Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Life in a Northern Town

Well I wasn't in this week with a "sweet thanggg" playlist. Too busy stuffing my face with malt loaf and Cadbury's Roses at my parents'. I did listen to all of your sweet playlists though and enjoyed them very very much. It was a week in which I revelled in all things Northern, from really great fish and chips, to VIZ magazine, to good Indian take aways, to trips down to Saint Mary's lighthouse (that's the photo) and Durham Cathedral where the interiors of Hogwarts School were filmed for the Harry Potter movies. Musically speaking, I thought I'd "bare all" [someone stop her! This is a family blog - Ed.] Here's a mini playlist of songs which evoke the North East, Geordies and the return to the homeland. Now it's very MOR, though, but. I'm not apologising. These songs are precious to me because they evoke the region whence [whence? she been nibbling the Thesaurus again? - Ed.] I come. An explanation concerning the Spanish City in 'The Tunnel of Love' - it's a (now very run down) funfair which now looks like this...
I suppose that the question I'd like to ask is - what songs evoke your old home town, to the point of making you feel very homesick?
free music

17 comments:

scarymonster said...

FP - has to be Sting's "We Work The Black Seam", especially as I left my hometown (and its pit) in the midst of Scargill's Strike. And, although sadly not on Deezer, Lindisfarne's "Lady Eleanor" makes me all misty-eyed, as does Paddy's "When Love Breaks Down". And anything by Martin Stephenson (again, not on deezer).

I too felt that regional pride when hearing Dire Straits sing about the Spanish City and it broke my heart when I saw its state of neglect last year. The white dome used to shine like a beacon from several miles away, on our annual summer trip along the coast to 'the shows' and our excitement grew the closer we got.

My appetite for Sting has abated somewhat down the years, so I'll stick with his first solo album.

G'neet

SM

Frogprincess said...

Nice one. Sting seems to be universally hated over on the Mother Ship. But I maintain that he has written some very fine songs about the North East and I love the use of the Northumbrian pipes on 'The Island of Souls'. I too like 'we work the black seam' very much. I am from mining stock as are many Geordies. Lindisfarne -now you're talking. Run for home? The Fog on the Tyne? Great Geordie anthems too. It's indeed heartbreaking to see what has happened to the Spanish City and I wish someone would invest and build it back up again. There would be a market as my Dad tells me that Whitley Bay has the dubious honour of being Britain's number one destination for stag and hen nights? Sure they could make something out of it. Perhaps Dire Straits could do a benefit gig and at least get the roof repainted. It's a thought. I would also have included a Prefab Sprout song as they are my favourite N/E band ever ever ever. Shall have to mull over which one and shall slip it in later [that's quite enough of that - Ed.]

DarceysDad said...

Songs that make me pine for home?

Coincidentally, I'm actually working 3 miles from where I went to school this week; doesn't happen often. Anyway ...

You'll Never Walk Alone, especially sung by 40,000 faithful but tone-deaf football fans (sorry, just got back from our thumping of West Ham tonight, and haven't yet peeled off my satisfied grin!)

The Mighty Wah! - Heart As Big As Liverpool

The Christians - Greenbank Drive

China Crisis - Christian or St.Saviour's Square

Ella Guru - Augustus Golden

Ian McNabb - Liverpool Girl

treefrogdemon said...

I was very impressed by Sting's singing on the Rogues Gallery album - my kids were all big Police fans in the 80s so I heard plenty of him then but this is quite different. I'll podbean the tracks for you when I get home, fp

Frogprincess said...

Darce - I'm with you on 'Christian' and 'Wishful thinking' has the same effect too. Waaaaaaaaaaaaahhhh. TFD: Please do. Let's organise the Sting resistence! Let Sting fandom blossom on The 'Spill! Well perhaps not.

Abahachi said...

Embarrassing confession time: I grew up in Surrey. So, homesickness is an entirely alien concept. The songs that evoke the place for me come largely from the late seventies: 'Sound of the Suburbs' and the like. Plus fantasies like 'Babylon's Burning' or 'Firestarter'. Ghastly, unspeakable place.

goneforeign said...

