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Thanks for the memories, Shaky
on 1 December 2012
I freely admit, I bought this on a drunken whim one evening. Being a grown-up is not all it is cracked up to be sometimes, is it? Every so often I yearn for a return to the safety of the Eighties; Swapping 'Smash Hits' stickers in the playground and reading 'Look-In' in the back row of dunce-set maths instead of doing battle with Pythagoras. Oh, I know I should have been swapping stickers of Peter Beardsley with the other boys but, let's face it, he wasn't exactly very photogenic was he? Keren, Siobhan and Sara, now that was much more my scene. And, of course, the fabulous Shaky.
I'm sure every one of the songs on this disc is an absolute classic in its own right, but the fact is I only bought it for a mere handful of examples of Shaky's genius, mostly from the year 1985. That was a tough year, 1985, and this man helped me to get through it. Let's look at his epic track, 'Lipstick, Powder and Paint' for instance; When I put that on now I am instantly back in my room, playing that number extraordinarily loudly for the benefit of my father. I used to actually wear a good deal of lipstick, powder, paint, high-heels... anything from that area really, in order to try to get his attention. That bit where Shaky sings 'Is you is, or is you ain't?' is almost an exact quote from my father. And he's still not sure about me, I don't think. 'Batting for the other team' - what does that mean?
This being December, any shop you go in around about now will have 'Merry Christmas Everyone' standing shoulder to shoulder with that one by Noddy Holder. Even after all these years, I still smile at my own naivety in believing this masterpiece to be finished with that first 'Doo-Doo-Dah-Dah'. If you can't feel good while listening to this then life really has inflicted its worst upon you. In which case things cannot fail to get better soon. That's what I keep telling myself anyway.
Since my divorce I have found myself resident in the sort of gaff described so eloquently in 'This Old House'. I'm hopefully not getting ready to meet any saints just yet though, although I might just get another lock fitted to my 'Green Door' just in case. I wouldn't want them Making Those Eyes At Me, just in case They DO Mean What They Say... .