Playlist Of Pete Atkin

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    Pete Atkin - Beware of the Beatiful Stranger


    It seemed a crime to me that no-one has uploaded this yet, so I spent all afternoon teaching myself how to upload videos to youtube to set things right. This is the unforgettable title track from Pete Atkin's brilliant debut album.

    Music: Pete Atkin
    Lyrics: Clive James

    If you enjoy this, you should visit

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    Pete Atkin on The Old Grey Whistle Test, 1974


    BBC TV session 25th June 1974 for Bob Harris 'The Old Grey Whistle Test'. Pete Atkin plays 'An Array Of Passionate Lovers' and 'Care-Charmer Sleep', accompanied by Steve Cook (bass guitar) and Paul Keogh (electric guitar).

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    Pete Atkin - Girl on the Train


    A memorable track from Pete Atkin's first album, Beware of the Beautiful Stranger

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    THE COLOURS OF THE NIGHT Pete Atkin with Clive James


    Pete Atkin has been writing songs with Clive James for nearly fifty years. Pete's new album will probably be the last to include new songs by the two of them. This conversation between them, interspersed with excerpts from the album, was recorded in June 2015 in Clive's kitchen.

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    Pete Atkin Beware Of The Beautiful Stranger


    Pete Atkin plays Beware Of The Beautiful Stranger at Acoustic Routes, Cambridge, UK, 11 Oct 2014.

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    Pete Atkin - The Last Hill That Shows You All The Valley


    On the last hill that shows you all the valley
    Look back to see what little's to be seen
    Burned books left over from the rally
    A worker-priest left bleeding in the alley
    And realise this place was never green

    On the last hill that shows you all your travel
    Look back to see your tepees disappear
    A team of army dump-trucks full of gravel
    Comes to fill the graves and tamp them level
    The buffalo will not return this year

    On the last hill that brands you as a dreamer
    Look back to see the dreams were always true
    The Persians went ashore at Iwo Jima
    Christ was in the gold mines at Kolyma
    Denounced because his mother was a Jew

    On the last hill that shows you all the battle
    Look back to everywhere you cried for joy
    The killer-dogs run down your barren cattle
    Your kid Cassandra walks collecting metal
    And you'll see when those rows of dust-clouds settle
    There are helicopters on the walls of Troy

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    pete atkin - between us there is nothing


    this song comes from the album - a king at nightfall 1973

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    Pete Atkin 2012 - Tenderfoot


    A masterful evocation of the desert landscapes of the American southwest, Tenderfoot is an allegory of a man suffering massive regret for his loss of true love through a lifetime of his own uncaring actions. Written in the early 1970s, this is one of Clive James' greatest and most poignant lyrics. Here Pete Atkin gives the song a rare outing in May 2012 at the Château of Saint-Germain-en-Laye, near Paris, France.

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    Pete Atkin - Touch Has a Memory


    After several requests, here's 'Touch Has a Memory' from Pete Atkin's first album 'Beware of the Beatiful Stranger'.

    Tricky/expensive to find now, you can still find a very fine recording of the song on Pete's latest album, 'Midnight Voices'. Please visit

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    Pete Atkin - Driving Through Mythical America


    Title track from the brilliant Pete Atkin's second album 'Driving Through Mythical America'. 1971. Lyrics by Clive James. Take that, Jethro Tull.

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    Pete Atkin


    Laughing Boy: garden music in St Germain en Laye, May 2012

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    Pete Atkin - Have You Got A Biro I Can Borrow?


    Pete Atkin is one of the relatively unheralded singer-songwriters of the 1960s and 70s. Baffling really, considering his lyrics are by the great Australian critic and poet Clive James, and that his melodies have a lilting oh-so-English quality reminiscent of Kevin Ayers, Nick Drake and even Cat Stevens. He's severely under-represented on youtube so I've decided to upload a few of his songs. 'Have You Got A Biro I Can Borrow?' is from his 1969 album 'Beware Of The Beautiful Stranger' and is probably the only love song to reference biros, double-decker buses, rubber bands and the belt of Orion.

    More at

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    thief in the night Pete Atkin


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    Girl On The Train - Pete Atkin Cover


    Yes its another Pete Atkin. This took 4 hours of meticulous strings alteration to get right... Still, I am rather pleased. Thanks for listening chums.

