Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Two Gifts from the Internet

Ever since I heard Sally Shapiro's cover of "Anorak Christmas" I have been trying to find the original, by a Swedish pop band named Nixon. I looked in all the usual places: Itunes, Emusic, Amp Camp, Other Music, Amazon, but no luck. I kept checking Hype Machine, the music aggregator, but no luck there, either. Then, a couple of weeks ago, I found it, posted on a blog called Spiked Candy. The collector in me is very happy. However, as much as I like Nixon's version I still much prefer Sally Shapiro's.
Nixon - Anorak Christmas

I met Adele Bertei back in 1979 or 1980, when she was playing keyboards in the Contortions with my friend and former bandmate, George Scott. I lost track of her when that band broke up, but a few years later, her Madonna-esque, vaguely European disco 12" called "Build Me a Bridge" became something of a hit.
At the time, it felt like the whole '70's New York scene had petered out, without much impact outside of the East Village. The clubs that had supported the scene had closed. No one (other than Talking Heads) had sold many records. Most of the bands, both punk and post-punk, had broken up. Drugs had destroyed a lot of lives (including George Scott's) and AIDS was beginning to destroy a lot more. So to see someone from that scene break out into the more commercially viable dance music scene was something of a novelty.
It's interesting how time changes things. Punk and post-punk are now seen as defining movements in popular music, and '80's dance music 12" records are collector's items prized by people like Sally Shapiro. And it's a lot easier to find Contort Yourself then it is "Build Me a Bridge."
Adele Bertei- Build Me a Bridge
I want to thank Dalton Oxfam Shop for reposting this. Check out this blog - it's fascinating.

1 comment:

rockpdx said...

This is Pete, and I totally agree with you about The Style Council! Whoa.