Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Pink Parker (Graham Parker & the Rumour) - "Hold Back The Night" (Vertigo, 1977 - EP)

F*ck Elvis Costello! I never liked him. I bought when I was a youngster two albums, which were ok but I can’t stand him! A sniveling nerd and nothing else! I still can’t understand also what’s on a woman’s mind… My eyes had been blown by surprise (to put it mildly...) when I read for the first time in the cool McNeil/McCain book 'Please Kill Me' the part in which Bebe Buell was ‘confessing’ her love for the aforementioned wearing spectacles bloke… I mean OK, love’s blind BUT what in the bloody hell gal, did you find to him? He wasn’t Buddy Holly, even if he wanted to; he could have never come close to his brilliance! And Elvis? Elvis! Oh my god, someone should stop parents giving names without second thoughts! And the sad/crazy/unreal part of this story it’s that this sell-out became a star and Graham Parker not!
I can easily spend my/your time by insulting 'Elvis' and forgot that this piece here is about Graham Parker. Don’t try finding someone better in this league, Parker was the best. Actually, Parker was a league by himself! I despite all this ‘Brit Springsteen’ non sense. I mean OK, just like Bruce, Graham had all the right influences and a shit hot band backing him up (the Rumour was a round up of ace pub rock stars -- Brinsley Schwarz and Bob Andrews from Brinsley Schwarz, Martin Belmont from Ducks Deluxe, Steve Goulding from Bontemps Roulez plus Andrew Bodnar), but unlike Spingsteen GP’s influences were visually audible. Van ‘the man’ Morrison, the Stones and a healthy dose of pure American Soul built his sound, having by side an almost Dylan-ish ability to write clever and auto sarcastic lyrics. His three first Mercury albums (at least...) are totally brilliant works and this page suggesting them without second thoughts as add-ons to your record collection. Anyway, the 'Pink Parker' EP belongs to the pantheon now of the absolutely legendary and kick-ass releases of the late 70s. A 7inch EP consisting by four fantastic songs, two studio non-LP tracks and two live (officially bootlegged, whatever that means anyway...), the title-track a KILLER rendition of the Northern Soul classic, "Hold Back The Night" originally by the Trammps with the Rumour and the Rumour Horns firing in all cylinders!



  2. I also loved early Graham Parker - I hear he is rehearsing with The Rumour for a tour soon. He also lives nearby in Woodstock, so I see him play around (usually acoustic.) But nothing he did later matched the brilliance of those early few albums - all time classics that stand up to anything. I think that "Sparks" was overrated and has not aged as well. (I bought this Ep when it first came out, still gets play with me.) Thanks again for your very good taste.

  3. Hi Gyro, thanks mate once again for stopping by here!
    Yep I think I understand your second thoughts on “sparks”, the much poppier sound crabbed many of the fans, but hey, it has “Passion is no ordinary word” on and for that song only still worth mentioning, right? Cheers buddy!

  4. Hi, I've just discovered your excellent blog. You are so right about GP vs EC. I've bored the arses off friends for years saying the wrong guy made it. Thanks for the memories, still got my pink vinyl copy!

  5. "And Elvis? Elvis! Oh my god, someone should stop parents giving names without second thoughts!"

    Elvis was a stage name. His real name is Declan MacManus.