Friday, May 29, 2020

It's New Music By Veteran Artists Week (Part III): Special "Subways Are For Sleeping" Edition

From his totally rocking just released album New York At Night...

...please enjoy incomparable singer/songwriter/keeper of the rock flame Willie Nile and his absolutely gorgeous "Under This Roof."

I absolutely love that album cover, BTW. And boy -- does it summon up a whole world that now, because of our current crisis, seems as remote as the Pleistocene.

In any event, you can -- and should -- order the album over at Amazon or Willie's official website..

Have a great weekend, everybody!!!

Thursday, May 28, 2020

PowerPop's Greatest Hits: Special "This Seems Oddly Relevant Given Our Current Crisis" Edition

[I first posted this back in 2011, but for obvious corona virus reasons, I thought it might be amusing to re-up it. --S.S.]

Attentive and/or long time readers may perhaps recall the story of my first high school rock band, The Plagues, and our 1965 adventures in the recording studio. Or not.

In any case, about two years after those epochal sessions -- during the fabled Summer of Love, if memory serves -- Allan Weissman, my old chum from The Plagues, and I were hanging out in his basement in sylvan Teaneck, New Jersey, when he informed me that he had just written a song in a style that might be considered Dylanesque. After he played it for me -- it was called "Cassandra," as in the Greek babe from the ancient legends -- I concurred, and we soon worked out a rudimentary arrangement; Allan was on bass and vocals, while I flailed around on a crappy Japanese guitar of some sort (I hadn't scored my fabled 1959 Les Paul goldtop at this point).

I decided that the song needed some kind of opening figure, a la the stuff Roger McGuinn did for The Byrds, and I finally came up with one. Unfortunately, given my limited guitar skills, what I came up was not merely lame, but in fact The Lamest Riff in History©. Which is to say a simple ascending and then descending single note sequence that was essentially...uh, just a G-major scale. And even that description overstates its level of inspiration.

Undeterred, Allan and I recorded a version of the tune, in mono, on one of those Wollensak reel-to-reel tape machines that everybody, including your high school AV department, had in those days, and I seem to recall thinking even then that my contribution to the track was vaguely cringe-inducing. What I would think now, I have no idea, because the tape itself has long since disappeared. And hopefully will remain so.

Anyway, cut to 2010. I had just reconnected with Allan and the rest of the high school chums with whom, as those same attentive and/or long-time readers mentioned above doubtless know, I had toiled for years in a subsequent garage/basement band called The Weasels. And Allan had given me a CD of (Weasel) The Other White Meat -- a home-made album the guys had recorded (without me, obviously) in 2004.

And suddenly, after I put the CD into my computer -- THERE WAS THE RIFF!!!!

Yes, nearly four decades after it was first committed to magnetic tape, the guys had done a remake, if that is the word, of "Cassandra." A song which is actually pretty cool, despite my...well, you know.

And here it is, exactly as my astonished ears first beheard it again.

The feeble contemplation that is going on inside
The mutilated warnings that they won't let you confide
Oh, ring the trumpets on their ears
The new Titanics come with years
Cassandra, turn your head to other people.

Hold your banner high until it stretches to the ground.
Shake the dead; the old, the buried recognize the sound.
Put yourself in ages hence
Glance, the foundlings never sense,
Cassandra, turn your head to other people.

Shout the call; the air is dead;
They'll never understand.
It echoes off the tired feet that walk upon their hands.
Deny the cradles, rob the graves,
The sirens drone, the prophet raves;
Cassandra, turn your head to other people.

I thought at the time, and still do, that "the tired feet that walk upon their hands" is one of the most, shall we say, remarkable lines ever.

I should also add that it is a mark of what a mensch I am that, despite the centrality of my riff to the entire "Cassandra" experience, I have never asked Allan for a co-writer credit.

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

It's New Music By Veteran Artists Week (Part II): Special "Why Can't She Be Like Other Girls?" Edition

From her just released album Songs I Can't Live Without...

...please enjoy jaded virgin Marshall Chapman and her haunting cover of the Goffin/King/Shirelles classic "Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow".

I've loved this woman's work since forever -- here's an interview/profile I did with her at Stereo Review on the occasion of her second album in 1978.

Scroll down to page 86 when you get to the link HERE.

And you can (and should) order the new one -- which includes way cool covers of songs by everybody from Leonard Cohen to Jule Styne and Sammy Cahn -- over at Amazon HERE.

