July 2021 Purchases – Vinyl & CDs

We are about to the end of July so time for another wrap-up of my purchases for the month. We had a little quieter month and some things I am so happy to have in my collection. The vinyl was limited this month, CDs ruled the month and I even have a nice new book to read. I would say it was a really great month of finds.

We will start off with some simple finds from when my kids and I hit up Manifest Discs and a little shop called 2nd & Charles. At Manifests, I found a couple of Velvet Revolver CDs that were in my collection at one time, but we won’t go in to that right now, I am just happy to have them again. The one on the left, ‘Contraband’, is the one my brother-in-law was the engineer on so yes, he worked with Slash and Scott Weiland!! Pretty cool.

Then we went down the street to 2nd & Charles and my daughter picked up 7 Volume set of Buffy the Vampire Slayer graphic novels and I grabbed a couple CDs. These were two more that were in my collection years ago and now they are back as well. A nice Richard Marx one and Chickenfoot. And Richard Marx will come up again soon…

Continue reading “July 2021 Purchases – Vinyl & CDs”

Friday New Releases – July 23, 2021

Happy Friday Everyone! We have another long list of releases for you today and isn’t that why you came to this page…yeah, we know it is. Now this week there are only 2 I’m interested in. One that has been bought and will be here today and the other is one I want to try out as I liked the song I heard and my Canadian followers will be happy. My choices are highlighted in Blue. I am sure there is something on here for you as there is so much there is probably something for everyone. I hope you find something you like! Thanks for stopping by and I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

  • 81GGJWyPWJL._SX522_  Stone Temple Pilots – Tiny Music…Songs from the Vatican Gift Shop (25th Anniversary) – (Atlantics): This is a MUST HAVE!! I have ordered and it is on the way. The first two box sets in the Anniversary Series they are doing were top notch and this one looks great as well. You get a remastered album, a bonus disc of demos and such and then a live show from the era and that is all you want in a good box set. My Brother-In-Law worked on this one as well and he mixed a bunch of he unreleased stuff (or was it the live show, I can’t remember). Anyway, I am excited and I will be really excited if he remembers to get a me a copy of the 7″ Single that is only available on the STP Site.
  • 61cTmy45YSS._SX522_  Lee Aaron – Radio On – (Metalville): And here is a long standing Canadian artist that has been around for a long time and she still sounds fantastic. I heard the track I posted below and it has intrigued me to want to give the rest of the album a listen. Who doesn’t a love a woman who can rock out with the best of them!!
Continue reading “Friday New Releases – July 23, 2021”

The LeBrain Train with Special Guest – Ryan Williams

Great show Yesterday if you missed! Mike Ladano and I brought on my brother-in-law and engineer/mixer/musician/songwriter Ryan Williams for storytime.  Though his credits range from pop to metal, we tended to focus our discussion on rock and roll.  If you’re a fan of Stone Temple Pilots, Pearl Jam, Slayer, Staind, U2, Phil Collen of Def Leppard, Limp Bizkit, Velvet Revolver, Dave Navarro, or Kelly Clarkson then you’ll want to check this show out.

From starting out in Atlanta, to travelling the world recording epic performances, Ryan Williams has seemingly seen it all and done it all.  Recording music on a Tascam 4-track home studio, graduating to two synced 24-tracks machines, to the modern tools of today, Ryan has kept learning.  We talked about his beginnings, and working with Brendan O’Brien, all the way to the present day and the imminent release of a Stone Temple Pilots box set for Tiny Music.  Ryan even had a little bit of show and tell with some hand-written original Eddie Vedder lyrics. He had stories about working with some guy from a not well known band called U2 and even going to a private party with I am sure people you’ve never heard of or maybe you have. It is all worth checking out.

Great show all around and thank you for watching.

REMINDER: ENGINEER AND MIXER RYAN WILLIAMS ON THE SATURDAY LEBRAIN TRAIN

A friendly reminder that Ryan Williams will be joining us on a Special Saturday Edition of the LeBrain Train…

Mike LeBrain and I will be interviewing a well-respected engineer and mixer in the music business who started out working with one of the biggest producers of all time Brendan O’Brien. Not a bad way to learn the business. Join us why we walk through Ryan’s career and all the great bands he has worked with and some interesting stories about some things that happened along the way. By the way, Ryan is my brother-in-law so I know the deep dark secrets…kidding…or am I?????

The LeBrain Train: 2000 Words or More with Mike and John Snow

Saturday July 3 – Episode 74 – Ryan Williams

Have you ever had anything with your name on it nominated for a Grammy award?  Ryan Williams has — for his work on Train’s Drops of Jupiter, Velvet Revolver’s Contraband, and Kelly Clarkson’s Stronger.  And we’ll be talking to him about it on Saturday’s LeBrain Train.

Join John Snow and I for this special Saturday episode with a very in-demand engineer.  How much demand?  Well, besides Stone Temple Pilots, he’s either engineered or mixed for Matt Nathanson, 3 Doors Down, Lifehouse, Linkin Park, Limp Bizkit, Pearl Jam, Outkast, Staind, Michelle Branch, The Panic Channel, Phil Collen’s Delta Deep, Korn, Static-X, Thirty Seconds to Mars, Biffy Clyro, 10 Years, Atreyu, Mastodon, Billy Idol, P!nk, Sugar Ray, Deftones, Adam Lambert, Coheed & Cambria, The Black Dahlia Murder, Bush, Neon Trees, and Beck.  He even has a co-write on a Kelly Clarkson song.  Is that enough demand for ya?

This is going to be a great chance for us to pick the brain of a guy who has literally worked with the biggest names in modern music.  You do not want to miss this one — catch it live so we can ask Ryan your questions!

Saturday July 3, 1:00 PM E.S.T. on Facebook:  MikeLeBrain and YouTube:  Mike LeBrain.

ENGINEER AND MIXER RYAN WILLIAMS ON THE SATURDAY LEBRAIN TRAIN

Mike LeBrain and I will be interviewing a well-respected engineer and mixer in the music business who started out working with one of the biggest producers of all time Brendan O’Brien. Not a bad way to learn the business. Join us why we walk through Ryan’s career and all the great bands he has worked with and some interesting stories about some things that happened along the way. By the way, Ryan is my brother-in-law so I know the deep dark secrets…kidding…or am I?????

The LeBrain Train: 2000 Words or More with Mike and John Snow

Saturday July 3 – Episode 74 – Ryan Williams

Have you ever had anything with your name on it nominated for a Grammy award?  Ryan Williams has — for his work on Train’s Drops of Jupiter, Velvet Revolver’s Contraband, and Kelly Clarkson’s Stronger.  And we’ll be talking to him about it on Saturday’s LeBrain Train.

Join John Snow and I for this special Saturday episode with a very in-demand engineer.  How much demand?  Well, besides Stone Temple Pilots, he’s either engineered or mixed for Matt Nathanson, 3 Doors Down, Lifehouse, Linkin Park, Limp Bizkit, Pearl Jam, Outkast, Staind, Michelle Branch, The Panic Channel, Phil Collen’s Delta Deep, Korn, Static-X, Thirty Seconds to Mars, Biffy Clyro, 10 Years, Atreyu, Mastodon, Billy Idol, P!nk, Sugar Ray, Deftones, Adam Lambert, Coheed & Cambria, The Black Dahlia Murder, Bush, Neon Trees, and Beck.  He even has a co-write on a Kelly Clarkson song.  Is that enough demand for ya?

This is going to be a great chance for us to pick the brain of a guy who has literally worked with the biggest names in modern music.  You do not want to miss this one — catch it live so we can ask Ryan your questions!

Saturday July 3, 1:00 PM E.S.T. on Facebook:  MikeLeBrain and YouTube:  Mike LeBrain.

Top Rock Albums of 2020

2020 was probably the strangest year yet.  With the Covid virus running rampant, many new releases were either postponed until late in the year or we never saw the release at all.  There were a flurry of albums at the beginning of the year, then basically nothing for a few months until we got to the Fall and now there are too many to get through.  But there were some great releases and I am sure I missed a number of great albums and if you look around the web, there will be tons of Top Album lists you can get a pretty good idea of what you should check out in case you missed any of these.

