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Brian talks Bowie, Weird Al, Stones Covers, and something for the comedy fans!

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....What the FUCK?!?!? This keeps happening... I'm trying to put things together for a post, and suddenly I get confronted with another musical hero dying! I'm hurt like I haven't been in a long time. Really, this sucks. I got a bad feeling about what's ahead, y'all...

Bowie's passed away. The Thin White Duke has left His Court. Ziggy has gone home. David Robert Jones has died. All Monday was Bowie day for me. I listened to Ziggy Stardust andChristiane F., shed some real tears, then drove while listening to an NPR rebroadcast of an interview with him, bought Blackstar, went home and shed a few more. And no, I'm not posting his new album. It's the man's final deliberate document! A great record, too - fans of Low will definitely like it. It's a beautiful, fucking spooky experience... just listen to "Blackstar" or "Lazarus", knowing now that he knew he was dying, and not feel a shiver go down your spine! And then there's the silence after the last track "I Can't Give Everything Away" ends. That's all she wrote, folks. Damn it. Now go buy it, guys. YOU OWE HIS MEMORY.

 
                                                          "Look up here, I'm in heaven
                                                            I've got scars that can't be seen
                                                            I've got drama, can't be stolen
                                                            Everybody knows me now.

                                                        Look up here, man, I'm in danger
                                                             I 've got nothing left to lose
                                                      I 'm so high it makes my brain whirl
                                                      I dropped my cell phone down below
                                                                     Ain't that just like me?"
                                                                             ---from Lazarus---

 
But, to commemorate this sad time, I did want to give you something. This file contains two albums. Christiane F. is a soundtrack he released in 1982. It's basically a small collection of his Berlin era stuff. This one is perfect for you if you're unfamiliar with albums like Low, Heroes, Station to Station, etc. A great listen for fans of the period, too. It also contains the German language version of "Heroes", which was largely unavailable til those post-2000 reissues. This was the one that made me feel his death the day I heard, especially with it ending with the ethereally beautiful "Warszawa".

 
The second thing in the file is LiveRarest. It's live stuff from his first decade. I don't know the facts of this release; I don't even know if this is complete, but it rocks. Check out Mick Ronson's squealing guitar solo on "Moonage Daydream"! "The Supermen" and "Width Of A Circle" both have that great glam crunch, too. "Life On Mars?" is really good. "Five Years" - the Bowie song that got the hooks in me years ago - is great 'cept for those background vocals. I've read some of this is from the Santa Monica '72 album. Either way, it's a good live sampler of his 70's period. The Spiders From Mars were a kickass band!

I'll miss him. My condolences go out to his wife of 24 years, Iman, as well as his son Duncan Jones and his very young daughter. You're daddy was a legend, honey. And we're losing legends too fast, guys. And if you ask me, we're not getting new ones near fast enough. (Sigh). Now, on to the original beginnings of this post.. 

 
As some may have noticed, the comedy links in my last post got taken down within 3 days. Glad maybe 30 of you got them before they disappeared. Interestingly, Scott's post didn't get zapped, just my RB links. Some random dick decided I shouldn't post that stuff. Jeez, thank you for that. But I won't repost them, promise, boss....

I'm not gonna be mad at this. But here's what's gonna happen: there will be no mention of comedy anymore. When I post other stuff, there may be an additional link in the comments that's a comedy album. There will be no mention of it in the post, who it is, or any pics. I'll make a promise not to repeat an album, but comedy fans will have to keep their eyes peeled. And Minions, pay attention...there will be passwords on those specific files. The password will be comedy. Everybody got that? comedy. No capital letters. This is the only time I'm gonna mention that fact. Putting these up is way more of a pain than it's worth - it's the reason I don't have a blog anymore - but I know they're appreciated.

 
Happier stuff, now... I put together a few comps! I've been a fan of Weird Al since I was a kid. As some may or may not know, on most of his albums, he does a Polka Medley of current pop songs. This is a collection of those. As bookends, there are two specific medleys, of The Stones and Queen. This is funny stuff! My favorite is "The Alternative Polka". "Polkas on 45" is good too. I would of course invite people to buy Al's proper albums...consider this a sampler. If Al has ever made you laugh, you need this one!

