take me home


Where did our love go?

Dec 8th: Thanks to everyone who came along to the Canterbury on Saturday. Another great night. That's the last one in Brixton now for a good while - I may do one in April, but I'll think about that sometime next year. The pub looked even more fabulous than last time with the addition of the wall of lights behind the decks. Just like DJ-ing in Vegas I'm sure! Great set from Comrade Dubversion (check out the P.R.O.D. website at http://www.peoplesrepublicofdis.co.uk/) who stepped in at the last minute when Fruitbat came down with the flu. My highlights were:

* "Meat Is Murder" early on, just to get the party started!
* "Build Me Up Buttercup" - I've always resisted playing this for some reason, but the response was astonishing
* "Completely And Utterly" - a little nod to Davey, RIP
* "I'm Coming Home In The Morning" - the driving northern one after "French Disko", just sounded great!
* "Mr Tambourine Man" - wonderful!
* "Breathe On It" - everyone bouncing (literally) around for the second to last song

Thanks again to everyone for such a great night and see you on the 19th for the Christmas party.

Nov 23rd:
Two posts in one day. Something must be afoot. And it is.

We're doing an extra HDIF for December. As Brixton went so well, I want to do another one at the Canterbury just to establish it as a night there. This means the club will be fortnightly in December and then back to monthly in January. I'm off to India at the end of January for three weeks so it will be monthly for at least the first three months of 2004.

Just to make sure the night changes a little depending on the venue it's in, we're going to do something slightly different for the extra one in December. The guest DJ is fellow Brixton resident Fruitbat, who you may know from his groups Abdoujaparov and Carter USM. I've asked Fruity to spin a one off melodic punk set for us. So, between half ten and twelve on Dec 6th, the no punk rule will be lifted and the Canterbury will be rocking to the likes of Buzzcocks, New York Dolls, Undertones, Wire, Ramones, Magazine, etc, etc. I guess the idea is to play the kind of music that inspired people like Morrissey to actually be in a band in the first place. The more tuneful, romantic end of punk perhaps. Sure you know what I mean. Then it'll be back to me with my indie pop and northern records.

The details then:

Saturday December 6th
Canterbury Arms
8 Canterbury Crescent, Brixton
9pm-2am, £3

Guest DJ Fruitbat (Abdoujaparov/Carter USM)

Nov 23rd: Thanks to everyone who came along on Friday. Another great night. Roughly 100 people in, which seems like the right amount to me. I like it better when there's some room to dance. My highlights:
* Playing the northern stuff that, ultimately, only I really want to hear - "I Like Everything About You" and "I'm Coming Home" were especially great
* The Swedish guys who were overjoyed to find a club playing old school jangle pop
* "War" followed by "William It Was Really Nothing" - my little stab at topicality (couldn't find a song with George in the title)
* "Good Vibrations"
* "Friday On My Mind"
* That song by The Chi-Lites that was sampled for "Crazy In Love"
All in all, a fantastic night. Thanks to Dickon for his excellent guest spot. And thanks to everyone for turning up and making the night what it is.

Nov 20th:
STOP PRESS. HOLD THE FRONT PAGE. FOLLOW THAT CAB. Chris King from Da Doo Ron Ron has had to pull out of his DJ-ing slot at the last moment and Dickon of Fosca has kindly agreed to step in and take his place. Dickon played an excellent set for us earlier in the year and it's a pleasure to have him back. He'll be on from 10.30 until 12.00, as usual. Chris will be appearing at HDIF in February.
Nov 15th:
Started up a new bit on the site called Rupert's Records. All is explained on the page, so go and have a look.
Nov 14th:
An amazing week for gigs. Dexys on Monday were a revelation. The songs were slower but no less emotional. It was a true honour to be in their presence. I was meant to be going to Beyonce on Tuesday but had to cancel at the last minute. Wednesday was The Offspring on HMS Plymouth, a surprisingly muted affair considering it was a competition winners only show. "Self Esteem" still sounds great. Thursday was The Distillers but not The Bronx, as the drummer broke his arm the night before. If you're a punk/metal fan, rush out and get the new EP by The Bronx right now. It's spectacular. Bits of Black Flag, Fugazi, Motorhead, At The Drive-In. The Distillers took a while to really get going and Brody wasn't quite the commanding presence that I thought she would be, but the second half was excellent. And Friday was Love. Right at the front, leaning on the bar on the right hand side. Great view, beer on demand. Lovely. Only spoilt by the fact that there was no trumpet player. I'm a bit of a sucker for trumpets - in fact I think I like pretty much anything with a trumpet in it. Herb Alpert, "Wake Up Boo", oh it's my blindspot alright. So no mariachi melodies to swoon over was a bit of a disaster for me. I was extremely disappointed - but a song later I'd got over it and was doing my best Flying Pickets impersonation, filliing in the trumpet bits myself. A fantastic show, but gig of the week goes to Dexys by a long long way.
Nov 9th:
Well, what a night. What an exciting, amazing night. Thanks to everyone who showed up and made our first one in Brixton such a success. I'd expected around sixty people. As I have to pay for the PA at the Canterbury, I truly thought I was going to make a loss. I spent the week leading up to it frayed with nerves. In the end, 140 people turned up and The Canterbury was buzzing. It was wonderful. It's actually one of the ones where I wished I could have been out there dancing. Not that I didn't have a few moments of my own behind the decks of course, but it's not quite the same. I'm still smiling about it now.

My highlights, then:

* The way people rallied round when half the PA packed up. Comrade Dubversion from the mighty People's Republic Of Disco (Brixton's finest club night, a real legend) and a few guys I didn't know put aside their evenings for a moment to help me out and work out exactly what had gone wrong. In the end, it turned out that a faulty cable caused three of the speakers to shut down, and after a bit of jiggling it all returned to normal. If I'd have been on my own, it would have stayed like that all night. I didn't have a clue where to start. So - thank you, fellas, for saving the night. It was one of those moments that made me proud to live in Brixton. Thanks too to Mike from Urban 75 for helping to spread the word. It's this kind of support that makes it all worthwhile.
* Amelia's good-naturedness in the face of everthing going very very wrong. While Comrade Dubversion and pals inspected cables and speakers and I laughed nervously and did my best not to flap too much, Amelia just kept on going, making sure the evening wasn't interrupted too badly and that the tunes continued flowing. I keep thinking of the phrase "the kindness of strangers" - now, I'm not going to go all "Streetcar" on you here (well no more than usual), but considering we'd only just met, Amelia was everything you'd want from a friend when you're in a tight spot. Great set too. Shame it was plagued by interruptions. We'll have to get both Amelia and Rob back for a return booking very soon.
* Songs? Were there songs? "The Snake" followed by "The Letter" was a personal highlight. "Baby Britain" twice was another. "Cool Jerk" for the first time was fantastic. "Wouldn't It Be Nice". "Emma's House". Oh...it all seems so long ago.

