There’s a family story that when I was about four my grandad bought me a record player, because I’d been given a record of nursery rhymes as a gift and we had nothing to play it on.
There was a portable record player in our house when I was little, and although I have no memory of any nursery rhymes, I do recall a small collection of records that were played again and again. There were a couple by The Beatles (Ticket to Ride was one), something yodell-ey which I now think might have been Frank Ifield’s I Remember You, and Roger Miller’s King of the Road.
I had no idea what the lyrics were, or could possibly mean, but I remember singing along with great enthusiasm … “trailers for cigarettes? sailorettes?”
It’s a song that’s been covered many times by many people, but my absolute favourite version is by the Proclaimers. What’s not to love about twins from Auchtermuchty singing an American song with Scottish accents.
There is a connection of sorts with the photo above. Uncle Tom owned a Messerschmitt KR200 — a three-wheeled bubble car. Being allowed to ride with him was one of the great joys of my young life. In my eyes, he was the King of the Road.
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