Thursday, June 30, 2011

Playlist for 6/29

Trucks Tedeschi Band - Revelator
Larry Carlton - Plays the Sound of Philadelphia
Randy Travis - 25th Anniversary
Bobby Bare - Lullabys, Legends
Sarah Jarosz - Follow Me Down
Grascals - Dance 'Til Your Stockings

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The Voice

Still trying to figure out if The Voice is a keeper or not.  I liked the initial concept, like the judges, but still don't know if it will be a one year wonder.  Have to admit, I'm more interested in the upcoming X Factor.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Blues Festival

I don't go to many concerts anymore, but when I do I'm most fascinated by the set lists.  Mavis Staples was in fine voice at the Monterey Bay Blues Festival, but her set list wasn't.  She waited until the final song to sing a Staple Singers hit from the early 70's, "I'll Take You There".  Before that her set consisted of old Gospel numbers and some newer songs, plus a 10 minute instrumental break.  But too many hits were missing.  When she finally did sing it, the crowd rose to their feet as if saying "Thank you" for finally remembering us.
The evening "Men Of Soul" was better as Jeffrey Osborne, Freddie Jackson and Peabo Bryson crammed most of their hits into tight sets. But opener Howard Hewett missed many Shalamar hits in favor of average solo stuff.

Note to acts:  I know some of you have had too many hits to get into one show, but at least play more than a couple a show.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Blues Festival

Making my annual trek to the Monterey Bay Blues Festival.  Always an interesting day.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Los Lobos and The Spinners

2 interesting quotes Rock Hall related:
Roy Trakin reviewing 2 members of Los Lobos' duet concert had this to say about the band:

"it’s high time to induct Los Lobos into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. If nothing else, this evening of pure songcraft and open-hearted connection convinced me they’re more than desrving of the honor."

Trakin's a NomCom member.  Why not bring up the band's name at the next committee meeting?
My guess is that group's like Sonic Youth and Los Lobos, while critic faves,  are being discussed at these meetings, and still getting passed over.  Frankly, I can't believe the Neville Brothers haven't been given a nod yet.

The there's this from one of the Spinners' founding members:

But for all their success, the Spinners never won a Grammy and aren’t in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Their “Unsung” episode describes them as the Rodney Dangerfield of music – getting no respect.

“It’s politics,” Henry Fambrough, 73, one of two original Spinners still living and performing told “There are artists that are in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame that don’t have the background that we have…I know that we as a group have achieved enough to be there.”

Once the O'Jays got in, the Spinners should have been next.  They certainly deserve to be in there more than the Dells.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Follow the Leader

Hey RC -how much would it take for you to review the new albums from the following artists-  Robbie Robertson, The Cars, The Feelies, Foo Fighters, Mike Watt, Glasvegas,The Strokes,REM- come on ,how much? Another scotch/rocks ,please. thanx.thanx

That was a post I saw at music Critic Robert Christgau's Expert Witness page, where he reviews 2 records a week graded A+ to B+, but nothing less than the latter grade.  Christgau is one of the older critic's whose books and columns I've read for ages, much like Dave Marsh or Greil Marcus.  They were some of the first Rock Critics.  But I don't agree with all of their favorites.  I'll follow their suggestions, listen to albums they recommend, but I form my own opinion.
The above post is one of many that I've seen at Christgau's site.  In other words, unless he recommends the album, then it can't be that good.

Use your own ears.  Follow others suggestions but if it doesn't hit you, then don't be afraid to dissent.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Father's Day

When I think about what I miss most about my Dad, the first thing that comes to mind is his honesty.  At least a couple of times a week we would talk on the phone about anything and everything.  His was a voice of reason I could always count on.    How I miss those moments.                                                                                                                           Thank you Dad for always being there with encouraging words, a big heart and wonderful sense of humor.
I love you and miss you.  R.I.P.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

The Big Man

Why am I almost crying?  Hearing the news on the death of Clarence Clemons had me going back to YouTube and other places and hearing his great sax adorning Springsteen's records.  It brought back many memories.  Clemons was a Big Man with a Big Soul.  The heart of the E Street Band.
A sad passing, but just thinking about him always brought a smile.

