Monday, January 25, 2021

Playlist for 1/25

Charley Pride: Beyond the Hits (Spotify Playlist)
Can't Slow Down (Book) - Michaelangelo Matos 
Lemon Twigs - Songs For The General Public
Kathryn Stott & Yo-Yo Ma - Songs Of Comfort & Hope
Lauren Mascitti - God Made A Woman
Kree Harrison - Chosen Family Tree
H.C. McEntire - Eno Axis
Arlo McKinley - Die Midwestern
Monophonics - It's Only Us
Small Axe: Lover’s Rock (Amazon Movie)
Shabaka and the Ancestors - We Are Sent Here By History
Porridge Radio - Every Bad

Sunday, January 24, 2021

An Album/Song A Week: "Anything You Want" - John Valenti

 This is a story about a long-forgotten song that connected two people even if they didn't know it at the time.  John Valenti was a Blue-Eyed Soul singer from Chicago who had one minor Pop hit in the Summer of 1976 called "Anything You Want".  It spent two weeks in the Top 40, peaking at #37.  It did better on the R&B charts, peaking at #10.  It is a completely forgotten song.  Valenti never had another hit. But he has an interesting backstory.  His band, Puzzle, released two albums on Motown in the early 70's. You can find their first album, on YouTube. If you like 70's Chicago (the band), you'll like Puzzle. The only time I've seen "Anything You Want" appear during the CD age was on a Japanese re-release of his 1976 album of the same name.  
  So, how did I hear and become fascinated with it?  Valenti performed the song on American Bandstand.  I remember that performance.  And of course Casey Kasem's AT40 played it twice before it disappeared forever.  When I met my future wife in 1986 we listened to music a lot in our early dating days.  At one point she heard a song that sounded like "Anything You Want" and mentioned the Valenti song in passing.  This fascinated me because I still had the .45 of that song.  When I played it for her, she lit up.  If you've never heard the song it is basically a Stevie Wonder homage.  She also mentioned that she saw him sing it on TV in 1976 and always liked it.  
  This is the power of music.  How songs can come into your life, popular songs or lost in time ones, and later on have an influence on your life.

Here's a YouTube link of "Anything You Want".  The most views I've seen for this song are around 52,000.  So, someone is still interested in it.  And the only way you'll hear it on the radio is if SiriusXM's 70's channel plays the two AT40 episodes in which it appears.  Valenti released another album in 1981.  

Thursday, January 21, 2021

Tom's 2020 Nashville Scene Critics Poll Ballot

Once again, I voted in the Nashville Scene Music Critics Poll

No links to individual ballots, but if you scroll to the bottom of the results page, you will see my name.

Results: 2020 Nashville Scene Critics Poll

Here's my 2020 Ballot: 

TOP TEN COUNTRY ALBUMS OF 2020:

 

1.  Ashley McBryde - Never Will

2.  Elizabeth Cook - Aftermath

3.  Lilly Hiatt - Walking Proof

4.  Margo Price - That's How Rumors Get Started

5.  Brandy Clark - Your Life Is A Record

6.  Chicks - Gaslighter

7.  Jason Isbell - Reunions

8.  Lori McKenna - Balladeer

9.  Chris Stapleton - Starting Over

10. Sturgill Simpson - Cuttin' Grass Vol. 1

 

TOP TEN COUNTRY SINGLES OF 2020:

 

1. Miranda Lambert - Bluebird

2. Maddie & Tae - Die From A Broken Heart

3. Mickey Guyton - Black Like Me

4. Chicks - Gaslighter

5. Ashley McBryde - One Night Standards

6. Tyler Childers - Long Violent History

7. Gabby Barrett - I Hope

8. Chris Stapleton - Starting Over

9. Kelsea Ballerini - Hole In The Bottle

10. Yola w/Highwomen - Hold On

 

TOP FIVE COUNTRY REISSUES OF 2020:

 

1. Elvis Presley - From Elvis In Nashville

2. Harry Smith B-Sides - Various

3. Dallas Frazier - Singing My Songs (Sony Digital Reissue 1970 Album)

4. Freddy Fender - El Bebop Kid - En Espanol (Jasmine Records)

5. Freddy Fender - El Bebop Kid - In English (Jasmine)

Phil Spector

Phil Spector was a murderer. But that's not all.  He was a truly horrible person for most of his 81 years. But he was also a misogynist who believed women were below him and treated them as if they were his property. And he was crazy.  There were very few RIP's after it was announced that he died.  And as the obituaries roll in, trying to balance the two sides to Spector's life, the musical and murderer, will be a delicate balancing act. It's the age old question of separating the art from the artist?

I want to tell you that anytime a Spector Produced record comes on the radio, the channel is immediately changed.  That I threw the Back to Mono box set out the day he was convicted of murder.  But that's not the case.  Spector was one of music's greatest Producers.  He invented the "Wall of Sound" from which some of the greatest Pop records were made.  There's no way to erase "Be My Baby", "He's A Rebel", "Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)", "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'", "Instant Karma", "Da Doo Ron Ron", "To Know Him Is To Love Him", "A Fine, Fine Boy" and "River Deep Mountain High".  The "Wall of Sound" was a huge influence on Brian Wilson, Bruce Springsteen and the Ramones. I'm sorry, no matter how awful he was, those records won't be erased by a monster. Darlene Love, Ronnie Spector, Tina Turner gave some of their greatest performances on his records.  They will be forever associated with him.  Those women, and anyone else who recorded with him, will always be remembered for turning those Spector-produced records into classics. 

Both Darlene Love and Ronnie Spector put out statements after Spector died, basically saying forget the man but remember the music.  It's hard and I don't expect everyone will agree with my thoughts.  Trying to balance Spector's life with his musical legacy will forever be a balancing act. 

Wednesday, January 20, 2021

How I Will Remember the Trump Presidency Pt. 2

Who’s going to miss the Worst President Ever? Sure Trump and his revolting clan of grifters will still be around.  But for now, he's gone. Definitely a reason to be cheerful. 


So GTHO to the:

   

Liar-In-Chief

Golfer-In-Chief

White Supremacist-In-Chief

Seditionist-In-Chief

Coup Attempter-In-Chief

Birther-In-Chief

Grifter-In-Chief

Most Impeached President Ever-In-Chief

Racist-In-Chief

Bigot-In-Chief

Coward-In-Chief

Traitor-In-Chief

Tax Evader-In-Chief

Conman-In-Chief

Pardoner-In-Chief

Treasonist-In-Chief

Bunker Boy-In-Chief

Putin’s Puppet-In-Chief

“Landslide” Loser-In-Chief

Wannabe Dictator-In-Chief

Misogynist-In Chief

Two Time Popular Vote Loser-In-Chief

Worst Ever Commander-In-Chief 

Worst President Ever-In-Chief


Did I miss anything?

