Dec 282009

You know you want to tell us about the musically relevant gifts you received over the holidays! Why wait for some thread to arise that allows you the opportunity to share and stay slightly on topic? So, whatcha get?

There was plenty of Beatles product to go around this holiday season, but I betcha didn’t get this. I did, however, get a McCartney biography and a Joey Ramone biography that my wife thought I would find amusing and enlightening for my Rock Town Hall activities. So far I Slept With Joey Ramone is meeting that goal. Haven’t cracked McCartney yet, but I’m hopeful that will tell me all the things Paul could have done before John.


  40 Responses to “So, Whatcha Get?

  1. One of the coolest things I got was a two-disc set of The Who playing at Kilburn in 1977 along with a performance from 1969 at London’s Coliseum. The ’77 show was filmed just for Jeff Stein’s Kids Are Alright film. The story, according to the notes, was that there were no good live films of “Baba O’ Riley” and “Won’t Get Fooled Again.” So, Stein convinced the band to play a one-off show so he could film it and include it in the movie. The only problem was that the band hadn’t played live in over a year and Keith’s health was on a decline (it was his next-to-last performance with the group). The performance is ragged and I’m sure there are better Who shows to be seen/heard. However, the raggedness gives this performance its charm. Pete, in particular, is in fine form and in full “attack mode.” Lots of anger is fueling his performance, which includes more than its fair share of windmills, kicks, jumps, knee-drops, and cursing. It’s like he’s single-handedly trying to save the performance. At one point, he screams at he knocks over the top Hiwatt head in a tantrum. Basically, it’s everything I love about Pete Townshend concentrated into one single show. How I’ve managed to go this long without this DVD is beyond me.

    The other side to the story is that the band wasn’t thrilled enough with the show, so Stein brought them into Shepperton to try once again to film “Baba” and “WGFA”. The band even wore the same clotes for continuity. All except Keith, of course, who was wearing some God-awful purple spangly thing for Kilburn. Those performances are the ones included in The Kids Are Alright.

    I haven’t watched the Coliseum show, but I’m sure it will be similar to the Isle of Wight/Leeds performances in terms of set list and look.


  2. The Jayhawks Anthology – Remastered “hits” and 2nd disc of demos and b-sides that were actually quite good. Also the DVD of their music videos. This is my favorite band of the last 20 yrs, but I have never seen one of their videos ever…until now.

    Also the McCartney Years DVD had some things I had never seen before (Little Willow had a video?)and some I forgot about “Mamunia”

    I bought 4 CDS for my 14 year old nephew who is just starting to get into music (or at least Rock Band game and sorta into music)

    1. The Who – Greatest Hits (new version of Meaty Beaty that goes up to the new record)
    2. Experience Hendrix (best of)
    3. Bruce Springsteen Greatest Hits
    4. The Rolling Stones – Jump Back (70’s and 80’s hits)

    He asked if he could play The Who instead of Christmas music and that made my day

  3. Ultimate Stan Getz
    Eric Alexander – Revival of the Fittest
    Grizzly Bear – Yellow House
    Homer & Jethro – America’s Song Butchers
    Homer & Jethro – Best of Hall of Fame 2001
    St. Vincent – Actor
    Wilco (the album)

    …and I also got a set of omni caps for my pair of MXL 603s’

  4. vinyl LPs from my mom:
    Pink Floyd-Obscured By Clouds
    The Clash-The Clash, Sandinista
    Bruce-Darkness, The River, B.I.T.U.S.A.
    Black Sabbath-Heaven & Hell
    a new stereo from my wife:
    a 50 watt Sony shelf system and a new turntable that also does the USB thing.
    also from my wife:
    a killer photo book called Punk 365
    it was a very good year!

  5. diskojoe

    1. The Figures of Light: Smash Hits!
    2. The Tell Tale Hearts: High Tide (Big Noses & Pizza Faces) Anthology 1983-1986
    3. Buck Owens: 21 #1 Hits
    4. German Francoise Hardy comp
    5. Aloha in Hawaii & Ed Sullivan Show Elvis DVDs

    Also, I got my niece’s husband a Factory Records CD box set that came out in the UK last year which he appreciated very much.

