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under the influence - the things which have shaped me!

Stephen Blair
 
One Step Beyond...
One Step Beyond...
"Ten years old with a pork-pie hat, and a Harrington jacket covered in Two-Tone badges - this is where it all began.  Still raises a chuckle"
The Specials
The Specials
"I remember buying the American version of this in Detroit, visiting relatives when i was 11 - and then baiting my friends 'cos the UK version didn't have Gangsters on it - ha!"
Machine Gun...
Machine Gun...
"I consider myself an old punk now, but if truth be told I was too young to remember 1977 and all that. Loved this when I heard it in early '80s though.  Nibbled to death by an okapi, indeed!"
New Day Rising
New Day Rising
"The mid-80s:crap in Britain but stuff like this was coming out of the US, and I took notice - the start of a long affinity with Mr Mould, and US punk in general"
Pleased to Meet Me
Pleased to Meet Me
"I don't know what it was/is about Westerberg - after all, a lot of his stuff sounds suspiciously AOR. I think it's just cos he means every word - I like that"
While You Were Out
While You Were Out
"Before they went radio-friendly: this was manic in a good way. A sad reflection-on Amazon, customers who bought Soul Asylum records also bought records by Def Leppard!"
Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
"I used to play with my uncle's original copy of this which he left behind at my grandpa's house - I liked to play with the little cardboard figures, then we would go fishing!"
The Stone Roses
The Stone Roses
"Don't remember much about Glastonbury in 1990 other than listening to this outside my tent while watching the sun come up and feeling alright..."
DESCENDENTS-ALL
DESCENDENTS-ALL
"Bought this in 1987 - and then laughed when Green Day et al came along years later; also, I REALLY don't want to grow up....do you understand?"
Scream, Dracula, Scream!
Scream, Dracula, Scream!
"After a drought of good music this was like an oasis to drown myself in - the 123 of Middle/Born in 69/On a Rope is unsurpassed"
Music For The Jilted Generation
Music For The Jilted Generation
"As close as I could get to the (generally) soulless pap that is dance music - this was different, this moved my feet and my head - no easy task!"
All The Best
All The Best
"Hey, it's not all doom and gloom around here - Frank IS the man, I just didn't believe it for a while"
The Brian Setzer Orchestra: Live In Japan [DVD]
The Brian Setzer Orchestra: Live In Japan [DVD]
"Always had a soft-spot for rockabilly, and saw Brian with his new 3-piece a couple of years ago.  I never thought a concert DVD could hold my attention, but I smiled all through this"
Let Me Come Over
Let Me Come Over
"Criminally under-rated, beautiful stuff.  I saw them years ago in Wolverhampton - me and a friend shouted for Wah-Wah, but they wouldn't play it cos they would have to pay George Harrison too much!"
Mush
Mush
"Ditto - first saw them around the time this came out, at a Reading festival - Frankie was wearing a Husker Du t-shirt, and I thought, you're alright mate. This is full-on from start to finish"
The Wasp Factory
The Wasp Factory
"Read this when I was 15, and I've been looking at things at a slight angle ever since!  I think I am on to my fourth copy now - Banks, you owe me!"
Trainspotting
Trainspotting
"A lesson in what not to do - read this and laugh your arse off, then read it again and learn from it.  Class"
The Shining
The Shining
"If I remember rightly, this and number 20 scared the sh*t out of me when I was younger, and instigated an aversion to the dark which lasted many years"
The Exorcist - Director's Cut [DVD] [1974]
The Exorcist - Director's Cut [DVD] [1974]
"So did this - I saw a rusty old pre-Video Nasty Act copy some time ago, and can't seem to shake off the heebie-geebies it gives me every time I've watched it since"
The Amityville Horror: Pt. 1
The Amityville Horror: Pt. 1
"I don't know if it IS true, but I was gullible back then and believed every word"
The World According To Garp (Black Swan)
The World According To Garp (Black Swan)
"The film was good too, but this is a book I could read over and over.  The funniest book about transvestite feminists, blow-job accidents and self-mutilation I have read"
Taxi Driver [DVD] [1976] [1999]
Taxi Driver [DVD] [1976] [1999]
"Obvious, I know, but you can't argue with genius"
John Carpenter's The Thing [DVD] [1982]
John Carpenter's The Thing [DVD] [1982]
"I used to go to horror movie festivals, which is where I first saw a film called Miracle Mile (unavailable in UK), which had me on the edge of my seat and in tears at the end.....much like The Thing!"
Rear Window [DVD] [1954]
Rear Window [DVD] [1954]
"...or anything from the 50s/60s really - thee man."
Midwestern Songs Of The Americas
Midwestern Songs Of The Americas
"...which started my third love affair with punk, and makes me feel that I'm not alone - hurrah!"