Sunday, July 31, 2011


Me love Stooges long time. But, not enough to have heard everything, read everything, or seen everything. So the chance viewing of a few photos (on Dangerouse Minds) sent me on a "let's see what else is out there?" dumpster dive. The photos that were posted were the Stooges playing in a high school gymnasium, in 1970, during the short period that the were a five piece. There they are, in all their glory, with score boards and basketball hoops in the background. I thought it funny. (Links to photos below.)

Among the songs down there are some Fun House alternate takes (from the "1970: The Complete Fun House Sessions" way-expanded edition). There's also three mixes of "Search and Destroy," the original stereo, the '97 Iggy Pop remix, and a mono mix of the original. (Yeah, like AM radio is going to come calling.)

The Stooges - Not Right mp3 at Boogie Woogie Flu
The Stooges - Real Cool Time mp3 at Boogie Woogie Flu
The Stooges - 1969 mp3 at Olcros
The Stooges - No Fun mp3 at Olcros
The Stooges - I Wanna Be Your Dog mp3 at Olcros
The Stooges - 1970 (Take 4) mp3 at Boogie Woogie Flu
The Stooges - See That Cat (TV Eye alt. take) mp3 at Boogie Woogie Flu
The Stooges - Down On the Street (Take 8) at Boogie Woogie Flu
The Stooges - Loose (Take 2) mp3 at Boogie Woogie Flu
The Stooges - L.A. Blues mp3 at 8106
Iggy & the Stooges - Search & Destroy (Stereo, original mix) mp3 at 8106
Iggy & the Stooges - Search & Destroy (Mono, promo flip) mp3 at Boogie Woogie Flu
Iggy & the Stooges - Search & Destroy (Stereo, '97 remix) mp3 at Boogie Woogie Flu
Iggy & the Stooges - Raw Power (Original mix) mp3 at 8106
Iggy & the Stooges - Shake Appeal (Original mix) mp3 at 8106
Iggy & the Stooges - Gimme Some Skin mp3 at Probe Is Turning-On the People
Iggy & the Stooges - I'm Sick of You mp3 at Olcros
Iggy & The Stooges - You Better Run mp3 at Better Propaganda
The Stooges at Farmington High School, Oakland County, MI in 1970 photos at Dangerous Minds (Seven photos and story of their origin)
The Stooges at Farmington High School, Oakland County, MI in 1970 photos at Facebook (All 28 photos, log in required.)
The Stooges at Wikipedia
Fun House entry at Wikipedia (Including details about expanded editions)
Raw Power entry at Wikipedia (includes details about mixes/remixes)
Lester Bangs legendary review of Fun House, Part 1, Part 2 at Creem Magazine

Saturday, July 30, 2011


Here's a few from Rodney Bingenheimer. If you're not familiar with him, you might think they suck. If you are familiar with him, you still might think they suck. I can't say that they're all great, but I've always had a soft spot for the guy. The longer Rodney's around, the longer we have a rock n' roll diehard link of continuity. A bit of a wimpy fanboy rock n' roll diehard link of continuity, but a link nevertheless. He goes way back. The GTO's did a song called "Rodney," about him (that featured him), way back in 1969. Blondie backed him on a cover of Ronny & the Daytona's "Little GTO" in the late 70s. Runaways era Lita Ford plays on his "Let's Make the Scene." Thurston Moore and Eric Erlandson (Hole) back him on "I Hate the 90s," which is the great guitar freakout you'd expect, but with Rodney complaining about the 90s over it. It's pretty funny, actually. That said, these are novelty records, really, probably only of interest to that small slice of the pie that know who Rodney Bingenheimer is and are not completely annoyed by him.

Trailer of the film "Mayor of Sunset Strip"

Rodney & The Tube Tops - I Hate the 90s, Tube Tops Forever/Cell Phone Madness (zip via Mediafire) at The (Formerly) Daily 7
Rodney Bingenheimer - Then I Kissed Her, Let's Make the Scene (1977) mp3s at Good Bad Music For Bad Bad Times Direct linking disbled, go there to get them
A Man Out of Time (a long profile) at LAWeekly
Rodney Bingenheimer’s English Disco - Story of the club at StandUpShowUp
Rodney Bingenheimer at Wikipedia

Friday, July 29, 2011


Scientist was a kid at the end of his teens when he went to work for King Tubby, starting out in Tubby's shop, winding transformers and working on sound equipment. (Tubby was an electronics and sound engineer by trade.) As Tubby's sound equipment business grew, there was a succession of eager studio locals waiting to take over the mixing of dubplates. Scientist was among the very first, and worked there for a short while, before going to work at Coxsone Dodd's Studio One which paid more. He updated Dodd's studio, and went to work, cleaning up the sound of Dodd's back catalog, embellishing some with sounds, particularly cymbals and drums. For this we owe him some credit for the Studio One sound that most of us recognize. Dude was in his early twenties. and just getting started. And he is still doing it. Cool.

