Cinderella – Heartbreak Station

Any song that contains train references I usually like and this one is no exception. I was surprised when I heard this song was by Cinderella. They had changed themselves into a bluesy hard rock roots band. The other song that I heard off the album at the time was Shelter…and that one I loved also.

The song peaked at #44 on the Billboard 100, #60 in Canada, #54 in the UK, and #13 on the Billboard Rock Charts in 1991.

In 1990 we were the house band at club at the time. We never played new music but I learned this one just to see the faces of the people when we played a new song. We did this one and Jealous Again by the Black Crowes.

They never really got a chance to follow this momentum up with another album. n 1991, Keifer lost his voice due to a paresis of his vocal cords. After operations, they didn’t follow up this album until 1994 (Still Climbing) and by then grunge had taken over and Cinderella was dropped from the record company after the album went nowhere.

They reformed in 1996 and would tour off and on until 2014.

Heartbreak Station

Waiting at the station
Tears filling up my eyes
Sometimes the pain you hide
Burns like a fire inside

Lookin’ out my window
Sometimes it’s hard to see
The things you want in life
Come and go so easily

She took the last train out of my heart
The last train
And now I think I’ll make a brand new start
The last train out of my heart

Watching the days go by
Thinking ’bout the plans we made
Days turn into years
Funny how they fade away

Sometimes I think of those days
Sometimes I just hide away
I’m waiting on that 9:20 train
I’m waiting on a memory

She took the last train out of my heart
The last train
And now I think I’ll make a brand new start
The last train out of my heart, yeah

My lady’s on the fly
And she’s never coming back
My love is like a steam train
Rolling down the tracks, yeah, yeah

The last train out of my heart
The last train
And now I think I’ll make a brand new start
Took the last train out of my heart, yeah

she took the last train, out of my heart
(The last train) she took the last train
And now I think I’ll make a new start
Last train out of my heart

View-Master

I had view masters as a kid and loved them…tonight I was able to see some view master slides in a view master projector with a screen. I always wanted one as a kid but never could get it. I had the “click” model you held in your hand.

A few months ago…my cousin Mark came over. He and I collect things from the 50s-70s. Mark has been collecting View-Masters and the round slides. He shopped on Market Place and found someone with a 1950s View-Master projector. The projector is very clear.

dav

All of us (wife, son, Mark, and myself) spent over an hour watching the view-master slides on a screen that he bought from different people.

Of course, the slides are not 3-D when projected but it still was really cool. We saw Busch Gardens, Silver Dollar City, Acapulco, Sequoia, Kings National Park (I think), and some other places. It was like stepping back in time to the 60s or 70s which I guess was the idea. All the pictures came from the 50s through the 70s.

As a kid, I would spend hours clicking the round slide over and over. For some reason, I remember an outer space slide selection I had. The 3-D made it look like you could touch it. When my son was around 5 we got him one and he loved it. I would recommend picking one up if you see one somewhere…no matter how old you are…they are still fun!

Small View Master

The View-Master was based on the stereoscopic viewer, which dates all the way back to the 1800s.

stereoscope

Why The Beatles Are Still Relevant… and my 5th Year Anniversary.

This is my 5th-year anniversary on WP. Thank you all for still reading and commenting. 

This was part of Dave’s at A Sound Day “Turntable Talk” series…hope you like it. It’s also a more in-depth re-working of my first post on September 18, 2017. I never dreamed I would be accepted in such a large community of like-minded people. It’s not easy to meet Big Star fans in real life…here in this community, they come to you. My mission was…if I could get one person to at least give Badfinger, Big Star, or the Raspberries a listen…my job was done…but it’s been so much more than that because I’ve learned more than I’ve given. Yes, I love the Beatles but they don’t need my cheerleading.

I usually write shorter posts than this…but it was a lot to say on this subject.

So why are The Beatles still popular with older and younger generations? Their influence seems never-ending. It’s as though they have never left. There are other bands that left a legacy but nothing like the footprint of the Beatles.

The Beatles shaped culture instead of following it. Society changed after that appearance on the Ed Sullivan show. They cast such a large net in music compared to everyone else. They influenced everything from rock, folk-rock, power pop, psychedelia, progressive rock, and heavy metal. They practically invented the thought or image of a rock band. They moved passed that and have become a huge part of the culture they helped create.

The Beatle’s breakup was announced in 1970. Many rumors flew that they might regroup through the years but that ended on December 8, 1980, in New York with the assassination of John Lennon.

Through the seventies, the Beatles were still quite popular with the Red and Blue greatest-hits albums released in the early seventies. The greatest hits album Rock and Roll Music (terrible silver cover) was released in 1976. Capitol released Got To Get You In My Life as a single off of the album and it peaked at #1 in Canada and #7 in the Billboard 100 in 1976. This was 10 years after it was released as an album track on Revolver.

I bought my first Beatle album (Hey Jude Again) in 1975 when I was 8 and then bought the Rock and Roll Music album. So, I was a 2nd generation Beatles fan and there were many of us. The solo Beatles dominated the charts to the mid-seventies. After 1975 they had hits but not as many as before. Beatles’ popularity waned in the mid to late 70s when the “newer/ younger” generations considered the Beatles as belonging to their parents. Many youngsters believed Led Zeppelin, Queen, and all newer bands would replace the Beatles in scope and success.

Everything changed when Lennon was murdered. A newer generation heard the music. Their popularity would go up and down but with the first Beatle CDs released in 1987…again another generation heard the Beatles. Sgt Pepper was re-released 20 years after the original and it went to number one.

What really cemented them in the public’s mind happened on November 20, 1995. The Beatles Anthology CDs were released, and the documentary was viewed during prime time on ABC. Since then, they have never left. On November 13, 2000, they released the compilation album “1” which was the best-selling album of the decade worldwide. The Beatles were also the largest selling band between 2000-2010. In 2009 The Beatles Rock Band game came out and…yet another generation found their music. One was my son who was born in 2000.

Between 2010-2020 they remixed and reissued many of their classic albums with 50th-anniversary editions. The Get Back film by Peter Jackson is the latest project that has thrust them in the spotlight again…but really, they have never left.

