Wednesday, May 31, 2017

GUDBUY T' RODNEY

Circa 1978
You might not know who Rodney Bingenheimer is, but a lot of people who have spent time in Southern California sure do. That includes rock stars. He is the grand poobah of fan boys. From being the stand-in for Davy Jones of the Monkees in the mid-sixties, to hob-nobbing with just about every hip act that's passed through Hollywood, to hosting rock stars, groupies and freaks at his own Rodney's English Disco, he had a huge head start by the time punk rock and new wave appeared in the late seventies. In 1976 he was given a radio show, Rodney on the Roq, on (pun intended) KROQ in Los Angeles, and it has aired live since 1976. That's coming to an end this Sunday night. It was the station's choice, a bad one.

The first time I ever laid my eyes on Rodney was at a stoplight right in front of the Whiskey. He was with Kim Fowley. If I remember correctly Blondie was playing that night. That's another thing. He was one of the first DJs to play Blondie. Shit, he was one of the first to play Cheap Trick, the Ramones, and the Runaways and that was early on. I remember hearing the original version of Devo's "Jocko Homo" on his show, well before they were signed. Another very early (possibly the EMI) spin was the Sex Pistols "Anarchy In the UK". And you had to be complete crap of a L.A. punk band to not get played. He didn't discriminate. It could be pop, punk, garage, hardcore, or whatever, it was his nugget if he dug it and that's all that mattered.


Living a hundred miles away, I couldn't tune it in often in the pre-internet past, but now you can stream his show, at least one more time. It's on June 4, at 12:00 AM (Pacific Time). There's a link below. In the meantime there's a few other links. You have to check "I Hate the 90's" (zip linked below). The first lines of it are "Why do people send me large and extra large T-shirts? What happened to medium and small T-shirts? Why do girls have spikes on their tongues? Marcia Brady never had one, she's godhead!" What a nut. The band? It includes Eric Erlandson from Hole, Thurston Moore from Sonic Youth, and Pat Fear (White Flag if memory serves). (On Rodney's first 45 he was backed by Blondie.) There's tons more shit out there with him and about him. I'm sure you can find downloads of past shows. I could dredge up more old trivial personal stories, but I'd get carried away with fond memories and it'd get all geezer in here. (A friend of a friend that lived in LA used to plan her Sundays to end with a bath, with booze, a book and a radio to listen to Rodney on the ROQ. There you go. Spa day. That'd be a paragraph right there.)

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Listen:
Rodney and the Tube Tops - I Hate the 90s (streaming) at YouTube
Rodney and the Tube Tops - I Hate the 90s, Tube Tops Forever/Cell Phone Madness
  at The (Formerly) Daily 7 Two songs in a zip.
The GTOs with Rodney Bingenheimer - Rodney Bingenhemer mp3 at Beware of the Blog 1969
On the Radio:
Rodney on the ROQ - Final show live this Sunday, June 4 at 12:00 AM (Pacific time) HERE Click on "Listen Live" (right column) and a player will open.
Rodney on the ROQ September 21,1980 (streaming) at YouTube :49 minutes
Rodney on the ROQ 1978 with Joan Jett (streaming) at YouTube She wishes Tomata (from the Screamers) Happy Birthday at 3:30. Cute.
Visit:
Influential KROQ DJ Rodney Bingenheimer talks about being taken off the air at OC Weekly
A Man Out of Time (a long profile) at LAWeekly
Rodney Bingenheimer
at Wikipedia

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

DEMAND THE FAKE!

Blah, blah, blah Sgt Peppers. As you may have heard, it's been cleaned up, remixed and re-released in four or five different versions, with outtakes, studio chatter and what not. If you're really into the Beatles, you probably already have some version of it. I'm waiting to hear what my Beatle freak friends have to say, because most of them are audio geeks as well. Regardless, I have to steer clear of posting Beatles stuff here. Every time I do, someone complains and I get my hand slapped. So, what the hell, how about a few parodies.



