Monday, August 31, 2009

Pitchfork 500 Songs of the 00's

The end of the year, which means the end of the decade, is not over yet, but Pitchfork gets a jump on all those inevitable best of the decade lists with
The Pitchfork "Top 500 Tracks of the 2000s" Cool-O-Meter - Link Farm

I think I've heard half of the songs they list. Recognize most of the artists. And don't agree with the #1 choice. But there will be more lists to come.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Music Critics Who Twitter

And to my surprise, not many. Why give away your free stuff, when you're paid for it. But it would be nice if some music critics would twitter and let us know what they're listening to or music book they are reading, etc, etc.
Also many of these critics, who I like, aren't on facebook or any other site like that.
Well, at least, I am.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Corporate Rock Rules!

Shh, don't tell those big name critic's who hate 'em, but guess who just passed 3 million in digital downloads? Yep, it's them. That Bay Area group that has gotten a little bit of respect since the 80's, but not by those Legendary Critic types (that's you Robert Christgau).
Oh well, his and their loss.

Chart Watch Extra: These Aren't Moldy Oldies - Chart Watch

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Ellie Greenwich

At what point did you start paying attention to writer's credits when looking at an album. For me it probably wasn't until the 80's. Up 'til then I was more interested in the artist. The death of Ellie Greenwich should make us all think about who's writing our hit songs. She has a lot writing credits that fill up my Ipod.
Greenwich isn't in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but she should be. She's in the Songwriters Hall of Fame. But writers like her who made AM radio a glorious place to be in the 60's deserve as many accolades as we can give her.
Here's a link to her songs:
Ellie Greenwich

Playlists for 8/27

Boxmasters - Modbilly
Elvis Presley = Sings Lieber and Stoller
Michael Franks - Art of Tea
Cerrone - Supernature
Soul Coughing - Vroom
Teenage Fanclub - Grand Prix

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Vince Aletti

Vince Aletti, as this article will tell you, was the first critic to write about Disco. I would put him in the music critic Hall of Fame. This is an excellent interview with a guy who I wish was a nominating committee member for the RRHOF. If he was we would surely have Barry White, Chic and Donna Summer in the Hall. Where they rightfully belong.

Vince Aletti

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Elvis In Memphis

Last Monday I listened to the Legacy's reissue of From Elvis In Memphis, a masterpiece of singer meeting the right songs. Put together right after his 68 Comeback Special was a ratings hit, Chips Moman got his best session musicians together, gathered some great new songs and old covers and pushed Elvis to his best studio vocal performance since 1960's Elvis Is Back.
But the bigger point I want to make is that this album refutes a lie that hardcore 50's Rock and Roll fans have been making for years: that Elvis never made anything good after he came back from the Army.
It was as if Elvis wasn't allowed to mature. By the time of the 69 album he was all of 34 years old. But the rockabilly Elvis was long gone, and soon would be the movie one. There's some searing white soul here, some Country crooning that would make his idols proud and the same sense of excitement that permeates the Sun stuff.
If you were one of those that jumped off the Elvis ship during his miserable run of 60's movies, go back and listen to From Elvis In Memphis.

Monday, August 24, 2009

David Geffen and Quincy Jones

Roger Friedman is reporting that David Geffen will get into the Rock Hall in 2010.
David Geffen: Next Rock Hall Inductee? The Hollywood Reporter: Showbiz 411
Here's Geffen's Wikipedia page.
David Geffen - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

I've got no problem with Geffen, he's got the credentials. But so does Quincy Jones. Jones continues to be blacklisted by the Rock Hall. Whether because of his rambling induction speech for Neshui Ertegun or because he started Vibe magazine in competition with Rolling Stone.
If Friedman is right, those who say that politics doesn't play a role in the Rock Hall will be wrong again.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Digital vs. Physical

The latest in what seems like an endless array of surveys about digital vs. physical music sales. Yep, digital is catching up, but illegal file sharing is still going strong. Ah, the music biz.

Digital music sales catching up to CDs

Saturday, August 22, 2009


Who needs Billboard? You can get the week's Top 20 airplay songs in a bunch of categories in USA Today's Tuesday Life section. It's as accurate as Billboard, without the name recognition. And besides, Billboard's web site takes too long to load and look at.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Abbey Road

Lost amid the Woodstock 40th anniversary (imagine what the 50th will look like), there was another one. The Beatles Abbey Road is also on its 40th. Recorded after Let It Be, but released before, its their last cohesive album. Harrison's best songs, Ringo in a garden, McCartney's big finish and Lennon coming together one last time.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Playlist for 8/20

Maria Muldaur - Heart of Mine
Bloodstone - Natural High
Sly & The Family Stone - Woodstock
Johnny Winter - Woodstock
Jefferson Airplane - Woodstock
Janis Joplin - Woodstock
Sugarland - Live

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Pay 'Em

For years I thought performers got something for getting their songs played on terrestial radio. But I was wrong. They should get a piece of the pie, and now Congress is getting involved.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Pew Music Poll

A fascinating look at why some artists (like Johnny Cash, Eagles, Beatles, Elvis, etc.) are still popular with the music public.

