Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Dull in Hull?

So last weekend I went to see Craig in Hull... it was far from dull.

Had a wicked time, especially at his boyfriend Carl's pub... The Polar Bear... which is on Spring Bank... if you're ever in Hull check it out as it's great.

Friday night they had a band on called the Influential Factor, who absolutely fuckin' rocked the place... see their website at

Friday also saw us refused entry to Fuel because apparently we aren't gay... what? First I knew!!! Maybe it was because I was in me boots and braces I dunno, but the bouncers were very rude to us. Aah well, we got an apology later and everything was ok for the Saturday night.
Me & Craig in the Polar Bear

Carl and dirty Nigel

Craig & Carl at Lounge

On Sunday I stopped by at David's new house for a good laugh at some old photos. I also got to feel up Muriella's tits!

Romania:- Semi-final 1

Romania also started out on the road to Helsinki last saturday night in Bucureşti. Eleven songs battled it out to win six places in the national final. Out of the six that qualified I can only find one video, which is below.

Morandi & Wassabi - Crazy

The song's not bad... some more of the usual eurodance that we've come to expect from Romania of late, but the singing (especially the girl) is atrocious!

Norway:- Semi-final 2

After they started looking for a song last week, the second Norwegian semi-final took place in Bodø last Saturday night. Another two acts were voted into the final and another two are allowed to have another go in the wild-card round. Watch the two winners below.

Guri Schanke - Ven A Bailar Conmigo

Now Guri isn't exactly in the first flush of youth, but she's still determined to show off her vag as much as possible... maybe her two camp dancers are getting her all hot! She does feel the need to change her dress after all!

Dusty Cowshit - Chicken Rodeo

Well no one can say the Norwegians aren't game for a laugh. Oh dear!

Lithuania:- Quarter-final 1

Like their neighbours, Latvia, Lithuania started looking for a song to represent them last Saturday night in Vilnius. However, whereas Latvia has a relatively easy method of selecting an act to represent them, I'm baffled by Lithuania's. It seems there's about 9 quarter finals divided into colours and then semi-finals, which some acts get automatic entry into, then a national final, which some more acts get automatic entry into. Confused? Yeah so am I. So we'll leave em to follow up the Godawful 'We Are The Winners' on their own, until I can understand it.

Latvia:- Semi-final 1

Latvia began their song search last Saturday in Rīga. There's two semi-finals leading to a national final in a few weeks. The vid below (very bad quality recorded from someone's TV) is of the song which won the first semi.

Lenii - Take Off Your Mask

Kind of ok, but the performance and dancing is shocking.

Iceland:- Semi-final 2

Iceland continued their song search last Saturday night in Reykjavík. Three acts out of the eight on offer were voted into the national final. The vids are below.

Friðrik Ómar - Eldur

Right then, your man's got a good voice, but the song's a little dull and predictable. Not sure why there's 2 blokes banging bottles of Jean Paul Gaultier's Le Male, but anyway!

Eiríkur Hauksson - Ég Les Í Lófa Þínum

Old-time rocker tries to recapture his youth!

Jón Jósep Snæbjörnsson - Segðu Mér

Jónsi returns from his 2004 foray in Eurovision with a cracking song and performance... he's obviously learned from 2004 that you don't need to run about the stage like a mad man to get your point across! Save anything spectacular happening in the last semi next week, this should (in theory) be the song that represents Iceland in Helsinki. Oh and I love his arms n all!!!

Monday, January 29, 2007

Finland:- Semi-final 2

Continuing from last week's start, Finland held their second semi-final in Tampere on Saturday night. Watch the vids of the 3 songs that have qualified for the final below:-

Jukka Kuoppamäki - Levitä Siivet
Dull, dull, dull. After Lordi, is this really the best that Finnish TV can come up with? It's like your Dad doing karaoke!

Katra - Tietäjä
Well she was apparantly sick so that explains her dodgy voice! Still not great though, but at least it's an improvement on Dad doing karaoke!

Humane - Plane Away
Quite a nice low-key chilled out effort with a bit of random opera towards the end! Am likin' the guy's red braces under his jacket!

Denmark: Semi-final 1

Last Friday night in Hostebro, Denmark began their search for a song for Helsinki. They'll be holding 2 semi-finals before a national final in a couple of weeks time. Four songs from each semi go through as voted by the Danish public. A further 2 songs will be selected by 2 Danish radio stations from those that didn't make it. Watch the vids of those who got through below:-
Jacob Andersen - Listen To Love
A good rock-pop song. If Denmark go for this, then they could have some good chances in May.

Annette Heick - Copenhagen Airport
A very camp pop song about Copenhagen Airport... the gays'll love it at least. Especially once the stripping pilot dancers enter the scene. Her voice starts off ok, but is flat by the end and quite frankly, this bores me.

