1975. A bit of a nothing year on the whole and honestly, choosing the music for this playlist was tough. I just about got up to 25 songs which is some achievement.
I even resorted to looking at the Wikipedia entry for the year to see if it was as blank a year as I recall. It wasn’t obviously with the tail end of Watergate and the Vietnam War, Cambodia, Franco’s death and Jimmy Hoffa becoming part of a freeway flyover.
It was also the year that Elton John appeared on US show ‘Soul Train‘ with ‘Philadelphia Freedom’ and there are some fascinating tales contained in the Soul Train History Book. David Bowie would follow him in November with ‘Golden Years’ and ‘Fame’.
Life went on as normal for us mortals. I was given my first Subbuteo set that Christmas, an event remembered as I walked onto the bus after swimming to find my mum sitting there with the big box barely concealed in a carrier bag from the local toy shop – The Doll’s Hospital I seem to recall as they did repairs as well as selling new toys.
That was the time when you either played Subbuteo or Striker.
Subbuteo had the longevity, generations before us had played it and some years later, my dad found his old set from the 1950s in the loft, complete with metal clips to hold the cloth pitch in place on the table.
The players’ base was the shape we were all familiar with but instead of the figures being plastic, they were metal.
And very thin. Whilst ours suffered the ignominious death of being crunched underfoot, I should imagine those metallic ones often warped beyond recognition.
It’s easy to dismiss Striker but it morphed into “Super Striker” where the “Goalkeepers actually dive for the ball” with the photos on the front cover to prove it and from memory the dive was as slow as the photos on the box made it look. The only reason saves were made was due to the ball being bigger than the goalkeepers head.
Subbuteo was so ingrained in the psyche of youth that The Undertones referenced it in My Perfect Cousin. The back cover had the player’s legs broken in a scene familiar to millions.
It was also a serious business. There were Subbuteo World Cup’s and indeed, we had a Subbuteo league for a while, complete with tape measures to resolve disputes over whose player was closest. And as it became more popular, grandstands and floodlights would be added, as well as eventually astroturf pitches.
One such match was the first time I heard ‘Autobahn’ in 1978, I think. And fair play to his older brother whose record it was, a cassette copy of the album was duly brought into school for me the following day when I commented on how good the album was.
So to this week’s playlist, which is as usual the stuff I was listening to as well those my older self would put me in the direction of were I given the chance.
If the playlist doesn’t work, you can open it in your browser here.
|Dr. Feelgood||She Does It Right|
|Elton John||Philadelphia Freedom|
|The Stylistics||Can’t Give You Anything But My Love|
|The Jackson 5||Call Of The Wild|
|Funkadelic||Good To Your Earhole|
|Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes||Wake Up Everybody|
|The Tymes||You Little Trustmaker|
|The Who||Squeeze Box|
|Bruce Springsteen||Born to Run|
|Steve Harley, Cockney Rebel||Make Me Smile (Come up and See Me)|
|Sweet||Fox On The Run|
|The Glitter Band||The Tears I Cried|
|Burning Spear||Marcus Garvey|
|Roxy Music||Love Is the Drug|
|David Bowie||Young Americans|
|Grateful Dead||Franklin’s Tower|
|The Sensational Alex Harvey Band||Soul In Chains|
|Humble Pie||We Can Work It Out|
|Hot Chocolate||Call The Police|
|Barry White||What Am I Gonna Do With You|
|The Chi-Lites||Living In The Footsteps Of Another Man|
|Patti Smith||Gloria – Remastered|
|Bob Dylan||Tangled up in Blue|