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A Life in Vinyl: 1978

September 18th, 2014 Leave a comment Go to comments

Life In Vinyl 1978

In 1978 I made it my business to become a respectable buyer of pop music — at least, to be more respectable than my fellow 12-year-olds. My benchmark in such things was my older brother, who had a broad record collection. He introduced me to things like Jethro Tull’s Aqualung LP (which I’d buy two years later). So in April I bought a bunch of singles: Gerry Rafferty’s “Baker Street”, Kate Bush’s “Wuthering Heights” and, yes, something by Jethro Tull. My brother never indicated whether he was impressed; happily I liked my purchases.

A little before that I had also discovered punk. In the spring and summer of 1978, my best friend at the time and I bought records by the Sex Pistols, The Stranglers, Sham 69, The Damned, Boomtown Rats and, erm, Plastic Bertrand (who, it later turned out was the Milli Vanilli of punk).

I was aware of disco, of course, and bought the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack, though I didn’t play it much. I liked Walter Murphy’s “A Fifth of Beethoven” though.


But the records I’m most proud of are the singles I bought in January 1978, just weeks after I had still bought a single by Harpo: The Runaways’ “School Days”, Tom Robinson’s “2-4-6-8 Motorway” and Blondie’s “X-Offender”. All are still favourites, though the Blondie track featured here is the single I bought on a trip to Amsterdam.

Which brings me to the illustrations for these posts: of the records I actually owned, I include the cover of the format in which I bought them — single or LP. In the case of the Blondie record, I naturally use the Dutch cover.

And of this lot, I had all the records except those of John Paul Young (who would lend his name to two popes later that year), El Pasador, Brian & Michael, Marshall Hain and Exile — those I include because they recreate the smells and sounds of my 1978.

1978_2As always, CD-R length, covers, PW in comments.

1. The Runaways – School Days
2. Tom Robinson Band – 2-4-6-8 Motorway
3. Status Quo – Rockin All Over The World
4. Uriah Heep – Free Me
5. Wings – With A Little Luck
6. John Paul Young – Love Is In The Air
7. Darts – Come Back My Love
8. Genesis – Follow You, Follow Me
9. Brian & Michael – Matchstalk Men & Matchstalk Cats And Dogs
10. Manfred Mann’s Earth Band – Davy’s On The Road Again
11. Gerry Rafferty – Baker Street
12. Jethro Tull – Moths
13. Goldie – Making Up Again
14. Blondie – (I’m Always Touched By Your) Presence Dear
15. Sham 69 – Angels With Dirty Faces
16. The Stranglers – Nice ‘n’ Sleazy
17. The Motors – Airport
18. Sex Pistols – My Way
19. Plastic Bertrand – Ca Plane Pour Moi
20. Boomtown Rats – Like Clockwork
21. Marshall Hain – Dancing In The City
22. Clout – Substitute
23. Exile – Kiss You All Over


More Life in Vinyl
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  1. halfhearteddude
    September 18th, 2014 at 07:08 | #1

    PW = amdwhah

  2. JohnnyDiego
    September 18th, 2014 at 13:27 | #2

    Finally I’ve learned the real origin of the name John Paul. When the first Pope John Paul died my friend Sea Dog said, “I hope they name the next one George Ringo.”
    As I said about 1977: This is not the music I listened to then but I will listen now.
    Thank, Dude.

  3. GarthJeff
    September 18th, 2014 at 14:22 | #3

    Hey AMD, You Got Me!!!! Downloaded (sorry acquired) your latest offering thinking I knew every track…Then came ‘Goldie – Making Up Again’. A plastic pop song I hadn’t heard since I was a kid. FANTASTIC!!!


  4. September 18th, 2014 at 15:14 | #4

    This was the year I graduated from high school. It’s always interesting to get someone else’s perspective on a memorable time. Thank you as usual sir.

  5. dogbreath
    September 23rd, 2014 at 15:33 | #5

    Looks like you’ve been rifling through my record collection! Great tunes, good times, thanks for the memories. Cheers!

  6. Beertje Colargol
    December 27th, 2018 at 19:41 | #6

    The subtitles are in Dutch but here is some background info on Plastic Bertrand: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yGrJej7AZOY

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