Monday, December 5, 2016

THE QUICK EXIT COP OUT (LATIN EDITION)

I don't even fight it anymore. I was over at Groove Addict, dinking around looking for Whitfield-era Temptations stuff when I ran across a Ray Barretto cut (and LP download). Yeah, hot diggity, off I went. You know how that happens, one minute you're listing to one thing, that leads to another, and another, until a couple hours have been sucked right out of you. I know when it's time to throw my hands up, step away from the keyboard, and just go listen.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Ray Baretto - Power  mp3 at Groove Addict 1970
Ray Baretto - BabalĂș  mp3
at Groove Addict 1963
Ray Baretto - Boogaloo Con Soul  mp3
at Groove Addict 1967
Ray Baretto - Search For Vulcan  mp3
at Groove Addict 1965, from the album above.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

HUMBLE THYSELF BIG TIME CHARLIE

I weighed all sorts of thing to post tonight, most from familiar names. Then I ran across the Dogs and all that went out the window. Sometimes, even after taking a look at that ridiculous sleeve above, you gotta be objective, bite your tongue and remind yourself that the very nature of DIY is that it does not discriminate. Stupid sleeve? Bad band? Shitty production? Hey, it only takes one person that likes the package enough to fund it. Besides, I may need to reassess. On second thought, that sleeve is no worse than something you'd see in one of the old National Lampoon magazines of the same era. After seeing the back of the sleeve, I was sold. Okay, so you have that sleeve, a band named the Dogs, that's the front, and on the back it has an address in Decorah, Iowa. Where the fuck is that? Let's move on. Take a look at the guys in the photos from the back of the sleeve. Where do you file that?



~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~ 
Listen:

Friday, December 2, 2016

DON'T NEED YOUR MILKCOW BLUES ANYMORE

Fuckin' Chocolate Watch Band, those sneaky sapsuckers. They recorded "Milk Cow Blues" and gave it a different title, "Don't Need Your Lovin'". That I knew. You know what else they did? They recorded a different version with the correct title. I can't believe I just noticed this, despite the fact that I've owned a greatest hits package that has both of them for years. Maybe because there were scant liner notes so I never bothered to look at the song listings as I was listening and it never registered the I heard the same song twice. They are slightly different, but the both sound like the Chocolate Watch Band. Who knows. But here's both versions a few other good songs by them.

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Listen:

Thursday, December 1, 2016

HOWDY FROM SUNGLASS DEPOT

I'm sick, head cold or flu or who knows what. The official diagnosis: I feel like shit. So, I'm gonna let Mudhoney take it out, and since misery loves company, Sonic Youth covering Mudhoney.

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Listen:
Mudhoney - Touch Me I'm Sick (LP Version) mp3 at Chewing Water
Sonic Youth - Touch Me I'm Sick mp3 at I Am Fuel, You Are Friends

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

TWO AND A HALF DECADES IN THE BANK

The other day I was in a small record store down the street, small meaning limited selection. In other words, they have to sell the shit that sells to stay afloat. Not a whole lot of stuff other than mediocre used old classic rock vinyl, with the new stuff limited to the latest hipster jive. Want the Growlers? Oh yeah, they'll have that shit. Sonny Boy Williamson? Forget it. But it's the closest record store so what are you going to do?

I wasn't browsing for anything in particular when I came across about a half dozen used Jon Spencer Blues Explosion CDs, all different titles, some that I don't have. I went through my normal judicious tightwad thought process. When was the last time I listened to the Spencer stuff I already owned? Okay then, move on, you don't need any more right now. After making small talk with the friend who worked there, I left empty handed.

