PCN Magazine

Songbook of my Teenage Years -Tommy Clark

Mr Thomas Clark

I have waited patiently to receive this mans 5 songs that shaped his teenage years, being his DJ partner in All or Nothing I had a vague idea of what type of song my friend would pick. Those of you that know him will be surprised at some of his choices and plenty of flak will follow.

  1. 1. The Housemartins – Happy Hour

“Being a member of the Pits from aged 13, I was introduced to all genres of music by the ‘older’ band members. I heard this song for the first time soon after it was released as we were rehearsing it with the band. The song has stuck with me and has become a firm favourite of mine and I regularly include it in my DJ set. From the crescendo intro it transports me back to the youth club days. Happy memories.”

2. Marillion – Kayleigh

“This is a tune I must have heard a thousand times as I had it on cassette in my drum room. I would play along with it trying to grasp every fill only to miss it, rewind and start again. Hours and hours of practice set me up as the drummer I am now. Having recently managed to obtain a copy I stuck it on the deck and unsurprisingly I could drum every beat. Never fails to bring a huge smile to my face when I hear it. Thanks Fish I owe you big time.”

3. The Clash – Tommy Gun

Back to the Pits again. Bruce and Fraz were huge punk fans and this was my introduction to the whole punk scene. It was another one of those tracks that I played to death although that had something to do with the machine gun drumming and double crash cymbal at the beginning. I use that fill to this day. It’s amazing to see how many people start paying attention when they hear that intro. Remember folks you aint happy unless you got one.”

4. The Band of the Royal Marines – Life on the Ocean Wave

Many of you wont know this but between the age of 16-18, I was a trainee musician at the Royal Marines School of Music, in Deal, Kent. The training I received there as well as the music training has shaped my life (probably more than I realise myself). Anyway, this is one of the first tunes you learn at RMSM it being he signature tune of the Royal Navy and subsequently the Royal Marines. So, I find myself surrounded in the percussion hut with 8 of the most talented musicians I have ever had the pleasure to play with (Shoosh! don’t tell the Kinks Experience boys). All in a row with tenor, snare drums and cymbals, all concentrating on our own part and always in perfect timing.

To this day anytime I hear ‘Ocean Wave’ I fill up with pride at being a part of such an amazing organisation, sadly also a whole lot of regret that I didn’t give it the effort that I should have.”

5. Wham – Wake me up before you go-go

“Now, before you destroy me for my selection, I was only 13 when I first heard this amazing track, most probably at a school disco. The way the dance floor fills when this song is spinning just shows you how good a songwriter George Michael was. I suppose these days we would call this a guilty pleasure but I have no guilt whatsoever when it comes to this track. I smile from ear to ear (that’s a big smile. Boab) when I hear it and cant help but dance like an idiot when its on.

Boab’s Verdict

Well now that you all have an insight into Tommy’s musical taste, did any surprise you?. ‘Ocean Wave’ surprised me although it shouldn’t have as its an instrumental and Tommy loves his instrumentals.

Kayleigh happens to be a favourite of mine and as for Wham, you can run but you cant hide, everyone loves a bit of Wham. What does surprise me is the lack of any Mod tunes in the list. It just goes to show that although you are ensconced in a music scene you generally find that your most memorable songs are not from that genre.

Thanks Tommy great selection (apart from the instrumental).

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