“I hate a song that makes you think that you’re not any good.
I hate a song that makes you think you’re just born to lose, bound to lose, no good to nobody, no good for nothing. Because you’re either too old or too young; or too fat or too slim or too ugly or too this or too that. Songs that run you down or songs that poke fun at you on account of your bad luck or your hard-trav’lin’.
I am out to fight those kind of songs to my very last breath of air and my last drop of blood. I am out to sing songs that will prove to you that this is your world; that if it has hit you pretty hard and knocked you down for a dozen loops, no matter how hard it’s run you down or rolled over you, no matter what colour, what size you are, how you’re built – I’m out to sing the songs that make you take pride in yourself and in your work, and the songs I sing are made up for the most part by all sorts of folks just about like you.”
Woody Guthrie * * * * * * *
Howdy Folks! YEEEEEHah! Y’all come right in and set down now, y’hear?
Welcome to ‘The Limpet’s first ever record review. Today we’re going to review just one recording, by a strange hybrid marine iguana conceived under a full moon at Innsmouth, from an unholy union betwixt Bobby Goldsboro and Gordon ‘The Moron’ Lightfoot, with a dollop of Billy Brag (aaaghghgh –sorry about that!) - anyway, the would-be warbler goes by the name of Gordon Bilsborough (what’s that? Should be ‘Johhny RottenBorough’? I don’t know what ya mean, guv!) Aaaaaanyway, Gordon has been released, I’m sorry, Gordon has released a song entitled THE MYTH OF THE BATTERY ROCKS, on You-Tube, which features the cheery blurb: “A protest song written by G.Bilborough, opposing the Friends of Penzance Harbour, a bunch of unreconstructed, narrow-minded Luddites who worship the Battery Rocks, an unsightly heap of granite...” The song is sung to the melody of that rather corny old tune, The Black Velvet Band, a long-time favourite with amusical inebriants. The only accompaniment is a cheap keyboard, in concertina-mode, which is played adequately, but without flourish, ornamentation or any solo. There's a curious hiatus around 1.47, where the 'engineer' couldn't quite be arsed to make the cut; and the voice is northern, dry and crowish. It can’t quite get down to the deep notes, which suggests that perhaps he should have pitched it a tone higher. I wonder how many keys were tried before recording? But to be fair, the actual SOUND of the recording is not that painful. Bearing in mind that my tastes range between, Roots Reggae, Shostakovitch, Rebetika, Sun Ra, Tzigane, John Jacob Niles, Sons of the Pioneers, The Slits, Satie, The Dubliners, Mongolian horse chants and field recordings of slugs farting – ya know, I’m pretty open-minded when it comes to me MUSIC, and potentially this could almost be a quite appealing recording of an old fella in the pub, singing an old song with more warmth than training, could be quite sweet. But as you all clearly know, it’s the VIBE in our music that makes it FOLK music. Any fool can pick up an acoustic instrument and copy the formula, but to keep it real in the folk music world, you have to have this stuff called HEART. It’s all about unity. Look at all the great gods of the 20th Century: Woody, Leadbelly, Pete Seeger, Bessie Smith, Bobby, Billie, Malvina Reynolds,Joan, Judy, Joanie, Victor Jara for Christ’s Sake! These guys were all about Unity, all about the People, all about the TRUTH goddamit!! And you come in here, dragging your tail in the gravy, talkin’ ‘bout you got yourself a PROTEST SONG ?? Boy you should be ‘shamed of yourself!! You ain’t no protest singer, boy, you’se a counter-revolutionary, boy!! Takin’ public money and puttin’ out this shit?? Are you for real? Ok – do ya think I’m being a bit harsh on the old geezer? Well, let’s take a look at some of his hate-mail, er, I mean lyrics, shall we??
“mud and the filth of the eyesore called Battery Rocks…”
“slime-covered Battery Rocks....”
“his spin and his lies”
“but when you go out on the town tonight beware of the Friends of Penzance,
they’ll harry you, they’ll bully you, so stay away from the docks,
and away from the misguided Luddites, obsessed by the Battery Rocks.”
Boy, you’re dabbling in something that doesn’t belong to you! I’m not talkin’ bout Battery Rocks, I’m talkin’ ‘bout FOLK MUSIC Goddamitt!! This is the music of the People! The voice of the struggle, sucker! The voice of Truth, and Rights, The People’s struggle for justice, motherfigure! So don’t be callin’ yoself no PROTEST SINGER boy, or I’m gonna set Howlin’ Wolf on yo reactionary ass, boy!! YOU GOT ME?? Also I felt that the coloratura in the coda was ever so slightly overstated. The tutti section in bar 847 was dripping with a gauche sentimentality when the score obviously indicated a taught, muscular precision, ala Furtwangler, Kubelik and a handful of the other great Mahlerians. Tempi are susceptible to an over-generous application of rubbato and there is a loss of cohesion with the reintroduction of the leitmotif. Otherwise, a totally kickass performance – sorry, kissass performance from a lackluster lichen-licker city-slicker mother-figure. P.S. See you in court, sucker!!
If you want to leave your own comments or reviews of 'The Myth of Battery Rocks' by Gordon Bilsborough on Youtube, follow this link:
And now for something completely different……
Battery Rox – Da Rapansa (Backatya BillyBoy!?!*)
By ‘The Limpet’, Save The Holy Headland Blogger
Slaggin off the Fopzs with ya slavering great chops
Thinkin’ you’re a battler? Man ya just a prat-tell'er!
Rattling ya cage like a venomous ta-rant-you-la!
Ya callin us thugs – but man you a liar
Thinking your lame shit’s gonna set the charts on fire
Think before ya speak man - who ya representin’?
Don’t be such a silly man – a rantin' and a ventin’
Stirring up trouble like a muddle-headed fool
Doin’ a public performance doesn’t always make ya cool
If you go to save the holy headland blog SPOT
You can read The Limpet & discover what IS HOT
Assuming you can read but in your case I am doubtful
Cause w w w dot is such a helluva mouthful
But then again you’ve obviously got a pretty loose mouth
Yeah they callin’ you the publicly-funded slanderer of the south!!