Whichever way you want to look at this week, it’s a blue one. Latics v Chelsea, the blues versus the blues, finished with a defeat that might have felt worse than it was, but was still enough to leave the DW faithful with the blues. Tomorrow, the blues of Leicester take on the blue & white of Huddersfield for the right to host our own blues on Sunday tea-time. And on top of it all, it’s bloody freezing, my fingers, toes, nose and other extremities are blue too.
The only things that aren’t so blue, are the Latics squad, who’ve gone off to Tenerife for some R&R and training in the sun. It’s not quite a game against the Omani national team and there are plenty of justifiable gripes about rewarding current form with a trip to the sun but I’m sure no-one will be complaining if this break has the same rejuvenating effect that last year’s run to the Middle East.
Whilst the team is away, I thought I’d have a go at proving that, musically, the blues doesn’t have to be about misery and pain with a perfect hat-trick of ‘blue’ songs that I (if no one else) find uplifting in one way or another.
The Bluetones – Are You Blue or Are You Blind?
Yes, I drag this out at least once a season, but tell me I’m wrong. In another universe, The Bluetones sit aside the music scene like a beomoth, but like a really twee one. In the same universe, Latics probably sit astride world football, like Barcelona but with pies and no goal scorer.
In both universes, this song, the band’s debut single is guaranteed to get the feet shuffling and fringes swaying. In title, tempo and toe-tappiness it deserves a regular airing at the DW. I’ve still got the petition going (with all of one signature on it) so just grab me if you want to join the campaign.
Song Sung Blue – Neil Diamond
Yeah, I know this, on first look, doesn’t come across as that uplifting but scratch the surface and you’ve got a sing-a-long, swing-a-long masterpiece that’s made for the back seat of the coach, if not the back rows of ES2.
Me and you are subject to the blues now and then,
But when you take the blues and make a song
You sing them out again
Ah, the therapeutic value of song and this one first came in my Latics consciousness after one of those great away days, spoilt by a poor game, a trip to Fulham in the mid-nineties. A one-all draw in the middle of a grand day out and then back to the Delph Tavern in plenty time for last orders and this on the jukebox. You had to be there, you probably have been.
Funny thing, but you can sing it with a cry in your voice
And before you know, start to feeling good
You simply got no choice
Bright Eyes – True Blue
The Conor Oberst cannon isn’t to everyone’s taste, but try and not get caught up in this one. Apparently it’s just a silly little birthday ditty he wrote for his nephew, but there’s enough subtext in the 45 uses of the word blue to keep a mini-industry of textual analysis going for the last eight years. Smack addiction, misery, politics, all of the above or is it simply just a silly little song with a nice little rhythm that wears blue tinted glasses?
And what’s wrong with that? In fact, as the nights get lighter and the football days get darker, it won’t do any of us any harm to slip on our blinkers and focus on us, the team and celebrating all things Latics.
I am a blue blood I will admit that.
I dance in blue shoes and wear a blue hat.
Live in a blue house, on a blue street,
in a blue town by a blue creek.
I write my blue songs with my blue pen.
I sing the blue notes to my blue friends.
Now I don’t know that much about you,
but I like you because you’re true blue.
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