Wednesday, November 30, 2011

HERE'S YOUR HILLBILLY FIX


When it comes to hillbilly music, Webb Pierce is as good as any. That is not to say he's not good, in fact that's saying the very opposite. As good as any, in terms of hillbilly music, is a complement. By virtue of the fact it's hillbilly music in the first place makes it red hot, and entirely listenable. Of course, I've heard comparatively little, so I'm totally unqualified to make a sweeping critique like that, but I'm just callin' 'em like I see 'em. And I see red hot, and entirely listenable. It fills a hole that nothing else really can. We can start with Webb Pierce. He's as red hot and entirely listenable as any.



I should've known, as soon as I saw the clip above and started to poke around online, that two places I'd find Webb Pierce stuff would be the Hound Blog, and Rocky-52, both red hot, and entirely visitable sites. If you're a regular, you know that I hold them both in high regard. So, I'll just defer to them on this whole Webb Pierce red hot certification nonsense. If they like him, I know enough to listen.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Webb Pierce - Teenage Boogie (alt. take) mp3 at The Hound Blog
Webb Pierce - In the Jailhouse Now mp3 at Rocky-52.net
Webb Pierce & Red Sovine - Why Baby Why mp3 at Rocky-52.net
Webb Pierce - There Stands the Glass mp3 at Rocky-52.net
Webb Pierce & Red Sovine - Little Rosa mp3 at The Hound Blog
T Rex - I Love To Boogie mp3 at The Hound Blog Tribute, or epic fail?
Mixes:
Hayseed Paydirt,
past post with links to ten Rockin' Hillbilly mixes
Video:
Webb Pierce - Here Stands the Glass at YouTube
Webb Pierce & Red Sovine - In the Jailhouse Now at YouTube
Visit:
Webb Pierce at Wikipedia
Webb Pierce post at The Hound Blog
Rocky-52.net

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

WELCOME TO THE TRASTOS AV CLUB


Ahh, Memphis. The city that was ground zero for rock 'n' roll over fifty years ago has never ceased producing rock 'n' roll weirdos, on the outer fringes of the often too bland genre. As is my habit, yesterday I checked back on one such weirdo, and I mean that with admiration. Mike McCarthy is a musician, comic artist and filmmaker. I first became acquainted with his work years ago, when my friend showed up at an impromptu BBQ that I was having, with two women from out of town in tow. One had been in one of McCarthy's films, Teenage Tupelo, and she left some flyers for the just completed movie at my apartment. A couple weeks later '68 Comeback was rolling through town and Monsieur Jeffrey Evans and the drummer (whose name escapes me) crashed at my place. The next morning the drummer saw one of the flyers laying around and said, "Hey, my girlfriend is in that movie!" Here we go...


The World of Mike McCarthy, clips of music videos

Fast forward to about a year ago. Frustrated at my inability to find Teenage Tupelo anywhere, I finally emailed McCarthy and asked where I could get a copy. Nice guy that he was, he burned me a copy, and let me tell you, it's got all the ingredients: a twisted, hard to follow plot, cool soundtrack (by Impala), a little bit o' nudity, and a timeless rock n' roll vibe, all shot in gloriously grainy black and white.



I still can't find it for sale anywhere, but sometime in the past year McCarthy posted it on Blip.tv, where you can view it online. I highly recommend checking it out, even if you can't watch the whole thing in one sitting (it's posted as chapters). You ought to check out his site too, Guerrilla Monster Films. It's got all sorts of nooks and crannies that you can get lost in, including videos he's shot for a number of bands (notably Guitar Wolf and the Oblivians), other films, McCarthy's comic work, and his own bands. Just close your eyes and click.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Impala - Odalisque at Gravel Sauce
The Oblivians - Cristina mp3 at Crypt Records
The Oblivians - Bad Man mp3 at Sucka Pants
The Oblivians - She's A Hole mp3 at Beware of the Blog
The Oblivians - Jim Cole mp3 at Beware of the Blog
Guitar Wolf - Missle Me mp3 at Spin.com
Guitar Wolf - Love Rock mp3 at Zana Bayne
The Makers - Matter of Degrees mp3 at Kill Rock Stars
The Makers - Red Headed Beatle of 1000 B.C. mp3 at Arf Lovers
Note: McCarthy has no connection with the above music, he has just worked with the bands at one time or another. Yeah, a weak tie-in.

