Top 5's

Desert Island Picks. The Best Of The Rest. Call it what you will. A person's Top Five tells me more than Bernard Pivot ever will.

 



Top 5  Favorite Concerts


Camper Van Beethoven Saturday October 7, 1989 Metropol Pittsburgh, PA  

 "everything clicked"

All Her Favorite Fruit/O Death/Tania/Eye Of Fatima Pts. 1&2/Sweethearts/Wasted/Take The Skinheads Bowling/Good Guys And Bad Guys/One Of These Days/Turquoise Jewelry/When I Win The Lottery/I Was Born In A Laundromat/SP37957/Kashmir/Hava Nigila/Staying Home With The Girls In The Morning/Tina/Lincoln Shrine/Flowers/Waka/Pictures Of Matchstick Men/She Divines The Water/Before I Met You/The Day That Lassie Went To The Moon/Shut Us Down/Sweet Virginia

This was one of the first concerts were I was familiar enough with the material to be really looking forward to the show. I was dying to hear 'All Her Favorite Fruit'. Well, they walk out onstage and open the show with it. I remember everything about that night as being perfect. Great sound. Not overcrowded. The band seemed in a great mood (that's saying a lot when describing David Lowery). They played exceptionally well. The joy of that show will never leave me.


Roger Waters Wednesday August 18, 1999 Star Lake Ampitheater Burgettstown, PA

 "front row center"

Set 1: In The Flesh/The Thin Ice/Happiest Days Of Our Lives/Another Brick In The Wall II/Mother/Get Your Filthy Hands Off My Desert/Southampton Dock/Pigs On The Wing/Dogs/Welcome To The Machine/
Wish You Were Here/Shine On You Crazy Diamond
 
Set 2: Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun/Breathe/Time/Money/Every Stranger's Eyes
Perfect Sense, Part One/Perfect Sense, Part Two/The Bravery of Being Out of Range/It's A Miracle
Amused To Death/Brain Damage/Eclipse
Encore: Comfortably Numb   

Unused mosaic I designed for the In The Flesh Tour 1999

I stumbled upon a website announcing Roger was touring in the summer. Cool! I haven't seen him since his last tour (Radio KAOS) twelve years earlier. As I was scrolling through the dates to try to find the nearest city to catch the show, BAM, he's coming HERE!! I was so thrilled I had to get good seats. I went up to the ticket outlet and wait in line for them to go on sale. I am about seventh in line and by the time I get my tickets they are in section whatever behind the section behind the soundboard. Damn TicketBastard! Anyway, feeling a little bummed I try to convince myself they are O.K. seats. A few weeks later I am at a class taking an internet course (don't ask) and they announce a venue change for the show and ticket exchanges are happening that morning. I call my wife and the trooper she is goes to the ticket outlet in her p.j.'s. She actually gets there 40 minutes early and the lady behind the counter is kind of befuddled that she is willing to wait that long. I rush home from the class dying to find out what happened. With a look of disappointment she says she tried the best she could. She's sorry but all she could get was Pit Section, Center!! She thought that was bad. Bad? I spent the whole show a few feet from Roger Waters with nothing between us but the rail. Beautiful! (Wait a minute, I just realized how totally gay that sounds.)


Tim Easton Spring 2001 Club Cafe Pittsburgh, PA 

"great interaction"

If I could remember the the date, I would. If I could remember the setlist, I would. I can't. This concert I do remember being a drunken hoot! My buddy and I were having a blast listening to Tim accompanied by Chris Burney on upright bass. He played two 45 minute sets. Most everything he ever  plays. Some covers and instrumentals. The best thing about it was his interaction with the audience, mainly me. I spoke to him outside during the break and he mentioned how important interaction between him and the audience is. So I take that as a hint to yell out a request or two, ask his bass player where his baby sitter is, and walk up to the stage to take 20 pictures during the night. I saw it as fun. Every one else saw it as a nuisance. They were right of course but Tim took it all in stride.

Tim and Chris. Photo courtesy Mike Z (his camera, my shot). My favorite pic on this site.


Bob Dylan  Saturday May 18, 1996 Star Lake Ampitheater Burgettstown, PA

 "onstage"

 Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat/Tonight I'll Be Staying Here With You/All Along The Watchtower
Most Likely You Go Your Way (And I'll Go Mine)/It Takes A Lot To Laugh, It Takes A Train To Cry
Silvio/Tangled Up In Blue (acoustic)/Masters Of War (acoustic)/Don't Think Twice, It's All Right (acoustic)
Seven Days/Never Gonna Be The Same Again/Highway 61 Revisited
Encore: Alabama Getaway/It Ain't Me, Babe (acoustic)/Rainy Day Women #12 & 35 (Aimee Mann on guitar) 

Sorry, that dildo ain't me.

The last time I saw Dylan he invited all these people onstage during 'Ballad Of The Thin Man' to dance. Too cool. I got tickets with a few friends and they were really good seats (4th Row Center). After we bought our tickets I started to date a girl who, by the time the concert rolled around, wanted to go. She bought a sucky lawn ticket and hung out by herself. I stayed with her while Aimee Mann was on and right before Dylan came out I went to join my friends. As I was going to the seat, I noticed that nobody was going to stop me from just going to the front row and well, no one did! SWEET!. The whole show Dylan was playing lead and while he was, he was looking RIGHT at me with an expression like, " Not bad, huh?" It was priceless. He was doing this to me all night. During the encore of The Grateful Dead's 'Alabama Getaway' people were hoping up onstage to dance. The people around me were like, "What are you waiting for?", and lifted me up to the stage. I looked at my friends in the fourth row and they were loving it. On STAGE, with DYLAN, during a DEAD TUNE! Oh yeah!


Palace Music Friday April 11, 1997 Staches Columbus, OH

"giddy buddies"

Patience/The Risen Lord/Arise Therefore/You Have Cum In Your Hair And Your Dick Is Hanging Out/Disorder/The Sun Highlights The Lack In Each/In My Mind/All Babies/New Gypsy/Stablemate/Give Me Children/A Sucker's Evening/Stable Will

Flyer for the following night courtesy Jeff W.

My buddy Jeff was a real big Palace/Palace Brothers/Palace Music fan. Essentially it was Will Oldham's moniker and we traveled from Pittsburgh to Columbus and Cleveland to see him perform over a couple days. It takes only a few hours to get there and basically we slept in his car for a few days. Driving down we did a little partying and when we got to the club it was about an hour or so before show time. The club was just a regular bar/restaurant with a TINY stage (Staches changed and moved to become Little Brothers). We sat at the bar and Jeff wanted to run across the street to pick up smokes. When he came back he was very serious and I asked what the problem was. Staring straight ahead and speaking in hushed tones as not to attract attention he replied, "I just saw Will." You must understand, Jeff idolizes Will. If Will's grandmother took a dump, Jeff would root through her draining system to...never mind you get the idea. Well he was like a giddy schoolgirl. He was too nervous to even say anything to him. By showtime the club was getting crowded but not too bad. Will comes out with an acoustic guitar and a drum machine and proceeds to play the most depressing music ever known. What do expect with a song called 'You Have Cum In Your Hair And Your Dick Is Hanging Out'. The audience is very quiet and attentive (Unlike the next night in Cleveland where everybody in the place is talking like it was a class reunion). At the end of the show during Stable Will, he starts to do a little soft shoe chicken dance a'la Beck, which Jeff and I dub "The Suicide Shuffle". After the set we approach Will and tell him how much we enjoyed the set. He offers up his bourbon which someone bought for him. I request a song for the next night ("More Brother Rides", he played it.) Things are going great, we are getting along famously and in our drunken brashness, we ask Will where he is staying tonight? He says he's crashing on a friend's floor. We suggest that we crash too. Conversation over. See you in Cleveland.


notables: Who Quadrophenia tour, many Dead, Farm Aid 2002, Eric Clapton w/Mark Knoppfler RowB, Bruce Springsteen The River tour



Top 5 Worst Concerts


Cars/Wang Chung 1984 

This show blew. The Cars looked like mannequins lip-synching the tunes. The set was some post apocalyptic, Warholian mess. I came out thinking that openers Wang Chang were better. How sad is that.