On the way home I was thinking about poor ol' Jon Spencer. A guy who clearly loves the blues, but interprets it in a different way. With theremin and all types of weird shit. Is he really what an authentic modern blues man should be? Rather than all of the more traditional types, retro types, or even the blues-rock bands? If so, will he end up like his forefathers, playing smaller venues to less appreciative audiences as he gets old and gray? He's clearly not the hot shot he used to be. Six used CDs in one small record store with limited selection tells me that. Would he, if truly a bluesman, trod on regardless of the rewards, because that's what he does? How blues a man is this blues man? Maybe years from now rediscovered, seen as a true torchbearer, playing to rabid European audiences in the midst of another blues revival? What do the coming decades hold for Jon Spencer's blues vision? This is gonna be good.

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Listen:

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

ODDBALLS FROM THESE LADIES

If you only have a passing interest in the Supremes, you probably only have a greatest hits album, or maybe one of their early albums with a bunch of hits. The ladies had their share of oddballs and deeper cuts. Here's four. "Sunset" slays me.

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Listen:

Monday, November 28, 2016

LIKE, WRITE YOUR OWN SONG DADDY-O

I know nothing about poetry. A few of the names that always get spouted out, a few not so dog eared books on my shelf, but that's about it. That despite knowing a bunch of poets, a few very scholarly and well respected in that world. But me? I really don't know shit. That said, I believe I can smell a rat. Not really a rat per se, but someone who the hard core poetry people probably thinks is a laugh. That's what Rod McKuen always seemed to be to me. Parent poetry. Like the decoupaged Desiderata  plaque in the hallway. 

Rod McKuen was on the brain because I was just thinking about his "Beat Generation", recorded by Bob McFadden and Dor, being the song that Richard Hell, another poet I bet real poets don't care for, drew from for his "Blank Generation". When I went to see if McKuen had recorded a version of "Beat Generation" himself, I ran into a slew of his cornball beat shtick stuff at YouTube. Beatsville? Oh, brother....

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Listen:

Sunday, November 27, 2016

INVENTING NEW WAYS TO BE LAZY

It was a total crap shoot tonight. I couldn't think of anything and it was getting late. So I just opened up my folder that has a tons of band images in it, and just blindly clicked. It happened to be an image of Ricky Nelson. The first song of his that came to mind was "Be Bop Baby" which doesn't make sense because there are songs of his that I like better. Regardless, it was good to hear it again.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Ricky Nelson - Be-Bop-Baby mp3 at Rocky-52
Ricky Nelson - Stop Sneakin' 'Round mp3 at Probe is Turning-On the People

Friday, November 25, 2016

RED'S RABBIT HOLE OF SOUL

Joe Haywood and the Dynamic Twisters
I've read much of Red Kelly's writings over the years. The guy behind The "A" Side, The "B" Side, Soul Detective, and The Cosimo Code is insanely knowledgeable about soul music and it's offshoots, the type of guy who doesn't do anything half-assed. His posts are almost always lengthy, with biographical information and factoids you're not likely to read anywhere else. The type of guy that doesn't just spout off info that's gathered in his head over the years, the dude does research to the extent that he meets and becomes friends with some of his subjects. He is the man, his encyclopedic font a research tool for other soul fiends and casual lookie-loos alike. Total respect from this corner.

Lazy Lester

I spent much of this afternoon and evening pouring over The Red Kelly Index, which, until a few hours ago, I was not aware of. It's an index of all of the songs, mainly 45s, that he's written about over the years, on all of the sites he's written for, with links to the songs (click on the song titles) and the original posts (click on the date), and being the kinda guy he is, the record label and catalog number. Having indexed all of this in one place makes it much easier than looking through page after page of old posts, particularly when you consider that they're culled from multiple sites. Once you start looking through it, you'll realize that it will not be a short visit. It will not be a one time visit. 

