Boom Oo Yata-Ta-Ta

Song 20 of my personal “31 Songs”.

Not primarily a “song”, more of a performance from one of the best British comedy acts ever.

I grew up with Morecambe and Wise. I think this particular performance comes from around 1962, so my memory of the song would be of later performances. I remember having an LP that included a recording of the “song”.

Since coming across this video I’ve watched a few more M & W appearances on YouTube. They were highly respected in the show business world and some of the top stars of the day appeared on their TV show.

Over five years ago I wrote a few blog posts with the title “Stories What I wrote”* – the title was a rip-off of Morecambe and Wise, where Ernie Wise would regularly mention the plays “what I wrote”.



Fireball XL5

Another blast from my past, a song by Russell Crowe’s ex father in law, Don Spencer (in his younger days) and number 19 on my personal list of “31 songs”.

This TV show theme song was one of the first records my parents bought for me.

31 Songs – the overture

Number 17 isn`t really a song, although it does have a choral introduction provided by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

This version of the 1812 overture conducted by Eugene Ormandy was one of the most important pieces of music in my late teens to early 20s.

My first full time job was in a bank. I’d spend  most lunch breaks in my car with the seat reclined and my recording of this performance playing at high volume on the stereo. I’m sure that eventually I knew it so well that I didn’t really need to listen to it anymore, but could play it all in my head.

With a finale featuring real cannons and church bells – I`ve never heard a better version.



“31 Songs” Picking up pieces

In my previous posts I’ve tried to maintain a reasonably chronological record of significant songs from my past. But it’s inevitable that some would slip my memory and be omitted from that chronology.

Here I’ll try to fill some of the gaps. These two should have come between songs 2 and 3.

14) Partridge Family.

How do I pick one significant song from a TV show I liked in my early teens? I don’t recall which ones I like best back then. I used to sit beside the TV and try to record the songs on my dad’s old reel to reel recorder (it was a year or two until I got my own portable cassette recorder).

My memories have perhaps been muddied by my recent reintroduction to the series on DVD. I chose the song at the link because I think it would have appealed to me back then, particularly the guitar effect preceding the chorus.


15) Child in Time, Deep Purple.

A major leap in taste after the Partridge Family. I was introduced to Deep Purple through a High School music class where the teacher played their album Concerto for Group and Orchestra, and a former school friend from England who I was still writing to at the time had mentioned them in one of his letters. This song for some reason is one I remember most.

The following should come somewhere between song 5 and 6

16) Wuthering Heights, Kate Bush.

Like most people, this song was my introduction to Kate Bush one of the more original singers, songwriters and performers I’ve come across in “mainstream” music. Not my favourite song of hers, but probably the most significant. I’ve seen and heard some very dubious things written about Kate, her music and her voice, that probably say more about the “accusers” than the singer.




“31 songs” Continued. (The early Gloria years).

After the list of 5 songs in my previous post, I’ve given the topic more thought and can add the following to my own “31 Songs”.

There’s still a significant short fall – but one day maybe I’ll be able to get to that arbitrary number, based on Nick Hornby’s book.

Part of the difficultly is narrowing a one time favourite group’s output to one song more significant than the rest.


6) Bad, U2.

I’m not sure why I went to see the U2 film Rattle and Hum. Around that time I often filled an evening by going to see films at my local cinema, and R & H was just one more on their programme. However it become more than  a film. I was the only one in the theatre, the volume was turned higher than usual, and it seemed like I was at a personal U2 concert. I immediately became a fan, something that changed my life completely because I later met Gloria at the first (and last) meeting of a failed U2 fan club. This song has always been a favourite.

7) Gloria, U2.

I had to include this one, the song that gave Gloria her nickname. We were friends for over a year until I knew her real name, and I didn’t find that out until our relationship progressed beyond friendship and we became a “couple”. My family still address her as Gloria.

8) Roaring Jack, were a group I discovered during my time at University. It was during the early stages of my friendship with Gloria and coincidentally we independently discovered them around the same time.

I was introduced to their music by a classmate. Gloria heard about them from the owner of her local record store. Almost weekly I drove to Sydney to see them perform at a Newtown pub on Thursday nights. Unfortunately Gloria missed out because of work commitments. We were eventually able to see them perform together at the Harold Park Hotel sometime around new year (of which year I don’t recall).

As I said we independently discovered them, and also unknown to each other, for many months both of us never missed  daily listening to one of their albums.

9) The Waterboys were another independent joint discovery, although we both came across them before we met.
I found them through their album Fisherman’s Blues. When I met Gloria she had all of their albums. There are a lot of songs I could have chosen from their catalogue that are more representative of their work, but I chose this one for Gloria.


The last songs for this post are the hardest to select. There are several groups I could choose from – most of them Irish. Groups like The Hothouse Flowers, The Saw Doctors, The Black Velvet Band, but I decided on the following:

10) In a Lifetime, Clannad.

It was hard choosing a specific Clannad song, but as this one features Bono from U2 it seemed the most appropriate and well known choice available. Unfortunately it seems that the original video (at least this one) hasn’t survived very well. The picture quality isn’t the best.

11 and 12 ) Capercaillie

A group that Gloria discovered first as another Celtic group with similarities to Clannad, but I probably took more of a liking to them than she did over time. We saw them twice live in Sydney. But how do I select a representative song? I couldn’t, so I chose two including this one from Karen Matheson their singer. I probably could have chosen almost anything they’ve released.


13) Lord of the Dance

It took a while to find a reasonable video of this. Gloria and I saw the show twice in Sydney (the video is of a later version). I’ve been typing this as I listen to audio from the video and find myself tapping the keys in time to the rhythm of the dancing.