The B-Side of Life

Back in the olden times , when all you could afford was a single rather than an album, when you’d played the ‘hit’ to death, you’d flip it to the B-Side, usually out of boredom, and listen to it until you liked it…in order to get your money’s worth. The B-sides were indeed like Mr.Gump’s  ‘box of chocolates’, you never really knew what you were going to get. Some bands were clearly in the ‘orange crème’ category. They were only there to fulfill their obligation to put something there and didn’t really care what it was. Blur in particular had dreadful ‘the chocolates that nobody loved apart from your grand aunt Minnie’. In our house when we were kids the last sweets left in the Milk Tray of Black Magic box were the Strawberry Crème, the Turkish Delight and the god awful Orange Truffle, usually with little finger impressions where we had checked in desperation if they were indeed the dreaded soft centres of chocolate covered EVIL !
But other bands had so many brilliant songs that not all of them made it on to the album, so you were in for a treat with the B-sides. Bands such as U2, The Beatles, Rolling Stones, Oasis, Primal Scream , and even The Smiths before we realized that Morrisey was a Nazi, all had wonderful gems hidden for the ardent fan to find. Some B-Sides even became more popular over time than their erstwhile A-sides.

Oasis ‘Half The World Away’ was the B-side of ‘Whatever’.

The Stones ‘You Can’t Always Get What You Want’ was the B-side to ‘Honky Tonk Woman’

The Smith’s ‘How Soon Is Now’ was the B-side to ‘William It Was Really Nothing’.

Listening to Spotify this week a song popped up on my ‘Discover Weekly’ list, Primal Scream’s ‘I’m Losing More Than I’ll Ever Have’ , a song I barely remember, but was immediately transfixed by.

And that’s what I mean by B-side of life. It’s not the second half, or a poor imitation of the first, or going through the motions, although some days its all of those things too. To me it’s appreciating something forgotten, undiscovered, or re-discovered.

Last Saturday was a dreaded ‘clear out’ day in chez Lisbane. Memories, family heirlooms and shirts that WILL fit again someday were casually tossed aside by Robyn, Jake, Elliott and my SoulMate. So it fell to me as keeper of the flame to wait until they’d all tired themselves out before I went through everything and rescued Walrus onesies , half completed Lego Death Stars ,and wonderful teddies called Tigger.

 The wonderful thing about Tiggers?  

Tiggers are wonderful things.

And ,, you’re not so bad so bad yourself.

Enjoy the B-sides !


P.S. Here’s a link to Primal Scream’s ‘I’m Losing More Than I’ll Ever Have’

P.P.S Incidentally, do you feel different about a book, movie or song that you always loved if you subsequently discover something unsavoury about the writer/performer ?  

P.P.P.S We’re installing our third Drumlin Giant in Rossmore next week, Garaidh Den Drum, aka Spike. If anyone would like a copy of his short story just email me.

Author: paul

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