Forty Years After Woodstock,A Gentler Generation Gap - Pew Social & Demographi

Monday, August 17, 2009

Robert Hilburn and David Wild

Robert Hilburn now has a website: - HOME

and David Wild, one of my favorite music critics has a Twitter page

David Wild (Wildaboutmusic) on Twitter

Music critics who Twitter are hard to find.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Elvis 32 Years Later

Great forgotten Elvis song for year 2009:

"If You Talk In Your Sleep" (1974) charted #17

Saturday, August 15, 2009


Was it the movie, the Soundtrack or the festival? What was it about Woodstock that still stands out 40 years later? The most logical response I've heard is that Woodstock was the end of an era. Peace and love hit the road after the festival. By the 70's the crowd's that attended Woodstock got older, married, had children and were no longer interested in revolution.
Good enough, but the movie also helped many think that the festival was a monumental success. By all accounts, from what I've read, the festival was kind of a bore. But because of the film's imagery: Hendrix "Star Spangled Banner", Cocker, Ten Years After, Santana, Joplin, Sly gettin' higher we are led to believe that it was the greatest festival ever. I've always had a soft spot for the Monterey Pop Festival.
I listened to all 5 of Sony's Woodstock reissues: Joplin, Sly, Airplane, Santana, J. Winter. I've also heard Hendrix' entire set. The music, and the ones that have already been released are good, but in the end Woodstock is remembered as an event. Those that were against "the Man" back then never would have guessed how commercialized it would become 40 years later.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Les Paul's Music

Les Paul, despite making numerous records, was more famous for his guitar and recording techniques than he was for the music he made. So, spend some time going back and listening to the ones he made with Mary Ford. They may not be the sounds of "Rock" that his guitar would shape, but it would be nice if people would remember his Capitol records stuff.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Brooks & Dunn's Legacy

If, indeed, Brooks & Dunn really are calling it quits in 2010, where would one place them in Country history? I've never found anything great about their music, but I do like Ronnie Dunn's voice. My fave was always "Neon Moon". A truckload of hits means that they will one day get into the Country Hall of Fame. Not quite the greatest Country duo of all time, but you can't deny they made Country radio a more tuneful place during their long run.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Can You Duet

I don't know how I got hooked on this show. But I did, not for the judges who were average, but because I've always loved Country duets. Not just the brother acts, but George/Tammy, Waylon/Willie, Loretta/Conway etc.
This show always had me thinking of them. I doubt any of these people will be big stars. No one from season 1 broke out. Like Nashville Star, it's easier to get people to watch you for free on TV then go out and buy your record.
But I like the concept.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

I Will Follow You

For more up to date things about what I'm doing go to my Twitter page

Tom Lane on Twitter

Monday, August 10, 2009

Rap Rock Hall Nominees

A recent discussion at Future Rock Legends about what Rap artists will or should get inducted into the Rock Hall had me thinking of who I would support and or not.
Very quick top-of-the-head yes or no's from names I saw mentioned:

Yes - Beastie Boys, Ice T, LL Cool J, Jay Z, Public Enemy , NWA (includes Ice Cube and Dr. Dre), 2Pac, Outkast, Kanye West, Salt-n-Pepa

No- Eminem, Puff Daddy, Notorious B.I.G. , Treacherous 3, Eric B. & Rakim, Afrika Bambaataa, Queen Latifah, Nas, Slick Rick , Snoop Dogg

Some of these are never going to get nominated: Slick Rick , Treacherous 3 (that includes Kool Moe Dee solo), Rakim, Nas, Big Daddy Kane, Puff Daddy, Queen Latifah

Others like Eminem or B.I.G. have a better chance.

I'm surprised no one mentions LL Cool J much with the Rock Hall. He had a great run of singles, a couple of classic albums.

I should point out that Russell Simmons and Rick Rubin are easy choices for their label Def Jam.

