Friday, April 27, 2018

Playlist for 4/27

Amy Rigby - Old Guys
Sarah Shook - Years
Sarah Shook - Sidelong
Ashley McBryde - Girl Going Nowhere
Bettye LaVette - Things Have Changed
Memphis Rent Party - Robert Gordon (Book)
Snoop Dogg Presents Bible of Love -  Various
Toni Braxton - Sex & Cigarettes
Nile Rodgers - Front and Center (PBS)

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Top 30 Albums by Women (Since 1964)

Last July NPR published the NPR Top 150 Albums by Women.   A strong list.  This year they asked listeners to vote on their Top 10 Albums by Women, since 1964.

As a bonus I've listed 20 more albums for a Top 30.  All studio albums.

1.  Carole King - Tapestry
2.  Joni Mitchell - Court and Spark
3.  Aretha Franklin - Lady Soul
4.  Dolly Parton - Coat of Many Colors
5.  Dusty Springfield - Dusty in Memphis
6.  Pretenders - s/t
7.  Madonna - Like A Prayer
8.  Fleetwood Mac - Rumours
9.  Amy Winehouse - Back to Black
10. Janet Jackson - Control
11. Joni Mitchell - Blue
12. Lucinda Williams - s/t
13. Donna Summer - Bad Girls
14. Whitney Houston - s/t
15. Linda Ronstadt - Heart Like A Wheel
16. Liz Phair - Exile In Guyville
17. Tina Turner - Private Dancer
18. Supremes - Where Did Our Love Go
19. Loretta Lynn - Coal Miner's Daughter
20. Adele - 21
21. Bangles - All Over The Place
22. Heart - Dreamboat Annie
23. Carpenters - Song For You
24. Rufus featuring Chaka Khan - s/t
25. Tammy Wynette - Stand By Your Man
26. Cyndi Lauper - She's So Unusual
27. Iris DeMent - Infamous Angel
28. Janis Joplin - Pearl
29. Shania Twain - Come On Over
30. Eurythmics - Be Yourself Tonight

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Musical Milestones from a 30 Year Marriage

Musical memories.  I hope music has played an important part of your life as it has mine.  I hear songs today that remind me of growing up in North Carolina/Germany/California.

And as my wife and I celebrate 30 years of marriage, it seems like a good time to reminisce over what songs bring back the most memories from the last 3 decades.

Song we heard the most when we were first going out:  "That's The Way It Is" - Bruce Hornsby. 
It's the fall of 1986 and this is a big hit.  Seems like we always heard it whenever we were on a date.

Song that reminds us of being at a club for a slow dance:  "Shake You Down" - Gregory Abbott.
A somewhat forgotten #1 slow jam also from 1986.

Song that reminds us of being at a club for a fast dance:  "Midas Touch" - Midnight Star.  A somewhat forgotten R&B band who only had one Pop Top 40 hit, but many Soul ones.  This wasn't a Top 40 Pop hit, but it got lots of club play in the Summer of '86. 

Song that reminds us of wedding reception:  "You Make Me Feel Brand New" - Stylistics.  We actually had a band playing this at the reception.  But I picked it out for our first dance.

Songs that reminds us of the last days before my son was born:  "Life Is A Highway" - Tom Cochrane,
"Would I Lie To You" - Charles & Eddie."  It's the summer of 1992 and my wife near the end of her pregnancy and those 2 songs are getting a lot of video spins on VH-1.

First Song my son remembered:  "I Will Always Love You" - Whitney Houston.  Released in the fall of '92, whenever this song came on the radio or the video on TV, my 6 month old son would become captivated by it.

Musical moment from first couple trips to Disneyland:  It's a 6 hour drive, and pre-SiriusXM, I kept myself entertained by listening to the many radio stations that came up.  But the 2 stations that will always remind me of driving to Anaheim are K-EARTH from L.A (which 20 years ago were still playing 60's/70's classics), and Radio Disney, which my son loved because it got him hyped for Disneyland. 

BTW- album that most reminds me of my son being born: Black Crowes - Southern Harmony and Musical Companion.  This album was released the week my son was born in the summer of 1992.  I remember buying and playing it quite often that first week.

Monday, April 23, 2018

30 Year Wedding Anniversary

Today I celebrate 30 wonderful married years with my beautiful wife Judicia.  And the occasion brought me back to early 1988 when we spent a day trying to figure out what songs we wanted at our wedding.

