Sunday, June 21, 2009

1980’s: Back To Rockville

I know it might sound strange, but I believe you'll be coming back before too long…(Don’t Go Back To Rockville – R.E.M.)

I was in college in the 1983; a college friend had just returned home from Europe (Germany I think) and the first song he said he heard when he arrived back was Radio Free Europe by R.E.M. Soon after he loaned me his copy of Murmur and I played it over and over. I tried to understand the lyrics and to figure out exactly how many guitar players that I was hearing. The album sounded like something new.

At this time rock radio seemed a little stale. Very few new rock bands were being played on classic rock stations; pop music was dominated by MTV bands and then College radio began to emerge. For me this was a music revolution and the influence of R.E.M. and U2 could be heard throughout.

I began hearing band from the Paisley Underground; a term associated with young Californian bands that were influenced by the 60’s psychedelic and pop music; bands like The Three O’Clock, The Long Ryders, Rain Parade, The Bangles, The Dream Syndicate, 28th Day, The Chesterfield Kings and others. I began hearing Jangle Pop bands from out of the south; a 60's pop sound with chiming rock guitars with folk overtones; led by R.E.M. and bands like The dB's, Let's Active, Guadalcanal Diary, The Windbreakers, Love Tractor, Game Theory, The Reivers, and others. I began hearing country influenced bands like Lone Justice, Rank & File, Los Lobos, The Beat Farmers, Beat Rodeo, etc...

This was a great period in music. Too bad a lot of people didn't hear these bands.

10 Great Songs That You’ve Never Heard From 10 Great Bands That You’ve Never Heard Of

1. The dB’s – Amplifier
2. The Long Ryders – I Had a Dream
3. Rain Parade – This Can’t Be Today
4. The Three O’Clock – Simon in the Park
5. The Reivers – Things Don’t Change
6. Windbreakers – That Stupid Idea
7. Let’s Active – In Little Ways
8. Rave-Ups – Positively Lost Me
9. Lone Justice – Sweet, Sweet Baby (I’m Falling)
10. The Beat Farmers – Bigger Stones

REM - Sittin' Still

The Long Ryders - I Had a Dream

Lone Justice - Sweet Sweet Baby (I'm Falling)

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Mix Monday: Father's Day

In the summer that I was baptized,my father held me to his side...(Bruce Springsteen - Adam Raised a Cain)

Mix Monday: I'm going to list a mix of 5 songs (or so) that are either topical or that are on my current playlist. I will list these either weekly or bi-weekly.

The first mix is sort of a tribute to Father's Day coming up on June 21. My father was a great man and I hope I am half the father that he was. He has passed on but still lives in his childrens hearts.

This mix of songs about fathers are no reflection on my father but rather excellent songs about father and son (or maybe daughter) relationships .

Fathers Day - Fathers Day Mix on IMEEM

Bruce Springsteen has written some great songs about his relationship with his father. In his early concerts Bruce would often tell stories about their relationship as introductions to songs. The saddest song Bruce Springsteen ever wrote may be My Fathers House from the Nebraska album, a song about a father and son relationship. In this song a grown son awakes from a dream and goes to his childhood home expecting to have a reunion with his Dad.

My Fathers House - Bruce Springsteen

Adam Raised a Cain is also by Bruce Springsteen. The song starts in the son's youth at his baptism and then in his young adult life as he returns back to his hometown. In the final verse and one of Bruce's best ever vocals; the son concludes that we're born into this life paying for the sins of our fathers.

Adam Raised A Cain - Bruce Springsteen

Your Dad Did by John Hiatt is one funny and touching song. As we go through life we become our parents. This song captures it perfectly. The ending suppertime prayer is funny!!

Your Dad Did - John Hiatt

Unwed Fathers by John Prine sadly rings very true. Being from the region this song sings about makes it hit home all that much more. The story is about a young girl being pregnant and all alone because the father can't be bothered.

Unwed Fathers - John Prine

Papa Was a Rolling Stone by The Temptations could almost be a sequel to Unwed Fathers. The son is at the father's funeral and asking his mother if all the bad stories that he heard about his father were true.

Papa Was a Rolling Stone - The Temptations

Daddy's Tune by Jackson Browne is another song about our regrets we have as we get older and we realize those things our dad's told us were true. Somehow when we are young these things are not as clear.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Disco's Revenge or Disco Strikes Back

Goodbye Sister Disco with your flashing trash lamps, Goodbye Sister Disco and to your clubs and your tramps... (The Who - Sister Disco)

Disco died in the early 80's, right? Punk killed it, right? Well two excellent songs in the last couple of years have left me thinking maybe it still has some life; maybe as a zombie.

Touch Me Im Going To Scream Pt. 2 - My Morning Jacket

Magnificent - U2

Sunday, June 7, 2009

The Beatles: Rock and Roll Music

Just let me hear some of that rock and roll music any old way you choose it... (The Beatles (by way of Chuck Berry) - Rock and Roll Music)

I play videos games occasionally, but I wouldn't consider myself a gamer by any stretch. However a new release set for September 09, 2009 (09/09/09) has me a intrigued: The Beatles: Rock Band. The Rock Band game lets you be a Beatle as it takes you from the Cavern Club to Shea Stadium to the London rooftop where the final gig was played. In the end you will be saying "I'd like to say thank you on behalf of the group and myself and I hoped we passed the audition".