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    Youd Better Face It Boy


    Pete Atkin with Simon Wallace on piano sings a song from The Colours Of The Night, lyric by Clive James, music by Pete Atkin

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    Pete Atkin - Errant Knight


    My Lady Anne your champion's depressed
    I'm not in shape to carry on the quest
    I have to keep my speed down to a trot
    Or lose what little armour plate I've got

    My screws are loose, my clamps are hanging off
    My helmet topples every time I cough
    I topple with it every time I charge
    I've gotta get this suit to a garage

    Oh do you wonder I feel so uptight
    Times were never tougher for an errant knight

    My faithful steed is the joke of Joyous Gard
    And sensitive withal he takes it hard
    His forward gears are shot, and what is worse
    He's too slow for my safety in reverse

    So there we go, my faithful steed and me
    No third party, tax or M.O.T.
    And there beside me rides my faithful squire
    His card's unstamped, his trumpet fixed with wire

    Oh do you wonder I feel so uptight
    Times were never tougher for an errant knight

    For tomorrow I must fight Sir Valentine
    Thy hateful ravisher, the prancing swine
    The time has come for him to meet his fate
    From me, Sir Sagramore the second-rate

    The joust is in the morning, Lady Anne
    And you not there? My one and only fan
    This time I pray that I may stay the course
    And not fall from the crane and miss my horse

    Oh do you wonder I feel so uptight
    Times were never tougher for an errant knight

    But Justice, God and Truth watch over me
    At half a sovereign ringside, children free
    Sir Valentine the Violent is through
    Providing God comes up with something new

    'Cause his drop-forged armour and his tungsten axe
    His horse that runs on caterpillar tracks
    That showy stuff is strictly for parades
    Like his rocket launcher, radar and grenades

    Oh do you wonder I feel so uptight
    Times were never tougher for an errant knight

    Sir Valentine the Violent, supersword
    Tilts with me tomorrow on the sward
    Thy just revenge lies in my hand and eye
    My faithful squire has bade me do or die
    And put all his money on the other guy

    So dost thou wonder I feel so uptight
    Times were never tougher for an errant knight

    Oh do you wonder I feel so uptight
    Times were never tougher
    Like rugged, man, and rougher
    Times were never tougher for an errant knight

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    Pete Atkin - Nothing Left To Say


    Another clip from Pete's March 2017 gig at The Pheasantry: a rare performance of this James/Atkin song.
    [Piano Simon Wallace, Video Seán Kelly]

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    Pete Atkin - The Wristwatch For a Drummer


    From the album 1973 RCA album, A King At Nightfall.

    Music and Vocals - Pete Atkin
    Lyrics - Clive James

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    Be Careful When They Offer You The Moon - Pete Atkin Cover


    Hmm. Reuploaded because the other version was crap. Good thing only 6 people saw it, really. Thanks for listening chums.

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    Pete Atkin - The Hypertension Kid


    Last night I met the Hypertension Kid
    Grimly chasing shorts with halves of bitter
    In a Mayfair club they call the Early Quitter
    He met my eyes and hit me for a quid

    I spend fortunes in this rat-trap said the Kid
    But the plush and flock soak up the brain's kerfuffle
    And I like to see a servile barman shuffle
    If sympathy's your need let's hear your bid

    It's my lousy memory I told the Kid
    What other men forget I still remember
    The flies are still alive inside the amber
    It's a garbage can with rubbish for a lid

    Your metaphors are murder said the Kid
    I know the mood -- give in to it a little
    The man who shatters is the man who's brittle
    Lay off the brakes and steer into the skid

    Strained virtue warps the soul announced the Kid
    Those forced attempts at cleanliness that linger
    Like soap between your wedding ring and finger
    They're residues of which you're better rid

    For evil said the Hypertension Kid
    Is better contemplated in the deeds of others
    Mass-murderers and men who knife their mothers
    Be glad that what you've done is all you did

    With me the problem's women said the Kid
    Befuddled, fondled under separate covers
    One and all they've gone to other lovers
    As I powered down to zero from the grid

    But I love the little darlings sighed the Kid
    The slide from grace is really more like gliding
    And I've found the trick is not to stop the sliding
    But to find a graceful way of staying slid

    As for the dreadful memories said the Kid
    The waste and poison in the spirit's river
    Relax your hands and let the bastards quiver
    They tremble more the more you keep it hid

    We turned to leave the bar, me and the Kid
    I with lightened head and lessened terror
    Toward the street, and he into the mirror
    My second self, the Hypertension Kid

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    Pete Atkin - An Array Of Passionate Lovers


    Pete plays this Atkin/James song from the 1974 album The Road Of Silk. Paul Keogh plays electric guitar and Steve Cook is on bass.

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    Pete Atkin - A King at Nightfall


    The title track from Pete Atkin's third - and, in my humble opinion, his finest - studio album. Pete's albums are trickier to get a hold of right now than they used to be, but are well worth the extra effort. Please visit

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    Pete Atkin - The Beautiful Changes


    From 9x2

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    Pete Atkin - All The Dead Were Strangers


    Pete Atkin at Theatre of Dreams 2009, Lantern Theatre, Sheffield

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    Pete Atkin - Carnations On The Roof


    From Pete's third album, A King At Nightfall. Lyrics to this (and all the album) by Clive James.

