Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Joy Week: Day Two

From the looks of a few comments on Day One, "Joy Week" might turn out to be a 36 hour virus.

Moving on, "It's The Little Things" is a terrific Sonny Bono tune made into a great Sonny & Cher record. But I'm running with the version from the late, great Lou Whitney and The Skeletons. This is one of those rare occasions where the cover might be superior to the original.

Man, this one makes me happy.


ag said...

Ditto from yesterday!

michael said...

How can you feel sorry for someone who has loved the Skeletons/Morells for over 30 years?

A home run Sal.


Sal Nunziato said...

Michael, I have a hard time when people who supposedly love music, irrationally dismiss the "giants." It's one thing to prefer "newer music" over the classics. But to imply that some of the greatest artists in music, Paul, Bruce, Sam Moore, and yes even Billy Joel and Phil Collins who have contributed greatly over the years, are "stomach turning," is nothing more than a wind-up. The whole point of my post was missed.

Anonymous said...

Great pick, Sal, though I'm kinda partial as I'm from Lou and Donnie's hometown, Springfield, MO. Always amazed that you big city boys dig us Ozark hillbillies. Good music is good music, y'know?

tim in the blue ridge said...

glad you love the skeletons sal !
i was lucky enough to live in springfield in the early 80's
Lou was one of a kind, he helped me with the Marlin Wallace re-issue
and would always put your name on the list, opening for The Box Tops reunion gig
at Mercury Lounge or the Kennedy Center birthday bash with Syd Straw and Los Lobos
live covers of "Off & Running" , "Hitler Lives" , "Psychedelic Situation" or "Ooh La La" were amazing
a true friend to the end, i miss him very much
see you at a record show soon

Anonymous said...

Sal, I love this site, I love your insights, but(there's always that but) I've gotta kind of agree with Michael, in as much as his opinion of Billy Joel. At least Phil Collins has a sense of humor and has always came off to me at least, as to not take himself too seriously, and for that I give him credit(doesn't mean I'm gonna run out and buy his albums or reissues). But Billy Joel? the guys has released albums in numbers that are reaching infinity. Out of all of his music the only song I would not turn off is "New York State Of Mind" to me the guy sucked all of the air out of the room when FM radio was my only way of hearing music. God, what I wouldn't have given if The Replacements could have had one-tenth of his fame, money, exposure, and it's not only The "Mats" there were some many others that were ignored while he ruled the airwaves. To try to give an example of what I'm talking about, Billy Joel would have been a guy like Perry Como compared to Elvis. Both people, of the same time frame, but both further from one another so that there is no comparison. It's not rock and roll to me. Anyway, I'm not trying to persuade you to agree with my assessment I'm just stating my opinion. Thanks for giving me the forum to do so

Sal Nunziato said...

Anonymous, thanks for your commentary. Of course, I couldn't disagree more. But for a minute, let me not discuss the merits of Billy Joel and focus on one thing:

"God, what I wouldn't have given if The Replacements could have had one-tenth of his fame, money, exposure..."

This is where, I think, the problem lies. It's apples and oranges. Pop music isn't always cool and doesn't always have to be cutting edge. I once talked up Boston's first album and was handed this reply, "If I am going to listen to a band from Boston, it's going to be The Remains." Fine. But what's that have to do with how good the first Boston album is? Nothing, really. I don't really like Phish but I love Ben & Jerry's ice cream.

Artists can't only be defined by their hits. I love Cheap Trick, but man do I hate "I Want You To want Me," "The Flame," "Can't Stop Falling Into Love," and "If You Want My Love." And if all I had ever heard by Billy Joel was "Piano Man," "Scenes From An Italian Restaurant," "Just The Way You Are," "Still Rock & Roll To Me" and "Big Shot," I might hate him as much as you do. But to deny his ability as a piano player or a songwriter who can cross tin pan alley with AM radio pop, simply because he has a stick up his ass, seems misguided. So, he's not as funny as Phil Collins. Neither is Dane Cook. But Phil Collins is one of the greatest drummers on the planet, took an underground prog band and made them superstars and carved a pretty decent solo career, writing hit singles that songwriters would give eyeteeth to have written. As you said, you don't have to like him and listen to him. But these "giants" are still around for a reason and if they can work up a crowd and get everyone smiling and dancing with a respectable cover of a legendary hit, why should that bother us?

