Picnic of the Pops – Second Helpings
Ping goes the microwave, grab a serviette and consider twelve more songs kinda linked to food and drink…
10) LIfe is a Minestrone – 10cc:
Sophia Loren! Give Peter Sellers the old Spanish archer and head over to this band of all-round musical geniuses who are all over la cucina italiana.
09) I’d like to teach the world to sing – The New Seekers:
Hmm. In 1960 Cliff Adams’ “Lonely Man Theme” was banned by the BBC as it had been used on a (then legal) cigarette commercial. In 1970, Ray Davies had to return from the US to re-record a single line of “Lola” to make it acceptable to the BBC. His sensational tale of a transvestite prostitute contained the offensive phrase “Coca Cola“. Yet a few months later this track – nailed to the famous Coke global advertising campaign – goes out on air unhindered and to the Number One spot. Shortly after, the BBC announce The New Seekers as the UK’s Eurovision entry… Hmm…
08) The Sidewinder Sleeps Tonight – REM:
Michael fancies the following. “Instant soup doesn’t really grab me…A can of beans or black-eyed peas, some Nescafe and ice, Candy bar…” He can always sleep standing up. After that lot, I’m surprised he can sleep at all. Note that this song doesn’t mention disgraced TV evangelist Tammy Bakker, you must have mis-heard that.
07) Chocolate Cake – Crowded House:
Australasia’s finest with a song doing exactly what it says on the cake tin. Lyrics mention disgraced TV evangelist Tammy Bakker.
06) That was Then but This is Now – ABC:
Now nobody kowtows to Martin Fry and whoever worked alongside him (real or animated) more than me. But these words from their 1983 hit? Well I ask you…”Can’t complain, mustn’t grumble. Help yourself to another piece of apple crumble.” Where’s his lexicon when he needs it?
05) Cold Turkey – Plastic Ono Band:
A little Lennon for you, Muse! I’ve never heard this but I presume it’s a follow up to “Merry Christmas, War is Over” but set on Boxing Day. Or maybe just a pop at Paul & LInda.
04) Matthew & Son – Cat Stevens:
Young Yousuf’s story of life in a rundown business where the highlight amongst lowlights is “a cup of cold coffee and a piece of cake”. So, a bit like where I work except you have to provide your own coffee.
03) Lilac Wine – Elkie Brooks:
The girl from Vinegar Joe’s sumptuous hit produced by Mike Batt (there’s a blog in me about how everything I learnt about music I learnt from Wombles’ albums so watch this space). Anyway, here’s a tale of a woman dealing with a breakup from the bottom of a glass. This was recently covered by Miley Cyrus. Sometimes this stuff writes itself.
02) Black Coffee in Bed – Squeeze.
Why write for Top of the Pops when you can write for Play for Today? Gifford & Tilbrook with another of their brilliant kitchen sink dramas. Also, the first three notes are exactly with same as the musical sting the Toronto subway play before making a customer announcement. In my opinion.
01) It’s Nice to go Traveling – Frank Sinatra:
The contemporary British listener, where are we, late 50’s to early 60s would have been left with two questions by this song. Firstly, does Frankie really own a pair of slippers? And more importantly, what is this “Pete-zer” of which you speak?
00) Misfit – Curiosity Killed the Cat:
Curiosity had their fifteen minutes of fame in the 80s. Now, this makes the list not because of Nestle’s Misfits sweets. No. The video for this song was made by Andy Warhol. Yup, Campbell’s Soup Cans.
-01) Down Under – Men at Work.
Ask yourself this. Has a single song lyric ever down more for the global footprint of a brand than “He just smiled and gave me a Vegemite sandwich”. Instantly, the whole world was intrigued.
Thanks for watching. Now wash your hands.