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Author: Michael

The Friday Five: April 13, 2012

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

“Upstairs” by Women (from Women, 2008)

It’s all a bit “indie rock by the numbers,” but this record got quite a few spins back in 2008. They remind me a bit of Pavement; maybe too much, even.

“A Roller Skating Jam Named “Saturdays” (LP version)” by De La Soul (from A Roller Skating Jam Named “Saturdays”, 1991)

Our friends over at Popblerd had a running discussion on their Facebook page last week looking for the greatest Hip-Hop band, to which I inquired if we could just include the Native Tongues. This right here—along with the Native Tongues remix of “Buddy”—is the reason why I’m lobbying for their inclusion. When Tip, Phife, Plugs 1 + 2, and the Jungle Brothers get together, magic is made.

“Piece of Me” by Skid Row (from 40 Seasons: The Best of Skid Row, 1998)

Sleazy, with a side of pop.

“To Lose My Life” by White Lies (from To Lose My Life…, 2009)

England’s answer to The Killers, White Lies does the disaffected new wave schtick even better. I don’t think they caught on much in the states, perhaps a cameo on a CW show would solve that problem?

“Little Light” by Rachel Platten (from Be Here, 2011)

Miss Platten possesses the sticky sweet voice of an angel, and the songwriting chops to back it up. Well worth checking out.

What’s on your shuffle today?

The Friday Five: April 6, 2012

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

“No One Like You” by Scorpions (from Hard Rock Gold, 2009)

(In my best Beavis voice:) YES! RAWK!

Do you know why this song rocks so hard? It isn’t the notes that guitarists Schenker and Jabs play, it’s the space they leave in between that builds the tension and makes you nod your head. (See also: AC/DC’s “You Shook Me All Night Long”)

“I Walked In” by Brougham (from Can’t Hardly Wait, 1998)

Who? Oh, dear God, this is awful. I rarely do this, but I’m not submitting myself to any more torture than required. Skip!

“Revolution” by Judas Priest (from The Essential Judas Priest, 2006)

Wait, this isn’t Jane’s Addition’s “Mountain Song”? Let’s see when it came out … according to Wikipedia: “Revolution” is a song on the album Angel of Retribution, by the heavy metal band Judas Priest. It was their first single since 1992’s “Night Crawler” to enter in the United States charts.it reached #23 in the Mainstream Rock Tracks chart.

Okay, so this is totally inspired by “Mountain Song,” right?

According to the producer Roy Z: “The bass intro to ‘Revolution’ is actually from a cassette tape the band recorded back in the 1970s. We loaded the riff into Pro Tools and built the rest of the song around it. We went for a raw, modern ’70s vibe. It is a wide-open rock and roll song.”

Way to CYA, boys.

“I Found Love (C+C Underground club mix)” by C+C Music Factory (from Ultimate, 1995)

I don’t have any issue with C+C Music Factory. At the time, I’d happily dance my ass off to these tunes once or twice a week. Nowadays, I can’t bear to listen for more than a minute or so. Skip!

“Best of Your Heart” by Rufus & Chaka Khan (from Street Player, 1978)

Every single one of you should be listening to more Chaka Khan. The world would be a better place.

What’s on your shuffle today?

The Friday Five: March 30, 2012

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

“Every Day I Have the Blues” by Count Basie (from Verve Jazz Masters 2, 1994)

You know, despite the title, this number swings like mad. I’m not sure I’d swing so hard if I had the blues everyday. Memphis Slim sure didn’t write it this way.

“Got Me Under Pressure” by ZZ Top (from Greatest Hits, 1992)

Driving beat; thumping bass line; Berry-esque boogie–yep, it’s a by-the-numbers ZZ Top hit.

“Hot Thing (dub version)” by Prince (from 12″ Archive 2.0, 2001)

Makes me long for the days when Prince would put out singles stuffed to the gills with b-sides and remixes.

“Kit (What’s the Scoop)” by Slick Rick (from The Great Adventures of Slick Rick, 1988)

Rick the Ruler! I wore out at least two copies of this cassette back in the day.

“Dancing Nancies” Dave Matthews Band (from 1995-02-25: DMBLive: Lafayette College-Allan Kirby Field House, Easton, PA, 2010)

This is a pretty subdued version of the DMB live staple.

What’s on your shuffle today?

