So Old It’s New set list for Monday, March 28, 2022 – on air 8-10 pm ET

  1. Lou Reed, Rock ‘n’ Roll (live, from Rock ‘n’ Roll Animal) . . . From the liner notes of the year 2000 remastered edition of Rock ‘n’ Roll Animal: “Lou Reed sucks, but Rock ‘n’ Roll Animal rules.” – unsolicited customer review on . . . It wasn’t me, honest! For one thing, if and when I do use Amazon, I use since I’m in Canada although I have been known to go to .com if I can’t find something here. Secondly, I like most of Lou Reed’s stuff and that of the Velvet Underground, most of whose songs he wrote. Like this one. Rock ‘n’ Roll Animal does, indeed, rule. And this live version kicks butt, featuring great twin guitar work by Steve Hunter and Dick Wagner, the latter of Alice Cooper fame.
  1. The Rolling Stones, My Obsession . . . Staccato-type track featuring terrific drumming by the late great Charlie Watts, from 1967’s Between The Buttons album.
  1. Johnny Winter, Silver Train . . . The first of several cover tunes, great artists doing other great artists’ songs, in tonight’s set. This is Winter’s version of the Rolling Stones’ song from 1973’s Goats Head Soup album. The typically Winter-ized version actually preceded the Stones’ release, as the Texas guitar slinger heard a demo of the tune and released it on his Still Alive and Well album that preceded Goats Head Soup by a few months. The song was written by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards in 1970 but was shelved before being polished for Goats Head Soup. Winter, who mined the Stones’ and Bob Dylan catalogs for such tunes as Jumping Jack Flash, Highway 61 Revisited and Like A Rolling Stone, also covered Let It Bleed on Still Alive and Well.
  1. Marianne Faithfull, Truth, Bitter Truth . . . From 1981’s Dangerous Acquaintances album, which didn’t do as well as the hard-act-to-follow Broken English. Faithfull herself said Dangerous Acquaintances was a difficult recording, everyone concerned with the project – Faithfull, her session players and the producer – weren’t always on the same page. Nevertheless, I think it’s a pretty good record, featuring such songs as the singles Intrigue and Sweetheart plus For Beauty’s Sake, Easy In The City, Tenderness and this one, a seven-minute epic that starts as almost spoken word before transitioning nicely into the main tune 1:15 in.
  1. Nazareth, Empty Arms, Empty Heart . . . As someone on YouTube commented, yet another great song (by anyone) that most people will never hear. That’s why Bald Boy is here, to dig into deep cuts like this one from Nazareth’s debut, self-titled album in 1971. It’s almost progressive hard rock, at least in terms of how many time signature changes they cram into a three-minute, 12 second song.
  1. Bachman-Turner Overdrive, The Letter . . .A song The Box Tops took to No. 1 on the charts in 1967 and was later covered by Joe Cocker and Al Green, among others. BTO’s rocked up version, whose main riff calls to mind Neil Young’s Southern Man, was recorded in 1971 as Brave Belt morphed into BTO but wasn’t officially released until the 2-CD BTO Anthology came out in 1993.
  1. Paul McCartney and Wings, Let Me Roll It (live, from Wings Over America) . . . Originally on the Band On The Run studio album, it was the B-side to Jet but may as well have been a single, as it’s one of Wings’ best-known tracks and one McCartney almost never fails to play in concert to this day – it appears on five Macca live albums.
  1. Led Zeppelin, Candy Store Rock . . . A shuddering sort of rockabilly tune, apparently one of Robert Plant’s favorites from 1976’s Presence album. It was a difficult album for Plant, who had suffered serious injuries in a car accident and sang from a wheelchair during the sessions.
  1. Budgie, Napoleon Bona Part One & Two . . . Clever, or silly, title, depending on one’s point of view but nevertheless another excellent almost progressive metal offering from the Welsh pioneers who influenced the likes of Iron Maiden and Metallica. Metallica has covered Budgie songs Breadfan, with its hellacious riff, and Crash Course in Brain Surgery. I’ve played Breadfan before but this reminds me to get to Crash Course in Brain Surgery at some point.
  1. Red Rider, Napoleon Sheds His Skin . . . Having fun with Napoleonic titles but aside from that, this is one of the many good tracks on Red Rider’s 1983 Neruda album.
  1. Patti Smith, Changing Of The Guards . . . Another cover, this one of the Bob Dylan song from his Street Legal album in 1978. Smith did it for her all-covers Twelve (for twelve tunes) album, released in 2007. I’ve played things like the Stones’ Gimme Shelter and Hendrix’s Are You Experienced? from it before but definitely an album worth returning to soon. It’s full of interesting Smith interpretations of such songs as the Jefferson Airplane’s White Rabbit and Nirvana’s Smells Like Teen Spirit, among others.
