The Holiday Season is upon us and once again I find myself flailing around for gifts. Music used to be my go-to gift, but no more. The Streaming Age has robbed us of the ability to give music as a gift; my dream of one day presenting my son with every Rolling Stones album has been abandoned.
Not only has the Streaming Age eliminated our ability to give albums and CDs as gifts, but we are now living in a world without mixed tapes. This week’s Playlist features songs from the embarrassingly-sappy “Matt-in-Mourning” mixed tape I made for my now-wife when she went to Europe for a summer during college.
One of the staples of my teenage radio-listening days was the “Old, New, Borrowed and Blue” sets on WNEW in NYC. This is my first post employing the format. It features, among others, the great Richard Thompson.
Shovels and Rope mix lots of different musical elements all dear to classic rock fans. There’s folk, bluegrass, rock, garage, country, and a hint of punk, all tied together with pitch-perfect harmonies.
These tracks may not be about ghosts and goblins, but they nonetheless cast a long, dark shadow of foreboding.
What is the shelf life for aging rock star Halloween costumes? With the demise of physical albums and CDs, it is getting shorter since a fan can now shimmy down the street, earbuds in, oblivious to what their favorite artists look like.
“Blue Eyes” is the first tune that ever hooked me from the lead-in count of “one, two, three, four. . .,” which is followed by a twangy, country-fried opening riff that sets the tone for the mellow Neil Young groove reverberating throughout the track.
I was jogging in the Oakland hills the other day, listening to a Pandora shuffle, when a version of Hendrix’s “Voodoo Child” stopped me in my tracks and challenged my long-held theory of cover songs.
A Top Ten playlist of the best rock ‘n’ roll cover songs, according to a painstaking methodology I have developed over the years. With one notable exception, these are either excellent versions of obscure tracks or completely revamped classics.
Watching Glen Hansard perform “Astral Weeks” is to see the power of music personified, how it shines a purifying light on the darkest internal recesses. It is like being let into a sacred space.