That's it. Photos are up now. Thanks again to everyone.

Nov 2nd: My friends Kevin and Tracey had a joint birthday party at the Canterbury Arms on Saturday and it was fantastic. The room is just brilliant. Great big dancefloor (not wooden, as I said before, but still perfect), a proper bar with draft lager and pub prices, the glitter ball and illuminated NY skyline - oh, it's got it all. Starting to get excited about this now. Looking forward to Amelia and Rob's set as well. The set they played at Too Much Too Young earlier in the year was really good - a bit punkier than the usual HDIF fare, which should make for a cool mix. I know there are a few gigs on that night - Von Blondies at the 100 Club for one - but please try and make it down to the club afterwards. We won't be doing another one in Brixton until at least next spring, so it's truly going to be a one off. See you there!
Oct 30th:
For the first time in years (possibly ever?), we've bought a box of chocolates to give out to kids who come trick and treating down our street tomorrow. I don't know if that says more about us or our street. There was a party at the end of August in our street, organised by the residents, for the residents, council not involved. Trellis tables, a pair of decks outside one of the houses down the way, bouncy castle, everyone standing around chatting and being friendly and neighbourly, all talking about that lot down the end who were having a barbecue and not coming out and joining in. That'll be us then. Thing is, I didn't know there was going to be a street party when we organised our barbecue, and it was too late to cancel when we did find out a few days before. So our friends would have to march through the festivities in the street, going "hello, no we're not stopping, sorry". How antisocial are we? Well, not very really - I went out and spent a happy three quarters of an hour shooting the breeze and all was well in the end. I hope.

So, yes, I fully expect to have the door chapped from four ish onwards tomorrow, all the tiny tots of the street dressed up for their Halloween. Not the kind of thing you really associate with Brixton, but then that's the beauty of London sometimes. It's much more than you think it is. And, you know, I'm looking forward to it. I hope there are bite sized ghouls and goblins. Some post would be nice as well.

A week to go til HDIF hits Brixton and I'm feeling slightly nervous. Unlike the Buff Bar, I have to actually shell out some money for this one. The room is free, but I need to hire a PA and twin CDs and mixers and all of that gubbins, so if no one shows it could potentially be a bit of a disaster. Please come, then, if you can. I can't stress how great the room is. Proper wooden dancefloor, glitterball, illuminated New York skyline, the works. Plus, beer in pints! At pub prices. For those who've felt that HDIF has been a little squashed since we moved to a Friday, next week will be an opportunity to dance with plenty of room. Even if we get 130 people, there'll be loads of space. And I'll be happy with half that. I think it's going to be a bit like going back a year. I'm looking forward to it.

I've done flyers for the night. If you're going to any indiepop gigs over the next few days (The Lucksmiths at the Metro, for example?), it would be fantastic if you could print off a few and hand them out. The link for the flyers is here. And if you have friends who live south of the river, please tell them about the night.

On Tuesday, I went to see Nina Nastasia play at The Lyric in Hammersmith. She was wonderful - bits of Mazzy Star, Kristen Hersh (specifically circa "Your Ghost"), Dirty Three, all with a voice to make your heart melt. You know, one of those voices made up of blood, regret, heartbreak, devotion, trust, wonder, defeat. Yeah, just so. We were sitting upstairs and had a great view of Nina's shoes. Great big clunky numbers that made me think of the Mr Men. Precisely the desired effect, I'm sure. My friend Phil thought her hair made her look like Mickey Mouse. She sang a song about calling an ambulance for a girl and how she hated the girl all the while. Something along those lines anyway. I'll take notes next time. I was lost in the voice. And the shoes.

Oct 22nd: RIP Elliott Smith. Terrible, terrible news.

Oct 20th: Well, what a night. I had a bit of a stressful time between midnight and one am, so apologies if I was distracted when you came up to ask for a request or appeared at all grouchy. Basically, a minute into the first tune of my set - Roadrunner by Jonathan Richman - someone dancing by the DJ booth decided they didn't want to wear their jumper top thing anymore and just threw it right onto my CD piles, knocking over a bottle of beer and soaking all of the CDs in the process. As you can imagine, I wasn't very pleased about that and spent the next twenty minutes or so trying to mop up the beer and dry the CDs while keeping everything going. That first twenty minutes is quite crucial in a way - it's when you set the pace, get the mood up to a level where you can ease off from playing bigger tunes and play newer stuff without interrupting the flow. Alas I didn't have an opportunity to do that and stayed in a pretty poor mood as a result. So, again, apologies if I was at all short with you. I shouldn't let these things get to me. But they do.

Anyway, I started to have fun about 1am, when we played Almost Prayed in the live link up with The Winchester Club. It was great to see people cheering and shouting "hello Glasgow" just like it was a real live link up. The other highlight of the night was doing an impromptu themed megamix. "Breathe On It" by The Hidden Cameras, "Oblivious" by Aztec Camera, and "Let Me Go Home" by Camera Obscura. Ho ho. Tiny things and all that. We ended on a wedding theme - "Reel Around The Fountain" for a guy who came up and said he'd just got engaged and could I play it in honour of he and his wife to be, and "Wouldn't It Be Nice", which was one of the first songs played at my friends Rob and Theo's wedding recently. Aw, bless.

That's it. Thanks to The Actionettes for their fabulous dance set and for a great DJ set. And thanks to everyone that came along and danced. See you in Brixton on the 7th!

Oct 8th: Been a good run for gigs recently. I went to see Suede at the ICA do their first album in order. It was a bizarre experience - like drowning, seeing your life, or images from one part of it at least, flashing before your eyes. I used to see Suede all the time back then and even remember them with Justine as their guitarist. It's been easy to forget how amazing those songs really are, but they brought it all back. Until the encore when they played the new single and Trash and so on, bursting the bubble completely. Luckily they had To The Birds to bring the night back on track again.

