Lipstick, powder and paint:

We have six grandaughters. four of whom are teenagers. A glimpse on top of their bedroom or bathroom shelves reveals an alchemists hidden treasure trove of ointments, creams and powders. We’re talking about makeup! Then there are the necessary tools to apply all these. Indeed, one grandaughter has no less than three open topped glass jars packed with brushes (tips up), which she assures us is absolutely essential to her appearance.

This got us talking about how things were back in our day, when all a girl needed was some lipstick, some powder and some mascara. Perhaps the occasional eyeliner too.

Of course, these essential items were carried around in a handbag – just the thing for fixing your makeup on the go. Terry doesn’t remember ever doing this but then he would say that, wouldn’t he?

A teenage girl would need a small suitcase to carry all her beauty aids today.

Jenny remembers that everytime you wanted to use the mascara brush you always had to spit on the bristles to moisten the black waxy gunk before applying to the eyelashes. Perhaps the manufacturers expected users to add a drop of water but certainly Jenny and every woman she knew just simply spat on the brush or the wax itself.

Incidentally, this “black waxy gunk” is usually made from a mixture of iron oxides and titanium dioxide and some natural oil, like lanolin for instance. Beeswax is sometimes added to help with the consistency. Some mascaras that sparkle or shimmer may have fish scales added. Fish scales for shimmer are often used in lipstick too.

Today we have a vast amount of choices when choosing mascara. Products to make lashes longer, to make them thicker, non clumping, waterproof and a vast rainbow of colours. Jenny recalls a time when you could choose only black or brown!

Back in the day, Jenny might have spent up to half an hour preparing her face before a big date – our granddaughters tell us they might take up to two hours, trying different styles, colours and applications.

Thought we’d attach Joe Turner’s song, “Lipstick, Powder & Paint” an old classic from 1956. We hope you like this song from the old blues shouter it as much as we do:

Guess that’s all for now, thanks for stopping by. Until next time, make sure you Keep On Rockin”

The Golden Rockers

P.S. What ever happened to compacts?

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Do you remember transistor radios?

Once upon a time, we didn’t have mobile recorded music, we had to listen to our favourite music shows on a small radio or a larger wireless all of which had to be plugged into an electric outlet but then……….

But then transistors were invented shortly after World War Two and were quickly utilised into small portable radios together with a suitable battery. By the 1960s billions were being made and sold all over the world and the world of the musically inclined teenager changed forever.

Now you could take your music with you to the park, a beach or just around to a friend’s house and listen to your own shows rather than whatever the oldies wanted to listen too.

With your friends you could play air guitar, piano or drums. If there was a handy cricket bat or tennis racquet, this too could be used as you tried to emulate The Shadows walk. Here we’re talking about a British musical group – they weren’t called bands in those days – who used to to a three step walk as they played guitar.

Of course those times are a long way from todays listening pleasure which is still mobile but now digitised and usually only available to the person with the attached earbuds.

In 1965, American singer, Connie Smith, released a single called, “Then And Only Then” which reached No. 4 on the country music chart, the B side was called, “Tiny Blue Transistor Radio” and this reached No.25 on the same chart. Written by Bill Anderson and intended for Skeeter Davis it fell into Connie’s lap. Connie still tours doing the old time country songs but this one is definitely one of The Golden Rockers favourites.

We thought this song pretty much sums up the era. We hope you enjoy it too.

Until next time, make sure you guys keep on rocking.

Terry & Jenny.

Childhood meals, anyone?

Do you like bread and butter, toast and jam?

So there we were, just sitting around at the end of the day, enjoying a glass or two, when the discussion got around to favourite meals our mothers cooked when we were kids.

For Terry, it had to be Macaroni Cheese, on its own or served with other stuff – it was the one meal he was never late for.

For Jenny, it was beef patties, served with mashed potato and tinned tomatoes. A meal not to be missed.

Simple meals but quickly made and delicious. Probably our favourite meals today would be curries but we still enjoy the above meals occasionally.

