Thursday, November 22, 2007

What I don't want for Christmas...

Yes, I'm watching a lot of daytime TV right now. On This Morning this morning (ah, I see what they've done there) some young chap was giving Fern and Phil a lot of suggestions for Christmas presents they should be buying, mainly consisting of 'personalised' items such as pillows and pop art and chopping boards, all of which appeared to be emblazoned with pictures of Fern's children and dogs or monogrammed 'PS'. I'm sure even the usual This Morning demograph would have looked at all this nonsense and realised it was a lot of overpriced shit.

Then there's John Barrowman. Now, John Barrowman as Captain Jack I love. But John Barrowman the air-brushed, pitch-shifted, all-round entertainer, Lloyd Webber search for a singer with a tight perm panelist and, as described today on Loose Women, "top TV man and now music master" I'd shoot with a big smile on my face, safe in the knowledge that I wasn't committing murder but carrying out a public service. I keep seeing the low-budget advert for JB's new album Another Side. I can only assume that the other side in question is John's back side, as not only does the tracklisting stink, the snippets of John's silky smooth West End stylee balladeer efforts displayed on the ad are akin to the outpourings of several thousand ripped open intestines. What a world already brimming with the bowel movements of the bad music brigade doesn't need is yet another CD full of cover versions of Your So Vain, All By Myself and If You Leave Me Now dumped on it. Here's more dross that begs the question - who buys this rubbish? I'd hope that common sense would prevail and the answer would come back nobody, but even I know that several thousand units will shift. A quick glance at Amazon provides some hints and tips and general merriment at the target audience's expense: "this CD is not only timeless and beautifully performed but the chosen tracks have meaning not only to the man himself but to my own heart which comes across in the recording" writes Mrs A McNeilly, suggesting that JB's powers also extend to psychic readings of people's hearts. "Before yesterday I had not heard John Barrowman sing, or indeed knew he sang," writes Mrs L Piper, with no hint of irony or malice, and, as well as enjoying John's grooves, even adds some insight into her own exciting life, "Its brilliant, I usually like rock (favourite Meatloaf) or songs from 30 or more years ago...". "...if you're like me, you'll lap up anything he does regardless," says Haecce Ity, creating the impression that she has cat-like tendencies. IR Scott comes up with a controversial view: "This CD is very enjoyable although, for me, the material is not as good as the performances," although I'm not sure I can fathom how you can compare what someone's singing to how they sing it, nor detach the singer from the song in this way. But I'm tired, so perhaps this makes perfect sense to those without a one week old son. Sarah Bailey has taken Your So Vain to heart and takes a self congratulatory approach: "best wishes for the future sarah bailey xxx" Finally, I especially like Kirsten Weissenberg's claims for the life-changing effects that JB's toons can have on a listener: "If I was not a fan up until now (which I totally am) I would be now. Long may this beautiful music continue!!!" I say to Kirsten, If I was a fan (which I totally aren't) I'd be seeking psychiatric help if I'd parted any money for this. No, I don't want John Barrowman Another Side for Christmas. I want Cliff Richard's Love The Album. That's where it's at. A 67 year old celibate bachelor telling me about love.


Mrs L Piper said...

The only reason I bought the album was because I had seen him act with my daughter Billie in Dr Who and thought he had a kind face. Billie got a lot of her musical taste from listening to my record collection.

Isn't 'Kirsten Weissenberg' a funny name. I sometimes think that a lot of those comments on Amazon aren't real people. A bit like John Barrowman when he was in Torchwood.

Anonymous said...

What is funny about a German name, I do exist and am a real person and I am glad that I am more tolerant than some people who feel the need to make themselves feel better by posting stuff like this on the net.