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First loves will never, ever, die.

Byline: Mike Chapple

SOME misery-moos say that at a certain age you should put aside the frivolous pleasures of your youth and learn to appreciate the more refined enjoyments of growing older - like making love to your slippers.

But like an increasing number of people of a certain age, I'm discovering that those dual teenage passions for music and football remain undiminished. In fact, sometimes they continue to be a source of joy in an otherwise mundane and hum-drum existence.

So it proved last week after first renewing an acquaintance with Geoff Davies, the former owner of what could have once been acclaimed one of the greatest music emporiums in the world - Probe Records, in Button Street.

Now a rather forlorn shadow of its former self hidden away in Wood Street, during its hey day in the mid 70s through to the early 80s, it was a magical place filled with characters and fantastic sounds. The pleasures found there were many.

Who could forget the delight at being served by a sullen dreadlocked Pete Burns (later to hit number one as lead singer with Dead Or Alive) caked in orange make-up, eyeliner and lipstick, who would literally throw your chosen album disdainfully across the counter before mincing off to find something better to do.

Memories such as this came flooding back as Geoff - a dry, droll Scouser of the old school - recalled some of the golden years at Probe, and of course Eric's club in nearby Mathew Street.

We talked about Eric's punk house band, Big In Japan, whose most famous 'song' consisted of Jayne Casey shrieking the band's name at 1,000 decibels over a deafening rumble.

They were truly awful.

Geoff begged to disagree: "That was the whole ethos of those days. It was about people getting up and saying we can do this. We can't dance. We can't sing.

Everything went out the window - that was the novel thing. When they learned to play that's when they became c***!"

We both collapsed with laughter - Ant and Dec, you can stick your Pop Idol.

The second highlight of the week came on Saturday afternoon when, at the end of a tense but otherwise scrappy game, Beckham salvaged England's World Cup place at the game's dying breath.

The pub erupted and I was laughing again, intermittently saying "It's fantastic" as Mark, from Kirkby, serenaded the Great Escape theme to a mate on his mobile phone.

There you have it, music and football - simple pleasures but truly fantastic in their own ways.

When the enthusiasm for both goes it will be, as Roy the android in Blade runner memorably proclaimed, truly time to die.
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Copyright 2001 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Columns
Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Date:Oct 8, 2001
Previous Article:Right track.
Next Article:TV review.

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