Welcome to the second edition of our 'Guilty Pleasure' series. This time around we asked a few of our friends that work behind the scenes. The results are even more amazing than our last adventure down the guilty pleasure road (click here). Personally I'm siding with Will Smith this time around. Paul 'A Badge Of Friendship' Photobucket My guilty pleasure would have to come from the 80s. Being an 80s child, the older I become I realise just how many cheesy songs I know all the words to. Forget Fugazi, Soundgarden or The Red House Painters, sometimes I just want to listen to Hall and Oats, Phil Collins or Huey Lewis and The News! Hell, even a bit of Pat Benatar, Duran Duran and Spandau Ballet will work its way onto the McCallum iPod from on occasion. Most of the 80s ballads hold up today as great sing along party tunes; unlike anything I find on offer in modern music at the moment. Take Hall and Oates’ 'Maneater' for example - two sinister looking weirdo's singing about a money hungry woman who is intent on ripping your world apart. With lines like “Oh, here she comes, watch out boy she’ll chew you up” and “the beauty is there but a beast is in the heart”, how could anyone resist? Not that they look like they’ve even seen a woman before. The one with the moustache (Oates) looks like he’s been let out on day release or has been taken in as Hall’s live in lover after he’s just landed in the US illegally. With the customary big hair, bad clothes and a saxophonist lurking in the shadows like a flasher on Hampstead Heath, this encapsulates everything about the 80s that I love in about 4 minutes! www.abadgeoffriendship.com Claire 'A Badge Of Friendship' I love Will Smith. I don't care who knows it. My love of Mr. Smith goes back a long time, all the way back to his days sipping drinks with Jazzy Jeff at random garden parties whilst rapping about the "Summer Time". And who could forget the ultimate cheesy party hit "Boom! Shake The Room!" - Big Willy knows how to get the good vibes flowing! My love of Will began during his Fresh Prince days. I watched that show and all the reruns to death. Although there were other fantastic characters like Uncle Phil and Carlton, Will was always my number one. He was cheeky enough without being a dick and seemed like the ultimate nice guy - all character traits that are prevalent in his films. He's just great - what's not to love? This is why I also love his music plus he's actually penned a few good tunes in his time as well. Sure there are the huge hits like the Men In Black theme tune but I strongly recommend you listen to "Miami" and "Switch" - two post Jazzy Jeff tunes that are just brilliant songs. He's not a great rapper but his voice suits the music and the music is really bloody catchy. I guess I just love the Smithmeister because his music makes me smile. I'm a sucker for a tune you can dance and sing along (badly) to. For me, music has to evoke an emotion and in the case of Will Smith that emotion is unadulterated fun and happy vibes. I'll even forgive him for "Wild Wild West", which for me, in hindsight, isn't that bad a song... is it? Guys? Anyone...? www.abadgeoffriendship.com Jules 'EyeSeeSound' Photobucket As much as I love great and challenging music, I do love my crap too. Thus it is with great pleasure that I shall extol the underrated genius of the following three short moments of musical wondrousness... Nick Kamen – 'I Promised Myself' Despite the intro ripping off 'A Little Respect' by Erasure, or because of it - who knows - I love this joyous celebration of monogamy and fairytale love. Ah, bless pop music and its' head in the sand attitude to the realities of life. I owned the 12" vinyl of this. I'm still gutted I lost it. S Club 7 – 'Reach' Pure joyous celebratory pop. I truly love this. Still. And yes, we had a dance for it. Meatloaf – 'For Crying Out Loud' I love every piece of cod-rock Steinman has ever written; it's so pompously and self-indulgently overblown. Magnificent. And this is the best thing he's ever had recorded. A nine minute piano led epic ballad sung by a man who pours his soul into every word he sings, despite the fact they are all actually really terrible lyrics (I sometimes think Steinman wrote all his lyrics before he was 15 and kept them in a book till he needed some). It also contains my all time favourite Meatloaf lyric "Can't you see my faded levi's bursting apart". Genius. http://www.eyeseesound.tv/ Peter 'EyeSeeSound' Photobucket Early 80's Black Sabbath Sabbath have almost been rehabilitated as long as it's the earlier, weirder stuff. But I'm talking about when Ronnie James Dio (RIP) replaced Ozzy and they went onstage wearing spandex and chainmail, wittering on about demons and wizards (or angels and wildebeest, if you listen to Tenacious D). Dio - possibly the most pompous and preposterous nincompoop to ever grace the stage. I love him, and not in any kind of cool, knowing, ironic way. The band are truly mighty on those records too. When mainstream pop went utterly gutless in the 80s, this kind of ludicrous codswallop kept me believing in Rock'n'Roll, although I soon learned to keep it a secret, because I wanted to lose my virginity. And that was clearly never going to happen as long as I had an iron-on Black Sab transfer on the back of my C&A denim jacket. Then Nirvana came along and suddenly it was OK to like rock again. Girls liked Kurt, so we rockers started to cautiously come in from the cold, but it was a long time before I could own up to this one. I still reference these albums ('Heaven' and 'Hell/Mob Rules') a lot as a benchmark when I'm mixing rock. If your perceptive/sensitive/witty/intelligent lyrics can move me half as much as Ronnie spouting utter bollocks, then we might have a record. http://www.eyeseesound.tv/ Simon 'EyeSeeSound' Photobucket Andy Williams Hmm... my problem here is I don't see Andy as a guilty pleasure. As far as I'm concerned anyone with any sense will know that this guy had one of the best voices in music history. After listening to music passionately most of my life and seeing bands regurgitating the same old pap I found myself looking backwards for something that would touch me in some other way than a riff from a guitar or a beat/horn stab sampled and ruined by some crap hip hop or dance band and what I found was Andy... beautiful warm fuzzy vocals, wonderfully funky backing music and songs up there with the best ever written. Not only was his voice warm and full of depth but the tunes were amazing too. His version of 'Spooky' is amazing as well as songs like 'Wives and Lovers' and the best version of 'Impossible Dream'. Not forgetting his 60's TV show which was and is amazing in its kitchyness... in a good way... yeah he can be a bit cheesy but the man could croon like no other!!! http://www.eyeseesound.tv/ Jack 'Alcopop' Photobucket Gay Dad Ok! So the cynical amongst you might suggest that the inception of Cliff Jones’ garishly entitled indie pop ‘experiment’ was a travesty. Some cunt journalist who’s been in the industry long enough constructs a band that can’t fail (allegedly), sticks in a load of clichéd lyrics (that’s cool/ Aerosmith rule.. C’mon let’s get it on/ and put some Kraftwek on) and deliberately picks a contentious(ish) name. Then he works all his contacts to build up some buzz which lasts for about 3 weeks, before slipping slowly and quietly away, leaving the poorly selling debut album cramming HMV sale racks until they’re all pulped. But the truth is that personally I really kinda dug that album, and still give it a spin now and then – even to this day (shame). You see, despite the idea that he actually went out to manufacture his own act (and seemed proud of it, Cliff and co did pen some pretty bangin’ indie hits - and flop 3rd single, the ridiculously titled Oh Jim, was really quite a tender, tear-jerking track. The album, although by no means a classic, outweighed bad tracks with good – and 'To Earth with Love' was huge. Oh come on, it was! Wasn’t it? Please don’t boycott my label. :-) http://www.ilovealcopop.co.uk