Friday, October 31, 2014

Rocktober 31, 2014 White Zombie

 Wrapping up the month of Rocktober with a Zombie... White Zombie 

The title, as well as lyrical references, are taken from the film Blade Runner, which was the slogan of the Tyrell Corporation, manufacturers of the replicants in the film. The moaning in the intro to the song was sampled from a post-apocalyptic porn movie called Café Flesh directed by Stephen Sayadian.

"More Human than Human" quickly became the band's highest-charting and most recognizable single in the entirety of their career. The song earned them their second Grammy nomination for Best Metal Performance in 1995. The song was named the 68th best hard rock song of all time by VH1.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Rocktober 30, 2014 Led Zeppelin

Led Zeppelin is an English rock band formed in London in 1968. The group consisted of guitarist Jimmy Page, singer Robert Plant, bassist and keyboardist John Paul Jones, and drummer John Bonham. Their heavy, guitar-driven sound, rooted in blues on their early albums, has drawn them recognition as one of the progenitors of heavy metal, though their unique style drew from a wide variety of influences, including folk music.

Kashmir is a concert staple, being performed by the band at almost every concert since its release.

The lyrics to Kashmir were written by Robert Plant in 1973 immediately after Led Zeppelin's 1973 US Tour, in an area he called "the waste lands" of Southern Morocco, while driving from Goulimine to Tantan in the Sahara Desert. This was despite the fact that the song is named after Kashmir, a region in the northwestern part of the Himalayas. As Plant explained to rock journalist Cameron Crowe:
The whole inspiration came from the fact that the road went on and on and on. It was a single-track road which neatly cut through the desert. Two miles to the East and West were ridges of sandrock. It basically looked like you were driving down a channel, this dilapidated road, and there was seemingly no end to it. 'Oh, let the sun beat down upon my face, stars to fill my dreams...' It's one of my favourites...that, 'All My Love' and 'In the Light' and two or three others really were the finest moments. But 'Kashmir' in particular. It was so positive, lyrically.
Plant also commented on the challenges he faced in writing lyrics for such a complex piece of music:
It was an amazing piece of music to write to, and an incredible challenge for me ... Because of the time signature, the whole deal of the song is… not grandiose, but powerful: it required some kind of epithet, or abstract lyrical setting about the whole idea of life being an adventure and being a series of illuminated moments. But everything is not what you see. It was quite a task, ’cause I couldn’t sing it. It was like the song was bigger than me. It’s true: I was petrified, it’s true. It was painful; I was virtually in tears.
In an interview he gave to William S. Burroughs in 1975, Page mentioned that at the time the song was composed, none of the band members had ever been to Kashmir.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Rocktober 29, 2014 Queen

 Is this the real life?
Is this just fantasy?
Caught in a landslide
No escape from reality...

"Bohemian Rhapsody" is a song by the British rock band Queen. It was written by Freddie Mercury for the band's 1975 album A Night at the Opera. The song consists of several sections: a ballad segment ending with a guitar solo, an operatic passage, and a hard rock section. At the time, it was the most expensive single ever made and it remains one of the most elaborate recordings in popular music history.

Although critical reaction was initially mixed, "Bohemian Rhapsody" remains one of Queen's most popular songs. The single was accompanied by a promotional video, which many scholars consider ground-breaking. In 2004, "Bohemian Rhapsody" was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame. In 2012, the song topped the list on an ITV nationwide poll in the UK to find "The Nation's Favourite Number One" over 60 years of music.

Freddie Mercury wrote most of "Bohemian Rhapsody" at his home in Holland Road, Kensington, in west London. The song's producer, Roy Thomas Baker, related how Mercury once played the opening ballad section on the piano for him: "He played the beginning on the piano, then stopped and said, 'And this is where the opera section comes in!' Then we went out to eat dinner." Guitarist Brian May says the band thought that Mercury's blueprint for the song was "intriguing and original, and worthy of work."Much of Queen's material was written in the studio according to May, but this song "was all in Freddie's mind" before they started. Music scholar Sheila Whiteley suggests that "the title draws strongly on contemporary rock ideology, the individualism of the bohemian artists' world, with rhapsody affirming the romantic ideals of art rock." Commenting on bohemianism, Judith Peraino said that "Mercury intended... [this song] to be a 'mock opera', something outside the norm of rock songs, and it does follow a certain operatic logic: choruses of multi-tracked voices alternate with aria-like solos, the emotions are excessive, the plot confusing."

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Rocktober 28, 2014 - The Yardbirds

Today I'm going to dig deep into the archives of music history to tell you about a band that was responsible for starting the careers of three of rock's most famous guitarists: Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, and Jeff Beck.

The Yardbirds were a blues-based band that broadened its range into pop and rock, the Yardbirds had a hand in many electric guitar innovations of the mid-1960s, such as feedback, "fuzztone" distortion and improved amplification. After the Yardbirds broke up in 1968, their lead guitarist Jimmy Page founded what became Led Zeppelin.

Eric Clapton replaced the original guitarist in 1963. the Yardbirds signed to EMI's Columbia label in February 1964. Their first album was the "live", Five Live Yardbirds, recorded at the legendary Marquee Club in London. Clapton, at the time a blues purist, left the group in protest on 25 March 1965 and joined John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers. He recommended Jimmy Page, a prominent young studio session guitarist, as his replacement. Unwilling to give up his lucrative gig and worried about his health, Page in turn recommended his friend Jeff Beck. Beck played his first gig with the Yardbirds only two days after Clapton's departure.

