All posts by Karlo Berkovich

Former Associate Editor/Web Editor/Sports Editor at Waterloo Region Record with a keen interest in rock music, specifically classic rock with side dishes of blues, late 70s punk and new wave plus sprinklings of reggae, soul and funk. Karlo Berkovich is the host of So Old It's New.

So Old It’s New set list for Monday, June 17, 2024

My track-by-track tales follow the bare-bones list.

1. Queen, Mustapha
2. Queen, Let Me Entertain You
3. Trapeze, Black Cloud
4. AC/DC, Skies On Fire
5. 10cc, The Second Sitting For The Last Supper
6. Roxy Music, Mother Of Pearl
7. Nazareth, Donna – Get Off That Crack
8. The Rolling Stones, All The Rage (Goats Head Soup outtake issued on expanded album re-release in 2020)
9. Thin Lizzy, Suicide
10. Aerosmith, Get The Lead Out
11. Wolfmother, The Simple Life
12. Chuck Berry, Too Much Monkey Business (live, Toronto Rock ‘N’ Roll Revival 1969)
13. Jerry Lee Lewis, How’s My Ex Treating You (live)
14. Jeff Beck, Head For Backstage Pass
15. Steppenwolf, Tighten Up Your Wig
16. Bachman-Turner Overdrive, Flat Broke Love
17. McKenna Mendelson Mainline, Bad Women Are Killing Me (1968 alternate version to Bad Women, released on 1969’s Stink album)
18. Stevie Wonder, We Can Work It Out (Beatles cover)
19. Dr. John, I Walk On Guilded Splinters
20. Peter Tosh, Till Your Well Runs Dry

My track-by-track tales:

1. Queen, Mustapha . . . Opening cut on 1978’s Jazz album where, as soon as the needle hit the vinyl grooves many people, myself included, were “WTF”? Then you grow to really like it and are thankful you maybe got introduced to such music via this Arabic rocker, lyrics in English and Arabic, that, arguably, only Freddie Mercury among rock singers could likely pull off. It’s one that reflected his background, born in Zanzibar to Parsi-Indian parents. Today, nobody would bat an eye at this progressive/art/hard rocker and it would also go under the ‘world music’ file. Terrific stuff.

2. Queen, Let Me Entertain You . . . And now for some let’s say more typical Queen from that same Jazz album, and yes, they could entertain. I saw the Jazz tour at Toronto’s Maple Leaf Gardens, a smoking hot show, one might have termed it, er, Killer Queen, to quote the title of one of their songs, which they did play that night I saw them, and on the tour. The tour was documented on the 1979 release Live Killers, recorded on the European leg of the journey.

3. Trapeze, Black Cloud . . . From the band that brought singer/bassist Glenn Hughes, later of Deep Purple, to prominence. Solid hard rock from the terrific Medusa album, released in 1970 on The Moody Blues’ Threshold Records and produced by Moody Blues bassist John Lodge.

4. AC/DC, Skies On Fire . . . Latter-day typically dependable AC/DC, from 2008’s Black Ice album and when I say latter day, geez, that’s already 16 years ago. Anyway. When I say ‘typically dependable” and I’ve said it in different ways before, but AC/DC’s magic is that they’ve done essentially the same thing for many decades now yet there’s enough little twists and turns throughout the repertoire that it never gets old. If you actually listen. To me, at least, or those who like the band but I can appreciate those who think it’s just the same old stuff. To repeat (pun intended) the band’s in on the joke, to quote guitarist Angus Young from some years ago: โ€œI’m sick to death of people saying we’ve made 11 albums that sound exactly the same. In fact, we’ve made 12 albums that sound exactly the same.โ€ He later, when teased on a UK TV show that the band had made the same album “14 times over”, updated it to: “No, we haven’t – we’ve made it 15 times over.” As of their most recent album, 2020’s Power Up, they’re now at 18 times over. ๐Ÿ™‚ And for me, at least, difficult to believe that’s it’s already been four years since their last release of original, new material. At some point, inevitably, due to age it will stop but I look forward to whatever they might be doing next.

5. 10cc, The Second Sitting For The Last Supper . . . From 1974’s The Original Soundtrack album which, as far as I know and have researched, isn’t the soundtrack to anything but the album itself, so presumably an attempt at being clever in terms of title. It’s the album that gave us 10cc’s biggest hit, I’m Not In Love but this largely soft rock or progressive pop band could also rock, as the galloping guitar riffing on this one suggests. The brief opening salvo and then the occasional returns to it during the four-minutes plus track could, and I know it sounds crazy maybe but, almost be Iron Maiden, and those boys, who formed their band in 1975, who knows, might have been listening.

6. Roxy Music, Mother Of Pearl . . . Early, more progressive Roxy although some journalism critics were already suggesting they were going more mainstream but I don’t see it on this track, biting guitar and “treatments’ as per the album liner notes, from Phil Manzanera and Bryan Ferry’s distinctive vocals expressing the lyrics about a love story, of sorts, on this one from 1973’s Stranded album. Like most early Roxy albums, it features a woman in a state of undress on the cover, in this case Playboy model Marilyn Cole, who was a Playmate of the Month in 1972 and became Playmate of the Year for 1973, which is how she got noticed by Ferry. Now in her 70s, according to her Wikipedia entry she now works as a journalist covering, among other things, professional boxing. Not to go on about her, I really know nothing about her but in researching for my track tales, I found her story as interesting perhaps as the album but everyone has a perhaps compelling story of some sort. Here are her thoughts, apparently expressed in a 2007 interview, on appearing on the album cover.

“It was at a tiny studio, somewhere off the Edgware Road in London. I’d never even heard of Roxy Music. I very soon understood that I was in safe hands, among some very talented people. There was a red dress hanging up, and I thought, ‘Ooh, good, I’m going to get to wear a really nice dress’… whereupon, as I’m having my make-up done, Antony (photographer Price) comes in and starts ripping the dress โ€“ a hole there, a slash there. I was thinking, ‘Oh no.’ They stuck me on this big log and explained I was supposed to be stranded in a jungle, and then they started spraying me; they sprayed my hair gold, and there was a whole mist coming over me and the dress was getting wet in all the right places.”

Oh, another thing. For the second through fifth Roxy albums – For Your Pleasure, Stranded, Country Life and Siren – each one announced, somewhere on the cover or in the liner notes, that it was “the (second, third, fourth, fifth) Roxy Music album”. Just in case, one supposes, people got distracted by the album covers and couldn’t keep track. All this said, I do really like Roxy Music’s music. It certainly wasn’t a case for me of having near-explicit album covers to draw you in only to find there’s little of value in the package. The contents are great, as is Bryan Ferry’s solo stuff. Quality, experimental, often sensual and seductive, compelling stuff for the most part.

7. Nazareth, Donna – Get Off That Crack . . . Some nice riffing on this one from guitarist Manny Charlton in the founding Nazareth member’s final foray with the band, 1989’s Snakes ‘N’ Ladders. He left for other projects in 1990 and died in 2022 at age 80. It was a maybe weird period for Nazareth, far removed from their early 1970s hit-making heyday and, apart from lots of their music that I like, leaves me with a soft spot for this band of survivors through thick and commercial thins over the years. At this point, late 1980s, Nazareth’s commercial fortunes were in such a poor state that the album was only at first released in Europe and Japan and not even on their home turf of Scotland/the UK. More recent Nazareth – yes they’re still around, having released two albums since the death of original singer Dan McCafferty in 2022, Carl Sentance now on lead vocals with McCafferty’s blessing once he retired from the band in 2013 due to health issues – has returned to more consistent, straight ahead hard rock even when McCafferty was still around. But during the 1980s they seemed on a flavor of the moment kick, trying every which genre, with varying degrees of success while losing their way at times, as detailed in the re-release liner notes to Snakes ‘N’ Ladders. But, not on this one, “a sordid tale of a drug casualty’ as described in those liner notes. A good, rocking tune.

8. The Rolling Stones, All The Rage (Goats Head Soup outtake issued on expanded album re-release in 2020) . . . Chugging rocker from the sessions that produced the Stones’ 1973 studio album, featuring the distinctive riffing/rhythm/lead guitar interplay between Keith Richards and Mick Taylor that was a feature of the Stones’ sound of the time.

9. Thin Lizzy, Suicide . . . A multi-faceted tune from 1975’s Fighting album featuring galloping guitar (and again I’ll mention, as some on YouTube have, that the formative members of Iron Maiden must have been listening), a pounding, compelling beat and, well, what more do you want from a rock and roll song?

10. Aerosmith, Get The Lead Out . . . I played Aerosmith (The Farm, from 1997) last week and that tune harkened back to 1970s Aerosmith which prompted me to start playing Live Bootleg in the car back and forth to the gym so I figured I’d actually go back to the 1970s on the show for this tune from perhaps my favorite Aero album, Rocks, from 1976. Lots of people, due to the Steven Tyler-Joe Perry singer/guitarist duo as doubles for Mick Jagger/Keith Richards often compare Aerosmith to the Stones and it’s an obvious comparison but in many ways, as some have pointed out, Aerosmith’s music actually might owe more of a debt to Led Zeppelin so one wonders if this tune was actually…Get The Led Out? Great track, regardless.

11. Wolfmother, The Simple Life . . . Speaking of Led Zeppelin, I remember when the first Wolfmother album, still their most successful commercially and in terms of airplay, came out in 2005 and I embraced it, my then teenaged older son saying, “Dad, it’s Zep”, suggesting how derivative it was to which I replied something on the order of, “yeah, so?” And pointed out how derivative Oasis, one of his favorite bands and I like them a lot too, is.

Anyway, Wolfmother – essentially leader Andrew Stockdale and whoever’s playing in the band with him at a given time – continues on its happily riff rock way, having released a new studio album as recently as 2021. They’ve become ‘classic rock’ in that sense that while the market embraces new sounds and genres, which is all well, good and as it should be, Wolfmother continues to farm its own furrow and some of us still follow them, as on this typically fine riff rocker from the band’s 2016 album Victorious.

12. Chuck Berry, Too Much Monkey Business (live, Toronto Rock ‘N’ Roll Revival 1969) . . . Well-known Berry tune I was actually surprised to find didn’t chart on the main music charts although it got to No. 4 on the R & B charts after release in 1956. So, it fits as a deep cut which is the essence of my show although I’ve always mentioned the caveat of me playing occasional singles, usually by relatively obscure bands, including those that didn’t necessarily chart. In any event, this version of Too Much Monkey Business comes from the 1969 festival well known for the appearance of John Lennon but the entirety of Berry’s performance was released on CD in 2020 although videos of the various performances by Berry and others like Jerry Lee Lewis and Little Richard have long been available on YouTube.

13. Jerry Lee Lewis, How’s My Ex Treating You (live) . . . Speaking of Jerry Lee, here he is, but not in Toronto in 1969 but earlier, in 1966 in Fort Worth, Texas on a live album called By Request: More Of The Greatest Live Show On Earth, ‘slowin’ it down’ as he says in his intro to the countryish tune. If you’re interested in Jerry Lee and/or the album, it’s available on a fantastic 4-pack of albums available online from the UK label BGO (Beat Goes On) Records that features: The Golden Hits Of Jerry Lee Lewis/Live At The Star-Club Hamburg/The Greatest Live Show On Earth/By Request: More Of The Greatest Live Show On Earth. I’ve played material from the outstanding and raucous Hamburg show before, will again, it’s amazing and arguably one of the best (if perhaps relatively unknown) live albums out there, by anyone.

14. Jeff Beck, Head For Backstage Pass . . . Funky excursion from 1976’s Wired album.

15. Steppenwolf, Tighten Up Your Wig . . . Boogie blues rock tune from The Second, the appropriately-titled second ‘Wolf album in 1968. It’s indebted to Junior Wells’ Messin’ With The Kid which Steppenwolf acknowledges in the lyrics:

“Just before we go, I’d like to mention Junior Wells
We stole his thing from him, and he from someone else
Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, he plays the blues like few before
May he play forevermore.”

16. Bachman-Turner Overdrive, Flat Broke Love . . . A personal favorite BTO deep cut, hypnotic, nice bass line by, on this tune, lead singer C.F. (Fred) Turner, the best BTO singer in my view.

17. McKenna Mendelson Mainline, Bad Women Are Killing Me (1968 alternate version to Bad Women, released on 1969’s Stink album) . . . It seems as if anyone into music in Canada knows MMM’s Stink album. Great blues/blues rock. But there was something before, 1968 tapes that didn’t get released (on CD not until 1996 which I somehow found in a used store at some point and glad for it) for a long time after the initial vinyl release. It was released as an album called McKenna Mendelson Blues and this track is among the songs, an alternate, with dirtier, fuzzier guitar than Bad Women from Stink. Both versions are great, but I’ve played the Stink version before so thought I’d go with the “Blues’ album version this time.

18. Stevie Wonder, We Can Work It Out (Beatles cover) . . . From 1970’s Signed, Sealed & Delivered album which yielded the title cut hit but this funky treatment of The Beatles’ tune did well on the charts, too, and rightly so.

19. Dr. John, I Walk On Guilded Splinters . . . Seven plus minutes of intoxicating voodoo from the doctor.

20. Peter Tosh, Till Your Well Runs Dry . . . Someone on YouTube suggested this is the first country/reggae tune and I’d never thought of it that way until I read that comment, but there’s merit in that assessment. It’s from Tosh’s 1976 debut solo album, Legalize It, after he left Bob Marley’s Wailers.

So Old It’s New set list for Saturday, June 15, 2024 – on air 8-10 am ET

Another live album replay set list for a Saturday morning, after last week’s Live Bullet (Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band) and Get Yer Ya Ya’s Out! (The Rolling Stones). This week I’m featuring Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Live at Knebworth ’76 and the lean, mean, original 6-song version of The Who’s acclaimed Live At Leeds, which has since seen a few expanded re-releases. The Skynyrd show, re-released as a CD-DVD package in 2021, is from the band’s renowned performance opening for the Stones at the English festival that also that year included 10cc, Hot Tuna, Todd Rundgren and short-lived American roots rock group The Don Harrison Band, which counted among its members former Creedence Clearwater Revival bassist Stu Cook and drummer Doug Clifford.

Lynyrd Skynyrd Live at Knebworth ’76

1. Workin’ For MCA
2. I Ain’t The One
3. Saturday Night Special
4. Searching
5. Whiskey Rock-A-Roller
6. Travelin’ Man
7. Gimme Three Steps
8. Call Me The Breeze
9. T For Texas
10. Sweet Home Alabama
11. Free Bird

The Who Live At Leeds

1. Young Man Blues
2. Substitute
3. Summertime Blues
4. Shakin’ All Over
5. My Generation
6. Magic Bus

So Old It’s New set list for Monday, June 10, 2024

My track-by-track tales follow the bare-bones list.

1. Joe Walsh, I Can Play That Rock & Roll
2. Black Sabbath, Heaven And Hell
3. Elvis Costello and The Attractions, Goon Squad
4. Tracy Chapman, The Rape Of The World
5. Atlanta Rhythm Section, Champagne Jam
6. Gov’t Mule, Monkey Man (Rolling Stones cover)
7. The Rolling Stones, Out Of Time
8. Aerosmith, The Farm
9. John Mellencamp, You’ve Got To Stand For Somethin’
10. Led Zeppelin, The Battle Of Evermore
11. Neil Young, Running Dry (Requiem For The Rockets)
12. Paul McCartney, Only Mama Knows
13. Free, Wild Indian Woman
14. The Black Crowes, Goodbye Daughters Of The Revolution
15. Bachman & Turner, Can’t Go Back To Memphis
16. Bruce Cockburn, Hoop Dancer
17. Bobbie Gentry, Ace Insurance Man
18. Bob Dylan, Isis
19. Ian Hunter, Old Records Never Die

My track-by-track tales:

1. Joe Walsh, I Can Play That Rock & Roll . . . Listen to the opening riff before the vocals kick in – and the entire song in fact – and you’d think it was a Rolling Stones track. And, according to Walsh, it is, or at least is a tribute to the Stones. The song was the lead cut on Walsh’s typically humorously-titled 1983 album You Bought It – You Name It but Walsh describes the genesis of the track in the liner notes to his Look What I Did! The Joe Walsh Anthology compilation, a 2-CD set released in 1995. Although Waddy Wachtel is not credited as a co-writer on the 1983 album, Walsh does name Wachtel, a pal of Keith Richards who later played in Richard’s solo band The X-Pensive Winos, as helping inspire the song.
“Written with Waddy Wachtel. Waddy showed me 5-string tuning that Keith Richards uses. We were trying to be The Rolling Stones. This is a tribute to them.” It’s a good one.

2. Black Sabbath, Heaven And Hell . . . Epic title cut to Sabbath’s 1980 album, the first with former Rainbow singer Ronnie James Dio taking over from Ozzy Osbourne. It’s one of those albums where a band loses its well-known and usually original lead singer yet manages to continue on to, sometimes, even more success, depending upon how one might define success whether it be commercial sales or critically successful artistic accomplishment. The other examples that immediately come to mind for me are AC/DC, which brought in Brian Johnson after the death of Bon Scott and released the monumental Back In Black, and the so-called Van Hagar version of Van Halen, when Sammy Hagar replaced David Lee Roth and the band, albeit with a different sound and lyrical approach, actually went on to bigger commercial success even though the Van Hagar band divided some of the original fan base. In any event, Heaven And Hell, the album and the song, rejuvenated Black Sabbath, which had been in decline for various reasons including substance abuse, over the course of the two previous albums with Ozzy, Never Say Die! and Technical Ecstasy which have their moments but were relative disappointments both commercially and critically.

3. Elvis Costello and The Attractions, Goon Squad . . . One of those songs with a driving beat one gets into for the music and then over time the lyrics start embedding themselves. Essentially a diatribe against attempts at groupthink control, at least that’s how I interpret it, released on 1979’s Armed Forces album.

4. Tracy Chapman, The Rape Of The World . . . An environmental activisim song by Chapman from her 1995 album New Beginning. She’s of course known for her breakthrough 1988 hit Fast Car and, later, Give Me One Reason from the New Beginning album but, now essentially retired from the industry, she’s not released any new material since 2008, alas. She has said she withdrew from performing because she was uncomfortable with being in the public eye which perhaps leaves the door open to her releasing new studio material at some point. Her most recent release was a hits compilation, issued in 2015.

5. Atlanta Rhythm Section, Champagne Jam . . . Title cut from the band’s 1978 album. The hit was Imaginary Lover but the band had come to prominence two years before with the hit single So Into You. So, they earned an opening slot – and they were excellent – on The Rolling Stones 1978 summer tour of the United States, my first Stones’ show, July 4, 1978 at what was then called Rich Stadium, where the NFL’s Bills play. Also on the bill were April Wine, whose set we missed because our tour bus from Toronto got stuck in ridiculous traffic entering the stadium, and pre-Steve Perry on lead vocals Journey.

6. Gov’t Mule, Monkey Man (Rolling Stones cover) . . . The Mule, led by guitarist/singer/songwriter Warren Haynes, who first attained prominence in Dickey Betts’ solo band then joined The Allman Brothers Band at the behest of Betts, is an amazing band in its own right playing its own material. But The Mule is also a fantastic covers band and has released many covers of classic rock tunes, live and studio versions, including material by Steppenwolf, Humble Pie, Deep Purple and many others. The Mule has also released full compilations of covers of bands they admire, like Pink Floyd (Dark Side Of The Mule) and the Stones, Stoned Side Of The Mule, from which I drew this cover originally on the Stones’ Let It Bleed album.

7. The Rolling Stones, Out Of Time . . . And here are the Stones, from the UK version of the Aftermath album, released in 1966 during a time when UK and USA track listings were somewhat different with bands like the Stones, Beatles and Kinks. I first heard this track on the 1967 North America-only compilation Flowers which my older sister owned and which collected singles and deeper cuts from the Stones’ previous UK releases that hadn’t made the US issues of their albums. The Flowers’ version was shortened by almost two minutes from the original 5-minute plus Aftermath release, which I’m playing tonight. The Stones played the song in the opening show of their current American tour, apparently the first time they’d ever played it live in the USA.

8. Aerosmith, The Farm . . . From 1997’s Nine Lives album, a hard rocking dronish tune harkening somewhat back to Aerosmith’s raunch and roll 1970s output.

9. John Mellencamp, You’ve Got To Stand For Somethin’ . . . Or you’ll fall for anything, as the lyrics state. From Mellencamp’s 1985 album Scarecrow.

10. Led Zeppelin, The Battle Of Evermore . . . The late great Sandy Denny, one of my favorites singers, of Fairport Convention fame, helps out Robert Plant on this one from the fourth Zep album; the one with Stairway To Heaven on it.

11. Neil Young, Running Dry (Requiem For The Rockets) . . . From Young’s second solo album, 1969’s Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere, backed by Crazy Horse. I leave it to Wikipedia entry for background:

“Running Dry (Requiem for the Rockets)” is dedicated to The Rockets, the six-piece band that evolved into Young’s collaborators Crazy Horse. Rocket violinist Bobby Notkoff plays on the track. Young expresses his feelings about breaking up The Rockets in the 1997 film Year of the Horse: “I asked those three guys to play with me as Crazy Horse. And I thought the Rockets could go on, too. But the truth is, I probably did steal them away from the other band, which was a good band. But only because what we did, we went somewhere. What they were doing, it didn’t go anywhere at that time, so this thing moved, this thing took off, and the other thing didn’t. But the other thing could have gone on, I guess. That’s the hardest part, is the guilt of the trail of destruction that I’ve left behind me.”

12. Paul McCartney, Only Mama Knows . . . Starts slow, then rocks. One of those great tracks by an amazing artist who most people always go back to for the obviously worthy tried and true like McCartney’s hits with The Beatles and Wings but if you keep following the guy and dig deeper, you get gems like this one from 2007’s Memory Almost Full album. McCartney re-released it on the 2016 compilation Pure McCartney, which came in 2- and 4-CD versions.

13. Free, Wild Indian Woman . . . Been a while since I’ve played Free. This one’s from the 1969 debut, Tons Of Sobs. All of the guys in the band including singer Paul Rodgers who of course later achieved great fame in Bad Company, were still teenagers at the time yet they sound like a veteran blues rock band.

14. The Black Crowes, Goodbye Daughters Of The Revolution . . . First single released from the 2008 album Warpaint by which time the Crowes had evolved from the hitmakers of their 1990 debut Shake Your Moneymaker to a jam type band, still quite quality material but not the type of stuff that sells or makes the charts. So, the single bombed and so, relatively speaking, did the album but the band persevered and, through various breakups is back together and continues to release music, the most recent of which is the fine 2024 album Happiness Bastards.

15. Bachman & Turner, Can’t Go Back To Memphis . . . Funky hard rocker from Randy Bachman and C.F. (Fred) Turner’s 2010 album which essentially, and it’s a good tune, sounds like an update on Bachman-Turner Overdrive’s 1970s glories. They had to be billed as Bachman & Turner due to various complicated lawsuits over band naming rights to do with who owns what re various former members of BTO, similar to the seemingly constant battles Randy Bachman and Burton Cummings have been fighting with former colleagues in The Guess Who.

16. Bruce Cockburn, Hoop Dancer . . . Hypnotic sort of spoken word intoxicating tune from Cockburn’s 1983 album The Trouble With Normal. This is why you listen to full albums. There’s the hits, like the title cut. Then there’s stuff like this amazing track.

17. Bobbie Gentry, Ace Insurance Man . . . She’s best known for her massive 1967 hit Ode To Billie Joe (sometimes writtten as Billy Joe) but her importance to music goes beyond that. She was one of the first female artists to write, produce and manage the direction of her own music and career and for that, subsequent artists owe a debt. And then, as of 1982, she elected to retire, quit, disappear, she lives in gated communities in either Memphis, Tennesse or Los Angeles, nobody’s quite sure. Good for her.

18. Bob Dylan, Isis . . . On one of his live albums, Dylan introduces this track from the 1975 studio album Desire with ‘this is a song about marriage’.

“Isis, oh, Isis, you mystical child
What drives me to you is what drives me insane . . . ”

19. Ian Hunter, Old Records Never Die . . . It’s never been absolutely confirmed but Hunter’s Short Back n’ Sides album came out in 1981 at a time when lots of people were doing tributes to John Lennon, who had been slain in December 1980. And the opening lyric:

“Sometimes you realize that there is an end to life
Yesterday I heard them say
A hero’s blown away.”

Would seem to indicate as much. In any event, beautiful, poignant song the spirit of which – old records never die – also serves my show.

So Old It’s New set list for Saturday, June 8, 2024 – on air 8-10 am ET

A live album replay set list featuring two of my favorite live albums, both considered among the best alltime live sets – Bob Seger’s Live Bullet and Get Yer Ya-Ya’s Out! by The Rolling Stones.

Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band – Live Bullet

1. Nutbush City Limits
2. Travelin’ Man
3. Beautiful Loser
4. Jody Girl
5. I’ve Been Working
6. Turn The Page
7. U.M.C.
8. Bo Diddley
9. Ramblin’ Gamblin’ Man
10. Heavy Music
11. Katmandu
12. Lookin’ Back
13. Get Out Of Denver
14. Let It Rock

The Rolling Stones – Get Yer Ya-Ya’s Out!

1. Jumpin’ Jack Flash
2. Carol
3. Stray Cat Blues
4. Love In Vain
5. Midnight Rambler
6. Sympathy For The Devil
7. Live With Me
8. Little Queenie
9. Honky Tonk Women
10. Street Fighting Man

So Old It’s New set list for Monday, June 3, 2024

An obscurities set list drawn from a series of three, 3-CD box set compilations released between 2016 and 2021 under the title I’m A Freak Baby that take the listener, according to the series subtitle, on ‘a journey through the British heavy psych and hard rock underground scene’ covering the years 1968-1973. My track-by-track tales follow the bare-bones list.