Unreal: Scientist dubs Marvin Gaye's "What's Going On" (Longer streaming version below)

Scientist - Kidney Punch mp3 at No Genre
Scientist - Dance of the Vampires mp3 at Quarter Life Party
Scientist - Your Teeth My Neck mp3 at Ear Milk
Scientist - Night of the Living Dead mp3 at The New Montreal
Scientist - Miss Know It All mp3 at Reggae Top Site
Scientist meets Marvin Gaye - What's Going On (streaming audio) at Facebook Dub starts at 3:52
King Tubby & Scientist - Ravin' Dub mp3 at Fat Berri's
Barrington Levy & Scientist - Rock and Come In mp3 at Zertya
Mad Professor meets Scientist - Buju Dub mp3 at Reggae Top Site
Scientist vs the Upsetters - Live set (streaming) at Red Bull Music Academy

Dub Echoes trailer at YouTube
Deep Roots Music -Four minute clip at YouTube with Scientist, Bunny Lee and Prince Jammy

Scientist at Wikipedia
Earlier reggae posts (many links still live)

Thursday, July 28, 2011


ESG could never happen again. There are just too many bands trying to be weird, and they are way too public. Too many outlets for weird bands to trust them, that they really are weird. They're too self-conscious. ESG were weird back when it meant something. Percussion, bass, and vocals, In the start, that was it (they later added guitar). But in the midst of post punk, early hip hop, and primitive synth stuff, things were already getting stripped down. They remind me of a Black Uhuru show I saw, years ago. The whole band left the stage, one by one, until it was just Sly and Robbie. I was amazed at how the crowd continued to dance and sway. Anyway, ESG get under something. I hadn't heard "Moody" in a long time, and I still remembered it, before I recently heard it again (tonight).

Total credit, for making me even think about the song again, goes to Versions Galore, who just posted five covers of the song, including one by ten year old twins from Ghana, the Green Door Kids. The five covers vary wildly, but all work on some level. I just posted one below, but they're all worth a listen, if ESG's original gets under your something. Definitely check "Erase You," the third ESG cut below. It is so rad. Seriously, you don't want it to end.

ESG - Moody mp3 at Loft and Lost
ESG- It's Alright mp3 at DJ or No DJ
ESG - Erase You mp3 at DJ or No DJ
Bomb the Bass - Moody mp3 at Versions Galore
Five covers of Moody at Versions Galore
ESG - Moody (live, from some movie, 1989) at YouTube
ESG at Wikipedia

Wednesday, July 27, 2011


There are a handful of bands that I never run into online. One of those bands that I'm constantly on the prowl for is the Nomads, a band from Sweden. Today I finally ran into one single Nomads mp3, and a fine one it is. A great cover of Alex Chilton's "Bangkok," from their 1984 LP, Outburst. (I think it was their first album.) I bought that album when it came out, based just on the songs listed on the back cover. Besides "Bangkok,", there was a cover of the Bards' "Five Years Ahead of My Time," and the Kinks' "I'm Not Like Everybody Else," along with a song called "Rat Fink A Boo Boo," which was the name of a B-movie (the Ray Dennis Steckler film, Rat Pfink A Boo Boo.) Not long after buying that LP, the Nomads became one of my all time favorite rock n' roll bands, and still are.

In lieu of finding additional mp3s I went looking for videos. And the first one I found happened to be from a 2008 show in Borlänge, Sweden, with the Nomads backing Roky Erickson, who I just wrote about yesterday, doing "The Wind and More." Figuring that it was a weird coincidence, I took a gander at the clip and was reminded off something; that music is sometimes more than performer and audience. Sometimes it is a moment. Check out that cropped screen grab at the top of the post. In it, you see a young guy, maybe late teens, early twenties, on the left, head banging away; and on the lower right, a couple caught up in the moment, making out. All this happening while the Nomads are backing Roky Erickson on stage. Is this not the textbook definition of bliss?

One thing you don't see in the screen grab is that, early in the clip (;38-:48), the young head banger guy is actually singing along, as is a young woman of roughly the same age (she's shown only for a few seconds). Their parents may not have even met when the song was released. Then there's the Robert Frank type moment. At 1:00 in the clip, time is about to stand still. With all sorts of individual experiences happening simultaneously, the headbanger bangs head, and the couple make out, with Roky Erickson and the Nomads onstage. Planets aligned, unadulterated symbiotic rock n' roll bliss. You can't get that from a computer. On that note, I gotta go book a flight.