Danni Elmo - Meaning Of Life
With a voice a bit like Bryan Adams, this is some more soft rock-cum-pop. It's ok and could probably be a radio hit, but I don't think it has enough of a hook to do well at Eurovision. Oh and well done to Dansk Radio, for completely fucking up the sync between the picture and sound!

Annika Askman - Fly
Her voice is a little ropey in places, but again this ok. Just ok though. Not spectacular.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Belarus work some magic

Remember about a month ago when Belarus held their sort-of-half-kinda-national-final-thing for Eurovision? If not click the link:-

Well it culminated in a special show on Belarussian telly last night, where the 3 "winners" performed again and a jury picked the best song.

The winner was a young lad called Dima Koldun who is fuckin hot. He changed his song to the one in the vid below. The quality is terrible, but his voice ain't. I think we could be seeing the first Belarussian in the Eurovision Final since they started trying in 2004.

The song's very 007 inspired, which I find quite ironic coming from the country regarded as Europe's last dictatorship! It is quite cheesy, but the hook in this is immense - it kinda grabs you and drags you along with it kicking and screaming til by the middle 8 it's already got into your skin.

Lovin' it!

Дзмiтpый Кaлдyн - Work Your Magic

To download the song in studio quality click the link below.

And completing a Nordic night

Iceland started their very own 2007 song search about an hour after Norway's started. They're holding 3 semi-finals leading to a grand final on 17 February (The same night as Finland's). The Icelandic public vote for their favourite 3 songs to pass through each semi. The winners of the first semi are below. As the entire population of the country is only 250.000 don't hold out much hope for anything too amazing just yet. Things'll probably get better for Iceland once they've picked a song, had it remixed and translated into English in time for the contest.
Bríet Sunna Valdemarsdóttir - Blómabörn
Ok, so she struggles on the high notes, but the melody is pretty good to this.

Sigurjón Brink - Áfram
Good looking bloke sings some acoustic rock. Not bad, but not sure what the little stomps at the end are all about!

Matthías Matthíasson - Húsin Hafa Augu
Oh why does the guy with the best voice have to be a heffer?

Hooked on the Norwegian dancefloor

About an hour or so after Finland started their 2007 song search, Norway started their's in the Arctic town of Alta. They're holding 3 semi-finals and then a wild-card round leading to a grand final in Oslo on 10 February. Six artists and songs battle it out in each semi with the Norwegian public voting for their favourites. The top 2 go straight to the final, the next 2 can have another go in the wild-card round and the 2 that come last can pack their bags! Watch the two that "won" the first semi below:

Infinity - Hooked On You

Some hearty eurotechno here. The melody I quite like, the lyrics are good in places and dreadful in others, the pair of eejits singing the song are terrible looking, but she certainly has a good set of lungs on her.

Torhild Sivertsen & The Funky Family - Love On The Dancefloor

Again, she's got a decent voice, but it's quite a laid back performance for what's a dancey retro song. I don't think this would have much of a chance in Helsinki, but it's all quite funky nontheless.


Finland held the first of 4 semi-finals for their Eurovision selection on Saturday night. The artists that take part in each semi-final sing 2 songs and the public then try and pick the best one for each artist. That song then goes into the Finnish national final which will take place in Turko / Åbo on 17 February.

Watch the 3 songs selected below:

Jani & The Jetsetters - Musta Sulhanen

Not really very interesting, way too downbeat to make an impact.

Hanna Pakarinen - Leave Me Alone

Better than the song above, but still not really very captivating, but I like her voice.

Thunderstone - Face In The Mirror

More memorable than the above two songs, some death metal here! But would people go for more of the same after Lordi's win last year?

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Chart of 1995

The Britpop craze, which started in 1994, really took hold in 1995. Also this was the year that singles started to enter the chart at their peak position and then work their way down, rather than enter low and climb higher.

Deuce - Call It Love

Kitsch British pop group famous for wearing day-glo colours. This was their most successful hit. They went on to attempt to represent the UK at Eurovision 1995 with the song I Need You. They had a string of hit singles, but were dropped by their record label when they couldn't compete with the Britpop bands of the time. They were probably a few years ahead of their time.

Livin' Joy - Dreamer

Number 1 hit for an Italian house music group. This song is considered a house classic.

Seal - Kiss From A Rose

One of the most popular waltzes written in the '90's, this gave the London singer a worldwide smah hit. It was released with the film Batman Forever, which was the second biggest film of the year after Toy Story.

Pulp - Common People

Big breakthrough single for the Yorkshire indie disco band. However, whilst this was a huge success in the UK, success in the rest of the world never came.

East 17 - Thunder

Number 2 hit for the bad boys of pop, this was the first release from their third album Up All Night.

Madonna - You'll See

Lead single from her album Something To Remember. It was accompanied by a Spanish version called Verás (You'll See), which was a huge hit in the Hispanic market. The matador in the video is the same one who appears in the video for Take A Bow.

Oasis - Some Might Say

The first taste of number 1 for the Mancunian lads, this was the lead single from their second album (What's The Story) Morning Glory? Liam failed to turn up for the video shoot, so the final video for this release contains a mix of footage from the videos for Cigarettes & Alcohol and Supersonic.