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

How I Will Miss The Trump Presidency

Updating this list from my Facebook post of 11/7/20. Let me know if I missed anyone.


Good riddance to the Dumb & Dumber bros., Don Jr. & Eric. Birther Melania. "White House Senior Advisors" Ivanka & Jared, Mike Pence, Bill Barr, Rudy G., Stephen "KKK" Miller, Steve Mnuchin, Hope Hicks (Hope Hicks!!), Mark Meadows, Betsy DeVos, "White House Senior Advisor" Kimberly Guilfoyle, "Senior Campaign Advisor" Lara Trump, Peter Navarro, Mike Pompeo, Ben Carson (wake up Ben!). Those twin liars, Kellyanne Conway and Kayleigh McEnany. Oh, and that odious My Pillow Guy. Don’t forget these great patriots: Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Sean Spicer, Steve Bannon, John Kelly, Jeff Sessions. 

 

Yes, I know that we haven’t seen the last of these names.  But hopefully these awful creatures won’t be in our face every day of the week. 

Monday, January 18, 2021

R&B and the Rock Hall

 On October 31, 2006, I posted An All R&B RHOF Ballot  on this blog. It was an update of a 1999 post with the same name that was on my now defunct first attempt at a blog, Tom Lane's Music Page.  The original post in '99 had 15 names. Seven years later none of those names got inducted.  For the '06 post, I added 4 more names.  Since then only 2 out of 19 have been inducted: "5" Royales and Donna Summer.  And of the remaining 19 names, only 7 have been nominated as of the 2020 ballot. As of 2020, non-white artists make up only about 32% of inductees.  That number was around 55% in 1989. 

Nowadays, we are lucky if we get one R&B act inducted.  Lucky if we get more than 3 nominated.  There were 2 out of 16 nominated in 2020. Notice I'm talking R&B names.  Rap acts weren't mentioned in my '06 post.  Right now we are averaging one Rap nominee a year. 

The argument I've heard as to why R&B acts are having a hard time getting in is that the R&B from acts eligible from the 80's was too slick.  Whereas early R&B was more impassioned, grittier and not as Pop-oriented as the music of the 80's.  And don't forget the dreaded "Disco" word, which doomed Chic's chances.  Probably Rufus/Chaka Khan too.  And kept Donna Summer out of the Hall until after she died.  These were R&B acts who hit big during Disco's peak. 

But the reality is that the voting bloc seems uninterested in R&B acts.  As more Classic Rock era acts got inducted, the voter roles swelled.  And they are voting in their own peers. While R&B acts like the Spinners, Meters and Chaka Khan have been passed over. Don't forget it took Janet Jackson three tries to get in. Just think, seven members of Nine Inch Nails have been added as voters.  So, what to do?  Add more NomCom members who know their R&B history.  Look for more voters who have written about R&B.  And add more R&B performers as voters. 

How important a role has R&B played in Rock history?  Consider the influences of some of the big name inductees like Elvis Presley, Beatles, Rolling Stones.  Then consider how much of an impact R&B has had on Elton John, Hall & Oates, Elvis Costello, Van Morrison, Rod Stewart, David Bowie.   And recent inductees like the Doobie Brothers, T. Rex, Roxy Music.  R&B continues to inspire many of your favorite artists of today and yesterday.   In 2020, Marvin Gaye's What's Going On was voted the #1 album of all time in a Rolling Stone magazine Top 500 list.  Looking back at the Summer of 2020 and the Black Lives Matter protests around the country, we heard important, historical R&B protest music from Marvin Gaye, Curtis Mayfield, Nina Simone, Sam Cooke and even recent names like Alicia Keys and John Legend.

I'm going to spotlight 34 R&B acts that deserve induction. How about a big induction class of 20?  At the end of my list I pick some Early Influences, non-performers and a Musical Excellence choice. Anyone who thinks this ballot is too much of a gimmick probably said the same thing about my 2020 all-Women ballot post. Let alone my all-Women 2021 post. And that's fine.  But "see a problem, solve a problem." And that's my focus for this post.
 
And yes, I've included all 17 acts from my dusty old '06 R&B ballot. 

Ashford & Simpson - One big Pop hit on their own, bunch of R&B hits and a string of excellent albums in the late 70's/early 80's.  Recording career underrated.  But it's as songwriters where they made their name.  Inducted into Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2002. 

Barry White - Whether you remember him more as a Disco artist than a R&B one doesn't matter.  Because there was no mistaking a Barry White record.  And that distinctive sound stood out on his greatest records.

Billy Preston - From his session work to appearing on the Beatles' Let It Be, and then to an early 70's run of solo hits, Preston would make a strong candidate for the Musical Excellence category. 

Chantels - One of the first Girl Groups, most likely chances hurt because they only had 4 Top 40 Pop hits. But they have been nominated twice before.  The last in 2010. 

Chuck Willis - One of the best singer/songwriters from the 50's.  He passed away in 1958 at the age of 32.  Nominated 6X, last in 2011. 

Commodores/Lionel Richie - Right alongside Earth, Wind & Fire as one of the biggest crossover R&B acts of the 70's/80's.  Lionel Richie's solo career is Hall worthy too. 

Diana Ross - I've probably overused the word Icon to describe certain names that the Hall has snubbed.  Here's another one. Just like Stevie Nicks, Ross had enormous success as a solo act. 

Dionne Warwick - Burt Bacharach and Hal David should be in as songwriters.  And Dionne, who was the greatest interpreter of the Bacharach/David songbook, should be in as well.  Past her Bacharach/David peak of the 60's she continued to have hits into the 80's. 

Gil Scott-Heron - An influence on Hip-Hop artists even though his own records never became big sellers. Another artist whose music has been rediscovered over the course of the past Black Lives Matters protests. 

Grace Jones - The unforgettable image she projected as a Disco/Dance diva has obscured her contributions to both genres.  Then in the 80's her records became an eclectic mix of reggae/rock/soul. 
                 
Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes - Powered by the dynamic lead vocals of Teddy Pendergrass, they had some of the best Philadelphia International records of the 70's.
  
Joe Tex - One of the best Southern Soul singers of the 60's/70's.  Nominated 5X, last in 2017. 

