Mar 042014


To celebrate Mardi Gras, let’s conduct a timed Last Man Standing on songs of excess. The last comment in by midnight New Orleans time will win a prize direct from the city of New Orleans, albeit this time next week, when I’m back from a coming trip there. [It turns out I was the last to add to the list before midnight New Orleans time on Mardi Gras, so I win/we lose. We’ll let the LMS carry on as nature intends.]

Do I have to explain what I mean by “songs of excess?” I hope not. If so, perhaps you might want to sit this one out. I’ll kick things off with “One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer.”

Live it up!

Jan 102013

Your personal workspace, ca. 1979.

The question is a simple one: What’s the best gatefold album cover for sorting weed? Be sure to think carefully before answering. You need something you can stare at, but not something that might, you know, totally freak you out. Something lifestyle-appropriate is a must, so: no Ella Fitzgerald compilations! Extra credit if you can think of a recent double-LP that would feel comfortable resting in your lap as you push the seeds to this side and the stems to that.

I look forward to your responses.


Feb 122012

Houston, we have a problem.

Last night while sitting on the can I pulled out my smartphone and checked the Web, only to learn that singer Whitney Houston was dead, finally, at 48 years of age. Remember when Elvis Presley died on the can? Reading about Houston’s death on my smartphone from such a perch will go down as nowhere near as legendary a moment in rock obituaries.

Continue reading »

Mar 162011

"I'm seeing trails! Can you see the trails?"

Until yesterday, when I belatedly read the news that the Godfather of Acid, Owsley Stanley, was dead I had no idea the guy had a last name, or should I say that Owsley was his first name! I also had no idea he was the man behind the high-tech stage soundsystem of the Grateful Dead. If you ask me it might have helped the band if he wasn’t so handy with electronics and their music came out inaudible. Here’s the New York Times obituary on Owsley. I wonder if all that acid he ate and handled had anything to do with his overall dietary philosophies.

Acid intake had a profound impact on rock ‘n roll, in many cases for the good of the genre. However, the drug—or at least music recorded to sound as if it had been recorded under the influence of the drug—led to some regrettable moments. What “acid” albums would you like to see packed off with Owsley’s corporeal remains…once and for all?

Jan 222011


In tonight’s edition of Saturday Night Shut-In, Mr. Moderator and his prednisone-charged airways kick out the mucous membranes before getting annoyed with former PiL guitarist Keith Levene, his 2008 non-interview, and a commentator named Charles. It’s an unfortunate, uncharacteristically unclassy end to an otherwise rockin’ show.

[audio:|titles=RTH Saturday Night Shut-In, episode 12]

[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 each week’s podcast.]


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