The night after that I went to see my favourite band when I was 15 - Hanoi Rocks. They had an album launch at the Finnish Ambassador's residence just off Hyde Park which was hilarious. All these very prim and proper looking suits being vaguely perturbed when a horde of rock fans came in to drink their free booze and smoke fags on the back verandah bit. The ambassador - no ferrero rocher, alas, by the way - gave a speech about Hanoi to TV cameras while Mike and Andy staggered around next to him. I know this all probably means very little to the indie pop fans out there, but it was an amazing moment for me. My 15 year old self would have been very proud of what he was going to do, ulp, twenty years later on. My god.

The night after that, I went to see Camera Obscura at The Water Rats. They were fantastic, but no Number One Son (unless they played it when I nipped off to the loo). I don't understand. It's one of the highlights of the album for me. Good gig generally, although I do wish Traceyanne would have a bit more fun on stage, you know smile and relax and get into it. I've said this to her before and she's actually much better than when I saw the group last, but still. I think everyone would get into it more if they saw the band were enjoying it too. They're excellent songs and the crowd did want to do more than jiggle a little. In fact, it was all starting to kick off when they played Let Me Go Home - as one of the last songs! A bit of set restructuring and a bouncy castle on the rider will sort them out.

Since then I've been lobbying my mates unsuccesfully to go out to a northern soul night. I want to go to a place with a proper wooden dance floor, talc liberally applied, blokes with record boxes in the foyer, and loads of tunes I've never heard before. I'm reading a book on the history of Northern Soul at the moment and it's really inspiring. It's called Too Damn Soulful. Well worth getting.

Gigs coming up that look good to me:

Hope Of The States, ULU on Friday
Aislers Set/Lucksmiths, LSE Thursday week

And then of course it's HDIF the day after. Can't wait.

Sept 20th: A fantastic night. Thanks to everyone for coming and thanks to David for DJing. Sorry to those who had to queue outside. We sold out about eleven and it was a one in one out policy for a little while. We somehow managed to get 193 people through the door during the course of the evening. Amazing.

My highlights:

* Nothing But A Heartache and Change My Darkness Into Light by The Flirtations
* Let's Wade In The Water and California Soul by Marlena Shaw
* Let Me Down Easy by Bettie Lavette
* Pristine Christine
* God Only Knows and Wouldn't It Be Nice
* Step Into My Office Baby, Dear Catastrophe Waitress, I'm A Cuckoo and Lord Anthony
* In My Life by Johnny Cash

Sept 14th: HDIF is doing a one off club night in Brixton, where I live. It's on Nov 7th. Full details in the Club section. The Canterbury Arms is a great venue. I remember seeing Snuff and Sink there back in the day, and went there recently for the Too Much Too Young night put on by Sean from Fortuna Pop, who's been a great help in setting up this night. The back room at the Canterbury Arms is fantastic. Proper dance floor. Mirror ball. Illuminated New York skyline by the stage. What more could you want? Please come along to this night. Our guest DJs are Amelia Fletcher and Rob Pursey from Tender Trap/Heavenly. Looking forward to it already.
Also - I've decided to get rid of the Messageboard and replace it with the Yahoo Group. This will stop unwanted people from posting on the board, as has been happening in the last few months.

Sept 1st: I'm pleased to announce that Clare and Matt (formerly of Sarah records) are returning to guest DJ in December, this time playing a non-Sarah set. Excellent news. That's this year all sorted then. Wonder who I can get to DJ in January? Also added another Great Lost Single. Keep 'em coming please...
August 26th:
Just confirmed the next three guest DJs for HDIF. They are David Gedge (Cinerama/The Wedding Present) for Sept, The Actionettes for Oct and Chris King from Brighton's Da Do Ron Ron for November. Getting Chris is especially exciting for me, since if it wasn't for him HDIF wouldn't exist in the first place. It's a convoluted story, but here goes. Chris used to do Da Do Ron Ron at the Buffalo Bars every third Thursday of the month. He stopped when he moved to Brighton and offered the slot to me and my friend Angus for another club night we do. We took it on and did it monthly, but then decided that we wanted to become bi-monthly to make it more of an event (I think it was the country special we did, attended by all of twelve people, that convinced us!). So we needed something to occupy the other month. A car ride from Glasgow to Edinburgh later, with me in the back seat, listening to the mix tape that Gary did for Amanda who was driving, and HDIF was born. 'Beginning To See The Light' was even on the tape, so I got the name and everything in just under an hour. Fantastic. So, if it wasn't for Chris (and Gary and Amanda), there would be no HDIF, so having him in to DJ is just great.

August 16th: Oh my head. Fantastic night last night. Thanks to everyone that made our first Friday go really well.

My highlights:

* You Set The Scene - ah, wonderful...
* Consolation Prize - apparently I made "two old men very happy", and one young one too, good choice Myles
* California Soul - it's the sound you hear, that lingers in your ear...
* Everything Flows - it's back...!
* Homeward Bound - always a pleasure

Thanks to Shirley and Samanthi for such a great set. Here's what they played:

Eddie Bishop               Call Me
Bobbie Gentry               Mississippi Delta
The Hidden Cameras Ban Marriage
Stephen Duffy              Kiss Me '83
Teenage Fanclub              Some People Want to Fuck With You
Chevette             We Can Dance Again
Blondie             Sunday Girl (French Version)
BMX Bandits             Little Hands
The Shangri-Las             Sophisticated Boom Boom
France Gall             Poupee de Cire Poupee de Son
Belle and Sebastian           String Bean Jean
Jerry Naylor            City Lights
The Futureheads                  Picture of Dorian Gray
The Pastels            Something's Going On
Wreckless Eric           Whole Wide World
Camera Obscura                 Happy New Year
The Field Mice           Coach Station Reunion
Call and Response           Rollerskate
Ballboy           Avant Garde Music
Imperial Teen           You're One
The Outsiders           Time Won't Let Me
Eddie and Ernie            Lay Lady Lay
The Lemonheads            If I Could Talk I'd Tell You
Hefner           Painting and Kissing
Comet Gain            You Can Hide Your Love Forever
Low            Just Like Christmas
Laura Green            Moonlight, Music and You
Animals That Swim            Faded Glamour

August 13th: Just started a Yahoo Group for HDIF. Please join. The link is on the front page.
August 12th:
I've put flyers for this Friday's night right here. If you're going to any gigs in the next few days and could hand a couple out to help spread the word, that would be grand. Thank you!
August 11th:
Well, only a few days until the first Friday club night. I'm looking forward to it immensely. If you have any requests, please email me. In the meantime, I've posted some more bits and pieces in Interviews and Writing. I was taking files off an old computer before giving it to a friend and found a load of stuff that seemed relevant to the site. More of this soon. See you all on Friday! Or at Sleater-Kinney on Thursday if you're going to that. Go early to see The Fiery Furnaces. They're on at eight. Very bizarre psych pop from the States.
August 5th:
Added a couple of Great Lost Singles.
July 18th:
Fantastic, fantastic night last night. The best one for a while, I reckon. I particularly enjoyed the following:

* Carwash Hair at the start - If I'm not in a band, doesn't mean I'm square/If I am, well then I don't care...
* Phil Wilson's set. A lovely man and fine music. A pleasure.
* The HOT 3
* I Am A Rock - singing it at the bloke who complained because we wouldn't play any Kosheen. He was very funny. Hated everything we played, stayed all night and danced to the lot.

