Errols Weekly Music Update.

March 25, 2011

Weekly Update – 03/25/2011

Hall & Oates at PNC Bank Arts Center on Wed. June 8 and at Jones Beach on Sat. June 11. Chris Isaack is opener. Pre-sale tickets available until 10:00 p.m. tonight and the password is: Concert. General public tickets on tomorrow morning at 9:00 a.m. PNC: $25 and $175.50; (What??!!! This is outrageous, talk about price gauging?) Jones Beach: $52 and $180.50. (The Government needs to undue this TM and Live Nation merger, this is outrageous).

Deep Purple at the Beacon Theater on Tues. & Wed. June 14 & 15. Also appearing at PNC Bank Arts Center on Fri. June 10. Tickets on sale tomorrow morning at 11:00 a.m. Beacon: $52.90 and $143.75; PNC: $51.85 and $106.20.

Los Lonely Boys at Irving Plaza on Wed. June 22. Tickets on sale this morning at 10:00 a.m. $36.25.

Michael Buble at the Mohegan Sun on Tues. & Wed. June 14 & 15. Tickets on sale this morning at 10:00 a.m. $100.10 and $115.45

Tim McGraw at the Mohegan Sun on Sat. July 23. Tickets on sale this morning at 10:00 a.m. $89.85 and $110.30

Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience at the Dome at Oakdale Theater in Wallingford CT on Wed. May 4. Tickets on sale this morning at 10:00 a.m. $46.70.

Death Cab For Cutie at the Bowery Ballroom on Wed. June 1. Tickets on sale tomorrow at noon. $35.

Chris Botti at the Beacon Theater on Thurs. June 23. Tickets on sale this morning at 10:00 a.m. $40, $60 and $85.

Youssou N’Dour at Terminal 5 on Fri. June 24. Tickets on sale today at noon. $50 ($55 day of show).

Guster and Jack’s Mannequin at the Summerstage in Central Park on Mon. Aug. 8. Tickets on sale today at noon. $35.

Other items:

Did you see the 2011 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ceremony festivities that was broadcast on FUSE TV this past Sunday night? Have to give it to Darlene Love, she still has “it!!” Her vocals were just like the original recordings and to see Bette Midler up there with her was surprising to me but seeing how much fun she was having up there and listening to her induction speech is really what it is all about. I was expecting a little more passion from Rob Zombie on his induction speech for Alice Cooper-meaning I thought he would have told the audience what impact Alice had on his life because (this is a presumption on my part) it just seems he took what Cooper did and expanded it and made it his own. I was looking for that passion that he was the reason why Zombie decided to become a rock “villain.” His induction speech was good but again I was expecting a bit more. Alice Cooper’s band mates were gracious and I felt good for them! Their performance of “School’s Out”- especially with all those kids dressed up in make-up, along with Mr. Zombie helping out on vocals-was the highlight of the two hour show. Elton John’s passionate speech for Leon Russell and Leon’s subsequent response brought a tear to the eye-you had to feel good for Leon. His performance with John Mayer-one of the best young guitarists’ out today-was also the highlight of the show. Maybe it was because in his mind (and Paul Simon’s) that it took too long to finally induct him into the Hall but Neil Diamond’s lack of interest was quite surprising and disappointing. He knew about this induction for at least two months and had no speech prepared and then gets up there and curses? (Hey I expected Rob Zombie to curse). And then of all the songs he could pick, he performs one of his most boring songs? Surprised that FUSE ended the show with him. Everyone and every performance before him showed more class and more effort. I don’t know about you but if I were in their position, I would be so stoked to be there…what do I know?

Ok what am I missing about Jacob Lusk? Steven Tyler jumps up on stage and gives him a hug & kiss, Jennifer says he moves her and Randy states that Berry Gordy is somewhere sitting and smiling after his performance? He is so over-rated, it is down-right sickening and I am at a loss. I don’t even think he sings well when he is not screaming. It’s like they have already anointed him the next American Idol, what gives? Hopefully America doesn’t drink the cool aid. I was so glad the judges saved Casey Abrams. America is voting the wrong way with the folks that keep landing in the bottom three.