1. Wicked Lady, I’m A Freak
2. Creepy John Thomas, This Is My Body
3. Iron Claw, Clawstrophobia
4. Distant Jim, Cosmarama
5. Eugene Carnan, Confusion
6. The Velvet Frogs, Jehovah
7. The Human Beast, Brush With The Midnight Butterfly
8. Crushed Butler, My Son’s Alive
9. Tear Gas, I’m Glad
10. Second Hand, Rhubarb!
11. Third World War, Hammersmith Guerrilla
12. Andromeda, Let’s All Watch The Sky Fall Down
13. Monument, First Taste Of Love
14. The Mooche, Hot Smoke And Sassafras
15. Sam Apple Pie, Winter Of My Love
16. Bram Stoker, Born To Be Free
17. The Gun, Race With The Devil
18. Hard Stuff, No Witch At All
19. Leaf Hound, Stagnant Pool
20. Curtis Knight Zeus, Mysterious Lady
21. Fuzzy Duck, Afternoon Out
22. Geordie, Keep On Rockin’

My track-by-track tales:

1. Wicked Lady, I’m A Freak . . . Motorhead-like propulsive track – and, like Motorhead, Wicked Lady, named after the cocktail, was a trio. The song features the lyric “I’m a freak baby on a losing streak” that also serves as the title track for the “I’m A Freak Baby” compilation series from which I’m drawing tonight’s set. This track is from the debut I’m A Freak Baby compilation, released in 2016. Wicked Lady existed from its formation in 1968 to 1972, played gigs throughout England but, according to the compilation’s liner notes, never released a formal album as the band couldn’t afford studio time. So, they taped a handful of rehearsal performances, like this one, which much later surfaced on releases such as 1994’s Psychotic Overkill . . . and then nicely packaged on the I’m A Freak Baby comp.

2. Creepy John Thomas, This Is My Body . . . Mid-tempo sort of psychedelic rocker, nice guitar work on this one from I’m A Freak Baby 3. The band was formed by a gent named John Thomas, who added the “Creepy’ to try to make his group stand out. I think his story alone – like that of many of these obscure artists – stands out, as told in the compilation’s typically detailed liner notes. Thomas hailed from Australia, then moved to Germany where he worked as a DJ, sold dope, apparently to touring acts like The Jefferson Airplane and also formed a pop group, concurrent with Creepy John Thomas, called Rust. Creepy John Thomas, the band, played the harder stuff, described in the compilation liner notes as “frazzled Lemmy-meets-(Captain) Beefheart blues rock’ although I hear more Beefheart than Motorhead. This Is My Body is from the 1971 album Brother Bat Bone, which was supposed to be called Brother Bad Bone but the producer, Conny Plank (and what a name that is) misunderstood Thomas’s accent regarding the title of the album during a transatlantic phone call, so Brother Bat Bone it became. There’s another fun story in that vein, re what a band or album was supposed to be called as opposed to what it wound up being called, in a few tracks. It concerns an Apollo astronaut. The well-travelled John Thomas, meantime, left the UK for a brief time in San Francisco, then returned to Great Britain to join the still relatively obscure but more well-known Edgar Broughton Band. The Broughton Band has some tracks spread over the various I’m A Freak Baby comps, but I’m not playing one today. Perhaps next time.

3. Iron Claw, Clawstrophobia . . . From compilation 2 in the Freak series. Black Sabbath-like stuff from 1970, also reminds me of much later California stoner rock band Fu Manchu who of course are derivative ‘sons’ of Sabbath. Iron Claw, who took their name from the last two words of the opening line – Cat’s foot iron claw – of King Crimson’s song 21st Century Schizoid Man – actually incorporated Sabbath’s entire first album into their early live gigs.

4. Distant Jim, Cosmarama . . . Psychedelic stuff from 1971. According to the third Freak compilation liner notes, band member Craig Austin likely made more money as, apparently, the first person to design flared pants with no pockets. I don’t recall having a pair of those but for we Canadians, remember those I think it was GWG brand flared jeans with the Canadian flag in the flares? I digress . . .

5. Eugene Carnan, Confusion . . . Here, in this boogie rocker from 1972, is the NASA astronaut I mentioned a few songs ago. Sort of. This trio mined the songs of Sabbath, Rory Gallagher’s early band Taste and Wishbone Ash as cover material but also wrote their own stuff, like Confusion. It’s an appropriate title, turns out, because the band was supposed to be called Eugene Cernan in honor of the Apollo 17 astronaut who was the last man, so far, to walk on the moon, in December, 1972, unless you’re one of those conspiracy theorists who believe humankind never actually went there.

Anyway, similar to Creepy John Thomas and that band’s album name that was supposed to be Brother Bad Bone but turned out as Brother Bat Bone due to a misunderstood phone call, Eugene Carnan was supposed to honor the astronaut Eugene Cernan but the printer screwed up the band’s business cards and like many of these obscure artists, the group didn’t have the money to pay for a reprint so they just went with “Eugene Carnan”.

6. The Velvet Frogs, Jehovah . . . Velvet is in the band name which suggests a Velvet Underground influence which is what the liner notes in the I’m A Freak Baby first compilation notes suggest. I respect that opinion and it’s a dark tune, also Doors-ish, to me. But I also hear Iron Maiden of the Blaze Bailey on lead vocals era, on epic-length Maiden songs like Sign Of The Cross. And isn’t it interesting, albeit perhaps natural, perhaps, that with these obscure bands we tend to analyze them in terms of bands we think they might sound like or were influenced by, rather than just, actually, themselves?

7. The Human Beast, Brush With The Midnight Butterfly…Dark, heavy, somewhat spooky guitar-drenched tune from 1970.

8. Crushed Butler, My Son’s Alive . . . Yet another Black Sabbath-influenced rocker by a band that the Freak liner notes suggest has been considered the first British punk band. Not sure about that; it’s a so-called classic rock sound to me, although the driving nature of it is punky. In any event, a great tune.

9. Tear Gas, I’m Glad . . . Wicked guitar from a band some of whose members, according to the Freak 3 liner notes, later became members of The Sensational Alex Harvey Band.

10. Second Hand, Rhubarb! . . . It’s been termed a Jimi Hendrix type tune … and I agree. But as the band explains in the I’m A Freak first compilation liner notes, they were apparently hung out to dry by the record company in terms of lack of promotion so the album, Reality, with the cool cover of an X-ray of a hand, and the song faded without a trace.

11. Third World War, Hammersmith Guerrilla . . . Interesting track from 1972. It’s epic, eight minutes and change, good straight ahead continually cascading bluesy rock to my ears, some nice prog-ish keyboard breaks…but the UK media didn’t like it or the band . . . one reviewer, according to the Freak 3 liner notes, wrote “they are the worst band I have ever heard perform. I felt like soaking myself in vodka, setting myself alight and flinging myself from a balcony in protest.” Well, that’s a guy I’d like to get to know but as for his musical opinon, I beg to differ. As did future Clash man Joe Strummer and The Who’s Pete Townshend, who pulled some strings and got Third World War’s album released on The Who’s Track Records. So there, music critics.

12. Andromeda, Let’s All Watch The Sky Fall Down . . . Driving prog metallic stuff that never quite made a dent on charts. One of the band members, guitarist John Cann, later going by the stage name John Du Cann, eventually joined Atomic Rooster.

13. Monument, First Taste Of Love . . . Organ-heavy driving rocker featuring a tasty guitar solo from a gent named John Truba, from 1971.

14. The Mooche, Hot Smoke And Sassafras . . . Not confirmed but apparently and almost certainly named for the Duke Ellington song The Mooche, the band does a heavier take on this fine tune and top 20 hit originally done in 1969 by Texas band Bubble Puppy.

15. Sam Apple Pie, Winter Of My Love . . . Bluesy, psychedelic 7-minute track from 1969, from a band who had associations with Frank Zappa and Atomic Rooster.

16. Bram Stoker, Born To Be Free . . . Driving rocker from a band that never quite made it but did open for The Who, also recorded by invitation at Who singer Roger Daltrey’s home studio and worked with members of the Deep Purple entourage. Interesting how some bands ‘make it’ and some don’t but even those that don’t sometimes hang around with those that do.

17. The Gun, Race With The Devil . . . The band was also known as just ‘Gun’. A White Room (by Cream) related intro evolves into a great galloping tune from 1968 that unlike most songs on the Freak compilations actually charted; it made the top 10 in the UK and was later recorded by Judas Priest during sessions for the Stained Class album and was later added to expanded releases of Priest’s 1977 album Sin After Sin.

18. Hard Stuff, No Witch At All . . . Straight ahead rocker from 1972 from a band whose various members had been in groups like Deep Purple family tree band Episode Six, Quatermass and, later, Roxy Music.
19. Leaf Hound, Stagnant Pool . . . Led Zeppelin derivatives for sure and critics derided them as such but it makes me laugh whenever people talk about people ripping off Led Zeppelin, considering the ripping off Zep did of blues artists. I like Zep, the music is irresistible I just am not a fan of their methods.

20. Curtis Knight Zeus, Mysterious Lady . . . These Freak compilations are to do with British rock but Curtis Knight, like the Aussie John Thomas I played earlier in the set, was a relocated American. His claim to fame perhaps is the fact Jimi Hendrix had played in Knight’s band Curtis Knight and The Squires. This bruising Hendrix-like track is from 1973.

21. Fuzzy Duck, Afternoon Out . . . Bluesy rock from a band whose members included former members of Tucky Buzzard, who have maintained a musical relationship with former Rolling Stones bassist Bill Wyman since the days he produced some Tucky Buzzard albums during the 1970s.

22. Geordie, Keep On Rockin’ . . . From the first album, 1973’s Hope You Like It (and I do) released by Geordie, whose first lead vocalist was future AC/DC singer Brian Johnson.

So Old It’s New set list for Saturday, June 1, 2024

A mostly female singer set list.

1. Koko Taylor, I’m A Woman (adaptation of Bo Diddley/Muddy Waters’ I’m A Man/Mannish Boy)
2. Emmylou Harris, Here I Am
3. Bonnie Raitt, Gnawin’ On It
4. Pat Benatar, Rated X
5. Linda Ronstadt, The Dark End Of The Street
6. Yvonne Elliman (as Mary Magdalene) with Murray Head (Judas) and Ian Gillan (Jesus) from Jesus Christ Superstar original 1970 soundtrack, Everything’s Alright
7. Carla Olson & Mick Taylor, Sway (Rolling Stones cover)
8. Ike & Tina Turner, Funkier Than A Mosquita’s Tweeter
9. Pretenders, Mystery Achievement
10. Joni Mitchell, This Flight Tonight (arguably relatively unheard from the Blue album, it was a hit by Nazareth, later tongue-in-cheek introduced in concert by Mitchell as ‘a Nazareth song’)
11. Heart, White Lightning and Wine
12. Fleetwood Mac, Storms (Stevie Nicks lead vocals)
13. Jefferson Airplane, Lather (Grace Slick lead vocals)
14. Marianne Faithfull, Working Class Hero (John Lennon cover)
15. Janis Joplin/Big Brother and The Holding Company, Roadblock
16. The Mamas & The Papas, The In Crowd (Cass Elliot lead vocals)
17. Eric Clapton with Marcy Levy co-lead vocals, The Core
18. Concrete Blonde, It’s A Man’s World (cover of James Brown’s It’s A Man’s Man’s Man’s World, Johnette Napolitano lead vocals)
19. Carole King with James Taylor, Will You Love Me Tomorrow/Some Kind Of Wonderful/Up On The Roof (live)
20. Willie Mae ‘Big Mama’ Thornton, Hound Dog
21. Melissa Etheridge, Refugee (Tom Petty cover)
22. Patti Smith, Soul Kitchen (The Doors cover)
23. Aretha Franklin, Bridge Over Troubled Water (Simon and Garfunkel cover)
24. Billie Holiday, Come Rain Or Come Shine
25. Blondie, Fade Away And Radiate

So Old It’s New set list for Monday, May 27, 2024

Track-by-track tales after the bare-bones list.

1. Fleetwood Mac, Coming Your Way
2. The Rolling Stones, Bye Bye Johnny (live, 1972)
3. Arthur Lee, One And One
4. James Cotton, Cotton Crop Blues
5. Howlin’ Wolf, Mr. Highway Man (Cadillac Daddy)
6. Roy Orbison, Go Go Go
7. Bruce Cockburn, Blind Willie
8. Blind Willie Johnson, Dark Was The Night
9. Dixie Dregs, Refried Funky Chicken
10. Elvin Bishop, Travelin’ Shoes
11. The Charlie Daniels Band, The South’s Gonna Do It Again
12. Wet Willie, Street Corner Serenade
13. Hank Williams, There’s A Tear In My Beer
14. Link Wray, Run Chicken Run
15. Roy Buchanan, Five String Blues
16. Stevie Ray Vaughan, Mary Had A Little Lamb (live)
17. Jerry Lee Lewis, End Of The Road
18. Grateful Dead, Dark Star (live, from Live/Dead)

My track-by-track tales:

1. Fleetwood Mac, Coming Your Way . . . Opening track to likely my favorite Fleetwood Mac album, the last of the Peter Green era, 1969’s Then Play On. I played Although The Sun Is Shining from the album a few weeks ago, it stuck in my head and this is another Danny Kirwan composition from that record. Amazing percussive power courtesy drummer Mick Fleetwood on this one, a gem from an album that, like so many of the albums I cherish, and I probably mention too much, stems from my older brother (RIP) by eight years bringing them home and opening my eyes and ears beyond, at the time, during the 1960s, The Beatles, Rolling Stones and Monkees. I suppose I’d have eventually embraced them but were it not for my brother it may have taken me longer to get into such bands and artists as the bluesy Fleetwood Mac, Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, Jethro Tull, Jimi Hendrix, Cream and Bob Dylan, to name just a few.

2. The Rolling Stones, Bye Bye Johnny (live, 1972) . . . From the Stones’ 1972 show at New York’s Madison Square Garden. Raucous cover of the Chuck Berry tune, including Mick Jagger’ shambolic intro of the band, who’s playing what, followed by Keith Richards ripping into the opening riff. I own this on at least two bootlegs from back in the days when you couldn’t get this stuff, officially, although most of the songs from that 1972 tour later came out on Ladies and Gentlemen, The Rolling Stones which was also the name of an earlier bootleg, although the Bye Bye Johnny on that album was from a Houston, Texas performance, not from New York. In any event, I was in my friendly neighborhood independent record store some time back and lo and behold there’s an album, The Rolling Stones Madison Square Garden 1972 from a heretofore unknown to me at least label London Calling released in 2023 so, natch, I buy it and here you go, the sort of unofficial official release.

3. Arthur Lee, One And One . . . Reggae tune from the Love (band) leader’s self-titled 1981 album.

4. James Cotton, Cotton Crop Blues . . . First of a few in the set from an amazing compilation I dug up in my collection, while doing some long overdue spring cleaning (from last spring, 2023, not 2024 lol). The 2-CD set is called Sam Phillips: The Man Who Invented Rock ‘N’ Roll and features sides recorded for Phillips’ Sun Records label. There’s also an accompanying book with the same title although when I purchased the CD some time back now, the book wasn’t part of the package – but the CD liner notes are quite extensive.

5. Howlin’ Wolf, Mr. Highway Man (Cadillac Daddy). . . Boogie tune featuring those unique Howlin’ Wolf guttural vocals propelled by the driving piano of a gent named L.C. Hubert, taken from the Sam Phillips tribute disc I mentioned with the previous track.

6. Roy Orbison, Go Go Go . . . Here’s another driving boogie rocker from that tribute to Phillips collection, featuring that remarkable voice of Roy Orbison.

7. Bruce Cockburn, Blind Willie . . . A tribute to Blind Willie Johnson, from Cockburn’s 2019 instrumental album Crowing Ignites.

8. Blind Willie Johnson, Dark Was The Night . . . Cold was the ground. Here’s the gospel blues legend himself, with those amazing ‘moaning’ vocals which might not directly express themselves with words but are nevertheless immensely compelling in their pure soulfulness. This is deep, emotional music recorded in 1927, nearly 100 years ago still to be cherished and appreciated for not only its quality but its influence on subsequent musical statements.

9. Dixie Dregs, Refried Funky Chicken . . . So I’m plowing through my CD collection and up comes a ‘country gold’ compilation which leads not only to this funky instrumental track by the Steve Morse (later of Deep Purple fame) led Dregs but some more which follows in this set.

10. Elvin Bishop, Travelin’ Shoes . . . Extended country blues funky rocking piece by Bishop, who was once of course a core member of the Butterfield Blues Band. Helping him out on the 1974 Let It Flow album, from whence this track comes, were musical mates like Charlie Daniels, Toy Caldwell of The Marshall Tucker Band, Dickey Betts of The Allman Brothers Band and, maybe surprisingly, Sly Stone of Sly and The Family Stone.

11. The Charlie Daniels Band, The South’s Gonna Do It Again . . . Speaking of Charlie Daniels, he came up on that “country gold’ album I mentioned a couple songs ago. Daniels is best known, in a more widespread sense, for his 1979 crossover hit The Devil Went Down To Georgia but like all great artists, such hits can be an entry point for discovery and if you do go down that discovery road, you’ll usually be rewarded. Like with this tune, for me, anyway.

12. Wet Willie, Street Corner Serenade . . . Another from the ‘country gold’ compilation I’ve been digging into for this show. I’m loving the experience, such great music from a genre, country/country rock/pop I don’t always delve into but when I do, am glad I did.

13. Hank Williams, There’s A Tear In My Beer . . . All that said, re country music, Hank Williams is someone I’ll always delve into in my own private listening even if I don’t always or often play him on the show, limited time, space, that sort of thing. The guy was absolutely brilliant and that goes beyond his obvious hits. Here’s an example. Here’s to you, Hank. Salut!

14. Link Wray, Run Chicken Run . . . Crazy how this guitar master can actually make his instrument sound like a chicken. Wray sometimes sang but for the most part was an instrumental artist but, like Joe Satriani, is/was amazingly compelling.

15. Roy Buchanan, Five String Blues . . . Even before the vocals begin the tone is set by the soulful guitar playing. Buchanan was a sometimes troubled soul and it’s sad but in many ways that’s why his music was so great. A brilliant artist lost to us, the temptation is to say ‘gone too soon’, but you go when you go, by however means.

16. Stevie Ray Vaughan, Mary Had A Little Lamb (live) . . . High energy version taken from Martin Scorsese’s collection of blues compilations.

17. Jerry Lee Lewis, End Of The Road . . . Back to that Sam Phillips Sun compilation I drew from earlier in the set we go for this typical Jerry Lee tune, that driving beat, the piano, all of it. So good.

18. Grateful Dead, Dark Star (live, from Live/Dead) . . . As I’ve previously stated, this was originally a shade under three-minute studio track, first released as single that didn’t chart, in 1968. It was then expanded to 23 minutes live on this perhaps best-known version from the ‘how could they not name an album Live/Dead?’ displaying the psychedelia, jazz and jam elements that constituted the Dead’s improvisational approach.

So Old It’s New set for Saturday, May 25, 2024 – on air 8-10 am ET

An album replay show for my Saturday morning set: Led Zeppelin II and Exile On Main St. by The Rolling Stones.

Led Zeppelin II

1. Whole Lotta Love
2. What Is And What Should Never Be
3. The Lemon Song
4. Thank You
5. Heartbreaker
6. Living Loving Maid (She’s Just A Woman)
7. Ramble On
8. Moby Dick
9. Bring It On Home

The Rolling Stones – Exile On Main St.

1. Rocks Off
2. Rip This Joint
3. Shake Your Hips
4. Casino Boogie
5. Tumbling Dice
6. Sweet Virginia
7. Torn And Frayed
8. Sweet Black Angel
9. Loving Cup
10. Happy
11. Turd On The Run
12. Ventilator Blues
13. I Just Want To See His Face
14. Let It Loose
15. All Down The Line
16. Stop Breaking Down
17. Shine A Light
18. Soul Survivor

So Old It’s New set list for Monday, May 20, 2024

The set is tied to Victoria Day here in Canada and features songs which, either by title or lyrics, reference royalty. My track-by-track tales follow the bare-bones list.

1. The Kinks, Victoria
2. Aerosmith, Kings and Queens
3. The Rolling Stones, Jigsaw Puzzle (contains the lyric ‘and the queen is bravely shouting ‘what the hell is going on?’)
4. Wishbone Ash, The King Will Come
5. Elton John, The King Must Die
6. Bruce Springsteen, Mary Queen Of Arkansas
7. Queen, Great King Rat
8. David Bowie, Queen Bitch
9. Metallica, King Nothing
10. Van Morrison, Queen Of The Slipstream
11. Guns N’ Roses, Rocket Queen
12. Bob Dylan, Queen Jane Approximately
13. King Crimson, The Court Of The Crimson King
14. Chuck Berry, Little Queenie
15. Rainbow, The Temple Of The King
16. Steely Dan, King Of The World
17. Jefferson Airplane, Crown Of Creation
18. Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, King’s Highway (live)
19. Rush, A Farewell To Kings

My track-by-track tales:

1. The Kinks, Victoria . . . A tradition for me the last few years; last year I used a live version of the song for the show which happens to fall on Victoria Day weekend here in Canada. Victoria is a well-known Kinks song and was a single taken from 1969’s Arthur (or the Decline and Fall of the British Empire) album. And while this is a deep cuts show I’ve always employed the caveat that I’ll play occasional singles that didn’t do well on the charts, or that you may no longer hear very often. Victoria fits that bill. Except in the Toronto market where, according to Wikipedia, it reached No. 9 on one of the big charts of the day, CHUM radio’s top 30 list. It did less well in home country UK, hitting No. 33, and No. 62 in the US.

2. Aerosmith, Kings and Queens . . . The band obviously liked this one from the Draw The Line album, released in 1977, because they included it on their first greatest hits package even though it wasn’t really a hit, making No. 76 in Canada and No. 70 in the US. A good one, though, reminds me a bit in song structure of one of my favorite Aerosmith deep cuts or songs of theirs in general, Nobody’s Fault from 1976’s Rocks album, the one preceding Draw The Line. To quote lead singer Steven Tyler: “This one was just about how many people died from holy wars because of their beliefs or non-beliefs.”

3. The Rolling Stones, Jigsaw Puzzle . . . What’s this got to do with kings, queens or royalty? It’s the only song in my set that doesn’t, title wise, mention kings, queens, crowns or royalty BUT 1. it’s a Rolling Stones track and I always play the Stones, my favorite band and 2. the song contains one of my favorite lines in rock music – “and the queen is bravely shouting what the hell is going on?”

Oh there’s 20,000 grandmas
Wave their hankies in the air
All burning up their pensions
And shouting ‘it’s not fair!’

There’s a regiment of soldiers
Standing looking on
And the queen is bravely shouting
‘What the hell is going on?’

With a blood-curdling ‘tally-ho’
She charged into the ranks
And blessed all those grandmas
Who with their dying breaths screamed ‘Thanks!’

and hell, in Mick Jagger’s voice, is heard with heavy emphasis, as ‘what the HELL is going on?”
I can just envision a scene out of Monty Python.
So, that’s why it’s in the set. ๐Ÿ™‚ But one of my alltime favorite Stones’ tunes, regardless.

4. Wishbone Ash, The King Will Come . . . From the Brit hard rock progressive band’s most successful album, 1972’s Argus. Truly gratifiying is the fact that, since I play Wishbone Ash periodically, an old (and renewed) high school and college friend of mine, tells me he’s gotten into the band a bit via my playing them on occasion. It’s not why I’m here, necessarily; I just play what I like and what moves me and all great if others like it or are turned on to it, which has happened in this case and isn’t that the beauty of the shared experience of music?

5. Elton John, The King Must Die . . . From Elton’s second album, the self-titled 1970 release that followed 1969’s Empty Sky, which I need to get back to, amazing title cut on that one, among other songs. As for the 1970 album, it’s arguably the one that announced Elton John to the world via the hit single Your Song but the depth of the album is apparent in the deep cuts, like this one, as would be the case throughout his amazing run of great albums through the mid-1970s.

6. Bruce Springsteen, Mary Queen Of Arkansas . . . Acoustic Dylan-like ballad (and Springsteen at least early on was talked about as the next Dylan) from his debut album, Greetings From Asbury Park, N.J. Based on research, it was played by Springsteen in an audition to record company execs and earned him his first album contract with CBS Records in 1972. His first album was released in the first week of January, 1973.

7. Queen, Great King Rat . . . Hard rock, progressive, whatever you might want to call it, it’s all of it, suffice to say it’s early Queen and it’s great. From the first, self-titled album, 1973.

8. David Bowie, Queen Bitch . . . Very Lou Reed-ish or, more likely, Reed was very Bowie-ish and of course Bowie, along with his bandmate Mick Ronson, produced Reed’s breakthrough solo album Transformer in 1972. Queen Bitch is from Bowie’s 1971 album Hunky Dory.

9. Metallica, King Nothing . . . Depending which chart you consult, this was either a hit or it wasn’t. It made No. 90 on some charts, No. 6 on others, as the fourth single released from the 1996 album Load which represented a further departure from Metallica’s thrash metal past and caused untold angst within some of their fanbase because the band, egads, cut their hair and went even more mainstream than the previous album monster hit Metallica (aka the Black Album). All of their stuff is worthwhile listening, if you ask me.

10. Van Morrison, Queen Of The Slipstream . . . Beautiful romantic ballad from Van The Man’s 1987 album Poetic Champions Compose, released as a single but it didn’t chart, perhaps because the song really has no easy hooks to draw those who need that sort of stuff in, but whatever. It’s Van Morrison, it’s great.

11. Guns N’ Roses, Rocket Queen . . . Sexual intercourse moans incorporated into the song (really, listen) from, as the story goes, a groupie screwing lead singer Axl Rose, and maybe other members of the band, during the recording. In any event, a good rocker from the Apetite For Destruction album that broke the band big via such songs as Welcome To The Jungle, Sweet Child 0′ Mine and Paradise City.

12. Bob Dylan, Queen Jane Approximately . . . Folk/garage rock from Dylan’s 1965 album Highway 61 Revisited which not only included the title track, later covered by Johnny Winter, but arguably Dylan’s signature tune, Like A Rolling Stone.

13. King Crimson, The Court Of The Crimson King . . . King Crimson in all their prog-rock glory, title cut from the amazing debut album, 1969.

14. Chuck Berry, Little Queenie . . . The father of The Rolling Stones, arguably, certainly their early stuff and of course the Stones covered it on early studio albums and later on one of the best live albums ever, 1970’s document of the 1969 American tour, Get Yer Ya Ya’s Out! which is when I really got into the Stones doing it.