The Nomads with Roky Erickson (center), 2008

The Nomads - Bangkok mp3 at Athens Indy Media
The Nomads and Roky Erickson, live in Borlange, Sweden, 2008. The whole set at YouTube
The Nomads - I'm Out of It (live, 2011) at YouTube
The Nomads at a Link Wray tribute, 2006 at YouTube Because parts of it sound a lot like Rocket From the Crypt's "On A Rope"
More Nomads videos at YouTube
The Nomads Official site
The Nomads at MySpace
The Nomads at Wikipedia

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


Have you ever known anyone who's done a lot of acid? I have, and it's not pretty what it will do to a person. One friend, who got straight A's in junior high, started with weed, moved onto acid before finishing high school, and the last time I saw him, he was excited that he was moved up to fry cook at a fast food restaurant, after ten plus years of folding boxes at the end of the counter. Another friend, who accidentally took too much on one single occasion, became a schizophrenic, and has been living on the street, and in and out of jail, for decades.

Roky Erickson took a lot of acid. His band, the 13th Floor Elevators, actually made a point to take a lot of acid, both for live gigs and while recording. As a result, Erickson has been, at times, pretty fucking messed up. He was institutionalized twice ('68, '69) for mental problems, once for for three and a half years. It's been speculated that, while in a mental facility, he may have been irreversibly over-medicated. In 1989, while off of medication, he was arrested for mail theft, which in his case meant stealing his neighbors' mail, and taping it, unopened, to the wall of a room where he lived. He has been to the deep end and back a few times. So it's no wonder that when I ran into a recent video interview, I felt like I could exhale. Whether it's meds, or just being in a better place, he seems relatively normal, or at least fully functioning. So I thought I'd celebrate his okay-ness by posting some stuff.

Among other things below are two versions of the 13th Floor Elevator's "You're Gonna Miss Me," a stereo version, and the original mono (along with a live solo version). There's a cut from his pre-Elevators band, the Spades, and the 13th Floor Elevators cover of "Baby Blue," that sounds like Erickson backed by Dream Syndicate. There's a recent collaboration with Okkervil River (that one's ho-hum). There's "Bermuda," an excellent 1977 solo cut, and a few other 13th Floor Elevators cuts as well, chosen totally at random. There's a trailer to the 1996 documentary abour Erickson, "You're Gonna Miss Me." One last thing, there's a video down there of him on Austin City Limits, doing "You're Gonna Miss Me," with Billy Gibbons, from ZZ Top, playing guitar. That one is notable because of Gibbon's respectable ability to replicate the bizarre electric jug playing on the original version, on guitar. You should dig Roky Erickson while he's with us, and (call me a square) don't do acid.

The 13th Floor Elevators - You're Gonna Miss Me (stereo) mp3 at The Rising Storm
The 13th Floor Elevators - You're Gonna Miss Me (mono, 1966) mp3 at The Rising Storm
Rocky Erickson - You're Gonna Miss Me (Live) mp3 at X818
Roky Erickson - Bermuda (1977) mp3 at
Roky Erickson with Okkervil River - Goodbye Sweet Dreams (2011) mp3 at Pitchfuck
The 13th Floor Elevators - Levitation mp3 at
The 13th Floor Elevators - I Don't Want To Come Down mp3 at
The 13th Floor Elevators - Baby Blue mp3 at Bowling League Records 4
The 13th Floor Elevators - Roller Coaster mp3 at Rocking Classic
The Spades - We Sell Soul mp3 at Rocking Classic

The 13th Floor Elevators - You're Gonna Miss Me (pool party version) at YouTube
Roky Erickson with Billy Gibbons - You're Gonna Miss Me (Austin City Limits 2010) at YouTube
You're Gonna Miss Me, 1983 documentary, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, & Part 4 at YouTube
You're Gonna Miss Me (1996) trailer at MySpace
Roky Erickson - Interview and The Creature With the Atom Brain (1980) at YouTube
Interview with Roky Erickson (recent) at Vimeo
The 13th Floor Elevators - A jug demonstration and "Fire Engine" (live, audio only) at YouTube
Roky Erickson Official site
Roky Erickson, interview by Gregg Turner, Creem Magazine, 6/81 at Texas Psych
Roky Erickson - Interview at L.A. Record
Rocky Erickson at Wikipedia
The 13th Floor Elevators at Wikipedia

Sunday, July 24, 2011


In looking for an image for this post, I thought I'd do an image search for "punk women," just for the hell of it, fully expecting to be disappointed. I was, more than I expected. I'm here to tell you, "punk women" doesn't mean what it used to. Neither does "punk men" for that matter. Slap me silly, there's some godawful missuses of the term, especially online where everything is packaged and marketed to death; be it gender, genre, or attitude. It's clueless, it's a haircut, a pair of shoes, a fashion spread, and uninformed editorial self indulgence.

Anyway, Network Awesome recently posted a five part video compilation series called "The Women of Punk." Band wise, there's a whole lot of favorites, most I never really identified as one gender or the other. Some I wouldn't even think of as punk. Regardless, if they're going to take the time to round up (or curate as they put it) that comprehensive of a playlist, they can call it "Pea Soup" for all I care.