  6. BigSteve

    Does it count if you were your own not so secret Santa? My facebook ‘friends’ have already heard me brag about how I snagged a very reasonably priced plexiglass Dan Armstrong guitar at a warehouse clearance sale:

    I wasn’t think about it as a slide guitar, and to be honest I wasn’t really thinking at all when I made the impulse buy, but it’s stayed tuned for slide since I got it, and whenever I pick it up it just starts playing All Down the Line or Stop Breaking Down or Love in Vain. Thank you, Santa.

  7. 2000 Man

    BigSteve, how awesome it must be to have a guitar that plays Exile for you whenever you pick it up! A lot of people in the Exile Mafia would be jealous, I’m sure.

    The Santa’s around here did pretty well. I got to pick a shelving unit at IKEA that seems to hold all my records, with a little room for expansion before I need another solution. I like that a lot.

    Listy wise, it went like this:

    DVD Rock n Roll HOF Concert
    LP – The Stooges, Funhouse. Man, that thing is gorgeous! Rhino did a great job.
    LP – The Nerves, Live at the Pirate’s Cove. That Santa stopped at my favorite music store to get a gift certificate, and I left a couple of suggestions there in an email, so I got that one, on pink vinyl that’s transparent.

    I was at the record store a few days before xmas, and bought myself The Exploding Hearts, Guitar Romantic on vinyl. The last time they pressed these on vinyl, they sold out in a week. I just stumbled across it and I was really excited to find it.

    I also got a Mick and a Keith Action Figures (I’m a boy, so they’re not dolls!

  8. Tom Waits – Glitter and Doom Live

    A gray DiPinto’s t-shirt

    A pack of Ernie Ball Slinky guitar strings

    Money for my Mac fund (I’m giving up on trying to record with a frigging pc).

  9. Big Steve, that’s awesome!

    I’ve never played one of those but they get a free pass from me because Westerberg, Rick Richards, “No Teef Keef” and of course Cyril Jordan.

  10. CDs
    Funkify Your Life: The Meters Anthology
    Live Santa Monica ’72, David Bowie
    Get Your Goat, Shudder to Think
    The Complete Peel Sessions, Magazine

    A New Career in a New Town: Bowie in Berlin
    On a Faraway Beach: The Life and Times of Brian Eno

  11. hrrundivbakshi

    Not to mention that guy from the Georgia Satellites! Talk about a guitar pedigree!

    I got change in my pocket, goin’ jing-a-ling-a-ling…

    ; )

  12. BigSteve

    Yeah, cdm, it was when I remembered Cyril Jordan playing one on the cover of Teenage Head that the slide thing clicked in my mind. High Flyin’ Baby and the title song have been on my playlist too. Now all I need is a pair of those boots with the glitter stars on them that Cyril is wearing in that shot.

  13. Can’t explain why this happened, but my aunt got me a set of all the Led Zeppelin CDs up to “In Through the Out Door” (or whatever it’s called, maybe it is called that). I copied “Communication Breakdown”, “Good Times/ Bad Times”, and “Misty Mountain Hop” from whatever CDs they’re on, then gave the whole shebang to this pot smoking high school kid who lives in my neighborhood (he’s supernice to my daughters). Honestly, have any of you listened to those things lately? It’s been some time since I’ve heard that much filler on a single LP.

    Man, do they give new meaning to “talking loud and saying nothing”!

    Can’t speak for all (what else is new), but it was once unforgiveable for those in the know to admit to a fondness for Zeppelin. Bad shit indeed.

    When I cared, I’d always try to find out as much as possible about a member of whatever gang I was hanging out with at whatever time, and questions regarding record collections were always necesary. Research showed that those who bought even one Zeppelin LP could somehow or another justify the purchase of an AC/DC title. And pushing all that further, those who bought the Zep and AC/DC titles actually preferred that shit over the good stuff bought to bury incriminating evdidence of bad taste.

    At some point or another it became okay to stand up for that crap. What I want to know is this: when and why did your typcial Trouser Press sort of fella throw in the towel and begrudgingly give those two bands an undeserved pat on the back?

