I’ve realised that I’ve started posting about items from my Boomtown Rats singles collection – the more unusual items that I hope you’ll all be interested in.
With some of the new features in City Hall, it would be possible to set up a “Collectors’ Corner” – somewhere where avid collectors could meet to share highlights from their collections. This wouldn’t necessarily need to be just about Boomtown Rats singles: the “Collector’s Corner” could focus on anything - albums, badges, press cuttings by the singers and bands that citizens are into. If you think this is a good idea – go to City Hall and drop me a message in “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For”. We’ll add a suitable song title and an image, and it will be good to go!!
For this post, I wanted to explore the often-confusing world of Rat Trap singles – although it’s possible that you weren’t aware there was anything to get confused about…..??
As discussed in October’s anniversary post on Rat Trap, there were a few hiccups with the production and release of the songon 7”. Ensign records never intended to release the song as a single. But after it went out on the Kenny Everett Show, fans of the song descended on record shops to buy it….....only to find it wasn’t available. Eventually the record company caught up and started production.
From what I can tell, most of the initial copies of the single were straightforward pressings of the album track – no reworking, no re-mastering, nothing.
Factories in both England and France were pressed into production with yellow label copies from England and silver labels versions from France.
On the copies pressed in England, a line from the song, ‘Swing high, swing free’ was scratched into the run-out area. There is supposed to be a dark green labelled version with ‘Swing high, swing free’ but I can’t find a copy anywhere!!!
So you’d think that was the supply problem sorted……well, no!!
Both the album version and the initial pressings included the line “Pus and grime ooze from the scab-crusted sores” and this seems to have caused offence to some people – judged against the standards of chart-music today, this seems ridiculous.
Keen not to damage sales, an alternative version was recorded and pressed – which has come to be known as the DJ edit. This was only pressed in England and comes with yellow and green labels. There’s nothing on the labels to tell the DJ edit apart from the original version – but if you look at the run-out area you’ll see the words “No grime here, Paddy” etched into the vinyl – clearly a reference to the offending(!) words of the song.
Play the record and the “pus and grime” line has been replaced with some poorly over-dubbed words that are quite difficult to understand – something “….being poured down the drains in the stores”?????
So what version(s) do you have – do you have the elusive green-labelled original album edit?? Do you care?? If the answer to those last two questions are ‘yes’ and ‘no’ in that order…..please get in touch with me 😉. If you have a green-label copy with “Swing high swing free in the run-out” – maybe we could make a deal???
So, having straightened all of that out, where does the French-pressed blue vinyl version with the red label fit (top of the post) fit into all of this? Frankly, I haven’t a clue!!!!