Category: YouTube clip of the week

Mike + The Mechanics

Mike Rutherford is 70 this week.

He was a founding member of Genesis and the band’s lead guitarist. In the 1980s he assembled Mike + the Merchanics – a sort of supergroup that comprised vocalist and keyboardist Paul Carrack, who had played with Squeeze, Nick Lowe and Ace, co-lead vocalist Paul Young formally of Sad Cafe and drummer Peter Van Hook who used to play with Van Morrison.

Their best-known song was the number two hit The Living Years which was co-written by Rutherford and B.A. Robertson both who had recently lost their fathers.

Including collections, they have charted 12 albums and 11 hit singles, Let’s remember the title track of their 1995 album, A Beggar on A Beach of Gold.

 

Meat Loaf

Marvin Lee Aday is 72 this week.

He was born in Dallas, Texas and when he was 22 headed to Los Angeles where he formed his first band Meat Loaf Soul, a name coined by Meat’s football coach because if his size. He released a few singles, but struggled because, as he claimed on an interview with a New Zealand radio interview, no one took him seriously in the music industry.

He went on to appear in the L.A stage production of Hair, he broke off for a U.S tour and then returned to the same show but this time on Broadway in New York. In 1973, he was invited to join the cast in the original production of the Rocky Horror Show where he portrayed Eddie and Dr. Everett Scott, the how was a success and it led to him being cast as Eddie in the film version, The Rocky Horror Picture Show.

In 1975, he and Jim Steinman began work on what was to become one of the biggest selling albums of all time, Bat Out of Hell. Two years in the making, it finally surfaced in 1977. To date, it has sold approx. 44 million copies worldwide.

He continued to appear in many film and TV productions as well as releasing the albums Dead Ringer (1981), Midnight at the Lost and Found (1983), Bad Attitude (1984) and Bat Out of Hell II: Back into Hell (1993) – the latter containing his only UK number one hit I’d Do Anything for Love (But I Won’t Do That).

In 1997, he had a cameo appearance as a bus driver in the film Spiceworld.

Let’s remember and enjoy one of the singles released from Bat Out of Hell which, astonishingly only reached number 32 in the UK singles chart.

T.Rex

It was 40 years ago this week that Marc Bolan died in a car crash in Barnes. The car was driven by his girlfriend, the singer Gloria Jones who recorded the original version of Tainted Love and also write the 1979 disco hit Haven’t Stopped Dancing Yet for Gonzalez.

T.Rex first hit the UK chart in 1968, under the name Tyrannosaurus Rex, with Debora. After three hits they shortened the name to T.Rex and chart 20 hit singles including the four chart toopers; Hot Love, Get It On, Telegram Sam and Metal Guru.

Let’s enjoy his last top 20 hit, from 1976.

Brian May

The legendary Queen guitarist Brian May is 70 this week.

The great man, whom I’ve met on a few occasions, has many strings to his bow, but he is certainly an underrated songwriter, probably just over shadowed by his phenomenal guitar playing.

He wrote or co-wrote almost 50% of Queen’s 46 UK hit singles, the first, and a sole writer, was Now I’m Here, a number 11 hit in 1975. It was primarily written about the good times and the bad times of the hard, extensive touring, which the band did during their first few years.

In 1974, they famously supported Mott the Hoople on their American tour, and it that tour which also provided some inspiration, highlighted by the line ‘Down in the city, just Hoople and me.’

Of all the queen songs, this one holds the record for the longest stay in their live sets, Freddie recalled in a Record Mirror interview in 1976, “We released it after Killer Queen, and it’s a total contrast, just a total contrast. It was just to show people we can still do rock ‘n’ roll – we haven’t forgotten our rock ‘n’ roll roots. It’s nice to do on stage. I enjoyed doing that on stage.”

Let’s enjoy this live version in Budapest from 1986.