Gordon Lightfoot 8/10/95 

Never having seen the guy and liking some of his mellow 70's vibe I decided to go with a couple people. What a waste. We were standing feet from the sound board and we COULDN'T HEAR A NOTE! If I whispered to my friend it drowned out the music. I couldn't believe it. Gordon Lightfoot literally apologized after every song. People were leaving. People were HISSING it was so bad. I actually felt sorry for him. I would have been upset but the tickets were only $10.


Tim Easton 6/27/02 

My wife and I decide to travel from Pittsburgh to Columbus to see Tim Easton. This is the first time we are leaving our year old daughter for more than 24 hours. Columbus is a few hours away, no big deal. Let's relax and enjoy ourselves. He's playing in his hometown at a quaint little club called Andyman's Tree House. It actually has a tree growing through the club. We book a room in a hotel a block away from the place. We have a nice meal. We are excited to see him, especially after a great show he put on in Pittsburgh in the spring. After dinner we go to the club to hang out before the show. It's around 7 P.M. We get there and the bartender unlocks the door and asks what we want. We came from Pittsburgh to see Tim play, are you open? Yeah, but he won't be playing till later. We are thinking 8, 9 at the latest. He doesn't expect him till MIDNIGHT. Ba-Ba-WHAT? He suggests we go to the big community festival that all of Columbus is at. He starts giving us directions here, there...you know what, we aren't from around here, we'll just hang. No less than FOUR HOURS LATER Tim arrives. By this time the club is getting crowded. It takes him a good half hour to set up. Set up? It's an acoustic guitar and a microphone. He doesn't even need a mike. The room is a stuffy, sweltering, smoke-filled shoe box that might fit 20 people if they were in a fetal position (some of them are during the "show"). It's not the best place to see a musician. Oh, did I mention there's a FUCKING TREE GROWING THROUGH THE CLUB ? So now it's close to 12:30 and we are enduring a new local "warm-up" band that I find out later hasn't practiced together once. No kidding. During all this time Tim is hanging out with some people (the members of his first band The Haynes Boys) slugging down drinks. Come on already. After a few songs from local luminary J.P.(Bad Florida)Olsen, Tim finally comes to the mike. He plays three tunes and LEAVES! I am flabbergasted. I stop him and ask him, "Is that it?"  He says he might play later. Later? It's 1 A.M., bud. I've had it. My wife's had it. We go back to the hotel room and I spend the night trying to sleep to the inconsolable sobs of my wife missing our baby.


The Band 1994 

R.I.P. Metropol. THE WORST VENUE EVER. This impersonal, vacuous, "industrial", horrible-sounding, obstructed viewing, expensive beering, shit hole finally closed it's doors in October 2003. The national acts coming through Pittsburgh that could fill a 1200+ space were only being booked there. Wilco, Cracker, Shane Macgowan, Son Volt, Blue Floyd (remember them?), Camper Van Beethoven, Dark Star Orchestra, Steve Earle And The Dukes, Lucinda Williams. I had to endure an evening of misery to see a show. After awhile I even refused to go there, missing some shows, because of the place. It was never as bad as seeing The Band there. They were on an upswing of sorts. The previous year they released a so-so album called Jericho. A couple days after the Pittsburgh show they were being inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. My friends and I were excited to be "up close and personal" with the legends. What a disaster. They over booked the show (as they always did, but this night it was obscene). We didn't get past the coat room because it was too crowded to move. We didn't see The Band let alone hear them. People were livid. My sister demanded to see the manager right then and there and got her money back immediately. Not only was the venue a turd, I found out later from somebody who could actually see/hear the band that they totally sucked. Off night my ass. When your snorting heroin the least you could do is cancel and refund the audiences money. This show will actually go down in my concert going experience (and every one else there, including my future wife) as the worst show I have ever attended.


This is a cassette that includes the last song 'Zanz Kant Danz' which was subsequently pulled and changed to 'Vanz Kant Danz' due to litigation by his former manager Saul Zaentz.

John Fogerty 1986 

Once again I am excited to see a bona fide Rock And Roll legend. During my senior year in high school, John Fogerty releases his "comeback" album Centerfield. I've been into Creedence Clearwater Revival for awhile and digging this return. The next year he releases Eye Of The Zombie which isn't as good as Centerfield (in fact, it sucks ass. Look at the cover above for chrissakes.), but he's touring so who cares. My two friends and I decide to take a bus to the Syria Mosque where I've seen some killer shows (R.E.M., Little Feat, Steve Miller Band, David Gilmour, David Crosby) before they tore the place down. I meet up with them on the bus and they are hammered. They have been popping pills and drinking whiskey for a few hours. They were a real mess. Anyway we get there and during the opener (Bonnie Raitt), my one friend is hunched over sleeping and my other buddy is staring off into space. During the break I have to get my snoozing friend moving so we go out to the lobby and this irate guy comes up to us and informs us that my friend wasn't hunched over sleeping, he was puking his guts out all over this guy's shoes. If we don't get him out of there he's gonna call the cops and have him arrested for underage drinking. I am pissed. We carry him outside to the steps and I reluctantly try to give away my ticket stub to someone coming in. The idiot coming into the show says no and my buddy asks the next person coming in late and they take his enthusiastically. In disgust we get on the bus and my two friends are in La-La land while I'm totally sober and fuming. Fuck this! I get off the bus and head back to the show. As the bus is pulling away I will never forget their shocked, drunken, expressions trying to see through the tinted windows at night. I run back to the show and hook up with some friends down on the floor. I missed a song or two and looking forward to hearing some CCR. I wait. And wait. And wait. "Goodnight Pittsburgh!" What the hell? I find out later that he's boycotting HIS OWN SONGS as not to give his former manager royalties. What a dickhead. 


notables: many Dead, getting kicked out of The Stones for intoxication, Kenny "Lip-Synch" Loggins.



Top 5 CD's 

(as of this writing)


Grant Lee Buffalo-Mighty Joe Moon (1994)

Lone Star Song/Mockingbirds/It's The Life/Sing Along/Mighty Joe Moon/Demon Called Deception 
Lady Godiva And Me/Drag/Last Days Of Tecumseh/Happiness/Honey Don't Think/Side By Side/Rock Of Ages

I was going through a horrible time in my life in 1994. I was homeless living with my cousin and her boyfriend. I was trying to finish college. I was holding down two jobs and still broke. I recently broke up with my fiancée of five years. Things were bleak. I was in my car listening to the radio when 'Rock Of Ages' came on. I was hypnotized. I was already where I was supposed to be and had to listen to the end. Who was this? I immediately got the disc and played it relentlessly. Even though I was going through a shit time this disc actually made me feel better. I can listen to this CD anytime and constantly do. When I found out GLB were opening for The Smashing Pumpkins, I had to go. They were great. We left before the Pumpkins even came on.


