Sally: Little Willy- The Sweet

Sally: Little Willy- The Sweet

Sally: Little Willy- The Sweetimage

This was my first record (I’m now fifty). I got it at Christmas when I was four, along with a lilac and purple record player. I loved both of those presents passionately.

I lived in Kingsthorpe, on the outskirts of Northampton and a few weeks before Christmas I went with my parents to a department store to pick out the record player I wanted. It featured a very sixties pattern of alternating, repeating lilac and purple circles. It seemed to me to be terribly sophisticated and stylish. I can remember the utter deliciousness of that moment, and the anticipation of that Christmas Day.

The record player was in my bedroom – light coloured with a border of vivid jungle animals.  The curtains were the same, with an animal theme. There was also a wardrobe of sorts that my Father had made. It displayed my ‘on trend’ sixties clothes, carefully chosen by my Mother, featuring a lot of black, turtle neck jumpers and knitwear in dark colours. They went with my very short, boy style, sixties hair.

Unknown-1I remember my father patiently demonstrating how to play the vinyl. I can still remember my four year old chubby hands, studiously manipulating the needle to the record.

The Sweet seemed to be the epitome of everything that was marvellous. I first heard them on the radio with my mum. I can remember dancing away in the kitchen.The energy in the song channelled something inside my four year old soul. When I listened to the unfortunately titled ‘Little Willy’ over and over in my bedroom, it was undiluted happiness.

In my head, I could climb into the lyrics and lift myself away from the tedium and confusion of everyday life. It was a form of meditation and brought me peace. At that age I found the world deeply confusing. I felt very isolated and different to other children and thought I was letting everyone down. There seemed to be a lot of mixed messages from the adult world that I couldn’t make sense of. I felt unliked and unworthy.

When ever I hear the tune, even now, all these years later, I get a tremendous rush of happiness. That song was a gift from the Gods for a small girl, in a seemingly Godless world. Thank you ‘The Sweet’, you have helped me so much.Brian-Connolly-sweet-band-29319531-312-420

Now, at fifty years, I have carved a life full of warmth and light.   Music has been instrumental in helping me deal with stress and conflict for all of these years. I’ve never stopped tuning in. That’s how I tune out.

The only regret I still carry from those years is not actually managing to marry Brian Connolly, the glamorous lead singer!

Photo: sent by Sally from Preston, Lancashire


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