Thursday, November 20, 2014

2015 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Predictions

The first 6 names are the ones I'm predicting get in.  Unless they do something sneaky with one of my picks,, then the #7 will be my next pick.  Hey, maybe the Hall will finally go big and induct 7 names this year, plus do something with Nile Rodgers.

Again these are predictions, not my personal picks.

Top 6 listed in alphabetical order:

1..  Chic - If all the current Hall members that Nile Rodgers has worked with voted for him, Chic would be halfway there.  It's the other voters that could be the problem.

2. Green Day - There was a time in the late 90's when this wouldn't have been possible, but American Idiot changed all that. 

3.  Lou Reed - Maybe he would have gotten in anyway.  He was last nominated in 2001. 13 years is a long time, and the voting bloc has changed. But Death is his ticket this time.

4.  Sting - So hard to pick against his name recognition, and I've gone back and forth on this more than any other act.  But maybe, just maybe,  this is that rare moment when a solo act from a legendary group gets passed over. Happened twice to Lou Reed over a decade ago.

5.  Stevie Ray Vaughan - Lots of people wondering when he'd get nominated.  Can't see how he doesn't walk right in.  Unless there's voters who think Johnny Winter should be in this spot.  

6.  Bill Withers - Who doesn't love Bill Withers?   One of the best singer-songwriters of the 70's.  Look beyond his hit singles, those early albums are great.  

Runner-ups  (A note on these names.  Most of these rankings are ones I might as well have charted as ties.  I'd say all of these are pretty much bunched up.  Which means my #15 could just as well be tied with my #9.)

7.  Spinners - Not favoritism, but an honest pick. I actually think they have a chance this year. Maybe too much to ask for on their 2nd try, though.   Okay, a little bit of favoritism.    
                                                               
8.  Joan Jett & The Blackhearts - She had some great moments at the 2014 induction ceremony.  And lack of female nominees could also work in her favor.

9.  Marvelettes - Not sure if the Motown magic will rub off on them.  They are certainly the most underrated group from Motown's golden 60's.

10.   N.W.A. -  No matter how badly the NomCom wants them, I keep thinking they are always a few votes shy.

11.  Smiths - 80's Indie Rock legends.  Sold a lot of records in England, but in the U.S. they were more influential, rather than big sellers.

 12.  War -  Check out some of their early 70's albums to get an idea how original they were.  But most voters will probably think they only had a few good singles.

13.   Nine Inch Nails -  Probably have them too far down this list.  If voters like new names on the ballot, then Trent Reznor could pick up quite a few votes on his first try.

14.  Kraftwerk -  I'm always seeing quotes from current voters saying how much they like them.  But still don't think there's enough of those voters out there.

15.  Paul Butterfield Blues Band -  Don't know why the NomCom put them on the same ballot as Stevie Ray.   I hope they are doing better in the voting than my #15, though.  

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

2015 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Personal Picks

These aren't my predictions, but my own choices.

Maybe we'll get lucky and the Hall will induct 7 names this year.  But usually they stop at 6.  Still, consider all names below #7 ones that just missed the cut.

I actually like all these artists, but some mean more to me than others.

My personal picks:

1.  Spinners - My favorite R&B vocal group of the 70's.  But everyone knows that by now.

2.  Chic - Oh, how I'd love to see the anti-Disco voters bow to Nile Rodgers & Co.

3.  Stevie Ray Vaughan - He had to wait while Albert & Freddie King got inducted.  But he's finally here.

4.  Smiths - The best British Indie-Rock band of the 80's.  Maybe the best Indie-Rock band of the 80's.

5.  War - Nominated for the 3rd  time.  Not sure why they don't get more respect.  There 70's singles & albums cut a pretty powerful rhythm on the charts.

6.  Bill Withers - You know the hits.  Now go back and listen to the rest of his catalog. Especially the early 70's albums.

7.  Marvelettes -  I know some will say they are only getting nominated because of the Motown magic.  But they were one of the best girl groups of the 60's.

8.  Paul Butterfield Blues Band -  Listened to their first 2 albums quite a lot this year, and can finally hear what made them so special.  If you've overlooked them, I suggest going back to those records to hear what made them so unique.

9.  Joan Jett & The Blackhearts - Gave the Top 40 in the 80's  a great blast of girl power punk.

10.  Green Day -  Does anyone think they are one of the great Rock bands of all time?   Lots of good songs and one great album, Dookie.  Still better than most bands that came out of the 90's

11.   Kraftwerk - Their electronic dance sounds have grown, not just on me, but on an entire EDM generation.

12.  N.W.A.  -  Maybe they were more influential for the way they changed the Rap landscape than they are for their own music?

13,  Nine Inch Nails - Never wholly bought Trent Reznor's pain.  Even if I did like some of the sounds that went with it.