Playlist for 8/10

McCoy Tyner - Real McCoy
Jaco Pastorius - s/t
Ephraim Lewis - Skin
Cheap Trick - Latest
Shooter Jennings - Best of
Grover Washingon Jr. - Feels So Good

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Christian Rock

My son spent 3 days at Spirit West Coast, a big Christian music festival here in Monterey. He wouldn't have gone if his girlfriend wasn't a volunteer there, but he went. He didn't come back a preacher or reading a bible. We're just not religious.
I have no interest in Christian Rock music, but I know some of the names. And the genre has certainly improved from the 80's when a Sandi Patty was Queen of the charts.
I'm not ignorant about this. I know some of the names, have heard a few of the songs on the Christian charts.
But it's a genre that just doesn't move me. But if it moves you, than I say, praise the lord.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Original Albums Redone In Concert

I like this idea and it's appeal could cover all ages. But I think it's been done before. Still, I'd pay to see some of my favorite albums redone in concert by the original artist.

Friday, August 07, 2009

John Hughes

It's hard to imagine John Hughes' most popular films without the music. Breakfast Club without Simple Minds, Ferris Buellar without the Beatles and Pretty In Pink without the Psychedelic Furs.
As others have noted his teen films of the 80's were also a soundtrack of the times. When his films are re-aired listen again and the teenage sound of that decade comes through.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Just Browsing

I used to subscribe to a ton of music magazines. But most of them folded. And the ones who's subscriptions I let run out are average at best. In other words, I can browse through them at Border's. Glancing through them recently I noticed that I wasn't missing much with Q, Blurt, Blues Revue, American Songwriter or Dirty Linen. The last 4 I subscribed to but let run out. Guitar World which is more metal than Classic Rock now costs a whopping $7.99 a single issue. The others are worth a browse. Q is the least of the British music mags. I only buy Mojo and Uncut.
I should feel bad about this. If you subscribe or buy you keep a music writer employed. But I find most American magazines lacking the enthusiasm for music that the best British ones do. I also have a problem in that the American ones don't honor music's past. So focused on today's stuff that you can't find a decent article about a forgotten artist from the 60's. Fringe magazines like Pretty Things is good but I want more.
Until I get it I'll just browse and not buy a thing.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

County Fair In The Country Sun

It's time for our annual fair. And this is this year's free entertainment.
Big Bad Voodoo Daddy
Marty Staurt

Did I say it's free?
It's a fair so what the heck, and summer's coming to an end.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Today's Hits

I'm putting together a mix tape for a friend who plays my cd's at work, and this latest one is recent 2009 hits, either from the Pop, some Rock and a little bit of Soul charts. So, I've been listening to a lot of Top 40 and have found a few gems that will end up in my Top 10 for the year. I don't follow the Top 40 charts as hard as I used too, but hit music is ubiquitous. If you listen to music, watch TV or however you find your music, your bound to run into today's hits.

Monday, August 03, 2009

Playlist for 8/3

Sonny Rollins - G Man
Thelonious Monk - Monk's Music
Matthew Sweet/Susannah Hoffs - Under the Covers 2
Nigeria 70 Funk- Various
Charlie Robison - Beautiful Day
Sarah Jarosz -Song Up In Her Head

Sunday, August 02, 2009

9 Future Rock Hall Nominees

I'm terrible at predicting who will get nominated by the annoying Rock Hall committee. But the folks at Future Rock Legends are interested in nominees by their readers.
I'm going with 9 nominees only. Just because the Hall has done the same in the last 3 years.
I'll probably change my mind in another post. But for now.

Stevie Ray Vaughan (somehow not nominated in first year eligible)
Smiths (might be too British, but what an influence on Indie rock)
Alice Cooper (the fans want him or Rush or KISS, I doubt any will get nominated, but what the hell)
Chic (god, put them in already)
Stooges (god, put them in already)
Gram Parsons (tragically overlooked)
Donna Summer (if not Chic why not her)
"5" Royales (R&B/Doo wop from 50's, were nominated before, and the Hall always puts someone from the 50's/early 60's on the ballot_
Hollies (Committee Member Little Steven's fave)

Vaughan and Stooges I'm sure of. Everyone else? Who knows? Other left field choices would include Bill Withers (from rockhall's comments section), Willie Nelson (this year's Miles Davis) or War (nominated last year)

Saturday, August 01, 2009

70's vs. 80's

I put together a quick playlist on IMEEM of forgotten 70's songs that don't get played even on big 70's internet channels, maybe not even on the tv 70's radio channels.
But I got to thinking I should expand it to the 80's. But the 70's are still a fertile field. Playlists were larger on AM stations back then, that's why so many acts crossed over from the Country and R&B charts. By the 80's playlists tightened, videos came aboard and music has been easier to find from that era.
There are still a lot of 70's stuff missing on CD.
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