The bottom line for their staying power is their music. The songwriting was outstanding. Even the early music was something new. They used minor chords, and different rhythms, along with harmonizing over the top. I’m not going to go into musical theory, but they never repeated themselves. Every album stands on its own.  John Lennon’s rhythm guitar was quirky and inventive, George Harrison brought in a Chet Atkins style along with jazz chords, Paul brought bass playing to a new level, and Ringo was a left-hander that played right-handed with an open high hat. The main thing was the songwriting, quality, and quantity that is rarely if ever seen.

Bob Dylan: “Their chords were outrageous, just outrageous, and their harmonies made it all valid.”

They rarely included their singles on albums. Most bands used singles to sell albums, but The Beatles treated both formats as different entities. Songs that weren’t released as singles include Norwegian Wood, You’ve Got To Hide Your Love Away, With A Little Help From My Friends, While My Guitar Gently Weeps, All My Loving, A Day In The Life, Back In The USSR, Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds, Helter Skelter, Michele, The Night Before, and one of the most popular Beatles song Here Comes The Sun, and many more. Any other band would have released these songs as singles but with the Beatles…they were just album cuts. That is how deep their songwriting was at the time, and from 1966 onward George was contributing to the quality as well. George developed into a great songwriter in the impossible situation of being with two of the best in history.

They had more variety than many others. They were rockers in Hamburg and The Cavern. They were pop stars in the Beatlemania years. They were rock-folk-pop in the middle period of Rubber Soul and Revolver. They were Psychedelic rockers during the Sgt Pepper and Magical Mystery Tour era. Then they went back to their roots and were rockers again with the White Album and Let It Be. Abbey Road saw them perfecting their craft in all genres. They knew when to make an exit…while still on top.

They broke up because they outgrew each other and were together constantly, much like brothers. John, Paul, and George grew up together in Liverpool and they knew Ringo well early on. They were never made to stay together like the Stones. The Stones developed a business/brand attitude, but the Beatles were more of a family and things were more personal.

They were not this clean polite band that Brian Epstein and the press created. In fact, the Stones and Beatles’ images should have been reversed… but to make it…they had to clean up to get through the international door. After they did, the door was open for all others. They did however speak of whatever was on their mind. They said things stars just didn’t say, even in the early days. There was something honest about them that is still there to this day.

They were symmetrical… John brought in Paul, Paul brought in George, and George brought in Ringo.

Their story adds depth to their legacy. The odds of them finding Brian Epstein, George Martin, Stuart Sutcliffe, and everyone on the way was nearly zero. If one key person would have would have gone the other way…the story would not be the same or might not have happened.

In a hundred years…the question will still be asked… why are the Beatles still relevant?

Jasper Mall

I watched a documentary on a shopping mall in Alabama that is dying. It’s not a unique story at all. The malls I grew up with are starting to fade away. It’s a sad thing to me.

I came of age in the 1980s and in America, the place to be was the Shopping Mall. We would cruise around, walk around it, and go to the shops inside. No reason and very little money…just hanging out with friends or trying to meet girls. We had to travel to Nashville to see them but we had around 4-5 good size ones that we would visit. Is it the Malls I miss or just being young and cruising around? Probably a little of both.

This mall they are focusing on is in Jasper Alabama and it’s incredibly sad. Knowing these were once vibrant places but Amazon and other online sites have made them obsolete…not to mention the jobs that went with them. As I got older I didn’t really like going in them anymore but I still got a feeling of nostalgia when I think of one.

I would recommend this documentary…it’s not exciting by any means but an interesting story that shows how real people were affected by its dwindling popularity. They try to revive it with different things and to their credit…it’s still open. It was made in 2018 and wiki said they picked that mall because it hadn’t been remodeled since 1981 when it opened.

If you have time to kill and want to watch something different…you could do worse.

I’m Boarding Up the Joint Until September 2, 2022

Hello everyone. As much as I hate to… I’ll be taking a small break from posting after today because of work, home projects, and just to recharge my batteries. I started this blog on September 18, 2017. I’ve been posting regularly since May 2018. WordPress has just told me that I have posted for 1,112 straight days going back to July of 2019…that needs to be broken now.

I had a few more posts scheduled to go, but I will save them for when I return. I genuinely love posting about pop culture and commenting with every one of you…if you agree with me or not. The last time I took time off I was in the hospital for a kidney stone…this time it’s my choice. Hope to see you all when I get back! I figure a good date to return would be Friday, September 2, 2022. Yep…just grabbed that out of the air! I’ll have some good posts lined up. 

I want to say a huge THANK YOU for all the comments in the past and those yet to come…that is what I like about WordPress most of all…the interaction with all of you. That makes it worth it all. 

Thank you to all my regular readers and the newer ones. I wish all of you a wonderful August! See ya in September!

I will be back soon Message Stock Photo by ©stanciuc1 67298191

Kinks – Set Me Free

The Beatles, Who, and Stones are the most famous bands that came out of the British invasion. The Kinks should have been one of them but an American ban on touring in a big chunk of the sixties hurt their career. Instead of sounding like their American influences like the Beatles and Stones…Ray Davies didn’t hide his roots at all.

They came back strong in the seventies and eighties though. On May 17, 1983, I was able to see The Kinks in concert. Ray Davies was 39 years old and was all over the stage like a 20-year-old. That remains one of the best concerts I ever attended. It’s up there with The Who, McCartney, and Stones…in fact maybe a little better because they were still in their prime and releasing new material.

Set Me Free peaked at #23 in the Billboard 100, #2 in Canada, and #9 in the UK in 1965. Set Me Free was heard in the Ken Loach-directed Up the Junction, this marked the first appearance of a Kinks song on a film or TV soundtrack.

When you listen to their discography it’s amazing the ground they covered. There are tons of different musical styles, which the group has explored throughout their career. Starting with the pre-punk rock of You Really Got Me, acoustic anthems like Victoria, the beauty of Waterloo Sunset, the concept albums, music hall influences, hard rock, and even some new wave in the 80s.