Actually, a better place to order it -- for considerably less money -- is over at Marshall's website HERE. And as a bonus, each order will include a signed essay Marshall wrote about the recording of the album -- why she chose each song, what each song has meant to her over the years, and so on.

POSTSCRIPT: If you're unlucky enough to have never seen Marshall perform, this clip should give you an idea of what you've missed.

You're welcome.

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

It's New Music By Veteran Artists Week (Part I): Special "So Beautiful It Hurts" Edition

Please enjoy Dion and Jeff Beck with the transplendently heartbreaking — and a song which splits the difference between blues and country in an astounding way -- "Can't Start Over Again."

Beck, of course, has been the greatest living rock guitarist since his Sixties tenure with The Yardbirds (yeah, yeah, we can argue -- but name somebody better or shut up).

And Dion -- who has been a star since the mid-50s -- has also been, IMHO, pound for pound the greatest rock singer who ever lived since his doo-wop days with The Belmonts.

Nice to know that both of them are still working with their powers undimmed.

BTW, the about to be released album that's from -- Blues With Friends -- can (and should be) pre-ordered over at Amazon here.

Friday, May 22, 2020

Your Friday Moment of Life Remains Worth Living

From the soon to be released (June) 2020 expanded reissue of "Orange Crate Art," the 1994 collaboration by Brian Wilson and Van Dyke Parks, please enjoy a thoroughly charming version of the venerable "Wonderful World."

I haven't listened to that album in years, but I remember it as, if not Smile great, pretty damn great in its own right, and I can't wait to sit down under the headphones with the new version.

You can (and should) order the album from the good folks at Omnivore Records over at Amazon HERE.

Have a great weekend, everybody!!!

Thursday, May 21, 2020

The Greatest Record Ever Recorded (An Occasional Series): Special "Vanda and Young are Literally Gods" Edition

[This is an old post, but I'm re-upping it because our antipodean chum (and friend of PowerPop) Peter Scott just sent me the mp3 on the off chance that I didn't have it. -- S.S.]

Okay, this is a really long story, and I've told some of it before on a couple of occasions, but there's a new kicker at the end, so please indulge me.

First, the set-up.

One of the greatest (and most obscure) lost singles of the 70s -- indeed, in rock history -- is a little number called "Natural Man" by The Marcus Hook Roll Band.

The MHRB were actually Harry Vanda and George Young of The Easybeats, then toiling under various aliases in the period before they roared back as the production team behind the first couple of AC/DC albums (AC/DC's Malcolm and Angus, of course, are George's younger brothers).In any case, the record itself is one of the landmarks of the Glam Era -- a perfect three chord "Sweet Jane" derivative with hilarious topical lyrics, gorgeous layered electric and acoustic guitars, and absolutely brilliant production, including a bass guitar and cowbell breakdown (a la the bit in Free's "Alright Now," but hookier) that sets up a massive series of final choruses that once heard are etched into your auditory canal forever. An absolute masterpiece, is what I'm saying.

Unfortunately, it was not a hit when released here on Capitol Records in 1973. I had a promo copy like the one pictured below at the time, but I misplaced it later in the decade.

Note the misspelling of Harry Vanda's name, which may give you some clue to the record's importance to the braniacs at Capitol. In any case, the only LP it ever appeared on back in the day was an Australia-only release that apparently self-destructed, Mission Impossible-style, approximately two days after it was issued. As for CD, starting in the late 90s you could get a copy of the song on an import MHRB compilation, but unfortunately it was an inferior demo version that lacked all the magic of the single.

You can read a contemporary account of the single -- from the now defunct house organ of United Artists Records -- online, although I'm having trouble getting the link. Incidentally, the author of said piece, Martin Cerf, was one of the hipper record company guys at the time, and a friend to numerous rock journalists of the period including the late great Greg Shaw; he may, in fact, have been a partner in Greg's BOMP Records, although I'm hazy on that.

Anyway, as the years flew by down the echoing corridors of time, I pretty much decided that the single version never actually existed and that I'd more or less hallucinated the whole business. But two or three years ago I finally got a pretty good vinyl rip of the 45 (with some surface noise and turntable rumble, but otherwise listenable) and musically it was indeed as great as I recalled.

And that, I figured, was that.

Well, not quite.

Cut to: last month. From Rhino's just released reissue -- which I had no idea was in the works -- of the original MHRB album, please behold in breathless wonder the newly remastered (from the original tapes) version of "Natural Man." Sans pops and clicks and sounding as glorious as it must have been when first played back over the monitor speakers at EMI's Abbey Road studios in June of 1972.

