Cover Versions, demo, Get This!, Gone but not forgotten, Hard-to-find, Most downloaded tracks, Studio master tapes, studio outtakes

Olaf, You’re Playing Catch-Up!

Going For Gold was a quiz show that ran for about 10 years between the mid 80s and mid 90s, broadcast usually after the lunchtime episode of Neighbours. Contestants came from all corners of the European Community to be asked general knowledge questions (in English) by genial Irishman Henry Kelly – “Who am I? I am an inventor. I was born in Scotland in 1869.” etc etc. What always amazed me about the show was that all contestants could understand and answer the questions in English. Indeed, Olaf from Finland and Gretchen from Germany always, always had a better grasp of the English language than Sue from Sussex and Karen from Coatbridge. In the final round, one contestant had control of the board and Kelly would always say to their opponent, “You’re playing catch-up!”

Once a year I like to round up some of the best music on Plain Or Pan and put it centre-stage for a second time. I like to think all the music I put on here is fantastic in it’s own way, but there are some things that are downloaded/searched for/requested far more regularly than others. The search facility about half-way down on the right there works fairly well (try it!), but I appreciate that sometimes it’s nice to have things put on a plate for you. If you’re a relative newcomer to this blog and you’re not sure what you may have missed out on, this post is for people like you. As Henry Kelly would say, “Olaf, you’re playing catch-up…

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Who am I? I am a singer-songwriter. I started out my career singing doo-wop with a vocal group known as The Moonglows. When they broke up I began playing as a session drummer at Motown Records before stepping out from behind the kit and standing in front of the microphone. In my time at Motown I added an ‘e‘ to the end of my name, recorded many memorable solo tracks and duets, changed the way the record company viewed the merits of albums and married and divorced the boss’s daughter, resulting in one of the bitterest break-up albums of all time. Who am I? I am Marvin Gaye. And these are the unedited studio master tracks for I Heard it Through The Grapevine. Original article here.

How about some more Motown vocal-only tracks? Get them via here. Want more of this sort of stuff? Search ‘studio master tapes‘ in the ‘whityeherefur?‘ box over there on the right…

What am I? I am another studio outtake. I am a famous song by a famous band, some say that band’s best track (although you could easily argue the case for many of their other records.) Rolling Stone magazine (there’s a clue right there) put me at #38 in their list of Greatest Songs Ever in 2004, which makes me just better than Buddy Holly’s That’ll Be The Day but not quite as good as No Woman, No Cry by Bob Marley. My lyrics predict rape and murder and are a fitting epitaph on the death of the 60s which is just a shot awayWhat am I? I am Gimme  Shelter by The  Rolling Stones. Here is the astonishing Mick ‘n Merry vocal-only track. And here is Keith’s rather groovy lead guitar track. Original article here. Sit down before listening, you may just be blown away.

There’s some terrific Curtis Mayfield stuff via here and here. And there’s some excellent Sly Stone stuff here and here. There’s a whole lotta soul on Plain Or Pan. Whiteyeherefur? Use it!

It’s well documented that Led Zeppelin didn’t so much re-write the blues as nick it riff by riff. Rape and murder, indeed. Compare Jimmy Page’s Dazed and Confused to the relatively-unknown Jake Holmes’ version here. I often contrast and compare the merits of originals v covers v blatantly plagiarised words and music. Type ‘double whammy’ or ‘triple whammy‘ into ‘Whiteyeherefur?‘ and see what you can find…

I could go on and on. Or you could use the ‘Whityeherefur?’ facility. Or you could just go through month-by-month, year-by-year. It’ll take you a while. But then, it’s taken me a while too. Last year’s round-up of all things good about Plain Or Pan can be found here, including links to Johnny Marr’s Dansette Delights, The Ronettes vocal-only version of Be My Baby and the now-legendary Plain Or Pan Compilation CDs. So much to choose from, so much to grab. Go! Go! Go!

Cover Versions, demo, Double Nugget, elliott smith, Get This!, Gone but not forgotten, Hard-to-find, Kraut-y, Most downloaded tracks, Peel Sessions, Sampled, Studio master tapes, studio outtakes

Four Play

Amazingly or not, ye olde Plain Or Pan is now 4 years young. This year saw the double-whammy milestones of reaching one million visitors and, on a personal level, having my writing recognised to the extent that I was invited to interview Sandie Shaw in advance of her appearing at the summer’s Vintage At Goodwood festival. My interview was subsequently published in the hardback Annual that festival goers could buy at the event. Which was nice.

