Monday, January 11, 2010

It's The Submarines' Vinyl District!

The Submarines’ ‘Honeysuckle Weeks’ pulled off one of those rare feats here at TVD HQ back in ‘08. A CD copy (egad!) was mailed to us by the label and quietly found its way wending though our collective psyche with its sunny, bubbly tunesmithery...and stayed there for quite a while as we basked in its glow.

While we await its follow-up, Blake Hazard and John Dragonetti, the duo that is The Subs, will be hanging around our office all week delving into their back pages and cuddling up with our turntable as we turn TVD over to them.

It’s The Submarines’ Vinyl District this week. We just work here.

John’s up first today:

I know this blog is about vinyl, but.... As a kid growing up in Dubai in the 70's and 80's, there weren't many options for buying records in the early days. Some of the older kids would bring back vinyl from the States, but I hadn't quite reached the age where it really mattered to me.

However, there was no shortage of cassettes, mostly pirated in places like the Phillipines or Lebanon. You could walk in to a "tape shop", spend 100 dirhams (about 30 bucks) and leave with twenty-five albums. And it didn't matter if ten of them sucked. The tapes were stacked floor-to-ceiling, wall-to-wall and the selection was mostly tacky British and American chart pop. But, there was a surprising assortment of punk, new wave, reggae and—funny enough—Southern rock from the States. Tons of Bollywood soundtracks, too. It really was a candy store. Of plastic.

One band that was huge in Dubai—and superstars in almost every part of the world except the America—was Boney M. I think I must have been in fourth or fifth grade. Suffice it to say, I fucking LOVED the song, "Daddy Cool."

This video is awesome, too. Pretty saucey stuff for a kid....but a radical disco track.

Then... everything changed when I saw this:

It was all about the blood. Which then led to this:

Bon Scott's voice freaked me out, but, with a cover like that it didn't matter. They were my no. 2 for at least a year.

My obsession with KISS led to my first purchase of vinyl. I had no idea who they were. Didn't know how many records they had released, or if they were even still together. (We usually got our pop culture several years after the fact, and Kojak re-runs dubbed in Arabic were a personal favorite.) In any case, my dad had to go to Hong Kong for business at that time, and I made him promise that he would buy me a KISS record.

I didn't even own a turntable.

Boney M - Daddy Cool (Mp3)
Boney M - Ma Baker (Mp3)
KISS - Hotter Than Hell (Mp3)
Space - Sweet Home Alabama (Mp3)

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