Hear, hear, I've never understood the anti-Sting attitude that seems widespread. One of my favorite VHS tapes was the live Synchronicity concert, I thought it was the best produced concert video ever, [back then] haven't looked at it in donkey's years, I should get it out. Also the VHS of his Paris concert, Bring on the Night, another good one and then his stuff with Branford, great stuff. Go and pick on Bono, he needs it.

Anonymous said...

I spent five years in Cumberland in a very small village from the ages 8-13 before moving to Cornwall. We once had a school outing to Whitley Bay and the Spanish City, with Housesteads as the educational bit. Then we moved to Cornwall and that's where I think of as home. So it's the Mousehole Male Voice Choir for me.

Mnemonic

Mnemonic said...

I'm also rather fond of Sting as a singer/writer, just think he's a bit of a knob as a person but that's true of so many musicians. Must say I haven't liked anything since Summoner's Tales, either.

TracyK said...

Sorry, brought up in Tamworth and hence it just evokes memories of violence, brooding, wilfull stupidity and a closed-minded, superiority complex that Sandybacks have. The only cool thing about Tamworth is the castle, a great place to explore as a kid,and the fact that Julian Cope came from there. In fact, my English teacher's wife was his English teacher for a while and was so concerned about his scrawniness, she'd being him jam sandwiches to school. A friend's older brother was Copey's paperboy, when he was living back in Tamworth just after the Teardrop days. It was possible to go ask Copey for the money for that week's papers, lurk for 20 minutes and go back and charge him all over again, so fried was his brain.
In short, Tamworth: RUN AWAY!

ejaydee said...

Whence does seem to be in vogue at the moment. I only discovered it earlier in the year and I try to stick it in every sentence now, often inaccurately.
Personally, I don't think I have songs that remind me of the place I grew up in. There might be some that remind me of moments in my life. Peter Sarstedt's Where Do You Go TO My Lovely makes me think of Paris, but not the one I grew up in, more like a cliche of it I've never known.

ejaydee said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Frogprincess said...

I'm loving all the Sting "non-detractors" (carefully avoiding the word 'fan' there) coming out of the closet. Tee Hee. There was a press revelation not soooo long ago which alleged that Mr Sumner reportedly indulges in marathon tantric sex sessions with his lady wife. Now this may or may not be true. The thing is VIZ magazine has never let him forget it. They endlessly run articles where there is a paragraph reading "we rang Geordie superstar Sting who refused to comment as he was busy servicing his missus. We were told to ring back in 6 hours time". And FP gossip can also reveal that it would seem that... Sting reads VIZ. See: http://www.sting.com/news/interview.php?uid=1503 Which shows he has a nice line in self-depreciating humour. Or maybe he was thinking of suing them. I'm a fan anyway. Showing my true colours there. I love the Soul Cages album which is aaaaalll about being a North Easterner.
---
TracyK: Watch this space for more Copey news. Manuel Göttsching and he are thinking about doing some gigs together and I'll keep you all posted about that.
---
Frenchy: I LOVE that Peter Sarsted song. The accordion solo is the Paris connection for me. But then anything with an accordion in it seems to evoke Paris. Sorry for the stereotype but it's true.
---
Mnemonic - Housesteads!!! My God. The compulsory school kids visit for all Geordies. What a blast from the past!

treefrogdemon said...

Thanks for explaining the Spanish City, fp...I'm afraid I spent my adolescence in Potters Bar, the town that pulled its cinema down to build a Tesco's. There was a great record shop though, called Delmar's, where I used to feed my Everly Brothers habit. It was the proper kind with a booth to listen to the records in.

treefrogdemon said...

Bob Harris just played Shooter Jennings' version of 'Walk of Life' - it's no. 17 in the Americana charts.

I couldn't do the dance though as I was having my dinner at the time. Mince and tatties, since you ask.

Frogprincess said...

Mail a portion over will you? :O) That's known as a "leg of mince" in the North East...

glasshalfempty said...

I'm rootless, really, but any road march from Trinidad carnival in the 60's gets me going. What do you mean you've never been, book a ticket now for next Feb!
Northerners seem much more loyal to their roots than feckless southerners. There's a northern couple round my way that have a sunshield on their car windscreen that reads "Norfolk 'n' Chance" , and they sure ain't from East Anglia ;-)