Here's just a few that I listened to, totally at random, and every one dyn-o-mite. Oh, and another thing: while there are many names you'll recognize, there are a shitload of names you will probably never see again. Totally deep this guy. If the links don't work, just start here and kiss the next few hours goodbye.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Professor Longhair - No Buts, No Maybes mp3 at The "B" Side
Rufus Thomas - (Do the) Push and Pull, Part 1 mp3
at The "B" Side
The Gaturs - Cold Bear mp3 at Soul Detective
The Golden Toadstools - Silly Savage mp3 at The "A" Side
Doctor John - Mos 'Scocious mp3 at The "B" Side
Visit:
The Red Kelly Archive Homepage
The Red Kelly Archive A-C
The Red Kelly Archive D-H
The Red Kelly Archive I-P
The Red Kelly Archive Q-Y
The "A" Side
The "B" Side
The Cosimo Code
Soul Detective 

Thursday, November 24, 2016

THE RECORD THAT KILLED TWO LABELS

Back in 1982 when Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five released "The Message", if you were a nascent rap dabbler, you had to stand back. Where the fuck did this come from? Rap dabblers didn't really know much of anything that wasn't a hit, or at least a semi-hit. None of the cult-ish deep shit on tiny labels. This was a rap song, with stark social commentary, from the label that put out the Sugarhill Gang's "Rapper's Delight" and the chicken that tasted like wood. "The Message" would end up on top of all sorts of best of year lists, notably Village Voice's annual Pazz and Jop critics poll, the list seemingly made for people don't bother to dig around themselves, where it was in the top ten of 75% of the ballots. How do you follow that up?



"White Lines (Don't Do It)" credited to Grandmaster Flash and Melle Mel did just that. A tune that warned against the dangers of cocaine, which being the eighties was rampant. The song had Flash's name on it, but he had already split the label over a royalties dispute. Melle Mel, the sole Furious Five member that was actually on the "The Message" (the rest were studio musicians), is really the guy behind "White Lines". Here's where it gets sticky. The backing tracks on "White Lines" were taken from a track the Sugar Hill house band had recorded, a cover of Liquid Liquid's "Cavern". That would set off a court battle between Sugar Hill and Liquid Liquid's label, 99 Records, and by the end of that Sugar Hill was ordered to pay 99 Records $600,000, so they just claimed bankruptcy. After all was said and done, with 99 Records expecting to recoup their court costs in a settlement, they ended up empty handed with no choice other than to shut down their label.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five - The Message mp3 at Hip Hop 4 Life
Grandmaster Flash and Melle Mel - White Lines (Don't Do It) mp3
at iinet (?)
Liquid Liquid - Cavern mp3
at Resounder

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

L.A. BLUES (SLIGHT RETURN)

I happen to have just read a blurb in a book about the Gun Club and so I started listening to them again tonight, and now you're stuck with them again. I gotta say, their stuff has aged well. If you've heard them before (and if you hang around here it's likely you have) you know what era they're from. But if you haven't, it might be hard to peg when this stuff was recorded. These are punk scene satellites and their version of roots. Pretty effective if you ask me.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
The Gun Club - Sex Beat mp3 at ATumblr (?)
The Gun Club - Jack On Fire mp3
at ATumblr (?)
The Gun Club - Ghost On the Highway mp3 at DK Presents
The Gun Club - For the Love of Ivy mp3
at ATumblr (?)
The Gun Club - Walkin' With Beast mp3 at So Many Records, So Little Time
The Gun Club - Like Calling Up Thunder mp3
at ATumblr (?)
The Gun Club - Mother of Earth mp3 at ATumblr (?)
Video:
Ghost n the Highway (Part 1)- Jefferey Lee Pierce/Gun Club documentary
at YouTube See the side bar on that page for parts 2-5

Monday, November 21, 2016

THE SOUNDTRACK THAT ISN'T

Well, this is kind of interesting. I'm not sure if the music was made specifically for the documentary or not, and I'm not sure the whole thing is good, but there are some interesting cuts, and you can download them individually if you want to cherry pick.. The overriding sound is kind of an updated blaxploitation soundtrack mixed with hip hop, some Latin and a little jazz, and maybe a touch of Morricone. Worth a listen, if this sort of shit doesn't scare you.

