Friday New Releases – January 24th

Finally…a good week of releases…at least for me.  There are at least 4 I am wanting to try out before I slam down some buckaroos.  Thank goodness for streaming.  There is a ton of Rock this week and a little pop and christian music as well.  Hopefully something to pique your interest.  Let me know what you want to hear this week or if I missed anything.  I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend and Happy Listening!!  Oh, I almost forgot…my choices are highlighted in Blue!

  • 81aQcX+Vm9L._AC_UL320_SR320,320_  Revolution Saints – Rise – (Frontiers Records):  What I thought was going to be a one time supergroup from Frontiers now has flourished to its third album…that is right numero three-o.  Jack Blades, Doug Aldrich and Deen Castronovo.  With Deen handling most of the lead vocals, there is a whole Journey vibe but heavier.  The songs are catchy and have some great guitar work and it is just great rock & roll.  I hope this one is as good as the last two and if so, you have a great trio of records from this trio.  Give it a listen.

  • 91FA1oOqXOL._AC_UL115_  Jorn – Heavy Rock Radio II: Executing the Classics – (Frontiers Records):  Another Frontiers release and this one is Jorn. I have been a fan for quite some time, however, the covers albums are growing kind of old…NEW MATERIAL MR. JORN WOULD BE NICE!!!!  However, I will give it a listen and see what he brings to these tracks.  If you like someone who sounds a lot like David Coverdale but just a bit more dramatic, you will like Jorn.  If you don’t like this…his early albums kick major ass!!

Continue reading “Friday New Releases – January 24th”

Friday New Releases – January 17, 2020

It’s a pretty slow start to the year, nothing for me last week and only one for me this week (highlighted in Blue).  However, that is normally the case for the first couple weeks of January. It will pick up soon, I promise.  Hopefully there will be something for you in this list and if not, there will be something soon enough, I promise.  The good news is it frees my up to keep chugging along on the Gene Simmon’s The Vault 15 part review and the David Coverdale Series…check them both out.  How’s that for a shameless plug?

  • 91J71+Iz4kL._SX522_.jpg  Sons of Apollo – MMXX – (InsideOutMusic):  I am so happy to see Sons of Apollo bringing us their second studio album, but third album overall.  I thought this might be a one and done kind of thing, but thankfully nope.  The band has one of my favorite singers, Jeff Scott Soto as well as some guys you might have heard of by the names of Mike Portnoy, Billy Sheehan, Derek Sherinian and some no name guitarist that goes by Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal.  Just a little band full of nobodies…huh, yeah right.  It don’t get much better than this lineup!!  A super group for dang sure. Check them out.

  • A1ZY0GJHrCL._SX522_  G. Love & Special Sauce – The Juice – (Philadelphonic Records / Thirty Tigers)
  • 71k-hlXAyFL._SS500_  British Lion – The Burning – (Explorer1 Music)
  • 71990GnQiwL._AC_UL115_  Magnum – The Serpent Rings – (Steamhammer)
  • 919n7zPbmrL._AC_UL115_  Little Big Town – Nightfall – (Craft Recordings)
  • A1EzbNkAnlL._SS500_  Dustin Lynch – Tullahoma – (Broken Bow Records)
  • A1X39UIXU+L._SX522_.jpg  Halsey – Manic – (Capitol Records)
  • 81AR1eEs6HL._SS500_  Of Montreal – UR Fun – (Polyvinyl Records)
  • 71lWuBqqsZL._AC_UL115_  John McLaughlin, Shankar Mahadevan & Zakir Hussain – Is That So? – (Abstract Logix)
  • 719VOLhACML._SS500_  Bombay Bicycle Club – Everything Else Has Gone Wrong – (Mmm…Records)
  • 91CoOjAVLKL._SS500_  Anti-Flag – 20/20 Vision – (Spinefarm Records)
  • 9185Ux4LWKL._SX522_  …And You Will Know Us By The Trail of Dead – X: The Godless Void and Other Stories – (Dine Alone Music)

The Original vs. The Cover – “Girls Just Want To Have Fun”

For this month’s The Original vs. The Cover, we are going to cover the classic 80’s pop song, “Girls Just Want to Have Fun”.  The original is by Robert Hazard who wrote the song and the cover we are going to use is Cyndi Lauper’s.  I know, you thought that was her original song, didn’t you?  Nope.  Not hers.  I guess an argument could be made that Cyndi’s is not really a cover since Robert’s song was only a demo and never released and I can see that argument, but I am ignoring for that so I have a post.

