39 People, Places & Things….

NUMBER 4: MY FIRST ALBUM(S)

So, there is a conundrum with this one.  My first album wasn’t a singular purchase as much as it was a triple treat.  Naturally, I  had full intentions of buying just the one though deciding which one was far too difficult for the mind of an excited 15 year old so I just had to have three didn’t I?

It was just after Christmas in 1992 and I’d only recently discovered the music of David Bowie.  So, as you do, or should I say did in the early 90’s, I pestered my dad to take me to a record store (a fucking huge one at that) in the city to buy my very first album on cassette tape. The choice was difficult so my dad helped me out with a few dollars so I could buy second hand copies of CHANGESONEBOWIE, Scary Monsters (and super creeps) along with Let’s Dance.  I guess you would argue that Scary Monsters was the bridge between Bowie’s classic era (1970’s) and the beginning of what was then known by many as his critical descent into the abyss aka, the 1980’s.  Ohh, I only paid about $23 all up for these three cassettes.  Seems a lot these days in the age of downloads however, back in 1992, it was seen as somewhat of a decent purchase.

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Everyone’s favorite Bowie compilation

I know, I know. How could Bowie ever have been on the nose with music fans?  Well, in the early 90’s he was well and truly on his way out for many.  After Tonight, Never Let Me Down and Tin Machine, it seemed he had lost his way and was never going to return to former glories.  How wrong were we?

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Edward Bell’s beautiful sleeve design for a most desirable album

If I am being honest, I loved Scary Monsters out of the trilogy of cassette’s I’d purchased.  Teenage Wildlife was then and still is a favorite track of mine.  Even today, listening to this album is like a new experience with each and every play.  I’m still discovering layers that I had previously not discovered.  I wonder if Taylor Swift’s “1989” LP could deliver the same intensity for today’s music lovers?  I most definitely think not.

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Phil Collins’ biggest album?  Not yet my friend….

Then we have the album Bowie fans love to adore or love to hate.  Some of his older campaigners feel Let’s Dance was where it all went wrong.  Personally, I feel the follow up, Tonight was where he fell away.  For the first time in his life he’d tried to follow the record label concept of more of the same.   You know right?  Like Adele.  Album after fucking album of utter dross.  But the people still buy it because they are unable to think for themselves so Adele all the way hey?  Anyway, Let’s Dance is a boss pop album and will always keep me swaying.

These three albums, well, masterpieces in their own right kept me going for weeks if not months.  If you have not heard them before, perhaps now is the time you got off your sorry ass, turned on your laptop and downloaded some classic albums.  No, not Adele’s debut album nor her follow up.  I’m going to leave you now and play Scary Monsters because simply writing about it is not enough.

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