  1. Blood, Sweat & Tears, 40,000 Headmen . . . The BS & T jazz-rock fusion treatment, applied to the Traffic tune in a nice version from the ‘3’ album. I remember getting the album when my older sister, brother and I were in the Columbia Record Club in 1970 via which we also got Chicago’s second album and Santana’s Abraxas. Things were different, then, but I suppose a record club is really not much different than ordering online now. Speaking of Abraxas, great album: 1. I need to return to it for some songs soon. 2. I always remember playing charades and our mom hilariously doing pantomime trying to describe the poster of the band members that came with the album. We didn’t ‘get’ what she was trying to describe and were in hysterics, but just more evidence that mom was pretty cool.
  1. Traffic, Light Up Or Leave Me Alone . . . Jim Capaldi wrote and sang this one from The Low Spark Of High-Heeled Boys album while usual lead singer/multi-instrumentalist Steve Winwood provides some nice guitar licks. 
  2. Creedence Clearwater Revival, Pagan Baby . . . Some might consider it repetitive. Others, hypnotic. Or, hypnotically repetitive, which to me is a good thing on yet another CCR deep cut that shows that while they were an amazing singles band and are well-served by compilations, the full picture – as with many bands – is revealed via the individual studio albums. This one’s from 1970’s Pendulum.
  1. Faces, You Can Make Me Dance, Sing Or Anything (Even Take The Dog For A Walk, Mend A Fuse, Fold Away The Ironing Board, Or Any Other Domestic Shortcomings) . . . Not sure what’s better, the song or the fun title, the in-parentheses part of which is not always used, but I like to be thorough. I like the song, a typically fun, shambolic Faces outing, which was their charm. It was the final Faces single, peaking at No. 12 in the UK charts.
  1. Gordon Lightfoot, Me and Bobby McGee . . . From Lightfoot’s 1970 album Sit Down Young Stranger, the title later changed to If You Could Read My Mind when that song from the record became a big hit. Lightfoot’s spare version, which was No. 1 on the Canadian country charts and No. 13 on the pop singles list, is one of the first recordings of the Kris Kristofferson song that soon after became a posthumous No. 1 Billboard hit for Janis Joplin. Roger Miller was the first to record it, taking it to No. 12 on the US country charts in 1969. Charley Pride, Jerry Lee Lewis and Kristofferson himself are among the many others who have covered what is simply a great song. Lewis had a No. 1 US country hit with it, a version I played on the show some time ago.
  1. The Grateful Dead, Throwing Stones . . . From the Dead’s 1987 album In The Dark which was a big commercial success thanks in large measure to the hit single Touch of Grey. This extended, jaunty piece about humanity, with lyrics like “a peaceful place, or so it looks from space; a closer look reveals the human race” was also a single but didn’t chart to my knowledge.
  1. Headstones, Cemetery . . . Hard rocker with upbeat lyrics (kidding) from what is still likely my favorite Headstones album, the debut Picture of Health, from 1993. And I have all of this consistently good Canadian band’s material. So we go, deliberately, from Throwing Stones to the Headstones in a cemetery. Yeah, I know, enough nonsense, Bald Boy. Next! Ha.
  1. Steppenwolf, Power Play . . . Little did I know, when at age nine in 1968 a friend played The Pusher from Steppenwolf’s debut album and our group of friends marveled that the lyrics said “god damn”, that I’d become a lifelong fan of the band that originated in Canada as The Sparrows. I’ve just always loved the band’s gritty sound and John Kay’s vocals. Steppenwolf was far more than the endless plays of Born To Be Wild and Magic Carpet Ride one hears on commercial radio. Great songs, but dig a bit, folks.
  1. Drive-By Truckers, 3 Dimes Down . . . As mentioned last time I played the Truckers, I quite enjoy their stuff, like this rocker from their 2008 album Brighter Than Creation’s Dark. Or maybe I decided to play it because of the album title, given I had just watched a documentary about the cosmic dawn, the period when light emerged, millions of years after the Big Bang, to illuminate what had to that point been a dark universe. On the other hand, if I played songs inspired by what documentaries I watch, then I would have played McCartney and Wings’ Spirits Of Ancient Egypt today since I had also recently watched a show about how we’d build the pyramids today as opposed to how the ancient Egyptians (or aliens, or helped by aliens) did it. I thought of doing just that, but then decided Let Me Roll it is a better Wings’ song than Spirits Of Ancient Egypt, so I played that instead. To refresh any failing memories, the Wings’ tune is No. 7 in tonight’s set.
  1. Uriah Heep, Bird Of Prey . . . A friend of mine occasionally has ribbed me when I play Uriah Heep but, what can I say, we all have guilty pleasures I suppose and I don’t even consider Heep a guilty pleasure. I like their stuff, especially the earlier material like this track from 1971’s Salisbury album. Depending on my mood I can do with or without the late singer David Byron’s operatic oohs and aahs but there’s no doubt bands like Queen and, much later, The Darkness were influenced by it.
  1. Rory Gallagher, Ride On Red, Ride On . . . Gallagher’s smokin’ cover of the song from Louisiana Red’s 1963 debut album, The Lowdown Backporch Blues. It appeared on Gallagher’s 1982 album Jinx.
  1. Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band, Get Out Of Denver (from Live Bullet) . . . As we, too, get out of here, for another week, riding the rhythms of Seger’s outstanding first live record.

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