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JohnO

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Posts posted by JohnO

  1. Wim - The leadoff track on Neil Young's new "Americana" album is his version of this arrangement of "Oh Susanna". He first heard it in the early 60s by The Thorns, Tim Rose's folk-rock band that, I believe, he started in '63.....about the same time that Tim was also in the Big Three with Mama Cass and Jim Hendricks. (That's Tim singing lead in the video.)

    And speaking of Hendricks.....the first version of "Hey Joe" that Jimi Hendrix ever heard was by Tim Rose, singing in a West Village club.......a slow version that Jimi appropriated for his later UK hit single. (I also think the Grateful Dead & Jeff Beck Group first heard "Morning Dew" as sung by Rose....) Tim was very influential in the folk-rock scene, but wasn't ever really successful, at least not in the US.

  2. Rich - If I recall, we have very similar tastes in music. If you believe that all Big Star had going for them was their hype, well. . . .different strokes for different folks. I had a local record store that played literally anything before I bought it upon request. I don't remember buying anything based solely on hype. . . .but I can see where a lot of people did. . . .primarily because the radio stations refused to play anything remotely new, unless their palms were greased by the big labels. Take Raspberries off of a big label like Capitol, and all they would have really had was word of mouth among critics and fans to get their product across.

  3. What I don't get is - it seems like most discussions here about 70s music somehow wind up in Big Star bashing! I think there are one Hell of a lot more similarities between them and Raspberries than differences. Both had deep roots in the 60s/Byrds/Beatles. . . .with Raspberries wearing their UK influences more on their sleeves, and Big Star tossing Memphis r&b/soul into their mix. Both had labels which did atrocious jobs in promoting them, Big Star more so, as Ardent, owned by Stax, wasn't used to putting out rock & roll records. The critics loved both bands, but they were pretty much the only ones who did. . . although Eric & company had the advantage of the hit singles, which never happened for Big Star, but certainly not due to a lack of commercial material.

    Yes, some critics, 40 years later, do prefer Big Star over Raspberries. . . . .but a scam perpetuated on the public? Sorry. . . I love both bands, and it certainly wasn't due to any kind of hype from back in the day! Critics also loved the Flamin Groovies II, Shoes, Plimsouls, Paul Collins, The Records, and a lot of other similar bands. They, however, don't seem to draw the ire of members of this board.

    PS - Truth be told, being over 60, aside from bands like Raspberries, Cheap Trick, Big Star, The Stooges, Ramones, Groovies II, I don't remember the 70s nearly as fondly as I do the 60s. . . . . .if I were younger, I probably would.

  4. Hmmmm....The Dictators first played "Stay With Me" live in late '76 or early '77, eventually releasing it on "Blood Brothers" in '78. Shaun C's "Hey Deanie," which preceded Eric's '78 version, came out in late '77. I suspect the riff similarity is just a coincidence in this case....

  5. My last comment on the lawsuits involving Mike Love (and Brian's not the only one he's sued - he and Al Jardine have been to court several times over the past 10 years, I think) is - it was good to hear last week that the lyrics to the last verse of "Do It Again" are back to the original ones.

    Since the start of Brian's comeback solo shows, he's been singing the last verse as "....so let's get back together and sue 'em again..."

    It's now back to "...get back together and do it again."

  6. I know they've been playing "Hawaii", with David Marks doing Mike's old lead part. "Wild Honey" would be a natural for Darian, but I don't think they've done that or any of the others on your list....yet. Would love to hear them do "Let Him Run Wild"....Brian may have done that in his set when he was plugging "Imagination", but I didn't hear him do it.

    Just looked at Marvin's link. 2 song difference between 6/19 and 6/15 (last Friday).....Friday's set list included This Whole World, Ballad of Ole Betsy (sung by Love's guitarist), but left out Marcella and Getcha Back. I think about 40 of the 48 song set list have been pretty much the same from night to night.

