Monday, January 30, 2012

Play That One More Time And I'll Kill You-More Overplayed Crap 2

As we conclude this month, it looks like we might give last month a run for the money as most viewed.  620 plus views for The Brains Blog and Good God.

My GF is just like me, pushing the buttons on the radio trying to find something worth listening to without going bonkers.  She even cusses out Music Choice for playing the same country songs over and over.  She was bitching about I'll Go To My Grave Loving You by the Statler Brothers and though I don't watch Music Choice classic country channel all that much I do noticed that they tend to play certain folks more often than others.  Certainly George Jones and Merle Haggard get many plays there.

It could be worse.  It could be that Top Forty Autotuned R and B station that grates on our nerves.  Or that crap assed channel that is playing at Micky D's.  In terms of theory,  Kris Allen has outlived his usefulness and perhaps his version of Live Like You're Dying is his one hit wonder, his Broken Wings.  And certainly nobody is buying his CD anymore judging by the 10 copies still at Half Priced Books in the dollar section.

Thoughout time, every era has its moments and overplayed moments although you don't hear it on the big band channel.  But then again classic rock radio has always been stagnated with the same songs over and over again. Once again a few songs have now crossed into my banned playlist thanks to overexposure.  Let somebody else live in Margaritaville Hell,  I don't have much time left on this planet to listen to the same old same old bullshit.

1976 was probably one of the best years for music but Silly Love Songs by Wings wasn't one of them.  In fact, Paul Mccartney has had his share of overplayed schmaltz  in the 70s' with the goofy assed My Love, the overwrought Maybe I'm Amazed to which the only version I can listen to is the Faces cover.  Didn't like the studio and hated the Wings Over America version.  Overall Silly Love Songs wins out as annoying over My Love is that the GD thing goes over 5 and half minutes of Paul and Linda chirping I Love You a gazillion times.  At least Cook Of The House is a change of pace but then again Wings At The Speed Of Sound was garbage over the landmark but overplayed Band On The Run and good Venus And Mars.  But then again Macca was always the most erratic Beatle, even more so than Ringo Starr and Silly Love Songs proves it,  And With A Little Luck and Goodnight Tonight is always more turds to forget.

Bruce Springsteen.  The Boss, the man.  Born To Run, need we say more?  I still like The River, his 1980 double album and I like the throwaways better than actual hits.  Hell I enjoy Crush On You or You Can Look But You Better Not Touch over the much overplayed Hungry Heart which is the reason why God created the fast forward button.  Somewhere in the world on a Cumulus or Clear Channel station this song is still in regular rotation for over 30 freaking years.  Another song that has been stripped of nostalgia for me is Glory Days from Born In The USA, the 1984 classic album that could be his finest hour had radio not run the songs into the ground.  When Glory Days comes on, the button gets pushed to another channel but I'll listen to No Surrender or Working On The Highway anytime.

My GF is a big Queen fan and I do have a few of their albums but in all fairness I have never been a big fan of Killer Queen, the first time we all got exposed to Freddie Mercury and company.  This song got into my crosshairs a couple months ago when both The Fox and 105.7 played this at the same time!  This is the problem of why corporate un-music lovers like Cumulus and Clear Channel shouldn't have bought all the stations back on that GD failjob Tele Comm Act of 1996, the actual day that the music did die and left us with the stale leftovers of the overplayed.  If we want to get into cutie pie keyboard fluff, we'll go with Sparks.  At least their songs don't get run into the ground like Queen's Killer Queen.  Bohemian Rhapsody also can be nerve grating at times too but again since my GF likes that song I'll let it pass through.  And TLC's Waterfall too.

I'm sure the artists in question never intended to have their songs being overplayed but the royalites check still come in quite handy for them.   But even they are probably sick of hearing the same old same old song everyday, if they listen to the radio.......

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Music Of My Years-Lincoln 1961-1965

Last week I told you about life in a small town before I was born.  Hard to understand what decides us to go to the places that we were born at.  I would loved to been born more toward the deserts or warmer places but it was decided that the journey begins at Lincoln Illinois.  Born to a teenage mother and a gas jockey dad.

Lincoln Illinois is a town that was a few years behind the times even when I born into that town.  Most everything was centered downtown in a square that housed the courthouse.  As I peered over old pictures and hardly remember how it was back then but we'll do our best.  My parents rented out a house about a block away from the Eisner's Grocery Store and then moved out to the outskirts of Lincoln on Route 121 which at that time was a two lane blacktop and not the four lane it is today.  The farmhouse was a rental and for the most part I remember my folks giving me a rocking horse on springs and a 45 player that I would play 45's and then jump on the horse to rock out.  I later would get a rocking chair that would be my constant buddy till it got wore out somewhere in the mid 70's. 

I do remember the nurses at the hospital that would actually rock me to sleep at times and they would hum a song or two.  I guess that's where the music side of things come to view but as for 45's, I have no idea of when everything happened.  I know my folks had a Symphonic Stereo to which they would play albums.  I would get certain 45's from the local booze store or go up to Woolworth's to which Mom would let me pick out a record or two.  That's how I remember getting Don Gibson's Oh Such A Stranger/Fireball Mail.

My mom would make a trip down Route 66, going through small towns like Broadwell, or Elkhart on the way to Springfield to which she would stop at the local discount cigarette shop.  Back in that time, with black and white TV, everybody smoked.  Including my folks.  There was times that I would be dropped off at Grandma Ambrose's house and I spent time playing games with Aunt Cindy and Aunt Virginia.  Some days would be spent over at Grandpa And Grandma Smith's house as well.  I think there was a drive in at Lincoln that we would go and watch a movie but most of the time the TV entertained us.

At that time, my father bought albums rather than singles and we grew up listening to a lot of Jim Reeves, Bobby Bare and Don Gibson's I Wrote A Song.  I think Mom bought the singles and most were given over to me to play.  For radio, I think country was more played than rock and roll, I don't recall hearing much of the Beatles invasion.  But in some ways, the all over the place 45s that Mom brought was basically how i buy things today.  The first 45 that I really loved was The Animals' Gonna Send You Back To Walker to which being a 3 year old I ended up breaking the record after playing it one time.  It would take me 45 years later to get a decent copy of.

I was the only child till 1964 when my brother was born into this world and all of a sudden I had to share things with him.  Hell I was a loner back then and for the longest time I was very jealous of the fact that the folks were spending more time with him then with me.  Granted I'll give him this, my brother looked up to me back then, even though years later he'd be the handy man around the house.  We didn't have many friends in Lincoln, there was Raymond and Aunt Cindy but it was me and bro against the world, or least Lincoln since most of the kids down there were pretty much jerks or assholes.  I never quite understood the mentality of them, since one day they would be your friend and then the next time tried to beat you up over some nonsense.   I recall a time, when Grandma Ambrose was still alive that I befriended some dudes in 1971 over by some abandoned building and then the next year they turned on me for riding my aunt's bicycle.   And to this day, I tend to have a bit of a grunge on the folks that lived there.  I remember one time in 1972 that me and my brother were walking back to Grandpa Smith's house when a bunch of hooligans tried to pick a fight and I started throwing rocks and calling them a few choice names and telling them to bring it on.  To which they scattered.