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As has been something of a tradition at the start of a year, I’ve put together a compilation of the most downloaded tracks over the past year – 2 CDs worth of covers, curios and hard-to-find classics. I like to think of it as a potted representation of what Plain Or Pan is about.

Tracklist Disc 1:

Jackson 5 I Want You Back acapella

Dean Carter Jailhouse Rock

Frankie Valli Queen Jane Approximately

Chris Bell I Am The Cosmos

Pete Yorn & Scarlett Johansson I Am The Cosmos

Scott Walker Black Sheep Boy

Tim Buckley Dolphins

Sandie Shaw I Don’t Owe You Anything

Big Maybelle 96 Tears

Patti Jo Make Me Believe In You

Curtis Mayfield (Don’t Worry) If There’s Hell Below We’re all Gonna Go (takes 1& 2)

Brinkley & ParkerDon’t Get Fooled By The Pander Man

Sly Stone Time For Livin’ (early version)

Maggie Thrett Soupy

Sheila and B. Devotion Spacer

Happy Mondays Staying Alive

Aretha Franklin / Duane Allman The Weight

Funkadelic Maggot Brain (alt mix)

 

 

Tracklist Disc 2:

Spiritualized Can’t Help Falling In Love

Serge Gainsbourg Melody

Stone Roses Something’s Burning (demo)

Can I’m So Green

Alex Chilton My Baby Just Cares For Me

Elliott Smith I’ll Be Back

The Czars Where the Boys Are

Peter Fonda November Night

Beach Boys Never Learn Not To Love

Charles Manson Cease To Exist

Wedding Present Happy Birthday (Peel Session)

Penny Peeps Model Village

The Stairs Woman Gone And Say Goodbye

Kinks Sittin’ On My Sofa

Ramones Judy Is A Punk (1975 demo)

Capsula Run Run Run

White Stripes Party Of Special Things To Do

13th Floor Elevators Slip Inside This House

Jake Holmes Dazed & Confused

White Antelope Silver Dagger

Arcade Fire Poupee de Cire, Poupee de Son

The Velvelettes Needle In A Haystack acapella

Each disc comes packaged as one big downloadable .rar file, complete with artwork.

If you’re new here, welcome and happy downloading! If you’re a regular here, you may have some or all of these tracks already, so why not download anyway and burn a CD for someone who might appreciate it?

Gone but not forgotten, Hard-to-find, Most downloaded tracks, Studio master tapes, studio outtakes

Gold! (Gold!) Always Believe In Your Soul!

You’re indestructuh-buh-uhl etc etc.

The internet is full of gold. Look in the deepest, darkest corners and all sorts of fantastic stuff awaits you with a nod and a wink and a glad-you-found-me smile.  Without the internet, I wouldn’t have learned to dance like James Brown (thank you, You Tube). I’d never have seen Stevie Wonder doing Superstition on Sesame Street (Thanks again, You Tube). I’d never have heard those rip-roaring Sgt Pepper master tapes (still available here) that caused Plain Or Pan to go into some sort of meltdown for a few of days a couple of years ago.

One story goes that the record companies are all in a  panic over the state of many of the master tapes in their posession. The original tapes have over the years been rendered gossamer-light and wafer-thin through combinations of repeated reissues/remasters/remixes and plain old neglect. In an attempt to preserve these original recordings as best they can, the labels have started transferring the original master tapes onto digital files, where they can be kept box fresh for as long as they want (you’re indestructuh-buh-uhl and all that, or at least until someone discovers that digital files also have a sell-by date). Being made digital also means that as soon as they’ve been converted, some kind soul sticks one or two teasers out into the ether and stirs up a bit of a feeding frenzy amomgst yer more savvy downloaders. It would appear that none other than the good folks at Motown (yes!) have decided to preserve their archives in this way and, thank you Lord, someone has seen fit to leak some of these masters online. A year or so ago I posted the master tapes to Stevie Wonder‘s Superstition and Marvin Gaye‘s Heard It Through The Grapevine. If you liked them, you’ll love these…

A 15 year old Stevie Wonder belting out Uptight (Everything’s Alright) like his life depended on it.  Crystal clear with just a touch of reverb, this is the music-free vocal track. Comes complete with all the gaps and pauses for you to fill in the horn parts yourself. Listen out for his wee laugh when he cracks up towards the end. Gold!

