Sunday, July 29, 2018

The Same Damn Song Twice. Maybe Even Three, Four Times

So a little while ago and it feels like months now.

Oh wait it was,

but it happened nonetheless.

I had a little period where the only music that made any sense to me at all was the recorded output of one of the greatest live bands to currently stalk the Earth, Southern Culture on the Skids.

 So I was listening to them quite a bit.

One of their perennial live highlights is their rendition of a song called "Daddy was a Preacher but Mama was a Go-Go Girl" Mary Huff just sings the living shit out of it.

Despite how easily it fits with the rest of their catalogue this song is actually a cover.

Joanna Neel (1971)

The songs was on the label as being coauthored by Joanna & her husband Bob and released as a B-side to a song called "Perfect Strangers" with a nice Nashville professional sound to it. But fortunately (!?) hers is not the only contemporary recording of the tune.

Betty Jo Bangs (1971)

A lady by the name of Betty Jo Bangs also released her own recording around the same time which she credits to herself. (The difference seems to be the inclusion of the word "but" in the title.
It's a little less polished, but no less charming and sincere a recording as you could want. Hers was backed by another Betty Jo credited song "Journey into Yesterday".

Based on the promo picture linked above she seems like a fine, upstanding lady with excellent posture. (I have been unable to locate a shot of Ms. Neel)

I also haven't readily been able to determine who the real songwriter is from ten minutes of casual googling nor do I really care. They both are. I like them.

But wait! That's not all!

But I did find that there was yet another recording by  one Miss DeLois & the Music Men that was released in 1972. I haven't been able to track down a copy of that one for myself, but I did locate a video of her doing the song on Youtube.

Good luck scrubbing that from your eyeballs..

Thursday, July 26, 2018

More Familiarity

I kind of set myself a three post quota for the past few nights.

This is the third post.

Short Stories (1989)

The Black Watch are this guy's band. They are better than the kind of pretentious picture on the front page of his website would imply.

If you want to scroll back to February 1, 2017 on here there's another single by them.

Of minor interest (and mostly because I  just learned about this stuff right now) is that the violin, guitar, vocals person on this particular 12" ep (and part of the Black Watch up to 2002), J'Anna Jacoby (who let her website die in 2014) was apparently the California State Oldtime Fiddle Champion: Junior Division in 1975 & 76, but she also earned her mortgage at the beginning of  the century by playing in Rod Stewart's live band which I hope paid well. (I mean, Rod seems like he could likely be a pretty Ok person, but I have a very visceral dislike of his recorded output.)

The More You Know...

Sunday, July 22, 2018

Bob Denver

Another short and sweet one.

As per the previous post. From New Zealand. A single sided slab of psychedelic nonsense that is thoroughly unrelated to the 1975 Sid & Marty Krofft tv show that featured the triumphant (?) return of Bob Denver to your television.

Don't confuse them. Bob Denver didn't play guitar this well.

Monday, July 16, 2018

Other things by Familiar Faces

I have other things I want to be doing.

I'll make this quick.

I have posted items by both of these acts previously, plus you're already on the internet.

Be your own best resource if you're curious.

I have other things I want to be doing.

Grow Up - Joanne (1980)

If you liked the previous one this is even better.

the Higsons - The Lost and the Lonely (1981)

If you liked the previous post, this is more of the same, but different.

Friday, July 13, 2018

Dates are a Bit Fuzzy at This Point

The internet has kind of let me down with this one.

It's the triumphant (?) return of a compilation on the thirteenth

It's a single sided cheaply recorded thing and I'm not sure exactly when it was released or when I picked it up for a dollar.

It's on the Blackbean & Placenta Tape Club Label who put out lots and surprisingly lots of quick and cheaply made records.

This is one of them.

I'm going with 1997 as the date for this. It just feels right. The internet doesn't seem to fucking know and twenty years later it's close enough for our purposes.

A1 Pip Proud Black Choir
A2 Noggin I'm Getting into Dirt Now
A3 Longstocking Mercyfuck
A4 Orange Cake Mix Les Viandes
A5 Magnolias Milan Bach
A6 Saraspoden Nostalgia


Wednesday, July 11, 2018

High School Faves

I'm fucking old. There's no denying it at this point. I gave up. I don't even bother celebrating my birthday anymore because it's just kind of depressing and I've had enough of them that some of the shine of living another fucking year feels much less like an accomplishment.

Perhaps in another dozen years it will be again.

If you were any kind of fan of the Power Pop in the Boston area in the late 70's there really was one band that ruled them all. It was the Atlantics. They had the songs. They had the moves. They were just fucking brilliant live. You really weren't likely to leave a show without one hook or another stuck in your brain. Myself and some other friends in high school were fairly obsessed with them and connived all sorts of ways to getting our underage asses into clubs or any all ages show that they appeared at. It was a great time to be young and stupid. Unfortunately for all involved though was that by the time we'd come of enough age to accomplish sneaking into bars the band itself was heading towards its nadir and eventual dissolution. But fuck, it was great while it lasted.

The Atlantics were just one of those bands for whom fame and fortune initially seemed like destiny only the stars didn't quite align. They made a single and just before they were going to release it they signed with ABC records which stipulated that all remaining copies of that as yet unreleased single were to be destroyed as part of their signing deal. (Some copies apparently escaped. It's a personal holy grail record) They then went in and recorded this Lp with a producer whose credits included Joe Walsh & that one terrible Keith Moon solo lp. He didn't get it. The record really ended up lacking the spark of the band live. The Power Pop nuggets are all in place, but the fire is more or less scrubbed in the mix. Then to make matters worse, ABC records got sold to MCA a week after its release and the band was subsequently left out in the cold. They got hosed, no support and then dropped in quick order.

