Monday, July 28, 2008

A Day in the Life of a Wannabe Beach Bum

Today is one of those days when I look at the weather and think I should be on a beach somewhere.

Instead, I am having a chipped tooth fixed at the dentist, attending a lunch with American journalists and working in a very hot basement office in Westminster with no sunlight. Still, later on I am going to the premiere of CASS, a film about West Ham football hooligans and later, at 11pm I shall be on Radio 5 for a couple of hours, during which time I shall be explaining why Abba were better than the Beatles. It's an odd life, isn't it?


Chris Paul said...

Southwold is very nice at this time of year. Still no sign of the foul weather predicted by some ironic souls.

@molesworth_1 said...

Let's just get this straight, ABBA were not better than The Beatles. ABBA were not even as good as The Wombles.

Anonymous said...

ABBA were great. But better than the Beatles? No way.

Abba tracks are great nostalgia, Beatles tracks are timeless. The number of instrumental covers of Beatles tracks, suggest that their music will endure like the classical composers of previous centuries.

Anonymous said...

The only odd thing about it Iain is the remarkable and unsustainable assertion that ABBA were better than the Beatles.

Anonymous said...

Iain, some of the most turbulent political events in decades and MSM is really showing the bloggers up.

The broadsheets are packed with riveting articles and the blogs are packed full of nonsense.

Iain Dale said...

Anonymous, Well, sometimes you can write too much about a single subjct. I just did a post on Brown. Should I be doing 5 a day? Sometimes you need to add a light post.

Anonymous said...

Abba were better than the Beatles


Abba were third division, along with the likes of Boney M and the Carpenters. First division: Beatles, Pink Floyd, Led Zep and Stones. But the greatest of all were Cream.

Anonymous said...

That's blasphemy, saying Abba are better than the Beatles!

Anonymous said...

This is a petty quibble, but why is there always 'Iain Dale' under each title? It's not as if you have guest posters.

For variety, why not try 'By Me', 'Him' or 'Who Would You Expect to Be Writing Something Called Iain Dale's Diary, Pepys Maybe?'

Chris, how do you do it? Just lifted this off the Beeb:

"...heavy rain will then move across Wales, the Midlands and southern counties of England tonight. Torrential downpours are possible bringing the risk of localised flooding Further updates will appear here.´"

BTW Chris, please advise: Newmarket - 7.45 - Snoqualmie Boy 7-2 favourite. Worth £20 to win?

Anonymous said...

Reply to anonymous at 11.30

It also has a lot to do with the fact the MSM, particularly the press, will happily publish any old rubbish they come across. In reality no one has a fucking clue what is going to happen with Gordon Brown; all the analysis you read is little more than wild speculation.

Bloggers, unlike the press, have a reputation to protect; their reputation is the only reason you keep reading. When was the last time you heard of a paper losing circulation for publishing bollocks? If anything a willingness to publish rubbish helps them sell papers.

Anonymous said...

Not another media outlet for a hoolie tosser to say "look how hard I was".

Can we expect a gushing zeitgeisty review tomorrow?

Anonymous said...

Abba better than the Beatles? Outrageous!

We seem to have a music theme going today. Thank God. I thought you were going to mention Joey Barton.

I am happy to come out and say that I think Abba and The Beatles are certainly on a par. There is, one crucial difference. And it is a difference, not in quality but in antecedence. With Abba there is what you might call a broader intertextuality, like the patina on an old piece of furniture. The Beatles drew their influence, quite narrow influence, from across the Atlantic; Buddy Holly, Little Richard, Chuck Berry and a host of beat-up blues guys. They were shamelessly copying American artists at the beginning. But it was by their own account, a slavish copy.

There was I suppose a superficial nod to their roots, but "The Liverpool Sound" was nothing more than a marketing ploy and a propensity to sound a bit fab, a bit "gear", when they were singing. They progressed, and boy, did they progreass, but in the end, they were still essentially writing and performing free standing pop songs that were universal in content and style. Anyone could have written them, anytime, with luck.

Now Abba; ask Bjorn and Benny. They have referred to Swedish folk music as their inspiration. Benny Andersson is steeped in it from early life and generations of folk musicians. Even now, they are involved in projects associated with the trad Swedish folk scene, and they admit to using melodic structures inspired by tradition. In 1995 the ambitious Kristina från Duvemåla was premiered, a musical full of Scandinavian pastorale themes. There is a timeline and a style line.

The point I am trying to make is that the emergence of Abba is an organic one, born out of Swedish cultural identity hitting Western pop at the crossroads. Abba is synthesis. They actually created something new. The Beatles are clever imitators of a hundred genres.

Dick the Prick said...

They've got a point - ABBA better than the Beatles!?!? That's just provocative.

One of the funniets things was when someone asked a chum's daughter who her favourite member of Westlife was and her uncle cut in and said 'the first one who dies?' Hee hee.

Get an assistant Iain - few SPads will be looking round.

Bill Quango MP said...

I shall be explaining why Abba were better than the Beatles. It's an odd life, isn't it?

If that were true it would be a very odd life indeed.

Paul Linford said...

Anonymous 11.30

Iain doesn't need me to spring to his defence...but politics isn't everything, you know. The essence of blogging is writing about whatever moves you, not necessarily what is "newsworthy" or "significant." I have just written a post on my blog about my one-year-old daughter's dedication party. I found that considerably more interesting than the endless speculation about the fate of Mr Gordon Brown.

Jay said...

I haven't heard of a dedication party - what is it?