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    Pete Atkin - Wristwatch for a Drummer


    Pete Atkin playing his 1972 song, from the King at Nightfall album.
    Written by his song-writing partner Clive James (yes, THAT Clive James).

    Pete is a lovely feller, and I strongly recommend any old fans to try to catch one of his live performances. Google his website peteatkin

    This performance recorded April 2012 in London. Sorry about the awful quality - I only had a phone with me to film it.

    (And if Pete gets to read this, I'd be delighted to come & film you with some proper gear some time!)

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    Pete Atkin - King For A Day / The King Is Dead / That Was The Way To Be Alive


    One song, choose your title! This may have been the performance premiere of a previously unrecorded, but not new, James/Atkin song. March 17th, 2017, and Pete bounces back from the interval at Pizza Express's venue The Pheasantry on the Kings Road, and takes Simon Wallace's piano bench for a rousing rendition (vocal mic permitting) of this number from the James/Atkin wilderness years. Video by Seán Kelly.

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    Pete Atkin - Dancing Master.wmv


    Pete Atkin plays Dancing Master at Acoustic Routes, Cambridge, 11 Feb 2012.

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    Pete Atkin - The Way You Are With Me


    Pete Atkin performs this new song, co-written with poet, critic and broadcaster Clive James, at the Dulwich Festival (South London) in May 2009. Pete plays his Alister Atkin (no relation) 'small jumbo' guitar and Simon Wallace plays Roland piano. Try the HD version if you have the bandwidth. See also Pete's Website -

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    RESTORATION songs - Once Armies Met


    sung by Alexander Salamat and the cast from the production of Restoration by Edward Bond, music by Pete Atkin, directed by Mark Wing-Davey at the Atlas Theater, New York City, January-February 2013

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    Pete Atkin - History And Geography


    'History and Geography' is a Pete Atkin / Clive James song from the 1970s, but at the time of this performance (a special comeback concert at the Monyash Festival, Derbyshire in 1997) it had not been released. The song is now available on Pete's CD The Lakeside Sessions, but this concert may have been its first public airing.

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    pete atkin - beware of the beautiful stranger


    anahtar maya deren'e, müzik pete atkin'e, şiir clive james'e ait.

    On the midsummer fairground alive with the sound
    And the lights of the Wurlitzer merry-go-round
    The midway was crowded and I was the man
    Who coughed up a quid in the dark caravan
    To the gypsy who warned him of danger
    Beware of the beautiful stranger

    You got that for nothing I said with a sigh
    As the queen's head went up to her critical eye
    The lady in question is known to me now
    And I'd like to beware but the problem is how
    Do you think I was born in a manger?
    I'm in love with the beautiful stranger

    The gypsy (called Lee as all soothsayers are)
    Bent low to her globular fragment of star
    This woman will utterly screw up your life
    She will tempt you from home, from your children and wife
    She's a devil and nothing will change her
    Get away from the beautiful stranger

    That ball needs a re-gun I said, shelling out
    The future you see there has all come about
    Does it show you the girl as she happens to be
    A Venus made flesh in a shell full of sea?
    Does it show you the shape of my danger?
    Can you show me the beautiful stranger?

    I don't run a cinema here, little man
    But lean over close and tune in if you can
    You breathe on the glass, give a rub with your sleeve
    Slip me your wallet, sit tight and believe
    And the powers-that-be will arrange a
    Pre-release of the beautiful stranger

    In the heart of the glass I saw galaxies born
    The eye of the storm and the light of the dawn
    And then with a click came a form and a face
    That stunned me not only through candour and grace
    But because she was really a stranger
    A total and beautiful stranger

    Hello there she said with her hand to her brow
    I'm the one you'll meet after the one you know now
    There's no room inside here to show you us all
    But behind me the queue stretches right down the hall
    For the damned there is always a stranger
    There is always a beautiful stranger

    That's your lot said Miss Lee as she turned on the light
    These earrings are hell and I'm through for the night
    If they'd put up a booster not far from this pitch
    I could screen you your life to the very last twitch
    But I can't even get the Lone Ranger
    One last word from the beautiful stranger

    You live in a dream and the dream is a cage
    Said the girl And the bars nestle closer with age
    Your shadow burned white by invisible fire
    You will learn how it rankles to die of desire
    As you long for the beautiful stranger
    Said the vanishing beautiful stranger

    Here's a wallet for you and five nicker for me
    Said the gypsy And also here's something for free
    Watch your step on my foldaway stairs getting down
    And go slow on the flyover back into town
    There's a slight but considerable danger
    Give my love to the beautiful stranger

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    Pete Atkin - Apparition in Las Vegas


    From the 1973 RCA album, A King At Nightfall.