If you haven't been on Network Awesome, there's a couple things to note. One is that in each series of videos, they have interspersed short promos for other stuff on their site, along with old commercials, primarily from the 70s and 80s. You can bypass any of these, or any of the music videos, by pulling the slider all the way to the end. It'll automatically go to the next clip or video.

At the very bottom below is a link to a really good recent video of Vivienne Westwood (wife of Malcolm McLaren, and co-clothier to the Sex Pistols) speaking her mind about art, punk, education, status and other related subjects.

The Women of Punk, Part 1 at Network Awesome: Suzi Quatro, The Runaways, Joan Jett, X Ray Spex, Bush Tetras, B-Girls, The Cranos, Shonen Knife, Pink Section, The Au Pairs, Bikini Kill
The Women of Punk, Part 2 at Network Awesome: Souixie & the Banshees, The Slits, Penetration, Sexsick, Kleenex, Kas Product, Suburban Reptiles, Kleenex, Neo Boys, Castration Squad
The Women of Punk, Part 3 at Network Awesome: Mo-Dettes, Model Citizens, Blondie, Delta 5, Sonic Youth, Bikini Kill, Pandoras, Knetics, Patti Smith Group, Nina Hagen, X
The Women of Punk, Part 4 at Network Awesome: Plasmatics, The Rezillos, 45 Grave, Vice Squad, Auróra Cirkáló, The Bags, UXA, The Raincoats, Avengers, Teenage Jesus and the Jerks, Spitboy, The Gossip
The Women of Punk, Part 5 at Network Awesome: Slant 6, Sleater-Kinney, Bikini Kill, Chalk Circle, Huggy Bear, Tiger Trap, The Gits, Bratmobile, Heavens To Betsy, Excuse 17, Babes In Toyland, L7
Definitely watch this:
Vivienne Westwood interview at the Guardian UK

Saturday, July 23, 2011


Several years ago, when my Dad was ill and knew he was going to die in the not too distant future, I asked him if he was afraid. His answer was no. "I just don't feel like I've finished, I don't feel like I've done everything that I was supposed to do." That was what I thought about when I heard this morning that Amy Winehouse had passed away. Now, I'm not a crazy Winehouse fiend. I was still getting into Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings when Winehouse hit. So I let "Rehab" stew for a while before I broke down and bought Back to Black. It was a promising album, and along with Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings' arrival, it looked like there would be a resurgence of interest in soul music. I was jazzed, as were a lot of other soul music freaks.

But it wasn't necessarily Winehouse's voice that sucked me in, though that was part of it. It was because she was one of us. By that I mean, those of us who have at one time or another championed music of the past, unraveled at the seams, had a hard time reeling it all in, and basically let music take over our lives. It's what separates us from the button down mortgage brokers. I think of myself at her age, 27, and I was on just as shaky ground, at one point hospitalized, from whooping it up like there was no tomorrow. I finally wised up, and I was looking forward to Winehouse getting back on her feet and showing us what she had in her. Sadly, we'll never find out what could have been. She didn't finish.

I was having second thoughts about posting anything about her, figuring that all sorts of blogs would have much more to say about her passing. That all changed when I ran across her cover of the Shirelles' "Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?" It made me stop for a moment and feel something that I hadn't with "Rehab" and some of her other better known cocksure songs, a certain vulnerability. Listening to it might even soften up some of the rubber necks who seemed to take delight in her personal setbacks. There's also a trio of songs from an obscure unofficial release, referred to as "The Ska EP," with a reggae cover of Sam Cooke's "Cupid," a cover of the Special's "Hey Little Rich Girl," andd the Maytal's "Monkey Man." "Fuck Me Pumps," from her first LP is down there because I like the fact that someone wrote a song called "Fuck Me Pumps."

8/7/2011 NOTE: Due to a notice from Blogger, all links have been removed on this post. I do not yet know which was the offending link, but I know enough to play it safe until I have more details. Sorry for the inconvenience.

Amy Winehouse at Wikipedia

Amy Winehouse - Official site

Friday, July 22, 2011


"Down By The River" is one arresting song, isn't it? That you probably knew, right? The length of it, the pace, the lyrics, and that guitar all add up to make a song that could easily be Neil Young at his most Neil Youngest. Released in 1969 as part of the LP Everyone Knows This Is Nowhere, recorded with Crazy Horse, it clocked in at over 9 minutes. It's that length that's needed to convey sound of someone defeated, forlorn, and exhausted. Young wrote it when he had a fever, with a temperature of 103 °F (39 °C), and it sounds like it.

I revisited the song after my friend Ray posted the video below of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young (a band I'm usually not too nuts about) on Facebook. (Ray always posts good stuff. Doesn't everybody have a friend that always finds the coolest shit on YouTube?) The video is CSN & Y live, on the David Steinberg TV show. All are playing electric (none of them folk singer specials).

