Sunday, June 26, 2011

1000 SONGS - DAY 77: SONG # 107

Day 77: A song from the radio

I have heard this song first on OE3 Musicbox, later on I have attended a performance by CB at the Vienna Festival called "Töne-Gegentöne", if I remember it rightly, impressing one that was. Casper Brötzmann is the son of Free-Jazz Saxophonist Peter Brötzmann. Here is the son's song about Tempelhof.

live version:

Friday, June 24, 2011

1000 SONGS - DAY 76: SONG # 106

DAY 76: Another song about the rain

"Songs about rain": this deserves to be a category on its own in popular music. Some examples: "Rain" by the Beatles, "Have you ever seen the rain" and "Who'll stop the rain" by CCR (J.C. Fogerty), " A hard rain's a gonna fall" and "Rainy Day Woman # 12 & 35" (the opening track of Blonde on Blonde, there is not a single hint on rain in the lyrics...) by Robert Zimmerman, "Seems it never rains in Southern California" by Albert Hammond, "Why does it always rain on me" (because you're from Scotland, baby) by Travis, "Rain" by Christian Vedder (Creed), "Red Rain" by Peter Gabriel, "Rain" by Madonna Louise Ciccone and "She brings the rain" by Can, to name but a few. As so often, CRACKER have done (one of) the best jobs in the genre by naming a song "Another song about the rain"; from their self-titled first album (read on Cracker hp: "Self Titled. Some people persist in calling this album 'Brand'"), here it is, a fine song:

A live-version by the Cracker "Acoustic" Duo, marvelous performance by the talented, the wonderful, the extraordinary, the great Johnny Hickman, the one who looks sober on the picture above. Whenever Cracker comes back to give a gig in Vienna, I will be there.

And, as a bonus track, "She brings the rain" by the Krautrockers Can:

1000 SONGS - DAY 75: SONG # 105

Day 75: A Song about Teenage Angst

This is by far the best song about Teenage Angst ever recorded, the second single of Pere Ubu from Cleveland, Ohio. It is loosely based on the Summertime Blues (at least the bass line on the Blue Cheer version). We know that there ain't no cure for the summertime blues, but the great David Thomas puts it as it is: "I don't need a cure, I need a final solution". I will become 52 this summer, and I am pretty much sure that there is no remnant of teenage angst to be found in my otherwise confused psyche. Nevertheless, the third part of the songs (from approx. 3:35 on) still sends shivers down my spine. I remember that my friend Bert once told me, when we were attending a Pere Ubu gig in Vienna, that it will be in a moment like that when we will die of a heart attack in our seventies. Hopefully, David Thomas keeps on performing for the next 20 years. Here is the final solution:

The girls won't touch me
Cos I've got a misdirection
Living at night isn't helping my complexion
The signs all saying it's a social infection
A little bit of fun's never been an insurrection

Mamma threw me out till I get some pants that fit
She just won't approve of my strange kind of wit
I get so excited, always gotta lose
Man that send me off
Let them take the cure

Don't need a cure
Need a final solution

Buy me a ticket to a sonic reduction
Guitars gonna sound like a nuclear destruction
Seems I'm a victim of natural selection
Meet me on the other side, another direction

Don't need a cure
Need a final solution

And, for the sake of completeness, the version of Summertime Blues by the "proto-heavy-metal" band Blue Cheer (we owned the single, back in the beginning of the seventies:

Thursday, June 23, 2011

1000 SONGS - DAY 74: SONG #104

Day 74: My favourite Kraut-Rock-Band

A band that Suzie Quatro sang a song about, an experimental band said to have influenced Thurston Moore (for other influences see the WP-article on Can, linked below), one of the first Krautrock bands ever. It is not necessary to write too much about CAN (follow the link to Wikipedia to learn more about them). I hold Jaki Liebezeit, born in the same year as my mother in law, to be a rather outstanding drummer. Here are no more than two songs from Ege Bamyasi Okraschoten, one of my favourite albums (although, currently, I do not own a copy of it; my birthday is August 29, btw), featuring singer ダモ鈴木, the best known song by the band, Spoon and the one I seem to like most on that album, Sing Swan Song:

