The Cover vs. The Cover – “Whiskey in the Jar”

Alright, we are going to shake things up this time on The Original Vs. The Cover.  We are going to actually look at two Cover versions of the same song and let them battle it out.  The song is “Whiskey in the Jar” and the bands are Thin Lizzy and Metallica.

Yes, the Thin Lizzy version was a cover and not an original.  “Whisky in a Jar” is actually on old Irish traditional song that was called “The Highwayman and The Captain”.  The lyrics were altered and the name changed to “Whiskey in the Jar” by the Beasley Brothers some time in 1967.  The song was later made famous by the Irish band the Dubliners in 1968.

The story behind the song is that this traveller (or highwayman) stole money from Captain Farrell.  He took it to his woman who betrays him (however, it doesn’t say what the betrayal is).  He later sees Captain Farrell again and ends up killing and winding up in prison.  It is such a happy song!!

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Turntables & Vinyl #11 – The Holiday Treasure Trove

Oh the Holidays!  The end of the year.  Christmas time.  The time John is not supposed to buy any albums since it is the holidays and it is my birthday time period so no record purchases as people need to have something to give me as a gift.  Well, that didn’t quite work this year.

I did set aside a list of albums people could buy for me for Christmas and/or my Birthday and I made sure that anything I picked up was not from that list.  December turned out to be a treasure trove of purchases, gifts and free stuff.  I definitely hit the jackpot with a crap load of albums to listen to and some day write about.

It all started mid-November when the Coke reward program was giving away $5 Amazon gift cards for every 10 bottle caps redeemed.  Well, I had been collecting them at work as I do drink one Coke product everyday and on really stressful, busy days, maybe two.  The $5 Amazon Gift cards were actually $10 because they allowed you to redeem it twice.  After setting up a several more accounts with different email addresses, I was able to redeem $40 worth of caps (I would have done more, but I ran out of caps).  What did I get with the $40 from Amazon?  Music of course.  I picked up the following:

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My Sunday Song – “Enter Sandman” by Metallica

My Sunday Song #61 is Metallica’s “Enter Sandman”.  I needed to crank things up a bit and this is great song to turn up to 10 and blast out some windows and shake some walls.  A good song to test out my new speakers on.  The song is off the 1991 album, Metallica (or The Black Album) and was the song that made Metallica mainstream and helped turn them into megastars.  The song was released two weeks before the album and helped the album debut at #1 and go on to sell well over 22 million copies.

If you are not familiar with this song, it just might be one of the most recognizable metal songs of all time and one of the scariest. The song is about children’s nightmares and what might be lying under your bed.  I think what helps give it that eerie feeling is the child’s prayer that is in the song:

Now I lay me down to sleep
I pray the Lord, my soul to keep
If I die before I wake
I pray the Lord my soul to take

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Bob Rock – Producer Extraordinaire #4

We are now on our 4th Producer Extraordinaire in this series.  We have seen Robert John “Mutt” Lange, Brendan O’Brien and Bruce Fairbairn so far, and now it is time for Bob Rock.  Bob Rock actually got his start as a recording engineer and mixer under the great Bruce Fairbairn so he learned from one of the best.

Bob’s musical career started back in 1979 / 1980 when he started engineering from Bruce as well as joined the band Payola$ who had a big hit in 1980 called “Eyes of a Stranger”. They were pretty successful in Canada and won a Juno Award in 1983 for Single of the Year.  However, Bob’s real talent (or at least to me) is his ability to work with bands and produce amazing albums.


Bob Rock has worked with some of the biggest bands in the world, but they don’t get bigger than Metallica.  Bob was selected as the Producer for the band’s biggest album they had ever done, however, at the time they did not know it would become so big. “The Black Album” as it is commonly known made Metallica cool in the mainstream world as well as the Thrash world.

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Tuesday’s Memes – Metallica

It is time for another round of Meme’s and I can’t believe we are now in August.  Summer is hot, work has been busy and I need something to smile about so here are some more Rock & Roll Meme’s.  This week we focus on Metallica.  I hope you get a smile from some of these as I certainly did.  Have a great rest of week.


Now I am hungry!


Their Never Never Land scares me though.

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1983 – The Greatest Year in Music?

Last year, I explored the year 1987 as the greatest year in music.  It was a great year and had some huge top selling albums.  Now , I am going to argue for 1983 as the greatest year in music.  The greatest year in music is very subjective and each person will have a different year.  Probably your high school years and/or the year you really started digging music.  1983 was the year that I started becoming massively obsessed with music.