In June 1966, the original bass player decided to leave the group and work as a record producer. Jimmy Page agreed to play bass until the rhythm guitarist could rehearse on it.A Beck–Page lead guitar tandem, however, is heard on the counterculture-era psychedelic rock highlight "Happenings Ten Years Time Ago" (with future Led Zeppelin bassist John Paul Jones)

After a tour stop in Texas in late October 1966 Beck was fired both for being a consistent no-show and difficulties caused by his perfectionism and explosive temper. The band continued as a quartet thereafter, with Page as sole lead guitarist; he subsequently introduced playing the instrument with a cello bow (suggested to him by session musician David McCallum, Sr.) and the use of a wah-wah pedal in addition to his fuzzbox.

"For Your Love" is a 1965 single written by future 10cc member Graham Gouldman and performed by The Yardbirds. It peaked at number three on UK Singles Chart and became their highest charting single in the U.S., peaking at number six.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Rocktober 27, 2014 Deep Purple

I cant let the month of Rocktober slip by without mentioning one of the most recognizable guitar riffs in the history of music.

"Smoke On The Water" is a song written and performed by the English rock band, Deep Purple

The lyrics of the song tell a true story: on 4 December 1971 Deep Purple were in Montreux, Switzerland, where they had set up camp to record an album using a mobile recording studio (rented from the Rolling Stones and known as the Rolling Stones Mobile Studio—referred to as the "Rolling truck Stones thing" and "a mobile" in the song lyrics) at the entertainment complex that was part of the Montreux Casino (referred to as "the gambling house" in the song lyric). On the eve of the recording session a Frank Zappa and The Mothers of Invention concert was held in the casino's theatre. In the middle of Don Preston's synthesizer solo on "King Kong", the place suddenly caught fire when somebody in the audience fired a flare gun into the rattan covered ceiling, as mentioned in the "some stupid with a flare gun" line. The resulting fire destroyed the entire casino complex, along with all the Mothers' equipment. The "smoke on the water" that became the title of the song (credited to bass guitarist Roger Glover, who related how the title occurred to him when he suddenly woke from a dream a few days later) referred to the smoke from the fire spreading over Lake Geneva from the burning casino as the members of Deep Purple watched the fire from their hotel. The "Funky Claude" running in and out is referring to Claude Nobs, the director of the Montreux Jazz Festival who helped some of the audience escape the fire.

Left with an expensive mobile recording unit and no place to record, the band was forced to scout the town for another place to set up. One promising venue (found by Nobs) was a local theatre called The Pavilion, but soon after the band had loaded in and started working/recording, the nearby neighbours took offence at the noise, and the band was only able to lay down backing tracks for one song (based on Blackmore's riff and temporarily named "Title n°1"), before the local police shut them down.

Finally, after about a week of searching, the band rented the nearly-empty Montreux Grand Hotel and converted its hallways and stairwells into a makeshift recording studio, where they laid down most of the tracks for what would become their most commercially successful album, Machine Head (which is dedicated to Claude Nobs).

     We all came out to Montreux
    On the Lake Geneva shoreline
    To make records with a mobile
    We didn't have much time
    Frank Zappa and the Mothers
    Were at the best place around
    But some stupid with a flare gun
    Burned the place to the ground
    Smoke on the water, fire in the sky
    They burned down the gambling house
    It died with an awful sound
    Funky Claude was running in and out
    Pulling kids out the ground
    When it all was over
    We had to find another place
    But Swiss time was running out
    It seemed that we would lose the race
    Smoke on the water, fire in the sky
    We ended up at the Grand Hotel
    It was empty cold and bare
    But with the Rolling truck Stones thing just outside
    Making our music there
    With a few red lights and a few old beds
    We make a place to sweat
    No matter what we get out of this
    I know we'll never forget
    Smoke on the water, fire in the sky

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Rocktober 26, 2014 Lynyrd Skynyrd

Lynyrd Skynyrd (pronounced 'lĕh-'nérd 'skin-'nérd) is an American rock band best known for popularizing the southern hard-rock genre during the 1970s. Originally formed in 1966 as the The Pretty Ones in Jacksonville, Florida, they then went through two name changes: The Noble Five and One Percent, before coming up with Lynyrd Skynyrd in 1969. The band rose to worldwide recognition on the basis of its driving live performances and signature tunes "Sweet Home Alabama" and "Free Bird". At the peak of their success, three members died in an airplane crash in 1977, putting an abrupt end to the band's most popular incarnation.

The surviving band members re-formed in 1988 for a reunion tour with lead vocalist Johnny Van Zant, the younger brother of lead singer and founder Ronnie Van Zant. The re-formed band continues to tour and record with co-founding member Gary Rossington and core members Johnny Van Zant, along with guitarist Rickey Medlocke, who recorded with the band for a short time in the early 1970s. Drummer Michael Cartellone has recorded and toured with the band since 1999. Lynyrd Skynyrd was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on March 13, 2006

"Sweet Home Alabama" was a major chart hit for a band whose previous singles had "lazily sauntered out into release with no particular intent". The hit led to two TV rock show offers, which the band turned down.

None of the three writers of the song were originally from Alabama. Ronnie Van Zant and Gary Rossington were both born in Jacksonville, Florida. Ed King was from Glendale, California.

"Sweet Home Alabama" was written as an answer to two songs, "Southern Man" and "Alabama" by Neil Young, which dealt with themes of racism and slavery in the American South. "We thought Neil was shooting all the ducks in order to kill one or two," said Ronnie Van Zant at the time.
"Well, I heard Mister Young sing about her
Well, I heard ol' Neil put her down
Well, I hope Neil Young will remember
A Southern man don't need him around anyhow"
Van Zant's other response was also controversial, with references to Alabama Governor George Wallace (a noted supporter of segregation) and the Watergate scandal:
"In Birmingham, they love the governor (boo boo boo)
Now we all did what we could do
Now Watergate does not bother me
Does your conscience bother you?
Tell the truth
Sweet home Alabama, oh, sweet home baby
Where the skies are so blue and the governor's true"
Music historians point out that the choice of Birmingham in connection with the governor (rather than the capital Montgomery) is significant for the controversy as "In 1963, the city was the site of massive civil rights activism, as thousands of demonstrators led by Martin Luther King, Jr. sought to desegregate downtown businesses...[and] was the scene of some of the most violent moments of the Civil Rights Movement. Segregationist police chief Bull Connor unleashed attack dogs and high-pressure water cannons against peaceful marchers, including women and children; just weeks later, the KKK bombed a black church, killing four little girls." 

