doesn’t sound good. The value of the damage should not trump lives affected in the media coverage. And there shouldn’t be a difference between lives in rich and poor countries, and white and non-white countries.

As Scroobius Pip says:

Thou shalt give equal worth to tragedies that occur in non-English speaking countries as to those that occur in non-English speaking countries