Christmas. We take time off work, only to be run ragged by excitable children. A time for reflection; to look back at the year just gone and…. “Mum! I’m hungry” “Dad! Can I have some more chocolate?”
Ah, daily life might mean you might struggle to reflect on the year just gone, so why not let me help? Here’s a month by month account of all the most important things that happened in 2013:
2013 was kick-started with the news that Suede had a new album ready for release! It sounded great! It was fresh, and oh, hang on – look! David Bowie! He’s released a new single! The video is set in Berlin! He looks like that rude bear-thing in Bo Selecta! Shhhh!
And so Suede’s huge comeback – which was excellent – was just a teeny bit overshadowed by one of their biggest influences.
February saw the Brit Awards, which remain a highlight of the year – for masochists everywhere. “One Way Or Another” sang One Direction, “We’re gonna murder a Blondie song”. Just as the howls of protest from Blondie fans reached fever pitch, they were drowned out by the sound of John Peel spinning in his grave as the One Directioners turned the Blondie song into a cabaret style medley, launching into “Teenage Kicks”. Rather than being given an award for Butchery, they then ran away with an actual Brit Award for “Most Lovely Haircuts” or something, which had never been an actual award before. Only a huge cynic would harbour suspicions that Simon Cowell had arranged a behind-the-scenes deal with the organisers that insisted on One Direction being given an award if they were to appear on the show. Watch closely in 2014 to see if the award reappears…
March saw Wilko Johnson‘s “farewell” gigs after the former Dr Feelgood guitarist announced he had terminal cancer. At the time of writing this, Wilko was still defying the odds and preparing a solo album and DVD of the gigs. His cheerfulness amidst acceptance of the news of his illness has been extraordinary. He even seemed to take the break up of Girls Aloud – also in March – in his stride…
In April the first few cracks began to show in Rock’s Toughest Bad Boy er, Justin Beiber as stories leaked of the cute pop prince acting in a manner that might have had him thrown out of Mötley Crüe. Well, not really – he just lost his rag with the press. It was nothing that other artists before him* didn’t do far better and with far more energy and attack – which pretty sums up his musical career too.
Sadly, as a result, the limited edition Record Store Day 7″ yellow vinyl single of Beiber’s cover of Aerosmith’s “My Fist Your Face” had to be withdrawn from sale at the last minute.
Meanwhile, at Buckingham Palace, Kate Bush received a CBE from the Queen. “Wow!” said Kate, “Wowwowowowowowow – Unbelievable!”
The Eurovision Song Contest lit up our TV screens in May, with Bonnie Tyler representing the UK. She came 19th as the rest of Europe continues to pay us back for giving them The Spice Girls, Bros and Showaddywaddy.
June saw the pageantry of one of Britain’s oldest and most established, and venerated institutions celebrated throughout the land. And as well as Black Sabbath’s number one album, the Queen celebrated the 60th anniversary of her coronation. Or something. It was great to see Ozzy, Tony, Geezer and
Bill er, the guy from Rage Against The Machine – no, not Zack de la Rocha, the other one. No not Tom Morello the other, other one ** at the top of the charts.
Whilst The Rolling Stones and Arctic Monkeys duked it out for “Best Headliner at Glastonbury” July saw Thom Yorke begin his dissent about the size of the cheque he was receiving from Spotify. The streaming service tried to rectify matters by sending him one of those oversized cheques that businesses present to charities, but it was still only for a tenner, and Yorke remains dissatisfied. Yorke was last seen ditching all his Moby CDs after the latter later accused his Spotify complaints as resembling “An old man shouting at fast trains”. When I say “all his Moby CDs”, I do of course mean “the only Moby CD in his and everybody else’s collection – you know, the one with that song off the advert”.
August saw the MTV Video Music Awards, which introduced the world to the joys of Twerking thanks to a performance by well known Jamaican Dance Hall legend Miley Cyrus. What made it odder was her insistence upon sticking her tongue out throughout the song like she was at the dentist. Cyrus performed with the appropriately named Robin Thicke. Thicke also best described some of the waistlines on show by the briefly reformed N-Sync. The world breathed a sigh of relief when, after what seemed to be an inordinately long time, the awards show ended.
In September, the viewing figures of “talent” show The Voice were given a boost as Kylie Minogue announced she was to appear as a coach on the show in 2014, thus likely increasing the number of viewers a hundred fold. To about a hundred.
You had to admit it was getting better all the time as Paul McCartney popped up in Covent Garden to do a spot of busking from the back of a lorry. He passed the hat round, but no-one put any money in there. “That’s for the Frog Chorus” said one spectator as they tossed in a button. “That’s for Mull of Kintyre” said another, throwing in a fake Scottish banknote that had been previously rejected by three hundred and forty nine different London taxi drivers.
Sadly the month ended with the death of Lou Reed, aged 71. Transformer still sounds wonderful today.
If that wasn’t bad enough, more tragedy was to follow a couple of days later as The Jonas Brothers announced they were to split up, in news that shocked a nation who had assumed they had split up years ago, (those who could remember them at all that is…).
Oh, whoops, instead of “more tragedy” I meant to say “Some better news”….Sorry about that.
November saw an extraordinary musical event when Prince William joined Taylor Swift and Jon Bon Jovi. It was odd seeing someone so out of touch, pampered and born to privilege singing in public with Taylor Swift and Prince William…
Thankfully not singing in public were One Direction during a live Doctor Who celebration show. Thanks to a dodgy satellite link up and delay the boys managed the most epic fail in live broadcasting since Sam Fox and Mick Fleetwood presented the Brit Awards.
The big news in December was that former X-Factor judge Tulisa was to be charged with a criminal offence. “At last!” I thought, “the police have begun to crack down on Saturday night TV talent shows. Perhaps Cowell will be next?”
Sadly it was for the far less heinous crime of being in possession of Class A drugs…
So there it is – another year gone. I hope you will agree we have remembered all the most crucial events of the last year there. Let’s hope 2014 will be every bit as exciting…. What were your favourite moments? Let me know in the comments below.
* Bjork would be a good example. She absolutely lamped one poor snapper at an airport. The Nation’s Sweetheart Cheryl Cole is another pop princess with a left hook rosier than her tattooed derrière, as a nightclub toilet attendant once testified.
** Brad Wilks
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