Monday, February 27, 2006

For goodness sake! I still have all my teeth!

My day actually began overnight, as I dreamt about this morning's trip to the dentist.
I don't usually dream about things that are going to happen to me the next day. Instead, I usually have dreams where I am sent to cover some event for the newspaper and the organizers don't believe the authenticity of my press pass and won't let me in.
Nope. This dream was different: I dreamt about today's trip to the dentist.
I dreamt that when I got to the dentist, three of my teeth fell out into my hands.
It shook me up sufficiently that I sat up in bed.
Thankfully, reality was much less traumatic. My dentist appointment included a thorough (and rather boring) cleaning, followed by the less-than-devastating news that three of my childhood fillings have fallen into disrepair and must be redone. (The dentist also said something about wisdom teeth needing to be surgically removed, but I remain in denial about that, and won't be mentioning it during this blog post.)
Indeed, the only thrills from this dentist appointment came from the songs I listened to as I drove there.
I created an early 1960s British rock playlist with the highlight being the ELECTRIFYING "Hippy Hippy Shake" by the Swinging Blue Jeans.
Some people might think the Swinging Blue Jeans simply rode The Beatles' coattails during the Merseybeat boom, and perhaps they did to a certain extent (who didn't?).
However, that perception cannot account for the sheer power of "Hippy Hippy Shake."
Ralph Ellis, Ray Ennis, Norman Kuhlke and Les Braid produced a song that would be a punk classic had it emerged 13 years later.
"Hippy Hippy Shake" stands tall among the 60s' classics. For goodness sake!

Sunday, February 26, 2006

I think I'll listen to some ABBA to celebrate!

Four years ago, calamity struck the Swedish men's hockey team and me.
Tommy Salo ducked, a puck flew in a hockey net and Olympic minnows Belarus had unceremoniously dumped my beloved SVERIGE out of the 2002 Salt Lake City Games.
The loss meant calamity for me, because I wear my Swedish allegiance (my grandparents emigrated less than a hundred years ago) on my sleeve and everywhere else. My hockey-loving coworkers have reminded me of that Swedish failure at least weekly for four long years.
Guess what?
Sweden's hockey stars emerged from that lengthy nightmare this morning, defeating Finland, 3-2, to win Olympic gold in Torino.
Niklas Lidstrom scored the go-ahead goal, then Sweden held on for dear life against the Finns -- their neighbors and longtime rivals.
People have talked about how both Scandinavian medal contenders came from relatively small countries, whose combined population doesn't even match Florida's.
Those folks making the comparison forget that there are plenty of people like me: A Swedish diaspora for which today's "Goldjubel" celebration means more than seeing some blue-and-gold-clad athletes parading around with a flag.
Thank you, Tre Kronor!

Saturday, February 25, 2006

I remember... when I used to play shoot 'em up...

I went on an iTunes shopping spree this morning.
Armed with a $15 gift card, I attempted to fill in some gaps in my R & B collection.
I purchased such essential tracks as:
"Everyday People" by Sly & The Family Stone.
"Could it be I'm Falling in Love" by The Spinners.
"Back Stabbers" by The O'Jays.
"Don't be Angry" by Nappy Brown.
"Riot in Cell Block No. 9" by The Robins (aka The Coasters).
and an absolutely brilliant song I had not heard in years...
"Cowboys to Girls" by The Intruders.
The Intruders -- Eugene "Bird" Daughtry, Robert "Big Sonny" Edwards, Samual "Little Sonny" Brown and Phil Terry (what... no nickname?!) -- formed in Philadelphia in 1960 and would be among my favorites simply for their Top 40 hit "(Love is Like a) Baseball Game."
"Cowboys to Girls," however, is nothing short of a STONE-COLD CLASSIC.
"Shoot 'em up, bang bang baby!"
It's the sort of song that I wish would last forever, instead of the mere 2:37.
"I went from cowboys to girls..."
It's simply one of the greatest songs Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff penned, and it might be the best iTunes purchase I have ever made!

