Oph & Mike’s Lost Radio Scripts! – The Mid Sixties!

These were a few notes for a series of radio shows that Mike and me put together!! We called ourselves SHYTE!!

Radio Shows

The Oph and Mike Karma Sutra of Sound

We look at Rock music from different positions

Programme 9 – Mid 60s British consolidation & songwriting development

We’re Opher and Mike and together we’re SHYTE!!!!

Around the mid-60s Britain still ruled the planet. The States had made a few forays with Bob Dylan, the Byrds and a bit of Surf music from the Beach Boys, but it was the long-haired English bands that set the pace, called the tunes and defined the fashion.

They’d moved on from covering Blues, R&B and R&R to writing their own songs. This was the transition phase between British Beat and the start of the 60s Underground.

The Yardbirds had started as an R&B Blues cover band. Though they put their own style on it, speeded it up and built up to freak out crescendos – a brilliant exciting live band. They’d backed Sonny Boy Williamson on tour, recorded Bo Diddley, Chuck Berry, Howlin’ Wolf and Muddy Waters songs and then moved on.

The mid sixties saw the exit of Eric Clapton and the entrance of a brilliant innovative guitarist, fresh from the Tridents, Jeff Beck.

Beck brought a new edge to the band. His playing was loud, raw and exciting and it was different and distinctive

Yardbirds – Over under sideways down

The who had started out doing Slim Harpo covers – got love if you want it. Their management made them into a Mod band. Mods and Rockers were all the thing in the mid-60s. With fights on Brighton beach and rallies on old LD Scooters in Parkas.

Mods wore their hair layered, smart Italian suits and Parkas with fur trim. They rode around on scooters with loads of headlights, dangly bits, aerials and Mod girls draped on the back all trying to look like Twiggy.

Rockers wore greasy leather jackets, motorcycle boots and jeans and rode big Triumphs or BSAs.

At one end of my town was a Mod café – they played Ska and Beat and dropped purple hearts – amphetamines.

At the other end was a rockers café. They listened to loud Rock n Roll.

The Who developed their Mod Art with roundels and union jack jackets and a wild act representing the rebellion of the time. They had the best live act of all with their mad drumming from Keith Moon, Their guitar gymnastics from Pete Townsend, microphone mayhem from Roger Daltrey, held together by John Entwhistles revolutionary bass playing. They finished it off by wrecking their instruments in a final act of mayhem and feedback.

Glorious.

Who – My generation

The Smallfaces were the other big Mod band fronted by Steve Marriott. They too started out with R&B covers but by the mid-60s were doing weirder stuff. I never quite got into the strange cockney type stuff. Sounded a bit to Chas and Dave for my liking but stuff like Itchycoo park was in another league.

Smallfaces – Itchycoo park

The Pretty Things were always too far out. Phil May always had the longest hair. They moved into songwriting in a big way and arguably wrote the first Rock Opera with SF Sorrow.

By the mid-sixties they were treading a very alternative path.

Prettythings – LSD

The Beatles were never a band to be left behind. They remained at the forefront of things right up to their break up in 1970.

Every single release seemed to take them to a new level and a new direction. By the mid 60s they were ploughing some weird and wonderful stuff on albums such as Rubber Soul and Revolver.  Tomorrow never knows came out of an LSD experience with Peter Fonda and the Tibetan Book of the Dead.

Beatles – Tomorrow never knows

The Stones didn’t stand still either. Their best years were ahead of them but the mid-60s was fertile ground for them, churning out some classic songs such as ‘have you seen your mother, baby standing in the shadows’, 19th Nervous breakdown, Ruby Tuesday, Let’s spend the night together, Last time. They held their position as the bad boys.

Rolling Stones – 19th Nervous breakdown        

The Downliners Sect sadly never hit the heights the promise of their brilliant debut album indicated. They released a couple more albums, trying to jump on the Country trend and then Rock trend without great success.

He was a square was quite fun. I used to play it a lot.

Downliners Sect – He was a square

It was in the mid 60s that Ray Davies really came into his own as a songwriter. He specialized in quiet English songs of precise social observation as you get on Well Respected Man or Dedicated Follower of Fashion. The 60sc were littered with his brilliant songs – Waterloo Sunset, Days, Lola, See my friend etc, etc.