The great Mark E. Smith has done a song on Damo Suzuki or something like that: I am Damo Suzuki

and a rather lengthy live version of aingswansong:

Saturday, June 18, 2011

1000 SONGS - DAY 73: SONG # 103

Day 73: A Band You Would Engage for a Party

"One thing we dislike when people at a party sit" (Boo Ya Tribe, Psycho Funk). It is clear that one will engage a dance band for a party and not Diamanda Galas. To be a dance band does not mean that its members were not musicians (I have never understood people who think that REAL music should be boring...). If I could afford it, I would engage the Brave Combo, wonderful Band from Texas with a repertoire of their own songs and cover versions of many famous songs in various dance styles (mostly polka and latin rhythms). Look up the band's homepage to learn more about them and their youtube-channel to listen to their music. I have put together a nice collection of their versions of different songs, starting with Hokey Pokey:

They also have done a polka version of the Doors' "People are Strange":

Next will be cumbia version of "Mission Impossible":

We find many videos of live performances by Carl Finch's Brave Combo on UTube, some of them of rather poor quality, soundwise (but never with respect to music); here is a collection of dances:

Clarinet Polka:

Let's Twist with the brave Combo:


Sleigh Ride:

Vampire Twist:

Thursday, June 16, 2011

1000 SONGS - DAY 72: SONG #102

Day 72: A song nobody would expect you to like

Ich bin mir so sicher, dass es jemanden gibt, der weiß, dass mir das gefällt. I am sure that there is somebody who knows that I like this song. It is a great song, eine großartige Ballade. Don't pass me by, by Christian Other (Geh nicht vorbei / Christian Anders):

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

1000 SONGS - DAY 71: SONG #101

Day 71: A song from your favourite band

There was a time, time, time, when my favourite band was Hüsker Dü, an American band named after a Danish or Swedish kind of "Memory-Game"; I still remember some songs of Hüsker Dü from some of the vinyls that are still somewhere around our house. Grant Hart and Bob Mould were close friends, and there was something about their songs like the Lennon/McCartney, Jagger/Richards or Forster/McLennan kind of tunes, although it seems to be, that Hart/Mould were the only gay couple among those. Be that as it may, when picking songs for this post I realized that I remembered the Hart (as he was the drummer, that is understandable) better than the Mould. Three songs by Grant Hart, from (chronological order) Zen Arcade, New Day Rising and Candy Apple Grey (this one, their first among just two major label releases, maybe my favourite HD album, although I cannot really say).

and, as a kind of bonus track, a Lennon/McCartney knid of song:

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

1000 SONGS - DAY 70: SONG #100

Day 70: song # 100

It is simply perfect: day 70 and song number 100, that means, on day 7oo, I will have reached song # 1000, this is even below 2 years to post 1000 songs - the problem is, that these are selected days and not real days... Anyway, song # 100 is a special occasion. I dedicate it to the memory of Cafe Cinema in Berlin Mitte, which has by now become a mere tourists' place. In 2003, I did my habilitation at Humboldt University, and after that I had one night to spend in Berlin. I went into CC, and asked the man at the only table with one seat free, whether this was a free seat. He said, of course. After some time, he asked me about me, myself and what I did; I explained. He said: wait, there is that woman doing her thesis on Nietzsche whom I will meet afterwards, because I have been proof-reading it (the thesis, not the girl). I waited, she came, I fell in love (with Cafe Cinema). At exactly that time, there was this strike on Austrian Railways, and I could decide to got to Passau or stay in Berlin. Not a hard one; one more week in Berlin! From that day on, whenever I was in Berlin, I met those bunch of people loosely arranged around that woman in CC. The last two times in Berlin, that had changed, they were not there, not even the most peripherous figure among them. But it was exactly at Cafe Cinema at Hackesche Markt that I did hear a song by Sivert Høyem, Norwegian singer, for the first time in my life. And it was that one, really do like it, Northwind:

