Soundtrack To My Life - Craig From

Soundtrack To My Life
As many of you know (because I've talked about it so much) a lot of my early internet hours were spent on the 80s Nostalgia forum and chat room. I discovered it after it was the recommended website in the Daily Mirror and still have many (very close) friends from those times.  I have lost touch with the original founder (Birdy) but Craig took over the website and still runs it today.

If I am being totally honest, I expected more 80s music from Craig's Soundtrack To My Life but, in a way, I'm glad that it's as mixed as it is.  For now, it's over to Craig.


Shout - Tears for Fears

This, for me, is how an 80s song should be – moody, mechanical and unhappy. I think I've always been a moody male, even when I was at primary school. Over the years I've often pondered why I was so moody for the early part of my life. There were no events that I was unhappy with, not occasions that made me sad, nothing bad ever happened to me and so it was a bit of a mystery.

Eventually I realised why I had been unhappy for so long - it was because for my entire school life, all through primary AND secondary school, I had been sporting a womans hair style. Every time my mum took me to the hairdressers, not the barbers, they would ask me how I wanted it cut. I’d tell them I wanted it spikey, or long at the back, or something fun that kids want. Then they would go to my mum and ask her what I ACTUALLY wanted. I never heard what she whispered to them, but in retrospect she probably said, “make it look like mine.” As a boy growing up between the ages of 4 and 14, my haircut was identical to my mums.

Shout is one of those songs that has lyrics you can read your own meanings into, and interpret in different ways depending on your own mood. For me it usually reminds me how I eventually rebelled and never had a haircut again.

Epic – Faith No More

From Out Of Nowhere, the album from which Epic was a taken, is a superb record. I bought it from a second hand record shop in Bolton, and it cost me a fiver. The first song I had ever heard by Faith No More was Woodpecker from Mars, which is an instrumental Aztec-themed song. I had heard that at my mate Olivers house, and the fact that this album had that song on was the primary reason I bought it.
Having bought it I got home and put it on, plugged headphones in and listened to the entire album from start to finish, reading along with the lyrics on the record sleeve. When Epic came on I had a few questions. What is this strange music? Its not quite metal, not quite rock, not quite rap, but I like it a lot! Why does it sound good?

I became obsessed with playing it over and over again, to the point where, ironically, I made a mix-tape of just that song over and over again. I think this song was the start of my preference moving from pop music to metal.

Silent All These Years - Tori Amos

Ok, I know I said I moved onto metal but, sweet mercy, Tori Amos was amazing! I first saw the video to Silent All These Years while bowling with my mate Russ in Bolton. They used to stream MTV onto the TVs, back when the M in MTV stood for Music. I remember stopping bowling just to watch the weird video and listen to her awesome piano. I think Russ liked it too, but as it was his week of footing the bill for the bowling lane, he was eager to play on.

The lyrics just sounded like odd, disjointed soundbites, with each subsequent line completely unconnected with the previous one. I loved the randomness of the song and every time I hear it, it temporarily reminds me of being 18. I wouldn’t want to be 18 again as I like where I am now, but that song in particular fills me with nostalgia.

The Size Of A Cow – The Wonder Stuff

When I left secondary school I went to a sixth form at a different school; the Deanery in Wigan. I was only there for a year but after a month it felt as though I’d been there for years. I began to mix a very small, close-knit group of people who grew to become good friends. They were quite diverse compared to the people I’d been to primary and secondary school with. Its weird how people of the same age differ based on the location of their upbringing. The people I was now mingling with grew up about 10 miles away from where I did and, even though they were ace, they all dressed differently and listened to weird music.
Alistair made a copy of two Wonderstuff albums onto a couple of C-90s for me. I’d never heard of them before. There was a song called Inertia on the Hup album which, due to Alistairs dodgy spelling, I believed was called Interia.

The first gig I ever went to was The Wonderstuff, and I went to it because of the people I met at The Deanery. Size Of A Cow had just been released, as had Dizzy with Vic Reeves (featuring The Wonderstuff) and I loved them both. The gig cost me £30 and it was ace!

Alice in Chains – Would?

By FAR the best gig I ever went to was Alice in Chains at Manchester Academy. It was the least expensive gig I’ve ever been to, and the most intimate. There were only about 1000 people there and I was so close to the front I could have untied Layne’s shoelaces, if they had been tied already. In fact I could have tied them for him.

Dirt is a superb album and one that I wholeheartedly recommend any fans of metal should listen to. Its just so… I think the best word is “dirty” Not dirty in a rude way, but grindy, mechanical, uncomfortable and moody. It is absolutely delicious.

I went with my mate Nick. I bought us both tickets and although Nick had never heard anything by AIC before, he was eager to give it a go. As we left that evening he admitted that was the best gig he’d ever been to. He repaid the favour by buying us both tickets to watch Living Colour a few weeks later, which ended up being the worst gig I’ve ever been to in my life. Not Nicks fault by any means, but I don’t think anything will ever live up to the AIC gig.


Soundtrack To My Life

You can find Craig remembering the 80s with a little bit of 70s and 90s thrown in for good measure on his website, Twitter, Facebook and Google Plus.

Read and listen to all previous Soundtrack To My Life entries by clicking on the mix tape to the right.  If you want to participate please complete this form and I'll be in touch very soon.