Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Music I Really Have on Vinyl, the Winter Edition

Once I had a love and it was divine
Soon I found out I was losing my mind
--Heart of Glass, Blondie

I feel the need to apologize.  I fell off the face of the earth a couple weeks ago; holed myself up into a sweet vacuum of internet silence.  I have missed out on so many wonderful things you all have had to say and I will never catch up.
I could claim it was a planned break.  I had to cook turkey for 85 guests.  I was wrapping presents for homeless Weimaraners.  I briefly joined the Holiday Rockettes as a roadie.  There was an unfortunate kale incident, but the incision is healing nicely.  When the Solstice came, I went home for a while to my own galaxy. 

Alas, the truth is I have no good excuse other than feeling a bit overwhelmed and underinspired.  I just haven't felt right.  Or write, as the pun may be.
I'm anxious, which is typical for year's end.  The process of reflection tends to poke me where it hurts, and sometimes the idea of a new year is more daunting than refreshing.  So I felt a need to disconnect from bright and shiny things for a while.  I guess for Christmas I gave myself a little present . . . taking the time to be really present.
A while back I discussed my love of vinyl.  Records that is.  Although I have a fantastic pair of pleather pants that make me look just like a Nebraska mom version of Dominatrix Barbie.
Anyway, when I feel low or unfocused, I have always found music brings me through.  It soothes the savage gypsy, so to speak.
So here’s another look into my album collection.  In no particular order of obsession, mind you.

Brian Setzer remains one of my faves.
Peter Steele was at times crude and definitely not PC, but the raw emotion in his songs has always hit a nerve with me.  He died just when it seemed he had championed over his demons. 
Electropop before we knew what it was.  Alison Moyet has a great angsty voice.
You likely don't know this guy, but he is Swedish guitar goodness.  The name might have held him back from commercial success.  Americans do better with Justins.
This is the only Christmas song that I truly love.  My mother would play this over and over for me when I was a kid.
Just watched this with the kids the other night.  Still better than most of the scifi movies out there now.  Same guy scored Close Encounters of the Third Kind, too.
Love this musical.  And according to some, 2012 is the dawning of the Age of Aquarius.
The album's title reflects revolution--and a handgun.  Interesting to wonder if it was meant that way.
Had the hugest crush on Joe Elliot, and the hugest amount of respect for Rick Allen, the band's drummer who returned to the scene despite losing his left arm in a motor vehicle accident.
Their remake of Sweet Jane is pretty amazing.
I desperately wanted Deborah Harry's hair.  And her cool.
This was the hair I got instead of Blondie's, courtesy of Aqua Net.
Only the Dead can mesh the birth of Venus and a skeleton into a cohesive album cover.
One of the first metal albums I listened to.  Probably inspired my love of platforms.
In the garden of Eden,  baby.  Lexiconfusion at its best.
Great Society was Grace's band before Jefferson Airplane, and she sings White Rabbit on this.  We will not speak of Starship.  Remember what the Dormouse said.
Pre-dread locked Axl.  I think all that torque on his scalp did something to his brain.  Should have stayed with the ratted hair, could have saved the band.
A recent purchase given my burgeoning Blues fetish.
This movie/book disturbs me.  Especially the giant padded codpieces.
Listening to this is the only thing I remember from kindergarten music.  And I just shared it with my son, who thought it was pretty cool, too.

I hope you all had a beautiful holiday and have great things planned for the new year.  I leave you with a neat little thing a friend sent me on the origins of dance music. 



  1. OMG I totally loved Joe Elliot and I have this on vinyl. I also have Appetite for Destruction. That album was the coolest when it dropped back in 87. I also own Aerosmith's Toys in the Attic on vinyl.

    And the Little Drummer Boy is my all time ultimate fave Christmas carol.

    Sorry I've been MIA. It's been a rough month and I can't wait to kick 2011 to the curb.

  2. No need to apologize, Julie. I think most people took breaks during the holidays. Your vinyl record collection is super cool! Btw, my little boy absolutely LOVES The Little Drummer Boy. We play it for him over and over again, sometimes even when it wasn't Christmas. And of course, we are huge Star Wars fans (again, my little boy who almost asked me for a REAL light saber for Christmas, and I had to tell him I didn't know where to get the crystal they used in their sabers.)


  3. Aaaaaaaaaaaaah! Stray Cats, Blondie, and Yaz in the same pile as Def Leppard, Guns n Roses, and Kiss? You are a complicated gal.

    Ha! Remember how the vinyl records would sometimes get warped, but you'd try and play it on the turn table anyway? That's kind of what it feels like if you don't take blogging breaks once in awhile. :P

  4. I love that you have all this vinyl. I've got friends here who basically live off vinyl when we're at parties or whatever. I only have a few records. One was a Hole EP a friend gave me 'cause he's not a big Hole fan...the others are SP or Soundgarden vinyl purchased in the last few years or so. Sadly I don't actually have the means to play vinyl in my home.

    RIP Peter Steele, I love him! And I know what you mean, it really seemed like he was getting to a good place, so sad that he died before he could really enjoy himself. :(

    I also love a good eclectic music collection - my own is TOTALLY eclectic!

  5. That is so cool that you own all of that music on vinal. I loved that little map, really goes to show how music has evloved so quickly over just the past few decades. I'm putting a pretty awesome song up on my blog tomorrow so you should swing by :)

  6. and I totally spelled vinyl wrong. Boo me.

  7. JULIE ~
    It’s about time you returned. I considered sending out a search party, but all the people I know would have only partied without doing any searching.

