Colin McQuillan

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I was shocked last night to read that Colin McQuillan, lead singer of Runnin’ Riot had died suddenly earlier in the day. I was shocked particularly because just over a week before I’d seen him at the Rebellion Festival, both at the bar and then on stage with Runnin Riot on the Sunday. He looked on top form, but according to what I’ve read he died in his sleep while on tour while supporting Lars Fredriksen’s Old Firm Casuals. The band seemed to be on the way up after an up and down “career” of over 15 years.

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BOB MARLEY.

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Today Bob would have had his 69th birthday, I have a hard time imagining Bob being 69. He was always so young and vigorous and he always had so much to say. And what he said touched so many people around the world, everywhere I’ve travelled there was always evidence of Bob Marley, on posters, T shirts, murals on walls, his music coming out of doorways and from radios, he was and is everywhere; the universal man. His music will last forever.
Bob literally changed my life, everything changed when I bought his first album, ‘Catch a Fire’ in 1972. To that point I’d been listening to jazz and pop, I suddenly discovered reggae and it was infectious. I spent the next decade always looking forward to his next album and his next tour. I saw him four times and the highlight was the 1976 Roxy show in LA, a small club packed to the gills and Bob was onstage about 10ft from the table where I was sitting. It was the most amazing and intimate musical performance ever. I’m including the encore of that performance in the playlist, if you haven’t heard it you should listen, I never heard the Wailers play that way again and I have most of his concert aircheck tapes.
Here’s a selection of his music, some spiritual, some Rasta, some love songs, some everyday life songs and a couple of cuts that some might not have heard, first the Roxy encore, ‘Get up, stand up’ and an acoustic set of Bob sitting on a hotel bed in Sweden playing a medley for his own enjoyment with just an acoustic guitar. When I had a radio show I did at least one special every year devoted to Bob, either on his birthday or the anniversary of his death, let’s continue that tradition.
And give thanks to Ari for her tech support.

Here’s the playlist.

1. One Love.
2. I’m hurting’ inside.
3. Waiting in vain.
4. Natural Mystic.
5. Time will Tell.
6. Is this Love.
7. I’ll be forever loving Jah.
8. One Drop.
9. Rastaman live up.
10. Give thanks and praises.
11. Jah would never give the power to a baldheaded.
12. Acoustic Medley.
13. Get up, stand up, Roxy encore.

Losing A Fortune, Sadly

One half of the UK’s best and most enduring satirical comedy double acts has just departed this life. With his partner-in-crime, John Bird, John Fortune ripped into the lunacy of political and economic life for decades. Their interview set-up – in which they took turns as interviewee George Parr – found a home on Rory Bremner’s show (the closest we came over here to Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert) and exposed the absurdity, hypocrisy, self-delusion and downright lies spewed out by the men (always men!) of our self-serving Establishment.

Here’s an example from 2008, when capitalism did a poo on everybody. Please be amused and angry in equal measure.

Let’s all give thanks that all that stuff got sorted out and we can now look forward to the coming year, sure in the knowledge that we won’t have another property-based economic bubble……