About the links, there is of course the original (Note to Neil Young's people: I didn't upload the music). Then there's a version by reggae singer Ken Boothe, a great song, once it kicks in. (Though I could do without the mouth guitar, ala Frampton Comes Alive). The Undisputed Truth's version is pretty way out. They worked a lot with producer Norman Whitfield, so it could be his work. It reminds me of one of Issac Hayes' epic covers. There's a link to another video of CSN & Y doing it live, in Big Sur in 1969. (Part of the draw to that video is to witness some of the worst dancing ever caught on film. Really, these people make Deadheads look like ballet dancers.) Down at the bottom is link to a transcription of Young's introduction to the song, (from a New Orleans show, in 1984), explaining what the hell the song is about.

Neil Young & Crazy Horse - Down By the River mp3 at I Am Fuel, You Are Friends
Ken Boothe - Down By the River mp3 at Pop Culture
The Undisputed Truth - Down By the River mp3 at Cool In The Pool
Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young - Down By the River (Live, Big Sur, CA 1969) at YouTube
"Down By the River" entry at Wikipedia
Neil Young's intro to the song (transcribed, from a show in New Orleans, 1984) at Thrashers Wheat

Thursday, July 21, 2011


If ever there was a infectious groove, Althea and Donna's "Uptown Top Ranking" is it. If you know the song, you know what I'm talking about. It's a song, and a rhythm, that just keeps giving. Though few versions, the source material or newer covers, really capture the feel. It's gotta be the voices. Althea (often misspelled "Althia", as it is above) and Donna were just 17 and 18 respectively, when they recorded it as an answer song to Trinity's "Three Piece Suit," and both utilized a repeated rhythm from Alton Ellis' "I'm Still In Love With You," which itself was covered by Marcia Aitken. Confused enough? Then just listen to Althea & Donna's version. If you already know that one, then you might dig a variation or two. We've got something for everyone down here! So just c'mon down to Uptown Top Ranking Depot, where we've got versions for everyone in the family! Here's some Beat the Heat Doorbusters right here...

Althea & Donna - Uptown Top Ranking mp3 at Diddy Wah
Rhythm source:
Alton Ellis - I'm Still In Love With You mp3 at Stop Okay Go
Mighty Two - Calico Suit mp3 at Diddy Wah
An answer song to:
Trinity - Three Piece Suit mp3 (with Mighty Two's Big Fat Thing) via Megaupload at Rewind Mi Selector
Marcia Aitken w/Trinity - I'm Still In Love With You mp3 at Planet Mondo (7 minute mix)
Dub Clossus - Uptown Top Ranking (streaming)
at Real World Records
Slightly different mix:

Althea & Donna- Uptown Top Ranking mp3 at Nate Frog
Althea & Donna - Uptown Top Ranking (Mono) mp3 at Boogie Woogie Flu
Althea & Donna - Uptown Top Ranking (Reggae Sunsplash 1978) at YouTube (Footage of them starts at :42)
Althea & Donna - Uptown Top Ranking (Top of the Pops) at YouTube
Tight'n Up - Uptown Top Ranking at YouTube

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


Here's a couple from the soundtrack of the Dennis Hopper film, The Hot Spot. The soundtrack was put together by Jack Nitzsche, and he recruited quite a crew of musicians. Besides Davis and Hooker, the soundtrack features Taj Mahal, Roy Rogers (the slide player, not the cowboy) and legendary drummer Earl Palmer. One of these cuts has been posted here before, but I just came across the other, and even though they sound an awful lot alike, it is a pretty unique combination. The soundtrack is out of print* (and copies selling in the $45-$55 range), so you make want know. (*Note: I was looking for vinyl, but have just been informed by a trusted adviser that it's readily available on CD.)

Miles Davis & John Lee Hooker - Bank Robber mp3 at Aquarium Drunkard Direct linking disabled, go there to get it.
Miles Davis & John Lee Hooker - Ending Credits mp3 at When You Awake
Earlier Nitzsche post:
Produced By Jack Nitzsche with "Memo From Turner" (from the soundtrack of Performance) and "The Last Race" (used in soundtracks to both Death Proof and The Village of the Giants).
Jack Nitzsche at Wikipedia

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


Here's a couple duly funky numbers that I never would have known existed if it wasn't for aimless meandering. The first one is Roy Porter who (I'm guessing) is a jazz dude I've never heard of. It's "Party Time," an apt title for one as funky as it is. That's from Clumsy & Shy, a blog by one Marjorie Owens that is pretty damn cool in it's simplicity. She posts about five or six songs every week or so, and there's always something I've never heard before that I really dig. No bio information or background info, which is fine (we all know how to do web searches at this point). The other song is "Cold Duck (On Ice)" another fine jam, this one by Cold Duck, again, an outfit I'm clueless about. It's from Oliver Wang's Soul Sides, a blog that takes a different tack, a little scholarly you might say. Wang knows his stuff, as evidenced by his writings being on liner notes and in magazines all over the place. His site usually features soul, funk, and hip hop, but he dips into Latin music and reggae from time to time as well. Bookmark both of these sites if you like to hear consistently good stuff (without meandering aimlessly).