Here is what roughly what Phil played. Thanks everyone for coming along. A great last Thursday!

Article 58 - Events to Come
Televison Personalities - Part Time Punks
Lee Kristofferson - Night of the Werewolf
The Nectarine Number 9 - Pop's Love Thing
Kim Weston - Helpless
The Modern Lovers - Roadrunner (twice)
Joesf K - Chance Meeting
The Undertones - Thrill Me
Sandie Shaw - Hand in Glove
The Wild Swans - Revolutionary Spirit
The Chills - Rolling Moon
Martha Reeves etc - Dancing in the Street
The Smiths - William it was really Nothing
The Zombies - Care of Cell 44
Another Sunny Day - You Should all be murdered.
1000 Violins - Like one thousand violins
Big Star - September Girls
Al Green - I'm a Ram
Orange Juice - Blue Boy
The Teardrop Explodes - Reward
Primal Scream - It Happens
The Byrds - So you wanna be a rock'n'roll star
The Mekons - Where were You
Felt - Rain of Crystal Spires
The Loft - Why Does the Rain
Girls at Our Best - Politics

July 14th: This is being written almost a month after the event, so there's bound to be holes. Big gaping holes. Entire chasms, in fact. If you can add anything to this account please do.
LONDON JUNE 19TH: First night of the tour. Angela did the door ­ thanks Angela. The Happy Couple were our guests. Harvey helped me out after they finished. One regular was so bladdered he was having trouble walking in a straight line. No names, of course. I remember having fun chatting next to the pinball machine. It was a good night. Told you there were going to be gaps, didn't I?
OXFORD JUNE 20TH: In the company of my musical supervisor and attorney Rupert, we made our way to Oxford. Drove straight past the venue, over a bridge, under spires, slumbering or not. All very pretty. The riverside pubs looked especially inviting. Met up with David and his team, our promoters and hosts for the night. Good room above the pub ­ just one problem. No curtains. It was bright sunlight outside and would be almost til the end of the night, since we were on pub hours. Curtains were needed and found. Had some food downstairs ­ the not very healthy vegetarian option of fried egg in a baguette and chips ­ then up to get things underway. Adam would be our guest for the night and play from half eight til nine. I'd then do til closing. First hour was nice and calm. Our first paying clubber wanted to hear Dusty and got to sit in the venue by herself (bar me and Rupert) to listen to her request. Got talking to Mark off the Sinister list. Then the girls from Coventry who went to London the night before turned up ­ they wanted to hear more Shangri Las. No problem. Great set from Adam, then it was my turn. My highlights were as follows:
* Different Drum by the Lemonheads followed by "Mrs Robinson" by Simon & Garfunkel
* 3 Is The Heavenly Option ­ fast becoming a firm favourite
* Claire's cakes. Very nice. Even if they didn't have any OJ in them. I had two
* Nipping off to the loo during There Is A Lightand hearing it skip while I was mid ablution. Erk! It got caught in a loop but David rescued it. There was a huge chod of dust on the needle apparently. Ooops.
* The wobbling table. Every time a footstomper came on, the table would wobble and the record start to jump. Not much fun, as I had to spend half the night telling people not to dance so enthusiastically, which is kind of defeating the point. Rupert stepped in to hold said table at one point, but refused point blank to help any further when I cued up Crash. He knew a lost cause when he saw one. Needless to say, fervent bouncing ensued and we hardly made it to the end of the track.
That's about it. A great night. I really really enjoyed it and will definitely be back.
NOTTINGHAM JUNE 21st: After a morning's shopping in Oxford ­ a red top for Nottingham ­ a quick and easy drive to Nottingham. Found the venue straight away again. Said hello to Fosca as they were stepping out of their taxi. Met up with Sam, our promoter for the night. Mentioned, at one point, that I needed a copy of Tigermilk and Sinister, and Aline (sorry, if I've spelt that wrong!) kindly took us to her halls of residence to pick up her copies. In return, I promised to play her countrymates Os Mutantes. Which is the sort of deal it's always a pleasure to strike up. Went into town. Chatted with Rachel of Fosca then went to listen to some Christian rappers who were playing on a carpark thing in the city centre. One rhyme was excellent "You might believe in Allah or Krishna/And I don't wanna diss ya" Genius. Found ourselves in a second hand record shop. As you do. Spent a happy half hour of so sifting through vinyl, playing bits and pieces on the old record players they had there. Bought a couple of things to play that night. The owner wanted to shut up shop but walked us to another second hand record shop. Or at least to the bottom of the hill it was on. Walked up, past every Indian and Chinese take out in town it seemed, to find it closed. My, the excitement of touring life. Went to Selectadisc, bought the first three REM albums on CD for 12 quid. Excellent. Played 'Superman' that night. Walked past an all you can eat indian buffet place and decided to get some food. Huge mistake. The worst meal I've had for a long long time. Dreadful food, utterly tasteless or completely not what it was meant to be. Disgusting. Makes me feel sick thinking about it now. Back to the venue. DJ downstairs started off with Gay Bar and followed it up with Money by Pink Floyd. I was very excited. From there, he could have gone anywhere. Anywhere! I wanted to stay downstairs and see what esoteric delights would ensue, but alas it all went a bit predictable after that. Ho hum. Blokes dressed as ladies cavorted downstairs. Upstairs the opposite looked likely. Retired upstairs. Fosca were excellent. I've not seen them before but they were truly great, particularly the new songs. Then it was me. A short, almost greatest hits set, but very enjoyable. The folk of Nottingham were clearly up for a dance and even didn't seem too perturbed when I played Tainted Love twice by mistake. What an idiot. Met Robin from Sinister - sorry, if I was too busy DJ-ing to chat. All fine in the end, though, and another great night.
What have we learnt? The following:
* Life on tour is all about food. It's the one thing that changes. Everything else is pretty much the same.
* Life on tour is a string of events, happening in a straight line. Reciting them turns you back into your six year old self. "And then weand then weand then"