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Listen:
Peter Cook and Dudley Moore - The L.S. Bumble Bee mp3 at the 365 Degree Project
The Rutles - Sgt. Rutter's Only Darts Club Band
(streaming) at YouTube
Palette-Swap Ninja - Princess Leia's Stolen Death Star Plans
(streaming) at NPR Star Wars parody.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

IT DON'T COME EASY

I can't be objective about Moe Tucker's first solo LP Playin' Possum. If you didn't know who she was and took it as just as it is, you would probably think it sucked, and objectively you'd probably be right. But knowing the Velvet Underground, the first thing you do is try to find the similarity. She was, after all, part of a rhythm section that plodded along, practically droning at times, making songs seem longer than the actually were.  When you realize that her lack of fills and other fancy drummer stuff that made her the perfect drummer for a band like the Velvet Underground, isn't necessarily apropos for covers of Little Richard, Bo Diddley and Chuck Berry, you start to realize that her plain Jane style of drumming was likely the result of being technically primitive. And that's part of what makes Playin' Possum so endearing.

Released in 1982, she recorded it her living room. She played all of the instruments, including sax and synthesizer. Just the thought of a post-Velvets semi-retired Tucker getting the hell out of New York, raising a family and then doing this in her living room - its all too much. I found a way to really dig it. Even after hearing that she was a Tea Partier, I took the record for what it was. A homemade rock 'n' roll record (with two different versions of Little Richard's "Slippin' and Slidin'" mind you), created in a critic free vacuum. That always rules.

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Listen:
Maureen Tucker - Slippin' and Slidin' (Version 2) mp3 at Dinosaur Gardens
The whole LP:
Maureen Tucker - Playin' Possum at Dinosaur Gardens Nine individual mp3s

Friday, May 26, 2017

GRACE JONES, YOU'VE BEEN SERVED.

As someone who's had a thing for Suzi Quatro for years, this is somewhat mind-blowing. A cover of the Normal's "Warm Leatherette" from 1980 (not released until 2014). If you're familiar with her 70's output you know that she was best known for the foot stomping glam of "48 Crash", "Devil Gate Drive", "Can the Can" and the like. You may have heard "Stumblin' In" released a few years later and lamented the loss of your rockin' leather clad dream girl. To hear her version of "Warm Leatherette", recorded just two years later, is a revelation. As Lee, of the hosting site Crying All the Way to the Chip Shop, points out "She even ups the ante by changing the original line 'Let’s make love before you die' to 'Let’s fuck before [we] die'." Gads! How would that be as the last words you hear? On your deathbed, Suzi Quatro right there. You'll be thinking that you're headed to heaven, because, shit, Suzi fucking Quatro is there. Then she says "Let’s fuck before we die". You don't know whether you're crossing over and going to heaven, because where else would you hear Suzi Quatro say that, or have one foot in hell, because she says it now, at the end of your life when it isn't possible. It's fucked up. All I know is that the thirteen year old me would have regarded this one a certified nut buster.

I'm not linking directly to the mp3 because you really should check out Crying All the Way to the Chip Shop. He's got good taste and it's a smart looking site.

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Listen:
Suzi Quatro - Warm Leatherette mp3 at Crying All the Way to the Chip Shop Go there to get it.

THERE'S NO SURF IN DENVER

A quick one to start off your three day weekend (in the U.S. at least), Here's a surf band from Colorado, of all places, doing a song about Mexico. WTF you say? A surf band from hundreds of miles inland? There were lots of cash-ins back then. Like many others, these guys had no shame. At least they got the Fender memo.

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Listen:
The Astronauts - Baja mp3 at California Girls (?)

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

IT'S HAPPENED

For a song that I'm not all that nuts about, I can't tell you how many times the title "The Lunatics Have Taken Over the Asylum" has popped into my head over the years. Every time idiots have some sort of influence over policy in government or the workplace it pops into my head. Whenever doing things in a lame (or just plain wrong) manner, mob rule raises it's ugly head, the song pops into my head. When a filthy rich completely ignorant motherfucker that lacks the sense god gave a goose ends up getting elected president of the United States, you better believe that song is running through my head. But shit, now I have to post it because in the past few weeks, just about every time I look at the headlines coming out of Washington, the song in my head is on repeat. This for a song that, until today, I hadn't listened to in ten or twenty years. Awesome title.

