I remember first hearing about Word magazine via the Rocking Vicar newsletter that arrived in my inbox each week. Initially, I didn’t know that it was anything to do with Mark Ellen or David Hepworth. These two were partly responsible for my head being full of pop-nonsense through my addiction to Smash Hits from ’81-’85 and then The Whistle Test.
When I saw my the 1st copy (who could resist Mr Cave’s welcoming smile?) in the old Virgin store in Manchester I was instantly intrigued. A group of people had actually put together a magazine about the kind of things I was interested in and done it with some intelligence and passion. In the 1st issue there’s a lengthy review of Herbert Asbury’s Gangs of New York book, a behind the scenes look at life on the 80’s revival Here & Now tour and an article analysing Julie Christie’s enduring appeal. You never got that kind of breadth in Q or Mojo.
My aim in this on-going series is to give a short account of each issue of Word, starting with the first and working steadily through them, highlighting anything particularly note-worthy, funny or unusual as I go. The Word Shuffle is generated by a random number from http://www.random.org/ and briefly describing whatever is on that page. As there’s no on-line record of any of the older issues, it seems like a nice way of preserving some of the content and flavour of this wonderful publication. I’ll try to update every few weeks at least and aim to be done by the end of 2015.
Cover star – Nick Cave
1) p36 round up of information about new releases by Paul Du Noyer. Stephen Malkmus, Turin Brakes and Mel C all get a mention.
2) p125 – an HMV full page advert for Ed Harcourt’s ‘From Every Sphere’ CD.
3) p20 – an article by Paul Sexton about the new ways of calculating the Top 40 singles chart and a short piece singing the praises of Dr. Zoidberg from Futurama.
4) p74 – The final page of Andy Gill’s impassioned defence of Eminem “So what if Eminem doesn’t seem a particularly nice bloke? Neither was Bob Dylan when he was revolutionising rock’s language in 1965”.
5) p116 – the first page of a 3 page review of Missy Elliott’s, Trina’s and Tweet’s new CDs by Paul Du Noyer. “Trina, indeed, is a cold-eyed proposition. Male suitors are advised to begin by offering Maurice Lacroix watches at the very least. They ought also to be fit, for she is high-maintenance, both financially and physically.”
Interesting – Aimee Mann – “My guitar player just gave me a Palm Pilot which makes me feel more technical and smart”
Longer article – John Peel interview by Mark Ellen.