I love The Cars new single-“Sad Song”- from their upcoming studio album-“Move Like This”(out on May 10)- it is that “classic” sound that will remind you of songs from the album “Candy-O.” Oh man does it feel good to “go back home.” The world has been missing these guys for too long (Ok maybe me but lots of others as well). If you a Cars fan, this is a no brainer. Can’t wait for the new album. There is however, no Elliot Easton classic short guitar solo on this song.

According to Rolling Stone magazine Lady GaGa’s second studio album (due out on May 23) is going to be “huge.” Lady says it is a combination of electronic music with “metal or rock & roll” anthem style melodies combined with “hammering dance beats.” She enlisted the one and only Clarence Clemons to play saxophone for the song “Edge of Glory.” Clarence stated that it took him a few days to come down after the experience in the studio with her, claiming that it was a “day I will never forget.” Wow, strong words…could I be purchasing…nah…maybe?

My favorite “old school” song of the week is “See You In September” by The Happenings. Wow I hadn’t heard this song in a while and I was riding in my car listening to an “oldies” station when this came on. “Bye Bye…so long…farwewell…” They don’t make songs like this anymore.

If you are a “metal” fan head on over to I-Tunes this week as they have an assortment of heavy metal albums on sale for $7.99. Lots of good picks to choose from.

Former Kiss lead guitarist, Ace Frehley, will be the guest on this weekend’s “That Metal Show” to be aired on VH1 Classic this Saturday night at 11:00 p.m. Eddie Trunk, the main host, is a huge Ace fan and a Kiss fan-but only with Peter and Ace- he totally ignores the new Kiss with Eric and Tommy. So you know this show is going to have a segment (or more) where they bash Gene. I still say that if the sum doesn’t equal the parts, you have to get the parts to equal the sum.

The Foo Fighters will release a “cover’s” album- “Medium Rare”- on April 16 and will include songs by Paul McCartney, the Ramones, Prince, The Zombies, Pink Floyd, Thin Lizzy, Joe Walsh, Cream and others. Dave Grohl never stops working, it is incredible. I’m in for this one as well. Their seventh studio album-“Wasting Light”- is out on April 12. Totally in on the new studio, can’t wait.

Robbie Robertson is putting out his first work in 13 years when he releases-“How to Become Clairvoyant”- on April 5. Trent Reznor helps him out on a song called “The Right Mistake.”

Nuggets

Agent Provacateur

Ok it is near the end of 1984 and I am about to turn twenty in February 1985 and what is the saying? –“In the prime of my life”- I had just graduated Brooklyn Technical High School and then went to Brooklyn College (lots of Brooklyn, huh?) and I was waiting impatiently for the next Foreigner album. “4” had been released in 1981 and the band had been broken down to four guys (which I did not like, I wanted the original six because those of you who know me, know that I don’t like change too much, especially if something is working) but ironically it went on to be their biggest selling album. Of course I loved it. Have I ever told anyone that I wanted to be Lou Gramm? (I tell that to my kids all the time and they say “yes Dad I know… you wanted to be Lou Gramm”). During the 1980’s he was the best rock and roll singer, in my opinion-he could do no wrong and just had an incredible voice. Now I have to mention Mick Jones as he was a very integral part of the band, his guitar hooks are addictive (and he can sing also) and I know he needs to make a living so I don’t begrudge him for moving on without Lou (well maybe just a little) but as I have maintained on this page for sometime-there is no “Foreigner” without Lou Gramm, so save your breath, no one will ever convince me otherwise. I totally ignore the new singer and no longer will follow Foreigner as long as Lou is out of the picture.