Roy Porter - Party Time mp3 at Clumsy & Shy
Cold Duck - Cold Duck (On Ice) mp3 at Soul Sides

Sunday, July 17, 2011


It has finally hit me. Gene Vincent was mortal. He's dead. I had long avoided any of his later material, in denial, as if the Blue Caps era Vincent was all that ever existed. Yesterday that all changed, and I'm still in mourning. I'm not kidding when I say that the one-two punch of a 1969 video and a 1970 song had me grieving. Not to say either were bad; in fact, they were both excellent. But they served as a shoulder shaker, as if to say "snap out of it, he's gone and this is how it ended." It was a sad night here on Bacon Street, but in a way long overdue. I have mourned the passing of one loved musician after another, but until last night, I'd never experienced a moment of solemnity for Gene Vincent.

Vintage Gene Vincent & the Blue Caps, from The Girl Can't Help It

The 1969 video (link below) is a 34 minute mini-documentary culled from four days of Vincent's final UK tour, just eighteen months before his death. The decline of interest in rockabilly in the hippie era had left him broke and struggling to remain relevant. There was no market for nostalgia (Sha Na Na had yet to break, American Graffiti was three years away, and the Stray Cats were still in grade school), a time when looking backwards was strictly for old farts and teddy boys. In the clip, Vincent is shown in some rather humbling circumstances, accentuated by his bum leg, from an injury in a motorcycle accident crash in 1955, and aggravated by another accident in 1960 (one that killed his best buddy Eddie Cochran). Just watch the clip (again, link below). If it doesn't make you want to go back in time and write him a check, you do not possess a rock n' roll heart.

Vincent in '69, screen grab from the BBC video below

There's a few of his earlier cuts down below, all essential. Let me repeat, essential. To read about Vincent, go to The Hound Blog for another one of the Hound's definitive profiles. And that later cut, the one that got me all weepy, is near the bottom, a cover of Mickey Newbury's "Sunshine." You want a tearjerker? Watch the BBC video below, and then listen to Vincent sing Newbury's lyrics, "All of my life it's been the same. I found a pot of gold, just a rusty chain. I dealt a winnin' hand in a losin' game, oh, I'm lookin' for the sunshine, livin' on the rain." Jeez, what can you say? I know. Long fucking live Gene Vincent.

Gene Vincent & the Blue Caps - Cat Man (1957) mp3 at Leave You Wanting Less
Gene Vincent & the Blue Caps - Cruisin' mp3 at The Hound Blog
Gene Vincent & the Blue Caps - Woman Love mp3 at The Hound Blog
Gene Vincent & the Blue Caps - Rollin' Danny mp3 at Beware of the Blog
Gene Vincent & the Blue Caps - Brand New Beat mp3 at The Hound Blog

Gene Vincent - Sunshine (1970) mp3 at The Rising Storm

Ian Dury & the Blockheads - Sweet Gene Vincent mp3 at The Rising Storm

Gene Vincent in the UK, 1969 - Live footage, rehearsals, and behind the scenes; at the BBC. NOTE: Scroll down to the third video, and read the text for context.

Gene Vincent & the Blue Caps - Profile with more mp3s at The Hound Blog
Gene Vincent at Wikipedia
Earlier Gene Vincent post:
Behold the Economic Solo
Other rockabilly related posts here

Saturday, July 16, 2011


And to think that Ray Charles has no idea that Billy Preston is doing the electrocuted day-glo Elaine Benes right in front of him. All joking aside, this clip is awesome.

SoulSides found it, all credit and respect to O Wang.

Friday, July 15, 2011


You've probably heard "Apache," at least one of the many versions. If you're into instrumental bands, particularly surf-type, you've probably suffered "Apache" saturation at some point, as it's been covered by just about every surf band that has ever existed. It was a hit in 1960 for the Shadows in the UK, and in 1961 for Jorgen Ingmann in the states. Written by Jerry Lordan in 1959, it was intended as "something noble and dramatic, reflecting the courage and savagery of the Indian." Most versions were straight up covers (I know, ho-hum, right?); that is until 1970, when the Edgar Broughton Band mixed it with Captain Beefheart's "Dropout Boogie." (Take note youngsters, Broughton's "Apache Dropout" is from back in the pre-mash-up day, before bedroom laptop studios, when they used to call these things "medleys.") Far and away, the most influential interpretation was the Incredible Bongo Band's version, released in 1973, a long-ass funk-ified version with long percussion breaks that have been sampled, at last count, four million times. Still, as an instrumental, the song could be seen as "something noble and dramatic." Enter the Sugarhill Gang, whose rap version in 1981 has enough stereotyping posturing to embarrass Bugs Bunny. Where to begin? How about with the introduction of "Tonto, jump on it! Jump on it!" Throw on some of the hand-to-mouth "Woo-woo-woo!" cartoon Indian yelps. Yeah. And it gets more embarrassing from there. Let's just chalk in up to the Ubangi Stomp Syndrome.

