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Tag Archives | Top Of The Pops

Bowie – My First Great Obsession

Brixton Bowie by Micha Theiner

I wanted to write in greater personal detail about David Bowie and the depth of impact his music and words had on me during my formative teenage years – this occurring when I was between the ages of 12 and 15. I’d uploaded a blog post once I’d heard about his death, but I’ve found myself needing to revisit what was a magical mystical part of my musical / life initiation, as much for myself as anyone else, both by listening through the records I loved, and still love, whilst getting it all into words somehow. Once I started writing this I couldn’t contain it – it was bursting out of all sides. So please excuse me for the tangents I go off on and the jumping about – there’s no easy coherent way for me to express this. For a period following his 6th July 1972 ‘Starman’ performance on Top Of The Pops, until 1975, when I began to disengage, Bowie ruled ok in my world.

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David Bowie

David Bowie

Woke up to the news this morning that David Bowie had died from cancer, aged 69, just a few days on from his birthday last Friday when his latest album, ‘Blackstar’, was released.

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Northern Renaissance

The Northern Soul movement has marked 2 significant anniversaries this year – the launch of the weekly All-Nighters at the scene’s most famous venue, Wigan Casino, in 1973, as well as the opening of its foundation club, Manchester’s Twisted Wheel, 10 years earlier. A new book, ‘Northern Soul – An Illustrated History’ was recently published by Virgin Books, its co-author, Bury-born Elaine Constantine, also the director of the upcoming film ‘Northern Soul’. The book has been well received by Northern aficionados, Constantine (and Gareth Sweeney) congratulated for their insightful overview of the movement, which is enhanced by the anecdotal offerings of some of the DJs, dancers and collectors who epitomized Northern Soul. Alongside the music and the clubs in which it featured, the book also highlights the drug culture that played such a major role, amphetamines fuelling its development.

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Sounds Like London

Just finished a captivating and, to my mind, long overdue book, which covers the history of black music in the capital spanning (almost) 100 years, the recently published ‘Sounds Like London’. By bringing all the threads together, its author, Lloyd Bradley has made a telling contribution to our understanding of how British black music evolved, following the lineage of its direct influences in the Caribbean and Africa, in juxtaposition with the impact of African-American innovation throughout the 20th century.

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Jimmy Savile – DJ Originator Or More Smoke And Mirrors?

Just over 12 months ago, on October 29th 2011, the TV and radio personality Sir Jimmy Savile died 2 days before his 85th birthday (he was born on Halloween 1926). He was regarded as one of the great British eccentrics, but there were always rumours about deviant behaviour, although nothing proven. Apart from his contribution to broadcasting, Savile was also said to be the first DJ, not only in Britain, but the World, to use twin-turntables, back in the 1940s, making him an unlikely icon to DJs of the modern era. Here’s the blog post I wrote at the time of his death:
http://blog.gregwilson.co.uk/2011/10/sir-jimmy-savile/

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Living To Music – David Bowie ‘The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars’

ARTIST: DAVID BOWIE

ALBUM: ‘THE RISE AND FALL OF ZIGGY STARDUST AND THE SPIDERS FROM MARS’

LABEL: RCA

YEAR: 1972

This Sunday (Jan 2nd), at 9pm, you’re invited to share a listening session with some likeminded souls, wherever you might be. This can be experienced either alone or communally, and you don’t need to leave the comfort of your own home to participate. Full lowdown here:
http://blog.gregwilson.co.uk/2010/06/living-to-music/

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Hazy Cosmic Jive

Beats In Space, the cult New York radio show hosted by Tim Sweeney, has a dedicated audience of groove aficionados and is held in high regard by the underground dance community worldwide. Tim asked me to do a mix for the show as far back as 2006, but a US tour that was in the pipeline never materialised, so the idea went on the backburner and, although my intention was to find the time to do something special for the show, life moved on and, before I knew it, it was 2010.

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