Sunday, September 30, 2012

Do it, do it, do it, do it, do it

Oh, balls. I said I would post every day and today has gotten away from me (and shhhh about Friday), with running and writing a review and rehearsals and eating (which means eleven-thousand hours of washing dishes).

I observed yesterday that I was going to become obsessed with Tattoo You, and that happened probably around 2:15 or so into this track.

Originally recorded around 1974-75 for Black and Blue, the song was scrapped when Mick Taylor bailed on the band, more or less. It was revived for the later album, but retained:
  • Billy Preston on organ
  • Sonny Rollins on saxophone
  • Pete Townshend on backing vox
That's all I need, mate.  I like it when the Stones play funk (yes, I do).

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Excuse me I'm only human

This one is about being affirmative.

And I'm posting/playing it because a. I need to post on this blog daily and b. I want to continue to perpetuate the feelings of Love, Tenderness, and Devotion so inimitably, unforgettably, high-heeled-ingly twice laid out by my Purple friend this week.

By the way (there is always a "by the way," isn't there), I love that the members of the Love Men LTD, which eventually became L.T.D., piled into a car and drove to New York to seek their fortune--and then did it again a couple of years later by driving to Los Angeles, this time with a second car to carry the additional members. During the New York days, they picked up a drummer/singer named Jeffrey Osborne, whom we can thank for later, when his solo career took off in the early 80s, providing a song for wedding processions and probably funerals alike for years to come. I prefer the turquoise-shirt-and-white-pants-1983 funk of this track, though. Oh-whoaaa-ohhh-BASS LINE.


Thursday, September 27, 2012

But I say it's only mountains and the sea

So I went back to the United Center last night to see Janelle Monae open for Prince, thanks to the clearance-priced tickets...

...And ended up with a priceless show with eleventy-thousand encores, including one that was just Prince, soloing on the piano with "How Come U Don't Call Me Any More?" "Do Me Baby" and "I Wanna Be Your Lover." Although we saw the show on different nights, I agree with this assessment.

But my favorite moment was hearing the song I'd forgotten about, the one that I dug, yeah, but never really dug into (and who bought Parade, anyway?), the one that was a middling hit in the summer of 1986, a summer about which I actually remember most details--movies I saw and with whom, who got a drivers license, who worked at which mall job, how I couldn't wait to get back to doing plays and speech at school.

Damn, this came at me hard, the culmination of a night that was in every way better than Monday's already "okay, I saw Prince; therefore it is good' show: sound, energy, set, pace. It had joy--and ass. My friend reported that an audience member nearby declared loudly during the "Do Me/Lover" encore that, to paraphrase, something was happening to her underwear.

He really is a sexy m.f. And ageless, too.

Anyway, at this juncture, there was such a great groove going, it was clear we were reaching the ecstatic apex of the show proper, which we slid deliciously back down with "Purple Rain" and an actual, gawddamn weep-inducing guitar solo played under a glitter-rain of confetti. We were all testifying, child. TESTIFY. Oh, this was a show.

So, yeah, back to that groove apex: until I heard the chorus I had the barest sense of recognition of this song.

Here it is, "Mountains," paired here as it was last night with "Everyday People," but featuring Sheila E., at the LA Forum shows in 2011.

But really, you should watch this clip from a Parade-era show, to feel me on this one.*

Prince Parade Tour Mountains

Anouk | Myspace Video

If you watch the "Purple Rain" clip in the set list link embedded above all the way through, Prince implores us to remember "we're s'posed to take care of each other."** Hollowly pontificating from the lip of your multi-million-dollar stage, was he? Do I believe him? I do. It's the same idea he laid down over Wendy and Lisa's track in "Mountains:" There's nothing greater than you and me.

Plus, there's a genuine simplicity about Prince now. It's apparent in an interview with Greg Kot that appeared in the Trib. He's out of the game. He's free to just make music, and give us what he called in his all-caps email interview with Time Out "A NIGHT 2 REMEMBER."

Oh, it was. To remember after, and remember during.

