...My record-store-memoir e-book GUARANTEED GREAT MUSIC! is supposed to be available FREE through the first five days of August at Amazon.com. Whenever Aug. 1 "starts" -- I just checked at Amazon and they hadn't reduced the price yet. But assuming they DO, all you gotta do is go to Amazon's Kindle Store and punch in the title, and it should pop right up for you. And of course you can download the first 20 pages for free anytime, as you can with any of my e-books.
So, if you haven't yet read this massive international best-seller that blows the lid off of early-'80s record-store culture ... well, now's your chance. For free.
You can thank me later.
Aretha and Al Green best-of CD's have arrived and are playing to rave reviews with customers. And they seem to relax ME pretty good, too.
I knew Aretha was great, but I didn't know she was GREAT. Some of this great stuff I've never heard before. Some of it I haven't heard in 40 years -- "Spanish Harlem" sounds WAY better now. And how come nobody ever told me about "I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You" or "Dr. Feelgood"?
As for the Reverend Al, I hadn't heard most of the hits off of his best-of in 40 years. "Let's Stay Together" still sounds great, and the rest sound real fine. I remember pretty-much hating "Tired of Being Alone" back in '71. I remember hating a lot of R&B/Soul when I was growing up -- it kept getting in the way of the good stuff that I wanted to hear more of. You know, like Three Dog Night and the Carpenters and the Partridge Family.
Yeezus, I was an idiot. Just a stupid white kid from Idaho. So it's taken me 40 years to be able to HEAR this stuff.
The thing that gets me about the Reverend Al is that even the FILLER sounds pretty good -- "Love Ritual" and "Belle" and some other non-hits sound just fine. Not sure what he's up to with the Bee Gees' "How Can You Mend a Broken Heart?" though.
And Al's "Take Me to the River" sure is different from the Talking Heads'. Neither version ever quite EXPLODES, though both sound like they're GOING to....
Anyway, have gotten more reactions to these than anything else I've played in the store in a long time. Had several women dancing, one who got QUITE into "I've Never Loved a Man" ... and other folks bouncing musical suggestions off of me like The Brothers Johnson and Wah-Wah Watson and Herbie Hancock. I'll have to see what else I can dig up. Brothers Johnson could really move sometimes. Bet THEY'VE got a best-of out there somewhere....
Need to get some James Brown into this joint, too....
(PS -- Just checked again at Amazon, they DID get that freebie deal goin'....)