Scatman John - Scatman (Ski-Ba-Bop-Dop-Bop)

Huge dance-jazz inspired song from the stuttering Californian John Larkin. This was his biggest single and was hugely successful in Europe. He holds the record for releasing a song that has charted in more countries than any other artist.

TLC - Waterfalls

This was TLC's biggest selling single and it aims to tackle issues such as drugs, homosexuality and AIDS. It was reported to be the most expensive music video ever made at the time of its release.

Take That - Never Forget

The band's 7th number 1 hit in the UK, but USA success STILL wasn't forthcoming.

Björk - It's Oh So Quiet

This is the crazy Icelandic singer's biggest hit and a cover of Betty Hudson's song Blow A Fuse. She seems to resent a cover being her biggest success and never included it on her Greatest Hits album.

The Rembrandts - I'll Be There For You

Theme tune to the American sitcom Friends, this gave the band a number 2 hit in the UK although no further success followed.

Perez 'Prez' Prado & His Orchestra - Guaglione

A posthumus release from the King of Mambo to coincide with a popular advert for Guinness!

Oasis - Roll With It

One of Oasis' most popular song, which promotes the great philosophy that you should just be yourself. This release was pitched against Country House by rival band Blur in what became known as the Battle of Britpop. This lost only making it to number 2 in the summer of 1995.

U2 - Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me

Second chart success for the film Batman Forever, this is one of U2's biggest hits and comes complete with a fantastic video. This was the more successful of the 2 songs from the film on the UK chart, whilst Seal's song (above) was more successful in the USA.

N-Trance - Set You Free

Huge hit for the Mancunian eurotechno group. This was one of the UK's biggest music exports of 1995 and it found chart success across Europe and Oceania.

Rednex - Cotton Eye Joe

Swedish euro dance band that captured the country-dance music vibe started the previous year. It's a complete trash song, but nevertheless it was a huge success and gave them a string of hits.

Boyzone - Father And Son

Cover of a Cat Stevens song it got the Irish boyband another number 2 hit from their début album.

Blur - Country House

Winner of the Battle of Britpop, the indie band from Essex got their first number 1 with this classic pop song. The video is directed by Damien Hirst. They beat Oasis to number one on the singles chart, but lost out in the battle of the albums.

Outhere Brothers - Boom Boom Boom

Radio edit of the American eurorap dance outfit. Lobbyists tried to get them banned in the UK due to the risqué nature of their lyrics, but this no doubt gave them more publicity and a predictable number 1 as a result.

Oasis - Wonderwall

Number 2 hit single and one that gave the Manchester boys their American breakthrough. This is one of the most covered songs to have been originally written in the '90's. It has been voted several times as one of the best British songs ever written.

Everything But The Girl - Missing

Best known hit of the Yorkshire pop and electronica band. They gave the track to music producer Todd Terry who came up with this version. It peaked at number 3 in 1994, but was the 9th biggest selling single in the UK in 1995.

Michael Jackson - Earth Song

Paean to saving the Earth, this was number 1 at Christmas 1995 and sold over a million copies in the UK. The video features real footage of Serb shelling in Bosnia-Herzegovina and clearing of the Amazon Rainforest. The song divided critics, some accuse it of being too overbearing. Jarvis Cocker (Pulp) famously invaded Jackson's stage performance of the song at 1996 BRIT Awards.

Robson Green & Jerome Flynn - I Believe

This was the second release from two actors in British military TV drama Soldier Soldier, which was popular at the time. They had to sing in one episode (see below) and carved out a short musical career off the back of it. This cover was the third biggest selling single in the UK in 1995. The video quality is really bad though.

Coolio feat. LV - Gangsta's Paradise

The second best selling single of the year came on the back of the film Dangerous Minds. The song begins with the first line of Psalm 23 from the Bible, but from there it diverges to comment about the life of violence and death that gangsters lead. It has the honour of being the first true rap song to reach number 1 in the UK.

Robson Green & Jerome Flynn - Unchained Melody

The biggest selling single of 1995 was this cover taken from the hit TV series Soldier Soldier. It was the second time in 6 years that this was the biggest selling UK single of the year. It was sung during the programme and ITV received so many requests for it to be released that they allowed the boys to do so. Personally I think it's a criminal version, but there ya go!

Friday, January 12, 2007

Chart of 1994

This year saw the start of the Britpop / Indie scene in the UK with the rise of Oasis and the increase in popularity of bands like Blur and Pulp.

Lisa Loeb & Nine Stories - Stay (I Missed You)

Lisa Loeb made number 1 with this song in the States before even having a record deal. She remains the only artist to achieve this feat. Despite a long-standing career in the USA, this remains her one big success in Europe as her follow up work never matched her breakthrough effort.

East 17 - Around The World

First single from their second album Steam, this got the London boys another top 3 hit. It's possibly the cheesiest song they ever released!

Cyndi Lauper - Hey Now (Girls Just Wanna Have Fun)

Lead single from her Greatest Hits album, this is a re-release of her début single with a bit of a re-work. This helped resurrect her career, which had been languishing in the doldrums for several years.

Céline Dion - Think Twice

Despite being a total flop in the USA, this cemented Céline's career in the rest of the world and gave her a 7 week stint at the top of the UK charts in 1994.

Tony Di Bart - The Real Thing

British dance act from the Thames Valley, he scored his only number 1 with this. A huge hit in the clubs at the time, its mellow sound trips you out.

MC Sar & The Real McCoy - Another Night

Another wicked club tune from another German dance act. This was their biggest hit and got them a number 3 in the UK, but amazingly for a eurodance song, this got to number 1 in the USA!

Enigma - Return To Innocence

Another chart topper from Engima. This got them into some trouble due to the illegal sampling of Led Zeppelin's, When The Levee Breaks and a traditional Taiwanese drinking chant, which was recorded on the sly during a cultural exchange in Paris!

Stiltskin - Inside

A Scottish post-grunge band, this was their only chart success. It made number 1 on the back of a Levi's advert.

Bruce Springsteen - Streets Of Philadelphia

Winner of the 1994 Oscar for Best Song, this is a haunting, slow, melodic and stripped down song that was part of the soundtrack to the film Philadelphia. The film was about a guy living with AIDS and the song reflects the general mood of the film.

Take That - Everything Changes

This was Take That's biggest hit of the year with Robbie on lead vocals, but American success continued to elude them. This was the title track of their most successful album.

Boyzone - Love Me For A Reason

And another boyband! This was the début single for the Irish boys, more favoured by your Granny, and got it them to number 2.

Baby D - Let Me Be Your Fantasy

A eurodance-trip hop outfit from the UK. This was originally released in 1992 without success, but became a huge club hit. After being voted the best club tune of all time on KISS FM, it was given another release in 1994 and got them a two week stint at the top of the charts.

The Grid - Swamp Thing

A slightly random phenomenon of music in 1994 was the mixing of country and dance music. This was a classic dance tune in this year. Who'd have thought you could mix a banjo riff onto a dance track!

Youssou N'Dour & Neneh Cherry - 7 Seconds

Classic R&B track from the Senegalese and Swedish singers. He sings in the Wolof language.

Mariah Carey - All I Want For Christmas Is You

Hugely overplayed Christmas song by the diva with a huge vocal range. This is the most successful Christmas song of the modern era and is her biggest hit in several countries including Japan.

Corona - The Rhythm Of The Night

Corona was an Italian eurodance act. This was her début single and was a smash hit all over Europe. It stayed at number 1 in Italy for 13 weeks. However it didn't catch on in the USA until 1995, almost a year after its European release. She had a few other hit singles around this period, but her follow up album flopped.

Ace Of Base - The Sign

The Swedish group's 5th single and one that got them 6 weeks at the top of the US chart. This was taken from their début album called Happy Nation. However in the USA the album was released as The Sign.

Doop - Doop

Doop were a Dutch dance music outfit that scored a huge hit with this Charleston inspired track that just repeats the word doop over a big band sample. The song was used as the theme music for Finnish TV programme Herra 47.

D:Ream - Things Can Only Get Better

Number 1 hit from the Northern Irish dance act. He went on to have 8 other hit releases. This song will forever be remembered as the theme music for New Labour's UK election campaign in 1997. How ironic things can turn out to be.

Let Loose - Crazy For You

A British pop band from London, they scored 8 top 20 hits in the UK and released 3 albums. This was their début and earned them a spot at number 2 in 1994.

Bon Jovi - Always

Huge power ballad by the New Jersey rock band. This went to number 1 and remains one of his biggest hits. Its from the album Cross Road and was originally written for the film Romeo Is Bleeding, but the band decided not to lend it to the film as they disliked it! Bon Jovi rarely perform this live due to the incredible strain it puts on Jon's voice.

Pato Banton & UB40 - Baby Come Back

Pato Banton is a reggae singer from the West Midlands and joined fellow Brummies on this number 1 smash hit. He won a Grammy in 2001 for Best Reggae Album.

East 17 - Stay Another Day

This was the London boys' biggest hit and gave them the Christmas number 1 of 1994 in the UK. It was the third biggest selling song of the year.

Whigfield - Saturday Night

A little Danish girl scored a huge worldwide hit with this party song and its dance. It was her biggest hit and was the first ever song to enter the UK chart at number 1 knocking the song below off the top spot.

Wet Wet Wet - Love Is All Around

This was the biggest selling single of 1994 and spent 15 weeks at the top of the UK chart giving the Scottish band their biggest ever hit. It was released with the film Four Weddings And A Funeral. It's a cover of the Troggs' song from 1968. Marti Pellow said they "drove everyone mad with it in the summer of 1994, but that the strength of the song is in its sheer simplicity".

