Once Upon A Time In The West

L to R: Mnemonic, DarceysDad, BethNoir, CaroleBristol, Zalamanda, TreeFrogDemon (with cider). Not in picture: Abahachi, Mrs Abahachi, TinCanMan and Mrs TinCanMan

Since I entirely failed to get my Social Playlist onto either a cd or a memory stick, I’ve put it into Dropbox: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/7mal4t39af6ls3n/wfEiz9yuKC. Unfortunately that insists on putting everything into alphabetical order, so I’m not sure if this is going to come out right, but here’s the write-up to give you the proper running order… N.B. Edited since first posted, as I suddenly realised that I’d forgotten one track; apologies to anyone who’d already downloaded it.

Friedrich Schiller’s poem Die Götter Griechenlands (The Gods of Greece) – here set to music by Franz Schubert and sung by the late, great Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau – laments the disenchantment of the modern world; once Helios rode his fiery chariot across the sky, now it’s an insensate orb obeying the laws of gravity. Once upon a time, the world was full of wonders, such as the transformation of a raven into a woman to bring comfort to a dying man in Isobel Campbell and Mark Lanegan’s wonderfully Gothic The Raven; once upon a time, giants strode the land looking for blood and bones, as in Wayne Shorter’s classic Fee Fi Fo Fum; even not so long ago, Roy Harper suggests in One of Those Days in England, summer days seemed like they’d never end. For Trwbador, however, in a song that sounds like a medieval lament, the past is full of regret: Once I Had A Love.

Blyth Power’s history is lousy – the castle at Castle Cary was abandoned by the local lords in favour of a much less draughty manor house in the 15th century, rather than featuring (as The Guns of Castle Cary suggests) in the civil war – but it’s an entertaining bit of lousy history, and anyway it’s local.  Couldn’t imagine a playlist like this without some Kate Bush: Oh England My Lionheart.  Edward Vesala was a Finnish jazz drummer and composer, but his tone poem The Wind is timeless and could be anywhere (including the Somerset Levels) where the wind sweeps in across the moors.  For a bit of variation of the prevailing folk-pop-rock mood, the KLF offer an even less likely history lesson in America (What Time Is Love?), before Barclay James Harvest offer an answer of sorts to Schiller; however much it may seem that the past is gone and everything wonderful has been lost, dramatic turns in history are, generally speaking, much less dramatic than they seem – The World Goes On

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37 thoughts on “Once Upon A Time In The West

  1. It was a wonderful social, sorry I had to go early, I’m excited about the playlist, will listen to it when the French homework is done :-) Thank you for your excellent hospitality and the gorgeous smoked cheddar!

    • Lovely to meet you (and everyone else), and likewise sorry you had to go early. Very much enjoyed your cd; much folkier that is my wont, but I am now seeking to investigate Mastodon further.

    • All too technical for me. Great to meet you and Sue, and very sorry that I forgot to get the camera out again after your arrival. Did anyone else get a picture with more of us in it?

    • I tried to post mine as a playlist to iTunes to help, but they didn’t have all the songs so it didn’t really work, I just typed them in, although Zalamanda’s magically has two number 7s which confused me.
      Didn’t take that long.

  2. It was an utterly lovely event. So lovely to see Beth again (although you still didn’t get yourself facepainted!), and to meet Carole, Mnemonic, DsD, Tinny, TFD – who was kind enough to give me a door-to-door lift – and, of course, our excellent hosts, the Abahachis (and their cats).

  3. Absolutely brill social – thanks very much to Abahachi and Mrs Abahachi, and it was great to meet you and the other guests. The grub was excellent and so was the cider, which is why I have my face stuck in it in the photo.

  4. looks like fun! More photos please! the home made cider sounds ‘lush’ as they say in those parts.

    Enjoyed the CD Aba, a couple I knew well and liked and a load outside of my usual remit…but it all went well with my Guinness and Mishima novel last night.