15. Rainbow, The Temple Of The King . . . Mid-tempo ballad, one of my favorite Rainbow tunes, Ronnie James Dio on lead vocals. It’s from the first Rainbow album, Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow, released in 1975 after the guitarist left Deep Purple, for the first time, later to reunite, break up, reunite, then break up with Purple for good. At least so far.

16. Steely Dan, King Of The World . . . Funky, galloping type tune from 1973’s Countdown To Ecstasy album.

17. Jefferson Airplane, Crown Of Creation . . Title cut from the Airplane’s 1968 album; typical of their psychedelic rock fare.

18. Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, King’s Highway (live) . . . Nice acoustic live version from the Playback box set released in 1995, taken from a Florida show in 1993. The original studio version appeared on the 1991 album Into The Great Wide Open.

19. Rush, A Farewell To Kings . . . As we say farewell, for this show, this week with the title cut to likely still my favorite Rush album and the one I most grew up with, 1977. Bought it for the single, Closer To The Heart, wound up listening to everything else on it, even more.

So Old It’s New set list for Saturday, May 18, 2024 – on air 8-10 am ET

An album replay show with a little twist. I’m using Mike Oldfield’s Tubular Bells (the 1973 original, he’s done several sequels) as wrapping paper around Pink Floyd’s 1971 album Meddle, with the full Shine On You Crazy Diamond suite from Floyd’s 1975 release Wish You Were Here tacked on to the end of Meddle to fill in the two-hour slot. Parts I-V of Shine On You Crazy Diamond opened Wish You Were Here, with Parts VI-IX closing that album.

1. Mike Oldfield, Tubular Bells, Part One

– Pink Floyd – Meddle album –

2. One Of These Days
3. A Pillow Of Winds
4. Fearless
5. San Tropez
6. Seamus
7. Echoes

– Pink Floyd from Wish You Were Here album –

8. Shine On You Crazy Diamond (Parts I-IX)
9. Mike Oldfield, Tubular Bells, Part Two

So Old It’s New set list for Monday, May 13, 2024

My track-by-track tales follow the bare-bones list.

1. Deep Purple, Flight Of The Rat
2. Golden Earring, Big Tree, Blue Sea
3. Love, She Comes In Colors
4. Robert Plant, Fat Lip
5. Midnight Oil, The Real Thing
6. Bruce Springsteen, Candy’s Room
7. Blue Oyster Cult, Then Came The Last Days Of May
8. Fleetwood Mac, Although The Sun Is Shining
9. The Rolling Stones, Whole Wide World
10. Little Feat, Day Or Night
11. Johnny Winter, It’s My Own Fault (live)
12. Moby Grape, Miller’s Blues (live)
13. Sass Jordan, Do What Ya Want
14. Lee Harvey Osmond, Cuckoo’s Nest
15. Otis Redding, Let Me Come On Home
16. Muddy Waters, Deep Down In Florida (live)
17. Joe Satriani, Clouds Race Across The Sky

My track-by-track tales:

1. Deep Purple, Flight Of The Rat . . . Just a shade under eight minutes of metal mayhem powered by Ritchie Blackmore’s driving guitar riff. Actually, I don’t consider Deep Purple to be metal, I just couldn’t resist the alliteration of ‘metal mayhem.” Purple has always been more just, for the most part, heavy or hard rock to me, if you can even generalize that much; they’ve got some bluesy ballads and other pretty diverse stuff if you dig deep enough. But, metal wasn’t really a widely-used musical term when the band began and I started listening, although they along with Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath were big influences on bands that did fully adopt the metal motif.

2. Golden Earring, Big Tree, Blue Sea . . . Many, me included, bought Golden Earring’s Moontan album to have their big hit Radar Love when it came out in 1973. That opened the door to discovering other excellent tunes, like this one, on a terrific hard rock/progressive album also featuring such tracks as Candy’s Going Bad, Are You Receiving Me and Vanilla Queen, all of which I’ve played over time.

3. Love, She Comes In Colors . . . A sound shift to softer psychedelia, from the influential Los Angeles band’s second album, Da Capo, released in 1966. It was a single but, like much of Love’s material, didn’t chart. It’s thought to have, and seems logical, inspired The Rolling Stones’ 1967 song She’s A Rainbow, which features ‘she comes in colours everywhere’ in its lyrics and the songs are stylistically similar. Love bandleader and writer Arthur Lee was apparently miffed as he thought the Stones stole the line.

4. Robert Plant, Fat Lip . . . Terrific mid-tempo tune from Pictures At Eleven, Plant’s first solo album, released in 1982, after Led Zeppelin called it quits upon the death of drummer John Bonham in 1980. Led Zeppelin did have a some reunions for live shows, in 1985 at Live Aid and in 2007 at a London concert which resulted in the live album and film Celebration Day.

5. Midnight Oil, The Real Thing . . . A cover of a big 1969 hit in Midnight Oil’s home turf of Australia by Russell Morris, a regular chart presence in that country in the late 1960s and early 1970s. The Oils recorded their own studio version and released it as the title track to an otherwise mostly acoustic live album of their songs, issued in 2000.

6. Bruce Springsteen, Candy’s Room . . . Great rocker from the Darkness On The Edge Of Town album, 1978. Besides that, and I’ve always loved the song, it’s a ‘correct an error’ tune for me on this show because last week, when I was doing a box set show and played a live version of Because The Night from Springsteen’s 1975-85 set, for whatever reason, as I later heard when listening to the audio playback, I introduced Because The Night as Candy’s Room. That’s likely because I was looking at the track listing on the Springsteen box, as I was talking, Candy’s Room is also on the live set and, anyway, I never corrected myself although I was accurate in my track-by-track tales written commentary. Never a bad time to play Candy’s Room, though. So, here it is, studio version.

7. Blue Oyster Cult, Then Came The Last Days Of May . . . Another spooky one, of which there are many, on the debut album by BOC that came out in 1972. I’ve had this in mind since the calendar changed to May and, while there’s still a bit more than two weeks left in the month, I figured I’d get it in before I forget. Not that I couldn’t play it at any time, of course.

8. Fleetwood Mac, Although The Sun Is Shining . . . Beautiful song written and sung by guitarist Danny Kirwan on 1969’s Then Play On, the album that introduced me to Fleetwood Mac via my older brother owning it, and was also the last to feature founding guitarist Peter Green. I just found out today that the song is used in the 2023 sci-fi movie Foe. I’m not a huge movie buff but I do like sci-fi, so maybe I’ll check it out. Or, maybe not. I just checked a review site and the movie at best averages a 5/10.

9. The Rolling Stones, Whole Wide World . . . Riff rocker from the 2023 album release Hackney Diamonds, the Stones’ first one of original material since 2005. (they released the blues covers album Blue and Lonesome in 2016). They’re out on tour, five dates into it, playing a fair bit, and rightly so, from the terrific new record. They played Whole Wide World at the New Orleans Jazz Fest, second show of the current tour, on May 2 after having debuted it live on Oct. 19, 2023 at the Racket club in New York, an album release show, with the studio record coming out the next day. That seven-song live set from New York was released in December, 2023 in an expanded issue of Hackney Diamonds.

10. Little Feat, Day Or Night . . . Funky, bluesy, swampy tune, the essence of the melting pot of music that is Little Feat, from 1975’s The Last Record Album, which it wasn’t. The band broke up in 1979 following the death of co-founder Lowell George, reunited in the late 1980s and continues on, mostly on the concert circuit while releasing studio material sporadically. Original member and co-founder and keyboard player Bill Payne is still in the group along with longtime core members, since 1972, Sam Clayton on percussion and Kenny Gradney on bass. Founding member and drummer Richie Hayward died in 2010 while guitarist Paul Barrere, who joined in 1972 and essentially assumed leadership of the reunited group, passed in 2019.

11. Johnny Winter, It’s My Own Fault (live) . . . Lengthy live treatment of a blues piece written by Riley King, aka B.B. King. It was released on the 1971 album Live Johnny Winter And. And who, you ask? Rick Derringer and other members of the McCoys (known for the 1965 hit Hang On Sloopy) teamed with Winter in what was originally to be called Johnny Winter and the McCoys but they decided on just ‘And’. Derringer, of course, had a hit single with Rock and Roll, Hoochie Koo in 1974, although it first came out four years earlier on the first, self-titled Johnny Winter And studio album in 1970.

12. Moby Grape, Miller’s Blues (live) . . . Straight ahead beautiful blues, co-written by Grape guitarist Jerry Miller and bass player Bob Mosley. The original studio version came out on the Wow album, paired with another studio record, Grape Jam, in 1968. This live version is a previously-unreleased track taken from The Very Best Of Moby Grape: Vintage, a fine 2-CD compilation.

13. Sass Jordan, Do What Ya Want . . . Typically raunchy Jordan rocker from her 1992 album Racine, which yielded the hit Make You A Believer.

14. Lee Harvey Osmond, Cuckoo’s Nest . . . From one of Canadian artist – and one of my favorites, regardless nationality – Tom Wilson’s various projects. Over time, and sometimes at the same time, those projects have included the Florida Razors, Junkhouse, solo work under his own name, Blackie and The Rodeo Kings with Colin Linden and Stephen Fearing, and Lee Harvey Osmond, with members of Cowboy Junkies and the Skydiggers. Wilson’s work mines blues, blues rock, folk/psychedelic folk, you name it.

15. Otis Redding, Let Me Come On Home . . . From The Dock Of The Bay, an album put together from various Redding recordings between 1965 and his death in a plane crash in December 1967. It was released in February, 1968 including and using the title of Redding’s posthumous No. 1 single.

16. Muddy Waters, Deep Down In Florida (live) . . . Ten minutes of deep blues from one of the masters, taken from the album Muddy “Mississippi” Waters – Live, released in 1979. It features Johnny Winter, who also produced, among the greats like pianist Pinetop Perkins and harmonica player James Cotton who were members of the band that worked with Waters on the trio of studio albums – Hard Again, I’m Ready and King Bee – released between 1977 and 1981. They were the final records of Waters’ career; he died of a heart attack in 1983.

17. Joe Satriani, Clouds Race Across The Sky . . . From Engines Of Creation, the 2000 album released by the instrumental music guitar ace Satriani. It’s an album where he went ‘completely techno’ in his own words, and it works. I always knew of Satriani but never thought a concert featuring an instrumental artist would be compelling, but I was proven very wrong when I saw him open for Deep Purple in 2004. Amazing show, as was Purple’s and of course there’s a connection between the bands as Satriani stepped in to help Purple finish a Japanese tour in late 1993 when guitarist Ritchie Blackmore quit Purple (again and for, so far, the last time). Satriani was apparently asked to join Purple fulltime but declined to concentrate on his solo career, with Steve Morse then filling the guitar slot. Morse left Purple in 2022 to care for his ailing wife, who died of cancer in February of 2024. Morse has since been replaced by Belfast-born guitarist Simon McBride whose first studio record with Deep Purple will be the album = 1 (I’ve also seen reports saying it’s to be called = 1 More Time) is due out July 19. It’ll be my birthday present.

So Old It’s New set list for Saturday, May 11, 2024 – on air 8-10 am ET

I was originally going to do a full Stones’ solo set but quickly realized that it would become mostly a Mick Jagger-Keith Richards-Ron Wood show, with some dips into Charlie Watts’ jazz excursions, and I actually had such a set in the works, including solo material from former Stones guitarist Mick Taylor and bassist Bill Wyman.

Then an old remark from Richards occurred to me. “Nobody leaves this band except in a coffin” Richards once said, miffed when Bill Wyman quit the band in 1993 and, before that, when Taylor left in 1974 although if memory serves Richards said ‘pine box’ instead of coffin, when Taylor left. Original founder member Brian Jones had been dismissed from the band in 1969 and died later that year.

So, perhaps a Jagger-Richards-Wood-Watts set (which if memory serves I’ve done before, actually) at some point but for this Saturday’s show, solo Stones featuring two former members who are still alive. I don’t think their solo music measures up to that of the other members, neither of them are at the same level in terms of songwriting, certainly with respect to Jagger and Richards in my view, but there is quality music within their catalogs.

My track-by-track tales follow the bare-bones list. Audio log of the show to come after it airs.

1. Mick Taylor, Giddy-Up
2. Bill Wyman, Apache Woman
3. Bill Wyman, Ride On Baby
4. Mick Taylor, Baby I Want You
5. Bill Wyman, A New Fashion
6. Mick Taylor, Leather Jacket
7. Bill Wyman, Visions (single version)
8. Bill Wyman, Every Sixty Seconds
9. Mick Taylor, Broken Hands
10. Bill Wyman, I Wanna Get Me A Gun
11. Bill Wyman, Like A Knife
12. Bill Wyman, Blue Murder (Lies)
13. Mick Taylor, Slow Blues
14. Mick Taylor, S.W. 5
15. Bill Wyman, Mighty Fine Time
16. Bill Wyman, Peanut Butter Time
17. Bill Wyman, Nuclear Reactions
18. Bill Wyman, Monkey Grip Glue (single version)
19. Bill Wyman, Soul Satisfying
20. Bill Wyman, Stuff (Can’t Get Enough, 12-inch single extended version)
21. Carla Olson & Mick Taylor, Silver Train
22. Carla Olson & Mick Taylor, Sway
23. Carla Olson & Mick Taylor, Winter
24. The Rolling Stones with Mick Taylor, Midnight Rambler, (from Grrr! Live, 2012 concert from Stones’ 50 & Counting tour)

My track-by-track tales:

1. Mick Taylor, Giddy-Up . . . Bluesy instrumental from Taylor’s debut self-titled solo album, issued in 1979, five years after he left The Rolling Stones. Little Feat’s Lowell George features on slide guitar.

2. Bill Wyman, Apache Woman . . . From Wyman’s second solo album, Stone Alone, released in 1976. His first one, Monkey Grip, came out in 1974 and received far more positive reviews but Stone Alone (also the name of a later Wyman book on the Stones) is the one I’m more familiar with, likely because it’s the one I bought first, when it came out. Decent funky-type rocker but as with Mick Taylor, Wyman is not the most compelling singer. What’s most impressive about Wyman’s first two albums, particularly Stone Alone, is the who’s who of rock stars of the time who helped him out on the albums, among them: pianist/singer Leon Russell, Lowell George, well-regarded session guitarist to the stars Danny “Kootch” Kortchmar, Dr. John, Van Morrison, Joe Walsh, Stones’ mate Ronnie Wood, drummers Jim Keltner, Joe Vitale and Dallas Taylor, regular Stones’ session pianist Nicky Hopkins and, on this song, The Pointer Sisters on backing vocals.

3. Bill Wyman, Ride On Baby . . . Not the Stones track which was recorded during the sessions for the 1966 album Aftermath and later released on the US compilation Flowers. This is Wyman’s own song, a bouncy number released on his 1982 self-titled album that yielded the hit single (Si Si) Je Suis Un Rock Star. Brian Setzer, who later formed the Stray Cats and then The Brian Setzer Orchestra, plays guitar on the tune.

4. Mick Taylor, Baby I Want You . . . Taylor sounds, to me, almost like Peter Green in his singing on this one, a mid-tempo tune from his 1979 album. Taylor, of course, replaced Green in John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers in the late 1960s, before Taylor joined the Stones, when Green formed the first, blues-oriented version of Fleetwood Mac.

5. Bill Wyman, A New Fashion . . . A nice love song, a ballad from Wyman’s 1982 album.

6. Mick Taylor, Leather Jacket . . . Perhaps Taylor’s best known solo song, again from his 1979 debut. Originally an instrumental worked on by the Stones in 1970. According to Martin Elliott’s book The Rolling Stones Complete Recording Sessions (at least up until 2012) lyrics and vocals may have been intended for the song, as a Stones’ piece, but it was left on the shelf until Taylor added lyrics to it, essentially describing his time with the band:

Rock and roll circus, it’s the best I’ve ever seen
All your leather jackets and your faded jeans
All you have left of your rock and roll dreams
Whoa, put your leather jacket on
Now it’s time to be movin’ on

7. Bill Wyman, Visions . . . Another love song from Wyman’s 1982 album, similar to some of the stuff issued during the early- to mid-70s period of Bob Welch-era Fleetwood Mac, to my ears, anyway. Chris Rea of Fool If You Think It’s Over (but so much more) fame guests on guitar.

8. Bill Wyman, Every Sixty Seconds . . . One of the songs, a bluesy, horn-drenched shuffle that immediately grabbed me when I bought Wyman’s Stone Alone album.

9. Mick Taylor, Broken Hands . . . Up tempo bluesy rocker, again from his 1979 album. Taylor only has two solo studio albums, and being the completist I am I have the other one, 1998’s A Stone’s Throw but alas I haven’t got round to putting A Stone’s Throw into the station’s computer system. So, Saturday’s being a programmed show, I don’t have anything from that album available. So, I may play something from A Stone’s Thrown on my Monday live in studio show at some point but, trust me, aside from myriad live albums and session work with various members of the Stones like Keith Richards and Ron Wood, and with Bob Dylan on Dylan’s Infidels and Empire Burlesque albums, Taylor’s best solo stuff is on the 1979 album. Speaking of Dylan, while putting together this Wyman-Taylor show I happened upon a YouTube clip of Dylan, Richards and Wood chatting backstage before their performance at the 1985 Live Aid show and Dylan mentioned Broken Hands as one of Taylor’s finest. Interesting also in that chat is Richards reiterating, in a positive way, that Taylor, like many musicians, was best as an accompanist, not as a solo artist/frontman. I’ve always agreed with that assessment because the proof is out there. There’s no doubt the Stones did some of their finest work when Taylor was in the band from 1969-74 but did they benefit from him, or vice-versa? Lots of both, really. Taylor hasn’t done much since, great guitarist obviously but . . . and the Stones were hitmakers long before him, Satisfaction and so on, during the early- to mid-1960s and on into the classic album Beggars Banquet and most of Let It Bleed. And the Stones have had hits, and continue to roll on, after him. As an old friend once said, it’s all about songwriting.

10. Bill Wyman, I Wanna Get Me A Gun . . . One of the best tracks, just a good rock song, from Wyman’s solo debut, Monkey Grip, 1974. Dr. John on piano.

11. Bill Wyman, Like A Knife . . . A funky tune from Wyman’s 1992 album Stuff.

12. Bill Wyman, Blue Murder (Lies) . . . Another funky, disco-type tune from the Stuff album, with longtime Stones’ henchman Nicky Hopkins helping out on piano and Ray Cooper, noted for his work with Elton John among many others including the Stones, Paul McCartney and George Harrison to name just a few, on percussion.

13. Mick Taylor, Slow Blues . . . Exactly what the title suggests, a slow blues number featuring Taylor’s exquisite playing.

14. Mick Taylor, S.W. 5 . . . S.W. standing for southwest, one of the highlights of Taylor’s 1979 album.

15. Bill Wyman, Mighty Fine Time . . . Nice groove on this one from Monkey Grip, 1974. Leon Russell (piano), Danny “Kootch” Kortchmar (guitar) and Dallas Taylor (drums), perhaps best known for his work with Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young and some of their solo projects, are among the personnel.

16. Bill Wyman, Peanut Butter Time . . . The Pointer Sisters on backing vocals on this one from Stone Alone.

17. Bill Wyman, Nuclear Reactions . . . An interesting Kraftwerk-like piece from Wyman’s 1982 self-titled album.

18. Bill Wyman, Monkey Grip Glue (single version) . . . Somebody on YouTube commented that it sounds like early 1970s Ringo Starr. True.

19. Bill Wyman, Soul Satisfying . . . Reggae and disco type tune from Stone Alone.

20. Bill Wyman, Stuff (Can’t Get Enough), 12-inch single extended version) . . . A nearly seven-minute remix of a funky tune that originally appeared on Wyman’s Stuff album, 1992. Not the Stones’ song Hot Stuff, although ‘Can’t Get Enough’ is the refrain in that tune that opens the Stones’ Black and Blue album.

21. Carla Olson & Mick Taylor, Silver Train . . . The first of several in the set highlighting what Mick Taylor arguably does best, besides straight blues; that being Stones’ songs, either with the band, or covering their tunes. He teamed with Los Angeles-based singer-songwriter/producer Olson for a couple live albums in 1990 and ’91, arguably the highlights of which were Stones’ tracks sung by Olson. Silver Train, also done by Johnny Winter, is from the 1973 Stones’ album Goats Head Soup.

22. Carla Olson & Mick Taylor, Sway . . . Fiery live version of the terrific track from Sticky Fingers.

23. Carla Olson & Mick Taylor, Winter . . . And another, this one a near-12 minute epic treatment of one of the highlights from Goats Head Soup.

24. The Rolling Stones with Mick Taylor, Midnight Rambler, (from Grrr! Live, 2012 concert from Stones’ 50 & Counting tour) . . . All of the boys got back together, with Taylor (and Wyman for selected shows just in the UK; Wyman doesn’t like flying) touring with the Stones and appearing on one or two songs per set on the band’s 2012-13 tour. I saw the Toronto show, great stuff.

So Old It’s New set list for Monday, May 6, 2024

I did a box set show last Monday, April 29 so this is box set show 2, from collections I own that I didn’t touch on last week. Still a few boxes left unmined, so I may do a 3rd such show next week, or sometime soon. My full track-by-track tales follow the list below.

1. Alphonse Mouzon, Nitroglycerin . . . The first of four songs taken from the 1989-released Tommy Bolin package The Ultimate. It covers the late guitarist’s trips, both solo and with various artists including the James Gang and Deep Purple, into blues and hard rock, jazz fusion and funk rock. This one’s from jazz drummer Mouzon’s 1975 album Mind Transplant.

2. Billy Cobham, Quadrant 4 . . . Via The Ultimate box, from jazz fusion drummer Cobham’s 1973 debut album Spectrum.

3. Zephyr, Showbizzy . . . Rocker from Zephyr’s second and final album featuring Bolin, 1971’s Going Back To Colorado.

4. Moxy, Time To Move On . . . From the Toronto rockers’ self-titled 1975 debut album, Bolin on guitar on this track.

5. Rod Stewart/Python Lee Jackson, In A Broken Dream . . . Stewart on lead vocals with Aussie rock band Python Lee Jackson, 1969. From Stewart’s Storyteller box set.

6. The Rolling Stones, I’m Free . . . Live, from Get Yer Ya Ya’s Out! 40th anniversary expanded box set release.

7. B.B. King, How Blue Can You Get . . . Live, from Get Yer Ya Ya’s Out! 40th anniverary expanded release.

8. Ike & Tina Turner, Come Together . . . Cover of The Beatles’ song, live, from Get Yer Ya Ya’s Out! 40th anniversary expanded release.

9. John Lennon with Elton John, I Saw Her Standing There . . . Live, from 4-CD Lennon set, played with Elton John’s band during EJ’s November, 1974 concert at New York’s Madison Square Garden.

10. Peter Green, Cruel Contradictions . . . from 2008’s 4-CD release Peter Green: The Anthology.

11. Chicago, A Song For Richard and His Friends . . . A diatribe against then US President Richard Nixon, from the Chicago box set Group Portrait via this live version originally released on the 4-LP vinyl album Chicago At Carnegie Hall in 1971.

12. Jeff Beck, Back On The Street . . . B-side of 1985 single People Get Ready, released on 1991’s Beckology.

13. ZZ Top, Salt Lick . . . Non-album single, 1970, taken from the Chrome, Smoke & BBQ box released in 2003.

14. Yes, Something’s Coming . . . Adaptation of the Leonard Bernstein/Stephen Sondheim song from West Side Story, taken from 1991’s 4-CD box Yesyears.

15. Derek and The Dominos, Evil . . . From Eric Clapton’s 1988 Crossroads box set, recorded during 1971 sessions for the Dominos’ aborted second studio album.

16. Judas Priest, Heart Of A Lion . . . Outtake from the 1986 Turbo album sessions, taken from 2004’s Metalogy box set.

17. Jethro Tull, To Be Sad Is A Mad Way To Be . . . Live cut from a 1969 show in Stockholm, Sweden, taken from the limited edition 25th Anniversary Box Set, released in 1993.

18. The Byrds, Mae Jean Goes To Hollywood . . . Outtake from 1969’s Ballad Of Easy Rider album, from The Byrds box, 1990.

19. Lynyrd Skynyrd, Junkie . . . 1970 demo released on the Lynyrd Skynyrd box set, 1991.

20. The Allman Brothers Band, I’m Gonna Move To The Outskirts Of Town . . . Live, from 1989’s Dreams box set, also available on Live at Ludlow Garage 1970.

My full track-by-track tales:

1. Alphonse Mouzon, Nitroglycerin . . . The first of four songs in this box set show taken from the 1989-released Tommy Bolin package The Ultimate. It covers the late great guitarist’s trip, both solo and with various artists including the James Gang and Deep Purple, into blues and hard rock, jazz fusion and funk rock. This one’s from jazz drummer Mouzon’s 1975 album Mind Transplant.

2. Billy Cobham, Quadrant 4 . . . Via The Ultimate box, from jazz fusion drummer Cobham’s 1973 debut album Spectrum. . It’s the record, featuring Bolin’s guitar playing, that caught the attention of then-Deep Purple singer David Coverdale who recommended Bolin – who played on Purple’s 1975 album Come Taste The Band – to his bandmates after Ritchie Blackmore left to form Rainbow.

3. Zephyr, Showbizzy . . . Rocker from Zephyr’s second and final album featuring Bolin, 1971’s Going Back To Colorado, with singer Candy Givens doing a nice impression of Heart’s Ann Wilson, or vice-versa.

4. Moxy, Time To Move On . . . From the Toronto rockers’ self-titled 1975 debut album, Bolin on guitar on this track. The story goes that Moxy’s guitarist was thrown out of the studio after a disagreement with the engineer, Bolin was recording in a studio next door, knew one of Moxy’s members and, here you go.

5. Rod Stewart/Python Lee Jackson, In A Broken Dream . . . Stewart on lead vocals with Aussie rock band Python Lee Jackson, 1969. From Stewart’s Storyteller box set.