Monday, June 13, 2011

DAY 69: SONGS # 98 & # 99

Day 98: A song that fits into almost every category

The category of today is: A song you know all the words to. I picked a song I can sing along with, but that fits into so many other categories as well: it has been written by one of my favourite musicians, it is a track from one of my favourite albums, I listen to it when I'm sad and when I'm happy, I can dance to it, it reminds me of someone and somewhere. Although it is not from my childhood, at least it is from my puberty days, it is simply a great song: Out On the Weekend by Uncle Neil, from Harvest. When I was looking it up on UTube, I learned that Lady Gaga did a version of it.

Day 99: A song that you can dance to

Whatever one might think about Lady Gaga and whether it should be looked at as an act of blasphemy that she did a cover of a Neil Young song, the next one person to be featured here is worth being among those songwriters that are listed among my favourite 1000 songs along with Neil Young. I came to know Christian Kjellvander, Swedish singer/songwriter by buying an issue of the German Music Journal "Spex" (German link) with a CD attached that featured one very fine song by Mr. Kjellvander. That song immediately incited me to dance; it starts with guitars that remind me of one of my favourite bands, (not solely but best known as) Neil Young' s Crazy Horse and it is the kind of tune that I can dance to, wherever I am, just turning, with my head bowed down looking at my feet. The kind of song that does not suggest any pre-determined motions to the dancer (like a Tango, a Bossa, or a Punk Song to pogo to) but is danceable. Polish Daughter by Mr. Kjellvander whom I think worthy to be featured in the same post as the GREAT Neil Young.

She was a sinner like all other guardians
For of her daughter she was proud
Went to the market on the third Sunday again
And there she vanished in the crowd
Oh it wasn’t long ago you suckled to her breast
And how your eyes exploded as you took your first
Now the lading days return and the want beckons the
To rise above the nest and to lay your head to rest
Forlorn but for the best
Immigrants come and emigrants go
Tell me why is it like that?
Emigrant at heart and an immigrant in mind
Ones’ emaciation an others’ fat
Oh it wasn’t long ago you suckled to her breast
And how your eyes exploded as you took your first breath
Now the lading days return and the want beckons the
To rise above the nest and to lay your head to rest
Forlorn but for the best
Crying emigrant at heart and an immigrant in mind
Touching all the trees to see if there was one with bark
like mine
In denial we worried that this was never meant
And on trial in the wake of all the prayers we never sent
And it wasn’t long ago you suckled to its breast
And now your eyes implode as you take your last breathe
Now that lading days return the want gives into yearn
Returning to your nest you lay your head to rest
Forworn but for the best

1000 SONGS - DAY 68: SONG # 96&97

DAY 68: A song that reminds me of a certain event, of somebody & somewhere

Since I frequently have put together more than 1 song under one of the "30-days song-challenge categories", or another category I have derived on my own, I take the freedom to choose a song that FITS into 3 categories at the same time. It reminds me of at least 2 persons, 2 events and one place. The first "event" is, that towards the end of the eighties, via the Flying Nun Label and, methinks, its collaboration with Rough Trade, a wave of so called alternative music from New Zealand swept over Europe. At roughly the same time, John Peel (person) did a midnight radio show in Austria (event #2; if I remember it correctly, once a month) that I have taped as often as I could. I first heard a track by Straitjacket Fits on that radio show, their wonderful cover-version of Leonard Cohen's "So Long Marianne".
I remember to have gone to a record store I forgot the name of but not the place where it had been located (somewhere: at the backside of the main university building in Vienna) and, among others, having listened to Straitjacket Fits' first album "Hail" and having bought it afterwards. Due to the strange kind of a system of memory I have, I remember, that Karl Bruckschwaiger (person #2), who had been working at that store during that time, told me, that a woman he knew who did not buy records frequently had decided to buy that one - this was his kind of an argument for the quality of the record. So the song also reminds me of Karl, a person I haven't met for a long time, and if so, only by chance.
There is one edited volume we have both written texts for: Michael Benedikt et. al. (Eds.): Verdrängter Humanismus, verzögerte Aufklärung, Band 5, Im Schatten der Totalitarismen. Vom philosophischen Empirismus zur kritischen Anthropologie. Philosophie in Österreich 1920—1951. Wien 2005. This seems to be (with the exception of facebook-"friendship") the only remaining link between his life and mine.
So here are Straitjacket Fits with the song composed by members of the band that I do like most, Dialing a Prayer, studio version and live version:

Sunday, June 12, 2011

1000 SONGS - DAY 67: SONG # 95

Day 67: A Song that Reminds you of Someone

This is a song that reminds me of Steve Harley, who has been the singer of Cockney Rebel until the band split up and he started "Steve Harley and Cockney Rebel" with almost no member left but him of the original line-up; he has also been the person credited for almost every CR song. One track from the first "SH & CR" album, "The Best Years of our Lives" has been his biggest hit: "(Come up and see me) Make me Smile" already featured on that 1000 Songs non-teleological history of popular music site that this blog pretends to be since today - on DAY 14, among those 3 songs that claimed to be # 33. The song has also been interpreted as a kind of reckoning of SH with his former band-mates.
The Wedding Present, a fine English band (live) from Leeds, who have always had the talent for straightforward and to the point versions of songs we already did like but now do like even more because of their rendering of it, have done a WONDERFUL version of that one, even more british than the original recording has been. Chapeau!!!!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

1000 SONGS - DAY 66: SONG # 94

Day 66: A beautiful quiet tune

Three of the best jazz players of our time make up the Paul Motian trio: Paul Motian on drums, Bill Frisell (very clearly more than just a "jazz guitarist" - both with respect to styles of music covered in his musical career and instruments he can play) and Joe Lovano on the saxophone. Although they sometimes are joined by musicians like Charlie Haden, the set-up normally does not feature a bass-player. They have played tributes to Thelonious Monk (Motian has played with Monk at the beginning of his musical career) and done versions of other great compositions. Enjoy a live version of "From Time to Time", originally featured on the CD "200 + One":

1000 SONGS - DAY 65: SONG # 93

Day 93: A song that makes you happy
I own 2 vinyls by the Scottish band "The Jesus and Mary Chain", "Psycho Candy" and "Darklands". I love both of those albums. I remember that back in the 80ies and early 90ies, listening to some of the songs from Darkland would make my day sometimes. There are three songs from that record that came to my mind, and they are featured here:
Deep One Perfect Morning, something like a belated Velvet Underground tune:

April Skies

Happy When it Rains

1000 SONGS - DAY 64: SONG # 92

DAY 64: A song that takes you into the heart of darkness

Although fire is a bright thing, this is a song about darkness, methinks. Kerosene by the so-called Big Black, band founded by the influential musician and producer Steve Albini, has originally been featured on their album Atomizer (1986):

I was born in this town
live here my whole life
probably come to die in this town
live here my whole life
never anything to do in this town
live here my whole life
never anything to do in this town
probably learn to die in this town
live here my whole life
nothing to do
sit around at home
sit around at home
nothing to do
stare at the walls
stare at each other
wait til we die
stare at each other
wait til we die
probably come to die in this town
live here my whole life
theres Kerosene around
something to do
theres Kerosene around X2
she's something to do
theres Kerosene around
find something to do
theres Kerosene around
shes something to do
theres Kerosene
set me on fire...Kerosene
Set me on fire
Kerosene around
shes something
Kerosene around
now what do we do
theres Kerosene
now what do we do
jump Kerosene
now what do we do
Kerosene around
jump Kerosene
never anything to do in this town
never anythng but jump Kerosene
set me on fire Kerosene
set me on fire

