Thursday, December 14, 2006

If I Had a Million Dollars

...and were a woman of leisure, there's all kind of stuff I could do that would be too fun for words.

For example, I could follow this band:

All Things Considered, December 13, 2006 · One of the most consistently popular bands in Nashville does not play country music, has no lead singer and doesn't plan to release an album. Instead, the Long Players perform classic albums, from beginning to end, before a live audience with all-star guest vocalists. Their shows have become a sensation in Music City.

The core of the band is Bill Lloyd (of the 1980s act Foster and Lloyd), Gary Tallent (who has played with Bruce Springsteen), and John Deaderick (Dixie Chicks, James Taylor).

And for singers, they band has used many, from Allison Moorer when they did Neil Young's After the Gold Rush to Kim Richey and others for Sergeant Pepper's.

Adrian Belew was part of the Blonde on Blonde show -- with special guests Al Kooper and Charlie McCoy, who backed Bob Dylan on the original.

The Long Players also have performed The Pretenders' self-titled album; The Band's second album; and Elvis Costello's My Aim Is True.

Listen to the whole thing: I was sort of dazed driving home after a root canal and a faculty meeting (toss-up as to which was more painful) and I heard the words "power pop" on NPR. "National Public Fucking Radio is talking about power pop?!?" I said out loud, speaking only to the fast food bags and unpaid parking tickets on the floor of my car.

Steve Allen plays guitar, and the lead singers are an impressive list of who's who in both country and pop music. Lloyd (always terrific) has a list on his website of every gig they've played so far, who sang what, and where they donated the proceeds. Mark Volman, Doug Powell, Brad Jones, Robert Reynolds, Marshall Crenshaw, Walter Egan, Steve Forbert..... holy christ on a cracker, it's an astounding list.

I would soooooooo sit in the front row for every gig for this band. Jeffraham Prestonian would let me sleep on his couch, wouldn't you, Jeff? Shit, it's only 14 hours. Each way.

UPDATE: Inspired, I treated myself to Lloyd's terrific "Set to Pop" album on my way to work today. What a gem. My fave is "Trampoline," hands down the best song ever written about manic depression.

God Bless our daily bread,
Coffee and dramamine.
God bless our ups and downs.
Goddamn the trampoline.

Rings true. Great mouth harp, too.


Pen Ultimate said...

Y'all are welcome any time, if you don't mind a little cat hair. :) We may have to rent some PODS for the thousands of children, though.

Anonymous said...

Steve Allen as in 20/20 Steve Allen??

I'd like to state for the record that I actually came up with this concept many years ago. It is nice to see that someone with actual musical talent has executed my idea!

My first show? The Pretty Things' "S.F. Sorrow"

NYMary said...

Yes, that Steve Allen, Kid C. He's a studio guy in Nashville now, does all kinds of cool stuff.