Monday, December 16, 2013

Top Ten Of The Week: House Of Records

Plenty of fucking missing pictures here.  Why bother changing them when they continue to Disappear?!

Among the things that I missed over the years was The Heidelberg Project, a Detroit idea of making good use of abandoned houses and add a art theme to them. One of which is called The House Of Soul, which grabbed my attention.  I'm guessing this is in one of the more rougher no man's area of Detroit, since arson has sense claimed the House Of Soul.  Guess I won't be making any trip to Detroit anytime soon. But with determination they continue to solder on, despite the arsonists burning down the houses. 

This month great things have happened here in the blog known as Crabb's Top Ten, I hit 923 views in one day over a blog that had nothing to do with 11 12 13 but the folks in India thought otherwise. At the halfway point, the ratings seem to indicate my best year since the breakout July record of 3727, but of course Bob Lefsetz gets that many views per hour.  But I do have regulars. But with two more top tens to go till the year is out (this is a short year since next week's is Christmas and still debating if I should go out in style and defy the holiday with a regular batch of songs or the overplayed Christmas crap that makes going to any store a chore upon itself.  Life is a very fleeting moment and you and I may not be around to see the next Holiday extravaganza or count how many times you hear Holly Jolly Christmas or Silver Bells or (insert another overplayed song here) before going bat crazy.   Used to be we could not wait for this part of the year to play Christmas songs, now we dread hearing the same song done by over the top arrangements from the latest DON'T YELL AT ME chick singers that make Marah Carey sound like Nick Drake.  I'm not a child anymore, nor any of my own, Christmas means nil to me.


Over the course of years, meeting starving musicians has always made me champion for them to be recognized in a era corrupted by overplayed classic rock and corporate radio but I always been a big fan of Liz Chaffe and her band Lizzy Williams. Thought I give her a shout out and some Crabb loving of her latest picture.  And still hounding her for a new CD as well. Liz, of the original My Space friends now over at Facebook. 

It made the local news here but Slipknot announced that Joey Jordison, freaky drummer of said band and helping out fellow bands such as Rob Zombie and Ministry has left the band to help his new band Scar The Martyr. Corey Taylor isn't saying too much about it at the moment but I'm sure more will come to light as the days progress on.  Slipknot, the best known Iowa band (best Iowa band another matter of opinion) has been pretty much dormant since the death of Paul Gray but Taylor has been quite busy with his projects and Stone Sour band too. With Joey's departure is this the end of Slipknot as we know them?  It won't be the same.

In the meantime, time for the latest top ten, if my finger will hit the right letters.  Good thing I don't handwrite this anymore, nobody would decipher what the hell I say.

1.  Good Rockin Tonight-Wynonie Harris  1947  Originally written by the late great Roy Brown, Harris turned it down but then did his own when Brown recorded it for himself.  For myself, this songs goes all the way to the Columbia 18 King Size Rhythm And Blues Hits which was played time and time again. One of the more early songs with a cymbal crash ride that foretell the future of future cymbal crashers like Keith Moon, this song was part of Rock Before Elvis comp that Stash Records issued when they were a mail order company out of New York (I ordered that while living at the old duplex in CR).  Rock and roll was coming but it would take another 7 years before Elvis strolled on down to Sun Records to make a record for his momma for a birthday present. And of course, did a cover of this song too.  The Man knew his music.

2.  Mustang Man-7th And Beale  2008  About five years ago I came across this band while looking through was CD Baby had for sale but obscurity of this band even in their stomping ground of Kingman Arizona nobody really knows about either. There's nothing about them at Hastings, maybe the music store downtown. The major players are Gilbert Sanchez and Stanfield Major but their secret weapon was Katherine Stewart, the closest soundalike to Patsy Cline that we will ever get. Crossroads And Highways was an inspired but uneven album with the best songs sung by Stewart. Sanchez and Major have moved on to a Facebook site called Lucky Dog! Music.

3.  I Like Marijuana-David Peel And The Lower East Side 1968  Yeah I miss the 60s too, radical music and people pushing the envelope.  Critics didn't care much for Peel, Robert Christgau gave his Pope Smokes Dope LP the infamous E grade and I doubt that this one would have fared much better either.  This has a vibe that you can find on the Fugs album but not as accessible.  Peel would redo this song with the hippie dippy shoegazer freaks The 360s on the hemplation album for Capricorn in the late 90s.  The folks at Real Gone thought so much of this album that they reissued it this year with Peel signing autographs on fifty copies.  That was six months ago; they had a Christmas sale, with five dollars on certain CDs (probably the least selling albums), which I scooped up unknown classics from Hello People, Wilderness Road and (Yes) even The Shoes best of.  And of course Have a Marijuana to which, guess what, I scored one of those autographed inserts from Mr. Peel himself. Score one for me.