In 1975, Van Zant said: "The lyrics about the governor of Alabama were misunderstood. The general public didn't notice the words 'Boo! Boo! Boo!' after that particular line, and the media picked up only on the reference to the people loving the governor." "The line 'We all did what we could do' is sort of ambiguous," Al Kooper notes. "'We tried to get Wallace out of there' is how I always thought of it." Journalist Al Swenson argues that the song is more complex than it is sometimes given credit for, suggesting that it only looks like an endorsement of Wallace. "Wallace and I have very little in common," Van Zant himself said, "I don't like what he says about colored people." 

Music historians examining the juxtaposition of invoking Nixon and Watergate after Wallace and Birmingham note that one reading of the lyrics is an "attack against the liberals who were so outraged at Nixon's conduct" while others interpret it regionally: "the band was speaking for the entire South, saying to northerners, we're not judging you as ordinary citizens for the failures of your leaders in Watergate; don't judge all of us as individuals for the racial problems of southern society"

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Rocktober 19 - 25 Week In Review

This week we featured:

  • Alice In Chains - "Would?"
  • Red Hot Chili Peppers - "Scar Tissue"
  • Stone Temple Pilots - "Big Bang Baby"
  • Linkin Park - "Crawling"
  • The Blue Velvets - "Have You Ever Been Lonely"
  • The Golliwogs - "Brown Eyed Girl"
  • Creedence Clearwater Revival - "Down On The Corner"
  • Creedence Clearwater Revisited - "Who'll Stop The Rain"
  • Harvey Danger - "Flagpole Sitta"
  • The Black Crowes - "She Talks To Angels"

Who was your favorite artist or song featured this week? What songs or artists do you look forward to seeing featured in future posts?

Check out the archives on the right hear them again, as well as previous posts!  Stay tuned for more great hits during our month of Rocktober! Be sure to follow this blog so you don't miss out!

Rocktober 25, 2014 The Black Crowes

The Black Crowes are a band that was formed in 1989 by brothers Chris and Rich Robinson. In 1989, the band, who have been heavily influenced by The Rolling Stones, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Faces, Buddy Guy, Otis Redding, and Humble Pie, made a demo that led to their signing with Def American.

"She Talks to Angels" is a song that is the eighth track on their 1990 debut album Shake Your Money Maker and was released as the album's fourth single. The song made it to 30 on the US Hot 100. The song hit number one on the US Album Rock Tracks chart and number 70 on the UK Singles Chart in 1991.
In 2010, Chris Robinson explained in a webisode (part of a promotional internet series for their 2010 Croweology album) that the song is loosely based on a "goth girl" he was acquainted with in Atlanta who was "into heroin".

I've always enjoyed this acoustic version.  Do you have a favorite song that is performed by The Black Crowes?

Friday, October 24, 2014

Rocktober 24. 2014 Harvey Danger

I'm not sick but I'm not well
And I'm so hot cause I'm in hell
I'm not sick but I'm not well
And it's a sin to live so well

Harvey Danger was an American indie rock band that formed in Seattle, Washington in 1993, and rose to prominence in 1998 with the single "Flagpole Sitta", which is also used as the theme tune to the British sitcom "Peep Show". On August 29, 2009, the band played its final show at the Crocodile Cafe in Seattle. The band's debut album, Where have all the merrymakers gone?, has sold over 500,000 copies, with "Flagpole Sitta" still receiving regular airplay around the world. On July 29, 2014, 17 years to the day after its initial release, Where have all the merrymakers gone? was re-released on vinyl as an LP by the independent record label No Sleep Records.

"Flagpole Sitta" has been used in other media, such as
  • Comedy site CollegeHumor also made a lip dub of their employees singing the song. 
  • The song was featured in the TV series October Road episode, "Best Friend Windows." 
  • It was also featured on the TV series Psych on the episode "Tuesday the 17th." Most recently, the American version of The Office performed an homage to the CollegeHumor lip dub for its cold open.
  • "Weird Al" Yankovic used the chorus of the song in his polka medley, "Polka Power!", on his 1999 album, Running with Scissors.
  • Chiodos have also covered this song on the album Punk Goes Pop 2.
  • American alt-country band Deer Tick performed a version of the song in July 2012 for The A.V. Club's A.V. Undercover series.
  • The first part of the song was used in various title sequences in the British satire show "Russell Howard's Good News".
 Kick back and enjoy this fun song! Don't be surprised if you catch yourself singing along ;)

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Rocktober 23, 2014 - The Blue Velvets

Today I'm going to tell you a little bit about a band that started out under the name "The Blue Velvets".

The band was a trio of - John Fogerty, Stu Cook, and Doug Clifford. A little while later, John's older brother, Tom Fogerty joined in on vocals.  Their band wasn't getting a lot of sales on their records, even though famed Casey Kasem had put their music into rotation.

Changes were made within the band. Tom took up guitar, but remained lead vocalist, and Stu switched from piano to bass. The band was eventually signed by Fantasy Records. With their first release, Mark Weiss, co-owner of Fantasy Records, changed the band's name to The Golliwogs. Band roles changed again. John became the band's lead vocalist and primary songwriter, and Tom remained as backup vocalist and guitarist.

In 1966, John and Doug were drafted into military service, and in 1967, Fantasy Records was bought by Saul Zaentz. Saul never liked the name "The Golliwogs" and insisted on another name change. In 1968, the band became known as Creedence Clearwater Revival (or CCR)

The name's three elements come from the following sources:
  • Tom Fogerty's friend Credence Newball, whose name they changed to form the word creed;
  • a television commercial for Olympia beer ("clear water"); and
  • the four members' renewed commitment to their band.

The band starting putting out hits. Their first was a remake of a 1956 song by Dale Hawkins - "Suzy Q". A second album was put out. The single "Proud Mary", backed with "Born on the Bayou", reached No. 2 on the national Billboard chart. The former would eventually become the group's most-covered song, with some 100 cover versions by other artists to date, including a hit version in 1971 by Ike & Tina Turner. John Fogerty cites this song as being the result of high spirits on gaining his discharge from the military. The album also featured a remake of the rock & roll classic "Good Golly Miss Molly" and the band's nine-minute live-show closer, "Keep On Chooglin".

More albums and hits kept churning out.

In 1972, the bandmates started arguing amongst themselves, and fingers were pointed at each other about the contract that was held with Fantasy Records. On October 16, 1972—less than six months after the Mardi Gras tour ended—Fantasy Records and the band officially announced the disbanding of CCR. The band never formally reunited after the break-up, although Cook and Clifford eventually started the band Creedence Clearwater Revisited.

In 1973, John Fogerty began his solo career with The Blue Ridge Rangers, his one-man band collection of country and gospel songs. Under his old CCR contract, however, Fogerty owed Fantasy eight more records. In the end, he refused to work for the label. The impasse was resolved only when Asylum Records' David Geffen bought Fogerty's contract for $1,000,000. His next major hit was "Centerfield", a chart-topping success in 1985. On tour in 1986, however, Fogerty suffered complaints over his steadfast refusal to perform CCR songs and suffered with recurring vocal problems which he blamed on having to testify in court. Fogerty's explanation for not playing CCR material songs was that he would have had to pay performance royalties to copyright holder Saul Zaentz, and that it was "too painful" to revisit the music of his past.

Tom Fogerty released several solo albums, though none reached the success of CCR. Fogerty's 1974 solo album Zephyr National was the last to feature the four original CCR band members. Several tracks sound very much in the CCR style, particularly the aptly titled "Joyful Resurrection" on which all four members played, even though John Fogerty recorded his part separately.

Tom Fogerty died of an AIDS complication in September 1990, which he contracted via a tainted blood transfusion he received while undergoing back surgery. Tom and John never reconciled before Tom's death, and in the eulogy he delivered at Tom's funeral, John said, "We wanted to grow up and be musicians. I guess we achieved half of that, becoming rock 'n roll stars. We didn't necessarily grow up."

The original CCR lineup rarely reunited after their breakup. All four members jammed together at Tom Fogerty's wedding on October 19, 1980. John Fogerty, Cook, and Clifford played at their 20th High School reunion in 1983, but as their original incarnation, The Blue Velvets. In the 1980s and 1990s, new rounds of lawsuits between the band members, as well as against their former management, deepened their animosities. By the time CCR was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993, John Fogerty refused to perform with Cook and Clifford. The pair were barred from the stage, while Fogerty played with an all-star band that included Bruce Springsteen and Robbie Robertson. Tom Fogerty's widow Tricia had expected a Creedence reunion, and even brought the urn containing her husband's ashes to the ceremony.

listen to The Blue Velvets here

listen to The Golliwogs here

listen to Creedence Clearwater Revival here

listen to Creedence Clearwater Revisited here

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Rocktober 22, 2014 Linkin Park

From our previous post on Stone Temple Pilots, we learned that their current lead singer came from the band Linkin Park.

Linkin Park

Formed in 1996, the band rose to international fame with their debut album Hybrid Theory, which was certified Diamond by the RIAA in 2005 and multi-platinum in several other countries. Their following studio album Meteora continued the band's success, topping the Billboard 200 album chart in 2003, and was followed by extensive touring and charity work around the world. In 2003, MTV2 named Linkin Park the sixth-greatest band of the music video era and the third-best of the new millennium.

Having adapted nu metal and rap metal to a radio-friendly yet densely layered style in Hybrid Theory and Meteora, the band has taken on other genres in their future albums, quite successfully.

"Crawling" is the second track that was released as single from their debut album Hybrid Theory. It was released in 2001 as their second single and won a Grammy for Best Hard Rock Performance in 2002.

Singer Chester Bennington has stated that "Crawling" is the most difficult Linkin Park song to sing live, stating "Crawling has caused me the most trouble live more than any other song." Bennington has also commented on the meaning of "Crawling" by stating it was inspired by his own battles with substance abuse. "Crawling is about feeling like I had no control over myself in terms of drugs and alcohol..."

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Rocktober 21, 2014 Stone Temple Pilots

 "Does anybody really know how the story goes, or do we all just hum along?"

I cant just talk about Red Hot Chili Peppers (see archives), and not mention Stone Temple Pilots. I guess this mostly due to the fact that when I saw RHCP in concert in 2000, STP opened for them. So in my mind, the two bands go hand in hand.

Stone Temple Pilots (often abbreviated STP) is an American rock band from San Diego, California, that currently consists of brothers Robert (bass, backing vocals) and Dean DeLeo (guitar), Eric Kretz (drums, percussion), and Chester Bennington (lead vocals). Since its formation, STP's line-up had remained unchanged until the dismissal of lead vocalist Scott Weiland in 2013, who was replaced with Chester Bennington of Linkin Park.

The band formed in 1985, under the name Mighty Joe Young, but when they signed with Atlantic Records, they changed their name to Stone Temple Pilots. They have been fairly successful in their own right.

"Big Bang Baby",  is only one of my favorite STP songs. I hope you enjoy it as well. What other STP songs do you enjoy? Please share in the comments.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Rocktober 20, 2014 Red Hot Chili Peppers

Red Hot Chili Peppers have been together as a band since 1983. Their original style was more of a rap/funk, but has recently taken on a more melodic style, with a strong funk influence.

"Scar Tissue" is about the Red Hot Chili Peppers' singer Anthony Kiedis and his battles with drugs, as well as the quarrels he had with friends and bandmates as a result of his addiction. The line "sarcastic mister know it all" was directed at the band's former guitarist Dave Navarro, who Kiedis referred to as the "king of sarcasm", while the line "make it to the moon if I have to crawl" is a reference to Kiedis' heroin addiction, which made him desperate to get high.

The lyrics for "Scar Tissue" were written by Anthony Kiedis probably because of the return of guitar player John Frusciante. Frusciante left the Peppers in 1992, uncomfortable with the band's success. He developed a severe drug addiction, but returned in 1998 to work together to make the album Californication. The theme of this song is often referred to as "life and resurrection".

The music of "Scar Tissue" is remarkably melodic, which contrasts with the earlier work of the Peppers. This was typical of the new style the band embraced since Californication.

"Scar Tissue" has been a live staple in the band's setlists since its first performance in 1998 making it the band's third most performed song ever behind only "Give It Away" and "Under the Bridge"

"Scar Tissue" is probably the one song that first caught my attention of this band. I have since learned to appreciate more of their earlier songs.  What RHCP song do you enjoy most?

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Sunday, October 19, 2014

Rocktober 19, 2014 Would?

Would? is a song by the band Alice In Chains. It was written by guitarist/co-vocalist Jerry Cantrell in tribute to Andrew Wood, the late lead singer of Mother Love Bone (which later became Pearl Jam), who died of a heroin overdose in 1990. In the liner notes of 1999's Music Bank box set collection, Jerry Cantrell said of the song:
 "I was thinking a lot about Andrew Wood at the time. We always had a great time when we did hang out, much like Chris Cornell and I do. There was never really a serious moment or conversation, it was all fun. Andy was a hilarious guy, full of life and it was really sad to lose him. But I always hate people who judge the decisions others make. So it was also directed towards people who pass judgments."

Know me broken by my master
And teach thee on child of love hereafter

Into the flood again
Same old trip it was back then
So I made a big mistake
Tried to see it once my way

Drifting body, its sole desertion
Flying not yet quite the notion

Into the flood again
Same old trip it was back then
So I made a big mistake
Tried to see it once my way

Into the flood again
Same old trip it was back then
So I made a big mistake
Tried to see it once my way

And am I wrong?
Have I run too far to get home?
Have I gone?
Left you here alone

And if I am wrong
Have I run too far to get home? Yeah
Have I gone?
Left you here alone?

If I would, could you?


Saturday, October 18, 2014

Rocktober 18. 2014 Doobie Brothers

"I'd like to hear some funky Dixieland, pretty mama come and take me by the hand"

One of my favorites performed by The Doobie Brothers was their first #1 single, Black Water.

The Doobie Brothers (who aren't really brothers at all!) got their start in Northern California in the early to mid 1970's. Their first real fans were members of local chapters of Hells Angels. The Doobie Brothers had a recurring gig at one of the Hells Angels favorite venues, Chateau Liberte. The band would show up unannounced, and impromptu, and frequently without all of the band members present.

Black Water was originally the B-side (remember when there was such a thing? remember vinyl records?).. er um, sorry got distracted..

Black Water was originally the B-side to Another Park, Another Sunday, but radio stations stopped playing Another Park, Another Sunday because of the lyrics ".. radio brings me down .. ", and Black Water ultimately became the more popular song.

Enjoy the video, and let me know if the lyrics get stuck in your head like they do mine...

"By the hand, take me by the hand pretty Mama..."

Friday, October 17, 2014

Rocktober 17, 2014 Rolling Stones

The Rolling Stones were formed as a band in 1962, and while they have had a few members come and go, they are still currently performing as a band.

"Beast of Burden" is credited as being written by Keith Richards and Mick Jagger of the Rolling Stones.  The music and some of the lyrics were written by Keith Richards, while Mick Jagger filled in the verses. The song was released in 1978 on the Some Girls album.

Mick Jagger said of the song, "Lyrically, this wasn't particularly heartfelt in a personal way. It's a soul begging song, an attitude song. It was one of those where you get one melodic lick, break it down and work it up; there are two parts here which are basically the same." The song can be seen as allegorical, with Richards saying in 2003, "When I returned to the fold after closing down the laboratory [referring to his drug problems throughout the 1970s], I came back into the studio with Mick... to say, 'Thanks, man, for shouldering the burden' - that's why I wrote "Beast of Burden" for him, I realize in retrospect."

In 2004, Rolling Stone magazine ranked the song #435 on their list of "The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time" and #433 on the 500 Greatest Rock and Roll Songs of All Time.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Rocktober 16, 2014 BTO

Bachman Turner Overdrive, also known as BTO,  is a band founded by Randy Bachman (also founded the musical group The Guess Who) and Fred Turner.  The band was very successful in the 1970's.  In 2005, the band went on hiatus, but reunited again in 2009 and continued to tour until just recently when they announced they were splitting up for good. Something about bucket lists to take care of, was the reason give for this latest split. Fred Turner turns 71 today. (Happy Birthday, Fred!)

The fans of BTO are referred to as 'Gearheads'. This is derived from the band's gear-shaped logo.

"Takin' Care of Business" is a song written by Randy Bachman and first recorded by  Bachman–Turner Overdrive (BTO) for their 1973 album Bachman–Turner Overdrive II. The song is widely considered to be one of the driving anthems of rock, and features one of the most well known riffs in rock and roll.

