The Beatles were over and Paul was out singing with his wife Linda who had no musical talent…..disaster!
But guess what….Paul was a happy man, enjoying his life. loving his wife, raising his family, and still making music that puts most of the crap that is out today to shame. Here is some great rare footage and interviews from those days to prove the point. I think you will really enjoy this!
If you long for the days of Paul McCartney and Wings stay tuned on Sunday and Monday for a great Wings show and TV Special. The 70s……Paul was young, I was young, and all was well with the world!
Well June of 1973 was nothing to write home about from a music perspective. Fortunately for us, Joe Walsh saved the day by releasing his classic album The Smoker You Drink They Player You Get. Before we get to listen to a couple of cuts from this great album let’s talk about some of the less notable releases forty years ago.
Gary Glitter – Touch Me
An aptly named album given what we learned about Gary in later years (Google it if you don’t know) but less than stellar music.
The Partridge Family – Crossword Puzzle
A fake TV family that happened to be a fake music group….not exactly the stuff of rock legends. The one an only saving grace…..Laurie Partridge (Susan Dey) was hot!
The Osmonds – The Plan
A real family making bad music.
Yes….June of 1973 looked like a vast wasteland until Joe stepped in and saved the day with his first solo album after the James Gang. Let’s listen to the huge hit from his album, Rocky Mountain Way. You have to love that opening guitar riff…..
Since it’s twofer Tuesday let’s check out Joe’s softer side on the album with Meadows, maybe my favorite song on the album. If you ever had any doubts as whether Joe is really a wild man, the introduction to this song should settle things.
Thank you Joe for saving June…..forty years ago today.
I have fallen in love with today’s song…..the best new music (and the best new voice) I have heard in a long time. Let’s listen to the song and then I will share some of the back story of Ashley and Used.
I am embarrassed to say that Ashley has been around since 2006 but I have just recently become aware of her. Ashley recorded her first album, Satisfied, in 2006 but when here first two singles failed to make the top 20, the record company decided to not release it. Ashley continued to pursue a career in country music, achieving significant success as a writer. (note: Satisfied was eventually released and is now available for download on sites like Amazon) It wasn’t until March of this year that she recorded and released her second album, Like A Rose. I highly recommend that you buy it now! Here’s a video of Ashley and Vince Gill discussing the recording of Used for the Like A Rose album.
So, as Ashley indicated in the above video, Used was actually included on her first ill-fated album. In case you are interested here the original recording of the song.
An amazing voice, song writer, and a beautiful young lady. If that isn’t the complete package I don’t know what is? She is destined for bigger and greater things! Oh….one more thing. I forgot to mention that Ashley is also a member of one of the hottest country groups performing today….Pistol Annies. Be looking for a post about them very soon but in the meantime here is a video of their live performance debut.
This must be my week for milestones.
This post is my 500th…….next week I turn 60 and (as the song says) I got some dents and bruises but…….maybe (with a little luck) we can keep me and this blog going a while longer!
Let’s get right to the point……I have been listening to The National’s most recent album, (Trouble Will Find Me) for the past month and it’s a a huge disappointment. As a self confessed fan, it pains me to say this but the songs on this album are boring. They drone on and on with minimal dynamics in either the lyrics or the underlying music.
At their best, songs are like good books in that they take you on a journey that includes key elements such as:.
a catchy introduction
a developing storyline that builds to a climax
a denouement or resolution
These elements apply to both the lyrics and the music of a song. While the lyrics normally are the driving force in telling the story, the music provides a dynamic element that helps propel the story forward. The songs on Trouble Will Find Me are, with a few exceptions, lacking in all of the above. I don’t expect you to take my word for it without proof so let’s listen to a few examples.
I Need My Girl
This song starts with a lot of promise ……… a simple but catchy guitar riff and a introductory verse that could go places but…..that riff that was catchy when it introduced the song becomes maddening one it is repeated for four minutes and the lyrics never go any where.
Out of all of the songs on the album I wanted to like this one the most. I loved the title, and with that title, the lyrics could have gone to some amazing places but they didn’t……
Passing buzzards in the sky
Alligators in the sewers
I don’t even wonder why
Hide among the under views
Huddle with them all night long
The worried talk til god goes on
I sincerely tried to love her
Wish that I could rise above her
What the hell does that mean?