Anonymous said...

Sal me(Anon) again so say, if you were going to Mars which 10 albums would you take with you? Also say you are at a party and there are only two albums you have your choice of playing, say, "Street Life Serenade" or "Don't Tell A Soul" which would it be?

Sal Nunziato said...

These are silly questions and have nothing to do with anything, Anon. Sorry.

Dr Wu said...

Nice choice! Here's hoping 'Joy Week' becomes an epidemic. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Once again I'm not trying to prove anything here. I don't see my questions as being silly...but yes they do have something to do with what we are discussing here. I'm not disagreeing with you when you state "His ability as a piano player or a songwriter who can cross tin pan alley with AM radio pop, simply because he has a stick up his ass" isn't valid. But "tin pan alley" is as far removed from rock and roll as Keith Richards is from Adele. All I'm saying is Billy Joel is not what I think ROCK AND ROLL music is about. I agree there is no accounting for taste. But a while back you dismissed the idea that "Because I don't like it" is not a legitimate excuse. And yes I will smash "Street Life Serenade" and play "Don't Tell A Soul" over and over. I don't want to argue, you state your point very eloquently I'm just saying my point has merit too. Thanks again for letting me speak and not censoring my opinions.

Sal Nunziato said...

Anon, we are not arguing. It's a discussion.

Here is why your questions are silly. I am not going to Mars. And I don't think I will be faced with the party predicament. I don't like Street Life Serenade. But I do like "Nylon Curtain" more than "Don't Tell A Soul." I also love the 'Mats and would take "Pleased To Meet Me" over any Billy Joel or Phil Collins record. But none of this is the point. I wouldn't play Born To Run at a party either, so is Bruce suddenly not rock and roll?

This isn't about taste, or what's better. It's about recognizing quality, even if something isn't your particular brand.

Anonymous said...

Great point, just due to the fact that I think "Don't Tell A Soul" is better than "Pleased To Meet Me' and sorry for bringing up the Mats it's just that I'm reading "Trouble Boys" right now and can't figure out how a band with such potential constantly shoots themselves in the foot.

Michael Giltz said...

Sal, thanks for sharing that awesome cover of a song I barely remembered. Now I've got an old Sonny & Cher song to appreciate again and a new band to explore (the Skeletons). I'm a little intrigued why they changed the lyrics back and forth from singular to plural. Of course they changed it in part so it wouldn't be gay (which naturally, I would have enjoyed) but I wonder why they don't sing "But baby that's ok, you love us anyway" and make it a love song to one particular gal rather than "But baby that's ok, they love us anyway" which means all sorts of girls somehow appreciate this regular dude. The whole point is that they're nothing special to look at but their girl digs them, thank goodness. Later it does go to singular and specific. Just an interesting choice. And a fun song. I feel a little...joy.

Michael Giltz said...

Oy. This is why we can't have nice things...part two.

I tried to just bring some positive vibes here but can't leave these comments unremarked. But please, when someone says, "Hey I'm sharing this to brighten your day," that's not the time to snipe. Even if it doesn't brighten your day, try not to smash their offering to ground and piss on ii. And no, when your wife asks if those pants or that skirt make her look fat, she is not looking for an honest opinion.

Tim, thanks for sharing your happy memories of Lou and the Skeletons.

Ok, now I think we can all agree the Beatles, CCR, Sam & Dave are giants (no quotes) and that suggesting they aren't is just provocative nonsense. And if you're a giant, you can't be "washed up." Creating some of the greatest, most enduring music of all time means you get a lifetime pass from having to hear "Yeah, but your last album sucked" or "What has he done lately?" I just say marilyn maye at Town Hall singing "Everything's Coming Up Roses" and she forgot the lyrics, an increasing problem for this cabaret legend beloved by Johnny Carson (no singer has appeared on the Tonight Show more often). She's 88 for Pete's sake. Did the audience boo her as washed up? They applauded her with their love and affection and she repeated the second verse correctly and we felt lucky to be around a talent who can still deliver anything at her age, not to mention still being alive. And it's not just a shadow of her former self; I wouldn't enjoy seeing someone who couldn't sing at all anymore. I'd politely stay home and not badmouth them. Happily Maye can still command a room.

