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9:19 a.m. - February 01, 2007
The Mystery Mix!
Well, after I posted the money mix, two kind souls, Freshhell and Harri3t, said "I want that mix!"

And so I sent it to them along with my long-delayed Holiday mix. But I also added a special secret mystery mix.

Now they have released what they thought was on the mystery mix, AND what their impressions of said mix were, I am now going to reveal, to them and the world at large what I tantalized them with. I knew they would get some of them, and I only put them on there to give them said songs, but others? Well, they were there for a challenge (and they were groovy songs as well).

So, off we go!

1. (For God's Sake) Give More Power To The People - The Chi-Lites. From a very groovy synthesizer opening, this moves to a typical 70's soul song with a great groove and impeccable vocals by an underrated group. This was on a K-Tel album I once owned, and I always loved the bass vocalist's lines in the song. They were more famous for ballads, but the Chi-Lites did have a way with an uptempo number as well.

2. Candy Girl - New Edition. Oh, how can you resist this one? Even in my alterna-daze, when this was played at a party I hit the dance floor with everyone else. (I guess Harri3t can resist, though, sigh!)

3. Ain't No Sunshine - Bill Withers. Such a classic song, I had to pass it along. The spare production in the opening verse sets a great tone, so when the strings come in it just grabs at your heart. I think there's 26 "I knows" in the bridge. He was born in Slab Fork, WV. Wow.

4. Rock Me Amadeus - Falco. Yeah. Pretty unmistakable, isn't it? I still desire the original "Der Kommisar". Anyone? Anyone?

5. Rock And Roll Love Letter - The Bay City Rollers. Oh, this may have fooled them if not for my posting of the video earlier. Well, that is if they saw the video. This wasn't a hit in England, but a decent sized hit here. I'm going to post about the difference between the US and UK, chart wise, on some bands that surprised me, and this is one of them!

6. Kate - Sambassadeur. Direct from Sweden, this is a tasty pop nugget with some interesting arrangements, and catchy hooks. I had no idea that Payless Shoes used this for a commercial, but thanks to TiVo, I don't watch commercials. I think this group may get big, and they'll be way better than Ace of Base or Roxette.

7. The Good That Won't Come Out - Rilo Kiley. I had originally put another song by Rilo Kiley on the mix, but then I realized that the language wasn't up to snuff, and now I hear this, and there's one slip up here. Ah, well. This is from the fascinating record The Execution Of All Things, a tasty mix of pop, indie rock and country, with my second favorite red-headed alt-chanteuse, Jenny Lewis. (Neko Case is still #1, of course!)

8. Boys And Girls Sing For Summer - Those Transatlantics. Another relatively new band from, get this, Mount Pleasant, Michigan, the blend wistful vocals and pop sensibility into a delicious stew. This song meanders along into several parts, but all of them are good for your soul. Ah, but I just read where I think they lost a member, who is the female lead singer. Ah, well.

9. Indecision - Martha & The Muffins. Love the song, and I wish I knew this band back in 1980 or 1981. "Echo Beach" was the cut that some people know and that I've mixed. They have a classic new wave sound with catchy melodies and great lyrics and every song I've downloaded has been aces.

10. Trouble - Lindsey Buckingham. A song people know, but before iTunes hard to find. Now, go grab it!

11. Range War - Todd Rundgren. Before he was a popular genius, he was a semi-obscure genius. Everytime I hear this this song, I think of alwaysange (locked, sorry - darn nutballs are everywhere now!) mainly because she's in Montana and well, there's no other reason except when I've been driving in Montana, I see signs for "Free Range Cattle". This is from Runt: The Ballad Of Todd Rundgren which was released to enthusiastic reviews, but two singles barely scraped the top 100 and this album didn't chart. The bass and drums were played by Tony and Hunt Sales, Soupy Sales' sons and musicians that Bowie drug into the Tin Machine wormhole.

12. I'm Gonna Tear Your Playhouse Down - Paul Young. Yeah, there's some cheesy 80's stuff going on here, but the guitar work is stellar, and the organ solo is spot-on and Paul Young can sing the heck out it. Of course, Ann Peebles did the original, and I have a remake she did in a jazzy feel that's just spectacular. I need to run down the original.

13. Rock & Roll Evacuation - The Electric Six. Oh, why is this band not popular? They rock, they sing about rock, they sing about nuclear war, they sing about going to the gay bar, they sing about evil boys eating evil hamburgers and fries. And the best lines from this song? "Mr. President make a little money sending people you don't know to Iraq / Mr. President I don't like you, you don't know how to rock!" Take it from Violet, they rock!

14. Dad, I'm In Jail - Was (Not Was). This is just an oddball little tune that shows the whimsy of Was (Not Was). Say hi to mom...FROM JAIL! They have some early stuff that I need to find on CD or digitally that also showcase an oddball sensibility, including a song "Zaz Turned Blue" voiced by Mel Torme.

15. Lark's Tongue In Aspic (Part One) - King Crimson. Threw a real curveball on them here. For one, it's an instrumental, for two, it's 13 minutes long, and for there, it has a lot of distinct movements so you can't really get a sense of who or what it is. What it is? Phenomenal, that's what it is - when the guitar and bass really cranks out of your speakers at about 3:40 into the song you're just dazzled, totally.

16. The Knife - Genesis. This is the best (and only decent) song off of Trespass, which was the album before Phil Collins and Steve Hackett joined the group. Anthony Phillips does some great guitar work, and John Mayhew's drumming is solid. Peter Gabriel's treated vocals stand out, as does the clever keyboard work by Tony Banks. Sure, it's an epic at about nine minutes long but it really works, and is one of Genesis' best songs ever.

17. I Ain't Superstitious - The Jeff Beck Group. People knew Jeff Beck back in the day, because he was in the Yardbirds (and yes, he did look a lot like Nigel Tufnel - lead guitar) and was an in-demand session man. So when he formed his group, he got some good folks. Ron Wood, late of the Birds, was on bass (later, of course, he joined the Faces and the Stones). Mickey Waller on drums, and of course, the unmistakable voice of Rod Stewart on vocals. Well, then, no one really knew of Stewart. Beck and Stewart really shine on this cut, with the wah-wah guitar providing a punch and Stewart's vocals spot on. Fantastic, this is!

So that's the mystery. I really didn't try to make a lot of them quite a mystery, really. They were just tunes I thought they'd enjoy AND it was a way to have some fun and fill another essay. More music, and other frivolity, later!


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