Now trying to top “4” was not going to happen-it couldn’t because of songs like “Juke Box Hero” and “Urgent”-even at a young age I knew that was not going to happen. And who knows if that was a factor (trying to top “4”) from the record company point of view because they needed to sell more Foreigner albums, so they write a masterful “ballad” (“I Want to Know What Love Is”) and the rest they say is… “the beginning of the end.” Unfortunately when a rock band does one ballad, the entire world seems to turn on them. (see Warrant for “Cherry Pie”-not a ballad but you know what I am talking about with one song) The general public loved it but the “rockers” seemed to scoff and just moved on. Now I totally get why that occurred, who am I kidding- I did the same thing. When The Cars and the Police became too “pop”-ish, I dropped them like a hot potato. But I couldn’t do that with Foreigner-they had too much of a grip on me, I couldn’t let them go. And in my opinion, they still made some very rocking songs on “Agent Provocateur.” In my opinion, “I Want to Know What Love Is” is an absolute stunner of a song, I thought that when I first heard it in December 1984 and I still think that today but even Lou and Mick admit maybe they shouldn’t have recorded it.

Anyway, the point here today is that “Agent Provocateur” is still a solid album-not “exceptional” like some of their earlier albums-but still contains some quality songs and that is why it lands in the “Nuggets” section. I can remember playing some of these songs when it was released for my “brother” –Slats- and he always maintained that Foreigner was a rocking band. He is a drummer and knows good rock & roll when he hears it. As you probably know, I will listen to this album from top to bottom but again recognize its limitations. So here are some of the songs that are golden nuggets in my opinion, in no particular order.

Stranger In My Own House – I think this was the first song I played for Slats, the first song on side two. You want proof that Gramm was the best? Listen to this bad boy and let it rip!! This is straight up rock and roll laced with some funky blues riff-when Lou and Mick did songs like this, they were some “1, 2 punch”-there is no denying that. It has an edge, a toughness and a blazing guitar hook that reels you in, throws you to the couch and makes you pay attention. “I got the key to the door but I’m still locked out…Ahh honey…I’m home!!!” Tell me this is soft??!!

Tooth and Nail– Love this song, what a way to kick off the album. It has a driving head-banging beat that will have you “air-guitaring” in no time. “And I’m tired of all this cheap talk…when you walk next to me” Mick’s riff’s are “off the hook” and Lou is…well Lou- pure rock and roll voice. I could do this song at a karaoke night and would totally nail it. Don’t listen to Joey Ramone when he called it “corporate rock”-this is some good stuff right here folks.

She’s Too Tough – For some reason I just picture this song being done in a local bar (pub) somewhere in New York City for a band trying to make it in the music world-to me that is how raw it is. Yes, Ok the production is polished but the vibe is raw. These guys could rock out with the best of ‘em and listening to Mick’s short-but powerful-guitar solo has to make you pay attention to their talent. This is a perfect work-out song, especially a kick-boxing or boxing class-or if you like to jump rope-put this on your headphones and let the rope hit the floor to the pulsating bass and drums-you will love it.

Reaction to Action – This sounds like the “hair-bands” before the hair-bands made it big. The production is “big” with a loud heavy riff and Lou’s powerful vocals that scream for attention. Again the sound is raw and powerful and I never really hear about these songs on the album-it all falls to “Love Is.” But I am here (hear) to tell you that this album had some kick butt songs and again Mick’s solo is right on target. He probably has some of his “heaviest” work on this album. He tears it up.

That Was Yesterday – Ok they take it down on this “radio friendly” song but again they could do no wrong in my eyes (or ears). Say what you want but these guys knew “the formula.” What is very strange is that the “keyboard” is the most prominent instrument on this song but yet there were only “four” guys-which is a lie because they had studio help with the keyboards and it accompanied them on tour as well, so why did they get rid of the other guys? Lou’s vocals are stupendous; if you don’t “feel” him, then you don’t feel at all.