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Listen:
Fun Boy Three - The Lunatics Have Taken Over the Asylum mp3 at Stop Smiling

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

CRUNCHY RIFFS AND SHARPIE HAIR

I'm not exactly sure what to make of Amyl and the Sniffers and I'm not sure I want to dig too deep. Half the stuff I've heard of theirs is a promising racket, but I'm not quite sure what their thing is. A couple of them have those sharpie hair cuts, they have crunchy guitars, a singer who seems to be nodding towards Cherie Currie, a stupid name, short songs, cheaply produced recordings. If I didn't know better I'd swear they were a clueless 1979 era band trying to cash in on punk. Who cares. Even somewhat off they're a nice change.

It seems as though all of their music is downloads at Bandcamp, a buck a pop or "name your price" for the whole EP. . I haven't run into any physical project. I guess that would make it the ultimate low budget/DIY. "We made this on the cheap, you can pay what you want."

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Listen:
Amyl and the Sniffers - Balaclava Lover Boogie
at BandCamp
The whole EP:
Amyl and the Sniffers - Big Attraction at BandCamp
Visit:
Amyl and the Sniffers on Facebook

Sunday, May 21, 2017

THE BAND WOULD LIKE A BEER

A while back I took a chance on a three dollar jazz LP, Chili Con Soul by the Jazz Crusaders. It was one of those last minute wild cards that come when you're wrapping up your record shopping and you just want one more thing. I didn't know anything about the Jazz Crusaders. I liked the title and figured it was of mid-sixties vintage, and it was on a West coast label, so what the hell. It's ended up a favorite. West coast Latin barbecue jazz, sunburns and cheap beer. As luck would have it, I ran into an old post at Groove Addict that has mp3s of two of the songs and a download for the whole LP. Dig it.

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Listen:
The Jazz Crusaders - Agua Dulce (Sweetwater) mp3 at Groove Addict
The Jazz Crusaders - Tacos mp3
at Groove Addict
The LP:
The Jazz Crusaders - Chili Con Soul
at Groove Addict

Saturday, May 20, 2017

TIJUANA GIRLS ARE REALLY THE MOST

This is a good one. A collection of sixties rock en Español. Actually, there's an instrumental or two and at least one sung in English, but it's all stuff from Mexico and Latin America. Maybe Spain too, I don't know. I'm guessing here. The title of the mix is Latin American Nuggets, but the zip file that contains it is titled Mexican Nuggets, and when you unzip it, the file info says Los Nuggets. Who gives a shit? Their foreign and raw, some covers, some fuzz, some Bond-eslque guitar tones. Thirty four of them. All in a language that you may not understand. Take solace in "Tijuana Sun" by the Famous Finks. It's in English, so you can enjoy the tweaked lyrics. But, shit, you need to check out Los Sirex's "El Tren de la Costa" (a cover of "Train Kept A Rollin'"). It's one of those songs that sounds relatively tame at the beginning, but then the whole house falls down. Frantic vocals in the red, seriously tweaked solos, weird mix, the whole package. And that's just one of 34 songs. Dig it!

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Listen:
Los Sirex - El Tren de la Costa (streaming) at YouTube
The Mix:
Latin American Nuggets at Beware of the Blog 34 individual mp3s in a zip. Click on "download".

Thursday, May 18, 2017

PUT A FISH ON MY FACE?

There are three types of people. One type is someone who has never heard of Captain Beefheart. A second is the Beefheart freak that can't get enough, eating up any morsel that pops up. The third is someone who saw Trout Mask Replica on all sorts of all-time greatest album lists, knew it was suppose to be some sort of landmark album, bought it and never went any further. Actually, that last group contains all sorts of subsets. Some couldn't stand Trout Mask Replica and only got halfway through it. Some hung on to it regardless and relegated it to the "attempt later" pile to gather dust. Others kept it for that weird mood when no other music would work. But that group that has Trout Mask Replica and nothing else of Beefheart's is probably a pretty big group. You might just be in there.

So here's something for just about everybody. Outtakes from sessions for the 1972 Beefheart LP The Spotlight Kid, one of his most accessible LPs, released a few years after Trout Mask Replica. Beefheart freaks who haven't heard these will no doubt gobble them up. Those in the Trout Mask Replica-only group will have something to further their dilly-dallying. And those of you who have never heard Beefheart may best think think of these as Tom Waits fronting a very stoned Exile-era Stones. That might not be all that accurate, but it might get you to listen.



Starting out with a couple cuts that did make it to the final album, and then the collection of outtakes. For good measure, there's also a link to a radio broadcast of a 1974 live show with surprisingly good sound. If you have no clue whatsoever who Captain Beefheart, there's a link to a John Peel narrated documentary.