Johnnie Taylor - One of the signature voices during Stax's peak years.  Taylor had a long career (over 40 years) singing Gospel, Deep Soul, Disco and then in the 80's until his death, Chitlin' Circuit Soul.  Kind of underrated, but has the hits and longevity to make a good case for induction.  

Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds - A triple threat as a singer/songwriter/producer,  who was all over the Pop & R&B airwaves during his peak in the 90's. Inducted into Songwriters Hall in 2017.  
                                     
Kool & The Gang - One of the great, longest-running R&B outfits ever.  Started out as Funk pioneers, then morphed into Pop chart mainstays in the 80's.  Inducted into the Songwriters Hall in 2018. 

Labelle - The Labelle records in the 60's, sound nothing like what they would become.  Patti Labelle, along with Nona Hendryx and Sarah Dash cut a visually electric R&B/Funk/Rock vibe in the 70's.

Luther Vandross - One of the biggest R&B vocalists of the 80's/90's. Probably the best R&B singer of his generation. 

Mariah Carey - Her chart stats are unassailable.  And she wasn't always a critical favorite.  But once she got out of Whitney Houston's shadow, it was obvious that she was a unique voice and songwriter.  Inducted into the Songwriters Hall in 2020.

Marvelettes - I often think that Motown fatigue is what has kept the Marvelettes out of the Hall.  They've been nominated twice before (2013, '15). 

Mary J. Blige - "Queen of Hip-Hop Soul".  Her music straddled the line perfectly between those 2 genres. Has definitely earned her royal crown. 

Mary Wells - Motown's first female star.  Career deserves a reappraisal.  Left Motown in 1964, and never regained that early success.  But what's left behind are some of Motown's best early songs. Nominated twice way back in 1986, '87. 

Meters/Neville Brothers - The great New Orleans R&B/Funk band had fine hits of their own and were also renown for backing up the likes of Dr. John and Paul McCartney.  A 4X nominee, last in 2018.  Meters founder Art Neville was also in the Neville Brothers.  Along with Dr. John, they are a seminal band who helped popularized the New Orleans sound. One could make a good case for Aaron Neville's solo career as well. 

Ohio Players - Funk gets little love in the Rock Hall.  P-Funk and Earth, Wind & Fire are in.  Isleys had some funky records. But that's it. Here's one the premiere Funk bands of the 70's. Also had two #1's on the Pop charts.   

Pointer Sisters -  Read this by Nick Bambach.  Explains better than me why they belong.

Rick James - He called his records "Punk-Funk" and that is an apt description for his best records during his 70's/80's run.  Not many crossover records, but always a presence on the R&B charts.

Roberta Flack - Her 1969 album, First Take, ended up at #451 on the new Rolling Stone Top 500 Albums.  Definitely a pioneer of the Quiet Storm format.  African-American women are not an easy sell for voters.  But Roberta has had a long, acclaimed career.    

Rufus & Chaka Khan - By now her name is a familiar one on the Rock Hall ballot. Nominated last year with Rufus. On the ballot twice solo and 4X with Rufus.  It's sad she can't get in, because she was one of R&B's powerful vocalists of her era.

Sade - She took the Quiet Storm format that Roberta Flack helped launch, to another level when she broke through in the 80's. 

Spinners - Some would say the greatest R&B vocal group of the 70's.  Most of their biggest songs & albums in the 70's Produced and co-written by the great Thom Bell.  Nominated 3X, last in 2016. 

Tina Turner - What a disgrace that Tina has not been rewarded for one of the great (greatest?) musical comebacks ever.

Toots & The Maytals - OK, not completely R&B. But the most R&Bish Reggae band of all time.  And vocally, the great Toots Hibbert definitely followed the paths of James Brown, Wilson Pickett, Otis Redding and many other R&b singers of the 60's. 

War - A 3X nominee, last in 2015.  One of the most durable chart acts of the 70's.  A mix of Rock, Jazz, Soul, Funk. 

Early Influences
Big Mama Thornton
Billy Ward & The Dominoes
Cab Calloway
Clovers
Ella Fitzgerald
Memphis Minnie
Roy Brown
Wynonie Harris

Ahmet Ertegun Award (Non-Performer)
Don Cornelius
Estelle Axton
James Bracken & Vivian Carter
Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis
Thom Bell

Musical Excellence
Sylvia Robinson (co-founded Sugar Hill Records, Had hits as Mickey & Sylvia ("Love Is Strange") & solo)
Willie Mitchell (Producer, who also had hits of his own in the 60's)
















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Playlist for 1/18

Anna McClellan - I Saw First Light
Strum & Thrum: American Jangle Underground 83-87 - Various
Sunny Sweeney - Live at the Machine Shop
Jerry Jeff Walker - A Man Must Carry On
Ward Davis - Black Cats and Crows
Fontaines D.C. - Hero's Death
Fontaines D.C. - Dogrel
Sleaford Mods - All That Glue
Fleet Foxes - Shore
Sam Morrow - Gettin' By On Gettin' Down

Saturday, January 16, 2021

An Album/Song A Week: Bee Gees - Main Course

It has remained a mystery to me for 45 years.  How did the Bee Gees 1975 album, Main Course, come to be the first album I ever bought?  In fact, up to that point, I never even bought a single.  Some of it had to do with the third single from that album, "Fanny", a wonderful slice of Bee Gees style R&B that peaked at #12 in 1975.  
The reason I was able to buy anything back then was a bi-monthly allowance from my Mom.  And money given to me every time I did something good in a football/basketball/baseball game.  What Main Course did open up to me was that albums had many other songs that were just as good as the singles I heard on the radio.  Of course, my sister had albums.  But too often I was more focused on the one or two hits I knew.  Now I'm noticing album tracks.  
It was the start of a long journey that I'm still riding along with today.  One harmless purchase resulted in a record collection that I'm still proud of today.  

Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Best Beatles Solo Songs

First posted this in 2015.  Updated it in 2017.  And now here's another update for 2021. 

I was originally going to rank the Beatles' Top 40 solo songs.  But I thought that wouldn't be fair. McCartney always had the most prolific solo career, even when John and George were alive. Ringo's
solo career bottoms out after 1975, John didn't release anything from 1976-1980.  George stayed active through his entire post-Beatles life.  For the George list, I didn't include any Traveling Wilburys songs as those were mostly a collaborative effort. 

So here's my list of each Beatles' Top 10 solo songs, consisting of album cuts and singles.  