* Being a DJ, playing the same core songs every night, makes you feel weird. Like you're being unadventurous. But if it's a different crowd then it shouldn't matter. A band don't worry after all. Did my best to make sure each night was different ­ and it was. But it's all in the margins. Enjoyed playing Jonathan Richman in Oxford and Os Mutantes in Nottingham. For those two alone, it was all worth it. Both were fantastic nights and I'd happily return any time.
That really is it now. If you want me to come to your town, just drop me a line.
July 2nd: Just added four singles to the Great Lost Singles section. The account of HDIF on tour here soon, I promise.
June 24th:
A fantastic three days. Thanks to everyone who came along and thanks to Dave and Sam for putting on Oxford and Nottingham. More here on it all soon.
June 9th: The date in Oxford has finally been confirmed, which means that HDIF is going on tour. Excellent news. I'll be ordering the chrome tour bus in the morning.
   It's happening on June 20th, Upstairs @ The Folly Bridge Inn, Abingdon Road, Oxford. 7.30pm - close. £3 entry. A map for the venue can be found
June 4th:
Another brace of great gigs over the last couple of days. First up, Tindersticks at the Royal Court in London, right next to Sloane Square tube station. I was a bit late and caused a mini Mexican wave of people standing up from their theatre seats to let me squeeze into the middle of the stalls. All mildly comical (to me)/annoying (to them, I imagine ­ sorry if it was you).
Anyway, the band were fantastic. They really make playing slow, emotional, beautiful music seem very very easy, which is possibly why they're taken for granted by some. The new songs were particularly great ­ and the longer they played, the easier it was to understand what Stuart was singing. I've always had a strange relationship with his voice, but it made sense at the Royal Court, starting off as an extra instrument that you don't try to interpret (think Sigur Ros) and ending up as a clear, affecting channel. Hmm ­ sounds a bit cosmic, but you know what I mean. Maaan.
Afterwards in the bar, the DJs played northern rarities and I chatted with some friends I haven't seen for ages. A great night really.
Then on Monday, the ICA and the Hidden Cameras. They are phenomenal, no doubt about it. A spectacle, in cabaret terms, and an experience. They had dancers in their underpants, someone wearing one of those foam horror masks that were popular about twenty years ago, they even snaked through the audience to begin like Hare Krishnas spreading the word. All very entertaining, but I couldn't help feeling that I would have liked them even more if there hadn't been any of the above. Maybe we've reached saturation point with all this extra curricular malarkey. It's not like we're spoiled for entertainment here in London ­ we've had 25 piece epiphanies in robes thrust in our faces at the Monarch, we've whooped with Mariachi joy with Calexico at the Barbican, there have even been reports of giant furry ears during Easter. I quite fancy seeing a band that were just great on their own terms. You know ­ no smoke, no mirrors, just heartbreak and brilliance. That was Saturday night with the Tindersticks I guess, so what am I on about, but still. There's a point in there somewhere.
So: The Hidden Cameras were wonderful. I didn't do the dance. Does this make me a bad person? Did it mean I felt left out somehow? Might they be better on record, without all of the distractions? Um: we'll be right back after these messages. What I do know is that I wish I could have made the solo gig that Joel did a few months back. I was away in Iceland I think. I would have liked to have heard the songs by themselves. But then the string section really made it too. I can still hear the swoop of "A Miracle" and it's gorgeous. I'm not getting very coherent here am I? Conclusion ­ the Hidden Cameras are an amazing, hugely entertaining group. But I wasn't touched emotionally at all by their performance. I think I still prefer that Scottish band.
On another tip ­ saw a load of people from the pics at the ICA on Monday. I didn't know whether to stop or say hello or not, so please don't think I was being rude if I didn't. I figured that while they were familiar to me from the site, I wasn't familiar to them as they were busy dancing and who wants to look at the DJ anyway, so they wouldn't appreciate being collared by a complete stranger while they were out with their pals. Does that make any sense? Not much of this does today. I think I'll stop while I'm ahead.
PS: Just heard that the midweek chart position for "A Miracle" is a nudge outside the top 40. So if you feel that the charts would be bettered by having some "gay church folk" (redundant summation, ahoy!) in them, then you know what to do! Buy it - the single is wonderful.
May 30th: Again apologies for the lack of updates here. I'm in the middle of moving house and it's proving very stressful and time consuming. Seven months it's taken now.
Anyway, last night I went to see Alfie at ULU. They've always been very easy to love but hard to like, which is an odd twist on things. Lee the singer is totally unique ­ a sparkling eyed idiot savant who spends most of his time waving to people in the crowd and clapping like he's taking part in a music therapy session. It's impossible not to love him. He just oozes charm - and an indefinable charm too, which is even better. The songs, though, have been slight sketches that you sometimes find hard to grasp hold of. And poor Lee isn't the best singer either. Must be something in the Manc DNA line that he's part of.
However, last night they were fantastic on all counts. They've written some new songs that are actually proper songs and Lee was more often in tune than not. By far the best song was one about a mole and a sparrow (I think, or some kind of bird at least), and the love that blossoms between them. Sounds mental ­ isn't. I just spent the whole tune thinking "they've cracked it". It really is a superb song ­ and someone should phone up Wayne Coyne immediately and get him to record a cover. Or better still, take on Alfie as tour support.
That's it. We're moving to Fridays as of August, so the first Friday will be the 15th. Our guest DJs that night will be Shirley & Samanthi from Spearmint. They came to the very first HDIF and have been back every so often since, so it was about time we got them in to do a guest spot. Looking forward to it.
May 16th: Another great night, another terrible hangover. At least I didn't move onto the chocolate vodka. Unlike some I could mention.
Thanks to Tony for bringing along Luna's version of "Sweet Child Of Mine". A truly bizarre record. And thanks to Clare and Matt for their excellent DJ slot. They'll be back again, but next time playing other people's records. Here's what they played last night.

