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11:06 a.m. - August 08, 2007
Summer Mix #9 - But You Should Read This Anyway.
We’re having a hot time in the old town tonight…today…every day. But it can’t last. On Friday, it’s dipping down to 91. (Pant, pant, wheeeeeeze…)

The kidlets are out and the grownups are doing some work around the house getting it ready to have pictures taken and go on the market. We have a handyman afoot doing handyman stuff – and mind you he’s a lot more hand than the ones you see on TV. I, of course, would be the TV style handyman – good at eating sandwiches and breaking stuff and not good at actually fixing things. Which is why, of course, we HIRED a handyman.

Anyway, because it’s hot and humid and all that I say that it’s time for a mix. Wait, it’s ALWAYS time for a mix.

So here it is, Random Summer 2007 Mix #9!

1. Gone Is The Sad Man – Timebox. This was a b-side of an obscure single released in 1968 by an obscure psychedelic band in the UK. But it’s got a groovy sound and has been on some anthologies. And if that’s not enough trivial stuff for you, the drummer of the group was the drummer in the Rutles. No, really. You see, the Rutles actually could play (well, three of them at least) and sing. Anyway, you may have to dig for this one but I’ve mixed it for a few people and I think it’s pretty darn groovy.

2. Function At The Junction – Shorty Long. A classic up-beat soul groove from the mid 60’s, this will get you up and moving about no matter the humidity. Shorty had some moments of grandeur in the 60’s, being one of the dudes that recorded something based on “Here Come The Judge” from the show Laugh-In. This is more representative of his talent.

3. I’ll Go To My Grave Loving You – The Statler Brothers. Ok, who hasn’t sung along with the Statler Brothers and tried to imitate the bass dude? You? You lie! Be gone!

4. Go Back – Crabby Appleton. This is a one-hit wonder group from the early 70’s, but unlike most of those groups, this is definitely in the rock mode and not in the bubblegum pop mode. The drummer earns his keep on this one, for sure. See this one out – it’s out there!

5. Temporary Beauty – Graham Parker. For all of the gnashing of teeth about Mercury Records not promoting him at all, and changing companies, when Squeezing Out Sparks, a brilliant album you must own, wasn’t a big hit, Parker folded. He softened his edges a bit, made slick, sheeny records, and STILL didn’t get a hit. This is a nice song but it’s not the angry Parker I truly love. This is the Parker I pass the time with in the summer.

6. Leaving Here – Eddie Holland. All you need to know about this soul scorcher (by one of the Hollands from Holland/Dozier/Holland) is that bands like The Who and Motorhead covered it. If you don’t have this, if you don’t know this, then rectify!

7. See – The Rascals. The Rascals moved away from their hit formula as the 60s turned into the 70s and they still were great. They grew more political and jazzy, but sometimes they could still turn out the corkers. Now this is a bit more hippy-dippy, but man does the electric piano and drumming on this one cook. Even if you’re not a huge Rascals fan, this is one to try and grab. It was a moderate hit in 1970, but deserves to be remembered.

8. Crown Of Creation – The Jefferson Airplane. Those who are bass oriented should dig Jack Cassidy’s overdriven, distorted, low, rumbly bass on this one. By this time, the Airplane were all about the freak flag flying high and the man not busting your chops anymore.

9. Disapperarer – Sonic Youth. When Sonic Youth signed to a major label, many were worried that they would fall apart or soften their sound or both, much like the Replacements and Husker Du had done. Well, they needed not worry. Basically, they did the stuff they were doing on SST and Blast First but had a better studio to record in. The records sound better, for sure. One always wonders, though, if their love of pop culture is ironic or genuine, as their music is almost the anti-pop culture. At any rate, this is pretty much Sonic Youth-by-numbers, which means I dig it con mucho gusto.

10. Outsider – The Ramones. Oh, Yeah, yeah. Yeah. Dee Dee makes a vocal appearance on the bridge here, and he almost sounds tuneful. It must have been a good day. Oh, my, Johnny has some guitar overdubs here, too! Well, a few.

11. Hey Hey You Say – Papas Fritas. No matter what mood I’m in, a lot of songs by them always put a smile on my face. This is just well made indie-pop of a certain era, and that’s good for something, like putting on mixes!

12. In The Garden – PJ Harvey. PJ’s always been interesting, if nothing else. She’s one of the best lyrical songwriters and is also as tough as nails. Here, she uses a bottom heavy bass-and-drums anchor that counterpoints some nice piano and her soprano voice. This is great stuff. The tweens may not get it, so it doesn’t chart, but we adults need some PJ Harvey.

13. Think About It – The Jayhawks. When Mark Olson left, they didn’t just disappear. They changed direction, a bit, but that’s understandable. There’s a pervasive sadness to this album and this song, which is also understandable.

14. Stain – Nirvana. I got lost trying to keep track when Nirvana actually released some singles in their transition between Sub Pop and Geffen. However, this is a pretty powerful song that rocks, as usual.

15. Generals And Majors – XTC. Andy Partridge is his typical tuneful self, and you can sing (or whistle) along. You know, I can’t whistle, but Katie can. She makes fun of the fact that I can’t whistle. Drat.

16. Gigolo Aunt – Syd Barrett. It may have taken a bazillion takes, but Barrett actually sounds pretty well together on this track. Now, if he stayed somewhat lucid, where would Pink Floyd be now? What about Roger Waters, who basically hoisted the band on his back after a while? Would he have wanted to remain a loyal henchman to Barrett going forward? Those are questions that will never be answered, but I do know that this is a tuneful little ditty that fits right in with Barrett’s stuff from the Floyd, though this does meander a bit toward the end. Well, it IS Syd Barrett, though.

17. Up The Hill Backwards – David Bowie. Bowie uses Robert Fripp to spew all kinds of guitar over the intro of this song, and then it breaks into a martial beat where Fripp is content just to play between verses in a very angular style before coming back in at the end. Bowie was quite creative and on target during this phase (this is on Scary Monsters) and his artistic decline of the mid 80’s is just sad, sad, sad.

18. Pushin’ Uphill – The Long Ryders. If they were around in the mid to late 90’s, they’d be the kings of alt-country and probably be rich. Ah, well.

19. Keep On Smilin’ – Wet Willie. Though they were a southern-rock group, soul is more of a jumping off point for this tune than boogie. They probably deserved better, and deserved to be more well known than say, the Marshall Tucker Band. But that’s the music biz, isn’t it?

20. Hooray – Grand Funk Railroad. Grand Funk released a lot of records in a short amount of time, but they never found it in them to actually release this song. That’s a pity, because this really plays on the strengths of GFR in their later incarnations. It’s a pretty tight song with a heavy sound (naturally) and Mark Farner contains himself on his vocals but comes up with a winning guitar riff. You wonder why this was left in the vault.

21. Stop – Howard Tate. I leave you with another classic soul song from the 60’s. You know, oldies radio has had such a narrow playlist that they leave a lot of songs by the wayside so you can hear the same songs for the 29,432nd time. Hipster doofuses who run satellite radio jump all over songs like this, with good reason.

Well, that’s the report from here. Aside from wondering when Indiana moved to the Equator, I’m wondering how two girls could garner so many toys in their brief years on the plant. Oh, that’s right. I’m their dad, that’s how. Heh.


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