I barely remember Grandma Smith, she died about six months after my brother was born but I do recall her being a lovely woman that always enjoyed holding me on occasion.  My dad was manager at the old Clark station on the main drag until the bigshots had him transferred over to Waterloo Iowa in 1965.  Thus ending our association with the town of Lincoln Illinois.  There was a baby sitter that lived a block away from that gas station that I spent time with.  There was a sowing place across the square that sold those old Hit Records for 39 cents a piece, you know the 45 with people doing cover versions of hits made famous.  Leroy Jones covered Chubby Checker, The Jalopy Five did a mean cover of Paint It Black, Thomas Henry covered Um Um Um Um Um and Ed Hardin did Ricky Nelson covers.

I do remember the day JFK got shot.  It was a cold and blustery day and I spent most of outside crying about something on a old swingset.

When we moved to Iowa, we would come back to Lincoln on occasion and in 1971 the folks let me stay with Grandma Ambrose for a month, my brother came out a year later and in 1974 I think it was just me again.  Once Grandma Ambrose passed away we didn't see the need to return to that town 20 years behind the times.  It would be about 25 years that I would return to that damn town to once again deal with drunk hicks going through Carlinville on route to a Smith Reunion.  To which none of our kin gave us the time of day.

Either way I was born there, and there are grave plots waiting when we die but basically I rather much not be buried there although it would be close to the old Route 66 that used to take us out of town.  I did go back there one day about 4 years ago and it amazes me how little remains there.  The Woolworth's long gone, the Lincoln TV and Record Store long gone and Kresge's long long gone replaced by an antique store.  But what I heard from my mom, it used to be a fun town.  So she says.

The music of that time
Welcome To My World, Be Honest With Me, Moonlight And Roses-Jim Reeves
500 Miles Away From Home, Jeanie's Last Kiss, Lynchin Party-Bobby Bare
Oh Such A Stranger, I Can't Stop Loving You, Oh Lonesome Me-Don Gibson
Theme From Exodus-Ferrarte And Theatcher
I Who Had Nothing, Let The Water Run Down-Ben E King
Hallelujah Time, Hymm To Freedom-Oscar Peterson Trio
That Lucky Old Sun, Hit The Road Jack, Unchain My Heart-Ray Charles
Carol, Everybody Tommy Roe
Gonna Send You Back To Walker, Baby Let Me Follow You Home-The Animals
I Fall To Pieces-Patsy Cline
Hurt-Tami Yuro
Rubber Ball, Walking With An Angel-Bobby Vee
Ride!-Dee Dee Sharp
Wild One-Bobby Rydell
Popeye-Chubby Checker
Don't Hang Up-South Street-The Orlons
Do The Continental-The Dovells
Under The Boardwalk, He's Just A Playboy-The Drifters
The Big Hurt-Toni Fisher
Pride And Joy, Hitchhike-Marvin Gaye
Fingertips Part 2-Stevie Wonder
Hanging Up My Heart-The Marvellettes
100 Pounds Of Clay-Gene McDaniels
The Gamble-Roy Agee
Piano Nellie-Bobby Brant
Not Fade Away-The Rolling Stones

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Crabb Bits:Sonic Bye Bye, Kris Allen, Ratings,

On the subject of:

Sonic:

Last month they closed the one on 33rd, this week, Sonic closed all of the drive ins up in our area.  The NE side of CR, Waterloo and Coralville also closed down.  Perhaps it wasn't cost effective for Sonic to open up them in a cold weather winter time.  Which means that the Sonics beyond the 32 degree line will continue to stay in business as well as the majority of them down in Arizona.  But I don't forsee me jumping into a airplane and going all the way down there for a Sonic Burger.  I'm sure whatever closes, a McDonalds will be opening up in that area.

The McDonalds across the interstate was the one I usually went to during lunch, since they played oldies from the past but unfortunly new management has switched the music over to that crapass top forty bullshit of bad singing and Kris Allen puke inducing Live Like Your Dying, to which visions of taking a gun and eating a bullet hopefully will stop that GD song from playing in my head ever again.  More American Idol shit from the folks at 19 Music.  Don't understand the big logic of this song, Tim McGraw's version was at least tolerable but Kris Allen thinks he can rap and sounds like bad 311 to it.   Don't have a problem with Kris Allen but his song selection I do.  Next to Daniel Powter's Bad Day to which you can't escape that when the NFL uses it for their bullshit fantasy commercial.  We have so much music and so many outlets but it's all hampered by Clear Channel/Cumulus Radio's shit playlist and crap from 19 Records, the official label for things played in Hell. Nevertheless, KDAT will be more than happy to play you Live Like You're Dying or Bad Day at some point per day.

With the lack of postings from the Groove Sandwich or some of my other favorite go to places to read for blogs, I'm beginning to wonder if the Blog biz is even worth posting anymore.  Ratings wise we're very good to go, this will be our second best viewed month ever (Thanks everybody) with four blogs of the month making the top 10 most viewed of the week but overall the whole month is a different story.  With The Rock And Roll And The Brains over 600 views this month, from various sources.  Too bad this doesn't translate into Universal reissuing any Brains albums anytime soon but they'll be happy to give you overpriced expanded editions of cd's I already had have in my collection.  A far drive down second place and we have the Brian Howe Bad Company years blog (which had help in the Domur Ru uprising in getting to second place).  Had I not modify that it wouldn't even be in the top ten.  After all nobody cares about the Brian Howe Bad Company era anyway.    The top ten of the week have their usual 10 to 15 views from the faithful but none have been groundbreaking from Sick Of Summer or the Alternatives top ten. Or Ides Of March.  As always I'll continue to renew the top ten on a month by month basis.  Best of 2011 crept into the top ten but at 65 views pales in comparison to the previous two years and nobody even read the 2008 one!   But the Crabb Bits of Mel McDaniel and Paul Revere made it within two spots of Sick Of Summer blog is now bounced out of the top ten.  Probably due to a bogus spam link such as Domur Ru.  Oh well, such is life but while things crash and burn, the Brains Blog continues to sky its way from the competition and into uncharted territory.  Now if somebody can FF the link to Andy McKie at Universal and tell him there's 2600 views from people that want to see this CD release before we're all dead and gone.

More stuff forthcoming is the continuation of Music Of My Years, The Lincoln Years and another top ten of the week.  And then take the month off to start working on the new Townedgers project.  It's kind of hard to juggle work along with music and time with the other half and blog about about things that mean something to me and to a select few of you.  Everything takes effort and time to get it going.  As we get up in years, things do die out due to lack of interest, even though the blogger still thinks it may lead to something better.

To me, recording a good album takes about 2 to 4 weeks at least to make it sound presentable.  Kinda hard to do it when my mindset is on the latest top ten or news story to blog for my followers out there (all four of you).  So next month, we'll try to seek out the best of the back years as we try to record a new album of new material for the first time in just about 4 years.  But I will still be around to keep an eye out on news that might make a difference.

So there.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Top Ten Of The Week-All Over The Place Again!

Well it's been a good month for the Rock and Roll And The Brains Blog, over 560 views and still going day by day.  In second place, far away but showing enough to overtake the 2009 and 2010 best ofs is the Brian Howe Bad Company blog which was the former Domur Ru crapfest which has now seem to not have much going on for itself.  Maybe if we can get that Brains site to 3,000 views we can tell the Universal folks about it and maybe just maybe the fuckers will reissue it.

Anyway a lot of weird stuff coming on, especially Helen Reddy's Ear Candy, the 1977 get together with Kim Fowley and Earle Mankey.  A strange pairing with Reddy best known for I Am Woman or You And Me Against The World with Fowley who gave us The Runaways and Earle Mankey who came from the Halfnelson aka Sparks band.  It really doesn't stray off that far of what Reddy does best, MOR pop but there's a bit of cajan leading off side two and failed single The Happy Girls sounds a bit like Fowley trying to imitate Phil Spector, but Fowley and Mankey gives a Beach Boys vibe on Midnight Skies.  The Sparks influence comes in on Baby I'm A Star (OMG she said shit!).  Guaranteed to fail as an album, Ear Candy didn't sell but it is a cult classic on its own.

