Returning home on Friday, after roughly 8 hours driving I got the news that our cat had been to the vets for the last time. Now the Internet is full of pictures of cute cats, and I am not going to add to that number, but I will miss Ash (for that was her name) as we had got her when we got our first house together, and she was a day shy of 17 years old on Friday. Ash was named primarily after the band Ash who burst onto the Britpop scene as precocious 16 year olds, touring in school holidays etc. it did help that Ash was a cute name for a cat too. Ash have been a cracking band over the years, being able to throw off golden pop singles willy nilly. Starting with Kung Fu where my love of their tunes began, a blistering pop tune, guitars whirling at the beginning, "Chill, Chill" dang dagga dang....Kung fu do what you do to me.... I've had loads of fun following Ash over the years, they remain the only band I've ever heard of to play a gig in Redditch, at the social club, when they asked the fans on the website where they should play. That was a hot and sweaty gig, topped off by my mate wearing the same T shirt as Rick the drummer. They were also the object of a vinyl obsession of mine, a red vinyl 7 inch limited edition single, with Drew Barrymore on the front. The single was a limited edition cover, doing get ready, given that's a cracking cover version done by one of my favourite bands it was an object of desire, it was gone quickly from the shops and so I remember thinking seriously about buying the single for £35! You can see this was the time before kids, but also a time where getting a song was hard, not like now where you can get it by jumping on iTunes or tapping on google. If I want the single now it's £7 on discogs, cheaper than most things on record store day. The song 'Girl from Mars' was always special, having been singing under my breathe for a week or song, Mrs P was disappointed to find out I wasn't singing "I still love you the girl from Marske" the town she's from. It's a special song as a result. I also got a great sampler album of there mini album Trailer, from Reddingtons Rare Records (long gone) but it looked cool, with the gold writing on the front "FOR PROMOTIONAL USE ONLY. SALE OR OTHER TRANSFER IS PROHIBITED. MUST BE RETURNED ON DEMAND OF RECORD COMPANY" all I can say is I hope they don't ask for it back. They are still going strong too, no doubt because they are innovative (as seen by the above tour), such as coming up with the A-Z singles releases (a release of a single every fortnight for a year) and accompanying uk tour, visiting a town starting with every letter of the alphabet (Queens Park, London, Ventnor, Zennor, Exmouth were the tricky ones they got) So to my Ash, she was the runt of the litter, we got her from a Squat in Walsall through a friend of a friend, her tail was broke at the end so it never grew properly and she would never get too friendly with anyone, even if purring you needed to watch out for the swipe of viscous claws. But I am sad now she's gone, she's been a huge part of my life always pottering around, never being any trouble, and the 2 other cats we have, big boy cats, we're clearly scared of little Ash, as they have now started getting on the sofa, they obviously didn't dare before. My favourite Ash songs, top 5 5. Orpheus - love that Mexican kick off
4. Jack names the planets - played at every gig, on the Trailer album no one else had, good stuff
3. Shining light - interesting fact, covered by Annie Lennox
2. Girl from Mars - for Mrs P
1. Kung Fu - never bettered in my eyes, especially for having the picture of Cantona launched into the crowd as the single cover, classic.