Friday, June 10, 2011

1000 SONGS - DAY 63: SONG # 91

Day 63: Just another one of my favourite songs

I will stay down under (looka looka yonder, looka looka yonder!) with Ed Kuepper, former member of The Saints. "It's Lunacy" is a track from his 1993 album Black Ticket Day, and there is not too much to say about it but that the paraphrase of the tune by the keyboard almost certainly will stick to your mind for some time after you have listened to the song (good tip for a wonderful morning: listen to it before you leave your home):

1000 SONGS - DAY 62: SONG # 90

Day 62: One of your favourite songs

To say: "The Go-Betweens" is enough. No description needed. Wonderful music from down under. Grant McLennan died 5 years ago, on May 6. Will never forget him. Here is one of my favourite songs from one of my favourtite albums by one of my favourite bands: The Wrong Road, from "Liberty Belle and the Black Diamond Express":

A trader in furs living in exile
Boy what a kook
Look at that passport
Stale bread and paper without privilege
If you live here learn the language
When the rain hit the roof
With the sound of a finished kiss
Like when a lip lifts from a lip
I took the Wrong Road round
A room in a lighthouse
Near the park
The ghosts in the next room hear you cough
Time drags on Sundays spent in Mayfair
With all your riches, why aren't you there?
The wind acts like a magnet
And pulls the leaf from the tree
And the town's lost its breath
I took the Wrong Road round
Handsome is good, pretty is better
What was that phrase
Grace under pressure?
Blind by the light bulb
Blood to the bank
Lost all yours letters when the ship sank
In the disjointed breaking light
The soft blue approach of the water
Makes a sound you won't forget
I took the Wrong Road round
Stranded at low-tide where the river bends
Wouldn't you know it, that's how life ends
Lucky at cards, that's an old lie
Lucky in love, that's how life ends
Well the turncoats turned around
When they heard the sound of the bell
Dropped their coins into the well
I took the Wrong Road round
Started out Oliver, ended up Fagin
Don't you worry, it's my problem
What's my name, what's my number?
I'm the lonely one
It's just at the end of the day
When the light makes its slow move away
That I know all I can say is
I took the Wrong Road round
Gambled with risk
Paid you back with risk
So now you know who your friends are
They'll steel your shadow when your back's turned
Bouquets of flowers
Lesson's over
When the rain hit the roof
With the sound of a finished kiss
Like when a lip lifts from a lip
I took the Wrong Road round

1000 SONGS - DAY 61: SONG # 89

Day 61: A Song from your Childhood

Death of a Clown by Dave Dacies is a song that I have really loved all of my life (and back then, I ownded the single). When I listen to it, my childhood days' atmosphere immediately comes back to my mind. Technically, it is a recording by the Kinks, since it has been written by Dave & Ray Davies and the musicians on the record are the Kinks. I have been a Kinks fan from childhood days on and I have never understood why the brilliant songwriting of Ray Davies has not achieved more fame than it actually did.
Vid & lyrics:

My makeup is dry and it clags on my chin
I'm drowning my sorrows in whisky and gin
The lion tamer's whip doesn't crack anymore
The lions they won't fight and the tigers won't roar

So let's all drink to the death of a clown
Won't someone help me to break up this crown
Let's all drink to the death of a clown
Let's all drink to the death of a clown

The old fortune teller lies dead on the floor
Nobody needs fortunes told anymore
The trainer of insects is crouched on his knees
And frantically looking for runaway fleas

Let's all drink to the death of a clown
So won't someone help me to break up this crown
Let's all drink to the death of a clown
Let's all drink to the death of a clown

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

1000 SONGS - DAY 60 - Song # 88

Day 60 - A song that makes you feel guilty

There is no song that makes me feel guilty, but ther might be song that reminded me of things I have not done. And the feeling of having missed to do some important thing is near to guilt. Each time that I get a new haircut I say to myself: "next time you won't wait so long, you will go to the hairdresser sooner; man, you are doing fieldwork among Mormons..,"; my hairdo is a catastrophe again, and why? I should have had a haircut two Months ago. But the devil intervened, and so I have a very different haircut form the one I have in mind. OK, her is Beck, Devil's haircut:

Monday, June 6, 2011

1000 SONGS - DAY 59 - Song # 87

Day 59 - A song you wish you could sing

Northern soul anthem this is called, although the singer is an US-American; to me still the best version of this song, whatever anybody else might pretend; and the song tells a story worth meditating; dedicated to lovely Pesendorferin, who will not have to read that blog entry in order to know and love this song and its message: here is Al Wilson's version of THE SNAKE, and I really would be happy if I could sing it..

