Mix Tape Friday: The Wizard of Oz
It appears that Fridays are no longer my own. Beloved Aussie blog vivant Mountjoy, from Ribbed for Your Pleasure, recently retired from the blogworld (something about continuing life as a grown-up), and asked to host a mix tape as his e-swan song. I didn’t want to start an international incident, so I'm giving him my page for the day. Mountjoy, throw some tunes on the barbie and get this mix tape rolling.
Okay, Coffey addicts, welcome to a special Down Under edition of the Friday Mix Tape. Beth has kindly agreed to let me mix up the tunes this week, and in doing so has given me the chance to put a compilation of home grown music from Australia and New Zealand out there for your enjoyment. Couple that with the fact that today is ANZAC Day (the down under equivalent of Memorial Day, when we celebrate our war dead) and I hope you will take this slice of Southern Hemisphere hospitality and enjoy.
I make no apologies for the bias of this collection — it is retro and fairly clichéd, but it’s also a cross-section of the music that makes me proud to be an Aussie, and at the same time sad that a lot of these acts never went on to bigger and better things. It’s a safe bet that if you aren’t from these parts of the globe, you will have missed a lot of this magic. Many of these tracks were staples heard on the radio when I was a teenager growing up in Sydney in the 1970s, and although the majority have disbanded, most still get plenty of radio airplay today.
Editor’s Note: The track listing is chronological so that you can sit back, listen, and experience Mountjoy’s life and maturation via his homeland’s turntable. I've been listening to the mix all week, and feel more worldly and aurally educated than I did a week ago. Oh, and the songs are awesome.
I’ve tried to avoid the obvious choices — so while INXS are present, you’ll hear “Burn for You” from The Swing, the album many Aussies think is their best, capturing them at their prime before they hit the big time with Listen Like Thieves and Kick. Cold Chisel’s “Khe Sanh” is my concession to public opinion — this song is the unofficial national anthem for a generation, spoiled only by over-saturation on the radio even today, some 30 years since its original release. Not all of you will find a song like “Tenterfield Saddler”— an autobiographical song, almost country & western, by the late Peter Allen (who was a master songwriter, penning Olivia Newton John’s “I Honestly Love You,” also part of the list today) — to your taste, but to hear the man who is probably best known for the flamboyant “I Go to Rio” singing so soulfully about his life story is a timeless.
Making the song choices for this list was incredibly hard; nearly every act represented here has a fistful of songs I wish I could share. The best I can do is to give you a taste, and hope maybe you’ll find your own diamonds within this grab bag. So from Johnny O’Keefe’s 1959 cover version of the Isley Brother’s “Shout,” all the way through to Powderfinger’s 2007 hit “Lost and Running,” I invite you to sit back, download, and enjoy some of the best pop and rock music Down Under has had to offer in the past half a century.
Johnny O’Keefe :: Shout
The Easybeats :: Friday on My Mind
Daddy Cool :: Eagle Rock
Billy Thorpe & The Aztecs :: Most People I Know (Think That I'm Crazy)
Peter Allen :: Tenterfield Saddler
Stevie Wright :: Evie (Part 1)
Olivia Newton John :: I Honestly Love You
Skyhooks :: Living in the 70s
Sherbet :: Howzat!
Jon English :: Hollywood Seven
Dragon :: April Sun in Cuba
Cold Chisel :: Khe Sanh
Ignatious Jones :: I’m Not Like Everybody Else
The Angels :: Marsellies
Australian Crawl :: The Boys Light Up
Mental as Anything :: Berserk Warriors
Men at Work :: Who Can It Be Now
The Church :: Almost With You
Splitz Enz :: Six Months in a Leaky Boat
The Divinyls :: Boys in Town
Midnight Oil :: Power and the Passion
INXS :: Burn for You
Mondo Rock :: Come Said the Boy
Mi-Sex :: Down the Line
Jimmy Barnes :: I’d Die to Be with You Tonight
Do-Ré-Mi :: Man Overboard
Paul Kelly :: To Her Door
The Go Betweens :: Streets of Your Town
Richard Clapton :: Deep Water
Hunters and Collectors :: Throw Your Arms Around Me
John Farnham :: That’s Freedom
Hoodoo Gurus :: 1000 Miles Away
Crowded House :: Weather with You
Noiseworks :: Hot Chilli Woman
Weddings Parties Anything :: Father’s Day
Wendy Matthews :: The Day You Went Away
Kylie Minogue :: Cowboy Style
Delta Goodrem :: In This Life
Powderfinger :: Lost and Running
It may take days to get to Australia — but you can get there aurally in a snap with this handy zip file. It extracts file counterclockwise, however.
Beth will be back to mixing tapes next week — tapes with R.E.M. tunes, no doubt.
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Labels: beloved bloggers, blog vivant, guest deejay, mix tape, Mountjoy, MP3 links are for sampling only and are disabled after two weeks, why don’t the guest deejays include R.E.M. to keep the host happy