What was your first record?

Some of you will know that I like to Tweet. Twitter is fast becoming the easiest way of communicating amongst the Addick faithful. Last night we started talking about music. In fact it was all Paul Benson’s fault. Someone had seen his “Addicks FM” selection on Charlton Player. Not the worst one we’ve had it must be said. Somehow the banter got round to what was your first record.

So what was yours? Mine and please remember that I was four years old at the time was Grandad, by Clive Dunn. To this day I cannot explain why I liked it, why I had to have it and why I went with my Dad to a record shop in Plumstead to buy it. I can say that it certainly wasn’t for the B-side “I play the spoons”. It made me think about my musical taste, how was it influenced and why I like certain genre’s, hating others.

My early musical choices were rather bad, in fact they were damn awful. I remember buying some serious cheese. Some of the worst offenders purchased were C.W.Macall, The Wombles and, the shame of it, Terry Wogan.

Like most kids, we grow up listening to the music played by our parents. I’m afraid that I grew up listening to Joe Loss, Glenn Miller, James Last, Shirley Bassey and other assorted big bands. Luckily I was saved by my cousins and their cast offs.

I was about six when I was given my own record player as a christmas present. Somehow I managed to end up with hundreds of assorted 45’s from my cousins. An eclectic selection from early Bowie, yes it was the Laughing Gnome, to the Beatles. I used to spend hours listening to the music.

Somehow I missed out on Punk, I was just that bit too young. When my peers at school were getting into Madness, the Specials and the whole 2 tone scene I was buying music from Queen and ELO. Pretty mainstream stuff, not very rebellious.

As I got older I started to appreciate and get into the Electronic genre, music from Kraftwerk, Jarre, Ultravox, Visage etc. But somehow didn’t embrace the culture that went with it. That’s probably down to having fairly strict parents. I still kick myself that I didn’t rebel.

As a parent myself I can now appreciate how lucky my parents were, I may have been a lippy so and so, but I towed the line. My eldest is gradually finding his feet and his voice. As anyone with a pre-pubescent child knows it can be a little fraught at times. The one thing that consoles me is that he has finally discovered music and what a chip off the old block he is too!

He’s grabbed my old MP3 player and rammed it full of music from his Dad’s collection. For Christmas he wanted the Beatles back catalogue. He’s forever playing Abbey Road. He went out in the Holidays and bought a couple of Muse albums, even though I already had them. My proudest moment was when he came in to tell me that Pink Floyd were awesome and that The Great Gig was his favourite track. It must be down to me then. It must be down to the times he spent in the car with me listening to my pretty loud taste.

So that still doesn’t answer how I got my taste. If I had taken after my Dad, I would be stuck in the 1940’s listening to the big band sound.

I’ll probably never know and to tell you the truth I don’t really care, I like what I like and that’s what makes me who I am!


Keeping it Live

Lennie Lawrence being interviewed by Pete and Terry for Charlton Live

Tonight’s Charlton Live has a special interview with Lennie Lawrence. We didn’t get as much time as we would have liked, so we’ll try and get him back at a later stage.

The team had also hoped to interview Robert Lee, but traffic problems around the Valley meant he only got to the ground shortly before kick-off.

Hopefully we’ll have some news soon about another exiting development for the show.

Thanks to everyone who has provided feedback, overwhelmingly positive it has to be said.

World Cup Songs #3 and #4

Too depressed last night and got in late from work on Friday, so as promised a real stinker and something that is so bad it’s brilliant!

First, it’s so bad it is utterly brilliant. A reworking of the 1980 classic (sic) D-I-S-C-O. Trust me, it’s catchy.

So that was quirky, now for something not so quirky. Sorry this is a bit of a stinker.

World Cup Songs #2

So this was from 2006 – Matt, bass player from Paradise on Purple, was a regular visitor to the Millennium FM studio’s on a Saturday morning plugging the band. Although by the time they had written this we’d been long gone from Millennium (I Jumped before I was pushed!)

It’s not a bad song, not a football chant by any means, but better than 95% of the other dross out there.

No idea what the band are up to these days their website doesn’t really tell you much!

Tomorrow – Proof that there really are some stinkers out there!

World Cup Songs #1

First in a series of several’ish videos that I’ve dug up on the web.

When it’s world cup time it’s amazing how many people crawl out of the woodwork with songs supporting England’s bid to go all the way and win that damn trophy.

Some are good, some are bad and some are, well, truly awful.

This is a good attempt – Young Stanley. Good song, but not upbeat enough in my opinion to be a terrace anthem like Three Lions.

Happy Sir Clive Mendonca Day

Today is the second greatest day in Addicks history (sorry returning home on the 5th December 1992 was the number one). Sir Clive got a hat-trick, the very Reverend Richard Rufus scored his first goal for the club. Oh and the small matter of promotion to the Premiership for the very first time.

