Friday 6 March 2009

Myspace looks different today

They've prettied up the song player. You can see it on some of the links I'm embedding today. And no, I have not forgot that is Cute Friday. I will be getting you hopped up on some small cute servings later this afternoon.

So, today's post is simple. It is What I Am Listening To Right Now.

Started last might with The Bowmans, for the second time. To be honest, I find something a little twee and clicheed about their songs, but godammit the sound of their voices together is just gorgeous. Their tone is not hugely varied, but it is thick and luscious. Lullaby-like.

They will probably not like this appraisal if they come across it. Nobody likes less than total enthusiasm when you've worked your arse and pocket off for months to make a labour of love. I dig that. But I also dig that I can listen to this stuff and it is not the kind of stuff I would normally find interesting, but I can hear the beauty in it. The last three songs of this myspace selection are particularly smokin', actually. The Bowmans are selling their new album now, from their myspace page.

I'm not a fan of earnest/cryptic Americana to be honest, but I can't get enough of Gillian Welch for instance. It's amazing how tiny the degrees are between what leaves you indifferent and what makes you ache with desire.

With Welch and Rawlings, it's again the gorgeous complementarity of their sound together, but it is also the sheer dryness of the tone, this desert-like tone, and their incredibly specific, clear, simple, hip, unclicheed songwriting.

Ok, so I've just watched Pete Doherty being interviewed by Pat Kenny, the most untalented, unsocial man to have a lifelong career in chatshow interviewing.

And then there's part two of this interview. Watch the kid on drugs shine over the man who thinks he's interviewing him for a bank clerk post. Does Pat Kenny not understand the notion of actually trying to get the best out of your guest? Clearly he's done his apprenticeship under the tutelage of Gay Byrne, particularly those interviews where Byrne grilled American mistresses of bishops who bore said bishops sons, like it was the Spanish Inquisition, rather than noting Byrne's natural hammy friendliness at times. Unfortunate choice of influence, but then I guess you can't always choose what you become influenced by, can you Pat Kenny? I'm sure that Pat Kenny has met excellent listeners in his time, but he hasn't noticed, clearly. Because if he was listening to this interviewee bearing his fucking soul for him, he would have noticed that the business of becoming mixed up in drugs was not the coolest thing that Pete Doherty thought he had ever done.

Ireland is an island nation of course, with a certain narrowness of outlook, and perhaps Parkinson's matey and gracious warmth was just a bridge to far to emulate. To be honest, I really put it down to the fact that Pat Kenny is good at numbers, and talking about economics on the radio, and really committed when he is doing that.

But when he's interviewing humans who are Different To Him, he misses every last bit of the good stuff. In this interview he sounds like a moralising tabloid, missing the humanity. He's clearly prepared to interview a half-conscious junkie, and instead gotten a lucid and openhearted junkie, and he can't even recognise this. There is a difference, mister Kenny, between 'asking tough questions' and 'endlessly harping on the same question 15 different times'.

So. The part of this interview that set off a hurrah in my heart was when Doherty tells Kenny that all the questions he has asked him in this interview were about "drugs or Kate. I bet you couldn't mention a single song I've written." And the answer from Kenny is that no, he couldn't. And Doherty responds with " well that is what I would like to do. I would like to put a melody in your heart and your head, and that that would be the first thing you would think of when you think of me". And then he sings his song.

Pete Doherty also has a record out next week. Two of his songs are up on myspace.

Thanks to Paula, who linked to Pete in one of her last posts on her blog.


  1. "I would like to put a melody in your heart and your head, and that that would be the first thing you would think of when you think of me." That's good, that is.

  2. Isn't it? Every time I've seen Pete Doherty on telly, he's been out of it, but it was always clear to me that he was a real human being under all that fug. It was so fucking nice to see the kind of real human being he is. I was paraphrasing there, but he says something pretty damned close. And I think that is pretty fucking lovely stuff from a rocknroll junkie to a paininthearse chatshow interviewer who is clearly only interested in trying to make him feel some kind of shame over the circumstances of his existence.