Heavenly ­ C Is The Heavenly Option
14 Iced Bears ­ Unhappy Days
Boyracer ­ I've Got It & It's Not Worth Having
Even As We Speak ­ Falling Down The Stairs
Secret Shine ­ Temporal
The Field Mice ­ Sensitive
The Orchids ­ Something For The Longing
The Springfields ­ Sunflower
The Sugargliders ­ Ah Prahran
Another Sunny Day ­ Horseriding
St Christopher ­ My Fortune
The Sweetest Ache ­ She Believes
The Hit Parade ­ Autobiography
Tramway ­ Technical College
Brighter ­ Noah's Ark
Sea Urchins ­ Pristine Chrstine
Talulah Gosh ­ Be Your Baby
Action Painting! ­ These Things Happen
The Wake ­ Crush The Flowers
East River Pipe ­ Silhouette Town
The Orchids ­ Thaumaturgy
Blueboy ­ Imipramine
Heavenly ­ Attagirl
The Field Mice ­ Missing The Moon
The Orchids ­ Sadness Of Sex
Even As We Speak ­ Drown
The Golden Dawn ­ George Hamilton

May 11th:
Here's an interesting press release about the forthcoming Felt reissues. Thought you might like to see it.

Cherry Red are set to release the entire Felt catalogue over the next six
months commencing with a new compilation, titled, 'Stains On A Decade',
personally selected by Lawrence, Felt's architect in chief. Of particular
interest to Felt fans is the June 23rd release of the DVD A Declaration.

Released on May 26th, the 15 track 'Stains On A Decade' compilation is the
first to encompass the entire decade of Felt's existence through the '80s,
when they were signed to first, Cherry Red and then Creation Records.
Drawing from various singles and EP's, it starts with Felt's first Cherry Red
single, 'Something Sends Me To Sleep'. The seven Cherry Red selections also
include the classic singles 'Penelope Tree' and 1985's 'Primitive Painters',
the latter produced by Robin Guthrie and featuring vocals by Lawrence and Liz
Frazer. The eight Creation tracks that follow include their first for the
new label, Ballad Of The Band' in 1986, through to August 1998's 'Space

The Felt lps will then be released, two a month, through till November 2003.
Each lp will be released as a digipack in its original form. Says Lawrence,
"The lps were never properly available on CD as we wanted. So we got them
back to the way they were - there's no demos or extras, none of that. They
are totally minimal, just like we were".

On completion in November, this will be the first time all the Felt lps will
be available - at present, none of the Creation lps are on catalogue in the
UK. Famously, Lawrence adhered to his disclosed master plan of releasing 10
lps in 10 years and then splitting the band up. They will be released as

June 16th Crumbling The Antiseptic Beauty
The Splendour Of Fear

August 18th The Strange Idols Pattern And Other Short Stories
Ignite The Seven Cannons

September 15th Let The Snakes Crinkle Their Heads To Death
Forever Breathes The Lonely Word

October 13th Poem Of The River
Pictorial Jackson Review

November 3rd Train Above The City
Me And A Monkey On The Moon

Like the lps, the DVD will come with no extras at all, just the entire
concert filmed at ULU in February 1987. There are songs from 'Poem Of The
River' and 'Forever Breathes the Lonely Word' and a cross-section which
includes 'Primitive Painters' and 'Ballad Of The Band'. The concert also
includes the unreleased song 'When the Dawn Starts Creeping In' and a cover
of 'Soul Coughing' .

April 25th:
I'm doing this benefit up in Nottingham the week before Glasto. Should be great.
Do Something Pretty Fanzine & Tasty Fanzine present Nottingham Stop the War Coalition Gig & Disco
Saturday June 21st
7-30pm ­ 1am
Junktion 7
6 Ilkeston Rd
Canning Circus
Tel. 0115 9116959
Admission: £4/5
April 21st: Things that made me happy this time around, in no particular order.
* The chocolate cupcake given to me by Chris and Steve. I ate it in the cab on the way home. Thanks, also, for the homemade badge and birthday cards. One year old - amazing really.
* Gena dancing with our doorman, Jean Claude (or Jean Paul, I can't quite remember). Say hello to Gena on your way in next time. You don't get many clubs where the person on the door is dancing with the bouncer. Then again you don't get many door people like Gena.
* "Son Of A Gun" by The Vaselines. Its first airing and an instant classic.
* "Heatwave" by Martha Reeves And The Vandellas. The night's most appropriate song.

April 2Oth:
Here's what Jim played the other night. A fine selection.
      Jane - It's A Fine Day - Cherry Red - 1983
Delgados - Mr Blue Sky - Mantra (B-side) - 2003
Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark Electricity Dindisc -1979
Dr. Kirimachu Waiting For My Man Bootleg - 2003
The Weather Prophets - Almost Prayed - Creation 1986
Mr Bloe Grooving With Mr Bloe DJM - 1970
Pixies Here Comes Your Man 4AD - 1989
Special Unit (I Can't) Shake The Feeling Eye - 2003
Barbara Randolph - I Got a Feeling - Tamla Motown - 1967
Marianne Faithfull - Summer Nights Decca - 1965
France Gall - Attends Ou Va-T,En - Philips 1966
Teenage Fanclub - Sparky,s Dream - Creation - 1995
Misspent Youth - 17 Forever - Sequel 1979
June Brides - Every Conversation (although it was my request)
The Psychedelic Furs - Love My Way - CBS - 1983
Lennon/Ono - Instant Karma - Apple - 1970
The Four Seasons - The Night - Mowest - 1972
Shocking Blue - Love Buzz - Penny Farthing - 1969
Ride Like a Daydream Creation 1990
The Factory - Try A Little Sunshine - CBS - 1967
The Smiths London Rough Trade - 1987
Dexy,s Midnight Runners There There My Dear EMI - 1980
Azrec Camera - Oblivious - Rough Trade - 1983
The Smiths - This Charming Man - Rough Trade 1983
Furniture - Love Your Shoes - Stiff - 1986
The Stone Poneys - Different Drum - Capitol - 1967
Freda Payne - Band Of Gold - Invictus - 1970

