Amazing Facts About Music

The Invention of the Record

The very first record was created way back in 1857 by a French scientist called Leon Scott. He was able to record sound onto paper which had been blackened with black candle wax. This amazing invention was known as a “phonoautograph”.

Twenty years later Thomas Edison created the phonograph when he recorded sound onto wax cylinders. Then in 1887, ten years later, Emil Berliner adapted Edison’s idea to put sound on to a flat wax disc and the LP was born.

The UK Singles Chart

The UK singles chart began in 1952, the first number one was Here In My Heart by Al Martino and it remained at number one for nine weeks. The New Musical Express (better known now as NME) is a popular UK music magazine, published weekly since March 1952. It was the first British paper to include a singles chart. In the 1970s it became the best-selling British music magazine.

The Music Cassette

The cassette tape was original used for recording dictations in offices however in 1964 it was started to be used to bring music to the public. Between the early 1970s and the late 1990s, the cassette was one of the two most common formats for prerecorded music alongside the LP. The compact disk was released in 1983 and by the early 1990’s sales of CDs had overtaken that of cassettes.

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UK Number Ones

The song ‘Spirit In The Sky’ has been number one in the UK on three occasions by three different artists. Norman Greenbaun, who wrote the song, released the original in 1970, followed by Doctor and the Medics version in 1986. Gareth Gates reached the number one spot with it in 2003.

Frankie Laine’s ‘I Believe’, went to number one on three separate occasions and for 18 weeks in total during 1953.

The Jackie Wilson song ‘Reet Petite’ was originally released in 1957 but did not reach number one in the UK charts until 1986. 29 years and 42 days after the original release.

The Beatles song ‘With A Little Help From My Friend’ also reached number one in the UK three times, although not by the Beatles themselves. Firstly for Joe Cocker in 1968, then by Wet Wet Wet in 1988. Finally hitting the top spot again for Sam and Mark in 2004.

‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ by Queen has reached the number one spot in the UK in four different years. Originally released in 1975, it reached the top spot in November and was still there in early 1976. After lead singer, Freddie Mercury’s death in 1991, the song was re-released, hitting number one in December of that year and holding on until late January of 1992.

Most Singles in the Top 75

The cast of ‘Glee’ have been making headlines ever since the show launched in May 2009. They hold the record for most Top 75 singles in a year, after hitting 45 last summer. But Michael Jackson managed 27 in one week (21 solo, five with the Jackson 5 and one with sister Janet), following his death in June 2009.

The Youngest and Oldest Chart Toppers

Jimmy Osmond became the youngest UK chart topper in 1972 with ‘Long Haired Lover From Liverpool’ at just 9 years old. Louis Armstrong is the oldest solo artist reaching number one at 67 years old with ‘What A Wonderful World’. Tom Jones reached number one in 2009 when a Comic Relief cover of ‘Islands In The Stream’ hit number one, he was 68 years old.

Some of the Best Cooking Books That Need to Be in Your Kitchen

cook book1. Rick Stein’s Taste of the Sea: 150 Fabulous Recipes for Every Occasion

As a massive lover of seafood, this book has literally been my magna carta. Rick Stein takes you on a journey around the coast and teaches you to really appreciate fish in all its scaly glory. From skinning methods to filleting, this book teaches you how to prepare and cook fish to perfection. Stein writes in a clear and simple fashion and it is impossible to resist his infectious passion. With a variety of dishes that cater for absolutely every occasion, this book is a must have for beginners and experienced fish mongers alike. The instructions are not condescending or set in stone, and leave freedom for experimentation. A truly great book by a truly great chef and teacher.

2. Simple Chinese Cooking by Kylie Kwong

Following the theme of specialist cooking books, Simple Chinese Cooking is an absolute must have for anyone wanting to start a love affair with chinese cooking. Filled with beautiful photography, this book coaches you through each dish with clear and crisp step-by-step instructions. Usually when faced with a specific cook book, there seems a never-ending list of ingredients that appear to exist in outer space, but this book has essentials that can be bought and found easily in local grocery stores. Not only is this book a great guide, but it is also incredibly exciting as each week you can watch yourself develop and gain confidence with once seemingly difficult dishes. From steamed cod to sweet and sour pork, Kwong’s recipes will have you burning all your chinese takeaway menus from the get go.

3. Jamie’s 30 Minute Meals by Jamie Oliver

There can be no such thing as a best cooking books list without Mr Oliver, of course. One of the things I love most about almost all of Jamie Oliver’s cook books are their beautiful and impeccable presentation. They are not endless pages of lines and lines of writing but are instead filled with bright, colourful and delectable pictures, as well as no- nonsense recipes. In his 30 Minute Meals Jaime shows you that once and for all cooking does not have to be a stressful and laborious affair. Jamie’s 30 Minute Meals is amazing for working people for whom time is money, and of course students who wish to spend minimum amount of time cooking and maximum amount of time… studying. Not only is it wonderfully organised with a designated section for starters, mains and desserts, but there are numerous vegetarian recipes scattered inside, making this book literally for every type of chef.

cooking4. The Best Recipes in the World by Mark Bittman

After his debut cook book How to Cook Everything became an international sensation, Bittman is back to teach you it is easier than you thought to cook recipes from all around the world. With no unnecessary embellishments Bittman gently leads you on a culinary round the world trip that will leave your taste buds in a state of euphoria. The best aspect of Mark Bittman’s The Best Recipes In The World whilst you may never get round to cooking everything inside, the dishes you do make will leave you feeling inspired to take dishes you already cook and turn them on their head. Although it can be overwhelming to face so many recipes in one book, I urge you to add this to your collection. It is timeless and will only help to increase your knowledge of food.

5. Gordon Ramsay’s Secrets by Gordon Ramsay

In this incredible and not too badly priced book, Gordon Ramsay lets you in on a few secrets that have made him the world-renowned chef that we have all come to love. With a huge collection of recipes from poultry to fish and desserts to soups, this cookbook lets you in on inside info that will have friends and family thinking you are a bona-fide kitchen guru. The recipes are simple and effective and Ramsay has even added flourishes of his own, such as useful tips on presenting dishes. If you really have a passion for cooking or would love to learn more, this is the book that teaches you not just to cook but how to become a chef. These tips help to make cooking a truly enjoyable experience and will boost your confidence to be adventurous not only in cooking but also in eating as well.

6. The Complete Book of Sushi by Hideo Dekura

As a self-confessed sushi addict this book is incredible – the pages are almost edible. It combines the modern with the traditional and allows you to get to grips with this difficult Japanese style of cooking. Although not to everyone’s taste, this book teaches you the secrets behind making that difficult sticky rice and how to present your sushi in wonderful ways. The most interesting thing about Dekura’s book is they way it advances from simple to expert. This allows you to move gradually at your own pace and also sets little targets within the book. Whilst there are other books on the market such as Yo Sushi’s, it is Dekura’s book that really stands out of the crowd. With gorgeous photography it inspires with a mere flick of the page, and unlike its contemporaries has clear and simple instructions. A must have for any sushi fan and it also makes a great present.