We’re doing something a little different this week. I’ve made quite a few images for the Grab a Stack of Rock show, but we haven’t really had the time to feature all of them in the show intro or title cards (as of yet- February 2023). So I’m going to give a little air time to the unused ones here. But it was actually a surprise to see just how few hadn’t appeared yet.
The 5 Images
A homage to Oingo Boingo’s debut album, this one would have likely been the image for this week’s reissue label show had the reunion of the Trek crew not happened.
I did a couple of lightsaber duel homages (this one being the firs) because they’re fun to do. This one also poked a little bit of fun at our sometimes opposing views.
My artist’s impression of part of Rock Heaven from Tee Bone Man Chapter 8
Another Boingo homage, this time for their first live album, Boingo Alive.
It’s time to scale things back from the weekly reviews, unfortunately. I started the site back in March of 2020 to give me something to do during the COVID lockdown, to keep my writing skills sharp and to introduce people to great music. However, now I have a job that takes up a lot of my time. For those of you who are familiar with Tee Bone Man, you’ll know I have more than a few creative outlets vying for my attention.
This is not a complete stop though. The regularly scheduled review will just be a little less regular. I’ll still try and maintain some semblance of routine and I’ll keep song of the week at the weekly slot. We had a good run though. Almost three whole years of straight weekly posting.
So thank you all for reading. Here’s to a long future for the site, whatever regularity the posts take.
There are a lot of Billy Joel songs I like and it’s always hard to pick a favourite, but this one is always in contention.
Top 3 Renditions
1- Live From Long Island
There’s not much in it between the renditions, but this one just feels the most alive and electrifying to me.
2- The Studio Version
I like the GNR “Civil War”-esque whistle intro, and I love the rocked up bounce of the main event.
3- Live, 1977
Sometimes a live version just won’t speak to you as much as another does, even though it’s a fine rendition. This is one of those. It might just be because I heard the Long Island version first, but that’s always my go to.
Yes I know it’s late, but I was preoccupied with cranking out Lego art. Sue me (please don’t). But in any case, better late then never, eh?
And so we find ourselves once again at the end of another year. This one was quite eventful with several returning favourites to go with the new ventures. We’ll take it from the start with The Adventures Of Tee Bone Man (a creative writing collaboration with mikeladano.com and others) with our own fictional universe. By the good fortune of being the writer of the second chapter, all of the chapters since that first one have featured Lego artwork from yours truly. It’s been so much fun to do and I hope you like it as much as I do. And I hope you’re not tired of it because there’s plenty more coming.
I also became a more permanent fixture of the Lebrain live-streaming scene. Through the newly-minted Grab A Stack Of Rock I have become the Alex Huard to Mike’s Brent Jensen. I just have to hope I don’t run out of things to show.
As for the things that continued on, Mix CD Monthly steamed ahead with itself, branching out into DVDs and VHSs. Though it nears the end of its run I have enjoyed it immensely. ELO Week had its third and final run, as I’ve run out of interesting things to talk about. Rather than continue on with boring drudgery I decided to end it on a high. Now I just need to find something to replace it for the last week of July.
In brighter news, Oztoberfest made its first return, and this one was better than the first. While I spent last year’s focusing on awesome albums I knew, this time I decided to go for unknowns, and almost every one was a winner. I’m totally chuffed with Oztoberfest this year and I’m really looking forward to next year’s.
And now comes the lists. We’ll start with the classics- my favourite reviews and my favourite albums I’ve looked at this year.
Of course, this one kind of had an advantage over the others. It was by far the most enjoyable of all my reviews I’ve done, even if it’s hard to interpret what I’m trying to say in some instances. The written word version of this review is one of my favourite reviews I’ve ever written though, so it balances out.
Even though 2Loud2OldMusic correctly surmised that the line “Any band would be happy if this was their best album, but for Iron Maiden it’s just their first album” would suffice as a review (as did I), I think the extra words were fine and succinct enough in themselves.
I like the title idiosyncrasy (along with the fact that I did in fact get the expensive version six months later) and made some interesting musings on the song selections. And I assure you we will be looking at the 42-disc box set version at some point next year.
Due to the Christmas rush we’ve opted to postpone the massive VHS again and go with a shorter disc this month. I’m sure you’re all utterly devastated. Except that this “mix CD” isn’t a disc- yet. That’s because the songs on this collection are still being gathered. The background starts in late 2020. I wasn’t particularly well and couldn’t handle the long public transport trips back home from university. My mother, who loved driving, graciously and gladly drove me home those days.
Because of our largely differing music tastes, we picked a radio station that both of us were equally apathetic towards. That station ended up being 100.1, Curtin FM. The songs were mostly old boring stuff we’d never heard (the title of this MCM being a hyperbolic way I’d poke fun at the channel. None of these songs are from the 50s, but I didn’t let that get in the way of a good alliteration), but occasionally there was something with a little more zest. There was one time early on that I recognised the singer of a song. After a close listen I blurted out “aha! It’s Chris Farlowe. Shortly after I recognised a Bob Dylan song simply based on the lyrics, and it was at that moment that she turned towards me and went “The shit you know!”.