Paul
1.  Jet
2.  Maybe I'm Amazed
3.  Band On The Run
4.  Live and Let Die
5.  Listen To What The Man Said
6.  Silly Love Songs
7.  Let Me Roll It
8.  Take It Away
9.  Let 'Em In
10. With A Little Luck

Ringo
1.  It Don't Come Easy
2.  Photograph
3.  Back Off Boogaloo
4.  Early 1970
5.  Oh My My
6.  Snookeroo
7.  You're Sixteen
8.  No No Song
9.  Wrack My Brain
10. I'm The Greatest

George
1.  My Sweet Lord
2.  Give Me Love
3.  What Is Life
4.  Crackerbox Palace
5.  Blow Away
6.  Got My Mind Set On You
7.  I'd Have You Anytime
8.  All Things Must Pass
9.  All Those Years Ago
10.  Any Road

John
1.  Instant Karma
2.  Imagine
3.  Jealous Guy
4.  #9 Dream
5.  God
6.  Watching The Wheels
7.  (Just Like) Starting Over
8.  Nobody Told Me
9.  Whatever Gets You Thru The Night
10. Mind Games

Bonus Tracks: Best of Paul's Duets & the Traveling Wilburys

Paul
Ebony & Ivory - w/Stevie Wonder
Get It - w/Carl Perkins
Nothing Too Much Just Out Of Sight - as the Fireman w/Youth
Say Say Say w/Michael Jackson
Sing The Changes - as the Fireman w/Youth
The Girl Is Mine - w/Michael Jackson
What's That You're Doing - w/Stevie Wonder

George
End of the Line - Traveling Wilburys
Handle With Care - Traveling Wilburys
Heading For The Light - Traveling Wilburys

Monday, January 11, 2021

Women & The Rock Hall (A Sequel)

My nominee predictions for the 2020 ballot was an all-Women ballot.  I knew it wouldn't happen.  But when the 16 nominees were announced and a whopping 3, yes 3, women were nominated, mildly surprised, but not shocked, is how I felt.  Rock Hall CEO Greg Harris fired off this beauty when the nominees were announced: “This year there are 16 nominees and three of them are women. That’s just over 18 percent women,” says Harris. “Last year three out of 15 nominees were women, which is 20 percent. The year before that there were 19 nominees and five women, which is 26 percent." There were three 2020 female nominees: Chaka Khan, Pat Benatar, Whitney Houston.  And even worse, the two Non-Performer inductees were, you guessed it, men.  Real progress, Mr. Harris. 

So, what to do about the 2021? We are now at 7.6% of female inductees.  It's pathetic.  The idea of an all-female ballot may seem like a gimmick to some, but I maintain that if you see a problem, fix it.  The Hall hasn't done that.  What are the solutions?  Put more women on the NomCom?  Add more women to the voting rolls? Will women only nominate and vote for women?  No. Nor should we expect that.  But we should also expect the the people running the Hall to not accept ballots that include 3 female nominees. Let alone an inductee class that includes 2 more male non-performers when the list of worthy female choices is a mile long.  

Look, I really didn't want to put out another all-Female ballot.  I was hoping we'd get a bunch of women nominated in 2020.  And I debated whether to put out the same ballot I did last year, but then this powerful piece by Mary Layton appeared from Hall Watchers and I decided that the more we can spotlight one of the Hall's biggest problems, the better. 

And in December, Future Rock Legends posted this excellent, but sobering piece on Women & the Rock Hall.  So, a sequel, if you will to my 2020 piece was born again. This is not a prediction post, but a reminder that many women are being passed up.  Would be be nice if the NomCom woke up this year.  And don't give us another weak-ass 3 women nominee ballot for 2021. 

Last year John Sykes took over as Hall Chairman for Jann Wenner.  Sykes was (still is?) on the NomCom, and what impact he has over the NomCom remains to be seen.

So, here's a Gigantic, Mega, Super-Sized ballot of 40 deserving women from the 1950's-90's.  And why not?  Hell, I'm sure I've missed many other deserving names. What would you do with a big ballot? Let's induct 20.  Isn't it time the Hall did something just a little bit different during induction season?  What I tried to do was shape my final nominations the same way the NomCom does.  Various genres covering different decades.

One thing Evelyn McDonnell pointed out in her 2019 post was that the system of allowing every living Hall inductee a vote needs to change. Her idea that a group of, say 5 band members, would have their percentage reduced to one fifth of a vote, is worth looking at.  But it must be pointed out, that longtime Hall Watchers, have been griping about this particular voting system for years.

I also realize that a year of women only nominees means that long-snubbed acts Kraftwerk and my beloved Spinners would be left out once again.  But blame that on the voters who’ve overlooked those and other slam-dunk nominees. 

Here's the amazing thing about my ballot.  25 of the 40 names have never been nominated.  And I'm definitely including inductees Carole King, Diana Ross & Tina Turner in that statistic.  Also, take a look at my picks in the Early Influence, Non-Performers and Musical Excellence categories.  If the Rock Hall Inductions exist to honor the greatest names that shaped music history, then how are these pioneers not in?

Alanis Morissette - Rolling Stone magazine's recent listing of Top 500 albums had Jagged Little Pill at a lofty #69.  Her breakthrough in 1995 brought forth a unique voice and songwriter. 

B-52's - The party never ended with their mix of New Wave/Surf and 60's Girl Group Pop. Might suffer the same fate as Devo, i.e., seen as too much of a novelty by some voters.  Cindy Wilson and Kate Pierson sang and co-wrote on many of their greatest songs.

Bjork - Though she lacked the U.S. commercial success of Annie Lennox & Cyndi Lauper, Bjork's been a critical favorite since the early 90's. Definitely an influence on Alt/Indie singers. 

Carly Simon - From her debut in 1971 through the 90's, she was a steady presence whose autobiographical songs were an inspiration to many female singer/songwriters. Inducted into the Songwriters Hall in 1994. 

Carole King - Inducted with Gerry Goffin as a songwriter in 1990.  But her own recording career demands its just reward. Let's talk influence.  One word: Tapestry.  Hard to believe that she was nominated one time in 1989 as a solo artist.  Inducted into Songwriters Hall in 1987. 

Carpenters - A name like the Carpenters as a viable Rock Hall candidate would have been impossible years ago.  And maybe it still is.  But that was before the word populism reached the NomCom.  Besides, what was dismissed as quaint and soft in the 70's, is now seen as some of the era's best singles. And Karen Carpenter turned into an Alt/Indie icon for many female singers of the 90's onward. 

