XTC – Senses Working Overtime Virgin VS 462 1982 UK
I happen to think that this is one of the greatest 45’s ever pressed to wax, a truly brilliant pop song that has intelligent lyrics but a rather simple hook. XTC had a lot of great songs but this one, as far as singles go, is right up there at the very top in a collection that is already in another league.
Public Image Ltd – Public Image Virgin VS 228 1978 UK
I saw the single in its newspaper wrapping in Woolworths, though I can’t remember where, in Oxfordshire I would guess. I remember walking over to it and picking it up, then opening it up to have a look to see what it was and then putting it back because I had no money. In Abingdon maybe? No matter, the important bit is that I couldn’t buy it, which is a shame as I absolutely loved it and still do all these years later.
We all have different views, opinions and tastes but for me, this is a masterpiece.
The Clash – Tommy Gun CBS, CBS S CBS 6788, 6788 1978 UK
I never owned a copy of this as far as I remember, a couple of friends did and I used to play their copy whenever I went around to their house. I remember setting up an elaborate trade with one friend, some of my singles for some of theirs and this was in the ones I would be getting as part of the trade but, despite spending hours discussing it, somehow valuing things in fractions with this being worth 1.5 of whatever I was offering, or something like that, the trade never actually happened.
Although I didn’t listen to it very much, the B-side is pretty decent too.
The Beat – Hands Off She’s Mine/Twist and Crawl Go-Feet Records FEET 1 1980 UK
The first time I heard The Beat was at a fun fair in Didcot, on the site of where the football club used to be. I was standing by the Dodgems thinking what great fun it looked, but unable to have a go as I didn’t have money, as was so often the case. I would have been 13 years old. Blasting out of the dodgems sound system came this and it sounded amazing.
The whole ska revival was really vibrant following hot on the heels of punk as it did and reaching back into a musical past that your typical white boy living in middle England would have no idea about. 40 years later I’m listening to and buying some of those songs that were covered and given new life and a new audience.