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Listen:
Captain Beefheart -  Click Clack mp3 at Culture Catch
Captain Beefheart - Alice In Blunderland mp3 at Rock Town Hall
The Outtakes:
Captain Beefheart - Spotlight Kid outtakes 1971-72 at The Big O
NOTE: Don't be alarmed by the anti-spam gateway you encounter. You will be transferred to the post without harm.
The Live Broadcast:
Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band - Live at the Cowtown Palace at the Big O 1974 radio broadcast
The documentary:
The Artist Formerly Known as Captain Beefheart at YouTube Narrated by John Peel, 51 minutes

Monday, May 15, 2017

THE KID SINGER

If you think Dennis Brown looks young in that photo, he was even younger, twelve years old, when he cut "No Man Is An Island" at Studio One. That's nuts. And he was singing for Byron Lee and the Dragonaires before that. He had a good long career, roughly thirty years, before he died in 1999 at age 42, after years of coke use.

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Listen:
Dennis Brown - No Man Is An Island (streaming) at YouTube 1969
Dennis Brown - Rain Drops Keep Falling On My Head mp3
at ATumblr 1970
Dennis Brown - Silhouettes mp3
at ATumblr 1975
Dennis Brown - Man Next Door mp3
at East African Tube 1977

Saturday, May 13, 2017

FIND YOUR SELF IN A BOX

Ronnie Self is one of those second tier rockabilly guys that's just beyond the Sun Records mob cognition sphere. You have to get past the more recognizable names and delve a little deeper. In other words, cheat and buy a few rockabilly compilations with a bunch of names you don't know, play them a few dozen times and then walk around like some big shot know-it-all. You ought to at least check the songs below. Holy shit, "Bop-A-Lena" is all-time. Wild, crazy and everything in between. Really, one of those songs that doesn't let up. No fade out, vocals end, a couple more bars, and done. Imagine that coming from a guy who, when playing live, didn't stop for chatter or introductions. Just bam, bam, bam, from one song to the next without stopping (according to his sister's account at the Rockabilly Hall of Fame). And then this, explaining the photo above (courtesy Deke Dickerson) "Ronnie Self was so wild, and moved around so much while singing, that producer Owen Bradley forced Self to stand inside a cardboard box while recording–the only way to keep him on-mic." What a nut!

Speaking of Deke Dickerson, as happens periodically when I come across his name, I was again sucked into his web. You could spend a good amount of time just at his official site. Don't miss the liner notes he's written for reissues (Gene Vincent! Davie Allan! More!), or his blog (dormant, but still worth checking out if you haven't already). Now he's gone all modern with a Tumblr page. In addition, there's a bunch of well recorded live shows at the Internet Archive. Dude doesn't sit still.

If you've been poking around here for a while, you know that I've posted Ronnie Self's stuff before, as well as Dickerson's. As a consolation, there's a few other cuts down there of other rockabilly singers with the surname Self, including Ronnie Self's son Roman who gets it down particularly well for a modern era rockabilly singer.

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Listen:
Ronnie Self - Bop-A-Lena mp3
at Rocky-52.net
Ronnie Self - You're So Right For Me mp3
at Rocky-52.net
Ronnie Self - Ain't I'm A Dog mp3
at Rocky-52.net
Other Selfs:
Mack Self - I Vibrate mp3
at Mp3 Rockabilly
Alvie Self - Let's Go Wild mp3
at Mp3 Rockabilly
Roman Self - Big Fool mp3
at Mp3 Rockabilly
G.Self - Roll On, Big Mama
(streaming) at YouTube

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

NOT SURFING USA

It's hard to believe that Bunker Hill's "The Girl Can't Dance" was released the same year as the Beach Boys' "Surfing USA". Crazy.

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Listen:
Bunker Hill - The Girl Can Dance mp3 at Internet Archive

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

THE DRAMATICS IN THEIR CIVIES

Man, fuck matching suits. It pisses me off when I think about how many bands and vocal groups I've ignored over the years because I couldn't get past their matching outfits. It's bad when it's suits, or jumpsuits. Worse when it's tuxes. Yikes. How are you supposed to relate to that? So, that photo up there? That's the best photo I could find of the Dramatics without matching outfits. And I had to post "Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get" because it had been ages since I heard it and when it popped up at the beginning of Wattstax I was reminded how insanely thick it is, in terms of shit going on in it..

