Well, one week on from our first league table and it would seem any excitement has died down, as we have not that many updates to report this week. Nevertheless, some people worked very hard on theirs so let's talk about them.
is first up, where he's looking at Butthole ..... Surfers! Also two songs he's diggin', so surely something of interest in there for anyone?
You can always rely on the Batlord
to put in a good shift, and indeed this week he does not disappoint. I'm delighted and thrilled to tell you that http://www.musicbanter.com/members-j...t-schemes.html
is back open for business after a short hiatus, and we're being treated to his next metal epic. Check it out now cos it's gonna be a great one! He's up to page 42 and 43 in http://www.musicbanter.com/members-j...-fidelity.html
, with music coming from Katrina and the Waves and the Righteous Brothers, while he's still fully into his punk kick in http://www.musicbanter.com/members-j...lks-about.html
, with bands like the Dils, the Zeros and Crime. You want it loud and angry? This is the place to be!
has responded to my plea in last week's Showcase, so we get another chapter in http://www.musicbanter.com/members-j...can-dream.html
--- great to see ya back!
, of course, never went away, and when you're cataloguing http://www.musicbanter.com/members-j...use-songs.html
it's some inventory! This week he's got videos of rock stars before they were famous, including Page and Hendrix, a review of the movie "Brassed off" and a forgotten classic album by Johnny Thunders. Don't forget to wear your hi-viz: health and safety at all times. Watch out for the forklifts!
is introducing "The Song Overthinker". No idea what that is? Step this way! http://www.musicbanter.com/members-j...sicalness.html
is looking at Models --- no, a band called Models, not swimsuit glamour ... well, you know, he could be. It's his life. But not here. http://www.musicbanter.com/members-j...-observer.html
observes music and related articles. Not porn. He probably does that on a different computer, like I do --- ah, I've said too much. Ahem. Moving on...
is riding high in our league table, and is it any wonder with a journal like http://www.musicbanter.com/members-j...all-music.html
? This week he's introducing us to another double album that failed to cut it n the USA.
That takes us to me, and what have I been up to? Well, in http://www.musicbanter.com/members-j...d-journal.html
I'm continuing my fourth part of the NWOBHM series, this time with Girlschool and, soon, very soon, Diamond Head. Also shaking the walls with Megadeth's "Rust in peace" in http://www.musicbanter.com/members-j...i-reviews.html
has two more episodes from Supernatural, as we edge closer to the end of season one. That just leaves http://www.musicbanter.com/members-j...ver-heard.html
, with offerings from Kate Bush and The White Stripes.
looks at Thin Lizzy in his "double header" in http://www.musicbanter.com/members-j...y-history.html
is still trawling through the "NOW!" series in http://www.musicbanter.com/members-j...nal-stuff.html
to close the show, with another look at Nine Inch Nails for him in http://www.musicbanter.com/members-j...used-hate.html
. Will he change his mind? You'll have to read his journal to see...
This week's Showcase comes from a man who not only can write but is a wicked guitarist too. Yeah, the man currently out on the ocean wave with his gal, the one, the only
Plankton's journal has generally followed the concept of his rise to glory as a rock star (oops! Sorry! Time machine? What time machine? No, no! I have not returned from the future. Just forget everything you just heard okay?) --- I mean, his beginning to learn to play guitar and how he honed his craft. It's a fascinating read. Here's a bit:
Originally Posted by Plankton
Chapter 1 - Talk About Yer Rabbit Holes... (continued)
After the warden parolled me some months later, I found myself seeking out friends with guitars. One such friend had exactly what I needed. His name was Paul, and he had an older brother who played bass in a gigging band. Paul had a Fender Strat, and he played quite well, which was inspiration for me to go over to his house after school and wait my turn as he pulled out licks from Funk 49, and Green Grass and High Tides:
...which infuriated me.
Dammit! I wanted to be the one in the spotlight! I wanted to hold that power in my hands! As Paul expended all his licks and knowledge of the fretboard to the delight of everyone but me, he'd finally get around to setting his guitar down for a rest. This was my chance! He's not looking, he's too involved with that hot little number over in the corner. I grabbed at his Strat, fumbled a bit and stood there holding a guitar in my hands for the first time in my life.
I was frozen. Not only from having looked up and found everyone in the room looking directly at me, but at the thought of me not knowing one. Single. Note.