The Byrds-The Notorious Byrd Brothers (1968)

Artificial Energy/Goin' Back/Natural Harmony/Draft Morning/Wasn't Born to Follow/Get to You/Change Is Now/ 
Old John Robertson/Tribal Gathering/Dolphin's Smile/Space Odyssey 
1997 Reissue Bonus Tracks: Moog Raga/Bound to Fall/Triad/Goin' Back/Draft Morning/Universal Mind Decoder  

A friend of mine would constantly play The Byrds and even though I thought they were O.K., I never was ga-ga over them. When they started reissuing their back catalogue with bonus tracks I bought Younger Than Yesterday. Then I bought Mr. Tambourine Man, then Turn. Turn, Turn. The last disc I bought of the first wave of reissues (I subsequently got them all) was this disc. It was the perfect combination of all the Byrd elements from their career. A tinge of psychedelia, the beginnings of country-rock, and David Crosby's sappy hippie ballads. This album represents to me the archetype of Byrds music and sounds great every time I put it on. David Crosby "left" the group before the album came out and the band replaced him on the cover with a fucking horse! Classic!


Camper Van Beethoven-Camper Van Beethoven (1986)

Good Guys And Bad Guys/Joe Stalin's Cadillac/Five Sticks/Lulu Land/Une Fois/We Saw Jerry's Daughter/ 
Surprise Truck/Stairway To Heaven (sic)/Pope Festival */Love the Witch */Pictures of Matchstick Men */The History Of Utah/Still Wishing To Course/We Love You/Deux Foises */
Hoe Yourself Down/Peace & Love/Folly/Interstellar Overdrive/Shut Us Down

*-2004 Reissue Bonus Tracks

Having discovered Camper with Our Beloved Revolutionary Sweetheart (which was a very close second behind this disc), I picked up this tape used for a couple of bucks. It totally blew my mind in the sense that these guys were experimenting with a sound that was totally unique in the 80's. They were way out there musically and lyrically while still being able to compose straight ahead rock songs within the context of the album. This third album is very similar in style to their second album (II&III) and both of them are wonderful.


The Grateful Dead-Dick's Pick's Ten (1998)

Recorded  Thursday December 29, 1977 San Francisco, CA Winterland Arena

* Friday December 30, 1977


Disc One: Jack Straw/They Love Each Other/Mama Tried/Loser/Looks Like Rain/
Tennessee Jed/New Minglewood Blues/Sugaree/Promised Land

Disc Two: Bertha>Good Lovin'/Playin' In The Band>China Cat Sunflower>
I Know You Rider>China Doll>Playin' Jam>Drums>Not Fade Away>Playin' In The Band

Disc Three: Terrapin Station/Johnny B. Goode/*Estimated Prophet>*Eyes of The World>
*St. Stephen>*Sugar Magnolia

I have more Grateful Dead CD's in my collecting than any other group. With over 150 discs worth of Dead and 25 Dick's Pick's alone, this is unequivocally my favorite. The sound is clean, the band is ON, almost every one of the songs are definitive versions. Listen to the boys (and gal) SMOKE through the opening 'Jack Straw'. The Jerry lead on 'Loser' is note perfect. The Bobby/Donna harmonies on 'Looks Like Rain' are exquisite. The bonus tracks from the next night are phenomenal. Everything about this release is "just exactly perfect".


R.E.M.-Life's Rich Pageant (1986)


Begin The Begin/These Days/Fall On Me/Cuyahoga/Hyena/Underneath the Bunker 
The Flowers of Guatemala/I Believe/What if We Give it Away?/Just a Touch/Swan Swan H/Superman

Although Fables Of The Reconstruction Of The Fables Of The Reconstruction Of The ...is a close second, nothing is better in the R.E.M. discography than Life's Rich Pageant. Just as they were getting huge, the band drop this disc and you can feel the hardships of a "working" band in the songs. Take a bit of political bite, add great music, catchy licks, and the venomous gnarl of Micheal Stipe, and you get this killer disc.


notables: Bob Dylan-Bringing It All Back Home, Wilco-Being There, Cracker-Kerosene Hat, Old 97's-Fight Songs, Traffic-Traffic, The Beatles-The Beatles (The White Album)



Top 5 Music Websites


Pollstar-The Concert Hotwire

http://www.pollstar.com/

This site lists the touring schedule of musicians by category. Search by artist's itinerary, city schedule, or venue schedule. A must for any fan of live music. I hit it every day and search Pittsburgh's (and surrounding cities!) schedule. It has a feature that shows additions/changes within the last 72 hours highlighted in blue, the last 48 hours in red. Can't beat it.


Rolling Stone Magazine

http://www.rollingstone.com/

Rolling Stone Magazine was an essential read growing up. Somewhere around the early 90's the godfather of all music mags took a turn for the worse. The final straw for me came May 20, 1999 when The Backstreet Boys graced the cover. To add insult to injury the "group" won the reader's poll for artist of the year. What the fuck? I discovered that the few precious pieces of information that I really cared about (news in brief, the occasional story) were available free online.


Alt Country Tab-Searchin' For A Truer Sound

http://www.altcountrytab.com/

For a musician, the internet brought a bonanza of resources. The chief among them are tabs. Tablature is a breakdown of chords or notes in a song. Any one can pick up a guitar and play tab without ever being able to read a note of music. The pros are that I don't have to buy sheet music anymore. Also, you can can find almost any song you can think of ( 'Lookout Joe' by Neil Young took me a good hour.) The cons are that most of the tunes are wrong because the author is sometimes tone deaf and some tabs are WAY off. Still the benefits far outreach the shortcomings and this site is chock full of cool songs. The forums section also is a good place to discuss music. It's not as varied musically as Harmony Central or TabCrawler for tabs, but essential to me nonetheless.


All Music Guide

http://www.allmusic.com/

This site used to be awesome. Keywords "USED TO BE." It's basically the online version of the All Music Guides books which are invaluable encyclopedic reviews of genres of music. Some time in June of 2004 they reformatted the site and made it un-user friendly. They offered a "premium" service where you paid for information you got free before. The site didn't work properly on all browsers. What a mess. Still it's an a great resource on musician biographies and group history.


Hugh's Concert Pages

http://www.hughshows.com/index.htm

The One. The Only. It's Hughshows. C'mon, do you think I would rank any other site over mine? Hughshows got it all, man. Where else can you get up to date concert listings. Memorabilia out the ass. Cunt is mentioned four times alone. Not only can you read about a Tim Easton show, in the same site you can experience the joy of a ticket stub long lost. If you are reading this you got a lot more time on your hands than I do. But I love ya anyway for it. Thanks.



Top 5 Rock And Roll Photographs


Johnny Cash

Photographer: Jim Marshall

This has to be the best portrait of a musician ever. Taken in 1969 before a concert to inmates at San Quentin prison. Supposedly photographer Jim Marshall asked Johnny to give a message to the warden. Classic!


John Lennon and Yoko Ono

Photographer: Annie Leibovitz

This picture was taken literally hours before John Lennon was murdered in New York City in December of 1980.


Richard Nixon and Elvis Presley

Photographer: White House Staff

Taken in 1973, President Richard Nixon invited Elvis to the White House to become an official "drug czar" or something to that effect. It's so ironic that "The King" is so stoned that you could blindfold him with dental floss. Priceless.


The Clash

Photographer: Pennie Smith

Taken at a Clash concert in 1978, this portrait of bassist Paul Simonon became the cover to their landmark 1979 album London Calling. Maybe THE defining image of the whole punk movement.


Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake

Photographer: Associated Press

I know some people will totally disagree with me on this one but what other image has changed the culture in America more than this one.


notables: Carl Perkins, Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, and Jerry Lee Lewis at Sun Studios, Hendrix burning his guitar at Monterey, The Grateful Dead at the corner of Haight/Asbury, The Beatles crossing Abbey Road, The Sex Pistols with straws.