Robert Hazard wrote the song in 20 minutes while taking a shower in a motel. I guess you listen whenever inspiration strikes.  He made a demo in 1979, but the demo never went anywhere.  That was until Cyndi’s producer, Rick Chertoff, remembered hearing the song and took her to meet Mr. Hazard.  After meeting, Cyndi wanted to do the song and Robert allowed her to tweak a few lyrics to fit the song coming from a woman’s perspective as the original is taken from a man’s perspective.

Robert’s version comes from a guys point of view and talking about what he wants to do with girls and that they really want to have “fun” in the sleazy sort of way.  Cyndi of course turns it as she is the one one out late getting in to trouble because she and all girls want to have fun. It became more a feminist anthem and is now so recognizable as Cyndi’s song since she truly made it her own.

ROBERT HAZARD

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Robert Hazard’s version is more of an uptempo rock song, heavier on the guitar than on synthesizers.  It has a great drum beat and the chorus is catchy.  His song is a little more sleazy than a pop feminist anthem  There is a great little guitar solo and it is an all around fun song.

Robert’s singing is pretty good.  He has a little roughness and grit to his vocals.  They aren’t all smooth and slick.  This helps in giving it a little sleaze factor to it.  I have to admit not hearing this song prior to researching this post and it is hard getting Cyndi’s version out of your head when you hear it, but I see why she was taken with the song and wanted to sing it as there is something special there.

CYNDI LAUPER

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Cyndi’s version changes things up significantly while still maintains the original song structure and vibe.  She adds a whole lot of synthesizers and electronic drum sounds including some weird little bleeps. The song went from a guitar rock song to a dance hit.  It is a happy, jovial tune now without any of the sleaze.

Cyndi’s unique sounding vocals are so happy and cheerful, you can’t help but get swept up in her bubble gum pop world and get up and dance along with the song.  She has such a beautiful voice as well.  The honesty in her voice propels the song into a women’s anthem that empowers women to go out and do anything you want as there is nothing they can’t do that a guy does. It is okay to have “fun” the same way a guy does.  You can find the song on her debut album ‘She’s So Unusual’.

THE VERDICT

Is there any discussion needed with this one?  Cyndi took and owned this song.  With a few minor tweaks, she turned a sleazy male point of view rock song and turned it in to an empowering anthem for women.  No contest!  I had so much trouble shaking Cyndi’s version from my mind when I was listening to the original demo of Robert’s which alone is a sign of the fact that it is Cyndi’s song now.  I am sure Robert’s band account is fine with that fact as well.

I am really interested in hearing what everyone else thinks of these two songs.  Let me know which version you like the best and why.  Feel free to leave a comment and talk about the song and tell me how right or wrong I am on this one.  Thanks for stopping by and have a great day.

The lyrics below are for Robert Hazard’s original version…

Girls Just Want To Have Fun

The phone rings in the middle of the night
My father says, “My boy, what do you want from your life?”
Father dear, you are the fortunate one
Girls just wanna have fun
Yeah, girls just wanna have fun
Come home with the morning light
My mother says, “My boy, you’ve got to start living right.”
Don’t worry, mother dear, you’re still number one
Girls just wanna have fun
These girls just wanna have fun
That’s all they really want
Some fun
When the working day is done
Girls just wanna have fun
Yeah, girls just wanna have fun
Some guys take a beautiful girl
They try to hide her away from the rest of the world
All my girls have got to walk in the sun
‘Cause girls just wanna have fun
Yeah, girls just wanna have fun
I know your love for him
Is deep as day is long
I know you’d never be the
Thing to do him wrong
But when I knock on the door
I’m close now, you could come
It really wasn’t important
‘Cause girls just wanna have fun
Yeah, girls just wanna have fun
It’s all they really want
Good fun
When the working day is done
Girls just wanna have fun
Yeah, girls just wanna have fun
(Just wanna, just wanna)
Come on, boy
(Just wanna, just wanna)
Oh yeah
(Just wanna, just wanna)
You are the fortunate one
Girls just wanna have fun
Yeah, girls just wanna have fun
(Just wanna, just wanna)
Come here, boy
(Just wanna, just wanna)
Oh, yeah
(Just wanna, just wanna)
You are the fortunate one
Girls just wanna have fun
Yeah, girls just wanna have fun

