Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Gil Scott-Heron

Gil Scott-Heron was one of these musicians who didn't realize how much people dug his music, until he made a belated comeback in 2010.
After his death, the hip-hop community came out in force to cite him as an influence, even though for years his records were hard to find.
Sadly, his death will spark the usual reissue of past albums and bring out new compilations.  You know how it is in the music biz, death will do that.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Classic Rock AOR Magazine

Wow, here's something that was news to me.  The U.K.'s Classic Rock Magazine is now going bi-monthly with their AOR special issues.  The last one came out in November 2010.  The new one is out now, and then will go bi- after that.
Thought the first issue was pretty good, with the articles better than the reviews.  Gave my copy away to a friend, but I'm looking forward to this new one.  Will report when I order it.

Friday, May 27, 2011


Future Rock Legends, Philip, has a good column about Doo-Wop and the Rock Hall.  The question being, has the Hall given up on the genre?  He cites a few names that deserve to go in.
I'll second the Clovers, a group I've been championing for years.  Also, I love the Spaniels and also the Harptones.  But nominating these groups with the regular yearly acts won't get them in.  I think there are very few voters who remember them.  There  only chance appears to be as Early Influences.  If Wanda Jackson can sneak in as one, then the Clovers could too.
Here's Philip's link:
Rock Hall Monitors

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Playlist for 5/26

Cars - Move Like This
X Ray Spex - Germfree Adolescents
Emmylou Harris - Hard Bargain
Phoebe Snow - s/t
Lonely Island - Turtleneck & Chain

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Dylan at 70

In honor of Bob Dylan's 70th Birthday, here are 10 songs that I don't usually see on Best of Dylan lists.  These are just a few album tracks that have stuck with me.

In no order:
1. Mississippi
2. Sara
3. Tight Connection To My Heart
4. You Angel You
5. New Morning
6. I Believe In You
7. Make You Feel My Love
8. If You See Her, Say Hello
9. John Wesley Harding
10. Sweetheart Like You

Monday, May 23, 2011

Top Artists

Last month I got an email ad for a new book by Rolling Stone Magazine for their Top 100 artists of all time.
Some strange omissions there, but that's the way it is.
Years ago I published a list of my Top 100+ artists.  The list became neverending, so I stopped it.
But for fun here's the Top 10:

1.  Elvis Presley
2.  Beatles
3.  Bob Dylan
4.  Elton John
5.  Stevie Wonder
6.  Rolling Stones
7.  Prince
8.  Aretha Franklin
9.  Michael Jackson
10. Beach Boys

If I did this same Top 10 4 months from now #10 might change.  It's the one slot that is the wild card on the list.  

Saturday, May 21, 2011


A couple of weeks ago, the 38th volume of the U.S. version of the Now series was released.  I have all 38.  Basically they are to the late 90's/00's/'10's what the Rhino Have A Nice Day series that came out in the 90's was to 70's music.  But the Rhino series stopped at 25 volumes.  I can tell you that they could have added 5 more volumes easily.  There are still many stray Top 40 singles from one-off's that are still out there to be compiled.

Friday, May 20, 2011

American Idol Wrap-Up

Soon as American Idol got down to the Top 10, I predicted that the 2 Country teenagers would end up in the final, and I was right.
This wasn't hard to predict, given the shows demographics.  Who votes the most?  Teens and Women.  Both these kids, who by the way are god-awful mediocre, fit that demo perfectly.
As usual who wins doesn't matter on this show anymore as the runner-ups have gone on to great fame.
Of course, none of the contestants were helped by the terrible judges who praised everyone weekly. I can't wait for the return of Simon on the X Factor.
But at the beginning of the season the  Producer's said they wanted another superstar like Carrie or Kelly.
Not gonna happen.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Playlist for 5/19

Sade - Ultimate
Now 38
Ellie Goulding - Lights
Montrose - s/t
John Oates - Mississippi Mile
Marcia Ball - Roadside Attractions
Matthew Morrison - s/t

Monday, May 16, 2011

Mix Tapes

Mix tapes.  Remember them.  They're going away, because of Ipods, etc.  But I still make 'em the old fashioned way.  Burning them on CD's and giving them away.
That's what I did the last 2 weeks.
Mix tapes are also a great way to stay in touch with your catalog.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Playlist for 5/12

Music books that I can highly recommend:

Talking To Girls About Duran Duran - Rob Sheffield
Ripped - Greg Kot
Fire and Rain - David Browne
Out of the Vinyl Deeps / Ellen Willis on Rock Writing
Life - Keith Richards


You can find great deals, but you're going to have to drag me kicking and screaming to get me to switch over to nothing but downloading albums.  Singles?  Yep, I use Itunes for singles.  But albums?  Not much.  Only on out of print titles.
But download prices are dropping.  Amazon has good deals.  But I like physical product.  I want to see the artwork up close, read the liner notes, etc.
Everyone is wondering when downloads will replace cd's.  I hope never.  But the clock ticks.

Monday, May 09, 2011

Gram Parsons

Rolling Stone has updated their Top 100 Artists of All Time List.
Of all the names currently eligible on that list, only the Beastie Boys and Gram Parsons (who ranked #87) are not in the Rock Hall.
I feel pretty comfortable in saying that the Beasties will get their someday.  But I think, for now, that voters still think of them as Frat/Rap artists.  More novelty act than respected one.  It may take them awhile.  Could be the rap Stooges.

As for Gram Parsons, he's been nominated as a solo act 3 times.  He's not in as a member of the Byrds.  Why has he been overlooked?  Most likely voters think his solo career was too short.  But damn them.  How about short but  influential.

It's time the Rock Hall do for Gram what they did this year for Leon Russell.  Russell got in under the banner:
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Award for Recording Excellence

Well, with his work with the Byrds, Flying Burrito Brothers and solo, Parsons fits that bill pretty good.

Saturday, May 07, 2011

Playlist for 5/7

Teena Marie - Emerald City
Nicole Atkins - Mondo Amore
Leon Russell - Carney
Boz Scaggs  - s/t
Gordon Lightfoot - Sundown
Those Darlins - Screws Get Loose

Wednesday, May 04, 2011


I don't blog political stuff here.  Most know my leanings (left, if you don't), but damn if what Seth Meyers did at the White House Correspondents dinner wasn't funny.  Not everything he said was laugh-out-loud, but the best parts were classic, and I'm not talking about his epic take down of the odious "The Donald."
And Obama was better here than he's been since his campaign speeches in 2008.  He'll have a fruitful future once he's out of office making speeches,writing books and doing TV guest gigs.

Monday, May 02, 2011


At the beginning of this year's American Idol, the producers said they were looking for a true superstar.  The next Carrie or Kelly.  Even Adam Lambert.
But I don't think they will get it with the eventual winner.  The surprise is that Pia could go on to the biggest career.  She got voted out early, which gave her instant sympathy, she can sing and is a looker.
But when I watch American Idol I'm always thinking if I would buy a record by the one of the contestants.  And this year it looks less likely.
Of course, once Jimmy Iovine gets hold of the winner or runner-ups that could all change.  For a one album deal, Iovine will go all out, and make even the snooziest singer sound better.
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