What a night! I still have "Son Of A Gun" going round in my head. Thanks for everyone who showed up. Thanks to whoever invented bank holidays. Thanks to Jim and Mark for DJ-ing. The photos are up now. A fuller account of the night later on. Then again, I always say that and never get round to writing anything. But I will this time. Promise.
April 15th:
Well just two days to go until the first birthday party. I still can't believe we've made it this far. I thought we'd be lucky to get to the end of the first one, let alone do any more, let alone have Stuart and Traceyanne DJ-ing for our Christmas special, let alone go over to the Isle Of Man to do the club there. Most unexpected and welcome of all, though, have been the new friendships that have been formed simply because we decided to spin a few obscure indie and northern tunes every month. Thanks to everyone who's been a part of the last year. It's been emotional. Of course. And quite drunken too, in places.
Anyway, enough of my blubbering. There's a flyer for Thursday night
here - if you can do anything to spread the word, it would be greatly appreciated. If, for example, you're thinking of going to see any gigs on Thursday night (Malkmus, isn't it? Someone else as well, I can't remember), it would be grand if you could leave a few flyers lying around. I'm really looking forward to Thursday - not least because it's good Friday the next day and so there's no work to worry about. Hurrah for that. See you all in a few days.
April 7th:
Not long to go til the first birthday party now. Looking forward to it. Just added a new interview to the site. It's Tony Wilson, talking about The Smiths and Morrissey.
There wasn't any Spanish class in the end, by the way. It had been cancelled. So I still don't know anything about the past tense en Espagnol. Shame.

March 26th:
Another great night. Pretty empty, then very full. The photos are up now. Sorry I haven't written something detailed and webloggy about it, but it's been one of those weeks. Or two of those weeks. Thanks to Dickon and to everyone for turning up. Apologies to the nice American girls who kept making requests. Hope I didn't seem unappreciative. All good ideas, but just not right for what the club is about. Right, I'm off to my Spanish class. This week we learn the past tense, apparently. At last.
March 16th:
A full account on here later on, but just want to say thank you to everyone who made How Does It Feel on the Isle Of Man such a fantastic night. I particularly enjoyed the first couple of hours before anyone really turned up, as I got to play:
* all of Marquee Moon (the song, not the album)
* both sides of the Plush single - Found A Little Baby and Three Quarters Blind Eyes (or whatever it's called)
* Lonely Planet Boy by The Pastels
* Yesterday by Marvin Gaye
Shame we had to end at half one instead of two as I'd wanted to finish on Sunday morning (do you see?) but French Disco was still a great last song. Thanks again to everyone. See you Thursday!

March 3rd:
Sorry for the lack of updates. Been rather busy lately with gigs and housebuilding and the like. May I recommend Devendra Banhart, who's playing at Shepherd's Bush Empire next Tuesday. He's like a vaguely mystic version of Jeff Buckley. Might turn out to be a little self indulgent and annoying live (as I said, like Jeff Buckley), but his album contains some startling songs.
A few of you may know this already, but to confirm ­ How Does It Feel To Be Loved? is next happening on March 15th on the Isle Of Man, with the London date on the following Thursday 20th. If anyone fancies a weekend away, the details are as follows:
Saturday 15th March, The Mannin Hotel aka La Bodega, Douglas, Isle Of Man, 8pm-2am, £4 in. Night also includes a guest DJ spot from Kris of legendary IoM club night Agent Orange, spinning 60's psych and soul. I'm very excited about this, as you might imagine. Email me if you are thinking of coming and we can sort out advance tickets.
In other news, the new Four Tet album is very good.