Witten by Robert Hazard

Friday New Releases – January 10th

Wow!  We are in 2020 and we are now to our first Friday of new releases.  2020!  It is hard to imagine another decade.  How time flies when you are having fun.  And we are having fun…aren’t we???  Anyway, here is our first batch of releases for the new year and if you are in to Pop music, there might be some music for you.  If you are in to some pretty Heavy Metal music, there might be something for you as well.  Otherwise, not so much.  Me, there is nothing I am interested in which is great as I am still digesting my big purchase from a couple weeks ago.  Let me know what you like or if there is something I missed or if there is nothing for you…whatever the reason, leave a comment and have a wonderful music weekend.

  • 71woOwjz-TL._AC_UL115_  Selena Gomez – Rare – (Interscope Records):  An album that was supposed to come out in 2017, finally sees the light of day.  Selena had to work through a lot of issues to get to this point. My kids are interested in this, sadly, not much interest from me.  Apparently a lot of people are interested as the video below is pushing 200 million views.  Good for her.

  • 91eKtR1Hh7L._SS500_  Echosmith – Lonely Generation – (Echosmith):  The pop band that brought us “Cool Kids” is back with another release.  Good luck to them as no dollars will come from me.

And the rest…

A little bit country…

  • 912zz6-zksL._SS500_  Ronnie Dunn – Re-Dunn – (LWR, LLC)

And a whole lot of rock & roll…with a heave dose of metal…

  • 71gF+e-HRRL._SX522_  Apocalyptica – Cell-O – (Silver Lining Music)
  • 81yMFIpzCuL._SS500_  Poppy – I Disagree – (Sumerian Records)
  • download-1  Behemoth – Live from Maida Vale E.P. – (Metal Blade Records)
  • 81kgWPW2Y2L._SS500_  Brothers of Metal – Emblas Saga – (AFM Records)

Rick Springfield – “Don’t Talk to Strangers” (The 45 Single)

When I am out on my record store digging adventures, I always go through the 45’s to see if there is anything I like and occasionally I find something.  I am a closet Rick Springfield fan.  Yes, I am out of the closet now and will admit openly, I like Rick Springfield!!! There, I said it.  I feel so much better that it is out in the open now.  Thank you for that!

I found this single in the $1 bin and was happy to grab it.  The single of is for the song “Don’t Talk To Strangers” from his 1982 album ‘Success Hasn’t Spoiled Me Yet’.  The single was released in March 1982 and went all the way to #2 on the Billboard.  It was Rick’s second biggest hit after that little song you might know called Jessie’s Girl.

The song is about Rick’s girlfriend at the time (future wife). When Rick was traveling and touring for his career, he had a lot of insecurities that his girlfriend was out with other guys.  This was his way of expressing those feelings.  The irony is that Rick was screwing around as he was touring and such.  Such a hypocrite.

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Continue reading “Rick Springfield – “Don’t Talk to Strangers” (The 45 Single)”

What to Expect for Music in 2020?

2020 is upon us and it is always fun anticipating what new albums are and will come out in the year.  There are quite a few we already know about, but some haven’t been officially announced or even a date set yet.  From what I have gathered around the internet, here are the bands that should have new albums out in 2020, but no dates announced yet. The ones I would give a try (and my kids) will be highlighted in Blue.  The ones with Dates Announced are at the bottom of this post.  The list is building up nicely!!