Soundtracks:
Elvis Meets the Beatles - Get Backward mp3
at Guerrilla Monster Films
68 Comeback - Smack Dab (in the Middle), from Sore Losers mp4
at Guerrilla Monster Films
NOTE: Most of the film pages under the "Movies" drop down menu at Guerilla Monster Films have parts of the soundtracks, some as mp3s, and some as mp4s.
Video:

Teenage Tupelo at Blip.tv Once there, scroll down for the different chapters
Guitar Wolf - Invader Ace at YouTube
Guitar Wolf - Butobase (All Through The Night) at Blip.tv
The Oblivians - Leather at Blip.tv
Jim Dickinson - Down In Mississippi at Blip.tv
The Makers - Lover Lover at Blip.tv
River City Tanlines - at Blip.tv
Impala - Live at the Cigarette Girl premiere party at Blip.tv
Cigarette Girl trailer at Blip.tv
All above clips, videos and films directed by Mike McCarthy, except the Impala clip.

Visit:
Guerrilla Monster Films - The World of Mike McCarthy

Monday, November 28, 2011

IN DEFENSE OF JOANY ROTTEN


Darby Crash (nee Bobby Pyn), Pat Smear, Joan Jett, 1977

The first people I ever saw slam dance were Darby Crash (then Bobby Pyn), from the Germs, and Joan Jett. It was at a Weirdos show in a rented hall. That's it, a two person pit. You're probably thinking "Joan Jett? Oh, brother..." If you were around, near the beginning of the L.A. punk scene, you'd know that in the waning days of the Runaways, it was more like a day job for Jett. She was always around at punk shows and parties. As Slash magazine, the biggest L.A. punk zine back then, said (to paraprase) "show us the Joany Rotten you really are." Shortly after that, she would produce the Germs only studio album, Germs (G.I.). Now, thirty plus years later, she's on Letterman, playing "Bad Reputation" with the Foo Fighters; on her far left, Pat Smear, the Germs guitarist from back in the day. Mind fuck.



Joan Jett has never been in heavy rotation in this house. In fact, I may only have a couple of her albums, and I can't tell you when I last listened to them. But I've always had a soft spot for her, from way back in those early days. She's always been herself, and unapologetic, as a woman musician, and as a gay person. (You knew she was gay, right? That's why me and her aren't dating. Uh huh, you betcha.)


Joan Jett, ca 1978

Here's how my sister related the impact of a performance on a young fan (from an email I received back in July).:

"It didn’t hit me until last night how empowering her lyrics are for teenage girls – like "As I Am" which beats Lady GaGa’s "I Was Born This Way" by 25 years. It really hit home after the concert how much that message resonated. There was this girl, about 15, in front of me during the whole show. She had short, spikey kind of androgynous hair with bright yellow streaks. She wore a Green Day t-shirt with the sleeves cut off, a studded leather bracelet, and black nail polish. She was going ape-shit the whole night and twice stomped on my toes with her Doc Marten boots, and there’s no way I could get mad."


The Runaways, 1977

"She didn’t have a lick of make-up on, and absolutely no piercings or tattoos, which I thought lent some authenticity to her individualism. But it wasn’t ‘til later after the show, when I saw her walking with a really pronounced limp that I realized she had cerebral palsy which was in no way noticeable while the concert was going on. I thought about how the lyrics must have affected her in a really good way, and stupid me, I got all weepy."

"You’re the only one who would understand what a profound thing that was, to see music set someone free like that, even if it’s music from someone as goofy as Joan Jett." Amen sister.


The Germs, ca 1978

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
The Germs - Richie Dagger's Crime mp3 at The Adios Lounge Producer: Joan Jett
The Germs - What We Do Is Secret mp3 at Cows Are Just Food Producer: Joan Jett
Video:
The Runaways - Cherry Bomb (live) at YouTube Jett is on far left of stage, in black
Joan Jett - I Love Rock n' Roll at YouTube
Joan Jett w/the Foo Fighters - Bad Reputation (live) at YouTube Madison Square Garden, NYC Nov 2011
Joan Jett and Miley Cirus - Bad Reputation, Cherry Bomb and I Hate Myself For Losin You (live) at YouTube Now, before go all "WTF?!" on me, let me add to the weirdness: Oprah is the audience. She's shown a couple times, but the really strange juxtaposition comes at !:45 when she's shown singing along to "Cherry Bomb."
The Germs - Manimal (live) at YouTube
The Germs - Live at the Whiskey at YouTube

Sunday, November 27, 2011

WHO KNEW?