Kinks – Well Respected man

The Animals were most prolific and successful with a string of hits but never seemed to develop too much and remained a bit commercial. None the less they produced some great tracks before splitting up and Eric Burden going off to form the more progressive New Animals.

Animals – Don’t bring me down

There were a few new British bands that started up. The Zombies were one. Not really a Beat group. They went on to produce a brilliant final album in the late 60s -Odessey and Oracle – before splitting.

Zombies – She’s not there

Amen Corner, featuring Andy Fairweather-Lowe, were another new addition. Andy went on to feature in many other projects in the future.

Amen Corner – If Paradise was half as nice

The Searchers managed to hang on for a while. They were a big influence on the guitar sound of the Byrds. They did some topical stuff with Jackie De Shannon numbers.

Searchers – What have they done to the rain

The end of this interim period is very confused but it gave way to the British Underground proper with its Blues Bands, Psychedelia, Folkrock, and Progressive Rock.

By the end of 1966 the underground was beginning to build ready for the great summer of love in 1967.

A band that heralded this transition was Jimi Hendrix. They exploded on the scene and propelled everything forward.

Jimi Hendrix – Hey Joe

Suddenly we had Pink Floyd, Fleetwood Mac, Cream, Jethro Tull, Taste,  Incredible String Band, Traffic, Family, Arthur Brown, Edgar Broughton, Fairport Convention, Strawbs, Social Deviants, Chicken Shack, John Mayall and a whole new Ball Game. But that’s another story.

Lazy Lester in a rare gig in London – photos

Lazy Lester produced great Swamp Blues numbers such as ‘I’m A Lover Not a Fighter’. I first him back in the mid-sixties. He was covered by bands like The Kinks and appeared on a compilation album of Swamp Blues. I loved that album – Lighnin’ Slim, Slim Harpo, Lonesome Sundown and Lazy Lester.

So when I heard he was playing a very rare gig I had to go. I gatecrashed a photo session and took a series of shots with him sitting on a sofa. Then I took other shots during the gig.

Fantastic!!

The Kinks – Well Respected Man – lyrics and rebellion in the sixties.

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When I was fourteen I started going through a phase. Actually I’m still in it – but I’m sure I’ll come out of it soon.

I had a little bit of a rebellion going on. It brought me into conflict with my school, parents and society in general. The only people I wasn’t in conflict with were a few of my mates who thought like me. I did not want to go down that path that everybody seemed to want me to go down. The thought of a career, family and a life in suburbia, mowing the grass, washing the car and cutting the Sunday roast looking like a nightmare to me – death by boredom.

I wanted a life on the road – Strolling Down the Highway – as Bert Jansch so eloquently put it. Of course I was a little romantic and idealistic back then. So I haven’t changed that much.

My life seemed to develop into one long round of – Turn that down! Get your hair cut! You can’t wear that! Do some homework! You can’t keep going out! and What about your future? You have to think ahead!

I didn’t want to think ahead. I didn’t want to do homework or worry about exams, careers or reality. I wanted to grow my hair, listen to loud music, wear my own style, chat up the girls, hang out with my mates, go to parties, concerts and get drunk.

I think my life plan was to drop out and bum around the world.

As I say – I wasn’t very pragmatic. I had not experienced too much and this was before Kerouac and Roy Harper came into my life!

One of my favourite bands was the Kinks. Ray Davies wrote a few songs that I could totally relate to. He seemed to have a knack of putting words to the things I was feeling all pent up about.

Back then I was looking at my old man and his life and it did not seem much of a life. He got up at six thirty, caught the train to London, worked in a high stress job, got home at six thirty, ate his tea, read the newspapers, watched a little light entertainment and went to bed – six days a week. Sunday was mowing, washing and carving. Occasionally he had a pint at the pub. He did not seem to have time for friends, hobbies or interests.

I promised I would never be like that.

So when Ray spoke of a well respected man I could not help making comparisons. Except we didn’t have maids to pull or councillors coming round for tea. It was the routine and hypocrisy that I railed against.

I would sit in my bedroom, put the single on the turntable, lift the arm and play it endlessly.

I did not like the society it described. I wanted something real, something alive, something with creativity and passion.

I didn’t know what it was – but I wanted it.

I wanted some excitement!! I wanted sex, drugs and Rock ‘n’ Roll.

