What was the first record you ever spent your pocket money on ?

What was the very first record you spent your pocket money on ?

Do you remember ?

Back in those far off distant days a 7” vinyl record cost six shillings and nine pence, 6/9d. Don’t ask me what that  is in today’s silly plastic money ! Anyway, there I was with six shillings and nine pence in my pocket, metaphorically clutched in my hand as I headed with my Mum on the number 29 ‘bus into Birmingham City Centre there to part with my pocket money cash to buy my very first record.

But what was I going to buy ?  My mind kept jumping from HATS OFF TO LARRY by Del Shannon and RUBBER BALL by Bobby Vee. I could not make my mind up. There is a bit in Rubber Ball which goes:

And like a rubber ball, I come bouncin' back to you
Rubber ball, I come bouncin' back to you
Bouncy, bouncy, bouncy, bouncy
Bouncy, bouncy, bouncy, bouncy

Hats and rubber balls were bouncing all over my ten year old brain as I tried to decide which record to buy.

Walking into the record department in Birmingham’s giant Lewis’s Department Store I had a complete change of mind. I handed over my six and ninepence for AFRICAN WALTZ by Johnny Dankworth and his orchestra. Why I changed my mind, why I plucked a third option out of thin air I really do not know but African Waltz by Johnny Dankworth and his Orchestra became the first record I ever owned.

I can clearly remember the green Columbia Record Label in the middle of the black vinyl disc. As I type these words the music is playing in my mind, it sounds every bit as good sixty years later.

African Waltz peaked at number 9 in the UK charts. Hats Off To Larry reached number 6 while  Rubber Ball made it  to number 4. Across the year of 1960 the biggest selling single was Elvis Presley with It’s Now Or Never. John Lennon is quoted saying: Before Elvis there was nothing. Well in my record collection this was before Elvis Presley but he was hovering on the horizon.

So African Waltz by Johnny Dankworth and his Orchestra became my first single. What was yours ? Can you remember ?

What was your first LP ? None of the silly album nonsense a 12 inch record was an LP – Long Playing record. A 7” single revolved on the turntable forty-five times every minute, a long playing record turned at thirty-three and third times every minute. That bit of irrelevance has given you time to think so what was the first LP record you owned ?

Mine was ADAM, Adam Faith’s second LP. Adam Faith and Cliff Richard were on the scene kind of simultaneously. I preferred Adam Faith’s music to Cliff Richard and still do so today, I have never really been able to get into the Peter Pan of Pop.

Even as a little kid I knew that Adam Faith was his stage name, he was truly Terence Nelhams who was born on 23rd June 1940, that made him ten and a half years older than myself. He moved into acting and starred in a TV series Budgie. Then in a total change of direction he became a financial journalist. I bet that was a bit boring after being a pop singer !

Adam died on 8th March 2003 at the age of sixty-two years.

I am trying to recall the tracks from that first album but so much of Adam Faith’s music is playing my mind I do not want muddle things by listing songs I am remembering from his singles. One track I do know for certain that was on ADAM is Greenfinger.

So that was my first LP. What was yours ?

You can find my music at www.geriatricdj.com

And my writing at www.maxrobinsonwriter.com


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