At the end of the first verse I waiting for the music to break out into an amazing chorus but instead I got a continued drone with “I stay down with my demons” repeated over and over. Not dynamic and not interesting. To be fair the song does take a slightly interesting musical turn with the third verse but it was too little too late for me. My son argues that the song reaches a climax with the word “Fuck” at the end of that third verse but he and I are going to have to agree to disagree on that one. So disappointing.
Now let’s compare and contrast these songs with England from High Violets.
The first time I listen to this song a little movie played in my head, there was story being played out in the lyrics. The music was interesting with entertaining flourishes that added to the song. Most importantly the overall song built to a great climax at the end. Really good stuff!
So….. I’m disappointed in Trouble Will Find Me but I still love The National. For now, I will continue listening to High Violet until their next album which I am sure will, once again, blow me away.
Things are a little crazy at work so I haven’t been able to post as often as I would like. Let’s get things rolling on the blog again with an excellent Sunday Session from the National. I became a huge fan of the group with the release of their High Violet album a few years ago and this concert features my favorite songs. I think you will enjoy it! Here’s the setlist…..
Afraid of Everyone
The bonus part of today’s post is an interview with The National that I had planned to post last Thursday. I’ve also included an acoustic version of my favorite song, England, that was recorded in association with the interview. Good stuff……
I’ve been listening to The National’s new album, Trouble Will Find Me, for the last month. Check back on Tuesday for my review.
Over the past couple of weeks I have been spending a lot of time listening to Daughter, a British folk group fronted by Elena Tonra that has a great indie sound. I particularly have enjoyed one of their songs that I found online, Get Lucky. Let’s listen……..
Much to my surprise, I discovered that Daughter’s version of Get Lucky was a cover version of a Daft Punk song. Daft Punk doesn’t play the kind of music I normally listen to but I was intrigued enough to seek out and listen to the original version of Get Lucky. Listen and see what you think…..
After listening to Daft Punk’s version I have to say that Daughter’s version is the ultimate proof that a cover song doesn’t have to be a note for note copy to be great. Amazing job Daughter! We will definitely be talking more about you in future posts on this blog.
As always I am interested in hearing your thoughts……post a comment and let me know which version of Get Lucky you like best.
As I mentioned yesterday, Quadrophenia is my favorite Who album. Today’s Monday Matinee is loosely based on the album and is definitely worth your time if you haven’t seen it before. Here is a summary of the plot as provided by the Wikipedia article on the movie….
It is 1965, and London Mod Jimmy Cooper (Phil Daniels), disillusioned by his parents and a job as a post-room boy at an advertising firm, finds an outlet for his teenage angst with his Mod friends Dave (Mark Wingett), Chalky (Philip Davis) and Spider (Gary Shail). One of the Mods’ rivals, the Rockers, is in fact Jimmy’s childhood friend, Kevin (Ray Winstone). An assault by aggressive Rockers on Spider leads to a serious unprovoked attack on Kevin during which Jimmy does not help his friend and joins in on the assault.
A bank holiday weekend provides an excuse for the rivalry between the Mods and Rockers to come to a head, as they both descend upon the seaside town of Brighton. A series of running battles ensues. As the police close in on the rioters, Jimmy escapes down an alleyway with Steph (Leslie Ash) — a girl on whom he has a crush — to have sex. When the pair emerge, they find themselves in the middle of the melee just as police are detaining rioters. Jimmy is arrested, detained with a violent, leading Mod he calls ‘Ace Face’ (played by Sting), and later fined the then-large sum of £50. When fined £75, Ace Face mocks the magistrate to the amusement of fellow Mods.
Back in London, Jimmy becomes increasingly depressed. He is thrown out of his house by his mother, who finds his stash of amphetamine pills. He then quits his job, spends his severance package on more pills, and finds out that Steph has become the girlfriend of his friend Dave. After a brief fight with Dave, the following morning his rejection is confirmed by Steph and with his beloved Lambretta scooter accidentally destroyed, Jimmy takes a train back to Brighton. In an attempt to relive the recent excitement, he revisits the scenes of the riots and of his encounter with Steph, but then, to his horror, discovers that his idol, Ace Face, is in reality a lowly bellboy at a Brighton hotel. Jimmy steals Ace’s scooter and heads out to Beachy Head, crashing the scooter over a cliff, which is where the film begins with Jimmy walking back from the cliff top in the sunset back drop.