Top 5 Movies


The Exorcist (1973)

Director: William Freidkin

"You know what she did? Your cunting daughter..."

This movie scared the crap out of me when I was a kid. So much so that I occasionally have the errant nightmare of a possessed little girl. As I grew older I realized what a great movie it is technically. The direction, acting, script, cinematography, make-up, visual effects and sound are all superlative. Sure it's a cultural icon, but I appreciate it even more for just being a kick ass movie. Dick Smith rules.


La Strada (1954)

Director: Federico Fellini

"What a funny face! Are you a woman, really? Or an artichoke?"

My wife turned me on to this movie and it immediately became a favorite. Gulietta Masina gives a performance of the ages in this tragic yet funny tale of love amid a world of chaos. Fellini rules.


On The Waterfront (1954)

Director: Elia Kazan

"He gets the title shot outdoors on the ballpark and what do I get? A one-way ticket to Palooka-ville!"

When I was ten I saw this movie. I really didn't comprehend it much but even at that age I was transfixed by Brando's acting. I even started a Marlon Brando scrapbook. The power in all the performances speak for themselves and it is deservedly among the finest films ever made. Brando rules.


Nixon (1995)

Director: Oliver Stone

"Presidents don't threaten. They don't have to."

Nixon? NIXON? I was working at a video and motion picture laboratory and I had to watch this movie all through (191minutes) several dozen times. After the third time I was surprised I didn't get sick of it, in fact, I like even more. The performance by Anthony Hopkins is chilling. He nails Nixon. The supporting cast is great. The editing is unique. Hell, even the music is good. This is my favorite Oliver Stone flick. John Williams rules.


Harold And Maude (1971)

Director: Hal Ashby

"Harold, everyone has the right to make an ass out of themselves. You can't let the world judge you too much."

This is such a cool movie I can watch it over and over again. Cat Stevens' music is the perfect marriage of music and film. Hal Ashby rules.


notables: The Godfather, True Romance, Fantasia, Up In Smoke, An American Werewolf In London



Top 5 Music DVD's


The Last Waltz (2002)

Director: Martin Scorsese

Cutthroat/Don't Do It/Theme From The Last Waltz/Main Title
A Celebration/Up On Cripple Creek/The Skylight Lounge/The Shape I'm In
Who Do You Love-Ronnie Hawkins/Canadian Overcoats/It Makes No Difference
Introduction To The Canterbury Tales- Michael McClure/Such A Night-Dr. John
 Helpless-Neil Young/Stagefright/A Name For The Band/The Weight-The Band & The Staples
The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down/An Adult Portion/Dry Your Eyes-Neil Diamond
Women On The Road/Coyote-Joni Mitchell/Sonny Boy Williamson
Mystery Train-Paul Butterfield/Rock 'n' Roll Melting Pot/Mannish Boy-Muddy Waters
Further On Up The Road-Eric Clapton/Tour Of Shangri-La/Sip The Wine-Rick Danko
Evangeline-The Band & Emmylou Harris/Genetic Method-Garth Hudson/The Music Teacher
Ophelia/Traveling Tent Shows/Caravan-Van Morrison/Loud Prayer-Lawrence Ferlinghetti
Forever Young-Bob Dylan/Baby Let Me Follow You Down-Bob Dylan
I Shall Be Released-Everybody & Ringo Starr & Ronnie Wood
Theme From The Last Waltz/End Credits

Archival Outtakes: Jam 2

My dad took my brothers and sister and me to see The Last Waltz in 1978 at an old movie theater in Squirrel Hill. I had no clue what I was doing there. I sat and watched the whole thing very attentively and my favorite part was Neil Diamond of all things. Later did I realize what a gift that was. My old man.


I Am Trying To Break Your Heart (2003)

Director: Sam Jones

Disc 1:

 Need More Piano/I Am Trying To Break Your Heart/Ashes of American Flags/Kamera/
Poor Places/Fericito/Not for the Season/Sunken Treasure/Reservations/I'm The Man Who Loves You/
A Subset Of Heavy Metal Drummer/Is It The Medication?/I'm Always In Love/Jim O'Rourke/
Jesus, Etc./Reprise Hears The Record/The Phone Call/Misunderstood/I Got You/Let Me Come Home/
War On War/Outta Site/Let's Talk About Jay/My Darling/Half-Assed, Fearful, Frightened/Magazine Called Sunset/  It's Something With A Drum In It/Months Of Discussions And Ruminations/Be Not So Fearful/
Monday/Pure Imagination

Disc 2:

Pot Kettle Black/Chris Brickley's Theory/Busy Bee Monkey Song/Why Would You Wanna Live/
Jeff Gets Recognized NYC/Pieholden Suite Rehearsal/Fericito's Sunken Treasure/
Acuff Rose/I'm Happy Because I'm Fericito/Please Tell My Brother/Imitation of Jeff Tweedy/
Cars Can't Escape/I'm The Man That Loves You/The Only Profound Thing/Magazine Called Sunset/
Your Sister Is Cock/Who Is Listening?/Wait Up/Jim O'Rourke Ruins Records/Radio Cure/Monday/
Someday Soon/Bob Dylan's 49th Beard/How To Fight Loneliness

I band nearly disintegrates in front of the lens...'Poor Places'. 'I'm The Man Who Loves You'. 'Nuff said.


Don't Look Back (2000)

Director: D.A. Pennebaker

Scenes/Subterranean Homesick Blues/London, 1965/Who's This Donovan?/
The Times They Are-A-Changin'/I Just Go There and Sing 'Em/Turn, Turn, Turn/
Denmark Street/Newcastle/The Science Student/The High Sheriff's Lady/I Don't Feel Like Singing/
Who Threw the Glass?/Donovan/Royal Albert Hall/The Interview/The Last Concert

 Bonus Audio Tracks: To Ramona/The Lonesome Death Of Hattie Carroll/Love Minus Zero,No Limit/
It Ain't Me, Babe/It's All Over Now, Baby Blue

My brother hates this movie because Dylan sings 'The Times They Are A Changin' ' about "twenty times."


The Closing Of Winterland (2003)


The Grateful Dead Sunday December 31, 1978 San Francisco, CA Winterland Arena


 Set 1:
Sugar Magnolia>Scarlet Begonias>Fire on the Mountain/Me and My Uncle>Big River/
Friend of the Devil/It's All Over Now/Stagger Lee/From the Heart of Me>Sunshine Daydream 
Set 2: Samson and Delilah/Ramble on Rose/I Need a Miracle>Terrapin Station>Playing in the Band> 
Rhythm Devils>Not Fade Away>Around and Around  
Set 3: Dark Star>The Other One>Dark Star >Wharf Rat>St. Stephen>Good Lovin'>Casey Jones 
Encore: Johnny B. Goode/We Bid You Goodnight

A classic show made available. The picture is not that great (what do expect for a 26 year old video) but the sound more than makes up for it. 


