Singles Night at the Virtual Hot Tub #20

Here we go with the first Singles Night of 2021! The Virtual Hot Tub is ecstatic with anticipation for the return of these playlists.

What’s it all about? Well, I’m glad you asked. The singles in question are 45rpm vinyl singles, which I have accumulated over time from various sources. The plan: listen to the records, side A then side B, one after the other without skipping any in the pile. Whilst drinking booze.

Let’s see how I got on this time…

  1. The Temptations – “Psychedelic Shack” / “That’s the Way Love Is”
  2. Queen – “Killer Queen” / “Flick of the Wrist”
  3. Buzzcocks – “I Don’t Mind” / “Autonomy”
  4. The Clash – “Bankrobber” / “Rockers Galore… UK Tour”
  5. The Clash – “Complete Control” / “City of the Dead”
  6. The Damned – “History of the World Part 1” / “I Believe the Impossible” / “Sugar & Spite”
  7. Skids – “Sweet Suburbia” / “Open Sound”
  8. The Beach Boys – “Mona” / “Rock and Roll Music” / “Sail on Sailor” / “Marcella”
  9. ABBA – “Head Over Heels” / “The Visitors”
  10. Bananarama – “Cheers Then” / “Girl About Town”
  11. The Belle Stars – “Sign of the Times” / “Madness”
  12. Chicory Tip – “Son of My Father” / “Pride Comes Before a Fall”
  13. John Farnham – “You’re the Voice” / “Going, Going, Gone”
  14. Stevie Wonder – “My Cherie Amour” / “Don’t Know Why I Love You”
  15. Bardo – “One Step Further” / “Lady of the Night”
  16. The Motors – “Love and Loneliness” / “Time for Make-Up”
  17. Hot Chocolate – “So You Win Again” / “A Part of Being with You”
  18. Elton John – “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road” / “Screw You”
  19. Blondie – “The Tide is High” / “Susie and Jeffrey”
  20. Slade – “We’ll Bring the House Down” / “Hold on to Your Hats”

Twenty – count ’em – twenty great tracks. Well, mostly. A solid offering from the world of punk rock in that collection, with the Buzzcocks, Clash, Damned and Skids singles all being salvaged from a local charity shop. Lucky day.

I had a great night spinning these discs, there are some really awesome records to add to the collection there. Time for more soon. Stay tuned!

Christmas Tat 2020

More bad taste baubles for your entertainment! Last year I displayed some of the wonderfully strange and tacky Christmas tree baubles that I’ve acquired. They can be found hanging from the branches of our festive tree. As I’ve added a couple more to the collection, I thought I’d share them here. for your enjoyment.

Now, something that has distressed me this year, whilst perusing the delights of Twitter, is people referring to these decorations as “ball balls” or even “baule baules”. I know, disgraceful isn’t it? No wonder we’re in the mess we’re in.

Anyway, I hope you like these ball balls, may they bring some yuletide cheer to what is a tough situation for us all.

Below you will see:

  1. A gherkin wearing a Christmas hat (or a pickle wearing a Christmas hat, if you prefer)
  2. A robot (note the clear plastic space helmet he’s wearing, just about visible)

And with that, all I can say is Merry Christmas to all of my readers. Enjoy this festive tat, and keep coming back to Platinum Al’s Virtual Hot Tub for more fun next year!

Christmas Tat 2019

And now for a visual feast of festive tat.  A collection of the odd and the bizarre, rendered in cheap plastic (or glass if you’re lucky).

You may have noticed that certain stores sell “wacky” Christmas baubles, gloriously garish and ridiculously random.  Not the traditional seasonal balls here – we’ve wandered into distinctly abstract territory.

Whilst the groovy shops sell the strange tree trinkets for a tenner, other, less glamorous emporiums are knocking them out for a couple of quid.  And bless ’em, these cheapo ones are usually even more ugly and weird.

Which is where I come in.  As a genuine aficionado of the kitsch Christmas, I have collected some of these decorations from various sources.  They are proudly displayed on our Christmas tree, and here I present them to you for your entertainment.

Enjoy these bad taste baubles, dear reader, and be inspired by the wondrous world of tat.

