Making Movies – A Trip Down Memory Lane.

Posted on 12/04/2020 By

Making Movies.

“Tim has given me the task of choosing ten albums that greatly influenced my taste in music. One album per day, for ten consecutive days. No explanation, no reviews, just covers.” More than one Tim, actually.

This was the Facebook challenge presented to Bobby one day. Just the one album. Totally naff idea, he thought. For what is the point without any kind of explanation? But he complied. Posted it in the wrong place and thought… there is an explanation and it will be shared on Mindfully Bertie.

Making Movies

Album cover of Dire Straits - Making Movies. Plain red, apart from a thin blue strip down the right hand sides with the artist and album name written sideways on it.

Bobby is a child musically of the late fifties. Buddy Holly, Elvis, Cliff, Shadows and best of all, slipping into the sixties, Roy Orbison. But then leaving school, getting a job, a girlfriend, a fiancé, a wife, a son and a rabbit changed his musical outlook. A brief foray into trad jazz with Acker Bilk and Kenny Ball was followed by a relative disinterest in the groups that took over the world. The music was fine, but buying records had slipped down the priority list. Until “pipe and slippers” came to the fore when he reached the seventies and a new interest in music dominated by “easy listening” and totally excluding rock and roll.

The Carpenters were a favourite.

Album cover of "Carpenters" - "The Singles 1969-1973". Just these words in gold on a plain leather brown background.

“Close to you”

(Here, Tim the Technical Director, has to interject. “Bobby may be surprised to learn, as he saw the somewhat eclectic album covers I posted, that although the majority were at the heavy end or just plain obscure, possibly my all-time favourite single is actually on this album. But not the track Bobby has chosen. The one below. Apart from the fact that I just loved Karen Carpenter’s voice, it was the guitar solo at the end – with the outrageous overdrive -that got me every time.
And, back in the day, DJs either talked over it or faded it out altogether!)

But then he fell totally in love with Crystal Gayle. This album cover was on his desk at work for months. He saw her many times on stage.

Album cover - "These Days", Crystal Gayle. Photograph of the artist in a white summer top and trousers on a beach,

“When I Dream”

Anne Murray followed. He saw her at the Albert Hall, in a programme being recorded for Canadian Television. Bizarrely it was cheaper to record in England.

Album Cover Anne Murray - "Snowbird". A picture of her face within a patterned framing.

“I needed you”

The Drifters were typical of those American groups and he saw them once in London.

Album cover The Drifters - "24 original hits". A comic-book type layout listing the tracks and three cartoons depicting three of the songs.

“Kissin in the Back Row of the Movies”

Glen Campbell sung so beautifully that music that veered between pop and country. Memorably he saw him sing “Amazing Grace” dressed in full Scottish regalia. Finishing on the bagpipes!

Album cover - "Glenn Campbell's Greatest Hits". Headshot along with a list of tracks.

“By the Time I get to Phoenix”

Bizarrely, he developed a real liking for big bands including, most notably, Burt Kaempfert. Many years later, sitting with his new beloved Diddley and her musical friend, he told them he liked Burt Kaempfert. Their derision was palpable because, of course, they were musical snobs of those who couldn’t even sing like Bob Dylan and Leonard Cohen. Yes they were poets. But they couldn’t sing.

His liking for Burt Kaempfert came from an unusual source. Wimbledon stock car racing. At the start of each meeting, the cars would come out onto the cinders and make a lot of noise. A lap of the track to Burt Kaempfert was always played out to “Swinging Safari”. Then the lights went out, apart from the track, and the cars were racing. It was so exciting that, if you played that tune now, he would glaze over thinking of those brilliant stock car meetings in the Speedway stadium now gone.

Album cover - "The Kaempfert Touch - Bert Kaempfert and his Orchestra". Picture of the left side of a lady's face, with blond hair cascading down.

“Swinging Safari”

Burt Kaempfert, like James Last, played mostly their own cover versions of famous music. But Burt did compose and one song became world famous when Frank Sinatra sang out “Strangers in the Night.”