6. The Rolling Stones, I’m Free . . . Live, from Get Yer Ya Ya’s Out! 40th anniversary expanded box set release.

7. B.B. King, How Blue Can You Get . . . Live, from Get Yer Ya Ya’s Out! 40th anniverary expanded release.

8. Ike & Tina Turner, Come Together . . . Cover of The Beatles’ song, live, from Get Yer Ya Ya’s Out! 40th anniversary expanded release. According to Roy Carr’s book The Rolling Stones: An Illustrated Record, the Stones wanted the B.B. King and Turner opening sets released as the second disc on a double live album but were turned down by their then-record company, Decca. The full package finally came out in a lavish 2009 box set that includes a retrospective book and DVD.

9. John Lennon with Elton John, I Saw Her Standing There . . . Live, from 4-CD Lennon set, played with Elton John’s band during EJ’s November, 1974 concert at New York’s Madison Square Garden. It was the lead track, sung by Paul McCartney, on The Beatles’ debut album Please Please Me, released in 1963. Lennon introduced it, as follows, during the 1974 show:

“I’d like to thank Elton and the boys for having me on tonight. We tried to think of a number to finish off with so I can get out of here and be sick, and we thought we’d do a number of an old, estranged fiancรฉ of mine, called Paul. This is one I never sang, it’s an old Beatle number, and we just about know it.”

Elton John released it as the B-side to his Philadelphia Freedom single and it’s also on his To Be Continued . . . box set and expanded re-releases of his 1976 live album Here and There.

10. Peter Green, Cruel Contradictions . . . Sublime jazzy blues from 2008’s 4-CD release Peter Green: The Anthology, with Green collaborating on guitar, harmnica and lead vocals with renowned British jazz, blues and R & B saxophonist Dick Heckstall-Smith on a song from Heckstall-Smith’s 2001 album Blues and Beyond. The album was something of a Bluesbreakers reunion as it featured, on various tracks, not only John Mayall but former Bluesbreakers Green, Heckstall-Smith and guitarist Mick Taylor, later of The Rolling Stones. Heckstall-Smith and Taylor, who replaced Green in the Bluesbreakers when Green formed Fleetwood Mac, played together on the 1968 Bluesbreakers album Bare Wires.

11. Chicago, A Song For Richard and His Friends . . . A diatribe against then US President Richard Nixon, from the Chicago box set Group Portrait via this live version originally relesased on the 4-LP vinyl album Chicago At Carnegie Hall in 1971. An instrumental version appeared as a bonus track on the 2002 reissue of the 1972 studio release, Chicago V.

12. Jeff Beck, Back On The Street . . . A metallic rocker, lead vocals by American singer Karen Lawrence, notable for her background vocals to Steven Tyler on the chorus of Aerosmith’s song Get It Up, from 1977’s Draw The Line album. Back On The Street was the B-side of the 1985 single People Get Ready that featured old Beck collaborator Rod Stewart, from the Truth and Beck-Ola album days, on lead vocals. Both songs were recorded during the sessions for Beck’s 1985 album Flash and both also appeared on the 1991 Beckology box.

13. ZZ Top, Salt Lick . . . Non-album funky somewhat psychedelic single from 1970, taken from 2003’s Chrome, Smoke & BBQ box set. ZZ Top was still in its formative stages, with only guitarist/singer/songwriter Billy Gibbons of the classic trio of Gibbons, bassist Dusty Hill and drummer Frank Beard in the lineup at this point. Lanier Gregg (bass) and Dan Mitchell (drums) were the other band members at the time.

14. Yes, Something’s Coming . . . An adaptation of the Leonard Bernstein/Stephen Sondheim song from West Side Story, taken from 1991’s 4-CD box Yesyears. It was the B-side to Yes’s first released single, Sweetness, from the band’s self-titled 1969 debut album.

15. Derek and The Dominos, Evil . . . I played a track from Clapton’s Crossroads 2 live songs box last week. This cover of the Willie Dixon tune, also famously done by Howlin’ Wolf, is from the first Crossroads box set, released in 1988. It was recorded during 1971 sessions for the Dominos’ aborted second studio album.

16. Judas Priest, Heart Of A Lion . . . Studio outtake from the sessions for 1986 album Turbo, taken from 2004’s Metalogy box set. Should have made the original album, if you ask me.

17. Jethro Tull, To Be Sad Is A Mad Way To Be . . . Bluesy live cut from a 1969 show in Stockholm, Sweden, taken from the limited edition 25th Anniversary Box Set, released in 1993. Ian Anderson is known for his flute playing, but he nails this one on harmonica, too.

18. The Byrds, Mae Jean Goes To Hollywood . . . An outtake from 1969’s Ballad Of Easy Rider album since released on expanded versions of that record. The song first appeared on the original 4-CD The Byrds box set, released in 1990. Now out of print, that box was replaced in 2006 with a new one, There Is A Season although each set contains some tracks, like this countryish tune written by Jackson Browne, that the other box does not.

19. Lynyrd Skynyrd, Junkie . . . 1970 demo of a funky rocker, released on the Lynyrd Skynyrd box set, 1991.

20. The Allman Brothers Band . . . I’m Gonna Move To The Outskirts Of Town . . . Live, extended cut first recorded in 1936 by bluesman William “Casey Bill’ Weldon. Taken from the Dreams box set released in 1989, the same version is also available on Live At Ludlow Garage 1970 and features the original ABB lineup of Duane and Gregg Allman, Dickey Betts, Berry Oakley, Butch Trucks and Jai Johanny “Jamioe” Johanson.

So Old It’s New set list for Saturday, May 4, 2024 – on air 8-10 am ET

My track-by-track tales follow the bare-bones list.

1. Teenage Head, Disgusteen
2. Ian Dury, Wake Up And Make Love With Me
3. Graham Parker & The Rumour, Saturday Nite Is Dead
4. Elvis Costello, I’m Not Angry
5. The Clash, Brand New Cadillac
6. Blondie, Accidents Never Happen
7. The Cars, You Can’t Hold On Too Long
8. Joe Jackson, Throw It Away
9. Jefferson Airplane, She Has Funny Cars
10. Neil Young, Crime In The City (Sixty To Zero Part 1)
11. Motorhead, Ain’t My Crime
12. Billy Joel, Ain’t No Crime
13. Elton John, It Ain’t Gonna Be Easy
14. Leon Russell, Jumpin’ Jack Flash/Youngblood (live, from the Concert for Bangladesh)
15. The Rolling Stones, Child Of The Moon
16. Iron Maiden, Sign Of The Cross
17. Black Sabbath, Computer God
18. King Crimson, 21st Century Schizoid Man
19. Judas Priest, Beyond The Realms Of Death
20. KK’s Priest, Return Of The Sentinel
21. Bob Dylan, The Ballad Of Frankie Lee and Judas Priest
22. Van Halen, Mine All Mine

My track-by-track tales:

1. Teenage Head, Disgusteen . . . “Nice day for a party . . . isn’t it?” I can never get enough of that intro line and then of course the later playing off The Exorcist movie amid the incessant riff of the song . . . “Come on in, Father Karras. Regan’s inside here with me, she’s going nowhere. ‘But please, it’s so cold you must let her go.’ “She’s not going anywhere. Not till I’m finished with her, you understand.”

2. Ian Dury, Wake Up And Make Love With Me . . . Dury, one of those artists I got into via a college friend who, en route to a party, played me Dury’s Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll on his car tape deck (yeah, I’m aging) which prompted me to investigate New Boots and Panties!! album from which Wake Up And Make Love With Me comes. Loved the album, still do, easily to me Dury’s best, most consistent work and I became a disciple of Dury, for a time, anyway, because aside from the slightly later hit, Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick, the stuff he was releasing post-New Boots and Panties!! didn’t make it with me anymore. But, that does not take away from whatever it is he did and I’ve named just a few songs here and the point is, he did them.

3. Graham Parker & The Rumour, Saturday Nite Is Dead . . . From the ‘angry young man’ period of Parker’s career, from the album, Squeezing Out Sparks, arguably his best album, terrific front to back and featuring such songs as the single Local Girls and Protection. But, I must confess that I got into Parker via his next album, The Up Escalator, issued in 1980 which met with lukewarm reviews I’ve never understood I mean, Devil’s Sidewalk, Stupefaction, Endless Night, Empty Lives . . . anyway so I got into Parker via The Up Escalator, then I went back, and forward until he found marital bliss, lost the angry young man persona, got boring, to me anyway, and that was that. He’s still out there, though. Maybe I should see what he’s up to; we’ve both aged, maybe I’ll find some commonality.

4. Elvis Costello, I’m Not Angry . . . Speaking of ‘angry young men’, Costello, around the same time as Parker was considered part of that unofficial, media-created trio that also included Joe Jackson, who I’ll get to in a bit because if I play one of the ‘angry young men’ I feel compelled to play the other two, at least if I’m playing something from their late 1970s period. So here’s I’m Not Angry, from Costello’s 1977 debut release My Aim Is True which arguably could be categorized as a greatest hits album, it’s so full of great songs.

5. The Clash, Brand New Cadillac . . . The Clash’s explosive take on Vince Taylor’s 1959 rockabilly tune, released by The Clash on London Calling in 1979 and prompting music completists like me to take a trip back to Taylor, which is what a great cover tune can do and thankfully so. Taylor’s tune is terrific. And you can’t beat a lyric the Clash inserted, Baby, baby, drove up in a Cadillac I said, “Jesus Christ, where’d you get that Cadillac?” She said, “Balls to you, daddy, she ain’t never coming back.” Now, Vince Taylor may have wanted to write and sing such a lyric but allowable things were different in 1958 when he released his song, as a B-side (?!) but anyway 21 years later The Clash said it and all is well and good.

6. Blondie, Accidents Never Happen . . . My favorite song – and maybe my favorite Blondie song overall, hits and otherwise – from the Eat To The Beat album, the 1979 followup to the smash hit 1978 album Parallel Lines which featured the hits or at least well-known tracks Hanging On The Telephone, Heart Of Glass and One Way Or Another. Accidents Never Happen wasn’t released as a single, though. Killer track, to my ears.

7. The Cars, You Can’t Hold On Too Long . . . David Bowie-esque track from the second Cars album, Candy-O, released in 1979. Sung by bass player Benjamin Orr, who also handled vocals on such well-known Cars tunes as Just What I Needed, Drive, Let’s Go and Moving In Stereo.

8. Joe Jackson, Throw It Away . . . a rocker from JJ’s debut album, Look Sharp! in 1979 ends the opening salvo of songs and bands I got into during my college days.

9. Jefferson Airplane, She Has Funny Cars . . . Bo Diddley-esque beat on this one from Surrealistic Pillow, overshadowed by that album’s two hits and the songs – Somebody To Love and White Rabbit – for which the Airplane is best known to casual listeners. There’s so much more, if you dig.

10. Neil Young, Crime In The City (Sixty To Zero Part 1) . . . Rockin’ In The Free World, electric version (it also appeared in acoustic form on the record) was the hit single from Young’s 1989 album Freedom. But this epic ‘story’ song is arguably the heart of the album, a tune Young had road tested at varying lengths, up to 20 minutes, with the final album track coming in at just under nine minutes, prior to official studio album release. Lots of interesting reading about the song available online, although was an instant favorite of mine when I bought the album on CD when it was released, without knowing further to that point.

11. Motorhead, Ain’t My Crime . . . It just came up in the computer system when I was digging for the previous Neil Young song, also featuring the word ‘crime’ in the title. Same as the song after this one. Anyway, as for Motorhead, this is from the band’s 1986 album Orgasmatron, back during a time I wasn’t much into metal although I soon gave the genre more of a chance and embraced it, evidenced by some songs later in the set. Well, check that, re metal. I was into it, I liked Judas Priest, Black Sabbath (who I continue to categorize as hard rock but anyway) and similar bands but I had always thought Motorhead was just shit noise, based on a few listens, but I decided to keep listening, and I was rewarded as I finally ‘got it’.

12. Billy Joel, Ain’t No Crime . . . A song about hangovers, at least that’s how I read the lyrics, good tune, too, from Joel’s Piano Man album. Just get up, get out and move on, to quote a song by the band Fludd which I should play again sometime.
“You got to open your eyes in the morning
Nine o’clock comin’ without any warnin’
And you gotta get ready to go
You say you went out late last evenin’
Did a lot of drinkin’, come home stinkin’
And you went and fell asleep on the floor
And then your lady comes and finds you a-sleepin’
Starts into weepin’ ’bout the hours you been keepin’
And you better get your ass out the door
Ain’t no crime
Yeah, it’s good to get it on to get a load off your mind
It ain’t no crime,
Well, ev’rybody gets that way sometime
It ain’t no crime”

Agreed.

13. Elton John, It Ain’t Gonna Be Easy . . . Lengthy, bluesy piece, one of my favorites from EJ, from 1978’s A Single Man album during a period when he and songwriting partner Bernie Taupin had parted ways and Elton’s commercial fortunes – at least compared to his massive success earlier in the 1970s – were on the downslope. Great stuff, nevertheless.

14. Leon Russell, Jumpin’ Jack Flash/Youngblood (live, from the Concert for Bangladesh) . . . Third in a row in the set from an artist best known for piano/keyboard playing, from Russell’s appearance at the George Harrison-Ravi Shankar-organized benefit concert at New York City’s Madison Square Garden in 1971.

15. The Rolling Stones, Child Of The Moon . . . And here are the Stones, who weren’t at the Bangladesh concert, with the psychedelic sounding B-side to their hit single Jumpin’ Jack Flash. JJ Flash is an amazing song but the fact Child Of The Moon was relegated to B-side status shows how great the Stones are but for the zillionth time, don’t take my word for it, I’m a huge fan so there exists an inherent bias for me, towards them. We all like what we like, we hear things and are moved by them as we hear them, or not, and that’s the beauty of it.

16. Iron Maiden, Sign Of The Cross . . . Spooky, heavy, lengthy progressive metal from The X Factor album, released in 1995 and the first of two records with Blaze Bayley on lead vocals replacing Bruce Dickinson, who had left to pursue a solo career. Bayley never seemed to be fully accepted by the band’s fan base, or arguably the band itself as sales suffered and they asked him to leave at a band meeting as talks of a reunion with Dickinson percolated, although I like the albums Bayley performed on.
Bayley remains something of a footnote and soon enough, Dickinson was back in the band. Maiden has still performed some Bayley-era songs in concert, including Sign Of The Cross which has appeared on some subsequent compilations albeit in live versions with Dickinson singing which seems to me a cheap dig at Bayley but whatever. Frankly, while I truly like Iron Maiden I can only take Dickinson’s vocals in small doses and I’m not saying Bayley is or was better, but Dickinson’s sort of to me operatic whatever one might call it style I find grating after a few songs. And live? Bruce, spare us the ‘scream for me (insert city you’re playing in)” shit, OK? It’s as bad as Ozzy Osbourne’s “clap your hands” BS during his concerts. Uh, the music should make us clap our hands, no? If we need you to exhort us, then maybe the music ain’t quite making it? And I like Maiden, Sabbath, Ozzy solo. Just saying.

17. Black Sabbath, Computer God . . . Prescience from Sabbath’s 1992 album Dehumanizer, Ronnie James Dio on lead vocals and songwriting? “Virtual existence with a superhuman mind, the ultimate creation, destroyer of mankind” Da dum, as AI takes us over which of course has long been addressed in sci-fi, and we’re getting there if not already although so far, we humans appear to still be in charge.

18. King Crimson, 21st Century Schizoid Man . . . More in the same vein as Dehumanizer, in the song title, anyway. And maybe some of the lyrics: “Nothing he’s got he really needs. Twenty first century schizoid man.” It’s so very true about the ‘nothing’ I mean in the end what does one need but a roof over one’s head, food and…music. ๐Ÿ™‚ Or maybe I’m overanalzying. In any case, progressive jazz rock metal, this one, from Crimson’s classic debut album, 1969’s In The Court Of The Crimson King.

19. Judas Priest, Beyond The Realms Of Death . . . Acoustic to metal and back again, repeat . . . guitar solos by Glenn Tipton and K.K. Downing. Classic stuff from Priest’s 1978 album Stained Class.

20. KK’s Priest, Return Of The Sentinel . . . Speaking of K.K. (Kenneth Keith) Downing . . . He’s dropped the periods in the title initials of his new project since parting with Priest. Not for his name, just the band name. Anyway, KK’s Priest has released two albums, 2021’s Sermons Of The Sinner, from which I pulled this lengthy obviously Priest-type piece what else would one expect and we now have essentially two Judas Priest bands to enjoy, and 2023’s The Sinner Rides Again. Both discs feature Tim ‘Ripper’ Owens on lead vocals. Owens replaced Rob Halford for two Priest albums, I liked them, in the late 1990s/early 2000s before Halford returned to JP.

21. Bob Dylan, The Ballad Of Frankie Lee and Judas Priest . . . Something completely different from the recent metallic nature of the set, from Dylan’s 1967 folk rock album John Wesley Harding. But . . . it is actually related, in that Judas Priest was inspired by the Dylan song in naming the band. And, later, Priest rocked up Diamonds and Rust, written by Joan Baez, who had been in a relationship with Dylan both musically and personally. It’s interesting how artists mining different genres within music can come together, in a fashion but that should be obvious as most people I would think open their ears to anything and everything. Baez loved Priest’s version of her song (and no doubt the royalties) which in a flip of things, Priest later did live in an acoustic setting, available on YouTube.

22. Van Halen, Mine All Mine . . . I saw/heard Van Halen, the Van (Sammy) Hagar incarnation of the band, open with this on Canada Day 1993 when Van Halen headlined a festival show in Barrie, Ontario. I remember some people bitched about why an American band was headlining a Canada Day show but whatever. We’ve long since had rock acts headlining supposed blues festivals (like in my town, Kitchener, Ontario) that really ought to be rebranded as music festivals with a blues element, so what’s the difference? You want to sell tickets, no?
Anyway, it’s a driving kinda funky track I immediatly liked upon purchase of the second Van Hagar album, OU812 incorporating thoughtful lyrics on life/humanity. Another case where a song could easily have been a single along with those released from the record: Black and Blue, Finish What You Started, When It’s Love and Feels So Good. Quality, all of them. And hey, with 10 tracks on the album you have to leave some for deep cuts DJs to play. ๐Ÿ™‚

So Old It’s New set list for Monday, April 29, 2024

A box set show selected from some of the many such collections I own. Song clips follow my full track-by-track tales, after the list below.

1. Aerosmith, Rattlesnake Shake (live radio broadcast WKRQ Cincinnati, 1971) . . . from Pandora’s Box.

2. Whitford/St. Holmes, Sharpshooter . . . from Pandora’s Box/Whitford St. Holmes album, 1981.

3. Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, Two Men Talking . . . From An American Treasure box set, outtake from the Hypnotic Eye (2012 release) album sessions.

4. The Rolling Stones, Strictly Memphis . . . driving, funky outtake from Dirty Work album sessions, Mick Jagger/Bobby Womack lead vocal duet issued on Great Dane Records bootleg box set Hot Stuff Volume 2, In Studio 1962-1989.

5. Led Zeppelin, Baby Come On Home . . . previously unreleased track until Boxed Set 2, 1993.

6. Faces, Dishevelment Blues . . . from Five Guys Walk Into A Bar . . .

7. Taste, Railway and Gun . . . from I’ll Remember box, Take 2 remix of On The Boards album track.

8. AC/DC, Down On The Borderline . . . from Backtracks, B-side of 1990 single Moneytalks from The Razors Edge album.

9. The Kinks, Afternoon Tea . . from 2014 release The Anthology 1964-1971; slightly longer remix of song originally released on Something Else album, 1967.

10. Jimi Hendrix, Shame Shame Shame . . . from West Coast Seattle Boy: The Jimi Hendrix Anthology

11. Little Feat, Wait Till The Shit Hits The Fan . . . from Hotcakes and Outtakes: 30 Years of Little Feat, outtake from Little Feat (first album) sessions.

12. The Police, Fall Out . . . from Message In A Box: The Complete Recordings, first Police single, 1977.

13. Bruce Springsteen, Because The Night (live) . . . from Live 1975โ€“85, co-written with Patti Smith. Originally recorded in 1977 and targeted for Springsteen’s Darkness On The Edge Of Town album, it was given to Smith and first appeared in studio version and became a hit from her 1978 album Easter.

14. Bob Dylan, Catfish . . . A salute to then star baseball pitcher Jim (Catfish) Hunter, an outtake from the Desire album sessions first appeared on The Bootleg Series Volumes 1โ€“3 (Rare & Unreleased) 1961โ€“1991.

15. Janis Joplin/Big Brother and the Holding Company, Road Block (live at 1967 Monterey Pop Festival) . . . from Janis boxed set, 1993, previously unreleased to that point.

16. Jethro Tull, The Chateau D’Isaster Tapes (a. Scenario b. Audition c. No Rehearsal) . . . from 20 Years of Jethro Tull The Definitive Collection, 1988, from the original scrapped A Passion Play album sessions.

17. Eric Clapton with Santana, Eyesight To The Blind/Why Does Love Got To Be So Sad? (live) . . . From Crossroads 2 (live in the seventies).

My full track-by-track tales:

1. Aerosmith, Rattlesnake Shake (live radio broadcast WKRQ Cincinnati, 1971) . . . from Pandora’s Box. A Fleetwood Mac track written by Peter Green for his last album with the Mac, 1969’s Then Play On. I think it’s improperly credited to Nanci Griffith and Jimmie Dale Gilmore; it says Griffith/Gilmore in the box set booklet but it’s the Mac song, unless Green stole it and credited it to himself but I can’t find any crediting other than Green. In any event, it was done before a live radio studio audience before Aerosmith had an album out. That came two years later with the band’s debut record in 1973. Aerosmith’s roots go back to 1964 when the eventual unit was playing in different outfits before singer Steven Tyler discovered guitarist Joe Perry and bass player Tom Hamilton playing in the Jam Band in the Boston area, sought them out and the rest is history.

2. Whitford/St. Holmes, Sharpshooter . . . Aside from a couple Joe Perry Project albums I bought on a 2-fer compilation years ago, while I like and have forever been into Aerosmith, not enough to have followed all their various offshoot or solo projects. So I only discovered this hard rocking boogie tune from 1981’s Whitford/St. Holmes album via Pandora’s Box when I bought the box upon its release in 1991. The Whitford/St. Holmes album, Aerosmith guitarist Whitford working with Ted Nugent collaborator Derek St. Holmes, came during a period where Aerosmith was in tatters with both Perry and Whitford having quit the band. Singer Steven Tyler held the mother ship together with replacement players Jimmy Crespo and Rick Dufay for the I think creditable though critically-panned Rock In A Hard Place album in 1982 – the killer song Lightning Strikes alone makes that record worthwhile. And soon enough, the original boys were back together.

3. Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, Two Men Talking . . . An outtake from the Hypnotic Eye (2012 release) album sessions that was released on the An American Treasure box set in 2018. Nice guitar groove with perfectly placed spices of piano. According to the American Treasure liner notes, The Heartbreakers had played the song live but never could get it to work, to their satisfaction, in studio. Then, one day, they did and Petty fans are appreciative.

4. The Rolling Stones, Strictly Memphis . . . a driving, funky outtake from the Dirty Work album sessions, arguably worthy of making the album but it didn’t. It’s a Mick Jagger/Bobby Womack of soul/funk/R & B/rock fame lead vocal duet issued on the Great Dane Records 4-CD bootleg box set Hot Stuff Volume 2, In Studio 1962-1989 that I picked up somewhere along the line. Good sound, too, which is always a risk with bootlegs but I’ve been fortunate for the very most part with such releases over time. I love bootleg label names like Great Dane Records and another, The Swingin’ Pig Records, which did lots of Stones, Led Zeppelin and Beatles bootlegs, among others.

5. Led Zeppelin, Baby Come On Home . . . from Boxed Set 2, a blues/soul track co-written (and actually, un-Zep like because it was actually co-credited to) by Bert Berns, whose name might not ring a bell but whose songwriting/co-songwriting credits on songs made famous by other artists should: Twist and Shout, Here Comes The Night, Hang On Sloopy, Piece of My Heart, Cry To Me, Everybody Needs Somebody To Love, Baby Let Me Take You Home, Cry Baby . . . As for the Zep set, the track was arguably the selling point of the band’s second box set back before one could access pretty much anything on the web; the box was issued in 1993, three years after the first such compilation issued by the band. Any Zep fan worth their salt already had all the individual studio albums but may have bought the box sets anyway, for tracks like this, and for the different sequencing of songs which I recall, and I agree, a reviewer saying somehow made it appear as if one were hearing stuff you knew and had heard before, yet in a different enough way as to make it sound fresh.

6. Faces, Dishevelment Blues . . . from Five Guys Walk Into A Bar . . . A box set title, Five Guys . . . and yes, the ellipsis (three dots) is part of the title, one that perfectly sums up the Faces’ ramshackle, rowdy, booze-soaked approach to music and life and what endeared the band to so many. Not to mention, they were damn good musically in their raunch and roll way. This is a Led Zeppelin-like blues track that, apparently, was a throwaway Faces had no intention of releasing. According to one Faces-related website: “When asked for material for a promo-flexi-disc by the New Musical Express, the Faces couldn’t be bothered to write a new song, instead tossing the magazine this one-off atrocity of a languid, idle, drunk, badly recorded blues rock track, thinking ‘they wouldn’t have the balls to use it’, as keykboardist Ian McLagan puts it.”

Atrocity, languid, idle, hell, I like it! Perfect title, too. It is disheveled. That’s why it’s good.

7. Taste, Railway and Gun . . . from the I’ll Remember box, Take 2 remix of On The Boards album track. Not all that much different from the album, about a minute longer, typically fine guitar from Rory Gallagher. What more could you ask for?

8. AC/DC, Down On The Borderline . . . from Backtracks, it’s the B-side of 1990 single Moneytalks from The Razors Edge album.

9. The Kinks, Afternoon Tea . . from 2014’s 5 -CD release The Anthology 1964-1971. This is a slightly longer remix of a song originally released on the Something Else album, 1967. A typically appealing ‘very British’ type Kinks song of that period of their existence.

10. Jimi Hendrix, Shame Shame Shame . . . from West Coast Seattle Boy: The Jimi Hendrix Anthology. Something of a funky jam session while Hendrix was trying to refine the song Room Full Of Mirrors to his exacting specifications, resulting in a sort of jam/combination track although I’m just playing the specific Shame Shame Shame portion which is a stand-alone song in itself. Not exacting, not perfect, but sometimes it can be best to just let ‘er rip as one finds the right feel for a song. No, er, shame in that.