I know what you're thinking. Bob Seger? Hear me out. Like a lot of people, my first exposure to Seger was his mid-70's stuff, all of the hits that you've probably heard way too many times. Inoffensive, but not my cup of tea. But, in 1977, Dave Edmunds, whose work I was familiar with (from his single "I Hear You Knockin'" and his LPs with Love Sculpture) put out his first solo LP, with a cover of Seeger's "Get Out of Denver." By itself it might have been a fluke, but shortly after that another UK act, Eddie and the Hot Rods, covered it. If you know the musical tastes of the UK back then, you know that they picked up on a lot of American acts that never got due recognition domestically. So, with only that thought to temper my Seger bias (c'mon, "Night Moves," you know you hated it), I never completely wrote off Seger, putting him in the further listening at some point file.



Everything had to be reevaluated after a chance purchase of a beat up 45, and, as it happens, it's one of the best anti-war songs I've heard. It's the Bob Seger System's "2 + 2 = ?", in this case it was against the war in Vietnam. I'd been wanting to post it, because it could also apply to our most current fuck-ups in the Middle East, but couldn't find an mp3 already online. Yesterday, I ran across a great post on AM Then FM, that's all about the early Seger stuff. The kicker is that he has contributions from a handful of other bloggers, most of whom I was already familiar with, and respected. So, here's a couple and a link to the rest. When it comes to Seger's early work, you might want to reconsider. (Note: Check out the Caretakers cover of "East Side Story" below for a little more punch.)

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Bob Seger and the Last Heard - East Side Story (1966) mp3 at AM Then FM
Bob Seger and the Last Heard - Heavy Music (Part 1) (1967) mp3 at AM Then FM
The Bob Seger System - 2 + 2 = ? (1968) mp3 at AM Then FM
Covers:
The Caretakers -Eats Side Story mp3 at Beware of the Blog
Dave Edmunds - Get Out of Denver mp3 at Rock Town Hall Note: a bit tinny.
Bob Dylan - Get Out of Denver (live) mp3 at Seger File Because it was floating around.
Visit:
Bob Seger's Other Greatest Hits at AM Then FM More early Seger
Bob Seger at Wikipedia

Friday, November 25, 2011

HE STILL LIVES IN TULSA


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.


Shindig TV show, 1965

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.


The Wrecking Crew effect creeps out at :47

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 - Shoot Out At the Plantation mp3 at Newsome.org
Leon Russell - Tight Rope mp3 at Star Maker Machine
Leon Russell - Beware of Darkness mp3 at Ryan's Smashing Life
Leon Russell - Delta Lady mp3 at Leons Bio
Leon Russell - Wild Horses mp3 at Achtung Baby
Leon Russell - Crystal Closet Queen mp3 at Iron Leg (via Funky 16 Corners)
Video:
Leon Russell - Jambalaya (Shindig, '65) at YouTube
Leon Russell and Willie Nelson - Jambalaya at YouTube (with Waylon Jennings and Doug Kershaw, early 70s)
Leon Russell - High Heel Sneakers (Shindig, '64) at YouTube
Leon Russell - Come On Into My Kitchen ('71) at YouTube
Leon Russell - A Song For You ('71) at YouTube
Leon Russell - Crystal Closet Queen ('71) at YouTube
Leon Russell - Jumpin' Jack Flash/Youngblood, Concert For Bangladesh ('71) at YouTube With George Harrison, Ringo Starr, Eric Clapton and many others.
Leon Russell with J.J. Cale - Corrina, Corrina ('79) at YouTube
Leon Russell - White Lightning ('79) at YouTube (Yes!)
Leon Russell, Willie Nelson and Ray Charles - A Song For You at YouTube
Leon Russell's induction into the Rock n' Roll Hall of fame (2011) at YouTube
Visit:
Leon Russell - Bio at Leon Russell Records
Leon Russell at Wikipedia
Semi-related:
How Was Work Today? - Earlier post about the Wrecking Crew