Friday, February 24, 2006

Stuck in the 70s with FRIDAY QUESTION

The Route 1 staff felt all nostalgic this week, so the FRIDAY QUESTION seeks an answer to this query: What song would you like being "stuck in the 70s" with? Big afro hairstyle optional, but encouraged.
Mike D. -- Although I was raised on the Bee Gees, I gonna have to go with something by KC and the Sunshine Band. "I'm Your Boogie Man," "Shake Your Booty" or "That's The Way (I Like It)" would help me get down and get funky!
Kerstin H. -- "“We are Family!"” Because it is fun!
Rick T. -- "Rain, Park and Other Things". Great song by the Cowsills
Diane H. -- I have a big soft spot for "Love will keep us together" by Captain and Tennille. My sister had it on vinyl and we listened to it a lot. And who doesn't love to sing along to that chorus? "I will, I will, I will, I willlllllll!"
Gary D. -- Not so much a song, but an album. Exile on Main Street, by the Rolling Stones. An awesome effort by the all-time Greatest Rock and Roll Band.
Ellen B. -- Any song by the Jackson 5.

Jill H. -- "“Dancing Queen"” by ABBA

Dave B. -- "“I Feel Love"” by Donna Summer.

Jim S. -- Not sure if I'd really like to be stuck with it, but the first one to come to my mind by the wording of the question was "Brick House," by the Commodores.

Lisa Y. -- Maybe "Knock Three Times on the Ceiling If You Want Me“." I can do the afro without a wig!!
Erik H. -- It was a little bit frightening, but they did it with expert timing -- of course it'’s "“Kung Fu Fighting"” by Carl Douglas. The other night I was watching some video clips from Britain'’s "“Top of the Pops"” show from 1974 and Douglas performed this song, which topped the charts on both sides of the Atlantic. That'’s quite an accomplishment --… in fact, I think it rates a "“HOOO-HAAAHH!"

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Why do they have rayguns AND swords?

My Valentine's present arrived from Amazon yesterday.
Jill got me the DVD box set of all three Flash Gordon serials starring Buster Crabbe.
They are wonderful!
I watched the first four chapters of the 1936 original "Flash Gordon" last night.
As a kid, I spent many hours watching Flash Gordon on TV. Even in the immediate pre-"Star Wars" period of the early 1970s, the special effects on "Flash Gordon" seemed somewhat laughable. The thrilling action more than made up for a few sparkler-propelled rocketships, however, and I have loved Flash Gordon since I was about 9 or 10 years old.
I will be watching more Flash Gordon in the days to come.
Meanwhile, I will be pondering this question that arose last night as I watched:
Why do the warriors of Mongo use both rayguns AND swords?
If I had a raygun, I would simply shoot my combatant before they even got close enough to whack them with my sword. Perhaps that is why Ming the Merciless was doomed to fail in his attempt to conquer Earth?

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Stuck in the 70s with the Rubettes

I have found myself stuck in the 70s this week, listening to a glam rock mix on my iPod while driving to various assignments.
One of the songs, "Sugar Baby Love" by the Rubettes, owes its success to one of the oddest stories in British pop history.
During the spring of 1974, Sparks were scheduled to appear on the BBC's "Top of the Pops" to perform "This Town Ain't Big Enough For the Both of Us." That was until TOTP producers realized Sparks were American and not British -- and thus not yet members of the Musician's Union. The Beeb scrambled to find a replacement act and happened upon the Rubettes, whose "Sugar Baby Love" was languishing in the charts with little real hope of success.
The last-minute replacements duly performed their tune and it subsequently took off.
It knocked ABBA's "Waterloo" off the top of the charts in May 1974 and held on to No. 1 for four weeks (it's successor as chart-topper? "The Streak" by Ray Stevens).
Sparks eventually reached an agreement to perform on TOTP, but "This Town..." couldn't quite equal the success of "Sugar Baby Love."

Monday, February 20, 2006

Monochrome Monday

Not many bands use the word "didactic" in their lyrics. The Monochrome Set did, which is probably why I like them so much.
The Monochrome Set emerged out of Britain's post-punk era (some of their members had been in the embryonic Adam and the Ants), but they sounded nothing like their peers. Their music drew as much from the cabaret tradition as from Cabaret Voltaire. They wrote catchy but wordy songs.
Perhaps their uniqueness worked against them. They were singing about juntas and upper-class twits when the rest of the nation's post-punk bands were getting their groove on. They never really had any hits and not many people remember them these days. There are only a handful of Monochrome Set Web sites.
I listened to them throughout the day today, as I drove to various assignments. I might make Monochrome Set listening a Monday tradition.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Rockabilly chili