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Listen: 
Rubble Kings - Original Music Inspired by the Documentary at Adult Swim Streaming, individual mp3s or single download.
Video:
Rubble Kings - Documentary trailer
at YouTube

Sunday, November 20, 2016

THE CONFOUNDING FATHER

Well I'll be damned, guess who's got new product out? James Chance and his latest version of the Contortions. It's been thirty years since his last studio LP and he doesn't seem to have lost a step. To the contrary, it seems like his age finally caught up with his vision. I'm digging this one, which is the only thing I've heard so far. If you're not familiar with him, there's some of his older stuff with the original Contortions at the bottom.


~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
James Chance and the Contortions - Melt Yourself Down
(streaming) at Soundcloud Better sound than the video.
Older stuff:

The Contortions - Designed to Kill mp3 at Nonalignment Pact
The Contortions - Contort Yourself mp3
at Why Prime (?)
The Contortions - I Can't Stand Myself
(streaming) at YouTube
No New York - Compilation
(steaming) at YouTube The Contortions, Teenage Jesus and the Jerks, DNA, Mars
Video:
The Contortions - Contort Yourself (Live, 1979) at YouTube
Visit:
Too Weird for Punk: New York No Wave Legend James Chance Keeps On Contorting Himself
at Flavorwire Great interview
James Chance
at Wikipedia
No New York
at Wikipedia
No Wave
at Wikipedia

Saturday, November 19, 2016

THIS JUST IN: SHIT WEEK 86'D

Not the way I like to wake up, not by a long shot. Checking the stats here this morning, I saw a comment from overseas buddy Espen, "Shit week just took another dump, Tom." posted with a link. As I was copying the URL of the link he posted I see the end of it "sharon-jones-dap-kings-dead". Fuck. I love Sharon Jones. After I read the thing E linked to, I went to Facebook. First comment I see, from Lady Spinsta, "One more for shit week." I've had it. I want shit week out of my house immediately.

I can still remember the first time I heard Sharon Jones's music. Tower Records, 2005, it was her "Naturally" CD. The R & B section at this record store was mostly current stuff, and what vintage soul or R & B there was was familiar stuff. The cover of that CD gave no clue of the era in which it was released, but it looked like some old stuff that I may have missed and/or should have known. I'd never heard of Daptone Records, or Sharon Jones, or the Dap Kings. Back then Tower Records had these great listening stations where you could just scan the bar code and listen before you bought it. So I gave it a whirl. After sampling a few tunes I still couldn't figure out when it was recorded, whether it was new or old. It really wasn't either. It was classic.

So that whole Daptone mob entered my sphere that day, not just Jones, all of them, because at the end of the day if it wasn't for Daptone Records, and the Dap-Kings, most of us would have never heard of Sharon Jones. After being told by record execs that she was "too fat, too black, too short, and too old" she marched on, and after hiring her to sing backup at one of their sessions, and ultimately signing her, Daptone gave her that shot that she needed, and unknowingly gave her the opportunity to live out her life doing what she loved to do. Twenty years of soul and funk, that's no small gift.


Check the video above. Nine and a half minutes at full throttle, at age 55. Unbelievable. And the only thing bad about it is a guest appearance by Prince, appearing from the wings to play some jag-off guitar. If you watch it from the beginning, you'll get so wrapped up in it that when Prince begins to play, you'll be thinking "Get him outta here, he's just ruining the whole vibe." You should watch the whole thing just to get an idea of her endurance.



This was supposed to be about her, a bio, you know the routine. It deviated and it got too personal. But, you know what? It feels personal. I've never met Sharon Jones, or the Dap-Kings, or anyone associated with Daptone Records, but they feel like family. I can't think of a reason for that, other admiration for the fact that everyone involved seemed to always be doing things right. I'll just leave at that. You can read her bio, about her records and her battle with cancer at other other sites. I just want to sit here and think about how great it is that Jones and the Dap-Kings found each other.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings - This Land is Your Land mp3
at Evil Vince
Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings - You're Gonna Get It mp3
at I Am Fuel You Are Friends
Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings - Just Dropped in (To See What Condition My Condition Is In) mp3
at Passion of the Weiss
Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings - Genuine mp3
at Corey Barksdale (?)
Video:
Miss Sharon Jones - Documentary trailer
at YouTube
Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings - Live on KEXP
at YouTube 34 minutes
Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings - More videos
at Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings
Visit:

