Pick of the Political Pops: George Strait “The Weight Of The Badge”

This week at Americana-UK Towers we have been mostly practising at being Shroedinger’s Worker – a concept where we are simultaneously both working from home and working from the office. It seemed the only sensible thing to do given the current government advice. Likewise we have been eating at Old McDonnell’s – the local ethical eatery where they pay you to consume the stuff and they have a terrific free broadband connection – but sadly that has now come to an end given that we don’t usually get up until three in the afternoon so a ten o’clock curfew badly impacts on our lunch. On the upside we have now taken to wearing our masks 24/7 which is handy when you need to mouth “You fucking wanker” at a colleague or passing musician and not be heard. This does mean that we are no longer able to play songs by Van Morrison, Ian Brown or Noel Gallagher (being anti-maskers) but only two of them won’t be sadly missed. Continue reading “Pick of the Political Pops: George Strait “The Weight Of The Badge””

VERSIONS – “That’s How I Got to Memphis”

Here we are again with VERSIONS – our look at the songs, the performers and the interpretations by performers of the songs. This week Clint West looks at the country standard ‘That’s How I Got to Memphis’. Continue reading “VERSIONS – “That’s How I Got to Memphis””

Pick of the Political Pops: Steve Earle “Amerika v6.0 (The Best We Can Do)”

Recently at Americana UK Towers we set up the cine projector and had our weekly ‘film night’ where we come together as one and enjoy a movie. We had a high old time each with their bottle of over strength spirit in one hand and vegan snack of meadow grass flavoured chickpea crisps in the other. It was truly remarkable – holding hands and disavowing the existence of an interventionist god as a precursor to the main event, smelling each other’s hands to check for ‘that’ hand sanitizer aroma and knowing therefore that we were free from virus spreading guilt and promising to love one another regardless of what we had said about our fellows via private messaging in the preceding days of the week. Continue reading “Pick of the Political Pops: Steve Earle “Amerika v6.0 (The Best We Can Do)””

Pick of the Political Pops: Yo La Tengo “Autumn Sweater”

Here at Americana-UK Towers we have unaccountably found ourselves in a new season and are ready to embrace all that this change in the meteorological world has to throw at us. Thank heavens that the madness of the spring and summer months is behind us we thought and that we can finally raise a glass of harvest punch on a reflective, calm and peaceful time. Continue reading “Pick of the Political Pops: Yo La Tengo “Autumn Sweater””

VERSIONS – “John Barleycorn”

Here we are again with another of our occasional series in which we examine a tune and explore the various ways in which different artists have interpreted them. This time Martin Johnson goes all folk on us but doesn’t stick a finger in his ear and sing “Hey Nonny-Nonny” which is probably a blessing for us all. You may disagree with that, however, so leave us a comment below. Continue reading “VERSIONS – “John Barleycorn””

Pick of the Political Pops: Robyn Hitchcock “Television”

Here in Americana-UK Towers we have recently renewed our television licence. It cost us a grand sum of fifty-three quid since The Editor is too tight to let us have a colour TV and we make do with a 66-inch curved screen surround sound job (set to black and white). The £157.50 demand for colour was beyond his ken and since several of our members have lied about their age none of us are seventy-five or over and hence (currently) eligible for a ‘free pass’. Also since we are only visually impaired when blind drunk this applies infrequently (ish). We don’t feel guilty about this. And we don’t see why the right-wing press should feel guilty either in blaming the BBC for their outrageous demand that the frail and elderly stump up out of their paltry state pension for something that should clearly be funded by sacking the lot of the left-wing shower and making them employ small children in the fabrication of fashion garments as a means of income generation. Continue reading “Pick of the Political Pops: Robyn Hitchcock “Television””

Pick of the Political Pops: Drive By Truckers “Perfect Timing”

This week we’ve been made aware of some interesting facts and figures. Apparently net migration to the UK (year ending March 2020) was 313,000 – up on 221,000 on last year. Xenophobes and Brexiteers must be wailing and gnashing their teeth. In fact 715,000 people moved to the UK but 403,000 left hence the ‘net’ figure. Of that net figure the vast majority were non-EU nationals. Indeed an estimated 257,000 of those people arrived for study/university and the vast majority of those were from China or India. The remainder were for work and family reasons. That’s a lot of money generated for the economy. Then Covid-19 hit. After that there was a 97% reduction in passenger journeys. Also – and here’s the economy killer – study visa applications are down 99%. And of course the Brexit transition period will end pretty soon with no deal or agreement in sight. And the country is in debt to the tune of something like two trillion pounds. Best start looking for change down the back of the sofa…

VERSIONS – “All Along the Watchtower”

Here’s another in our VERSIONS series in which we take a song and examine it from different angles, different positions and different viewpoints. This time Jonathan Aird does the forensics on ‘All Along The Watchtower’. Continue reading “VERSIONS – “All Along the Watchtower””

Pick of the Political Pops: Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young “Teach Your Children”

A relatively short Political Pops this week because whilst we have sort of worked out how this happened we cannot fathom why. So no students sat A-Level exams this year due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the fact that schools were closed. Firstly reflect on that – the schools were closed (or only open to a small minority of students whose parents were key workers). So the schools were, largely, empty. A perfect place then for responsibly distanced written examinations to take place then? Apparently not. No – examinations had to be cancelled and a method found to award grades to students which reflected what they would have got. Continue reading “Pick of the Political Pops: Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young “Teach Your Children””

Pick of the Political Pops: Neil Young and Crazy Horse “Cortez The Killer”

This week at Americana-UK Towers we have been poring over the history books and were reminded of the anniversary of the fall of the Aztec capital Tenochtitlan in 1521 which essentially lead to the downfall of the Aztec empire. The man at the centre of it all was Hernan Cortez. Continue reading “Pick of the Political Pops: Neil Young and Crazy Horse “Cortez The Killer””