The Top Ten Of The Week:

1.   Tall Cool One-Robert Plant 1988   Can't blame him for finally sampling Zeppelin on this comeback song off Now And Zen which got Plant back into the spotlight after the fiasco known as Shaken n Stirred but that album kinda paved the way for Now And Zen but I can't listen to Shaken N Stirred at all.  The closest thing to a Zeppelin reunion, Jimmy Page guests on guitar.  Plant would return the favor by appearing on The Only One off Outrider.

2.  My Babe-The Fabulous Thunderbirds 1982  Not to be confused with the Little Walter number.  Kim Wilson continues to keep the Fab Birds going but when he had Jimmie Vaughn playing guitar they made their most memorable music.  Even got Nick Lowe to produce on T Bird Rhythm and then switched over to Dave Edmunds on the next album Tuff Enuff.  I think on this one, Lowe wins out in the end, the sound is bit less polished than Tuff Enuff but Edmunds gets the hit and production credit on that.

3.  The Last Time-The Rolling Stones 1965  From Out Of Our Heads and basically to me this was the cut that made me turn on to the Stones more than I Can't Get No Satisfaction, both worthy of their status of rock classics but I'm sick of hearing Satisfaction myself.  Both feature a catchy guitar introduction but somehow that high pitched sound that Keith Richards got out of his guitar sealed the deal.   Probably my favorite all time Stones number but I'm sure your favorite is different.

4.  The Walkin' Blues  (Walk Right In-Walk Right Out)  Jesse Powell Orchestra with Fluffy Hunter  1951  A Risque blues number that our friends at AM 740 in Canada played Monday night.  Which we are thankful that we can get AM740 after dark here in the wintertime here.  Cuz we all know that fucking Cumulus Radio would never play this song, it's not politically correct.

5.  Bright Lights, Big City-Jimmy Reed 1961  Ever since starting the top ten I don't add a lot of blues to the list, not because I'm biased, in fact in the early years of the CD coming out, I tried to buy as many blues cds that I could find.  It's basically that with 10 slots open, most of them go for rock and roll  music.  Anyway Jimmy Reed was boss but he either couldn't or wouldn't read so he had his wife whisper the words in his ear or sometimes she would sing along with him.  Later on, Sonny James had a top ten country version of said song.

6.  Country Wine-The Raiders 1972  Look, I love Paul Revere & The Raiders just as much as you do but when Mark Lindsay took over production the band became a bit more poppy than rock but by the time this song came out, The Raiders were passe on the charts and Country Wine the album would be their last (not including greatest hits packages mind you).  This made to the top twenty on our local radio station but you don't hear this on the radio anymore.

7.   Back To Marion-The Townedgers 1991  Diggy Kat, my friend from Radio Buzzed actually played this song on his show a couple weeks ago which really floored me.  Any other radio station wouldn't but that's the power of internet radio, you never know what you will hear till you make a comment and somebody gets that comment and plays the song.  Thanks again Diggy now where's my birthday greeting at? ;-)

8.  Jet Fighter-The Three O'clock 1983   Somebody has called them one of the pioneers of cowpunk which is bullshit, The 3 O'clock owed more to new wave than country and Mike Quercio has one of the more distinct vocals ever.  To me he sounds like a cross of Jon Anderson, Robin Gibb and Alvin Chipmunk.  This comes from their Frontier debut Sixteen Tambourines produced by Earle Mankey. Later moved over to IRS for two album before Prince signed them on his own label for the illfated Vermillion.  Ian Richie's pussy production made them sound even more fruity then before.  Best song was done by Jason Faulkner who would move on to other things.  Jet Fighter remains a cult classic paisley underground number.

9.  Baby Baby-The Vibrators 2010  They have been around forever,mostly in the UK, but they are the last of the original pub punk rockers still led by I.M. Carmicheal (Pat Collier, a former member went on to be a good producer for Robyn Hitchcock and The Candy Skins to name a few).  The original version of this song is off 1978's Pure Mania (one of the definite punk albums of the 70s) but a new version is off Punk: The Early Years album that I've seen at Half Priced Books for 10 bucks and comes from the mysterious Vinyl Lovers label.  The Vibrators covers most of the punk bands of the past and while they do justice to The Stranglers and The Dammed, their Ramones covers are too tame.  But in case you have forgotten they covered themselves and do a fine job considering the source.  No liner notes to tell where the recordings came from but the copyright is 2010.

10.  Pistol Dawn-Rank And File 1987  The Kinman Brothers started Rank And File and they're considered to be the forefathers of Cowpunk/Americana with the likes of Jason & The Scorchers and The Long Ryders but not the Three O'clock, and Sundown remains their shining moment but they lost a big player in Alejandro Escovedo who formed The True Believers and made a just as good album for Rounder (later reissued via Rykodisc as Hard Road).  Later moving from Slash Records to upstart Rhino Records, Rank And File's third album is more blazing hair metal rock than cowpunk and a lotta people got off the bus.  But actually I still like that third album, as flawed as it was.  This track may have been the most reflective of the early years, if you can overlook the whammy bar specialist playing lead guitar.  The Kinman Brothers retired Rank And File and move on to BlackBird which made a strange album for Scotti Brothers in the 90s, but after that they became Cowboy Nation, an acoustic western (not country) band that has recorded infrequently through the years.  They're still are great songwriters, Mike Watt covered Big Train in the mid 90s.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Crabb Bits: Assorted Random Thoughts

Basically it's my birthday today.  I think we did this just last year at this moment.  Skies are sunny, temps are about 28 degrees and there's snow on the ground but it is sunny.  But 51 years ago, my parents were fighting getting to the hospital in a GD blizzard on Route 66, and here I am today.

In terms of blogging, I think I have mellowed a bit although if I really wanted to start up a war or words with anybody, all I have to do is say Carrie Underwood has a big mouth and sucks and watch the fun begin.  One thing I do give The Carrie Nation credit is how dedicated they are to Underwood and if that is the case, she'll be around for years to come.  I know she can sing but she tends to oversing too much for me to like and at times annoy the hell out of me.   When I read of the story of Underwood teaming up with Steven Tyler on a CMT Crossroads show that gave me visions of a forthcoming headache, so that caused me to call her Big Mouth Underwood on Twitter and then the switchboard lit up.  I actually got into a decent conversation with one of them to which we actually got a good laugh and me then making the comment that she has some dedicated followers and she can sing.  And got 8 retweets for that comment.   Maybe someday I'll mellow and cave in to seeing what CD of hers I can listen to.  But till then, I can't get on the Carrie bandwagon, and still think Miranda Lambert is the better of the two.  Get Carrie Underwood with a T Bone Burnett and let's see what happens after that.

