He put a quarter in the Wurlitzer, and he pushed three buttons and the thing began to whirr and a bar maid came by in fishnet stockings and a bow tie and she said “Drink up now it’s gettin’ on time to close.”
“Richard, you haven’t really changed,” I said
Joni Mitchell: The Last time I Saw Richard
I’m sure you know the song ….but do you remember the jukebox?
I remember a chip shop in Carnoustie. Our family would all have been there having a fish-tea. There was a drunk man trying to put sixpence in a jukebox and failing miserably. Somehow, when I hear that James Taylor song (see blog title) I always think of that time. The great days of the jukebox were really before my time but I had enough of a student experience to know how great they could be. The importance of getting a choice in before some psychotic maniac from Kirkcaldy ruined a precious coffee break with a bad medley of metal music was all important. What significant jukebox records do I recall? Like A Rolling Stone/ Behind Closed Doors and Milk and Alcohol. Oh, I could go on….
I remember signing my first music publishing deal and my lawyer showing me his jukebox. He told me he had a single from every artist for whom he’d negotiated a record deal….How much I wanted to have a 45 on it. It was a couple of years later when I would stumble across our second single in pride of place on a Liverpool University jukebox waiting for someone to put in 10p.On Friday I get to bring you my stack of favourites. How wonderful it would be if I just had all these songs stored in my own machine – perhaps one day. There’s one half of the AC duo who does own one though…and you can see (above) just how proud he is.
What I can guarantee is you will hear some great Country songs. There will be songs from my past and a good few I have discovered since starting my shift on the AC. You will hear songs of heartbreak, songs of joy and songs to make you want to get on the road and drive. I can’t tell you how much joy compiling the list of songs gave me and sadly you won’t be able to see how much I’m smiling as the songs are playing on this Good Friday, but believe me I will be a very happy man. I hope I play a few gems that bring smiles to your own faces.
It’s my last Sunday for a while so I go out in style celebrating the most important day in the Christian calendar. It’s Easter Sunday and I’ll meet a man who’s own story is as remarkable as any of the amazing people I’ve met over the last few years. Mark Lowey is now a Church of Scotland minister in East Kilbride. A few years ago however his life had spiralled out of control and he ended up in prison with a serious drug problem. We’ll hear how his life has turned round and what kind of the advice he’d give to people who find themselves in similar positions.
How many Biblical Epics have you seen? The Ten Commandments, The Robe…Ben Hur? I have watched them all and view them as bygone cultural icons. But watch out. Just when you thought it was safe to go back to the cinema…they’re making a comeback. We discuss the new Holywood blockbusters and they’re all based on..The Bible.
We’ll also hear how a church in Aberdeen is being used by Christians and Muslims as a place of worship with both groups enjoying each others company.
We’ll have Easter music too….look out for Patty Griffin and The Impressions as well as Elvis.
It all starts on Sunday at seven (a.m!) on BBC Radio Scotland.
As a student, I think I probably spent at least as much on the jukebox as I did on beer during those inevitably long sojourns in the pub. (And I drank a fair bit in those days.) The opportunity to soundtrack an evening and share great music (at least I like to think folks were happy with what I shared) is one I cherished then, and still do to this day. Maybe I should’ve sought out my own radio show. Those jukeboxes were of the latter-day CD variety, but I am very lucky that my cherished local—The Snooty Fox, just up the road from the Union Chapel no less—still has a working vinyl model to this day. I still can’t resist its pull.
That’s certainly a thing of beauty that Richard has there in the photo. The first edition of your Country Jukebox was a joy—your enthusiasm, as always, utterly infectious—and I very much look forward to Volume Two for all the same reasons. I’ll probably feel compelled to crack a beer or two whilst I listen, though.
Love the picture of Richard and his jukebox!