I Want To Know What Love Is – Ok I told you that I absolutely love this song and I never considered it a “mistake” to record. There is no denying the exquisiteness of this song and getting the New Jersey Mass Choir to back them up on vocals was pure genius. Ironically, this was their only number one song ever. (Hey Aerosmith’s only number one hit was “I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing” – a ballad). This could be Lou’s best vocal performance ever. I know this song was a double edged sword for them-on one side of the blade is a number one song that attracted so many people from around the globe but on the flip side, this attraction lasted only a few songs for the general public once they realized that this was a rock band but their “rock” fans walked away from the band, except me. I only walked away once Lou was gone. Fantastic song, period end of story!!

Artist Profile

Image of Fats Domino

How important is Fats Domino to the world of rock and roll, rhythm & blues and just about any type of music that makes you move? His contribution to the world of music is so significant, so powerful that his influence has been engrained into the general fiber of anything that is rock & roll or rhythm & blues. And yet I get that feeling that he is often over-looked and this was especially true once the terrible disaster named Katrina disrupted his world (along with so many others, I don’t want to minimize any other suffering from the lives of so many affected who lost loved ones and much, if not all, of their personal possessions). Thankfully, many artists, including Paul McCartney, Elton John, Tom Petty and lots of others took part in a tribute where the proceeds went to help him as well as many others. Just on that fact alone, this album should be in your music library. (The covers by the various artists are fantastic). Now I was born many years after Fats made his mark on the music world and I do not profess to know all there is about this man, how could I? I can’t imagine what he endured (again as well as many others) in the music industry when many of his generation were stripped of earnings that should have gone in his pockets, rather than people who did not even create the magic that he did.

My connection to Fats is due to my father, he played his music around the house constantly while I was growing up. There was always something special about his music that hits me right in the heart. Every song, even though many are very short as far as length of time, told a huge story and you could feel his passion. He has “it!!” Fats’ songs are full of energy and he seemed to be so content just sitting in front of piano making some of the best songs in the history of rock and roll. He created infectious grooves that will last forever and we all know a few songs (if you don’t please don’t tell me because I will be crushed). C’mon everyone knows “Blueberry Hill,” right???!!! For those who know me a long time, you know that the 1970’s show-“Happy Days”- is one of my all-time favorite sitcoms and I idolized “Richie Cunningham” and many of my family & friends said that I reminded them of him. (I was stoked when I heard that). Anyway, what is the one song that Richie will forever be associated with? – that’s right-“Blueberry Hill.” “I found my thrill…on blueberry hill”-could be the most recognized lyrics in the history of music, no?! Anyway, I will list the following songs that I absolutely love by the “Fat Man,” in no particular order (of course there will be songs that I will leave out but not intentionally):

Blueberry Hill – Ok so I know we have all heard this song a zillion times but when is the last time you have listened to it? It’s been a while, right? From the opening piano note, it sounds as fresh as it ever did and you can’t help but sing along to this landmark song. I can picture Richie’s face as he sang the opening notes, it was with such joy and that’s what Fats has brought to this world- joy. This is one for the ages and I never tire of its existence. Elton John does a fabulous cover on the “Going Home” tribute album. If you don’t have either-buy both. Of course there is nothing like the original.

Blue Monday – What a funky blues groove in this song-so addictive, so infectious that I have to keep rewinding the tune to listen to it over and over again. “Saturday morning, oh Saturday morning…for it’s worth it for the times I’ve had.” Many of his songs contained saxophone solos and this one is no exception, love it. Like I said, his songs are short and sweet but pack a powerful punch.

The Fat Man – Wow what a song!!! This is “old school” rhythm and blues at its best. I wonder if it was a “78” record when it was first released? My friend Abel has this really old record player that plays “.78’s” (and he has a ton of .78’s as well) and I can imagine the “scratchy-ness” of this song once the needle is put down on the record. This is totally cool stuff and I highly recommend it for your next house party-this needs to be on your next I-pod set list when you create your next one. Love it!!

Walking to New Orleans – Wow this song takes on a whole new meaning after Katrina, no? This is one of his most “heart-felt” songs that he has recorded. It is an astounding arrangement that makes me drift off to another stratosphere. What a beautiful song. I love the part where he sings-“you used to be my huh-knee…till you spent all my ma-knee” Just a totally amazing song.

