Aynsley Lister High Fives 2013

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Here’s the first of our guest contribution for this year from someone whose album “Home” was a Riot Squad favourite this year.  We were also lucky enough to see Aynsley support Joe Louis Walker at The Garage in Islington this year.  You’ll probably notice that, in time-honoured “Spinal Tap” fashion, Aynsley takes the High Fives concept and goes one higher.

Deleted Scenes...Caro Emerald – “Deleted Scenes from the Cutting Room Floor” (CD album)

This is a great ‘feel good’ album; it’s got a kind of jazzy feel to it with Caro’s voice and certain instrumental nods but it’s got some very clever elements and twists that bring it bang up to date. The grooves are hypnotic and the songs have some great hooks and melodies, very well written and put together. I regularly have it on when I’m cooking!!

 

Live in CorkRory Gallagher – “Live in Cork” (concert DVD)

I first saw this concert when I was about fourteen and learnt all the songs and guitar parts note for note. Of course I moved onto other things and got into other guitarists and it wasn’t until recently that I watched it again for the first time in years. It made me feel the same as it did back then; it’s still probably the best live concert I’ve seen. Rory’s playing is just so melodic and tasteful and he never plays the same thing twice: plus his guitar tone is the best ever. It’s mainly a three piece band on this and they’re as tight as it gets….. but when Mark Feltham joins on harmonica for a few songs there are moments that are just killer: “Aint No Saint” and “Off the Handle”. Brilliant

Freddie King – live footage compilation (Rare DVD’s given to me by a friend)

I always listened to Freddie on my dad’s stereo but I’d never actually seen any live footage of him until recently. I was at a friend’s house and he put it on… It completely stopped me in my tracks! Watching the guy perform is a whole other thing to just hearing it on a stereo.  He just had this amazing conviction and tremendous stage presence. He could hit one note and that’s all he needed, not to mention his singing which had an emotive intenseness that was easily up there with his guitar playing. Truly inspirational to watch; blues how it was meant to be performed!!

 

Life on Mars“Life on Mars” soundtrack music (DVD boxset)

I got into this series a couple of years back but sometimes I’ll just put it on for the music they used during the episodes. It’s all the music I remember growing up hearing on my dad’s stereo; stuff like The Sweet, T-Rex, Free, Cream, Thin Lizzy, Audience etc. I just love that late 60’s / 70’s vibe… before people spent months in studios making albums perfect with all the technology that’s around these days. This stuff just sounds earthy and real.

 

RayRay Charles – “RAY” (The Film)

This is such a moving film and Jamie Fox really was the only guy who could have pulled this off. Very cleverly put together, it tells his story very well indeed. I’d always liked many of his songs and love his voice but it wasn’t until I saw this that I learnt so much about the man behind the music. I always find it interesting to learn about the actual people and what I got from this was that unlike so many artists out there, Ray Charles was a man who knew his worth and could stand on his own two feet.

 

Still Crazy“Still Crazy” (film)

I love any band-themed film and have seen most including the obligatory Spinal Tap but for me, this goes one better. It’s so much more believable on every level – the idea of a band that were once ‘almost famous’ getting back together after two decades apart. There’s the inevitable friction between certain members, the various ailments that old age has brought about etc. The really cool thing about this film is that it focuses on the personal lives of all the band members and there really are some classic moments: the bass player who is constantly on the run from a woman believed to be from the Inland Revenue, the lead singer’s ridiculous but believable pre-stage ritual – brilliant! I’ve probably seen it five or six times now!