In the photos below you will see:

  • A taco
  • A guitar
  • A cupcake
  • Santa with a surfboard
  • A pizza slice
  • Some beer
  • Peppers and an ice cream
  • Another taco
  • A VW Beetle
  • A crown and a strawberry
  • A VW camper van with a Christmas tree
  • A crocodile in a UFO (my personal favourite)

 

I want a tattoo of the crocodile in a UFO – spectacular.

Hopefully you’ve enjoyed that trip into the low quality and down right strange.

I would like to wish all my readers a very Merry Christmas!  Thank you for reading Platinum Al’s Virtual Hot Tub, your support is always appreciated.

Tat Trek Update #8: Jo Guest Strip Pen

It’s been far too long since we last took a peep into the collection de tat at Platinum Al’s Virtual Hot Tub.  So lets examine another fine piece from the assembled items of dubious taste and quality which I humbly possess.  And this one is a beauty, make no mistake.

ITEM: Jo Guest Strip Pen

Description: one of those ink pens that feature a picture of a woman on the side, wearing a bikini.  The clothing “disappears” when tilted so that the lady is naked

Cost: Free with copy of Men’s World magazine

Bought: location n/a

Reason for buying: n/a

When I was about twelve, a friend of mine (who was a few years older) went to the seaside and was allowed to buy one of these “tip and strip” novelty pens.  I was thoroughly shocked by this.

Years later, a similar pen came into my possession.  This is the one featured here, which features images of lovely 90’s pin up/page three girl/nudey mag legend, Joanne Guest.

Jo was a popular glamour model in the mid 1990s, and regularly appeared in top-shelf magazine Men’s World.  This pen was a cover mounted free gift with a particular issue.  Of course, I didn’t buy the magazine (or any other, similar publications) – this item was given to me as a gift, honest.

It’s quite a neat little item to own.  Guesty looks very cute on the pen, even though the image is tiny.  The tip and strip action is still working well and the pen even writes.  Owning one of these pens would be an envious item in any stationery stockpile, the fact it’s glam queen Jo Guest emblazoned in all her (naked) glory makes it even more desirable.

I’ve censored Jo’s rudey bits in the above pic, as you can tell.

For anyone who has trouble remembering the 90s, on the right is a pic of Jo from back in the day to refresh your memory:

To see more from my tat collection, go to the right hand side menu and click on “Tat”.  Scroll through for the goodies.

Disclaimer: in no way does Platinum Als Virtual Hot Tub admit to owning, viewing or buying any gentlemen’s periodical/jazz mag.

Singles Night at the Virtual Hot Tub #4

Yes, it’s that time again – a playlist of 45rpm singles that have provided me with an evenings entertainment.

I have a stack of 7″ records that haven’t been listened and filed away yet.  So I spend a night listening to them, both sides, in order.

As you can imagine, there are some dodgy songs in amongst the good stuff.  And this week, there are some corkers.  However, the rules are: the songs MUST be listened to.  I own them, so I must be responsible!

Here’s the list:

  1. Joe Dolce – “Shaddap You Face” / “Ain’t No Hurry”
  2. Sinitta – “Shame Shame Shame” / “Maybe Someday”
  3. The Charlie Daniels Band – “The Devil Went Down to Georgia” / “Rainbow Ride”
  4. Rod Stewart – “Angel” / “What Made Milwaukee Famous (Has Made a Loser Out of Me)”
  5. Kate Bush – “Babooshka” / “Ran Tan Waltz”
  6. Tom Jones – “Help Yourself” / “Day by Day” / “Delilah” / “Smile”
  7. Bananarama – “Love in the First Degree” / “Mr Sleaze”
  8. The Timelords – “Doctorin’ the Tardis” / “Doctorin’ the Tardis”
  9. Pig Bag  – “Papa’s Got a Brand New Pigbag” / “The Backside”
  10. Blondie – “Union City Blue” / “Living in the Real World”
  11. The Sweet – “Hell Raiser” / “Burning”
  12. The Who – “I’m a Boy” / “In the City”
  13. Depeche Mode – “Enjoy the Silence” / “Memphisto”
  14. Free – “My Brother Jake” / “Only My Soul”
  15. Nazareth – “Love Hurts” / “This Flight Tonight” / “Broken Down Angel” / “Hair of the Dog”
  16. Lalo Schifrin – “Jaws” / “Quiet Village”
  17. Rainbow – “I Surrender” / “Vielleicht Das Nachster Zeit (Maybe Next Time)”

