Jan 112013

It’s a simple enough question: would you rather have all the dudes (and they are all dudes) from Hear’n Aid or all the men and women from The Cause (aka Christian Artists United to Save the Earth) staying at your house for a week? Remember, you’ll have to share the bathroom.

I look forward to your responses.


Dec 152012

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

On today’s early edition of Saturday Night Shut-In your host, Mr. Moderator, reflects on the latest school shooting in Connecticut and allows himself a Bob Costas Moment on gun control. Later he recounts a recent conversation he had with his partner in crime, sammymaudlin, over the old David Sanborn-hosted music show Night Music. If you feel the urge to complain about your host’s getting on his soapbox when all you want to do is rock out, man, please do so in this thread. Hell, if that’s where you’re headed there’s no reason to listen in the first place. Just post your outrage and threaten to boycott our sponsors.

RTH Saturday Night Shut-In, episode 91

[Note: You can add Saturday Night Shut-In episodes to your iTunes by clicking here. The Rock Town Hall feed will enable you to easily download Saturday Night Shut-In episodes to your digital music player.]

Dec 022012

Any therapist will tell you that a necessary step in reducing psychic pain from a traumatic event is to confront it, head on — or at least to acknowledge it happened, by describing it if possible. That principle forms the root of this, the first of a series of posts in which we gather together in a healing circle to group-confront an egregious example of poor Rock behavior that might otherwise leave us scarred.

I am a huge Charlie Rich apologist. Like my fandom for Rory Gallagher, I admit my desire to like his music is almost greater than the amount I actually like it— so I am thrilled when I discover a bit of audio or video that bolsters my opinion that the Silver Fox was a true country music maverick, a magnificent pop songwriter, and a closet Southern soul master of the highest order. On the flip side… well, when I found the video clip you see here, I felt a new level of pit open up in the pit of my stomach. It did more than humanize Rich: it cast him out of the musical heavens at the white-hot burning end of God’s own flaming sword, branding him charlatan.

I have been transfixed by this video since discovering it. I know it captures a performance when Rich was at the pinnacle of his fame — also a time when he was least happy, and most prone to hitting the bottle. (Oh, how I wish there was a clip out there of the CMA awards ceremony when Charlie, presumably stoned out of his gourd, set John Denver’s award for country music male entertainer of the year on fire.) And, Charlie Rich fans, please spare me your explanations about how the Silver Fox was a balladeer, and not an uptempo performer. The plain and simple fact is that this video destroyed a part of my soul. I need your help confronting it. I need your help discovering all the ways I’ve been hurt by this performance of “The Dance of Love” from 1975. So, tell me: what’s hurtful; what’s painful; what’s just downright wrong about this performance?

I look forward to your responses, and I look forward to this opportunity to bond and heal together.


Oct 022012

…not exactly my cup of tea, musically. – Mickey Thomas, on the Jefferson Starship’s mid-’70s output.

Here’s a story that needed to be told: living legend Mickey Thomas discusses his move from the Elvin Bishop Band to Jefferson Starship. I can’t tell you, when I’m out and about and run into fellow Townspeople, how frequently the band’s late-’70s rebirth comes up in discussion. “Can you believe they bounced back with a smash hit like ‘Jane’?” someone might ask. Or, “What forces do you think came together to reboot the Starship? It’s a topic that’s completely overlooked in rock history books.” Well, this interview may provide the answers you’ve been seeking.

…The more I didn’t want to do it, the more they wanted me. – Mickey Thomas, on his initial indecision about joining the band.

Sep 142012

The home page gives a mission statement for RTH. I’ve also referred to RTH as the Uni-Mind for Rock.

I think there is another purpose it can serve. In AA, recovering alcoholics have a sponsor, the person they can call when they feel the urge to fall off the wagon weighing heavy, someone who can talk them out of making such a big mistake.

RTH should serve the same purpose. For instance: Please don’t ever let me buy another sunshine pop/orchestral pop/Brian Wilson-inspired album again!

The latest mistake I made was buying The Critters, Awake In A Dream: The Project 3 Recordings.

I don’t know what I was thinking. I’ve been burned so many other times on stuff like this.

“Maybe there will be something as good as ‘Mr. Dieingly Sad’.”

“Maybe this one will really be of Brian Wilson-like quality.”

“Maybe, maybe, maybe…”

Never is though. File this one next to The High Llamas, The Beau Brummels, and others even more forgettable.

Please help me—and tell me how I can help you avoid such mistakes.


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