Eine Kleine Nichtmusik

Witty and pertinent observations on matters of great significance OR Incoherent jottings on total irrelevancies OR Something else altogether OR All of the above

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Twenty-Five First Lines

Usual rules: the song title doesn't appear in the first line, only one song per artist or band, no tricks. Nothing incredibly obscure this time, though a few slightly off the beaten track. Equally one or two you'll probably have got before I've finished posting this. Answers in the comments box (title and artist) and I'll update the post as songs are guessed. Good luck.

1. In a little while from now, if I'm not feeling any less sour
Gilbert O'Sullivan, "Alone Again (Naturally)", guessed by Persephone

Video here

2.So you think you can tell heaven from hell
Pink Floyd "Wish You Were Here", guessed by Tim Hall

3. We were talking about the space between us all
The Beatles, "Within You, Without You", guessed by Persephone

4. The local rock group down the street is trying hard to learn their song
The Monkees, "Pleasant Valley Sunday", guessed by Persephone

5. It's so nice to meet an old friend and pass the time of day
Gordon Lightfoot, "Did She Mention My Name", guessed by Persephone

6. I saw her today, I saw her face, It was a face I loved
The Searchers, "Needles and Pins", guessed by Fried Mahooga

7. "What did you learn in school today?" that's what the teachers used to say
Daz Sampson, "Teenage Life", guessed by Phil

8. Hi there, nice to be with you, happy you could stick around
The Bonzo Dog (Doo-Dah) Band, "The Intro and the Outro", guessed by Phil

(And I can't pass over this version from Thames TV's "Do Not Adjust Your Set" - essential viewing for my schoolfriends and me):

9. The young man rose his pretty face
Sandy Denny, "Listen, Listen" - UNGUESSED

10. Listen to me, lovely, shake our relations hip
Kevin Ayers, "Take Me To Tahiti", guessed by Phil

11. Getting crazy on the waltzers but it's the life that I choose
Dire Straits, "Tunnel of Love" - UNGUESSED

12. (Hey! Psst PSST! Here she comes now.) Oh, you know her, would you look at that hair
Blondie, "Rip Her To Shreds", guessed by Joe

Video here (not the same one Joe linked!)

13. You ask me where to begin. Am I so lost in my sin?
Jon and Vangelis, "I'll Find My Way Home" - UNGUESSED

14. They could see there was something special about the man in white
Decameron, "Mammoth Special" - UNGUESSED

Play clip here

15. Do me a favour kid, tell me what it was I did to make you want to live without me
Janis Ian, "Friends Again" - UNGUESSED

16, Coming in from London from over the pole
Arlo Guthrie, "Coming Into Los Angeles", guessed by Persephone
Video here

17. Tumble outta bed and I stumble to the kitchen
Dolly Parton,"Nine to Five", guessed by Persephone

18. Honey, it's getting close to midnight
Iron Maiden, "Bring Your Daughter To The Slaughter" - UNGUESSED

19. Oh Lord, I'm so bored, living on my own
The Darkness, "Knockers" - UNGUESSED

20. It's astounding; time is fleeting; madness takes its toll
Richard O'Brien and cast of Rocky Horror Picture Show, "The Time Warp", guessed by Persephone

21, Clever girl, think you are but you think too much
Kylie Minogue, "Did It Again" - UNGUESSED

22. It was late in December, the sky turned to snow
Al Stewart, "Time Passages", guessed by Persephone

23. You said I was Northern scum: I was wounded, baby
Robbie Williams, "Knutsford City Limits" - UNGUESSED

24. What I thought wasn't mine, in the light wasn't one of a kind
t.A.t.U., "Gomenasai" - UNGUESSED

25. The decks were stacked, the wind blew low, the wind blew high
Captain Beefheart, "Upon the My-Oh-My", guessed by Phil


At 22 October, 2011 20:18, Anonymous Tim Hall said...

2 is obviously "Wish You Were Here" by Pink Floyd, a song I've heard played live three times so far this year.

At 22 October, 2011 22:11, Anonymous Phil said...

After the last lyrics challenge my son asked me if you'd posted another one yet for about six weeks. He'll be gutted to miss this one (he's in China till Wednesday).

10 is Take me to Tahiti, Kevin Ayers (which I haven't heard in more years than I care to think)
25 is Upon the My-Oh-My, Captain Beefheart (which I heard in a pub two nights ago)

I've got one or two others, but I'll give everyone else a chance!

At 23 October, 2011 00:16, Blogger Rob said...

Phil - I'm sure there will still be a few left on Wednesday for your son!

At 23 October, 2011 04:06, Blogger Persephone said...

Should I feel ashamed for recognising these ones?

1. Alone Again, Naturally (Gilbert O'Sullivan}

3. Within You, Without You (Beatles)

4. Pleasant Valley Sunday (Monkees)

16. Oh hell, what's the name of it? -- Arlo Guthrie sang it at Woodstock; "Coming in from Los Angeles/Bringin' in a couple of keys/ Don't touch my bag, if you please, Mr Customs Man." Is it "Coming in from Los Angeles"?

