On this Music Friday, we head back to the early '70s for a band that helped launch the power pop movement...but existed under a cloud of being accused of being Beatle-clones and having their greatest composition hijacked by another artist.
Hijacked may be too harsh a word, as the band actually loved Harry Nilsson...and, his version of "Without You" is probably a stronger statement than their own. But, it was one of several missteps for the band that ended in tragedy.
Besides trusting their careers to a "soulless bastard," the Beatles' shadow probably hurt as much as it helped. That Pete Ham resembled John Lennon and Joey Molland was a ringer for Paul McCartney caused some critics to dismiss the band as Beatle wanna-bes. But, the music was unmistakably masterful on their first few albums.
And so begins vacation season for American families. Most of the extra-curricular activities of June and July for the kids are wrapping up and it's a mad dash to cram in that vaca before school starts.
On this Music Friday, it's one of my favorite summer vacation songs.
Terri was doing what Terri does...networking with DMOpros around the country, when she shared a conversation with our friend Steve Halloran at Visit Anchorage. He was bragging on his niece, who is the bass player for a "little" band that's getting some serious attention.
The gentle giant is, at long last, at peace after a lengthy, valiant battle with cancer.
On this Music Friday, we offer up an audio track that I'm guessing only a handful of friends have ever heard. Trick was working on a track called "Rock and Roll Tonight" that ended up on the "Busted" album. As they worked to perfect it, they let Wheel take the mic.
The result is pretty cool...and a wonderful tribute to the man. And, I love that he biffs the last verse. Always makes me smile.
Thanks for the memories, my friend. Stir things up in heaven, ehh?
Steve Miller went to the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the early '60s. He played in bands with guys like Boz Scaggs and Ben Sidran. Since then, he's had a few hits here and there...and was recently inducted into the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame.
He came back home last Friday for the first time in over 25 years...and simply cooked.
Before he went on, we saw some friends that had their teenagers in tow. When I asked if they were looking forward to the show, they responded with the obligatory grunt and a roll of their eyes. I spotted them half-way through the set, in rapt attention.
She's the only recording artist I can think of that has scored a Top 10 hit with a song in which the word "fucked" was never edited out for radio airplay. I guess that's because a) she has the voice of an angel and/or b) the use of the word can't be disputed.
On this Music Friday, we're going with a live version of one of Sarah McLachlan's biggest...and one with a quirky backstory. She was actually sued over the lyrics by an obsessed fan who said she had used his love letters as the basis for the song. He killed himself before the case came to trial...so, we'll never know.
Either way, "Possession" is one of her best...and as one of the commenters to the video says, the note she hits at 4:05 is pretty awesome.
There aren't a lot of covers of Beatles songs that can stand the test of time. A handful of attempts from the soundtrack to the truly horrible movie adaptation of Sgt. Peppers notwithstanding, a YouTube search of "Long and Winding Road" reveals some cringeworthy attempts from Cher, Olivia Newton-John, Donny Osmond and others.
But that same search will reward you with two sensational gems. We don't often do Beatles on Music Friday...but, when we do, it's with the Father and Queen of Soul, Ray Charles and Aretha Franklin.
Don't laugh. The self-described Peter Pan of 80's Rock turned in a stellar performance of where he's been and where he's going. And, doing it all acoustic delivered a nuance to the classic hits and the new material that was pretty freaking cool.
On this Music Friday, however, we dip back to the glory days of Winger. A video that, when I shared it with my youngest, she blurted out, "Holy Hair."