Never one to do things by half, my first ever purchase (paid for with my own money and with the express purpose of buying something for myself) in a record store consisted of two albums, to wit: The Rolling Stones's Beggar's Banquet and Queen's A Night At The Opera. I went to get the latter one, but was intrigued by the blank cover of the first. Years later I discovered there should have been a picture of a toilet on it.
Queen, in Ahoy, Rotterdam, May 1977. I was 14, my sister 13, and we had only ever attended operettas and piano recitals before, so we turned up in evening dress, and found we had rather overdressed for the occasion.
Favourite Music Movie:
Spinal Tap, definitely!
Favourite Music Book:
Larousse Encyclopaedia of Music? I don't know, I don't read books about music, bands or artists per se.
There are several songsmiths whose skills I admire: David Sylvian is one, Paul Weller another...In the younger generation, I'm quite impressed by whoever's responsible for Snow Patrol's songs. Oh, and I like Sufjan Stevens, and Morrissey, and Sting, and quite a few others, too...
I've heard Trevor Horn, William Orbit, Steve Lillywhite, Mark Ronson, all do fantastic jobs; though to be honest, most of the time I haven't a clue and don't give two figs who the producer might be.
Favourite Record Label:
Can one have a favourite record label? Me, I couldn't care less.
I seldom buy magazines. When I do, it's usually because I've got some time to kill at an airport, say, and the cover story's piqued my interest, so it could be Rolling Stone or Record Collector or even The Pig Farmer's Monthly.
As I started out as a Queen fan, I would duly note down John Deacon as 'best bass player' in any music magazine's award compitition between 1974 and 1980, when I left the Queen fandom. It wasn't until later though, that I realised he really was an exceptional player, who used his bass as a lead as well as a rhythm instrument. Some of his walking bass lines are very intricate, with numerous runs and tight quick note changes. And is there anyone who can ever forget that signature bass line on Another One Bites The Dust (one of his compositions, by the way)?
Then some time in the 80s, I noticed Mark King of Level 42 used a different technique from most of his colleagues up to that time, that produced a louder, more droning and prominent sound. His playing introduced me to slap bass, or as Wikipedia explains "slapping" is a percussive playing technique in which a player hits the string with the thumb of the strumming hand near the base of the guitar's neck, often combined with snapping the strings usually with the index or middle finger of the same hand, (the latter more specifically called "popping", i.e. "slapping and popping").
Favourite Album Cover:
For me, that's a toss-up between David Bowie's Low and Depeche Mode's Violator. They're pretty similar, in effect.
Favourite Teen Idol:
I never went in for teen idols. I was into rock music when I was a teenager, and listened to Bowie, The Stones and Queen almost exclusively. The teen idol thing completely passed me by.
Artist Who Broke Your Heart:
No artist has ever broken my heart yet, I'm glad to say.
Artist You Will Always Believe In:
David Bowie, Paul Weller and David Sylvian have been my favourite artists for the last 25 years, or 30-odd years in the case of Bowie. And I think I'm safe in saying that I will also always believe in the musical talents of David Berkeley and Common Rotation/Eric Kufs.
Singer Who Makes Your Skin Crawl:
Jarvis Cocker, pretentious git.
Singer Who Makes You Swoon:
I prick up my ears when I hear the warm dulcet timbre of the baritone. For that reason, Dave Gahan and David Sylvian have the ability to 'make me swoon', as does David Bowie, although he mostly pitches his voice a little higher (or so it seems to me)..
The ticking of the clock telling me the working day is at an end.
Album You Will Always Defend:
Black And Blue, by The Stones. Critics call it a weak album, but how can it be when it's got Memory Motel on it?
Album You Own That No One Else Does:
An album I own that no one else I know does, is Altitude by ALT, a one-off collaboration by Andy White, Liam O'Maonlai and Tim Finn. I don't think I've played it more than once.
Classic Album You Own But Don't Like:
I haven't played Never Mind The Bollocks in forever, and to be honest, I didn't play it all that much back in the day either. Still, it would be unfair to say that I don't like it, it's just that I'm rarely in the mood for it.
Artist You're Supposed To Like But Don't:
There are artists I like, and artists I don't; but I'm not aware of any I'm 'supposed to like'. Although...a friend of mine keeps trying to interest me in Editors, and I just can't seem to share his enthusiasm.
Song You Can't Stand By An Artist You Like:
Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me, George Michael & Elton John. I don't like Elton John, you see...though there are some covers of his songs that I do like.
Band That Should Break Up:
Not for me to say.
Band That Should Re-form:
Bands usually break up for a reason, and if that's musical differences and the members want to head off in different directions or pursue different interests, then who am I to say they should reform? Having said that, I was very happy to hear Kula Shaker reformed some years ago, and if The Stone Roses could do the same...but I don't think that's likely.
Disco! Or 70s soul music; I love me some Commodores, Earth Wind & Fire, and the like.
Favourite Music DVD.
I don't have one. But then, I've only got a handful of them, and of Paul Weller, mostly.
Concert You Wish You'd Seen:
I never saw Japan in concert, but whenever I listen to (their live album) Oil On Canvas, I wish I could have.
IMO, David Berkeley and Common Rotation work very well together, and could be described as a dream collaboration. If we're talking fantasy dream collaboration though, one that isn't likely to ever come about...David Bowie and David Sylvian, perhaps?