The Rolling Stones, Can You Hear The Music . . . Somewhat ethereal tune from Goats Head Soup, yet another deep cut showing the Stones’ diversity in approach and music that – as with many great artists – those only listening to hit singles (which is fine) maybe never hear or appreciate.
Alan Parsons Project, Sirius/Mammagamma/Lucifer . . . I wanted to play some Alan Parsons Project, haven’t in a long while, but couldn’t decide between these instrumentals. So I put them all together as one lengthy cut.
Eagles, Long Road Out Of Eden . . . Long title track from the band’s 2007 album, the first (and likely last) studio album they’ve done since 1979’s The Long Run. Typically acerbic lyrics sung by Don Henley. Great, at times spooky, tune.
Kansas, Portrait (He Knew) . . . Besides Carry On Wayward Son from Leftoverture (which I’ve long since owned), Point Of Know Return, via the hit single Dust In The Wind, is really the album that got me into Kansas and how I discovered this tune, one of my favorites by the band and the third single from the album. It made No. 64 on the charts. Inspired by Albert Einstein, the lyrics were later re-written by Kansas founder member Kerry Livgren for his solo band, to reflect his conversion to Christianity – although even the original Kansas lyrics could be taken to be as much about Jesus Christ as Einstein.
Mott The Hoople, All The Way From Memphis . . . Reconnecting with lots of stuff I haven’t played on the show of late. Always liked Mott The Hoople and Ian Hunter’s solo work. And, there’s a Bad Company connection to Mott via Mick Ralphs, a founding member of both bands.
Rush, Working Man . . . I tend to always play this song at some point in my Labour Day set. Great rocker from the early, pre-progressive days, with the late John Rutsey on drums. From the self-titled debut album in 1974.
Bruce Cockburn, Justice . . . Timeless lyrics, from Cockburn’s 1981 album Inner City Front.
Pete Townshend and Ronnie Lane, My Baby Gives It Away . . . A leftover, of sorts, from my Charlie Watts tribute show last week. Meant to play it, but got lost in the shuffle (true story: I couldn’t find my CD to load into the station computer system). Anyway, Watts plays drums, complete with his perhaps trademark ‘thwack’ to end this tune from 1977’s fabulous Rough Mix album. It’s a collaboration between The Who’s Townshend and Lane, of Faces fame, along with many of their musical friends and luminaries. John Entwistle, Eric Clapton and longtime Stones’ pianist Ian Stewart, among others, contribute.
Rod Stewart, (If Loving You Is Wrong) I Don’t Want To Be Right . . . A tune done by many artists, written by Homer Banks, Carl Hampton and Raymond Jackson of Stax Records. Stewart, a great interpreter beyond his own songwriting abilities, has always been sterling in his choice of songs to cover, and this is another example. From 1977’s Footloose & Fancy Free album. Stewart’s old band, Faces, recorded it as an outtake for their 1973 album Ooh La La, so perhaps not surprising he chose to revisit it.
John Mellencamp, Emotional Love . . . Interesting story with this track from 1996’s Mr. Happy Go Lucky album. It was written by Mellencamp’s then-bassist Toby Myers. Myers wasn’t sure about it, asked Mellencamp to listen to it, Mellencamp loved it but it was decided to put Mellencamp’s vocals on it and the rest is history. It’s one of my favorite tracks from the album. I like the groove.
Paul McCartney/Wings, Beware My Love (live, from Wings Over America) . . . One of McCartney’s harder rockers, originally on Wings At The Speed Of Sound, an album of mostly softer rock. It’s not metal by any stretch, but I like it when Macca rocks out.
The Beatles, Happiness Is A Warm Gun . . . From 1968’s The Beatles, aka or should we say not also known as but mostly known as The White Album. John Lennon took several song fragments and made them into one coherent whole. Well, I shouldn’t say just Lennon. It was his tune(s) but it’s one of the few songs on the album where all four Beatles actually worked together to hash it out, and all identified it as their favorite track on the record.
T. Rex, I Love To Boogie . . . It’s a boogie tune. And I figured a good one to lead into a harder rocking phase of tonight’s show.
