Category Archives: Nostalgia

ChuckleVision

I feel sorry for today’s generation of young children; they’re growing up on programmes infested with poor stories, weak scripts, tiring CGI and just downright heavily cringing ideas for series. I am especially sorry for young children growing up watching poor CGI versions of such fantastic children’s shows like Postman Pat (now Postman Pat’s Special Delivery Service), Thomas the Tank Engine and Fireman Sam. Postman Pat riding a helicopter AND a motorbike? Thomas the Tank Engine’s brilliant old-fashioned animation being replaced by poor CGI? And now FIREMAN SAM? What is going on in this world?!

As a child, I loved so many old stuff: the Clangers, a little bit of Bagpuss and Ivor the Engine, Postman Pat (which I loved to pieces), Thomas the Tank Engine (I didn’t like the crashes and the moments of peril, but apart from that I loved the stories…and Ringo Starr’s heavily Liverpudlian voice), Hanna-Barbera cartoons and Thunderbirds. I also liked some of the new stuff: Teletubbies, Tweenies, Brambley Hedge (which I liked so much that I watched Sea Story during the millennium celebrations instead of the fireworks), Kipper, Percy the Park Keeper AND Woody Woodpecker (which, I recently found out, was voiced by Looney Tunes’ Mel Blanc). These still play endlessly in my head. As does a certain programme that was only subtly hidden in the title…

#Chuckle — Chuckle — Vision! Chuckle-Chuckle-Vision! Chuckle-Chuckle-Vision!#

The guilty pleasure of my childhood. It was cheesy, but wasn’t as cheesy as the Chuckle Brothers’ quiz show: first prize is…a box of Roses chocolate. Yay. The theme tune is ultra-80s-catchy, the slapstick is nearly always giggly good, and their catchphrase is priceless and ageless. Sure, the titles look like they were made at the last minute, the episodes got more and more stretched over the series, and it isn’t exactly comedy gold, but the Chuckle Brothers — Paul and Barry — are now comedy legends! Especially to me.

Ah, nostalgia. Shouldn’t really be feeling it yet as a teenager, but I’m liking it! Well, so long as you avoid thinking about the scary side to it… One day at a time, though. One day at a time.

To me, to you, live long and prosper! 😀

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My Childhood Top 40 (Part 2)

In my pre-teenage years, whilst everybody came into school listening to pop music on their iPods, grinning and bobbing their heads to the beat, I still hadn’t found my musical taste. In Year 7, I watched the music channels often. I liked quite a lot of the music, but not so much that I would listen to it on my Zen on my way to school. Nothing sent me in a metaphorical rocket up to Music Heaven.

Well, as a child I didn’t think this, but looking back now I really want to slap a Human League CD into my past self’s hand and say, “Listen to something that you actually like.” After all, Human League is what made me realise I preferred old stuff to modern music.

But that doesn’t mean to say that I don’t still beam with delight when I listen to these songs. Because today, these songs really are now very special to me. It’s Nostalgia Time!