Thursday, November 24, 2011

CELEBRATE BUY NOTHING DAY


When was the last time you could help a movement buy sitting on you ass at home? As we will be reminded ad nauseam over the next twenty four hours, tomorrow is known as the biggest shopping day of the year. It is also Buy Nothing Day, a day when you can use your free will, break away from the pack, and stay away from malls, department stores and sales. You can refrain from spending part of your life waiting in line to buy that heavily discounted flat screen that you don't need and can't afford. You can stop giving credit card companies your money to fortify the power and control they have over your daily life. Tomorrow could be the day that you start to think for yourself, objectively, and ignore what the media and sale ads tell you. Tomorrow, you can be free.



It should go without saying that, by not shopping tomorrow, you can also help the Occupy movement, without spending the night anywhere, without holding a sign, or participating in a demonstration. Buy Nothing Day, which has been in existence for several years, is part and parcel of what the Occupy movement is about. Freeing ourselves from the power that corporations, banks and big money hold over us. Buying nothing for a day, whether tomorrow or any other day, is empowering, liberating, and as any of my fellow tightwads will tell you, highly addictive. It's how you dig yourself out of that hole. And believe me, even if it takes a long time to do it, once you're out, you'll want to stay out.



As I did last year, for this Buy Nothing Day, I'm including the music of Poly Styrene (RIP) and X-Ray Spex, because for many in my generation, she was the first person who raised our awareness about conspicuous consumerism. (You can read more about her on previous posts here and here.) You also ought to check out The Story of Stuff and The Story of Broke video links below, they're great to share with anyone dubious of the Occupy movement. (Your pep talk free posts will resume tomorrow.)

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Poly Styrene - Black Christmas mp3 at Perfect Porridge
X-Ray Spex - Art-I-Ficial mp3 at Krucoff
X-Ray Spex - More cuts on this post (a few links are dead, but most are good)
The Go! Team - Buy Nothing Day mp3 at Naive Harmonies
Buy Nothing Day - The Album - 18 mp3s at Ted Dave
Video:
Poly Styrene - Black Christmas at YouTube
The Story of Stuff at YouTube
The Story of Broke at YouTube
Visit:
#Occupy Christmas page at AdBusters
The Story of Stuff official site
Buy Nothing Day at Wikipedia
International Buy Nothing Day
Occupy Wall St.
Occupy Together

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

THEN TRASH TALK YOU WILL GET


Yee haw! It's not often that two of my favorite blogs feature the same artist doing related songs within days of each other, so I had to post these. Both are by one of my favorite potty mouths, LaVern Baker. Diddy Wah posted her biggee, "Jim Dandy," which I would imagine (and hope) that most of you know. Diddy Wah hosts all sorts of early rock n' roll, R & B, soul, surf, and oddball instrumentals, so consider the Baker cut a teaser and go check his place out. Funky 16 Cormers posted Baker's "Batman to the Rescue," which is actually a rewrite of "Jim Dandy," recorded during the Batman craze in the sixties. If you can get past the obvious shilling, it's neat to hear a version with a little more oomph (not that the original needed it). Funky 16 Corners hosts soul, funk, R & B and the occasional reggae cut, so bookmark it too.



So, you're asking yourself, where's the potty mouth connection? You cussers will thank yourselves for reading this far. There's a duet with Baker swapping lines with clean cut Jackie "Lonely Teardrops" Wilson, that's about as dirty as songs got back then. "You Better Think Twice" is a humdinger. F-bombs? Check. Drug references? Yep. Accusations of promiscuity? Covered. Hell, they even throw in accusations of lice infestations. This sucker, besides being a great song with dirty words, is also appealing in that both Baker and Wilson are clearly enjoying all of that cussing. It's one for the ages folks.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
LaVern Baker - Jim Dandy mp3 at Diddy Wah
LaVern Baker - Batman to the Rescue mp3 at Funky 16 Corners
LaVern Baker & Jackie Wilson - You Better Think Twice mp3 at Beware of the Blog

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

THIS WOULD BE THE RESET BUTTON


If ever a band represented everything this humble dimension of junk favors, it is the Monks. In short, they were raw, primitive, inventive, and weird. They had their own sound, their own look, their own hair cuts, and their own reasons. They went where few of their contemporaries would; they challenged their audience. Sonically, verbally, and what-the-fuckingly. I cannot be objective. There are too many specifics to start checking them off. They stir something in me, and I'm not quite sure what it is. (If you don't know it already, I recommend familiarizing yourself with their story.)