Michael checks his latest royalty cheque. Older brother isn’t reading a text from Berry Gordy. It’s 1971.

What happened to Michael Jackson? I mean, what happened? When he died, the TV showed a brilliant black and white clip of The Jackson 5, young Michael at the front boppin’ and a-poppin’  in slow motion to this track. Here for you is the vocal-only track of an 11 year old (11 years old!) Michael Jackson singing I Want You Back with absolute total abandon. By the time he gets to the end, his voice has almost gone but he’s still going for it with those wee ‘uhs‘ and ‘huhs‘ that would later develop into crappy girly yelps. No wonder Jarvis Cocker kicked his arse all those years later. Gold!

I’ve posted Marvin Gaye studio stuff before, but never this. It’s only the vocal-only track of What’s Going On! Just Marvin double-tracked and duetting with himself through the slickest protest song ever written. The middle section where he scats and shoobee-do-bops is outrageous, something I’d never really noticed in the finished record, given that the middle part is packed full of sweeping strings, bongos and kitchen sinks full of Funk Brother riffs. Gold!

I’ve also posted versions of The TemptationsPapa Was A Rolling Stone before, but again, not this – the vocal-only track. Written by regular Motown producer Norman Whitfield, the vocal group didn’t really like his instrumentation. Vocalist Dennis Edwards didn’t like the autobiographical (he thought)/coincidental (Whitfield claimed) “...3rd of September” line, given that that was the day Edwards father had actually died. Whitfield made him sing the line time and time again until he got a take filled with the right amount of anger and frustration. I’m not sure who the dude doing the bass vocal part is, but be careful, he might just shake your fillings loose. Here too, is the vocal-only track of Ball Of Confusion. Gold x 2!!

Theres tons of this stuff out there. I probably should keep these back, there’s about a month’s worth of posts here….

The Spinners vocal take of the Stevie Wonder-penned It’s A Shame. Gold!

The Four Tops vocal take of Walk Away Renee. Gold!

The Velvelettes vocal take of Needle In a Haystack. The handclaps don’t stop from start to finish! Gold!

Smokey Robinson & the Miracles vocal take of Tears Of a Clown. Gold!

Diana Ross & the Supremes vocal take of Baby Love. Gold! (New link 15.10.10)

Cover Versions, Football, Hard-to-find, Most downloaded tracks

Ramble On

One of the greatest pleasures in this blogger’s life is the daily digestion of blog stats. At any given time I can see who’s visited here, where they’re from and what the most popular posts and downloads are (currently the Jake Holmes/Led Zeppelin one). I can also see who’s Googled what and arrived at Plain Or Pan either by sheer good luck or misfortunate malapropos. Current visitors include those looking for What Brand Of Cigarettes Does Keith Richards Smoke?, Pain or Fantasy and my favourite, African Jungle Horse Sex. I can just about understand why trouser arouser browsers looking for Teenage Fanny are directed here. I just hope the sad old bastards leave with a new-found appreciation of the Bellshill Beach Boys chiming guitars and honey-coated harmonies. But don’t stand anywhere near me at the next TFC gig, or you might just get a punch in the face. OK? I wrote something about the Stone Roses a wee while ago that said the bassline on Something’s Burning sounded like it came from the heart of Africa itself. And a long while ago I wrote about Johnny Wakelin’s In Zaire being total jungle funk, but how Google pointed a slevvering sexual deviant looking for quirky equestrian delights towards this mighty fine site four times in one day is beyond me.

Off course, there’s an underlying seriousness to all this. Clearly, people are using the internet for purposes other than tracking down obscure records by musicians only a handful of people have heard of. Whodathunkit, eh?

On a lighter note, the football transfer window closed at midnight on Tuesday night. This is a nerve-wracking time for fans of any club, but especially for fans of the less-fashionable, poorer clubs. As a Kilmarnock fan I’ve had to endure the pain of seeing our star players being snatched away from us at the stroke of midnight by ‘Sir’ Walter Smith and his satanic promises of first team football and the chance to wear the badge of the team they’ve “always supported since I was a wee boy“. To be fair to my club, the last time this happened they held out spectacularly for a decent sum (£2 million I think) for Steven Naismith. But this was only after failing miserably to command a fee any greater than £400,000 (to be paid in instalements, not even in the one go) for the services of Kris Boyd the season previously, a player who went on to score about 17 gazillion goals over the next few seasons (many against us), helped his team to a European final and cemented his place in the Scotland team, before getting his dream move to a bigger club. That’s Middlesborough, if you didn’t know.