  7. Marv - The whole is a lot greater than the sum of the parts here. I think it's the attraction of all remaining Beach Boys (and yes, without Brian, it wouldn't have happened), it's their 50th anniversary, they have a new CD, etc., that's brought out a lot more people this time. Neither the Love/Johnston/Jardine/Marks version nor Brian by himself could draw these huge crowds.

    And the difference between the 19,000 crowd I saw last Friday at Merriweather Post and the 2,000 crowds for Brian at the Warner Theater is, IMO, mostly casual BB fans. I had people all around me bellowing their lungs out, singing along to "409", "Surfin Safari", "Be True To Your School", and "Kokomo", who didn't have a clue about "It's Okay", "This Whole World", "Don't Back Down", "I Just Wasn't Made For These Times", or "All This Is That" (well...actually, I question the inclusion of THAT one myself, but I digress.......Mike Love had to get in a plug for TM, I guess....). There were people there who wondered aloud as to why the videos for Dennis and Carl....couldn't they make it in person? People who questioned why Jeffrey was singing the falsetto parts. Unbelievable....but more money and greater exposure for the boys, and everyone's having a good time, so ultimately, who cares?

    P.S. Regarding Mr. Foskett.....I had the great fortune to see him in Annapolis at the Rams Head Tavern several years ago doing a very rare solo show. His band was Scotty Bennett, Probyn G., whoever Brian's bassist was at the time, and Dennis Dikken of The Smithereens on drums. Sadly, his set was pretty much restricted to BB/BW material, with some interesting covers tossed in (including a killer "Whiter Shade of Pale"!). None of his solo material. Anyhow, the place was about 1/3 full, and it's a small club to start with (maybe 250 seats). Midway thru his set, Jeffrey asks - "Aside from you guys up front here (we had been requesting JF solo tunes, to no avail), does anyone know who we are?" Dikken replies "Hell, I don't know who you are, and I'm playing the drums!"

  8. Overall, this is a win-win situation for all involved, assuming they put aside their differences and get along.

    Mike L. gets his money and a chance to hog the spotlight, Brian gets to play his music without the pressure of the spotlight being directly on him all night (unlike in his solo shows), and they both get to play in front of much bigger crowds.

    I've seen Brian do his solo shows in the Warner Theater 3 times (capacity of about 2,000), Pier Six in Baltimore (maybe 3,000), and the Highline Ballroom in NYC (400-700, depending on seating versus standing). Last Friday's show attendance (Merriweather Post Pavillion) was close to a sell-out - between 18,000 - 19,000. The Beach Boys name, with the still-living band members, does the trick. And yes, Mike L. was and still is a vital part of their sound. And yes, he is a clown....but they do a great live show together.

  9. I don't think Brian's ever lost "it" musically.......although I think his non-music-related mental and emotional issues sometimes made it appear that way. It's helped that he's had Jeffrey, Darian, etc. to help him stay on track, musically speaking, and his latest wife's support. It's also helped that he's gotten rid of the Dr. Landy's and Mike Love's for the most part.

  10. I read the article. That's Jeffrey Foskett's quote about Love being the entertainer, and Brian the artist. If there's an MVP for these shows, it has to be Jeffery - I only hope, for his sake, that he's getting paid as well as the original band members. He deserves it, taking more lead vocals than Al, Bruce or David....in addition to serving as referee, it sounds like.

    Mike Love, I suspect, will be on good behavior as long as there's huge money involved, which there is in the case of these reunion shows. To me, Brian has been very magnanimous and forgiving to allow this reunion to take place. If I were Brian, Love would still have to go a long ways to be forgiven for the lawsuits and nasty past behavior.

    (I remember reading an old article about the time of the first lawsuits - '93 or '94...per Mike, his lawyers advised him to sue for back royalties on 35 songs he allegedly co-wrote, telling him that Brian really couldn't remember that far back, and would settle out of court for millions, just to get rid of the lawsuits - which he did. Nice move, Mike - taking advantage of your cousin's mental issues for profit! When Brian was asked about why he settled, his response was - "I'm not sure....Mike may have written some of those lyrics; maybe he didn't. I can't really remember.")

    It was easy to see what was primarily on Love's mind at last Friday's show. I believe he mentioned that "That's Why God...." entered the Billboards charts at #3 a minimum of maybe 30 times.

    Also - I got a kick out of the RS reporter's comment about Bruce Johnston....that, lest anyone forget that he wrote "I Write The Songs" for Manilow, he'll be sure to remind you frequently.

  11. Just saw them in Columbia, MD last night. As expected, a great show. . . .and an unexpected surprise - Bruce Johnston's intro after "Disney Girls" was greeted with a smattering of boos - due, no doubt, to his recent comment about Obama being a "socialist asshole". (If the Dixie Chicks career can go in a tailspin over a much less offensive comment about Bush, Bruce J. can at least get booed. . . .)

  12. Hmmmm.....seeing as Brian's last solo album was all covers of songs from Disney films.....and the one before that was covers of Gershwin tunes.......

    Some words I wrote down while listening the first time to "That's Why God Made The Radio"....."lyrics are awful on "Spring Vacation", "Beaches In Mind"....gotta be Love's....surely Brian and Joe Thomas had something better!" (NOTE: Found out later that both Al and Bruce had written and sung songs that didn't make the final cut - ???) Also, how can Brian pitch so well for the Giants with that goddamn beard? - Oh, sorry, wrong Brian Wilson!.......

  13. Truth be told, it's just a great week all around for old farts, music-wise.

    Neil Young's bizarre new album "Americana" (his verison of the Seeger Sessions, only all seemingly done in one take, and with most of the tunes changed 180 degrees) debuted at #4; Paul Simon's "Graceland" box at #10; and in the UK, Dexys' (reunited Dexy's Midnight Runners) "One Day I'm Going To Soar" (IMO, the best release of the bunch) also debuted at #1 (first album in 27 years).

    Now, if only PIL and Bobby Womack, who also put out stellar comeback albums over the past week, could whip up some sales.......

    P.S. Oh, and Alan Jackson, who's 54 or 55, debuted at #2 this week. Adele's album has now been #1 for 24 straight weeks, and counting........

  14. I was shocked to hear Andy was considering a reunion in the first place.

    There are some very weird and strong personal issues going on between Rodgers and Andy. After they played together at Woodstock in '94. Andy complained in several interviews that he tries and tries to get along with Paul R., but the latter always treated him like a hired hand instead of an equal band member....and it apparently hadn't changed over the years. If anything, Rodgers' later success made him worse.

    Then there's Paul Kossoff's drug-related death at age 25. Everyone associated with Free seems to blame it on the constant fighting between Rodgers and Fraser which broke up the band, which continued for a year or two without Andy, but seemed to go downhill until Koss quit....at which point, it became Rodgers, Kirke and ringers. Paul K's father David Kossoff (a fairly well known actor in the UK) sent Andy a note after his son's death, blaming him for Paul K dying so young. Fraser, per past musings on his website, didn't seem happy about Paul's father blaming just him.

  15. From what I've read, if Free reunites, it'll most likely be to do a one-shot show to promote the upcoming Olympics, to be held in London this summer. If it's just the one show, I'm guessing Rodgers would bring his current guitarist, Howard Leese, along to do Koss' part....while he doesn't really sound like Paul K., at least he's used to playing Free songs live regularly.

  16. I'll be seeing them in Columbia, MD, on 6/15, and I don't particularly have high expectations for the show or the guys. From what I've heard, it's essentially still the Brian show, only with additional back catalog songs added to accommodate Al (whom I've seen with Brian), Brian J. and Mike on lead vocals. I noticed on a recent set list that they did 45 songs, about 30 of them holdovers from Brian's live shows over the past decade. While it'll be great hearing "Don't Back Down", "Disney Girls", the new song from the upcoming album and others, I could do without hearing most of the added older tunes, especially the Mike Love gems ("Be True To Your School", "Kokomo", their awful cover of "Rock & Roll Music.").

    I understand Jeffrey F. is still singing the falsetto parts and various Brian band members are doing the lion's share of the backing vocals....which will sound great, but, having already seen Brian & band do:(1) greatest hits shows; (2) Pet Sounds; (3) Smile; (4) That Lucky Old Sun; and (5) Gershwin shows over the past decade, not sure if I'm ready for more greatest hits shows at this point, even with the old Beach Boys......whom I saw at least 5 times in the 70s/80s, a couple of times with all 3 Wilsons.

    Hey, it's something to do between seeing Manitoba (ex-Dictators) in Baltimore on 6/8, then Eli Paperboy Reed and The True Loves in DC on 6/22, followed by Johnny Winter, The Derailers and Bill Kirchen at the Colonial Beach Music Fest the weekend of 6/23-24.

  17. Just heard that Donald "Duck" Dunn, bassist extraordinaire, passed away in his sleep last night in Tokyo, where he was on tour with Booker T & The MGs. He was 70. Motown/Detroit had James Jamerson; Memphis/Stax/Volt had Duck. Very glad now that I saw Booker T & The MGs, along with Eddie Floyd, a couple of years ago at the 930 Club.

  18. P.S. Not to say that Wally wouldn't be a great choice. . . he obviously would be!

    However. . . .in all honesty, I'd prefer that the 3 guys not do it (reunite). Andy has been trying to get them together for years, but I'm not sure about doing it without Koss. . . not to mention that Paul R. is playing more Free songs in his shows (he did 10 at a UK show last April), and frankly, the old feel, the old swagger just ain't there, at least not with his current band. Maybe playing again with Simon and Andy might roll back the years, who knows? I do know that most of my Brit friends aren't crazy about the idea. . .and Free was much, much bigger there than in the States, where most fans know them for All Right Now and as the original band of Paul R & Simon, and that's pretty much it.

    For Andy's sake, I hope they do it. For Free's sake, I hope they don't.

  19. The animosity between Fraser and Rodgers has prevented any reunion in the past. Per Andy, he's played a couple of times with Paul in recent years as one-shot deals, and the old ill feelings resurfaced each time. Since rumor has it Andy has full-blown AIDS, though, they'd better patch up their differences now if they're ever gonna do it. Other possibilities on guitar - Leslie West and Joe Bonamassa, each of whom has recorded multiple covers of Free tunes. Leslie's vibrato is probably the closest anybody could get to Kossoff's, but he has health issues, having lost one of his legs to diabetes last year. (Also, Gibson chose Joe B. to help announce and publicize their Paul Kossoff Les Paul model last year - listing for about $10 grand if you want a brand new one, $15 K for an aged/ reliced one.)

  20. Anybody know why the song isn't on the soundtrack album? There are 11 tracks on it - 2 Danny Elfman instrumental pieces, a Johnny Depp reading of "The Joker", and 8 originals from '72. . . . .Nights In White Satin (Moodies), I'm Sick Of You (Iggy Pop), Season of the Witch (Donovan), Top Of The World (Carpenters), My First, My Last, etc. (Barry White), Get It On (T. Rex), No More Mr. Nice Guy (Alice C.), and Ballad of Dwight Fry (also Alice).

    Wonder if Eric was approached about using the original GATW?

  21. Long-time Memphis musical mainstay Charles "Skip" Pitts passed away the other day at age 65, due to cancer. He was Isaac Hayes' guitarist for years - that was Skip on the wah-wah pedal on the "Theme From Shaft", and did tons of sessions for Stax/Volt (his guitar on The Isley Brothers' "It's Your Thing.") Most recently the guitarist for The Bo-Keys - both of their recent CDs are worth picking up. Saw them live at three Ponderosa Stomps in New Orleans (2008-2010). RIP

  22. "I LOVE "only Japan""!!!

    Good for you! My use of the term "unfortunate" refers to the fact that the CD costs between $53 and $54 US dollars for the CD, including shipping from Japan.

    If the CD is released in this country, I'm guessing it will cost maybe $15 - $18......and a lot more people would be able to enjoy the music. It's unfortunate for those people who can't afford the import CD, and the artist (Flashcubes) as well, since they probably won't be able to sell many copies at the current price.

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