    Hope to hear from you soon,
    E. Pluribus

  14. Mr. Moderator

    You know my feelings on my belated embracement of Led Zeppelin: there’s no point in considering the quality of the songs – it’s all about the production. They took the root ideas of The Yardbirds – the cool guitar riffs and awkward attempts at song structure – and blew them out into recordings that SOUND as glorious as any Beatles album. THAT’S why. You can save your thanks and appreciation for me for tonight’s get-together. I will tell you now that the act of generosity you displayed toward that young man is admirable.

  15. I don’t love ’em or hate ’em, but I’ve never liked Plant’s voice.

    I think I could distill Zeppelin’s output down to about 10 songs.

  16. Moderator,

    You and I are finished. You ruined what could have been a historical meal by using it as a ploy to announce your coming out out the closet to fully embrace the Led Zeppelin / AC/ DC crowd. Again, I suspected it for a long time. There were numerous warings along the way: your dislike of handheld percussion instruments, a comp tape you once made me that featured both Pixies and Nirvana songs, the grail-like respect you have for the second LP by the Band, “the Lennon songs on Rubber Soul drag the LP down” comment you made” at one of your get togethers. . . .I can’t believe I’ve hung in this long, keeping myself reigned in, not calling bullshit on whatever it is you’ve been pretending to be for the last 25 odd years. What’s next? Kiss is acceptable as well?

    And don’t waste my time with any of that production shit. You and I both know that’s as hollow as your continuous thumbs up for Captain Beefheart, Ubu, and Between the Buttons. You like that shit because it speaks to you -all of it. I can forgive just about anything, but comparsions between those assholes and the Beatles, no matter what the criteria, are unforgiveable.

    Give it antoher year or two, and you’ll be telling me that “Songs from the Elder” by Kiss is more or less their “Smile” LP -but better.

    Shame on you.

    E. Pluribus

  17. Mr. Moderator

    AC/DC’s a matter between you and Hrrundi. I’m with you on those retards, although their records do sound good, but never good enough to make up for all their shortcomings. I’m still hopeful that you’ll come around on The Band’s second album. We’ll talk about it tonight, OK? And listen, I’ve got a remastered 180-gram vinyl issue of Honi Soit… for your young friend. Talk to you later.

  18. misterioso

    When I was young (through college, say, so up to the late 1980s) I took it as axiomatic that since Zeppelin was embraced more or less universally by metalhead stoner losers that therefore only metalhead stoner losers could possibly like them and that they had nothing to offer to me (fancying myself as neither metalhead nor stoner nor loser).

    Of course, I heard many of the songs on FM radio in this era (70s and 80s) and even, if administered truth serum, would have admitted to liking some of them. But it wasn’t until later that the power and–I dare say–the beauty of much of their output got to me and the albums as albums and songs as songs began to differentiate themselves and took on meaning for me.

    Seeing Plant and Page live in ’95 (?) at the Boston Garden and noting the incredible preponderance of skeezy looking dirtbags in attendance reminded me of my earlier prejudices.

    As for AC/DC, I feel about them more or less exactly as I feel for the Ramones: in theory I like the idea a lot but in practice after about 3-4 songs its enough already. They do one thing: they do it really well. With Zeppelin I find much more variety, subtlety, grandeur.

  19. BigSteve

    I support epg 100%, if by 100% you mean ignoring his comments about Beefheart, Ubu, Between the Buttons, and the brown album. You go, dude, but stay focused.

  20. sammymaudlin

    Thanks to BigSteve for the segue. This is what I got.

  21. CDM,

    I’d really enjoy seeing your top ten Zeppelin list.

    As far as my list is concerned, the buck stops at three. Everything else is flawed in someway or another, be it structure, overall monotony, and/or the inanity of whatever it is Plant chooses to ramble on about (he likes that word a lot, by the way). And regarding Plant’s ramblings, one can always count on a “you don’t need to be a Dylan to make it work” defense. True, but the music behind the rambling is presented in such a majestic fashion that the listener is expecting some sort of wisdom, or at the very least something that makes some sort of sense period. All one ever gets is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

    And that’s my real beef with Zeppelin. No one expects any insights from on high when electric piano keys are pounded on the “Louie, Louie” intro because nothing overly complicated is going on in the first place. The Kingsmen never claimed to serve up anything more than entertainment. And for that matter, nether did any mid sixties Motown or Stax act. Mary Wells never opted to have a gigantic Zeppelin on any of her album covers or her head, shot in black and white, merged onto the body of a Rosa Parks.