    I think I see a pattern in Tinny’s CD, but I can’t quite put my finger on it….! Of course I skipped straight to the Clinic cover (one of my all-time top 10 favourite songs)…hmm, not a bad go, but lacks the dark menace of the original…am listening to the other tracks now…

  5. It was lovely to meet everyone. I really enjoyed myself and the food and conversation were both excellent. Now to listen to all the music!

    • Glad you both enjoyed – I hope this has gone some way to getting you forgiven for abandoning your home and family to carouse with us. And I hope you let the bottle of cider stand for a decent amount of time before opening, and then poured very carefully…

      • Ah, now funnily enough, that’s for in about an hour’s time. Again, it will be shared. Looking forward to it.

  6. It was a lovely event. Thank you so much, Mr and Mrs Abahachi. I don’t understand Tin’s comments about tags at all but as I’ve already spent 4 hours (3 of them in conjunction with a delightful man from the BT Helpline) trying to get antivirus software onto my computer, I think my brain has exhausted its IT functionality for a few hours.

  7. Incidentally, since I didn’t make it into any of my own photos, I feel I should mention that I was wearing one of the brilliant Music Snob t-shirts that Japanther mentioned on the Spill earlier this year – and tfd was wearing something even more special.

  8. Once Upon A Time, there were 96 people ….

    I had written a full narrative that I could/would have used as a printed sleeve, if I had a printer to hand, but in the cold light of day a week later, I’ve decided you don’t need to have it inflicted on you. I’ll stick to the following:

    1. The Mighty Wah! – Heart As Big As Liverpool
    I’ve put this on a previous Social CD, but it was the only place to start this compilation.
    2. Spear Of Destiny – Somewhere In The East
    Or, as Monty Python have it in the Meaning Of Life:
    “The Third World . . . Yorkshire” [Insert usual disclaimers here.]
    3. Antony Hegarty & Bryce Dessner – I Was Young When I Left Home
    And 96 people haven’t got any older even 23 years on.
    4. First Aid Kit – You’re Not Coming Home Tonight
    I was drunk, alone, in front of the TV by last Wednesday evening; I’m afraid subtlety was not a guest present in my hotel room.
    5. Soul Asylum – Caged Rat
    Started pleasantly, but then the fear and rage exploded, just like …
    6. Brain Police – One Blow
    One minute, that’s all it took.
    7. Maria McKee – Breathe
    I wish . . . if only . . . but there is peace in MMcK’s heavenly voice.
    8. The Family Stand – Sky Is Falling
    9. Black Rebel Motorcycle Club – Red Eyes And Tears
    10. 22-20s – Baby Brings Bad News
    11. Iron & Wine – Homeward, These Shoes
    12. iLiKETRAiNS – Remnants Of An Army
    And so the red tribe takes a beating from the blue tribe rulers, and the years of lies and deceit begin.
    13. Them Crooked Vultures – Scumbag Blues
    14. Skunk Anansie – Yes, It’s Fucking Political
    15. Drive-By Truckers – Hell No, I Ain’t Happy
    The families, whose dignity I’ve only been able to disbelievingly admire, managed not to make those feelings their masters. Instead, with the selflessness the guilty parties fatally lacked, they buckled in for the long haul.
    16. Deep Dark Woods – Never Prove False
    17. Little Axe – Seek the Truth
    And with the patience of Job no, that wouldn’t be right, for Job was a sinner in the eyes of God. LFC were merely sinners in the eyes of the D.O.G. [Devil Of Grantham]. But after 23 years, finally
    18. Calexico – Red Blooms, and
    19. Centro-Matic – Truth Flies Out
    So we know, and now everybody knows that –
    20. Clint Mansell – Together We Will Live Forever
    which is more than you will, McKenzie, you vile slug.

    I’m sober now, folks, but I’m trying to put myself back into last week’s mindset (however painful/raw that still is) to try to – oh, I dunno, is justify too strong a word? – why I made the selections I did.

    Apologies if the end result is too maudlin, or indulgent, or pathetically self-pitying, but I can promise you that there isn’t a song there I’m indifferent to.

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