Chaka Khan - By now her name is a familiar one on the Rock Hall ballot. Nominated last year with Rufus. Now on the ballot twice solo and 4X with Rufus.  It's sad she can't get in, because she was one of R&B's powerful vocalists. 

Chantels - One of the first Girl Groups, most likely chances hurt because they only had 4 Top 40 Pop hits.  But they have been nominated twice before.  The last in 2010. 

Cher - Some will say Sonny has to go in with Cher..  And that's fine.  But solo Cher is where she cemented her icon status.

Cyndi Lauper - She was the perfect advertisement for MTV in the early 80's.  Colorful, brash and her videos were tailor-made for the new medium.  But Lauper was also incredibly talented.  And her combination of powerful vocals and excellent songs made her one of the biggest female stars of the 80's.

Diana Ross - I've probably overused the word Icon to describe certain names that the Hall has snubbed.  Here's another one. Just like Stevie Nicks, Ross also had enormous success as a solo act. 

Dionne Warwick - Burt Bacharach and Hal David should be in as songwriters.  And Dionne, who was the greatest interpreter of the Bacharach/David songbook, should be in as well.  Past her Bacharach/David peak of the 60's she continued to have hits, but veered even closer to the Adult Contemporary world, which may hurt her Hall chances. Some will find her music too mellow for a Rock Hall (something that will keep the Carpenters out), but play those 60's records again and you will hear a unique voice that sounded like no other.

Dolly Parton - The last artist with any Country leanings to be inducted (and nominated) was Linda Ronstadt in 2014.  Dolly Parton is more than just a great singer/songwriter.  She's an Industry all by herself.  Plus her songs have crossed over to the Pop charts and have been covered by Rock and R&B singers. Inducted into Country Hall in 1999 and Songwriters Hall in 2001.

Emmylou Harris - Alternative/Progressive/New Traditionalist Country.  No matter how you label it, Emmylou Harris was a major voice in all of those things.  Her work with Country-Rock pioneer Gram Parsons was just the beginning.  Add her solo albums which began in 1975, and she is more than deserving of an induction.  Inducted into the Country Hall in 2008. 

Eurythmics - Nominated once back in 2018.  Has to be back on the ballot again soon.  Annie Lennox solo career is fine, but it was with Dave Stewart that she was a pioneer.  Inducted into Songwriters Hall in 2020.

Gloria Estefan - With or without the Miami Sound Machine?  Not sure how the NomCom plays this.  Read Nick Bambach's piece on why Estefan belongs for more.  Makes a better case for her induction than I ever could. 

Go-Go's - One of the first great female bands to come from the New Wave/Punk era.  Just a matter of time before they get nominated.

Kate Bush - A surprise (shocking?) nominee in 2018, Bush's catalog dating back to the late 70's has only grown in stature.  An inspiration to many female alternative singers.

Labelle - The Labelle records in the 60's, sound nothing like what they would become.  With Nona Hendryx and Sarah Dash, they cut a visually electric R&B/Funk/Rock vibe in the 70's.

Lesley Gore - One of the most successful solo singers of the Girl Group sound from the early to mid-60's. 

Mariah Carey - Her chart stats are unassailable.  And she wasn't always a critical favorite.  But once she got out of Whitney Houston's shadow, it was obvious that she was a unique voice and songwriter.  Inducted into Songwriters Hall in 2020. 

Marvelettes - I often think that Motown fatigue is what has kept the Marvelettes out of the Hall.  They've been nominated twice before (2013, '15).  But a Girl Group bias could be at work as well.  But I would advise anyone who's still skeptical to go back and listen to their back catalog.  They belong.

Mary J. Blige - "Queen of Hip-Hop Soul".  Her music straddled the line perfectly between those 2 genres. Has definitely earned her royal crown. 

Mary Wells - Motown's first female star.  Career deserves a reappraisal.  Left Motown in 1964, and never regained that early success.  But what's left behind are some of Motown's best early songs. Nominated twice way back in 1986, '87. 

Pat Benatar - One of the biggest Rock singers during the first part of the 80's.  And turned out to be an influence on many female singers decades later.  Nominated for the first time last year and finished 2nd in the Fan Vote. 

Patsy Cline -   Once she found her calling in the new genre that would be called Nashville Sound she was off and running.  Needless to say, has influenced many Pop and Country female singers.

PJ Harvey - One of the most critically-acclaimed artists since her debut in 1992.  Always challenging the norms of Rock music with her groundbreaking albums. 

Queen Latifah - Salt-N-Pepa were one of the first female rappers to cross over to the Pop charts, while Queen Latifah was the most recognizable solo woman in hip-hop during the first part of the 90's.  And as many have pointed out one of the first who could be labeled a feminist.  But like LL Cool J, I think her acting career has overshadowed her recording legacy.  

Pointer Sisters -  Read this by Nick Bambach.  Explains better than me why they belong.

Roberta Flack - Her 1969 album, First Take, ended up at #451 on the new Rolling Stone Top 500 Albums.  Definitely a pioneer of the Quiet Storm format.  African-American women are not an easy sell for voters.  But Roberta has had a long, acclaimed career. 

Sade - She took the Quiet Storm format that Roberta Flack helped launch, to another level when she broke through in the 80's. Could be a tough sell though, since R&B female singers have a tough time getting in, but her influence continues to grow.

Salt-N-Pepa - When talk comes to the next Hip Hop artist to be inducted, it is usually male names that come up. Why doesn't this trio ever get mentioned?  Here we have one of the first female Rap acts to cross over to the Pop charts and help pave the way for other women who followed them after their mid-90's peak.  

Shangri-Las - See my Marvelettes entry above.  But let me add that their greatest songs, were as a critic said, "Dark, three minute symphonies."

Sheryl Crow - For about 10 years starting in the mid-90's she was Rock's biggest female singer.  Now at age 57, she's being embraced as a Heritage act.  Bonus: she's a friend of the Rock Hall, having performed on induction night a couple of times. Oh, and she just released a new album. I've seen people write that it might be too soon to induct her.  But as a rebuttal I give you one name:  Green Day.

Sinead O'Connor - One of the most admired and influential female voices,  Not afraid to do her own thing, which probably cost her sales wise after "Nothing Compares 2 U".

Siouxsie and the Banshees - Led by Siouxsie Sioux, they were one of the first and most successful punk-goth bands of the late 70's/80's. 

Sonic Youth - Critical favorites don't always get nominated.  Which may explain how these Alternative/Post-Punk/Avant-Garde Indie legends continue to be passed over.  Kim Gordon is now a much revered figure in Indie Rock circles.