I made an effort to keep what little reputation I had as one of the cool kids (in my mind anyway), and made the extremely bad decision to try and play something. Anything. I plunked out two or three sour notes right about the time Paul caught me out of the corner of his eye and made a dash for me and his guitar. I quickly returned the Strat to it's home on the stand and sat back down, only to find Paul picking it back up so he could show off how those notes should "Properly" be played. I went home that night early. Early enough that dinner wasn't even ready yet, and I wasn't grounded... although I'd wished I had been.
And now it's time for this month's
I know he seemed to indicate that he was getting depressed about his writing and in all likelihood we're probably not going to hear again from
but I hope we've not seen the last of Mr Dave. In a similar vein to Plankton's above, his journal catalogued his experiences both in creating his own music, and with regard to his father, who was by all accounts a minor recording star. His stories were always interesting and engaging, and hell, I miss the guy! This is the kind of thing he used to write. We can only hope he'll one day pick up his keyboard again and regale us with more http://www.musicbanter.com/members-j...-jam-room.html
(Question, which for some reason didn't copy, is "What are you going to do with your life?")
Originally Posted by mr dave
… or maybe not.
While the correct answer to that question will always be “I WANNA ROCK!” the truth is… hell if I know. There’s something offsetting to me in seeing a middle aged person trying to rock out like it still matters; whether it’s a complete refusal to let go of the styles and sounds of their youth, or the lame creepiness of being a 40 something still holding fast to being 21 and obsessing with the latest pop star drama, it’s just a little off for me. It’s like a comment I got on this site once about how cool it was that I was a 30 something who still puffed weed everyday and liked making shoegaze music, I don’t think it was meant as a back handed insult but it still made me feel like a stunted adult.
That’s not to say that I think there’s an age limit to particular styles of music as much as there definitely seems to be a correlation with the attention given to certain aspects of pop culture within certain stages of personal development. I’d go so far as to say adolescent rebellion is one of the most substantial phases of personal development within youths today, it’s when and how a young person differentiates themselves from their parents and really starts getting a true sense of individuality. For the most part (especially in the western world) rock/pop music is the soundtrack to that rebellion, it means so much to so many because I think for a lot of young people it’s their first taste of a grown up communicating at them like individuals rather than children - especially since the 80s. It provides the child with another perceived voice of authority and provides them with alternative options on how to deal with daily conflicts. Whether it’s some pop garbage talking about trends, or some heartfelt reflection of the soul is irrelevant so long as the young listener feels an impact.
The problem occurs when you get people who don’t recognize the underlying reason for the appeal and run with the belief that the personal pop culture of their youth IS the superior one that shouldn’t ever have to be remixed by the mainstream. Whatever, they’re the same kind of people who’d complain about Amy Winehouse getting added to the 27 club but were defending Kurt Cobain against the exact same ‘logic’ back in their own heyday. I don’t think we all need to become cranky old curmudgeons, but at the same time I sure as hell don’t want to be a frat boy forever.
Having said all that, if rock music is the soundtrack to adolescent rebellion – how do you rebel against
a rock musician?
I’m still not sure, but ultimately, it doesn’t matter anymore. It’s kind of like a magic trick, once you understand how it works it’s not special anymore, it just doesn’t matter. In my case, it was owning up to the realization that I was abusing music as a way of getting back at the old man. I know I’ve got ‘potential’, not enough to sell millions of records and tour the world but enough to have other people pick up and comment on it - I spent years burying that potential under a mess of noisy improvisations. Problem being, I was blind to the fact that I was actually following rather closely to his early path.
I don’t have that many memories of seeing my old man in action, in fact I only ever remember seeing him actually perform once (some promo gig in the mid 80s for a local tv spot). What little I do remember form back in the day were rehearsals and the unbelievable boredom within – STOP! START IT OVER AT THE CHORUS AND GO THROUGH THE BRIDGE! GOTTA GET IT TIGHT! 2-3-4! GO!... ALRIGHT! NOW FROM THE TOP!
…. Oh. My. God. It was so boring. I remember being like 5 and thinking ‘Why can’t you guys just rock out? Why do you have to keep stopping every time it starts getting good?’ Soooooo boring, and 20 years later, I had no intentions on reliving that shenanigan, or creating a new stage for some sycophants to latch onto. In my mind his music was lame and corporate, his focus on commercial success and his discipline towards the quality of their sound just turned me off. Turns out that boring level of discipline is kind of exactly what you need if you want to be taken halfway seriously as an actual professional working musician, and if you intend to pay your bills without having to work some lame day job you’d better believe you need to approach performing with the same attitude as a corporate professional.