You know, a legend is a legend. And Paul McCartney's solo work would make him a legend even if he'd never gone to that school fair and heard the Quarrymen.

michael said...

I have noting against Sam Moore Sal...


Michael Giltz said...

Now to defend the "lesser" lights. Anonymous, one artist's personal success does not come at the expense of another. The Replacements are awesome. But they would not have been commercial giants if Billy Joel had never left that dive bar out of bitterness over the nightmare of his debut album being injected with helium by a producer who sped up the vocals and made him sound like Alvin and the Chipmunks on Cold Spring Harbor. In fact, the album that first garnered the Mats some widespread attention from mainstream losers like me was "Let It Be" in 1984. (I used the song "We're Coming Out" to tell a friend I was gay, by the way. I know, that's not what the song is about. Sue me.) Their last album came out in 1990. Billy Joel had two albums during that period, both rather weak: "The Bridge" (only double platinum) and "Storm Front" which somehow sold four million copies. That's it. Do you really think the Replacements would have become the Rolling Stones if "Hootenanny" hadn't been overshadowed by "An Innocent Man?" (My favorite Billy Joel album, by the way.) Even to type that is amusing because one has nothing to do with the other. Clearly, so bitching that Billy Joel sold a lot of albums and [insert beloved cult band] didn't is irrational and annoying.

Now you're on firmer ground when you argue about your personal opinion of, say, Billy Joel. I guess. But mocking an artist by saying Boston's debut isn't remotely as good as, say, Nirvana's debut is neither here nor there. (Boston's debut album is pretty stunning.) But where to start with Joel? Does Phil Collins really have a sense of humor? I'm not so sure though he is enjoyably self-deprecating at times. I think Joel is more pugnacious, which they both have the right to be since their popularity led to the sort of vicious personal loathing in print that we would eventually see flourish on the internet for everyone, not just celebs. (Another reason why it's nice to encourage civility and politeness here.)

"Tin Pan Alley is as far removed from rock n roll as Keith Richards is from Adele." Uh no they're not. Tin Pan Alley IS the rock n roll of its day, the popular music that upended convention and upset the morality police and was dangerous and exciting. Just as big band music was the rock n roll of its day. Your great grandmother was aghast at the riotous goings-on of Benny Goodman. Such noise! I'll bet Keith Richards is down with Adele. I'm about the only one who liked anything on her third album but she's got a great voice and knows how to sing, as opposed to say Celine Dion or Mariah Carey. I think that's pretty firm ground. I guess I never felt drawn to "rock and roll" as fighting words or as opposed to pop music in general. "It's Still Rock N Roll To Me" is YES a pop song more than a rock song. So what? Rock n roll is a mutt of a genre, soaking up blues and country and pop and tin pan alley and you name it. It's all popular music to me.

I don't know what I dislike more: the knee jerk hatred of anything popular at the moment or the knee-jerk "re-appraisal" of something just because it's "popular plus 20 years" or "popular plus 30 years" or "popular plus the act is now dead." I loved ABBA's singles from day one. No, I never owned albums beyond the hits (No one has ever suggested I bother, but I will if someone does). I just feel sorry of you can't enjoy "Waterloo" or need to wait 20 years before you can admit enjoying "Waterloo" (or "In The Air Tonight," great damn song even if his drum sound spread like a virus). What, NOW you think the Carpenters are super cool? Where were you when Karen was wasting away? :)

To be continued....

Michael Giltz said...


I don't cherish the Who (no idea why), but I'm not going to waste my days slagging them as if the Who never did anything of note. They've done enough great stuff I can appreciate and I certainly understand why someone would be passionate about the Who or Pearl Jam or whomever, even if it doesn't rock my boat. Heck, maybe 30 years from now it'll click and I'll LOVE Pearl Jam. At least then I won't have a paper trail of lazy mockery to have to explain to Eddie Vedder when I ask him to sign my ukulele.