I Want To Walk You Home – Ok I’m squinting my eyes, scrunching my lips together (my brother Rich says that is the tell tale sign that I like a song) and snapping my fingers to this super cool groove. This is like walking through the park on a beautiful spring day with your partner holding their hand and singing to them- “You look so good to me…ooh ooh weee..I wish I was the lucky guy who could walk you right on down the aisle.” How great is the guitar work on this track, of course Fats is always there on piano but the guitar part is super awesome.

I’m Ready – This is what rock and roll is all about-this is a hand-clapping and a knee slapping song if there ever was on. If this doesn’t get you out of your seat to dance then I don’t know what will. It has the obligatory hand-claps so you know I’m in. I can remember every Sunday morning my dad would pull out all his records and I would get “schooled” in the right way as I was taught where rock and roll came from-and Fats was at the forefront. This is one of my favorites from him. (George Thorogood does a smoking version of this by the way).

Hello Josephine – C’mon these are some of the greatest songs ever recorded in the history of music, I’ sorry but “they don’t make songs like these anymore.” I picture my mom, dad and my aunt Carol sitting around the table singing songs like these for hours and hours. These songs are priceless, pure amazing you need to pass it on down to your children, grandchildren, neighbors and everyone else.

I’m In Love Again – Another one of his greatest accomplishments. Ahh I love to sing along to this one- “Eeeny, meeny, miney, mo…told me ya don’t want me around no mo’..” How great is the saxophone solo? The arrangement, as always, is superb. My only complaint is that it is too short. You need to own this as well.

My Blue Heaven – Wow I can be here all day and night writing down these awesome songs. The man knows how to rock and roll with the best of them and jazz it out, blues it out-looking for a good time? You better have some Fats albums or songs because they will keep the party going strong. Norah Jones does a fantastic version of this song, slows it down and adds a beautiful touch-unreal.

Please Don’t Leave Me – Love the piano work on this tune, absolutely stunning. Folks I am at a loss of words in trying to explain what his songs to do me. You have to feel this, it’s all from his heart and his gift to the world. Fats Domino is a national treasure!!!

Whole Lotta Loving – What a fun song!! Again the piano work is flawless. The hand claps are in there and why not? You can’t help but clap along. “I gotta a whole lotta love for you… I gotta whole lotta smooch smooch for you.” Lenny Kravitz does an absolutely amazing cover on this song and changes the whole arrangement around…but it totally works.

This list could go on for days… you need to familiarize yourself with this living legend. Fats thanks for all that you have given to us!!!

Top Ten

Image of Black Sabbath

This week’s I-pod shuffle landed on “Changes” by Black Sabbath and I had been contemplating doing a top ten list with Ozzy at the helm (with no disrespect towards Ronnie James Dio, Ian Gillian, Glenn Huges or Tony Martin-and any I may have missed-who also were the lead vocalist for this legendary band) and hearing this song was the signal for me to do it, so I will attempt to do my best with naming my favorite top ten songs from this unbelievable quartet who has influenced more bands in the genre of heavy metal and hard rock than any other act that I can think of. Now for those of you who know me a long time, especially while growing up in Brooklyn, you are probably saying-“hey wait a second, he never listened to Black Sabbath when I hung around with him?!” And that would be correct. But just like Metallica, my discovery was a little late in the game but eventually my passion would rise to the level of the pure fan. Ironically, it was actually someone who is younger than me that introduced and opened up the world of Black Sabbath for me. His name is Jon and at one point in our careers we both worked at MBIA and he was the most knowledgeable student of “classic” rock and roll that I have ever come across for someone his age. His knowledge was a source of hope for me because at times I felt like the whole world was listening to Z-100 (not that there is anything wrong with that) and here was someone from the “younger” generation who knew way more than me, that just filled my gas tank to the full position and it has remained there ever since. His enthusiasm in explaining how great those albums with Ozzy were, inspired me to do my homework and dive into the world of Black Sabbath. (Remember as I have grown older, my taste in the “heavier” side of things increased along with my age).

