Saturday, October 4, 2014

welcome to the beautiful south

The Beautiful South kept it all in and turned grief into glory with cynical sophistication and love as deep as a pencil case.  The group was formed from the ashes of The Housemartins when singer Paul Heaton, drummer Dave Hemingway, and roadie Sean Welch formed a new band with Dave Rotheray and Dave Stead.  This time around Heaton declared that Hemingway couldn't be wasted on drums.   Hemingway demurs:   "Well, it was nice for him to say so, but it was never my idea, and I didn’t know he had that in mind at all.  When I was asked to join the Beautiful South, I assumed it was just as the drummer. But then he said, I just want you to sing, which was alien to me.  I was alright as a drummer, safe behind the kit. Being out front is a different thing.”

Mike Hedges produced their debut album, 'Welcome to the Beautiful South', with the band.  The sessions featured Paul Heaton and Dave Hemingway on vocals;   Dave Rotheray on guitar;  Sean Welch on bass;  Dave Stead on drums;   with Briana Corrigan adding some vocals (and later becoming a full member); and Pete Wingfield playing all keyboards and piano.  

The original cover art by Jan Saudek was deemed too controversial for some stores with its depiction of different suicidal tendencies.  A new cover was issued with stuffed animals instead.  'Welcome to the Beautiful South' went to number thirty-nine in France, thirty-six in Canada, and number two in the UK.  

"Song for Whoever"

I love you from the bottom, of my pencil case
I love you in the songs, I write and sing

Love you because, you put me in my rightful place
And I love the PRS cheques, that you bring

Cheap, never cheap
I'll sing you songs till you're asleep
When you've gone upstairs I'll creep
And write it all down

Oh Shirley, Oh Deborah, Oh Julie, Oh Jane
I wrote so many songs about you
I forget your name (I forget your name)
Jennifer, Alison, Phillipa, Sue, Deborah, Annabel, too
Jennifer, Alison, Phillipa, Sue, Deborah, Annabel, too
I forget your name

I love your from the bottom of my pencil case
I love the way you never ask me why
I love to write about each wrinkle on your face
And I love you till my fountain pen runs dry

Deep so deep, the number one I hope to reap
Depends upon the tears you weep, so cry, lovey cry, cry, cry, cry

Oh Cathy, Oh Alison, Oh Phillipa, Oh Sue
You made me so much money, I wrote this song for you
Jennifer, Alison, Phillipa, Sue, Deborah, Annabel, too
I wrote this song for you

So let me talk about Mary, a sad story
Turned her grief into glory
Late at night, by the typewriter light,
She ripped his ribbon to shreds

"Have You Ever Been Away?"

"You Keep It All In"

"I'll Sail This Ship Alone"

'Welcome to the Beautiful South'  full album:

All songs written by Paul Heaton and Dave Rotheray, except where noted.

"Song for Whoever" – 6:10
"Have You Ever Been Away?" – 5:12
"From Under the Covers" – 4:05
"I'll Sail This Ship Alone" – 4:41
"Girlfriend" (Antonio Reid/Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds) – 2:54
"Straight in at 37" – 4:29
"You Keep It All In" – 2:54
"Woman in the Wall" – 5:16
"Oh Blackpool" – 3:01
"Love Is..." – 7:04
"I Love You (But You're Boring)" – 4:31

interview 1989

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