Chart of 1993

This was the first year since 1989 that the number of single sales actually rose from the previous year. However no single released in 1993 sold over a million copies.

East 17 - Deep

This was their first big success and top 5 hit after the rocking song House Of Love made it to number 10 earlier in the year. East 17 were seen as a harsher alternative to the fresh boy next door look epitomised by Take That. Much of their lyrics were very deep and double meanings abounded in their music. In restrospect East 17 were a very alternative boyband that were possibly slightly mis-marketed. This song comes from the massive Walthamstow album.

M People - Moving On Up

Number 2 hit of the Mancunian soul dance group that famously beat Blur and Oasis to the BRIT Award for Best album in 1994 and 1995! This was the group's only success on the mainstream US chart where it got to number 34.

Bee Gees - For Whom The Bell Tolls

Lush power ballad from the Manx brothers. They scored a UK top 5 hit with this.

Take That feat. Lulu - Relight My Fire

Another homoerotic video from Take That featuring the genious inclusion of Lulu. This is massive gay anthem and watching the video it ain't hard to see why!

Annie Lennox - Love Song For A Vampire

The Scottish pop singer with a soul voice released this to coincide with the film Bram Stokers Dracula. It reached number 3. I love the offbeat nature of this.

Spin Doctors - Two Princes

Great feel good pop-rock song from the American group. This was their biggest success and have hardly troubled the charts since 1993. However, they're still together and recording as a group.

4 Non Blondes - What's Up?

The biggest hit for the American rock chicks. This was covered a year later by DJ Miko as a dance song to a repeat of the original's success.

Freddie Mercury - Living On My Own

A re-release of his 1985 hit. The video contains footage of Freddie's 39th birthday party.

Snow - Informer

Everyone was feelin' this at the time, but no one had the faintest idea what he was singing about! It epitomises the reggae vibe that was prevalent through so much music in 1993.

Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince - Boom! Shake The Room

Huge party song from a guy who is now one of the biggest black actors in America. "Jazzy Jeff" now works as a major R&B producer in the States.

Take That - Babe

The boys' biggest single of 1993, but beaten to the Christmas number 1, by the evil Mr Blobby! This track is sung mainly by Mark.

Culture Beat - Mr Vain

A German dance act that had an enormous Europe wide hit with this banging tune. Their producer died in a car accident at the end of 1993 at 29 years old, but the group held together and have now released 5 albums in total.

Haddaway - What Is Love?

The biggest hit of another German eurodance outfit (there were hundreds at the time ha!). This was his only success in the USA, but he released 3 albums and had a string of successful singles across Europe.

Shaggy - Oh Carolina

And aside from eurodance, the other major musical influence of the year was of course reggae. Shaggy had a string of hits after this and made a comeback in 2001. Oh Carolina was a Jamaican dancehall cover of an original ska track by the Folkes Brothers.

Gabrielle - Dreams

The début single of one of the most prolific British female singers with 18 hits to her name. This was the first time a début act had ever entered the British charts at number 2. She then climbed to number 1 and stayed there for 3 weeks.

2 Unlimited - No Limit

The biggest selling song of the year in the combined European chart, and the 4th biggest selling song of the year in the UK. This is the Dutch group's best known hit and got them to number 1 in 35 countries.

Ace Of Base - All That She Wants

A reggae-eurodance hit from the Swedish pop group. This was their breakthrough single and conquered almost all the European charts and gave them a number 2 in the USA. They followed up with many equally successful hits and have to date released 8 albums with a 9th in the pipeline. This was the third biggest selling song of the year in the UK.

UB40 - (I Can't Help) Falling In Love With You

The Brummie boys scored their biggest hit with the cover of an Elvis classic. Their influence is mainly ska and reggae and obviously 1993 was exactly the right time for them to get the second biggest selling single of the year.

Meat Loaf - I'd Do Anything For Love (But I Won't Do That)

The biggest selling single of 1993 was neither reggae or eurodance, but reserved for an old rocker, who has taken on iconic status in Europe (especially the UK and Germany). The vid for this song goes on for nearly 8 minutes and it helped relaunch Meat Loaf's career after a period of difficulty in the late '80's. The female singer is credited only as Mrs Loud, but her real name is Lorraine Crosby, a performer from Northumbria. However, in the video her part is lip-synched by Dana Patrick.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Chart of 1992

This was the year of the least number 1's. Only twelve songs got to the top spot in 1992. Every song that made it to number 1 stayed there for a minimum of 2 weeks.

Take That - Could It Be Magic?

The first taste of the top five for Take That with a Barry Manilow cover. I guess no other introduction is needed to this, except to mention how homoerotic the video is!

Felix - Don't You Want Me?

Another huge club hit from a Dutch rave-eurodance act. Unfortunately I can't find a vid of the whole song.