Playlist for 6/18

Bob Dylan - New Morning
Gurf Morlix - 113th Wet Dream
Blaze Foley -Duct Tape Messiah
Eddie Vedder - Ukulele Songs
Ozzy Osbourne - Blizzard of Oz/Diary Of A Madman
Mandy Barnett - Sweet Dreams

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Dying Record Stores

The dying record store.  Sigh?  Whenever I drive around town I still see places where there used to be record stores.  I still know what I bought there.  Albums, singles.  I tell people about these places and they can't believe how many record stores were around in the 70's.  But today?  How sad.

Monday, June 13, 2011


I wonder why more older artists don't ask Amazon or Itunes to do what Amazon did with Lady GaGa.  Drop the price to a $1 for their new release.
How many more people would buy recent albums buy Robbie Robertson, Stevie Nicks, Steve Miller and even Paul Simon if they could get them cheaply for at least the first or second week of release?
Nicks and Miller  make their money on royalties and touring.  As do most of these classic rock acts.  The same could be applied to R&B and Country artists as well.
The whole point is to get your music heard.  You took the time to make another album.  In the case of Nicks and Robertson, its been over a decade since their last one. 
Why not let people hear what you've been up to?  Most of these names are never going to top the charts again.  In fact, some of their older fans probably don't know they have albums out, unless they follow them on Twitter or Facebook, or read Rolling Stone.  

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Playlist for 6/11

Booker T. Jones - Road From Memphis/
Warren Haynes - Man In Motion
Jimmie Dale Gilmore -Heirloom Music
Matraca Berg -Dreaming Fields
Small Faces - Ogden's Nut Gone Flake

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Blues Festival

A couple of weeks away from my annual trek to the Monterey Bay Blues Festival.  The Sunday arena lineup is R&B heavy.  Why can't this festival get Blues acts as headliners?  There are some still out there.  Regardless, I'm still going.

Monday, June 06, 2011

Happy Birthday Son!

Happy 19th Birthday to my Son, Anthony!

Love you and miss you,

Sunday, June 05, 2011

Back In The Day

Just thinking about the good old days of going to stores to buy albums, I mean vinyl.  Fond memory of a day in 1979, when I went up to a counter with copies of the newest Van Halen, Commodores and a Supertramp album.  The clerk made some snide comment to another employee about the odd trio I was buying.
I was a teenager and didn't think much of it.
Today, it's easier to buy stuff online and not feel apprehensive about what you're buying.  So, mixing up guilty pleasure titles with crit faves is so easy.
Back in the day?  Not so.

Saturday, June 04, 2011


Musicians like Andrew Gold die all the time and are relegated to footnotes in obituary pages.  Gold is known in the U.S. for two hits, "Lonely Boy" and "Thank You For Being A Friend".  But he was a prominent player behind the scenes, even as he was making solo records.  Producer, session musician, songwriter who scored some Country hits, Tour player.  
Check out his Wikipedia page, and then the next time some one or two hit wonder dies, always wonder if they did more than a fleeting chart glory.

Friday, June 03, 2011

Playlist for 6/3

Moby - Destroyed
Rosanne Cash - Essential
Randy Newman - Songbook Vol. 2
Brad Paisley - This Is Country Music
Danger Mouse & Daniele Luppi - Rome

Wednesday, June 01, 2011


It was 1976.  The first year I realized that there was life outside of American Top 40.  Sure, my sister had albums, but I didn't listen to them.  I was a singles guy.  1976 was the year that I got deep into music, period.  AT 40 was a must hear every week.  I'd get depressed if I missed it.  There was no way to hear it again.  Billboard magazine?  None where I lived.
One day on the weekend I heard a different countdown show.   This one was playing album cuts.  Album cuts from the week's best selling albums.  You'd hear non-singles and singles, but here was the catch:  you'd also hear the album versions of songs.  I'd wonder why "Carry On Wayward Son" sounded different then what I heard on my AM station.  Now I knew.
From there I started buying albums when I could get enough money, and when I went to my record store, paid more attention to the week's Top albums section.
But my passion for music bloomed in 1976.
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