11. Little Feat, Wait Till The Shit Hits The Fan . . . from Hotcakes and Outtakes: 30 Years of Little Feat, a box set that by all accounts is out of print, and absurdly expensive online, so I’m glad I got it ages ago. This is an outtake from the Little Feat (first album) sessions. Recorded in 1970, the band’s debut record came out in 1971.

12. The Police, Fall Out . . . from Message In A Box: The Complete Recordings. The first Police single, 1977. Punk rock aggressive track, short (2 minutes) and sweet, notable because it featured guitarist Henry Padovani, a short-term member of The Police who later became part of Wayne County and The Electric Chairs. Padovani was replaced in The Police by Andy Summers who for a brief time was second guitarist in the band, alongside Padovani, before The Police settled on their trio lineup.

13. Bruce Springsteen, Because The Night (live) . . . from Live 1975โ€“85, co-written with Patti Smith. Originally recorded in 1977 and targeted for Springsteen’s Darkness On The Edge Of Town album, it was given to Smith and first appeared in studio version and became a hit from her 1978 album Easter. I first cottoned to the song – which prompted me to investigate Patti Smith’s music and glad for it – when a bar band played it, during my college days.

14. Bob Dylan, Catfish . . . A salute to then star baseball pitcher Jim (Catfish) Hunter. It’s a bluesy, acoustic outtake from the Desire album sessions that first appeared on The Bootleg Series Volumes 1โ€“3 (Rare & Unreleased) 1961โ€“1991. That amazing series, to Dylan fans like me at least, is now at Volume 17 covering the various stages of his career, both in studio and live, although a 2023 article in Rolling Stone magazine suggested the series might be petering out. That said, a multi-disc expanded version of the Bob Dylan at Budokan live album from 1978 recently came out, although it wasn’t labelled as a “bootleg series’ release.

15. Janis Joplin/Big Brother and the Holding Company, Road Block (live at 1967 Monterey Pop Festival) . . . from the ‘Janis’ boxed set, 1993, previously unreleased to that point. Funky sort of jam essentially just repeating the song title and yet . . . it works.

16. Jethro Tull, The Chateau D’Isaster Tapes (a. Scenario b. Audition c. No Rehearsal) . . . from 20 Years of Jethro Tull The Definitive Collection, 1988, the song is from the original scrapped A Passion Play album sessions. The A Passion Play sessions at first did not go well but are an interesting insight into the creative process. It was 1972 and Tull went into the studio to record the followup to Thick As A Brick but after a time, realized it wasn’t working. So they ditched what they were doing and eventually started again, and out came the official A Passion Play album, released in 1973. But those initial tapes were left behind, eventually surfacing on this track on the 1988 boxed set 20 Years Of Jethro Tull and then in full bloom in 1993 on the fine 2-CD compilation Nightcap: The Unreleased Masters 1973-1991. The Nightcap release included, on CD 1, the Chateau d’Isaster Tapes, the entire originally planned album of songs that morphed into A Passion Play. As with Dylan’s Bootleg series, and those of others, you could include Tull (which has a second boxed set I didn’t touch on today) among those bands with an amazing amount of obscure/previously unreleased/relatively unheard gems.

17. Eric Clapton with Santana, Eyesight To The Blind/Why Does Love Got To Be So Sad? (live) . . . From Crossroads 2 (live in the seventies). Clapton enjoyed success with his then (1988 release) careeer-spanning box set Crossroads. It wasn’t the first such release. To my knowledge and research, Bob Dylan’s 1985 release Biograph started the box set trend at least among musicians of 60s and 70s vintage but Clapton’s was the one that really set things afire. In any event, in 1996 Clapton went back to the box, so to speak, issuing Crossroads 2, this time entirely live tracks. And what a collection, including this 24-minute but never remotely boring combination Sonny Boy Williamson/Clapton track performed with the Santana band – it could easily be seen as a Santana song – which was opening for Clapton and invited onstage for encores like this, on Clapton’s 1975 American tour.

So Old It’s New set list for Saturday, April 27, 2024 – on air 8-10 am ET

My track-by-track tales follow the bare-bones list.

1. R.E.M., The Wake-Up Bomb
2. ZZ Top, Bedroom Thang
3. Talking Heads, Popsicle
4. Midnight Oil, No Time For Games
5. Roxy Music, Beauty Queen
6. Judas Priest, Never Satisfied
7. Joe Jackson, We Can’t Live Together
8. The Stone Roses, Love Spreads
9. The Rolling Stones, Dirty Work
10. Jason and The Scorchers, 19th Nervous Breakdown
11. Stray, All In Your Mind
12. Steve Earle, Snake Oil
13. AC/DC, Spoilin’ For A Fight
14. Paul McCartney/Wings, Soily (live, from Wings Over America)
15. Leslie West, Blind Man
16. Queen, The Hitman
17. Guns N’ Roses, Locomotive (Complicity)
18. Grateful Dead, Terrapin Station
19. Alvin Lee, Can’t Stop
20. Black Sabbath, Into The Void

My track-by-track tales:

1. R.E.M., The Wake-Up Bomb . . . 8 a.m. on a Saturday, the show’s starting, rise and shine, here’s your alarm clock. From the band’s New Adventures In Hi-Fi album, released in 1996. It was the last with the band’s founding drummer Bill Berry, who retired in 1997, became a farmer, then returned to the music industry in 2022 by forming the band The Bad Ends with various musicians from Atlanta and R.E.M.’s original home base in Athens, Georgia. The Bad Ends’ debut album, The Power and the Glory, was released in early 2023.

2. ZZ Top, Bedroom Thang . . . Sticking with the bedroom and what might happen there. From ZZ’s first album, called – wait for it – ZZ Top’s First Album.

3. Talking Heads, Popsicle . . . More bedroom activity. Listen to/read the lyrics. As for the music, it’s a funky piece recorded during sessions for 1983’s Speaking In Tongues album but not officially released until the 1992 compilation Popular Favorites 1976โ€“1992: Sand in the Vaseline.

4. Midnight Oil, No Time For Games . . . “Let’s rock!” is how lead singer Peter Garrett introduces the song, shortly after the opening guitar riff. Then, they rock. Early Oils, from their 1980 EP, Bird Noises.

5. Roxy Music, Beauty Queen . . . A somewhat spooky ballad with touches of progressive and art rock. But that’s Roxy Music for you, an often intoxicating listen. This one’s from the band’s second album, 1973’s For Your Pleasure. It’s the second and final one to feature synthesizer and sound effects specialist Brian Eno – who went on to work with and/or produce such artists as David Bowie, Peter Gabriel, U2 and Talking Heads among many others – as a member of the band.

6. Judas Priest, Never Satisfied . . . Early Priest, from the first album, Rock A Rolla, released in 1974. It’s heavy, but more blues-rock heavy than the fully metallic direction the band later took.

7. Joe Jackson, We Can’t Live Together . . . “We can’t live together, but we can’t stay apart.” Which might sum up some if not many relationships. This one’s from Big World, an atypical, perhaps, live album JJ released in 1986. What differentiates the record from most live albums is you don’t hear much if any applause or crowd reaction. Jackson’s band had road-tested the material in rehearsals and club gigs but as stated in the album’s liner notes, once recording day came, the audience at the Roundabout Theatre in New York City was asked to keep as quiet as possible, with the band recorded directly, no mixing or overdubbing possible as is the usual case in how most albums are put together.

8. The Stone Roses, Love Spreads . . . I don’t listen to The Stone Roses much. When I do, it’s this song, one of those cases when a good song is a good song is a good song no matter who it’s by or whether you’re a particular fan of a band or artist. Infectious guitar riff. Yet while it was a big hit in some places, like home base the UK where it was the band’s highest-charting single at No. 2, it didn’t do huge business in many other places, like Canada, where it topped out at No. 67, No. 55 in the US.

9. The Rolling Stones, Dirty Work . . . Rocking title cut, biting lyrics, from the band’s 1986 album. It was critically panned, the band was on the verge of breaking up during the so-called “World War III” period when chief songwriters Mick Jagger and Keith Richards were at odds, even some fans (I think overly influenced by critics’ reviews) dismiss it without perhaps really listening to it. It is an ‘angry’ album, as I recall at least one critic, Peter Goddard of the Toronto Star, terming it when it came out, but he was talking about the music, not band relationships, in his positive review. He was right. It is ‘angry.’ And aggressive. That’s also why it’s good, critics be damned. But to each their own, of course, in a subjective situation like rating music.

10. Jason and The Scorchers, 19th Nervous Breakdown . . . Scorching, er, cover of the Rolling Stones’ 1966 hit single. The Scorchers’ version was released on their 1986 album Still Standing.

11. Stray, All In Your Mind . . . I’ve told this story before, but was long ago so I’m going to repeat myself. Years back, a friend sends me a message on Facebook. “You have to get this!” “This’ being a CD compilation called I’m A Freak Baby: A Journey Through The British Heavy Psych & Hard Rock Underground Scene 1968-72. So I got it, and the two subsequent releases in the series that started with the debut compilation in 2016, and I’ve done shows using those compilations and will again. The first compilation is how I got into Stray, to the extent that I quickly bought a 2-CD compilation of theirs. Initially active from 1966-77, Stray had a couple reunions during the 1980s and 1990s and at last look, reunited again in 2023 – with all the original members, which is maybe surprising these days – with a new album, About Time. They’ve picked up where they left off with their hard rocking psychedelic and sometimes progressive sound. Iron Maiden covered All In Your Mind as the B-side of its 1990 single Holy Smoke from Maiden’s No Prayer For The Dying album.

12. Steve Earle, Snake Oil . . .From Copperhead Road, the 1988 album (and title cut hit single) that brought Earle’s music to a wider audience. Earle called the album the first blend of heavy metal and bluegrass. A good rocker, Snake Oil, with a fun part coming at the very end: “I knew there was a first-taker on this album somewhere!’ Earle exclaims.

13. AC/DC, Spoilin’ For A Fight . . . Typical AC/DC, nice guitar licks, great opening riff, the usual formula which, as I’ve said before, AC/DC does so well so, why change? That’s the magic, at least if you like the band. If you don’t, then it’s the same old thing, and I can see it, but the band’s in on the joke. โ€œIโ€™m sick to death of people saying weโ€™ve made 11 albums that sound exactly the same,” guitarist Angus Young said some years ago. “In fact, weโ€™ve made 12 albums that sound exactly the same.โ€ Which is not really true, of course, if you listen. This one’s from the 2008 album Black Ice, which topped charts worldwide.

14. Paul McCartney/Wings, Soily (live, from Wings Over America) . . . The band is on fire on this rocker. In fact, it’s prompted me to pull the full album out and listen to it. Again.

15. Leslie West, Blind Man . . . Heavy, bluesy rock from West’s 1969 album, titled Mountain, after which West and bassist/producer Felix Pappalardi formed the band Mountain, of Mississippi Queen, etc. fame.

16. Queen, The Hitman . . . A rocker from Innuendo, the 1991 album that harkened back to the band’s 1970s sound and was the last recorded by Queen while singer Freddie Mercury was still alive.

17. Guns N’ Roses, Locomotive (Complicity) . . . Epic near-nine-minute track from the Use Your Illusion II album, released with its companion piece Illusion I on Sept. 17, 1991. A riff rocker, fine guitar solos by Slash eventually settling into a piano-led coda.

18. Grateful Dead, Terrapin Station . . . Multi-part, 16-minute plus suite and title track from the Dead’s 1977 album. Usually, they’d take a three-minute studio cut like Dark Star and extend it in concert to 23 minutes, as the band did on 1969’s Live/Dead, which turned that song into one of their signatures after the 1968 studio single stiffed. For Terrapin Station, they figured, why wait for the concert, let’s extend it in studio.

19. Alvin Lee, Can’t Stop . . . Nice groove tune from the late great Ten Years After axeman, issued on his 1981 album RX5 under the moniker of The Alvin Lee Band.

20. Black Sabbath, Into The Void . . . There’s the Tony Iommi guitar riffs, Geezer Butler bass lines and Bill Ward drumming that hit you on, especially, the early Black Sabbath stuff like this one from 1971’s Master Of Reality album. Then on some songs in particular, like Into The Void, there’s Ozzy Osbourne’s vocals, often coming in seemingly sideways from parts unknown is how I’d describe it. Creepily effective.

So Old It’s New set list for Monday, April 22, 2024

A tribute set to guitarist/singer/songwriter Dickey Betts of The Allmans Brothers Band fame, who died last Thursday, April 18, at age 80. All songs written and/or sung by Betts, credited as Richard Betts on his first solo album, 1974’s Highway Call. My track-by-track tales follow the bare-bones list.

1. The Dickey Betts Band, Rock Bottom
2. The Allman Brothers Band, Nobody Knows
3. The Allman Brothers Band, Blue Sky
4. The Allman Brothers Band, Revival
5. Dickey Betts & Great Southern, Bougainvillea
6. The Allman Brothers Band, Pony Boy
7. The Allman Brothers Band, Louisiana Lou and Three Card Monty John
8. The Allman Brothers Band, Les Brers In A Minor
9. The Allman Brothers Band, Pegasus
10. The Allman Brothers Band, Seven Turns
11. Richard Betts, Hand Picked
12. The Allman Brothers Band, No One To Run With
13. The Allman Brothers Band, Southbound
14. The Allman Brothers Band, High Falls
15. Richard Betts, Long Time Gone
16. The Allman Brothers Band, Can’t Take It With You
17. The Allman Brothers Band, In Memory Of Elizabeth Reed (from Play All Night: Live at the Beacon Theatre 1992)

My track-by-track tales:

1. The Dickey Betts Band, Rock Bottom . . . Appropriately titled rocker from Betts’ 1988 album Pattern Disruptive which brought Warren Haynes, Betts’ guitar foil on the record, into The Allman Brothers Band family. Haynes later joined the Allmans, with Betts quoted in a book on the band, One Way Out, as saying that with Haynes, he achieved a level of guitar interplay he had once shared with Duane Allman in the early days of the Brothers. Speaking of Duane Allman, the ace axeman was once quoted as saying about Betts: “I’m the famous guitarist, but Dickey’s the good one.” They were both amazing, of course. Drummer Matt Abts, part of the Betts band on Pattern Disruptive, later co-founded Gov’t Mule with Haynes and that Allmans offshoot continues to this day.

2. The Allman Brothers Band, Nobody Knows . . . From the latter-day version of the Allmans, featuring Haynes. A 10-minute piece from 1991’s Shades Of Two Worlds album, it’s yet another example of the Allmans’ magic – they can go on for 10, 20 minutes (just wait until later in the set) or more and it’s never boring. As their longtime producer Tom Dowd was once quoted as saying, and it really applied to all versions of the band: “Here was a rock and roll band playing blues in the jazz vernacular.” Perfectly put.

3. The Allman Brothers Band, Blue Sky . . . From 1972’s Eat A Peach, Betts’ love song to his Indigenous Canadian girlfriend, Sandy “Bluesky” Wabegijig, whom he would later marry, on of his five marriages. It was Betts’ first lead vocal performance on an Allman Brothers Band record. He originally wanted Gregg Allman, who had handled all lead vocals to that point, to sing it but was encouraged by Duane Allman to do the honors. Duane Allman’s playing on the song was one of his last performances with the band before he was killed in a motorcycle accident. Betts, well known for his many instrumental compositions with the Allmans, went on to sing many of their songs including of course Ramblin’ Man and latter day classics like Seven Turns, which I get to later in the set.

4. The Allman Brothers Band, Revival . . . The first solo songwriting credit for Betts on an Allmans album, their second studio effort, Idlewild South, released in November, 1970. It’s got that typical country-esque boogie beat inherent in many of Betts’ songs. It was also the first Allmans song to chart, albeit only making No. 92 on Billboard’s top 100.

5. Dickey Betts & Great Southern, Bougainvillea . . . Beautiful ballad/jam from Betts’ second solo album and first one co-credited to his band Great Southern. Among the players on the record are ‘Dangerous Dan’ Toler, who later joined the Allman Brothers Band for the 1979-82 period albums Enlightened Rogues, Reach For The Sky and Brothers of the Road as well as playing on Gregg Allman’s solo albums I’m No Angel and Just Before The Bullets Fly. At the top of the set, I mentioned Warren Haynes coming into the Allmans’ family via his association with Betts starting with Betts’ Pattern Disruptive album and Toler is another example typical of the Allman Brothers through their various breakups and reunions and configurations: new seeds were often planted and the branches from the parent band continued to interact and collaborate in one way or another, throughout.

6. The Allman Brothers Band, Pony Boy . . . Funky, acoustic country blues from the Brothers and Sisters album which featured Betts’ signature Allmans’ tune, Ramblin’ Man. The album was part of a period where, following the deaths of founding guitarist Duane Allman and bassist Berry Oakley, Betts assumed a huge leadership role in the band alongside Gregg Allman. He became a major songwriting contributor and, for Brothers and Sisters and its followup studio album Win, Lose or Draw – aside from occasional session players before Toler was recruited for Enlightened Rogues – Betts was the Allmans’ lone guitarist.

7. The Allman Brothers Band, Louisiana Lou and Three Card Monty John . . . A jaunty Betts-penned tune from the critically-panned 1975 album Win, Lose or Draw which even the band members themselves didn’t much like, as the band was in tatters by that point, before its first breakup. To quote drummer Butch Trucks: “Everyone was into getting f*cked up and f*cking. We were into being rock stars and the music became secondary. When we heard the finished music, we were all embarrassed.”

Gregg Allman: “Win, Lose or Draw was a perfect reflection of our situation in 1975. It was basically all over with the Allman Brothers Band.”

Yet . . . as with all great bands, the album wasn’t nearly as bad as reviewed, even by the players who made it. My opinion. It’s just that it may have not measured up to previous higher standards as determined by, who, exactly, given that any and every assessment in art is subjective. I maintain that quality bands don’t do bad albums. They do great ones, and less great ones or, at worst, average ones that lesser bands would consider their best work. The Rolling Stones and Dirty Work, for example. But that’s just me. Anyway, Win, Lose or Draw has its gems like the Muddy Waters cover Can’t Lose What You Never Had, the title cut written by Gregg Allman and this one, nice piano by Chuck Leveall coupled with Betts’ typically lyrical guitar, plus a long Betts instrumental, High Falls, that’s often overlooked among the great Betts instrumentals but I get to later in the set.

8. The Allman Brothers Band, Les Brers In A Minor . . Another epic Betts instrumental, this one from the studio portions of the half live, half studio 1972 album Eat A Peach, the last Allmans album on which Duane Allman played, although not on this track, before his death.

9. The Allman Brothers Band, Pegasus . . . Another Betts composition where words aren’t necessary. From Enlightened Rogues.

10. The Allman Brothers Band, Seven Turns . . . Title cut from the reunion album issued in 1990 and one of my all-time favorite Allmans tunes. Beautifully sung and played by Betts but what ‘makes’ it for me, and others in the band, and this is the magic of a band of brothers, is when Gregg Allman comes in on backup vocals with the “somebody’s callin’ your name’ refrain. From the book One Way Out, guitarist Warren Haynes describes how it came about, by happy accident: “Dickey, Johnny Neel (piano, keyboards, synthesizer) and I were working on the three-part harmony stuff for Seven Turns in the studio hallway and Gregg was in the lounge shooting pool. As we rehearsed the ‘somebody’s calling your name’ part, I heard Gregg answer it. I don’t even know if he did it on purpose. It wasn’t like he said “hey, check this out.” He was just singing along to what he heard us doing as he shot pool. And I said, ‘hey, listen to that. This is what we need.’ It was all very coincidental and it became one of the pinnacles of the tune, when Gregg comes in on the anwer vocal at the end of the song.”

11. Richard Betts, Hand Picked . . . Hand pickin’ indeed. Fourteen minutes of western swing, toe-tapping rockabilly instrumental from Betts’ first solo album, Highway Call, 1974, featuring fiddle player legend Vassar Clements.

12. The Allman Brothers Band, No One To Run With . . . Bo Diddley beat tune sung by Gregg Allman, originally written for a Betts solo project but shelved until polished and released on the Allmans’ 1994 studio album Where It All Begins.

13. The Allman Brothers Band, Southbound . . . Up-tempo, swinging tune from Brothers and Sisters.

14. The Allman Brothers Band, High Falls . . . Seemingly almost forgotten, or overlooked, among the band’s acclaimed instrumentals it’s nevertheless a quality composition and a centerpiece of the Win, Lose or Draw album.

15. Richard Betts, Long Time Gone . . . A Ramblin’ Man-like tune from his first solo album, Highway Call.

16. The Allman Brothers Band, Can’t Take It With You . . . Co-written by Betts and actor/sometime musician Don Johnson of Miami Vice TV show fame. From 1979’s Enlightened Rogues album. Could have been a Lynyrd Skynyrd track as it’s very much, to my ears anyway, in that style.

17. The Allman Brothers Band, In Memory Of Elizabeth Reed (from Play All Night: Live at the Beacon Theatre 1992) . . . Elizabeth Reed was the name on a tombstone Betts used to disguise a song to a girlfriend of his who was cheating on her man at the time. The original studio version appeard on the second Allmans studio album, Idlewild South, 1970, and became more well known via the live interpretation on the band’s breakthrough album At Fillmore East. But while it may seem sacrilegious in that I’ve played nothing from that seminal live album in this set, anyone who knows the Allmans knows that album and that version. Instead, I’m going with this mind-blowing 21-minute take on the tune from the latter day Warren Haynes version of the band, proving Betts’ contention that he and Haynes approached the levels of Betts and Duane Allman. The rest of the band ain’t bad, either. Only one original member left now, given Betts’ passing, that being Jai Johanny Johanson, born John Lee Johnson but best known as Jaimoe, drummer and percussionist, age 79 at this writing.

So Old It’s New set list for Saturday, April 20, 2024 – on air 8-10 am ET

My track-by-track tales follow the bare-bones list.

1. David Bowie, Station To Station
2. Deep Purple, Fools
3. Janis Joplin, Move Over
4. The Rolling Stones, Down The Road Apiece
5. ZZ Top, Manic Mechanic
6. Humble Pie, Earth And Water Song
7. David + David, Being Alone Together
8. Styx, Miss America
9. Pearl Jam, Crazy Mary
10. The Beatles, Cry Baby Cry
11. Bob Dylan, Baby Stop Crying
12. Santana, Hope You’re Feeling Better
13. Paul McCartney/Wings, Don’t Let It Bring You Down
14. Carole King, Corazon
15. Steve Miller Band, Journey From Eden
16. The Tragically Hip, Eldorado
17. Neil Young, Eldorado
18. Van Halen, Cabo Wabo
19. Billy Joel, Stiletto
20. KC and The Sunshine Band, Boogie Shoes
21. Joe Walsh/Barnstorm, Mother Says
22. Jack Bruce, Never Tell Your Mother She’s Out Of Tune
23. Warren Zevon, My Ride’s Here

My track-by-track tales:

1. David Bowie, Station To Station . . . Enter a new, at the time, Bowie persona, the Thin White Duke, on this epic opener, the title cut to his 1976 album which represented the start of his transition towards his Berlin period of the albums Low, Heroes and Lodger.

2. Deep Purple, Fools . . . I remember when Nirvana broke big with the Nevermind album, hit single Smells Like Teen Spirit and all of that and I like Nirvana and that album and the whole Seattle scene, but some journalism critics who either should have known better or were ridiculously not well-read, musically speaking, went agog about Nirvana’s soft to hard transitions (not so much within that hit single but throughout the album it came from) within songs . . . and the rest of us were thinking, uh, ever hear Fools by Deep Purple, from 1971 (20-plus years earlier) or much of Led Zeppelin or who knows how many other bands, Jethro Tull an example, with myriad within song changes, etc?

3. Janis Joplin, Move Over . . . The song that arguably got me into Janis Joplin, and she was already gone, sadly, by the time of its release in early 1971; she died in October, 1970. My sister had the Pearl album, so I heard this a lot and yet again I thank my older brother and sister, by 8 and 4 years, respectively, for introducing their younger sibling to so much great music and charting at least part of my musical course. Although it’s a well-known track, or at least has come to be well known, and one written by Joplin herself (many of her hits were covers) Move Over perhaps surprisingly was not released as a single from Pearl, although it’s found its way to various compilations over the years and deservedly so. And what (another) a great name for a Joplin band: she went from Big Brother and The Holding Company to The Kozmic Blues Band to her Canadian backup band on Pearl, the Full Tilt Boogie Band.

4. The Rolling Stones, Down The Road Apiece . . . Boogie woogie early Stones written by American songwriter Don Raye. The Stones put it on their 1965 UK album The Rolling Stones No. 2, released in January, and it came out that same year on the US release The Rolling Stones, Now! back in the days when US labels bastardized releases by UK bands like the Stones and Beatles with different track listings, including singles that were never put on albums in the UK, etc. The Stones played the track on selected shows on their 1981 tour.

5. ZZ Top, Manic Mechanic . . . From ZZ Top’s 1979 album Deguello which featured hits like Cheap Sunglasses and I Thank You plus well-known songs I’m Bad I’m Nationwide. The album is front-to-back good in my opinion but I have a soft spot for this one because when my two boys were young, and getting into the music I was listening to, we formed an air guitar band and this was one of our songs. Eldest son was the singer, I was the guitarist, youngest son played drums although sometimes he and I would switch. As things have played out in reality, eldest son can play most instruments, particularly guitar, has recorded and done gigs beyond his ‘day job’, youngest dabbled in drums, I tried guitar, too lazy and unfocused to continue so I listen instead and do a radio show DJ gig.

6. Humble Pie, Earth And Water Song . . . A mostly pastoral, beautiful piece, heavy in spots, written by Peter Frampton for the Pie’s 1970 album, the band’s third, simply titled Humble Pie.

7. David + David, Being Alone Together . . . What might have been? But people go in different directions, as Davids Baerwald and Ricketts did following the release of their one and only collaboration as a duo, the 1986 arguably somewhat obscure album Boomtown although it was something of a hit at the time. It’s brilliant. I cite it and play it often, it introduced me to Baerwald’s occasional catalog since, while Ricketts went into, mostly, music production. Both guys worked with Sheryl Crow on her 1993 debut album Tuesday Night Music Club.