Bob Lefsetz continues to dazzle us with his brand of Bullshit and his latest blog pretty much is the same as the rest of his preaching about how to be good musically in a digital world.  Yep the reason why radio sucks is that it caters to the advertisers, Rolling Stone is more politics and pin up babes than actual music and Jimmy Iovine is nothing more than chasing money, like anybody else that is in the music biz.  Interesting read although I await a response from the dude that disses Lefsetz. http://lefsetz.com/wordpress/index.php/archives/2012/01/24/power-top-ten-3/

Another great read that I found on the net very late was from Shooter Jennings stating that rock and roll is dead but the spirit is alive in underground country.  Shooter has the same mindset as his dad, very opinionated and dead on, his music on the other hand I just can't get into but I'm certain he still has that classic in him that will come out one of these years.  It's wordy but Shooter tells the truth and pulls no punches either. http://www.blackcountryrock.org/moonrunners/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=26%3Arock-and-roll-is-dead&catid=1%3Amusic&Itemid=24

BTW another website to tell you about. http://www.moonrunnerscountry.com/  More of that alt country rock thingy that I enjoy reading.  Deep in the archives they have something on Cowpunk, or the Americana sound of the early 80s.  Perhaps I'll take a swing at Cowpunk in a future blog.

Neil Young has a bone to pick about the way music is recorded in the last decade and he brings up a good point. http://ultimateclassicrock.com/neil-young-angered-by-the-way-todays-music-sounds/  I love that the way he describes the way digital recordings that are some badly LOUD and COMPRESSED that it sounds like an 78!  Or an 8 track (my opinion).  We have the technology to make things sound better but the newbie recording engineers record everything IN THE RED and the HIGHER RED too.  On another note, looks like the next Neil Young album might be with his cohorts Crazy Horse and maybe two albums too.

And Neil Diamond is 71 today.  Rock and roll started with him.

And finally Jeff Higgins from Groove Sandwich has a site dedicated to all things vegetarian.  http://rocktownvegan.blogspot.com/

And if you don't have enough links to look at, this is the FB page for Pat Travers.  The man lives and breathes music and can give Tom Petty and Bob Dylan a run for the money with his music tastes.  http://www.facebook.com/pattraversband

Yes, we missed this but Jason & The Scorchers played a show in St Louis this month, great review is here. http://www.nodepression.com/profiles/blogs/concert-review-jason-the-scorchers


Finally, I have a bone to pick with my Aunt Virginia who after 49 years of sending me birthday wishes or a birthday card that she decides that she's not going to do that anymore.  But she can talk to my brother anytime of day and pretty much give him a car in her name once she passes on.  So be it then.  Life is what we make it and if you rather show favoritism and chat up with my brother and all you can say to me is how fat I'm getting then basically you can go live in your fantasy world till you're in the grave and we can just excommunicate with each other and you can be an invisible dead person as far as I care.  If you want to go away, just do it and not give me this jazz every time my birthday pops around.  I'll love ya in my own way but you'll be in the past tense.  That way I don't have to hear you say how much we need to go to Jenny Craig when you pop into town.

Have a nice life, if you can remember it.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Music Of My Years-Before I Was Born 1955-1961

It's hard to tell you when it all begin for me.  Wish I could but I wasn't even born yet.

Life in Lincoln Illinois in the late 50's was like any other small town in the Midwest.  Most of the happenings are at the local malt shop, or the teenage boys racing on the outskirts of town on some two lane blacktop in around Route 66.  Hard to understand what the BIG MAN had in store for me.  Lincoln Illinois downtown area was a block square with the country courthouse in the middle of town.  My mom and her sister were big record buying teens who probably flocked down to either the Kresge's or Woolworth's although there was a Lincoln TV and Record Store, at least three record stores within walking distance, unlike the long driving distance that I have to overtake today in order to get anything.  My Aunt Virginia was into more of the teen idol crap of the day, Frankie Avalon and Paul Anka figure greatly into this.  There was some Elvis Presley 45's in the collection as well, Teddy Bear and Big Hunk O Love to which I'm sure Mom bought.  There was plenty of Johnny Mathis LPs and Percy Faith too but I'm guessing Grandma Ambrose listened to those. 

Life was very tough for Grandma Ambrose and family, she was married to Archie, a person that I never knew all that much when I came about in 61.  But he was a very tough and abusive asshole who would spend many a time and money down at the local bars and then come home and terrorize Grandma.  I heard horror stories about that and best not to comment but Archie isn't considered a Grandpa in my life even he passed away in 2007.  So basically I think Mom spent most of her days getting away from that and being a cheerleader and working at the Dog N Suds. 

Dad on the other hand was a grease monkey type dude who would go around stealing hubcaps in the car and getting into trouble once the sun goes down.  He worked at many of the gas stations around Lincoln at that time, an old Star station that was in the local parking lot of the A and P.  Down the road was Eisner's, across the street was a malt shop to which kids would play the juke box and dance around just like in the movies you see today.    The old Star station was no bigger than the computer room at my GF's place, in fact I think the bathroom was bigger than that gas station, but later Dad would move over to Clark.  At some point around 1959 or so, I'm sure Grandma Ambrose went up to the station to get the old 59 Biscayne filled up and I'm sure Dad was flirting around with Mom at that time.  Needless to say one thing lead to another and a big fight with Archie led Mom and Dad to sneak away in the middle of the night to the Justice Of The Peace in 60.

At that time, I was probably basking in the great white light in the great beyond.  Maybe I was up somewhere at some Record Store in the sky or talking to Buddy Holly about rock and roll and he suggested a route to the new promised land, I don't recall myself.  But somehow the beginning led to some town that was 20 years behind the times.  And in a driving blizzard of a Alberta Clipper one night 51 years ago begins the story untold.  They said once you move toward a different light you would not return for some time. And as I made my way toward open light, it looked like a new and exciting beginning.  And seeing covered faces and then..SMACK!

And the banshee screams of being a newborn.  Life is just beginning.

The Music Of The Times.
Sweet Little Sixteen, Rock And Roll Music-Chuck Berry
My Heart Is An Open Book-Carl Dobbins Jr.
Alley Oop-Hollywood Argyles
It's Late, Poor Little Fool, Hello Mary Lou, Sweeter Than You-Ricky Nelson
Walking To New Orleans, I've Been Around, I Want To Walk You Home-Fats Domino
I Only Have Eyes For You, Mia Amore-The Flamingos
A Big Hunk O Love, Teddy Bear-Elvis Presley
Just Born To Be Your Baby-Perry Como
Diana, Something Has Changed Me, Don't Gamble With Love-Paul Anka
Just Ask Your Heart, Bobby Sox To Stockings-Frankie Avalon
To Know Him Is To Love Him, Don't You Worry My Little Pet-The Teddy Bears
Sinbad-Bobby Freeman
Little Darlin'-The Diamonds
Maria, Gina, It's Not For Me To Say, Wonderful Wonderful-Johnny Mathis
Daddy Cool-The Rays
It's All In The Game-Tommy Edwards
Under The Boardwalk, Lonely Winds-The Drifters
Dream Lover-Bobby Darin
Buzz Buzz Buzz-The Hollywood Flames
Rockin Robin, Over And Over-Bobby Day
So Fine-The Fiestas
I'm Sorry, I Need To Be Needed-Brenda Lee
Among My Souvenirs, Lipstick On Your Collar-Connie Francis
New River Train-Bobby Helms
I Understand How You Feel-The G Clefs
Maybe-The Chantels
Handy Man-Jimmie Jones
Sorry I Ran All The Way Home-The Impalas
You'll Never Tame Me-Bobby Rydell
Toot Toot Toosie Goodbye-Al Jolson
Wake Up Little Susie, Problems, Since You Broke My Heart, When Will I'll Be Loved-Everly Brothers
Willie And The Hand Jive, Ring A Ling-The Johnny Otis Show
That's My Desire, The Way You Look Tonight-The Lettermen
Honest I Do-The Innocents
Tallahassee Lassie, Way Down Yonder In New Orleans-Freddy Cannon
I've Had It-The Bell Notes
Alimony-Frankie Ford (with Huey Piano Smith And The Crowns)
Am I The Man, Lonely Teardrops-Jackie Wilson

All of these came from the collection of my mom and Aunt Virginia and I know there's more that I have forgotten but these are the ones that stand out most.  The majority of the songs were teen idols or MOR pop but I'm surprised of how much black R and B records that were in the collection.  Dad didn't have any 45's but I'm guessing he was more into hillbilly country music than rock.  But that's just a guess since I really wasn't around to notice things but that's another story for another time.........

