Tuesday, October 29, 2013

2275 Elton John - Rocket Man (I Think It's Going to Be a Long, Long Time)

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From: Honky Château; Year: 1972; Genre: Rock
I had some of Elton John's music on my mind and thought I would pick one of his songs.
I've always loved this song; I was actually surprised that I hadn't already picked it, but apparently not. The way that John and Taupin wrote this space epic as if the Rocket Man was a long-haul trucker was a stroke of genius; essentially turning something exciting like space exploration into something akin to the daily drudgery of work that everyone can relate to.
Of course the lyrics are one-half of the equation, the masterful way Elton John mixes major and minor chords brings the sense of longing in the verse and then swells in the pre-chorus to all the way to the sky in the chorus is just as genius as the lyrics; they compliment each other perfectly.

Hear Rocket Man on YouTube.



My song pick a year ago today: Béla Bartók - BB 52 - String Quartet No. 1 in A minor

My song pick two years ago today: Victor Wooten - Us 2

My song pick three years ago today: The Sons of the Pioneers - Cool Water

My song pick four years ago today: Norman Greenbaum - Spirit in the Sky

My song pick five years ago today: Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) - Here is the News

My song pick six years ago today: Faith No More - From Out of Nowhere


Monday, October 28, 2013

2274 Lou Reed - Satellite of Love

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From: Transformer; Year: 1972; Genre: Glam Rock
Yesterday we lost yet another musical legend: Lou Reed passed away at the young age of 71. An obituary for him can be found here on BBC.com.
I cannot state how important the man was to music in the last half a century; again the musician died, but his music and influence will live on!
Probably most will remember him as either the frontman of Velvet Underground or for his monster hit Walk on the Wild Side. However, his influence on music spread far beyond those two instances. Really, I couldn't think of too many other great songs of his to pick today, just based of the cultural significance of this track; most would probably remember the title of this song as also the name of the space craft from Mystery Science Theater 3000. That being said, if I hadn't already picked the song Walk on the Wild Side would have been my pick today.

Hear Satellite of Love on YouTube.



My song pick a year ago today: Alestorm - Barrett's Privateers

My song pick two years ago today: Sly and the Family Stone - Sing a Simple Song

My song pick three years ago today: Miles Davis - So What

My song pick four years ago today: Ray Charles - I Can't Stop Loving You

My song pick five years ago today: J.S. Bach - BWV 659 - Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland

My song pick six year ago today: Billy Thorpe - Children of the Sun

Sunday, October 27, 2013

2273 Eddie Lang - Pickin' My Way

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From: Jazz Guitar Virtuoso; Year: 1990 (1932) ; Genre: Jazz
I had some other songs in mind for today's pick, but most of the morning I've been having early Jazz guitar music running through my mind and thought I'd pick one of that ilk instead.
It still amazes me to think that Eddie Lang was playing guitar this way all the way back 80 to 90 years ago, years before guitar greats like even the Gypsy Jazz guitar master Django Reinhardt. I guess he earned the title "father of the modern guitar" that some have bestowed on him.
Anyway, this is definitely a virtuoso piece that goes all over the place from jazz to pop hit parade to even classical. I would loved to have heard him during the time of overdriven amplifiers playing with the likes of today's guitar greats.

Hear Pickin' My Way on YouTube.



My song pick a year ago today: Sergei Rachmaninoff - Op. 27 - Symphony No. 2

My song pick two years ago today: AC/DC - Big Balls

My song pick three years ago today: The Guess Who - Hand Me Down World

My song pick four years ago today: Finntroll - Skogens Hämnd

My song pick five years ago today: Bon Jovi - These Days

My song pick six years ago today: Yes - Roundabout


Saturday, October 26, 2013

2272 "Weird Al" Yankovic - Your Horoscope for Today

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From: Running with Scissors; Year: 1999; Genre: Comedy/Third Wave Ska
This morning I've had this rather funny song running through my mind, and as usual I thought I would make it my pick today.
This happens to be one of "Weird Al's" originals, which features music in the style of bands of the "Third Wave Ska" genre such as The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, which is pretty fun to listen to. However, as with most of his material the lyrics are the main draw, and this one has him running down comedic horoscopes for each sign of the zodiac at break-neck speeds.

Hear Your Horoscope for Today on YouTube.



My song pick a year ago today: Sly and the Family Stone - Stand!