8. Styx, Miss America . . . Not major into Styx, got into them more, as I did with KISS, via my younger brother by 5 years who was a big fan of both bands during the 1970s. But, I will say, I like this rocking tune, a rival to Prelude 12/Suite Madame Blue as my favorite Styx track. It’s been misinterpreted over time, as it’s actually about writer James Young’s wife’s battle with an incurable disease. Miss America

9. Pearl Jam, Crazy Mary . . . From a tribute covers album of Victoria Williams songs, 1993’s Sweet Relief: A Benefit for Victoria Williams, who was stricken with multiple sclerosis. Williams, who at last look is still with us despite her ongoing health issues, does backing vocals on the song. It’s one of Pearl Jam’s finest performances, in my estimation. The album led to the creation of the Sweet Relief Musician’s Fund, a non-profit charity that provides funds from which professional musicians with medical care or financial needs can draw. There have since been two more such compilations. Among those performing on the various albums were Lou Reed, Smashing Pumpkins, R.E.M., The Jayhawks, Jackson Browne, k.d. lang and Rickie Lee Jones.

10. The Beatles, Cry Baby Cry . . . Most people know the band well enough that finding ‘deep cuts’ can be a challenge. This one’s from The White Album. To me, it’s in the vein of great John Lennon songs on that album, along with I’m So Tired and Happiness Is A Warm Gun, with Cry Baby Cry having the additional ‘oomph’ of Paul McCartney’s Can You Take Me Back coda.

11. Bob Dylan, Baby Stop Crying . . . “You been down to the bottom with a bad man, babe. But you’re back where you belong. Go get me my pistol, babe” . . . and as always with Dylan, his vocal intonations, as on this one from 1978’s Street-Legal, are the ‘thing’. People who say he can’t sing don’t get it; he’s the best Bob Dylan singer there could ever be.

12. Santana, Hope You’re Feeling Better . . . Among my favorites from Santana, a rocking cut from Abraxas; I figured it fit in well with the previous series of people crying and, hopefully, recovered from whatever trauma brought the tears on.

13. Paul McCartney/Wings, Don’t Let It Bring You Down . . . Celtic-type track co-written with Denny Laine, from the London Town album, 1978.

14. Carole King, Corazon . . . Funky, maybe uncharacteristic but intoxicating stuff from King’s 1973 album Fantasy.

15. Steve Miller Band, Journey From Eden . . . From the tail end of Miller’s earlier, psychedelic, bluesy period, a seven-album stretch starting in 1968, before he became a commercial hits machine via albums The Joker, Fly Like An Eagle and Book of Dreams. This is from his 1972 album Recall The Beginning . . . A Journey From Eden. A year later came The Joker and widespread commercial success. And I send this one out to a friend who has been mentioning Miller to me recently.

16. The Tragically Hip, Eldorado . . .

“And tired of thinking ’bout drinking
For thinking of drinking
While thinking ’bout drinking
And thinking ’bout drinking
It’s man-sized inside”

From the Hip album Fully Completely.

17. Neil Young, Eldorado . . . Same title as the Hip song, different song. Spanish guitar showcase, and other things, from Young’s 1989 album Freedom.

18. Van Halen, Cabo Wabo . . . If you like drinking, you like this line: “We drink Mescal right from the bottle. Salt shaker, little lick a lime, oh” . . . Sammy Hagar of Van Hagar fame still going strong, a rich man not just from music but via his Cabo Wabo bar, whiskeys, etc.

19. Billy Joel, Stiletto . . . Why this funky groove, my favorite on the album, wasn’t a single from 1978’s 52nd Street is beyond me but in the end I’m glad because it therefore qualifies as a deep cut which is my show’s raison d’etre.

20. KC and The Sunshine Band, Boogie Shoes . . . Guilty pleasure track, occurred to me out of the blue as a tie-in with Billy Joel’s. Stiletto shoes, you know, etc. An interesting maybe instance of a song being an album track, on KC’s self-titled 1975 album which featured the big hits That’s The Way ( I Like It) and Get Down Tonight then later, via the Saturday Night Fever movie soundtrack, becoming a hit.

21. Joe Walsh/Barnstorm, Mother Says . . . From the first album, 1972’s Barnstorm, Walsh did after leaving the James Gang. It was the first album recorded at Caribou Ranch, built by James William Guercio, best known as the producer on Chicago’s first eleven studio albums. Chicago recorded five albums there while Elton John named his 1974 album Caribou after the studio, where he also recorded Captain Fantastic and The Brown Dirt Cowboy and Rock Of The Westies.

22. Jack Bruce, Never Tell Your Mother She’s Out Of Tune . . . Up tempo jazz all over the place excellence from the former Cream member’s 1969 debut solo album Songs For A Tailor.

23. Warren Zevon, My Ride’s Here . . . Jesus, John Wayne, Shelley, Keats, all in one song . . . Zevon’s way with lyrics was arguably unparalleled. The music’s good, too. Title cut from his 2002 album, as I ride on out of another show.

So Old It’s New set list for Monday, April 15, 2024

My track-by-track tales follow the bare-bones list.

1. FM, Black Noise
2. Nash The Slash, In A Glass Eye
3. BB Gabor, Simulated Groove
4. The Rolling Stones, Hot Stuff
5. Sly & The Family Stone, In Time
6. Isaac Hayes, Hyperbolicsyllabicsesquedalymistic
7. Curtis Mayfield, Get Down
8. Peter Tosh, Downpressor Man
9. Black Uhuru, Mondays
10. Junior Murvin, Police And Thieves
11. The Clash, Police And Thieves (Junior Murvin cover)
12. Bob Marley/The Wailers, I Shot The Sheriff
13. The Specials, Gangsters
14. Devo, Shrivel-Up
15. Queen + Paul Rodgers, Cosmos Rockin’
16. Paul Rodgers, Deep Blue
17. Love, Bummer In The Summer
18. John Mayall/Bluesbreakers, Out Of Reach
19. Elton John, Indian Sunset

My track-by-track tales:

1. FM, Black Noise . . . Back when FM (radio, not the band) played long tracks, even full albums or album vinyl sides, you were likely to hear this, and/or songs like it, often late at night on things like ‘album replay’ shows. It’s the multi-faceted, including great drumming, title cut from Canadian prog/space rock band FM, featuring Nash The Slash. Many got into the record via its hit single Phasors On Stun, and a great one that is, doubly so because it served as a gateway into a terrific full album listen.

2. Nash The Slash, In A Glass Eye . . . You can hear Nash sing “in a glass eye’ on this spooky track from his post-FM solo album Children Of The Night and I only mention that because the song is written as “In A Glass Eye’ everywhere I look . . . except for my 2016 expanded CD re-release of the 1981 album. My CD copy titles the song In The Glass Eye. Typo? No matter. Cool track, regardless.

3. BB Gabor, Simulated Groove . . . The late Gabor, an emigre from Hungary who fled that country with his parents at the time of the Soviet invasion in 1956 is well known, certainly in Canada, for songs like Metropolitan Life, Nyet Nyet Soviet (Soviet Jewellery), his cover of Joni Mitchell’s Big Yellow Taxi (which I almost played instead, have before, I imagine will again) and Moscow Drug Club, from his self-titled 1980 debut album. But I love the, er, groove, and fun, partly spoken-word lyrics to this one from his less successful second album, Girls Of The Future. “Would you like to have a daaaance? . . . are you sure you’re from this planet?” Gabor, alas, left us, at his own hand, in his early 40s, in 1990.

4. The Rolling Stones, Hot Stuff . . . Speaking of grooves . . . Funky, catchy, disco-y opening cut to the Stones’ 1976 release Black and Blue, an amalgam of funk, disco, reggae, salsa, hard rock, ballads and whatever else the boys were delving into at the time as they experimented with different guitarists (Harvey Mandel of Canned Heat and various sessions fame on this one) in replacing Mick Taylor, finally settling on Ron Wood. The record was largely savaged by critics at the time but as is often the case, decades later those same critics in ‘retrospective’ reviews praise it. Whatever. I love the album (so did Mick Taylor, apparently) but as a big Stones fan, I’m probably the wrong guy to ask because I embrace everything they’ve done. When it was finally released as a single, after Fool To Cry from the album, Hot Stuff managed just No. 49 on the US charts although it was apparently big in dance clubs. Two years later, people embraced the Stones doing funk/disco as Miss You, from Some Girls, was a No. 1 hit.

5. Sly & The Family Stone, In Time . . . Intoxicating funk/soul from the 1973 album Fresh. Jazz great Miles Davis was apparently so impressed by the song that he made his band listen to it repeatedly for a half hour, to let its potential influences sink in – although Miles had already gone down the psychedelic funk path with his 1972 album On The Corner.

6. Isaac Hayes, Hyperbolicsyllabicsesquedalymistic . . . Four songs, including two extended cover tunes – Walk On By and By The Time I Get To Phoenix – a compelling, arguably iconic album cover of Hayes’ bald head, and this near 10-minute psychedelic soul exercise and there you have the essence of the 1969 release Hot Buttered Soul. Superb stuff.

7. Curtis Mayfield, Get Down . . . More funky soul, from Mayfield’s second album, Roots, 1971. It’s the type of intoxicating music that envelops the listener in a pleasurable embrace.

8. Peter Tosh, Downpressor Man . . . From Tosh’s 1977 album Equal Rights, one of several recordings of a song he did (some spelled Downpresser Man) of a traditional spiritual with, apparently, unknown authorship also recorded, as Sinnerman, in 1965 by Nina Simone. The song has an interesting history, and thankfully given the internet, it’s easier for me to just link to it:

Peter Tosh and Downpressor Man

9. Black Uhuru, Mondays . . . One of the reggae bands I briefly got into once reggae started breaking big, certainly among mainstream white audiences, thanks in large measure to Eric Clapton’s No. 1 hit cover of Marley’s I Shot The Sheriff (more on that in a bit) and Peter Tosh’s association with The Rolling Stones as he was signed to Rolling Stones Records. I stayed with Marley and Tosh but a reggae ‘Gold’ double CD compilation of various artists – and of course now the internet – has since sufficed, for me, for most of the rest of it. Hypnotic track from a band that’s been around since 1972. Mondays is from the 1982 album Chill Out.

10. Junior Murvin, Police And Thieves . . . Original version of a song, released in 1976, that The Clash covered for their debut album in 1977. The song’s co-writers, Murvin and Lee “Scratch” Perry, the legendary producer/singer/composer, didn’t like the speeded up, more rocking Clash version, with Murvin quoted as saying “they have destroyed Jah work!” and Perry saying The Clash “ruined’ it although he then worked with the band, producing the song Complete Control which was a top 30 single in the UK and appeared on the US version of the first Clash album. Bob Marley liked The Clash version of Police and Thieves and was inspired by it to write his song Punky Reggae Party, whose lyrics mention The Clash, The Damned and The Jam along with reggae bands The Wailers and Toots and The Maytals.

11. The Clash, Police And Thieves . . . I’ve talked so much about the song, I ought to play the Clash version so I leave it for listeners to judge. I like both versions, with a slight preference for the original by Junior Murvin – arguably a better groove and more emotionally charged, even though it’s understated but that’s what makes it effective.

12. Bob Marley/The Wailers, I Shot The Sheriff . . . Marley’s version – from his 1973 album Burnin’ – is arguably not often heard, at least in comparison to Eric Clapton’s cover which came out a year later and did break Marley and reggae into the mainstream. Marley, according to some reports, wasn’t pleased that Clapton’s version received more airplay, even on the Jamaica Broadcasting Corporation, than his own version did. To me, another case where both versions are excellent. More on the story of the two versions: Marley and Clapton – I Shot The Sheriff

13. The Specials, Gangsters . . . The song that got me into ska music – bands like The Specials, The Selecter, Madness and The Beat (known as The English Beat in Canada and the US) – during my college days. It’s from the band’s debut album in 1979, at least in Canada, the US and other places. In line with UK music industry practice, at least at the time, it didn’t appear on the UK version of the album but was a top 10 hit single. It didn’t chart in the colonies but like much of the ‘different’ stuff coming out at the time, was pretty well known by followers of such shows as Toronto station City-TV’s The New Music, which is where I first heard it.

14. Devo, Shrivel-Up . . . A college friend – or I suppose I should say acquaintance – of mine I had otherwise nothing in common with but music – not a bad thing at all – introduced me to Devo and the band’s 1978 debut album via playing me their cover of Satisfaction by The Rolling Stones. He knew I was a big Stones fan, said “(Mick) Jagger loves it!” but he didn’t need to sell me on it. I appreciate different and I, too, like Devo’s version of the Stones’ hit because if you’re going to cover a tune, make it different and thus at least attempt to make it your own, otherwise it’s just a note-for-note copy and likely will pale in comparison to the original and risk eliciting a ‘why bother?’ assessment. So I bought the Devo album, and found this infectious track, among many others. My buddies, still channelling the All The Young Dudes lyrics “my brother’s back at home with his Beatles and his Stones (and Zep, and Deep Purple, and Black Sabbath, and The Who and so on . . . and I still was, too) thought I’d lost my mind. I told them to open theirs and kept on my path of discovery with Devo, Talking Heads, Ian Dury (also introduced to me by the aformentioned college friend), etc.

15. Queen + Paul Rodgers, Cosmos Rockin’ . . . From the one and only studio album released by Rodgers with Queen, released in 2008, a few years after they had finished a world tour as Queen + Paul Rodgers, complete with some Free and Bad Company songs and a live album and DVD, Return Of The Champions. They then decided to do a studio album, eventually titled The Cosmos Rocks, with this straight ahead boogie rocker leading things off. It’s not Freddie Mercury, it may not exactly be Queen, but Rodgers is one of the acknowledged greatest voices in rock music and it’s a more than creditable effort.

16. Paul Rodgers, Deep Blue . . . Straight ahead rocker from Rodgers, from his 1999 album Electric, another reliably consistent effort in his catalog. Rodgers released a new studio album, Midnight Rose, in September 2023. It’s good but to be honest I’m not familiar enough with it yet to decide what to play from it, but I will get to it soon. What’s remarkable is that Rodgers is still with us. He suffered major strokes in 2016 and 2019, affecting his speech and musical abilities, then 11 (eleven!) minor strokes but after treatments and surgery has thankfully made a full recovery.

17. Five Man Electrical Band, Moonshine (Friend Of Mine) . . . A minor hit single, made No. 56 in home country Canada in 1970 and is likely familiar to most once heard. It was overshadowed on its parent album, Good-byes and Butterflies, by Signs, the hit single for which the band is best known. I had to drop this track due to time constraints. It’s available on my Bald Boy Facebook page.

18. Love, Bummer In The Summer . . . It’s not quite summer but I couldn’t wait. Nice country guitar break in the middle of the arguably too short (just under two and a half minutes) but very sweet song. Leave ’em wanting more. From the 1967 album Forever Changes, one of those influential albums, particularly on psychedelic and folk rock, that didn’t sell much but is definitely worthy of the acclaim.

19. John Mayall/Bluesbreakers, Out Of Reach . . . A Peter Green-penned and sung haunting slow blues that first saw wide release on the 1971 compilation Thru The Years, a collection of previously unissued songs or singles that weren’t on albums. It later appeared on expanded re-releases, in 2003 and 2006, of The Bluesbreakers’ 1967 album A Hard Road, from whose sessions it came.

20. Doug and The Slugs, Drifting Away . . . Good breakup song. Good lyrics. Good tune. From 1980’s Cognac and Bologna album, which I got into via a short-term college girlfriend who introduced me to the band’s music after she had spent some time in Vancouver, where the Slugs got their start in 1977. Dropped this track due to time constraints. It’s available on my Bald Boy Facebook page.

21. Elton John, Indian Sunset . . . Extended, symphonic in spots, piece from 1971’s Madman Across The Water album. The depth of EJ’s catalog during the 1970s is, well, deep.

So Old It’s New set list for Saturday, April 13, 2024 – on air 8-10 am ET

My track-by-track tales follow the bare-bones list.

1. The Beatles, Birthday
2. Vanilla Fudge, Ticket To Ride
3. Spooky Tooth, I Am The Walrus
4. Rod Stewart, Get Back
5. Deep Purple, Hey Joe
6. Garland Jeffreys, 96 Tears
7. Television, Marquee Moon
8. T Bone Burnett, Humans From Earth
9. Steely Dan, Aja
10. Van Morrison, A Sense Of Wonder
11. Led Zeppelin, Black Country Woman
12. The Rolling Stones, Brand New Car
13. Nazareth, Back To The Trenches
14. The Kinks, To The Bone
15. The Black Crowes, Stare It Cold
16. ZZ Top, Sure Got Cold After The Rain Fell
17. Creedence Clearwater Revival, Gloomy
18. Ian Hunter, Standin’ In My Light
19. The Byrds, Lover Of The Bayou (studio version)
20. Jeff Beck, Blues De Luxe
21. Tommy Bolin, Post Toastee

My track-by-track tales:

1. The Beatles, Birthday . . . It’s my youngest of two son’s birthday Saturday. He’s 32. This is for you, Scott.

2. Vanilla Fudge, Ticket To Ride . . . Somehow or other, playing a Beatles’ track got me thinking of other bands covering Beatles material (and that could and now that it occurs to me likely will be a future show) so here’s the first of a few, then into some more cover tunes and then on with original material from the rest of the artists in the set. Vanilla Fudge puts their psychedelic stamp on this one.

3. Spooky Tooth, I Am The Walrus . . . As does Spooky Tooth, a la Vanilla Fudge psychedelic approach on this Beatles tune and both bands employ what to me is the best/most effective approach to covering well-known songs: make it different, at least attempt to make it your own.

4. Rod Stewart, Get Back . . . Stewart has always been a good interpreter of other people’s music and this is a quite fine to me, raunchy in spots cover of The Beatles tune, generally along the same path The Beatles took but different enough with enough of Stewart’s stamp on it. It appeared on the soundtrack of a movie bomb All This and World War II which lasted two weeks in threatres in 1976 before being mercifully pulled out of circulation. I don’t claim to know much about the movie but lots of interesting reading about it is available online including this analysis headlined: โ€˜All This and World War IIโ€™: The Beatles Movie Nobody Asked For, Nobody Saw and Nobody Remembers.’ (but now I want to find it and watch it ๐Ÿ™‚ )

All This and World War II

In short, it’s a movie incorporating scenes, mostly newsreel footage, and you can view the trailer in the link above, of World War II juxtaposed to Beatles music, in this case Beatles music as covered by other artists. On the surface, a bizarre concept, but the man behind the movie explains his rationale in the above link. Major artists participated, including Stewart, Elton John, Bryan Ferry of Roxy Music fame, The Bee Gees, Peter Gabriel doing Strawberry Fields Forever in apparently his first solo performance once he left Genesis and before his first solo album was released, Tina Turner, Status Quo . . . But the failure of the movie is maybe, and I can only guess, why Stewart, in his otherwise in depth and informative personal song-by-song liner notes to his Storyteller anthology, said of Get Back only “What’s this doin’ ‘ere?’ Well, I for one am glad he included it on the anthology, it’s a good cover, to me akin to his cover of the Stones’ Street Fighting Man, similar to the original but with enough of Rod’s personal stamp to make it effective.

5. Deep Purple, Hey Joe . . . Not a Beatles cover, but it’s along the lines of the psychedelic Vanilla Fudge and Spooky Tooth Beatles covers earlier in the set, Hey Joe as done by the original version of Deep Purple. That version of the group featured Rod Evans on lead vocals and Nick Simper on bass before they were replaced by Ian Gillan (vocals) and Roger Glover (bass) for the fourth album, In Rock, which charted Purple’s course into the hard rock arena. To that point, Purple had been fairly successful, Hush was a hit single for the first version of the band but they were dipping in and out of various styles and seemingly not totally finding themselves. Yet that first version of the band left lots of great music behind including this epic treatment of the song Jimi Hendrix didn’t write but made famous and I leave listeners to research the myriad tales about who exactly wrote the song. The Purple version is mind blowing, if underappreciated or even recognized, given, especially, the interplay between Purple keyboardist Jon Lord and guitarist Ritchie Blackmore, including some fine Spanish guitar interludes, many songs in one, essentially.

6. Garland Jeffreys, 96 Tears . . . Last one in my mini covers set within the overall set. And I reserve the right to go contrary to what I’ve previously said about how making a cover version different is the way to go. Sometimes, you can do the song the same way, but differently enough – I’d put Van Halen’s cover of The Kinks’ You Really Got Me in that category – to still make a song your own while paying respectful homage to the original. And that’s what Garland Jeffreys does on his 1981 version of the ? and the Mysterians 1966 No. 1 hit. I think it’s Jeffreys’ aggressive vocal style that does it for me. I remember when this came out on his Escape Artist album, it of course reminded me of the Mysterians hit, prompted me to buy the Jeffreys album, and I discovered a new artist whose work I like.

7. Television, Marquee Moon . . . Infectious, irresistible riff on this title cut to Television’s most acclaimed album, the 1977 debut that didn’t do much on the charts but has long been cited as a major influence on the development of what became known as alternative rock. I like the song. But I didn’t, at first. I remember buying the album because it’s so acclaimed. Somehow I missed it in the late 1970s which is weird because I was major into the ‘new wave’ stuff that was coming out then but I also totally missed The Stranglers while listening to Elvis Costello, Joe Jackson and Graham Parker and I’ve gone back since and I still don’t ‘get’ The Stranglers but anyway one of those time and place things, I suppose, that I missed in their case. Back to Television: so I bought the album at some point, was unimpressed. Took it back, traded it in at a used store. Then, years later, I was in a used store and a song was playing on the store’s sound system and I’m digging it and I hear the words marquee moon in the lyric and I’m like, “I’ve been too hasty, I must have this!” So, I now long since have it. I still haven’t really grasped the rest of the record but for the title cut alone, it’s well worth it.

8. T Bone Burnett, Humans From Earth . . . His production credits are too long to list – Elvis Costello, Elton John, John Mellencamp to name just a few, myriad soundtracks – but Burnett also does his own music, and this cool soundscape groove is from his 1992 solo release The Criminal Under My Own Hat.

9. Steely Dan, Aja . . . Amazing title cut from the band’s 1977 album. Peg and Josie were the well-known and well-deserved hits but Aja incorporates all that Steely Dan was, could be, and where they were heading in an intoxicating brew of jazz rock and however else one might describe it. Sax solo by the great Wayne Shorter, who deferred at first but then agreed to play on the record and of course adds so much.

10. Van Morrison, A Sense Of Wonder . . . Title cut to Van The Man’s 1984 album, a beautiful, spiritual track released as a single but didn’t chart. Veteran artists seem to get to that point; they continue releasing great music, and Van still is but already 40 years ago he had fallen out of commercial favor at least as far as the charts went, but so what? You miss loads of great music if all you pay attention to is top hits, or charts, if they even exist anymore.

11. Led Zeppelin, Black Country Woman . . . Noted for Robert Plant’s ‘nah, leave it” meaning leave in the sound of an airplane flying overhead at the start of the song as Zep is recording outside at Stargroves, an estate in the English countryside owned at the time by Mick Jagger of The Rolling Stones. And a great tune it is, from a great album, Physical Graffiti.

12. The Rolling Stones, Brand New Car . . . And here are the Stones, with a cool wah wah guitar groove tune complete with obvious but still fun double entendre lyrics i.e. car equals woman, from 1994’s Voodoo Lounge album. Some critics panned the song but what is a journalism critic, really, one could argue, but a listener with access to a keyboard and a wide platform? It’s a good song, nice groove, nice playing.

13. Nazareth, Back To The Trenches . . . Nazareth had a great run of hard rocking hit making during most of the 1970s then seemed to sort of lose themselves as they attempted or seemed to attempt to diversify their sound into the 1980s and they lost some fans, as a result, after let’s say the Malice In Wonderland album in 1980 with its hit Holiday but even that album was getting perhaps too slick for some fans’ tastes. Yet even amid the creative let’s call it searching, every now and then the band would reach back to its roots and Back To The Trenches, a hard-driving, pulsating complete with biting political lyrics tune from 1982’s 2XS album, fits that bill and could easily have fit on albums like Razamanaz, Loud ‘n’ Proud and Hair Of The Dog. And Nazareth is still around, original lead singer Dan McCafferty retired due to health reasons and later sadly died, but the band has continued with McCafferty-approved singer Carl Sentance, and has fully – even when McCafferty was still around until 2014’s Rock ‘n Roll Telephone album – returned to kick butt rock and roll as evidenced by the two very decent recent albums, Tattooed On My Brain (2018) and Surviving The Law (2022). By this point, to me, longtime bands carrying on with likely not all the original members, where once I might have said, ah, pack it in, now and obviously likely a product of my own aging, I admire them for their perseverence. I mean, it’s what they do. Why stop?

14. The Kinks, To The Bone . . . Fabulous title cut to what turned out to be the last Kinks album, although rumors persist about a possible reunion but as a major Kinks fan, I actually hope not. It’s been too long, 30 years, let it be. What’s the point, at this point? Both Davies brothers, Ray and Dave, continue to sporadically release solo music, not to me up to their Kinks’ standards but I think it’s all fine, their collective legacy is assured. And why not go out with as brilliant a cut as this title track to what otherwise was a live largely unplugged album (that was a big thing, back then, 1994) played in front of a small audience in the band’s Konk Studios. The album featured most of any Kinks hit you could name, it’s a terrific record, well played, and it ends on this high note of a great studio track. A good one to go out on.

15. The Black Crowes, Stare It Cold . . . Stones-ish without apology – the Crowes often cite the Stones as an obvious influence along with Faces and so on – deep cut from the blockbuster debut Crowes’ album, Shake Your Moneymaker in 1990 featuring hits like Jealous Again, the Otis Redding cover Hard To Handle and Twice As Hard.

16. ZZ Top, Sure Got Cold After The Rain Fell . . . Pure, cool, deep blues from early ZZ Top, from the second album, Rio Grande Mud, released in 1972. I thought of this one due to a forecast of rain, where I live, over the next few days.

