The best b-side in the world. Ever.

SIMON SWEETMAN
Last updated 11:35 04/07/2014

I had something very important to do today - I had to tell you about that Jimi Hendrix biopic that's going to be in the film festival. You may remember that last week I talked about the music films in the festival. I've been lucky to see a few of them already and the Pulp documentary is great, the Kathleen Hannah doco is brilliant (already reviewed) and this week I caught a screener of Voices of The Land - and that's a wonderful film, a must-see.Jimi: All Is By My Side

But I also attended an early screening of the Jimi Hendrix biopic that stars Andre 3000 (or Andre Benjamin) of Outkast.

Oh dear. Just awful. A really embarrassing set of barely stitched-together vignettes that cover the obvious ground - just one year in the life of Hendrix and none of the music was allowed to be used (Hendrix Estate Says No!)

But it's late, I had a big night DJing last night so I won't trouble you by repeating too much from my review - if you want to be warned about the Hendrix biopic read here. I'll understand if you read the review, agree with it - or at least see where I'm coming from - and then still see the film. That's what I would have done had someone else warned me off seeing the film. I'm a sucker for music biopics even though, most often, they're underwhelming; they under-deliver.

Well, that's not much of a Friday topic - so I thought we could talk about the best B-side in the world.

I decided, last night, that Prince's Erotic City is the best B-side in the world. It was originally going to be part of the Purple Rain album but was used, instead, as the B-side to one of the lead singles. This was back in the day when the B-side was a chosen thing; something kept off the record, selected as a standalone - a keepsake for the fans.

The Cure does B-sides well. Very well. There are a few other bands that do too. But Prince's Erotic City gets my vote for the best B-side of all time because it's as good as anything Prince has released. And he's prolific - with an archive of unreleased material that has plenty of highlights too - many of the songs are around and about in bootleg form, or Prince has played them live, or loaned them out for cover versions - despite never officially releasing them as singles or on albums. What I'm saying is - for Erotic City to be this sneaky gem, as good as almost anything else he's released, means it deserves full points.

What I want to know is what's your all-time favourite B-side? What's the best B-side in the world as far as you're concerned? 

Postscript: Here's my full set-list from last night's DJ set - if anyone is interested. And here again, to save you scrolling back up, is my review of the Jimi Hendrix biopic, Jimi: All Is By My Side.

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