The Friday Five: March 23, 2012

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

Sometimes you’re the windshield, sometimes you’re the bug … today, I’m buzzing like a bumblebee. Here’s what is powering my flight:

“V-2 Schneider” by David Bowie (from “Heroes”, 1977)

“Recruting Sargeant” by Great Big Sea (from Play, 1997)

“Window” by Mordred (from In This Life, 1991)

“Dirty Diana” by Michael Jackson (from Bad, 1987)

“So What” by Miles Davis Quintet (from The Unissued Japanese Concerts (disc 1: 1964-07-12: Tokyo, Japan), 2011)

What’s on your shuffle today?

The Friday Five: March 16, 2012

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

“Lemon Yellow” by Plasticene (from BASEketball, 1998)

I have absolutely no recollection of this song. Clearly, there was no short supply of soundtrack fodder in the ’90s.

“Rock in This Pocket (Song of David)” by Suzanne Vega (from 99.9 F°, 1992)

I was duped into purchasing this record for the oh-so-catchy title track, and the even more efficient earworm, “Blood Makes Noise.” The juxtaposition of Vega’s folksy leaning against the pseudo-industrial production of Vega’s husband Mitchell Froom.

“I Found a Girl” by The Valadiers (from The Complete Motown Singles, Volume 3: 1963, 2005)

Motown’s first white vocal group, and they don’t even rate a Wikipedia page? Ain’t that a bitch.

“Green Room” by Dig (from Dig, 1993)

“All I really want to do is get high …” Well, it would appear that my shuffle is attempting to expose just how much bad ’90s music is lurking in the dark bowels of my library.

“The Betrayer” by Kaki King (from Junior, 2010)

I’m not going to lie: I preferred Miss King when she just played guitar.

What’s on your shuffle today?

The Friday Five: March 9, 2012

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

“Drown” by The Smashing Pumpkins (from Singles, 1992)

By virtue of its inclusion on the Singles soundtrack this could be my favorite Smashing Pumpkins track. On second thought, that right probably belongs to the the album cut “Mayonnaise” from Siamese Dream, but I’d still place “Drown” at a close second.

“Mishale” by Andru Donalds (from Andru Donalds, 1994)

Okay, raise your hand if you’ve ever heard of Andru Donalds. I’m not going to lie, I’m astounded to find that this tune actually charted in Billboard’s Hot 100.

“The Monster’s Heart” by The Damnwells (2009)

During the recording of No One Listens to the Band Anymore, Alex Dezen opened the studio doors and gave the fans that pledged to fund the record access to the demos, outtakes and sketches from the proceedings. This is the early bones of “The Monster,” and is just as powerful in its quiet acoustic take.

“I’m Bad, I’m Nationwide” by ZZ Top (from Greatest Hits, 1992)

Do you think that for a moment the boys in ZZ Top considered for a moment while writing all these blues infused tunes they’d serve as the soundtrack for shilling everything from automobiles to beer?

“The Magic Number” by De La Soul (from The Best Of. 2003)

Ending on a funky note, nice!

What’s on your shuffle today?

The Friday Five: March 2, 2012

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

“Nice Guys” by We Are Scientists (from Barbara, 2010)

I love tripping over songs that I forgot about. Ironically, the music blogosphere completely forgot about We Are Scientists by the time this release came out, which is a damn shame as it contains some of their strongest songs.

“The Stars of Track and Field” by Belle and Sebastian (from If You’re Feeling Sinister, 1996)

Oh, the toothache! Now with 90% more trumpet!

I kid, because I care. I stumbled onto Belle and Sebastian during my stint working at a record store in the mid-’90s. Yes, an actual record store.

“Long Kiss Goodnight” by The Notorious B.I.G. (from Life After Death, 1997)

Goddammit, Diddy is one annoying motherfucker.

“Leave in Silence (longer)” by Depeche Mode (from A Broken Frame, 1982)

Just lovely.

“Granny” by Dave Matthews Band (from Warehouse 8, Volume 3, 2007)

“Love! Baby!” Nothing like wrapping up another Friday Five with a little bit of love. To quote my friend Dennis, “Hope you all hear something good this weekend!”

What’s on your shuffle today?

The Friday Five: February 24, 2012

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

“Always and Forever” by Heatwave (from Can You Dig It? The ’70s Soul Experience, 2001)

During the nomination process for the recent Popdose 100: The Greatest Love Songs of All Time there were only a handful of tunes that I could’ve smacked myself for forgetting to include, this is one of them. I don’t know about you lot, but when I was growing up this tune was a staple of the high school dance.