Tommy Seebach Band "Apache". Where's Link Wray when you need him?

So here's a few versions, including a snippet of a great reggae version by Byron Lee and the Dragonaires. If you want to read about the whole long story there's a link to "All Roads Lead to Apache," an excellent history of the song, but be forewarned. The author, Michaelangelo Matos refers to the Shadows version as a sonic "missing link between Speedy West, Link Wray, and Ennio Morricone," which seems only slightly accurate. This is what happens when someone who seems to know their shit about one type of music (in Matos' case funk and hip hop), and thinks it transfers to areas outside of their expertise. (And yes, I do see this as a teachable moment, because I'm the worst offender in that category.) I do know my guitar music, and the Shadows are on a different planet than Speedy West and Link Wray. (Just imagine though, Link Wray vs the Sugarhill Gang in a bar fight. Sorry, that just popped into my head.)

The Shadows - Apache mp3 at
Jorgen Ingmann - Apache mp3 at Funky 16 Corners
The Ventures - Apache mp3 at Mark.D.Hall
The Surfaris - Apache mp3 at
The Edgar Broughton Band - Apache Dropout mp3 at The Brobots
The Incredible Bongo Band - Apache mp3 at
The Sugarhill Gang - Apache mp3 at
Byron Lee & the Dragonaires - Apache (short :40 second clip) mp3 at Piccadilly Records
The Shadows - Apache (1964) at YouTube
The Sugarhill Gang - Apache at YouTube
All Roads Lead to Apache by Michaelangelo Matos at Soul Sides
Who's Sampled the Incredible Bongo Band's "Apache" at Who's Sampled
Apache (song entry) at Wikipedia

Thursday, July 14, 2011


If it wasn't for Specialty Record's scramble to find a replacement for Little Richard when he found God, we may have never have heard Larry William's exemplary tier two rock n' roll classics. Nor would we have heard the dozens of covers of his songs (among them several by the Beatles and the Stones). The former pimp, and Lloyd Price's ex-driver, was in the right place at the right time. Right about the time Little Richard, Specialty's meal ticket, switched directions, would be stand-in Lloyd Price jumped ship as well, starting his own label. Specialty didn't have to look far to find their next star. Williams was recommended by Price as a possible hole filler, and, with the crack studio team (among them drummer great Earl Palmer, and future Blaster sax player Lee Allen) waiting, they went to work. Acknowledging his serendipitous luck, Williams wrote half a dozen Little Richard song titles into his "Short Fat Annie," as if to say, "he's gone, get over it."

Larry Williams - Slow Down mp3 at Mercury Paradise
Larry Williams - She Said Yeah mp3 at Beware of the Blog
Larry Williams - Short Fat Annie mp3 at The New LoFi
Larry Williams - Dizzy Miss Lizzy (ext. 78 version) mp3 at The Hound Blog
Larry Williams - Excellent bio and 15 plus mp3s at The Hound Blog
Larry Williams - Discography at Wang Dang Dula
Larry Williams at Wikipedia

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


"I want to kick in the radio, I wanna go bomb the record store,..." Those are the first two lines of "Destroy All Music" by one of L.A.'s earliest punk bands, the Weirdos. They weren't as much innovative, as they were a package, visually, lyrically and musically; a blast that rarely let up, and they were really tight. Where there were guitar solos, they were short, just enough for punch, and on stage they were all over the place, with lead singer John Denny wiggle wobbling and pacing the stage. Early on, they would be covered with stuff; stapled, taped, pinned, some stuff just dangling, like some sort of walking collage of pop culture crap. All the visual clutter of a ransacked 99 cent store. Throw into the mix that John Denny, in an early interview, cited Captain Beefheart and Gene Vincent as influences, and they sound nothing like either. But, the thought was there. Plug that in and turn it up. Behold the sound that once was taken for granted.