Sharon Jones, Soul Singer With Dap-Kings, Dies at 60
at NY Times
Postscript: Sharon Jones, 1956-2016
at The New Yorker

Friday, November 18, 2016

KEEPING UP IS FUTILE

I'm not entirely sure what falls under the category of tropical music, whether it's limited to Latin music of the Caribbean or not. It would make sense that there are tropics all over the world so the tropical music should encompass and all music indigenous to that sort of climate, but that doesn't seem to be the case. Regardless, for whatever reason I gravitate towards the music of warm climates, not exclusively, but that's what I seem to be into more than the people I hang with. African, Cuban, Indonesian, Jamaican, whatever, it's all good. So when I see a link to a blog called Estropical, I'm going to check it out. The blog seems to be dormant, but the last post was a mix called Baltic Breaks, What the hell, right? I'm going to be doing the dishes, so let her rip. Right about six minutes into it I found myself doing some variant of the housecleaning boogaloo. So I checked to see who it was that was playing. Bronx River Parkway. Oh shit, here we go again. Add them to the list.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen: 
Bronx River Parkway - Agua Con Sal mp3 at The Couch Sesions
Bronx River Parkway - El Resbalon mp3
at All My Rowdy Friends
The Mix:
Baltic Breaks
(streaming via MixCloud) at Estropical

Thursday, November 17, 2016

THE CUSP

Big Joe Turner, thirty cuts, enough to keep you busy. I don't have to elaborate do I? At this point I would think most of you have some idea what's going on. This is kind of like a club, not an elite club, but not a club with babysitters. Do some legwork. You have Google. We had to go to the library if we wanted to know who the hell Big Joe Turner was. Wow, I'm kinda pissy tonight.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Big Joe Turner - Honey Hush mp3
at Internet Archive
Big Joe Turner - Shake, Rattle and Roll mp3
at Internet Archive
Big Joe Turner - Flip, Flop and Fly mp3 at Internet Archive
All thirty:
Big Joe Turner - The Collection at Internet Archive NOTE: In the right hand column, where it says "Download Options", click on "VBR MP3" for thirty individual mp3s.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

THE BIG BOUNCE

Earlier tonight, I felt like reading something random so I just grabbed a back issue of Waxpoetics, an issue from 2005, with an interview with Sharon Jones. While talking about Daptone Records in the interview she mentions the Daktaris, another band on the label. It's been at least a couple years since I last listened to them. After revisiting their LP, I was still jonesing for more early Daptone, so I did what I always do every two years after listening to the Daktaris, I listened to the Sugarman 3. Both bands just knock me out, funky and exotic, and after not hearing either for a long time, it was a movin' and a-groovin night over here. Outta my way Shit Week.


~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
The Daktaris - Super Afro Beat mp3
at ATumblr (?)
The Daltaris - Musicawi Silt mp3 at Big Rock Candy Mountain
Sugarman 3 - Funky So-and-So mp3 at DK Presents
Visit:
Daptone Records

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

THE DUDE YOU DIDN'T KNOW YOU KNEW

Man. I've got to call a moratorium on death coverage. Shit week is working overtime, stretching it to day eight with the death of Mose Allison, a jazz blues singer/pianist whose songs you've undoubtedly heard whether you know it or not. Here's three covers of his songs that you may know. My bet is that a lot of you have never heard the original versions. If you haven't, you'll be surprised to hear how laid back they are. You may think you prefer the covers, but after you listen to enough Allison, you'll cave in, to some degree, to his unassuming delivery.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
The Yardbirds - I'm Not Talkin' mp3
at Yardbirds.us (?)
Mose Allison - I'm Not Talkin' (streaming) at YouTube
The Who - Young Man Blues mp3
at a.tumblr.com/tumblr (?)
Mose Allison - Young Man (streaming) at YouTube
John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers - Parchman Farm mp3
at Scissor Soft
Mose Allison - Parchman Farm (streaming) at YouTube
Visit:
Mose Allison, a Fount of Jazz and Blues, Dies at 89 at NY Times

