Ceol Anocht

Ceol Anocht Special : “Both Sides Now” : 18/4/2022

A-Sides and B-Sides

So…they let me loose, as Béarla on Monday the 28th.

I’d been having a think about what makes a good opening track…and a closing track. For years, since hte arrival of the album, musicians and producers and record companies would agonise over which track would kick off their album and what would be the best way to finish it. Music fans would then argue about whether they worked or didn’t…and still do.

Formats change and we’ve seen the rise, fall and revival of vinyl and now cassettes, but for those of us of a certain vintage, sitting down when you’ve put the needle down on a record was often the start of a love affair with a band, a singer, an entire album. The same applies to all formats, but vinyl has a special place. Now it’s back and fighting fit, it seems like a good idea to go bak to the argument.

We all have our favourite openers and closers. Some great opening tracks take your breath away, some closing tracks make you breathe, smile, stand up and put on the album again.

There are some suggestions, personal choices from albums I (sadly) remember on their release. In the first hour it will be opening tracks and, in the second, the tracks that finish some of his favourite albums…let the conversation begin…I could have chosen dozens more in differing conversations but I went with my gut.

I started in 1970…

Two Of Us The Beatles
Mother John Lennon
The Lovely Linda Paul McCartney
I’d Have You Anytime George Harrison
Sentimental Journey Ringo Starr
Carry On Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young
Love The One You’re With Stephen Stills
Tell Me Why Neil Young
Morning Morgantown Joni Mitchell
Your Song Elton John
And It Stoned Me Van Morrison
Get Back The Beatles
God John Lennon
My Mummy’s Dead John Lennon
Hear Me Lord George Harrison
Why I Sing The Blues Aretha Franklin
Delta Lady Joe Cocker
I’ll Remember Taste
Zero She Flies Al Stewart
Life Is Like A Mountain Railway Linda Ronstadt
Jesus Was a Carpenter Johnny Cash
Snowbird Jesus Was a Carpenter
It’s Over Scott Walker
The Supermen David Bowie
Wild Horses The Flying Burrito Brothers