Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Crabb Bits:Rock N Roll HOF Joe Bihari

Let me say this about this year's rock inductees....They sure don't rock. Or most of them.

Let's start this out in order of importance (for me).

The fans vote seem to be that they know more about rock and roll than Jann Wanner does. Deep Purple, which fell short, fared worse in the voting and basically Wanner drooling from the mouth said sorry guys, no Hall for you. Even though Gene Simmons would tell you it's been his and Paul Stanley's band from the get go, it was Ace Frehley's guitar work that made their best albums stand out.  Of course back then everybody in high school had a copy of KISS Alive or Destroyer and would dress up in KISS gear to lip synch to Rock And Roll All Nite in the high school's local talent show.  My faves remain 1974's Hotter Than Hell and to a lesser extent Rock And Roll Over.  The wheels fell off on the Vini Poncia's produced Dynasty and Unmasked and The Elder was a jumbled mess and Creatures Of The Night, Ace's finale not much better. Lick It Up was somewhat of a comeback but once they got rid of Vinnie Vincent the rest of the 80s and 90s stuff was crap, including the supposed reunion album Psycho Circus, a waste of time for everybody.  Tom Thayer and Eric Singer really have been the best replacements for the early KISS type of sound (not to take anything away from the late great Eric Carr) and the last two recent KISS albums were a return to the good old days.  But no matter what Gene Simmons thinks or does, he'll never top Ace Frehley's 1978 album as the best solo KISS album ever made.  He'll have to live that down.

You know you're getting old when they make it into the Hall.  They effectively killed hair metal with Nevermind's head exploding popularity. But on the downside ushered in the "grunge" movement  and may have inspired Limp Bizkit.  The mud splattered Bleach, the corrosive but polished Nevermind, the B side and odds and ends Insecticide, and Kurt's suicide note In Utero and the unsafe at any speed Steve Albini mix to boot, Nirvana's time was very brief.  Kurt would have been happier being obscure but make no mistake, Nevermind was a snapsnot of the early 90s and you had to be there.

Hall And Oates

More white boy soul than rock and roll but they got in the HOF on the string of high charting RCA singles but the Atlantic years had their share of moments.  War Babies has Todd Rundgren producing and Utopia backing them up, and it's somewhat progressive rock in a way, but it has John Oates' finest song Can't Stop The Music (he played it much too long) and I have a fondness for the first RCA single, not Sarah Smile but rather Carmelia another forgotten Oates sung number.   Daryl Hall got Robert Fripp to produce Sacred Songs and wouldn't it been fun to see Robert produced H&O next album but instead they went with hack David Foster on Along The Red Line which had a fine but minor hit in It's A Laugh (which explains Jann Wanner's HOF anyway), a cover of You Lost That Lovin Feeling opened the doors for a 4 year dominance on the pop charts ending with Big Bam Boom their hardest rocking record ever.  But then they dropped out, and when they returned the hits were no longer there.

Peter Gabriel
Never enjoyed much of his Genesis stuff with the exception of And The Word Was...Genesis and as much as I tried to listen to Foxtrot or Selling England By The Pound and the first live album it bored the hell out of me. His solo career was much better and although his Atlantic stuff was still uneven, the Fripp produced album was the best.  Going to Mercury for the 1980 album with Biko Gabriel hit his stride with So and of course the major hit single Sledgehammer and the beautiful In Your Eyes before Cumulus radio overplayed it to death.  His last good album was Us. His best of can be found in the 2 dollar bins and you're better off to go there.  As for the Genesis stuff, you're on your own.

Linda Ronstadt
Everybody in high school loved her, she was so damn sexy back then in the late 70s and she knew great songs to cover. From Neil Young (Love Is A Rose), Warren Zevon (Poor Poor Pitiful Me) and early rock and roll (When Will I Be Loved, That'll Be The Day) she remains a part of classic rock radio but I have no use for her music since I never own any albums and the only single that I ever had was her 1982's Get Closer.  Her U turn into pop standards and Nelson Riddle everybody got off the bus.  Not exactly rock and roll. But did managed to produced David Lindley's 1988 Very Greasy for Elektra which was his most fun album in years.  Greatest Hits 1 and 2  are the best overview.

Cat Stevens
A Jan Wanner pick, I have found only a handful of Stevens numbers I can listen to: Matthew And Son and Wild World which remains my fave, but for Yusuf Islam's albums not much so.  This is where the supporters of Deep Purple, Yes and Paul Revere And The Raiders come in and complain about this selection.

E Street Band
Without them Bruce Springsteen doesn't rock

Brian Epstein:
Beatles manager

Andrew Loog Oldham
In some ways Andrew was a bit more important than Epstein as Stones manager, plus it helped that he formed a record label that gave us Humble Pie and The Small Faces and it could have been one of the most important label had bad distribution done it in.  An odd sort of fellow, Oldham can be heard on Little Steven's Underground Garage although he tends to be a bit longwinded on his stories.

So there ya go, the 2014 inductees and of course the more deserving folks are still not in. And never will be as long as Dipshit Wanner is still alive.


Joe Bihari, the last of the Bihari brothers who formed Modern Records has joined his brothers in the great beyond at the age of 88.  While it was true that the Bihari's would go find black bluesmen to record, they were also known to stick their names in for songwriting credit which made BB King mad to leave for ABC Paramount.  The Bihari's also discovered (and took some songwriting credit as well) Etta James, Ike Turner and Elmore James as part of the Modern/RPM/Meteor/Flair labels that they owned.

And Harold Camping, the doomsday minister who kept making predictions about when the world would end and ended up being wrong time and time again...The end of him came.  Age 92, fell and his his head after falling. The way it goes:


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