Tina Turner - What a disgrace that Tina has not been rewarded for one of the great (greatest?) musical comebacks ever.

TLC - Along with En Vogue, they were the biggest female group of the 90's.  And their music covered many genres: Hip Hop, R&B, Pop. 

X - L.A. Punk legends who paved the way for many other similar bands in the early 80's.  As a singer/writer, Exene Cervenka was a charismatic presence on stage. 

Early Influence
Big Mama Thornton
Carter Family
Ella Fitzgerald
Memphis Minnie

Musical Excellence
Carol Kaye
Sylvia Robinson (co-founded Sugar Hill Records, Had hits as Mickey & Sylvia ("Love Is Strange") & solo)

Non-Performers
Estelle Axton - (Co-founded Stax Records)
Jane Scott (First female Rick critic)
Vivian Carter - (Co-founded Vee-Jay Records)



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Sunday, January 10, 2021

Playlist for 1/10

Elton John - Jewel Box (8 CD's)
Miles Davis - Lost Septet
Jimmy LaFave - Highway Angels..Full Moon Rain
Steve Goodman - Live '69
Chloe x Halle - Ungodly Hour
Mary Lattimore - Silver Ladders
Mary Halvorson's Code Girl - Artlessly Falling
Yves Tumor - Heaven To A Tortured Mind
Caribou - Suddenly
Break It All: History of Rock In Latin America (Netflix Documentary)

Saturday, January 09, 2021

An Album/Song A Week: "Daydream Believer" - Monkees

Right behind "Eight Days A Week" as the first song I remember hearing is "Daydream Believer" by the Monkees.  Again, my sister's small record collection had something to do with this.  She had the .45 of "Daydream Believer" and played it often when it came out in late '67.  The Monkees had an appeal to youngsters the same way the Beatles did.  Their early songs were catchy, easy to sing along with, and the youthful energy that came across from their TV show was inescapable.

My sister's .45 of this song was always one of the most beat up/scratched of the singles she had in her tiny collection.  I was always fascinated by it.  Tried playing it on my own turntable years later and it was so hissy that I couldn't finish it.  Even today when I hear the song, my first reaction is that initial beat up sound of the .45. 

Friday, January 08, 2021

Songs About Elvis Presley (Special Elvis Birthday Edition)

There have been more songs written about Elvis Presley than any other performer.   No surprise, because along with the Beatles, Frank Sinatra, Louis Armstrong, he's one of the most important musicians of all time. But doing research for this post, even I couldn't believe how many songs about Elvis have been released.  I can't claim that all the songs listed below are stellar.  A lot of tribute records can be pretty mawkish, no matter the subject.  But there's certainly many good ones and at the very least, interesting takes on Elvis' legacy.

Billy Burnette - Today Is Elvis' Birthday
Bobby Bare (as Bill Parsons) - All American Boy
Bruce Springsteen - Come On (Let's Go Tonight)
Bruce Springsteen - Johnny Bye Bye
Confederate Railroad - Elvis and Andy
Danny Mirror - I Remember Elvis Presley
Dire Straits - Calling Elvis
Elton John - Porch Swing in Tupelo
Fatboy - What Would Elvis Do?
Frankie Allan - Just A Country Boy
George Jones - King Is Gone
George Michael - John and Elvis Are Dead
Gillian Welch - Elvis Presley Blues
Hayden Thompson - Boy from Tupelo
Janis Martin - My Boy Elvis
J.D. Sumner - Elvis Has Left The Building
Jerry Reed - Tupelo Mississippi Flash
Jim Ford - Story of Elvis Presley
John Fogerty - Big Train
John Hiatt - Riding With The King
John Hiatt - Tennessee Plates
Johnny Earle - Private Elvis
Kacey Musgraves - Velvet Elvis
Kenny Chesney - Jesus and Elvis
Lalo Guerrero - Elvis Perez
Lenny LeBlanc - Hound Dog Man
Link Davis - Trucker from Tennessee
Link Wray - It Was Elvis
Marc Cohn - Walking In Memphis
Merle Haggard - From Graceland to the Promised Land
Mojo Nixon - (619) 239-KING
Mojo Nixon - Elvis Is Everywhere
Neil Young - He Was The King
Odie Palmer - Letter to Elvis
Patty Loveless - I Try To Think About Elvis
Paul Simon - Graceland
Ray Stevens - Mama's In The Sky With Elvis
Ronnie McDowell - King Is Gone
Sonny Fisher - I Miss You Elvis
Stan Freberg - Heartbreak Hotel
Steve Goodman - Elvis Imitators
Unknown (Jimmy Fields) - I Have Returned
U2 - Elvis Presley & America
Wanda Jackson - I Wore Elvis' Ring
Warren Zevon - Jesus Mentioned
Warren Zevon - Porcelain Monkey

Sunday, January 03, 2021

Playlist for 1/3

Bee Gees: How Can You Mend A Broken Heart (HBO Documentary)
Ma Rainey's Black Bottom (Netflix)
Paul McCartney - McCartney III
Pylon - Pylon Box
Elvis Presley - From Elvis In Nashville (Box Set)
From Elvis In Memphis (33 1/3 Book Series) - Eric Wolfson 
Becky Warren - Sick Season
Karen Jonas - Southwest Sky and Other Dreams
Harry Shearer - Many Moods of Donald Trump
Dave Alvin - From A Old Guitar
Luke James - to feel love/d
Bootsy Collins - Power of the One
Black Thought - Streams of Thought Vol. 1- 3
BTS -BE
Avalanches - We Will Always Love You
Mountain - Nantucket Sleighride

Friday, January 01, 2021

Most Iconic Song From Every Rock Hall (Performer) Inductee

What is the most iconic song that a band or singer are known for?  In some cases that one song is not their biggest seller, biggest chart performer or even their best song.  But it is that one song that springs to mind whenever people talk about their favorite artists.  Some of these choices were easy, others were tougher. A few acts didn't seem to have just one, but a number of iconic songs. While others, didn't really have one. In those case, I tried my best.  The biggest debate I had was whether to include Christmas songs. There are four acts: Brenda Lee, Charles Brown, Darlene Love and Nat "King" Cole whose Christmas hits are their most famous song.  But Christmas music only get played a couple of months out of the year.  In the end, I decided to stick with non-Christmas songs.  

Below is a listing of all current Rock Hall Performer Inductees as of 2020.  Some Non-Performer inductees are also included if they had a prominent performing career (e.g. Herb Alpert). Also included are Musical Excellence inductees.