Monday, November 14, 2016

SHIT WEEK CONTINUES

I just ran into a post saying that Billy Miller died yesterday. Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck. This one hurts. Miller wasn't a person so far removed from people like us. Having a beer with him seemed like a genuine possibility, if ever in the same bar. He was co-editor, with Miriam Linna, of one the earliest of the ultra-fiend type zines, Kicks, and co-founder, with Linna, of Norton Records, specializing in the crazy, wild, rare, underappreciated and overlooked.

He had a way with words in those Kicks magazines, and I still have some of his lingo in my lexicon, decades after the first read ("Whoa Dad!", "jiggle club", etc). Never mind the music I was turned onto. Holy shit. Hasil Adkins, Esquerita, Ronnie Dawson, Chan Romero, Mighty Hannibal...where do you start? I learned of dozens and dozens of bands from the pages of Kicks, and later the Norton label. Just thinking of all the music that would have just rotted away in some dusty old box of tape if not for him and Linna. The records that you'd never hear because there were only 1500 pressed on some podunk label 50 years ago in some shithole town, reissued with only us nut cases in mind. He did a good thing getting all that music out there and keeping the fires lit.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Esquerita - Crazy, Crazy Feeling mp3 at Rocky 52
Hasil Adkins - She Said mp3
at Beware of the Blog
Chan Romero - Hippy Hippy Shake mp3
at Mp3 Rockabilly
Ronnie Dawson - Rockin' Bones mp3
at Mp3 Rockabilly

Visit:
Billy Miller, Curator and Historian of Fringe Music, Dies at 62 at NY Times
Miriam Linna and Billy Miller - Norton Records - Interview at Dust and Grooves
Lengthy interview with Billy Miller at Turn It Down This is excellent: Kicks, Norton Records, Esquerita and Hasil Adkins
Norton Records

Sunday, November 13, 2016

THE SHIT WEEK JUST GOT SHITTIER

Leon Russell just passed away. Shit. First the election goes south, then Leonard Cohen dies, and now Leon Russell, all within the space of a few days. The sky is not falling, but it has been one fucked up week. If you don't know who Leon Russell is, or have never gotten around to checking him out, now might be a good time. Here's why (originally posted five years ago):

Imagine this for a line up on your solo album: George Harrison, Ringo Star, Bill Wyman, Charlie Watts, Steve Winwood, and Eric Clapton. On your first solo album. Oh yeah, and you're twenty eight years old. But Leon Russell didn't exactly get there overnight. He began playing in Tulsa, Oklahoma clubs at the ripe old age of fourteen, in the Starlighters (which also included J.J. Cale). After that he did time in the house band on Shindig, and as a member of the Wrecking Crew (and you know what that means). Just a partial list of people whose sessions he's played on includes Badfinger, Glen Campbell, Joe Cocker, Willie Nelson, Bob Dylan, John Lennon, B.B. King, Freddie King, Steve Cropper, Rita Coolidge, Gram Parsons, Barbra Streisand, Ike & Tina Turner, Ricky Nelson, Herb Alpert, Frank Sinatra, Aretha Franklin, Ann-Margret, Dean Martin, Marvin Gaye, the Monkees, the Astronauts, the Ventures, the Beach Boys, the Byrds, Jan & Dean, Gary Lewis & the Playboys, Paul Revere & the Raiders, the Rolling Stones, the Ronettes, the Crystals, the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, the Everly Brothers, the Righteous Brothers, and the Flying Burrito Brothers. (Phew!) His songs have been covered by as disparate artists as the Carpenters, Sonic Youth, and Ray Charles. In short, his CV is mind blowing.