Now of course, I did not live under a rock (like those guys on the “GEICO” commercial) and knew many of their songs that were constantly being played on the radio. (“Iron Man,” “War Pigs” and “Paranoid.”) But I didn’t know the lesser known classics (think-“Hand of Doom”) and the great joy of experiencing their catalog is something that everyone should feel (note, it doesn’t have to be Black Sabbath, it can be any band or artist-the joy of discovering music is something that will never go away). A few weeks back I mentioned that Black Sabbath was always in my rotation for the car ride for much of the six years that I worked at MBIA and made the 33 mile trip from New Fairfield, CT to Armonk NY. The more I listened, the more it opened my eyes (and ears) to the fact that this band could have single handedly been responsible for metal music. The musicianship between Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler and Bill Ward is nothing short of phenomenal and arguably this quartet could have been one of the best-if not the best- band(s) in the history of hard rock/heavy metal. Folks, once you “get it” you will see (hear) what I am talking about. My younger son has really taken a liking to Sabbath and considers Bill Ward the greatest drummer ever (yes even above the “mighty” John Bonham-which I will not debate-everyone is entitled to their opinion) and I think my oldest son enjoys more songs than he lets on, but he acknowledges their importance to the world of music.

I hope that Tony and Ozzy can put aside their differences and have another “reunion” tour (or maybe a new album) but until then I can still listen to all their great albums and songs. I am now on an island and have been informed that I can only have ten songs from Black Sabbath with Ozzy Osbourne as their lead singer-“These Are Them:”

10.     Warning– Ok so I know this is a blues cover of an Aynsley Dunbar’s “Retaliation” tune but I had to include this in my top ten. Listen to Geezer’s bass line throughout the song-it is absolutely incredible and you will feel like your chest is thumping as his playing just seems to rip the cover off the ball. Ozzy sings the song like he is at the bottom of a water well. Many of their early songs sound like they were recorded near a cemetery at around 2:00 a.m. (see the song “Black Sabbath”). Tony’s amazing guitar prowess is highlighted during the middle of the song and as the upbeat tempo changes right around the 4:45 mark, he takes off and “school’s” everyone-folks this is unbelievable how great these guys were (are). Tony’s guitar work is worth the price of admission. At some points it sounds like there are two guys playing at the same time, this could be one of the best “guitar” songs ever recorded. At the nine minute mark, Bill enters back into the fray and unfortunately you know the song is soon coming to an end as Ozzy comes back from a long break and takes the song to its end. “Just a little bit too stroonnnggg!!!” Awesome tune.

9.     After Forever – Talk about great guitar riffs? Iommi’s work is so distinctive and was so progressive and ahead of his time and I realized after I started listening to this man play why my friends from Sunset Park Brooklyn were so into Black Sabbath. I don’t want to just single out Tony because without the sum of the parts, they could have never been one as a group. Each individual was so impressively good at what they contributed, it is the main reason why their music will live on forever. Every once in a while a band creates magic that affects people’s life’s in a way no one can understand unless they live it. This song identifies the magic I am talking about. This is off their third album-“Master of Reality.” You need to own this song and that album.

8.     Symptom Of The Universe – Again the great guitar riff starts it off and Bill Ward’s drumming is so freaking out of sight that you will be head-banging in no time. Ozzy’s screams and squeals is pure metal-this song is one of the many reasons why he is so revered. He actually sounds like he is being plugged into an electric socket. Tony waits in the wings as Ozzy takes a break and launches into a blazing guitar solo that by this time should have your head snapping at break-neck speed. Then just like that, the tempo slows down to a funky groove as Ozzy comes back to sing at a nice pace. How freaking good is this song-the acoustic guitar now takes over and you’re wondering if this is still the same song. Tony plays a stellar acoustic solo to the songs’ end and you have just listened to greatness.