The internet was buzzing on Tuesday night. Fans forums were in meltdown as everyone logged on trying to find the truth amongst the rumours, the rubbish and the rest. This year’s big worry was whether or not our star midfielder and captain, Craig Bryson, would be off to join up with recently departed Killie boss Jim Jefferies at Hearts. The rumour mills were in over-drive. At various points leading up to midnight he was at Tynecastle undergoing a medical, he was being sold for £400,000, he was being sold for £200,000 plus a player in return. At one point he was even off to Ipswich. Truth is, none of this was correct. By midnight, Hearts had had a couple of cheeky bids knocked back and Bryson remained with us.

Amongst all the Bryson rumours was a rumour about another player joining Hearts. Every team has fans’ favourites. Maybe not the most technically gifted set of legs in the team, but the one with the biggest heart, worn on the sleeve with pride. The player who’s first to question the referee’s authority whenever he feels a sense of injustice. The player who’ll give away the ‘clever’ foul and take the ‘clever’ booking for the team. The player who kisses the badge unironically cos he means it (maaaan), the player who, when a goal is scored, is the first to run to the crowd and not his teammates to celebrate, a player who can whip up a frenzy of excitement on the terracing by the sheer mention of his name.

At Killie, Manuel Pascali is that player. A tough, no-nonsene pro he breaks down attacks with a crunching tackle before distributing the ball wisely to a team mate. Not wisely distributing. That would infer that he’s incapable of anything other than giving the ball to a teammate to do the hard bit. No. I mean distributing the ball wisely, whereby at lightning speed he assesses the situation and from all his options picks out the best pass that’ll put his team on the offensive. He’s a bit like one of those Dutch or Spanish holding midfielders that slugged it out in that tetchy World Cup final a couple of months ago. Only not as good, or he’d be at a bigger club. Which takes me back to transfer deadline day and stupid rumours. Not only was Bryson going to Hearts, Pascali was off too! In fact, he was currently undergoing a medical and was about to put pen to paper. Noooooo! This was a disaster! While we were getting all hot under the collar about our star midfielder, our old manager had only gone and thrown a cat amongst the pigeons by pinching Pascali from right under our blue and white noses. Manu! How could you? Except, of course, he hadn’t. As all this drama was unfolding on the football part of the internet, over on the social networking section my close personal Facebook friend Manu Pascali was exclusively revealing we were  not to worry, that he was sitting “at home watching a DVD” and that he was “Killie Til I Die!” Heroes, eh? Dontcha just love ’em?

Also over on Facebook, another friend had posted a video of lost Talking Heads‘ classic This Must Be The Place (Naive Melody). I’ve got Arcade Fire doing that I said. What, with their quirky nature and choice of instrumentation, it’s a song that suits them perfectly. So, for you, Mr Big Stuff and any other Arcade Fire fans (and there must be a fair few, given that they’re currently (ahem, cough) burning up the charts, here’s some rare Arcade Fire.

This Must Be The Place (Naive Melody) (taken from a 2004 CBC Radio 3 Studio Session)

Cold Wind (from the Six Feet Under TV series soundtrack)

No Cars Go (from the 2003 and re-released in 2005 Arcade Fire ep)

Poupee de Cire, Poupee de Son (Serge Gainsbourg cover, released on one side of a joint tour 7″ single with LCD Soundsystem. Sung in French. Or is that French Canadian?)

And if you haven’t done so already, you need to try this. Arcade Fire video +  Google earth images of your address + some animated birds = pretty fantastic viewing experience. Warning – takes a wee bit to load. But it’s worth the wait.


Most downloaded tracks

Plain Or Panache

This blog has something. The words? The music? I dunno, but it has something. Why? Because hits to the site are at an all-time high. It would appear that Plain Or Pan has become something of a phenomenon. Daily figures are rising. Incoming links are being pinged from all manner of websites. Heavy traffic (man) is visiting from places as far-flung as Sao Paolo, Aukland and Moscow.  As the wee sidebar on the side says, truly Plain Or Pan-Global. What’s weird though is that the rise in popularity here is relative to the lack of new stuff I post. In other words, the less I write, the more hits I seem to get. Long may it continue…

This post is for all you new comers/late comers/returners. Take a look again at the wee sidebar on the left. Just below it you’ll notice the search facility. Use it! I get all sorts of emails from people everywhere requesting stuff that’s still available. If you go to the search bar and type in the artist or the song or any sort of key word relating to whatever it is you’re looking for, it’ll take you to it in a nano second. But you knew that already. Try it!