17. Creedence Clearwater Revival, Gloomy . . . A multi-faceted track, great guitar sounds and yet more obvious proof that hits compilations are a good way, but not the only way, to appreciate a great band but of course they often serve as a fine introduction and some people are satisfied with the comp, others are prompted to dig deeper. CCR is renowned as a great singles band and deservedly so but there is so much depth to their catalog, as this track from their debut album from 1968 proves.

18. Ian Hunter, Standin’ In My Light . . . It’s been on my list of potential plays and I’ve been trying to get this song in for the last several weeks since returning, as of March 4, from my 9-month hiatus but somehow or other I haven’t made the space or time for it. So, finally, here it is. From Hunter’s great 1979 album You’re Never Alone With A Schizophrenic.

19. The Byrds, Lover Of The Bayou (studio version) . . . I say ‘studio version’ in parentheses because in most cases, including compilations, one will find Lover Of The Bayou in its live three minutes and change version as originally appeared on the half live, half studio album Untitled, in 1970. And the live version as a result has likely become the most well known but while I like both, I tend to prefer the studio version perhaps because it’s almost two minutes longer, hence I’m able to enjoy that infectious riff for longer. The studio version, recorded in 1970 as the band was working on the album, didn’t see physical release, to my knowledge and research, until the 2000 expanded re-release of the original album.

20. Jeff Beck, Blues De Luxe . . . From the Truth album, the 1968 album that set the template for so much that came after (Led Zeppelin, for instance). It featured of course Jeff Beck on guitar, Rod Stewart on lead vocals, Ronnie Wood on bass and Micky Waller on drums but session player to the stars Nicky Hopkins arguably steals the show on piano, on this track.

21. Tommy Bolin, Post Toastee . . . In some ways, the brilliant guitarist Bolin was forever the ‘replacement’ guitarist and even though he brought immense talent and songwriting ability to the bands he joined, like the James Gang (replacing Joe Walsh) and Deep Purple (replacing Ritchie Blackmore) that’s how he was often perceived despite his prodigious talent. He was an amazing artist, with demons, drug addiction, that eventually did him in far too soon but what a legacy. Not only with the aforementioned bands but with jazz drummer Billy Cobham on his Spectrum album (Bolin’s gateway into Deep Purple after David Coverdale heard his playing on the record) and Bolin’s earlier band Zephyr. Bolin wound up doing just two solo studio albums, Teaser and Private Eyes from which I pulled this track and I just had to play it (again, I’ve played it before and don’t like repeating but . . . inevitable . . . ) because while looking it up, in one post on YouTube I saw a comment from a former exotic dancer who said that she always played Post Toastee as part of her act, and always got her best tips when she danced to the song. I can visualize it, dancing to the song’s groove. So, ๐Ÿ™‚ here you go. I’ll never think of the song in the same way again.

So Old It’s New set list for Monday, April 8, 2024

1. Pink Floyd, Eclipse
2. Eric Burdon & War, Sun/Moon
3. Genesis, Watcher Of The Skies
4. Triumph, Blinding Light Show/Moonchild
5. Deep Purple, Shield
6. The Monkees, Daily Nightly
7. Fleetwood Mac, Hypnotized
8. David Lee Roth, Ladies Night In Buffalo?
9. The Rolling Stones, Dance, (Pt. 1) (from Live At The Wiltern)
10. Rory Gallagher, Keep A Knockin’ (Little Richard cover, from All Around Man, Live in London)
11. Pete Townshend, Gonna Get Ya
12. AC/DC, Nick Of Time
13. George Thorogood & The Destroyers, Killer’s Bluze
14. Rare Earth, What’d I Say (Ray Charles cover), from Rare Earth In Concert
15. Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, Don’t Pull Me Over
16. Slim Harpo, Shake Your Hips
17. Sea Level, Nothing Matters But The Fever
18. Eagles, Long Road Out Of Eden

My track-by-track tales, including Buddy Guy’s Feels Like Rain, Concrete Blonde’s Walking In London and Commander Cody’s Lost In The Ozone, which were on my initial list but had to drop for time reasons. Such is live radio. ๐Ÿ™‚ Song clips for those songs, and the entire set, are available on my Facebook page, Bald Boy.

1. Pink Floyd, Eclipse . . . I don’t typically like doing the obvious, but what the heck. So we begin, with the first few songs tied, in title at least, to today’s celestial event.

2. Eric Burdon & War, Sun/Moon . . . Ten minute slow-burning funk/psychedelic piece from the second and final album, The Black Man’s Burdon, 1970, by the collaboration between Burdon, of Animals fame, and War.

3. Genesis, Watcher Of The Skies . . . The opening cut on Foxtrot, released in September of 1972. Second time in a few days I’ve mined that album; I played Get ‘Em Out By Friday for last Saturday’s show.

4. Triumph, Blinding Light Show/Moonchild . . . Near nine-minute epic from the Canadian band’s self-titled 1976 debut album, re-released on CD in 1995 with a new title, In The Beginning, and new cover art.

5. Deep Purple, Shield . . . From the first version of Deep Purple, a more psychedelic phase of the band with Rod Evans on lead vocals and Nick Simper on bass before things changed to the harder rock direction with the switch to Ian Gillan as lead singer and Roger Glover on bass for what became the most celebrated version of Purple, the so-called Mark II version of Gillan, Glover, guitarist Ritchie Blackmore, keyboardist Jon Lord and drummer Ian Paice. Mark II had many great moments and albums, of course, and likely remain to many the default position for Deep Purple but there are many quality moments in the myriad other versions of the band, and Shield is one of them.

6. The Monkees, Daily Nightly . . . The eclipse turns day into night, at least briefly, prompting my selection of this Monkees song, a spooky offering written by Mike Nesmith. It appeared on the group’s fourth album, PIsces, Aquarius, Capricorn and Jones Ltd. Apparently, the first rock recording to feature a Moog synthesizer.

7. Fleetwood Mac, Hypnotized . . . Another from the perhaps underappreciated Bob Welch on guitar period of Fleetwood Mac, in the middle between the early Peter Green foundational blues band days and the later Stevie Nicks-Lindsey Buckingham commercial monster sales phase. This one’s from the 1973 album Mystery To Me.

8. David Lee Roth, Ladies Night In Buffalo? . . . From Eat ‘Em and Smile, the first full solo album by Roth after the breakup of the original version of Van Halen, which became the so-called Van Hagar with Sammy Hagar taking over on lead vocals. After a strong start with this album, Roth quickly went downhill commercially. This nice groove tune wasn’t even a single, Yankee Rose from the album was. Easily my favorite Roth solo song, though, and apparently he thought well of it, enough to put it on a later compilation album.

9. The Rolling Stones, Dance (Pt. 1) (from Live At The Wiltern) . . . Extended, even funkier version of the opening track to 1980’s Emotional Rescue album. There is a part 2 to the song, called If I Was A Dancer (Dance Pt. 2) which appeared on the 1981 compilation album Sucking In The Seventies. I’ve played it before on the show, coupling it with part 2 and will get back to it at some point. As for this version of part 1, it’s from the recently released live album of a Los Angeles theatre show, from the 2002-03 Licks world tour. The Stones were touring after releasing their 40th anniversary career (to that point) spanning 40 Licks compilation, which seems and is ages ago now that they are beyond 60 years in the business. It was a tour where the Stones played stadiums, usually focusing on the greatest hits, arenas, going a bit deeper into the catalog and, in some cities, small theatres where they dug even deeper into their album cuts. I saw the stadium and arena shows in Toronto. They didn’t do a theatre show in Toronto as an official part of the tour although they did do a warmup gig at the Palais Royale dance hall. I have it on a bootleg DVD and CD and it’s great, particularly for fans of Stones’ deep cuts as it featured rarely if ever played live songs like Torn and Frayed, Hot Stuff and Heart of Stone, plus some live rehearsal footage.

10. Rory Gallagher, Keep A Knockin’ (from All Around Man, Live in London) . . . Quite the rave-up on short, sweet, two-minutes 15 seconds that’s all you need Little Richard cover from another recent live release, taken from a 1990 show, from the archives of the late great Irish guitarist/songwriter/bandleader. A fellow by the name of Geraint Watkins – who has played with the likes of Paul McCartney, Van Morrison, Nick Lowe, Dave Edmunds and Status Quo – does a nice impression of Jerry Lee Lewis on piano on the track, and throughout the album. Or, perhaps I should just say, Geraint Watkins is a great piano/keyboard player, although the boogie woogie on this track reminded me of Jerry Lee.

11. Pete Townshend, Gonna Get Ya . . . From 1980’s Empty Glass, likely if not certainly Townshend’s best solo album, in fact some music critics termed it a Who album that never was. Who singer Roger Daltrey said he felt let down by Townshend, believing many of the songs would have worked as Who songs.

12. AC/DC, Nick Of Time . . . Inspiration comes from anywhere. I was at the grocery store the other day and just as the cashier was finishing ringing in my purchases and about to put down the ‘another cashier will be pleased (I always wonder about that, are they really pleased?) to serve you’ thing, another customer comes up behind me and says, ‘whew, just in the nick of time.” So here you go, this track, complete with some perhaps uncharacteristic, at least for AC/DC, tempo changes, from 1988’s Blow Up Your Video album.

13. George Thorogood & The Destroyers, Killer’s Bluze . . . I just realized this now, as I type this, but playing AC/DC and then Thorogood is maybe interesting happenstance given that both artists have made careers of essentially doing the same thing over and over, yet in such a way that it’s never boring (to me, anyway) and always actually inventive in various ways. All of which of course is a talent in itself; otherwise they wouldn’t have careers. Plus, I like how ‘bluze’ is spelled on this hard, heavy, slow burner. It’s from Thorogood’s 1993 album Haircut.

14. Rare Earth, What’d I Say (Ray Charles cover), from Rare Earth In Concert . . . A reinvention of the Ray Charles tune, from the album an old friend of mine calls ‘the backpack album’ because, well, a backpack is on the cover.

15. Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, Don’t Pull Me Over . . . Speaking of friends . . . buddy of mine was talking about Petty’s Mojo album the other day. So I threw darts and one landed on this reggae-ish tune featuring some fine wah wah guitar from Mike Campbell, from that 2010 album.

16. Slim Harpo, Shake Your Hips . . . The great thing about music is how you grow up liking a band, then you dig into their influences and who they like and whole new avenues open up. So, I give you this hypnotic track the Stones covered to great effect on 1972’s Exile On Main St. album.

17. Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen, Lost In The Ozone . . . Country/rockabilly title cut to the band’s 1971 album. The album also featured perhaps Commander Cody’s best-known to mainstream audiences song, the cover of American singer-songwriter Charlie Ryan’s Hot Rod Lincoln, first released in 1955.

18. Sea Level, Nothing Matters But The Fever . . . Probably my favorite from Sea Level, a funky, blues-based offshoot project of various Allman Brothers Band members between 1976 and 1981 led by the Allmans’ then-piano player Chuck Leavell, hence the group’s name, a pun on C. Leavell. Leavell, whose discography is extensive both as a bandleader and session player, is perhaps best known these days as a longtime touring player with The Rolling Stones. He’s also played on every Stones studio album, except 1997’s Bridges To Babylon and 2023’s Hackney Diamonds, since 1983’s Undercover.

19. Concrete Blonde, Walking In London . . . Title cut from the Los Angeles band’s 1992 album, fueled as always by lead singer Johnette Napolitano’s powerful vocals. Concrete Blonde, defunct now, is best known for the 1990 album Bloodletting and its hit single Joey.

20. Buddy Guy, Feels Like Rain . . . I played John Hiatt’s Perfectly Good Guitar recently and got to talking about how so many artists have covered his tunes including Bonnie Raitt with the hit Thing Called Love and George Thorogood with The Usual. Here’s another example, the title song from Guy’s 1993 album. It was on Hiatt’s 1988 album Slow Turning. Hiatt wasn’t involved with the Guy album, but lots of other music luminaries were including Bonnie Raitt, who played slide guitar and sang on Feels Like Rain, Paul Rodgers, John Mayall, pianist Ian McLagan of Faces and session fame, and Little Feat drummer Richie Hayward and pianist Bill Payne.

21. Eagles, Long Road Out Of Eden . . . Ten-minute title track from the band’s 2007 album which was their first full studio effort since The Long Run in 1979. Few people likely expected a new album at that time, and the band, while continuing to tour even after the death of founder member Glenn Frey in 2016, hasn’t released a new studio album since and almost certainly won’t, Don Henley said at the time of Long Road Out Of Eden’s release, thoughts echoed a few years later by band members Joe Walsh and Timothy B. Schmit.

So Old It’s New set list for Saturday, April 6, 2024 – on air 8-10 am ET

So Old It’s new prog rock set for Saturday. My track-by-track tales follow the bare-bones list.

1. Pink Floyd, Welcome To The Machine
2. Genesis, Get ‘Em Out By Friday
3. King Crimson, Fallen Angel
4. Yes, Starship Trooper
5. Rush, Cygnus X-1
6. Can, Mother Sky
7. Hawkwind, Space Is Deep
8. The Moody Blues, Veteran Cosmic Rocker
9. Saga, Careful Where You Step
10. Jethro Tull, Black Satin Dancer
11. Soft Machine, Hope For Happiness
12. Supertramp, Another Man’s Woman
13. Kansas, The Pinnacle
14. Electric Light Orchestra, Dreaming Of 4000
15. Gentle Giant, Schooldays
16. Camel, A Song Within A Song
17. Emerson, Lake & Palmer, The Endless Enigma Part One/Fugue/The Endless Enigma Part Two

My track-by-track tales:

1. Pink Floyd, Welcome To The Machine . . . From the Wish You Were Here album, 1975. Spooky, dark, machine-like indeed. Lyrics as relevant today – probably even more so – than they were then. I’ve been in a bit of a Floyd phase, put together a suite of their mostly instrumental songs for my show last Saturday – The Great Gig In The Sky/Marooned/On The Run/Cluster One/Terminal Frost/Signs Of Life – and plan to open Monday’s show with a song to do, at least somewhat, with something happening in the sky that day. You’ll see, if you can’t figure it out already but I’m sure most Pink Floyd fans have.

2. Genesis, Get ‘Em Out By Friday . . . A song about what’s now called rent-eviction. From 1972’s Foxtrot album, perhaps best known for the 23-minute epic Supper’s Ready.

3. King Crimson, Fallen Angel . . . A multi-layered track, but then most Crimson songs are, from the 1974 album Red. Brooding, then soft, then hard and heavy, including the drumming of Bill Bruford on the first of two straight songs, with two different bands, featuring Bruford, which also allows me to sneak in a little tale about Geddy Lee reacting to an uninformed interviewer in a documentary I saw some years back on Rush. But let’s wait until I get to the Rush song.

4. Yes, Starship Trooper . . . Bruford again, preceding the time he spent in King Crimson, this time with Yes-mates Jon Anderson (vocals), Chris Squire (bass), Steve Howe (guitars) and at the time of this recording, before Rick Wakeman joined the band for Fragile, Tony Kay (organ/Moog synthesizer). Bruford was with Yes for the band’s first five albums – Yes, Time and a Word, The Yes Album from which I pulled this amazing piece of music, Fragile and Close To The Edge, later returning for Union, in terms of studio work, in 1991. Starship Trooper is, as one reviewer termed it, an astonishing composition/production in three distinct parts featuring myriad tempo changes – Life Seeker, Disillusion and Wurm – displaying all the band could throw at you from its instrumental and vocal arsenal. The essence of prog, in short.

5. Rush, Cygnus X-1 . . . Love this one, especially the spooky start, but all of it, from A Farewell To Kings, 1977, the first Rush album I bought with my own money, age 18. I had known their short, straight-ahead singles like In The Mood from their debut album and Fly By Night and bought A Farewell To Kings for another such song, Closer To The Heart and in doing so was introduced to Rush’s progressive rock side via extended pieces like Cygnus X-1 and Xanadu. It’s likely still my favorite Rush album, and not simply for nostalgic reasons. As for the Bill Bruford-Geddy Lee tale I promised: Rush often cited Yes as an influence and if memory serves, I think it was on the excellent documentary Beyond The Lighted Stage, might have been another one, Lee is interviewed backstage by an obviously less than prepared journalist and Lee mentions Yes and Bill Bruford but it’s clear the interviewer doesn’t have a clue about either Yes or Bruford and while Lee is too polite and too nice a guy to say anything, as he patiently proceeds telling his tale, the look of irritation on his face is priceless.

6. Can, Mother Sky . . . Propulsive track from the Krautrock band, originally on their 1970 release of songs they did for films, called Soundtracks. It’s 14-plus minutes long there but while I like that version, I decided to play the edited down, more concise offering that appeared on the 1994 compilation Anthology that got me into the band. I’d always known of them but decided to take the plunge via that compilation, was hooked and very quickly acquired the entire studio catalog.

7. Hawkwind, Space Is Deep . . . Another of those songs in this set that perhaps presages things I’m doing for my upcoming Monday show, to do with space and the sky and such, obviously influenced by a celestial event that is happening on April 8 and I’ll have a few more songs in that vein, title-wise anyway, on Monday. This is from Motorhead founder (after he left Hawkwind) Lemmy’s first studio foray with space rockers Hawkwind, the cleverly – or eye rolling, depending on one’s point of view – titled Doremi Fasol Latido album, released in late 1972.

8. The Moody Blues, Veteran Cosmic Rocker . . . From 1981’s Long Distance Voyager album, likely my favorite full piece of work by the band, probably because music is so often one of those time and place things in terms of what was going on in your life, what the music of the day was, etc. And for me, it was a fun spring and summer, immediately post-college graduation, spent in the San Francisco area of California where my dad had taken a new job. Long Distance Voyager was all over the radio, along with Kim Carnes’ Bette Davis Eyes and Burnin’ For You from Blue Oyster Cult’s Fire Of Unknown Origin album. I wound up buying Long Distance Voyager and Fire Of Unknown Origin, and just enjoying the Carnes song, great tune, great voice, which of course now I can call up any time I wish to hear it.

9. Saga, Careful Where You Step . . . Not a huge Saga fan, even if they are from my hometown of Oakville, Ontario, but I do like their early stuff and this is from the 1980 album Silent Knight, which featured the song Don’t Be Late and got me into the band for a time, following them through such hits or at least well-known tracks like On The Loose, Wind Him Up, The Flyer and Scratching The Surface. In one of those interesting things that happen in music where bands can be huge in a certain place beyond their appeal anywhere else (see Cheap Trick and Japan, just one example; what broke Cheap Trick big was the live at Budokan album), Saga is/was huge in Germany.

10. Jethro Tull, Black Satin Dancer . . . From the Minstrel In The Gallery album, 1975. It’s a record that, over time, and I’m a huge Tull fan, has cemented itself as one of my alltime favorites in the extensive catalog. Obviously, one could say this about so many Tull tracks but we’re talking deeper cuts here and this song is the essence of Tull, encapsulating what the band has been about: tempo changes, flute, acoustic, hard rock, guitar solos, stop, start, back and forth, including sometimes interesting vocals or, rather, mouthing effects. Just listen and you’ll know what I mean. Ridiculously good.

11. Soft Machine, Hope For Happiness . . . From the debut album, 1968, simply titled The Soft Machine, from back before myriad lineup changes to the point where no original members remained, and changes in direction to where Soft Machine eventually – and rather quickly, by the fourth album in 1971 – became an instrumentals-only jazz/jazz fusion/jazz rock band. Quirky, always interesting, ever-changing, worth checking out.

12. Supertramp, Another Man’s Woman . . . Another band I credit my dear departed older brother by eight years for introducing me to when he brought back their first album of any real consequence, Crime Of The Century, in 1974. This is from the followup, 1975’s Crisis, What Crisis? At the time, the band members weren’t happy with the album as they felt it was rushed due to record company pressure to strike while the iron was hot so to speak and issue a followup to Crime Of The Century. Yet Roger Hodgson later termed it his favorite Supertramp record. I like it, can’t really decide between for me the band’s best works – Crime Of The Century, Crisis and Even In The Quietest Moments with a nod to the first post-Hodgson album, 1985’s Brother Where You Bound. No Breakfast In America? No, not really, for me. I saw the tour in Toronto and it was fantastic but as for the album? It’s OK. Lots of hits but way overplayed and far too commercial and pandering to the US audience for me. I mean the songs are infectious ear candy, but no real depth, certainly not as compared to previous records. It worked, commercially, finally broke them in the USA, but it didn’t last long.

13. Kansas, The Pinnacle . . . There are fans of music who may only know Kansas by their two big commercial hits – Carry On Wayward Son and Dust In The Wind – and that’s all well and good. But, unless they bought the actual albums on which those songs appeared – like Leftoverture with the extended piece Magnum Opus or Point Of Know Return with Hopelessly Human and Closet Chronicles – they might not think of Kansas as a progressive rock band producer of multifaceted epics like this. From the Masque album, 1975, which preceded the aforementioned Leftoverture and Point Of Know Return in 1976 and 1977, respectively. For a moment in time, Kansas popped into the commercial rock singles consciousness but like the tide, receded pretty much permanently – and good for it – into the full-blown progressive rock ocean represented by songs like this one.

14. Electric Light Orchestra, Dreaming Of 4000 . . . That heavy guitar riff kicks in at the 12-second mark and you’re thinking hard rock/metal but no, that’s not what prog is about, of course. Suddenly we’ve slowed down, then speeded up, then later on that hard rock guitar riff returns. Etc. Early ELO, from 1973’s On The Third Day. The commercial hits from the album, and great ones they were, were Showdown and Ma-Ma-Ma Belle but that’s why you do full albums, you draw ’em in with the singles so you can expose ’em to killer stuff like Dreaming Of 4000, to be maybe used, sometime down the road, by a DJ doing a deep cuts show.

15. Gentle Giant, Schooldays . . . Such amazing sounds on this one from the British prog, er, giants. You just sort of let yourself be embraced by the sounds, the vocals, all of it. From the 1972 album Three Friends, a concept piece about three childhood friends and their subsequent lives.

16. Camel, A Song Within A Song . . . As the title suggests, truly a song, or songs, within a song. At risk of repeating myself, like so many progressive rock songs, the tempo changes are the appeal, at a given moment things can move in a different direction within the same overall piece, which is the obvious attraction for avid consumers of this form of music. From the English band’s 1976 release Moonmadness. Perhaps a subtle nod on my part, again, to something involving the moon that will happen on Monday, April 8.

17. Emerson, Lake & Palmer, The Endless Enigma Part One/Fugue/The Endless Enigma Part Two . . . The three-part suite that opens ELP’s third album, Trilogy. As I told a friend, my default position on music I mostly listen to is Rolling Stones-ish raunch and roll but I do have a lot of prog and when I listen to it, or play it for the show, it reinforces in me the thought that, while critics of it often suggest it is or can be boring, pretentious stuff, it’s actually brilliant stuff. And it rocks, a lot of the time. Thanks for listening.

So Old It’s New set list for Monday, April 1, 2024

My track-by-track tales follow the bare-bones list.

1. Elvis Costello, Welcome To The Working Week
2. Chicago, Sing A Mean Tune Kid
3. The Clash, The Guns Of Brixton
4. The J. Geils Band, Chimes (live, from Blow Your Face Out)
5. Frank Sinatra, Bad, Bad Leroy Brown
6. Bob Dylan, Tonight I’ll Be Staying Here With You
7. Robert Palmer, What Do You Care
8. Johnny Cash, (There’ll Be) Peace In The Valley (live, from Johnny Cash at San Quentin)
9. Black Sabbath, Country Girl
10. Emmylou Harris, Two More Bottles Of Wine
11. Mick Jagger, Party Doll
12. Junkhouse, Drink
13. Foreigner, Love Has Taken Its Toll
14. Tim Curry, No Love On The Street
15. Bruce Cockburn, The Rose Above The Sky
16. Molly Hatchet, Fall Of The Peacemakers
17. Patti Smith Group, Space Monkey
18. Grateful Dead, New Speedway Boogie
19. UFO, Rock Bottom
20. Savoy Brown, Leavin’ Again

My track-by-track tales:

1. Elvis Costello, Welcome To The Working Week . . . The only thing wrong with this opening rocker to Costello’s first studio album, My Aim Is True, is that it’s too short. But at one minute, 22 seconds, that’s what makes it so effective; leaves you wanting more. It was the B-side to the Alison single which, remarkably, though it’s come to be one of Costello’s best-known songs, didn’t chart, even on his home turf of the UK. Linda Ronstadt’s beautiful cover version of Alison – how could it not be beautiful, given Ronstadt’s amazing voice now sadly silenced due to a form of Parkinson’s – however, did make No. 30 in the US and No. 66 in the UK. Costello apparently was derisive towards Ronstadt’s version, but was quoted as saying “I didn’t mind spending the money that she earned me (in royalties).”

2. Chicago, Sing A Mean Tune Kid . . . Thank you to my older brother and sister for joining the Columbia Record Club for a time in 1970 and ’71, which helped introduce me to bands who were on that label at the time – Santana, Blood Sweat & Tears and the early, and best, inventive, jazz rock fusion version of Chicago. All of the Terry Kath-era albums are very good, lots of great songs and singles throughout but as whole pieces of creativity, the first three albums, to me, are sublime. This extended track, part song, part band jam, part Kath guitar showcase, is the lead cut on Chicago III, from 1971.

3. The Clash, The Guns Of Brixton . . . Speaking of mean tunes, from London Calling, one of my favorite Clash songs. It was written and sung by bass player Paul Simonon in something of a departure for the band, most of whose material was written and sung by Joe Strummer or Mick Jones. London Calling, a more mainstream offering than previous Clash material, was the album, released in 1979, that broke them big and for a time, into the early 1980s, for me they may truly have lived up to their billing as ‘the only band that matters” and were a group that rivalled my all-time favorites The Rolling Stones as a go-to listen.

“When they kick at your front door
How you gonna come?
With your hands on your head
Or on the trigger of your gun?”

The opening verse is compelling and does what good art does, it prompts you to research and learn about that which prompted the song, which described the tensions that existed in Brixton and led to the 1981 riot but more so, the tune is inspired by the 1972 movie The Harder They Come, starring Jamaican reggae artist Jimmy Cliff.