And you will hear no better rock-and-roll song or record any time this year, trust me.

You're welcome very much.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Shoot Me Now

Jane Wiedlin of The Go-Gos turns 62 today.

I have never felt so old in my life.

BTW, I have always assumed she was a nice Jewish girl. Boy, I hope I'm right.

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Songcraft in the Time of the Virus

So my friend from the neighborhood (and an absolutely brilliant singer/songwriter/guitarist) Joe Benoit...

...has just written and recorded a song that, I strongly believe, will go down in history as the greatest work of art to have been inspired by our current trying times.

Okay, maybe not the greatest work of art, but certainly the best fucking pop-rock song.

You can, and should, order it over HERE. And share it with everybody.

Seriously, this damn thing is so brilliant I want to kill the kid.

Hey what’s your hurry?
You don’t have to worry
There’s nowhere to go anyway
I think the clock still ticks
As I’m watching Netflix
But I’m losing track of the days

There’s nothing left out there for me

Welcome to the longest weekend that you’ve ever known
It’s getting kind of strange to be alone
At least we’re still breathing
We’re living in the longest weekend
You’d think it would be fun
I never thought I’d say that I want Monday to come

The shelves are all empty
As far as we can see
New York has become a ghost town
Too much hesitation
And no preparation
Has led us to where we are now

Will there be something left for me?

Welcome to the longest weekend that you’ve ever known
Now every waking moment’s in your home
Just try not to lose it
We’re living in the longest weekend that we’ve ever known
It’s getting kind of strange to be alone…

With our thoughts
And our fears
And our hands that stay sanitized
It feels like a dream
But did we ever wake and realize

We were heading for the longest weekend that we’ve ever known
It’s getting kind of strange to be alone
At least we’re still breathing
We’re living in the longest weekend
You’d think it would be fun
I never thought I’d say that I want Monday to come
I never thought I’d say but I want Monday to come
I never thought I’d say that I want Monday to come

I have been blessed during my life to have known lots of incredibly talented people, but this is just ridiculously cool.

Monday, May 18, 2020

Your Monday Moment of Words Fail Me and I'm Freaking Crying

A music teacher and friends and colleagues from East Meadow, Long Island -- and I have relatives there -- reminds us all of what matters in these trying times.

I should add that yeah, this is better conceptually than it is in the execution, but I don't give a crap. This is so moving I can't stand it.

I should also add that the cello player with the mouse ears is a living saint.

Saturday, May 16, 2020

Phil May 1944-2020

The lead singer of The Pretty Things -- the greatest British bad boys except for The Rolling Stones -- has passed.

And not from the virus, I'm happy to say.

The Prettys never made much of an impression in The US of A, for whatever reason, but they were a very big deal in the UK. And I'm pleased to say that I saw them live -- touring the above album they made for Led Zeppelin's record label.

Can't remember who they were opening for, but they were very impressive.

And I love that song.

Friday, May 15, 2020

Weekend Listomania: Special "Only the Good Die Young" Guest Blogger Edition

So it's Friday, and you know what that means.

Yes, my Oriental Amanuensis of Awesomeness Fah Lo Suee and I will be social distancing at an undisclosed location that I won't be sharing with you freaking peons, thank you very much.

But in the meantime, courtesy of friend of PowerPop Captain Al, who graciously did the work for this when I decided to be a total slacker, here's a fun project for all of us:

Greatest Pop/Rock/Soul/Country Artists of the 20th Century Whose Early Deaths Probably Deprived Us Of Terrific Music They Would Otherwise Have Made!!!

In other words, these people had to have died before their artistic decline began. Got it? Good.

And our (one of these is mine) totally top of our head Top Eleven is ----

11. Jim Ellison [Material Issue]

Okay, so Ellison wasn't Kurt Cobain, but his death hit me a lot harder. For starters, unlike Cobain, he seemed to actually enjoy being a rock star. -- S.S.

10. Robert Johnson

Reason for inclusion: He was a mentor directly and indirectly to an entire generations of blues and rock musicians. The legend of his life and musicianship is the breakfast of champions for these musicians and fans.

What if he had lived: What direction would his music have taken had he lived. Would he have moved to Chicago and eventually gone electric? Jazz? Jump Blues or even more pop based? He easily could have done any single or combination of those directions. It would have been fascinating to see.