All this music was played on a very nice seventies Pioneer music centre. But then he got caught up in the latest craze. A music system of “separates”. Magazines gave you recommended separates to make up your own system. All sorts of different makes and Bobby was smitten. Choosing the system and the shop to buy it from. Sevenoaks Hi-Fi branch in Brighton. It had a facility common back then . A back room full of speakers. All wired up to a turntable and a selector like a TV remote. A heap of albums to play and switch between speakers to your heart’s content. On top of that heap was a bright red album by Dire Straits. A band he had vaguely heard of, without registering any real interest. It was on top the pile and he put it on. What followed was seismic. So much so, that the wife with him left for Marks and Spencers and he stayed playing that record over and over until the shopkeeper was relieved to hear a decision. The Mission 600 speakers. Small in size, but big in sound quality. In fact he bought the whole system. NAD amplifier, Yamaha tape deck, Marantz CD player, Akai tuner, Dual turntable. Remarkably, that system still works perfectly in the home it found in the Garden Room at Laurel Cottage. A future blog, of course.

Album cover of Dire Straits - Making Movies. Plain red, apart from a thin blue strip down the right hand sides with the artist and album name written sideways on it.

But Making Movies was a revelation. He had always loved the electric guitar of Hank Marvin and the Shadows, but here was his successor acknowledging Hank and the place he had established in electric guitar folklore

The first track was “Tunnel of Love”. WAM BAM, CRASH BANG WALLOP

“Tunnel of Love”

Romeo and Juliet followed and became the hit track of the record

“Romeo and Juliet”

Skateaway next…  another single hit

“Skateaway”

…and so on.

Eventually, of course, he bought all Dire Straits albums as they became one of the world’s biggest bands. Sadly, he could only play them at home when “er indoors” went out, as she hated them and he was scared of her.

When Tim (x2) asked the Facebook question, he realised that he had not played these records for years. So this really has been a trip down memory lane.

Not forgetting that, by the time he had met Diddley and her friends, everything had changed. Until one night they were invited to a party. A Dire Straits party. That was good. “Brother is Arms” remains his favourite Dire Straits track of all time

“Brothers in Arms”

Album cover - "Dire Straits, Brothers in Arms". A blue background with a photograph of a metal guitar in the clouds.

Lighting a Candle for Diddley.

A candle lit for Diddley in a mug with painted swallows on it. The handle is broken.

This swallow lost its wing the other day. It has now “migrated” upstairs for “special duties”.

And finally, we loved “Brothers in Arms” so much and, given the current heartache of the world, we thought you might like an alternative Brothers in Arms by one of Diddley’s favourite singers. Joan Baez.

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Music    


  1. Avatar Phil Barfnett says:

    Quite an eclectic mix of styles which on the face of it don’t go together. However as far as music goes we are entitled to like what we like and some of the albums took me back. My first record purchase was a single “She loves you” by the Beatles. I still have it along with some Beatles albums – I suffered from Beatlemania and some stars of the early 1960s hailed from Liverpool, and I liked most of them. I moved on to The Who (saw them live at Bath Pavilion – what a night!) and Rolling Stones, and dabbled with Leonard Cohen. Songs of Leonard Cohen was an early album of mine. At the same time I moved on to Yes, with The Yes album and saw them live in Devizes, then on to Neil Young (After the Goldrush and Harvest). At uni I got into Al Stewart (saw him a couple of times at Southampton uni) and Mike Oldfield.
    My first hi-fi after marriage was NAD with Acoustic Research speakers. Still have the turntable plus tuner/amp up in the loft somewhere. My musical taste then included (marriage mellowed me a bit) The Carpenters – Karen had one of the most amazing voices ever and died far too young. I also include Dire Straits though I only managed to see Mark Knoppler with a band live in Birmingham. An amazing guitarist. I could go on…REM, U2, Queen – all brilliant, but others may think differently. Music is such an amazing gift in all its creativity and beauty whatever the genre we prefer, and I haven’t even started on Country and Western!

    • Avatar Bertie says:

      You are an old rocker. How about you taking over the blog one week to do something similar?.

  2. Avatar Kris Paxton says:

    beautiful collection…do you have any on original vinyl?

    • Avatar Bertie says:

      I do Kristian. Apart from Joan Baez they are all my original record sleeves. With vinyl inside. Comes with being old. Got lots of others. Many from Di who loved the Boss and Leonard Cohen. Still got my first record. Rock Island Line by Lonnie Donegan on shellac. Must make sure I dont break it.

      • Avatar Kris Paxton says:

        Happy Easter to you and everyone there. Very nice about the all original vinyl. And yes, that last one sounds like a gem.

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