Friday, January 20, 2012

Crabb Bits: Johnny Otis, Etta James RIP, Winter

Etta James finally gave up the ghost and passed away at age 70 from leukemia.  A day earlier Johnny Otis passed away at age 90.  Back in 1994 Etta James gave the introduction to Otis to the rock and roll hall of fame.

I remember years ago that my folks had a copy of Willie And The Hand Jive but the B side was the hard rocking Ring A Ling which may have been the first real punk rock number.  Some wild sax playing and of course the drummer of Earl Palmer makes this stand out but for me this may have been the first single that made me a slave to the forty fives of rock and roll.  And the endless decline into my musical journeys.

Johnny Otis was one of the founders of rock and roll if you think about it.  He made a bunch of big band r and b for Savoy in the late 40s early 50s before simplifying the band down when he signed on with Capitol Records.  His big hits employed the Shave and a haircut/ Two Bits sound that Bo Diddley had down put and enjoyed his biggest hit with Willie And The Hand Jive and later hits like Casting My Spell and Crazy Country Hop.  Capitol back in 1989 issued Otis' best moments on The Capitol Years (later reissued via Collectibles). Highly recommended.  But also Otis was instrumental in starting the careers of Big Mama Thornton (Hound Dog), Etta James (Roll With Me Harry) and a few others.

Winter has made in here and after a week after the first storm we have had three more come through, with another big 5 and half inches of the white shit this afternoon.  Basically we got spoiled with the mild and quiet winter but it seems the last week Mother Nature is trying to make up for lost time.  Needless to say, we are all sick of it, except for the kids who get to stay home after school is closed. 

Hate to say it but the new Bruce Springsteen song is blah.  I heard rumors that his new album is his angriest album in years and whose to say otherwise but from what I have heard there doesn't seem to be much urgency in the lyrics which is missing something.  At least with The Rising Bruce sounded inspired but this song seems to indicate that he's coasting and basically another album that will fall short of my expectations. But then again I have yet to play the Born To Run Japan CD that I got for 2 bucks at HP Books last year.

Still even though I'm not too impressed with Van Halen's latest single Tattoo, I do have their album pegged in for review when it comes out but they may have dropped the ball by hiring John Shanks to co produce.  Wasn't Ted Templeman available? Or Don Landee? Or Andy Johns?  I love Diamond Dave and the Van Halen Brothers but I'm thinking Mike Anthony would have made the album much more better.

No bargain hunts are in the works.  More crappy weather is on the way.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Top Ten Of The Week-Pawnshop Finds Of The Week

Ah the bargains were good to me this past week.  These 10 songs taken from stuff found for five bucks or less at selected pawnshops and Half Priced Bookstores around the area.

1.  Flipside-The Click Five 2007   These guys were hyped up on their first album which was produced by Ric Ocasek but their second Atlantic/Lava album was slightly better, with radio ready songs such as this failed hit single and basically further proof that being on a major label and the outdated behind the times Atlantic didn't help this band at all.    Kind of has this lite power pop vibe that Good Charlotte or The Jonas Brothers were putting down at that time.  From the Modern Minds and Pastimes CD.

2.  Wild One-John Waite 1987  Former lead singer of The Babys had a major hit with Missing You back in 1983 but by 1987 he was basically on the way out at EMI.  Secret weapon on Missing You and the No Brakes album was Gary Myrick, on this Waite is assisted by Desmond Child, which explains why this single and the album bombed.  Waite would then form Bad English with Neil Schon and ex Baby's keyboardist Jonathan Cain and have a major hit with the crapola When I See You Smile in 1989.  From Rover's Return.

3.  Going Up In Smoke-Johnny Guitar Watson 1980  Dave Spich turned me on to Watson back around 1979 when we both worked at the old Marion 76 and basically Watson went back further than that.  Had some outrageous blues singles for King/Federal in the late 50s and then hooked up with Larry Williams for the ultra cool Mercy Mercy Mercy for Okeh in the 60s but Watson got more into the funky side of soul when he recorded for DJM in the late 70s.  This comes from his 1980 album Love Jones, which was found for 4 bucks sealed at Half Priced Books.

4.  Burning Wheels Turning-Electric Sun 1978     Uli Jon Roth played in the Scorpions in the mid 70s before hooking up with somebody that knew Jimi Hendrix and influenced him enough to quit the Scorps and play like Jimi did.  To me this is more closer to Frank Marino and Mahogany Rush Maxoom period.  In other words, pretty damn good guitar playing but cornball hippy dippy lyrics.  From Earthquake.

5.  Eastwood-Brad Paisley with Clint Eastwood 2011   All around nice guy and great guitar player in his own right Brad Paisley frustrates me sometimes with his choice of music or good humor.  And sometimes he tends to overplay but one thing for sure, he's more in tune with the old school country rather than new although you wouldn't know that by that duet he did with Big Mouth Underwood and the reason why I wouldn't buy his new album unless I found it for a dollar at the pawnshop.  To which I actually did.  This is an instrumental but Clint Eastwood is the whistler on Brad's tribute to Morricone Spaghetti Westerns of the 60s which made Clint a household name.  As for Carrie Underwood, there's a reason why God invented the fast forward button on the player.  From This Is Country Music.

6.  Animal-The Tokens 1967  The Tokens better known for The Lion Sleeps Tonight and other doo wop favorites pay a bit of tribute to Pet Sounds by releasing a album that even liberal minded Warner Brothers rejected the first time and told The Tokens to refine it better.  Don't know why, the album has 16 songs but only 26 minutes long and sounds unfinished at best.  From Intercourse.

7.  Underwhelmed-Sloan 1992  Alternative rock is lot different back then than it is today.   In fact alternative radio is dying, X103.9 in Phoenix changed their format over to classic rock of the 80s and 90s and call it Generation X music.  Whatever that means.  Sloan came from Canada and had a power pop sound that also recalls Sonic Youth (yuck).  This got played on the alternative station back then. But then again I noticed that alternative radio doesn't play the alt rock of the early 90s.  Sloan would make another album for Geffen that more Beatles like than Sonic Youth but never heard that one.  From Smeared.

8.  Logos-Tangerine Dream 1982  Found this for 50 cents at Housewerks in Iowa City along with a few other cds (John Waite, Ornette Coleman, Pure Prairie League).  Best way to hear Tangerine Dream is during a winter storm to which I was playing this on the way to work last Thursday when the first snowfall of the season hit and basically it's a long song even by T.D. standards at 45 minutes but it all comes together.  The next to the last album for Virgin Records.  From Logos.

9.  I La La La Love You-Pat Travers Black Pearl 1982   Probably the oddball selection from the Valley Girl Soundtrack album which has the best known stuff (Love My Way, Who Could It Be Now, Johnny Are You Queer) along with the oddball crap (Felony's The Fanatic) and at that time the only way to get anything from Gary Myrick on CD (She talks In Stereo).  Travers went a bit of new wave on the Black Pearl album and somehow this got on the original soundtrack.  Alas, some of the better songs off that movie went to More Valley Girl Music which Bonnie Hayes Girls Like Me and Sparks Eaten By The Monster Of Love can be found there.  And of course more 80s crap like Mickey.  From Music From The Soundtrack Valley Girl.