Every post since January 2007 has been preserved here. Sadly, some of the music has been deleted. Not by me – try typing  ‘fascist internet police bastards who hack your account without your permission’ or something similar into ‘search‘ and you’ll find out why). But much of the music remains. Stuff that many of you may not know is there. So what follows are a few links to some of the better/more obscure/popular/whatever I fancy right now music I’ve put up over the years. Think of it a bit like one of those supermarket sweep trolley grabs, because once some of the tracks below get pinged around the world I expect those pesky internet police to come a-knockin’ on my virtual door once more. They may not be here for long folks. Go get ’em!

Johnny Marr‘s Dansette Delights. Johnny compiled a CD for Mojo magazine. Words here. Music here.

Elliott Smith‘s rare as you-know-what version of The Beatles ‘I’ll Be Back’. Music here.

Those Blur fanclub singles. I did a few posts in a series. Some, but not all, of the mp3s were removed. I try and put them back up when I notice they’ve gone. You can get the Sing (To Me) (demo) here. Words and other links here. Remember to use ‘search‘ or the Blur Fanclub Singles tag on the sidebar!

The Ronettes vocal track of ‘Be My Baby’. One of the most downloaded tracks….. ever! in the history of the internet. Possibly. Words here and here. Music here. (nb. Sadly, some of the other links in these posts have been deleted.)

Those 4 Beatles mastertapes that melted Plain Or Pan for a week in March 2008 are still up for grab! Words here. Music here – Sgt Pepper. With A Little Help from My FriendsA Day In The Life. She’s Leaving Home.

Talking of mastertapes…many of the original ones I put up (The Stones Gimme Shelter, Stevie Wonder’s Superstition, Marvin Gaye’s Grapevine) were removed. Some of the tracks however are still available on these excellent Best Of Plain Or Pan compilations. Here y’are….

Plain Or Pan (The First 2 Years In A Nutshell) Words and tracklistings here. Music here. And here.

Plain Or Pan (3rd Birthday) Words and tracklistings here. Music here. And here.

I could go on all night. Hopefully some of this stuff is new to you. If so, happy downloading. If not, try using ‘search‘. You never know what else lurks within….

Ciao!

Live!, Most downloaded tracks

Sopht Rock

When Revolver came out, or Dark Side Of The Moon, or Never Mind The Bollocks, or Appetite for Destruction, or Nevermind or (add yer own here _____(mine would be XO by Elliott Smith)), did the public immediately sit up and shout “Classic Album!!” with much gusto and emphasis on the 2 exclamation marks, or did they let the music fester inside their collective brains for a few months before decrying it worthy of such lofty status?

The mists of time have blurred perception of such trivial matters, and I suppose we’ll never know how it felt for the record buying public as a whole to hear these albums for the first time, but for what it’s worth I think most of these albums were growers first and classics later; albums full of songs, sounds and symphonies that lodged themselves into the brain after many needle drops and repeated listens and gradually became so important to the listener that over time they knew and loved every little detail about them. But what stands the above records apart from the XOs of the world is that those tiny little details were so important to thousands, even millions of people.

Alongside Elliott Smith’s finest hour stands The Sophtware Slump by Grandaddy. I’ve loved it and played it to death since it was released in 2000. Maybe not every day, or every week or even once a month, but at least a couple of times a year I’ll reach for it (I don’t need to dig it out, I know exactly where it is) and listen to it. And I mean listen to it. Not as background music while the TV flickers silently in the corner with subtitles on. Not as background music while I fry something to death on the gas hob. No. I sit there in my favourite chair and listen to it from start to finish. Uninterrupted. Which is hard in a house with 2 young children and a wife with a ‘to do’ list longer than a giraffe’s neck, but I manage it somehow.