Take a look at that video above, from a German TV. While they were doing that whacked out shit, the Dave Clark Five were doing this. The Beatles were doing Rubber Soul, Syd Barrett was doing god-knows-what, and Johnny Rotten was still in grade school. The Monks had their own world, and it included banging on guitars, fuzz, feedback, and that beat. That gloriously monotonous beat.



~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
The Monks - Monk Chant mp3 at Pretty Goes With Pretty
The Monks - Oh, How To Do Now mp3 at Popop
The Monks - Shut Up mp3 at One Sweet Song
The Monks - I Hate You mp3 at Merry Swankster
The Monks - Drunken Maria mp3 at Popop
The Monks - Love Came Tumblin' Down mp3 at Gorilla vs Bear
The Monks - I Can't Get Over You mp3 at Popop
Cover:
The Gossip - Drunken Maria (streaming) at YouTube
Video:
The Monks - Complication (German TV) at YouTube (HIGHLY recommended)
The Monks - Boys Are Boys and Girls Are Choice (German TV) at YouTube
The Monks - Cuckoo (German TV) at YouTube
The Monks - Oh, How To Do Now (German TV) at YouTube
The Monks - I Can't Get Over You (German TV) at YouTube
You're A Monk, I'm a Monk, We're all Monks, profile at YouTube
Visit:
The Monks Official site
The Monks at Wikipedia
Earlier post about the Monks:
I Know Just What You Kids Need A profile of the Monks

Monday, November 21, 2011

ONE SONG CYNIC BUSTER SPECIAL


The first record I ever bought, that I ever owned, that I ever played incessantly, was a 45, the Dave Clark Five's "At The Scene." I bought it at a parking lot sale for ten cents. I had no idea who they were, but it was my record and that wasn't going to stop me from playing it over and over. There was a line in it that says "where the music play-ay-ay-ay-ays, 'til way past two!" I had absolutely no clue what that meant. I was all of ten years old. I do remember liking the line "there's no need to be fancy, no one there will stare, dress in all the things you usually do, there's no need to care." I would, in fact, take it to heart by the time I was cognizant of what happens after two.



I'm not entirely nuts about the Dave Clark Five, but just for the hell of it I tried to find an mp3 of "At The Scene," alas to no avail. (There is a streaming YouTube version below for the curious). I did find one song of theirs from a couple years later, "Concentration Baby," which is a bit of an anomaly. Why? Two related reasons: one is that it's got some pretty good fuzz (I tell ya, Davie Allan's posse just keeps getting bigger) and, because it's got fuzz, I really like it. You might too. (Even if you, like me, think they were tools. The videos seem to reinforce that opinion.)

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
The Dave Clark Five - Concentration Baby mp3 at Beware of the Blog
The Dave Clark Five - Glad All Over mp3 at SMU
The Dave Clark Five - At The Scene (streaming) at YouTube
Video:
The Dave Clark Five - Bits and Pieces at YouTube Hokey alert

Sunday, November 20, 2011

MAYBE IT WAS THE SWEATERS


It's somehow fitting the the guy who turned me on to Big Star many years ago (gulp, decades), is the person who first tipped me to a new documentary about them. Frank co-owned a record store, Scratching the Surface, and I've mentioned his influence on me a few times, but I'll sum it up quickly: the Sonics, the Wailers, the Flamin' Groovies, and Big Star are just four of the bands he pushed on me, when I was a young punk rocker in the midst of the ol' classic rock purge (you purged back then too, right?). Like a lot of people, he couldn't understand why Big Star wasn't huge. After all these years, I think I might know why. And it's the same reason why they don't get heavy rotation on my record player.