The year had some of the biggest selling albums and a ton of music that influenced me, but what makes the year even better were the debut albums that came out in 1983. Some of the biggest names in music.  Here are the albums and/or events that make 1983 the greatest year in music:

Michael Jackson:

michael_jackson_-_thrillerWe will start off with one of the biggest reasons 1983 might be the greatest year in music.  That reason is Michael Jackson.  His album, ‘Thriller’, actually came out on November 30, 1982.  However, the impact of that album was truly felt in 1983.  Believe it or not, ‘Thriller’, did not reach #1 until almost 3 months after its release.  On February, 26, 1983, ‘Thriller’ was the #1 album in the country.  It was the first of 37 weeks at #1.  The album is the top selling album of all time at over 65 million copies.  A number that is unheard of and might never be topped.

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Halestorm – ReAniMate 3.0 – The CoVeRs eP – Album Review

As I have said repeatedly, cover albums are not my favorite albums as usually they lack the imagination and creativity to make them feel like it is the band’s songs.  They stick too much to the original and who wants that.  If I want to hear something that sounds like the original song, I will listen to the original song.

I will keep an open mind with this review and do my best to do it justice.  Halestorm is now on their 3rd edition of their Reanimate the Covers E.P.’s.  I give the band credit for giving their fans something to tide them over until their next album.  As a music fan, it is nice to always get something new from your favorite bands even if it is a cover song.  However, Halestorm does a lot of covers.

After listening to the album repeatedly for the last few days, I feel I have a great grasp of the songs and can say that I am not overly impressed with the E.P. as a whole.  The band sticks pretty close to the original versions which is where my disappointment lies on most of the songs, but overall it is not a bad effort.  I would rather have a full album of new material though.

The opening track is “Still of the Night”, a Whitensake cover.  I have to admit I do like this song.  Yes, they stick close to the original version, but the vocal range is actually perfect for Lzzy and the band sounds really great.  What I like about Halestorm is that when they really rock it out, that is where they shine.  This song really gives them the opportunity to rock out.

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The Top 20 Rock Songs of 2016

Welcome to the Top 20 Rock Songs of 2016.  These songs are my favorite songs of the year and were not necessarily played on the radio or even shot up the charts.  They just moved me in some way good or bad!

If you missed the Top Rock Albums of 2016 or the Top Albums of 2016 (that were not Rock), just click on the link and go check them out.

It is time to start the list so here we go…

20. “Parasite (feat. John 5)” by Ace Frehley off the album ‘Origins, Vol. 1’:  I wouldn’t pick a covers song for this list if this one wasn’t so damn good.  John 5 on guitar is amazing and since this is an old Kiss song it is perfect for Ace.  I think it sounds better than the original.

19. “Raise Hell” by Dorothy off the album ‘RockisDead’:  This bluesy gem from Dorothy has such a great sound and Dorothy’s vocals are perfect for this style.  I expect big things from this band!

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The Top Rock Albums of 2016

2016 is about to be over so it is time to look back on the year and see what amazing albums rocked my world this year.  It was a great year indeed.  This was the year I started this blog back in April and it has been a blast. I have listened to a lot of albums this year so I had stuff to write about and it really made the year special.

This list will be my favorite “Rock” albums of the year.  All other types of music will be for a later post.  I am going to leave this one to my favorite genre.  It is a broad genre, but these are the albums that I consider to be ROCK!!

Also note, these are MY FAVORITES!!  These are not the most popular or possibly even the ones that have sold the most.  These are the albums that I connected with during the year and kept coming back to again and again.  And without further adieu, here are the Top Rock Albums of 2016:

My #1 Album of the Year:


Hellyeah – UnDen!able (Eleven Seven Music):  This album screams Rock & Roll to me!  It is heavy and pounding with aggressive vocals and lyrics and was perfect for me when I got stuck in traffic and needed to vent a little.  With songs like “Startariot”, “X”, “Scratch A Lie” and “Be Undeniable”, I was completely satisfied with this gem.  Check out the review at this link to see what I thought in detail about the album.

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Friday New Releases – November 18th

Wow!! Some huge releases today!  I can’t wait to get into some of these. I hope there is something for you as well.  Sixx:A.M., Metallica, Bruno and Miranda are doing it for me today.  Here is to some great listening pleasure.  My favorites are highlighted in Blue.

  • cover170x170-45  Sixx:A.M. – Prayers for the Blessed Vol. 2 – (Eleven Seven Music):  Volume 1 was released earlier this year and was OUTSTANDING!!!  I have extreme high hopes for this one as well and since they have never diappointed, I expect to be blown away…AGAIN!!  Could they end up with 2 albums in my Top 10 albums of the year…wait and see.

  • 51iCjOdvPoL._AC_US200_  Metallica – Hardwired…To Self-Destruct – (Blackened Recordings):  Metallica is back heavier and louder than ever.  I was a little disappointed in their last release so I am hoping they return with some of their old magic.    If the song, “Hardwired” is any indication, we might just see some more greatness.

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