The band seemed to be always on the brink of breaking up but they stayed together until 1996. In 2021 it was reported that the Kinks were at work in the studio once again.

Ray Davies: “the trouble is, the two remaining members — my brother Dave and Mick [Avory, the original drummer] — never got along very well. But I’ve made that work in the studio and it’s fired me up to make them play harder, and with fire.”

Dave Davies: “This has really been going on for a couple of years, we keep going backwards and listening to a lot of old stuff. Some of that is very good, and some of it needs a bit of work.”

Set Me Free

Set me free, little girl,
All you gotta do is set me free, little girl,
You know you can do it if you try,
All you gotta do is set me free, free,
Free.

Set me free, little girl,
All you gotta do is set me free, little girl,
You know you can do it if you try,
All you gotta do is set me free, free,
Free, free.

I don’t want no one,
If I can’t have you to myself,
I don’t need nobody else,
So if I can’t have you to myself,

Set me free,
Set me free.

Oh set me free, little girl,
All you gotta do is set me free, little girl,
You know you can do it if you try,
All you gotta do is set me free, free,
Free, free.

I don’t want no one,
If I can’t have you to myself,
I don’t need nobody else,
So if I can’t have you to myself,

Set me free,
Set me free.

Oh set me free, little girl,
All you gotta do is set me free, little girl,
You know you can do it if you try,
All you gotta do is set me free, free,
Free.

Set me free,
Oh, set me free

Rock Star Hologram Tours

It’s gone past simple holograms…they are now avatars (the ABBA reunion). For the sake of this post… I’ll call them holograms. This post is basically me arguing with myself and wanting some input.

I’ve thought about the subject of the dead rock star hologram tours off and on. I apologize for putting it so bluntly but that is what it is. Something in me just tells me there is something inherently wrong about this. So I hate to ask myself this…but would I want to go to a Jimi Hendrix show playing near me? Uh…yes I would and I feel bad about saying that. I would probably go and then hate the decision later. How could they capture Jimi Hendrix? I don’t see how someone could capture a performer like him…who was different every time he played.

I was surprised at my answer that I would even go. On the other hand, we have laser shows with bands’ music…so what is the big difference? We also have duets with Paul McCartney singing with John Lennon right now on Paul’s tour. When I saw The Who, there was Keith Moon singing “Bell Boy” in a film from a concert in the 70s while the current Who was playing. I also got to see Beatlemania with artists dressed up as The Beatles…somewhat different than this but is it really?

It’s something that I think will happen in the near future for different stars no matter if we like it or not. Holograms have been around for a while. In 1977 The Who presented a promotional event just for their fans with this Keith Moon hologram (with the real Keith Moon in attendance) and in another event in 2009…obviously without the real Keith in attendance.

Keith is near the end of his life in this version…you can tell it’s older with the greenwash all around. The big difference is now …the holograms sing, move, and play their instruments or rather they appear to do that. There have been shows now built around Buddy Holly, Roy Orbison, Elvis, Ronnie James Dio, ABBA (who are very much alive),  Whitney Houston, Tupac, Billie Holiday, Wilson Pickett, and more.

The families are in control now and will decide. I’ll ask myself again…would I want to see the Hamburg or Cavern Beatles? The 1972 Rolling Stones? the 1969 Who? The 1950’s Elvis? AC/DC with Bon Scott? 1970 Janis Joplin? The Doors?

Yes to all the questions I asked but…I’m not sure how I would feel.

What do you think? Would it be unsettling to see a long-gone performer in their prime again a few feet from you? Would you go see a show (not really a concert) of your favorite deceased performer?

Now, on the other hand, there is another angle. If Bob Dylan, who is very much alive, would announce tomorrow that a 1966 version of himself was going on tour…would I go? Oh yes, I would and I would not feel bad at all. ABBA just did this also. So why do I think I would feel different about seeing Jimi, Lennon, Janis, or someone else that has long been gone?

Before you answer…now, current bands can play in Washington and be projected as holograms in London simultaneously…so it’s taken a huge jump. See the bottom video. No traveling in stuffy vans….just play at your local pizza joint and be somewhere else also. So our band could play in my garage and be on stage at Carnegie Hall and interact with the audience. I have to wonder how far it will go?

Skipping School

Skipping School…I was known to do this dastardly deed a few times in my high school life. I have a scar to remind me of one time hiding in some barn where I shouldn’t have been and sliding down and cutting my hand on something trying to get out. That is not the one I want to talk about this time though.

My friend Kenny had a black 1969 Chevelle Super Sport and it was fast. We decided one morning, that we were not going to attend school that day. Kenny had just put new wheels on his car and we were going to Nashville. I’m not sure what we were planning to do that particular day but it did not include listening to teachers.

We were on the interstate and Kenny was flooring it like he always did and suddenly we heard a loud POP. We didn’t think anything about it and kept rolling…again another POP. We looked at each other but were having too much fun and then POP POP…after that fourth POP…he started to slow from 90 and the car didn’t feel right…he finally pulled to the side of the road. 4 of the 5 wheel studs that held the wheel on was gone…hence the four POPs we heard.

One lug nut was the only thing between us and losing our wheel and ending in a crumpled mess. We ended up calling Kenny’s dad who owned a car shop in Nashville. We got the car fixed and were on our way again…but I think back on how that could have ended differently.

The next day Kenny was called to the principal’s office. He was punished for skipping school and spent a week or so in the “rubber room.” That is what we called detention. It was a room beside the cafeteria where you would sit and do homework or read in silence. When you went to lunch… all of the delinquents in the room would get up and walk together to eat lunch…but not talk.

As for your humble writer…I heard nothing at all about the escape from school until…two weeks later. That is when yours truly was called to the office. “Max do you want a paddling or rubber room?” To this day I don’t know how they found out or had the goods on me. I know Kenny didn’t tell…he didn’t want me to get caught. I have my suspicions but I enjoyed myself anyway.

I took the rubber room choice because I liked it. I could catch up with my homework or read a good book…I would claim it was for a book report and I enjoyed peace and quiet for a week.