*edited to add: I have a feeling that for some, a Myspace login (!!) is required to view the Parade concert video. You can also try this: 

**edited to add: I withheld some information. The clip proves that I did hear right and Prince did tell us to "read your Bible" during the peak of "Purple Rain." But this, like the way I noticed he won't sing "in and out around your legs," "you got an ass like I never seeeeeeeeen" and other naughty bits in his older, racy material, I am going to ignore in deference to the greater good, i.e. my  having had a blast at these shows.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

He's the rolling stone

This isn't a Your Guilty Pleasure*. It's a great song.

This interview/focus on the song from BBC radio (which starts around 1:04), is a lovely remembrance of an unforgettable song and an empathetic, agile artist who, sadly, leave much of a legacy.

Man, this song has it all: screaming guitar solo, hip-shaky bongo noises, soaring,otherworldly riffs, and that take-it-to-the-bank saxophone solo, which, as explained in the BBC piece, was created by Gerry Rafferty, not saxophonist Raphael Ravenscroft.

It is so legendary that I submit that the Sexy Sax Man pick up his shiniest axe and purvey this smooth riff across some Kohlses and hell, why not a Thanksgiving Day parade, this fall.

And guess what? I can dig into this song myself as the nights begin to chill and shadows lengthen earlier and earlier.

*a song that you didn't know you liked, liked but didn't want anyone else to know, or that you find is making your mind or butt involuntarily move.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Baby, have you got enough gas?

Pregame, avec boot.


I think the set list was printed in oversize format on the top of the piano, which also hid his synths and beats and shit. That was my favorite portion of the concert proper, the blazing medley (still, medley, dammit) that ranged from "When Doves Cry" and "Nasty Girl" to "Sign 'O The Times" with the total tease of the opening strains of "Darling Nikki" wedged up there in the middle. It was within this segment that he called out "Too many hits -- we got too many hits!"

Was that a hint? 

The post-encore encore (and post-stage sweeping--and that took so long that I began to hope that the stagehand would off his workclothes and lights would bump up to reveal Prince in purple sequins within) was the best part of the night. More than thirty minutes after Prince left the stage, around midnight, the band came back and jammed, seen here. I ran back inside the arena from the concourse when I heard a cry rise up from within. Then Prince rode out on a white bicycle to take his place and proceeded to melt my whole self with "1999" and "Little Red Corvette."

Quite a night. Five-hour energy, child.

On Repeat: Anticipation of a bite from the apple of yes

Finally grabbed the entire lp this weekend. My wait is rewarded.

I can't stop listening to this extra slinky track, a delectable merging of seductive beat and honeyed voice. It makes my shoulders move.

Of course, I missed their show in August; I had my own going on.

As always, next time...

Monday, September 24, 2012

Paint a perfect picture

Dammit, I have to say that I prefer the Purple Rain-era version. He got all quiet storm on this. I miss (and love) the big synthy fills from the original.

I would have posted it, but the clip from the film--complete with a hacked off Morris Day and Apollinia and Prince eyeballing each other--with the French dubbing, she gone from the interwebs.

Will I hear this tonight?

Prince Performs The Beautiful One's Live! on... by Doloresdu92

George Lopez has(d) a talk show?

Sunday, September 23, 2012

I want to talk about you

This is my favorite track by Trane. I think I bought a cassette copy of Soultrane at the old Radio Doctors on 2nd and Wells. This was probably around 1990, when I was listening to a lot of jazz, having just become friends with my friend John and also having spent an interesting evening in the company of a rising star in jazz, one Branford Marsalis.

And Radio Doctors! I had to poke around Google for a few minutes to come up with its name, which I couldn't remember. I could remember exactly where it was, and how long it took to walk there from my dorm (about 15 minutes), and that I discovered it all on my own when walking around downtown Milwaukee, just exploring (which was exactly how I saw Corbin Berenson on Wisconsin Ave that fall when Major League was filmed around the city).

Radio Doctors was magical. I can't remember what it looked like inside, but I can picture how the light felt inside, and what Squeeze looked like when did an in-store there. And Radio Doctors was old -- I mean, in 1979, it was old.

...A white girl from Kentucky buying Coltrane cassettes at a venerable record store in Milwaukee.

It was a wonderful world, even back then.

