Fancy a walk in the park...?
Special mention to Maxïmo Park, Van Dyke Parks, South Park and Ray Parker Jr. Of course.
10. Dubstar - Cathedral Park
I always thought Dubstar was a rubbish name for a band, particularly a band with very little dub in their sound. I always liked the fact that you could hear Sarah Blackwood's northern accent in her vocals though.
The interweb tells me Dubstar are recording again and soon to release a new record. Ooh...
9. The Auteurs - After Murder Park
A song about dead children to cheer your dark winter days. Could have been worse (?) - I could have gone with Tom Lehrer - Poisoning Pigeons In The Park.
8. Feist - The Park
Feist thinks she's seen an old love in the park... it's unlikely she'll see him there again.
7. Georgie Fame - Sitting In the Park
Or you may prefer the original by Billy Stewart, which I only just discovered, but it is rather fine.
6. Cinerama - Barefoot In The Park
Named after the old Jane Fonda / Robert Redford movie, this is David Gedge going all romantic on us again. Hardly the sort of thing you'd hear on Steve Wright's Sunday Love Songs, but perhaps it ought to be...
Yes it's because you're just sublime5. Blur - Park Life
That I think about you all the time
Don't ask me if it's true
Because how could anybody not love you?
You may have expected this nearer the top... but in retrospect, isn't it just the teeniest bit annoying? Great single, but still... a bit annoying. Actually, I'm not sure who's more annoying, Damon or Phil Daniels. Probably Damon... Phil's just playing a part.
For something slightly less annoying from the Blur boys (but not half as catchy), try Trailer Park.
4. Bruce Springsteen - 4th of July, Asbury Park
Look, I'm not going to apologise for the amount of times Bruce makes My Tops Tens... but I should probably apologise that this one only got to #4. In any other chart... Number One With A Bullet.
And me, I just got tired of hangin' in them dusty arcades3. Billy Bragg - Tank Park Salute
Bangin' them pleasure machines
Chasin' the factory girls underneath the boardwalk
Where they all promise to unsnap their jeans
And you know that tilt-a-whirl down on the south beach drag
I got on it last night and my shirt got caught
And they kept me spinnin', dear, didn't think I'd ever get off
One of Billy's most heartbreaking songs, about a young boy coming to terms with the death of his father. Sends a shiver down my spine.
For a much younger, much more raucous Billy, you might try: Riff Raff - Barking Park Lake.
2. Small Faces - Itchycoo Park
I feel inclined to blow my mindWhat did you do there?
Get hung up, feed the ducks with a bun
They all come out to groove about
Be nice and have fun in the sun
I got high!
You don't say...
1. Richard Harris - MacArthur Park
Yes, I could have gone with the Donna Summer version, the Glen Campbell version... or even Jimmy Webb's own version... but Richard Harris did it first, and most famously. This song gets a lot of stick, partly because as a singer, Richard Harris was a great actor... and partly because nobody can really agree on what the lyrics are about. Hell to all that - it's a metaphor, deal with it.
Those were my favourite park songs, but... which one leaves your cake out in the rain?