As a band, Grandaddy mostly passed me by, but I was working in a record shop (remember them?) when The Sophtware Slump came out and I played it to death one afternoon, bought it that night, went home and played it to death again, went to work the next day, played it to death again….you get the idea. Sandwiched somewhere between ZZ Top and those Fleet Foxes, most of Grandaddy had the finest beards in music. And like those two hirsute bands above, they had the tunes to match. Taking elements of 70s Pink Floyd (none of yer trendy Syd-era Floyd here), the album is mainly a (whisper it) concept album about science v’s nature/man v’s robots – a full 2 years before fellow cosmic travellers the Flaming Lips had thought up the ‘original’ concept about Yoshimi and his pink robots. Opening track He’s Simple, He’s Dumb, He’s the Pilot begins with some chirpping birds and creaking front porch banjo before blooming into this magical 8 minute opus on 21st Century living. Coincidentally, when the band supported Elliott Smith, Elliott was fond of joining Grandaddy on stage to sing along (crappy old mp3 of it here) The album meanders melancholically through ruminations on androids who drink themselves to death and the problems of and with technology before arriving at thisMiner at The Dial-A-View, a weird and wonderfully melodic tale about ‘dreaming of going home’ – back to pre-CCTV times.

Tracks ebb and flow from one to another, an acoustic guitar here, a spacey keyboard there, all sewn together by a high pitched reedy voice much like Wayne Coyne of the Flaming Lips or Mercury Rev’s Jonathan Donahue. If Neil Young had lost the Les Paul and kicked out the (Pearl) Jams (Motherfucker!) he might’ve been making records as essential as this.

For my money, The Sophtware Slump is as essential as OK Computer. It really is. You’ve heard a coupla tracks. Now do the decent thing and go and buy it. Whatchawaitin’ for?

Blur Fanclub Singles, Cover Versions, demo, Dylanish, Gone but not forgotten, Hard-to-find, Kraut-y, Live!, Most downloaded tracks, Studio master tapes

Three! Free! Fae Me!

Plain Or Pan is 3 years old and what better way to celebrate than with a compilation CD…..

Add your own Ronco/K-Tel voiceover:

Featuring the most popular downloads from last year’s blog, this compilation is the ideal taster for what Plain Or Pan is about. Covers, curios and the odd hard-to-find classic, this fantastic double CD is not available in the shops or from any good online retailers. Get it only at myTunes! Free! Today! Now!

Aye. It’s the ideal companion to last year’s double CD (still available here). Kicking off with the notorious Beatles Revolution take 20  outtake/outfake? that nearly melted Plain Or Pan for good in January last year, I’ve included some odd ball covers (Eli ‘Paperboy’ Reed, the Dead Weather track), Fleet Foxes spin-offs (White Antelope), one of Johnny Marr’s favourite records (The Equals), rare fanclub-only releases (Blur), hardly-heard studio gems (The Temptations), demos (Marvin Gaye, The Pretenders), rarities (The La’s white label version of Timeless Melody – only 500 exist) and a whole lot more over 2 CDs. I’m rather proud of this wee compilation. It includes some nifty home-made artwork too! Right click on CD1 and CD2 below to download each CD in one go.

 

CD1                                                 CD2

 

Complete tracklisting:

Disc 1

The Beatles – Revolution (take 20)

The Kinks – I Need You

Pop Levi – Blue Honey

The Temptations – Ball Of Confusion (unreleased version)

Booker T & the MGs – Sing A Simple Song

Ike & Tina Turner – Bold Soul Sister

Eli ‘Paperboy’ Reed & the Trueloves – Ace Of Spades

Marvin Gaye – Let’s Get It On (demo)

Arctic Monkeys – Baby I’m Yours

Afghan Whigs – Band Of Gold

Nirvana – Smells Like Teen Spirit (live)

The Soup Greens – Like A Rolling Stone

The La’s – Timeless Melody (GOLAS3 version)

Trash Can Sinatras – Snow

Super Furry Animals – Citizens Band

The Sundays – Wild Horses

Sparkelhorse/Danger Mouse feat Nina Persson – Daddy’s Gone

 

Disc 2

Glasvegas – The Prettiest Girl On Saltcoats Beach (full length version)

The Pretenders – Brass In Pocket (demo)

The Byrds – Mr Tambourine Man (vocal track)

Frank Blake – You Don’t Have To Cry

The Equals – Black Skin Blue Eyed Boys

The Fall – Lost In Music

Dead Weather – Are Friends Electric?