And so it became a tradition for as long as we drove together to spend the time listening to that station and guessing who sang the songs. While I had a few obscure names up my sleeve, she also knew people like Englebert Humperdinck and Julio Iglesias. And don’t get me started on how she would always recognise Cliff Richard within seconds of hearing his voice despite not liking him.
So naturally as we listened, I’d hear songs that I’d like and would always make a note of them. I know have a fairly sizeable list, and it’s only getting bigger as I still listen to the channel sometimes. And eventually there’ll be mix CDs of them. So let’s look at what we have so far. Hopefully this doesn’t make any of you feel too old.
The ‘Tracklist’ (Running order not final)
Atlanta Rhythm Section- Spooky
A little laid back, it was, at the time, still one of the more energetic tunes we heard on that station.
Normie Rowe & The Playboys- Shaking All Over
I really like the keyboard work on this one as well as the western feel to the guitars.
Danny Wilson- Mary’s Prayer
You know, I think this might be the youngest song they’ve ever played on that station. I like it too. Definitely would have stood out among a lot of the rest on account of the good sound quality.
Partridge Family- I Think I Love You
The atmospheric verses are the highlight but the main hook is still serviceable.
Original Caste- Mr Monday
Energetic and enjoyable.
Ronnie Burns- Exit Stage Right
God do I love this song. Such a good, but simple, hook. And the Beegees even covered it (though I think they write it so I’m not sure how much of a cover that really is)
Trini Lopez- We’ll Sing In The Sunshine
One of the earliest ones, I still love this one just as much as I did then. Mellow, yet energetic, it’s my favourite of all the versions of this song.
The Ides of March- Vehicle
The very first song, early on in the drives, that made me perk up and go ‘hang on, maybe they do play good stuff occasionally’. A horn-laden funk-fest, this is still one of the highlights of those days.
Donovan- Wear Your Love Like Heaven
From late 2022 actually, comes this bouncy one with some classic organ.
Neil Sedaka- Calendar Girl
Another fun upbeat one.
Chris Rea- Josephine
The latest one of the bunch. I recognised it as Rea and lamented that I was alone in the car because that would have been a great round in the chamber.
Lorne Greene- Ringo
The latest discovery, I’ve never been a huge fan of spoken-word, but this ‘song’ rules. Great story to follow along to as well.
So that’s it for now. There’ll undoubtedly be more songs to add to this collection before the eventual burning of the disc, and maybe I’ll chronicle those at a later date.
Live Fleetwood Mac can be hit or miss at times (hint: avoid 1982), but this live album, recorded on the Tusk tour, is a definite hit. This 2021 edition comes with three full CDs of the band live in concert (or live at a soundcheck), and the highlights are plenty. Just see below.
The mellow rocker “Monday Morning” makes a very rare appearance on a live album (the only appearance that I know of), and what a performance. Buckingham nails the singing here.
Classic songs such as “Say You Love Me”, “Dreams” and “Landslide”, all performed excellently.
And Peter Green era songs! The awesome “Oh Well” makes a very welcome appearance here with Buckingham singing.
Mega-hits “Rhiannon”, “Go Your Own Way” and “Don’t Stop” and deeper cut “I’m So Afraid” are all present and rendered spectacularly.
A soundcheck cover of The Beach Boys’ “The Farmers Daughter” also makes an interesting closer to the disc.
And the third disc is really what helps fill out this package. The recordings are split here over the Tusk tour and the ’77 tour, but you wouldn’t know if you weren’t told.
An extra bunch of classic tunes (“The Chain”, “Gold Dust Woman”, “Tusk”, “Songbird” and “You Make Loving fun”) help make sure there are next to no songs you’d want on here that aren’t.
Tusk deep cut, and my second favourite song on that album, “What Makes You Think You’re The One” makes a very, very welcome surprise appearance.
And the album highlight, head and shoulders above the rest on this disc, a 1977 live performance of “The Green Manalishi (With The Two-Pronged Crown)”, with Buckingham singing which pretty much sold on this album all on its own.
Now just how much you enjoy this album depends on how much you like the songs off Tusk, but no Fleetwood Mac fan is going to come away disappointed.
I mean, what else were we going to look at today. One of the perks of being 23 is you’re not sick of some of the sings that other people qre.
Top 3 Renditions
1- The Studio Version
It’s got a great bounce to it as the lyrical whimsy comes out. Simple but effective hook, and you’ve got one of my favourite Christmas songs (not that that is a genre I’m too serious about).
2- Live at the Hucknall Miners’ Welfare Club
It’s a vintage Slade live rendition- that means Noddy’s belting the tune out with such power and accuracy that were it not for the guitar sound and tempo you’d swear you were listening to the studio version. Just can’t believe it took us until 2022 to get a proper live rendition of the song.
3- Alive! At Reading 1980
Well this is technically misleading because it’s just the audience singing a bit of it. But it’s still a little fun to hear.