Randy Bachman had sung what would later become "Takin' Care of Business" while still a member of The Guess Who. His original idea was to write about a recording technician who worked on The Guess Who's recordings. This particular technician would take the 8:15 train to get to work, inspiring the lyrics "take the 8:15 into the city." The standard uniform worn by technicians at the studio was a white collared shirt, which inspired the title "White Collar Worker."
In the early arrangement for the song, the chorus riff and vocal melody were similar to that of The Beatles' "Paperback Writer." When Randy first played this version for Burton Cummings, Cummings declared that he was ashamed of him and that The Guess Who would never record the song because the Beatles would sue them. 

Randy still felt like the main riff and verses were good, it was only when the song got to the chorus that everyone hated it. While BTO was still playing smaller venues in support of its first album, Bachman was driving into Vancouver, British Columbia for a gig and listening to the radio when he heard a particular DJ's (Daryl B) catch phrase "We're takin' care of business." Lead vocalist Fred Turner's voice gave out before the band's last set that night. Bachman sang some cover songs to get through the last set, and on a whim, he told the band to play the C, B-flat and F chords (a I-VII-IV progression) over and over, and he sang "White Collar Worker" with the new words "Takin' Care of Business" inserted into the chorus.

After this, he rewrote the lyrics to "White Collar Worker" with a new chorus and the title "Takin' Care of Business." Along with this he wrote a revised guitar riff, which was the I-VII-IV progression played with a shuffle. The song was recorded by Bachman–Turner Overdrive for their second album Bachman–Turner Overdrive II. It would reach #12 on the Billboard singles charts, #3 on the Canadian RPM charts, and become one of B.T.O.'s most enduring and well-known songs.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Rocktober 15, 2014 Jimi Hendrix

Purple Haze was in my brain,
lately things don't seem the same,
actin' funny but I don't know why
'scuse me while I kiss the sky.

Purple Haze all around,
don't know if I'm coming up or down.
Am I happy or in misery?
Whatever it is, that girl put a spell on me.

Purple Haze was in my eyes,
don't know if it's day or night,
you've got me blowing, blowing my mind
is it tomorrow or just the end of time?

"Purple Haze" is a song written by Jimi Hendrix and recorded by the Jimi Hendrix Experience for their second single. It has been referred to as "one of the archetypical psychedelic drug songs of the sixties", although Hendrix described it as a love song. It features Hendrix's inventive guitar playing and a driving rhythm. On March 17, 1967, the single was released in the UK and quickly rose to number three in the British record chart. In the US, "Purple Haze" became the opening track on the American Are You Experienced album.

Jimi Hendrix put out some really great music before his death in September 1970.  Aside from "Purple Haze",  I always enjoyed "Foxey Lady", as well as the version of "Star Spangled Banner" that he performed at Woodstock in 1969.  Which of his songs have influenced you the most?

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Rocktober 14, 2014 Pink Floyd

Oh boy. Where do I start? I had such a difficult time picking a song from the Pink Floyd library. So many great songs to choose from. I went back and forth between several songs from  the  Dark Side Of The Moon album and songs from The Wall. I listened to so many that I almost forgot that I was to be choosing one to share with you all today!  Finally, I have settled on "Comfortably Numb", one of Pink Floyd's more famous songs.

"Comfortably Numb" is one of only three songs on the album for which writing credits are shared between Roger Waters and David Gilmour. The chorus melody was written by Gilmour while Waters contributed the lyrics and the music for the verses.

The Wall is a concept album about an embittered and alienated rock star. This song contrasts the rock star's memories of being feverishly ill as a child, and feeling nothing at all in adulthood. The lyrics feature interplay between a doctor treating the adult rock star (verses, sung by Waters) and the rock star's inner monologue (chorus, sung by Gilmour).

The video is good. But I've always enjoyed Pink Floyd with my eyes closed and letting the music take me away. 

Monday, October 13, 2014

Rocktober 13, 2014 Foghat

Foghat is a British rock band. Slow Ride appears on their fifth album Fool for the City, which was released in 1975. It also appears on Foghat Live, which was released in 1977. Foghat Live was their best selling album at over 2 million copies. In 2009, Slow Ride was named the 45th "Best Hard Rock" song of all time by VH1.

There are 5 versions of this song on the market. The original LP version from Fool For the City lasts 8 minutes and 14 seconds. The single version, found in several compilations was truncated to 3:56 with a fade-out ending. The 1977 live version is 8:21, the King Biscuit Flower Hour Foghat version is 10:37 and the 2007 live version is 9:44.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Rocktober 12, 2014 Paul Revere & The Raiders

Paul Revere & The Raiders is a band that originated out of Boise, Idaho, and had considerable mainstream success in the mid 1960's thru the early 1970's.

As a young child growing up in Idaho, my older siblings were fans and as a result I was indoctrinated into enjoying the band as well.  Later, in my 20's, I recall attending the Eastern Idaho State Fair where Paul Revere & The Raiders would perform free matinee shows during the afternoon.

Their manager suggested they record a song, "Louie, Louie", for which they were paid a mere $50, but the recording ultimately lead to them being signed with Columbia Records. It is uncertain whether The Raiders or the Kingsmen recorded the song first, but both groups recorded it at the same studio in Portland, Oregon in April 1963.

Paul Revere Dick recently passed away on Oct 4, 2014 from cancer. "Louie, Louie", 'Kicks" and "Indian Reservation" each played a role in my formative years. While his body is no longer with us, his music and soul remain in our hearts.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Rocktober 11, 2014 The Cranberries

Rounding out the week of Women Who Rock..

Rocktober 11, 2014 The Cranberries #Rocktober

"Zombie" is a protest song by the Irish rock band The Cranberries. It was released in September 1994 as the lead single from the album No Need to Argue. The song was written by Dolores O'Riordan, the singer of the band, and reached No. 1 on the charts in Australia, Belgium, Denmark, and Germany.

This song was written during the Cranberries' English Tour in 1993, in memory of two boys, Jonathan Ball and Tim Parry, who were killed in an IRA bombing in Warrington.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Rocktober 10, 2014 Joan Jett

Rocktober 10,  2014 Joan Jett #Rocktober

 Midnight, gettin' uptight. Where are you?
You said you'd meet me, now it's quarter to two
I know I'm hangin' but I'm still wantin' you.
Hey, Jack, It's a fact they're talkin' in town.
I turn my back and you're messin' around.
I'm not really jealous, don't like lookin' like a clown.
I think of you ev'ry night and day.
You took my heart, then you took my pride away.
I hate myself for loving you .
Can't break free from the the things that you do.
I wanna walk but I run back to you, that's why
I hate myself for loving you .
Daylight, spent the night without you.
But I've been dreamin' 'bout the lovin' you do.
I won't be as angry 'bout the hell you put me through.
Hey, man, bet you can treat me right.
You just don't know what you was missin' last night.
I wanna see your face and say forget it just from spite.
I hate myself for loving you .
Can't break free from the the things that you do.
I wanna walk but I run back to you, that's why
I hate myself for loving you.
I hate myself for loving you.
Can't break free from the things that you do.
I wanna walk but I run back to you, that's why
I hate myself for loving you .
I think of you ev'ry night and day.
You took my heart, then you took my pride away.
I hate myself for loving you .
Can't break free from the the things that you do.
I wanna walk but I run back to you, that's why
I hate myself for loving you .
I hate myself for loving you .
I hate myself for loving you .

Rocktober 10,  2014 Joan Jett #Rocktober

Originally titled "I Hate Myself Because I Can't Get Laid", Joan Jett was persuaded by producer Desmond Child to change it to something with "love" in the title.

The melody  is used as the theme music for NBC Sunday Night Football with re-worked lyrics based upon which teams are playing each week, and retitled "Waiting All Day For Sunday Night".

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Rocktober 9, 2014 Brass in Pocket

Chrissie Hynde is best known as the leader of the rock/new wave band the Pretenders. She is a singer, songwriter, and guitarist, and has been the only constant member of the band throughout its history. She has also released a number of collaborations with other musicians - two of which reached No.1 in the UK Charts.

Chrissie Hynde - The Pretenders

The Pretender's third single, Brass in Pocket,  was their first big success, scoring number one on the UK Singles Chart for two weeks in January 1980 (making it the first new number-one single of the 1980s), number one in Australia during May 1980, and number 14 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the United States. The song takes its title from an expression Hynde heard from a member of Strangeways, a support band, who was looking for his money (or 'brass').

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Rocktober 8, 2014 Stevie Nicks

Continuing this week's theme of  Women in Rock 

"Edge of Seventeen", is a song written and recorded by Stevie Nicks. It was the third single from her 1981 solo debut album, Bella Donna.

According to Nicks, the title came from a conversation she had with Tom Petty's first wife, Jane, about the couple's first meeting. Jane said they met "at the age of seventeen", but her strong Southern accent made it sound like "edge of seventeen" to Nicks. The singer liked the sound of the phrase so much that she told Jane she would write a song for it and give her credit for the inspiration. Although Nicks had originally planned to use the title for a song about Tom and Jane Petty, the deaths of both her uncle Jonathan and John Lennon during the same week of December 1980 inspired a new song for which Nicks used the title. Nicks's producer and friend, Jimmy Iovine, was a close friend of Lennon, and Nicks felt helpless to comfort him. Soon after, she flew home to Phoenix, Arizona, to be with her uncle Jonathan, who was dying of cancer.

Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like she's singing...
Whoo... whoo... whoo...
Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like she's singing...
Ooo baby... ooo... said ooo

And the days go by...
Like a strand in the wind...
In the web that is my own...
I begin again
Said to my friend, baby...
Nothin' else mattered

He was no more... than a baby then
Well he... seemed broken hearted...
Something within him
But the moment... that I first laid...
Eyes... on... him... all alone...
On the edge of... seventeen

Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like she's singing...
ooo baby... ooo... said ooo...
Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like she's singing...
Ooo baby... ooo... said ooo

I went today... maybe I will go again...
And the music there it was hauntingly...
And I see you doing...
What I try to do for me
With the words from a poet...
And the voice from a choir
And a melody... nothing else mattered

Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like she's singing...
ooo baby... ooo... said ooo
Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like she's singing...
Ooo baby... ooo... said ooo

The clouds... never expect it...
When it rains
But the sea changes colours...
But the sea...
Does not change
And so... with the slow... graceful flow...
Of age
I went forth... with an age old...
Desire... to please
On the edge of... seventeen

Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like she's singing...
Ooo baby... ooo... said ooo
Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like she's singing...
Ooo baby... ooo... said ooo

Well then suddenly...
There was no one... left standing
In the hall... yeah yeah...
In a flood of tears
That no one really ever heard fall at all
Oh I went searchin' for an answer...
Up the stairs... and down the hall
Not to find an answer...
Just to hear the call
Of a nightbird... singing...
Come away... come away...

Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song
Sounds like she's singing...
Ooo... baby ooo... said ooo
Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like she's singing...
Ooo... baby ooo... said ooo

Well I hear you in the morning...
And I hear you...
At nightfall...
Sometime to be near you...
Is to be unable... to hear you...
My love...
I'm a few years older than you...

Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like she's singing...
Ooo baby... ooo... said ooo

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Rocktober 7, 2014 Annie Lennox

Annie Lennox started her music career in the late 1970's. In the 1980's, she paired up with a fellow musician to create the Eurythmics. In the 1990's, she split off from the duo to start a solo career.