This should have taught me a valuable lesson…but alas it didn’t quite do the trick. My mom was a single mom and she kept up with me the best she could…but I did make good grades so I took advantage of the situation. There would be more skipping days to come. Any interesting stories out there?

Bonnie Tyler – It’s a Heartache

Late seventies at the skating rink…this one was played and that is what I think of. I knew enough about Rod Stewart at the time I was 10-11 to think this was him for a while. My sister got the single and I loved it. Rod Stewart finally covered the song in 2007.

It’s a Heartache was released in 1978 and peaked at #3 in the Billboard 100, #4 in the UK, and #1 in Canada. It also crossed over to the country charts at #10. The single sold over 6 million copies. This song fits Bonnie Tyler’s voice perfectly. The song was written by Ronnie Scott and Steve Wolfe.

Bonnie Tyler had throat problems severe enough to require surgery in 1976, the procedure can often be career-threatening. In this case, however, the nodules that she developed singing in nightclubs in her native Wales turned out to be career-making. She was told not to speak 6 weeks after her surgery but she did and it helped cause the rasp.

Some useless trivia… The two weeks that “It’s A Heartache” was at #3, for those two weeks the #1 record was “Shadow Dancing” by Andy Gibb and at #2 was “Baker Street” by Gerry Rafferty

The drummer on this song was Mike Gibbons of Badfinger.

It’s a Heartache

It’s a heartache
Nothing but a heartache
Hits you when it’s too late
Hits you when you’re down

It’s a fool’s game
Nothing but a fool’s game
Standing in the cold rain
Feeling like a clown

It’s a heartache
Nothing but a heartache
Love him ’til your arms break
Then he let’s you down

It ain’t right with love to share
When you find he doesn’t care for you
It ain’t wise to need someone
As much as I depended on you

Oh, it’s a heartache
Nothing but a heartache
Hits you when it’s too late
Hits you when you’re down

It’s a fool’s game
Nothing but a fool’s game
Standing in the cold rain
Feeling like a clown

It ain’t right with love to share
When you find he doesn’t care for you
It ain’t wise to need someone
As much as I depended on you

Oh, it’s a heartache
Nothing but a heartache
You love him ’til your arms break
Then he let’s you down

It’s a fool’s game
Standing in the cold rain
Feelin’ like a clown
It’s a heartache
Love him ’til your arms break
Then he let’s you down
It’s a fool’s game

Alarm – Sixty Eight Guns

I saw The Alarm open up for someone and I think it was Dylan in the late eighties. At that time I didn’t know who they were but I liked them right away. I kept up with them after that concert. This song stood out from all the ones they did.

When they first started out…like most rock bands they were rebellious. “Sixty Eight Guns” was their battle cry, a call to arms against the establishment. This attitude was formed in their hometown of Rhyl, North Wales, where they grew up in bleak economic times and fought naysayers who saw no need for another rabble-rousing rock band.

The song was written by bass player Eddie Macdonald and lead singer Mike Peters. Many reviews at the time compared them to U2…also calling them U3 at times. The Alarm gained a huge audience by opening up for…guess who? They opened for U2 on a large 1983 tour. This song was released in 1983 and peaked a #39 on the Billboard Top Rock Tracks and #17 in the UK.

In 1991 The Alarm was doing a concert and lead singer Mike Peters suddenly said “We’ve shared some great moments in time over the last ten years and tonight I would like to thank all the people who have supported me from the beginning to the end. Tonight this is my last moment with the Alarm, I’m going out in a Blaze of Glory – my hands are held up high”…… It would have been nice if he would have shared this little bit of info with his bandmates before the concert!

They did regroup occasionally and they have switched up members but have continued to release albums in the 21st century under the name The Alarm MM++.

Mike Peters: “It was about young people at that difficult age where you’re too cool for school, but not wise enough or eligible enough for adult life, So, it’s about people like that – like I was, once. We hung around on street corners, we started bands, we bought clothes, we identified with each other, and we credit these very bonded groups of individuals. And that’s how the Alarm grew.”

“It was a gang that made The Alarm special, ‘Sixty Eight Guns’ is really the description of the feeling that you could make change for yourself and make your life a better place to be in.”

Sixty Eight Guns

And now they’re trying to take my life away 
Forever young I cannot stay
Hey
On every corner I can see them there
They don’t know my name they don’t know my kind
They’re after you with their promises
(Promises of love)
They’re after you to sign your life away
(Yeah, yeaoh)

Sixty-eight Guns will never die
Sixty-eight Guns our battle cry
Sixty-eight Guns
Sixty-eight Guns
Oh, the Sixty-eight

Living in the backstreets 
That’s our home from home
The painted walls were all we’ve ever known 
?he Guns Forever’ that’s our battle cry
It is the flag that we fly so high 
For every day they’ll try and drag us down
(Drag us down and down)
I cry with anger I have done no crime
No
(Yeah, yeaoh)

Sixty-eight Guns will never die
Sixty-eight Guns our battle cry
Sixty-eight Guns will never die
Sixty-eight Guns our battle cry
Sixty-eight Guns
Sixty-eight Guns
The Sixty-eight

Up on the terrace I can hear the crowd roar 
Sixty Eight Guns
And in the subway I can hear them whisper 
Sixty Eight Guns
Through all the raging glory of the years 
We never once thought of the fears 
For what we’d do when the battle cry was over . 
Nothing lasts forever is all they seem to tell you when you’re young 

(I, I do swear
To unbreak the promise
To unbreak the vow

Unbreak it)

When you’re young
Have no illusion, no disillusion

Unbreak the promise
Unbreak the vow
Uphold the promise

SIXTY EIGHT GUNS

Sixty-eight Guns will never die
Sixty-eight Guns our battle cry
Sixty-eight Guns will never die
Sixty-eight Guns our battle cry
Sixty-eight Guns
Sixty-eight Guns
The sixty eight guns
Sixty eight guns
The sixty eight guns

Cheap Trick – Southern Girls ….Power Pop Friday

I hope everyone is having a wonderful Friday!

When I think of Cheap Trick, I think of a checkered pattern and the 5-neck guitar of Rick Nielson. I guess I should add power pop to that list that they carried on from bands such as Badfinger, The Raspberries, and Big Star.