Shit happens.

(At one point there was talk of them trying to negotiate an opportunity to remix, remaster and rerelease the Lp, but MCA wanted too much money for the tapes.)

Which is not to say that the Lp is a total waste. It's got some great stuff and is thoroughly enjoyable as it is. "One Last Night" & a great cover of  Martha and the Vandellas "Nowhere to Run", but it did take me a few years away from the live versions I was used to to get there.

Here's some contemporary live recording from 1979. Compare and contrast.

The fuck of it is that their swan song was a huge local hit back in the days before Clear Channel bought and homogenized radio into the preconceived pablum of shit that it is today nation wide. A local band could actually get played on a local mainstream radio station at one time long ago rather than the same fifteen songs mandated by corporate bean counters telling the entire nation what constitutes a "hit". I don't listen to the radio.

So they put out this record. The A-side is listed as "Can't Wait Forever", but it's "Lonelyhearts" that was the undisputed plug side. If shit hadn't gone south with their Lp, there's a good possibility that they could have had some kind of at the very least, Top 100 action with it. It's a Power Pop juggernaut. It sounds like the band live. It should have been. It wasn't, but this still exists.

(After the band broke up the rhythm section remained and formed Ball and Pivot which is quintessentially mid-80's nonsense. I was not a fan.)

I prefer to remember stuff like this from a Saturday afternoon local access show of bands live in the studio. "Weekend" is fab, but "Pop Shivers" is a lost classic. (Both of which are available on retrospective discs via Cd Baby. Do yourself a favor. Pick them up.)

Saturday, July 7, 2018

Expectations subverted by familiarity

Familiar names, but not what you're expecting.

Paisajes Nocturnos (1982)

Oh no. If you're somewhat a student of the era and see the name Alphaville the first thing you think of is some seriously hairsprayed and maudlin Germans who were "Forever Young

You're fortunate because this is not they. 

This is a different synth pop band from Madrid who also took their name from the Godard New wave sci-fi classic which featured not a single futuristic prop or special effect. This is the trailer. (It also may or may not be on Youtube in its entirety, but you didn't hear that from me...)

I like the movie and this Alphaville.
The other one, not so much.

Being Boiled (1980)

The Human League. So a few years before they were wondering if you wanted things and while Phil Oakey still had fabulous (or even any) hair, the band was a bit more experimental and/or dark, or as I like to think about it, interesting and worth listening to.

This was their debut single.

It features Ian Craig Marsh and Martyn Ware who brought in Phil Oakey to sing. After a pair of Lps they apparently decided they'd had enough of that Fascist Groove Thing and went on to form Heaven 17 leaving only Phil Oakey and his hair to reform Human League himself into the radio juggernaut that made 1981 radio almost unlistenable with repeated airings of that one song they'll go to their graves singing on oldies tours. (I prefer not to rehash that here. I don't need that fascist groove thing either.)

I prefer to be heading to the Circus of Death which references Steve McGarrett (who had the kind of hair that Phil could only dream of) and is presumably some kind of Hawaii Five-O reference.

There does appear to be at least one episode of the show involving a circus. But it doesn't involve Heathrow Airport.

Perhaps they were just trying a really fancy way of pitching CBS a script.

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

More Reconsiderations

Happy Independence Day.

I'm probably working.

4 Skins (1980)

Another single that gets lumped in with the "punk scene" in New York.
Is it or isn't it? It's kind of nebulous 40 years later as to where this fits. There's saxophones. But that's alright if you want to believe Fear.
I'm personally not one to argue with 1981 Lee Ving. He looks mean.

Criswell (1991)

Eleven years later and on the other side of the fucking country Archipelago Brewing Co. with the help of Four God Damn Girl Drummers penned and released this love note to the future prognostication powers of the Amazing Criswell.

And who isn't interested in the future? It's where we're going to spend the rest of our lives.

(I'm still waiting for "Plan 9" to happen, but maybe it already has and we just don't know...)

On the flip there's a lovely tune about seafood and an instrumental of sorts.

If you require more information about this band you can just read this page. I've got something else that requires my attention at the moment.

Can your heart stand the shocking truth?

Sunday, July 1, 2018

This Post is Aces

A pair of things I rediscovered and reconsidered to be worth the posting.

I do that on occasion. I don't post everything I've got. That would be just madness.

And yeah, I know if what I post is the "good stuff", how fucking terrible must the rest of my shitty record collection be.

Precisely this shitty.

the Acetones (1980)

From the riot torn streets of Milwaukee, WI and straight to your heart comes the rock and roll stylings of the Acetones. Our bowtied hero from the cover apparently has a thing for handcuffs and ladies in polyester uniforms.
B-side gets a bit funkier and is probably the sort of stuff that maybe got them an extra gig or two. You could dance to it, but I might break a hip at this point so I'll refrain

Ace & the Eights (1979)

This is an interesting oddity singularly for the presence of one Rockette Morton on bass and with a smoking slide solo on "Explosion". For the uninitiated this is one of the original and one of the longer lasting musicians who played with Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band. Here they are on German Tv in 1972. Rockette (aka Mark Boston) is looking particularly stylish in his suit and pimp hat playing bass on the first song.

This single sounds absolutely nothing like Beefheart. That's a good or maybe a bad thing depending on your perspective. For me it falls kind of in a nebulous middle gray area. I don't hate on the single, but I had hoped for more Beefheart than it provides with Mr. Boston's esteemed presence.

You make your own decisions. You're presumably an adult.