23.1.09

GOING FOR A SONG

Maybe the answer to snooker’s problems lies in the recording studio.

In the 1980s, several top players released singles. They were termed ‘novelty records’ with novelty, of course, meaning ‘awful.’

Most famous was Snooker Loopy featuring cockney duo Chas ‘n’ Dave and Matchroom’s then stable of Steve Davis, Tony Meo, Terry Griffiths, Willie Thorne and Dennis Taylor.

Sample lyric:

“Now old Willie Thorne his hair's all gone
And his mates all take the rise
His opponent said cover up his head
Cos it's shining in my eyes
When the light shines down on his bare crown
It's a cert he's gonna walk it
It's just not fair giving off that glare
Perhaps I ought to chalk it.”

This last line was sung by Willie himself. In fact, each player had a line to sing and it took me at least a decade to find out what Terry had sung (“hair brushes for me Barnet”, for the record.)

The lyrics everyone remembers from this song also serve as an instructional aid: “Pot the reds then screw back for the yellow, green, brown, blue, pink and black.”

It is not believed Stephen Sondheim suffered any sleepless nights on hearing this.

However, Snooker Loopy had an infectious charm that made it impossible to resist and it duly reached no.6 in the singles chart.

The inevitable follow-up was called the Romford Rap and was a kind of call for multi cultural harmony around the snooker table. You can listen to it here and anyone who makes it through to the end deserves a medal.

Alex Higgins followed up his 1982 Crucible success with the song ‘One-Four-Seven’ which you can listen to here.

Joe Johnson, who sang in a band before winning the 1986 world title, released a single called ‘Bradford’s Bouncing Back’, with all the money going to the victims of the 1985 Valley Parade fire.

And, of course, Peter Ebdon has done his best to trouble the top 40 with his 1996 release ‘I Am a Clown’ and the later ‘Fall of Paradise.’

Neither charted.

Jimmy White also sang on a record in recent years but, following extensive therapy, I’ve forgotten all the details.

I’ve heard Mark Selby do karaoke and he’s not bad. There must be other players who can hold a tune.

Michael Holt’s brother is in a band, The Kull, so maybe they could help out.

So, what should the players sing?

Suggestions please (and keep them tasteful if you will).

Here’s a couple to get started...

Ronnie O’Sullivan – Rocket Man (Elton John)
Mark Selby – Jokerman (Bob Dylan)
Ali Carter – Come Fly With Me (Frank Sinatra)
Neil Robertson – Down Under (Men At Work)
Stephen Maguire – Fire (Arthur Brown)

16 comments:

Monique said...

I'd suggest "Shine on you crazy diamond" (Pink Floyd) for Ronnie... maybe less obvious but very fitting.

Ruthie said...

Hi Dave,

I'm shocked that you've not mentioned the gothic snooker musical, now on DVD, "Billy the Kid and the Green Baize Vampire" starring Phil Daniels. I've heard John Higgins sing (badly) but didn't Jan Verhaas used to be in a band?

Anonymous said...

Ryan Day - Perfect Day

i "stole" that from tsf (too)

Sparky said...

John Parrott - Let me entertain you (Robbie Williams)

Anonymous said...

I seem to remember Jimmy White, Alex Higgins and I think Kirk Stevens covering the Status Quo song "The Wanderer". I actually bought it (no-one else did), so no wonder this entry is going under "anon"!....

Anonymous said...

Oh, you forgot Dominic Dale! I will never forget his performance in Fürth 2007. Look and listen: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e_LUeVWbqpc (if the link doesn't work, search at youtube "Dominic Dale Fürth")

SupremeSnooker.com said...

You've missed The Troggs when they teamed up with Alex Higgins, Oliver Reed and Wolf from Gladiators when they covered "Wild Thing".

Marcus

said...

Hi Dave,

This is such a funny post! ROTFLMAO

Thanks!

MJ said...

I had no idea Holt's brother was in The Kull! They had a great song a couple of years ago called "God Knows How".

Claus Christensen said...

Quinten Hann - Wasted Years (Iron Maiden)

Janie - GSC said...

I think you were commentating at the time David, but you missed a heart-rending rendition of snooker loopy by the Massed Choir of the Media Centre during the final of the UK, with a guest appearance by Willie thorne, as himself, singing solo!

the general concensus was, "don't give up the day jobs boys"!

PS:Where's my January Snooker Scene, The Postman hasn't even knocked once!

PPS: There are some good voices to be heard on the Karoake.
Del Hill is a star, Trish Murphy the referee is superb.
Former pro player Antony Bolsover was pretty good too.

Roland Van Laere, the former snooker guru at Pontin's is also brilliant, to such an extent that he is booked for gigs, and his son also has his own band.

BillyR said...

Ronnie O'Sullivan - "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before"

Ding Junhui - "Boys Don't Cry"

John Higgins - "World In My Eyes"

Judd Trump - "Don't Ya Wish Your Girlfriend Was Hot Like Me"

Liang Wenbo - "Europe Is My Playground"

Ken Doherty - "It Couldn't Happen Here"

Steve Davis - "I Am The Resurrection"

jamie said...

Nice blog Dave did you get this idea from the walk on music I suggested in a comment on an earlier blog article, as I came up with Rocket Man and Fire.

Dave H said...

No, but there may have been some sort of subliminal influence

jamie said...

Their is song by idlewild called no emotion that would fit marco fu and Smile by Lily Allen could be an ironic one for Stephen Hendry!

Anonymous said...

there was a similar discusion on TSF recently too....