This journal of the comings'n'goings and musings'n'enthusings of Dave Ling will be updated daily - except after days of stress and nights of excess.
Friday 29th May
Very sorry to hear the terrible news about Bob Kulick's passing. Bob played on some of my favourite records (often incognito) and was an incredibly gifted guy. He was 70 years old.
I've just been watching Citizens Of Boomtown, BBC2's hugely enjoyable documentary on The Boomtown Rats. It brought back lotsa very vivid youthful memories. I had no idea that the band's US label bought 1,000 dead rats from the New York sanitation department and stapled them to radio promo copies of their debut single... and then wondered why it flopped. I must play their defining record, 'A Tonic For The Troops', today.
Wednesday 27th May
Methinks a Facebook friend cull might be overdue. I've just deleted a US muso who re-posted this drivel.
Ted Nugent knocks it out of the park:
Why do I have to stay home just because you are scared? How about you stay home....you stay in your house indefinitely, you wear a mask, you socially distance yourself from me, you avoid restaurants, you avoid baseball games, you stay off the roads, you avoid malls and beaches and parks, you believe the made up death numbers, you believe the media hype, you Get your toxic vaccine while avoiding vitamin C, sunshine and the things God gave us to actually heal,
I'm done playing your dumb game. We are not “all in this together.” I'm not wearing your dumb tin foil hat anymore. I’m no longer going to be a prisoner of your fear. I'm no longer staying in my house or catering to you because you are scared. I'm not wearing a mask and I'm not staying 6 feet away from you anymore because I'm not afraid of you. You are not my enemy and if I get sick, it's not because of you, it's because of me and my system, which not only have I been addressing for quite some time, but I also know how to treat if I get sick.
This virus (or whatever it is) is already circulating. Millions of people have already encountered it, as it's been circulating around the world probably since last September. You WILL have to confront this thing, if you haven’t already. There is no way around it, unless you lock yourself up in your house and it somehow doesn't manage to hop on some mail or some groceries that you ordered online.
Your fear is not an excuse to destroy America. Your fear is not my fear and your fear does not have the right to interfere with my life, my job, my income or my future as a free American citizen. So if you're scared, you can just put your tin foil hat on, or even wrap foil all around your whole body - or around your whole house if you wish - but please keep your fear contained to your little corner of the world and don't contaminate me or my family or my Country.
Can you believe that??!!
Tuesday 26th May
The entire country is caught up in the sorry saga of a man that makes the rules only to go and flout them in the face of those that were stupid enough to what they were told. If I had a sawn-off shotgun, Cummings would be brown bread... it's a simple as that. For me, this story from the Guardian is a quite outstanding summation of all that's gone wrong with my homeland over the past 12 months and more. I laughed aloud at: "Cummings is the talking car to Johnson’s Hasselhoff." To all that voted for Boris and his cronies, I hope you are feeling proud of yourselves.
Sunday 24th May
That's a third park run in six days. Fitness is gradually returning. Abstaining from booze (albeit temporarily) must be helping the process. Today is three months.
Saturday 23rd May
The kittens are beginning the day with some play fighting. As usual, Curly - the ginger one, named after CPFC legend David Hopkin who is the ringleader was "looking to curl one" in the 1997 play-off victory over Sheff Utd - seems to be the ringleader. And then, just as suddenly, they are all asleep!
Thursday 21st May
I'm currently engaged in a deep appreciation and reappraisal of classic early Genesis. I’ve just reached the chapter on ‘Selling England By The Pound’ in Mario Giammetti’s exquisitely detailed book 1967-1975: The Peter Gabriel Years (Kingmaker Publishing). It's great to read the band members talking through those classic albums song by song, record by record, tour by tour. With my music collection still packaged up after the house move – don’t ask why! – I felt suitably compelled to visit Amazon and purchase ‘Nursery Cryme’ and ‘Selling…’ on CD for the first time. Revisiting the likes of ‘Harold The Barrel’ for the first time since I was a spotty teenager it amused me greatly that I still knew these songs inside out, right down to that brilliant lyric of: “Upon the ledge beside him/His mother made a last request/Come off the ledge/If your father were alive he'd be very, very, very upset/There's a man here from the BBC”.
As a visual companion to this journey I was thrilled to receive a copy of Robert Ellis' new photo-book, entitled ‘5’. Robert worked with the band throughout this halcyon era, and his weighty compendium traces their journey from the ‘Nursery Cryme’ tour in 1972 to the Six Of The Best Show at Milton Keynes a decade later – which as he rightly points out is likely to be Gabriel’s final appearance with the group. We get to see their legendary stage show grow from foxes heads, bat wings and slippermen and to rows of Varilites as the weighty tome pulls together some magnificent photo images from the stage, recording studios, homes and various modes of transport, plus Bob’s own memories and anecdotes, set-lists and vintage music press cuttings. Check it out here.
