Sunday, December 02, 2012

Top 40 For December 2012

Coming in December!

The Satin Kittens, Ace of Hearts Sampler, Beatles book!, a new DVD on Producer George Martin, Ian Hunter live in Paradise and more!

These are in no particular order just yet- every month the goal is to get the discs up and put them in their proper order perhaps midway through the month.

Fantastic Ian Hunter concert I intend to review on the Rock Journalist Joe Vig page.


New York, NY (November 28, 2012)—An integral part of the 60’s British Blues Boom, legendary rock pioneers The Yardbirds took standard 12-bar blues, doubled the tempo, kicked up the amps, and carved out the mold for modern hard rock. Introducing some of the world’s greatest guitarists – Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, and Jeff Beck – the band crafted such classic hits as “Train Kept Rollin’” (later covered by Aerosmith), and “For Your Love.” Now, on the cusp of the band’s 50th Anniversary, the latest incarnation of The Yardbirds will release Making Tracks, a 2DVD tour set available on December 11 via MVD Entertainment Group [MSRP $19.95].
Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee and founding member/drummer/composer Jim McCarty states “The DVD Making Tracks was great fun to make, and I think it really shows how young and old musicians can work together in a spirit of harmony and energy, giving credence to a great repertoire.”


Nina Simone's first official album, 1958's Jazz as Played in an Exclusive Side Street Club, is pure perfection, an amazing accomplishment for a 24-year-old pianist arranging and singing studio renditions of songs from her live set. Captured here are moments of intrigue, as Simone magically takes the listener through musical caverns that want to be explored again with repeated spins. The rendition of "Plain Gold Ring" is exotic and draws the listener back, just as the Richard Rodgers/Lorenz Hart classic "Little Girl Blue" (the alternate title of the album stamped on the label of the vinyl as well as on the back cover) is a gorgeous work of art, Simone adding the melody from the traditional "Good King Wenceslas" to the standard Janis Joplin would bring to rock audiences a decade later. The cover photograph of the artist on a park bench in Central Park is a play on her only songwriting contribution, "Central Park Blues," which concludes the LP. In her autobiography,
Read more here:

Release Date: 10/19/2004

For those who grew up hearing only "Those Lazy Hazy Crazy Days of Summer," "Unforgettable," and "The Christmas Song" on the radio, with the perception that Nat King Cole was just a legendary pop singer from somewhere in the past, the When I Fall in Love: The One and Only Nat King Cole DVD will open eyes and serve as an informative and entertaining documentary on the jazz pianist and his pioneering TV show. It is so extraordinary that it doesn't need frills, though there are nine pictures in a photo gallery as well as subtitles in English, Spanish, and French. The 20 selections culled from the television program are presented with narration by Dennis Haysbert and include commentary from wife Maria Cole, twin daughters Timolin and Casey Cole, and musician/brother Freddy Cole, as well as the original writer/producer/director of Nat's TV show, Bob Henry. That mixture of color and black-and-white that helped make The Wizard of Oz such a classic works inadvertently very well here, with the insertion between songs of interviews tracked almost half a century after the precious black-and-white performances first aired nationally on TV. Read more here:


Review to follow

Review to follow

 Review to follow


Journeyman drummer Steve Holley has provided some of the most solid and creative beats for Paul McCartney, Kiki Dee, Joe Cocker, Julian Lennon, and Ian Hunter over the years, and though he recorded a couple of tracks in the U.K. in January of 1980 (included here), those beats never got the opportunity to be heard backing him up until the release of The Reluctant Dog, a 13-track collection of melodies and feelings that are well worth the wait. For those put off by the manufactured pop that Phil Collins runs off the assembly line, The Reluctant Dog will provide much satisfaction. Produced by Holley and bassist/guitarist Keith Lentin, the album is chock-full of surprises -- the short and sweet instrumental "Punta del Este (with daughter Amanda Holley on flute) and a bubbling Genesis-like "Entertain You" to mention just two. Holley (also listed in many credits over the years as Holly without the "e") delivers splashes of Beatles on one of the early tracks, "For Better or for Worse," which resembles the Fab Four's "Free as a Bird" phase, though recorded 15 years before that classic hit the Top Ten. This early recording features Holley on vocals, glockenspiel, piano, and drums, with Nick Pearson's electric guitar and Phil Curtis on bass. The drummer was concerned about adding the two decade-old tracks into this mix, but they bring much to the set.  Read more here:


"Pick Me Up", track 4, is a car-driving pop number that has a distinct groove and might be the best track on this fine collection.

