Feb 052013

The All-Star Jam is the place to do your thing, tell your story. Don’t let anything hold you back.


  32 Responses to “All-Star Jam”

  1. The top five rock and roll superbowl moments:

    5) What happens when one thousand halftime dancers all plug their hair dryers in at the same time…
    4) ‘Crack your nuts, Gangnam style’…
    3) Paul Harvey. Pure rock and roll…
    2) Los Lobos singing ‘El Noche’ behind the wilding retirees…
    1) Wayne Coyne wrecking your dad’s new car…

  2. jeangray

    The clarinet is really under-used in Heavy Metal.

  3. This is truly an amazing piece of writing about rock music that I feel compelled to share:

  4. Thanks for the tip. That was great.

  5. Jeffrey Glenn’s Lost Jukebox Compilations (170 CDs worth!) – something that might be up many an RTH-er’s alley (EPG, where are you???). Glenn looks like he was an obsessive who makes all of us look like pikers.

    Here is where to download a lot of them:


    And here are some track listings (you’ll need to click around):


  6. misterioso

    Did you read that whole thing? Holy moses, my tolerance for reading about truly awful 70s music is pretty high but c’mon. I can appreciate the enthusiasm, but “They weren’t the greatest rock and roll band in the world, except for one night when they were”? I’ve watched some clips from this on the youtube, and this guy’s either on whatever the Medicine Show was self-prescribing, or he’s pulling the reader’s leg, or he has genuinely bad taste.

  7. “Sylvia’s Mother” was in a place in my brain that I never needed to go back to. Funny that THEY couldn’t bear to finish the song, which gets to author’s point.

  8. Yes: I did read the whole thing. I consider it a much-needed corrective to the uncritical praise of bands like Black Oak Arkansas, Bachman Turner Overdrive, heck, any band that tries to make it on ‘tude alone. It’s a fair court.

  9. misterioso

    Who is praising BTO or BOA? And what kind of corrective is praising a truly hideous band rather than a truly mediocre band? Some corrective.

  10. I think you already answered the question.

  11. Huh? I read the whole thing and never thought of those bands. Please explain, Doc.

  12. Apropos of the sibling thread from the other day:

    Jan 31, 2013: Blues guitarist Jimmie Vaughan is recovering in the hospital after suffering a heart attack. The 61-year-old co-founder of the rock band the Fabulous Thunderbirds was admitted to a medical center in California last week and has since undergone surgery. A statement released by festival organizers reads: “Jimmie Vaughan was admitted to Pomona Hospital Medical Center on January 23, 2013 with an acute myocardial infraction. He had a coronary angioplasty and stent placement. He is still in the hospital but recovering and has been advised by his cardiologist to rest at home for a month.”

  13. I can’t recall if anyone’s posted this 1971 Grateful Dead concert before, but I’m curious to watch more of this thing. It seems to catch the band in an especially vital, coherent Peace Warrior phase. I’m curious to hear what knowledgeable fans of the band know about this period and this particular film. Enjoy.


  14. Suburban kid

    Why is Robbie Rist in the random photo banner? Was there a Cousin Oliver thread, about late joining younger members signaling the demise of bands? A quick search of the site says no.

  15. The point is that bands like BTO get praised for the ability to “rock,” as if it were something that had authentic value. What the article does in its brilliant close reading of the performance is to show how easily this can be faked and/or manipulated.

  16. After the bad-mouthing around here for San Franciscan music recently I guess it’s time for me to admit to having been a Deadhead in the 70s.
    The band traveled to France for a free festival which was cancelled due to flooding. They stayed at Chateau d’Herouville (Elton’s “Honky Chateau”) & decided to play in the grounds for anyone who wanted to show up. The jam was filmed by ORTF & shown on French TV.
    I turned down a ticket for the 72 European tour as I had an exam the next day & I was then the kind of guy who turned up to exams. It was 1975 before I got to finally see the Dead. This show, despite the dodgy tuning, (the cold) is making my afternoon a better one.

  17. Part 5 of Grantland’s ongoing The Winners’ History of Rock series is a good one – and one with a conclusion that we should be able to get our heads around:


  18. Yeah, I read that yesterday and thought that last graf was pretty relevant to the MBV thread, and our concerns in general.

  19. jeangray

    oKay Mr. Mod:
    Having watched the above Easter Bloc Heavy Metal video, I find myself compelled to ask what sort of youtube rabbit hole lead you to to that extraordinary find. Consider my mind boggled.

  20. misterioso

    I guess so. Not sure I am getting the nuances here.

  21. misterioso

    Well, I skimmed the article ’cause I can’t muster any interest in Metallica but his framing arguments are interesting and relevant.

  22. The nuance I guess I’m trying to get across: both BTO and Dr. Hook gained recognition because of novelty songs that became hits. Regardless, BTO is seen as better because it is imagined that they could put on a great show. You look at pictures of Dr. Hook and figure there is no way they could be as good live. But the article shows they could. So, then, what’s the difference between what one would call “mediocre” and “horrible”? And which, really, is the worse category to be in?

  23. dr john, I make no great claims for BTO, but I simply think their music is better. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a clip of them playing live or cared to, except to laugh at them, as I did the Dr. Hook stuff. I simply think Dr. Hook’s music is fairly terrible, whereas BTO’s music is mostly bad but sturdy enough to give me some pleasure a song at a time. It’s like cheap beer vs shitty beer. I used to be able to drink enough cheap brands of beer to get drunk, but there was some brand of absolutely terrible regional brew (Old Milwaukee???) in Chicago that tasted so bad it wasn’t worth the cheap buzz. I’d put Dr. Hook’s music a little closer to that shitty category.

  24. But you’re not really making a solid argument for why BTO is better, are you? What I think this article proposes is that it’s really a fine line between mediocre and horrible–and it’s all subjective anyway, just like any argument for what bands are the greatest (and yes I am aware of your previous points about the Talking Heads)

  25. True, we’re arguing rotten apples and moldy oranges. Perhaps we enjoyed that piece for slightly different reasons. I loved the degree of analysis and humanity for such a lousy band and awkward performance. However, I could see you digging those aspects too. I did not, however, see it as an exercise in blurring the line between Dr. Hook and BTO. I feel that BTO deserves what little credit it deserves for delivering a coherent, consistent, focused package of ridiculous macho boogie rock. They’re like a well-oiled fast-food chain, for better and for worse.

    Dr. Hook is more like a really funky, suspect hole-in-the-wall diner. You may enjoy the greasy burger they serve on Tuesday, but the meat may be from a different animal on Wednesday. There’s actually something humble to be said for that type of dining establishment as well. In that way, I can see how the lines of mediocrity and lousiness are blurred. Just thinking aloud…

  26. misterioso

    I admired the writer’s commitment to analysis, too, but I drew the line when he tried to explain that, no, really this is kinda great stuff. When it’s horrifically bad stuff.

  27. 2000 Man

    Boo. There’s nothing wrong with BTO. They’re a perfectly acceptable and usually fun mid tier 70’s band. They’re kind of like Grand Funk North. Sure, the nerdy kids and the critics hate them, but everyone else has no problems with putting their brain on idle and digging some big, fat, crunchy chords.

    Dr. Hook sucks on too many levels. Their biggest hit is too sappy for the Hallmark Channel, and their next biggest hit is a joke with all the staying power of a Henny Youngman quip. Actually, that’s wrong. Their biggest hits were the kind of thing that made rock n’ rollers hate disco.

  28. 2000 Man

    I don’t always agree with him, but I’ve liked the series so far. I have different thoughts as to the demise of Rock as the Kingpin, but he’s managing to keep things interesting.

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