14.  Lou Reed - Neither death nor the decade since he was last nominated has changed my opinion that his solo years aren't Hall worthy.

15.  Sting -  I bet even he doesn't think his solo career is Hall caliber. Wait, this is Sting we're talking about.  I take that back.

Friday, November 07, 2014

Fave TV Shows (Fall 2014 Updated)

Shows I watch, updated for the Fall 2014 season.

Listed in random order:

Walking Dead
Anthony Bourdain Parts Unknown
Portlandia
Louie
Justified
Little Couple
Game of Thrones
Shameless
Episodes
Parks and Recreation
Saturday Night Live
Homeland
Sherlock 
Falling Skies
Lilyhammer
Orange Is The New Black
House of Cards
House of Lies
Veep
Girls
Episodes
New Girl
Raising Hope
Glee
American Idol
The Voice
So You Think You Can Dance
American Pickers
Little Couple
Silicon Valley
In The Flesh
Whitechapel
Strike Back
Americans
Hell on Wheels
Real Time with Bill Maher
Mad Men
Rectify
Moone Boy
Lilyhammer
The Fall
Orange Is The New Black
Ray Donovan
Masters of Sex
30 for 30
Key & Peele
Silicon Valley
Derek
Sleepy Hollow
Newsroom
POV
Frontline
Nova
How We Got To Now
Independent Lens
Dan Rather Reports
Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel
Banshee
Ripper Street
Vikings
Orphan Black
New Girl
Mindy Project
Girls
Looking
Da Vinci's Demons
Red Sails
Veep
Daily Show with Jon Stewart
Late Night With Jimmy Fallon
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver
Conan
Late Show with David Letterman
60 Minutes Sports on Showtime
Maron
Broadchurch
Vice
Knick
Affair
Flash
Outlander
Please Like Me
Transparent
Alpha House

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Playlist for 11/5

Neil Diamond - Melody Road
Bob Seger  - Ride Out
Jerry Lee Lewis - Rock & Roll Time/Knox Phillips Sessions
Aretha Franklin - Sings The Great Diva Classics

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Platinum No More

Maybe you saw the headlines  a couple of weeks ago that not one album that was released in 2014 has gone platinum.  The nearest thing to a 2014 platinum album was Beyonce s/t one from last December.  And even with all the hype that's surrounded that one, it still has only sold 750,000.  The only hope for a million seller in 2014 now lies with Taylor Swift's forthcoming release.

This total includes both physical, which we know is slowly dying on new releases, and digital which is also down.  There was no data on streaming services but the last I read they were flat as well.  So where are people going to find out their music.  My guess is free sites like YouTube and good old streaming radio stations.

In other words, if it's free the consumer will buy it.
But back to the original topic.  The only album of any sort that has sold over a million this year was the 2013 Frozen soundtrack.  And what's the industry going to do about any of this?  If the past is any indication, then not much.  Because they are always hoping for a magic turnaround.  I still see physical albums priced at the $10 range, digital slightly less.  The consumer decided long ago that they weren't going to pay for overpriced CD's.

As for my own personal buying habits, I now stream albums first before buying.  And even on ones I like, I'm cautious about buying unless I find a deal somewhere.  I figure I've done my part in trying to keep the biz alive by buying tons of music back before streaming, and getting burned on lousy albums.


Link to article:
Billboard

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Playlist for 10/28

Doug Seegers - Going Down To The Rivers
Angaleena Presley - American Middle Class
Joe Ely - B4 84
Cowboy Jack Clement - For Once and For All
Jackson Browne - Standing In The Breach

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Streaming

Did you know that Bob Seger put out a new album 2 weeks ago?  Ok, I did because it's what I do.  Follow that type of stuff.  So, on release day I fire up my Spotify search for Seger's album and nothing.  There's not one album or song listed under his name.  Now I knew he was a holdout on Itunes for a long time, but is there now.  Still, I thought he and his management would realize it's 2014 and people aren't going to be buying a new Seger album without hearing it first.  Then I checked for Kid Rock, who is managed by the same company, and he's not there either (but is on Itunes).

Not sure why I care about this subject anymore.  I used to post about it years ago, but then moved on.  Yet, I think it's funny that anybody would be holding out in late 2014.

Just for old times sake I did a Spotify search on some old faves that weren't on there in the past:  Bee Gees, Metallica, Bad Company.  They were all there.  Even good old Garth Brooks who isn't on any of these, has his own site for downloading his albums.  (Wonder how long that will last?) But wait?  Def Leppard?  Nowhere anywhere because of a dispute with their former label.

I don't want to get all Bob Lefsetz on anybody who's reading this.  But my point of all this is simple.  It's  almost 2015 and if I can't stream your album to see if it's worth buying, especially a heritage act like Bob Seger, than I will move on.  As will everybody else.


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