...No, this is not a review of the classic 1976 album by Kansas -- if you need me 2 urge you 2 check out that album at this late date, you really R in trouble. (But you really SHOULD check-out that album's songs "Miracles Out of Nowhere" & "Questions of My Childhood" & "Cheyenne Anthem" & "What's on My Mind" & "The Wall"....)
No, what this is instead is a collection of stuff I've been piling up 4 the last few weeks -- material that wasn't quite enuf 4 a post of its own. Here 'tis....
Hope you've been catching rock critics Jim deRogatis & Greg Kott's weekly music show SOUND OPINIONS on an open-minded radio station near you. (Here they're on the University of Washington's KUOW-FM, Sunday nites at 10 pm.) In recent weeks they've had a long interview with producer Tony Visconti -- who talked about how fast folks like David Bowie & Marc Bolan (of T. Rex) liked 2 work in the studio, & about spending 10 MONTHS in the studio with the Moody Blues recording THE OTHER SIDE OF LIFE. They even talked a bit about Gentle Giant, who Visconti produced sevral early albums 4. Visconti also talked about his book: BOWIE, BOLAN AND THE BROOKLYN BOY, which sounds like a hoot -- anybody out there got a copy? I can't afford Amazon's prices -- I promise 2 review it here, drop me your address below....
Last nite, March 31, 2 celebrate the start of baseball season, Jim & Greg talked about artists who achieved "grand slams" -- 4 great studio albums in a row. You can imagine summa the names that were mentioned -- Led Zep, etc., & there were lotsa critic's babies: XTC, Husker Du, Blur, etc. -- but I was suprised at summa the names that WEREN'T mentioned. I was working, so I didn't hear EVERYTHING, but... They SAID they weren't gonna include Bob Dylan, the Stones, Roxy Music. But how bout the Beatles? (REVOLVER/SGT. PEPPER/WHITE ALBUM/ABBEY ROAD)? How bout Pink Floyd (DARK SIDE/WISH YOU WERE HERE/ANIMALS/THE WALL)? Or The Who (SELL OUT/TOMMY/WHO'S NEXT/QUADROPHENIA)? How bout Fleetwood Mac (FLEETWOOD MAC/RUMOURS/TUSK/MIRAGE)?
...& then they quoted rock critic Lester Bangs on how "all music today goes back to the Velvet Underground," & listed their 4 great albums. Well, maybe. Xcept 4 "All Tomorrow's Parties," I've never been much of a Velvets fan -- but Jim & Greg said especially the Velvets' 2nd album, WHITE LIGHT/WHITE HEAT, thrilled them & terrified them when they were young, & they submit that's what great rock&roll SHOULD do.
Well, still a pretty great radio show. Lotsa critics' babies, but. I've learned a few things. & they're a great argument-starter. Check 'em out, if you haven't already, if they're on-air where you're at....
Was listening 2 Blondie's charming remake of Randy and the Rainbows' early-'60s hit "Denise" (Blondie's version is on their GREATEST HITS), when I started wondering when was the last time I heard the original played on the radio. 4 me, it was near Salt Lake City, Utah, early in 1998, driving thru a snowstorm.
& then I started thinking about how Oldies Radio has failed us all if great stuff like this is forgotten in favor of the same old publically-acceptable 200 Oldies hits that everybody plays over & over.
When's the last time you heard Timmy Thomas's "Why Can't We Live Together" on radio? Marvin Gaye's "Ain't That Peculiar"? Nitty Gritty Dirt Band's "House at Pooh Corner"? Fanny's "Charity Ball" or "Butter Boy"? Or 100 others I could probly rattle off if I took a few minutes 2 think about it?
Can somebody with some MEMORY & IMAGINATION take over a radio station somewhere? I'd tune in... daily.
"THE BUG 3" -- Bagged a few more items during a trip thru a Bremerton 2nd-hand store over the weekend:
Mott the Hoople -- MOTT.
Mary-Chapin Carpenter -- COME ON COME ON.
Peter Gabriel -- 3.
Dusty Springfield -- YOU DON'T HAVE TO SAY YOU LOVE ME.
Nino Tempo and April Stevens -- DEEP PURPLE.
Patrick Moraz -- I.
Three Dog Night -- HARMONY.
Trisha Yearwood -- SONGBOOK best-of.
Liz Phair -- EXILE IN GUYVILLE.
Carly Simon -- BEST OF.
...The Mott 2 replace a CD copy I foolishly traded-off 5 years ago. Gotta hear "All the Way from Memphis" & "Honaloochie Boogie" & "Violence" again ... The Mary-Chapin Carpenter is an olde favorite from the '90s, worth it all 4 "Passionate Kisses" & "The Hard Way" & the title song & a coupla others ... The Gabriel mainly 4 the heartbreaking "Family Snapshot" -- I'm sure I won't play it much, but it'll B good 2 have it around ... Dusty 4 the gorgeous melodramatic title song ... Nino & April 4 the foghorn-impression title song of course -- but mainly 4 the amazing B-side "I've Been Carrying a Torch for You So Long That I've Burned a Great Big Hole in My Heart" (I'm NOT making this up!), which is somewhere between a yodel & a field holler, something that coulda come from another planet ... The Moraz cos I loved his work with the Moodies & have always thot he was screwed out of a lotta credit 4 that band's comeback in the '80s ... The Dog 2 replace a copy I've foolishly traded off 2wice now ... The Yearwood 4 the country hits I can't stop singing along with ("She's in Love With the Boy," "Thinking About You," "X's and O's," "Wrong Side of Memphis") -- if "Woman Walk the Line" were on it, it'd B perfect ... Liz Phair cos she got rave reviews & all I've ever heard by her were a coupla middling hits a few years back, including the wonderful "Extraordinary" ... The Carly Simon mighta been a mistake. I've already got "Anticipation" on an old promo 45. Maybe 4 "Attitude Dancing"? Or so I could hear "Legend in Your Own Time"? I wonder what I put back by mistake...?
...I can also report that this apparently nameless 2nd-hand store in Bremerton's Perry Avenue Mall has a HUGE selection of reasonably-priced vinyl. I PUT BACK albums by Al Stewart, Incredible String Band, Rick Wakeman, It's a Beautiful Day, Fleetwood Mac, Rascals, etc.
Oh, they also have a Vee-Jay copy of INTRODUCING THE BEATLES, in a locked glass display case -- only $500?! Maybe if it were in the original shrink-wrap & had never been opened.... Damn, I coulda grabbed a copy 4 $2 back in 1976....
NEway, worth a visit if you're in the area....