Easter weekend came and went and of course it was madhouse fun at the Smith family residence once again. Trying to watch the finale of The Walking Dead only to have my mom make commentary throughout the show. And of course the old man passed in front of the TV set downstairs watching Louisville upset Baylor in women's basketball. For the most part I think we missed the Ten Commandments, which usually shows on Easter weekend, mostly Saturday Night but I think I was out and about.
A lotta people think The Passion Of The Christ is a powerful movie but for me it's the 1927 silent film King Of Kings to which whoever played Jesus did a very convincing job to the point that when I am dead and gone from this world, the first person I want to meet would be Jesus. TCM shows King Of Kings on Easter Sunday Nights and although I have seen it about 10 times, I always shed tears of the cross scene and death and resurrection of Christ. Guess I have some good in me after all.
One of my earliest followers and friends Genie sent me a email for the first time in just about five years I think and their newest song is Resurrection Rhapsody which is a parody of Queen's version. Thought I would share it for you since Genie and her husband have been supportive of my musical endeavors. http://geniemusic.com/?s=1671
Apparently, The First And Last Crabb Fashion Show has been a hit with viewers to the point that it has now popped unto the All Time 10 Best Blogs. No matter how good it has done the past month, I have no intentions of doing a followup although Natalie Monet is tied for 4th place all time for most searched names here. Meanwhile Pat Travers has caught Samantha Fish for the top spot and probably will overtake her since a lot of you out there are tired of hearing about Sam Fish. In that case don't buy the new Townedger's record then. ;-)
If I was to kill The Rock N Roll And The Brains Blog, we would return to the days of 1,000 or less. I can't believe the world continues to read that or hit the clicker to generate more views.
Last year at this time I was mowing the yard. This year, we can't seem to get temps up past fifty degrees. Global warming my ass, it's the ice age all over again. Funny how one year ago we were ready to put the AC up in the window. This year we still got the humidifier going. And it's still chilly here. Still have snow in the shady areas.
I want to share this touching eulogy to Phil Ramone from Billy Joel. It was Ramone who managed to get the best of B.J. beginning with the Stranger and through a lot of his classic albums of the 70s and 80s up to An Innocent Man. I was not much of a Joel fan till later (Piano Man still sucks) but his albums really have gotten better over time. Paying tribute to the man who got the most out of Billy. RIP http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/billy-joel-pays-tribute-to-phil-ramone-he-was-the-king-20130403
The Top Ten Of The Week IS:
1. Motel Broken Hearts-Walter Egan 1979 From The Last Stroll, an album that I have never heard nor seen till finding it in Iowa City last month. Egan better known for Magnet And Steel featuring help from Fleetwood Mac really did carve out a pretty good pop rock career although sales after Not Shy dwindled into nothing. This time out, he goes with Earle Mankey on a more modern pop sound that isn't anything like Fleetwood Mac and if you have seen the cover of this album it probably would have creep you out. Very underrated singer who would return to the top forty charts with Full Moon Fire for Backstreet MCA in 1983.
2. All The Same To You-Laura Cantrell 2002 One of the greatest mysteries to me is how come Laura Cantrell never got to be more than just a cult artist, John Peel the late great DJ loved her to bits and called Not The Trembling Kind the best album of his life or something to that effect. I've heard it and thought it was pretty good but I liked the 2002 followup When The Roses Bloom Again better, probably of the fact that Laura covered a Amy Rigby song as well. I also add Cheri Knight into this fold of country rocking women with sarcastical wit to boot although Amy has kinda mellowed since marrying Wreckless Eric. This song is too country for country radio today and even back then 11 years ago it was iffy but Laura Cantrell needs to be rediscovered and quickly soon. Maybe I should pass this CD on to Steve Ramussen at work since he likes female country singers with a bit of twang to them.
3. Drop Down And Get Me-Del Shannon 1981 To me, one of the best heartbreak songwriters that ever lived was Del Shannon and although radio pretty much ignored him after Runaway, Shannon had a legion of fans and musicians that would support and help him along the way, most notably Tom Petty who produced his 1981 Elektra/Network album of the same name. Basically forgotten in the US, most if not all of his albums are still available on import, Drop Down And Get Me highly recommended for you Tom Petty and power pop fans.
4. With A Little Help From My Friends-Joe Cocker 1969 Ain't it amazing to see that Joe continues to deliver records and put on shows and really his vocals have never changed all that much, even 44 years after the fact that Joe would gather some of England's finest to play on his albums? Jimmy Page plays mad guitar and drums are by the late great BJ Wilson on this track that still gets plenty of airplay on classic rock radio (and oldies too). Another two dollar buy at the pawnshop since nobody thought it would sell.
5. Tennessee Birdwalk-Jack Blanchard & Misty Morgan 1970 Ain't the internet wonderful? They are still around and they are still making music and they are still married after all these years and having the only number 1 country hit of their lifetime. The original take was they were a stoner Sonny And Cher but to these ears, they had more in common with Nancy And Lee although Blanchard sounded more stoned than Lee Hazlewood ever did. This song got covered a few others (I've seen an album which the late Buck Owens and Susan Raye covered TBW but haven't worked up the nerve to hear it). Found a decent copy of Birds Of A Feather for two bits at Goodwill and it's a fun listen. For more and games you can hear more and some of Jack's insights at their website: http://www.jackandmisty.com/
Jack and Misty recorded a few singles and albums for the likes of Mega, Epic and United Aritsts although I have to admit I have never seen any other singles outside of Tennessee Birdwalk and Humphrey The Camel
Fun fact: Bethlehem Steel, came on Those Darn Records label and has A Martin Daniels Production tag to it. The Martin Daniels I know and talk to from time to time swears he had nothing to do with that, he wasn't even born at that time hehehehe.