  1. Hot N Cold – Katy Perry (I preferred Katy Perry before her “California Gurls” transformation, and I particularly liked this song during my stress-infused time in Year 7. I can still remember the entire video: the entire, crazy video which, for some reason, had a male bridesmaid…)
  2. Sex On Fire – Kings Of Leon (Intensely dark but superb! Same to “Use Somebody.”)
  3. Beggin’ – Madcon (What was it about demented music videos in those days? The video to this song was no exception.)
  4. Not Fair – Lily Allen (The cowboy band players in the video are mouthing, “What the hell?” at Lily for a reason. I always laugh when I listen to this song, which, for reasons only known by Lily, features a banjo instrumental in this song about…uh…shall we say…a relationship gone sour.)
  5. Poker Face – Lady Gaga (Lady Gaga in her early days was so much better than she is now. I was disappointed that this song took weeks to get to Number One. Yes, I knew what game Lady Gaga was playing in the video, but I didn’t care.)
  6. Day ‘N’ Nite – Kid Cudi vs Crookers (Dodgy video aside, I liked this song!)
  7. Greatest Day – Take That (Take That were, and almost still are, my musical guilty pleasure. To this day, I don’t understand the music video, but oh well!)
  8. Broken Strings – James Morrison & Nelly Furtado (Sweet and subtle. I knew the lyrics to this very well as a pre-teen. Every time this plays, the amount of nostalgia this brings back to me makes me tearful and shiver with goosebumps.)
  9. Love Story – Taylor Swift (This is in my Top 40 mainly because of how obsessed all the girls in my year were about this. On the way back from a trip to France, EVERY GIRL at the back of the coach was blaring this of their iPods and squealing the lyrics at the top of their voices. She’s still going. To paraphrase Victor Meldrew, I do not believe it!
  10. Human – The Killers (This song, like Baby One More Time, got its own comedic actions, but this song is just so brilliant that it doesn’t matter; this song was such a craze, even Strictly made a joke based around this. Enough said.)
  11. I’m Yours – Jason Mraz (The girls obsessed about Love Story; the boys obsessed about this. A popular choice in secondary school concerts. This song deserved all the attention it received.)
  12. Omen – The Prodigy (When I got this song, I vowed to make it the most played song on my Zen. The mission failed as the song started to become repetitively less interesting. I like electronic music, but not music as loud and booming as The Prodigy. But it’s still packed full of nostalgic nibbles.)
  13. I’m Not Alone – Calvin Harris (These next three songs all have one thing in common: the artists were clearly inspired by 80s music. I listened to Calvin Harris again recently, and immediately I knew I’d found somebody modern who I could confidently say I liked. The video is as puzzling as “Titanium”, but I’m so glad Calvin Harris is back in my musical life!)
  14. Bulletproof – La Roux (I LOVED La Roux. Her wacky hairstyles, her obscure fashion style and her bip-bopping synthesized songs with impossible-to-understand videos and puzzling lyrics were all wonderfully wacky.)
  15. Remedy – Little Boots (Every milligram of her songs and videos contained a big helping of Retro. And that’s why she fascinated me. That and her height that bordered on hobbit-size.)
  16. Bonkers – Dizzee Rascal & Armand Van Helden (The song’s bonkers. The video’s bonkers. I’m bonkers. A perfect match! And it’s probably the only Dizzee Rascal song that I still like.)
  17. Boom Boom Pow – Black Eyed Peas (“Oh and FYI, you never even heard of the Black Eyed Peas before you met me!” “I heard of them. Just didn’t know they were a band.” There. Now my Big Bang Theory lobe is happy. I liked the BEP and the END. Who didn’t? And BEP weren’t just referred to in BBT once; Leonard sang to their other No. 1 hit, “I Gotta Feeling” in the car – another song that invaded the world by storm, and picked me up in its wake. Shame that it really is the END for them.)
  18. Fight For This Love – Cheryl Cole (I missed Girls Aloud, but Cole’s debut single was such easy listening I really liked it.)
  19. Islands in the Stream – Vanessa Jenkins, Bryn West & Sir Tom Jones feat. Robin Gibb (Gavin and Stacey, Tom Jones and a Bee Gee in a charitable song that is as epic as Band Aid! What more could you ask for!)
  20. My Life Would Suck Without You – Kelly Clarkson (Listening to this song again brought back memories I thought had long since been cleared out by my brain. I was shivering with nostalgic goosebumps as memories of  Year 7, including a certain trip to France, and every emotion I was feeling at the time came flooding back to me.)

This chart was difficult to compile, since so many songs bring back tidal waves of nostalgia. Such songs that failed to get into the chart included Owl City’s Fireflies (which, along with the Match.com ad songs, stuck in my head during Year 9) and, fortunately, Pitbull’s I Know You Want Me (Calle Ocho). I thought I had found peace from Pitbull for the first time in years, but hearing the background music to the Baggage ad sent my mind into pandemonium, and now his womanizing ways has polluted my brain.