Besides the fact that they played few live gigs, Big Star were just too good of a band. It's the same reason why a lot of people (myself included) would take the Stones over the Beatles. Not everybody wants a perfect band, or even a polished band. Face it, most of us like bands that release stinkers every now and then, maybe to remind us that they're human, and that the good stuff is just everything coming together in some sort of serendipitous event. That could explain why, while I know Big Star is an excellent band, and I appreciate Alex Chilton's songwriting, I hardly ever listen to them. Come to think of it, most of the people I know of who really dig them are either musicians or music critic types. In other words, schooled. The vast majority of record buyers aren't. Maybe they should have put out a crappy album, or rocked out a little more, or ditched those sweaters. Maybe then the world would have listened.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Big Star - Don't Lie to Me mp3 at MFR
Big Star - Kizza Me mp3 at That's Plenty
Big Star - Kangaroo mp3 at Mecca Lecca
Big Star - In The Street mp3 at All Things Go
Big Star - Thirteen mp3 at Music For Humans
Big Star - Thank You Friends mp3 at Indie Rock Cafe
Big Star - I'm In Love With a Girl mp3 at Star Maker Machine
Big Star - Nightime mp3 at Pretty Goes With Pretty
Big Star - The Ballad of El Goodo mp3 at Pretty Goes With Pretty
Big Star - Jesus Christ mp3 at The Adios Lounge
Big Star - Femme Fatale mp3 at Cover Me Velvet Underground cover
Big Star - Hot Burrito #2 (live) mp3 at The Adios Lounge Flying Burrito Brothers cover
Covers:
Elliot Smith - Thirteen (live) mp3 at Large Hearted Boy
Wilco - Thank You Friends mp3 at Everybody Taste
The Replacements - September Gurls mp3 at Everybody Taste
Six more Big Star covers at Everybody Taste
Video:
Big Star - In the studio at YouTube
Visit:
Nothing Can Hurt Me: The Big Star Story - Documentary site
Like Burning Fire Shut Up In My Bones - The Adios Lounge Good piece about Alex Chilton and Memphis music.
Big Star at Wikipedia

Saturday, November 19, 2011

DAVIE ALLAN HAS A POSSE


I've got no idea where the Mystery Suggester comes up with these things, but I dutifully follow all leads coming from her quadrant. As I've said before, our tastes are remarkably similar, so these things usually pay off. In addition to knowing a shitload about just about every type of American music, she's on the International Fuzz Patrol. Today she pointed me towards a song out of 1970's Nigeria, "Amebo," by the Lijadu Sisters, which does indeed have some dyn-o-mite fuzz (not to mention some baddass organ). Yeah, Nigerian fuzz. That works around here.



The Lijadu Sisters were twins, and cousins of Fela Kuti. They were a big deal in Nigeria, for a number of reasons, not the least of which was that they were female, and they called their own shots. While it couldn't have possible hurt being the cousins of Fela, or being tight with Ginger Baker (who lurked around Lagos quite a bit in the early 70's), a big part of their sound came from one Biddy Wright, the son of one of their mother's friends. He played almost all of the instruments (with the exception of percussion) and co-arranged all four of their albums, released from '76 and 79. And he loved his fuzz.

Not a peep has been heard from the Lijadu Sisters for years, until Knitting Factory Records (who just reissued their first LP, Danger), tracked them down. As it turns out, their exit from the music business was due to one of them being seriously injured in a fall, in the Brooklyn apartment they shared. Now good to go, and with renewed interest in their music, they're ready to start performing again. Unfortunately, Biddy the Nigerian fuzz king is no longer with us.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Lijadu Sisters - Danger mp3 (via Soundcloud) at Soulphonic Sound (click on the small arrow above the streaming gizmo)
Lijadu Sisters - Amebo (streaming) at YouTube
Full LP:
Lijadu Sisters - Danger at With Comb and Razor
Video:
Lijadu Sisters with Ginger Baker at YouTube (short clip)
Visit:
Lijadu Sisters - Bio at Knitting Factory Records

Friday, November 18, 2011

YOU SURE? I'M PRETTY MUCH A SLOB.


Here's a handful of covers. The first of which, is Little Roy's cover of Nirvana's "Come As You Are." If a reggae cover of a Nirvana song sounds like just a novelty, give it a listen. I dig it, even after reading that it's to be a part of an all-Nirvana album (which does sound like a cash-in). My cynicism went out the window when it hooked me with that bubbly organ. Oh yeahhh, the bubbly organ. Shades of classic era Studio One (where not so coincidentally Little Roy started out at). And the short trombone bit comes in effectively enough, just enough to add flavor. This is some good stuff. His cover of "Lithium"? Ehhh, we'll see.



