Diane Young – Vampire Weekend (2013, XL Recordings, Taken from ‘Modern Vampires of the City’)
Two things leap into my mind when I think of the name Diane. The first is figure from my childhood – Miss Diane, who was in the long running Brummie soap Crossroads. Crossroads for those of you who are under 30 or simply had better things to do in the early eighties, was set in a Motel and ran for twenty years. It was famous for its ridiculous storylines, such as its kitchen assistant, the wonderfully named Amy Turtle, being arrested for being a Russian spy and its wobbly sets, which were made out of cardboard and often shook on screen when doors slammed.
Miss Diane, was in the soap for twenty years and in that time she was married three times and it turns out that the only person who actually called her ‘Miss Diane’, like she was some sort of control freak Dominatrix, was village idiot masquerading as a handyman, Benny Hawkins. Benny for those of you who want to be reminded of Crossroads (and it is accepted that there is absolutely no reason why you should, it was largely terrible for the last fifteen years of its life) always wore a blue bobble hat and spoke with a yokel accent. So ingrained in my childhood was Benny and his hat, that I used to call the old man who lived at the top of my dad’s road, who always wore a blue bobble hat when he went out, ‘Benny’. For years even when Crossroads had been axed and I was old enough to know that the man with the hat at the top of the road was called Ron, I still referred to him as ‘Benny’. I think my brother once shouted “Ooh, Miss Diane” at him once as we cycled past him on our Raleigh Grifters.
The second Diane that leaps into my mind when I think of that name is of Diane from Trainspotting, who must surely be the best Diane to have ever graced our screens. I remember going to a press only screening of Trainspotting when it first came out. I came away with a record bag full of Trainspotting swag, which I was supposed to give away in the student paper by setting some sort of stupid question like “Who plays Renton in the film – a) Robert De Niro, b) Edd the Duck or c) Ewan Macgregor.
The record bag contained Tshirts, a copy of the soundtrack, a copy of the book by Irvine Welsh and a massive poster of Diane snarling at the camera (see above). I kept the bag and the poster and gave the rest away as prizes.
Just to make people feel ridiculously old, I’ve just checked and that advance press screening took place on February 20th 1996. Twenty seven years ago today.
There is a cluster of other Diane and for the sake of completeness Diana songs in the music library. Here are two of each, the Diane ones are the same song, in contrasting styles.
Diane – Husker Du (1983, SST Records, Taken from ‘Metal Circus EP’) – ‘Diane’ of course is a true story. It was written by Grant Hart about the murder of a waitress called Diane by a chap called Joseph Ture Jr in 1980. In 2004, Nick Talbot under his Gravenhurst persona, took the song stripped it back marvellously and almost made it his own.
Diane – Gravenhurst (2004, XL Records, Taken from ‘Black Holes In The Sand’)
The two Diana songs are firstly, taken from the debut album by Northumberland’s Everything Everything, who I thought were named after an Underworld lyric, but are apparently named after a Radiohead song.
Come Alive, Diana – Everything, Everything (2010, Geffen Records, Taken from ‘Man Alive’)
Finally for today, a track taken from the debut album by Sweden’s The Concretes, all about listening to songs by the worlds worst penalty taker, Diana Ross.
Diana Ross – The Concretes (2003, Licking Fingers Records, Taken from ‘The Concretes’)
Tomorrow – Annie, who may or may not be ok.