  • Ace Frehley – Origins, Vol. 2
  • Alicia Keys – A.L.I.C.I.A.
  • Angels & Airwaves
  • Bon Jovi
  • Bush – The Mind Plays Tricks On You
  • Busta Rhymes
  • Cardi B – Tiger Woods
  • A Day to Remember – You’re Welcome
  • Deep Purple
  • Deftones
  • Dixie Chicks – Gaslighter
  • Dokken
  • The Doobie Brothers
  • Dua Lipa – Future Nostalgia
  • Evanescence
  • FM
  • Greta Van Fleet
  • Harem Scarem
  • Iron Maiden (rumor)
  • J. Cole – The Fall Off
  • Jeff Scott Soto
  • Kid Cudi – Entergalactic
  • Lana Del Rey – White Hot Forever
  • Megadeth
  • Miley Cyrus
  • Niall Horan
  • One Desire
  • OneRepublic
  • Ozzy Osbourne
  • Pearl Jam
  • Red Hot Chili Peppers
  • Royal Blood
  • Sam Smith
  • Sanctuary
  • Scorpions
  • Skid Row
  • Static-X – Project Regeneration
  • Steven Wilson
  • Stryper
  • The Airborne Toxic Event
  • The Cure
  • The Killers
  • The Offspring
  • Winger

Continue reading “What to Expect for Music in 2020?”

December Purchases (& Gifts) – Vinyl (2019)

First off, December is a little light compared to the last two months of purchases  December was a more normal month of purchases mainly because it is the month for Christmas and my Birthday.  For that reason, I have to leave things for people to buy for me as gifts.

The month started out actually on Black Friday and yes, I know that is November. The problem is I couldn’t get these purchases into last months post due to timing issues and Thanksgiving and all.  I am sure you won’t mind.

Record Store Black Friday was on November 29th and I got up bright and early to pick up are few things and I got exactly what I was going for and nothing more…I stuck to the plan for once.

First up is the RSD Exclusive Release of Pearl Jam’s MTV Unplugged and you saw that one already at THIS POST!!!!

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Continue reading “December Purchases (& Gifts) – Vinyl (2019)”

Top Albums of 2019

The year is almost over so it is time to look back at what was awesome in music during the year.  I have already looked back at the Top Rock Albums of 2019 (click to read).   This list will cover all other genres that I listened to over the year including Pop, Country, Christian and whatever other genre you want classify these albums.  Rock is my favorite genre and that is why it gets it’s own list, but that doesn’t take away from any of these choices as I think they are great on their own.

I feel I didn’t get to as many as I would have liked as the year seem to get away from me.  I did spend a lot of time on a few series such as finishing The Billy Idol Series, The Kiss Bootleg Series, the Kiss Box Set 6 Part Series and starting the David Coverdale Series.  These consumed a lot of my time.  What I am trying to say is I missed a lot.

Note:  These albums were my favorites and not necessarily the most played on the radio (which I hate the radio) or even the biggest sellers.  There aren’t the trendy indie bands on everyone else’s top albums list (okay, there might be one or two).  These are just what I came across during the year and connected with me in some way and some thanks to my kids.  So, we might as well get started…

#10 – The Highwomen – ‘The Highwomen’

61lneK+2aVL._SL1200_  A Country Super-Group consisting of Brandi Carlile, Natalie Hemby, Maren Morris and Amanda Shires.  I have not been digging Country lately, but the women on country rock.  I found this to be enjoyable and was really digging the songs “The Highwomen”, a rework of the the Jimmy Webb classic “The Highwayman” as well as “Redesigning Women” and “Crowded Table”.  Check them out.

Continue reading “Top Albums of 2019”

Tuesday’s Memes – Billie Eilish

Have you heard of Billie Eilish?  If not, you have been living under a rock. The girl is the hottest thing on the radio right now. She is the only pop artist doing anything remotely interesting and my kids love her.  Actually, I think most young teenage girls love her.  I have to admit, the girl is pretty dang awesome.  There are a few songs I have head that I have admittedly added to my playlist.  So, let’s celebrate all things Billie!

The songs…

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Continue reading “Tuesday’s Memes – Billie Eilish”

The Original vs. The Cover – “Hard to Handle”

For this month’s version of The Original vs. The Cover, we are tackling the Otis Redding song “Hard to Handle”.  Otis wrote and recorded the song along with Al Bell and Allen Jones back in 1967.  Otis died in December 1967 before the song was ever released.  It finally was released in June 1968, but not as the main single.  It was the B-Side to the single “Amen”. The song did chart though as it reached #51 on the Pop Charts and got to #38 on the Billboard R&B charts.  It was a modest hit. The song first appeared on an album in 1968 which was a compilation called ‘The Immortal Otis Redding’.