Wednesday 20th May
The exercise regime has been reactivated. I can't believe I just managed a complete lap of the large recreation ground behind Gentling Towers without the need to stop! Sobriety must play its park in all of this, I think.
Monday 18th May
Fans of Edward Van Halen: Check this out. It's absolutely bonkers.
Friday 15th May
This is getting ridiculous. Now Phil May, lead singer of The Pretty Things, is gone.
Thursday 14th May
Yet more terrible news: Derek Lawrence, producer of the first three Wishbone Ash albums (including their high water mark 'Argus') has passed away at age of 78. I didn't meet the guy but how work, including early records for Deep Purple, spoke for itself.
Tuesday 12th May
Lockdown literature: Can't wait to get started on this. The Peter Gabriel years in the band's own words. The first book from Kingmaker Publishing. [Edit: There are some unexpected handbags between Messrs Hackett and Banks in the 'Selling England...' chapter! Love it! Go Steve!!!]
A very happy birthday to my Sports Bud, Eddie Ling. Wish I could buy you a pint or three. Have a great day and see you on the other side. Stay safe!!!
Three decades ago, led by Steve Coppell, Palace walked out onto the fabled turf at Wembley for their first ever FA Cup Final. What are my memories of that day thirty years ago? Hmmm. Wearing Palace colours and being in the ManUre end for a start, and being *way* too bladdered to care for my safety when Wright came off the bench to score twice. And then, of course, crushing disappointment at the last-gasp equaliser.
Sunday 10th May
That fuckwit Johnson is on the TV and I'm climbing the walls with fury. So the plan is... there is no plan. #gobledegook
Saturday 9th May
... And now Little Richard has gone, at 87 years old. A very sad day, but what a great, colourful and important life he lived.
I had an interview with Brian Howe that got mothballed for 'political reasons'. I'm sure he'd have laughed at the timing of its unveiling...
Friday 8th May
According to the BBC, the live music circuit 'risks collapse within weeks'. Terrifying stuff, yet not unexpected.
Thursday 7th May
I was saddened to hear that Brian Howe is gone. Brian was one of the very first artists that I interviewed as a young fanzine scribe during his spell with White Spirit, following a gig at the Fulham Greyhound in '82. We remained in contact and would often share footie banter - despite living in Florida, Howe remained proud of his English birth and on at least one occasion considered buying into his beloved Portsmouth FC. He had a brilliant sense of humour and as those Bad Co albums prove, could write a song or two. I'm gonna miss him.
Wednesday 6th May
'CWF2', the new album from Bill Champlin, Joseph Williams and Peter Friestedt is causing me to go all weak at the knees. 'Who?' you might ask (if you've been living on a remote desert island). The son of Star Wars composer John, Joseph Williams retains an instantly recognisable voice, and 10 Miles could have appeared on either of the two mid-1980s albums he cut with Toto. Champlin spent almost three decades with Chicago, crooning many of their biggest smashes including 'Hard Habit To Break', while despite being a Swedish passport holder two LA Project albums bestowed honorary metaphorical Green Card status upon guitarist and producer Friestedt. What a melodic masterwork.
Tuesday 5th May
Six years have passed since one of the most amazing games of football I ever experienced. The night the Eagles made the odious Saurez blub. Love it, love it, love it! So let's celebrate the moment and re-live the occasion with The Scouse Commentator. "It don't matter, like, 'cos we're just gonna score another seven!" #Crystanbul
Monday 4th May
There’s a great new live record from the Hawklords. I am *so* enjoying this! Such a shame that thanks to this bloody virus their gig in St Leonards was pulled. [Just spotted they have a new date in Hastings on Nov 20 - virus allowing].
Saturday 2nd May
A very happy birthday to Amanda, my spectacular other half. These are very strange circumstances to find ourselves in but let's make it the best day possible. I can't think of anyone else I'd rather be quarantined with.
Here's your chance to vote for the Greatest Rock Songs Of The 21st Century. I had to do some prep work on this a few days ago. My knee-jerk reaction was that it would be easy: I don't listen to a whole lot of 00s-era music. With one song per artist there had to be enough for a Top Ten, right? So the following morning I submitted my Top 39, lol! Can you guess how many of these were my selections?
Friday 1st May
Here's this month's Playlist.