Monday, 18 March 2019

Wired For Sound

In 1981 Cliff Richard had a number four hit with WIRED FOR SOUND. The video, which has become a music legend in its own right, was filmed in Central Milton Keynes. Cliff dances and roller skates around our city centre wearing a state of the art Walkman.

Power from the needle to the plastic.....I'm wired for sound.

One is obliged to wonder if the video could be filmed today in the same location. Would the production team be able to afford the high parking charges imposed by Milton Keynes Council ? Cliff most certainly could not have skated his way along the underpasses as this is now the location of Tent City and our homeless rough-sleeping friends.

Would the music system fumbling along in the twenty-first century be able to manage the quality of music that came from Cliff Richard ? 

Now aged 78 and still the Peter Pan of Pop Music, Cliff was 37 when Wired For Sound was released. If a teenage Cliff were to appear on the music scene today would the system allow him to achieve anything other than obscurity ?  Would his talent remain for ever hidden ?

Power from the needle to the plastic.....I'm wired for sound.

What have Queen, David Bowie and Michael Jackson in common ?

They all played at Milton Keynes Bowl. to give it its correct title The NATIONAL Bowl.

National Bowl - Milton Keynes Bowl - or just The Bowl - today it is nothing more than a location for an occasional travelling
circus and a weekly car boot sale. A good car boot sale but still a car boot sale. What a sad shadow of its former self the bowl (Deliberately now in small case letters) the venue is.

That is probably not down to the current management of the bowl but to the lack within the twenty-first century music of artists like Queen, David Bowie and Michael Jackson.

Also a shadow of its former self is Bletchley Youth Centre where Status Quo performed. If a similar band were to set up stage in Bletchley Youth Centre today would there be any youth there to listen to them ?

In 1972 pioneers of synthesised electronic music, Chicory Tip played at Wilton Hall.

In 1976 I helped a friend put on Billy J Kramer, he of Little Children fame, at The White Hart in Bletchley. What an amazing performance Billy gave us. The White Hart may be gone but Billy J Kramer is still performing.

The first 7" vinly single I spent my pocket money on was Johnny Dankworth's African Waltz. Johnny, a Milton Keynes man, with wife Cleo Laine, gave us WAP - Wavendon All Music 
Plan, now The Stables. Aged 91, Cleo still lives in Wavendon.

Not far from Johnny and Cleo's home once lived Michael Crawford who starred in Phantom Of The Opera.

The Peartree Bridge Dinosaur, given to our city by artist Bill Billings, was used by Bon Jovi for a photo shoot.

Power from the needle to the plastic ..... I'm wired for sound.

On Water Eaton Industrial Estate there was once a company - Stylus Supplies Mountings, who helped take the music from
the plastic.

Without Jim Marshall and Marshall Amplification could any of these musical legends have achieved a single note ?

Possibly not.

Our city of Milton Keynes is indeed a musical legend - WIRED FOR SOUND.

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