We thought the above video would serve (pun intended) as an nice intro into today’s post. This was the Newbeats, first and biggest hit. In 1964, it just missed the top spot in the US charts, missing out to The Animals, “House O The Rising Sun” and Roy Orbisons, “Oh, Pretty Woman”. Ironically, perhaps, one of the co-writers of the song, Larry Parkes used to play drums for Roy Orbison from time to time.

Just wondering who else out there in blog-world has good memory of a homecooked meal from their own childhood. Why not share it with us?

Until next time, Keep On Rockin’

Terry & Jenny

 

Remember The ANZACs

rosemary-tuscan-blue

There are many legends associated with the herb, Rosemary, one of the most enduring is of its alleged power to improve memory.

April 25th is recognised in Australia and New Zealand as Anzac Day. On this day many Aussies and Kiwis wear a sprig of rosemary in remembrance of the fallen.

ANZAC Day was originally arranged to honour the members of The Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (thus ANZAC) who served in the Gallipoli Campaign which was their first engagement in the Great War (1914-1918). It has since grown to incorporate all,         ” who served and died in all wars, conflicts and peacekeeping operations” and “the contribution and suffering of all those who have served”.

Rosemary has particular significance as it is found growing wild on the Gallipoli peninsula.

On ANZAC Day,  it is the custom for people to gather at their local War Memorials or Armed Service Club and pay tribute to fallen citizens in a ceremony known as the Dawn Service. Why dawn?

During battle, the half-light of dawn was one of the most favoured times for an attack. Soldiers in defensive positions were woken in the dark before dawn, so by the time first light crept across the battlefield they were awake, alert, and manning their weapons; this is still known as the ‘stand-to’.

After the First World War, returned soldiers sought the comradeship they had felt in those quiet, peaceful moments before dawn. A dawn vigil, recalling the wartime front line practice of the dawn ‘stand-to’, became the basis of a form of commemoration in several places after the war.

The simplest ceremonies are those held in small villages, whilst the large media attended ones are held in  big cities where, for some strange reason, the politicians always seem to find the time to attend.

Having attended both, we find we prefer the smaller, more intimate gatherings. The proceedings will usually start with a short address from either an ex-serviceman, a serving Member of the Defence Force, a local dignitary or student.

At the end of the address, the speaker will then recite The Ode:

“They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;                                                                   Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.                                                                    At the going down of the sun and in the morning                                                                    We will remember them.”

This is followed by the words, “Lest We Forget”.

Then, as dawn breaks through, a lone bugler will play, “Last Post”, followed by a one minute silence. We doubt if anyone who does attend the Dawn Service emerges through it without the hairs on the back of the neck standing up as the bugle plays. It is very moving.

It’s also great that so many young people attend this tradition now nearly one hundred years in the making – the first, recognised, service being recorded in 1921.

The above mentioned Ode comes from a poem called, “For The Fallen”. It was written in the early days of World War One, by an Englishman, called Robert Laurence Binyon. The full poem can be seen below:

For The Fallen

With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children
England mourns for her dead across the sea,
Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit,
Fallen in the cause of the free.

Solemn the drums thrill: Death august and royal
Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres,
There is music in the midst of desolation
And glory that shines upon our tears.

They went with songs to the battle, they were young,
Straight of limb, true of eyes, steady and aglow,
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted,
They fell with their faces to the foe.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again,
They sit no more at familiar tables of home,
They have no lot in our labour of the daytime,
They sleep beyond England’s foam.

But where our desires and hopes profound,
Felt as a well-spring that is hidden from sight,
To the innermost heart of their own land they are known
As the stars are known to the night.

As the stars shall be bright when we are dust,
Moving in marches upon the heavenly plain,
As the stars that are starry in the time of our darkness,
To the end, to the end, they remain.

Until next time, we hope you folks,

Keep On Rockin’

 

 

 

Old Friends (Gone With The Wind)

It’s an old cliché but so true. Life is a journey not a destination. We meet a lot of fellow passengers on our own personal journey – some for just a short while, others for the entire trip. But there are always some who get off before we are ready to say goodbye.