Feb 22nd:
I had a grand idea. To save me carting crates of records every time, I was going to burn a load of stuff onto CD. I spent two nights busy with the technology, adding in some great Otis Redding stuff, a load of good northern and tons of songs by Microdisney and Band Of Holy Joy, as promised. Only thing is, I recorded them all too quiet, so come the night you couldn't hear a damn thing from the CDs. Which is why I didn't play a lot of the tunes I usually play. No House Of Love. No Pastels. No Plush. Just me telling people, "sorry, it's on the CD. I can't play it."
But still. Another good one, despite my idiocy. I enjoyed the following:
  * Playing the original of "Crash" and filling the floor.
  * Playing "Party Fears 2" and pretty much emptying the floor
  * Love proving difficult to dance to but not impossible
  * "Sloop John B"
  * Beer in a bucket, tres bling!
  * Flavoured vodka.
  * All of "The Concept". Some things just have to be done.
Thanks to Dave for a fine DJ set and his excellent company. Nearly got the April guest sorted, so I'll let you know when it's confirmed.
Feb19th: One day to go! Added another Great Lost Single. Thanks Rupert!
Feb 15th:
Low really are the most wonderful band ever, aren't they? Great gigs by The Polyphonic Spree, Sigur Ros and Low, all in the space of a week. Next stop: the Fannies on Wednesday and then, at last, the next club night! Any more requests?
Feb 13th:
Just back from Sigur Ros. It was magnificent, of course, even if it did take me a while to slow down to their pace. I went to my Spanish evening class as usual (this week: things you do at the weekend. One of them was ski-ing!), and it took an hour to get from Elephant & Castle to Hammersmith. Hence the band were just starting as I found my seat. Very annoying. But anyway: the new songs were fantastic. They seem to be rediscovering melody again after the funerial ambience of "()". I do love following this band as they evolve. Tonight was the fourth best I've seen them. But then I have seen them...erm...let me count...thirteen times?? That doesn't seem right. Must be more than that. Reykjavik, Astoria, Camber Sands, Chelmsford, Union Chapel, Newport, Oxford, Brighton, Shepherd's Bush, Barbican, Reykjavik, Festival Hall, Hammersmith. What have I missed out? Oh yes, V2002. Fourteen times. I think.
Feb 12th: Got a great email from Sergio and Juan Carlos, who run the Spanish equivalent of How Does It Feel To Be Loved? It's called Stop In The Name Of Love and their playlist goes:
diana ross & the supremes + martha reeves & the vandellas + the beach boys + petula clark + marvin gaye & tammi terrel + the lovin' spoonful + jr walker & the all stars + smokey robinson & the miracles + francoise hardy + france gall + the turtles + the hermans hermits + girlfrendo + belle and sebastian + ivy + pulp + mono + heavenly + pizzicato five + divine comedy + velocette
+ saint etienne + rialto + club 8 + cinerama + adventures in stereo + serge gainsbourg + future bible heroes + la buena vida + family ...
Sounds fantastico, no? The next one is this Saturday. It's free to get in and it's at EL TORNILLO [c/ Campoamor, 42. Valencia]. Please go if you live nearby. Support your local indie Motown club!
Feb 7th:
My local pub has "Sally Cinnamon" on its jukebox. It feels like a sign almost. An omen. The first time we went there, we could hear the strains of ELO being played as we walked up the street. The last, the jukebox played seven Queen songs of its own accord. It's always doing that, playing Queen. You can spend a couple of quid sticking on the entire Motown selection and a certain early Stone Roses track and you'll still get some Queen numbers thrown in for good measure. Maybe people buy more beer when Queen are playing. Perhaps it's all a grand ruse designed to part us with our cash.
"Fat Bottomed Girls" is a bizarre song, isn't it? I know almost all of the words. The sign of a misspent youth. I also know most of the words to the hits of The Eagles. That probably explains why I quite enjoyed seeing John Squire last night. He didn't play "Sally Cinnamon" but managed "Made Of Stone", "She Bangs The Drums", "Fools Gold", "Waterfall"- oh, just typing the titles makes me feel all funny. He can't sing, but he's no Ian Brown, so the songs remain kind of intact, left to the crowd to handle. It was like watching a cover band, really, until the instrumental parts. Then you could close your eyes and imagine yourself fifteen years back in time.
Other bands that have been good this week:
The Raveonettes: pretty much a Jesus And Mary Chain tribute band, but fantastic nonetheless.
Hope Of The States: these get better and better. If you haven't seen them already, then do. Trust me. They're amazing. I turned round to find that Colin Greenwood was standing right behind me. He seemed to be enjoying himself. Must have been a bit like Jim Reid watching the Raveonettes. Or Ian Brown watching John Squire.
Feb 6th: Added another Great Lost Single. More of these please!! I'll make the page look better when I have a bit more time.
Jan 30th: I've done some brand new flyers for the February How Does It Feel To Be Loved? - if anyone can name our flyer star for this month, then...well, have a go at naming her and we'll see what happens. Shouldn't be too hard to work out really. If you can give any out to spread the word, that would be fantastic. Thank you.
Jan 20th
: I spent the weekend stripping wallpaper and listening to these three records:
Iron And Wine - great album coming out early Feb. Sounds like bits of Simon & Garfunkel and Elliot Smith. Very basic, very beautiful, very rustic even. Fantastic.
Sister Flo - a five track EP. They're from southern Finland apparently. Sound a bit like Teenage Fanclub circa "Songs From Northern Britain". But, well, better than that. Also great.
The Hidden Cameras ­ oh yes. The "gay church folk" band from Canada. There's fifteen of them or something and that includes dancers who wear balaclavas and shorts. The album veers from slightly too self conscious Belle & Sebastian "Arab Strap" style clapalongs to excellent Magnetic Fields type dry pop songs. Possibly the least immediately engaging or satisfying of the three but - as you can tell from the amount I've written on each - easily the most intriguing. Pop's a strange beast sometimes. Talking of which...added another Great Lost Single. Keep 'em coming!
Jan 18th: The first track Harvey played sounded great: a late Beatles-esque mix of perfect pop, delicious harmonies and arrangements to make you melt. So was the second. And the third. And the fourth.
Me: "Harvey, who's this song by?"
Harvey: "The Bee Gees. They've all been by the Bee Gees so far."
Me: "Really? Wow. So what's next?"
Harvey: "The Bee Gees."
It was one of those nights again. I played nearly all of the Hidden Cameras album to start off with. Harvey had his tribute to the late Maurice Gibb. I played "Beach Baby" followed by "Since Yesterday", thinking I was being clever. No one said a word. They were too busy dancing.
There was even a first - in the thirteen or so years that I've been DJ-ing, I've never been offered "a line of coke" in exchange for playing a song. But tonight my class A/requests cherry was popped. A handful of soap powder (probably) in return for spinning "Shop Around". I turned him down, alas, as I'm now far too old for any such tomfoolery (and anyway, my nose goes berserk and daahl starts streaming from my nostrils if anything powdery goes the wrong way), but still it was a momentous, erm, moment. More of this please. I accept all requests, as long as they come with a decent, and preferably illegal/immoral/imaginative bribe.
So yes. The Bee Gees.
God knows how many of their songs Harvey played. Me and Mark went on a flyering run to the Garage after the first five or so. He might have played them for another half hour for all we knew. He might still be playing them now. Can't really remember much else of the evening, apart from that it was another fine night and it was a great turn out for a cold January evening not long after New Year. So thank you all for making the effort to come out. You're all very...sniff...no...it's too much...I'm filling up.
And so on.
The guests for the next two have been confirmed: David Callahan for February and Dickon for March. April is...drum roll please...our first birthday so we should have some sort of party I imagine. Who would you like to see as guest DJ? Pick anyone you want. I can only ask. It worked last time.
Jan 17th: Oh my head. Another fantastic night. A full account up here when I've put myself back together. Photos have been added. Respect to the guy with the winebucket!
Jan 12th:
Got an email from my friend John today. It went like this: "Have you heard The Hidden Cameras yet? They are yr favourite new band of 2003". I said no, asking what they sound like. He said: "The Hidden Cameras sound like an exact cross between Belle And Seb and The Polyphonic Spree, only Canadian and gay. Told you!" He's right: they do sound like my ideal band. Sigh. I'm sooo predictable.
Jan 11th:
Added photos today. Over 30 of them! Or is it 30? Loads anyway. Looking forward to Thursday. Oh, and confirmed guest DJ for Feb...it's the grand return of David Callahan, formerly of The Wolfhounds. A gentleman and a man of taste. Just waiting for a certain someone to email me back with final confirmation and I'll be able to announce March's guest.
Jan 6th:
Done a poster and flyers for the 16th. If you can spread the word in any way or hand them out at any gigs you're going to, that would be grand. Isn't "grand" a great word? A New Yorker used it in conversation a year and a bit ago and I'm still a fan. It's quite the word. Oh and: new musical thing to like...Ty Cobb. On the label set up by the Black Rebel Motorcycle Gang and just leagues better than the tired third hand dirges they offer. More on them another time I suspect.
Jan 5th:
Spent the last week listening to compilations made for me by Steve and Chris (the Isle Of Man massive). Steve even did a special How Does It Feel style cover for his. Very impressive. They were both excellent and have helped me to understand the following: Ballboy are really very good indeed (and not, as previously thought, Blueboy - that's something else entirely); Beach Baby by First Class is also superb (and nothing to do with First Rate, the George Dawes lookalike who was a member of the Scratch Perverts and still remains one of the finest technical DJs I've ever gaped at in awe); the best way to get your favourite song played at the club is to burn it onto CD and give it to me, it seems. I always wanted this club to be a musical education and it's turning out better than I could have hoped. Thanks fellas.

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