6. Earth Blues-Jimi Hendrix 2013 Recorded 1969 and featuring The Band Of Gypsy's (Billy Cox and Buddy Miles RIP) and came out on the new cash grab People, Hell And Angels album. They keep telling you that if Hendrix had lived this would have been the general direction his music would have taken. As a Hendrix fan, I pretty much have bought what I have seen and People, Hell etc etc is a better listen than the jamtastic Valleys Of Neptune. Granted, dead Hendrix releases do sound better than alive Bowie albums from my experiences. Your opinion will be different.
7. Desperadoes Waiting For A Train-Guy Clark 1976 Here's the one thing I don't get when I see things from Amazon. Old No. 1 which Sugarhill reissued in the 1990s (now deleted) sells for 40 dollars whereas the Essential Guy Clark to which RCA reissued both that and Texas Cookin (the only 2 albums he did for RCA) and you can buy for 4 dollars new. The power of Amazon sellers fucking people up the ass in terms of profit. Had the Sugarhill album and sold it for 8 bucks at one time and then doing research on Guy Clark found the Essential for 2.50 at Goodwill. Clark reminds me a lot like Kris Kristofferson although Clark sings much better although Kris beats him for better songwriting but Clark is in the school of Kris and the late Harlan Howard, great songwriters that couldn't sing well. Problem number 2 is that most of the songs that Clark does is slow tempo and tends to put me to sleep if I'm not careful but this is one of his better songs, to which The Highwaymen (including KK, Johnny Cash, Waylon and Willie) had a minor hit with this song.
8. Good Morning Little School Girl-Ten Years After 1973 The live version to which Alvin Lee and Leo Lyons has a shoot em out jam between guitar and bass guitar. Alvin Lee, excellent guitar player in the tradition of Jim Hall gone rock and maybe he should have considered doing a instrumental only album in his lifetime. Lee's lyrics at times could be embarrassing just like Dave Peverett could be embarrassing too (Second verse: I'm gonna ball you, like you never been balled before, can't get away with that anymore creepy old dude-Side Note: John Lee (the original Sonny Boy) Williamson wrote this song back in 1937 and don't think he ever uttered those words in said song). Our good friend Bob Dorr has played this song a couple times in past history on Backtracks. Or somebody did when KFMW was hosting the underground rock show back in the mid 70s. On the subject of Bob Dorr, Backtracks is now a Saturday Afternoon show before Garrison Kellor's show at 5. I hardly noticed anymore since I don't listen to KUNI on Saturday Nights and only time I did they were playing that new rock garbage that clears a room out in seconds. Next.
9. Can I Sit Next To You Girl-Ac/Dc 1976 You really don't get much variety from AC/DC outside of the meat and potatoes rock and roll that they have been doing for all these years but even in the early years they seem to do a bit more variations on three chords and the truth, in fact this is probably their most poppish song ever done and the only one not written by Bon Scott during that era. KRNA sure plays TNT and It's A Long Way To The Top quite a bit but they won't touch this one, doesn't fit the Cumulus Criteria. To which we all say Fuck Cumulus and their Corporate Crap Radio. Going off subject here: I went to get my twice yearly haircut and for the 5th straight time of going to Cost Cutters, they had KDAT in the background and guess what song was playing? Hey Soul Sister from Train! One of the reasons why I hate Cumulus Radio. And Train for that matter. Getting back to AC/DC High Voltage didn't sell much back in 76, saw Long Way To The Top as a single at Sears one day and never picked it up, mistook that for a disco song. Hey it was 5 minutes long.
10. After Forever-Black Sabbath 1971 Mark Prindle finally relented and gave Masters Of Reality a ten and downgraded Volume 4 to a 9 or 8 and for my money, Masters Of Reality was the best Sabbath album of the Ozzy era with the S/T and Volume 4 and Paranoid coming into that order. If you had Sabbath in your collection back then, you were considered cool and a freak all in the same sentence. Reading the liner notes, Ozzy didn't write this one, Tony Iommi did. Unconventional but still classic Sabbath.
Past my bedtime but oh well, five more
Wasting My Time-Jimmy Page 1988
Coolhead-Kelly Osborne 2002
Here Come Those Tears Again-Jackson Browne 1976
Good Morning Little School Girl-Sonny Boy Williamson 1937
Laugh At Me-Mott The Hoople 1970
Passings: Bob Clarke, one of the original MAD magazine artists who drew Spy Vs Spy and countless other things. He was 87.
The end of the week I should know of my fate of where we will be at once printing has moved up north to Minnesota, of course they would make the decision on the day I penciled in a bargain hunting trip but I may postpone that or do a weekend thing. I an not exactly pleased of the ways of Minnesota management or the way they treated people that were interested of coming up, Dave Hansen never did return any phone calls or emails which probably makes the fact that if he didn't cared now, he probably be the first to show you out the door once you're not needed up there. All in the name of money and the bottom line. Oh yeah and Minnesota is a great place to live, if you like an extra month of snow and cold and two months of rain, heat and tornadoes. I'm sure Owatonna is a nice town to be in, if you knew anybody but it's not my home nor my livelihood. Only thing I be missing is an hour's away from Minneapolis. At least we're spared of Hoshin, some new aged mind control thought up by them. It sure helped our department, NOT.
The music festivals are early around here but Iowa City this week has the Mission Creek Festival running through the 7th with a lineup featuring Iris Dement, Deerhoof, Tig Nutaro with Jeanne Garfolo (I love her to death in Truth About Cats And Dogs and most of her stuff back then although I'm sure she'd never give me the time of day) and plenty of hours (sad to say The Townedgers won't be there) but they'll be playing at different venues around Iowa City with Deerhoof concluding things on Sunday at The Mill. http://www.missionfreak.com/
As always thank you for your support. Especially Tad!