Well Respected Man – Ray Davies

‘Cause he gets up in the morning and he goes to work at nine
And he comes back home at five-thirty, gets the same train every time
‘Cause his world is built ’round punctuality, it never fails

And he’s oh, so good, and he’s oh, so fine
And he’s oh, so healthy in his body and his mind
He’s a well respected man about town
Doing the best things so conservatively

And his mother goes to meetings while his father pulls the maid
And she stirs the tea with councilors while discussing foreign trade
And she passes looks, as well as bills at every suave young man

And he’s oh, so good, and he’s oh, so fine
And he’s oh, so healthy in his body and his mind
He’s a well respected man about town
Doing the best things so conservatively

And he likes his own backyard and he likes his fags the best
‘Cause he’s better than the rest and his own sweat smells the best
And he hopes to grab his father’s loot, when pater passes on

‘Cause he’s oh, so good, and he’s oh, so fine
And he’s oh, so healthy in his body and his mind
He’s a well respected man about town
Doing the best things so conservatively

And he plays at stocks and shares, and he goes to the Regatta
He adores the girl next door ’cause he’s dying to get at her
But his mother knows the best about the matrimonial stakes

‘Cause he’s oh, so good, and he’s oh, so fine
And he’s oh, so healthy in his body and his mind
He’s a well respected man about town
Doing the best things so conservatively

Read more: Kinks – A Well Respected Man Lyrics | MetroLyrics

I’m Not Like Everybody Else – Ray Davies and the Kinks – Lyrics and how they impacted.

When I were a young lad I used to play this non-stop. I would sit in my bedroom with my Dansette record player with the arm raise so that it played on repeat. If memory serves it was the B-side of Sunny Afternoon.

I was about fourteen/fifteen and was nuts about Rock Music (still am). This was way back in 1964/5. Very exciting times. The Beatles, Stones, Who, Downliners Sect, Prettythings, Yardbirds and Smallfaces were storming my head. Every week seemed to throw up a new bit of magic. It was as if something had been unleashed and all that pent up creativity was pouring out into music. This was our stuff. Music for my generation.

This was the era of ‘TURN THAT RACKET DOWN!’. As my Mum and Dad repeatedly shouted to me.

I was particularly fond of the Kinks because of the lyrics. This number summed up exactly how I felt. I did not fit in. I was a million miles away from my parents world and not in tune with my mates at school.

I was shortly to discover Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, Bob Dylan and Woody Guthrie and find that there were other people I could relate to.

For then – this was my song. I still love it.

“I’m Not Like Everybody Else”

 

I won’t take all that they hand me down,
And make out a smile, though I wear a frown,
And I won’t take it all lying down,
‘Cause once I get started I go to town.’Cause I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else.

And I don’t want to ball about like everybody else,
And I don’t want to live my life like everybody else,
And I won’t say that I feel fine like everybody else,
‘Cause I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else.

But darling, you know that I love you true,
Do anything that you want me to,
Confess all my sins like you want me to,
There’s one thing that I will say to you,
I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else.

I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else
And I don’t want to ball about like everybody else,
And I don’t want to live my life like everybody else,
And I won’t say that I feel fine like everybody else,
‘Cause I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else.

Like everybody else,
Like everybody else,
Like everybody else,
Like everybody else.

If you all want me to settle down,
Slow up and stop all my running ’round,
Do everything like you want me to,
There’s one thing that I will say to you,
I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else.

I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else.
And I don’t want to ball about like everybody else,
And I don’t want to live my life like everybody else,
And I won’t say that I feel fine like everybody else,
‘Cause I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else.

Like everybody else (like everybody else),
Like everybody else (like everybody else),
Like everybody else (like everybody else),
Like everybody else.

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Kinks – I’m not like everybody else – my theme tune! Lyrics about individuality.

I played this endlessly when I was fifteen. It seemed to sum up exactly how I felt about myself. I was an individual. I wasn’t like anybody else. I did not fit into the usual pigeonholes. I stood out. I didn’t want to fit in.

Make your own rules!

