Category Archives: Friday Music Day

FMD — “New” old bands

So I recently came across a band called the Vulgar Boatmen. They had a couple of albums out in the late 1980s and 90s that didn't get a lot of play, broke up, and then released a complilation album in 2004. I had never heard of them. The thing is they are pretty cool. Kinda like a Murmer-era R.E.M. and I even think The Beths may have even been inspired by then. Anyway definitely check out Please Panic and You and Your Sister (which was rereleased in 2015).

So any bands out there that you missed but came across years later?

As always drop 'em if you got 'em.

FMD 1-4-2019: What Are You Looking Forward To?

For someone like myself, being a more casual follower of music than I once was, I'm often only aware of things after they happen. I used to anticipate releases, performances, etc. It worked because I was paying attention and knew what was coming up. These days, I'm not quite as on top of things, and so I've no idea what I should be looking forward to. Any great artists with new releases coming out this year? What else are you looking for in 2019?

FMD — Live Music

So it's no secret that I go to a bunch of live music shows and 2018 was no exception (see full list in comment below). By my count I will have seen well over 50 live acts this year, although a lot of that was due to my Memphis and Nashville trips where I saw over a dozen acts on Beale Street and Broadway. I have only one regret, I missed the David Byrne show at Northrop, which I heard was excellent. I had a chance to go, but the $140 price tag turned me off. Now I'm kicking myself.

Some Highlights:
Most fun show -- The Posies
Artist having most fun -- Liz Phair
Most visually stunning -- Thom Yorke
Most anticipated -- Guided by Voices Dec 30 (duh).

2019 promises to be fun too as I already have tickets for Neil Young solo acoustic, Teenage Fanclub, two different Billy Bragg shows, and the Flesheaters. Also the Blue Ox festival in Eau Claire looks really good too.

What shows did you see this year? What was your favorite?

Hope to see you at a show sometime in 2019!

FMD — Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

So the Rock and Roll 2019 Inductees came out yesterday. Here they are:

• The Cure
• Def Leppard
• Janet Jackson
• Stevie Nicks
• Radiohead
• Roxy Music
• The Zombies

I guess no big surprises. Well Def Leppard is a surprise. I like big dumb hair metal like anyone else but in the Hall of Fame? Whatever.

Was surprised The Zombies weren't already there. Can't be many boomer-centric bands left who haven't been inducted.

What do you think of the inductees? Upset Devo didn't make it?

Drop 'em if you got 'em.

FMD — The White Album

Yesterday was the 50th anniversary of The Beatles releasing their album The Beatles, or as it is commonly known The White Album. In celebration of the anniversary, the album was re-released with a remaster of the original, a bunch of demos and alternate takes, and other studio arcana. Here's a hagiographic article on it I highly suggest reading if interested.

The common refrain of The White Albums was this was when the Beatles starting to break up. Many of the songs appeared to be one or two Beatle composing and recording on their own. One thing the re-release has shown as that they were much more collaborative than previously advertised. The so-called Escher Demos really point this out. I wish that the Escher Demos were in fact released as a stand alone. I would definitely pick that up.

My own history with The White Album goes back only 40 years or so. As a teenager, I listened to The White Album a lot, stoned, in my bean bag chair, with headphones. Which is what white suburban teenage boys did a lot of in the late 70s and early 80s. So I know this album intimately. Even as a teenager and into adulthood, some of the one-off songs bugged me so when I was able through I-tunes, I eliminated what I considered the crap songs. That left me with a solid 18 song album in the 55 minute range. It had a nice mix of the rockers and softer songs. I've listened to this version of The White Album for the last 10 years or so.

Reading some of the articles on the making of The White Album, I learned that there was discussion among the Beatles to release two albums instead of one double album. This intrigued me. My 18 song version could probably be broken down to a two album hard and soft version, in fact I could probably add Martha My Dear to the soft version to make it a bit longer, instead of an EP.

So below is my "Rock" version of the White Album. It's 12 songs, 37 minutes long and pretty much every song is a killer. Savoy Truffle makes it because the song rocks, even if the lyrics are dumb. Why Don't We Do it in the Road and Everybody's Got Something to Hide make it for the same reason. The order is the same as the original album except I put Revolution #1 at the end. It also follows the basic structure of mostly Lennon-McCartney songs, with a smattering of Harrison, and a Ringo song. The White Album is beloved because of its sprawling, druggy, vibe. If they had released my Rockin' White Album version, who knows how history would've been changed :o)

Back in the U.S.S.R.
While My Guitar Gently Weeps
Happiness Is a Warm Gun
I'm So Tired
Don't Pass Me By
Why Don't We Do It in the Road?
Yer Blues
Everybody's Got Something to Hide Except Me and My Monkey
Helter Skelter
Savoy Truffle
Revolution 1

FMD 11/9/18: Wedding Music

I'm going to a wedding this weekend. So let's talk wedding music. What's good for a first dance? Father/Bride dance? What song do you have a piano version played of as people are waiting in the church after the ceremony (if you did the church thing). What goes on the do-not-play list for the DJ? Etc.

Not too long ago I was at one where there was a version of "She Drives Me Crazy" played as people were milling about. That was... fun? We supposedly had our pianist play Linus and Lucy after the ceremony, but I wasn't around to hear it, so... I still haven't gotten confirmation on that.