Singles Night at the Virtual Hot Tub

Regular readers will be aware of my love for vinyl records: beautiful, spinning discs revealing a world of aural pleasure.  Most of my attention is devoted to albums, though I’ve also amassed a fair collection of 7 inch singles over time.

Back in my younger days, I would pick up singles to embellish my album collection with b-side tracks excluded from the main release.  I’d also pick up some interesting, groovy records that were within my budget and offered something different to my music library.

Over the last couple of years, I originally ignored the 45 rpm singles, but gradually I’ve started picking a few up.  One of the main influences for this was my friend Greeny’s jukebox, installed in his home, which I though was really cool.  It inspired me to pick up a few classics, in order to compile a wider range of musical genres on 7″.

You never, know, I may just get my own jukebox one day.

And so I’ve bought singles from record fairs, charity shops and car boot sales to complete gaps in my collection.  This has left me with a stack of 45s that I haven’t got round to playing yet.

So I had the idea for Singles Night:  I would play the records, both sides (A then B) from the top of the pile down, oldest to newest.  Regardless of genre, or what ever mood I was in.  Almost like the random playlists I’ve posted here before, but analogue.

The reader will notice that there are some cheesy, if not disgusting, purchases included amongst the gems in this list.  Everyone has some guilty pleasures; in the land of the 7″ single, my love of the truly awful can be fully exposed.

Here’s the list of what I played.  May the gods of music forgive me…

  1. Dave Edmunds – “Queen of Hearts” / “Creature from the Black Lagoon”
  2. Lipps, Inc – “Funkytown” / “All Night Dancing”
  3. Depeche Mode – “New Life” / “Shout”
  4. Carrie – “The Birds” / “Sugar Fan (Demo Version)”
  5. Deborah Harry – “I Want That Man” / “Bike Boy”
  6. Lovebug Starski – “Amityville (The House on the Hill)” / “Amityville (The House on the Hill) (Dub Mix)”
  7. Sinitta – “So Macho!” / “Cruising”
  8. Sinitta – “GTO (Radiomix)” / “GTO (Instrumental)”
  9. The Firm – “Star Trekkin'” / “Dub Trek”
  10. Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass – “Mame” / “Our Day Will Come”
  11. Dannii Minogue – “Show You the Way to Go” / “Show You the Way to Go (Dub)”
  12. Partners in Kryme – “Turtle Power” / “Splinter’s Tale 1” + “Splinter’s Tale 2”
  13. MC Hammer – “U Can’t Touch This (LP Version)” / “U Can’t Touch This (Instrumental)”
  14. Selena – “Shotgun” / “Shotgun (Instrumental Version)”
  15. Roxy Music – “Jealous Guy” / “To Turn You On”
  16. Senseless Things – “Hold It Down” / “Crucial Juvenalia”
  17. The Silent Underdog – “Papa’s Got a Brand New Pig Bag” / Pigbag – “Papa’s Got a Brand New Pig Bag”
  18. The Beach Boys – “Breakaway” / “Celebrate the News”
  19. Black Box – “Ride On Time Massive Mix (Remix)” / “Ride On Time Epsom Mix (Remix)”
  20. Genesis – “Invisible Touch” / “The Last Domino”
  21. Quincy Jones – “Razzamatazz (Edit)” / “Velas”
  22. Hawkwind – “Silver Machine” / “Silver Machine (Full Version)” + “Psychedelic Warlords”
  23. David Bowie – “Sorrow” / “Amsterdam”

I could write notes about pretty much every one of those songs to elaborate on why they’re in my collection.  Some are classics – Bowie, Hawkwind, Beach Boys etc. and need no introduction.

But as a means of explanation for some of the really ripe songs, let me say this: Sinitta and Dannii are in my collection ‘cos they’re well fit.

