“The Dutch Have A Word For It Shuffle Monkey!”

“Pronkstillevens”, they say around Old Amsterdam, as Old Bertolt & Bowie & Brel have been want to Sing, &, it means in Painting Terms, “Sumptious Still Lifes” – But The Shuffle Monkey is All Jackson Pollock if anything & in His little Abstract Heart there’s nothing remotely Still Life about what this Simian throws down & Today is no exception as he starts us off with The Originals, & “Californian Sunset” – rather moody, Pacific West Coast Soul. Followed by Dazz &, “Brick”; & then Father’s Children &, “Hollywood” and Chain Reaction with, “Hogtied” – Chain reaction of course were Bruce Ruffin (‘I’m Mad About You’) Dave Collins – Brother of Ansel (‘Double Barrel’ – no less) – & the other one who I should remember, but I can’t and The Shuffle Monkey’s no hope with His Banana addled Brain!!

Next it’s Bowie with, “Everyone Says Hi” – a more contemporary track, but excellent; Interesting – Danny Wilson next with, “Mary’s Prayer” – Lighters’ Aloft!; & back to some Soul now with ZZ Hill, who has one of those Voices & this is just one of those Deep Soul Songs, “Make Me Yours” – 4-to-the-floor; Speeding up a little, but still on the Soul Side comes Arthur King, with “Fear”; And now a real Corker, The Supremes with“Bad Weather” – We have several versions of this great track in the Shuffle Monkey’s Mix-Bag, but check the groove on this cut and Blow Your Whistle!

GEAR CHANGE – Some Reggae with Bunny Wailer &, “The Oppressed Song”; GEAR CHANGE, Again – Rose Royce &, “Get Up Off Your Face” – A Tad Darker & Heavier than Car Wash; Followed by “Tite Rope” Harold Alexander blowing His Funky Horn; then another GEAR CHANGE & a bit of ‘Blue Grass’ Beatles, or rather, I should say Handsome Hank swinging “Back In The USSR” – Hey, Hey, Hey! Airplane Landing!!

Duke Pearson follows that and whilst I catch my breath I must ask – How did we get here? But it’s fabby – Cool, Piano Driven Samba, with a great vocal, “Sandalia Dela”; & finally today The Man, Mark Murphy with, “Love Is What Stays” – Some of Mark’s stuff has been more recently remixed by Nicola Conte and works really well – This cut though is a straight ahead take! I had the pleasure of seeing Mark Murphy play in Edinburgh a while back – Another Story, like The Gil Scot Heron “Birmingham’ Adventure, which will feature in a Future Blog – Anyway, Catch Mark, if you can, while you still can!! And Keep The Faith, Be Awesome & We’ll Keep It On Shuffle… Oh Yeah! 🙂

keepitonshuffle@whateversinmyhead – Blog 92 – Or, It’s Christmas!

No, of course it’s Not, but the Shuffle Monkey watches neither the Clock, nor has his Piqued Eye on the Calendar – & for our First Track Today we get a Righteous Slice of Kurtis Blow & “Christmas Rappin” – Ho, Ho, Ho!! And this is speedily followed on the Mother of all Sledges drawn by a Team of Hungry Huskies – Yes, Zucchero – I know you were ahead of us & Here he is serenading us with, “Quonti Anni Ho” – & Ho, Ho, Ho again, &, this comes from His, ‘Live In Italy’ Album!!

Elastica spring-up and into place next with, “2:1” – Justine liked to keep her song titles Numerical, like her Boyfriend of the time – Blur’s Damien Albarn – & this is followed by the completely marvellous and certainly under-rated Swing Out Sister – the Shuffle Monkey & I commend them to you, The Jury – & Go and check out this Track, “Something Every Day”; Whilst David Bowie – Yet again, Swings by Next with, “Boys Keep Swinging” – Which catapulted him into the 1980’s and just pre-dates his next phase after Berlin etc – ‘The Serious Moonlight’ Era! And Clare Teal closes this segment with, “One More” – Try it, One More Dip In The Ocean, One More Fish In The Sea… Happy Music!!

Some Bionic Boogie to follow next with, “Dance Little Dreamer (12″ Extended)” – Extended what, we Don’t know?? And then we have Teddy Pendergrass singing as part of Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes from about – 1974? – & what a Track, “Be For Real” – & this version is All 7.31 Glorious Divine Minutes…; Whilst Linda Clifford (who was married to Curtis Mayfield) Blows us away with the Track, “With You”!

Next up is not only a Great song writer, but also not a Bad Singer either – Lamont Dozier & he provides us with one of his own compositions – “It’s The Same Old Song” – You Know It! And to Follow we go on a Moon Safari with Air as, “Kelly Watch(es) The Stars”!! That leads into Rod ‘The Mod’ Stewart who is back in the House with the Majestic, “Handbags & Gladrags”; & up on the fence comes the Original of, “Summer The First Time” by Bobby Goldsboro – This takes me right back to 1974 & Pauline from Letchworth – Which I don’t believe has a Public House in it’s boundary? – Well, it didn’t, but that’s no excuse – there are always Board Games!

And Blue Magic are now, “Chasing Rainbows”; Whilst Wilbert Longmire ups’ the ante further with his version of the Classic, “Loves Holiday” – written by Skip Scarbrough – & Earth Wind & Fire do a Great Vocal version – but this version by Mr Longmire however is a Great Jazz-er; & Keeping in the Jazz Groove the Mighty, Mighty Mark Murphy follows with, “Love Is What Stays” – A voice Aged in Life & Love – Love Found, Love Lost, Just Love & the Price We Pay!

David Bowie hits us again now – It’s very early Bowie though with, “The Laughing Gnome” – &, well, You’ve just got to Laugh, Haven’t You – & he is sounding not unlike a Young Anthony Newley – But then again we know that – Coz We/You Are In The Know – & Once Upon A Once Upon A Time, I used to have a version of both this Track &, ‘Love You To Tuesday’ in German – But that was on Cassette!! It was a Miracle of course we survived such a Dark Age- but the Monkey & Me believe in Miracles and here’s a great song to Proove it – the Jackson Sisters &, “I Believe In Miracles” – Classic & Class!! And this brings us to our last Track Today picked by the Shuffle Meister & Yes, It’s The Mighty, Mighty, Mighty George Benson – Who I believe is Touring again Soon – & this is one of his more recent cuts, “Show Me The Love” – From The Album, ”Songs & Stories’ – So, Keep The Faith, Keep It Real, Be Awesome & We’ll Keep It On Shuffle, Promise! 🙂