For the record... who was your first?
THE first single I ever bought with my own money was Jim Dandy by LaVern Baker and the first album I ever bought was All Summer Long by The Beach Boys. I was about 14, 15, I’d cut somebody’s lawn, I’d get two dollars, and I’d go buy an album.
Then, I’m painting a house in Phoenix one summer morning and I hear this song called She Loves You by the band called The Beatles. I stopped painting and I went “What was that?” Because it was something totally new. I never saw what they looked like, it didn’t matter, it was the song that got me. Then I saw a picture of The Beatles and I was hooked. THE first record I definitely fell under the spell of was Seasons In The Sun by Terry Jacks – a great record, which actually has a much grander tradition in the sense that it comes from Jacques Brel and that whole era. Then, I’d like to say it was Combat Rock (The Clash) but I think the week before that I bought Kings Of The Wild Frontiers by Adam And The Ants. THE first single I remember buying on CD was Eminem, My Name Is. I must have been about 11. Before that I had The Corrs on tape, I loved them. And I had the Spice Girls on tape. I had a Coca-Cola CD player – I was really little. THE first one I actually bought was Chuck Berry On Stage, live at Tivoli Theater. There was something about vinyl. It’s precious, isn’t it. It’s like an extension of your body, almost. K-Tel. My mother was a public school teacher and so we didn’t have a record player in the house, but on weekends she would bring the cr***y public school turntables home. I bought this record – the K-Tel compilations – and it had Fly Robin Fly (Silver Convention) and That’s The Way (uh-huh, uh-huh) I Like It by KC and The Sunshine Band, but it also had Edgar Winter’s Frankenstein on it, and it totally changed my life. It was like, ‘Oh my god.’ THE first record that I fell in love with, apart from Billy Eckstine and Johnnie Ray-type things, was called Flamingo by a saxophone player called Earl Bostic. Soon after I bought Walking Shoes by Gerry Mulligan’s Quartet. Earl Bostic was a sort of R&B jazz player and Gerry Mulligan was out and out jazz. I REMEMBER getting hold of a copy of Cool For Cats by Squeeze. I don’t think I would have bought it new, it must have been a few years old, even then. My mother threw it away, because it was seen as a bad influence. I CAN remember where I was standing when I saw the first Beatles record in this big discount house where my parents used to shop. I Want To Hold Your Hand – that might have been one of the first ones. But before that, I bought a song by Freddy Cannon called Palisades Park, sort of a fairground-sounding thing, and The Orlons, South Street. MY grandmother took my two sisters and me to Mr Pemberton’s record store. We bought an Elvis Presley album from the film Double Trouble, and a Disney film called The Parent Trap starring Hayley Mills. Among the singles was Tammy Wynette’s D-I-V-O-R-C-E and I Want To Hold Your Hand by The Beatles. I LOVED Elvis very much. I didn’t like his later period, but I loved Heartbreak Hotel and I liked Chuck Berry. I bought some stupid s**t too. I bought Venus In Blue Jeans by Jimmy Clanton. I loved The Everly Brothers, Cathy’s Clown, and I loved Buddy Holly.