John Kongos – He’s Gonna Step On You Again

Grace Jones – Pull Up To The Bumper (12” mix)

Blur – Sing (To Me) (demo)

Inspiral Carpets – 96 Tears

Beck – Sunday Morning

White Antelope – It Ain’t Me Babe

Eddi Reader – Blues Run The Game

Stone Roses – Love Spreads (Guitar Track)

Neu! – Hallogallo

 

Gone but not forgotten, Hard-to-find, Most downloaded tracks

Now, Nancy Sinatra with a word to the wise.

Due to a combination of work commitments, family stuff, illness and far-out holidays in New York I’ve not been doing much blogging recently. Now that things have settled down a bit, I’m back.

Way back when Plain Or Pan first started (nearly 3 years ago) I posted a few Coca-Cola jingles. Visitors to the blog loved them – they were the most downloaded tracks for most of that year, so..when the inspiration just isn’t there to write anything new….this post is a bit of a repeat. I’ve taken the words from a March 07 bit I wrote and the tunes from my Coca Cola folder, although apart from the Nancy Sinatra jingle (which is kitsch, camp and quite ridiculous) I don’t think I’ve made them available on here before.

coca-cola_aretha_frankin

Hey! Get down! Dig it with the Vanilla Fudge and Coca Cola! My mum tells me that in the swinging 60s, most provincial teenagers never had access to, never mind actually try, the mind-bending drugs that were so obviously shaping music, fashion and the consciousness of society. Instead, the hip, with-it teenagers in my wee corner of the west of Scotland would pop a couple of aspirins into their Coca Cola and swing the night away in a tripped-out approximation of sixties bliss.

Coca Cola were well aware that things indeed go better with a Coca Cola, and their 60’s marketing team were so on the ball that they got the groups du jour to record Coke jingles for local radio and the likes. Most of these jingles are bloody magic. They are quite blatant pastiches of those artists’ current hit singles and fall into 3 distinct categories:

1. The soul/r’n’b artist – Aretha Franklin, Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell, Carla Thomas, The Supremes, Otis Redding, Ray Charles etc etc

2. The fuzzed-out, beat-driven, blues-influenced garage bands – The Who, Vanilla Fudge, Troggs, Box Tops, Dave Dee Dozy Beaky Mick & Titch (so that stretches it a bit, but you get the point)

3. The pop stars/crooners – Bee Gees, Lulu, Roy Orbison, Petula Clark, Nancy Sinatra, etc.

cocacola

Here’s your starter for 10

Nancy Sinatra‘s jingle

Aretha Franklin‘s jingle

The Supremes jingle #1

The Supremes jingle #2

The Supremes jingle #3

Aretha Franklin & Ray Charles‘ jingle

Lulu‘s jingle

Roy Orbison‘s jingle

Vanilla Fudge‘s jingle

The Troggs‘ jingle

More to follow in future posts….

 

demo, Hard-to-find, Most downloaded tracks, Studio master tapes, studio outtakes

It Was Plenty Years Ago Today

A year or so ago I had the idea to run a series of pun-tastic posts called ‘It was plenty years ago today‘. Based on the success of those Beatles mastertapes that I had posted (when Plain Or Pan melted immediately and the internet police first cottoned on to this site) I would combine my expert textpert knowledge of The Beatles with some of their better bootlegs in my collection and post rare outtakes and the like on the anniversary of the track being recorded. For one reason or other, I never quite got round to doing it, until today.

beatles walrus group

Given that this weekend is Beatles Weekend on BBC2 and given that the remastered albums are out in the middle of the week (now there’s a novel way of promoting a computer game – cannae wait to play it by the way), this is as good a time as any to get things going. Plenty years ago today (42 41  (oops!) to be precise), a week or so after Brian Epstein’s death, The Beatles reconvened (at Paul McCartney’s insistence – the others, especially Lennon, had no motivation to continue) on the 5th September to start work on the Magical Mystery Tour project.

beatles walrus

First up saw them tackle I Am The Walrus. Between the 5th and 6th and 27th, 28th and 29th September, The Beatles twisted and turned John Lennon’s gobbledigook nonsense tune into the psychedelic masterpiece you are no doubt familiar with. The tune itself began life in Lennon’s Weybridge house. Absent mindedly tickling the ivories one morning, Lennon heard the sound of a police car outside, noting how the ‘notes’ of the siren changed as the car got further away. He began replicating this sound on the piano, and this became the chord progression for I Am The Walrus. It should be noted here that JWL was heavily into LSD by this point in his life. Taking drugs to make music to take drugs to, as Spacemen 3 once said. Ian Macdonald’s excellent Revolution In The Head book dissects Lennon’s acid-soaked Walrus lyrics to the nth degree way better than I ever could. It’s a fantastic book. The last time I was in Fopp I think it was on sale for about £4! But I digress. Back to the music…

