Aug 072014

Well, well — Tom Petty has his first album ever to debut at #1 on the Billboard album chart. It’s a pretty low bar these days, and there are all kinds of tricks (like giving away album downloads when you buy a concert ticket) but, hell yes! #1 baby! Clapton comes in at #2 with his JJ Cale tribute. What is this? 1977?

Petty’s “Hypnotic Eye” sounds OK by me — I have not listened to it 50 times yet — but I’m liking it. Also this week, Spoon put out a new one that seems promising for the long haul. Jenny Lewis  has a nice new album that I probably will listen to 50 times at some point this year.

So — I’m pretty optimistic about R-O-C-K-ers (yeah, of a certain age) right now.

P.S. Stream Sinead’s new one at NPR’s First Listen, too!

Oct 252012


If a picture is worth a thousand words, this image is the freaking War & Peace of, you know, everything that I know you know this picture stands for. Just look at Lou Gramm for a second here. No, wait — linger thoughtfully for a few minutes and consider what this picture is saying — about rockin’, about kickin’ serious ass; about bein’ Hot Blooded; about takin’ it to the limit. Then see if you can find an image that beats it in terms of, you know, all that stuff.

I look forward to your responses.


Aug 222012

On the way to the Phils game last night (don’t get me started) we were listening to the classic rock channel. My wife turned to me and said “Rock is dead.”

Although I nodded silently, it struck me how heavy and huge a pronouncement this was. And, I’m sad to say, pretty true.

I know I’m out of it, but I do try to keep up with a lot of music the youngin’s are listening to these days—mostly through my own kids. They’re pretty much up on a lot of stuff—but nothing is what I’d call Rock with a capital R.

I know it’s a broad term—and there are some throwback bands doing all sorts of rock derivatives. I, for instance, like what small amount I’ve heard from The Hentchmen—but they are throwback garage rock.

No, what I’m talking about is Power-and-Glory Rock. Anyone (besides some stuff I’ve heard from Jack White) doing this sorta thing nowadays?

Or is my wife correct? Is Rock dead?

Jun 042011

Sounds of the Hall in roughly 33 1/3 minutes!

In this evening’s edition of Saturday Night Shut-In, in the hour leading up to tonight’s Sausages for Sammy Extravaganza and Classic Rock Psychic Rock Block Event, Mr. Moderator plays a mix of Coulda, Shoulda, Woulda-Been Classic Rock contenders! At the end of this episode he will reveal the identity of our latest Mystery Guest!

These are songs you almost certainly are not going to hear during tonight’s 20-minute rock block on a Classic Rock Station to be announced. Crack open a cold one, fire up your grill, and listen along, won’t you?

[audio:|titles=RTH Saturday Night Shut-In, episode 31]

[Note: The Rock Town Hall feed will enable you to easily download Saturday Night Shut-In episodes to your digital music player. In fact, you can even set your iTunes to search for an automatic download of each week’s podcast.]

Jun 032011

Do you ever listen to Classic Rock radio and find yourself predicting the next artist or song? Here’s your chance to turn that habit into a charitable contribution, a barrel of rock-nerd fun, and more!

By now our founding and regularly participating Townspeople should have been reached with an invitation to our upcoming Sausages for Sammy fundraiser event to benefit Rock Town Hall’s producer and blog designer—and my trusted partner in crime—Townsman sammymaudlin and his family. Many of you have followed posts on our friend’s condition and already contributed to his remarkable road to recovery.

I look forward to seeing a number of you at our event and especially thank those of you from all corners of the Hall who have donated despite not being able to down sausages with us. If you would like to learn more about the Sausages for Sammy event, hit me offlist: mrmoderator [at] rocktownhall [dot] com.

Online predictions for tonight’s Classic Rock Psychic Rock Event are now closed. Thank you for your healthy contributions to our friend’s health!

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May 162011

Driving home from my son’s soccer game yesterday we tried to get our minds off a most-frustrating loss and near “global red card,” as the ref put it, by turning on our Classic Rock station. The following 3-song sequence played in the following order, which I explained to my son might have represented absolute rock ‘n roll mediocrity and the two points on either side of that state:

  • Steve Miller Band, “Jet Airliner”
  • Bad Company, “Can’t Get Enough of Your Love”
  • John Cougar Mellencamp, “Jack and Diane”

I felt that one of these songs represented the absolute point of rock ‘n roll mediocrity, while the other two just toed the line on either side of the mediocrity. Where would you place these songs along the narrow spectrum of mediocrity?

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