I got to see Cheap Trick in 1984 at Opryland in Nashville. Opryland was a theme park that was foolishly closed in the late 90s so Nashville could have yet another mall. The concert was short…it was only an hour but they are one of the best bands I got to see. Cheap Trick has always been one of the hardest-working bands in rock. They seem to always be on tour since the 70s.

The band fits in with just about any type of band. They have shared the bill with John Mellencamp, KISS, Krokus, REO Speedwagon, The Who, Motley Crue, Kool and the Gang, Iron Maiden, The Oak Ridge Boys, and Willie Dixon. How much more variety does anyone need? When you go from the Oak Ridge Boys, Mellencamp, and Iron Maiden…you have ran the gamut.

The lyrics were inspired by women the band met in southern Canada. However, Rick Nielsen didn’t like the sound of “Southern Canadian Girls” in the hook, so he just left it as “Southern Girls.”

Rick Nielsen and Cheap Trick’s bass player Tom Petersson wrote the song.

The song was on the album In Color, you can find a review at  John’s site (2 Loud 2 Old Music) …great info. The album was released in 1977 and was produced by Tom Werman. He took their sound and produced a more power pop radio sound than their debut album.

This is the album that paved their way to stardom in Japan and later on Live at Budokan that was their breakthrough in the US. Five out of the 10 tracks on this album ended up on the live album.

Southern Girls

I’ve been north,
I’ve been east to the California beach
There’s only one place I know where to find you
And all you Southern girls got a way with your words
And you show it
You say hump and I’ll jump
You say go and I’ll know
Waste no time getting
So close to you
And you’ll never run way
When you find out why I wanted to find you

Ooh baby need some brand new shoes
Get out on the street
You got nothing to lose
You rock me and your crazy
And everyone says it, yeah yeah
Southern girls, you got nothing to lose
Southern girls, you got nothing to lose

I’ve been up I’ve been down
I’ve been weak I’ve been strong
But I never met someone like you
And you’ll never run away
When you find why I wanted to find you
You say hump and I’ll jump
You say go and I’ll know
Waste no time getting
So close to you
All you Southern girls
Got a way with your words
And you show it

Ooh baby need some brand new shoes
Get out on the street
You got nothing to lose
You rock me and your crazy
And everyone says it, yeah yeah
Southern girls, you got nothing to lose
Southern girls, you got nothing to lose

You think this boy, he loves you
Southern girls
You make it hard oh, so hard
I’ve been north, I’ve been east to the California beach
There’s only one place I know where to find you
And all you Southern girls got a way with your words
And you show it

Ooh baby need some brand new shoes
Get out on the street
You got nothing to lose
You rock me and your crazy
And everyone says it, yeah yeah

Southern girls, you got nothing to lose
Southern girls, you got nothing to lose
Southern girls
Southern girls
Southern girls

Cream – Badge

During my senior year in high school in 1985, I had their greatest hits. I wore it out and became a huge Cream fan. I went to an old music store a couple of years ago and they had an original 60s  Leslie Cabinet. Why am I bringing that up? That is what Clapton is playing through on this song.  A Leslie Cabinet (I have video at the bottom of the post) contains a rotating horn and was designed for organs, but many tried it with guitars. It gives an organ guitar a swirling sound. The Beatles used it a lot.

One of my favorite Cream songs. Badge was written by Eric Clapton and George Harrison. In George’s handwritten lyrics he wrote the word “Bridge” as in bridge of a song and Clapton thought it read “Badge” so they named the song that. In 1969 Badge peaked at #60 on the Billboard 100 Charts, #18 on the UK Charts, and #49 in Canada.

It appeared on Cream’s final album Goodbye. This song is one of only 3 studio tracks on Goodbye…the rest are live cuts. Badge would be the only Cream song to include 5 people…in addition to Clapton, Bruce, Baker and Harrison, Felix Pappalardi played the piano and Mellotron. Pappalardi produced Disreali GearsWheels Of Fire, and Goodbye. Robert Stigwood produced their debut album Fresh Cream.

Cream were broke up when this album was released. Clapton was already working with Blind Faith. The did reunite for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction in 1993 and played 3 songs. In 2005 the band reunited at the Royal Albert Hall…the location of their last concert in 1969 and later in the year at Madison Square Gardens.

I will say…it’s hard for me to listen to the 2005 reunion. Clapton chose to play his Fender guitar and it just didn’t have the bite his Gibson SG had in the Cream days. I didn’t expect the long jams but I do wish he would have been a bit dirtier in his sound. The musicianship though was great.

Don’t study the lyrics too much. They don’t make much sense. Supposedly many of them came from drunk conversations with George and Ringo.

George Harrison: I helped Eric write “Badge” you know. Each of them had to come up with a song for that Goodbye Cream album and Eric didn’t have his written. We were working across from each other and I was writing the lyrics down and we came to the middle part, so I wrote ‘Bridge.’ Eric read it upside down and cracked up laughing – ‘What’s BADGE?’ he said. After that, Ringo walked in drunk and gave us that line about the swans living in the park

Hope I didn’t bore you all with the Leslie Cabinet information, but I really like them. In this video you will see how  it works and why an organ gets that swirling sound. A sixties model costs around $3000 and up. 

Back to our song of the day!

Badge

Thinkin’ ’bout the times you drove in my car.
Thinkin’ that I might have drove you too far.
And I’m thinkin’ ’bout the love that you laid on my table.

I told you not to wander ’round in the dark.
I told you ’bout the swans, that they live in the park.
Then I told you ’bout our kid: now he’s married to Mabel.

Yes, I told you that the light goes up and down.
Don’t you notice how the wheel goes ’round?
And you better pick yourself up from the ground
Before they bring the curtain down.
Yes, before they bring the curtain down.

Ah Ah Ah, yeh yeh yeh
Ah Ah Ah, yeh yeh yeh

Talkin’ ’bout a girl that looks quite like you.
She didn’t have the time to wait in the queue.
She cried away her life since she fell off the cradle.