My song pick two years ago today: Sethian - Purity in Sorrow

My song pick three years ago today: Sethian - Nothing Is True

My song pick four years ago today: Steely Dan - Charlie Freak

My song pick five years ago today: Van Halen - Summer Nights

My song pick six years ago today: Apocalyptica (featuring Nina Hagen) - Seemann


Thursday, October 24, 2013

2270 Sky - Westway

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From: Sky; Year: 1979; Genre: Progressive Rock
This morning I woke up with a couple of songs from Sky running through my mind; I of course took it as a sign that I should pick one of their songs.
This was the first song from their first album, so back in '79 if you just "dropped the needle" this classical guitar meets electronic groove/funk track would've been there to greet you. While it's not even close to my favourite from the band, it's a very interestingly arranged track.

Hear Westway on YouTube.



My song pick a year ago today: Asia - Wildest Dreams

My song pick two years ago today: Don Henley - Dirty Laundry

My song pick three years ago today: The Scorpions - Big City Nights

My song pick four years ago today: Graham Central Station - Earthquake

My song pick five years ago today: John Denver - Season Suite - Fall

My song pick six years ago today: Kyu Sakamoto - Sukiyaki (Ue o Muite Aruko)


Wednesday, October 23, 2013

2269 The Coasters- Poison Ivy

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From: The Coasters 20 Greatest Hits; Year: (1959); Genre: Rhythm and Blues
I've had this track in the queue for a while now, and I though I would pick it today. It's kind of funny, on the surface this is kind of an upbeat "feel good" song. However, if you dig into the metaphor-laced lyrics this one is somewhat of a "dirty" track about a superficially beautiful woman whose not only loose, but also carries a sexually transmitted disease. It's amazing to think that this was such a radio hit in the "wholesome" 1950s; of course the great performance by The Coasters probably had more to do with it being so big.

Hear Poison Ivy on YouTube.



My song pick a year ago today: Béla Fleck & the Flecktones - Earthling Parade

My song pick two years ago today: Stuart Hamm - Kings of Sleep

My song pick three years ago today: Steeleye Span - Lovely on the Water

My song pick four years ago today: Crosby, Stills & Nash - Just a Song Before I Go

My song pick five years ago today: Robert Mitchum - Ballad of Thunder Road

My song pick six years ago today: Blue Öyster Cult - Harvest Moon


Monday, October 21, 2013

2267 The Cult - Painted on My Heart

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From: Gone in 60 Seconds (Soundtrack); Year: 2000; Genre: Rock
I had this song on my mind today for some reason and thought I would pick it.
I found it odd that this song was only released on the soundtrack of the remake of the classic film Gone in 60 Seconds, and never made it to a proper Cult album.
Even though it was made for the motion picture, it is still a really great track, and is among my favourites from The Cult; it would've fit very well on one of their albums.

Hear Painted on My Heart on YouTube.



My song pick a year ago today: Scott Joplin - The Entertainer

My song pick two years ago today: Maktub - So Tired

My song pick three years ago today: Dizzy Gillespie - Manteca

My song pick four years ago today: Iron Maiden - Sun and Steel

My song pick five years ago today: Deep Purple - Knocking At Your Back Door

My song pick six years ago today: Slade - Cum On Feel The Noize


Sunday, October 20, 2013

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

2262 Neil Young & Crazy Horse - Hey Hey, My My (Into the Black)

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From: Rust Never Sleeps; Year: 1979; Genre: Hard Rock/Metal
The other day I started playing this song on my guitar and forgot how much of a stress reliever this track can be. Just hearing that obscenely distorted guitar in the intro is enough to get the blood moving. The totally awesome, raw, unpolished primal 'grunt' of this entire album has been one of the main draws for me. In reality it actually was more or less a live album, which is what I think made the album as good as it is; doing these tracks in the studio would've spoiled it in my opinion.

Hear Hey Hey, My My (Into the Black) on YouTube.



My song pick a year ago today: Hawkwind - Hurry on Sundown

My song pick two years ago today: Steeleye Span - New York Girls

My song pick three years ago today: The Steve Miller Band - Living in the U.S.A.