We always believe that the worst thing about growing older, apart from  the inevitable aches and pains, is saying goodbye to those we love – both family and friends.

Sometimes, we’ll be sitting outside on the deck having a few glasses of rum, chatting about old friends that we’ve lost. Reinforcing and sharing our memories. It is at those times that we’ll then deliberately play the above song.

We believe that as long as someone is recalling them, especially with a smile, then they  are not entirely lost to us, They still live in our memories amd hearts.

They have seen us at the best and worst of times, we’ve shared drinks and tears, laughter and hugs. Times we thought would never end.

As we grow older, so more of our friends get off the community train. But of course they do, that is the very nature of this life we share. One day, we will all have to disembark.

We wonder if anyone else out there in blog world has a special song they play whilst remembering their old friends.  If so, why not share with us.

The above video was compiled by Jenny as a tribute to Johnny Trouble and to all our absent friends

Keep On Rockin’

So what was your first record, Part 2

Together with Rag Doll by the Four Seasons, this was the first record Jenny ever bought with saved up pocket-money! The year was 1965, however, her musical journey began back in 1962.

Recovering from an appendix operation, Jenny was allowed out of hospital a day or so earlier than planned because it was her 10th birthday party and, as it was her first party, one she’d been looking forward to very much. As part of her birthday present, her parents bought her a second-hand portable record player – a Dansette no less! They also bought her a brand new 45 rpm record album (like a photo album but with plastic pockets for holding the discs. To top it all off they took her to London’s famous Petticoat lane Market (which is actually in Middlesex Street (!) gave her a few pennies and pointed to some stalls selling ex-jukebox records and no longer needed demo-only records.

For a very small outlay, Jenny ended up with several platters, like: Magic Wheel (Rodd-Ken & The Cavaliers),  Runk Bunk (Adam Faith), Happy Birthday Blues / Someone To Love – had to get the birthday one (Kathy Young & The Innocents) and Under The Moon Of Love (Curtis Lee) plus a few more. A few of these were gems for sure. Anyway back to the original post –

The Moody Blues version of Bessie Banks, “Go Now”, became their only No. I. It was released in November, 1964 but, as a slow burner, did not hit the top of the charts until late January, 1965. Many rock pundits hail this record as one of the precursors to progressive rock. It was certainly very different to the very poppy songs of that era.

So once again we ask what was your first record?

Until next time, Keep On Rockin’

Terry & Jenny.

P.S. Whatever happened to portable record players?

So what was the first record you ever bought?

You know how it is,  you’re just sitting around, maybe having a drink or two, and the conversation drifts to musical influences and then discussion about the first record we ever bought as individuals.

Terry’s was “Tower of Strength” by British crooner Frankie Vaughan. It was very common for British bands and solo singers to cover American originals throughout the fifties and early sixties. Not sure why, perhaps it was a lack of confidence in British songwriting skills or problems obtaining the right to sell the originals but anyway the practise was wide-spread.

So, for many listeners and viewers of  British wireless and television the only songs they were familiar with were the ones produced by the homegrown talent.

Back in 1961, Terry saved as many pennies as he could spare from his meagre pocket-money and then proudly went to his local electrical goods store which had a small area set aside for selling records (but only if they were in the top twenty!).

Terry played the heck out of that 45 rpm, on his parents radiogram, until the emergence of The Beatles changed the musical environment for ever. In time Terry, came to be embarrassed about his first musical purchase and would tell friends that his first record was “Return to Sender” by Elvis (this was actually his second purchase!).

It wasn’t until coming to Australia and getting into rock and roll in a big way that we found out that the original song was done by Gene McDaniels. It is now our preferred version.

In later years however,  Terry has become more amenable to Frankie’s cover and believes that Frankie’s version is actually quite good and is very happy to boast about his first record.

In our next post, Jenny will write about her first record, meanwhile we wonder how many people out there still remember their first record? Does it make you cringe? Does it make you beam with pleasant nostalgia? Do you even still have it, we wonder?

Keep on Rockin

Terry & Jenny.

P.S. Whatever happened to radiograms?