4.  Hey Pocky Way-The Neville Brothers 1981  Longtime band of brothers doing some funky New Orleans grooves as the The Meters and of course the soul singers of Art and Cyril plus Charles along with the crooner Aaron has been making critic approved albums as the Neville Brothers over the years and I didn't pay much attention till I saw the cheapo 2 CD set for 65 cents and then caught up on the best moments. Fiyo on The Bayou seems to be their best album. Produced by Joel Dorn.

5.  Dead Man Walking-Brand New Sin 2005  Southern rock has never died but it has been altered over the years. Texas Hippie Coalition comes to mind but Brand New Sin has been around longer than THC. Echoes of Molly Hatchet and Skynyrd plus some Metallica here and an Pantera howl there. If KRNA had any balls they would be playing this as modern rock classic but they never will. They tend to ignore anything that comes out on Century Media. The new Southern Rock.

6. Oh Death-Camper Von Beethoven 1988  Somehow with all the passings of people that I known this year, I thought this would be a good song to put up.  And hoping we can get spared another day to look forward to another day.  The Kaleidoscope (thank God for spellchecker since I'd never get that GD word spelled right) did it on the Side Trips album they did for Epic back in the 60s.

7.  Laundromat-Rory Gallagher 1971  In the years of reviewing albums and bands, I never really gotten around listening to his discography outside of the Polydor Best Of Taste, Rory's band before going solo but I recall him doing a excellent live performance on the old In Concert series for ABC way back in the 70s.  Like Gary Moore, Rory played a mean slide and shared a love of booze that eventually doomed him.  His albums have been reissued a few times on CD but the only one I ever got was the Beat Club Sessions in the two dollar bins and Rory puts on a great performance on his three sessions for the German TV Beat Club.  Back then on Friday and Saturday Nights, we could see live music be it Rock Concert or Midnight Special here. Nowadays all they show is infocommercials of those forgotten shows.  For what it cost for cable, ya think they would show the shows instead. Fuck you Guthy Renker for the info-commercial.

8.  Rebel Beat-Goo Goo Dolls 2013  They have had a very good and long run on Warner Brothers, two decades if you can believe that but their albums have been underachieving as they try to keep a foot in the door of radio, to which this song bombed and KDAT passed on.  Four producers tried their hand including Greg Wattenberg but outside of the faithful fans (that would be me and about 120 others) Magnetic didn't sell.  It really is their best since Dizzy Up The Girl but at this point nobody else cares.  It's a bitch getting old. The 90s are truly gone, just like the 80s, 70's, 60's.  Light years away.


9.  Hard Love-Spirit 1988   Part of Miles Copeland's efforts to give classic rock bands a second chance at stardom in the late 80s, he didn't have much to work with. Black Sabbath was going through the Tony Martin era, John Kay and Steppenwolf made the silly and forgettable Rise And Shine and perhaps the best of the bunch the return of Spirit with John Locke rejoining Randy California and Ed Cassidy although too bad Jay Ferguson sat this one out.  Mark Andes (borrowed from Heart at the time) and Curly Smith (Jo Jo Gunne) helped on this song which was the best off Rapture In The Chambers.  Had this on CD years ago and traded it in but a trip to Hastings this year in Kingman found Rapture for 1.49.  It's okay but not one of their best.

10.  One Tin Soldier (The Legend Of Billy Jack)-Coven 1971  Dedicated to the memory of Tom Laughlin who died on Sunday at age 82. But perhaps the biggest paradox of music history, this song was written by the Lambert/Potter team, but Coven was one of the pioneering goth bands (though the term wasn't around back then) and made a hard rock album for Mercury that got recalled after it was revealed that Charles Manson listened to it (you can guess the rest).  This light hearted pop single charted three times and both MGM and Warner Brothers issued it as a single.  Nevertheless Jinx Dawson may have beat Ronnie James Dio as the first to use the devil horn sign (\nn/)  and continues to lead various lineups of Coven, although outside of One Tin Soldier, I have heard nothing else from Coven or Jinx for that matter. 

No shortage of crappy music especially the country side of radio  Which may be even more torturous than KDAT (although they're on their Christmas period with the overplayed Christmas crap of long ago and far away) and Z102.9 which is reserved for hair styling salons and Cost Cutters.  Saving Country Music's worst of 2013 although yours truly still believes My Kind Of Night is the new Soul Sister of this decade.

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