Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Closed for Monkey Business

CD Baby just sent me a fifty dollar royalty check for combined sales of The Floor Models CDs and the Fire Lane reissue.

Gonna spend today partying like it's 1999 -- regular sober and well-groomed postings resume on the morrow.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Pete "Overend" Watts 1947-2017

RIP Mott the Hoople's bassist.

I was lucky enough to see the pre-David Bowie Mott on a couple of occasions, and all the glam-era incarnations (save for the one minus Ian Hunter) several times. Watts was a fixture in all of them, and they were all just great.

Have I ever mentioned that this may be the greatest rock-and-roll song under one minute and twenty seconds in history?

God, I'm getting sick of posting obituaries around here. Especially since I have the awful feeling that sometime soon I'm going to be posting one for the United States of America.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Have a Great Weekend!

And people say we Monkee around!

Seriously -- real world concerns have impinged today. Actual power pop stuff resumes on Monday.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Mary Tyler Moore 1936-2017

God, she was wonderful.

And how cool is it that the theme to her sitcom was written by one of Buddy Holly's Crickets?

You had spunk, Mary. Like Lou Grant, I hate spunk as a rule, but you made me like it.

UPDATE: This one is just fucking awesome.

[h/t Matt Mitchell]

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

In the Immortal Words of Country Joe McDonald -- This Song Offends Even Me

From sometime in the 90s, please enjoy my old garage band chums The Weasels and their canine masterpiece -- "Alpha Dog."

Vocal and bass by the great Allan Weissman; the splendidly lyrical piano stuff is by the song's composer Glenn Leeds.

I'm not playing on this one, so I can't be held responsible. That said, the first time I heard it, I laughed so hard I almost broke a rib.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

French Cookin' Has Got the Blues (And I Don't Feel So Good Myself)

From their swell new album If You Wanna, please enjoy the blues stylings of French Cookin' (featuring former Floor Model Glen Robert Allen on those pagan skins) and their insinuating "Don't Leave Me Hangin'.

If you're in the NYC/Jersey area and want to check these guys out live, you can find their gig schedule over HERE.

I should add that the aLbum is available for download at Amazon, iTunes, Spotify and all the other usual suspects; actual CDs can be purchased from Target.

Monday, January 23, 2017

Annals of Alternative Facts

Okay, the events of the last three or four days have pretty much tuckered me out.

Two brief observations come to mind, however.

First of all, Propaganda Barbie White House spokes-liar Kellyanne Conway -- who coined the now immortal phrase "alternative facts" on Sunday -- apparently got her inaugural outfit from the only heterosexual designer in America.

I mean seriously -- she looks like the lead singer of a Paul Revere and the Raiders tribute band.

Secondly, long-time readers may recall I had a bug up my ass for several years over Kelefa Sanneh, the then scribe for the New York Times who I dubbed "The World's Most Irksome Rock Critic" for his fealty to the "Everything's Great Including the Obvious Shit" school of pop music journalism. In any case, Sanneh abandoned rock criticism for a more lucrative gig at the New Yorker as a political pundit of sorts, and I figured good riddance to bad rubbish (at least at the New Yorker, he's a mediocrity surrounded by people far more talented than he, and I could thus safely ignore his inanities).

Until this month, however, when he published this appalling apologia for an anonymous pro-Trump blogger. And thus was able to weasel-word an on-the-one-hand-but-on-the-other-hand endorsement for Trumpsputin and all his evil works.

To which I can only add -- fuck you, Kelefa Sanneh. Where you breathe.

Regular less partisan and despairing music postings resume on the morrow.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Radio Killed the Radio Star (Part Deux)

And for those of you who missed it -- and shame on you, obviously -- here's last Tuesday's episode of friend of PowerPop Capt. Al's intertube radio show Lost at Sea.

Featuring your humble scribe and his garage band chums The Weasels in a two-hour extravaganza of self-indulgence, vaguely smutty jokes, and a musical hall of shame retrospective spanning our several decades of low-fi recording.

Have a great weekend, everybody!

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Total Victory is Ours, Comrades!

So here I am on this week's episode of 70s80s90sNOW, for those of you who don't have SiriusXM radio.

Pretty amusing, I think, and I crushed the opposition and won valuable prizes. (I gave the Rush box set to one of the losers, which shows a nice spirit, I'm sure you'll agree).

Spoiler alert: Although I did win the episode, I blew the concluding bonus question. Which, given the subject, is beyond embarrassing.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Closed for Monkey Business

Yesterday's radio broadcast tuckered me out. Regular posting -- including an audio link to the show -- resumes on the morrow.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Radio Killed the Radio Star

Two programming notes:

Your humble scribe -- along with the rest of my garage-band mates The Weasels -- will be appearing on friend of PowerPop Capt. Al's show LOST AT SEA over at Area 24 Radio today starting at 12pm EST.

We'll be playing non-stop Weasel music (the horror! the horror!) and reminiscing about our decades together, so get ready for lots of in-jokes and other shameless self-indulgences.

Here's the link to listen.

Even more amazingly, for those of you with SiriusXM Radio, I'll be making my second appearance on their music trivia game show 70s80s90sNOw today at 1pm EST.

I crapped out badly on my first appearance (although I was a pretty funny contestant), but this time, without giving anything away, I crushed the opposition. I did blow an insanely easy bonus question at the end of the show, however, so if you have satellite radio and want to hear me humiliate myself, please check it out. It's on XMs Volume channel, number 106.