10.  X Girlfriend-Bush 1994  Had 16th Stone years ago and didn't care much for it outside of Everything Zen and this album closer which only goes for about a minute but might be the Gavin Rossdale's shining moment or a tribute to The Ramones.  The Sea Of Memories can be blamed for me to backtrack to the first album but I didn't have to look too far.  Found it for a buck at the pawnshop.  From Sixteen Stone.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Winter Is Here Now It Can Go Away

It had to end.

On Wed. afternoon we hit a record high of 52 degrees as I walked out into the sun and actually felt some warmth of the sun on the back of my neck.  At four oclock, the front went through and the winds went from a light SW to a hard blowing NW as the snow begin to fall in a wind driven haze.  The roads actually were not bad, by that time the temps drop about 30 degrees so it wasn't icy.   But the way the wind blew it, some places had no snow whereas the back of my door and between my cars was about 2 feet of the GD white shite.  The wind blew it all around yesterday and in the end we got about 5 and half inches of the white crap and winter is now here in Iowa.  With more to come next week for sure.

Other notes:  the ratings seem to indicate that viewership will return to around 1,400 views give or take a hundred or two.  Unfortunly, Domur Ru will not go away, just when I think it is, I see about five views from that GD spam site and about ready to be in third place in the all time referring URL.  I guess a Russian link based in Texas really thinks that this site is going to put Domur Ru on the map.  Oh well, you try to put together a blog music site that can make a difference only to be a part of a spammer rating game from the Russians based out of Dallas that thinks this can be used as world domination.   Fuck you Domur Ru and take the GD snow with you too.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Top Ten Of The Week: My Demise Your Gain

Tuesday marked the anniversary of the death of Howlin Wolf, one of the best bluesmen out there, who died on Jan 10, 1976.  And all he got to show for it is a song touting Viagra.

Robbing the cradle again is Bryan Ferry who married a 30 year old who once had a fling with his son Isaac.  He's 66. But he's always been a classy gentlemen and always looks his best (and just like dad his sons are so well groomed too) http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-2084738/Bryan-Ferry-66-marries-toygirl-Amanda-Sheppard-romantic-island-ceremony.html

Some people may care but I don't but it's music related anyway.  At The Drive In is reuniting.  They made a few noisy Nu prog stuff back in the late 90s and got heaps of praise for it. Some people get them, some people love them, the rest have other important things to worry about.  Like 4 dollar gallon gas this summer.  And by the way Fuck Iran.

The old farts are returning.  The Yardbirds with Jim McCarthy will embark on a tour while Chris Dreja recovers from illness but should return.  And no, Jeff Beck, Jimmy Page or Eric Clapton will be any of the guitarists on that tour but if they did, that would be the biggest concert until the Rolling Stones get it together for the 50th year of existence tour.  And even Charlie Watts has said that would take a lot to get going.

Interesting report from Forbes saying that Best Buy is doomed to fail and I could probably see why.  The help up there are robots, they either bug the hell out of you or they ignore you.  With the downloading in full force and perhaps more music stores going out of business (bye bye Webster Records) Best Buy seems to be going further away from the things that make me go up there in the first place.  And besides nobody is going to sell CDs after 2014 anyway so sez Bob Lefsetz, the halfwit crank that has the latest gadget long before you do. But still worth a read if you like comedy from somebody who thinks he's on top of things but you soon realize that he's basically left out in the cold most of the time anyway.

And today's weather it is a balmy 50 degrees and sunshine.  Winter might be making a bit of a comeback later in the week with snow showers and a return to seasonal wintertime weather, which means back to 20s for highs and single digits for lows but we haven't had this late of no snow cover in just about 25 years.  Hey, gotta go enjoy this before it gets cold again.

And now, this week's collection of songs from varying degree.  The cycle is never ending.

1.  When The Saints Go Marching In-The Ink Spots 1961?  In my father's record collection lies many things I listened to growing up when we were in Lincoln Illinois years ago. Jim Reeves comes to mind, Fats Domino, Bobby Bare, Bobby Rydell as well but he seemed to buy a lotta 1.99 junk too, mostly Cameo Parkway stuff under the Wycode banner (that's probably misspelled but too lazy to look it up) and this album from the seminal jazz vocalists whose time had come and gone and they recorded a cheapo cheapo for Coronet to which you can find anywhere for a dollar at Goodwill or Salvation Army.  The album is hodgepodge but they do a wonderful cover of this New Orleans staple with a bit of rapping in the middle of the song.

2.  Fight-The Rolling Stones 1986  Nobody follows the Ink Spot with The Stones unless you're me and you're not me folks.  The Stones in the 80s were lost in the wilderness and made their most crappy albums to date (Undercover anyone? Oops I think Rastro liked this album, side 2 of Tattoo You).  However I did like Dirty Work although I didn't think it was the A album that Robert Christgau gave it.  Tom Waits appears on this album and perhaps this song to which he's letting out a banshee scream on the break.  You go Tom!

3.  On A Plain-Nirvana 1991  Target had the 20th year version on sale for 6 bucks to which I couldn't pass up such a deal and got to revisit the album that killed off hair metal.  You'll be happy to know that Endless, Nameless is on the reissue abit as the untitled track after Something In The Way and a bunch of B sides and BBC sessions to boot.

4.  If It Takes You Home-Idlewild 2007   Hard luck band  leaves EMI for Sanctuary in their death thrones and made perhaps what I think is their best album to date Make Another World.

5.  Those Were The Days-Cream 1969
6.  Tilt A Whirl-Masters Of Reality 1992

Two selections featuring the powerhouse drumming of Ginger Baker.  The Cream song was the B side to White Room and I liked the B side better than the goofy lyrics Pete Brown gave us for White Room.  The second track comes from the Masters of Reality album Sunrise On The Sufferbus.  Got some airplay on Rock 108 back in 92.  Baker left soon afterward complaining that the best of the band played too loud and he couldn't hear his drums.

7.  Frayed-Junk Monkeys 1991  They got lost in the Metal Blade shuffle and even I didn't know much about them till I found Bliss, their cd at the pawnshop for a dollar but it seems to me that they were more Replacements rock and roll at that time than the Replacements were at that time.   But nobody ever talks about the Junk Monkeys anymore.  Such a shame really, they did rock.

8.  Peggy Sue-Bobby Vee 1961  From Bobby Vee meets The Crickets and amazingly Vee sounds much like Buddy Holly did although Vee does try a bit too hard on the rrrrrroaring that Buddy did so easily.

9.  The Heat Of The Matter-Bush 2011  Never cared much for Bush, they always seemed to bug me. 16th Stone broke them big with Everything Zen but my second fave song was the less than a minute X Girlfriend. Gavin Rossdale continue to slag on with albums of varying degree, fans loved them, critics didn't and basically I didn't care much either but their new album The Sea Of Memories is actually very good although I'm sure it doesn't vary much from Everything Zen.  Either I'm softening my opinion on them or I'm getting desperate to listen to something good nowadays.  Really I dig the new album.  Really.

10.  Misty-Erroll Garner 1954  Sometimes when you need to mellow out, a nice mellow piano jazz number last night with cigar in hand is the perfect way to call it a day.  And makes you look forward to the next top ten.  Whenever that will be.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Real Gone Records Newsletter Number 1

Welcome to our first-ever newsletter! And thanks for signing up with us-we will be bringing you special deals on our new releases and back catalog, deals that you and you alone will enjoy (great prices, too!). So get ready to get Real Gone every month!