Vol. 1 of 2 disc tribute to Jimi Hendrix, review by yours truly
 Homage and honor to Jimi Hendrix via various artist compilations has become more than a cottage industry, from the Rubber Band's Hendrix Songbook released back in the 1960s, to Pat Boone doing a hideous cover of "The Wind Cries Mary." Jimi has certainly made his mark beyond influence in a world where his music is absolutely adored. In From the Storm and Stone Free: A Tribute to Jimi Hendrix were the most commercial of the lot until 2004's Power of Soul: A Tribute to Jimi Hendrix landed on the market. Released almost simultaneously with the Experience Hendrix company's official tribute comes the first of at least two collections from the Lion Music group out of Finland. Regi Hendrix, a cousin of Jimi's, writes the CD booklet essay on The Spirit Lives On, Vol. 1: The Music of Jimi Hendrix Revisited. Regi also performs on "Bold as Love" along with Jason "JMR" Richardson and Greg Howe.  Read more here:

Italian Boys, Gary Private 

PASS THE CONDIMENTS  by Jeff Mastroberti

Eric Lilljequist  NO DISTANCE
album cover is not available online.  Here's a photo of Eric performing on Visual Radio

1.That's What  3:20
2. Push  2:13
3)After All 3:01
4)Don't Make Promises 3:52
5) Listen Up  2:04
6)Thief   3:32
7)I Know 3:24
8)Morning   1:51
9)No Distance  3:14
10)Tell Me Why 2:40
11)Just Like You  3:34
12)Only Good Thing 2:34
13)Born To Sing   2:49
14)This Ain't Love 3:42A truly superb album from veteran Boston musician Eric Lilljequist of the group Orphan, No Distance contains 14 selections that exhibit spirit, tasteful musicianship and precise delivery.  It's a truly obscure gem of a recording up there with Ron Davies' 

The cover of The Beatles "Tell Me Why" is inventive and very pleasant, giving a soulful vocal approach to an essential number from the Lennon/McCartney catalog.  The dreamy addition of a line from "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" at the conclusion just tremendous.  

With its pretty vibes the two minute "Listen Up" is a great track on a "Thief" sounds like quasi-Prince merging with 70s folk-rock

The Groundhogs

 Eagle Rock presents Live at the Astoria by The Groundhogs

 Filmed at London's Astoria on February 20th, 1998, this was the first complete Groundhogs show ever filmed. The band was touring in support of their album "Hogs in Wolf's Clothing," their tribute to the great Howlin' Wolf, and the show starts and finishes with tracks from that album, but also includes songs from across the band's career. 


Jim Sullivan interview


Shakin' Our Souls

BLT  Jack Bruce & Robin Trower

It wasn't until the 1980 Victims of the Fury album, seven years into his solo career, that Robin Trower would employ former Procul Harum bandmate Keith Reid to provide lyrics (with Reid probably the only lyricist in history to get band status). Though this is officially a Robin Trower release entitled B.L.T., the marquee giving Jack Bruce and Bill Lordan equal heading above the double-sized name of Robin Trower, the project is shouldered by all talents involved and inhibited by a dreadful cover photo of a white bread sandwich: bacon, lettuce and tomato with -- if you look closely -- raw bacon. All concerned would have been better off titling this a Jack Bruce/Robin Trower project with drummer Bill Lordan. The vocals are all the work of Bruce with the production by Trower, and a moment like "Won't Let You Down" is among the best for both the vocalist of Cream and the guitar player from Procol Harum. "Won't Let You Down" is subtle, stunning, and beautiful. It oozes out of the speakers with double-tracked Trower guitar work that sounds like he was listening to Hendrix's Cry of Love album again. And there's nothing wrong with that. "Into Money," "What It Is" (another song about money), and "No Island Lost" are interesting because they take the West, Bruce & Laing concept further into the realm of progressive rock, a place where all parties concerned feel very comfortable. For the Trower fans who couldn't get enough of him sounding like Hendrix, take the "Voodoo Chile" riffs of "No Island Lost" and add the highly commercial voice of Jack Bruce.   Read more here: 

It should come as no surprise to fans of Captain & Tennille that Toni tackled an album of standards. The duo always threw a nod to yesteryear into the mix, having been influenced so heavily by Tennille's father Frank having recorded with the Bob Crosby Orchestra, and husband, Daryl Dragon being the son of arranger Carmen Dragon. Carly Simon had already released 1981's Torch, while Linda Ronstadt presented her first Nelson Riddle collaboration in 1983, so the way had been paved for the voice that was so successful on Top 40 to do a full album of standards. The captivating sound behind the singer on Gershwin's "Do It Again" is certainly a different setting from when Captain & Tennille dabbled with the format, the "Captain" is missing in action on this original ten-song release recorded live to two-track in Hollywood, in January of 1984. Though the singer tends to overdo it on the title track, "More Than You Know," she gets into a groove on "I've Got It Bad and That Ain't Good," Jeffrey Weber's elegant and understated production. Sammy Nestico's arrangements are gorgeous, especially on "Our Love Is Here to Stay," and after a few spins, one gets used to the singer in this environment. "Let's Do It" could have fit nicely on Toni's pop recordings with her significant other,

Read more here:


Paul McCartney in Dandy cartoon
 LONDON (Reuters) - Paul McCartney will fulfill a lifelong wish on Tuesday when he appears in the final print edition of Britain's longest-running children's comic The Dandy, a favorite of the ex-Beatle when he was growing up in Liverpool. 

