Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Marc Bolan & T. Rex - 20th Century Boy - The Ultimate Collection


More horrific confessions unleashed by music.  Listening to Bolan and T Rex initially brought me back to my first husband, who was a mad Marc fan (hi, Dougald!).  Before he joined the army, he actually resembled Mr Bolan in his choice of hairstyle.  But then as I went through the CD, I travelled back in time, earlier and earlier, until I was living in an expat British community in northern Africa, aged about 10 or 11, and receiving my musical information from Jackie magazine.

Dear reader, I am here to confess my original sin.  The first artist who graced the walls of my bedroom, taken from said magazine, was not Marc.  Oh, how I wish it was.  He did make it up there eventually, but I can only plead youthful naivete in revealing the man who first graced my pre-pubescent walls was - in the supremest form of irony - Gary Glitter. (YourZ sez: ahahahaha... brilliant - mine were Kiss, but yours wins hands down, my love)

You see where this musical journey is taking us?  I haven't thought about that for decades.

Anyway, my Bolan exposure was initially through Jackie (anyone remember the agony aunts, Cathy and Claire?  And there was a great columnist... she loved Bowie... damn, can't remember her name) and then through the BBC World Service and Top of the Pops... and then to my first husband who owned everything they'd ever recorded.

Bang A Gong is as funky today as the day it was recorded.  And Children of the Revolution has to be up there on my "best songs of all time" list.



We love to boogie, we love to boogie, jitterbug boogie, Bolan pretty boogie, we love to boogie on a Saturday night...

T-Rex is another band I remember hearing when I was still young and my knees didn't ache.  Bolan's unabashed glam pop lyrics and the deceptive simplicity of the music were perfect for a young lad learning to play guitar.  I remember sitting in front of the speakers trying to work out the riff for Get It On many times.  However, unlike a lot of the other music from those times, T-Rex (like Bowie, Led Zeppelin and a few others) have stayed with me.

I had Solid Gold, Easy Action on cassette and played it until my the tape player in my old '63 Belair got hungry and ate it.  I replaced this with a two cassette greatest hits collection but only played the one featuring the T-Rex recordings (as opposed to the hippy, folky Tyrannosaurus Rex releases of their earlier years).  I think it befell a similar fate as Solid Gold..., although I can't quite recall.  But I do remember cruising around in that big old beast with T-Rex blasting out of the tinny, tiny speakers.  Those were the days...

This disc was added to our collection because I only had T-Rex on vinyl and missed it.  Listening to a lot of the songs on this collection is like taking a trip (being the operative word) to days when I was young, carefree and unburdened.  And while it has a bit too much of the folky, hippy stuff for my liking, at least it also features some of my favourite tracks too - Hot Love, The Slider, Metal Guru, I Love To Boogie, Ride A White Swan and 20th Century Boy as well as the big hits.

Hmm, I wonder if Mine would be interested in trading in her Seca for something a little bigger? (Mine says: as long as it has aircon and I can park it, baby I'm keen)


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