Mavis's Dream Four







Mavis knows best. So please write to her with all your music-related problems, and she shall attempt to answer in a most condescending manner.

Dear Mavis, Is it me or is there some special kind of Vocoder machine used to great effect on Cher’s vocals on the fantastic no. 1 hit single ‘Believe’? Please help me as this question is keeping me up nights and as a high-court judge, I really need my sleep. Wouldn’t want to inadvertently perform any miscarriages of justice now, eh? Your servant as always, Sir James Wittering-Forceps QC

Dear Sir James, Your letter, frankly, appals and terrifies me. How anyone could call a Cher single ‘fantastic’ is quite utterly beyond me. In answer to your query, though, and in order that the British justice system should remain the best in the world, no, Cher is in fact a robotic space alien with tinfoil hair like out of ‘Day of the Triffids’ or ‘The Terminator’. Or something. Hope you sleep better tonight, I don’t think I will, Love, Auntie Mavis xxxxxxxx

Dear Mavis, I am a young, vibrant, good-looking, well-dressed guy in his, um, mid-30’s, and I come from Somerset. Just lately I have found myself obsessing over stars from boy bands, including Stephen Gately, that bloke out of SClub7 that used to be on EastEnders, and Adam Rickett. Is this normal for a sophisticated, fascinating person like myself? With love from Nemp… er, um, Thrubnett Nempwell X

Dear NEMPNETT, (ain’t much gets past old Mave, young feller-me-lad, and you’d do well do remember that…) Having these feelings is perfectly normal. However, you, following these poor chaps about their daily business, ransacking their garden sheds and doing unspeakable things to their nice little harmless family pets is NOT normal. Now will you please bog off and let me get on with my knitting. I still have 67 squares to go before my giant commemorative blanket of that lovely young lad Bob Pollard is finished (lovingly crafted in no 6 Angora yarn), and I don’t want any more of your nonsense. Got it? Love, Auntie Mavis xxxxxxxx

Dear Mavis, My hubby and I are having a tiff, please could you help us to sort it out? He insists that the solo on Oasis’s ‘Champagne Supernova’ is played on a 12-string Rickenbacker, whereas I know this to be untrue. It is definitely a simple 6-string. However, he says that if I turn out to be right, he will pack his bags and move in with his mistress. Please please please help me, as I cannot pretend for much longer, I really don’t hear those extra jangling strings!!! Yours truly, Janet Dull (Mrs), Wroughton, Swindon.

Dear Janet, Oh, my dear, my heart really goes out to you in this time of crisis and trauma. Of course, everyone knows that all of Oasis’s (s)hits utilise the classic six-string Rickenbacker sound, quite unlike the jingly-jangly sound of the 12-string as used by great old fogeys like The Byrds, on, well, just about every song they ever wrote. Ever. Your hubby is clearly a stupid tone-deaf cheating bastard. My advice is to file for divorce immediately and take him for everything he’s got on the grounds of mental cruelty. Oh by the way, don’t forget to grab the car, as well. Love, Aunty Mavis xxxxxxxxxxxx

Dear Mavis, I have a terrible problem. Please help me, as I am growing desperate and don’t know which way to turn. Every time I hear the words ‘Ibiza’, ‘party’ or ‘Mediterranean sea’, or see stupid dancers on TV, I get an unending, tortuous headloop of the Vengaboys single ‘We’re Going To Ibiza’. It lasts for hours and gives me clanging headaches. I have tried to replace it with assorted hits by Guided By Voices, but to no avail, it just becomes a Bob Pollard/Denise Venga medley duet about tractor rape chains in Ibeetsa. It’s driving me crazy! Love from Alex.

Dear Alex, Well, having consulted the top medical sources of information on this subject (my trusty copy of Chat magazine’s Dr Ardon’s Healthcare page), it would seem that the advice would be to drill a hole in your head to let out the evil, impure thoughts. Ahem. However, this doesn’t sound quite right to me, so I would advise buying a Discman and a blindfold instead. Hope that clears up your embarrassing little problem, my dear boy. Love from Aunty Mavis xxxxxxxxxxxxx

Dear Mavis, I love you. Always your adoring little Nempy X

{editor’s note – 17 pages of this letter had to be carefully binned wearing elbow-length rubber gloves}

Dear Nempnett, Look, I told you before, bog off and leave me alone. You’ve made me drop a stitch now, right in the middle of the complicated bit around Bob’s nostrils. Also, if you EVER send me another 18 page letter, 17 of which consist of X’s scratched into the paper and inked in with something which I can only hope is egg white, I will be forced to report you to the local constabulary. Again. And you remember, you didn’t like what that lynch mob did to you before with the Superglue and the chicken feathers and the flaming torches, did you? Just a warning, dear. Love Aunty Mavis xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx