Monthly Archives: October 2008

“Eatin’ spam and Oreos and drinkin’ Thunderbird”

Baby Huey and the Babysitters – “Hard Times (LP version)” from The Baby Huey Story: The Living Legend (1970)

This song was born to be a hip-hop sample; it’s funky, catchy, and socially conscious.

Baby Huey transcended his era.  Like the music of his contemporaries Demon Fuzz, his work with the Babysitters seemed quite progressive in 1970.  The intro to their cover of Curtis Mayfield’s “Hard Times” particularly exemplifies this anachronism. Fascinating.

Buy it here

Posted by Jordy

Advertisements

2 Comments

Filed under 1970s, Funk

“I don’t need those words to say what I mean”

The Avett Brothers – “Tear Down The House” from The Second Gleam (2008)

I can’t stop listening to this song. Too bad their Greensboro show next week is sold out.

Buy it here

Posted by Glenn

1 Comment

Filed under 2000s, Acoustic, Folk

“Everybody’s comin’ home for lunch these days”

Camper Van Beethoven – “Take The Skinheads Bowling” from Telephone Free Landslide Victory (1985)

No home should be without this slacker classic. My team, the Bowl Weevils, is dead last in our league.

Pray to Jah

Posted by Glenn

2 Comments

Filed under 1980s, Rock

Country Blues

Hank Williams – “Long Gone Lonesome Blues” (1950)
Hank Williams – “Weary Blues From Waitin’” (recorded ca. 1951)

Weary. Lonesome. Long Gone. This is the sound of stately anguish. Like all the greats, Hank Williams creates a world with his music, a world that intersects with this one but also takes you a million miles away; a world that, for a few minutes at a time, renders other music unthinkable.

Paul over at Setting The Woods On Fire knows way, way more about Hank than we ever could. Check out his excellent blog for more.

Buy Hank here

Posted by Glenn

1 Comment

Filed under 1950s, Acoustic, Country

Favorite Song to Play, Part IV

The Beatles – “Helter Skelter” from The Beatles [The White Album] (1968)

I play the drums. I could never get the fingers on my right hand (I’m left-handed) to move independently enough to play any stringed instrument, although I’ve recently been thinking about taking up the hurdy-gurdy. I love playing this song because it’s loud and raucous. I hate to sound like a stereotypical drummer, but it’s fun to just beat the hell out of the skins every now and again, and this song makes that possible.

The song’s title comes from the British amusement park ride pictured above.  One climbs up the tower on the inside and then slides down round the outside.  Knowing this, the lyrics make perfect sense.

Honorable mention goes to Revolution Blues for much the same reasons.

Get blisters on yer fingers

Posted by Adam

2 Comments

Filed under 1960s, Rock

Favorite Song to Play, Part III

Dave Holland – “Conference of the Birds” from Conference of the Birds (1972)

I spent a few years (almost) exclusively playing jazz bass. One of my favorite tunes to play with a jazz group is this repetitive jam, the title track off my favorite ever free jazz album. Take a listen, and you’ll understand why: a simple chord progression and beautifully spartan melody allows for plenty of noodling. The recording features Anthony Braxton and Sam Rivers on saxophones, Barry Altschul on percussion, and the impeccable Dave Holland on bass.

I like to play this one, too.

Attend the Conference of the Birds

Posted by Glenn

Leave a comment

Filed under 1970s, Instrumental, Jazz

Favorite Song to Play, Part II

Emmylou Harris – “Goin’ Back to Harlan” from Wrecking Ball [1995]

Wrecking Ball is a perfect album.  There is no other to compare it to.  Combine the production of Lanois with the additional production sensibilities of like-minded Malcolm Burn (one of my favorite producers), bring them to Emmylou Harris and you get a genre-bending masterpiece.

This song was penned by Anna McGarrigle, whose debut album I have yet to obtain, although I plan to sometime in the very near future.  I like to play this song most often on an electric guitar and a Shure SM-57, looping some vocal beats and finger-picking the rest out.  It’s a damn good time, and spooky as sin.

I go crazy in the head when I hear this song.

Tabs for those who need them

I can’t believe you don’t own this album.  Honestly.  Buy it yesterday.

Posted by Phil

2 Comments

Filed under 1990s, Americana, Country