But… I’m a hard headed idiot, so rather than learn specifics I worked off my assumptions. Here’s the kicker though, a lot of my initial rebellious attitudes were not only seen as correct and viable but actually encouraged; we were NOT supposed to want to emulate the past, as grunge kids we were NOT supposed to openly want commercial success. And with peers that shared those initial attitudes it took me a long while to recognize how foolish I was being and how closely I was actually following the path we all thought we had turned our backs on.
I’ll cut this rambling here for now, but I’m sure I’ll come back to this topic for further introspection in the future.
Anyone who’s ever paid attention to my posts when it came to the Red Hot Chili Peppers, classic songs, or major influences knew this song was coming. This is the lightning bolt that refried my brain after it froze up following the breakdown of my family.
Everything about this track is badass, from sounds to sights I’ve never seen anything quite like it before or since. I’d seen other bands who looked all freaky and punkish but the hardcore styles I’d hear as a result didn’t appeal to me. I’d heard other bands who sounded kind of funky like that but never without a bunch of keyboards and shoulder pads (it was the 80s after all). Ultimately everything I’d heard before the Chili Peppers got compared to some imaginary line I’d established through my old man. Then again when all you heard was 80s AOR radio rock like Don Henley or Phil Collins or Journey or Foreigner it’s easy to think that most music is boring grown up stuff.
Jungle Man is not boring grown up stuff.
That bass line entered my head the same way you’d swing a baseball bat into a bag of garbage - it splattered ALL OVER THE PLACE before Hillel’s guitar scooped it all up into a new container. I remember laying on the floor in the living room at my aunt’s house doing homework, and then stopping completely, mouth agape, entirely possessed by what I was seeing and hearing on the tv. It’s the first time I remember recognizing the popular value of a piece of media completely independently of any other factors.
In fact I got social pressure from my peers to distance myself from the band because ‘they were gay’ in the days before Under the Bridge becoming a hit and making it ‘ok’ to like the band. Looking back this attitude is definitely one of the factors in my frustration with musicians who would talk about their ideals on how to create music but wouldn’t actually be willing to attempt any sort of public display of those ideals until another group has proven the viability of the action through their own means. I mean, really, if WE did it first someone might laugh at us, and we certainly don’t want to be risking a little ridicule in light of being potentially seen as innovators, no sir.
This song is also the first time I WANTED to play guitar, though I also remember thinking I wanted to play guitar because I’d never be cool enough to play bass like what I’d just heard. Though in reality…
… is a pretty easy bass groove.
My other big thing for the Chili Peppers is all the indirect influence they had on me. I’d pick up any magazine I could find that featured an interview with Flea and whatever guitarist they had at the time and in every interview I learned something more about either playing music or other musicians. Again this is something that the proliferation of the internet has changed immensely. You don’t need to wait for a new magazine to be printed to learn a bit more about a person or their influences, you don’t need to make a list of people to check out in the future when all you need to do now is clear off enough hard drive space prior to clicking on the discography download. But back in the day those magazine interviews could provide real substance and I was lucky that Flea always took advantage of those opportunities to discuss some of his favourite musicians with the hopes that kids like me would explore music beyond the tv and radio and discover some new sounds and grooves.
I can’t actually think of an interview where Flea acted like he was above the situation like a big star, or glamourized the lifestyle or talked about partying and banging groupie (I’m totally making this expression a thing now). It was ALWAYS about the music first and foremost, and for being a consummate musician like that, even if the last few RHCP have sounded bland to my ears, I’ll always have time to hear what Flea has to say, no matter what voice he chooses to use to speak it.
And so to the league table for this week. As you can see, Screen13 is holding on to his rather large lead at the top but is being challenged by, um, me, thanks to the hive of acitivity "Classic Albums" has become. My little journal jumps a massive 13 places, displacing poor Vanilla (sorry hon!) who drops from second to third this week. Other than that there's no huge major movers, with some journals moving up one place and others sliding down, and CrzyVegn now occupying the bottom rung, having slid from her position of 17 last week.
We have however two new entries, in the shape of Antonio, who comes in at 17, and after my impassioned plea and featuring of him on the Showcase last week, Engine at 19.
Leaving us this week: CanwllCorfe and Fetcher, and bubbling under is YorkeDaddy with 13 points. So update a little guys and you could be in the running. It's that simple. You don't need loads of points, you just need more than the person below you in the pecking order. Of course, if you want to rise to the dizzy heights of mid-table or even higher, that's going to take a little work and time. But we can't all update every day. Nice to see your name up there though...
Till next week, meatbags!