Courtesy of a Facebook group, I found this link….
Well, it’s now actually 31 years since PURE POP FOR NOW PEOPLE (or as it’s known in the UK THE JESUS OF COOL….The uptight American record label refused to use that title in case of offending people) came out….I prefer the order of songs on PURE POP to JESUS so I will stick with describing that.
It’s been one of my favorite records since I was a teenager….Nick Lowe shifts effortlessly between different genres of music (rockabilly, punk, big kitchen sink ballads, reggae, radio friendly pop) backed by the crème de la crème of pub rock/new wave (Members of The Attractions and The Rumour not to mention his own band Rockpile)….The irresistibility of the music stands in direct contrast to the bizarre stories Lowe relates….Kids who cut off their right arm, little dachshunds who devour fading filmstars, alligators in the sewers, people who love the sound of breaking glass as well as the Bay City Rollers.
For me, it all comes together and makes sense in the song NUTTED BY REALITY….After a hilarious, funky intro section wherein Lowe talks about the CIA’s attempt to castrate Fidel Castro “because he was the people’s friend”, the song completely changes melody and lyrics and Lowe sings of himself jumping and laughing at people but they don’t get the joke “my pleasure gave no pleasure” ….The chorus explains it all “See I’d been living in a different world and I’d been nutted by reality”….I often feel that way myself….Reality is malleable and should be taken lightly and one should find humor and pleasure in day to day details be they small or large.
Lowe’s tongue is firmly in his cheek as he relates his mischievously malicious lyrics over the undeniable hooks….A great, unique record that has stood the test of time that can be listened to as a whole or in bits and pieces.
Speaking of Nick Lowe, I must reflect on the great symbol to commerciality and uselessness which is the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame….It’s now clear that it is the Rock and Roll Sales Hall of Fame since the biggest criteria seems to be how many records an artist has sold not the relative artistic worth of an artist’s music….How else to explain how quickly Aerosmith and U2 got in but how slow it took for The Velvet Underground and Iggy Pop?....In addition, there seems to be a big American bias to the rock and roll hall….American bands get in a lot faster than British bands (The Jam and Roxy Music are examples of two bands that were successful that still haven’t been inducted).
Nick Lowe belongs in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for several reasons….
1.) His own solo career ( LABOUR OF LUST is almost as good as PURE POP FOR NOW PEOPLE and he has made a number of other good records including NICK THE KNIFE, THE ROSE OF ENGLAND and the underrated gem THE ABOMINABLE SHOWMAN) as well as his records as part of Brinsley Schwarz and the one album he made with Rockpile SECONDS OF PLEASURE which is a masterpiece also.
2.) His career as a producer (the hall also honors producers)….In addition to producing most of Elvis Costello’s best records, he also worked with The Damned, The Pretenders, Graham Parker, John Hiatt, and many others.
3.) The hall honors entrepreneurs who start record labels and discover new acts….Nick Lowe helped found Stiff Records which produced records and helped get the careers going of so many popular punk/new wave bands of the late 70’s….He also discovered many of these acts.
4.) The hall honors songwriters….Lowe has written many great songs including two that have become standards – (WHAT’S SO FUNNY ABOUT) PEACE, LOVE, AND UNDERSTANDING? And I KNEW THE BRIDE(WHEN SHE USED TO ROCK AND ROLL).
Add these points also to his work as a studio musician banging along with his aggressive two or three chord style on the bass guitar and you have more than enough reasons for Nick Lowe to be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame….
Hey, let’s start a petition!