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Born in '62!

I was born in 1962 which means this year I will turn 62. I’m thinking I may get a new tattoo.


Apparently, in numerology, the number 62 is a business number with a strong inclination to benefit family and other relationships. It is realistic and efficient and a builder. The number 62 is also a diplomat and idealistic. 62 is a balanced number. It tends to build large works that benefit both its immediate family and society for a long time. Its works tend to be harmonious, not only within themselves but also within the environment where they exist.


Apart from the business bit – I have never been a business kind of guy – that all sounds quite sweet, though sadly I don’t believe in numerology, so the positive implications are somewhat wasted on me.


Performing at The Fiddler's Elbow with Skull Puppets, January 2024 (photo by Justine)


Bob Dylan released his debut album in 1962 which is not too shabby. As well as our strongly defined noses, Bob and I are equally mediocre harmonica players, a fact of which we are equally proud.


In that year, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards met Brian Jones at The Ealing Club, a blues club in London, which resulted in some fine tunes, but ultimately didn’t work out so well for Brian. Also, former Beatle Stuart Sutcliffe died from cerebral paralysis caused by a brain haemorrhage in Hamburg, which is a bit sad, though if you are going to exit early, then Hamburg is a cool town to take that bow.


Peter, Paul & Mary released ‘If I had a Hammer’ in 1962. Sixty years later, Grae, Bruce and Mary (Skull Puppets) would release ‘Hammer Man' obviously inspired by that contemporary folk classic of my birth year. Both The Trashmen and Question Mark and the Mysterians both formed in 1962, so a good year for garage rock ‘n’ roll all round!


Peter Paul & Mary


There were some fine singles released in ’62, a few of my favourites being; Twistin' the Night Away by Sam Cooke, The Young Ones by Cliff Richard and The Shadows, The Locomotion by Little Eva, The Wanderer by Dion, James Bond Theme by The John Barry Orchestra, Telstar by The Tornados, Hole in the Ground by Bernard Cribbins, Monster Mash by Bobby "Boris" Pickett, Stranger on the Shore by Acker Bilk, End of the World by Skeeter Davies, Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree by Brenda Lee, Rocket Man by The Spotnicks, Right Said Fred by Bernard Cribbins, Nut Rocker by B. Bumble and the Stingers, Breaking Up Is Hard to Do by Neil Sedaka, Can't Help Falling in Love by Elvis Presley, Orange Blossom Special by The Spotnicks, Let's Dance by Chris Montez and Love Me Do by The Beatles. That’s a damn good party playlist right there!


My new vintage turntable!


The go-to dance craze of the year – as I’m sure you are all aware – was the Mashed Potato!


Axl Rose, Sheryl Crow, Michelle Shocked, Jon Bon Jovi, Craig and Charlie Reid (The Proclaimers), Clare Grogan, MC Hammer (who strangely never did do a cover of If I had a Hammer), Izzy Stradlin, Ian MacKaye, Dave Gahan, Ian Astbury, Nick Rhodes, Femi Kuti, Paula Abdul, Bobby Gillespie, Joan Osborne, Steve Albini, Tracey Thorn, Flea, Anthony Kiedis, Brix Smith and Ben Watt were all babes of ’62. I have met three of them and shared a stage with one of those three, but which could it be I riddle thee! I have conversed with a fourth online, who ended up staying at my mate’s place in Catalunya – but that’s another story.


A few years back I wrote a poem called Born in the ‘60’s, so here it is;


Born in the 60’s

 

There were no heroes

Not really

Just cultural poppers

Three minute highs

Flash bulbs in the gloom

As we attempted to crawl

From beneath the weight

Of our parents disillusionment

In those dim lit

Suburban bedrooms

 

Like-souls and absinthe kisses

On celluloid and vinyl

Danger signs in beguiling neon

And printers ink

That stained our minds

Androgyny and satin pink

Black and white worlds

And smoke curls

Barely cut

And intertwined

 

As heaven’s secrets revealed themselves

So Jesus died

And like newborns we fell

On to cold grey floors

And silent screamed

The factory walls

And prison bars

The existential truths

That stung the eyes

And haunted dreams

 

As the war will never end

So the shop will never close

And the money lenders swarm

Like rabid dogs

Across the sky

Our escape so too our downfall

Forever feted harbingers

Of the century that saw

Such wondrous possibility

Wither fade and die

 

I wish you all a fine and joyful 2024 – catch you somewhere down the road!

 

 

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