The Complete Monterey Pop (2002)

Director: D.A. Pennebaker

Disc 1

Monterey Pop

 Combination Of The Two-Big Brother And The Holding Company/Set-Up/San Francisco-Scott Mackenzie/Preparations Continue/Creeque Alley-California Dreamin'-The Mamas And The Papas/
Rollin' And Tumblin'-Canned Heat/59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin' Groovy)-Simon and Garfunkel/Bajabula Bonke (Healing Song)-Hugh Masekala/
High Flyin' Bird, Today-Jefferson Airplane/Ball And Chain-Big Brother And The Holding Company/Paint It Black-Eric Burden And The Animals/My Generation-The Who/Section 43-Country Joe and the Fish/
Shake!, I've Been Loving You Too Long-Otis Redding/Wild Thing-The Jimi Hendrix Experience/Got A Feelin'-The Mamas And The Papas/Raga Bhimpalasi-Ravi Shankar/Credits

 
 Disc 2
 Jimi Plays Monterey/Shake! Otis at Monterey
The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Can You See Me?/Purple Haze/Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band/Monterey/
Killing Floor/Foxy Lady/Like A Rolling Stone/Rock Me Baby/Hey Joe/
The Wind Cries Mary/Wild Thing/Credits

Otis Redding: Shake/Respect/I've Been Loving You Too Long/(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction/Try A Little Tenderness

Disc 3
Monterey Pop: The Outtake Performances

 
The Association-Along Comes Mary/Simon and Garfunkel-Homeward Bound, Sounds of Silence/
Country Joe and the Fish-Not-So-Sweet Martha Lorraine/Al Kooper-(I Heard Her Say) Wake Me, Shake Me/
The Paul Butterfield Blues Band-Driftin' Blues/Quicksilver Messenger Service-All I Ever Wanted to Do/
The Electric Flag-Drinkin' Wine/
The Byrds-Chimes of Freedom, He Was a Friend Of Mine, Hey Joe/
Laura Nyro-Wedding Bell Blues, Poverty Train/Jefferson Airplane-Somebody to Love/
The Blues Project-The Flute Thing/Big Brother and the Holding Company-Combination of the Two/
Buffalo Springfield-For What It's Worth/
The Who-Substitute, Summertime Blues, A Quick One While He's Away/
The Mamas And The Papas-Straight Shooter, Somebody Groovy, I Call Your Name, 
Monday, Monday, San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair), Dancing in the Street/
Tiny Tim-King for a Day-Laugh, Clown, Laugh, May God Be With Our Boys Tonight, My What a Funny Little World This Is
 

The best DVD ever? The sound is phenomenal. The remastered picture is crisp and clean. The bonus discs are massive. The packaging is top-notch. The movie itself is a classic. Can't beat it. Worth every penny of the $70 price. Plus it takes place the night I was born.


notables: The Beatles Anthology, Gimme Shelter, Roger Waters In The Flesh, This Is Spinal Tap, View from the Vault 1-4, U2 Go Home



Top 5 Fugliest Rockers (Male)

Someone asked me why all the Top 5 Dogs in Rock were women. Good question. This one goes out to the ladies.


G.G. Allin

Look up disgusting in the dictionary and you should find this asshole's picture. Among his bag of tricks when performing were extinguishing lit cigarettes on himself, shoving bananas up his ass, and shitting on stage and eating it. Good times. I was trying to find an acceptable picture to have on the site and all of them showed him with either blood, piss, excrement, or all three smeared all over him. Oh yeah, his music? How can you go wrong with songs like 'Suck My Ass It Smells', 'Needle Up My Cock', and the classic ditty 'Ass-Fuckin', Butt-Lickin', Cunt Suckin' Masturbation'. I'm not sure but at his funeral his road crew actually waited in line to piss on his grave. Good riddance.


Joey Ramone

Did you ever see the aliens at the end of Close Encounters Of The Third Kind?


Lemmy

I work with a guy who worked with Lemmy Kilmister of Motorhead for years. He told me Lemmy would get obliterated and sleep with the most vile pig groupies you can imagine. He didn't care what they looked like. Obviously, they didn't either. You know you are ugly when your trademark is a bunch of grotesque bumps on your face.


Marilyn Manson

I will never for the life of me understand this. He got Rose MacGowan? My greatest fear in life is that one of my daughters grow up and become a fan.


Shane MacGowan

I think stumbling over yourself drunk is this guy's best quality. That mug is horrid.


notables: Sid Vicious, Ron "Pigpen" McKernan, Neil Young, Alex Van Halen, Roger Waters



 

 Top 5 "Johnny Cash Show" Appearances

From 1969-1971 'The Johnny Cash Show' aired on ABC-TV. Johnny would open the show with a few numbers and various guest performers would do a tune or two and sometimes duet with Johnny. Usually Johnny, band leader Carl Perkins and The Tennessee Three (Marshall Grant, W.S. Holland and Bob Wooton), Mother Maybelle & The Carter Family (June Carter Cash, Helen and Anita), The Statler Brothers, and The Bill Walker Orchestra would close. The show was filmed at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville in front of an audience and not a single note was lip-synched. There were a total of over sixty shows lasting an hour each.


Bob Dylan-June 7, 1969

The pilot episode saw a rare television appearance by Bob Dylan. He sang 'I Threw It All Away' and 'Living The Blues', then joined Johnny on a great version of 'Girl From The North Country'.


Derek And The Dominoes-January 6, 1971

Eric Clapton, Bobby Whitlock, Carl Radle, and Jim Gordon glide through a terrific version of  'It's Too Late'. After sheepishly explaining the importance of American blues to kids in England, Clapton and Johnny bring on Carl Perkins and rip through a killer version of 'Matchbox'.


Neil Young-February 17, 1971

The theme of this episode was today's youth and featured Johnny talking about the relevant issues of the day with college kids. James Taylor and Linda Ronstadt also appeared. Their performances couldn't hold a candle to Neil's solo readings of 'Needle and The Damage Done' and 'Journey Through The Past'


Joni Mitchell-October 7, 1970

After appearing on the pilot episode performing 'Both Sides Now' and 'I Still Miss Someone' (with a visibly smitten Johnny), Joni returned the following year to perform a chilling version of 'California' on dulcimer.


Arlo Guthrie-September 23,1970

Arlo plays 'The Motorcycle Song' solo and adlibs a short, stoned version of 'Alice's Restaurant' with a giggly Johnny.


notables: Cass Elliott, Roy Orbison, Bobbie Gentry, James Taylor, Gordon Lightfoot, Linda Ronstadt, Buffy St. Marie, The Cowsills, Jeannie C. Riley, Glen Campbell, Ed Ames, Marty Robbins, Melanie, O.C. Smith, Pat Boone, Merle Haggard, Lulu, Odetta, Roger Miller, Charley Pride, Tex Ritter, Jose Feliciano, Rod Mc-Kuen, Neil Diamond, Ray Charles, Vickie Carr, Peggy Lee, Kenny Rogers, Bob Hope, Kirk Douglas, George Lindsey, Steve Martin, Dan Blocker, Jackie DeShannon, Waylon Jennings, Louis Armstrong, Tommy Cash, Shel Silverstein, Michael Parks, Tony Joe White, Judy Collins, The Everly Brothers, Patti Page, Minnie Pearl, Loretta Lynn, The Monkees, Stevie Wonder, The Guess Who, Dennis Hopper, Tennessee Ernie Ford, Burl Ives, Lynn Anderson, Doug Kershaw, Anne Murray, Rick Nelson, Brenda Lee and Kris Kristofferson.