The song’s theme is pretty obvious.  It is about a man that is so cocky and braggadocios about his sexual prowess that he is coming on to women who already have themselves a man.  I mean he gets cockier and cockier as the song goes on. It is a really cool piece for Otis to write and sing as his earlier work did not come across that way.

OTIS REDDING

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Otis Redding’s original version of the song was a departure for him.  He seemed to be experimenting with a new sound.  He brought a whole James Brown funk feel to the song from the opening piano riffs, the big horn section and that driving bass line. It is quite a departure from “(Sittin’ On) The Dock of The Bay”.  The song is short at just over 2 minutes, but it packs enough greatness in to that time that you don’t realize it is so short.

Vocally, Redding attacks the song with so much confidence and with those lyrics it is the only way to pull it off.  With a little grit to his voice, he comes across as a smooth, slick operator who you believe is going to come home with the woman.  I love the ad libbing at the end which is also in the James Brown vibe.  This is a total badass song.

THE BLACK CROWES

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The Black Crowes covered the song on their debut album ‘Shake Your Money Maker’ from 1990. We are going to speak to the album version and not the single version as they were two different mixes.  The single version adds a horn section that is missing from the album version.  The album version is a straight-up rocker.  It brings in the guitar as the focus, throws in some piano, heavier drum work and dang it speeds up the tempo.  The song is stretched out from 2 minutes to over 3 minutes mainly due to the addition of a killer solo by Jeff Cease.

Chris Robinson attacks the song with such vigor and emits that same cockiness needed to sing such lyrics.  The only thing missing is the heart as he is singing everything so fast it loses some of the intent, the passion.  He is focused on getting through the song and not really believing that he is that much of a badass (even though he probably felt he was).  When comparing to Otis, it isn’t quite the same.  Now, I do love this version by the band and it was one of the songs that got me in to them.

THE VERDICT

When I decided to do this cover, I would have said The Black Crowes would win hands down.  The Crowes are from my home town, went to a rival high school not far from me so these guys were the bomb when the blew up on the scene.  BUT…….when I took the time to digest both versions, there is something about Otis Redding that you can’t deny.  His version was funkier, it was more sincere and it was so different than his previous work you applaud the risk he was taking.  Plus, there is no denying his voice.  You are rooting for him to take home the girl.  With the Crowes, you don’t really care if he does you are just enjoying the song.  For me, Otis Redding and the Original is the hands down winner.

I am really interested in hearing what everyone else thinks of these two songs.  Let me know which version you like the best and why.  Feel free to leave a comment and talk about the song and tell me how right or wrong I am on this one.  Thanks for stopping by and have a great day.

“Hard To Handle”

Hey there, here I am
I’m the man on the scene
I can give you what you want
But you got to come home with meI forgot some good old lovin’
And I got some more in store
When I get to thrown it on you
You got to come back for more

Toys and things that come by the dozen
That ain’t nothin’ but drug store lovin’
Hey little thing, let me light your candle
‘Cause mama I’m sure hard to handle, now, yessir’am

Action speaks louder than words
And I’m a man of great experience
I know you got another man
But I can love you better than him

Take my hand, don’t be afraid
I wanna prove every word I say
I’m advertisin’ love for free
So, you can place your ad with me

Once it come along a dime by the dozen
That ain’t nothin’ but ten cent lovin’
Hey little thing, let me light your candle
‘Cause mama I’m sure hard to handle, now, yessir’am

Baby, here I am
The man on your scene
I can give you what you want
But you got to come home with me

I forgot some good old lovin’
And I got some more in store
When I get to thrown it on you
You got to come runnin’ back for more

Once it come along a dime by the dozen
That ain’t nothin’ but drug store lovin’
Hey little thing, let me light your candle
‘Cause mama I’m sure hard to handle, now, yessir’am

Written by Otis Redding, Al Bell and Allen Jones