Freddie Mercury & Montserrat Caballé - Barcelona

A re-release of a collaboration that took place in 1987, this was adopted by the Spanish Olympic Committee for the 1992 Barcelona XXV Summer Olympiad. It spent 8 weeks at number 2 in the UK.

Shanice - I Love Your Smile

The biggest hit of the American R&B singer. The video version edits out the rap part during the bridge. Janet Jackson also laughs at the end of the song!

Dr Alban - It's My Life

Another eurodance act, this time with a reggae style, from a Nigerian born guy living in Sweden. This was his biggest hit, but he features on a Sash! single called Colour The World

Tasmin Archer - Sleeping Satellite

Breakthrough smash hit for the Yorkshire singer with a soulful voice. Sadly, follow up singles failed to emulate the success of this, which remains one of my favourite songs of all time.

Shamen - Ebeneezer Goode

"E's are good, e's are good!!" The biggest hit for the Scottish group. It sort of charecterizes the whole rave scene going on at the time and it spent 4 weeks at the top of the chart, bizarrely during the BBC's Drug Awareness Week! Despite the gimmicky nature of the lyrics, it's an absolutely wicked tune.

Undercover - Baker Street

The British dance act scored a number 2 hit in the UK with a fantastic remix of this Stealers Wheel classic. Amazingly I think it still sounds fresh today.

Erasure - ABBA-esque [EP]

The camp boys with a fetish for synth pop released an EP of 4 ABBA tracks this year, which spent 5 weeks at the top of the UK charts and stayed at number 2 in Germany for even longer. In the USA it only charted at 51, but the song Take A Chance On Me did get significant airplay. Here's the vid for Lay All Your Love On Me, which is the first song on the EP.

KWS - Please Don't Go

KWS were a dance act from the East Midlands, but despite being nimonated for a BRIT Award, this was their one and only hit, but it still got to number 1 for five weeks in May of this year.

Shakespeare's Sister - Stay

This got to number 1 in the UK and Ireland, but the video was banned in Germany for its scenes of witchcraft! None of their follow up singles repeated the success of this song from the group that takes their name from a song title by The Smiths.

Charles & Eddie - Would I Lie To You?

Charles and Eddie met on a train and began performing soul music together. This was their only hit, but was the third biggest selling song of 1992.

Snap! - Rhythm Is A Dancer

Huge dance anthem from the German dance act that employed actors to take their place at live appearances because of people's preconceived ideas about the German music scene! This tune is still played in clubs today and was the second biggest selling single of 1992.

Whitney Houston - I Will Always Love You

But this cover of a Dolly Parton classic was the biggest selling single of 1992 and it was the only one to sell over a million copies in this year. It charted in November 1992 and stayed at number 1 until mid-February 1993. It was also the third year in a row that a song from a film soundtrack was the biggest single of the year. Whitney was, of course, releasing this on the back of the blockbuster love story The Bodyguard.

Chart of 1991

And here's some of the songs that made 1991...

Shaman - Move Any Mountain

Amazing club song from the Scottish electro dance act. The guy with the long hair in the vid is Will Sinnott, who died during the making of the video clip by jumping off some rocks into the sea in Tenerife.

Enigma - Sadness (Part 1)

Number 1 hit for the Romanian and German new-age dance act. This is one of the most sexual songs I've ever heard and is taken from the ground breaking album MCMXC AD.

PM Dawn - Set Adrift On Memory Bliss

This was a big hit for the American brothers who rap over a sample of True by Spandau Ballet.

Amy Grant - Baby Baby

The Christian singer originally wrote this for her 6 month old daughter Millie, but it proved such a success it was a given a general release and made it to number 2.

Hale and Pace & The Stonkers - The Stonk

The song that went hand-in-hand with Comic Relief in 1991. It's really a terrible song, but was one of the biggest hits of the year!!!

James - Sit Down

Breakthrough hit of the Mancunian group reaching number 2. They were one of the proponents of the Madchester music scene of the early '90's.

Clash - Should I Stay Or Should I Go?

Re-release of the 1982 hit from this mega punk / ska band. The song made number 1 in 1991 on the back of a Levi's advert.

Extreme - More Than Words

An American death metal band wrote one of the most intricate and lyrical love songs of the decade. This is amongst my favourite songs of all time.

Salt-N-Pepper - Let's Talk About Sex

Controversial hit song that didn't really do that well in the USA due to lack of airplay, but in Europe it was massive. It reached number 2 in the UK and was the first American rap song to get to number 1 in Germany.

2 Unlimited - Get Ready For This

The Dutch eurotechno group took the European charts by storm with this, their début release.

Vic Reeves & The Wonder Stuff - Dizzy

Another song that brings back loads of memories. Unfortunately the sound quality on this vid is terrible, but it was the only version I could find.

Chesney Hawkes - The One And Only

Number 1 for one hit wonder Chesney. This song was taken from the film Buddy's Song. Chesney still tours with his band, but only really does student gigs!

Right Said Fred - I'm Too Sexy

Massive tongue-in-cheek euro dance song about a vain male model. This was only kept from the number 1 spot by Bryan Adams' (see below).

