I’d like to talk today about the Grandaddy of ‘Superstar DJs’, Sir Terry Wogan. Cheery of demeanour, Irish of birth, rambling of delivery, seriously middle-of-the-road of musical taste.
And – born on exactly the same day as my Mam. So we always know that when she has a birthday, Sir Terry is having exactly the same birthday. Except that he’s probably having his at his chateaux in France, not at his terraced house in Sunderland. Just to be clear, Terry doesn’t have a terraced house in Sunderland, he may or may not still have all of those forests though.
The reason why I have adopted Sir Terry’s own rambling style myself today should become apparent later, when we discuss today’s cassette, Sweetmouth’s ‘Goodbye to songtown’.
Not so much a supergroup, but more of a super-duo, Sweetmouth were the hugely talented songwriter and former member of Fairground Attraction, Mark E Nevin, and the wonderfully voiced brother of Bap and future backing singer of Van, Brian Kennedy.
‘Goodbye to songtown’ finds these two collaborating on an album of extremely high quality, which nonetheless dips its toes ever so slightly into Sir Terry’s musical territory somewhere around the middle.
Side 1 is scorching (in a very restrained way) with the stand-outs being ‘Forgiveness’, ‘I know why the willow weeps’ and the touching ‘Home to heartache’, which mines a similar seam to Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes’ ‘I don’t want to go home’ with similar disturbing effect.
Side 2, with the exception of the single ‘Fear is the enemy of love’, is where it all goes just a little bit too Wogan, because if your music is pleasant and unchallenging (and this is, in the nicest possible way), Terry’ll love you. If you’re Irish too, as Brian is, Terry’ll love you even more. This may also explain Terry’s otherwise inexplicable adoration of Imelda May.
In conclusion, a very ‘nice’ album to listen to every once in a while, and well worth the 49p that I paid for it.
Label – RCA.
Year - 1991