Up Against The Wall – Psych Mix Part 2

“You cannot count on anyone except yourself. It’s sad, but true, and the sooner you learn it, the better.”

As I prepare to move from Radio Clash Towers, the second half of this mix is about several things – the current political climate, a zeitgeist via 1968-1974, but also a cri de coeur about a dark time in my life, and moving on, quite literally. There’s always a voice in my head going ‘someone is going to ask “Are you OK?” – take that out!” because really, I don’t need the question, it’s not helpful (as is assuming how I feel about things, from grief to moving in with my partner). The answer is no, can you help? Probably not. Would you help? The included quotes from American Beauty, Garden State and Bill Fay’s Screams In My Ears has the answer to that…

But it’s OK. Life is shit. Marvin the Paranoid Android had the best take on that one.

“Will you stop asking me who I am?
Go and find someone else
To tell your jokes to
What a great party this is”

The mix can’t be that depressing though, it features the Clangers! And pretty sure the only time ANYONE in the world has mixed Moondog into War, Clangers into Waterproof Candle, Fugs into 80’s Sandie Shaw, or sequenced Dialogue next to the song Next Time Around that answered it (Sandy and Jackson C. Frank had a relationship early in her career, he convinced her to start singing professionally).

The funny thing is though I tried to make a psychedelic proper mix, I ended up connecting to tunes that critiqued that thinking. I think the dropping out and apathy didn’t help, floating off downstream is fine when you can pay the rent. It’s a privilege to drop out and turn off, not when reality is banging on your door of your darkened room.

“Making all your friends feel so guilty
About their cynicism
And the rest of their generation
Not even the government are gonna stop you now
But are you ready to be heartbroken?”

But there are other related themes in this mix – the transition from (the) summer (of love) to autumn and winter, hence the underrated Smokey Day by the Zombies, Nico’s Fairest of the Season which seems quite wintery for such a summer song and more directly is Sandy Denny’s No End. And there are four songwriters I’ve been obsessed over recently – Jimmy Webb in his psychedelic phase (like the Johnny Rivers, 5th Dimension, Executives and oddly Hugo Montenegro & His Orchestra Does Psych!), Bill Fay with a view on humanity I support, Jackson Browne writing spookily accurate songs about middle age when he was 16, the other Jackson C. Frank and Sandy Denny again. You cannot have enough Sandy Denny!

“I’ll follow signs that point the way
To yet another empty day
Seems it’s just my generation
But I never leave the station”

Talking of Jackson (Browne not Frank) the mix also has the first full cover I’ve sung in about 2 decades. I’ve created music and covers, but never posted them. I hate my voice, and it took 7 takes and some editing to get something reasonable. Then again Nico is fucking out of tune on the original, and it didn’t hurt her did it? Oddly country too, I wasn’t going for that but I guess without Nico it goes back to a 16 year old country boy! But the song’s lines all resonate, and I’ve always wanted to record in my (actually no) bathroom and time was running out.

Oh and a few choice songs stolen from The Get Down. Some great psychedelic soul, new and old in that.

“Now that it’s real
Now that the dreams have given all they had to lend
I want to know do I stay or do I go
And maybe try another time
And do I really have a hand in my forgetting?”

2016 has been the pits, probably the worst year in a few decades, although 2003 and 2009 give good competition. But I don’t think I’m alone in that, hence sharing it. And with Trump, Brexit, May et al, I think it’s going to get worse, so this mix is also about the future, the upcoming months, a Cold War Winter, or maybe even more worrying for the rest of the world a (de)frosting of dictators. And how that Wall can be Mexican, or the walls we put between us.

“Tear down the walls…Won’t you try?” (138Mb, 1:49)

Up Yours 2016:

  • David Peel & The Lower East Side – I Like Marijuana
  • Clangers – Vote for Froglet b/w
  • The Waterproof Candle – Electrically Heated Child
  • The Fugs – Wide Wide River
  • Strawberry Children – One Stands Here
  • Edgar Broughton Band – Up Yours
  • The Holy Modal Rounders – The Pledge
  • Fingertrouble – These Days
  • Sandie Shaw – Are You Ready To Be Heartbroken
  • The Fugs – Exorcising the Evil Spirits From the Pentagon October 21, 1967
  • Bill Fay – Screams in the Ears
  • Fatima Yamaha – What’s A Girl To Do
  • The 5th Dimension – Pattern People

The Dark Empty Room

  • Jason Paul – Shine A Little Light Into My Room
  • War – Slippin’ Into Darkness
  • Moondog – Why Spend a Dark Night with Me
  • Paul Simon – Flowers Never Bend with the Rainfall
  • Jackson C. Frank – Dialogue (I Want to Be Alone)
  • Sandy Denny – Next Time Around
  • Jimmy Webb – Three Songs (Let It Be Me, Never My Love, I Wanna Be Free)
  • The Kinks – Strangers
  • Zombies – Smokey Day
  • The 5th Dimension – Requiem: 820 Latham
  • Michael Kiwanuka – Rule the World
  • The Network – Ears Of Stone
  • The Executives – Parenthesis
  • Sandy Denny – Milk and Honey
  • Nico – The Fairest Of The Seasons
  • Johnny Rivers – Sweet Smiling Children

Moving On

  • Charlie Poole – It’s Moving Day
  • The Carnival – I’m Going Home Tomorrow
  • Sandy Denny & The Strawbs – On My Way
  • Jefferson Airplane – We Can Be Together
  • Hugo Montenegro & His Orchestra – When It Was Done
  • Bill Fay – Be Not So Fearful
  • Sandy Denny – No End (Solo Piano Version)
  • The Fugs – We’re Both Dead Now, Alice

P.S. Here’s the original 1968/Olympics inspired artwork, I might get into trouble for the Trump one, inspired by a shirt worn and I think printed by B. Dolan. I remade it. Just don’t shoot him, mmmkay? I’ll be in deep shit if one of the NRA-types goes off script…


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