Abba - "Dancing Queen"
AC/DC - "Back In Black"
Aerosmith - "Dream On"
Alice Cooper - "School's Out"
Allman Brothers Band ' "Ramblin' Man"
Animals - "House of the Rising Sun"
Louis Armstrong - " What A Wonderful World"
Chet Atkins - "Yakety Axe"
Joan Baez - "Night They Drove Old Dixie Down"
Lavern Baker - "Jim Dandy"
Hank Ballard & the Midnighters - "Finger Poppin' Time"
Band - "The Weight"
Beach Boys - "Good Vibrations"
Beastie Boys - "Fight For Your Right"
Beatles - "Hey Jude"
Jeff Beck - "Beck's Bolero"
Bee Gees - "Stayin' Alive"
Lead Belly - "Where Did You Sleep Last Night"
Chuck Berry - "Johnny B. Goode"
Black Sabbath - "Paranoid"
Bobby "Blue" Bland - "Farther Up The Road"
Blondie - "Heart of Glass"
Bon Jovi - "Livin' On A Prayer"
Booker T. and the MG's - "Green Onions"
David Bowie - "Heroes"
Charles Brown - "Trouble Blues"
James Brown & the Famous Flames - "I Got You (I Feel Good)
Ruth Brown - "Mama He Treats Your Daughter Mean"
Jackson Browne - "Doctor My Eyes"
Buffalo Springfield - "For What It's Worth"
Solomon Burke - "Cry To Me"
Byrds - "Turn! Turn! Turn!"
Cars - "Just What I Needed"
Johnny Cash - "Folsom Prison Blues"
Ray Charles - "Georgia On My Mind"
Cheap Trick - "I Want You To Want Me"
Chicago - "25 or 6 to 4"
Eric Clapton - "Layla"
Clash - "London Calling"
Jimmy Cliff - "You Can Get It If You Really Want"
Coasters - "Yakety Yak"
Eddie Cochran - "Summertime Blues"
Leonard Cohen - "Hallelujah"
Nat "King" Cole - "Unforgettable”
Sam Cooke - "A Change Is Gonna Come"
Elvis Costello & the Attractions - "Pump It Up"
Floyd Cramer - "Last Date"
Cream - "Sunshine Of Your Love"
Creedence Clearwater Revival - "Proud Mary"
Crosby, Stills & Nash - "Suite: Judy Blue Eyes"
Cure - "Friday I'm In Love"
King Curtis - "Soul Twist"
Bobby Darin - "Mack the Knife"
Dave Clark Five - "Glad All Over"
Miles Davis - "Blue in Green"
Deep Purple - "Smoke On The Water"
Def Leppard - "Pour Some Sugar On Me"
Dells - "Oh What A Night"
Depeche Mode - "Enjoy the Silence"
Neil Diamond - "Sweet Caroline"
Bo Diddley - "I'm A Man"
Dion - "Wanderer"
Dire Straits - "Money For Nothing"
Fats Domino - "Blueberry Hill"
Doobie Brothers - "Listen To The Music"
Doors - "Light My Fire"
Drifters - "Under the Boardwalk"
Bob Dylan - "Like A Rolling Stone"
Eagles - "Hotel California"
Earth, Wind & Fire - "September"
Duane Eddy - "Rebel Rouser"
ELO - "Mr. Blue Sky"
Everly Brothers - "Bye Bye Love"
Flamingos - "I Only Have Eyes For You"
Fleetwood Mac - "Dreams"
Four Seasons - "Sherry"
Four Tops - "I Can't Help Myself"
Frankie Lymon & The Teenagers - "Why Do Fools Fall In Love"
Aretha Franklin - "Respect"
Peter Gabriel - "Sledgehammer"
Marvin Gaye - "What's Going On"
Genesis - "Invisible Touch"
Carole King (w/Gerry Goffin) - "It's Too Late"
Gladys Knight & The Pips - "Midnight Train to Georgia"
Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five - "Message"
Grateful Dead - "Truckin'"
Al Green - "Let's Stay Together"
Green Day - "Good Riddance (Time Of Your Life)"
Guns 'N Roses - "Sweet Child O' Mine"
Woody Guthrie - "This Land Is Your Land"
Buddy Guy - "Damn Right, I've Got The Blues"
Bill Haley & the Comets - "Rock Around The Clock"
Daryl Hall & John Oates - "You Make My Dreams"
George Harrison - "My Sweet Lord"
Isaac Hayes - "Theme From Shaft"
Heart - "Barracuda"
Herb Alpert - "Rise"
Billie Holiday - "Strange Fruit"
Hollies - "Long Cool Woman"
Buddy Holly & the Crickets - "That'll Be The Day"
John Lee Hooker - "Boom Boom"
Whitney Houston - "I Will Always Love You"
Ike and Tina Turner - "Proud Mary"
Impressions - "People Get Ready"
Ink Spots - "If I Didn't Care"
Isley Brothers - "Shout"
Janet Jackson - "Nasty"
Michael Jackson - "Billie Jean"
Wanda Jackson - "Let's Have A Party"
Jackson 5 - "I Want You Back"
Elmore James - "Dust My Broom"
Etta James - "At Last"
Jefferson Airplane - "Somebody To Love"
Jimi Hendrix Experience - "Purple Haze"
Joan Jett & The Blackhearts - "I Love Rock 'N Roll"
Billy Joel - "Piano Man"
Dr. John - "Right Place Wrong Time"
Elton John - "Your Song"
Little Willie John - "Fever"
Robert Johnson - "Cross Road Blues"
Janis Joplin - "Me and Bobby McGee"
Louis Jordan - "Caldonia"
Journey - "Don't Stop Believin'"
Albert King - "Born Under A Bad Sign"
B.B. King - "Thrill Is Gone"
Freddie King - "Going Down"
Kinks - "Lola"
Kiss - "Rock and Roll All Nite"
Led Zeppelin - "Stairway to Heaven"
Brenda Lee - “I'm Sorry”
John Lennon - "Imagine"
Jerry Lee Lewis - "Great Balls of Fire"
Little Anthony & The Imperials - "Tears On My Pillow"
Professor Longhair - "Tipitina"
Darlene Love - "He's A Rebel" w/Crystals
Lovin' Spoonful - "Do You Believe In Magic"
Lynyrd Skynyrd - "Sweet Home Alabama"
Madonna - "Like A Virgin"
Mamas and the Papas - "California Dreamin'"
Bob Marley - No Woman, No Cry
Martha Reeves and the Vandellas - "Dancing In The Street"
Curtis Mayfield - "Superfly"
Paul McCartney - "Maybe I'm Amazed"
Clyde McPhatter - "Lover Please"
John Mellencamp - "Jack and Diane"
Metallica - "Enter Sandman"
Steve Miller - "Joker"
Joni Mitchell - "Big Yellow Taxi"
Bill Monroe - "Blue Moon of Kentucky"
Moody Blues - "Nights In White Satin"
Moonglows - "Sincerely"