Billy Joel has been a favorite of mine since childhood. While I regret it, I really respect his walking away from recording new music. 22 years is hardly a short time, but still, he was at another commercial peak and obviously he still has fans eager for new songs. Saying simply, "I'm done" is really admirable. (And please no comments about how he spared us more crap. I get it. You don't like him.) If anyone could keep milking his popularity and churning out crap, it's Billy Joel who remains a huge concert draw and whose albums were uniformly huge. The last thing you can do is accuse him of delivering the same old shit. Indeed, I think he recognized the poor quality of Storm Front and The Bridge and so was happy to walk way when he'd delivered another solid album with River of Dreams. That's remarkably self-aware.

I think he's been a punching bag (and lost his sense of humor) because the critics always despised him. He was popular and uncool. What could be worse? (Plus his politics were...un-engaged. He wrote a song about Vietnam insisting war was hell and in the middle of a battle it didn't matter who was wrong or right. Wha? About Vietnam, the most debated war in US history? And in "Angry Young Man" he mocked young collegiate types who got up on their soap box all the time. "I once believed in causes too, I had my pointless point of view, Life went on no matter who was wrong or right" was simply anathema. (And I disagree with it, to a degree.) I really do think those working class sentiments of a guy uninterested in the big debates of his time were what drove critics to distraction.

But Billy Joel is a very good songwriter. I assumed he would be remembered mostly as a songwriter of songs that other people would cover. But his music isn't interesting in whatever way makes a pop song interesting to a jazz artist. His tunes don't get reworked at the Blue Note, unlike say Sting. And other pop artists really don't cover Joel's songs, beyond "New York State Of Mind." As it stands now, I was wrong and Joel will be remembered mostly for his own recordings, not for songs that become standards a la those Tin Pan Alley hacks dismissed by Anonymous as not rock n roll. There's literally nothing to say about his music. Joel has been so popular that whether you like it or not you've heard two dozen of his songs ad infinitum. He deserves to be in the Rock N Roll Hall Of Fame. He's a terrific live performer. (Except he's not because his live performances sound EXACTLY like his albums. Rarely does he rearrange them or show his songs off in a new light. Yet another "give 'em what they want" ethos that's so un-rock n roll unless you're actually a fan and paid good money and kind of WANT to hear his songs in recognizable form.) And he's got some very strong albums to his credit. I don't like the baseball team Boston, but hey, they won the World Series. That deserves a little respect.

michael said...

I don't type well...and I'm sorry for past errors...I'll do better.

I guess I stirred up some real stuff with my "giants" comments...

I happen to come to Burning Wood early everyday because I like you Sal and I think there are few blogs even close to yours in quality. Stories behind the music and musicians are top notch and worth my time.

I have owned recordings by Paul, Bruce, John. Never did own a Billy or Phil but I was always around people who adored them and I guess I just never "got it".I also volunteer in a place where they have FM radio tuned to the most middle of the road music...every other song, Billy or Phil. I did smirk a bit when Collins did the, what, cross country flights thing? To get to different events all in one day or evening as if it was "important" that he be in those places...or that people were made aware he was in those places...Billy Joel? Please don't make me listen.

Of course I loved the Beatles...no one wrote better 70's am radio music than John Fogarty...and I did purchase the first 3 "Boss" records.

I'm getting old, it's true.

It's hard to explain but, when my "heroes" start taking themselves far too seriously and the music begins to suffer and they also can now take up to 2-3 years to pump out new product..I lose interest...and I almost feel/felt betrayed. I find it hard to put on an oldie and think about how great things were.

Enter things that I found more interesting...more spontaneous without the heavy messages(Skeletons?)...I don't need Bruce to guide my politics and frankly, I do think he's taking things and himself a little too seriously in the recent past. How can someone with that much talent, and that brilliant stage presence, be such a horses ass when the camera is off. Lighten up Bruce...you're still the "Boss" I guess. I know he'll show up on "Meet the Press" soon...I just know it. It'll be top rated too.

Read an interview with Fogarty not long ago and I'm sure that he didn't want to be there and believe me it showed. I'm pretty sure he killed his brother...ONLY KIDDING!!! What a sourpuss!. Is it because he hasn't done one good thing since the CCR breakup? All those Fantasy lawsuits? You can only go "down the road" so many times huh?

Paul...well...I'm pretty sure he killed George????ONLY KIDDING!!!! Well, ok, but he sure made a good portion of GH's life miserable, huh? Come here George, I'll show you how to play that lick...Christ! And here's another case of someone who, having failed at a solo career, turns his attention to the "problems of the world"...oh Jesus. And please, don't throw "Maybe I'm Amazed" at me.