My first suggestion, being the Elvis Presley fan that I am, was to have one of his songs played.  Luckily, the music store we went to had the sheet music of "Can't Help Falling In Love".  Perfect.  But how about two songs that would be played as we walked up the aisle and after the ceremony?  This was more of a puzzler.  We rejected many until my wife came upon a Stevie Wonder deep cut from 1972's Talking Book album, "You and I."  I had the album, but couldn't remember the song very well.  But she insisted it was a good one.  And she was right.  So, that was would be used as the walk out of the church song.  Opening the ceremony?  We both agreed upon Roberta Flack's "First Time Ever I Saw Your Face."  One of my wife's friends was a singer and she did both of those at the wedding.

A true story.  When we met the Minister to go over the wedding details, he asked about the music.  I gave him a copy of the Elvis song, and to my surprise he said it wouldn't be a good choice!  Why? Because there's a lyric in their about "sin".  So, I calmly explained to him that Elvis wasn't singing about that kind of sin, but it didn't matter.  On and on he went about how we shouldn't do the song.  I said we'll take the word out of the song, but he said people knew the song too well.  No matter how much I told him that Elvis wasn't singing about the sin he thought he was singing about, he wouldn't listen.
Yea, I got frustrated, but if we ever renew our vows, "Can't Help Falling In Love" will be it.

On to the reception.  We hired a local band.  The thing I remember about them was they reminded me of Gloria Estefan & the Miami Sound Machine.  Lead singer was a female Hispanic and the band mostly Latinos as well.  Remember this is 1988, and Estefan's sound is very popular.  But they were good.

The question was what song would we use for our first dance.  I couldn't think of another Elvis song to use.  My wife loves Old School Soul Music and so do I.  We eventually landed on the Stylistics' 1974 hit "You Make Me Feel Brand New".

Two songs, that whenever I hear today, take me back to April 23, 1988.  I hope music has and continues to play a part in whatever life brings your way.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Playlist for 4/17

Yo La Tengo - There's A Riot Going On
Mount Eerie - Now Only
Decemberists - I'll Be Your Girl
Kacey Musgraves - Golden Hour
Courtney Marie Andrews - May Your Kindness Remain
Lost Bayou Ramblers - Kalenda
Revolution Blues - Various (Mojo Magazine April 2018 CD)
Fantastic Johnny C - Boogaloo Down Broadway

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Playlist for 4/11

Trouble No More (Bob Dylan Documentary on Gospel Years)
Queen: Rock The World  (Documentary)
Rolling Stones- Sticky Fingers Live at the Fonda Theatre 2015 (Documentary)
In Flight With Elmore James - Various
Uncle Walt's Band - Anthology
Meshell Ndegeocello - Ventriloquism
August Greene - s/t .

Thursday, April 05, 2018

Playlist for 4/5

Nathaniel Rateliff - Tearing At The Seams
Jack White - Boarding House Reach
Caitlyn Smith - Starfire
Lucy Dacus - Historian
Isaac Hayes - Presenting
Andrew W.K. - You're Not Alone
Jimi Hendrix - Both Sides of the Sky
Wax Poetics Magazine - Special 2018 Prince Tribute Issue

Monday, April 02, 2018

Tom's Top 20 Songs of 1998

As a followup to my Top 20 Albums 1998,here are my Top 20 songs of 1998.

1.  Cher - Believe
2.  Stardust - Music Sounds Better With You
3.  Verve - Bittersweet Symphony
4.  Billy Bragg & Wilco - California Stars/Way Over Yonder In The Minor Key
5.  Lucinda Williams - Car Wheels On A Gravel Road
6.  Lauryn Hill - Doo Wop (That Thing)
7.  Will Smith - Gettin' Jiggy Wit It
8.  New Radicals - You Get What You Give
9.  Dixie Chicks - Wide Open Spaces
10.  Madonna - Ray of Light
11.  Fatboy Slim - Rockafeller Skank
12.  Natalie Imbruglia - Torn
13.  Robbie Williams - Millenium
14.  Backstreet Boys - Everybody (Backstreet's Back)
15.  Semisonic - Closing Time
16.  Harvey Danger - Flagpole Sitta
17.  Beastie Boys - Intergalactic
18.  Chris Knight - Framed
19.  Outkast - Rosa Parks
20.  Aaliyah - Are You That Somebody
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