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Sunday, 2 November 2014

The Other Side of the A-Side!

One of the things that struck me recently when putting together my All-Time Top 50 Cover Versions was that at least 9 of them were actually B-Sides! So I went on Facebook and asked my friends and in a couple of Groups (Distant Warning and The Wasting Shed) what their favourite B-Sides were. This post is a collection of their responses. (I would have added more but I just realised that I had this sitting in the draft folder for at least a week and so wanted to get it out now as I don't have a lot of time to research more at present - but I'm fairly certain that it's a theme we will return to at some point - Doug).

As is the custom when asking these types of questions you get a very wide range of answers covering many different musical genres, and that's a good thing. We are not all the same, and are not all shaped by exactly the same kind of music but the one thing that binds us is our love of music.

The B-Side has almost been lost to us in these days of CD's, There are some bands/artists who still do release 7"/12" Singles but it is quite uncommon in light of the amount of releases that are on CD - even the CD Single has kind of had it's day as more and more bands/artists release "Digital Singles" (which more often than not are just one song and no B-Side!). Of course there are some bands who still call the extra songs they record with the main song 'B-Sides' and I'm happy to use that here in this post.

So, one of the aims of this post is to reclaim a little of the memory of a time when you were playing your favourite singles and you had to get up off the couch or your bed to turn the record over if you wanted to explore the strange world that is the B-Side. I actually had a friend when I was younger that never played the B-Side of any of his thousands of records because he said he bought them because of the A-Side and the B-Side never mattered! My mate G. actually missed out on so much great music holding on to this stubborn viewpoint and nothing could sway him to turn those 7"'s of Vinyl over to dive headlong into a song or songs that often were just as good as the A-Side!

Click on the links to enjoy the music.

Sometimes when you turn that record over you are in for a surprise of your life because the B-Side is so good that it actually could have (or should have in some cases) have been the A-Side!

So here's a few suggestions from my friends:
B-Side of 'Absolute Beginners'. - Andrew Dawes and Eric Levell.
And The Jam had loads of great B-Sides.

B-Side of 'I'm On Fire' - Helen Minnes.

B-Side of '(White Man) In Hammersmith Palais' - Coxy.

B-Side of 'Honky Tonk Woman' - Stuart Crawford.

B-Side of 'Stray Cat Strut' - Steve Woodhouse.

B-Side of 'Postcard'
" 1974, the greatest band of all times released a mediocre single, written by bassist john entwistle, who wrote some superb who songs, the track was the forgettable 'postcard'.....but on the b-side was one of the all time great who songs, showcasing the band at their peak, which subsequently became an unknown classic outside of the hardcore fans of the band.....but make no mistake, its one of their finest offerings...." - Doug Matthews.

B-Side of 'Chance' - Skinny Crimmings.

B-Side of 'Mama Weer All Crazee Now'. - Ralph McPhlugg.

B-Side of 'Into The Valley' - Nigel Williamson.

Aneurysm - Nirvana.
B-Side of 'Smells Like the Teen Spirit' - Darlene Tucker.

Ten Favourites in No Particular Order.
B-Side of 'Hard Day's Night'.
B-Side of 'Freeze'.
B-Side of 'Raindown'.
B-Side of 'Now It's Gone'.
B-Side of 'Identity'.
B-Side of 'New Guitar In Town'.
B-Side of 'By Your Love'.
B-Side of 'Staring at the Rude Boys'.
B-Side of 'Eton Rifles'.
B-Side of 'Born in the USA'.

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