We hosted the annual Telegraph Herald Chili Cookoff tonight and our entry finished a credible second (out of five). Hats off to Jim Swenson. His winning entry included some type of sliced sausage.
I tried my hand at authentic Texas chili. It featured chunks of steak, beef broth, diced green chiles, chili powder, garlic, cumin... and that was it. Simplistic. Powerful.
I listened to some vintage rockabilly as I made the chili this morning.
I absolutely adore the song "Sunglasses After Dark" by Dwight Pullen. Simplistic. Powerful.
Like all classic early rock-n-roll tunes, "Sunglasses After Dark" exudes the thrill of musical discovery. You listen to this infectious tune, and you can feel the excitement of the musicians, as they blazed a trail. This aspect of the music makes it positively exhilarating to me!
Pullen originally came from Alabama, but moved with his family to Pittsburg, Calif. That's not far from where I grew up in Concord, Calif. Contra Costa County rarely registers when people talk about rockabilly bastions. Pullen formed his first band in California, but then the family moved back to Alabama but Pullen ended up in military service in Anchorage, Alaska. He also lived in Nashville and various other locales, including Medford, Ore. -- my late father's hometown.
Pullen died of cancer age 31 in 1961. He never realized his "Sunglasses After Dark" would become a revered example of rockabilly... or the inspiration behind my second-place chili. Thanks Dwight.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Listening to a Notts band, welcoming felines

The girls became first-time pet owners this morning, after a trip to the Dubuque Regional Humane Society resulted in the acquisition of black cuddly kitten Lorelei for Kerstin and white crazed-playing kitten Arabella (Mika) for Annika.
Mika spent her first morning with us trying to figure out how high up the steps she could climb while still surviving a reckless leap onto the floor below. Lorelei spent her first morning seemingly rooted to Kerstin's side, kneeding and purring and probably "cherishing the moment," as Kerstin would say.
While wondering how my two totally different kids could select such totally different kittens, I also listened to the two big hits by Paper Lace and tried to figure out why Nottingham has produced so few bands.
There's Tindersticks, KWS (of "Please Don't Go" dance music fame) and... and... well, and Paper Lace.
Their original of "Billy, Don't be a Hero" roared up the UK charts to No. 1 in early 1974. However, Bo Donaldson's cover version swiped the similar chart placing in America. Paper Lace did secure the top spot in the US with follow-up single "The Night Chicago Died," but were prevented from touring America to support it.
They faded back into obscurity, and Notts has yet to produce a band to match the success of Paper Lace. I wonder why?

Friday, February 17, 2006

No Lions, tigers or bears?

Kerstin (shown here with friend Tucker) asks this week's FRIDAY QUESTION: What is your favorite song about an animal?
Gary D. -- "“Stray Cat Blues"” by the Rolling Stones

Mike D. -- I like the lazy, '70s feel of "Me and You and a Dog Named Boo" by Lobo.
Ellen B. -- "Hungry like the Wolf"“ by Duran Duran... does that count it has the word "wolf"” in it?
Annika H. -- "Who Let the Dogs Out!" Because it is about doggies! "Who let the dogs out? Who?! Who?!"
Mary N.-P. -- It's really a whole album: "Cat Songs" by Garrison Kiellor and friends (and if your Dad reminds me,I'll bring it for you to listen to). Lots of funny (and some sad) musings about life with cats, both good and bad
Rick T. -- Got to be "Tie Me Kangaroo Down Sport"” No doubt!
Jim S. -- "Horse With No Name," by America, "Crocodile Rock," Elton John and "Fly, Robin, Fly," Silver Convention are some good ones. "“Disco Duck" and "Muskrat Love" aren't so good.
Erik H. -- "Stray Cat Strut"” by the Stray Cats. "“Get a’ shoe thrown at me by a mean ol'’ man, I get my dinner from a garbage can."
Kerstin H. -- "Hound Dog"” by Elvis Presley. Cuz I looooove dogs!

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Aussie punk and The Phantom

I need to take my daughter Kerstin to the doctor's office this morning -- she is complaining of a sore ear.
While I wait I am listening to some Australian punk circa 1978-79 and reading an illustrated history of comic strips that I checked out from the library.
The Aussie bands include The Victims and Fun Things, both of whom supplied members to Hoodoo Gurus. There are also some largely forgotten Brisbane bands such as Razar, Just Urbain and the Leftovers. It's interesting to hear how they translated what they heard coming out of England into a Queensland punk experience. What do you sing about when you live in a sunny paradise?
The comic history is quite interesting. I read today about Lee Falk and Ray Moore's "The Phantom." He looked mysterious with his little black mask and purple body suit.
For some reason, "The Phantom" resonated all over the world. Falk and Moore's creation has been translated into numerous languages.
There is one other thing I am doing this morning: Nervously glancing out the window, waiting for a "potentially significant" winter storm to plow into the area.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