Van Morrison - "Brown Eyed Girl"
Jelly Roll Morton - Black Bottom Stomp"
N.W.A. - "Fuck Tha Police"
Nine Inch Nails - "Hurt"
Ricky Nelson - "Garden Party"
Randy Newman - "I Love L.A."
Stevie Nicks - "Edge of Seventeen"
Nirvana - "Smells Like Teen Spirit"
Notorious B.I.G. - "Hypnotize"
Laura Nyro - "Stoned Soul Picnic"
O'Jays - "Love Train"
Roy Orbison - "Oh, Pretty Woman"
Orioles - "Crying In The Chapel"
Johnny Otis - "Willie and the Hand Jive"
Parliament-Funkadelic - "Give Up The Funk" (Parliament)/"One Nation Under A Groove" (Funkadelic)
Les Paul - "Vaya Con Dios" w/Mary Ford
Paul Butterfield Blues Band - "Born In Chicago"
Pearl Jam - "Alive"
Carl Perkins - "Blue Suede Shoes"
Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers - "Refugee”
Wilson Pickett - "In The Midnight Hour"
Pink Floyd - "Another Brick In The Wall, Pt. 2"
Gene Pitney - (Man Who Shot) Liberty Valance"
Platters - "Only You"
Police - "Every Breath You Take"
Elvis Presley - "Hound Dog”
Pretenders - "Brass In Pocket"
Lloyd Price - "Stagger Lee"
Prince - "Purple Rain"
Public Enemy - "Fight The Power"
Queen - "Bohemian Rhapsody"
R.E.M. - "Everybody Hurts"
Ma Rainey - "Runaway Blues"
Bonnie Raitt - "I Can't Make You Love Me"
Red Hot Chili Peppers - "Under The Bridge"
Otis Redding - "(Sittin' On) the Dock of the Bay"
Jimmy Reed - "Big Boss Man"
Lou Reed - "Walk On The Wild Side"
Little Richard - "Tutti Frutti"
Righteous Brothers - "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'"
Smokey Robinson & the Miracles - "Tears Of A Clown"
Jimmie Rodgers - "In The Jailhouse Now"
Nile Rodgers - "Good Times" w/Chic
Rolling Stones - "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction"
Ronettes - "Be My Baby"
Linda Ronstadt - "You're No Good"
Roxy Music - "More Than This"
Run DMC - "Walk This Way" w/Aerosmith
Rush - "Tom Sawyer"
Leon Russell - "A Song For You"
Sam and Dave - "Soul Man"
Santana - "Oye Como Va"
Pete Seeger - "Where Have All The Flowers Gone"
Bob Seger - "Old Time Rock and Roll"
Sex Pistols - "Anarchy In The U.K."
Tupac Shakur - "California Love"
Del Shannon - "Runaway"
Shirelles - "Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow"
Paul Simon -"You Can Call Me Al"
Simon & Garfunkel - "Bridge Over Troubled Water"
Nina Simone - "Feeling Good"
Percy Sledge - "When A Man Loves A Woman"
Sly and the Family Stone - "Everyday People'
Small Faces/Faces - "Itchycoo Park" (Small Faces/"Stay With Me" (Faces)
Bessie Smith - "Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out"
Patti Smith - "Because The Night"
Soul Stirrers - "Wade In The Water"
Dusty Springfield - "Son Of A Preacher Man"
Bruce Springsteen - "Born To Run"
Staple Singers - "I'll Take You There"
Ringo Starr - "It Don't Come Easy"
Steely Dan - "Rikki Don't Lose That Number"
Cat Stevens - "Wild World"
Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble - "Pride and Joy"
Rod Stewart - "Maggie May"
Stooges - "I Wanna Be Your Dog"
Donna Summer - "Last Dance"
Supremes - "Stop! In The Name of Love"
T. Rex - "Bang A Gong (Get It On)"
Talking Heads - "Burning Down The House"
James Taylor - "Fire and Rain"
Temptations - "My Girl"
Sister Rosetta Tharpe - "Rock Me"
Allen Toussaint - "Southern Nights"
Traffic - "Dear Mr. Fantasy"
Big Joe Turner - "Shake, Rattle and Roll"
U2 - "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For"
Ritchie Valens - "La Bamba"
Velvet Underground - "Sweet Jane"
Ventures - "Walk, Don't Run"
Gene Vincent & the Blue Caps - "Be-Bop-A-Lula"
Tom Waits - "Ol' 55"
T-Bone Walker - "Call It Stormy Monday"
Little Walter - "My Babe"
Dinah Washington - "What A Diff'rence A Day Makes"
Muddy Waters - "Mannish Boy"
Who - "Baba O'Riley"
Hank Williams - "Hey, Good Lookin'"
Bob Wills & His Texas Playboys - "New San Antonio Rose"
Jackie Wilson - "(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher & Higher"
Bill Withers - "Lean On Me"
Howlin' Wolf - "Smokestack Lightnin'"
Bobby Womack - "Across 100th Street"
Stevie Wonder - "Superstition"
Jimmy Yancey - "Yancey Stomp"
Yardbirds - "For Your Love"
Yes - "Owner Of A Lonely Heart"
Neil Young - "Heart Of Gold"
Frank Zappa - "Don't Eat The Yellow Snow"
Zombies - "Time Of The Season"
ZZ Top - "La Grange"












An Album/Song A Week: "Eight Days A Week" - Beatles

What is the first song you remember hearing?  I was born in 1964, my sister in 1959.  Beatlemania was just taking off in 1964.  And my sister was caught up in it.  She had a few Beatles album.  1965's Beatles VI was one of those.  It was released in the summer of '65, but she definitely played it past 1965.  The album had four new songs and previously released songs. "Eight Days A Week" was one of those previously released songs first released in Britain in 1964.  

Many don't consider it as top tier early Beatles material.  Too simplistic? Possibly.  But that's what must have caught my very young ears.  Easy to remember with a catchy chorus that clocks in under 3 minutes.  This was the Beatles appeal to youngsters like my sister and millions of others who were already under their spell.  
  
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