Thursday, December 4, 2014

RIP Bobby Keys, Ian Mclagan

It's been a bad week in the music world and life in particular.   A co worker's sister at work had a stroke is an ICU, I've been battling chest pains and high BP but still continue to defy the odds.  And Bob Lefsetz continues to bitch about the music world and no intent of stopping. Sometimes I think it's best to quit reading his bellyaching at his website.  I'm surprised I haven't had a stroke yet, after dealing with going into town and red lights, shitty drivers and too many roundabouts.  After waiting 10 minutes in route to work, I had to deal with a bitchy pharmacist with a attitude I pretty much told her to shove the refill up her arse and Merry Christmas.  Time for a new Pharmacy.

But we're all getting old. And when you get old you die.  You just don't know when.  Bobby Keys, the wonderful saxophone player with the Rolling Stones, finally gave up the ghost after liver failure at age 70.  He also played alongside Buddy Holly way back when.  His sax solo on Brown Sugar by the Rolling Stones was a highlight.

Ian McLagan, one of the best keyboardist in rock history suffered a stroke Tuesday at age 69.  There was talk of a Faces (what's left of them) reunion but since Rod Stewart had other things to contend with, that never happened and the Faces went out on the road with the Simply Red lead singer.  McLagan played on a wide variety of other bands album, lately the new Empty  Hearts album.  Certainly he will be missed.

The Rolling Stone best of 2014 is out and basically it's a joke.  U2 and Bruce Springsteen best albums of the year in their opinion.  I didn't care for either album and while Rolling Stone gave U2 props for giving the album away, I thought U2 forced their product on the public on the smart phone.  I didn't think it was even worth the 6.99 special that Best Buy had on their annual Black Friday sale either.  But then again I haven't found U2 to be worth a mention since their All That You Can't Leave Behind which came out 14 years ago, which I actually liked.  I also liked Pop too but the last two albums were dreadful. Lefsetz thought that was a joke too and I posted the link on the last blog but that got lost due to a slow computer and other technical issues.  I don't think it's worth posting anyway, basically the world is sick of hearing Bob bitch about everything new and if you don't stream and listen to albums you're not a friend of his.  But let's not lose sleep over that.  The phone ain't ringing and I don't expect to hear from him anyway.

The last couple albums for 2014 has been reviewed and it will be a couple weeks for me to finalize a best of the year that my 20 fans and readers will be waiting to read.  Then the usual Year In Review and perhaps another Singles Going Steady to end this miserable year.  And hope we'll still be alive in 2 thousand one five.

I'm not done yet.

Guardians Of The Universe Soundtrack (Hollywood)

Disney's attempt to cash in with a Big Chill or Dazed And Confused soundtrack for this generation.  As you know there's no shortage of 70s music soundtracks or compilations and Guardians turned out to be one of the bigger selling albums of 2014 due to a public tired of crappy top forty and rock music decided to revisit their childhood roots.  Songs here have been overplayed on classic rock radio but I wouldn't quibble with the majority of songs here,  Ooh Child, Fooled Around And Fell In Love, I'm Not In Love, Spirit In the Sky, for soul throw in some Motown for good measure, and for cheese, let's go with Rupert Holmes and (YES) Blue Swede. Only song here that doesn't overplayed is David Bowie.  Hmmm....if you have a Time Life Collection of best of the 70s, you don't need this.  For those who don't listen to the radio or live under a rock.

Grade B

Carrie Underwood-Greatest Hits Decade 1 (Arista)

By far the biggest selling artist for American Idol, the folks at 19 Records convinced the head hunchos that Carrie would have a better career had she gone country rather than being rock and roll and it worked for her.  She can sing but she can also yell and she still gives me a major headache on Something In The Water which could pass for top forty pop radio, although her faith in Jesus is noted..  Like the majority I think she tries to be everything at once and it goes against her, even on Jesus Take The Wheel where she screams out the final chorus as if to keep up with Celine Dion or Kelly Clarkson.  I'm in the minority though when I thought she did a credible job on a Aerosmith song so what do I know?  I also thought that she would last 1 or 2 years tops, but she has survived for 9 years running now with a little help from Carrie Nation, the online social media that champions every thing she did and chastise the ones who think she sucks.  And so the end result is that we're all rewarded with a two CD set of her hits and duets but it's a bit too bloated for the casual fan who would like a single disc of her accomplishments.  It does have her duets with Randy Travis and Brad Paisley but it doesn't have the duet with Miranda Lambert (Something Bad) that somehow didn't work wonders on the country music charts, problem was that song sounded unfinished and thrown together.  Nor does it have the Aerosmith duet from Music From Another Dimension which would have fit on this comp. She would have been better served with a single disc overview as well but as the folks at Arista/19 Records are thinking that her in the spotlight is beginning to fade, so what's a better time than to put out a best of.  Watch out Miranda, you might be next.

Grade C+

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