Rocktober 7, 2014 Annie Lennox

"Why" is the first solo single by the Scottish singer Annie Lennox, released in 1992. It was taken from her debut solo album Diva and reached no.5 in the United Kingdom and number thirty-four on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. The single also reached no.6 on the U.S. Adult Contemporary chart.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Rocktober 6, 2014 Janis Joplin

Janis Joplin first rose to fame in the late 1960s as the lead singer of the psychedelic-acid rock band Big Brother and the Holding Company, and later as a solo artist with her own backing groups, The Kozmic Blues Band and The Full Tilt Boogie Band. Her first ever large scale public performance was at the Monterey Pop Festival; this led her to becoming very popular and one of the major attractions to the Woodstock festival and the Festival Express train tour.

Joplin charted five singles, and other popular songs from her four-year solo career include "Down on Me", "Summertime", "Piece of My Heart", "Ball 'n' Chain", "Maybe", "To Love Somebody", "Kozmic Blues", "Work Me, Lord", "Cry Baby", "Mercedes Benz", and her only number one hit, "Me and Bobby McGee".

I love Janis' raw, gravely voice. The sound she creates lets you know she puts her heart and soul into her music.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Rocktober 5, 2014 Pat Benetar

Rocktober 5, 2014 Pat Benetar

Let's give some love to the Women of Rock! This week we will be playing music from women musicians. Today's addition to Rocktober is Pat Benetar's "Heartbreaker".

During the 1980s, Pat Benatar had two RIAA-certified Multi-Platinum albums, five RIAA-certified Platinum albums, three RIAA-certified Gold albums and 15 Top 40 singles, including the Top 10 hits, "Hit Me with Your Best Shot", "Love Is a Battlefield", "We Belong" and "Invincible". Other popular singles include "Treat Me Right", "Fire and Ice", "Promises in the Dark", "Shadows of the Night", and "All Fired Up". Benatar was one of the most heavily played artists in the early days of MTV. She was the first woman to play on MTV, performing "You Better Run".

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Rocktober 4, 2014 Skid Row

Rocktober 4, 2014 Skid Row

It's the weekend. Time to really let our hair down! Today's song was the B-side to Youth Gone Wild. It was difficult finding more info to share with you about this song. When I think of the music done by Skid Row, I instantly think of this song, followed by Rattlesnake Shake, Youth Gone Wild, and then finally 18 And Life. But this song sticks out the most in my memory.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Rocktober 3, 2014 Peter Frampton

Rocktober 3, 2014 Peter Frampton

There was some deliberation at my house as to which Peter Frampton song to play for you today. The song with the most votes was Do You Feel Like We Do, but I overruled and picked a song that I have loved for many years.

Baby I love Your Way was released in September 1975 and was first featured on Frampton's 1975 album, Frampton. The song segues from the previous track "Nassau". A live version of the song was later released on his 1976 multi-platinum album Frampton Comes Alive!, where it gained popularity as a hit song, peaking at number 12 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart and making the top 40.

Now excuse me while I close my eyes and recapture that memory of my first slow dance...

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Rocktober 2, 2014 "Let There Be Rock"

AC/DC Let There Be Rock
"Let There Be Rock" is a song by Australian hard rock band AC/DC. It is also the title track of their Australian album Let There Be Rock, released in March 1977, and was written by Angus Young, Malcolm Young, and Bon Scott. It similarly featured on the international version of Let There Be Rock, released in October 1977.Let There Be Rock" is a play on the third verse of the Book of Genesis, in which God created heaven and earth. God's demand of "Let there be light" is echoed in the song, and is extrapolated to calls of "Let there be sound... drums... guitar... Let there be rock". In the studio recording, Scott called for sound before light, whereas this is switched during live performances of the song.The song is influenced by Chuck Berry's "Roll Over Beethoven", specifically the lyric "go tell Tchaikovsky the news", which is referenced in Scott's lyric "but Tchaikovsky had the news.""Let There Be Rock" is a playable song in the music video game Rock Band 2. A television advertisement for the game features a Kurt Cobain look-a-like lip-syncing to a short clip of "Let There Be Rock", which resembles the music video. Others are shown playing the guitar and drum-simulating game controllers in time to the music. It was then featured on a track pack for Rock Band that have live versions of the songs in it, with Let There Be Rock being the hardest of them all, due to being played at a faster tempo than the studio version. It also is the only song with a Big Rock Ending to last more than 2 minutes.

I chose this song as it was recently been announced that Malcolm Young has left the band due to his battle with dementia.


In the beginning
Back in nineteen fifty-five
Man didn't know about a rock 'n' roll show
And all that jive
The white man had the smoltz
The black man had the blues
No one knew what they was gonna do
But Tchaikovsky had the news
He said -
"Let there be sound", there was sound
"let there be light", there was light
"Let there be drums", there was drums
"Let there be guitar", there was guitar
"Let there be rock"
And it came to pass
That rock 'n' roll was born
All across the land every rockin' band
Was blowing up a storm
And the guitarman got famous
The businessman got rich
And in every bar there was a super star
With a seven year itch
There were fifteen million fingers
Learning how to play
And you could hear the fingers picking
And this is what they had to say
"Let there be light"
"Let there be rock"
One night in a club called `The Shaking Hand'
There was a ninety-two decibel rocking band
And the music was good and the music was loud
And the singer turned and he said to the crowd -
"Let there be rock"

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Rocktober 1, 2014

My nephew has this great idea that every October is Rocktober, and he shares a song or video on his social media sites. I wanted to expand upon this and share music and information about artists throughout the year. So, while this is a somewhat stolen idea... I promise not to let you down.

I thought I would start out with a fabulous video that feature two great bands that I truly enjoy.  Ann and Nancy Wilson of  Heart perform an amazing rendition of Stairway to Heaven by Led Zeppelin at the Kennedy Center.  I  hope you enjoy it as much as I do :)