This list will be my favorite “Rock” albums of the year.  All other types of music will be for another post tomorrow.  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 trendy albums.  You won’t find the cool trendy bands, because they are usually here today gone tomorrow.  These are the albums that I connected with during the year and I kept coming back to again and again.  And without further adieu, here are the Top Rock Albums of 2020:

#10 – Storm Force – Age of Fear:

81HSuWcovgL._SY355_ Thanks to some fellow bloggers in the name of LeBrain and SuperDekes, I was introduced to this Canadian band that unapologetically brought us a classic 80’s rock album full of songs that rocked you out and songs that were actually relevant to the events going on in the world which is amazing considering this song came out prior to the Covid shutdowns.  I believe these guys can see the future and with music like this, I can see their future being very bright.  You need to hear the songs “Breathe”, “Because of You” and “Dirty Vegas because once you do, you will be caught in the Storm!!

Continue reading “Top Rock Albums of 2020”

‘Memoir of a Roadie’ – by Joel Miller – Book Review

I get a lot of emails every day asking me to review this person or interview that person, but honestly, I don’t have time to explore the new artists or their music. I can’t keep up with the albums I want to review as it is so to add anything new ones in to the mix is impossible. And let’s be totally honest, most of the stuff I get is so bad, it is nauseating. Then one day I got a request to review a book. That hasn’t happened very often. I actually took the time to read the email and I loved the concept. It is a true story about life on the road and touring with bands. The book was called…this will take awhile…’Memoir of a Roadie: Axl said I mad a great cup of tea…Scott Weiland liked The Carpenters…& Ozzy likes Rosé’ and it was written by Joel Miller. I am going to just call it ‘Memoir of a Roadie’.

Joel Miller’s book covers the time in his life when he was a roadie.  It was only a few short years, back around the early 2000’s, but Joel experienced so much.  You get a realistic view of what goes on in the life of a roadie.  Joel toured with bands like Stone Temple Pilots, Guns ‘N Roses, Poison and The Cranberries and each tour gives us some funny moments, some insane moments and some very sad moments.  The book covers his hard, but fun life on the road in his early 20’s as well as the hardships of his life with not being on the road and the dysfunctions of his family.

Do you get stories about sex, drugs and rock & roll…Duh!!  But it is the storytelling of those events that makes this book a fun, fast-paced read.  Fast-paced because you don’t want to put it down.  The chapters are numerous, but short which helps keep a well paced book interesting and page-turning.  You’ll get to hear a lot about his jobs with telemarketing, working on movie sets and doing whatever he could to make ends meet.  And there is a portion of the book that deals with his tough relationship with his dad who was a Jaguar mechanic and who was sort of friends with Jay Leno.  Heck, Joel even got to go over to Jay’s and see that car collection.  When Joel’s dad was nearly dying, he had Jay call his dad and we get another funny moment in the book.  Jay seems like a really nice guy. Continue reading “‘Memoir of a Roadie’ – by Joel Miller – Book Review”

Turntables & Vinyl #24 – Interactive Album Covers

It is Thanksgiving 2020 and dang what a crazy year it has been. One thing I have found to give me peace and help deal with stress during this Covid impacted world is my vinyl collection. I am of course thankful for my health and my family as that is a given, but since this is a music site, I need to tie in music somehow, I am also thankful for my vinyl collection. It brings me great joy. To be able to pull out an album and play it and it might help my mood brings me great satisfaction. There are so many things I love about it.

One of the things I love about vinyl is that occasionally you find an album cover that is interactive in some way. Something about the picture can be manipulated, changed or just turned to a different angle for a dramatically different picture. This makes for the most fun and enjoyable album experience. For this version of Turntables & Vinyl, we are going to explore those I have in my collection and maybe one I want to get in the future. I will break it out in to different categories. And let’s get right in to the first category…

Perspective

Some album covers have a cover that changes the look of the cover strictly from the perspective of how you are looking at it. A changing perspective is actually a good thing to have in life as well. We change our perspective on the world depending on how we look at it. Why not take that ability and turn it in to an album cover. A couple I have in my collection do just that.

Def Leppard – ‘Retro Active’: This album cover looks different depending on the position you hold it. Up close, it is a beautifully lady sitting in front of a mirror doing make-up. From far away it is a Skull. See what I mean below…Look at the picture closely on your screen and see the girl, pull the screen away from you (or sit further back) and you will see the skull.