    Every Zeppelin package is presented as art and purports to have some sort of glimpse into the meaning of life. All fail miserably.

    Granted, no one in their right mind can challenge Zep’s talents in production. That said, Yes have a mastery in that area as well. In the long run, Yes has suffered because the men in Yes (Yesmen, if you will) are fairly unattractive human beings. Plant is absolutely and positively attractive to millions of men and women of all races, creeds, and colors. I think it’s safe to say that the the same cannot be said of Jon Anderson.

    Your thoughts CDM? Any insight would be greatly appreciated.

    E. Pluribus

  22. misterioso

    So, E. Pluribus, it appears that your LZ issues boil down to packaging. The packaging–somehow–leads you to expect “some sort of glimpse into the meaning of life” and the contents fail to deliver. Hmm.

    If you buy the Trader Joe’s Italian Roast coffee with the imagery from Botticelli’s Birth of Venus on the container, do you get angry because it turns out the only thing in the can is coffee? “Yes, it tastes fine, but dammit, I expected to be transported! At least when I have a shitty cup of Maxwell House instant coffee I know what I am getting!”

    Can’t help you with The Band or Between the Buttons, either, but if you want throw stones at Pere Ubu, I’m right there with you, guy.

  23. Yeah, Sammy! Kick out the Jams. That’s a solo that comes with fries and onion rings. Can’t wait until you go viral.

  24. hrrundivbakshi

    Hey, Gergles —

    As usual, your musical advice can be distilled into, oh, 30% genius and, say, 70% twaddle. But that’s a lot better than the 100% I-suppose-there’s-some-truth-to-that that we get from most everybody else.

    Here’s the 30/70 genius/twaddle I got from you today: the fact that out of the entire LZ catalog, you only chose to rip three songs. That’s the twaddle part. There’s at least a C-90’s worth of good to Great music across the first five albums. But your 30% of sheer genius is this: one of your three worthy Zep songs is “Misty Mountain Hop.” That song is an absolute, balls-out, cock-on-the-tabletop rock-and-roll MONSTER. And most folks lump it in as an also-ran. WRONG. It’s one of their absolute best, if not THE best.

    Plurbie, you’re still okay in my book, despite your low, low batting average. Your slugging percentage is still crazily high; I still want you on my team.

    Your number one fan,


  25. Hi Hrundi,

    You taught me a very vaulable lesson today. Getting laid doesn’t always loosen up white conservative men.

    Three cheers for Prince, ELO, and ZZ Top!

    Your pal,
    E. Pluribus

  26. Mr. Moderator

    Sammy, I’m just seeing your link now. That’s one impressive haul. How you learned to play that thing in 1 day is beyond me!

  27. misterioso

    hrrundivbakshi wrote: “most folks lump [“Misty Mountain Hop”] in as an also-ran. WRONG. It’s one of their absolute best, if not THE best.”

    Well, duh. But who are these “most folks,” anyway? Do they get paid to be wrong about things or are they straw men constructed to bolster a point of yours that hardly needs bolstering?

  28. Gergs,

    Any Zeppelin I own is on vinyl. If I were to get some for the iPod, I would get the following:

    Communication Breakdown
    Over the Hills and Far Away (despite the lyrics)
    Good Times Bad Times
    Heartbreaker/Living Loving Maid
    Misty Mountain Hop
    Rock and Roll (perfect in its simplicity/stupidity)
    Houses of the Holy (the song not the album)
    Custard Pie
    Trampled Under Foot
    Your Time Is Gonna Come
    Ramble On (despite the lyrics)
    Whole Lotta Love (despite the bloated freakout in the middle and the fact that they stole it from Willie Dixon)

    If I need to hear anything else by them, I can wait until I get home and look for the album.

    I think that they are probably more popular than they deserve to be but part of that is because when you consider their bombast in the context of the times (the faded hippie dream of the 60s being replaced by the 70’s indulgence, the massive divide between rock and soul/funk etc culminating in the Disco Wars, etc), they were the right band for their era.

