Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Top Ten Of The Week-Can't Stop The Top Ten

Coming to end of February and still getting snowstorms although it looks like Rocky Snowstorm kept down to the south of here, and Amarillo got 18 inches of snow on Monday, Update to this at end of the blog.

Bill Wyman seems to be disappointed that the Rolling Stones didn't ask him to do more than just two songs when he guest starred on their 50th Anniversary Tour in Britian. Strictly financial, if the Stones wanted Wyman to do more, he would have probably asked for more money.  Likewise Mick Taylor.  Glory days are gone and all we get is old farts on the Geritol tour.  We have better things to spend our money on.  Sadly too much if it is going to Big Oil and their damn high gas prices.

Once again, no shortage of tunes to consider.  I'm probably leaving out 1 or 2 but there's always next week, or the five bubbling under.

1.  The Revolution Will Not Be Televised-Gil Scott-Heron 1970  Next to The Last Poets, GSH is really one of the pioneers of rap although he had a mostly jazz band backing him up and this still does hold up although the references to old commercials dates this back to 1970.  A classic although you won't hear this on the radio anytime soon thanks to Whitey Cumulus and Old Fart Clear Channel Fat Cat Radio.

2.  Is This Love-Big In Iowa 1998  Bigger in Ohio though, they never did make it "Big In Iowa" since they never played here as far as I know but next to Big Back Forty was one of the best alt country rock bands to come from Ohio in the late 90s.  Bob Burns sounded like a Midwestern Van Morrison and the band played like the Rolling Stones aka Exile On Main Street era, which is a big statement.  Legend has it that Jerry Lee Lewis wanted the guitar player to play in his touring band and got turned down, saying that his band was "Big In Iowa".  They made four good to great album, Green Pop produced by Roscoe Ambel (to which I have never seen or heard). Ken Glidewell died in a motorcycle accident in 2006, however the band has been doing some selective reunion shows in Ohio this year.  More to come?  Side note: Bob Burns played in The Do's And Don'ts in Ohio, probably not the same Do's And Don'ts band that is from Iowa.  Confused?  I bet you are.

3.  Black Mule-Grant McLennan  1991  Once part of The Go Betweens with the more radical Robert Forrester, McLennan was the more pop sounding of the two and although I haven't really checked out any of the Go Betweens stuff, I'm aware of Forrester's Danger In The Past CD that I found for fifty cents at the pawnshop years ago.  Black Mule got some airplay on the Alternative rock stations of the early 90s.  This version is taken off the Money Is Not The Answer compilation CD that Beggar's Banquet put out in the early 90s via RCA/BMG. It also contains choice cuts from The Dylans, Buffalo Tom, The Charlatans UK and Robert Forrester himself.  Worth a dollar if you find it.

4.  Hypnotized-The Mighty Lemon Drops  1986  Echo And The Bunnymen Junior.  Their first album sounds a hell of lot like Crocodiles, Echo & The Bunnymen's 1980 album for Sire to which The Mighty Lemon Drops were also on Sire.  I bought their World Without End when it came out on Cd in 1988 at the old Iowa City Record Realm years ago to which Record Collector was a couple doors down from the the long gone Realm.  Happy Head the first album is still very good but World Without End is their classic album. They made three more albums but reviews have been more on the negative and still can be found as cut outs.  Wounded Bird, the specialty label, issued both Happy Head and the 8 song EP Out Of Hand as a 2 on 1 CD.  They also reissued the rest of The Lemon Drops catalog as well.  Still in print if you can believe that.

5.  Soul Man-Sam And Dave 1967  Thanks to The Blues Brothers, this song lives forever in the overplayed oldies format but it's still a damn good song regardless.  Play it Steve!

6.  Humor Me-Pere Ubu 1979  Were they punk rock or were they art rock?  Hard to tell and in my high school years I couldn't figure them out, Allen Ravenstine's bizarre noisemaking keyboards and David Thomas banshee vocals were not for the faint of heart.  Dub Housing originally came out on Chrysalis Records and while Robert Christgau gave it a A, Dave Marsh thought it was a piece of poo.  Time has actually treated Pere Ubu a lot better now than it did back then but their back catalog remains a mess, Geffen issued The Modern Dance and Terminal Tower, a collection of B sides, live stuff and failed experiments.  I guess Dave Thomas continues to lead Pere Ubu although the last time I was interested in their music was The Story Of My Life which is a lot more mainstream than the radical late 70s period Dub Housing. Which you can call it alternative too.

7.  Hound Dog-Scotty Moore 1964  Elvis' original guitar player extraordinaire finally jumps on the Elvis money making venture and made a one off album for Epic with Billy Sherrill producing.  Moore picks 12 of Presley's better known numbers and turns them into easy listening muzak.  It's no different then the Tom Tomlinson/Jerry Kennedy's guitar instrumental albums for Mercury/Smash of the early 60s, you have some of the in demand session-men of Nashville at the time, including the unmistakable sax sounds of Boots Randolph although the cd liner notes hardly mention any of them or who sings backing, The Jordanieres   although it also sounds like the Hi Lo's played a role in the singing, but that's speculation on my part.  Never seen the original Epic album of The Guitar That Changed The World but Razor And Tie reissued it on CD and sat for months at Half Priced Books before being banished into the Clarance bins. Guess who picked it up.