Continue reading “Turntables & Vinyl #24 – Interactive Album Covers”

BREAKING NEWS: Stone Temple Pilots – Gutt Out, Weiland Back In

In a surprise announcement, Stone Temple Pilots lead singer Jeff Gutt quits the band and they replaced him with the late Scott Weiland.  You heard that right.  Scott Weiland is back in the band.  Well, sort of.

The DeLeo brothers stated…”It was actually Gutt’s idea.  Jeff couldn’t take the pressure anymore of living in Weiland’s shadows.  As he quit, he screamed at us..”why don’t you just dig Scott up and let him be your lead singer again.  That’s what your asshole fan’s want anyway”.  So, we did!!”

Late one night, they went out to Weiland’s grave and dug up his bag of bones…

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And for some reason, they stole the headstone too.

Gravediggers-in-Hungary-compete-in-first-national-grave-digging-contest Continue reading “BREAKING NEWS: Stone Temple Pilots – Gutt Out, Weiland Back In”

February 2020 Purchases – Vinyl & CDs

Two months in to the year and already some great purchases.  If you are new to the site, this is my monthly wrap-up of my vinyl and CD purchases since not everything I buy makes it on to the site.  Some of it does or already has or will in the future, but whose to say how long that will be.  So, I thought why not share the love of music and let you see what I have been adding to the collection.

The first set of purchases started with a run of vinyl diving when my daughter wanted to go out and pick up a certain album.  We hit two stores…Repo Records and Lunchbox, both in Charlotte, NC.  First stop was Repo Records and my daughter didn’t find anything she wanted, but I found one.  It is the 1980 debut album of Canadian rock star Bryan Adams. Honestly, I have never seen this one and for $5 bucks, why not add to it my ever growing Adams collection. I have at least 6 or 7 of his so this fits in nicely.

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Then we are off to Lunchbox and my daughter found the album she wanted which was Lorde’s album “Pure Heroine” which is actually a really good album.  And don’t worry, I found a couple as well.  I love the UK band The Alarm.  I have about 4 or 5 in the collection and now I have one more.  It is Electric Folklore Live from 1988 that I was missing.

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And then one more to add to the ever growing Aerosmith collection. I finally found ‘Permanent Vacation’ at what I thought was a good price of $10. I’ll take it.

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And then a week later, my wife and I had an afternoon to ourselves and we spent it going to 2nd & Charles as my wife wanted to look at some books and they have a great selection of new and a ton of used books. They also have a vinyl and CD section as well. They have bootlegs on vinyl which is cool and I might have to go back and get some.  I didn’t buy any vinyl, but picked up some cheap CDs which I always like.  First up was a from a band called Audiovent.  Their only album ‘Dirty Sexy Knights in Paris’ came out in 2002 and I had it at one time on CD and loved it, so I re-bought it.

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And since I have been on a Robbie Williams kick lately, I decided I needed all his albums. I didn’t get all, but I picked up 3.  I grabbed ‘The Ego Has Landed’ and ‘Intensive Care’ both studio albums and then a really cool Live album called “Live Summer 2003” recorded at Knebworth.

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I also picked up the new album from Stone Temple Pilots called ‘Perdida’ and I already have shown you that when I did a review.  It wasn’t pleasant.  But I bought it mostly due to my brother-in-law being the engineer and mixer on the album.  Go Check out the Review.

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If that wasn’t enough, when my kids and I were out to dinner on Saturday, February 15th, we were driving by Noble Records and I had to stop in.  As usual, I found a few more things.  First up is another Stone Temple Pilots album. This one is Shangri-La Dee Da and since I am buying albums that their uncle worked on, this falls in that category as he was working with Brendan O’Brien back then and he was the engineer on this album.

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And then there were two 80’s albums I didn’t have.  First one was Dokken’s “Under Lock And Key”…

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and the next one was one of the covers I am after for Stryper’s “To Hell With the Devil”…now I need to find the alternate more controversial cover…

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And that is all.  Well, there was one more, but it didn’t arrive in time for this month’s post so it will kick off next months.  Here is everything in one bundle and yes, I have a problem…

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See you next month…