I think my car is haunted

I don't know how else to explain it!
I locked my keys in my car this morning and did not discover that mishap until RIGHT BEFORE I was due to drive to an interview assignment. Luckily, my wife Jill had a spare set and could bail me out.
I initially thought I might have accidentally dropped my keys after I had first arrived at work. I had been juggling my iPod, my iTrip, my keys and a half-consumed bagel while I attempted to get out of the car.
Then I realized there was a far simpler explanation: Ghosts!
I know it is ghosts because when I returned from my interview and walked up to the door of the newspaper office, my door-unlocking badge, identification tags and press pass were no longer hanging around my neck on their lanyard. That *NEVER* happens. Sure enough, they were sitting inside the car... *EXACTLY* the same spot as my keys had appeared earlier.
That cinches it! Ghosts!
I have tried to appease the ghouls the rest of the day by listening to the Cramps as I have been driving around. The Cramps produced some of the creepiest post-punk rock of the past 25 years, simply by honoring reverb-laden rockabilly classics and B-movie horror film themes.
I might try to further appease the ghouls by cleaning out my car when I get home. Hopefully the ghosts will quit haunting me so much.

Monday, February 13, 2006

The realization made me laugh out loud

I found myself driving to a dentist appointment today while listening to a band called the Screamers.
I am reading Barney Hoskyn's "Waiting for the Sun," a rock history of Los Angeles, and I have arrived at the portion detailing the punk scene of 1977-78.
Although best remembered now for their iconic "screaming head" logo (created by graphic artist Gary Panter, see more information at his Web site, here), the Screamers were one of the most ambitious of the original L.A. punksters. They played synthesizers instead of guitars and sounded like Johnny Rotten hijacking Kraftwerk.
I listened to them en route to the dentists' office and just laughed at my unintentionally ironic soundtrack choice.
Then, more laughter ensued at my dentists' appointment.
I apparently have some lingering bite problems from my junior-high-era descent into the dark days of orthodontics. The dentist said the bite problems allied with my small mouth (40mm opening) would continue to wear down my teeth.
The dentist said he could give me the name of an orthodontist if I wanted an opinion on "re-treatment."

Actually, with a daughter currently in orthodontics, one more almost assuredly requiring future orthodontics and a just-purchased house, I already happen to have an opinion on "re-treatment."
Could somebody please turn up the Screamers?

Sunday, February 12, 2006

You can't hide your love -- of Orange Juice -- forever

I love the Pastels and Belle and Sebastian, but both those bands and many more are unthinkable without the majestic Orange Juice blazing the Scottish indie trail.
I have no idea what it is about Scotland that produces so many talented bands. Nothing to do but practice during those rainy, dreary days? Perhaps that's the reason.
All I know is that Scotland seems to have produced an inordinate of wonderful bands.
Surely others will argue my choice, but I believe Orange Juice might be the best.
During the band's early days, they rejuvenated "jangly pop," the type last heard by the Byrds and other folk-informed rock bands of the early and mid-1960s. Now, so many indie bands have adopted the jangly sound that it is difficult to remember that other bands in 1980 were either trying to keep the punk flame burning, reliving their David Bowie dress-up fantasies or pushing against the boundaries of the accepted "rock" sound.
Not Orange Juice.
Edwyn Collins, James Kirk, David McClymont and Steven Daly crafted beloved pop music in a delightfully shambling sort of way.
I listened to "The Esteemed Orange Juice" compilation throughout the day today, smiling the entire time.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

When I wasn't watching the massacre...

When I wasn't watching the Canadian women's ice hockey team massacre the hapless Italians (16-0... and the scoreline could have been twice that margin), I was listening to some vintage Genesis on my iPod.
I had to shovel snow from the sidewalk outside our home, so I listened to "Supper's Ready" from "Foxtrot."
I had to clean the bathrooms, so I listened to several tracks from "The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway."
I had to walk several blocks to retrieve a bowling ball from storage, so I listened to "Firth of Fifth" and "The Cinema Show" from "Selling England by the Pound."
It was a good day to listen to Peter Gabriel and the lads. Dubuque's skies were gloomy and light snow fell at various intervals during the day.
Watching the Olympics was OK, I suppose, although I tire so easily from the seemingly endless features on television. Just show the events!
Although... if there are any more events similar to Canada's demolition of Italy in women's hockey, perhaps I don't watch to watch anymore.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Friday Question: Hearts and Flowers edition

