Jun 122020

Have you ever realized that there are artists you like who nevertheless have a surefire type of song on every album that you will likely skip? The most obvious example of this may be Paul McCartney‘s patented “songs for me granny” on any Beatles album starting with Sgt Pepper’s. I’ve actually come to appreciate “Your Mother Should Know,” but I get it.

For me, the first surefire needle-lifter that comes to mind are the two long rock ballads on any Mott the Hoople album. Were they pioneers in rock balladry? I know they often aspired to the sort of rambling songs Dylan used to turn Blonde on Blonde into a double album. Sometimes the results were decent, such as on “At the Crossroads.”

Too often, however, these efforts resulted in the kind of ponderous rock balladry that original Mott guitarist Mick Ralphs and his new bandmates in Bad Company would specialize in. From there, it’s just a hop, skip, and a jump to Bon Jovi.

With the exception of Mott’s cover of “Your Own Backyard,” which does pick up steam, I’m skipping the Mott ballads.

How about you and the catalog of an artist you dig?


This Is Us

 Posted by
Apr 012020

Here are some things I would have commented on during the interregnum since October 2016:

I would have continued championing Dylan’s Sinatra period as he released Triplicate. Here’s Dylan doing “Once Upon A Time” at a Tony Bennett 90th birthday tribute. Dylan does it far better than Bennett, as does Sinatra.

I would have mentioned the Len Price 3, one of my favorite “new” bands of the last 15 years.

I would have raved about Scorsese’s Rolling Thunder Review “documentary.” Personally, I love the phony bits in this; it’s so Dylanesque I’m surprised he hasn’t thought of it before. Hmmm? And you have to love the film if only for the performance of “Isis,” which immediately joins 1966 and the first Letterman performance as the best Dylan live performances.

And speaking of Dylan, Robbie Fulks’ album 16, a cover of Dylan’s Street Legal, is as great a Dylan cover set as you are going to hear. Little is a replication of the original; it’s a wonderful reinterpretation in much the way that Dylan reinterpreted Sinatra.

And speaking of Robbie, his collaboration with Linda Gail Lewis, Wild! Wild! Wild!, is another great one, on record and especially live.

And it was plenty of fun seeing Mott the Hoople in NYC last spring. Ian Hunter giving Ariel Bender and Morgan Fisher another chance to be in the spotlight and dress up glam. Bender pulled it off and Fisher had moments where he seemed to know where he was. At 64, I was one of the younger members of the crowd, many of whom were glammed up as well, even those with walkers and, I kid you not, in one case a walker and an oxygen tank. Not exactly all the young dudes.

Oh, and as long as we are talking about fun concerts, the oldies show with Freddie Cannon, Lou Christie, Bobby Rydell, and Darlene Love was lots of fun. Even if I didn’t get to hear Darlene sing “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)” live (apparently November 5 is too early for that); that was rectified this past December.

What would you have written about in the last 3½ years?


Lost Password?

twitter facebook youtube