Posts Tagged ‘J. Geils Band’

My people! The cash has been rolling in since I launched this blog on November 4, 2010. PolitiFact rates this assertion as Pants on Fire. I haven’t made a penny, but I have listened to Johnny Cash at San Quentin (what a record) and anyway blogging is fun and a relief from the cruel indifference of a world that has yet to form a cult around me. (I’ve also listened to Love by The Cult. Imagine if AC/DC got religion, but not one that anyone would recognize.)

I indexed the first year of Run-DMSteve in November of 2011. You can find it over there on the left in the Blogroll. (The Rolling Stones, Now! – A look back at the band as they moved from covering their American blues idols to writing their own songs. They’re barely a year away from incandescence.) The end of 2012 was kind of busy and I didn’t index the second year until January 2013. With that precedent in mind, I present the official authorized index to the third year!

Thanks as always for being there, reading this stuff or pretending to read this stuff and making appropriate or inappropriate comments. I couldn’t do it without you, Special D, WordPress, and the weekend of classes I took at the International House of Critics. (J. Geils Band, Full House vs. House of Pain, House of Pain. J. Geils wins!)


Bikini Machine

Kid Rock

Ray Parker, Jr.

The Pretenders

Paul Simon

Siouxsie & The Banshees

Talking Heads

2013 Clarion West Write-a-thon
Introducing the whole thing

It’s all about to happen

The Write-a-thon finally starts (Day 1)

The Write-a-thon finally ends, thank God (Day 41)

The summing up

Teddy Ballgame

“Let Me Count the Ways” Week
I start reviewing every band with a number in its name

I run out of every band with a number in its name (or so I thought)

A tale of two miracles

Baby Boomers Social Club

Ask Run-DMSteve asks Run-DMSteve

Round-up of albums released at Christmas 2013 but are not about Christmas in 2013 or any other year

Good Dog Happy Man

Random Pick of the Day
Bill Frisell, Good Dog, Happy Man (1999)
A guitar album of considerable skill, yet somehow with little to stick to your memory or disturb your concentration. For example, the title track – it’s pretty, and it floats away while you’re listening to it. I think that would make Good Dog, Happy Man a good listen when you’re out for a spin. Totally excellent cover art.

Refusing to read

Yesterday I promised you a guest blogger, mystery novelist Deborah Donnelly. Due to circumstances beyond our control, Ms. Donnelly will not eventuate. Not on Day 4, anyway. She says hi.

New kids on the block
I’m speaking now to the new readers I’ve just detected, thanks to the stats dished out by WordPress. Are you lost? You’re not getting your money back! What you’ve stumbled on is a blog about popular music, but right now I’m engaged in a six-week write-a-thon that ends August 2. I don’t want to abandon music entirely, so I’m finishing each post with the musical picks and pans I wrote over the past few months. I’ve already run out of pans. And people say I hate everything!

The writing cartoons have aged for years in my lifelong collection. The cultural references may provoke laughs but the themes are timeless.

I’ve cleverly hidden indexes to the first two years of this blog (November 2010 to November 2012) in the left-hand column under Blogroll. You’re on your own for Year 3.

Not all who wander want to find their way back to the freeway
Day 4 for me was like urban in-fill in most U.S. cities: packing more people into already established neighborhoods. Yesterday I solved the challenge of the chapter that goes forever on by breaking it up. Chapter 5 became much more manageable after I evicted a third of it. That section became Chapter 6. A few stray paragraphs became the opening of Chapter 7.

My task today was to write a real ending for Chapter 5 and a real beginning for Chapter 6. I didn’t finish either but I know I’m headed in the right direction because I was surprised by some of what I wrote. “Where do I get my ideas? I don’t. They get me,” Lewis Carroll said.

The problem with writing a novel the way I’m writing a novel, with a set of ideas rather than a set of ideas and a roadmap, is that I plunge into chapters without knowing exactly where they’re going or what they’re trying to accomplish. Everything takes longer than it should, even though I’m enjoying every minute of it. Maybe I don’t want it to end?

I wouldn’t recommend my method to anyone. Maybe someday I’ll listen to me.

Box score
I’ve written for four days out of four
– 5.5 total hours

Random Pick of the Day
The Vines, Highly Evolved (2002)
These Aussies bow to Nirvana and Stone Temple Pilots, but I suspect they would sell their souls to be a catchy little pop band. All the tempo changes and other experiments on Highly Evolved could’ve been Duran Duran reimagined as a grunge act circa 1992. This is especially true on my favorite tracks, “Outtathaway” and “Sunshinin.”

The real treat on this album is “Factory,” in which The Vines pretend to be Nirvana pretending to be The Beatles.

Random Rock ’n’ Roll Image of the Day
Aerosmith and J. Geils Band at Fenway Park, 14 August 2010: Steven Tyler in a Sox jersey at a white grand piano atop the Green Monster belting out “Dream On.”

In this very exciting new feature, regular workin’ stiffs just like you (and Mitt Romney) ask for my opinion and regret it later!