Still, there's something about him that seems so nonchalant. It might be his chronically expressionless face. Or his Jerry Lee Lewis meets early Tom Waits, meets Full House-era Peter Wolf, gravelly drawl. Or the way he calmly tickles the ivories, or the way he goes about his business without the normal look at me rock star posturing. Whatever it is, it works, and although his music may be an acquired taste (it took me about twenty years), once that voice gets under your skin, you realize that there's no one who sounds quite like him. He's that guy you know who's fundamentally badass, without ever having lifted a finger.

 A few notes about the videos: check out the two versions of Hank Williams' "Jambalaya." The first one is from Shindig. If you can ignore the corny set, the performance is great. Now, compare that to the second version, at one of Willie Nelson's Fourth of July Picnics. While he seems a little buzzed, it's got a nice "it's okay, you're among friends" party vibe, that many of you have probably experienced when you've had one two many. Especially endearing is his tug on Waylon Jennings shirt when he joins them on stage (seriously, that part slays me). The other videos are equally engaging, so you might want to budget some time. By the end of them, you'll be adding him to your list.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Leon Russell - Beware of Darkness mp3 at Ryan's Smashing Life
Leon Russell - Delta Lady mp3
at Leons Bio
Leon Russell - Back To The Island mp3 at Internet Archive
Leon Russell - Goodnight Irene mp3
at Internet Archive
Video:
Leon Russell - A Song For You
at YouTube
Leon Russell - Roll Over Beethoven (1964)
at YouTube
Leon Russell - Jambalaya (1965) at YouTube
Leon Russell - Come On Into My Kitchen (1971) at YouTube
Leon Russell, Willie Nelson, Doug Kershaw, Waylon Jennings - Jambalaya (1974)
at Bohemia Visual Music

Saturday, November 12, 2016

DOUBLE FEATURE FROM THIS GUY

Back in the mid-nineties, a buddy of mine that lived a few blocks away stopped by when I was having a barbecue. With him were two women from out of town, Memphis to be exact. (I'm in San Diego, to be exact.) They had some flyers with them, for a film that one of them was in, Teenage Tupelo. I took a few and put one on my refrigerator. The movie wasn't playing out here so I've no clue why they brought them. A couple weeks later, 68 Comeback, also from Memphis, came rolling through town and Jeffery Evans, the singer, and the drummer (don't remember his name) crashed at my place afterwards. The next morning the drummer sees the flyer on my refrigerator and says "Hey, my girlfriend is that movie". These Memphis people were a cool lot, so Teenage Tupelo was put on the list.



In the ensuing years I looked for the movie and in doing so became sucked in, more than once, by the site of Mike McCarthy, the guy behind the movie. His obsessions are splayed all over his site, rock 'n' roll, horror movies, comics, pin-ups and Memphis. The site has so many nooks and crannies that it's easy to get lost, and I have many times. He's done several films, comic books, music videos, all sorts of shit, worked with bands like Impala, the Oblivians, and Guitar Wolf, and had works published by Fantagraphics and Dark Horse.


It's crazy that the only way I even know who he is is from someone who was in one of his films. I've never seen anything written about him, short of things linked to on his site. How is it then that he's not better known? I must be traveling in the wrong circles. Other than that, I've no explanation, and believe me, that's something I've been trying to figure out since first viewing Teenage Tupelo. And even then the only way I got to see it at all was by pestering him for a burned copy, which he sent me for a barely the cost of a blank disc and postage. That's another thing, his films are impossible to find for sale, at least that I could find. Believe me, I'd rather pay the going rate than ask someone to burn a copy.