I have to go...Go to You Tube and look up "Art Fein's Dance Party" or something like that..Find Skeletons doing "Play with My mind".

I'll stop now...yes, I'm sure Monday's video was wonderful...I just didn't feel it and that's my loss...I guess. I do like Darlene Love though...Sam Moore too.


jeff said...

loved the song. i just saw "The Wrecking Crew" documentary and listening to this song, I was struck how similar it sounded to "Gary Lewis and the Playboys, and there is a connection between Sonny and Gary: Snuff Garrett, the producer.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Glitz
Now you done went and made it personal. Let's look at your rants. First looks to me, your first encounter with The Mats came from "Let It Be" Maybe you should look at their first LP,(Sorry Ma) it's obvious to even an Abba fan that these guys did not take their music, or themselves too serious, but by doing that they did the exact opposite, meaning here's a band that just says fuck it like us or hate us we don't care and we are here to upset the apple cart i.e. your beloved Billy Joel. Due to this fact, radio programmers (and we are talking way before the net,Spotify or wherever else you get your music info these days. When radio was the only way to hear new music) Due to this fact radio programmers were going out of there way to play the new Billy Joel record even if it was just a prolonged fart, due to his proven track record. In the meantime The Mats will be scoffed at for the reasons that their first album exists. Because some moron disc jockey decided The Mats have no commercial potential. Surely "Customer" or "Johnny's Gonna Die" could have been added to a playlist or two. Let's see a young man with a guitar accompaniment, bass and two or three drums goes into a studio and creates rock and roll. You mention respect, to my dying day if anybody tries to tell me what a viable asset Billy Joel is/was to rock and roll I will dismiss them as failing to get the whole point of R&R and consider their view far less superior to mine. sists.

Anonymous said...

First off my comp took a dump on me so disregard the letters sists from my last post. And Michael everyone knows Paul did not kill George Paul died in that bloody car crash. But Yoko killed John.

Michael Giltz said...

Hey Anonymous,

I'm not sure if you were joking or whether I said something insulting. I didn't intend to be rude in my long posts, or as you called them rants. My apologies if I did.

To be clear, I've heard all the Replacements and solo Westerberg. I was just pointing out that Billy Joel's commercial peak was in the 1970s and early 1980s and then 1993. The Replacements received their biggest burst of popularity exactly when Joel was NOT a huge commercial factor. That's all. It would be more logical to say Madonna or Bryan Adams or Bon Jovi ruined it for The Replacements. But again, one act's success does not come at the expense of another. Never has; never will.

Hey Michael,

Bruce Springsteen ALWAYS took himself seriously. It's part of his appeal. He always spoke out in concerts about life and social issues. What are Nebraska and Born In The USA if not deeply serious politically charged albums? Nonetheless, he's hardly a glutton for attention and really doesn't give many interviews or hold forth on the issues of the day a la Bono or whomever else you dislike for their liberal politics. So complaining he's NOW serious makes no sense. And complaining he runs around holding forth on politics makes no sense, because really he doesn't, objectively speaking. He waited decades before endorsing a politician and then supporting Obama. Whether one likes his politics or not, he doesn't get on a public soap box constantly.

As for Paul McCartney, you say, "And here's another case of someone who, having failed at a solo career, turns his attention to the "problems of the world"...oh Jesus." Again, you may despise his music but by any standard -- commercial, critical -- Paul McCartney hasn't "failed" at a solo career. Why say something you know isn't true unless you just want to piss people off? And on a post that was expressly designed simply to be positive and happy, posted by a guy you say you admire and whose blog you enjoy?

And Phil Collins pulled the stunt of flying on the Concorde from London to Philadelphia to help bring attention to Live Aid. It was a charity event intended to raise money to feed people who were starving to death because of famine and a corrupt evil, government in Ethiopia. No one knew if anyone was going to watch this or whether it could be pulled off technically or actually raise enough money to pay for the event, much less raise funds to make a difference. Anything to help the day be an "event" and garner press coverage was all for the good. So now you're mocking Phil Collins for charity work intended to keep people from dying. Probably one of the more defensible stunts in his career, I'd say.