Dave having A Sound Day

Thanks to Max, aka “Badfinger” for giving me the chance to write something for his site today! He’s likewise written something cool about the band from which he took his screen-name, for my site, A Sound Day, (http://soundday.wordpress.com today)  One of the best things about writing a blog, for about four years now, has been getting to know other bloggers with similar interests and read their posts. Of those, Badfinger has been a favorite of mine almost since I came to WordPress. I’m amazed that he and I are similar in age and have very similar tastes in music, and in baseball as well. So, needless to say he’s a pretty cool guy!

What I do at A Sound Day is post daily articles generally involving things which have happened on that calendar day in the world of music – album releases, records hitting #1, musicians having birthdays, that sort of thing.  A simple enough idea, and one which I must admit wasn’t entirely original. A decade or so back, ex-Sex Pistol John Lydon (aka Johnny Rotten) ran a short syndicated radio bit called “A Rotten Day” which did the same basically, but in headline form delivered in his characteristically snarky persona. So, it’s not a unique idea, but I try to go beyond the headlines and tell a story.  Make it interesting. For example, we pretty much all know the song “Midnight Train to Georgia”, but how many knew it was indirectly inspired by a Mississippi songwriter talking to Farrah Fawcett? Lots of us like London Calling, but do we know that the big hit single on it, “Train in Vain” wasn’t included on the track listing printed on the record because it wasn’t supposed to be on the album? How about an avant garde new wave rocker who has a successful second career writing books about archaeology?  It’s the details that make the stories interesting and I try to find them… and remind people of some great music that they might have forgotten. Or introduce them to music I love that they might not have even heard. Grudgingly, I sometimes even cover music that, well, didn’t really get my motor running but was important in its own way, and try to listen to it with a fresh ear. If it was rock, or pop, or maybe even occasionally country, and it was from the ’60s to the end of the century, I’ve probably given it a look.  That’s kind of an overview of what I do there, but let me tell you a bit about why.

Music has always been important to me. A big part of my memories… so much so that it can be an almost Rainman-like, frustrating ability. I can barely remember the names of my teachers or classmates from 1974, for example, but I can probably name two-thirds of the #1 songs of that year without ever looking to Google or Wiki. I couldn’t tell you the name of a girl I might have danced with at a junior high dance, but I can still recall the song was “Car Wash” by Rose Royce.

Mind you, there weren’t a lot of dances for young me. I was rather ill a lot of the time, and had by 1970s standards, a very over-protective mother…although by today’s standards, she was pretty lax. At least I walked or cycled to school myself instead of being driven to the door. But if it was raining, or cold, I probably wouldn’t be going out with friends to hang out on the weekend – “you’d get sick.” So I was home (with chain-smoking adults) and prone to lots of asthma attacks and bouts of pneumonia. Things like reading, looking outside at the birds coming to the feeder and music took on an import to me that many wouldn’t be able to relate to. Music especially.

Both my parents liked music, and every vague memory I have of being very young seems to have included music somewhere in the background. One of my first memories was listening to Sgt.Pepper and marveling in the weird but delightful sounds coming from the big wooden-cabinet stereo in the living room, while being dazzled by the funny-looking cover of the record. I can’t say whether it was my Mom or my brother who had the album… my Mom loved the Beatles and my older brother was a rocker as long as I can remember. One time just after he was old enough to drive, my Dad let him drive the car home most of the way from a family Florida vacation. He played Wish You Were Here on 8-track for almost the entire ride. It took some years for me to be able to listen to that with happy ears, I can tell you!  Pop, Beatles, Glen Campbell, some old-school country now and again… there always seemed to be music on in the house when I was little.

Around when I was five, I was given a little transistor radio. Might have been for my birthday, might have been for Christmas. I can’t remember. What I do remember is that little black plastic, mono radio with its’ rotating dial and tiny earbud let me listen to my own music…and life was never the same. And here, I feel very lucky because I grew up near Toronto, Canada… so I got to mature listening to two of the coolest radio stations on the continent…CHUM when I was a kid, and CFNY as I grew towards adulthood.

The first station I seemed to find on that little transistor was 1050 CHUM. A Toronto “hits” station that was by far the most-listened to station in the entire country at the time. It had been around since, well about since Noah went looking for two giraffes and two hornets ( did you really have to take them…but I digress!) but one which had switched to rock and pop before the curve, in 1957. “All Shook Up” was the first song they played apparently, and their first #1 song. Madonna’s “Live to Tell” was its final one, 29 years later before it changed formats (the station still exists but is now talk sports apparently) so it covered my early school and junior high years. My tuner rarely swayed back then, even though my radios got better and better through the ’70s, to a big transistor with a big built-in speaker to one of those only-in-the-70s white, plastic stereos with rounded corners and a turntable on top. And I put that to use; while other kids were spending their allowances on chocolate bars or comic books, I was saving my coins til we went to the mall and I could buy “Chevy Van” or “Don’t Call Us, We’ll Call You” as singles. I still remember the first LP I bought – Elton John’s Greatest Hits. Nearly 50 years later, that still seems like a pretty decent place to start.

chumchart

CHUM was a pretty conventional “top 40” station, even though it actually had a “top 30”. And a cool thing about that was they actually published it weekly… I’d stop by the basement of Eatons and go to the records and pick up a little folder with the top 30 songs listed inside, as the picture shows. And take a look at that, a fairly typical example of one. Rock – how ’bout BTO or Rick Derringer? Country, dare you say? Umm, Tom T. Hall, John Denver. Cool pop? Elton John, Wings. Disco? It’s there. In fact, CHUM let us hear pretty much everything that was hot in the decade from Motown to Meco to McCartney. It was one of the great things about the decade, its music (which Max nicely reminded us last week with his 70s AM Radio series) and radio before it became too formulated and narrow in playlists. Plus, it mixed in a fair bit of Canadian content. That helped the homegrown artists and let us hear even more of a range of music. The world knew Anne Murray and BTO but we knew Wednesday (from my hometown, their biggest hit being a cover of “Last Kiss”) and Edward Bear too. Years before he was writing “Black Velvet” for his girlfriend Alannah Myles, we knew Christopher Ward as a decent singer of soft-rock ballads (www.youtube.com/watch?v=2E1VgsoS6i4 ) thanks to CHUM.