“Tell Me (Go Go mix)” by Groove Theory (from Tell Me – The Remixes, 1995)

Here is one of the things that I love about doing the Friday Five: after doing a quick background check on Groove Theory I discovered that principal players Amel Larrieux and Bryce Wilson have reunited. There isn’t much in the way of details, but damn if that isn’t exciting news.

“Why Don’t We Do It in the Road?” by The Beatles (from The Beatles, 1968)

This one is a little less ‘Beatles’ and more ‘McCartney’, much in the same way “Julia” is more ‘Lennon.’

“Under the Cherry Moon” by Prince & The Revolution (from 1986-08-02: Madison Square Garden, New York, Ny, USA, 2012)

Okay, two things to discuss here:

This soundboard recording was recently unearthed and is nothing short of excellent. The band did two shows at the Garden to prep for the European tour, and these performances are fiery and loose. This one is well worth seeking out.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t bring up the benefit gig that The Revolution —that’s right: Wendy, Lisa, Bobby, Mark, Dr. Fink and Dez!— performed at the legendary First Avenue in Minneapolis last weekend. The skinny motherfucker with the high voice didn’t show his face, but after listening to the tapes from the show he should be listening, and thinking about taking this band out on tour. Hell, they don’t even need him! Viva la Revolution!

“I Have Loved You Wrong” by The Swell Season (from Strict Joy, 2009)

Did you know that Glen Hansard & Markéta Irglová made a second movie chronicling the recording of Strict Joy? I didn’t know this until earlier this week, and now it’s all I can do to try and find a way to see this film. If you haven’t watched the film Once, I cannot recommend it more. All that said, I hold hope that the duo will reconvene for another record in the near future.

What’s on your shuffle today?

The Friday Five: February 17, 2012

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

“Armageddon It” by Def Leppard (from Vault: Greatest Hits 1980-1995, 1995)

It’s not my favorite Def Leppard song, but it is as catchy as VD at the Jersey Shore (or, somewhat ironically, a Def Leppard show during the Hysteria tour.)

“Candy Store Rock” by Led Zeppelin (from Boxed Set, 1990)

The Zeppelin box set was standard issue for high school students in the early ’90s.

“Nobody But You” by The Apples in Stereo (from Travellers in Space and Time, 2010)

Phew, I was getting worried that Matt Wardlaw had somehow possessed this week’s shuffle.

“Wrapped Up in Books” by Belle and Sebastian (from Dear Catastrophe Waitress, 2003)

I’m suddenly getting sleepy.

“Come Up to My Room (feat. Tha Dogg Pound)” by Jodeci (from Murder Was the Case, 1994)

Whoa, that is like puling the emergency break while speeding—albeit rather gently—down the highway.

What’s on your shuffle today?

The Friday Five: February 10, 2012

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

N.T., Parts 1 & 2” by Kool & The Gang (from Cutmaster Swift Presents: The Breaks, Volume 2, 1999)

Prior to penning the wedding band anthem “Celebrate,” Kool & The Gang dropped some of the funkiest instrumental breaks this side of Parliament-Funkadelic. Originally featured on 1971’s Live at PJ’s, the “N.T.” actually stands for “No Title.” No points for originality there, but it more than makes up for it’s lack of an original title with its sprawling funk movements.

O.P.P.” by Naughty by Nature (from Tommy Boy Presents: Hip Hop Essentials, Volume 11 (1979-1991), 2006)

I dare you to listen to this record without bobbin’ your head.

Pastime Paradise” by Stevie Wonder (from Songs in the Key of Life, 1976)

Seems as if we’re shuffling between the bedrock of hip-hop breaks and a hip hop classic. Where Kool & The Gang’s nameless jam supplied the breaks for Kool G Rap’s “Truly Yours” and Nas’ “It Ain’t Hard To Tell,” Stevie’s “Pastime Paradise” was the bedrock of Coolio’s “Gangsta’s Paradise.”

Gratitude” by Beastie Boys (from Check Your Head, 1992)

Ha! Here’s a funky bit of irony: track 16 on the Beastie’s Check Your Head, it’s a groovy little track called “Live at P.J.’s.” That aside, I’ve always loved this track.

So Alive” by Love and Rockets (from Sounds of the Eighties: 1989, 1995)

Dammit, iTunes! You had me going.

What’s on your shuffle today?