The approach of Valentine's Day prompts this week's FRIDAY QUESTION: Name some romantic music. Why does it pull on the heartstrings?
Jill H. -- Some slow sultry jazz like Chet Baker, his voice along with the
instrumentals just makes you want to grab the one you love...
Rick T. -- "I will always love you" by Dolly Parton. If that don't pull a heart string, then you just might be dead!
Mike D. -- Soft instrumentals by Kenny G. The John Barry soundtrack to "Somewhere in Time" for a nostalgic mood. But "our song" has always been "Playground in My Mind" by Clint Holmes, because the lyrics include "My name is Michael,... My girl is Cindy..."
Kerstin H. -- "We Never Loved Before" by Faith Hill.
Roseanne H. -- We both like "At Last" - in fact we danced to it at our wedding. But a few days ago we saw a cat food commercial and guess what song the cat was eating now the song has been elevated to an elegance never before known that now makes it even more special to us.
Erik H. -- I have to admit: Chet Baker's cool jazz vocals from the 1950s have always held a mystifying power over me. He couldn't really sing... not in the conventional, "good singer" sort of way. Still, true emotion seems to unfold out of his songs, enveloping the listeners.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Tourism for locals

Yep... That's my sister Inger in today's San Francisco Chronicle. She's the red-haired girl with the sneakers and the red sweater.
The photo illustrated a story about Mundane Journeys, a firm that gives tours of the San Francisco locales that the tourists wouldn't necessary want to see.
According to the story, the pictured tour took in a Chinatown kite store. The tour also takes in sights such as a Vietnamese sandwich shop in the Richmond district.
No Alcatraz... No Pier 39... No corner of Haight and Ashbury.
None of that stuff for these intrepid travelers. Nope. They go to places like Upper Market.
Check out today's Chronicle for the story.
Go here, to learn more about Mundane Journeys.

Grammy moments to ponder

Top SIX SURREAL MOMENTS from last night's Grammy Awards telecast:
1) Sir Paul McCartney slumming it by singing "Yesterday" with Jay-Z (who could only rap "Yeah!" and "That's right!") and Linkin Park.
2) The computer-generated guitarist of Gorrilaz licking guitar with a virtual tongue.
3) The complete assimilation of Billie Joe Armstrong and Green Day into the very bowels of the global recording industry. Et tu, Punk Rock?
4) Nicole Kidman + Keith Urban.
5) Franz Ferdinand did not win anything.
6) Sly Stone's towering mohawk seemed longer than his brief appearance on stage.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Milwaukie's finest?

So, here is the 300th post on the Route 1 blog.
I might as well write about something I know... how about Oregon?
Today I have been listening to Kingsmen, arguably the Portland area's most famous band and almost assuredly the most famous band to arise out of suburban Milwaukie, Ore.
Right now, in fact, I am listening to 1964 single "Little Latin Lupe Lu." Given the gargantuan shadow cast over their career by "Louie Louie," it is easy to forget that guitarist Mike Mitchell and the rest of the Kingsmen recorded other songs that also sold admirably well.
The historical significance of 1963's "Louie Louie" cannot be denied, however, as the song that provided a template for the garage rock explosion that would peak three years later. I just heard the Barry Curtis organ intro. So memorable!
The quintet formed at David Douglas High School, on Portland's southeast side and gained a residency of sorts at The Chase, a teen nightspot in the aforementioned suburb of Milwaukie.
Everybody knows the history of their recording of "Louie Louie," about how original singer Jack Ely had already left the band by the time the record began to break on the East Coast, about how the governor of Indiana banned the song for "obscene" lyrics (as if anyone could understand them!) and about how an FBI investigation eventually cleared the band of wrongdoing by deciding that Ely's words were too unintelligible to cause harm.
That's great stuff... mythic, even. And to think this was just a bunch of kids from Milwaukie.
Happy 300th post from Route 1! To celebrate, how about listening to "Louie Louie?"