Cher - The Shoop Shoop Song (It's In His Kiss)

Number 1 for 6 weeks in the UK, but only reaching number 33 in her native America. The video features a very young Christina Ricci.

Queen - Bohemian Rhapsody

This was re-released in 1991 following the death of Freddie Mercury from AIDS. It was the second biggest selling single of the year.

Bryan Adams - (Everything I Do) I Do It For You

Well what to be said of this song? It spent a huge 16 unbroken weeks at the top of the UK chart. However if you think that's a long time, it was at number 1 in Canada for an amazing 39 weeks!! It's one of the best selling singles ever in the whole world. Apart from number 1 in the UK and Canada, it reached the top spot in the USA, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, Austria, Switzerland, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Australia and New Zealand. It charted in the top 10 in every country in which it was released. It obviously gave a massive boost to the film Robin Hood: Prince Of Thieves, but the film's producers didn't really like the song and tried to get Adams to change it, but he resolutely refused. That's why the song's stuck right at the end as the credits roll. I guess he had the last laugh though!

Chart of 1990

So I'm bored at the folks'!!! Here's a bit of a reminisce of songs that made the year that was 1990...

Kylie Minogue - Better The Devil You Know

THE song that defines Kylie (at least up until Spinning Around was released), this is an up-tempo pop classic with some really sad lyrics. It helped Kylie redefine herself from a SA&W puppet to become more who she wanted to be. It's one of the biggest gay anthems out there and it reached number 2 in the UK and number 6 on the combined European chart.

Berlin - Take My Breath Away

This was re-released in 1990 and made number 3 for the Oscar Award winning song of 1987. It's 1990 release was to coincide with the first showing of Top Gun on TV.

DNA feat. Suzanne Vega - Tom's Diner

The remix of Vega's acapella song about a guy's day sitting in café in New York. This reached number 2. Do-do-do-do, do-do-do-do, da-da-da-da-da-da-do-do...

EMF - Unbelievable

Number 3 début single from the indie alternative group from the Forest Of Dean. They never really ever achieved the success of this again and their bass guitarist died from a drug's overdose in 2002. The band finally split at the end of that year.

Paula Abdul & The Wild Pair - Opposites Attract

Great video for her smash hit of 1990... in fact she was so popular the cartoon cat in the video even got it's own record deal after this video, which made number 2.

B-52's - Love Shack

My over-riding memory of this song is from school discos! The song is an ode to a real life cabin that one of the band member's owned near Athens, Georgia. The cabin burnt down in 2004.

Kim Appleby - Don't Worry

Kim's début solo effort charted at number 2 after the death of her sister, Mel, from pneumonia during treatment for spinal cancer.

Technotronic feat. Ya Kid K - Get Up (Before The Night Is Over)

Follow up to Pump Up The Jam, this made number 2 for the Belgian and Zairian dance group.

Roxette - It Must Have Been Love

Biggest single for the Swedish group. This peaked at number 3 in the UK, but was overall one of the biggest selling singles of 1990. It was not included on any Roxette original album, but featured as part of the soundtrack to Pretty Woman.

Beautiful South - A Little Time

The only single to reach number 1 for the Hull band. I love the quirky nature of this song.

Madonna - Vogue

Massive hit for Madonna from the album I'm Breathless, which also helped plug the Dick Tracy film. Inspired by dancers in gay clubs in New York, this had everyone voguing all over the world. It was performed at the 1990 MTV Awards with a very risqué 18th Century French theme featuring Madonna as Marie Antionette.

Beats International feat. Lindy Layton - Dub Be Good To Me

Number 1 hit from a group created by Norman Cook after he left The Housemartins.

Maria McKee - Show Me Heaven

One of the biggest hits of the year from the Country & Western singer. This was taken from the film Days Of Thunder.

Elton John - Sacrifice

Haunting ballad and Elton John's first solo number 1 in the UK, which I find astonishing.

Sinéad O'Connor - Nothing Compares 2 U

The Irish singer's international breakthrough hit. It was the second biggest selling song of 1990 and the video won Best Video at the 1990 MTV Music Awards.

Righteous Brothers - Unchained Melody

The biggest selling single of 1990 was this re-release from the film Ghost, which features one of the most romantic scenes in film history.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

And by way of contrast...

Here's the current top 3 in the FYR Macedonian singles chart!!!

Kwan - Tainted Love

A Finnish lite-rock band is number one! It's not bad this, but apart from the endless repetitions of the chorus, I can't find a decent hook in here, which makes it seem odd that it's at number one, but anyway!

Koop - Come To Me

This is number two, and is bloody random, but I'm lovin' it! The kinda thing that would NEVER feature in the British mainstream charts.

Eлeнa Цвeткoвcкa - Bo Oчитe Пaк Mи Cпиeш Tи

And this is number three, and is a bit of a dance fest with people wearing masks in what looks like the toilet of a nightclub! Actually I quite like it...

