Here’s an interesting item: The song Deep Cuts was planned as a single by Squeeze on Deptford Fun City Records for release in July 1978 (Catalogue number DFC 06). It was never released. Here’s the sleeve:
It’s a deeply uncomfortable song written by a youthful Difford. Here’s the version which was finally released on the re-release of the ‘Squeeze’ album (U.K. Squeeze in the US and Canada).
Don’t you just love Harri Kakoulli‘s bass playing – it has real menace.
Fancy seeing Chris and Glenn in NY? Selfies? Autographs? Signed Fender Stratocaster guitar? All for a good cause? “Teaming up with WhyHunger, Glenn Tilbrook is offering you a unique experience for you and a guest to see him and his musical partner, Chris Difford, play in New York City – or at a New York area venue to be determined next spring. But, this is not just a great, intimate concert. You will receive two tickets to a show during Glenn Tilbrook and Chris Difford’s “At Odds Couple” tour.
You will also get to meet the legendary rockers and take selfies with them. You can get your favorite Squeeze records autographed and receive a signed Fender Squier Stratocaster Surf Green electric guitar. Feeling “Tempted”? You don’t want to be “Up the Junction” on this one.
Once labeled as the best British songwriting duo since John Lennon and Paul McCartney, Glenn Tilbrook and Chris Difford of the 1980s rock band Squeeze have remained radio staples for decades. Their many lyrically crafted, catchy, upbeat songs are still played on various radio formats today – even here at WCBS News Radio 880 — where hits like “Black Coffee in Bed”, “Tempted” and “Pulling Mussels from the Shell” are used as “rejoins” and “bumpers”. Nearly 40 years since Squeeze stormed onto the pop music scene with its first of countless sing-a-long hits like “Take Me, I’m Yours”, — and a few breakups of the band in between — old mates Glenn Tilbrook and Chris Difford have reunited. With their voices ever-strong, still one octave apart, they are sharing their timeless melodies with the world. Currently touring in Europe, Glenn and Chris have hit the road in the fashion of Felix Unger and Oscar Madison, performing “The At Odds Couple Tour”. “
It’s not quite from the cradle, and hopefully I’m not quite ready for the grave as yet, but I’m truly delighted to have been asked by Packet of Three to talk about my Squeeze adventures, which definitely lie in-between the two.
If I may begin at the latest point in time, 19th November 2014 Warwick Arts Centre, Coventry and the final date of Chris Difford’s and Glenn Tilbrook’s ‘At Odds Couple’ tour, celebrating their 40 year musical marriage. It had been with a sigh of relief when, at the final hour, a business cancellation allowed me to make last minute arrangements to see these guys reminisce on their journey, which had touched my life in so many ways.
Apart from the hotel being slighted overrated in my Google search, everything else went splendidly. The train journey seemed to encapsulate memories and as we pulled out of Chesterfield station, feeling slightly dishevelled after a long day, I found myself a seat. Tucking into an unfinished sandwich I had bought earlier, I reflected on past times, which began on March 8th 1978.
I doubt it was the precariously positioned towel over the guitarist’s head, whilst mischievously playing with the neck of his guitar, or the cigar smoke billowing out from behind the keyboards that evoked my curiosity to these five musicians, but something definitely struck a chord that night at the City Hall in Sheffield.
And it was from then on that the next few years of my life made a surprising detour. Squeeze took pride of place on my bedroom walls, in my diary and most of all within my record collection. Their tour dates were scrutinised and planned with precision. Once published in the latest edition of the NME there would instantly be ticks against the ones I could attend, a cross beside the few I couldn’t, and the possible ones ‘question marked’ for review at a later time. Everything else became secondary and just like most teenagers I embarked on my new journey with excitement and wonder.
Thirty six years later and through a chance meeting with David Bailey at the Warwick Arts Centre, I am dusting down the old photographs and memorabilia in order to share some of those cherished and fun times with you all. I feel privileged to have been asked to pen a series of blogs written through the eyes of a Squeeze fan, music lover and now in the midst of my life to look back on these days with fondness and smiles.
Take Me I’m Yours is a Squeeze classic – but how well do other artist do in their cover versions of the song? It’s not the easiest of songs to play. Here’s Tim Curry covering the song. How do you think he did and which are your favourite cover versions of the song?
Meghan Trainor thinks that it’s All About That Bass and so do I. Here are some of my favourite Squeeze bass covers from novices to accomplished! What do you think? Any budding bassplayers out there want to give us a demonstration of their skills?
Uploaded on Nov 23, 2011 “Squeeze are a British band that came to prominence in the United Kingdom during the New Wave period of the late 1970s, and continued recording successfully in the 1980s and 1990s. They are known in the UK for their hit songs “Cool for Cats”, “Up the Junction”, “Tempted”, “Labelled With Love”, “Black Coffee In Bed”, “Pulling Mussels (From the Shell)”, and “Hourglass”.”
“From their great album “Argy Bargy” this is my version of the bassline to “Pulling Mussels”. This cover was a request from Chuck in North Carolina. Hope you like it, Chuck!
FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY!”
Those of you who went to the recent The At Odds Couple tour shows might have noticed the stage set with an arm chair, standard lamp, car radiator grille and other ‘retro’ and ‘vintage’ items. As well as these is a folding screen room divider decorated with photographs of Chris and Glenn – many of which are from my collection.
Here’s one from the thousands of unusual shots I have – enjoy!
When is this from? Leave a Comment below if you think you know – no prizes for a right answer, but lots of kudos if you do get it right!
If you have any interesting Squeeze photos that would make a good Mystery Squeeze Photo just Contact Me.
“Glenn Tilbrook and Chris Difford, the men behind Squeeze, have been called everything from the new Lennon and McCartney to the godfathers of Britpop. Now, 35 years after their first record, this documentary reappraises the songwriting genius of Difford and Tilbrook and shows why Squeeze hold a special place in British pop music.
Difford and Tilbrook, two working class kids from south east London, formed Squeeze in 1974 with the dream of one day appearing on Top of the Pops. In 1978, they achieved that dream when the single Take Me I’m Yours gave the band the first of a string of top 20 hits. The period from 1978 to 1982 saw the group release a run of classic singles, timeless gems such as Cool for Cats, Up the Junction, Labelled with Love, Tempted and Pulling Mussels (From the Shell) to name but a few.
Although the line-up of Squeeze would go through various changes of personnel (another founder member Jools Holland left in 1980 and then rejoined the group in 1985) it is Difford and Tilbrook’s songs that have remained the constant throughout the lifetime of the band.
The duo explain how they came to write and record many of their greatest songs. Although their relationship at times has often been tenuous at best, the mutual admiration for each other’s talent has produced some of the best songs of the past 40 years.
With contributions from former band members Jools Holland and Paul Carrack, together with testament from Elvis Costello, Mark Knopfler and Aimee Mann to Difford and Tilbrook’s songwriting talent and why they deserve to be placed alongside such renowned songwriting partnerships as Lennon and McCartney, Jagger and Richards and Elton John and Bernie Taupin.”
Another Nail in My Heart is one of Squeeze’s most covered songs – but how well do those cover versions do? It’s not the easiest of songs to play. Here’s Patti Austin covering the song. How do you think she did and which are your favourite cover versions of the song?