I’m Not Like Everybody else

I won’t take all that they hand me down
Make out a smile, though I wear a frown
And I’m not gonna take it all lying down
‘Cause once I get started, I go to town

‘Cause I’m not like everybody else
I’m not like everybody else
I’m not like everybody else
I’m not like everybody else

And I don’t want to ball about like everybody else
And I don’t want to live my life like everybody else
And I won’t say that I feel fine like everybody else
‘Cause I’m not like everybody else
I’m not like everybody else

But darling, you know that I love you true
Do anything that you want me to
Confess all my sins like you want me to
There’s one thing that I will say to you

I’m not like everybody else
I’m not like everybody else
I’m not like everybody else
I’m not like everybody else

And I don’t want to ball about like everybody else
And I don’t want to live my life like everybody else
And I won’t say that I feel fine like everybody else
‘Cause I’m not like everybody else
I’m not like everybody else

Like everybody else
Like everybody else
Like everybody else
Like everybody else

If you all want me to settle down
Then slow up and stop all my running ’round
Do everything like you want me to
There’s one thing that I will say to you

I’m not like everybody else
I’m not like everybody else
I’m not like everybody else
I’m not like everybody else

And I don’t want to ball about like everybody else
And I don’t want to live my life like everybody else
And I don’t want to stay fine like everybody else
‘Cause I’m not like everybody else
I’m not like everybody else

Like everybody else
(Like everybody else)
Like everybody else
(Like everybody else)

Like everybody else
(Like everybody else)
Like everybody else

Songwriters
DAVIES, RAYMOND DOUGLAS

Read more: Kinks – I’m Not Like Everybody Else Lyrics | MetroLyrics

Rock Music Genres – The British Blues Beat Groups of the early 60s – The Rolling Stones, Yardbirds, Them, Pretty Things, Downliners Sect and Animals.

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The British Beat Group Blues boom – 1964

Hard on the heels of Merseybeat came the first British Blues boom in the form of the sixties beat groups. They were led by the Rolling Stones but closely followed by the Animals, Pretty Things, Yardbirds, Downliners Sect, Manfred Mann, Bo St Runners, Kinks and Them.

The real pioneers of this Blues boom were Alexis Korner’s Blues Incorporated, Graham Bond and Zoot Money. But, while being seminal, they did not receive the commercial success of their compatriots.

The blues set, of which I was one, were a little snooty when it came to the blues. We saw it as superior to the Pop and Rock of the day. It seemed raw, earthy and authentic, not produced as a product by the record companies. This was genuine music from the heart, or at least the genitals. It spoke of real life and not soppy love, and teenage crap. You could wander about looking incredible serious and intellectual clutching your Sleepy John Estes and Elmore James albums. It was all very cliquey. And this was precisely how many of these bands came together. They were passionate aficionados. To us blues wasn’t just a music form; it was a crusade. We loved it and we loved those old black guys from the depths of Mississippi, Texas and Louisiana. It was an exclusive club.

In the Art Colleges all over the country various passionate blues musicians got together to swap their precious collections of coveted albums, learn licks, exchange tales and learn how to imitate their idols. They didn’t do it quite the same. They speeded it up a bit, added a bit of a rave up, but in general were remarkably true to the music of their heroes. They might have wanted to make the big time but it was more important to be true to the music, do it justice and win the respect of your fellow musicians. In the process it created a great club scene and a lot of followers. The blues was cool.

From the Deep South of the Thames Delta we had the Rolling Stones and Yardbirds fighting it out for supremacy in Richmond and the Kinks and Pretty Things battling with the Downliners Sect. From the swamps and levees of Newcastle we had the Animals and from the plantations of Ireland we had Them. Almost overnight the blues was the biggest thing going and the kids were all dancing to the music of black southern America.

The catalogues of Howlin’ Wolf, Muddy Waters, Jimmy Reed, Robert Johnson, Bo Diddley, Chuck Berry and John Lee Hooker were plundered.

The Stones nearly hit with their first single – a cover of Chuck Berry’s ‘Come On’ and then had theit first top ten hit with a song given to them by the Beatles. After that it was all systems go. They actually got to number one with an extremely authentic version of Howlin’ Wolf’s ‘Little Red Rooster’. Their first two albums were stuffed with blues covers. Likewise the Kinks first album was full of Swamp Blues. Them hit the charts with ‘Baby Please Don’t Go’. There were covers of ‘Dimples’, ‘Got My Mojo Working’, ‘I’m a Lover not a Fighter’, ‘Got Love if You Want It’, ‘Good Morning Little Schoolgirl’, ‘Hoochie Coochie Man’, ‘I Just Want to Make Love to You’, ‘I Ain’t Got You’, ‘Cadillac’, ‘Honest I Do’, ‘I’m a Man’, ‘I’m Mad Again’, ‘I Wish You Would’, ‘Smokestack Lightnin’’, Mona (I Need You Baby)’, ‘Too Much Monkey Business’, ‘Around and Round’, ‘Bo Diddley’, ‘You Can’t Judge a Book’, ‘You Can’t Catch Me’, ‘Boom Boom’, and a dozen more. The blues was selling to white kids. They were in the playground discussing blues harp, slide guitar and square guitars. The exclusive club had opened right up.