My song pick four years ago today: Three Dog Night - Shambala

My song pick five years ago today: Diesel - Sausalito Summernight

My song pick six years ago today: Eric Clapton - Layla


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

2261 Jethro Tull - Bourée

From: Stand Up; Year: 1969; Genre: Progressive Rock
Out of the first few pieces of music I tried to learn after getting my first bass guitar this had to have been one of the most insane song for a novice to learn, but I did. I remember having to learn Glenn Cornick's bass solo more or less note-by-note; what a pain in the arse. Although, I have to say it was a very rewarding experience and pushed my skills as a musician past their limits, thus making everything else seem tame at the time.
Anyway, this was one of Jethro Tull's earlier hits; it is Ian Anderson's arrangement of J.S. Bach's fifth movement of his Suite in E Minor BWV 996. Apparently Ian had a neighbour that was practicing this song on classical guitar ad nauseam and he thought he would "get back" at J.S. Bach by arranging it into a jazz-rock song.

Watch a music video clip of Bourée on YouTube.



My song pick a year ago today: Richard Strauss - Also Sprach Zarathustra

My song pick two years ago today: 30 Seconds to Mars - Year Zero

My song pick three years ago today: Don Williams - If Hollywood Don't Need You

My song pick four years ago today: Cream - Strange Brew

My song pick five years ago today: A-ha - The Living Daylights

My song pick six years ago today: Procol Harum - Conquistador 


Sunday, October 13, 2013

2260 Simon & Garfunkle - Mrs. Robinson

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From: Bookends: Year: 1968; Genre: Folk Rock
Last night I had this song running through my mind, essentially keeping me awake and depriving me of sleep. As I always do, I took it as a sign that the it needed picked.
Anyway, I've always liked this song every since I first heard it. Mrs. Robinson is one of those songs that has it where it counts and has it in spades: great musical arrangements, incredible lyrics, amazing vocals, and an excellent all around production quality. Not only that but it was part of the soundtrack of a classic film: The Graduate.

Hear Mrs. Robinson on YouTube.
Hear the original version from The Graduate on YouTube.



My song pick a year ago today: Rare Earth - Get Ready

My song pick two years ago today: Trio of Doom - Continuum

My song pick three years ago today: Jethro Tull - Aqualung

My song pick four years ago today: Bill Monroe & the Blue Grass Boys - Wayfaring Stranger

My song pick five years ago today: Billy Squier - In The Dark

My song pick six years ago today: Jethro Tull - Steel Monkey


Saturday, October 12, 2013

2259 Faces - Stay With Me

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From: A Nod Is As Good As a Wink... To a Blind Horse; Year: 1971; Genre: Hard Rock
I always find it interesting about the band Faces; they are almost like a supergroup in reverse with how members went on to super stardom. However, this was a case that, in my opinion, not only were the individual parts great, but as a whole they were great as well.
I love that driving rhythm section and of course Rod Stewart's unmistakable voice, but for me Ronnie Wood's slide guitar is the the amazing cherry to top it off.

Hear Stay With Me on YouTube.
Watch a classic live performance on YouTube.



My song pick a year ago today: Neil Young & Crazy Horse - Oh Susannah

My song pick two years ago today: Miles Davis - Freedom Jazz Dance

My song pick three years ago today: Boston - More Than a Feeling

My song pick four years ago today: David Bowie - Suffragette City

My song pick five years ago today: Slade - Mama Weer All Crazee Now

My song pick six years ago today: Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) - Prologue/Twilight


Thursday, October 10, 2013

2257 Louis and Bebe Barron - Main Titles (Overture) from Forbidden Planet

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From: Forbidden Planet (Soundtrack); Year: 1956; Genre: Electronic
Today's pick number (2257) was, I believe, also the year that the groundbreaking Science Fiction film Forbidden Planet was supposed to take place.
This is a film that not only many remember, but was would also have a profound impact on most sci-fi to come out after. One of the more interesting parts of this film was that it is credited as being the first film with a totally electronic score. Inventors and composers Louis and Bebe Barron actually created the electronic devices, or instruments that made the sound. To get an idea of how big this was you have to remember, this was almost a decade before synthesizers were even invented.

Hear Forbidden Planet Main Titles (Overture) on YouTube.



My song pick a year ago today: Rush - Anagram (for Mongo)

My song pick two years ago today: Sky - Troika

My song pick three years ago today: Mason Williams - Classical Gas

My song pick four years ago today: Alexi Murdoch - Breathe

My song pick five years ago today: Bad Company - Shooting Star

My song pick six years ago today: Ella Fitzgerald - Blue Skies