One thing Toronto was great for – many say best in North America – was being open to new sounds and “obscure” British music. By 1980, CHUM’s list of #1 songs included some classic rock mega-names – Led Zeppelin, John Lennon, Pink Floyd – but also things like “Turning Japanese” by the Vapors and “Making Plans for Nigel” by XTC. That might have been inspired a bit by the second great station that I lived with – CFNY.

cfny

CFNY-FM was a station started in the late-’70s in “the little yellow farmhouse” in the outer suburbs. It’s reach was only a few miles at first; it’s nickname “the Spirit of Radio”… yes the one and the same name Rush wrote a song about. It concentrated on finding and playing great music other stations ignored. If you were going to hear the Damned, solo Peter Gabriel or Depeche Mode years before other people would in Canada, it was going to be on CFNY. As time went by though the station relocated, bought more powerful transmistors and was broadcasting to half a million regular listeners from the CN Tower. And making bands like the Psychedelic Furs and The Smths huge, arena-selling artists in Toronto. Such was their sway in the area that soon other stations began copying them to some degree. Not many hard rock stations were playing A Flock of Seagulls or “music at work” stations The Stranglers, but in Toronto they were. They had to to compete. Now, don’t get me wrong. I actually liked Bruce Springsteen, John Mellencamp, even Madonna and I did hear them, once in awhile turning over to a hit station, or watching Much Music (our version of MTV) but by listening to so much CFNY I found incredible music by artists most elsewhere in North America never heard of – It’s Immaterial, Black (Liverpool singer Colin Vearncombe), (www.youtube.com/watch?v=koRT3HEmre4 )

Sinead O’Connor long before she flipped her wig and became a Saturday Night Live punchline.  And as with CHUM, CFNY highlighted a lot of great Canadian acts. A couple of them went on to become national heroes with a lengthy string of platinum records at home… while remaining anonymous outside the Great White North. Blue Rodeo and Tragically Hip. The latter had very Canadian-oriented lyrics that made them so endeared the Prime Minister attended their final concert… which was televised nationwide on the national network! The former mixed country and rock seamlessly to create a great music that at the time defied labels – alt country? Country rock? Later it would probably be described as one of the early examples of “Americana” music (www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mqa4YzKPrFw ), following the traditions of The Band before them. Something we took to by the millions up there… but wouldn’t likely have ever heard were it not for that one station championing them in the early days. See an example of one of their year-end charts below.

When I was six or seven, and coughing and my parents were fighting, I could be in my room listening to Jim Gold or the Doobie Brothers on that transistor radio…and feel kind of happy. A decade or so later, I didn’t fit in that well in many places but when I went to the indie record store and picked up the latest import 12” Depeche Mode single, I was everyone else’s equal… the equivalent of a Sheldon in Stuart’s comic book shop on Big Bang Theory. Music was my friend.

It still is, and I feel priviledged to be able to help you discover some of it, and make some human friends all the while doing so. Thanks again Max, for giving me this space today.

Velvet Underground – There She Goes Again

Being a fan of bands like this is like being in a secret club. When you do find a person who knows Big Star, The Velvet Underground, or any other band like that…you usually have found a friend.

In the 80s a buddy of mine had some Velvet Underground albums (same one with Big Star albums) and I loved what I heard. After I started to know some of their songs, I wanted to talk to other people about them…most people I talked to never knew who I was talking about. Lou Reed they knew but not this band. That is when I learned what a cult band was…after being introduced to Big Star and Velvet Underground by the same person…I’ll never be able to thank him enough.

This song was on their debut album The Velvet Underground & Nico it was released in 1967. Lou Reed wrote There She Goes Again. The lyrics to this song must have sounded outrageous to the listeners in 1967. The album only charted at #129 in the Billboard 100 and that would be the best charting LP of all of their 5 original albums.

Their compilation album VU did peak at #85 in 1985.

The band got its name from the 1963 paperback book of the same title. Cover quote on the book: “Here is an incredible book. It will shock and amaze you. But as a documentary on the sexual corruption of our age, it is a must for every thinking adult.”

It came with an introduction by Louis Berg, M.D. Cover price: sixty cents. Lou Reed called it “the funniest dirty book he’d ever read.

The Velvet Underground – “Velvet Underground” by Michael Leigh / 1963 Book  The Band Took Their Name From

From Songfacts

“There She Goes Again” is the 8th track from the Velvet Underground’s debut album, reaching up the Billboard Hot 100 charts at… oh, wait, the Velvet Underground never charted. However as Velvet Underground songs go, this one is perhaps the most mainstream-sounding.

The lyrics more than make up for the ear-friendly notes, however, when you realize that this song is about a woman falling into prostitution. And in fact it does so with gritty references to being on her knees and walking the streets – maybe not so shocking today, but monocle-popping in 1967.

On December 11, 1965, the Velvets appeared at the Summit High School Auditorium for one of their first paid gigs, alongside two other bands since long forgotten. Their set began with this song, then went to “Venus In Furs,” and finished with “Heroin.” At a high school. Sterling Morrison later recounted in a 1983 interview that a “murmur of surprise” changed to “a roar of disbelief” and then to “a mighty howl of outrage and bewilderment” over the course of their three-song set.

Musically, this song does borrow from Marvin Gaye’s “Hitch Hike” – give it a listen. It’s even more obvious of an influence if you listen to the Rolling Stones cover on the Out of Our Heads album – there’s the guitar riff and the pronounced stops.

That album cover for The Velvet Underground & Nico – have you ever thought about how, if you peel off the sticker, the revealed banana is pink? Isn’t that an… interesting color choice for a… peeled banana? It’s almost like Andy Warhol was trying to convey some subtle Freudian signal to us. Pink banana.