Paul & Linda McCartney's RAM Deluxe Box

Deluxe Edition Box Set: 4 CD/1 DVD box set & download Remastered album, bonus audio CD, remastered Mono album, Thrillington CD, bonus film DVD, 112 page book, 5 prints in vintage style photographic wallet, 8 full size facsimiles of Paul's original handwritten lyric sheets and mini photographic book of outtakes from the original album cover photo shoot. 




MICK: (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction began life as a filler for their next album. The famous opening guitar riff was to have been played by a horn section.
ROD: "In 1971, when Maggie May came out I had to go on Top of the Pops to promote it, [band] the Faces came along for a laugh and we tried - and failed - to break into the dressing room of Pan's People, the show's resident female dance troupe."
PETE: "My left ear stopped functioning . . . already damaged by [drummer] Keith [Moon's] explosion on the Smothers Brothers' show, it would never be the same again."
KENNY: "We took a minibus from Dunedin to Auckland and did concerts in about 13 cities along the length of the country. We were treated like superstars. They loved us in New Zealand."
- Mick Jagger by Philip Norman, HarperCollins, $36.99; Rod: The Autobiography by Rod Stewart, Random House, $37.99; Who I Am by Pete Townshend, HarperCollins, $44.99; Luck or Something Like It: A Memoir by Kenny Rogers, HarperCollins, $34.99; If I Only Had Time by John Rowles with Angus Gilles, New Holland Publishers, $49.99.


27) Queen Live in Budapest
3 disc set

Hungarian Rhapsody: Queen Live in Budapest [Blu Ray/2CD] [Digipak] by Queen (CD, Nov-2012, 3 Discs, Eagle Vision)

28)Rolling Stones Under Reeview 1962-1966

With the immediacy of YouTube and other internet information streams it is tough to accept the tag-line "Ultimate review and critical analysis of the music and career of The Rolling Stones" that adorns the back of this DVD package, The Rolling Stones Under Review 1962-1966. The big tease is the videoclips -- gorgeous video clips -- the Stones sitting on a stage while they present Howlin' Wolf on the TV show Shindig, Buddy Holly with a snippet of "Peggy Sue," and delicious Rolling Stones tracks on film, all too short, and spliced alongside the commentary from Melody Maker magazine's Chris Welch, R&B singer Chris Farlowe (who was also under Andrew Loog Oldham's umbrella and had hits with Jagger/Richards material), Pretty Things guitarist Dick Taylor -- who had performed with Mick Jagger in the band Little Read more here:

29)Rolling Stones Under Review  1967-1969

Where the Rolling Stones' Under Review: 1962-1966 had its moments with eight commentators giving us the beginnings of Stones history, this part two -- Under Review: 1967-1969 with a dozen critics and musicians interviewed -- is truly superior in its approach and in direction, a perfect segue to the unnamed part three of this trilogy from Chrome Dreams/Sexy Intellectual, the very excellent Under Review for Keith Richards. Critic Keith Altham is on all three documentaries as is Tom Keylock, and they add wonderful insight, notably Altham's essential critiques and historical perspective. Thomas Arnold is the narrator, as he is on the Richards disc, replacing Mandy O'Neal from the first volume, and the storyline is meatier as the "greatest rock & roll band in the world" moves into these new....READ MORE HERE

30)DVD Review: “The Rolling Stones, 1969-1974: The Mick Taylor Years”

Robert Barry Francos review

 read more here:

The Rolling Stones are a three-act play, all positioned around lead guitar: The first was the Brian Jones early period (1962-1969), the middle were the Mick Taylor years of growth (1969-1974), and then there is the Ronnie Wood time of pop malaise and decline (1974-present). Obviously, from the title, this British telley documentary deals with the center portion.

While I’m more of a Brian Jones era kinda guy, there is no doubt that the Rolling Stones had a growth spurt under Mick Taylor’s tenure that was bolstered in part by (and not given enough credit for here) producer Jimmy Miller a nice (though drug addled) Brooklyn boy who was very approachable the few times I met him in Joe Viglione’s kitchen in the 1980s.

31)Easy Action Alice Cooper

The author of the book Alice Cooper, Steve Demorest, accurately calls this "the great undiscovered" Cooper album. Pretties for You is a difficult record, and Love It to Death is a classic, but this pre-Bob Ezrin album, created with help from Neil Young producer David Briggs, might be the perfect picture of an evolving Alice Cooper Group. "Mr. & Misdemeanor" has Cooper beginning to define his nasty trademark vocal style: "Here's new pretties for you/nobody likes me but we adore you." Cooper became known for writing two-and-a-half- to three-minute catchy tunes with negative themes, augmented by longer pieces toward the end of the recordings. With that in mind, this is almost pre-production for Love It to Death, although the band is more inventive here. "Shoe Salesman" could be Strawberry Alarm  Read more here  :

Gary Sohmers Roar's Back March 8 with Collectibles Show, To Jah Nature Ellis, Tom Hambridge New CD, Keith Richards Waiting for the Man, Sean Walshe American Son, Clive Davis with Anthony DeCurtis

Top 10 1)Gary Sohmers 2)Tom Hambridge 3)Nature Ellis  4)Keith Richards "Waiting for the Man" Lou Reed's Birthday 5)Sean Walshe...