Friday, September 21, 2012

Recently, on The Barstool...

Darn, it's been three months since I last did one of these rundowns on what's been happening over on my other blog, but... well, posting was a bit light during my long summer holiday, and I wasn't able to post at all for the first couple of weeks after I got back to China; so, hopefully there won't be too much to catch up on.

Let's see. Well, back at the end of June some musings on the phenomena of 'last call' and 'closing time' prompted me to post videos of two great songs on this theme, Semisonic's Closing Time and Tom Waits's I Hope That I Don't Fall In Love With You. A week later, I posted a tribute to the late Donald 'Duck' Dunn of Booker T & The M.G.s, with five of his greatest basslines (prefigured by an extra bonus track a couple of days before). I've also compiled a 'Top Five' selection of the songs that are most likely to make me blub

Other recent musical offerings included the traditional 'Drinking Song' that Beijing-based Mongolian folk-rockers Hanggai like to close their set with, Song for Whoever and Liars' Bar by The Beautiful South, Afroman's hilarious singalong Because I Got High (with an accompanying video montage of remarkably appropriate clips from The Simpsons), The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band's energetic instrumental Return To Dismal Swamp (the most appropriate track I could think of to signal my return to Beijing!), two classics blues tunes - Worried Life Blues (played by Eric Clapton and Buddy Guy; also a vintage recording by the song's original composer, '40s blues pianist Big Maceo Merriweather) and Serve You Right To Suffer (played by John Lee Hooker), upbeat love song Wow and Flutter by (my newest musical discovery!) April Smith and The Great Picture Show, and classic '80s stick-it-to-The-Man anthem We're Not Going To Take It, by Twisted Sister. Gosh, yes, there's been more and more MUSIC over on The Barstool this year: something for people of every taste... and for people who have none!

I commemorated my month spent in America with accounts of four great bar crawls: in the Del Ray district of Alexandria, VA., where I was mostly based; on nearby King Street; and on 3rd Avenue and 9th Avenue in Manhattan.

My imminent return to China prompted me to reflect on how bar prices compare between Beijing and the UK these days, and also to question whether I really wanted to return to the land of baijiu - the (almost) undrinkable local white spirit.

New entries in my 'Unsuitable Role Models' series have been the larger-than-life and frequently half-sozzled TV chef Keith Floyd and - much less 'unsuitably' - Aussie wilderness survival expert Les Patterson Les Hiddens.

And just last weekend I turned up some curious new excuses for having a knees-up (and a reason to post some Monty Python!), and discovered a thing or two about barstools while searching for a way to celebrate my 'drinking blog's 6th Birthday. What?? Yes!  WOW.  Happy Birthday, Barstool.

Moreover, yesterday saw The Barstool's 2,500th post. Oh, my!

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