Feel free to comment back. I won't dive in again, promise.


Sal Nunziato said...

"to my dying day if anybody tries to tell me what a viable asset Billy Joel is/was to rock and roll I will dismiss them as failing to get the whole point of R&R and consider their view far less superior to mine."

I am proud to have started listening to and seeing live music as early I did. I'd like to think I even know a little something. But comments like that one, ANON, poison any possible argument you may have. Can you define what rock and roll means? Or what it means to you? I have heard a few New Orleans gospel groups that were pretty fucking rock and roll. I'll go as far as saying the late great sax player Jackie McLean was pretty rock and roll at one of his last Blue Note sets in the 90s. Do I have to be a shitty guitar player, down a bottle of Jack and drive a motorcycle off a cliff to be rock and roll? Or just not be Billy Joel.

I can understand contempt for Adele before I can Billy Joel. I think too many cannot separate the person from the art, which is a shame, because sadly, I think every one of our rock (or not rock) heroes has been a piece of shit at some point in their life. I happen to like Billy Joel's records. I even love a few of them. Also happen to love Motorhead and the Clash and well...you know how that goes. But to dismiss Billy Joel, as a pop star, or a rock star, or a songwriter, or an entertainer, or a live performer is just ignorant. That's my view point and I guess yours is superior.

Sal Nunziato said...

"I think too many cannot separate the person from the art, which is a shame, because sadly, I think every one of our rock (or not rock) heroes has been a piece of shit at some point in their life."

I wish I thought that out more carefully. Disregard.


I’m not sure what’s going on here but there you go.

Following Monday’s post I’ve been thinking about songs that define JOY for me. I can’t figure out what make a joyful song as opposed to a fun song, an important song, …

Often a song that brings joy is also so caught up in memories of places, times, people, kisses, smells, … that what fires a spark for me might not do the same for someone else. And many songs that came to mind were once joyful — he the pathetic romantic — now are too painful to remember let alone celebrate.

Still, here is a rough draft Sixpack (you have taught me well oh Jedi Master!) of possibles even if some might seem a tad bitter sweet:

Prince — Little Red Corvette

Joel Plaskett — Nowhere With You

Lucinda Williams — Right In Time

Bruce Springsteen — Born To Run

Harry Nillson & John Lennon — Save The Last Dance For Me

Jesse Winchester — Sham-A-Ling-Dong
(the performance on Elvis Costello’s Spectacle where Jesse sings and the tears roll down Neko Case’s cheeks — I’m not sure I’ve ever seen anything so beautiful, so sad, so JOYFUL!)

Looking forward to tomorrow’s post.

Anonymous said...

The "far less superior" comment was meant as a joke. Far be it from me to decide what you should or should not like it is truly a stupid comment, once again a sorry joke but that's all it was meant as

M_Sharp said...

Great band, great song! I saw The Skeletons several times by themselves and with Dave Alvin, they could play with anyone and had a sense of humor, too.

michael said...

God Bless you all...

You are all good people.


Sal Nunziato said...

Tomorrow, cat videos.

Sal Nunziato said...

Anonymous, in the context of the entire post, the "far superior" comment did not come off as a joke. But thanks for saying so. No biggie.

rick said...

Today's song is really joyful. It reminds me of about 7 different things, including (oddly enough?) the song Darlene Love used to sing every year on Letterman, 'Christmas, Baby, Please Come Home'...I often don't know what the hell you guys/gals are talking about (like today, for example), but here's hoping the joy project continues for longer than 36 hours. Much longer.

Anonymous said...

I promise this is my last comment of the day. Mr. Giltz I must humbly and respectfully disagree with your comment "one act's success does not come at the expense of another" We are talking about a time when Radio could decide the fate of a rock and roll band. Many people were dictated too about what was thought to be "cool, hip" through Radio, just due to the fact they couldn't give a rat's ass about music. They were more worried about how fast their car could go, how many "chicks" they could pick up on, how much weed or booze they could drink or smoke on the upcoming week-end. Music was background noise to them as played by the so called cool radio stations. How else do you explain the enormous following for bands like REO Speedwagon, Bryan Adams, Bon Jovi etc. This is what was programmed 24-7, of course it's also what killed Radio too. I don't want to get into college radio here just because for every time they would play a song by say The Germs, or The Flamin' Groovies they would then come back and play a Gregorian chant.