 
And while assembling the Weird Al comp and listening to "The Hot Rocks Medley" a lot, I got a bit of inspiration.... The Stones! Should I do an album? Nope. My intro to The Stones - like a lot of people - was the '64-'71 Hot Rocks collection. It's a necessity, if you don't have it. I recommend it on vinyl, even an old copy. (The Stones always sound better on LP). Assembling this covers comp, there was a wealth of versions; usually 2 or 3 good ones for each track. And I tried to keep from well-known stuff, mostly. So, can I walk you through it?
 

Things start out with two versions from the time period. The Tremoloes'"Time Is On My Side" has some great pop vocal harmony work. The Nightcrawlers'"Heart Of Stone" is pretty straightforward. Then things get odd. Yat-Kha is a Mongolian group that incorporates throat singing with Western music styles. Their version of "Play With Fire" has some real menace to it with those deeeeep vocals! I love it. Otis Redding brings that Stax soul heat to his version of "Satisfaction". Isn't that the song that really blew away the audience at Monterey '67? I think I've heard that.

Hard to believe croaky and creaky ol' Marianne Faithfull could once deliver something as pretty as her version of "As Tears Go By", huh? I didn't know about The Eyes, but their version of "Get Off Of My Cloud" from '66 or so has a nice pop-ish garage snarl to it. Tesla's "Mother's Little Helper" is a great, faithful cover; sounds like it's from their Five Man Acoustical Jam period. The Standells - of "Dirty Water"Nuggets psych-rock fame - rip up "19th Nervous Breakdown" pretty good. The Flamin' Groovies - always reliable - give a great rendition of "Paint It Black", with a nice 70's studio sound to it.

I didn't ever know that The W-h-o covered "Under My Thumb"; they're perfect for it. Give it a good
listen - you can tell they had to really dampen Moonie's drums! Julian Lennon's great take of "Ruby Tuesday" stands out as my fave cover of the song. Was gonna put in somebody else's cover of "Let's Spend the Night Together", but in light of current events, Bowie's great version stands. 60's oddballs The Godz deliver a nice scuzzy take on "Jumpin' Jack Flash".

The Ramones and "Street Fighting Man"... do I need to say anything else? And Motörhead's version of "Sympathy For the Devil" is perfectly gnarly. Neither Scott nor I knew about this one! When they drop the hammer in the middle, it is a beast! Dammit Lemmy, now I miss you more. Albert King's "Honky Tonk Women" drips with bluesy soul - and check out those guitar licks! Patti Smith's great version of "Gimme Shelter" is yet another pick from her great covers album Twelve.

The Black Crowes live take of "Midnight Rambler" captures the spirit of the original perfectly. Def Leppard's version of "You Can't Always Get What You Want" might be the best surprise in here for some of you. It was recorded in '92, back when they could do beautifully sparkling acoustic songs. They really do it justice, guys... don't judge. Def Lep is awesome! Little Richard's take of "Brown Sugar" is also astonishingly good! I love the bellow in that man's voice. That's rock and roll! To close things out, we have The Flying Burrito Brothers' gorgeous version of "Wild Horses", which surpasses the original in my opinion. Hope you guys dig this. I tried to make a comp for More Hot Rocks as well, but that fell apart quickly.

 

NOTE: though this track list is laid out like the 2 disc set, it's one 21 track album file.

1. The Tremoloes - Time Is On My Side
2. The Nightcrawlers - Heart Of Stone
3. Yat-Kha - Play With Fire
4. Otis Redding - (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction
5. Marianne Faithfull - As Tears Go By
6. The Eyes - Get Off Of My Cloud
7. Tesla - Mother's Little Helper
8. The Standells - 19th Nervous Breakdown
9. The Flamin' Groovies - Paint It Black
10. The Who - Under My Thumb
11. Julian Lennon - Ruby Tuesday


1. David Bowie - Let's Spend The Night Together
2. The Godz - Jumpin' Jack Flash
3. The Ramones - Street Fighting Man
4. Motörhead - Sympathy For The Devil
5. Albert King - Honky Tonk Women
6. Patti Smith - Gimme Shelter
7. The Black Crowes - Midnight Rambler
8. Def Leppard - You Can't Always Get What You Want
9. Little Richard - Brown Sugar
10. The Flying Burrito Brothers - Wild Horses

Hope you guys like these comps, as well as David's stuff.
 

 

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