Last month, The Guardian printed a list of 49 ‘Musical Secret Weapons’, albums that were ‘obscure but incredible’, overlooked yet, in their way, essential to those who cherished them. Music industry folk (Maconie, Marr, Manzanera etc.) chose the 49; a week or two later ordinary punters suggested albums that should complete the fifty. The pieces proved fascinating reads and have flagged up a number of long players I’d quite fancy for my birthday next month and for Christmas (if you weren't aware, also next month). I’ve asked for the Roy Harper album Stormcock, The Sound’s Jeopardy, Georges Brassens’ Les Amoureux Des Bancs Publics and a few others. I won’t bang on about them but feel free to browse the lists yourself. I wonder if Santa will be kind to me. One album on the lists that I certainly require - but Amazon isn’t flogging at the moment - is Eg and Alice’s 24 Years of Hunger, a genuine lost classic that critics and cognoscenti rave about but which never sold and kinda disappeared. I shall have to put my feelers out and find out if anyone I know owns the blighter. EBay had a copy at the weekend but I was too tardy and, by the time I thought about bidding, it was too late.
I have used the word cognoscenti on consecutive days and I feel a touch self-conscious as a result.