Tuesday, 4 September 2012

WEDNESDAY CLUB - Shangri-Las/Twinkle - Leader of the Pack/Terry

MIDWEEK CRISIS you ain't going knowhere, come to WEDNESDAY CLUB we will take you to Shangri-la and put a Twinkle in your eye
Vroom! Vroom!

SHANGRI-LAS - Leader of the Pack(1964)

What is it about motor cycles and death, here we have 2 songs about young love cut tragically short. It was simple back then in the early sixties, the songs were simple ditties, mostly always about love. They were great songs, usually with a very memorable and hummable melody. Even the Beatles were singing 'She Loves You' and 'I wanna Hold your Gland'.  Then a certain Mr Dylan came along and everything changed. 'Like a Rolling Stone' took popular music to a new higher level. Suddenly the Beatles upped their game starting with 'Rubber Soul'. The sixties were transformed into a whole explosion of new exciting experimental music. I still believe the best musical decade is the sixties, but I suppose it does help when you have lived through it. 
Motor Cycle Black Madonna two wheeled Gypsy Queen

Even Dylan himself had a famous encounter with a Motor Cycle. I remember when I heard the news in 1966 and was devastated at the time.

There is of course many films where the motor cycle features strongly, 'The Wild One' with Marlon Brando, 'Girl on a Motor Cycle'  with the delicious Marianne Faithful and of course how can we forget 'Easy Rider' with one of the best soundtracks ever for a movie.

Most people will be familiar with the Shangri-las 'Leader of the Pack' it is simply a great pop record. 'Terry' by  Twinkle is another fabulous bit of pop about death and motor cycles. She was a bit of a one hit wonder but it is such a memorable song.

Both the videos are timeless   

TWINKLE - Terry(1965)

Still on the subject of motor cycles, if you ever get the chance to watch 'The Worlds Fastest Indian' starring Anthony Hopkins, it is a must see. The Indian being a Motor Cycle.

I never had a motor cycle or a scooter for that matter and never really wanted one. Did you have one?

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WEDNESDAY CLUB - Shangri-Las/Twinkle - Leader of the Pack/Terry
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5 September 2012 at 07:26

Wonderful post.
The Shangri-Las were just brilliant in their dumbness. A genuine classic.

Twinkle - another classic. Didn't The Smiths or Morrissey cover it?

Of course, the motor bike has had a fine rock and roll history but the best 'bike' song has to be Richard Thompson's '1952 Vincent Black Lightning'.

Never owned a bike or scooter (although I have fantasized about being a Mod on wheels a few times in my Quadrophenia moments). The nearest I ever got to being a biker was having lift on my mate's moped! I bet Morrissey was just the same, too.

5 September 2012 at 08:39

SB - Will check out the RT one....Mod or rocker?...think I would have to be a rocker, but loved the mod music...One I missed...motor cycle black madonna two wheeled gypsy queen...theres a line..I have added to Marianne Photo.

5 September 2012 at 22:11

A fine post OPC. I never had a motorcycle, but my Dad did. He wasn't a 'biker' of any sort, it was just his way of getting to & from work through the London rush-hour. I was on the back when we hit a car that pulled out in front of us without looking and sometime later Dad got knocked off the bike by a car jumping the traffic lights. Luckily the injuries were slight on both occasions, but twice was enough for Mum. She put her foot down and Dad caught the bus thereafter!

Here's an amazing version of '1952 Vincent'. I'm sure Richard Thompson must have three hands to play like that! http://unthoughtofthoughsomehow.blogspot.co.uk/2011/03/my-hats-off-to-you.html

23 September 2012 at 14:01

I loved 60's music growing up although it was 25 years after the event. As you said, they were easy to sing along to and were simple. One of my faves was leader of the pack too! I had a scooter and used it once, I cut both ankles on the stunt pegs at the back and was too traumatised to use it again. Sorry Pa!