From Greil Marcus, in Mystery Train:

Shortly before his death Johnson reportedly formed a band with piano and drums ("ROBERT JOHNSON" emblazoned on the bass drum); there are even claims that he was using an electric pickup on his guitar. These developments by themselves would not have been unknown (Howlin' Wolf may have been playing an electric guitar in Mississippi at the same time...) But the rhythmic structures of Johnson's songs suggest that any band of his might have been making music recognizable as rock 'n' roll, full-blown not protean rock 'n' least by 1938, the year of his death.

9. Hank Williams

Reason for inclusion: He was a huge star, all-time great songwriter & extremely popular live performer. Like Robert Johnson his self destructive behavior became a symbol for future generations of country and rockabilly artists. Everyone loves a self destructive bad boy.

What if he had lived: Maybe country music would have been recognized as a serious genre much sooner.
He might have become an international superstar.

8. Buddy Holly

Reason: Come on now it's Buddy!

What if: This is my imaginary history if Buddy had lived. This could/should have happened!

In the early 60's Buddy concentrated on songwriting, producing other artists and even becoming a record company executive. He occasionally created his own new recordings and possibly (maybe probably) moved in a more pop mainstream direction. He cuts back on live performing. The British Invasion pulls him back into being a more active recording artist and live performer. By the second half of the sixties he starts playing places like the Fillmores' and the college circuit. Even a few hits follow after he shares stages with The Beatles, Rolling Stones, Jefferson Airplane and The Dead. I envision him standing between Grace and Kantner while on stage with the Airplane while directly in front of the stage I and 5000 other hippies dance to him playing at The Tripping Fields at SUNY New Paltz in May 1970! In an alternate universe this really happened. Of course after that he is influenced by James Taylor and gets old, fat and boring. He ends up an executive at Asylum Records and is caught in bed with Carly Simon. Oh, the humanity!!!

7. Eddie Cochran

Reason: Just like Buddy Holly: Great live performer, producer and songwriter.

What if: Possibly even more successful than Buddy! He had it all! He's almost a man of mystery because it feel like very little of his musical future had happened yet. His possibilities for greatness seemed endless. He was a true ass shaking rocker! He might have changed the history of rock & roll, he had that much potential.

6. Elmore James

Reason: One of our greatest blues songwriters. Possibly the most influential slide guitar player ever.

What if: He could have joined Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf and BB King in receiving the success and recognition those three gained in the sixties and beyond. He just didn't receive the medical attention he needed. Many of the bluesmen died way too early due to health issues. Freddie King is another one who had his future in front of him and lost it due to a bad heart. The lifestyle of bluesmen was extremely tough and it caught up with Elmore.

5. Otis Redding

Reason: He was possibly the best vocalist and showman of the rock and roll/soul era. Successful record producer. He was just getting better and better as a songwriter.

What if: He was a potential record company executive if there ever was one, maybe creating his own record label someday. He would have achieved success on the level of a superstar. The sky was the limit on his talents with unlimited potential. (He is my favorite vocalist ever!) What a loss.

4. Jimi Hendrix

Reason: Considered by many the premier rock & roll guitarist. Great showman and wrote some classic songs. Jimi was a master at using the recording studio as a musical instrument. Then he pissed it all away by dying.

What if: What if he had lived is such a good question and one I have a great bit of difficulty contemplating. Had he hit a wall (as some feel) and he would of stalled creatively taking his music no further creatively with him and us looking at the promised land but unable to enter it the way The Beatles showed us a psychedelic music ("Strawberry Fields", "I am The Walrus" and "A Day in the Life") but could take it no further, or would Jimi have freed up the music and taken it in directions we still can't contemplate. Damned if I know!

3. Janis Joplin

Reason: Unlike the others Janis was mainly a song interpreter but she was one of the best. Janis found great songs that fit her to a 'T" as a performer. She commanded the stage with a passion few could equal. Steve saw her perform with Big Brother back in the day and says it might be the best performance he ever attended! Ask him sometime.

What if: Another tough one to nail down. Some fans and critics said she had burnt her voice out and was on a downhill trajectory as a singer. I don't hear that as her singing on "Pearl" was superb. Her live performances from the same era were in general very, very good. She went out on top. With the right band and material she could have sustained a long wonderful career if only she could have gotten her life under control.

2. Sandy Denny

Reason: That voice, that songwriting and when she was right she could command a stage like few other singer/songwriters.

