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Any Major Telephone Vol. 4

August 10th, 2023 Leave a comment Go to comments


Sometimes the lack of feedback can kill off a series of mixes. So it was with the Any Major Telephone series which I started in April 2013 with Volume 1. Any Major Telephone Vol. 2 dropped a few months later, and Vol. 3 in March 2014. The first two mixes got a lot of comments; the third only four (which in those days was rather little. Nowadays it would be a pleasing reaction). I thought the thing had run its course.

I had cause to revisit the Any Major Telephones when reader Jungle Jim (possibly not his real name) asked me to re-up Vol. 1 in the series, which he had somehow lost. I was happy to oblige — as I always am, provided I still have the requested mixes. Jim still had the other two volumes, but I have re-upped them as well. I reckon Vol. 2 is the best of the three.

And as I looked up the folder with Vol. 1, I noticed that I still had a long shortlist of telephone-related songs. So, after nine years, here’s Volume 4!

On the first two mixes, I used only songs that featured actual phone calls, direct or implied. Vol. 3 featured mostly tracks nominated by readers. This mix, like Vol. 3, places no restrictions on the nature of telephone-related subject matter, so there are a lot of ruminations about the potential of phone calls, usually involving a theme around the invitation or hope to receive a call.

The present mix closes with a French cover of Andy Williams’ Music To Watch ls Go By. Since our French singer from 1967 is a girl, who doubtless had her share of unnerving men watching her go by, she changes the subject to telephone games. Both song’s lyrics would have little application in the 2020s, when neither telephones and advocacy of sexist attitudes are appropriate subject matters in pop music.

Conversely, the song by the Drive-By Truckers, from almost 20 years ago, has a great message for our current age. When you drive, leave that cellphone alone! Or you might end up like country star George Jones, who in 1999 crashed into a bridge and was lucky to survive for another 14 years. He blamed talking on his cellphone while driving, though he later admitted to also having been under the influence of alcohol. The experience drove the hard drinker to sobriety. So, obviously, don’t drink (or smoke weed) and drive — and, please, don’t text and drive!As ever, the mix is timed to fit on a standard CD-R and include home-payphoned covers. PW in comments.

1. Curiosity Killed The Cat – Name And Number (1989)
2. Blondie – Call Me (1980)
3. City Boy – (1977)
4. Foreigner – Love On The Telephone (1979)
5. RAH Band – Clouds Across The Moon (1985)
6. Deacon Blue – When Will You Make My Telephone Ring (1988)
7. Prince – How Come U Don’t Call Me Anymore (1982)
8. Chaka Khan – Telephone (1992)
9. Corinne Bailey Rae – Call Me When You Get This (2006)
10. Mayer Hawthorne – You Called Me (2011)
11. The Sylvers – Hot Line (1976)
12. Aaron Neville – Wrong Number (I’m Sorry, Goodbye) (1962)
13. Billy Fury – Phone Call (1960)
14. Hawkshaw Hawkins – Lonesome 7-7203 (1963)
15. Mel Tillis – Coca Cola Cowboy (1979)
16. Drive-By Truckers – George Jones Talkin’ Cell Phone Blues (2009)
17. Shelby Lynne – Telephone (2003)
18. Sheryl Crow – Callin’ Me When I’m Lonely (2013)
19. Wings – Call Me Back Again (1973)
20. 10cc – Donna (1972)
21. ABBA – Ring Ring (1973)
22. Natacha Snitkine – Le Jeu du telephone (1967)


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  1. amdwhah
    August 10th, 2023 at 08:47 | #1

    PW = amdwhah

  2. August 10th, 2023 at 14:05 | #2

    Just to ensure we get more of these, I’m leaving a comment! I love these mixes and have discovered some wonderful songs from them… pretty sure I first came across As Soon as I Hang Up the Phone by Conway & Loretta via an earlier volume. Although I recognise a lot of the tunes above, I’m sure there will also be some gems I’ve not encountered before. Thanks, as always, Dude.

  3. Hey-ItsMike
    August 10th, 2023 at 18:13 | #3

    Wow, these four volumes really are the last word on the subgenre. Just for fun, tried to think of any that weren’t included. All I could come up with was Carly Rae Jepsen’s cheerful bubblegum song of summer 2012, “Call Me, Maybe,” and The Big Bopper’s 1958 hit, “Chantilly Lace,” which begins with a phone ring and that big voice intoning, “Hello, bayyyybe!” Anyway, bravo!

  4. August 10th, 2023 at 21:53 | #4

    Nice idea! I don’t think I was around for the earlier examples, so thanks for bringing’ ’em back!

    Trying to think of the telephone song I found about the switch from operator assisted dialing to direct calls here in the US. It has some long name that’s totally escaping me now. By some folk group with a penchant for the occasional funny tune, and this one is great. You’ve probably got it on here already anyway.

    Thanks for sharing!

  5. August 10th, 2023 at 22:33 | #5

    Found it, and I don’t think you’ve used it, but it may be an acquired taste… The Wayfarers-The Ballad of the Battle of the Great All Digit Dial. Give it a listen! :)


  6. Jim Dubai
    August 11th, 2023 at 20:43 | #6

    Great Series, amazing how many songs over the years have been about telephones or calling, you don’t realise till go you go through these 4 lists.
    My fav from this list is 5705 by City Boy.
    If you ever do a number 5 i could add St Etienne – He’s on the Phone and maybe Calling Occupants by Klaatu.

    Jim Dubai

  7. lil williamson
    August 14th, 2023 at 03:30 | #7

    “Don’t Call Us, We’ll Call You” by Sugarloaf (197?) seems to have been missed. I read thru your 4 Telephone lists to be sure. I found you one year ago, Summer ’22. Try to check in once a montb. Thanks for what you do; really takes me back! FYI: Graduated HS 1979

  8. TimV
    August 16th, 2023 at 13:11 | #8

    Thank you and.. thanks for all the previous posts I enjoyed but ‘forgot’ to comment on. Much appriciated. Love the monthly IM overviews and selections. A lot of hidden gems

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