20. The Time Warp - The cast of The Rocky Horror Show (or the Rocky Horror Picture Show if you're watching the movie).

At 23 October, 2011 12:20, Blogger Rob said...

Persephone : coming in FROM London TO Los Angeles. And you didn't guess the one I thought you in particular might hit right away.....

At 23 October, 2011 16:16, Anonymous Fried Mahooga said...

6. "Needles and Pins." I like the Searchers version, but I have a feeling they might not have been the first band to have recorded the song.

That said, I can't say who the original artist might be. I think the song was co-written by Sonny Bono, though.

At 25 October, 2011 01:18, Blogger Rob said...

FM - indeed it was co-written by Sonny Bono and Jack Nitzsche, and originally recorded (in the USA) by Jackie de Shannon. Good call.

At 25 October, 2011 19:42, Blogger Phil said...

Just listening to "Take me to Tahiti" for the first time in... never mind how long. How it wasn't an enormous hit I don't know. (Well, it was the B-side, but apart from that.)

PS "One important question
I hear my conscience breathe
For when I reach Tahiti
Will I just want to leave?"

At 26 October, 2011 14:03, Anonymous Fried Mahooga said...

Yay! Alas, it was the only one I was able to answer, although no. 18 is almost "Thriller" by Michael Jackson.

I might ask a friend of mine if he knows a few of these at some point. He was a professional musician for over twenty years and is also a fountain of knowledge where trivia is concerned. He's been ill for the last few weeks following a tonsillectomy (sp?), however, so they'll be no answers in the near future. :(

At 26 October, 2011 23:06, Blogger Rob said...

FM - As you say, #18 is only CLOSE to thriller. Similar sentiments but very different performers.

Phil - where does your PS verse come from? Is it a translation/backwards play of whatever he's singing at 1:58? Whatever the answer, I shall reward you with another good Ayers oldie back in the main blog.

At 27 October, 2011 21:12, Blogger Phil said...

Yep, it's the backwards vocal section (as well as I could make it out by turning the turntable backwards with my finger!)

At 27 October, 2011 21:36, Blogger Phil said...

8 is The Intro and the Outro by the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band (as they then were)

And 7, I'm ashamed to admit, is Teenage Life by Daz Sampson (although I had to check the CD listing for his name!)

At 30 October, 2011 22:30, Blogger Rob said...

No shame at all, Phil: considering the dross that the UK routinely submits for Eurovision I think "Teenage Life" has held up pretty well. It probably didn't deserve to win but it should have done better than it did.

At 31 October, 2011 00:52, Blogger Persephone said...

I suppose it's Canadian or something, then? The only one that rings a bell for me now is the one about the first of December and the sky turned to snow which I know is not "Sweet Baby James" because a) that's the first line of the second verse; and b) that would be "Well, the first of December was covered with snow..."; c) it isn't Canadian, which may or may not be relevant.
Sounds familiar, though, but you know I can't google it until you make the big reveal.

At 31 October, 2011 01:58, Anonymous Calogero said...

Thanks for these videos. :-)

At 31 October, 2011 11:38, Blogger Lisa Rullsenberg said...

Gah - 13 SOUNDS like it should be from you're just to good to be true, can't take my eyes off of you... but the song BEGINS with those lines as just given, so that CAN'T be right...


At 31 October, 2011 11:44, Blogger Lisa Rullsenberg said...

Okay - from the clues, I know WHO one of them was by and you're right that her biggest (only major) hit came RIGHT at the start of her career (and I remember sobbing to it, and still do).

But I can't work out which one it is! MORE FRUSTRATION!

At 01 November, 2011 02:39, Blogger JoeinVegas said...

12: Blondie


At 01 November, 2011 22:52, Blogger Rob said...

Persephone - definitely on the right lines with Canadian. Think of famous Canadian artists (national treasures, even - big hint), and title tracks. Oh, and it's not from a recent album.

Lisa - OK, a little help maybe. If you have the right singer, then Googling the singer's name and the title of that famous early hit (with a small typographical modification) will bring you surprisingly rapidly to the video clip I propose to use. You still have to watch it to confirm the lyrics of course. (If you don't make the modification you end up with an endless stream of worthy cover versions.)

And come ON, has nobody figured out the "aspects of their anatomy" clue? Or why a prog rock giant might have the biggest electiricity bill in the EU (and there's another clue I hadn't even thought of, right there). How many British bands made it to superstar status? Just looking at the lyrics might suggest which one goes with a heavy metal band. And what might there be about a foreign duo that would meke them blend into the Daz Sampson video?

At 02 November, 2011 12:59, Blogger Persephone said...

A national treasure: well, that narrows it down to Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, Leonard Cohen, Gordon Lightfoot, Gilles Vigneault, Bruce Cockburn, Robbie Robertson --- possibly The Guess Who or Ian Tyson, or Buffy St Marie. (Please God, not Bryan Adams, Anne Murray or Celine Dion...)

At 04 November, 2011 04:42, Blogger Rob said...

It's someone in the first part of your list. So if you wanted to find a Canadian singer who was a national treasure, what might you key into Google? Then, as I said, it's the title track of a fairly early album.

And dear God, somebody make the obvious connection for the female artist famous for an anatomical feature. And that song is REALLY famous.


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