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Friday, November 12, 2004

THE KIDS ARE MOST DEFINATELY ALRIGHT

I finally got around to listening to some of my birthday vinyl. We, The Guy, Andy Rock, Bob Mlansky, and yours truly, started off with the Billy Cobham record, 'Spectrum'. The minute I pulled it out Bob recognised the cover, and said "Is that 'Spectrum', no way!" Apparently it's a drummer thing, I had been turned on to it by another drummer, Rob Machold. Anyway it went over extremely well. The Guy and Mr. Rock were floored. Andy said it's his new favorite album, and now he needs the CD so he can listen to it in his car. It is an impressive record, featuring the drums of Mr. Cobham (Mahavishnu), keyboards by Jan Hammer (who else), Mr. Leland Sklar on bass (the guy with the long beard like a Tolkien character) and Tommy Bolin on guitar (It's Tommy's playing on this record that made me purchase his two extremely tame solo records). It's out there, and it rocks like only real good jazz fusion can. Says Mr. Cobham on the gatefold; "What is life but a spectrum, and what is music but life." Next up came the Budgie record. I was half expecting to be disapointed, but was pleasantly surprised. We put it on and this very stacatto riff emerged, The Guy and Andy in unison yelled "Breadfan!", which is the name of the song that was playing. This album came out in '73, and I had never heard it, but The Guy and Andy, who are twelve years my junior, had. Whenever this happens I know what's next; Metallica covered it. It is a good record, the vocals take a bit of getting used to, but it stands up well. Sort of somewhere between Zepplin and Sabbath. We took a break from the vinyl to persue the prog rock fest with 'Col Claypool's Bucket of Bernie Brains', which features Les Claypool and the drummer from Primus with Bernie Worrel and Buckethead. If Billy Cobham had heard this record prior to making 'Spectrum', he might have said "why bother". Col. Claypool's record is so way out there, I wonder if they'll find a way back to earth. Maybe Bernie can ring up his old buddy George Clinton and borrow the Mothership. I took us down a different road when we got back to the vinyl. I pulled out The Staples Singers 'Be What You Are'. Holy guacamole! Another fantastic record. Again recorded in '73 (so was Spectrum) for Stax, I dream of making records this good. Mavis Staples is simply the most emotive singer on the planet. There's a quality to her voice that makes one weep instantly (regarless of the key, Dm or not). I played a few songs of off some of the other records; the Coney Hatch would have been better left in the bin where I found it, the Tommy Bolin not much better, and Uriah Heep "Firefly' was decent enough. With the Bowie and Scorpions I already knew what I was getting, but I couldn't resist playing 'The Man Who Sold The World' and 'Width Of A Circle'. As it turns out I bought a slightly warped copy, and 'Width Of A Circle doesn't play without some serious needle jumping, oh well. Off of Scorpions 'Lovedrive' I played the instrumental 'Coast to Coast' which features Michael Schenker, then I put on the record that started all this madness, Nazareth 'Playing The Game'. Loved it. I already knew 'Born To Love' and 'I Wanna Do Everything For You' from their greatest hits record, but the rest of the record is excellent as well. As the night progressed, and the bottle emptied, for yucks before we headed to the bar I put on Accept's 'Breaker' LP. Laugh if you must, but man that Udo had some set of pipes. At the bar we watched a great cover band. They played alot of road/trucker tunes, some Buddy Holly, some CCR, but the shinning moment of their set was the Bee Gee's 'To Love Somebody', it just doesn't get better than that. After their set we chatted briefly with one of the guitar players, he knew the Cobham record too. What else have I been missing out on?

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