Hi Everyone!  Are you familiar with the book series “331/2?”

Well, it is a series written by all different authors, mainly different musicians, and each book is dedicated to an entire album.  I recently learned of this series from my brother, who sent me 2 of the books: one is penned by Colin Meloy, lead singer of The Decemberists, and is all about The Replacements’ album Let it Be.  I will start that soon, probably tonight.  I just finished the other one, though, written by Bill Janovitz, lead singer and guitarist from the band Buffalo Tom.  His book?  Is all about The Stones’ “Exile on Main Street!”

Now, I first have to admit that, although I’ve always loved the album, I sometimes secretly (and a bit guiltily, being a “Stones Freak”) wondered why almost everyone, from the casual fan to the obsessed fanatic, seemed to consider it the absolute, hands down, greatest album by The Stones.  Many of their albums, like Beggar’s Banquet, Metamorphosis, Some Girls, and Sticky Fingers have had many more “spins” by me than Exile.  (Until now, hehe).

Amazingly, reading this book has truly made me listen to the album in a different way; I have more appreciation for some of the songs, not to mention a familiarity, an intimacy, even, that I never felt so strongly before reading this book.  Janovitz is a good writer, yes, but understanding even more than I knew about the circumstances surrounding the recording of the album, the dynamics of the relationships between not only the band members (especially Mick and Keith) but also the extended families and musicians involved, and understanding more of the technicalities of every single instrument played, described in extreme detail for each song on the 4 sided masterpiece, left me at the end of the book feeling as if I had been there, right there with them all, in the crumbling mansion in France.

Now, I won’t bore you anymore with descriptions of my excitement and freshly opened ears, but let me say this:  I have played “Exile” more times in the past week than I have in the past year.  I’m currently OBSESSED with an album I’ve had forever, but before I just loved it!!

Now, this computer has not been cooperating.  I wanted to just play the song, but it’s not worth coming to tears because of trying repeatedly to get the song from Windows Media player into my post.  I succumbed and got this from youtube, but at least it’s not the video.  Nothing wrong with videos, of course!  But, for this, I wanted you to just close your eyes and listen.  Close them if you want to, still!

This is originally by the one and only Robert Johnson.  Mick picked this song himself, and also a Slim Harpo tune, but the rest of the songs are written by The Stones.  They also covered Johnson’s “Love in Vain” for Let it Bleed, and Mick, Keith, and Mick Taylor especially embraced the great Blues artists from the generation before and alongside them, as opposed to just copying (and not giving much credit to the originals), like Led Zeppelin.  I like a few LZ songs, but The Stones delightedly invited and worked together with their idols and later mentors.

I digressed.  Please enjoy this bluesy, sauntering number that I think they cover very well.

Stop Breaking Down!

I like My Morning Jacket, but I’m not obsessed.  This song, however, was one I was obsessed with and played almost hourly for a few weeks (except when I was sleeping, and even then I sometimes heard the song in my dreams).  It’s dark, it’s otherworldly, and it has kids singing.  I think I have a soft spot (ex: You Can’t Always Get What You Want) for kids singing.

It sank into my bones immediately—-please turn it up LOUD!  And you know, I don’t even own a whole MMJ album, but….this song……is called Holding On to Black Metal!

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For everyone of course, but with a special nod to Cap and Progtracks! 

Here is just a little taste of Kraftwerk performing a couple weeks ago in Los Angeles.  My son, a huge fan, saw them twice in a week-they also played San Franciso, and he says (I’ll have to take his word for it) this was the most impressive concert he’s ever attended.  I like Kraftwerk a lot, but I think seeing their show would be much more exciting than hearing them.

The show was all in 3D, so everyone got 3D glasses, and apparently the effects were very…..effective.  An audio and visual confection!  No words from the musicians through the whole show, except a “Thank You, Gute Nacht!”

But of course none were needed.  Here is a little bit from “Radioactivity”…like I said, just a taste.  I hope it whets your appetite some, Cap!

This has been in my head for a while, thanks Cap!

Mail Question

Hi Everyone,

I have a question that maybe one of you can answer.  I am able to see any mail in my inbox, but, try as I have, I’ve yet to figure out how to see mail that I’ve already sent (through Tumblr).  It’s as if, once I’ve sent it, I cannot look later to see what I sent.  (and yes, smarties, I have tried clicking “sent mail”— they just don’t show themselves!)  Hmmm…any suggestions/answers?

Rufus Thomas - Walking the Dog

A couple weeks ago, after a hundred or so visits to see my mom and brother (and stepdad!) in Memphis, I finally visited Stax Records Studio (museum).  I plan to post more about it as soon as I have a chance.  I don’t know why I waited so long; it was a soul lover’s dream (or just about any music lover’s dream!).

Sun Studios is great, but I think Stax, as a museum today, has something special that delves more deeply behind the music, and addresses the racial and historical impacts on the music scene in Memphis that manifested before, during, and after Martin Luther King’s murder.  I gained a deeper understanding of the significance of Martin Luther King’s assassination in Memphis and how that brutal act changed the dynamics of the music scene, but in particular Stax Records, at the time.  In fact, his murder had a very direct impact and was the main reason for the ultimate demise of Stax Records.

As you probably imagined, Rufus Thomas is featured prominently at Stax, and I wanted to share this classic….Walking the Dog!  Enjoy!


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Amazing Starlings!! This video is not long….I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

This song is called “The Struggle” and it’s been growing on me. It appeared the other day on Spotify, the same day the band behind it, Grizfolk, released its debut EP, called Spark. I’ve not downloaded it yet, but I’m thinking I will. I hope you enjoy it! Oh yes, Grizfolk is from Sweden…that’s all I know right now (except that the song is growing on me).

I forgot to wish Peter Gabriel a happy birthday the other day….SO ;-),  Happy Birthday, Peter Gabriel!  (2 days late).  He’s 63! I’ve never seen him live but my son saw him last year and said he was absolutely amazing.  I like this song with Kate Bush.


Cristo Redentor, Rio de Janeiro, Brasil



Cristo Redentor, Rio de Janeiro, Brasil


Songs, some posts, videos, questions, some photos, general thoughts.

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