The Weirdos - Destroy All Music mp3 at Killed By Death
The Weirdos - Life of Crime mp3 at Killed By Death
The Weirdos - Why Do You Exist mp3 at Killed By Death
The Weirdos - We Got The Neutron Bomb mp3 at Killed By Death
The Weirdos - Solitary Confinement mp3 at Killed By Death

The Weirdos - 3 Full LP downloads (via Rapidshare) at Uncontrollable Urge An album of demos and rehearsals, and both Weird World compilations. (Click through redirect to RapidShare. Scholl down and click on the gray "Free Download" button.)
The Weirdos - Life of Crime ('78) at YouTube
The Weirdos - Destroy All Music (live, at the Masque '77?) at YouTube
The Weirdos - Solitary Confinement (live, at the Masque '77?) at YouTube
Weirdosism - Weirdos bio by John Denny
at Break My Face
The Weirdos discography (incomplete) at New Jersey Noise

Monday, July 11, 2011


I was sucked in big time today, at Rollo & Grady. They just posted an interview with King Khan, and I like Khan. Though, at times I've felt like a rubber neck, because the guy has been so close to nuts. Turns out he did have issues, and they eventually came to a head. After a series of tumultuous events, he checked himself in. You can read all the details at Rollo & Grady, including his road back. Among other recent events, an encounter with Lou Reed. You are not going to believe this: Khan nose-thwacked Lou Reed. On purpose. As in, "What's that spot on your shirt?" thwacking. And he lived to tell the story. This is big folks. Bigger than the Pete Townsend/Abbie Hoffman incident, or Dylan going electric at Newport. Pet Sounds? Mince meat compared to this. Someone nose-thwacked Lou Reed. Damn, does that have a nice ring to it.
Rock n' roll is alive.

Check this out:
The King Khan interview and a few mp3s, including a recent demo at Rollo & Grady
King Khan & the Shrines - Destroyer mp3 at Rollo & Grady
King Khan & the Shrines - Burnin' Inside mp3 at I Am Fuel, You Are Friends
King Khan & the Shrines - Outta Harms Way mp3 at KEXP
King Khan & the Shrines -Torture mp3 at AW Music
King Khan & the Shrines - Welfare Bread -mp3 at Quiet Color
King Khan & the_Shrines - I Wanna Be a Girl mp3 at Melophobe
King Khan & the Shrines - Don't Walk Away Mad mp3 at Music Alliance Pact
King Khan & the Shrines - Live set, Mc Carren Park, NYC 2008
(50 minutes!)

Sunday, July 10, 2011


The name King Tubby is synonymous with dub, but you knew that right? (If not, here's an excellent profile.) Assuming that you're somewhat familiar with him, you might also know that the Tubby well runs deep. Even if you have a lot of his stuff, even if you're a total obsessive, you're not going to have it everything he's done. After all, it's not like some rock band reissuing something with a few alternate takes. King Tubby's bread and butter was alternate takes. Every time he turned a dial, or moved a fader, and added dub to the title, another version was born. When you take into account material released under his own name, versions he did for other artists, and dub plate sound system exclusives, you come up with a discography that may never be absolutely final.

Earlier this week I received an email from a guy who had seen an earlier post about King Tubby, he actually took the lead, visited Wikipedia to learn more about him, and then procured himself some Tubby sides. As you'd imagine, it made my day. I was already pondering another King Tubby post (because you could do one a week and still not exhaust what's out there), but then I remembered a site I'd bookmarked a few years ago.

The site, Infinite Wheel Presents Dub City Rockers, allows you to play like you're King Tubby. You just start out picking from one of the dub selector options (various starting rhythms), it's take you to another screen and there may or may not be minimal instructions (i.e. what can be achieved with the arrow keys, etc.) but my best advice is to just start clicking away on anything that's blinking or moving. Some have echo effects, some drop out one instrument or more, and some are just a rim shot here, or a reverb kick there. Most have vocals that can be brought up, or dropped out. If you are at all into dub, this site is a something you ought to bookmark. To go through it all would take hours. It'll bring out your inner Tubby.

Infinite Wheel Presents Dub City Rockers (Interactive dub simulators. Description in paragraph above.)
King Tubby - Take Five (dubless) mp3 at 8106
King Tubby Meets the Agrovators - Inspiring Dub mp3 at
King Tubby - Dub From the Roots mp3 at Future Shocked
King Tubby - King Tubby Dub mp3 at CubikMusic
King Tubby Meets Lee Perry - Rainy Night Dub mp3 at Cr3ation
King Tubby - King At The Controls mp3 at Walrus Music
King Tubby - A Noisy Place mp3 at Siblingshot On The Bleachers
King Tubby - A Rougher Version mp3 at Gorilla vs Bear
Prince Jammy vs King Tubby - Jah Works mp3 at Siblingshot On The Bleachers
King Tubby & Scientist - Ravin' Dub mp3 at Fat Berri's
King Tubby & Scientist - Copper Shot Dub (Music is My Occupation) mp3 at Siblingshot On The Bleachers
King Tubby page at Roots Archive
King Tubby profile at Perfect Sound Forever
King Tubby - Discography and dub sources at XRay Music
Earlier posts:
King Tubby & Scientist post
All reggae related posts