Please note that I don’t dislike all the listed music; just listening to my NOW CD collection again made my mind feel like it was being pummelled by a tsunami of joy, memories and nostalgia.

Well, that’s my Top 40 done. Now it’s back to normal. Live long and prosper! 😀

My Childhood Top 40 (Part 1)

When I was young and naive, I could describe my taste in music in two words: POP PARTY. I just liked most of what I heard, and didn’t even think of experimenting with different genres (I’m currently listening to Jean Michel Jarre’s AMAZING album Oxygene, which is entirely instrumental, entirely electronic, and entirely…spacey). Since it’s the Pop Charts’ 60th birthday, I’ve figured that I should create a Top 40 of my childhood music. This is my first half, from when I was not yet in my double digits.

Some make me cringe. Some make me beam. But all bring me nostalgia. (N.B. This is NOT in order of preference!)

  1. …Baby One More Time – Britney Spears (Somebody has created genius but embarrassingly suggestive actions to this song. This song’s embarrassing enough! We don’t NEED actions to accompany this!)
  2. Year 3000 – Busted (They predicted that in the Year 3000, everybody lives underwater. What they forgot to predict was the one-eyed mutant, the lonely red crustacean who can imitate the Three Stooges, and the barmy professor!)
  3. Sk8er Boi – Avril Lavigne
  4. Spirit in the Sky – Gareth Gate and the Kumars (Ah, the Kumars. They always, and still do, make me smile!)
  5. Get The Party Started – P!nk
  6. Cheeky Song (Touch My Bum) – The Cheeky Girls (Um…don’t really know what to make of this song.)
  7. Aserje (Ketchup Song) – Las Ketchup (I used to be told that this was song was spoken in English, only really quickly. Wow, was I stupid.)
  8. Fast Food Song – Fast Food Rockers (“A Pizza Hut, a Pizza Hut, Kentucky Fried Chicken and a Pizza Hut!”)
  9. Reach – S Club 7 (S Club 7. Truly THE band of my childhood. They’re so nostalgic that their songs often make me smile sheepishly. I remember doing a warm up routine in PE to this.)
  10. Tragedy – Steps (I had NO IDEA that this was originally a Bee Gees song. This was just made for Steps.)
  11. Sound of the Underground – Girls Aloud (I was the proud owner of the Girls Aloud album “Chemistry” once. Glad that was a phase.)
  12. Round Round – Sugababes (A constant choice in school talent shows, I remember.)
  13. Can’t Get You Out Of My Head – Kylie Minogue (The one song from my childhood that I still like.)
  14. Who Let The Dogs Out – Baha Men (“Who let the dogs out? Who? Who? Who who?”)
  15. Follow Da Leader 2002 – Nigel & Marvin (“Follow da leader-leader-leader-leader, follow da leader!”)
  16. Hey Baby – DJ Otzi (“Heeeeeyyyyy! Hey, Ba-Bay! Oo! Aa! I wanna knoo-ooaaahh-ow…If you’ll be my girl!”)
  17. Mambo No. 5 – Lou Bega (EPIC SONG!)
  18. Mickey – Lolly
  19. Sundown – S Club 8
  20. It’s Chico Time – Chico (I LOVED Chico. I owned the single and played it multiple times. Now I hate myself for it.)

My childhood. So heavily infested by an appalling taste in poppy-pop pop music and Doctor Who soundtracks. Thank goodness I had the right sense to recoil in horror when Aqua’s Barbie Girl started playing. Rest assured I will NEVER listen to these songs under my own will! I’ve found some superb bands at the moment, and if I ever listen to these listed songs again, it’s for nostalgic purposes ONLY.

For Part Two, time to delve into my NOW CD collection for some proper music…

Live long and prosper! 😀

P.S: I’m not going to put Barbie Girl on my Spotify playlist; it’s just NOT the done thing for a male human to show the slightest interest in this most annoying but nostalgic song.

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