The show will be rerun later today and all week, so please listen to LOST AT SEA in real time.

Thank you.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Happy Great Americans Day!

Of course, it's actually Martin Luther King Day, but not, at the moment, in Biloxi, Mississippi.

BILOXI, Mississippi -- City leaders say they will hold a special meeting Monday after the city came under fire for posting online that city offices would be closed Monday for "Great Americans Day" rather than Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Mayor Andrew "FoFo" Gilich said the meeting will be used to update the city's Code of Ordinances after the city received backlash for not referring to Monday as MLK Day.

"In my opinion, that is the appropriate step to take, for the holiday to have the same name as the federal holiday," Gilich said in a statement, according to NBC News.

No racism down there in Mississippi, goddamn. No siree bob. That sort of stuff is long over.

So in their honor, I'm reposting the following obviously relevant song/video by an old band of mine.

Gerry wrote that song in 1994, inspired by watching the Ken Burns Civil War documentary. Thank god, nobody's gonna have to write another song like that anymore now that racism is a thing of the past.

And I would be remiss if I didn't add that no grown person should be nicknamed "FoFo," but that's an issue for another day.

Friday, January 13, 2017

It's Covers Week (Part V): Special Make America Grape Again! Edition

From 2002, please enjoy Robert Plant and his lovely (if less intense than the original) cover of the Moby Grape/Skip Spence stunner "Skip's Song."

I should add that technically this should be called "Seeing," as it was named when it originally appeared on the Grape's amazing Moby Grape 69 album; the song was retitled in the '90s when it appeared in demo form on Sony's Grape box set.

Here is what it sounded like when given the full Grape treatment; I think it's one of the greatest rock-and-roll records ever made, but as Chuck Barris used to say, what do I know -- I like cold toilet sets. In any event, Skip Spence was a goddamned genius, and good for Robert Plant for recognizing that.

Have a great weekend, everybody.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

It's Covers Week (Part IV): Special Faux Fab Edition

From 1975, please enjoy the great Procol Harum (produced in this case by the equally great Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller) and a cover of The Beatles' classic "Eight Days a Week."

It has come to my attention that I am all but alone in my fondness for this one, but what the heck -- I'm sure you guys will let me know what you think.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

It's Covers Week (Part III): Special Visine of the Gods Edition

From 2016, please enjoy friends of PowerPop The Steve Deaton Three and an absolutely swell cover of the 1968 Todd Rundgren/Nazz classic "Open My Eyes."

That song, of course, is one of those Ground Zero power pop events, and as such there is no definitive cover. But I think this one is really cool.

I should also add that the splendid album the SD3's version appears on can be be purchased at Amazon, iTunes, etc.

BTW, for you vinyl cultists, there's now an LP edition; you can find an order link for it over HERE.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

It's Covers Week (Part II): Special Outside the Boundries of Time and Space Edition

From 1989 (and perhaps his most unjustly underrated album) please enjoy the incomparable Marshall Crenshaw and a brilliant beyond belief cover of John Hiatt's sublimely Buddy Holly-esque "Someplace Where Love Can't Find Me."

BTW, the slide guitar on that track is by Sonny Landreth. If you ever have a chance to see Landreth perform, do everything short of murder to get a ticket. Trust me -- listening to him play in front of you is the closest thing you will have to a legal psychedelic experience ever.

[h/t Matt Mitchell]

Monday, January 09, 2017

It's Covers Week (Part I): Special Blue Swede Shoes Edition

From 1996, please enjoy the incomparable Wondermints and their astonishing revamp of ABBA's "Knowing Me Knowing You."

Incidentally -- by covers week we sorta mean covers of power pop classics (loosely defined, obviously, as in this case).

I should add that the album that's from -- Wonderful World of the Wondermints -- also includes a pretty transplendent version of The Monkees' "Porpoise Song," which also behooves behearing.

Friday, January 06, 2017

The Phantom Video

Had to take down the previous YouTube link to our masterpiece for reasons that I won't bore you with.

Here's the new one.

It's a slightly different (and better) edit, BTW. I still can't believe that any of us in the band and first-time director Steve Schwartz did something so cool.

In any case, enjoy, and have a great weekend everybody.

Thursday, January 05, 2017

Tuesday, January 03, 2017

Who Knew This Guy Was So Funny?

It's not exactly news to long-time readers of this here blog that I'm hardly the biggest David Bowie fan in the world, but this clip is absolutely great.

Bowie and Reeves Gabrels with a live studio audience explaining how the songs "Supermen" and "Scary Monsters" were created. Yeah, it's your basic And Then I Wrote shtick, but Bowie is really a riot.

The bits about Johnny Cash and Chekov's The Seagull in particular cracked me up.

[h/t Steve Schwartz]

Monday, January 02, 2017

Beautiful Wreck of the World

From 1983 -- and I haven't really researched its provenance beyond that -- please enjoy Keith (He'll Outlive the Cockroaches) Richards and the amazing Jerry Lee Lewis and an astounding live version of Chuck Berry's venerable "Little Queenie."

It's pretty much a mess, but hey -- rock 'n' roll.

Sunday, January 01, 2017

Happy New Year

And amazingly enough, today we are a video.

Gerry wrote this song in late 1994, inspired by the Ken Burns Civil War documentary; at the time, we thought it was sadly relevant. This year, alas, it's even more so.

In any event, our great good friend Steve Schwartz made this for us, and I am not overstating things (well, a little bit) when I say it's the most impressive directorial debut since Orson Welles set foot at RKO.