Sunday, January 25, 2009


The Rok label released a lot of rather ordinary knee-deep in mod/pub rock style singles. This is of interest to me as I used to work with one of the Debutantes backing singers in Readings record shop in Clapham Junction in the early 1980's. Her name was Valerie Shatwell (I'm not making this up) and I had a crush on her. My affection for her was never revealed though I imagine she was aware of it as I took her to see the Teardrop Explodes at Hammersmith Apollo (it wasn't called that then). Not long after being caught up in the Brixton riots, she lived in Railton Road and had her flat window smashed, she returned to her homeland, Scotland. I pined for her for a few weeks and then the resilience of youth returned me to my senses. She was 23 and I was 18 and it would never have worked. But whenever I play her single, an unremarkable effort, I think back to my hopeless crush and a sliver of nostalgia pierces my hardened heart.


The legendary Ed Ball had a hand in the Reflection AOB single. The seller had originally placed a wildly optimistic starting price of £199. Months went by and ebay remained shy of free-spending idiots so it was come all at a greatly reduced starting bid. Mod revival fans queued up and it sold for a sensible £48.


Seller requires information. Wants to know how much the English McCoy single is worth. My response, "name your price, I'll see if I can match it." Too late. The seller put it on ebay and offers flooded in. The seller yanked it off ebay and despatched it to Japan pocketing £237 thereby depriving the indie community of a ferocious bidding war. Nobody had a chance to place an opening bid. An instant £237 is good but a patient £300 is far better.


1 Fallover 24 : Pessimistic Man
2 Sema 4 : Capital City
3 Ember Days : Plaza
4 Evening Outs : Channel
5 Ninotchka : I've Got Wings
6 Whips : Nationwide
7 Pains Of Being Pure At Heart : Everything With You
8 One Happy Island : Earth's Circumference
9 Friends Ahoi : Grandstand Girls
10 Miracle Mile : Breaking Down The Barriers
11 Danny Boys : Days Of The Week
12 Now : Development Corporations
13 World Of Pooh : Stones Of Judgement
14 Groove Farm : Baby Blue Marine
15 Elephant Noise : Halloween Day
16 Whips : Walking In Circles
17 Ruth Ellis Swing Band : The Antichrist Of Love And Hate
18 White Heat : Nervous Breakdown
19 Northern Portrait : Crazy
20 Suntime Glorious : Sexual Health

Green numbers indicate new entries.