4. The J. Geils Band, Chimes (live, from Blow Your Face Out) . . . I love the J. Geils Band, especially their pre-overtly commercial stuff like the Freeze Frame album, and especially live. And how can you not love – or want to investigate – an album called Blow Your Face Out ? Which they always did, live. Even on slower material like this or, for another example, their cover of John Lee Hooker’s Serves You Right To Suffer on Geils’ first live album, Full House. Chimes was originally a five-minute track on their 1973 studio release Ladies Invited, and a good version that is, but something magic happened when J. Geils Band went live in concert, evidenced by the 9-minute version on Blow Your Face Out.

5. Frank Sinatra, Bad, Bad Leroy Brown . . . Yeah, I know. Frank Sinatra? Talk about out of left field, perhaps, but I like and embrace all kinds of music, a good song is a good song is a good song, besides which yeah, I sometimes do go out on a limb and there’s some method to this apparent madness. Blame a buddy of mine, or me and him, together. I was talking to him about how I do like throwing the occasional curveball, I’ve done it forever on the show with perhaps jarring genre changes from one song to another, so I said something like I may even play Frank Sinatra sometime, as I continue becoming my dear departed dad, in my own aging time, I think. So be it. So, here you go, with Sinatra’s cover of the Jim Croce hit. It’s not going to replace Croce’s original for me, but not a bad job, Ol’ Blue Eyes. It appeared on Sinatra’s 1974 comeback from a brief retirement (1971-73) album, Some Nice Things I’ve Missed. And we miss Jim Croce (RIP), taken from us at the height of his popularity in a plane crash while on tour in 1973, age 30.

6. Bob Dylan, Tonight I’ll Be Staying Here With You . . . A single that wasn’t a big hit, made No. 50 and you don’t arguably hear it very much compared to other Dylan tunes, but a jaunty sort of jingle that is one of my favorites of his but of course, being a big Dylan fan, there are countless favorites. It’s from his country rock album, Nashville Skyline, released in 1969 and featuring Johnny Cash, although not on this song, among the musicians. Speaking of Johnny Cash, wait . . .

7. Robert Palmer, What Do You Care . . . Palmer, who sadly died of a heart attack in 2003, age 54, became massively commercially successful with mid- to late 1980s hits like Addicted To Love, Simply Irresistible, I Didn’t Mean To Turn You On, good songs all, and his work with members of Duran Duran as the band The Power Station including hit singles Some Like It Hot and the T. Rex cover (Get It On) Bang A Gong. But I prefer his earlier stuff, songs like Sneakin’ Sally Through The Alley and then the two front to back solid albums that made me a fan during my college days, Secrets and Clues, the latter of which I mined for What Do You Care.

8. Johnny Cash, (There’ll Be) Peace In The Valley (live, from Johnny Cash at San Quentin) . . . The wait is over, from the earlier Dylan tune. Here’s Cash, from an album my dad owned and played incessantly and I’m glad he did, Johnny Cash at San Quentin, with a stirring rendition of this spiritual tune.

9. Black Sabbath, Country Girl . . . Speaking of perhaps jarring genre changes, here’s the Ronnie James Dio version of Black Sabbath, from the Mob Rules album. Not only is it a great, melodic tune as so much hard rock actually is, but it serves to set up . . . a country girl.

10. Emmylou Harris, Two More Bottles Of Wine . . . And here she is, country girl Emmylou with a Delbert McClinton-penned tune she took to No. 1 on the country charts in 1978. But you don’t play hits, Bald Boy, it’s a deep cuts show. Or supposed to be. True. But it’s my show, my rules, and as often stated I do play the occasional single that didn’t do well, or a single released by an obscure band that typically doesn’t do well . . . or a country tune my mostly rock audience may not have heard. And, hey, she collaborated with Mark Knopfler of Dire Straits fame on the excellent 2006 album All The Roadrunning from which I’ve played songs in the past so, she’s more than worthy, a great artist. And I appreciate her sentiments, or those of McClinton’s lyrics, good to have booze in reserve, especially on long weekends like Easter, when so many things are closed.

11. Mick Jagger, Party Doll . . . From his second solo album, Primitive Cool, released in 1987. This, to me, is the type of country-ish ballad Jagger does best as evidenced by similar tunes Evening Gown and Hang On To Me Tonight on his 1993 and arguably best solo release Wandering Spirit.

12. Junkhouse, Drink . . . I’ve stated it many times, I like anything Tom Wilson is involved in whether it be as leader of Junkhouse where he first came to prominence, soon branching out to solo work and his involvement with Blackie and The Rodeo Kings and as main person in Lee Harvey Osmond. Wilson kicked booze, sober to this day as far as I know but he wrote about it a lot during his drinking days; this from the 1995 Junkhouse album Birthday Boy.

13. Foreigner, Love Has Taken Its Toll . . . Foreigner is one of those bands where, usually, a compilation of hits will suffice and we all likely know Foreigner’s hits well. But sometimes, you have to own or at least know about an album to get a great deep cut, like this one from the Double Vision album. I bought the album on release in 1978 for the title cut single as well as another single, Hot Blooded, only to discover what might be my favorite Foreigner song.

14. Tim Curry, No Love On The Street . . . From the multi-talented Curry, perhaps best known as Dr. Frank-N-Furter in The Rocky Horror Picture show movie, which I got into in a big way in college. Curry was also the hilarious butler in the movie Clue. So, anyway, when I was browsing the old Sam The Record Man main store in Toronto back then, and they were playing Curry’s just-released 1979 album Fearless, it was an impulse buy I’ve never regretted because it caused me to discover his full discography selected songs of which, including this one and Sloe Gin, have been covered by American blues rocker Joe Bonamassa. But, sorry Joe, love your playing but you don’t have the vocal chops to match Curry’s passion. I’ve played Curry’s Sloe Gin before and will do so again. A great talent, Curry, sadly reduced since a 2012 stroke but still performing.

15. Bruce Cockburn, The Rose Above The Sky . . . Beautiful stuff from his 1980 album Humans. In a 1981 interview about the album, Cockburn touched on what had been a difficult time for him, including a separation from his wife which influenced several songs on the album, like What About The Bond, but cited The Rose Above The Sky as “about moving from downness into something that opens up, although what that something is is not really spelled out.”

16. Molly Hatchet, Fall Of The Peacemakers . . . Every so-called southern rock band seems to have a classic epic track. For Lynyrd Skynyrd, it’s of course Freebird. The Outlaws have Green Grass and High Tides and for Molly Hatchet, it’s this one.

17. Patti Smith Group, Space Monkey . . . From Easter, the 1978 album I got into via a bar band in the pub I worked in during college days playing Easter’s hit single, Because The Night, co-written by Bruce Springsteen.

18. Grateful Dead, New Speedway Boogie . . . A bluesy shuffle from Workingman’s Dead, from 1970.

19. UFO, Rock Bottom . . . Guitar showcase for Michael Schenker on his first outing with UFO, the 1974 album Phenomenom, which could be a reference to his guitar playing.

20. Stevie Ray Vaughan, Superstition (Stevie Wonder cover, from Live Alive) . . . Funky, bluesy, still will always prefer the original classic but SRV puts his own cool stamp on it.

21. The Who, How Many Friends . . . One of my favorite songs from one of my favorite Who albums, The Who By Numbers. It was somewhat dismissed by music critics because it’s not Tommy, Who’s Next or Quadrophenia but cut for cut I think it’s great, probably because I was age 16 in 1975 when it came out, coming of age so to speak in high school, and that’s when so many things truly resonate or we look back on fondly. It was the first Who non-compilation studio album I bought with my own money (for the single, Squeeze Box, which quickly took a back seat to the rest of the record) and to this day it remains a favorite of mine.

22. Savoy Brown, Leavin’ Again . . . Extended blues rock from the 1970 album Looking In. I finally saw Savoy Brown, by then billed as (leader/guitarist and lone constant member) Kim Simmonds (RIP as of 2022) and Savoy Brown, at the Kitchener Blues Festival in 2013. Great show.

So Old It’s New set list for Saturday, March 30, 2024 – on air 8-10 am ET

An all-instrumentals show, including a Pink Floyd song suite I put together, cheating a bit with Clare Torry’s improvised ‘wordless vocals’ on The Great Gig In The Sky, drawing from various of their albums. My track-by-track tales follow the bare-bones list.

1. The Allman Brothers Band, Instrumental Illness
2. The Alan Parsons Project, Lucifer
3. The Alan Parsons Project, In The Lap Of The Gods
4. Pink Floyd, The Great Gig In The Sky/Marooned/On The Run/Cluster One/Terminal Frost/Signs Of Life
5. Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Hoedown
6. Jeff Beck, Beck’s Bolero
7. The Butterfield Blues Band, East West
8. Eagles, Journey Of The Sorcerer
9. Santana, Soul Sacrifice (live at Fillmore West, 1968)
10. Deep Purple, Son Of Alerik
11. Joe Jackson, Zemeo
12. Genesis, Los Endos

My track-by-track tales:

1. The Allman Brothers Band, Instrumental Illness . . . Twelve-minute track from the final studio album by the band, Hittin’ The Note, released in 2003, serves as the title cut for my all-instrumental song show. Interesting, maybe, for me it is, how the set lists can develop. I enjoy the process of putting things together, developing a flow, throwing the occasional deliberate curveball with a genre change from one song to another, etc. Not to overanalyze it but it’s revealing perhaps in terms of how our brains work, how one thought leads to another, and in this case, the decision to do an all-instrumentals show came from searching for Gram Parsons and Flying Burrito Brothers songs in our radio station’s computer system. Searching his name also brought up The Alan Parsons Project, so I listened to that group’s instrumental In The Lap Of The Gods and that was my eureka moment for this week. Out went Gram Parsons, for this show at least, in came instrumentals, and who better to start with than a band, the Allmans, well known for them. It’s a long list that includes In Memory Of Elizabeth Reed, Pegasus, Mountain Jam to name just a few. And, I’m throwing in a couple from The Alan Parsons Project, too.

2. The Alan Parsons Project, Lucifer . . . A hit in Europe, from the 1979 album Eve. I think most people might recognize the groove, soon enough you’re thinking ‘I know that tune”. The song has been used as the theme music to a German political affairs magazine show, Monitor. Damned If I Do was the hit from Eve in North America (No. 16 in Canada, No. 27 in the US).

3. The Alan Parsons Project, In The Lap Of The Gods . . . And here’s the random song that inspired the set, via the Gram Parsons search. It’s from Pyramid, the 1978 album that preceded Eve.

4. Pink Floyd, The Great Gig In The Sky/Marooned/On The Run/Cluster One/Terminal Frost/Signs Of Life . . . I’m cheating with The Great Gig In The Sky as the lead cut in a nearly half hour suite of Pink Floyd instrumentals I’ve put together, given the spoken word parts and, more so, session singer Clare Torry’s stunning, improvised ‘wordless vocals’ on the track from The Dark Side Of The Moon. Interestingly enough, it’s an album on which Alan Parsons served as a studio engineer and suggested Torry, who he had worked with before, as someone who could add something to keyboard player Richard Wright’s composition. The band had no lyrics for the tune, asked Torry if she could improvise something, and the rest is history. She was originally credited as the vocalist, but later sued and received an undisclosed settlement and a songwriting credit. Marooned, Cluster One (both from The Division Bell album), Terminal Frost and Signs Of Life (from A Momentary Lapse Of Reason) are from the post-Roger Waters, David Gilmour-led version of Pink Floyd while On The Run is also from The Dark Side Of The Moon.

5. Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Hoedown . . . An arrangment of a composition by Aaron Copland, who did the music for the ballet Rodeo, which premiered in 1942 and on which his version, titled Hoe-Down, appeared. ELP released their interpretation, with Copland’s permission and credit to him, on their 1972 album Trilogy.

6. Jeff Beck, Beck’s Bolero . . . Writing space, even though it’s unlimited on the web ๐Ÿ™‚ does not permit all the insights and intrigue about this track which finally appeared on album on Beck’s seminal 1968 release Truth. But the truth about the track itself is rather murky and has taken many twists and turns over the years. Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin fame wrote it, or Jeff Beck might have, or they both did, and either Page, Beck or other people produced it. Gee, Jimmy Page involved in disputes or at least questions about credits? Nah, can’t be. See Led Zeppelin and plagiarism. Oh, also, drummer Keith Moon of The Who, credited as “You Know Who” played on it, so did noted session pianist Nicky Hopkins and future Zeppelin bassist/keyboardist John Paul Jones and for a while some combination of those guys might have become the first lineup of Led Zeppelin. And Who bassist John Entwistle was also hanging around the studio at the time. Worth reading up on. As for the song itself, you know it, you love it, you’ll know you know it when you hear it.

7. The Paul Butterfield Blues Band, East West . . . Another piece that books, or at least long essays, have been written about. It was apparently inspired by an LSD trip taken by guitarist Mike Bloomfield and incorporates elements of jazz, what’s now called ‘world’ music and psychedelic acid rock. It’s the title cut of the second Butterfield band album, released in 1966. It truly is quite the trip.

8. Eagles, Journey Of The Sorcerer . . . The long and winding road that is the root of this instrumental show brings us back, sort of, to Gram Parsons and The Flying Burrito Brothers. That’s because Bernie Leadon, who had been in the Burritos along with Parsons before joining the Eagles, wrote this piece that appeared on the One Of These Nights album, after which Leadon left the band, being replaced by Joe Walsh of solo and James Gang fame. Leadon did return to tour with the Eagles from 2013-15.

9. Santana, Soul Sacrifice (live at Fillmore West, 1968) . . . Not the famous 1969 Woodstock performance that made Santana stars but a 14-plus minute version from an earlier gig, recorded in December of 1968 on the band’s home turf of San Francisco, eight months before the first studio album was released. The performance finally saw physical copy release in 1997 on the Live At The Fillmore 1968 album.

10. Deep Purple, Son Of Alerik . . . Bluesy 10-minute guitar showcase for Ritchie Blackmore with tasteful input from keyboardist Jon Lord, apparently about a Visigoth king, more commonly spelled Alaric. It’s from the Perfect Strangers album in 1984, the first reunion record released by the celebrated so-called Mark II version of Purple – Blackmore, Lord, singer Ian Gillan, bassist Roger Glover and drummer Ian Paice. An edited version was the B side to the Perfect Strangers single and, later, the full version was added as a bonus track on CD re-releases of the album.

11. Joe Jackson, Zemeo . . . Extended moody piece from the excellent Mike’s Murder movie soundtrack album, released in 1983. The movie, starring Debra Winger and about the seedy side of the Los Angeles entertainment world, bombed at the box office. It had a tortured history, was revamped before release and most of Jackson’s music was replaced with a score done by John Barry, noted for his James Bond movie music and theme. But the soundtrack album is to me one of Jackson’s finest and is essentially a companion piece to his 1982 album Night and Day, although he later released Night and Day II, in 2000.

12. Genesis, Los Endos . . . Ending the show with the final track, appropriately titled, from the first album, A Trick Of The Tail, Genesis did after the departure of lead singer Peter Gabriel. That left drummer Phil Collins, somewhat reluctantly at first and surprising as it may seem now, to eventually take the microphone as new frontman after new singer auditions proved fruitless. Collins sings a barely audible snippet from Supper’s Ready, the epic song from the Gabriel era, on the fadeout as a tribute to the original lead singer.

So Old It’s New set list for Monday, March 25, 2024

My track-by-track tales follow the bare-bones list:

1. Peter Gabriel, Intruder
2. Led Zeppelin, In The Evening
3. The Rolling Stones, Fingerprint File
4. Peter Frampton (I’ll Give You) Money (live, from Frampton Comes Alive!)
5. Headstones, Captain Of The Shit Out Of Luck
6. Gov’t Mule, Have Mercy On The Criminal (Elton John cover)
7. Black Oak Arkansas, Mutants Of The Monster
8. Richie Havens, Rocky Raccoon (Beatles cover, live)
9. Bruce Springsteen, Adam Raised A Cain
10. Johnny Winter, I’m Yours And I’m Hers
11. Little Feat, Willin’ (original version, from 1971 self-titled debut album; updated and better-known version appeared on 1972’s Sailin’ Shoes album)
12. Linda Ronstadt, Roll Um Easy (Little Feat cover)
13. Dave Edmunds, (I’m Gonna Start) Living Again If It Kills Me
14. John Lee Hooker, Tupelo
15. Nirvana, Polly
16. Soundgarden, Fresh Tendrils
17. Thin Lizzy, Opium Trail
18. John Hiatt, Perfectly Good Guitar
19.Thunderclap Newman, Accidents
20. Canned Heat, Gotta Boogie (The World Boogie)

My track-by-track tales.

1. Peter Gabriel, Intruder . . . Spooky opening track to Gabriel’s third solo album, all of them to that point simply called “Peter Gabriel’ so the third album became known as ‘Melt’ due to its cover art of Gabriel’s face melting. Gabriel’s old Genesis bandmate Phil Collins guests on drums using the ‘gated reverb’ audio proecessing sound technique for the first time, which Collins later used to great effect on his hit single In The Air Tonight on his first solo album, Face Value. I’m no drum or instrument expert, so I leave the audience to look up ‘gated reverb’. Bottom line, it’s a great drum sound.

2. Led Zeppelin, In The Evening . . . I was going to start this evening’s show with this, from In Through The Out Door, makes sense of course but then I thought, the Intruder is, er, intruding In The Evening. Some have criticized Robert Plant’s vocals for being barely understandable. Yeah, maybe, never occurred to me all that much, actually. Most rock songs, let’s face it, you only focus on certain lyrics anyway, the chorus, the signature line, whatever, I mean we’re not talking Bob Dylan or whoever all the time, it’s bloody rock and roll, after all and this is a pulsating, extended rock track with a nice riff; it kicks butt. So there.

3. The Rolling Stones, Fingerprint File . . . This is why you listen to full albums, not just hits compilations. Amazing funk/rock by the boys, Mick Jagger even goes into a spoken-word rap before rap was a big thing, from 1974’s It’s Only Rock ‘n Roll album which got mixed reviews but some rock critics I think are looking to write something more interesting and provocative, being negative towards great artists, than what they might actually be listening to, if they took the time to really listen. Their loss, in my opinion.

4. Peter Frampton, (I’ll Give You) Money (live, from Frampton Comes Alive!) . . . Nice rocker from the live album that finally made Frampton a big solo star, some years after he had left Humble Pie and released several solo records. The studio version of this song is on his fourth studio album, simply titled Frampton and issued in 1975, and it’s good, but as with most of his material it’s long since been eclipsed, to most people, by the versions on Frampton Comes Alive!

5. Headstones, Captain Of The Shit Out Of Luck . . . Short (2 minutes, 14 seconds) sweet, typically blistering Headstones, great song title, from their 2017 album Little Army. Nice harmonica break by lead singer Hugh Dillon.

6. Gov’t Mule, Have Mercy On The Criminal (Elton John cover) . . . The Mule, led by guitarist/vocalist Warren Haynes, is a band that emerged in the 1990s as a side project out of latter-day versions of The Allman Brothers Band to become a top entry in its own right. The Mule does their own great, original blues-based rock but are also excellent at classic rock covers, either in studio or live versions, this studio version of the Elton John/Bernie Taupin tune from the Don’t Shoot Me I’m Only The Piano Player album among them. It appeared on the bonus 3rd disc of the band’s 2021 mostly blues covers release, Heavy Load Blues.

I like The Mule’s classic rock covers so much that, years ago, I burned a CD of their versions of such material: The Beatles’ She Said She Said and Helter Skelter, Free’s Mr. Big, Steppenwolf’s Don’t Step On The Grass, Sam, Black Sabbath’s War Pigs, Humble Pie’s 30 Days In The Hole, King Crimson’s 21st Century Schizoid Man, Deep Purple’s Maybe I’m A Leo, Grand Funk Railroad’s Sin’s A Good Man’s Brother, The Who’s We’re Not Gonna Take It and Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Simple Man. The band has also done tribute albums of Pink Floyd (Dark Side Of The Mule) and The Rolling Stones (Stoned Side Of The Mule) material. They’ve also done a reggae album of covers and their own stuff, Dub Side Of The Mule. Great stuff, all of it, a fair bit of their work produced by Canadian Gordie Johnson of Big Sugar fame.

7. Black Oak Arkansas, Mutants Of The Monster . . . Two things about Black Oak Arkansas, the southern hard rock/country rock/boogie rock band fronted by Jim “Dandy’ Mangrum. 1. Van Halen’s David Lee Roth was obviously influenced by Mangrum, just listen, read, look at photos. Not criticizing, I liked Roth as Van Halen’s singer during his heyday (his vocals during various reunions tours were embarrassing; he’d lost it), just saying. It’s pretty evident to anyone. 2. Great tune, Mutants Of The Monster, from an even better named album: 1972’s If An Angel Came To See You, Would You Make Her Feel At Home?

8. Richie Havens, Rocky Racoon (live) . . . Havens reinvented various Beatles tunes including Eleanor Rigby, Lady Madonna, Here Comes The Sun, several others in addition to various Bob Dylan tunes. Here’s his speeded up take on this White Album track and, as is often the case it’s his fast acoustic guitar strumming that draws you in for the duration.

9. Bruce Springsteen, Adam Raised A Cain . . . So, I was on Twittter, now of course known as X, the other day posting a previous show of mine and someone was throwing out one of those sorts of random rock and roll questions that can be irresistible. The question: favourite Springsteen album? I couldn’t really pick between what are and always will be my three favourites from that amazing run Springsteen had starting with 1975’s Born To Run, then 1978’s Darkness On The Edge Of Town and 1980’s The River. So I cheated and listed all three. I like the first two Springsteen albums, preceding those three, and subsequent stuff like Nebraska and Tunnel Of Love and assorted great songs throughout the catalog but if forced to pick, it would be those three and if forced to narrow it down to one it might well be Darkness. And then picking a track from that? Well, so many good ones including the title cut which resonates so much, lyrically, to me. But I threw darts and hit on Adam Raised A Cain. No way to go wrong with that album, really.

10. Johnny Winter, I’m Yours And I’m Hers . . . Usually, it was Johnny Winter covering The Rolling Stones (Jumping Jack Flash, Let It Bleed, Silver Train) but the Stones actually at least once covered Winter. They played this tune, from Winter’s 1969 debut album, to open the 1969 Hyde Park tribute concert to the then-recently deceased Brian Jones. It apparently had been Jones’ favorite song.

11. Little Feat, Willin’ (original version, from Little Feat’s self-titled debut album in 1971; updated and likely best-known version appeared on 1972’s Sailin’ Shoes album) . . . A more spare, acoustic take on the Lowell George-penned tune, Willin’ also later done by the next artist in my set.

12. Linda Ronstadt, Roll Um Easy (Little Feat cover) . . . Speaking of Lowell George, he plays slide guitar on this cover of his tune that Ronstadt did for her 1975 album Prisoner In Disguise. Ronstadt covered Willin’ a year earlier on her Heart Like A Wheel album.

13. Dave Edmunds, (I’m Gonna Start) Living Again If It Kills Me . . . It can be interesting what happens as time passes. Case in point, this song. And in fact the album from which it came, Edmunds’ 1981 release Twangin’. I had gotten into him during my second-last year of college when he had a fairly big hit album, Repeat When Necessary, featuring such commercial tracks as Elvis Costello’s Girls Talk and Graham Parker’s Crawling From The Wreckage. All three artists by then had become favorites of mine but when Twangin’ came out, I remember buying it and being disappointed because to my still obviously developing ears, there was nothing immediate that struck me. Years later, I like the album and this song, both in its ballad but slightly rocked up pace but more so, the lyrics about moving on from the past. Sometimes, you have to live for a while for things to resonate.

14. John Lee Hooker, Tupelo . . . So good. One of my favorite Hooker tracks, any era, this one from his late 1980s-1990s rebirth with various guest stars that started with 1989’s The Healer album. But this spare, acoustic blues is all Hooker, from his 1995 album Chill Out. Carlos Santana, Van Morrison and Booker T. Jones are among the guests on the album but this track is just Hooker, his guitar, his voice. Sublime.

15. Nirvana, Polly . . . Disturbing subject matter always makes it a difficult listen for me and I almost hesitate to play it, but I do like the song, musically. It was written, from the perspective of the perpetrator, about the abduction, rape, and torture, with a blowtorch, of a 14-year-old girl returning home from a punk rock concert in Tacoma, Washington in 1987. The girl managed to escape and the perpetrator was arrested and convicted. He’s serving two consecutive 75-year prison terms.

16. Soundgarden, Fresh Tendrils . . . One of those songs that seems and is familiar – love the sort of descending, backwards riff is how I’d describe it – that one might think it was a hit single but that’s what happens with blockbuster albums, like Superunknown. It’s a terrific album, broke Soundgarden big during that early- to mid-1990s period where it seemed the Seattle grunge sound was taking over music, yet Fresh Tendrils, with its catchy ‘long time coming’ refrain wasn’t a single on an album full of them (Black Hole Sun, Fell On Black Days, Spoonman, maybe my favorite Soundgarden song, among them).

17. Thin Lizzy, Opium Trail . . . Yet another of those songs, this one from the Bad Reputation album (which features that also great title cut) in 1977, that shows Lizzy as being far more than just The Boys Are Back In Town. But Lizzy fans know the depth of quality of the band’s catalog, it’s up to others to investigate if they so choose.

18. John Hiatt, Perfectly Good Guitar . . . Hiatt is one of those artists, like Tom Waits, perhaps, where more people have hits with his songs (Bonnie Raitt with Thing Called Love; George Thorogood a minor hit with The Usual) than Hiatt has had himself. I remember hearing Perfectly Good Guitar, great song, I think so anyway, on the radio when the album of the same name came out in 1993. But, turns out, it wasn’t a chart hit, nor was the album which charted, according to my research, only in Australia where it made the lofty heights of No. 83. I shouldn’t have mentioned The Usual. Now I want a drink. To Hiatt’s songwriting.

19. Thunderclap Newman, Accidents . . . One album, one big hit single, Something In The Air, one big name producer and benefactor, The Who’s Pete Townshend, and then, well, we still have this extended piece from 1969’s debut and only record, Hollywood Dream. Guitarist Jimmy McCulloch, later of Paul McCartney and Wings who died as a result of drug and alcohol abuse at age 26 in 1979, was among the personnel on the Thunderclap Newman album and his solo is a featured portion on Accidents.

20. Canned Heat, Gotta Boogie (The World Boogie) . . . That John Lee Hooker Boogie Chillen riff . . . As we boogie on out of here.