TOP 3 in UK charts

Leona - A Moment Like This

Can you believe this is STILL number 1? Ok so her voice is great, but this song is dreadful and the video makes me cringe summat cronic!

Eric Prydz vs Floyd - Proper Education

However, Eric Prydz has a much deserved entry at number 2. Some of his DJ'ing I don't like, but I'm quite enjoying this zuped up Pink Floyd classic. I guess it's one you either love or hate!

Take That - Patience

And yes they're still hanging around after 8 weeks with what sounds like a James Blunt song! However, this is a million times better than Beuatiful, and I don't really mind it still being in the top three...

Tory talking sense? Whatever next?

I read this letter written to the Editor of the Daily Telegraph today... page 17.

"SIR - Lord Mackay (Comment 19 January) misunderstands the Sexual Orientation Regulations. Their purpose is not to restrict religious freedom. Rather, tehy extend to gay people the same rights that already exist to protect women, ethnic minorities, disabled people and religious groups. No one would seriously wish to return to the days when guesthouses could put up signs saying 'no blacks', 'no Catholics', or 'no Irish'.
I am perplexed by his insistence on the difference between homosexual orientation and homosexual practice. How would such a difference be policed? Do guesthouse owners propose to inspect bedrooms in order to ensure that two friends who are happy to save money by sharing a room are not in fact lesbians who 'wish to indulge in homosexual practices'? Would these same proprietors insist on viewing the marriage certificates of heterosexual guests?
The tone of much of the opposition to these regulations is inflammatory and obscures the issue. Extraordinarily, the Christian Congress for Traditional Values, which has orchestrated much of the opposition to the regulations, insists on labeling them a 'paedophiles' charter'. If there are Christians in 2007 who think that gay people represent a risk to children, it only serves to demonstrate just how necessary these regulations are. John Bercow MP (Con) London SW1"

Quite right. A Tory standing up for gay rights? I may need heart surgery!

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Fekk me! The UK might be about to be good!

It seems that the BBC have invited Morrissey to write and possibly perform the UK's entry in Helsinki.

Oh. My. God.

This would be AMAZING. I'm fekkin' speechless.

Watch the vid to You Have Killed Me Below, plus the link to the news on the BBC website.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

And some news from Israel

It appears that unless there's a massive hitch in the Israeli Broadcasting Authority's plans for Eurovision 2007, they'll be represented by a band called Teapacks (no kiddin')!

They apparently mix trad-Israeli sounds with modern (read rap) elements. This could work I guess, but I'm not entirely convinced that they'll stand out enough... especially if the entry is as downbeat as the song below.

However, they'll present 4 potential entries to the Israeli public next month, who'll then (try to) pick the best one. I'll reserve my judgement on this one I think.

Their most recent release... some of it works, but some of it doesn't I think.

News from Cyprus

The Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation has selected Evridíki to represent them in Helsinki. This is about the best choice they could make as she's a fekkin' amazing singer. She's one of Cyprus' top stars and was voted (unofficially) by London Greek Radio as the person they'd most like to represent Cyprus in 2007. She's had a massive career over the last 10 years and obviously Cyprus is hoping she'll qualify them to Saturday's final after last year's disaster.
She's already represented Cyprus twice at Eurovision. Once in 1992, then again in 1994. She came 11th both times, which is a bit unfair as she gave arguably one of the best performances of both evenings.
Watch some of her vids, plus her two previous forays into Euroland below.
Her latest release (bit of a serious ballad) - Zoí Na Mpo
A euro-dance-leather-romp-with-semi-naked-men - Óla Diká Sou
Some high Greek drama - Póso Lígo Me Xéreis
Possibly the most sultry performance in Eurovision - Tairiázoume (Malmö 1992)
How she only came 11th with this I'll never know - Eímai Ánthropos Ki Egó (Dublin 1994)

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Story Of My Life

Just found the vid for Story Of My Life by Kristian Leontiou...

This is one of my favourite songs of all time. I just love the way his voice soars effortlessly over the dark music. The words are quite sad, yet it leaves you feeling uplifted. It's a shame he seems to have done nothing since 2004, as he's probably one of the UK's best young singers.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Drunken texts

I took Gary out for a beer (or 10) and a few (or 10) games of pool last night. I was so bloody drunk... I really need to calm it down I think as I've been hammering the alcohol lately.

I sent two texts to Gary on my way home... I don't even remember sending em...

Text 1:
"I'm a nob! That's why I wanna get train on me own! Hope ur ok. I think about you a lot. X"

Text 2:
"Oi i'm dulle3 see you soon slimiebe. Just in bed. Ur turn to get wasted next."

Oh dear...


A lovely photo of me, Rob and Shaun at Federation where we spent New Year's Eve.

This was the moment that 2006 became 2007 and Rob looks especially pleased at the occasion!

Very disappointed about the lack of naked dancers though... aah well, I guess you can't have everything!!!