Over the course of the 5 sessions, the tune would go from instrumental (here‘s take 7) to incomplete vocal versions (here‘s take 16, minus the drunk-sounding strings at the start. Listen out for Lennon fluffing the ‘yellow matter custard’ line.), to alternate mixes (here‘s one) to the finished item complete with a King Lear radio play and various bits ‘n bobs woven into the mix by George Martin. Achtung! Here‘s the German mono mix.

capa

The tracks above come from a 15 track bootleg called Walrus, Eggman and Pinguins. It varies in quality and, to be honest, many of the tracks sound identical, but it nonetheless charts the studio progress of one of The Beatles more interesting moments. You can download the whole shebang here. Goo Goo G’joob!

Also available for download, reissues (!) of those Beatles 4 track mastertapes that caused all the fuss way back when.

Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

A Day In The Life

She’s Leaving Home

With A Little Help From My Friends

And also still available (in high quality flac form only – the internet police jump straight on board with their handcuffs and truncheons whenever the mp3 of this becomes available) is the previously unheard 10min + mix of Revolution. Possibly an outfake, possibly the real deal, I wrote about it a wee while ago here. It’s a good read, even if I do say so myself. On the other hand, if you’re only here circling overhead like a vulture awaiting your next musical feast, you can cut out all the crap and download it here.

*Bonus Beatle fact #1!!!

I Am The Walrus is in Gary Numan’s list of Top 20 songs ever.

*Bonus Beatle fact #2!!!

As well as recording I Am The Walrus on the 6th September, The Beatles also had a go at George Harrison’s under-rated masterpiece Blue Jay Way. Sadly I have no outtakes of this. If anyone does have, you know how to contact me…

*Bonus Beatle fact #3!!!

Did you know that at the end of I Feel Fine the studio microphones unwittingly picked up the sounds of some dogs barking outside Abbey Road?  Hear it here! Right after the last “ooh!” backing vocal. Now dig it out your own copy, listen to it, turn it up for the last 10 seconds and you’ll hear them. I wonder if the dogs’ll still be on the up and coming remasters?

 

Most downloaded tracks

Radioheadline News

As usual, limping just one half-step behind the rest of the world when it comes to exciting new stuff, Plain Or Pan brings you the not entirely exclusive revelation that Radiohead have once again gone under the radar to release some new material. No trumpets. No fanfares. No ads in the press. No emails to those on the geeklist. Perhaps not quite on the grand scale of things when In Rainbows came from nowhere and had most of us all in a lather and foaming at the mouth, the weekend nonetheless saw a new Radiohead track leak online. I wouldn’t be surprised if the band had leaked it themselves. Aye. It’s easy to give away yer music when you happen to be that rarest of things – a commercially successful worldwide band/brand and critically acclaimed, but still, kudos where it’s due. By today (Monday), the track’s not so much leaked online as totally drowned the world wide web’s file sharing communities in a tsunami-like tidal wave of expectant saliva.

radiohead twisted words 

It’s rumoured that These Are My Twisted Words is from a new 4 track ep called Wall Of Ice. The supposed tracklisting varies depending where you google and visits to radiohead.com and wallofice.com reveal nothing, but you knew that already. The track itself is pretty decent. Taking off where In Rainbows left us, it starts with some wonky guitar, some pattering computerised beats and a bit of atmospheric bass. Decent singing too. Not in any way forced like last week’s Harry Patch single. It’s playing as I type, and it sounds fantastic. But you knew that already too. For those of you even slower than me on the uptake, here it is.

Now keep your eyes peeled for the real thing. And let me know about it when you find anything out. Ta!

*Cheers to Paul in the comments section. Since posting the track, it’s been made available at Radiohead’s official site, here. Possibly due to it being everywhere by now, it’s free! It’s probably also slightly higher quality. It comes with a wee note from the band. It also comes with artwork (see above) which you can customise. Generous stuff!

*Postscript. This website has a really good article about Radiohead and These Are My Twisted Words.