The other two covers down there are just to round things out. There's another Nirvana cover, the Polyphonic Spree doing "Lithium," which I wouldn't post if it sucked. The other cover is an 80's era version of the steel drum band, the Katzenjammers, who had apparently been around in some form or another since 1957, doing the Gary Numan song, "Cars." That one is definitely a novelty, but what steel drum band cover of a pop song isn't? An interesting thing to throw in a mix nonetheless.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Little Roy - Come As You Are mp3 at The Cover Lovers
The Polyphonic Spree - Lithium mp3 at The Cover Lovers
The Katzenjammers - Cars mp3 at Soul Sides
Visit:
Little Roy at Wikipedia
Polyphonic Spree at Wikipedia

Thursday, November 17, 2011

OOH, I'M SO READY


I can hardly begin to sum up all the cool things going on in Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels' "Sock It To Me Baby." Starting with the abrupt "Sock!" followed by Ryder's "Oooh, I'm sooo ready!" it just gets better and better. Before the first verse, the brief slightly fuzzed out riff, and then Ryder's gravelly voice with the first four words of the actual lyrics "Honey with the beehive...," which has gotta be one of the best opening phrases of any rock n' soul song of that era or any other. Followed by "every time you kiss me, hits me like a punch," his phrasing could not be better. And the band? Holy shit, even though it doesn't take a virtuoso to play this stuff, the way it comes together, the bass, the drums, the hand claps, the random party atmosphere vocals buried in the mix; hell even the slide whistle (which is normally tacky as hell) fits. This is one of those songs that is just too good to ignore. No matter how many times you've heard "Devil With a Blue Dress On," this is the sucker that puts Ryder, at least on this song, on a whole different level of some of his blue eyed soul contemporaries. (Can't you just see him leaving the stage, all sweaty, saying "Suck on that!" to the Righteous Brothers?)

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Mitch Ryder & the Detroit Wheels - Sock It To Me Baby mp3 at 4Shared
Mitch Ryder & the Detroit Wheels - Shakin' With Linda mp3 at Johnny-Bee
Mitch Ryder & the Detroit Wheels - Breakout mp3 at Johnny-Bee
Mitch Ryder & the Detroit Wheels - Just a Lttle Bit mp3 at Johnny-Bee

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

HIP HUGGIN' MINI (SLIGHT RETURN)


Here's just a quick one. I've posted another version, but was jazzed to find this one. It's "Hip Huggin' Mini," with the previously posted version (just a couple days ago) by Sunny and the Sunliners. This just found version is by Tender Joe Richardson (awesome name, right?). Way cool. Check out the hosting blog, the accurately titled 45 Blog. There's a lot of really good stuff there, most obscure with just a few kinda corny. The stag humor discs are a nice touch.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Tender Joe Richardson - Hip Huggin' Mini mp3 (via DivShare) at at 45 Blog
Tender Joe Richardson - Hip Huggin' Mini (streaming) at at 45 Blog
Sunny & the Sunliners - Hip Huggin' Mini mp3 at Rock 'n' Soul

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

WHO'S THIS KID?


The mind boggles, yes it does. Every time I run across some drool worthy song that was recorded ages ago, I picture the musicians in some dank studio recording what they think could be a hit, or maybe just a throwaway instrumental, not even able to comprehend that someone fifty years later would be completely taken by it. It's weird enough thinking that it can even be stumbled on while browsing online. I'll say it again; any of you that grew up with music downloads have no idea what it's like to find something ultra-cool without so much as getting out of your chair for a piss break.
Here's a little contrast and compare exercise for you. The first three songs are Johnny Watson from the early days of his career ('53-'54), when he was known as Young John Watson (before he became Johnny "Guitar" Watson). "Space Guitar" is the one that got me in a tizzy, and the other two are mighty fine as well. The Hound Blog had these gems on his site, with over twenty others recorded between '53-'62, when Watson was 18-27 years of age. If your only exposure to Watson is his later funky brand of blues, you owe it to yourself to dig these and the others that the Hound posted. If you've never heard any of his stuff, boy are you in for a surprise. It seems like every blues artist goes through their own Electric Mud period, when they stray from their roots, trying to stay "current," and Watson is no exception. He's no slouch though, and even his later stuff is entirely worthy. In fact, Watson is probably better known for his later stuff. But, if you ask me...no, never mind. If you have to ask me which era I prefer, you haven't been paying attention.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
John Watson - Space Guitar mp3 at The Hound Blog
John Watson - Gettin' Drunk mp3 at The Hound Blog
John Watson - Motorhead Baby mp3 at The Hound Blog
Much more early John Watson (20+) at The Hound Blog
Johnny "Guitar" Watson - Superman Lover mp3 at La Detente Generale
Johnny "Guitar" Watson - A Real Mother for Ya mp3 at Musik Kurier
Visit:
John Watson - Excellent overview of his early career at The Hound Blog
Johnny "Guitar" Watson bio at the Rockabilly Hall of Fame