Top 5 Box Sets


Camper Van Beethoven-Cigarettes And Carrot Juice: The Santa Cruz Years (2002)

Disc: 1 Border Ska/The Day That Lassie Went To The Moon/Wasted/Yanqui Go Home/Oh No!/9 Of Disks/ 
Payed Vacation: Greece/Where The Hell Is Bill?/Vladivostock/Skinhead Stomp/Tina/Take The Skinheads Bowling/ 
Mao Reminisces About His Days In Southern China/I Don’t See You/Balalaika Gap/Opi Rides Again-Club Med Sucks/Ambiguity Song 

Disc 2: Abundance/Cowboys From Hollywood/Sad Lover's Waltz/Turtlehead/I Love Her All The Time/No Flies On Us/Down and Out/ 
No Krugerrands For David/(Don’t You Go) Goleta/Four Year Plan/(We’re A) Bad Trip/Circles/Dust Pan/Sometimes/ 
Chain Of Circumstance/ZZ Top Goes To Egypt/Cattle (Reversed)/Form Another Stone/No More Bullshit 

Disc 3: Good Guys & Bad Guys/Joe Stalin’s Cadillac/Five Sticks/Lulu Land/Une Fois/We Saw Jerry’s Daughter/Surprise Truck/ 
Stairway To Heaven (sic)/The History Of Utah/Still Wishing To Course/We Love You/Hoe Yourself Down/Peace & Love/ 
Folly/Interstellar Overdrive/Shut Us Down 

Disc 4: Heart/Never Go Back/Seven Languages/Axe Murderer Song/Sp37597/Crossing Over/Guardian Angels/I’m Not Like Everybody Else/ 
A.C. Cover/Porpoise Mouth/(We Workers Do No Understand) Modern Art/We Eat Your Children/Six More Miles To The Graveyard/ 
Ice Cream Everyday/Processional/Photograph/Om Eye (Sweet Isthmus)

Disc 5: All Her Favorite Fruit (Orchestral)/Sweethearts/Tania/Eye of Fatima Pt. l/Eye of Fatima Pt. ll/My Baby Just Got Outta Jail/ 
 Borderline/Turquoise Jewelry/She Divines Water/L’aguardiente/Life Is Grand/When I Win The Lottery/James River/One Of These Days

This was the first time Camper's first four albums (Telephone Free Landslide Victory, I + II, Camper van Beethoven, Camper Vantiquities) were released on CD since being out of print years before. The last CD is a live compilation from the 89-90 tour. Since then the albums have been re-released with bonus cuts. I normally would be pissed but the box set was only $20.


Bob Marley-Songs Of Freedom (1999)

Disc 1: Judge Not/One Cup Of Coffee/Simmer Down/I'm Still Waiting/One Love/People Get Ready (Original)/
Put It On/Bus Dem Shut (Pyaka)/Mellow Mood (Original)/Bend Down Low/Hypocrites/Stir It Up (Original)/ 
Nice Time/Thank You Lord (Original)/Hammer/Caution/Back Out/Soul Shake Down Party/Do It Twice/Soul Rebel/ 
Sun Is Shining/Don't Rock The Boat/Small Axe/Duppy Conqueror/Mr. Brown 

Disc 2: Screw Face/Lick Samba/Trenchtown Rock (Alternate Mix)/Craven Choke Puppy/Guava Jelly/Acoustic Medley/ 
I'm Hurting Inside (Alternate Mix)/High Tide Or Low Tide/Slave Driver/No More Trouble/Concrete Jungle/Get Up Stand Up/ 
Rastaman Chant/Burnin' And Lootin'/Iron Lion Zion/Lively Up Yourself/Natty Dread/I Shot The Sheriff (Live) 

Disc 3: No Woman No Cry (Live At The Roxy)/Who The Cap Fit/Jah Live/Crazy Baldheads/War/Johnny Was/Rat Race/ 
 Jammin' (12" Mix)/Waiting In Vain (Advert Mix)/Exodus (12" Mix)/Natural Mystic/Three Little Birds (Alternate Mix)/ 
Running Away/Keep On Moving (London Version)/Easy Skanking/Is This Love (Horns Mix)/Smile Jamaica/Time Will Tell 

Disc 4: Africa Unite/Survival/One Drop/One Dub/Zimbabwe/So Much Trouble In The World/Ride Natty Ride (12" Mix)/ 
Babylon System/Coming In From The Cold (12" Mix)/Real Situation/Bad Card/Could You Be Loved (12" Mix)/Forever Loving Jah/ 
Rastaman Live Up/Give Thanks And Praise/One Love/People Get Ready (12" Mix)/Why Should I/Redemption Song (Live In Pittsburgh)

This is a great overview of Marley's career. The early dub stuff is great. The 12" remixes get a little tired but the rest of the set more than makes up for it.


The Band-The Last Waltz Box Set (2002)

Disc 1: Theme From The Last Waltz (w/ Orchestra)/Up On Cripple Creek/The Shape I'm In/It Makes No Difference/
Who Do You Love (w/ Ronnie Hawkins)/Life Is A Carnival/Such A Night (w/ Dr. John)/The Weight/ 
Down South In New Orleans (w/ Bobby Charles)/This Wheel's On Fire/Mystery Train (w/ Paul Butterfield)/ 
Caldonia (w/ Muddy Waters)/Mannish Boy (w/ Muddy Waters)/Stagefright 

Disc 2: Rag Mama Rag/All Our Past Times (w/ Eric Clapton)/Further On Up The Road (w/ Eric Clapton)/Ophelia/ 
 Helpless (w/ Neil Young)/Four Strong Winds (w/ Neil Young)/Coyote (w/ Joni Mitchell)/Shadows And Light (w/ Joni Mitchell)/ 
Furry Sings The Blues (w/ Joni Mitchell)/Acadian Driftwood/Dry Your Eyes (w/ Neil Diamond)/ 
The W.S. Walcott Medicine Show/Tura Lura Lural (That's An Irish Lullaby) (w/ Van Morrison)/Caravan (w/ Van Morrison

Disc 3: The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down/The Genetic Method/Chest Fever (Excerpt From Movie Soundtrack)/ 
Baby Let Me Follow You Down (w/ Bob Dylan)/Hazel (w/ Bob Dylan)/I Don't Believe You (She Acts Like We Never Have Met) (w/ Bob Dylan)/ 
Forever Young (w/ Bob Dylan)/Baby Let Me Follow You Down (Reprise) (w/ Bob Dylan)/I Shall Be Released (Finale)/ 
 Jam #1/Jam #2/Don't Do It/Greensleeves (From Movie Soundtrack) 

Disc 4: The Well/Evangeline (w/ Emmylou Harris)/Out Of The Blue/The Weight (w/ The Staples)/The Last Waltz Refrain/ 
Theme From The Last Waltz/King Harvest (Has Surely Come)/Tura Lura Lural (That's An Irish Lullaby) (w/ Van Morrison)/ 
Caravan (w/ Van Morrison)/Such A Night (w/ Dr. John)/Rag Mama Rag/ 
Mad Waltz (Sketch Track For "The Well")/The Last Waltz Refrain (Instrumental Version)/The Last Waltz Theme (Sketch)

This is essentially the complete Last Waltz concert (where's Richard Manuel's 'Georgia On My Mind'?, can someone say, "Drop The Ball?"), some rehearsal cuts, and some outtakes.