Saturday, June 4, 2011

1000 SONGS - DAY 58 - SONG # 86

Day 58: A Song that you can play on an instrument

Here are 6 songs that I can play on the drums; and if you don't believe me, I will prove it!! It has to be mentioned that I play most of these songs in a different way than they are played on the recordings featured here, due to the fact that a cover version is a cover version is a cover version.

Lets start with Deborah Ann Harry, a woman one has to like, one way or another:

Go on with one hit wonder "Deep Blue Something" and their one hit:

Slow down with Pink Floyds "Wish you were here":

Ok, not too much drumming required on that last one; we will stick to that tradition, with a jazz standard, Fever, two versions, first the original recording by Little Willie John, and after that, Ella's rendering (don't need to feature Madonna or Beyoncé here...):

Song # 5 on this blog entry is a song that Grace Slick has taken with her from The Great Society to Jefferson Airplane (and I came to know the JA version at a relatively young age), Somebody to Love:

Last song in this collection is Burning Down the House by Talking Heads:

1000 LIEDER - TAG 57 - LIED #85

Tag 57: Ein Lied, das Dich lachen macht

Es macht genau so wenig Sinn, diesen Eintrag auf englisch zu verfassen, wie es notwendig ist, das irgendwie zu kommentieren. also 3x Funny van Dannen: Junge Christen, Lesbische Schwarze Behinderte und Nana Mouskouri Konzert. Erfreut Euch!

Friday, June 3, 2011

1000 SONGS - DAY 56 - SONG # 84

Day 56 - A song you would play at your funeral

I always have been thinking about my funeral as an event where people should dance, eat, drink and be merry (Ecclesiates 8, 15 in the KJV). When it comes to melancholic moods, that shoud have their place in a funerary rite (where all the emotions and moods of one single life would ideally be represented in some way), Nick Drake is my first choice, the wonderful English singer, songwriter and musician who died in 1974 of an overdose of some anti-depressant. First, I post three tracks from his first album, Five Leaves Left, "Day is done", "Way to Blue", and "River Man":


From his second album, Bryter Layter, I dig "Northern Sky", featuring John Cale on celeste, piano and organ, Dave Pegg on bass and Mike Kowalski on drums, wonderful, marvellous music watch it on UTube, since embedding has been deactivated for that one and the video I did embed originally, has been deleted from You Tube:

1000 SONGS - DAY 55 - SONG # 83

Day 55: A song you want to play at your wedding

A song that has ectually been sung at our wedding nearly 30 years ago is the Austrian folk-tune "Fein sein, beinander bleiben" (I would translate it as "be decent, stay together"). Here is a version without the lyrics, arranged for a quartet playing the ocarina.

As "to stay together" and "to stick together" does not make too big a difference with respect to semantics, and it is also nice and advisable for a couple to stick together, the elusive Mr. Ferry himself comes to my mind:

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

1000 SONGS - DAY 54 - SONG # 82

Day 54: A Song You Listen to When You are Sad

A fine song, a great song, a song that brings with it a certain sad mood. The first Neil Young song to be featuread among my favourite 1000 songs. An easy one, nothing to explain, as everyone will know who Neil young is and nobody will not be able to find out about Pocahontas. Neither the last nor the least NY song on this blog... And, versionwise, we start with a singer equally known to every person of good musical taste, Johnny Cash

To all of those I can't imagine (people not knowing the NY version/s):

And, as everybody might know, my very favourite pair of american music, gillian welch & david rawlings (rather long intro..):