The greatest game ever at Wembley, the emotions of a rollercoaster ride like no other. Tears, songs, cheers and about 37000 lost voices across the southern part of England. For some strange reason I was let loose with a microphone and wandered onto the Wembley pitch to proclaim that it was our year, our destiny to win. Cue 38000 Mackems booing and questioning my parentage. One of those surreal, you had to be there moments. As Charlie Connelly said this afternoon in a tweet, the Big Loon was on the pitch. Pity this is the only photo I’ve ever seen. Never mind I wouldn’t have changed it for the world.

So as a treat, head on over to the Valley Sounds page and there you will find four separate MP3 files from the fantastic commentary provided by Mark Mansfield and Colin Powell on Millennium 106.8fm.

Enjoy them and make sure you have some tissues handy to wipe away those tears. I guarantee you WILL well up!

Now that the dust has settled

After Monday nights heart wrenching season finale, it’s taken me a few days to recover from the multi layered depression that engulfed me at about 10.45 pm. Thankfully Tuesday was spent away from the Office and amongst a group of people with no connection, love of Football. Wednesday was slightly different. The commiserations of the plastic Premiership fans, lightened by the two Brentford fans – Ah ya cocked it up!! Thanks Dave and Kieran and yes I look forward to seeing you for that pub crawl round Griffin Park.

Some say that being a football supporter can be likened to driving along a rocky road, so that must mean that being a Charlton supporter is like driving along the Yungas Road.

It’s not been an easy four years since Alan Curbishley’s departure. Double relegation has been a hard pill to swallow for many fans. The plastic premiership fans have departed leaving a hard core of Addicks. Fans that have stuck with the club through one of our lowest ebbs.

Many travelled to such exotic places as Prestfield, Senegal Fields, Boundary Park following Parky’s Read and White Army as we battled to get out of League One. For some 15 glorious minutes on the 8th May we had made it, escaped, one foot in the Championship. Life isn’t that easy though, It wouldn’t be Charlton would it?

So the play-offs came, at least we finished fourth and had second leg advantage, a home fixture. Having managed to not lose by more than one goal at the County Ground the return leg was eagerly anticipated.

Most of us will admit to not sleeping much over that weekend, nerves kicked in early Monday morning. Work dragged. Finally we assembled at the Valley on a balmy May evening. Memories of a similar May evening some 12 years previous.

Down by the tunnel we could sense the tension, sense the eager anticipation , the willing of the fans to get on with it. The crowd were in fine voice, for once everyone was pulling together, backing the team.

Never has a Valley crowd been so loud, so passionate. I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to having goosebumps. The support was tremendous, actually it was truly awesome. For 120 minutes you kept going.

Football once again she proved that she is a cruel mistress, our dreams snatched from us and a chance to visit the new Wembley for the first time gone. Tears flowed, even I shed a few. It just wasn’t meant to be.

We can debate over why it went wrong, games lost or drawn. Penalties not given. Though to me it’s irrelevant, if you continue to worry about the “what if’s” it will drive you mad.

So next season, we need the same again. It’s going to be so important that the Valley faithful return and back their club.

As it’s the end of season I need to thank a few people. Matt Wright, Ria Hopkinson, Tom Harvey and Gary Haines from the Charlton Media Team. Four of the best people you could wish to meet, even if two of them are Wet Spammers (you can work out which two!) Steve Crooks for his hard work nursing the big screen through it’s final season. Andy Judd for all the technical support. Dan Bream for the excellent Fishbowl software. Tom Perfect for operating the screen. Jon Lucas for keeping me guessing what music he’d come up with next! Pete Finch for stepping in last Monday when Jon wasn’t able to join us.

Finally you, the dedicated Addick. Thank you. Throughout the season you’ve supported your team. On Monday night you really did back the boys, You really did make some noise.

Have a great summer – KEEP THE FAITH!

Come on you Reds!


Now I can blog from my recently acquired Android phone!

Not that I’ve much to say mind you.

When things go wrong….

….they really go wrong.

At about 1.00pm this afternoon this could have been me in the picture above picking up the Valley Music Playout Computer and smashing it. Only I’m not as slim as that and it’s a tower not a laptop. I suspect you get the point though.

When technology fails, it usually does so in a spectacular way. Well today the old PC decided to reboot itself every five minutes without being asked. So very quickly we managed to find an alternative system from the bowels of the Valley, load up the music, software and away we went! Unfortunately we didn’t have back ups of all the music. So James that’s why Guru Josh didn’t make an appearance this afternoon.

Jon Lucas continues to multi task and play the music and DVD’s you see on the screen. Tom Perfect operates the software we use for the screen and I sit down between the dugouts watching the match and keeping my eye on the fourth official.

Huge game on Tuesday night now. The Seagulls will be confident after their draw today at Leeds, hopefully our lads will have given themselves a boost after our victory this afternoon. With Norwich having a wobble and Leeds having a crisis of confidence we need to start taking advantage and turn the Valley back into that fortress it once was. The Crowd were fantastic today, backing the team and making lots of noise. Much more of the same from 7.45pm Tuesday please!