The Stooges, Down On The Street . . . dunta dunta eeyow…etc etc. Typically crazy good stuff from Iggy and the boys.
Nazareth, Not Faking It . . . No, we’re not. Real hard rock and roll.
Status Quo, Paper Plane . . . Quo got a bit too poppy for me later on; I prefer their earlier, harder-rocking hard boogie stuff, like this one from the appropriately named Piledriver album, released in 1972.
Jefferson Airplane, The Last Wall Of The Castle . . . Wicked, hard-rocking psychedelic tune from the maybe somewhat ‘weird’ but wonderful After Bathing At Baxter’s album. Great lead guitar and soloing by Jorma Kaukonen, who wrote the song and handles lead vocals.
Thin Lizzy, Killer Without A Cause . . . I don’t know what more to say about Thin Lizzy besides I like all their stuff and anyone who thinks The Boys Are Back In Town is all they ever did, needs to dig deeper. They could fill the Grand Canyon with their great work.
Blue Cheer, Saturday Freedom . . . Best known, likely, for their version of Eddie Cochran’s Summertime Blues, this is from the band’s self-titled fourth album, a more diverse one in style but still excellent.
The Butterfield Blues Band, In My Own Dream . . . David Sanborn with the great sax solo on this one, the title cut from Butterfield’s 1968 album. It’s the last one with Elvin Bishop on guitar as the band started moving in a more soul-oriented direction after the earlier rocking blues featuring Bishop and Mike Bloomfield.
The Kinks, Holiday In Waikiki . . . The only thing wrong with this song is its length. Too short. Just love the quirky rhythm and guitar work. From the Face To Face album in 1966. Unlike most of The Kinks’ post-British Invasion hit singles-infused albums, which arguably were hit singles and lots of filler like that of the output of many bands of the period, Face To Face didn’t sell particularly well. It’s something of a paradox, as the band got arguably more creative as chief songwriter Ray Davies moved into concept album territory. But the relatively poor-selling material the band did from 1966 to the early 70s, outside of big hit singles like Lola, is terrific. If you want a nice summation, I’d recommend The Kinks Kronikles. It’s a 1972 compilation that gathers lots of those songs and is how I got into this tune years ago. That prompted me to collect the full studio albums from that period of this terrific yet still somewhat underappreciated band in comparison to their contemporaries – Beatles, Stones, Who.
The Doors, Ship Of Fools . . . A friend of mine, now a follower of the show and I got talking about the Doors’ later output some time ago, after I played a tune from the L.A. Woman album. So hard to pick, I like all Doors albums, but Woman might be my favorite of theirs – dark, bluesy, booze, cigarette and other smoking things-soaked vocals by Jim Morrison. But the previous record, Morrison Hotel, is similar in its deliberate ‘back to basics’ approach after the experimenation of The Soft Parade. The intro somewhat reminds me of the intro to Break On Through (To The Other Side) from the debut album, but this is a terrific cut in its own right.
Murray McLauchlan, Sixteen Lanes Of Highway . . . Terrific stuff from one of Canada’s greats. Just put on, via CD or whatever your delivery system, the Songs From The Street compilation and Try Walking Away On The Boulevard Down By The Henry Moore or Out Past The Timberline.
Bruce Springsteen, Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out . . . One of those tunes I came across while searching for something else in the radio station’s computer system. Was looking for Free songs, up came Free-ze Out so I thought, why not? Haven’t played The Boss recently always liked this one, among many by Springsteen. And Free will have to wait at least another week.
Canned Heat, So Long Wrong . . . Latter period (then) Heat, same old great blues. From 1973’s The New Age album. Formed in 1965, Canned Heat is still around, no original members, drummer/singer Adolfo de la Parra, who joined in 1967, is still there but founder members/chief songwriters Bob (The Bear) Hite and Alan (Blind Owl) Wilson are long gone to the great gig in the sky. It’s interesting, though, going through the looong list of former members. Included are Larry Taylor, who had several stints in Canned Heat as well as with John Mayall and Tom Waits. Also, Harvey Mandel, who once auditoned for/played on The Rolling Stones’ Black and Blue album and also was with John Mayall for a time. Noted bluesman Walter Trout also had a stint, 1981-85, in Canned Heat.