7.     She’s Gone –I’m sticking to my guns here, yes I know this is not what everyone would typically associate Black Sabbath with but it shows that these “demonic” guys had a heart and even though it is broken as you listen to the lyrics along with the entire composition, you realize that this is one of the most beautiful songs that you have ever heard. Ozzy pours his heart and soul into this one and you realize that beneath all the tough exterior from all these guys that there is a soul that yearns for the same thing we all do and they hurt just like we all do, especially if we lose someone we love. Awesome song.

6.     Children Of The Grave – Now you can’t judge a book by its cover and you can’t judge a song by its title either. It is not what you think, although with their “devil worship” image did (does) not help them, it is actually a song about their generation (at the time) was tired of all the fighting and they were determined to put an end to it. Musically this song is pure excellence. Listen to Ward’s drumming-if this doesn’t get you psyched up I don’t know what will. This makes me want to take drumming lessons. The heavy guitar riff is best when listened to with a great set of headphones as you try to make your ears meet in the middle of your head. Ozzy is in top notch form with his vocals. This is a great song!!! Rob Zombie does a cover of this song.

5.     Dirty Women –I love this song, there is something about it that just defines rock in my opinion. It has a slow trudging groove but just fast enough to slowly head-bang your way through while making believe you are Iommi as you air-guitar your way around the room. The song shifts momentum a few times as the musicians take over and at the 3:14 mark the pace really picks up as the rocking groove becomes steadier as Ozzy exclaims-“dirty women, they don’t mess around.” Their background vocals kind of remind me of the Beatles’ song-“Lovely Rita.” Iommi’s solo is so righteous, so amazing that it kind of leaves you in a state of awe (like many other compositions). Top notch song!!!

4.     Supernaut – I think I read somewhere that Frank Zappa stated that this was one of his most favorite Black Sabbath songs and mainly due to the guitar hook in the beginning-if this doesn’t reel you in, then I give up. “I want to reach out and touch the sky!!!” Folks, this is hard rock/metal at its best. If you look up this genre in the dictionary it may just have- see “Supernaut” by Black Sabbath. The best part of the song is right around the 2:44 mark as it seems like Carlos Santana’s percussion section must have pitched in to help because the groove becomes filled with various instruments that you used to play in band class that gives it a latin flavor. Ozzy is well…Ozzy, his vocals are pure rock and roll. This song will make you want to take guitar and drum lessons tomorrow. Awesome!! \m/ \m/

3.     Sabbra Cadabra – Oh my, how psyched do I get when I hear this song??!!!! From the opening guitar lick to the psychedelic slow down, this song makes me feel like Sabbra Cadabra-whatever that is. This is a foot stomping, head-banging, dance your way around the room like Robin Williams often did in his role as “Mork”-remember how he used to flay his arms all around like when an adult shows a kid that a pencil is “rubber-like” as they shake it to the child’s amazement. How great is Wakeman on piano? This song is a masterpiece, pure and simple. Metallica does a cover of this on “Garage Inc.” (but the original is better, sorry boys). Love the ending where Ward does his best Moon impersonation.

2.     Hole In The Sky – How great is this song? I believe my youngest son likes this Black Sabbath song the best out of any they have recorded. The only way to listen to this song is LOUD!!!! This is the best!!! This could be Ozzy’s greatest vocal performance ever. (The guy next to me on the train just looked over at me because it is 6:30 in the morning and he can hear the music coming out of my ears-that’s how loud I have it-but I will turn it down because I don’t want to be like the general public who don’t seem to care about their neighbors). This song depicts what I am saying about having “it.” When a band has “it” you feel “it” and “it” becomes a part of you. I could wake up and immediately put this song and start my day. That is when you know the “it” factor. Another masterpiece!!!!