Look at some of the bands that I do have a true affinity for(and please hold your laughter till I'm through) Black Oak Arkansas,(some)Elvis soundtracks,The Monkees(some)Ratt(hell their singles remind me for some reason, of The Seeds)I could go on,so just by the Ratt admission alone, that should tell you by no means do I think my tastes are superior to anyone's here.

I'm glad to know that yourself and the readers of this blog could see through the bullshit of all that though. Nowadays my listen to stack of CD's includes King Biscuit Boy, Astrosoniq, the new Robin Trower, The I Don't Cares, Jason Isbell any Steve Earle, Tom Waits and now radio has become my "background noise" thank God for the internet where I am exposed to all sorts of things I may have missed the first time around and all the new/old stuff I'm exposed too. So believe it or not I do respect everyone here at Burning Wood's opinions and love reading the comments. KILL UGLY RADIO!!!!!!!

Michael Giltz said...

I'm commenting AGAIN because I can be positive or at least not confrontational.

Jayessemm, thanks for the list of joyful songs. That jesse winchester perf is so touching I literally tear up when I listen to that song. Which is not often because Im afraid of dimming its impact. I'll have to think of some joyful songs, which is def in the spirit of what Sal tried to start here.

UGLY RADIO: I have literally never listened to the radio with any regularity. I grew up in South Florida which had dreadful "10 songs played in heavy rotation" mass market boringly typical playlists and none of the quirky deejays one might have loved. From the earliest age, I was buying cassettes and playing music in the car even before I could drive. The idea of letting someone else decide what I should listen to at any given moment was anathema to me. I'll be the deejay thank you very much. So I rarely had that experience of getting utterly sick of songs because they were played to death on the radio or hating a band in the first place and wondering why anyone bothered with them (R.E.O. Speedwagon for example). I had very mainstream tastes but heck I was the one who decided when I listened to Billy Joel or Jimmy Buffett (South Florida remember) or Simon & Garfunkel and then slowly but surely Dylan and the Beatles et al. So I've never really cared what was played to death on the radio or what was hugely popular to the masses. Sometimes those acts were gopd, sometimes they were bad, and I didn't care. Never had a job where I ws forcefed radio etc. The only time I listened to the radio was when I did community radio and deejayed my own relentlessly eclectic show. And it's safe to say anyone who finds this blog has to have diverse taste or they wouldn't be here.

SUCCESS: I guess this is where we cross wires. Aren't the Replacements a huge success? They never seemed built to last, a la the Stones or the Who (and maybe those weren't either but got lucky). I mean, the Replacements recorded a string of good to great albums. garnered tons of press, signed to a major label and essentially lived the dream. Eventually, as it usually does, their creative juices dried up and the band ran its course and they ended it. (Bands being together for decades is obviously the exception.) Billy Joel would kill for some of their press and reviews. Most bands that labor in deserved or esp undeserved obscurity would kill for it. And they've got a body of work that will endure. If by success you mean sell a ton of copies, I just don't care and that never occurred to me as what you meant. To my mind, both acts are HUGELY successful and far more than the vast majority of acts that have ever recorded an album or taken a stage. I just don't care that a Billy Joel album sold seven million copies and the Replacements sold maybe a couple hundred thousand at best of Pleased To Meet Me. I doubt you do either, really. Nick Drake is a huge success! Jesse Winchester is a huge success!

Peace out.

J. Loslo said...

Skeletons/Morells: Joy!

The Skeletons also covered Sonny Bono's "Laugh At Me," but changed it from a song about a guy with long hair to a song about a guy with no hair.

Sal, have you heard the Lou Whitney/D. Clinton Thompson collaboration "The Book of Matthew?" It's pretty good.

cmealha said...

Great timing. This came on the iPhone shuffle today and put me in a great mood. Awesome song and great version.

cmealha said...

P.S. Always thought this would have been great for Gary Lewis and the Playboys to do

dogbreath said...

You've plumbed the depths of my ignorance again as I'd never heard of the Skeletons, so I plugged in my Little Pink Dude (not an euphemism) to give the song a listen on the office desktop. It's a bit of all right, isn't it. No heavy critique required; it's just good fun. Nice one!