Bad Holiday: New Song by Loic J Tuckey
You wait and you wait and you wait. But nothing shows. Until finally, from the dirty end of the hard drive, comes Bad Holiday. Located a mile beneath hundreds of compressed MP3s is a song which I’d all but written off. Hear it now.
Over the past eight years or so, I have carried around my external hard drive like a precious newborn child. I kept it safe with bubble wrap on short rides to the studio and hidden it away from clumsy family members and visitors. It’s even spent some time in a locked safe.
But now, I’ve begun to ask myself “what is the point?”
Well, there isn’t any. Not as far as I can work out now, anyway. So I will dig deep and put every petty, no-good recording I’ve ever made online so I can free myself of this burden.
Today, seven years after being told to train with the reserves, Bad Holiday has been recalled to the starting lineup. You can listen now.
Was it really such a bad holiday?
Bad Holiday touches on a British tourist’s first few hours on the beach of Rio de Janeiro. Specifically, Copacabana, where Lola the showgirl has been plying her trade for what must seem like centuries. Our guy in Rio finds himself on the receiving end of a local scam in which he struggles to navigate his way out.
The scam involves one person discreetly throwing a poo-like substance onto the tourist’s shoe while another offers to clean it up for a price. Needless to say, our guy in Rio is not impressed with the welcome party. After some fuss he manages to leave the situation amicably, but with a badly stained shoe.
A short time later, another local harangues our guy and offers to clean it up for R$30. These days that price translates to around £5.82, but back in 2008, he could have bought a new pair of shoes at a local market for that cost. So, again he declines the offer and decides to cut his losses. Fed up with the bother, he simply calls an end to his holiday and returns to Sheffield.
In reality, this story goes on and on. And would be another six weeks before being forced to fly home for different reasons entirely.
Excluded highlights include a chase around the streets of Rio by a man on crutches who demanded access to the mucky shoe. Our guy loses his bearings and winds up miles from the safety of his hotel and right back where the trouble started.
Eventually, the police get involved too. As does a local translater, who manages to clean up a few misunderstandings.
The recording of unfulfilled potential
Bad Holiday was recorded in one single afternoon using a few battered SM57s and an unremarkable condenser mic from no brand worth remembering. The drums and guitar were recorded live while the bass was overdubbed using a typical DI box from any local music store. The same goes for the vocals, clearly without the security of a pop-shield.
It’s fair to say this is not the intended finished article. Hence it’s been sitting on my hard drive for the average life-span of an Irish Wolfhound. Unfortunately, my old Mac took a tumble and was rendered useless. This file is all that remains of that session. Seemingly shat out as a rough mix and destined to remain buried beneath future WAVs and MP3s. Until now.
Yes, the mix is dodgy. It contains mic knocks and background mutterings which were never eliminated and would benefit greatly from a lot more investment. But despite its flaws, I like the song. At the root of the thing is a nice story and some great vocals from my pals Sophia Petit of Night Flowers, and Luke Twyman of North East Lincolnshire.
Some happy-go-lucky types will label the recording as ‘having character.’ Other’s might say it’s ‘salt of the Earth,’ kind of stuff. If I shared that same positive outlook then Bad Holiday needn’t have stayed hidden on my hard drive for seven years.
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