Music Played14 items
Queen Crazy Little Thing Called Love
The Game, Island, 5
Bruno Mars Locked Out Of Heaven
(CD Single), Atlantic, 1
Marmalade Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da
Best Scottish Album In The World..., Virgin
Aztec Camera Oblivious
The Best Of Aztec Camera, Warner E.S.P.
The Stranglers Peaches
The Stranglers - Rarities, EMI
The Script Six Degrees Of Separation
Booker T. & The MG’s Green Onions
Atlantic Soul (Various Artists), Warner E.S.P.
The Doors Light My Fire
(CD Single), Elektra
Swede Mason Masterchef Synesthesia
The Beatles Strawberry Fields Forever
Magical Mystery Tour, Parlophone, 8
Donald Fagen I'm Not The Same Without You
Sunken Condos, Warner Bros, 1
Neil Diamond Cherry Cherry
Neil Diamond - The Ultimate Collectio, Columbia/Mca
The Rolling Stones Doom & Gloom
(CD Single), Polydor
Quincy Jones Soul Bossa Nova
Mundo Latino (Various Artists), Columbia
Confession: From Bad to Verse
Dear Father S.
You won't forgive this one. I’m pretty sure of that because I'm not sure I forgive myself. It’s a stinker and that’s for certain.
It is spring 1975 and I am a student at what you normally refer to as a leading university in a busy English city. Not top drawer, but upper drawers, and better than a polytechnic. I’m a second year English Lit student and somewhat taken with the ways of Milton, Hardy and the rest of them. I read all day, every day. I walked, I am ashamed to say, from lecture to seminar to lecture, head deep in poetry or literature, ignoring pretty much everyone and everything. My walls in the flat I shared had classical images of Byron & Shakespeare as opposed to the lady tennis player who had forgotten her undergarments or a Che Guevara. My friends and I didn’t discuss sport or politics but magical realism and the Bronte’s.
At this point I should also mention the university chapel which I attend on an infrequent basis. When I go I love the singing and the friendship but usually come Sunday morning I'm too fast asleep to walk the half mile to the service, so stay under my 70's Dralon sheet and blankets. Then one Sunday when I finally muster the energy required to go to chapel I notice a girl who I hadn't seen before. She's petite and stunning and called Susan. After the service I find myself next to her in the queue for coffee and we start talking. To say we hit it off is an understatement and we talked for ages. When the chapel was closing we carried on our chat in the union building and then we walked for a while. You could say I was smitten. She was from Leeds, a first year American Studies student, and wore a necklace of silver charms I remember to this day.
The same thing happened the following Sunday. We sat together and shared a song sheet. She had a lovely voice, a beautiful but gentle soprano, and by this time I was totally gone. She was the one for me! We hadn’t had a date but I just knew she was just perfect. That is until she stopped coming to chapel.
Two weeks passed and no sight of her. I called round to her flat, but her flat mates said she was out. They said that the next day too. I left a note for her saying I hoped to see her that Sunday but still she didn't come. I started hanging out near the American Studies hall and then one day, I saw her emerge from the building, bright and smiling. And arm in arm with someone else. I stood frozen to the spot, unable to take in what I was looking at.
A few yards further down, she nuzzled her head into his neck and I knew I was lost. I’m sure most listeners remember what it is like when you are so heartbroken you feel sick. Well that was me. I must have stood there for ages. I have to admit I cried just a little.
And so the following Sunday I find myself back in chapel for what I discover is 'share your favourite bible verse' Sunday. I am just contemplating whether I can remember any verses when she walks in, with this toad of a man on her arm. Really he's gross and I'm not even sure he's the same guy as I saw before. But Susan looked wonderful of course and it was as much as I could do to not walk straight out. But she had seen me by then and given me a little wave as though everything was fine – which for her it may have been.
I then remembered that I did in fact remember a passage in the Old Testament that would do the trick nicely. I consulted the bible in the seat in front of me to check for accuracy. I had it pretty much right but I wrote it out correctly. I then walked to the plate we were told to place our verses in and returned to my seat. When no one was looking – eyes were closed and heads bowed – I left.
And that's it. I'm not 100% sure what happened next. What I did know was that the chaplain picked the anonymous pieces of paper and read out the contents. If he could he would have done a little talk about each one of them and then moved on to the next. I also know that Susan never spoke to me again and stopped coming to chapel anyway. So I suppose I need to apologise to her for what may have happened. What I wrote on my paper was ‘This verse always makes me think of Susan and it is Song of Solomon Chapter 4 Verse 5’.
“How beautiful you are my darling. Your hair is like a flock of goats descending from the hills of Gilead. Your teeth are like a flock of sheep just shorn, coming up from washing. Your lips are like a scarlet ribbon, your temples like 2 halves of a pomegranate, your neck is like the tower of David, your breasts are like 2 fawns of a gazelle browsing in the lillies”
You might not read that last bit. But you get the idea. If the chaplain read out what was on my paper, that's what he would have said. And now, many years on it seems pathetic and stupid. But at the time it was right. I stopped going to chapel until my 3rd year when there was a new chaplain. I hope I didn't finish the other guy’s career with a misplaced bible verse.
Your forgiveness please.