Here you can listen to the most recent song that is stuck in my head. And now it will be stuck in yours:
For no other reason than it’s a catchy tune that made its mark on civilization thanks to an equally catchy music video, I must include this little ditty from The Bangles. I heard it the other day, and it is near impossible to listen to without moving your arms like an Egyptian. Enjoy this from the Golden Age of female rock bands and just try not to move like the Pharoah:
I was late to the party in a full appreciation of The Smiths, but as time has gone on, the haunting vocals of Morrissey and the driving, rhythmic guitar of Johnny Marr has gotten deeper and deeper into my bloodstream. This tune has been playing in my head for a month now, and I don’t mind.
This week, both David Byrne and Brian Eno celebrated birthdays. In their honor, I had to spin my favorite song from one of their many collaborations. It has no connection to sports, but it has music, religion and if you listen closely, some political undertones. Pour a glass of wine, turn down the lights, and let this tune hypnotize you:
NOW PLAYING ARCHIVES:
My youngest daughter and I would watch old 80s music videos together on YouTube as part entertainment, part indoctrination. This is one video that became her all-time favorite and she would request it often. She would tell me to “play that video with that boy I like.”
She was talking about Bono.
About 10 years ago, I became ‘friends with’ (in the most casual sense of the word, since it was a work-related acquaintance and had we not been in the same workspace and involved in similar projects there is no way we would have ever been friends and the minute his employment ended so did any and all contact between us, confirming that the friendship had no roots other than a shared employer) a guy that fancied himself an audiophile, based solely on his ownership of a collection of prog rock CDs. I enjoy some prog rock bands as a change of pace from time to time (Gentle Giant is a lost gem), and I guess he came along during a phase when I was open to some more exposure to the genre.
He reintroduced me to Robert Fripp and King Crimson. I owned Discipline, I grew up listening to The Court of the Crimson King (because of the cool cover art), and my college years included a brief but intense love affair with the music of Adrian Belew, guitarist and vocalist for King Crimson. He lent me some Crimson CDs and one really impacted me. The title track from one of these albums, The ConstruKction of Light, has been a Holy Grail of mine for almost 15 years. I want to own the individual track, but Robert Fripp, who controls the musical rights, is a purist who rejects the iTunes model and believes that corporate musical warlords are destroying the art of sound and the sanctity of the album format. He’s a weird dude but that doesn’t make him wrong. In this video clip of The ConstruKction of Light live, Fripp is the guitarist who is sitting outside of the stage lighting. Fripp is not the show. The music is.
I love this tune, but if you plan to listen, full disclosure: it is an 8+ minute investment (but sure to pay off for you):
In the summer of 1980, I took my girlfriend Chris to an all day concert on the infield of Freehold Raceway in New Jersey. We enjoyed cold beer and sunburn while soaking in the sounds of Hall and Oates, Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes, and this opening band, Willie Nile. After his powerful set of hard driving rock-folk, I bought his debut album on cassette and proceeded to stretch that ribbon to death over the next few years.
Here’s his one hit, Vagabond Moon, that I have yet to find as the studio version for purchase online. It still rocks, and yes – I can play this one on guitar:
This week’s song that I cannot shake is Robert Cray’s Smoking Gun. It’s got a hook that has been playing in my head for a few years now. You’re welcome.
Today’s feature is A Life of Illusion by Joe Walsh, formerly of the James Gang, formerly of The Eagles, formerly of Joe Walsh, the solo rock star. I got this song stuck in my head watching The 40 Year Old Virgin a few years back and while I didn’t think that movie was worth the hype, I could not shake this tune.
As a bonus for my guitar playing readership, I found this tab lesson that with time and effort, I might even be able to learn.