There She Goes Again

There she goes again (There she goes again)
She’s out on the streets again (There she goes again)
She’s down on her knees, my friend (There she goes again)
But you know she’ll never ask you please again (There she goes again)

Now take a look, there’s no tears in her eyes
She won’t take it from just any guy, what can you do (There she goes again)
You see her walkin’ on down the street (There she goes again)
Look at all your friends she’s gonna meet (There she goes again)
You better hit her

There she goes again (There she goes)
She’s knocked out on her feet again (There she goes)
She’s down on her knees, my friend (There she goes)
But you know she’ll never ask you please again (There she goes)

Now take a look, there’s no tears in her eyes
Like a bird, you know she would fly, what can you do (There she goes)
You see her walkin’ on down the street (There she goes)
Look at all your friends that she’s gonna meet (There she goes)
You better hit her

Now take a look, there’s no tears in her eyes
Like a bird, you know she will fly, fly, fly away (Fly, fly, fly)
See her walking on down the street
Look at all your friends that she’s gonna meet

She’s gonna bawl and shout, she’s gonna work it
She’s gonna work it out, bye bye
Bye by by by by by bye baby
She’s all right

Nazareth – Love Hurts

I owned Nazareth’s Hair of the Dog on 8-track tape (a book about 8-tracks from Deke) that was given to me as a kid. I still remember that CLICK during the title song. I expect to hear it when I listen to it today.  The only version I knew of Love Hurts was Nazareth for the longest time. Later I found out it has been covered by many people including The Everly Brothers.

I saw Nazareth in the early 80s. Dan McCafferty’s voice was rough, loud, and great. Instead of talking to the audience he screamed through a very hot mic…but they were awesome. The opened up for Billy Squire but I would have loved to seem them headline.

The album this song was on was Hair of the Dog. It would be Nazareth’s biggest album. The album peaked at #17 in the Billboard Album Charts and #20 in Canada in 1975.

Nazareth released Love Hurts as a single late in 1974. Surprisingly, it tanked, but in April 1975 it became a hit in South Africa, prompting their label, A&M, to release it in America. It took a while, but radio stations in Texas started playing the song, and others around the country gradually followed suit.

The song peaked at #1 in Canada and #8 in the Billboard 100 and #41 in the UK. Nazareth got their name from the first line of the Band’s “The Weight” – “I pulled into Nazareth…”

The Everly Brothers may have been the first to cover it, but they never released the song as a single. They planned to release this as a single, but industry politics got in the way. The group was managed by Wesley Rose, who was part owner of the publishing company Acuff-Rose. After a string of hits for Cadence Records, they left for Warner Bros. in 1960, and continued to make hits but Rose wanted them to release singles for which Acuff-Rose owned the publishing, and when the duo recorded covers of “Lucille” and “Temptation” (a song from 1933), he protested, leading to a split and a legal dispute. Rose had another one of his clients, Roy Orbison, record “Love Hurts” and released it as the B-side to his #1 hit “Running Scared” in 1961.

Don Everly: “Wesley covered us with Roy Orbison, which was outlandishly selfish,” Don Everly said in Walk Right Back: The Everly Brothers On Warner Bros. “The arrangement was ours, and it was written for us. We couldn’t release it as a single because we didn’t know if Acuff-Rose would license it or not because we were in a lawsuit with them. It got that bitter.”

Pete Aginew Nazareth bassist: “We all loved the song. We often covered songs that we liked that we used to listen to on tape. Every now and then, we’d just go back and try to do something with one of these things. If you could change it and make it yours, we’d do it in the studio and see if we could do something about it. When we did Love Hurts, I believe there were 42 different versions recorded of it. The one we used to listen to was Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris, off the “Grievous Angel” [1974] album. We used to have that in our van and we loved the song. […] We recorded “Love Hurts” as a b-side and that’s how we saw it. Of course, when I hear it now, it’s probably one of the best rock ballads of all time and definitely the vocal is in the top three.”

From Songfacts

Nazareth made this song a hit, but it was originally released by the Everly Brothers on their 1960 album A Date With The Everly Brothers. Like their heartbreak hit from 1957, “Bye Bye Love,” it was written by Boudleaux Bryant.

Young love is hot with passion, but it burns you when it’s hot. The guy in this song has just made this discovery, which is a revelation of sorts – all those singing the praises of love are fools who will soon be burned, as love is just a lie made to make you blue.

The original Everly Brothers version runs 2:23 and is delivered in their distinctive, pleasing harmonies. The Nazareth version is 3:03, with sandpaper vocals by lead singer Dan McCafferty screamed out as if he’s falling into the pit of despair.

The group is from Scotland and had three UK hits under their belts when 
Nazareth’s Stateside success was short lived: “Holiday” reached #87 in 1980, and “Love Leads To Madness” went to #105 in 1982, but none of their other songs charted there.

The album version runs 3:52, with a guitar solo by Manny Charlton that is not on the 3:03 single.

By the time Nazareth brought this song to life, the Everly Brothers had been split for three years. When they re-formed in 1983, they added the song to their setlists for the first time, starting with their reunion concert at Royal Albert Hall, which was released as a live album. In later years, it sometimes seemed like they were singing it to each other on stage, as their relationship had clearly soured.

The Everly Brothers recorded a new version on their 1965 album Rock’n Soul. Other artists to release it include Ray Peterson, Jimmy Webb, and Gram Parsons with Emmylou Harris. Jim Capaldi is the only other artist to chart with the song; he took it to #97 US in December 1975.

***A Real 8-Track Museum in Dallas Texas***

Love Hurts

Love hurts

Love scars

Love wounds and marks

Any heart not tough or strong enough

To take a lot of pain, take a lot of pain

Love is like a cloud, it holds a lot of rain

Love hurts

Ooh love hurts

I’m young

I know

But even so

I know a thing or two, I learned from you

I really learned a lot, really learned a lot

Love is like a flame, it burns you when it’s hot

Love hurts

Ooh love hurts

Some fools think

Of happiness, blissfulness, togetherness

Some fools fool themselves, I guess

They’re not foolin’ me

I know it isn’t true I know it isn’t true

Love is just a lie made to make you blue

Love hurts

Ooh love hurts

Ooh love hurts

I know it isn’t true

I know it isn’t true

Love is just a lie made to make you blue

Love hurts

Ooh love hurts

Ooh, love hurts, ooh