What if: Surprisingly "Little Miss Demure" was as self destructive as anyone on this list. Drinking, drugging and self destructive physical behavior doomed her. She was ill equipped to deal with a music business in an era before artists could build their careers much more independently of the major labels and unresponsive management. She never got to transition into successful niche careers like Richard Thompson, John Prine, Lucinda Williams or Rosanne Cash, who lowered their expectations of mass stardom and gained longterm control and success with their careers. Sandy could have had that long term success and made good money if she could have lasted long enough to make that transition. Filling mid size halls, selling her own recordings and merchandise and having many more artists covering her wonderful song catalog the way the above named artists have had done to their song catalogs. Another real loss.

And the Numero Uno he died way too freaking young artiste clearly is....

1. Pete Ham

Reason: He was a great rock/pop songwriter and a passionate singer.

What if: Peter had little stage presence or charisma (see the video), but even with Badfinger's limitations as a live act, in the studio they often shined! Even with those limitations I see Peter as a major player as a hit songwriter and producer. Maybe he even could have grown as a live performer. Many of the greatest often do. (Think Richard Thompson)

As with all of the performers on this list Peter Ham's death was very tragic. But unlike the others he committed suicide which was a precursor to the new chic way to die among big time rock stars. His death broke my heart as it was so unnecessary. It broke my heart in a way that was different from the other nine deaths on this list in that he was directly the master of his own fate. For another later generation Kurt Cobain had the same effect on them. Now this way of dying by suicide is all too common and even accepted.

There we are, what do you guys think? Who do you miss because of their early death?

And have a great weekend, everybody!!!

Thursday, May 14, 2020

An Early Clue to the New Direction: Special "Digging Your Own Grave" Edition

From 1971, please enjoy the pre-Bowie -- i.e., the good version of -- Mott the Hoople and their delightful ode to losing it at Christmas, "Death May Be Your Santa Claus."

A coveted PowerPop No-Prize© will be awarded to the first reader who gleans its relevance to the theme of tomorrow's Weekend Listomania.

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Letters From the Earth

In case you didn't see it, Lou Reed -- seriously(!) -- from the netherworld, responded to my Monday post thusly.

Hell -- 05/11/20

OK, Steve, now you’ve done it. You’ve invoked my name six times now, and here I am. Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice. Lou Reed, Lou Reed, Lou Reed … you know the routine. But I was supposed to show up yesterday, but I guess not. What the fuck, huh? Since I’ve been gone, I’ve begun to see things straight, and perhaps for the first time since I divorced Sylvia, what year is this? 2020? Thirty years ago. Huh.

First of all, Stevie boy, you don’t know shit about covers of my work. Or any of my work. All of those "Sweet Jane" covers were for shit, and none so lame as Willie Nile’s. I remember telling Mr. Mott The Hoople he should stick to WW II-era songs like "A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square," but did he listen? No! Nobody listens. Fuck ‘em.

Second, cut Laurie some slack, would’ya? She’s the one person who looked at me as an artist, and could she ever cook up a fine mess of corned beef and cabbage! You know, the fatty kind you’d find at the Landmark Tavern on Eleventh. I mean the kind of corned beef you’d get at Katz’s was good, but not like The Landmark. And I absolutely adored her reference to me as a Tai Chi master! Imagine that! Me! A master. She also thought that Metal Machine Music was art. She never listened to it, I mean, how could anyone, but still.

Since I’ve got you here, and I’m not going anywhere, and from what I just heard from Little Richard, you’re not going anywhere soon, let me tell you something. Coronavirus? Big fucking deal! Coronavirus wouldn’t have lasted ten fucking minutes on the Lower East Side in the Sixties! And you shitheads are staying at home? Andy would be pissing in his pants if he heard that! And Cale would’ve have already written three dirges and two symphonies about your coronavirus. He probably already has. I’ll check on him later today.

I don’t have a lot of time left with you, Steve, but there are two things I want you to know. The first is don’t play guitar on carpets in your bare feet. I don’t want to get too Keith Relf about this, but as my Mom used to say, “A word to the wise doesn’t cost you anything,” By the way, we got together Sunday for Mother’s Day. And if I can reconcile with my Mom, anyone can.

The other thing is that of all the Velvets albums, you know which one I liked best? The Doug Yule one, Squeeze. First of all, I had nothing to do with it. Second, give it a listen again. It’ll grow on you in time. And that’s one thing we’ve all got plenty of these days.

Look. I’d love to stay and chat, but I’ve got a video shoot later today with Bowie. We’re going to do a remake of Bowie and Mick’s "Dancing in the Streets," but this time we’re going to do it in Times Square, cause there’s nobody fucking there!

Til next time, Stevie boy. But before I go, let me say two things. Wishbone Ash. And The Cure. I’ve been listening to both a lot lately. Great bands, great bands. Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice.