The Who appeared at the Isle of Wright festival on August 29, 1970, performing in front of a crowd estimated at 600,000. Although the full concert was over three hours long, this video presents a version that was significantly edited (a lot of Tommy was eliminated and the performances were resequenced). The track listing, as included in the video, includes:
1. Heaven And Hell
2. I Can’t Explain
3. Young Man Blues
4. I Don’t Even Know Myself
6. Shakin’ All Over
7. Spoonful/Twist And Shout
8. Summertime Blues
9. My Generation
10. Magic Bus
12. It’s A Boy
13. Eyesight To The Blind (The Hawker)
15. The Acid Queen
16. Pinball Wizard
17. Do You Think It’s Alright
18. Fiddle About
19. Go To The Mirror
20. Miracle Cure
21. I’m Free
22. Tommy’s Holiday Camp
23. We’re Not Gonna Take It
I think you will really enjoy this video. In my opinion the Who are arguably the greatest band of all time and this performance captures the original group at full power. Let’s watch…..
If you enjoyed the Who’s performance at the Isle of Wright, check back tomorrow for the movie version of my favorite Who album of all time, Quadrophenia.
Pete is an amazing composer, a brilliant musician, AND an amazing interview. He always has something intelligent to say and I always feel like I learn something when listening to him. He never hesitates to speak his mind which is quite refreshing these days but be aware that his stated position almost always change over time. Bottom line…..he is always entertaining.
I have two interview offerings for you today. Up first a very young Pete talks about Tommy…….
(Pete Talks About Tommy)
Next up is an interview of an older Pete by Murray Lerner who captured the Who live at the Isle of Wright festival in 1970. The interview is intermixed with Who footage which makes for an interesting viewing and listening experience.
Part 1 of 5
Part 2 of 5
Part 3 of 5
Part 4 of 5
Part 5 of 5
Stay tuned on Sunday when I will bring you the Who live at the Isle of Wright festival. Really good stuff!
Last week Eric found his way to this blog and left a comment about his new song (I’m Going Down) and his upcoming album (also named I’m Going Down). Since he was nice enough to visit the blog I HAD to listen to his song and………it (and the video that went with it) were both great. I was intrigued, I was charmed, and most importantly I was thoroughly entertained both musically and visually which is not something that I can say about most music that I hear today. Maybe more importantly I wanted to hang out with Eric, his band, the people in the video (I would like to think they were his friends), and party. Really good stuff. Let’s listen…..
Eric Howl and the Way Down Lows – I’m Going Down
I wanted more (no….I needed more) so I took to the internet on a quest. Bingo, another song from his upcoming album, You Already Know The Way To Brahma’s House. Weird title for another “alt-country” song but what the heck.
Eric Howl – You Already Know The Way To Brahma’s House
OK, once the song started it was not what the heck,it was what the Hell! Bhangra, rap, Bollywood dancing, who is this guy and why haven’t I heard of him before! Now let me be honest….I am not a rap fan, I have never heard bhangra (had to look it up), but damnit it worked and I was entertained. I have no idea what to expect from Eric’s album when it is released but I personally can’t wait. I suggest we all pick it once it is released and gather back here to talk.
If I had to word to describe Eric in one word it would be eclectic, faced with the same challenge for the Savages the word would be intense. These girls rock, not that’s not quite right, they rock hard and with an amazing focus. I love their guitarist (she has an amazing ringing tone), the rhythm section is rock solid (together they are great and they individually have the capability to drive songs forward), and I don’t even know how to describe the singer. Maybe the thing I like most about them is they are better live than they are on record and that says a lot. As soon as they manage to capture their live sound on a record there will be no stopping them but until then you won’t go wrong by picking up their debut album, Silence Yourself. Enough babbling on my part…..you need to hear this for yourself……