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Songs: Red and White Sockets

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<a href="http://mjhibbett.bandcamp.com/track/red-and-white-sockets">Red And White Sockets by MJ Hibbett &amp; The Validators</a>
I had a ghetto blaster
It lived in the kitchen on top of the fridge
And though it wasn't very good it was good enough for me
Well one week it breathed its last
So i took a chance and took it down
To take a glance at the back
And when I did that what do you think i could see?
I saw red and white sockets on the back to plug a hi-fi in.

Now what on earth's the point of that?
I loved my ghetto blaster but i knew it was crap
It was never gonna form the basis of a modern hi-fi system
It's like a band that uses strings
For no other reason than Oasis did
Like a pretty bitty baby with a big man's drink
Like a lad who washes lorries in a kitchen sink
Like red and white sockets on the back to plug a hi-fi in

Red and white, red and white, red and white sockets
Red and white, red and white, red and white sockets
Red and white sockets, red and white sockets
Red and white sockets, red and white sockets
Red and white sockets on the back to plug a hi-fi in

Well i failed to see the metaphor
A tape deck with pretensions was all that i saw
And it wasn't until later that the truth bore down on me
Because i went to take a litte bath
And as i lay back in the bath i felt discomfort on my back
And when i looked into the mirror what do you think i could see?
I saw red white sockets on my back to plug a hi-fi in
Red and white sockets stuck to the back of me

Saying red and white, red and white, red and white sockets
Red and white, red and white, red and white sockets
Red and white sockets, red and white sockets
Red and white sockets, red and white sockets
Red and white sockets on the back to plug a hi-fi in


Published by Wipe Out Music Publishing

Another Plasterboard Of Sound production from My New Flat - man ALIVE, listen to all that STUFF going on there, COOL! Having not heard if for a while, the first time I listened to it on this CD I was EXTREMELY excited to hear the PIANO coming in halfway through, NICE!

This song first appeared on my FINAL home-recorded cassette, or at least the last one I ever gave out to people. When I first decided to start doing gigs on my OWN I made several cassettes to sell to people at gigs or, more usually, to GIVE to other people in bands, at venues or on labels in the hope that they'd then ask me to do gigs or put records out with them. This didn't work QUITE as much as I'd hoped, especially when it came to giving them to other people in bands, but occasionally it paid off.

Like I say, this was recorded for the final one of these, "Home Taping Is Killing Music", and was performed by ME regularly at The Durham Ox. The Ox was the pub in Leicester that all the people I knew in bands used to drink in regularly, and was owned by Dave Dixey, who also ran Sorted Records. Like a lot of people, I was constantly badgering Dave to put a record out, and so he used to do compilations to stop as many people as possible from hassling him. I'd had a Voon song and a Council song on his previous releases, but what I REALLY wanted was one of my own ones, and so Dave was a regular recipient of these tapes, which actually he seemed to quite like. He liked them enough to give me a regular SLOT at the pub anyway - roughly every other Sunday night me and my friend Neil (with whom I'd played in Voon and The Council) would each do a half hour set in the corner of the pub. Neil, then as now, is SOMETHING of a PERFORMER and would regularly steal the show from me, so I soon learnt to go on FIRST so I didn't have to follow him, and to do songs like this with a GOOD CHORUS and POINT, so as to attract attention. I'd always play this song, and it became the song that the pub regulars liked the most. It may be a FALSE MEMORY but I'm sure I remember a little cheer going up occasionally when I'd announce this one, and one night somebody came in WITH some red and white stereo leads to wave during this one. COOL.

THUS when Dave asked me to do a song for the album this was the obvious choice. He seemed a little disappointed, as I remember, because I was giving him a song already "available" (to people in the pub at least) on a cassette, as he is EVEN WORSE than I am for that sort of thing. I'd always call the cassettes ALBUMS, and would think of the 50 copy runs in EXACTLY the same way as I would have done if they'd been 50,000 CDs, and Dave was much the same - the track wasn't EXCLUSIVE to the album if four pub regulars had bought me a pint in exchange for a tape. I talked him round to the idea eventually, and come the Album LAUNCH party (in The Durham Ox, of course), when Dave made a menu of Cocktails based on all the songs, the Red And White Sockets was ESPECIALLY delicious.

The song itself is ALL TRUE... for the first half, at least. I always kept a cassette recorder in my kitchen on top of the fridge, as that was the room I played my guitar in, and so it was handy to have there for when I had new ideas. One particular tape player DIED on me, and when I took it down, to be carried up to the Appliances Graveyard in the Attic, I noticed for the first time that round the back it had sockets to plug into a hi-fi system. As the song says, there was no way I would EVER have used this particular tape player for that, and I was actually DEEPLY TOUCHED by the fact that, all these years, it had had these sockets there, just in case. I felt an AFFINITY with the plucky little tape player, as in those days I felt that I TOO had all SORTS of sockets, for all SORTS of emotions and abilities, that I was just waiting for somebody to find and use. It might well be that I'd never be much GOOD at any of them, but all I wanted was for somebody to notice.


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