I Get By Got Allotments On My Mind


"I get by, got a lot on my mind, I get by got allotments on my mind." (from "Turned Up, Clocked On, Laid Off" by Half Man Half Biscuit from "This Leaden Pall" – if your household doesn’t own a copy go and buy one now from the new online Probe Plus shop).

– Without doubt the purchase of my week must be "On The Street Where I Live" an LP from Barbara Mullaney aka Rita Littlewood aka Rita Fairclough aka Rita Sullivan. It’s a fantastic LP (from the early 70s)featuring her interpretations of various classics including "Who’s Sorry Now", "Let’s Do It Let’s Fall In Love" and "Are You Lonesome Tonight" – my copy also came with a collection of Babara Mullaney press cuttings hidden away within the inner sleeve. [Confusingly it now seems that her stage name is Barbara Knox not Mullaney – how many names does one person want ?] Having googled around a while to try and find out more information about this LP, I stumbled upon this petition demanding it’s release on CD ! It currently has 2052 signatures, actually make that 2053.

– I’ve met Tom Cox a couple of times albeit many years ago. He was responsible for a fabulous fanzine (remember them ?) called Words I Might Have Ate and as such interviewed Magoo for an American music magazine (Raygun ? I can’t recall and it’s probably not important). As a music journalist he was notable for (a) not being an arse and (b) having an unhealthy obsession with Guided By Voices (if indeed one can have an unhealthy obsession with GBV). Since then he’s been writing for a variety of publications and has written a number of books, two of which I own,  "Nice Jumper" and "Educating Peter", both of which I’d recommend. His latest holds particular resonance for yours truly and could well be worth a read, buy "Under The Paw" here. This piece in The Times today explains more. (The Times this week because of it’s redesign . . . which is so so.)

Sickly Love

– And finally a great piece on the artwork of Mills & Boon by Fay Weldon. I’ve long been a fan of the 70s house style and whenever I venture into a charity shop I always wonder whether today will be the day I start collecting them. (As you can see I have already ventured into the romance market with these rather marvellous examples – "A Halo For Dr Michael" is my favourite of the bunch.)

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