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Super Bowl Sunday of Sound

Sure, I got ready to watch the Super Bowl, just like everybody else...
7:32 a.m. -- I began my day by listening to My Bloody Valentine's shoegazing classic "Loveless" while sipping coffee. Aah... Sunday mornings...
8:47 a.m. -- Downloaded more than a dozen vintage BBC Radio One jingles (circa 1967-1991) from the spectacular Radio Rewind Web site.
10 a.m. -- Broke down some boxes used during our recent move while listening to some classic Pet Shop Boys' singles. I adore "Suburbia." Neil Tennant could sure pen a great pop song!
11:30 a.m. -- Read Pete Townshend and Roger Daltry interviews in the latest issue of MOJO Magazine while listening to some 1960s singles by The Who.
2:14 p.m. -- Switched on VH-1 Classic in time to catch "Only You" by Yazoo. Yet another classic pop song.
3 p.m. -- Suitably inspired by the Yazoo video, I am listening to the first 10 songs on an 80s' iPod playlist devoted to synth-pop. It opens with Freur (pre-Underworld) with "Doot Doot," one of the forgotten singles that surely should be remembered.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Sh... sh... shing a lil wiff me! Letsh shing!

It's the end of a long week and the Route 1 staff are ready to let their hair down.
Well, I would let my hair down, if I... well... you know...
At any rate: It is PARTY TIME on the ol' Route 1 blog, so this week's FRIDAY QUESTION seeks the best sing-along PARTY ANTHEM!
Diane H. -- Well, if we're in Amy's kitchen drinking then it's "The Perfect Country Western Song." But it seems to me that just about anywhere, "Sweet Caroline" gets people singing really loudly. Bum, bum, baaaaa.

Jim S. -- Jenny, Jenny (867-5309) or Yellow Submarine
Ellen B. -- The Y.M.C.A by the Village People!!
Dave B. -- Shout! Otis Day and the Knights. Off the Animal House Soundtrack.
Tom J. -- Beastie Boys: "You have the right (to party)" or Y-M-C-A -- Craig's personal favorite.
Shannon H. -- Summer of '69. Worked on the Tonica, Ill., school bus and works with drunkards too.
Mark H. -- Creedence Clearwater Revival'’s "“Running Through the Jungle."
Rob K. -- "Beer Barrel Polka," and "Oh Lord It's Hard to Be Humble" by Mac Davis
Rick T. -- "“Louie Lou I, Woooo woo we gotta go!"” (The Kingsmen)
Erik H. -- My favorite sing-along party anthem sounds like it was recorded at a party by about eight guys who haven't even put down their (intoxicating) beverages to step up to the microphones. All eight guys appear to be singing, too, in the Swinging Medallions' glorious "Double Shot of My Baby's Love."
"She loved me so long and she loved me so hard, I finally passed out in her front yard. It wasn't wine that I had too much of, it was a double shot of my baby's love."
Happy Friday everyone!

Thursday, February 02, 2006

First Rock Supergroup?

I am in a rockabilly mood, so I am listening to some 1956 tunes by The Johnny Burnette Rock 'n' Roll Trio.
You probably know the story:
Brothers Johnny and Dorsey Burnette grew up in Memphis, where they hung out with a boy named Elvis Presley. They even worked for the Crown Electric Company, where that Presley kid served as a truck driver.
They loved the same kind of music.
Presley began cutting a few records. The Burnette boys were turned down, allegedly for sounding too much like their truck-driving friend. So vocalist/guitarist Johnny and standup bassist Dorsey hooked up with hot-shot lead guitarist Paul Burlison, went to New York, and blazed a glorious, rockin' trail.
The trail ended for Johnny in Clear Lake, Calif., where he died in a drowning accident in 1964. Dorsey continued as a country artist and Burlison retired to run a construction company.
During their brief time together in the late 1950s, nobody could touch these guys. Bill Haley, Roy Orbison, Buddy Holly... they all sound pale compared to these three wild boys.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

I haven't been this excited about a CD since...

Well, probably since the last CD I got.
That's not the point.
The point is that I am REALLY LOVING the "Nuggets from Nuggets" CD that arrived from Amazon the other night.
It's a collection of those classic garage rockers from the 1960s; songs such as "Louie Louie" by the Kingsmen and "Wooly Bully" by Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs and "Psychotic Reaction" by the Count Five.
I am not the type of person who says "things were so much better back in the old days," because in many ways they were not much better (just different). However, these are the songs every music fan should have in their collection. They really do seem timeless, and I can't help singing along to these songs.
Take "Liar Liar" by the Minneapolis one-hit wonders The Castaways, for example. I must have heard this song five times on my iPod yesterday and I sang along every time:
"Liar liar, pants on fire/Your nose is longer than a telephone wire"
"Ask me baby, why I'm sad/You been out all night, know you been bad."
Songs such as this one are simple and simply great.