I was listening to Billy Sloan’s show on BBC Radio Scotland last night and he played a previously unreleased version of Bowie’s I Can’t Read which is set to be released on a new compilation due out on Record Store Day called CHANGESNOWBOWIE. He then followed it up by playing a cover of Absolute Beginners. Almost immediately I was like “woah, this is pretty good. WTF is this?!”
To my utter amazement, when it finished Billy revealed it to be Steve Harley. My gob was truly smacked. That was NOT the name I was expecting to hear at the end of it. I don’t know whose name I WAS expecting…but it wasn’t Steve Harley’s. But hats off to him. It’s a wonderful version.
Don’t believe me? Here’s the link to Billy’s show. Absolute Beginners plays about 48 mins in. Give it a listen and see what you think.
It’s a track on Harley’s upcoming release called Uncovered. I’d be intrigued to hear the rest based on this track.
Jim and Charlie will be on Virgin Radio UK at 9pm GMT tonight (Sunday, Nov. 17). Tune in for the patter. Jim and his bloody “la la las” – and there I am extolling the virtues of his amazing songwriting. Lol
Jim talks extensively about his memories of a recording career spanning 40 years as Simple Minds frontman and lyricist and touches on his working partnership with Charlie Burchill, Live Aid and the Free Mandela concert in the summer of 1988, plus the first Simple Minds concert in Satellite City, Glasgow on January 17th, 1978.