I wouldn't blame you for taking a pass on this type of seventies soul. I did, for years. It wasn't until a friend gave me five mixes heavy on that sort of stuff that it started seeping in. Still not quite one of those go-to things, but once it starts, I let it ride.

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Listen:
The Dramatics - Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get mp3 at Evil Vince (?)
The Dramatics - Hot Pants In the Summertime mp3 at Sweet Too (?)
Full Movie:
Wattstax - Full movie at YouTube with Isaac Hayes, Rufus Thomas, the Staple Singers, the Bar Kays and more.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

THE FUNKY CLICK SOUL SISTER SURPRISE

All it took was seeing Marva Whitney's name mentioned. There's a link, hopefully it's a James Brown era Marva Whitney cut. Bam! Diversion initiated. Marva Whitney and the JBs? Listen to that first one, you'll see. There ain't no going back, not tonight.

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Listen:

Saturday, May 6, 2017

THIS BUGS ME

I'm past the age where you run out and buy music by the latest buzz band, so I've no clue. This band might have a big following. I'd wager that it does given the amount of coverage I ran across. One thing that I do know is that I'm not liking the singer at all. Never mind the fact that I've only heard/viewed one live video. All I know is that the singer in this band is a detriment. To his bandmates, the song, shit, let's cut to the chase, a waste of the the bandwidth needed to post a video.

Camera 2, close up: Protomatyr, you have a bad egg. That singer of yours is dead weight. If your music doesn't move him enough to rock out, sway, tap his foot, put down his beer bottle or even take his hand out of his fucking pocket, fire him. Give the job to someone who wants it. Maybe it's his thing to look detached, bored, above it all. Fine, do Morrisey covers. And don't blame the venue. I don't give a shit if it's a small audience. No singer with his hand in his pocket should even be in the same room as a Stooges cover. Period.

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Listen:
Video:
Iggy Pop - Down On the Street at YouTube 1996 Age 48, still moving more than Señor Slug

Thursday, May 4, 2017

YOU CAN'T RUIN BROTHER RAY

A couple hours ago some big ass motorcycle came rolling down the street. It was one of those huge things with fiberglass all over the place and a fucking sound system. I hate that, motorcycles with speakers blasting. Hate 'em. The guy tooling down the street today was blasting Ray Charles's "Hallelujah, I Love Her So". I love the song, but I still wanted to slap him upside the head. But he's been punished enough. The shame of negating cool points earned for blasting Ray Charles by blasting Ray Charles from an over-equipped old man Harley. He may not even be aware he's afflicted. To his credit, it's what gave me a Ray Charles diversion tonight.

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Listen:

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

VIVA SONNY!

Every once in a while, it occurs to me that there is someone who has slipped through the cracks, even after a couple thousand posts. That's what the bruise on my forehead tells me. Yesterday it occurred to me that there has not been one mention of Sonny Burgess, an early Sun artist who had one of the wildest rock 'n' roll records ever released. That's right. I said it. Check "We Wanna Boogie", it's just nuts. The first thing you'll note is the presence of a trumpet. Unusual for any rockabilly record, even more unusual on a Sun product. While the singing is pretty crazy, somewhere between Ray Campi and the Legendary Stardust Cowboy, there are solos that need to be heard. First the piano, then the trumpet. After one more verse, a manic guitar solo with the drummer just bashing the hell out of what sounds like a kit made out of cardboard. Then one more verse of increasingly crazed vocals and after Burgess hits the last three words sounding like he's eating the microphone, the end. Two and a half minutes of absolutely abandon.

Though the band wanted to do another take, Sam Phillips insisted the first take was a keeper, later saying "...they had a sound like I've never heard. Maybe Sonny's sound was too raw; I don't know- but I'll tell you this. They were pure rock and roll." This from the man that was the first to record some of the greatest rockers of all time.

Sonny Burgess is another great from the past who is still alive. Not only is he alive, but apparently still playing out with dates booked through October of this year. But wait, there's more. He co-hosts a radio show called "We Wanna Boogie" on a public radio station in Arkansas. Sonny Burgess is alive, he's alive!

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Listen: