Saturday, October 29, 2011

A Snowy Winters Day in...October?

Mother Nature definitely woke up on the wrong side of bed here in the Northeast U.S. this morning. Normally this time of year we expect temperatures peaking at between 55 and 60 degrees but today it is not going to get out of the 30's. And when I look outside my window the ground is covered in ugly snowy slush. Looks more like December or January out there.

It's been awhile since my last regular post and a lot has been happening out in the world. By now the Occupy Wall Street movement has been written about and discussed in depth so I don't really have a whole lot to add except for this. The one knock against them that I have been hearing repeatedly is that they have no focus and they "haven't accomplished anything". For me, this is not OWS's purpose. For awhile now people have been disgusted with our government and the system in general which has been failing more and more of us. OWS is giving that discontent a voice and (in my opinion) it will continue to grow in some form or other. The movement which started out as a bunch of punky looking kids with signs is attracting more and more "legitimate" and well-known names and faces. The powers that be, both in government and business are just beginning to get the message that more and more of us are fed up and demand a change. OWS in itself may or may not last the winter but the ripples of discontent that they are generating will continue to grow in some form. And even in this short time there are some definite results. Just today Bank of America announced that it is rethinking its plans to charge a $5 fee to use their debit cards and some other banks such as Wells Fargo and Chase that were also planning to start charging fees have changed th
eir minds, due to "customer feedback".

Anyway, let's get to what you came here for - gimme the downbeat maestro!

Al Urban - Gonna Be Better Times

Back in the mid-50s, in the wake of Elvis it seemed that every country boy (and girl too) with a guitar caught the rockin' bug and was going to be a star just like their hero. Al Urban waxed this tune for the Sarg label in 1958 looking for his share of fame and glory.
Bob Dylan - Boogie Woogie Country Girl
This comes from a long out-of-print Doc Pomus tribute CD. I love Dylan's laid back vocal and arrangement which doesn't stray too far from the original.
The Stoics - Enough of What I Need
Back in 1967 this San Antonio fivesome recorded this garage classic for the Brams label. Over the years this song has appeared on a number of comps, if not always with the best sound quality. But it sounds fine here.
Heavenly - Cool Guitar Boy
This is one of those songs I included in one of my earliest posts which is probably long gone by now. This has always been a favorite of mine since the moment I first heard it and Amelia Fletcher has never sounded sweeter.
Dion - Will Love Ever Come my Way
Recorded for Columbia in the mid-60s I'm not sure if this ever came out on a 45. If it did, it never cracked Billboard's Top 100. But that certainly wasn't due to a lack of musical merit as this has "hit" written all over it. Dion recorded a number of fine 45s for Columbia which went nowhere due to, in part I'm sure, lack of promotion by the label. There is one in particular I am looking for, "Two-Ton Feather" by Dion and the Wanderers. It was included on a few Dion compilations over the years but it's the 45 mono mix that I crave so if anyone out there has an extra copy for sale or trade, please get in touch via the comments section.
Mickey Murray - Shout Bamalama
Mickey's remake of this old Otis Redding rocker made it to number 54 on the Billboard charts in the fall of 1967. It's a bit more restrained than the original but it's a great dancefloor filler nonetheless.
The Nashville Teens - Find My Way Back Home
This is another perennial favorite I know I posted back in the early days of TOMH. After almost 50 years, this song still gets my adrenaline pumping.
Dave Edmunds - Dear Dad
Dave Edmunds turns in a pretty faithful to the original rendition of one of Chuck Berry's lesser known gems.
The Chants - I Don't Care
Like The Newbeats and Tim Tam & The Turn-Ons, The Chants seamlessly meld doo wop and garage into something totally fun and infectious. Despite the "you'll be sorry" nature of the lyrics, this is one of those songs that immediately brings a smile to my face every time it comes on the Ipod.
The Cordells - Annie Get Your Yo-Yo
Ritchie Cordell is the master behind this two-minute plus slab of bubblegum magic. As a look at his discography will show, he was involved with a whole slew of AM radio hits in the late 60's and early 70's. Sadly he died of pancreatic cancer at the age of 61 in 2004.
Huey "Piano" Smith & The Clowns - High Blood Pressure
If these guys ever made a bad record I have yet to hear it. Not only is lead vocalist Bobby Marchan one of my favorite singers ever, HPS&tC's 45s all have that infectious, good-time vibe that makes it virtually impossible to remain in a bad mood whenever I hear them, no matter how awful a day I've had.
Junk Monkeys - All In a Day
Junk Monkeys were one of many combos that were influenced by earlier bands like The Real Kids and Radio Birdman that seemed to come and go in a flash back in the 90's. As so often happens, in this case their anonymity is not deserved as there are a lot more terrific tunes where this came from, which in this case is their "Bliss" CD which is available for cheap on Amazon.
The Lynx - You Lie

Another Texas garage band, this appearss to be The Lynx's brightest shining moment, appearing on a number of compilations over the years.
Prentice Moreland - Holy Mack'rel
While Elvis may have convinced the white youth of 1950's America that stardom was only a few hip swivels away, it would also appear that Little Richard may have had the same effect on their African-American contemporaries. If you like your R&R loud and wild, here it is.
The Tams - Be Young, Be Foolish, Be Happy
The last chart entry for this Atlanta, GA quintet (#66 in June 1968), this seems like some pretty good advice.
Rob Hoeke R&B Group - Margio
While Bob Hoeke was primarily known as a boogie woogie pianist, he still managed to cut some R&B fueled garage records in his native Holland that are now regarded as classics. To me, this is the best of them.
The Kwyet Kings - You Say
If there were any justice in this world, Arne Thelin would be a name more people would recognize (along with Jeff Conolly of the Lyres and Dom Mariani of the Stems/DM3) but unfortunately his supreme talent is known only to a select few. Hopefully he is more appreciated in his home country of Norway. The Kwyet Kings is the latest (as far as I know) of his 3 bands and if you like what you hear here, you can find some of their CDs on Amazon. If the man isn't making much money from his music, he at least deserves a bit more respect.

Won't be home until half passed 2.

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