8.  The Great White Buffalo-Ted Nugent's Amboy Dukes 1974   The beginning of the Terrible Ted's classic period, first signing up with Herb Cohen's DiscReet label for two albums and then over to Epic.  Derek St Holmes would provide vocal relief since Terrible Ted isn't the best singer out there and every time I hear this song I hear irony along Ted's Right Wing Rhetoric which he's more of a parody then actual songwriter.  Ted hasn't made a listenable album since leaving Epic and you wish he would shut the hell up about Obama threatening to take away his guns.  I don't forsee that happening anytime soon.  Can't deny that he brings it on guitar, shut up and play Ted.  Rob Grange plays bass on this song.

9.  Jack The Ripper-Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds 1992  Somebody on Twitter asked El Cranko Cave last week what's the best song he's ever written and he came up with this.  I find myself to limit myself on Cave's music, never thought much of him when he was leader of The Birthday Party to which I had the Hits Comp CD years ago, although his new album is quite good from what I have heard.  If I want to hear Cave I go to Henry's Dream, the album to which the late David Briggs (Neil Young's producer of choice and not the Nashville D.B musician) produced but Cave didn't think much of Briggs involvement or recording of Henry's Dream.  Brought a promo long time ago from the old Rockaway Records in Mesa then sold it.  Got a scratched up replacement at CD's 4 Change.

10.  Waiting-Santana 1969  If you haven't heard by now, Carlos has decided to bring back the original members of the Santana band (those who are still alive mind you) to do some new music for a forthcoming album.  Needless to say the original Santana knew their cuban-latin-fusion-jam rock very well as I decide to close this top ten with the B side to Evil Ways a forty five that still plays pretty good despite it's rough looking shape.

The bubbling five:

Johnny Can't Read-Don Henley 1982
Raspberry Beret-The Derailers 1997
Pass It Around-Smokey 1975
Rex Bob Lowenstein-Mark Germino & The Sluggers 1991
Travelin This Lonesome Road-Bill Monroe 1949

Other things:

At the end of month ratings, February will still be over 2200 views and not sure why the Olivia Blog is getting so many views at this point, even outnumbering the Whitesnake blog and being in 3rd place for most viewed this month, can't understand that one.  The All Time Views is a joke with Bobby Fuller Strange Case falling off the top ten although it comes up with 120 views on the another overview site. Then again The Whitesnake blog should be on the Consortium side of the ledger.  In terms of theory, the First And Last Crabb Fashion Show is better in my opinion.

The OscarsTM  was a travesty.  Seth McFarlane is better off just sticking his slapstick comedy to Family Guy/American Dad/Cleveland Show or whatever he has planned.  Pitty the poor actress who tripped on the stairs leading to the podium to get her OscarTM. Bob Lefsetz trashed the whole thing and even while commenting on Shirley Bassey doing Goldfinger 50 Years After The Fact, the young and curious took a wonder of who was this old woman singing, especially from one K J Testin who asked the Bob who was Shirley Bassey.  Testin got a backlash from the old guard on her lack of knowledge but you can't blame her since she wasn't around and perhaps her parents weren't around when Goldfinger was on the charts.  Got a laugh when Bob told her to ignore the haters (um Bob remember Vader??? *wink*). My question is...who is K J Testin?

This just in, Stone Temple Pilots have fired Scott Wieland.  Next up, a reunion of Army Of Anyone.  I'm sure STP will reunite with Scott when they realize they make more money with him in the band.  Casinos tend to pay pretty good from what I've heard.

The Temptations have been taking a beating of losing former members  First they lost Damon Harris, who replaced Eddie Kendricks and sings on Papa Was A Rolling Stone and most of the mid 70s Norman Whitfield albums passed away at age 62 from prostate cancer on February 18.   Richard Street, the third longest tenured Temptation died at age 70 on Wed, Street would sing in the background when Paul Williams couldn't sing and then replaced him altogether soon after, he too can be heard on Papa Was A Rolling Stone. Street would be a member till a falling out in 1993 and then took his act on the road, sometimes Damon Harris would help him out as well.  Street did perform overseas at 45 different concert dates.

Van Clyburn a cold war envoy and classical pianist also departed this world, from complications of bone cancer aged 78.  Clyburn's RCA albums have been known to pop up in the Salvation Army and Goodwill record bins from time to time.

Say goodbye to Pope Pervert Benedict.  Never liked him anyway.

Another week another snowstorm, this time Winter Storm Rocky playing havoc on the way home from work.  Took me an hour and ten minutes and taking back roads into Springville and hope to God blessed me enough to get me home and not take a gravel road with a 10 foot snowdrift in the middle of the road.  All told we got about 4 inches of the white shit and hope we are done with winter storms till December which I doubt.  We didn't get the 18 inches of Amarillo's white shit and Kansas probably got two feet of it.  Looks like the East Coast will get their forth straight storm, four straight weeks in a row.  Bet ya they're more sick of this than we are.

Could be worse could be a tornado.  Next week is Tornado awareness week here.  I'm sure when it gets warmer and the weather more unsettled we'll go from snowstorms to big assed thunderstorms.  The cycle never ends.

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