This in turn paved the way for the blues guys to come back over from America. Middle-aged blues guys like Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Sonny Boy Williamson and John Lee Hooker received rapturous receptions from young white kids while mini-skirted white girls danced to their rhythm. They must have been amaqzed. It was a million miles away from the sweaty Chicago clubs.

The Press had a field day. They pitted the long-haired, scruffy blues bands against the smart suited Mersey bands. There were the lovable mop-tops and the obscene and dangerous Stones who you wouldn’t want your daughter going within a hundred miles of. It was great fun and of course the Stones manager – Andrew Loog Oldham – lapped it up and fed it for all it was worth.

What it did to the music was to bring a harder edge to the sound. It was not so Poppy and over-produced. There was a rough, raw edge to it. This was not commercial pop; this was unrefined blues – and it rocked! The excitement and energy was right there in your face!

The first band I ever saw live were the British Birds with Ron Wood on guitar. The second band I caught was Them when ‘Baby Please Don’t Go’ was riding high in the charts. I was in my element.

Of course it couldn’t last. The blues bands were quickly joined by the Mod bands and soon everyone was writing their own material. It all became more ‘original’ sounding and the blues became only one component.

You can see it with the Stones – the first two albums were heavily Blues and then the music changed. Likewise with the Downliners Sect – one superb blues album and then into country. The Kinks – one Swamp Blues album and then their own distinctive sound. The blues phase moved on and burnt itself out. After 1964 the British Blues Beat Bands changed their sound.

The irony was that, on the back of the Beatles and Merseybeat, the British Beat groups exported blues back to America. The Rolling Stones, Animals and Yardbirds got the American white kids dancing to black American blues. The real thing might have been playing on their doorsteps and they had never heard it. They went for the sound of the British Beat groups with a vengeance. The blues invaded America.

I’m not like Everybody Else – the Kinks – meaningful lyrics

kinks
As a fourteen year old I sat on the bed in my bedroom endlessly playing this song. It seemed to sum up how I felt about myself. I didn’t seem to fit in. I didn’t like the mainstream stuff.
One you’ve accepted that you’re an outsider you begin to look at things objectively.
I looked at the life my parents led and it seemed shallow.
I looked at the career path laid out for me and it seemed dreary.
I looked at the world I lived in and it seemed drab.
I yearned for something with more meaning, purpose and bigger horizons. I was after more colour. The post-war society of Britain seemed black and white and all veneer. I wanted depth and colour.
Ray Davies was one of the first singer-songwriters to say things. He connected with me.
This was around the time I discovered Dylan.
My life has never been the same.

“I’m Not Like Everybody Else”

I won’t take all that they hand me down,
And make out a smile, though I wear a frown,
And I won’t take it all lying down,
‘Cause once I get started I go to town.

‘Cause I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else.

And I don’t want to ball about like everybody else,
And I don’t want to live my life like everybody else,
And I won’t say that I feel fine like everybody else,
‘Cause I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else.

But darling, you know that I love you true,
Do anything that you want me to,
Confess all my sins like you want me to,
There’s one thing that I will say to you,
I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else.

I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else
And I don’t want to ball about like everybody else,
And I don’t want to live my life like everybody else,
And I won’t say that I feel fine like everybody else,
‘Cause I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else.

Like everybody else,
Like everybody else,
Like everybody else,
Like everybody else.

If you all want me to settle down,
Slow up and stop all my running ’round,
Do everything like you want me to,
There’s one thing that I will say to you,
I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else.

I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else.
And I don’t want to ball about like everybody else,
And I don’t want to live my life like everybody else,
And I won’t say that I feel fine like everybody else,
‘Cause I’m not like everybody else,
I’m not like everybody else.

Like everybody else (like everybody else),
Like everybody else (like everybody else),
Like everybody else (like everybody else),
Like everybody else.