I’m reading, and enjoying, ‘The Road to Little Dribbling”, Bill Bryson’s latest book, it’s a sequel to 1996’s  ‘Notes from a Small Island. I found myself Googling his name and there among the results was his participation in Desert Island Discs, a program that I used to listen to many years ago. Listening got me thinking, which seven titles would I choose were I ever put in that predicament. I could trawl through near 10,000 titles in my iTunes picking ‘possibles’ and then editing that list down to seven, that would take weeks, or I could just pick ’em off the top of my head; I chose the latter. And then I thought this would be an interesting post for the Spill, we have a group of dedicated listeners all with very clearly defined musical tastes, so the question is, were you to be confined to a desert island for the rest of your life, which seven titles would you take with you?

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Tuesday night family tree challenge #12

OK, so it is Wednesday morning, but I was a bit busy yesterday and forgot the challenge.

This week I am once again going for a name that people might not immediately recognise, but if you Google for a picture of her, I am pretty sure that most of you will know who she is.

Anyway, this week, my featured starting point is Claudia Fontaine and here she is performing some lovers rock back in 1981;

There is a playlist here which will hopefully work.


RR Movies: Lies

I’ll continue following Shoey’s train, as I said I would last week*, and ask for films about lies.

My first thought was Festen, in which terrible truths are revealed at a wedding, but that may be more about keeping secrets than telling lies (a bit of nit-picking that also rules out Mike Leigh’s great Secrets And Lies). I considered Compliance, in which an unseen authority figure lies to see how easy it is to humiliate a burger shop employee (answer: all too easy), but have settled on Philomena. It’s the true story of how the Catholic Church in Ireland lied (and continued to lie for decades) about the fate of the babies they took from ‘unwed mothers’. It’s shockingly good.

What films about lies would you recommend?

*Oh, no I didn’t….

Tuesday night family tree challenge #11

Last week’s challenge seemed to stump everyone, so this week I am going unashamedly populist.

Allegedly the only teenage footballer ever to turn up to play for Man City wearing eyeliner, he is one of the best-known musicians to emerge from the 1980s indie boom.

We all know him, he is Johnny Marr. He’s played with loads of people, so finding links is surely going to be easy.

Here is a track from his 2013 solo album, The Messenger.

Here is a link to the playlist

RR Movies: School

I sense Shoey’s RR:Revisted series is perhaps running out of steam, so I’ll consciously uncouple it from my movie follow-up series and simply pick topics from the Marconium. Until we all get bored…..

The first RR topic ever (and Shoey’s first re-visitation) was Change and the second one was School. An obsession of the US film industry – just watch those hormones kick in! –  British and European takes on the subject tend to be a little more serious and/or sinister. Lindsay Anderson’s If, for example, or last year’s The Falling, from Carol Morley:

What school-based films would you recommend?

Tuesday night family tree challenge #10

This week I am picking someone who is not particularly known as a solo artist, although she has released a few solo albums, but who is a major session musician and has featured in the music of many artists.

Her instrument is the bass guitar, although she also plays guitar and clarinet. Here is a photo of her with David Bowie and she is Gail Ann Dorsey.

Here is a track from her solo album “I Used To Be…..”

The playlist is here, and will open in a new window.

RR Movies: Sport

Plenty of classic films about sport, from This Sporting Life, through Raging Bull to Chariots Of Fire and Rocky. Plenty of documentaries, too, from Senna to Dogtown and Z-Boys to Hoop Dreams and the hypnotically boring Zidane: A 21st Century Portrait.

The best ones are about the egos and emotional journeys, of course, not the actual sport, which can be a tad grubby and sweaty (other types of film do this more entertainingly, imho…). I’ll pick a couple of fairly recent ‘based on a true story’s: Moneyball and The Damned United.

What sport films would you recommend?