Words fucking fail me. And may I just say, and for the record, but the Doug Yule Squeeze joke just put me on the floor.

True story -- I actually owned that record, and saw that edition of the Velvets at a club on Long Island. Me and Captain Al drove out to see them. Boston rock legend Willie "Loco" Alexander was in the band, and they were actually pretty good.

POSTSCRIPT: Whoever actually wrote that Lou Reed missive -- please e-mail me. And when you're in NYC after our current crisis is over, allow me to buy you a three course meal.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Closed for Monkey Business

No, I'm not slacking.

In point of fact, I'm hard at work editing an extremely complex Weekend Listomania, written by a certain guest blogger whose nym you'll recognize, which is going up on Friday.

Trust me, it's gonna be fabulous and I'll be back with normal posting on Wednesday.

Monday, May 11, 2020

Sweet Jane Week: The Postscript

Indie band Hat Without Men -- featuring some idiot whose name rhymes with Sleeve Nimels -- performing the opening riff of the Lou Reed classic.

Okay, I obviously have too much time on my hands.

That said, I thinks it's a nice view of my new Strat Squier and our newly renovated den/office.

Saturday, May 09, 2020

Little Richard 1932-2020

The world is now a much duller place.

Yeah, I know, I should have put up a music clip, but the Georgia Peach's appearance in Down and Out in Beverly Hills seemed depressingly relevant given the murder of a black man in Georgia recently.

POSTSCRIPT: Okay, on a less political note, this one still cracks me up big-time.

Friday, May 08, 2020

Your Friday Moment of the Most Epic Trolling of All Time

So as you may have heard, on Wednesday, President Schmucko paid a visit to an Arizona factory that makes anti-virus masks, and of course he did not wear a mask.

Because he's like, you know, a schmuck.

And as a result, the Honeywell plant blasted the Guns N' Roses version of "Live and Let Die" over the sound system as President Schmucko walked around, oblivious to metaphor. (And everything else, obviously)

But what you may NOT have heard is that the same geniuses responsible for that devastating historical moment followed up GNR with the R.E.M. recording of "It's the End of the World as We Know it."

Can't find the news footage of that, but trust me -- it's apparently true.

All of which has made me happier than anything I can recall in the last few weeks, save for this omission.

Sadly, the wags that trolled the Manchurian Cantaloupe thusly did NOT play the one more song they really should have.

Hey, life is unfair.

In any event, barring the unforeseen (heh!), regular non-political postings resume on Monday.

Till then, have a great weekend, everybody!!!

Thursday, May 07, 2020

Everybody Must Stay Home

Joshua Williams and friends update a Bob Dylan classic for the Age of Corona.

Pretty damn funny, and I must say that the toilet bowl scene at approximately 1:23 minutes is a particular hoot.

[h/t Robert Albiston]

Wednesday, May 06, 2020

Your Wednesday Moment of How to Get Through Our Current Trying Times Without Slitting Your Wrists

An absolutely wonderful piece on The Kinks from The Guardian.

You can read the whole thing HERE.

And because I love you all more than food, here's my personal favorite Kinks sort of obscurity.

I forget who said it, but Black Sabbath should have covered this years ago.

[h/t KLG]

Monday, May 04, 2020

Your Monday Moment of Words Fail Me

From the current issue of Smithsonian Magazine.

Okay, this isn't exactly a state secret, i.e. most Beatles fans are at least vaguely aware of it. But this is pretty amazing anyway.

Read the whole thing HERE.

You're welcome.

Saturday, May 02, 2020

"The Most Reliable Female Discovery Since Lassie"

Title courtesy of a review of Julia Child's cooking show, as noted in the PBS documentary about her that aired in NYC yesterday.

In celebration, please enjoy late 70s New York City New Wave band The Hounds -- featuring some asshole whose name rhymes with Sleeve Nimels on rhythm guitar -- and their ode to everybody's favorite dog, "Lassie Come Home."

Folk-rock, bitches.

And dig the speed limit, which would have dizzied The Byrds back in the day.

Friday, May 01, 2020

It's Sweet Jane Week: Special "Saving the Best for Last" Edition

From 2014, and a bluegrass festival somewhere, please enjoy the most gorgeous version of this week's cause célèbre imaginable.

I don't know who any of those musicians are, but if somebody out there does, let me know and you'll win a coveted PowerPop No-Prize©. And deservedly.

In the meantime...seriously -- if that doesn't kill you, you're already dead.

Have a great weekend, everybody!!!