Friday, June 02, 2006

Uptown Uptempo Mot

Caroline, NO!
Next weekend, as well as the little matter of the World Cup, sees the fifty-ninth birthday of Randy Edelman. Randy Edelman is currently making a few pound from writing movie soundtracks, and more power to him, but in his original incarnation Randy was a singer-songwriter in the 1970s, one of those characters who played plink-plink piano and sang what were meant to come across as sophisticated songs of love and loss. His oeuvre was never really that great, to be honest, but An Spailpín will raise a glass in Randy’s honour on Saturday night week, Randy’s birthday, because Randy wrote one of the greatest of all the Songs You’re Ashamed to Love.

A Song You’re Ashamed to Love is one of those songs, probably first heard at an impressionable age, that touches you somehow, despite the fact that by all rational and reasonable judgements, it’s really the most desperate muck. Peter Sarstedt’s Where Do You Go to, My Lovely? springs to mind as a fine example of the genre, as does Terry Jacks’ Seasons in the Sun, Bonnie Tyler’s Total Eclipse of the Heart and possibly the most appalling of the whole dang bunch, their Hitler, their Napoleon, their Attila the Hun, I’ve Never Been to Me, by Charlene.

Truly terrible tunes all, and yet not without their charm. Except Terry Jacks', of course - that was always rubbish. Anyway, as Randy will be looking at the small bonfire that is a 59-candled cake the weekend after next, An Spailpín Fánach has taken the liberty of, ahem, re-imagining, updating and transposing the mise en scène of Randy’s most famous composition from 1970s New York to 21st Century Dublin. I hope that, in time and with Christian charity, the civilised world can someday forgive me.

It started out in Arnotts, the way that most things do,
You wore your Louis Vitton, I wore me Dublin blue.
I grabbed your bag and we raced out,
Hardly said a word;
You saw I was a bit o' rough,
I knew you for a fit burd.

You decided to drop charges
Because you saw I was a man;
I took you back to Finglas
And greased your bacon for my pan.
But early the next morning,
I was ruined from Dutch Gold,
You had a business meeting
As I lay there, still out cold.

When you got back in the evening,
You said you had to fly;
You're an uptown, Brown Thomas woman,
I sell Johnny Blue on the sly.

Our romance soon got heated,
As May quickly turned to June,
You got in a fight on Parnell St,
I did some dealin' in Cocoon.
But it got a little too much
When on your chips you saw a fly;
You enjoy your haute cuisine,
But I prefer Birds-eye.

You're an uptown, Brown Thomas woman,
I sell Johnny Blue on the sly.

Our romance soon was ended
When I stole your mother's ring,
I knew I shouldn'ta done it
But I could never resist da bling.
You reported me to the Old Bill
You told them that's the guy;
“I’m an uptown Brown Thomas woman,
He sells Johnny Blue on the sly.”

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