Is this the real life?

“Mama … just killed a man”* Not the happiest start to a Christmas blog post but nevertheless it is the striking line (after the preamble of course) to the only song to have been number 1 at Christmas twice and given that this is the last post in the series, it seems fitting to end… Read More »

It’s only make believe

This somewhat melancholy and mournful tune by Conway Twitty, was the 1958 Christmas number one.  Conway Twitty, (having changed his name and chosen two seemingly random towns as names), was an American singer and this was his first big hit.  The song was actually written whilst Conway was in Ontario, apparently he had become convinced that this is… Read More »

The Wall

Pink Floyd’s lyrics for The Wall, expressing a less than positive view of education, clearly resonated with the record buying public at the end of 1979. Teenagers may have finished the year singing ‘We don’t need no education*’, but at the beginning of the year other pop stars were rather more supportive; on the 9th… Read More »

Only connect …

What is the connection between the Human Rights Act 1998, the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 and Tom Jones?  NO, this is not to do with changes in the law since novelist Henry Fielding  worked as a magistrate among the criminalized poor of eighteenth century London, nor is it to do with the rights and… Read More »

Can We Fix It?

In Bobsville, the answer is always a resounding “Yes We Can!” In England it’s possible to make a living as a builder through networking, working with personal contacts on existing construction sites, without any set qualifications or skills at all, but it’s hard and dangerous work so builders do have to be physically fit and willing to listen and learn.… Read More »

I hear you knocking

This 1970 Christmas no.1 is particularly apt for the past year for the Law Library. ‘I hear you knocking’ indeed: what with all the drilling, hammering, mess and disruption, it’s amazing that anyone got anything done. We (readers and staff) cannot wait to get back to our understanding of “quiet enjoyment” of a library. Our… Read More »

Hello, Goodbye

  Who can forget the 1967 classic ‘Hello, Goodbye’ by the Beatles? Perhaps not the most diverse set of lyrics of any Christmas number 1, indeed here is a short sample; “You say goodbye and I say hello Hello hello I don’t know why you say goodbye, I say hello Hello hello I don’t know… Read More »

Return to sender

In 1962, although his best films were already behind him, Elvis’ music was still hitting the spot.  He’d already had three UK number ones that year (including one of the best single releases of all time, Rock-a-hula Baby/Can’t Help Falling in Love) and ended the year in top position again with Return to Sender.  Written… Read More »

Ernie (The Fastest Milkman In The West)

Ernie, before his unfortunate demise due to being hit in the eye by a stale pork pie thrown by his love rival Ted the baker, was noted for the speed of his milk cart. He and his horse Trigger “galloped into market street” which sounds rather dangerous, especially if it was contemporary, for at the… Read More »

1980 Sentimentally valid

On first listening to the strains of There is no one quite like Grandma, this writer’s inner Scrooge leapt out unbidden: initial reaction was “A sugar tax cannot come soon enough!” (It remains to be seen whether the 2016 Budget‘s proposal of a new Soft Drinks Industry Levy (SIDL consultation) from April 2018 will survive… Read More »