Bob Dylan-The Bootleg Series Volumes 1-4 (1997)

Disc 1:. Hard Times In New York Town [Live]/He Was A Friend Of Mine/Man On The Street/No More Auction Block [Live]/
House Carpenter/Talkin' Bear Mountain Picnic Massacre Blues/Let Me Die In My Footsteps/Rambling, Gambling Willie/ 
Talkin' Have Negeilah Blues/Quit Your Low Down Ways/Worried Blues/Kingsport Town/Walkin' Down the Line/ 
Walls of Red Wing/Paths Of Victory/Talkin' John Birch Paranoid Blues [Live]/Who Killed Davey Moore?/ 
Only A Hobo/Moonshiner/When The Ship Comes In/The Times They Are A-Changin'/Last Thoughts on Woody Gutherie [Live] 

Disc 2: Seven Curses/Eternal Circle/Suze (The Cough Song)/Mama, You Been On My Mind/Farewell, Angelina/ 
Subterranean Homesick Blues [Alternate Acoustic Version]/If You Gotta Go, Go Now (Or Else You Got to Stay All Night)/ 
Sitting On A Barbed Wire Fence/Like A Rolling Stone/It Takes A Lot To Laugh, It Takes A Train To Cry [Alternate Version]/ 
I'll Keep It With Mine/She's Your Lover Now/I Shall Be Released/Santa-Fe/If Not for You [Alternate Version]/ 
 Wallflower/Nobody 'Cept You/Tangled Up in Blue/Call Letter Blues/Idiot Wind 

Disc 3: If You See Her, Say Hello/Golden Loom/Catfish/Seven Days [Live]/Ye Shall Be Changed/Every Grain of Sand/ 
You Changed My Life/I Need a Woman/Angelina/Someone's Got A Hold of My Heart/Tell Me/Lord Protect My Child/ 
Foot of Pride/Blind Willie McTell/When the Night Comes Falling from the Sky [Original Version]/Series of Dreams

These discs contain killer tunes that equal or out shine the officially released tracks. Even the "born-again" songs are good.


The Grateful Dead-So Many Roads 1965-1995 (1999)

Disc 1: Can't Come Down/Caution (Do Not Stop On Tracks)/You Don't Have To Ask/On The Road/
 Cream Puff War/I Know You Rider/The Same Thing/Dark Star>China Cat Sunflower>The Eleven/ 
Clementine/Mason's Children/To Lay Me Down 

Disc 2: That's It For The Other One>Cryptical Envelopment>The Faster We go, The R Rounder We Get>Cryptical Envelopment/ 
Beautiful Jam/Chinatown Shuffle/Sing Me Back Home/Watkins Glen Soundcheck Jam/Dark Star Jam>Spanish Jam>U.S. Blues 

Disc 3: Eyes Of The World/The Wheel/Stella Blue/Estimated Prophet/The Music Never Stopped/Shakedown Street 

Disc 4: Cassidy/Hey Pocky Way/Believe It Or Not/Playing In The Band/Gentlemen, Start Your Engines/ 
Death Don't Have No Mercy/Scarlet Begonias>Fire On The Mountain/Bird Song/Jam Out Of Terrapin 

Disc 5: Terrapin Station/Jam Out Of Foolish Heart/Way To Go Home/Liberty/Lazy River Road 
Eternity/Jam Into Days Between/Days Between/Whiskey In The Jar/So Many Roads 

The long awaited Dead box contain a ton of music. Some hardcore Heads complained of some glaring omissions (not enough Pig Pen, no acoustic numbers) but all in all a nice set.


notables: Bruce Springsteen-Tracks, Bob Dylan-Biograph, The Byrds-Byrds Box Set, Various Artists-Have A Nice Decade, The Grateful Dead-The Golden Road



Top 5 Underrated Albums


Roger Waters-The Pros And Cons Of Hitchhiking (1984)

4.30 Am (Apparently They Were Travelling Abroad)/4.33 Am (Running Shoes)/
4.37 Am (Arabs With Knives And West German Skies)/4.39 Am (For The First Time Today, Pt. 2)/
4.41 Am (Sexual Revolution)/4.47 Am (The Remains Of Our Love)/4.50 Am (Go Fishing)/ 
4.56 Am (For The First Time Today, Pt. 1)/4.58 Am (Dunroamin, Duncarin, Dunlivin)/ 
5.01 Am (The Pros And Cons Of Hitch Hiking, Pt. 10)/5.06 Am (Every Strangers Eyes)/ 
5.11 Am (The Moment Of Clarity)

When this album came out I was just beginning to go through my Pink Floyd stage. I had a little boom box and would walk to and from work with this thing blaring The Wall, The Final Cut and this tape. This is very similar in tone to The Final Cut. I went through three Pros and Cons tapes (Columbia products were CHEAP) in one summer. I must admit, if your not into the Floyd, you wouldn't appreciate this. Eric Clapton plays some biting lead on this album, especially on 'Sexual Revolution'. The bootlegs of this tour sound like a real fun time. Too bad I was a junior in high school and didn't have a car to travel to Philly.


World Party-Goodbye Jumbo (1990)

Is It Too Late?/Way Down Now/When The Rainbow Comes/Put The Message In The Box 
Ain't Gonna Come Till I'm Ready/And I Fell Back Alone/Take It Up/God On My Side 
Show Me To The Top/Love Street/Sweet Soul Dream/Thank You World

A friend of mine had World Party's first album Private Revolution and I liked 'Ship Of Fools'. When this album came out I had no money whatsoever and bought it on a whim. No buyer's remorse here. This album is sooo good. Every song on it is great. Karl Wallinger supposedly plays every instrument on his albums which is kinda impressive. His subsequent releases are good but don't touch the artistry of this one.


Daniel Lanois-Acadie (1989)

Still Water/The Maker/O Marie/Jolie/Fisherman's Daughter/White Mustang II/ 
Under a Stormy Sky/Where the Hawkwind Kills/Silium's Hill/Ice/ 
St. Ann's Gold/Amazing Grace

This was the first CD I ever bought. I don't really know why I bought it except for the fact that I liked his production work on Peter Gabriel's So and U2's The Unforgettable Fire and Joshua Tree albums. From the first time I listened to it, this disc sounded like nothing before it. Very mellow, atmospheric and just plain good. Billy Bob Thornton used his instrumental music for Slingblade. I traveled to see Grant Lee Buffalo open for Scott Wieland at the 9:30 club in D.C. in 1998 and a last minute addition to the show was Daniel Lanois backed by Emmylou Harris. How cool was that.


Marah-Floating Away With The Friday Night Gods (2002)

Float Away/Soul/Revolution/People of the Underground Listen Listen/
Crying on an Airplane/Leaving/Shame/For All We Know We're Dreaming/ 
What 2 Bring/Out in Style

Marah's sophomoric effort Kids In Philly is considered an alt-country masterpiece. To follow it up, the Bielanko brothers moved to England, hooked up with Oasis producer Owen Morris, and "sold out" with the release of this disc. Hardcore fans practically disowned the boys and the disgust was equal to Lennon's "bigger than Jesus" uproar in the sixties. I never listened to the disc when during an after show conversation with Serge Bielanko, I asked him his take on all the negative reaction to Float Away. He said that they were following their inspiration and the "real" fans would stick with them. I thought that was such an honest answer that I picked up the CD and was immediately loving it. Sure it doesn't sound like their earlier stuff,  but it's still good. Does  Highway 61 sound like Freewheelin'? Does Sgt. Pepper sound like Meet the Beatles? I know I'm stretching, but check your biases' at the door.


Kantner, Slick, Freiberg-Baron Von Tollbooth And The Chrome Nun (1973)

Ballad of the Chrome Nun/Fat/Flowers of the Night/Walkin'/
Your Mind Has Left Your Body/Across the Board/Harp Tree Lament/ 
White Boy/Fishman/Sketches of China

Of all the psychedelic San Francisco superstar groups, Jefferson Airplane were probably the most smug and least talented. Talk about the right place at the right time. Hey, anybody would shine next to It's A Beautiful Day. This long lost gem is a great disc. The musicianship is superb. Sure, it sounds a bit dated ("Your Mind Has Left Your Body") but it's the best of the splintered Airplane output.


notables: Golden Smog-Down By The Old Mainstream, Palace Music-Viva Last Blues, Fairport Convention-Unhalfbricking, Pink Floyd-The Final Cut, Elton John-Tumbleweed Connection, Bob Marley-Uprising, Rhett Miller-The Instigator, Bloomfield/Cooper/Stills-Super Session, Paul & Linda McCartney-Ram. Grandaddy-Sumday,  Mannassas-Mannassas



Top 5 Opening Acts


Camper Van Beethoven supporting R.E.M. 10/24/86 Syria Mosque Pittsburgh, PA 

When I saw Cracker in the early nineties I maneuvered backstage and had the opportunity to ask David Lowery the following question. "When Camper toured with R.E.M. in 1986, did the band come out in wizard hats and perform cross legged on big pillows?" He looked at me like I was from Mars, rightly so. I didn't mention to him I was flying on 'shrooms and that might have obscured my perception.