1.     Jack The Stripper/Fairies Wear Boots – I was going to put this on my list of songs with “great beginnings” but for some reason held back, I shouldn’t have. As soon as I hear the opening notes, I am completely hooked and can’t wait for the action to begin. Now I know there are other “masterpieces” that Sabbath has done (“War Pigs”) but in my opinion, this is their “ultimate” masterpiece. This song is so raw, so full of energy and again sounds like these songs were recorded in a dungeon but yet with fire breathing dragon force (if that makes any sense). I can recall when Sal and I went to see Saliva at the now “Best Buy Theater” in New York City in the early 2000’s and the pre-game music featured this song. I told Sal to look around to see if the kids knew this song and to my pleasant surprise almost everyone on the floor was singing the song word-for-word. My “meter” again went to the “full” side and I will never forget that moment because to me, it was a sign that their parents, grandparents or whomever did their job and passed down the beauty of Black Sabbath. There was hope again. How great is it when Ozzy starts singing-“Going home late last night, suddenly I got a fright…yeah I looked through a window, surprised what I saw…all riggghhhttt nooooowww!!!” This is one of the best head-banging songs ever recorded, so addictive-I have to listen again. Listen to Geezer on bass-unbelievable. Thanks Jon for opening my eyes (and ears)!!!

Trivia Questions

Answers from last week:

1.     Linkin’ Park

2.     Godsmack

3.     Aerosmith

4.     Steve Winwood; Spencer Davis Group

This week’s trivia (Random)-

1.     We exploded on to the scene with our brand of heavy metal rap complete with a furiousness that was seemingly unmatched and right out of the gate we had something to say and didn’t care who we offended. Our political views is how we were able to get our music out. We are always up for a protest. Our band split up for a while and we recently reformed but who knows if we will make a new album, we toured last year for the first time in a long time. Who are we?

2.     We are one of the hardest working bands in rock and we are from Sacramento CA. Most think we are a “one-hit” wonder band (and that wasn’t even our song). We were lumped in to that “hair-band” genre but our fans know we have been straight up rock and roll for more than two decades now. Who are we?

3.     We recently shocked the music world by stating that our band was breaking up. Most of our fans are wondering what is was that made us decide to disband but it was just time. We have decided to release a whole bunch of “never heard” before songs and outtakes which we will begin releasing in the near future. Who are we?

4.     We are still not in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland despite being eligible for some time now. We are one of the most successful three-some in the history of rock music? We still tour and make a studio album every five years or so and we will continue to exert our freewill. Who are we?

Name That Tune

Answers from last week:

1.     Your Song – Elton John

2.     Feels Like The First Time – Foreigner

3.     You Got It – Roy Orbison

4.     California Girls- The Beach Boys

Can you guess the title from the following lyrics from part of the song?

1.     “…see the man with the broken heart…you’ll see that he is sad…he hurts so bad (so bad, so bad) see the girl who has lost the only love she had…”

2.     “…every morning I would see her waiting at the stop…sometimes she’s shop and she would show me what she bought…all the people stared…”

3.     “…drums keep pounding rhythm to the brain…la de da de dee…la de da de daa…the grocery store, the supermart uh huh……”

4.     “…Come with it now…Come with it now…the microphone explodes, shattering the mold…”

Back on this Day

Back on this day in 1967, The Who made their concert debut in the U.S. by performing at the RKO Theater in New York City, located on 58th street.

Back on this day in 1969, John Lennon & Yoko Ono began their week long bed-in at the Amsterdam Hilton Hotel to promote world peace.

Back on this day in 1986, Guns & Roses were signed to a record contract with Geffen Records after one of their executives, Tom Zutaut, saw them perform live just one time and immediately signed them thereafter.

Back on this day in 1990, Tommy Lee was arrested in Augusta GA for exposing his “bottom” at a concert there.

Back on this day in 1991, Michael Jackson escorted Madonna to the Academy Awards.

Back on this day in 1995, Eddie Vedder was rescued off the coast of New Zealand after being swept away about 250 feet from shore by a riptide while swimming.

If it is your birthday today, you share the same birth date with the Queen of Soul, Ms. Aretha Franklin, living legend Sir Elton John and the late Jeff Healey.

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