    Pete Atkin - Music and vocals
    Clive James - lyrics

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    Pete Atkin - Thirty Year Man


    From the album 1973 RCA album, A King At Nightfall.

    Music and Vocals - Pete Atkin
    Lyrics - Clive James

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    RESTORATION songs - Song Of Learning


    Sung by Louis Sallan (as Frank) from the play by Edward Bond with music by Pete Atkin, directed by Mark Wing-Davey at the Atlas Theater, New York City, January-February 2013

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    Pete Atkin - Thief in the Night


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    RESTORATION songs - Man Is What He Knows


    Sung by Crystal Lucas-Perry (as Rose) and the cast from the play by Edward Bond with music by Pete Atkin, directed by Mark Wing-Davey at the Atlas Theater, New York City, January-February 2013

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    Pete Atkin - Ready for the Road


    Pete Atkin performs 'Ready for the Road' (music by Pete Atkin, lyrics by Clive James) at Monyash in 1997. (Also featuring Julie Covington and the Monyash audience).

    From the 'Pete Atkin at Monyash' bootleg. As far as I'm concerned, this is the definitive performance of the song. Please visit

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    Pete Atkin - Search and Destroy


    A song first recorded by Pete for the Lakeside Sessions in 2001, this is one of the time-warp lyrics at which Clive James excels. Somewhere in the Middle East, a clinical seek-and-destroy mission takes out a rebel leader and his followers. Shot here at the Lantern Theatre in Sheffield, September 2009.

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    Midnight Voices


    New original

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    RESTORATION songs - Song Of The Calf


    Sung by Alexander Salamat (as Bob) from the play by Edward Bond with music by Pete Atkin, directed by Mark Wing-Davey at the Atlas Theater, New York City, January-February 2013

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    Pete Atkin - Senior Citizens


    Pete Atkin's retake of the beautiful Senior Citizens, originally on the RCA album, The Road of Silk. This is taken from Midnight Voices- The Clive James-Pete Atkin Songbook, Vol. 1, which you can buy over at Pete's site...

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    Pete Atkin, Sarah Moule - Living In Overdrive


    Another impromptu HD video from the Dulwich Festival. Bright Lights Tonight are Pete Atkin and Sarah Moule (vocals) with Simon Wallace (piano). On this set they were augmented by Nicki Leighton-Thomas (vocals) while Sarah was recovering from a bout of bronchitis. This song was written by Fran Landesman, with music by Simon Wallace. See also the Pete Atkin website,

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    08 - Beware Of The Beautiful Stranger: Mike Boursnell


    At the AHT Band Concert, August 2014

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    Touch has a memory


    Clive James and Pete Atkin's song has long been a Wizz Jones favourite. Filmed at The Trades Club Hebden Bridge in 2012.

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    Pete Atkin live at The Pheasantry, London, March 17, 2017


    Pete plays 'The Last Hill That Shows You All The Valley', a song featured on his 1973 album 'A King At Nightfall'. Piano accompaniment by Simon Wallace. Thanks to Seán Kelly for the video.

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    Apparition in Las Vegas by Pete Atkin and Clive James


    Perhaps the best song ever written about Elvis and his fans. Music by Pete Atkin, lyrics by Clive James.
    From Atkin's album A King At Nightfall, which can be purchased from his webpage at:

    When the King of Rock and Roll sang in the desert
    He didn't seem to age like other men.
    To Vegas came the ladies with pink rinses
    Agog to see the dreamboat sail again.

    To Vegas came the shipwrecked and the broken,
    Their long regrets, their searing midnight rages
    Their disappointment seldom left unspoken
    In marriages that turned to rows of cages.
    He wrote and bound the book of which their early aspirations were the pages.

    When the King of Rock and Roll sang in the desert
    With a ring of confidence around his smile
    He sparkled like the frosting on a drumkit
    He was supple as the serpent of the Nile.

    To Vegas came the ladies with pink rinses
    With all their ills and all their soured karma,
    With all their pills and all their tics and winces
    To feel again the liberating drama
    Of a shining silver buckskin suit against a solid purple cyclorama.

    When the King of Rock and Roll sang in the desert
    He broke no hearts that hadn't burst before.
    The ladies with pink rinses all were veterans
    It was they and never he that knew the score
    And knowing that they only loved him more.

    To Vegas came the debris of an era
    For the promise that no longer could deceive them
    Their eyes grew misty as their sight grew clearer
    With a drum roll the past began to leave them
    And it all drew further from them as the spotlight caught the King and brought him nearer .

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    Pete Atkin 🎼🎼❤ Session Mans Blues ❤🎼🎼


    From Pete Atkin's album The Road of Silk - 1974
    No copyrights infringement intended ~ All copyrights go to their respective owners

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    Pete Atkin - Carnations on the Roof


    Another masterpiece from 'A King at Nightfall'

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