A couple weeks ago, I thought I'd look again, only to run across two of his films, Teenage Tupelo and The Sore Losers, both on YouTube. So here's a double feature and a whole bunch of other stuff, including a handful of tunes from Impala, the band that scored Teenage Tupelo. Dig it. Get lost in the world of Mike McCarthy.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Now showing:
Teenage Tupelo - Film by Mike McCarthy at YouTube
The Sore Losers - Film by Mike McCarthy at YouTube
Listen:
Impala - Epilogue mp3
at Electraphonic Recording
Impala - Night Full of Sirens mp3
at Electraphonic Recording
Impala - Rope of Sand mp3
at Electraphonic Recording
Impala - Tomb of the Tupelo Twin mp3
at Electraphonic Recording
Elvis Meets the Beatles - Get Backward mp3 at Guerrilla Monster Films
68 Comeback - Smack Dab (in the Middle), from The Sore Losers mp4
at Guerrilla Monster Films

Video:
Guitar Wolf - Invader Ace at YouTube
Guitar Wolf - Butobase (All Through The Night)
at YouTube
The Oblivians - Leather
at YouTube
Jim Dickinson - Down In Mississippi
at YouTube
The Makers - Lover Lover
at YouTube
Cigarette Girl trailer
at YouTube

Visit:
Guerilla Monster - The World of Mike McCarthy 

Thursday, November 10, 2016

WHAT A SHITTY WEEK

Leonard Cohen passed away today. I'm not going to bullshit you, I know very little of his stuff; I own but one LP. He is among the many "I'll get to them at some point" artists in my peripheral scope, but he is held in such high regard by friends that I hold in high regard, ranging from brainy crushes to practical deification by songwriters, that I cannot let his passing go without pause. His respected status as some sort of songwriter's songwriter (Dylan covered him), his longevity and his apparent desire to do nothing more than just keep writing and singing, this is one guy that it doesn't quite matter whether I learn his music next month or when I'm eighty, I will get to him more thoroughly when I need to, and I'm looking forward to it.  So, I'll mourn him out of associative respect, like a contact high, except as a contact low.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Leonard Cohen - Bird on a Wire mp3
at DK Presents
Leonard Cohen - Almost Like the Blues mp3
at Sucks Pants
Leonard Cohen - Memories mp3
at Cold Splinters
Leonard Cohen - Sisters of Mercy (Live) mp3
at The Helpless Dancer
Leonard Cohen - Three more
at Aquarium Drunkard
Visit:
Leonard Cohen: 20 Essential Songs
at Rolling Stone
Leonard Cohen Dead at 82
at Rolling Stone

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

STONER ROCK

On yesterday's ballot, an initiative passed legalizing weed in California. I'm not sure when it goes into effect, not that it matters. In my neck of the woods it's always been readily available. If you couldn't get some from a friend or neighbor, maybe a friend of a friend or what have you. Twenty years ago, the song I would have gone for would have been "Legalize It" by Peter Tosh. Today that seems a little too obvious, like the playlist of some dorm dwelling stoner. Oh, but the Lat-Teens? Check the photo above. Dressed like that and singing about accidentally getting too stoned? I'm all over that shit.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
The Lat-Teens - The Smoke Shop mp3 at Groove Addict
Peter Tosh - Legalize It mp3 at Free (?)
The LP:
The Lat-Teens -Buena Gente Good People LP
at Groove Addict Full LP in a zip

DEAR FELLOW LEFTIES

If you, like me, were in a funk today about the election results, I suggest that you take Bluto's fuck 'em attitude to heart. It picked me up. When the going gets tough, the tough get going. No one said that this revolution of ours was going to be easy. We are now the underdogs, and if I learned anything from punk rock, it's that being a minority doesn't make you wrong, and it can be empowering. Though this spiel from the film Animal House is not necessarily on topic, not the dialogue anyway, the call to arms is. I suggest you adopt this attitude for the unforeseeable future. Now, let's get back in those trenches.


Tuesday, November 8, 2016

FUCK HIM

I didn't vote for Donald Trump. Of course I'm worried and I'm pissed and I'm ashamed of the Americans who actually did vote for him. This next four years is going to be one heck of a hell-ride, so we've got to dust ourselves off, roll up our sleeves and think about the best way to fight this ignorant fuck. Please excuse me for not posting any music tonight. I'm not exactly in the mood to go look for an appropriate tune.

My country can be such a dumbshit at times.