    I’m not suggesting that you forgive all of their excesses, but they have a little more to offer than you are giving them credit for.

  29. misterioso

    A great list. They stole Whole Lotta Love from the Small Faces as much as from Willie Dixon (or, more to the point, Muddy Waters).

    Another dozen:

    How Many More Times
    What Is and What Should Never Be
    Immigrant Song
    Black Dog
    When the Levee Breaks
    Song Remains the Same
    Dancing Days
    The Ocean
    Ten Years Gone
    In the Evening
    Fool in the Rain

    Throw in the BBC Travelling Riverside Blues, if you like, for a baker’s dozen.

  30. hrrundivbakshi

    Come on, Misterioso! Lok at the track listing for LZ IV and you’ll see the songs that are regarded as the “classics” from that LP, to wit:

    Rock and Roll
    Black Dog
    and, maybe…
    When the Levee Breaks

    I’m not claiming that everybody says MMH sucks — but I don’t think people see it as one of the defining, Great tracks on that album. And it is!

  31. Mr. Moderator

    Hrrundi, “Misty Mountain Hop” has always been one of Zep’s signature tunes. Just because it’s surrounded by other stone-cold classics on that album doesn’t mean it’s any less regarded. Is it the song you want to do your last bong hit of the night to? No, but it’s one of the Zeppelin tunes dudes crank up as those first plumes of smoke take effect. If you don’t believe me there’s a iPhone app to prove it!

  32. misterioso

    hrrundivbakshi, not sure what committee evaluated LZ IV, but in terms of sheer airplay, or overplay, MMH and Goin to California rank higher than When the Levee Breaks, at least in my experience. But whatever.

    Where MMH ranks really high for me is in the generally undervalued (for LZ) department of sheer hook value and exuberance.

  33. You start to lose me on that second batch, Misterioso. I can do without most of that stuff.

  34. 2000 Man

    Sammy, that video is nothing but PURE goodness!

    I forgot, I got a book called “What Would Keith Richards Do.” I think it’s gonna be okay.

  35. trolleyvox

    Nice seeing the RTH gang last night for some serious debate about post-Pig Pen Grateful Dead and Mr. Moderator’s beef with comic book rock.

    Wuddid I get?

    1 Mac Pro Quad core. Let the proc rock opus recording begin.

    A wreath of sleigh bells.

    Vinyl Junkies, a book by Brett Milano.

    Also, intimations from my mom that she’s thinking about shipping down my dad’s grand piano this spring. Tantalizing, but I’ll believe it when I see it.

  36. 2000 Man

    I think, if anything, ePlurb’s three selections give far too much credit to Zep. I wouldn’t hit a dog in the ass with any of their records, and that’s being generous. I have no use for hard rock that glorifies gnomes and faeries. I don’t get AC/DC all that much, either.

    But I like Bachman Turner Overdrive, so you can take that with a grain of salt, I suppose.

  37. misterioso

    I hear you, 2000 Man. I would definitely hit a dog in the ass with any BTO album, or, for that matter, band member; except that I wouldn’t want him to end up smelling like shit. My dog, that is.

  38. I learned how to play music live from imitating Led Zeppelin, so it’s hard to separate my fondness of that time from the actual “songs”. That said, after a 5-10 year sabatical from LZ music, I gave them a fresh start about a year ago and played a 45 min Zep Set as part of a tribute night (with 4 bands each taking a set, no doubles on song picks). Show was a blast and the songs held up better than I expected. The songs about goblins and wizards withstanding. Like AC/DC these riffs of our youth are a blast to dust off and play to a crowd of drunk girls.

  39. dbuskirk

    Only Zep I’ve found myself throwing on is the classic live stuff from California ’72, HOW THE WEST WAS WON and the BBC Sessions. I’m just too burnt on the rest, although PHYSICAL GRAFFITI is near-by on vinyl…

    Great seeing folks last night!

  40. Strike the thumbs us I gave to “Over the Hills and Far Away” at the RTH get together. I revisited the thing and did not enjoy any of it.

    E. Pluribus

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