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Saturday, January 28, 2006


I hope to make this a regular feature; extolling the virtues of the unsung heroes of Rock. The guy who nobody interviews, who can check into a hotel under his own name, but at the same time is responsible for a great deal of the character of the sound of the band.

Note the use of the word band. Criteria.

The individual that motivated this post, and hopefully discussion about candidates for recognition is Mike Mills, the bass player and vocalis for R.E.M.

How awesome is fucking Mike fucking Mills?

I gotta say, since Bill Wyman has retired, if I was putting a band together, I'd call Mike.

I have to admit I've never understood the appeal of REM. I don't think I've ever heard a song of theirs that does anything for me. My entire Sophmore year of college was marred by the incessant playing of "Losing My Religion" at every available opportunity.

This is one of those bands I don't think I will ever "get."

That being said, Michael Stipe lives next door to me on Jane Street and complimented me on how beautiful Wallace ande Maggie are. Nice guy.


Spelling 'droid is never around when I need him.
Like many acts, REM made some not so good records. Out of Time had the hits and the exposure, but is NOT the definative REM record for my generation thankfully. Life's Rich Pagent, Rekoning, and Document were staples of my college days and better records overall. Great song writing.

To Jackson's point, Out of Time does contain my favorite Mike Mills "The Other Guy" track and that is the most awesome Texarkana. That song alone make's him worthy of HOF "The Other Guy" status.

Here's some easy nominees... Any of the Heartbreakers. Benmont Tench first.


Don't worry about spelling, this is Jackson's blog. He doesn't care about spelling.
Finally something Tony Alva and I agree on! Besides having the coolest name in show business, Benmont Tench is the most underated talent I can think of. His contribution to Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers is what gives their sound it's distinction... I dare say, even more so than Tom Petty's vocals. Furthermore, the breadth(sp?) and eclecticness (a word?) of his collaborations is staggering. Check out this list of albums he's contributed to:


I never knew he was on All Shook Down! Plus he played on other Post Replacements projects for Paul Westerberg and Bash and Pop. Jayhawks, John Hiatt, John Prine, Dan Baird (what band was he in?), Feargal Sharkey(former Undertone, I think), Mary Chapin Carpenter and all sorts of Cashes. It's funny how much of his work I've bought without even realizing he was there; especially considering I'm not much of a cd collector. I guess I dig what he digs. It's also neat to peruse the list for those promising pop bands that never really achieved their due. Then there's the soundtracks... Gods and Generals AND The Country Bears, among others.

My love for Benmont Tench is strong and deep. Damn the Torpedoes has been my favorite album since I was 9. My brother gave me his concert shirt and I think I wore it for 10 years straight. I don't know what happened to it. I think my college roommate stole it (that bitch, she didn't even know who they were). I saw Jessica Simpson wearing the same shirt on tv once and I almost cried. It's funny how my older brothers competed for my adoration. My other brother gave me a really cool Elvis Costello shirt (from a show in England). I can't say where that one is either.

p.s. I've been spelling sophomore wrong my entire literate life.
Surely we agree on much more Clarkie. Sure it wasn't Jackson who stole your prized TP shirt?

"Dan Baird (what band was he in?)..."

I'm assuming you're being facetious. Dan Baird penned one of the greatest lyrics ever written:

Yeah my baby called up said I done made her mad.

She's takin' me off for everything that I had.

Ran out of town and now she's come back.

Got Van Halen wailin' on the stereo eight track.

Watch out baby that's what I said,

There's a red light, road block, bridge out ahead.

Pure poetry...
Unfortunately I think Clarkie does not indeed know who Dan Baird is. Dan baird was the main vocalist and guitar player for the now defunct Georgia Sattelites. Check out his 'Love Songs For The Hearing Impaired", which Benmont plays on. It's fucking great!

Benmont is the man. I think Tom's vocals and Mike Campbell's guitar playing are equal thirds to Benmont's contributions.

Dave hates everything, everything ruined his life, poor Dave.
Is it that Dave hates everything, or is it that he doesn't care about anything/everything?

There's a big distinction.
No, no, no.

I don't hate everything.

I hate everyONE.

Please, people, pay attention.

I love many things.
Might boobies be one of them?
Dan Baird is Awesome, what ever happened to him???

One of my favorite REM releases is "Dead Letter Office" there is a great cover of "King of the Road" on it.

Would Tito Jackson be considered an "other guy"???
There's a rippin' version of Toys In The Attic on that record as well.
Is Dan Baird the guy that sang "I love you period... Do you love me question mark... Please, please exclamation point." The name was familiar to me but I couldn't place what band he came out of. Is he an "other guy" too, or was he the skanky one in the back of the pickup? Unfortunately, because Jackson decided to call this piece "The Other Guy," I've had the most god awful song running through my head all day: ("The other guy won't be around to talk to our kids, he won't understand when your down, the way that I did, we had it all you and I, we just need to try again.") Thanks a fucking lot Jackson.
oh yeah, my wife told me to write this.

"Hell yeah, I Love REM, Tell Jackson great post"
- Hue's Wife
Mike Mills is one of my 3 or 4 favorite bass players. The bass line on 'Driver 8', which I used to play a cover of, is fantastic. And what great backing vox.

Peter Buck, on the other hand, is a hack.
Am I the only one who never covered 'Driver 8'?

Buck is no hack, he's a dick.

I am unfamiliar with whatever song got stuck in your head, Clarkie, but don't blame me, blame the radio.

Dan Baird is not an 'other guy', indeed he's the shanky one.
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