Grant Lee Buffalo supporting Smashing Pumpkins 9/6/96 Civic Arena Pittsburgh, PA 

My buddy and I didn't give a shit about The Smashing Pumpkins and the Pumpkins fans didn't give a shit about GLB. Some asshole in the audience threw something at Grant Lee Phillips which he responded by threatening the next person who throws something up on stage with a visit to the dentist's office. The band tore into a scathing version of  'Two And Two' and abruptly left. As did my friend and I. Read more.


Wilco supporting R.E.M. 8/25/99 Blossom Music Center Cuyahoga Fall, OH 

Nobody seemed to pay attention to Wilco which meant I could get closer the stage during their set. I swear maybe fifty people were listening under the pavilion.


Bob Dylan/Tom Petty supporting The Grateful Dead 7/2/86 Rubber Bowl Akron, OH 

Very strange day! Click here for more.


World Party supporting 10,000 Maniacs 6/18/93 Star Lake Ampitheater Burgettstown, PA 

It was my birthday and some people were having a "surprise" party for me. I surprised them by going to see World Party. I didn't care about 10,000 Maniacs ( I already saw them open for R.E.M. anyway) so my friend and I went out to listen from the lot. As people were going in some one offered us two extra tickets for free! We watched the remainder of World Party's set and made it back to my party.


notables: Radiohead w/R.E.M., Roger McGuinn & Alvin Lee w/Steppenwolf, Tim Easton w/Blue Rodeo, Matthew Sweet w/Wilco, The Jayhawks w/Allman Brothers Band, Grandaddy w/Saves The Day, Rhett Miller w/The Clarks



Top 5 Acoustic Live CD's ( thanks Bon Jovi! )


David Crosby And Graham Nash-Another Stoney Evening (1997)

Anticipatory Crowd/Deja Vu/Wooden Ships/Man In The Mirror/ 
Orleans/I Used To Be A King/Traction In The Rain/Lee Shore/Southbound Train/ 
Laughing/Triad/Where Will I Be?/Strangers Room/Immigration Man/ 
Guinevere/Teach Your Children/Exit Sounds


John Mayall-The Turning Point (1969)

Laws Must Change/Saw Mill Gulch Road/I'm Gonna Fight For You J.B./
So Hard To Share/California/Thoughts About Roxanne/Room To Move 
2001 Reissue Bonus Tracks: Sleeping By Her Side/Don't Waste My Time/Can't Sleep This Night


The Jayhawks-Live From The Women's Club (2002)

I'm Gonna Make You Love Me/Nothing Left To Borrow/Drivin' Wheel/Crowded In The Wings/Say You'll Be Mine/Save It For A Rainy Day/Two Hearts/Smile/Trouble/Bottomless Cup/Tailspin/I'd Run Away/Break In The Clouds/Blue/Waiting For The Sun/Sound Of Lies/Sister Cry  Bonus Tracks:  Demos from Smile Album Desperate Serenade/Someone Will


Various Artists- The Bridge School Concerts Volume One (1997)

I Am A Child - Neil Young/Shadow Of A Doubt (A Complex Kid) - Tom Petty/
All That You Have Is Your Soul - Tracy Chapman/Sense Of Purpose - Duke String Quartet/
It's All In Your Mind - Beck/Road's My Middle Name - Bonnie Raitt
Yes It Is - Don Henley/Friend Of The Devil - Ministry/America - Simon & Garfunkel
Heroes - David Bowie/Nothingman - Pearl Jam/Battle Of Evermore - Lovemongers
Believe - Nils Lofgren/Alison - Elvis Costello/People Have The Power - Patti Smith


The Grateful Dead-Reckoning (1981)

Dire Wolf/The Race Is On/It Must Have Been The Roses/
Dark Hollow/China Doll/Been All Around This World/Monkey And The Engineer/ 
Jack-A-Roe/Deep Elem Blues/Cassidy/To Lay Me Down/ 
Rosa Lee McFall/On The Road Again/Bird Song/Ripple


notables: The Grateful Dead-Dick's Pick's Volume 8 Disc One, Bob Dylan-MTV Unplugged, David Gilmour-David Gilmour Live DVD, Simon And Garfunkel-Live In New York City, Bob Dylan-The Bootleg Series Vol. 4 Disc One



Top 5 Accordion-Tinged Tunes


'Sauget Wind'-Uncle Tupelo-7" Single (1992)

Accordionist-Chris Bess

This song is quickly becoming one of my favorite tunes of all time. Right before the feedback laden bridge the notes from the accordion shine through. I love the little things like that in music.


'Goodnight John Dee'-Grant Lee Buffalo-'Mockingbirds' Single (1994)

Accordionist-Paul Kimble

This is such a melody friendly "lick". I've always wanted to see this tune live. Grant Lee said he never played it in public before. I am a very patient man.


'Dr. Bernice'-Cracker Van Beethoven-Flash Your Sirens (2001)

Accordionist-Kenny Margolis

Kenny Margolis is a very underrated musician. The multi-instrumentalist always adds something strong to a show. This song and 'Wedding Day' off this rare live disc are great versions.


'It's All Over Now, Baby Blue'-The Grateful Dead-View From The Vault 2 (2001)

Accordionist-Bruce Hornsby

Usually behind a grand piano during his tenure with the band, occasionally Bruce would pull out the squeeze-box for some tunes such as 'Sugaree', 'China Cat Sunflower>I Know You Rider', 'Iko-Iko', and this beautiful Dylan cover among others.


'Omaha'-Counting Crows-August And Everything After (1993)

Accordionist-Charlie Gillingham

My favorite song off this played to death album.


notables: Eddie Vedder-'Bugs', Krist Novoselic-'Jesus Don't Want Me For A Sunbeam', Phil "Mr. Squeeze" Parlapiano, Pete Sears-Hot Tuna, Weird Al Yankovic, Ralph White-Bad Livers, Matt Henly-Flogging Molly, Garth Hudson-The Band, Tara Nevins-Donna The Buffalo



Top 5 Guilty Pleasures

O.K. Why am I admitting this shit? Screw it, I like these tunes. Sure, they're sappy. Yeah, they're wimpy. But one thing is for sure, they sound great played on acoustic guitar. Don't believe me, play 'Lost In Love' with an upbeat tempo and the tuning a half step down and you will see. Yeah right, I'm a pussy.

Air Supply-Lost In Love (1980)

Melissa Manchester-Midnight Blue (1974)

Mariah Carey-Without You (1993)

Madonna-Borderline (1983)

Kelly Clarkson-The Trouble With Love Is (2003)


notables: Alanis Morissette-You Learn (Live), Elvin Bishop-Fooled Around And Fell In Love, Jefferson Starship-Miracles, Freda Payne-Band Of Gold, USA For Africa-We Are The World, Prince-Purple Rain, Journey-Faithfully, Cheap Trick-Voices, Pat Benatar-We Belong, Electric Light Orchestra-Telephone Line, Queen-Somebody To Love, ABBA-S.O.S



 

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