Dear Run-DMSteve,
There are small moments in songs – a guitar riff, a single lyric, a repeated refrain – that resonate so strongly that I have an overpowering emotional reaction to them. As I was driving to work this morning, I heard Glen Campbell’s “Wichita Lineman.” It came out in 1968, when I was 11 years old. I have no idea why I was so moved by the music/lyric combination of “And I need you more than want you/and I want you for all time/and the Wichita lineman/is still on the line.”

Any thoughts?
–Accused of Lurking 

Dear Lurking,
Here’s a specific thought: Glen Campbell had a good voice, not in the Sinatra or Tony Bennett league or in the second rank with Bobby Darin, but about on a par with Dean Martin. That’s not a slam. Dino and Glen knew how to use what they had to the fullest. (Sinatra was so phenomenal that he could goof off in a song and still sound good.) Like Martin, Campbell almost never got anything great to sing. That’s one of the reasons “Wichita Lineman” stands out among his recordings. It’s a terrific song and he puts everything into it, but in his Glen Campbellian, low-key way. The arrangement is a sort of countrified Nelson Riddle, but it works here, perhaps because Campbell sings like an Everyman. The words and the music enter your heart, even if you’re just 11, and the line you quote powers it all. I’d never really thought about it, but you nailed it.

Here’s a general thought: Proust thought that food was the ultimate time machine to the past, and that was probably true when music was not available for replay. You couldn’t “own” music in human history until the eye blink of the past 100 years. Now music has replaced food as the time machine. We experience them much the same, but music is more powerful. Why that is, I can’t say, as I’ve expended my philosophical budget for this question. I just know that music can make you cry. Can food? (I’m talking about food that hasn’t been prepared by my mother.)

Special D adds, “What always got me was the lift in his voice from ‘still on the…’ to ‘…li-i-ine’ followed by the telegraph-key sounds. I pictured this man’s yearning voice stretching thin, traveling the wires, and reaching his lover. That, and the masculine but non-macho poetry of ‘I need you more than want you/and I want you for all time’ just kills me.”

Keep drivin’ the main road, Lurk!

Dear Run-DMSteve,
I like to listen to the jazz station on the radio while I’m making dinner. I would never consider myself a jazz aficionado; it’s more of a relaxing backdrop while I’m concentrating on my cooking. Tonight, of course [Feb. 14], there was someone singing “My Funny Valentine.” That song has always struck me in a weird place and I can’t explain why. It always feels like the wail of a wounded animal, no matter if it’s Frank Sinatra or Elvis Costello or Rickie Lee Jones. Where does that come from?
–Perplexed Valentine Girl

Dear Perp,
“My Funny Valentine” is an odd one; it’s short, yet it packs some ambiguous meanings. “Your looks are laughable/unphotographable.” Is the singer in love with his partner despite her flaws? Does he love her for them? Is he GGG or just a manipulative asshole?

Is your figure less than Greek
Is your mouth a little weak
When you open it to speak
Are you smart?

But don’t change a hair for me
Not if you care for me
Stay little valentine stay
Each day is Valentine’s Day

This is too close to Billy Joel territory (“She’s Always a Woman”) for me, man.

The music isn’t exactly a winner either. Your “wounded animal” description is apt. I don’t know what kind of song this is but I wouldn’t play it anywhere near Valentine’s Day.

Next year, ask for the chocolates.

Dear Run-DMSteve,
Your opinions are rubbish, mate. Did you have any experience writing music criticism before lobbing this blog at us? Or are you mucking about in blogland because someone at your paying gig gave you the boot? Have you any qualifications at all up your sleeve, or are you having us on? And just an FYI: Chris Martin rules.

Dear Sexy,
I haven’t received any training in writing about music. I can’t even read music. I’ve never written about music before, except in tenth grade when I reviewed the J. Geils Band’s Full House. I’m still proud of my lead: “Rock is rhythm.” I didn’t even know about sex yet.

It was Special D’s idea that I embark on this voyage. She knew I had run out of crafts projects. She also felt that she shouldn’t be the only person who had to listen to me babble about music. Spreading me around has taken the burden off her. I am indebted to Special D for this fab idea and she is indebted to my readers for egging me on.

I immediately set goals for my blogging career. I would be deluged with free CDs and other band merch, an all-expenses-paid trip to SXSW, and money. Crumpled singles, jars of pennies, checks with funny animals on them, and my favorite: four-figure transfers via PayPal. This didn’t happen.

However, I can report that Domino’s is making money from my blog. Every time one of their ads appears at Run-DMSteve, Loyal Reader Krafty orders one of their pizzas. I hope you’re enjoying them, Loyal Reader Krafty, because Domino’s won’t even send me a thank-you note! I can’t get anyone to pay me for an ad, and the only way to keep the ads out is to pay WordPress, which doesn’t sound like revenue generation to me (though it does to WordPress).

So you see, Sexy, I have no real qualifications beyond some spare time and the ability to type wicked fast. All I know how to do is to put things in groups and compare them. I’ve been listening to the radio all my life, and my head is brimming with everything I’ve listened to. I keep finding ways to connect the dots. Which is more than I can say for Coldplay.

I’m back in The Nervous Breakdown after a lengthy hiatus while I wrestled with my novel. So far the novel is ahead two falls to one. I might have to resort to Plan B and install a plot.