Happy birthday to John Coltrane.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

But I would love to spill the beans with you till dawn

I acquired these today so that I will go get a turntable already.

I can hardly wait to see you come of age

A long time I ago, I copied and pasted URLs here to share photos of cute baby animals.

Now I don't have to do that any more.

This remains a jukebox, not a bragging aunt's photo album, so here's one of a big brother and a little sister for the ages. And it'll do for a while.

Up and away

Refreshed, resolved resolve to post on this blog every day. It is a jukebox, after all.

This quote made me do it:

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.”

I can't guarantee excellence at every turn (again, a jukebox), but nothing's pulling the plug outta the socket on this machine.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Of a favorite song

I didn't think I could love this song more until I found this performance that's introduced via a bit with some very special guests.

I don't  have time right now to wax poetic over the riches that Burt Sugarman's Midnight Special has generally brought to my eyes and ears, but I will. Oh, I will.

I will say this: I think I got more chops when I've karaoked this shiz than Rupert.

But maybe he just needed to untuck that jacket from his pants.

Monday, September 17, 2012

On Repeat: And should I be sung and unbroken by not saying

This is one of My Most Favorite Songs Ever, ever. It is the most favorite song wherein the favorite status is not caused or created by lyric, or the marriage of lyric and sound, but solely is its sound. Only its sound, which is, to me, the sound of a heart hoping. The ache conveyed in this song is the ache of re-feeling what has been felt, and anticipation of feeling more. Flying down East Lafayette Hill Road on a yellow bike. Push play. Rewind. Repeat. Inside the apartment, after shutting the car door, insides screaming like a girl who spied a teen idol's hair flop just so over his eye during the concert. Push play. Rewind. Repeat.

This song stretches luxuriously up, and up even more.

It is on repeat every time I play it.

Saturday, September 08, 2012

You sock it to me, mama

Here's a belated--and smoking--Hal David shout-out.

I love the back-up singers' woh-WOH! at the start of the song, adding to that slow burn. This is really masterfully orchestrated--and no wonder, it being a Bacharach. The overture for the album, really.

It's a track heavily favored by modern hip-hop and rap. Biggie to Bushwick Bill.

I favor this one, though (you'll want to click through to this. Damn, son).

This song spun on Dad's turntable; he had a copy of Hot Buttered Soul that I think I have. Gotta do a cabinet check on that one.

Gotta stop talking about it every two months and get the flipping turntable up in here!

Friday, September 07, 2012

How can I escape this irresistible grasp?

1. I know. 80s-era Pink Floyd. I know.
2. But there is an absolutely incredible mullet in this video (around the 2:14 mark)
3. And this song reminds me of boring afternoons working at Randalls grocery store when I was in high school.
4. I was pretty lucky to be able to listen to the radio while I was working at my job during high school.
5. That is why I knew who Robbie Robertson was when I was 17. But didn't truly discover The Band until I was 37.
6. Victoria Beckham's autobiography (from 2001?!) and a video album by Hilary Duff are both titled "Learning to Fly."
7. This is my favorite "Learning to Fly." Not really this one (though the video is rather funny). Too much of an earworm.
8. PF's LTF sits in the middle, straddling meaning and memory. Well, the weight is mostly on memory's side (see number 3).
9. Of all Pink Floyd songs, this one makes me feel something. Even when I heard it bleeding from Wrigley this June into the rehearsal I was in, up the street on Wilton Avenue.
10. I seem to gravitate toward making lists about Pink Floyd.

Thursday, September 06, 2012

I'm still hanging on

Something brand-new! Too new for a jukebox, even. Well, a real one that whirs and flips and involves belts.

And I like it.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

You've got to lead where your heart says go

The actual tune starts about 1:45, but the interview is worthwhile.

I feel hopeful listening to this. Maybe because I read (most of) my party's platform today. Maybe because I'm planning good things like travel and reconnecting friendships. Or that Prince is coming.

The lyrics hit me like a delicate scent wafting out of a full-blown-summer flowerbed. And those aren't going to be around much longer; it was dusk at 7:45 tonight). Instead of feeling the loss, I just felt the sunset.