Oh, and “Turtle Power” is an awesome song and needs to be heard again!

I hope you enjoyed that playlist, reader.  I certainly did, and there will be more of this in the future.

Tat Trek Update #7: Dancing King

Let me begin this blog post by stating that I am a big fan of Elvis Presley.  Despite the fact that this particular piece of paraphernalia appears in the Tat section at Platinum Al’s Virtual Hot Tub, please be under no misapprehension that this is a slight on the King of Rock’n’Roll.

So what have we this time in the collection de tat? 

ITEM: “Dancing King” Solar Powered figurine

Description: a small solar powered figure, labelled as the “Dancing King”, but we all know it’s Elvis.

Cost: £1.50 (currently retailing approx. £2.99 in Rhyl)

Bought: Connah’s Quay car boot sale

Reason for buying: It’s Elvis!

The Dancing King is a small Elvis like figurine, who shakes/dances when powered by sunlight.  It’s not exactly Elvis the Pelvis, but it is a pretty cool little wiggle.

I already had a solar powered dancing Hula Girl, who sits on my car dashboard, when I discovered this little trophy.  I bought one for a friend for a Christmas present last year, whilst in tat haven of Rhyl.  I then decided I needed one too.

Luckily, I found this fella in a car boot sale earlier this year.  He was snapped up immediately.

I decided to post this piece today, on the 40th anniversary of Elvis Presley’s death, as a tribute to the great man.  Yes, it’s fun, but no offence meant.  Elvis rules.

RIP Elvis Presley 

08.01.1935 – 16.08.1977

Tat Trek Update #6: Spice Girls Mug

Wow, what’s that saying about waiting for buses?  Yes, it’s another Tat Trek post, not too long after the last one – ‘cos you love ’em so much.  Here we go with another look at an item from my collection of kitsch.

img_20170222_184031807

Item: Spice Girls Mug

Description: your common or garden drinking mug, featuring pictures of girl power legends, the Spice Girls.

Cost: 2 for £1!

Bought: from Shotton (new tat capital?)

Reason for buying: I indulged in the two for a quid offer so I could give one to my daughter and keep one for myself.  Plus I actually think that the Spice Girls were a great pop band.

I couldn’t resist picking up these mugs, especially at the price.  The Spice Girls might seem a bit naff, hence the immediate induction into the Collection de Tat, but to be fair I thought they were pretty good.  They had some genuinely good pop songs and were a lot of fun.  On the whole much better than all that Britpop crap from the time. img_20170222_184056046

Plus the best example to illustrate how fantastic the Spice Girls were is this video.  Now tell me that’s not awesome.

And my daughter likes them, so it was smiles all round.

Despite my justifying my Spice Girls love here, the novelty value of these cheap mugs makes them another fabulous find for Tat Trek.  Hope you enjoy!

Tat Trek Update #5: Meerkat Meal Tray

Let me start this post with an apology.  The “Tat” section of the blog, where I feature items of questionable taste that I have collected, has been severely neglected of late.  The last Tat article was in May 2015, and that was the only one that year.  It’s about time I made amends for this terrible oversight.

It’s not like I’m lacking in kitsch crap to showcase, there’s plenty.  So let’s start 2017 with a fresh effort to celebrate garbage – after all, it seems that the useless and ridiculous are all the rage right now.

Item: Meerkat Meal Tray

Description: a tray which supports a plate of food, with cushioned area underneath to rest on the users lap whilst eating a TV dinner.  Featuring a delightful picture of a group of meerkats. img_20170129_181552466

Cost: approx £7

Reason for buying: this item was actually bought by Mrs Platinum Al.  But as it’s in the house, I’m claiming it as an entry for Tat Trek.

Yes, not actually an item that I bought, but never the less, part of the scenery chez Platinum Al.  Seven quid is a bit steep for tat, even for me.  And it was from Charlie’s in Shotton, rather than Rhyl.

Even so, this fantastic item features one of the great tat icons of our age: the always popular meerkat.  For that reason, if not the fact that TV dinner trays are a bit naff, this item is proudly part of our Collection de Tat.