And speaking of special offers, we have a couple for you to kick things off-The first 50 customers to order Jody Miller: Complete Epic Hits will receive a booklet signed by Jody herself! And the first 50 customers to order Maggie & Terre Roche: Seductive Reasoning will receive a wallet signed by Maggie Roche herself (both of these releases come in spiffy four-panel wallet packages with booklet enclosed)! Thanks to both of these artists for providing their John Hancocks and for the great photos that adorn both of these packages.

January also sees the second installment in our release of the Grateful Dead: Dick's Picks series. Like the first three volumes we issued in November last year, these two volumes-Vol. 32 8/7/82 Alpine Valley Music Theatre and Vol. 33 10/9 & 10/76 Oakland Coliseum Stadium, Oakland, CA-have never been available in stores. And these two are among the rarest volumes in the whole series!

Glen Campbell has been in the news lately with his great new album and his Farewell Tour. We honor the legacy of one of America's greatest guitarists, sessionmen and song interpreters with a little-known live album taken from his mid-'70s prime: Glen Campbell: Live in Japan. Recorded in Tokyo in 1975, this concert was hitherto ONLY released in Japan, and it appears here in its original gorgeous gatefold packaging with liner notes added.

And our last January 24 release features probably the greatest blue-eyed soul singer ever-in fact, Bill Medley basically invented the genre! We are releasing the two solo albums he recorded for MGM in the late '60s after he left the Righteous Brothers, Bill Medley 100% / Soft and Soulful, on one CD. Absolutely gorgeous production and arrangements, not to mention singing-CD debuts for both albums!

Now that our store is open, we also wanted to remind you about our November releases, starting with our Real Gone "girls"-complete singles collections from Joanie Sommers, Connie Stevens and Shelby Flint, plus The Girls from Petticoat Junction: Sixties Sounds! For vinyl mavens, we have the two ? and the Mysterians albums, 96 Tears and Action!, pressed on to 180-gram vinyl at 45 rpm for maximum fidelity. And we have a few copies left of our Christmas albums from Cameo Parkway Holiday HitsEd Ames and David Rose-don't let the holidays fade away just yet!


Thanks for listening and we will be back to you shortly with more great releases!

Real Gone Gabby and Gordon

Friday, January 6, 2012

Crabb Bits: Saliva, Etta James, Bristol Creme

While everybody was too busy singing the praises of Bon Iver and Red Hot Chili Peppers making it to the RnR HOF, Josey Scott quietly left Saliva to focus more on Christian rock music.  It wasn't a very good time for Saliva after their last album bombed and Island Def Jam showed them the door.  Under Your Skin was the album and though it didn't vary much from previous albums, they did managed to hang on Island for almost a decade.  I still enjoy Blood Stained Love Letter and their best of and Under Your Skin had some creative moments the album was badly over recorded.  Bobby Amaru replaces Scott and he brings a bit more of a poppier sound from what I hear of his songs.  Maybe worth a listen if and when Saliva returns.

File this under Circus Leaves Town Part 2: Bristol Creme Palin has decided she's had enough of the desert life and LA and have moved back to Alaska to live the rest of her years as a trivia question to being a daughter to a dumbass quitter whose Going Rouge book can be found for 50 cents at your local junk shop.  We haven't heard much from her when she moved to Arizona and even less when she jumped out to LA to try to star in a failed reality show.  Once Screech Palin got out of the spotlight, Bristol Creme simply found out that the world didn't care about her all that much.  What does God have in store for you Miss Creme?  Working as a assistant at some doctor's place in Alaska for starters and back into oblivion just like the rest of us.

Etta James has been released from the hospital to return back home which is good news.  We were just about ready to write her obituary before Christmas, but James is fighter and got a bit better over the past two weeks to come home again.  We don't expect her to record any new music anytime soon but as long as she still lives it's another day to live and cherish.

Nice of Al Kooper mentioning Get It While You Can, the version which Jerry Ragovy and Howard Tate are together only.  Haven't heard the 2009 version but I know of the version that was on Rediscovered.

And The Townedgers will start working on their first album in over four years. Which means I won't be much online to blog in order to write some thoughtful lyrics.  But I'm sure the blogging machine will continue to toss them out whenever the middle of the week rolls around.

Great to see Ed again, our old co worker who retired.  Saw him up at Red Robin.  He may return to work in our department when we get busy again.  Good man.

What's In The Player this week?  A wide collection of forgotten and stupid named bands I guess.
But they do rock hard I think.

Ass Ponys-Electric Rock Music
Junk Monkeys-Bliss
Flop & The Fall Of The Mopsqueezer
Ryan Adams-Fire & Ashes
Masters Of Reality-Sunrise On The Sufferbus
Soul Sixties
Joel Vance-What I Did On My Vacation
Cream-Creme De La Cream

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Can't Review Them All: Present Tense Aritists Of Today

As I begin a new year and reading through best of 2011 blogs from around the net world I have come to the conclusion that I am really running out of time to really sort through all the praises being bestowed upon Adele. I guess the Amy Winehouse comparisons to her 19 album made me think I can basically live without that or 21, which seems to be a shoo in for Grammys TM this year.   TAD reviewed the new Grace Potter but I don't think I really liked her first album all that much either.

Brantley Gilbert/Jason Aldean/Josh Thompson  Or the new Trailer Park Country Posse.

Farce The Music has such a hatred of Brantley Gilbert that it seems that perhaps I should take a listen to what he has out. A closer listen to Halfway To Heaven seems to be more in line with hard rock Mellencamp or Kentucky Headhunters but his lyrics a bit more country cornporn than the average Toby Keith.  More southern rock to these ears rather than real country.  Jason Aldean and Josh Thompson share one thing in common, if they name check Johnny Cash or Waylon Jennings then they think they can be called country.  Didn't like Johnny Cash the song off Relentless although Aldean got Miranda Lambert to sing on a track off that album.  He got his fans and they will defend him to the very end and you cannot beat fans like that.  But as for me I don't care for his music.  Lose the cheap goatee and cowboy hat and maybe name check somebody from the past that you don't hear of, try Roy Acuff  THE KING OF COUNTRY MUSIC next time Jason and you might get points from me, but probably not my time nor attention to listen to your music.

As for Josh Thompson, if Waylon Jennings was still alive he be coming out to kick your ass for having the most cliche country album of last year Way Out Here, which sounds like bad Georgia Satellites.  Whatever you're playing Josh, it's not country, it's crap.

The Cure:

Sorry to hear they didn't make it to the RnR HOF and someday Robert Smith will but the only album that I ever enjoyed listening to them was the Staring At The Sea best of that came out way back in the mid 80s.  Yeh you can't escape Friday I'm In Love (which isn't bad) but Lovesong has never been a favorite of mine nor anything off Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me.  At least Depache Mode got commercially better whereas The Cure simply sold out for radio airplay and kudos.

Nickelback:

They are this generation's rock and roll band of today but they are hated for Chad Kroeger's vocals and lyrics.  I guess you call it the perfect rebellion since they can't get a decent review and was even booed at halftime at the Thankgiving game at halftime in Detroit.   How You Reminded Me, broke them big and then broke them from the critical reviews.  One of the longer lasting bands on Roadrunner Records, if I chose a album to listen to, perhaps The State might be that one.  They were hungry back then.  Robert John Lange helped them on Dark Horse which would be my number 2 but now they're back to producing themselves.  It's not supposed to be everybody's agreeable band folks, that's why they call it rock and roll.  If I was about 20 years younger I'd be more of a fan but nowadays so much music and bands, so little time......

