Those of you reading this will have realised that the world hasn't ended. Is anyone really shocked by this news? In my round about tribute to this non-event all this week's tunes will be live versions. Get it?!
Let's begin with the master, James Marshall Hendrix. I'm loving this particular version because Jimi is playing a Gibson SG rather than the Fender Stratocaster he's most famous for. Sure, this is a reasonably standard 12 bar blues but it's all in the delivery.
Jimi Hendrix Experience – Red House - http://youtu.be/_ypkLenWkOI
Staying with the blues for just a minute, here's Stevie Ray Vaughan ripping it up with Albert King. Mentor and pupil! Note that Albert plays his Flying V left handed but it's strung for a right hander – so the strings are upside down.
Albert King / Stevie Ray Vaughan – Born Under A Bad Sign - http://youtu.be/okKLYszEnIg
Rock 'n' roll is littered with stories of bands and performers who shone very brightly only to be destroyed by drugs and alcohol. I watched a documentary today called "Thank God for Ozzy Osbourne". How he's still alive we'll never know. Throughout the show there's a camera permanently mounted in his tour dressing room wherever he happens to be touring. We see Ozzy going through his vocal warm ups, riding the exercise bike, skipping, on the phone and just about anything else you can think of. But, right at the end of the documentary, as he's about to go onstage he closes the door and gets on his knees in a corner and prays quietly. Now THAT, from the Prince of Darkness, was unexpected. This is one of Ozzy's solo tracks, written about TV evangelists...
Ozzy Osbourne – Miracle Man - http://youtu.be/sSe3oB9E-bc
I always associate this next song with AM radio and with the Simpsons. Homer singing this track always gives me a good laugh.
Steve Miller Band – The Joker - http://youtu.be/eYwKGDe7AnQ
Some songs get into our psyche for all the wrong reasons. After hearing this next tune on every crime TV show the intro became my phone ringtone for ages. Great song, but you have to listen to the whole thing not just the first minute or so!
The Who – Baba O'Reilly - http://youtu.be/6ZBhgZBjiLE
Elton John isn't someone I really associate with rock music. He's a great writer and performer but a rock star? This song proves me wrong. It's got everything; great beat, fabulous dynamics and swagger.
Elton John – The Bitch Is Back - http://youtu.be/e8RzSRIKGvs
And I've been busy this week. Learning songs on the guitar, a quick 300km motorcycle day out with DJ Bennee, riding my bicycle up too many hills and being totally impressed with Angus and Zoe's school results. It's amazing how much you can fit in when you don't have to go to work! Ha!
Next week I'll review some new albums. I know I've already played one track from Ian Hunter's (Mott The Hoople) latest offering. However, the full album arrived in the mail yesterday and it's been on high rotation all day. It's a great rocky, country style album with enough hooks to land a whole school of fish. I haven't been this impressed with an album as a whole for quite a while.
Ian Hunter & The Rant Band – Comfortable (Flying Scotsman) - http://youtu.be/CvrPqF6lqEU
Note that this week I have avoided the US gun debate. That's while I work out something coherent to write. I seriously doubt that anyone on any side of the gun debate wants kids to die.
So, have a great Christmas – celebrate in style and think about why you celebrate at all.
Today in a store they were playing the Glee versions of Christmas tunes. It made me want to spew. Here's the antidote...
Stryper - Winter Wonderland - http://youtu.be/FwD57Y58s4E
Ho, ho, ho!