Bury Community Choir, Encore (Bury Young Voices) – The Ultimate Manchester Mash-Up

Over the last 6 years or so – ever since I started this site – I’ve made many friends in Manchester, England. Some are connected with bands you’ve heard of and some are indie musicians – on the fringe of accessibility. So it comes as no surprise that my heart was broken when I read about the attack on Manchester Arena on May 22, 2017. As it turns out, someone connected to someone I know was hurt in the blast – just a girl on a night out to enjoy music with her family. If there is one thing I know in this life it is that music has the power to unite people. So when a friend told me about this charity single featuring a mash-up of some of Manchester’s famous songs it was a no brainer – I told him I’d give it a listen and post a review on my site.

Bury Community Choir was formed in 2013 by music teacher Katie Geelan for people living in the Bury area. Encore (Bury Young Voices) are also conducted by Ms. Geelan and are made up of students in Bury Schools and Colleges. The Ultimate Manchester Mash-Up was created and directed by Andrew J. Smith. The artists featured are Elbow, The Verve, Courteeners, James, Heather Small, The Stone Roses, Take That, and Oasis. The single is just over 9 minutes and is a testament to the fighting spirit of Manchester. In my personal life I believe today’s youth are the key to the future and this single touched my heart. It has a purity that is inspiring. I’ll tell you right now that I don’t typically listen to choral recordings, but that might change going forward. My favorite pieces of this movement were the bits by The Stone Roses and Oasis.

You can stream or download this song for free here and here. Donations can be made here. It is for a worthy cause and is a testament to the power of the people to always move forward and help those in need. Never giving up always resonates with me and this will be a single I’ll always come back to. Cheers!

Verdict: Brilliant choral interpretations of Manchester favorites

For fans of: Britpop, humanitarians, people who want to make a difference,

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The Stone Roses – I Wanna Be Adored

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Attack of the Killer Track! is a series that explores tracks from artists from a variety of genres. Some of the tracks were singles, some of them were obscure b-sides or long forgotten album tracks. One thing is certain – all of them are killer tracks.

Mick Jagger had sympathy for the Devil. Robert Johnson sold his soul to the Devil at the crossroads. Ozzy Osbourne sold his soul to Rock ‘N’ Roll OR the Devil (depending on what you believe). Ian Brown? Ian Brown didn’t need to do any of that. As far as opening lines in the history of music, I’d be hard pressed to think of one more impressive than “I don’t have to sell my soul / he’s already in me” from I Wanna Be Adored by The Stone Roses, released in 1989. A statement of intent, confrontation, and mystery. The Stone Roses hadn’t arrived overnight, of course – they’d toiled as a Goth-lite outfit in the mid 80’s before slowly arriving at their sound. In the UK it was “Baggy” – in the US it was “Indie” or whatever else the press could think of (Alternative was a few years away). I Wanna Be Adored was the 3rd single to be lifted from the self-titled debut album, and remains my favorite song by The Stone Roses. The slow fade in of instruments increases anticipation for Brown’s opening lines – make no mistake – Mani’s bass lines, John Squire’s guitar licks, and Reni’s drum fills are among the most memorable ever laid down to tape. Ian Brown doesn’t enter the mix until the 1:45 mark and it’s a vocal performance for the ages. Defiant, questioning, full of emotion – it is simply perfect. The song is a not just an 80’s classic or a great song from the Baggy era – this is one of the greatest songs in all of Rock ‘N’ Roll history.

Primal Scream – XTRMNTR

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Part 38 of a series that will run every Friday throughout 2012 as I discuss records that have affected me throughout the years – Flashback Fridays

The truth can be a curious thing. I once knew a person who would follow each opinionated rude statement with the disclaimer “At least I’m honest”. But what is honesty? Really, each one of us is making judgments based upon our life experiences and spinning our opinions back as “the truth” (not talking about Scientific facts). At what point do opinions and perception become indisputable facts? That really isn’t for me to say – my memories of “truth” are tainted for the reasons outlined above. In the early 00’s, Primal Scream released an album that dealt with truth head on with an amazing display of virtuosity.

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