Monday, November 14, 2011

HEAVY ON THE HEAVY


I've always liked bands that do stuff to the extreme. Weird stuff, loud stuff, really fast stuff, really slow stuff, distorted stuff, well produced stuff, lo fi stuff,...you know. Boris can check off more than a few of those boxes, and a few others as well (most sedate guitar face, most exaggerated drum face,...). Just about everything I've heard by them is over the top by some measure, whether droning, quiet, or simply loud up-to-11 rock (this is a band the named themselves after a Melvins song for crying out loud).

Even if you find their some of their stuff abrasive, they can be a band by which to measure other less adventurous combos. Take the first two songs below, from two different albums, both released at the same time. Boris serve a purpose in this house. I'm not sure what it is, but I do know it's got to do with them doing their own thing. While not often on my turntable, my hat is duly tipped.



~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Boris - Galaxians mp3 at In All Caps
Boris - Attention Please mp3 at In All Caps
Boris - Spoon mp3 at Fingertips
Boris - Farewell mp3 at Draw Us Lines
Boris - Electric mp3 at Draw Us Lines
Boris - Pseudo-Bread mp3 at Draw Us Lines
Boris - My Machine mp3 at Draw Us Lines
Video:
Boris - Variations + Live In Japan at YouTube
Boris - Live in-store at YouTube
Visit:
Boris at Wikipedia
Boris - Discography at Wikipedia
Boris - Official site

Sunday, November 13, 2011

THE DIG NEVER ENDS


This is how things happen around here. I was so taken with Sunny and the Sunliners' "No One Else Will Do" (posted yesterday) that I thought I'd do some digging. I knew the band's name, but for the life of me, I couldn't remember from where. After I heard the cover of Little Willie John's "Talk To Me" by his earlier band, Sunny and the Sunglows, it came to me. Radio DJ Dick "Huggy Boy" Hugg used to play it all the time, back when he was on XPRS (the station that inspired the Blasters' "Border Radio"). So, if you were around Southern California and listened to Huggy Boy in the early eighties, you'll realize why the original version by Little Willie John never seemed to be the familiar one. (If you're not into ballads, read on.)

Sunny Ozuna, was the leader of both bands, as well as a solo artist. (Today he fronts Sunny Ozuna and the Skyliner Band.) The evolution of his music went from the balladry of "Smile Now, Cry Later" and "Talk To Me," to the swinging Latin soul of' "No One Else Will Do" and "Hip Huggin' Mini," with a detour doing a load of Tex Mex stuff. Somewhere in there, the Sunliners also served as backing band for the early Archie Bell and the Drells. After all of that, they got downright funky (as evidenced by "Get Down" below.) Yesterday I didn't know shit about Sunny Ozuna. Today he's on my "further listening" list. That's how things happen around here.

~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~
Listen:
Sunny Ozuna - Smile Now, Cry Later at Sir Shambling's Deep Soul Heaven
Sunny & the Sunglows - Talk To Me mp3 at 4Shared
Sunny & the Sunliners - No One Else Will Do mp3 at Rock 'n' Soul Ichiban
Sunny & the Sunliners - Hip Huggin' Mini mp3 at Rock 'n' Soul Ichiban Highly recommended
Sunny & the Sunlners - Get Down mp3 at NowAgain Highly recommended
Tex Mex:
Sunny And The Sunliners- Triste Y Lastimado (streaming) at YouTube
Sunny Ozuna - Carino Nuevo (streaming) at YouTube
Check this!:
20 Masterpieces of Latin Soul at Sir Shambling's Deep Soul Heaven
Visit:
Sunny Ozuna - Official site
Sunny and the Sunglows, and the Sunliners bio at All Music