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Top Ten Of The Week-And The Circus Leaves Town

A new year begins and welcome everybody to my 10th year of blogging about things important to me and a top ten of the week that may or may not entice you to go seek it out on the net or your local record store.  That is if you do have a record store.

Last week, I was in Dubuque around closing time at CD's 4 Change and the owner gave me a box of records without any covers, some have sleeves but I think he used the jackets for some other things so I told him that I'd check things out and if whatever I like I'd listen to and the rest I'd redonate to a local charity.  Most of the records are in reasonable shape.  In fact I just got done playing a obscure album from Joel Vance called What I Did On My Vacation which came out on the Cadet Concept label, which was Chess Record's Rock label.  It's a strange album for sure, he does a rocking version of Fannie Mae and Slippin & Sliding but for the most part Vance's own stuff sounds like Donovan gone artsy fartsy.  Or something that John Cale would do for Paris 1919.  Anyway, not much is known about Vance, it was a one off for Cadet but the harmonica player is Charlie McCoy.  Some of the stuff was recorded in Nashville, and I'm guessing that the Nashville band Area Code 615 or Barefoot Jerry backed him on this,  Wayne Moss comes to mind.  Other goodies is Colin Blunstone's One Year for Epic, the 2 LP Best Of The Weavers and a Eubie Blake 2 fer.  Kind of a shame not to have the jackets but they were free and some in good shape.  If not, I can always use the inner sleeves for other replacement sleeves for other records I have.  And so on.

The Iowa Caucus are done and Mitt Romney and Rick Santorium are neck and neck with Ron Paul in a close third but don't look at Iowa as the place that will make the next President of the US.  Now they can leave us alone, till June, when the GOP winner comes back and floods the airwaves with more bullshit commercials.
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The top ten of the week is combination of what I have been playing in the player or what sounded good from the radio that wasn't overplayed.  The biggest piss in the pancakes is how bad Cumulus Radio continues to cop the playlist from Clear Channel and vice versa.  Surely there isn't no need of hearing Torn by Natalie Imberaga or Bitch by Meredith Edwards twice in the same fucking hour.  Fuck you KOKZ and KDAT.  At least play Ednaswap just for the original of Torn but you know they won't.  God FM radio is the pits.

My list is better, at least it varies.

1.  Riff Raff  AC/DC 1978  Ah yes Cumulus KRNA, playing anything off Back In Black every GD hour and ignoring the majority of their catalog.  First AC DC album I ever bought was the live If You Want Blood You Got It which really sounds more polished than the rough sewn draft that Mark Opitz recorded for the Powerage album.  I actually started listening to them in 1978 before they broke it big with Highway To Hell and another year before Bon Scott would leave us too early.   Oh yes and BTW as you can tell I hate Cumulus Radio. Them and Clear Channel.  But you already know that.

 


2.  Let The Music Do The Talking-Joe Perry Project 1980  I have all his albums but finding the Raven Best Of Joe Perry Project slimlines everything down to just about everything that you need from I Got The Rock N Rolls Again and the flop 1983 Once A Rocker Always A Rocker to which Raven Records steals the most tolerable moments from that.  But LTMDTT album itself was 10 times much better than Night In The Ruts and it benefitted from Jack Douglas producing.  But that was a toxic event in itself,  Ralph Morman getting the boot and moving over to Savoy Brown for the beyond belief Rock N Roll Warriors.  I still give Let The Music an A, Rock n Rolls Again a B- (Charlie Farren did the vocals and moved on to Fahrenheit that made a 1985 album for Warner Brothers) and the MCA album a C+ at best.

3.  Fannie Mae-Joel Vance 1969   Chess Records in the late 60's was in big trouble.  Most of their great blues artists' best days were behind them and an a attempt to get them up to date, got them to do poor blues covers and cover it with bad Hippy Dippy Psychedelia (Example: Muddy Waters Electric Mud, This Is Howlin Wolf's New Album, He Doesn't Like It...)  Cadet Concept was home to The Status Quo (Pictures Of Matchstick Men) and Rotary Connection and this one off from Joel Vance, who I have no clue is except for that was found on the net or on EBAY.  Not bad from a box of free records.

4.  2000 Light Years From Home-The Rolling Stones 1967  For all the backlash that was Their Satanic Majesties Service, it came close to rival Sgt. Pepper in terms of sound imagery and may have been the most misunderstood album of the Stones career.  This is one of the more fun stereo separation songs ever made, I really can do without the bizarre mellotron on the right side of the speakers, rather going for the more mysterous bass guitar and drum side of the speaker.  A Beaker Street favorite for years.

5.  In Your Arms-Glen Campbell 2011   With Alzheimer's slowly taking the mind and guitar playing of Campbell away, he may have made his most memorable album ever, which is more power pop than country.  Even covers Paul Westerburg twice, Robert (Guided By Voices) Pollard and this number from Teddy Thompson.  Campbell's S/T album on his return to Capitol was the start in this direction but Julian Raymond figures greatly on this album.  Too bad that Campbell will be unable to follow this album up but if you care, Ringo Starr will have a new album out this month.  Well some people do care.

6.  Wear Your Love Like Heaven-Donovan 1967  I promise this year that I'd be focusing more on the music that I grew up with rather than overdoing it on the obscure new stuff of today.  But I tend to think that my favorite music came more from the 90s rather than the 60s or 70s, even though I grew up listening up to the radio back then.  Actually had this on 45 years ago when we lived in Webster City but dammed if I knew what ever happened to the record.

7.   Midnight Hour-? And The Mysterians 1966  B Side to 96 Tears, another 45 gotten at Goodwill in Waterloo around 67 I believe.  Question Mark aka Rudy Martinez came across like a Tommy James/Mark Lindsay vocalwise and basically I always believed that he was too mild mannered to be a lead screamer.  This band originally from Michigan was transplanted Chicanos which might explain the Sir Douglas Quintet sound too.

8.  Always A Reason-The Dirt Drifters 2011   Country Music is the new rock and roll as this band reminds me of the new rock and roll that is Country Music today.  Where Jason Aldean figures into this is probably more poser than the Steve Earle Guitar Town sound that the Dirt Drifters have and they have worked with some of the better hat acts out there.  Being in a major label won't get you very far and I probably would have blown these guys off had I not read the nice review Robert Christgau gave them.  For rock n country this actually beats out The Kentucky Headhunters latest or Mr. Fool Tool Aldean.  Aldean namechecks Johnny Cash, The Drifters get Willie Nelson to cameo himself.  That's country to me.

9.  Late In The Evening-Paul Simon 1980  From One Trick Pony, a movie that I liked back then but the DVD that I got won't play in my outdated player.  Brings back memories but what it failed to do was remind me how freaking boring the soundtrack was till I bought the cd.

10.  I Shall Be Free-No.  10-Bob Dylan 1964   Acoustic Dylan, walking and talking.  Even his throwaways back then were pretty damn good too.

Late additions:
Dave Lifton does a smackdown on Bob Lefsetz's double talk last blog. http://popdose.com/bob-lefsetz-hates-a-lot-of-things/?utm_campaign=Bob

Finally....I haven't clicked on any sites of referring sites but continue to get traffic from Domur Ru, the Russian viruspammer which seems to originate from Dallas Texas.  Must be a Rick Perry ploy or something like that.  Maybe ratings are overrated.  I doubt if we'll go over 1,000 views this month but then again I could be wrong. 13 views this week from a site that we're trying to avoid and ignore?  Fuck off Domur Ru.