    I switched from vinyl to CD in ’87 or ’88 and sold off all my vinyl in the process, but here’s a few thoughts on what you’ve presented here:

    Brian Setzer And The Stray Cats – yeah, I dug ‘em back in the day. In perhaps ’99 or 2000 I heard Setzer’s “Big Band” version of ‘Rock This Town’ on the radio and thought it was even better than his original. Bought the album ‘The Dirty Boogie’. Not long afterwards, I played a few cuts from it for my Mom, who I thought might dig it a little bit.

    What I played, she kinda liked, that’s all. As I was about to take the CD out, I decided to play her one more track: ‘Since I Don’t Have You’. She being so familiar with The Skyliners’ version, I didn’t think she’d care for it very much but . . . she immediately fell madly in love with Brian Setzer, and his version of ‘Since I Don’t Have You’ probably became one of her top 5 favorite songs of all time! She was maybe 60 years old at the time, and his vocals on that one literally gave her chills!

    It’s not my cup of Grand Marnier, but Yngwie Malmsteen was a big favorite of a blogging friend of mine who passed away this year, and who I was thinking about and posted a comment for on Christmas Day. (You a mind reader?)

    ‘The Little Drummer Boy’ is my Brother’s all-time favorite Christmas song. And I told him just the other day that I decided – just the other day – that The Harry Simeone Chorale does the best version of it. (OK, it’s decided… you ARE indeed a mind reader!)

    ‘HAIR’ – every single one of us old hippies owned that Broadway soundtrack on LP. I have said and written it many times, that I hardly know a single person five years my junior or five years my senior who did not own ‘Hair’ on vinyl.

    Have you seen the movie version? If not, I recommend it. If Americans had any sense whatsoever (which, of course, they DO NOT!), the movie ‘Hair’ would have propelled Treat Williams into superstardom.

    It’s still subjective, of course, but as a professionally trained actor who worked professionally, I’m prepared to state that only three actors ever surpassed Treat Williams in ‘Hair’ when it comes to screen charisma: James Dean in ‘East Of Eden’, Robert DeNiro in ‘The Deer Hunter’, and Val Kilmer in ‘Tombstone’.

    One of the best scenes in the movie ‘Hair’ is this: LINK. [Please watch it if you’re not already familiar with the film. This is “Blues” in the key of “B Major”!]

    I would rate that ‘Easy To Be Hard’ vocal as one of the greatest ever. Top Ten for sure, and far superior to the Broadway musical version. (Bobby Darin’s vocal on ‘Lazy River’ might be number one.)

    The less said about “Blondie” the better. (She was just the Madonna for an earlier generation, and Lady GagGag is the Blondie for a much later generation.) Every generation has its brain-dead blonde.

    Ahh, yes, Billie Holiday. ‘Gimme a pigfoot and a bottle of beer’. My one and only screenplay was titled ‘Billy And Billie’. One of the two principal characters – the female lead – was actually named Kimberly Clayton [Kimberly because I knew a Black girl with that name; Clayton because I was listening to a lot of Buck Clayton at the time], but she went by the name “Billie” because she idolized Billie Holiday.

    If Americans had any sense whatsoever (which, of course, they DO NOT!), my screenplay would have sold and been a huge hit and EVERYBODY would know and love “Billie’s Blues”!

    ~ D-FensDogg
    ‘Loyal American Underground’

  8. Good to hear from you, Julie! I have some of those albums. (Younger folk are asking what the heck is an LP?) And Yngwie is a great guitarist - I have one of his albums as well.

  9. What a great selection of albums. A lot of my favourite albums are still on tape (without a tape player in the house) and I've never updated them :-( I'm not sure I ever had any vinyl in my collection - too young!!

    I'm a huge fan on KISS and Def Leppard.

  10. And now I've got strains of Peter and the Wolf in my head. Thanks. Really. Better that than Axl. (Yeah, I was a metal head once upon a time, but now G&R just reminds me of bad days and even worse choices.)

    OMG, I totally forgot about Yngwie. Tremendous talent - horrible name.

    Here's hoping the savage gypsy soon becomes underwhelmed and over-inspired. Hang in there. :hugs:

  11. I am so, so impressed. I remember your last post with several of your other LPs. These are great posts, Jules. That Star Wars cover is actually beautiful.

    85 guests! Yowza.

  12. No need to apologize...we all hit that wall. Hope your well has been refilled.

    What a mix! Most of my remaining vinyl is classical but I used to have a lot of what you list here :) (Note to self: take turntable in for servicing.)

  13. Peter and the Wolf freaked me out when I was a kid. I love it now.

  14. Melissa--I will be happy to bury 2011, too.

    Cherie--My kids were thoroughly unimpressed with the plastic light saber I purchased at Walmart, so good move.

    L.G.--Yep, that wah-wah sound is exactly how I have felt lately.

    Trisha--I've got quite the mix, although harder to get the more recent stuff and it's pricey. Most of mine came from garage sales! Hole is hard to find at a Nebraska yard sale, so I'm way envious.

    J.A.--I will have to check out your post. That map just amazes me--everything comes from somewhere.

    Stephen--I'm your huckleberry. Love Tombstone, and Val Kilmer owned that role. Hair is my favorite musical, barely beating out Pippin. I knew the soundtrack by heart before I ever saw the movie, though. I agree that Treat Williams didn't see the success he probably deserved. But I can't explain the Kardashians, either. And I did throw Billie in, hoping you'd comment. Very cool that you channelled her into a screenplay.

    Alex--He is great, good writing music for actiony scenes.

    B.E.--Thanks, lady! My metal phase involved many things breaking. And some of those things I miss.

    Annalisa--I sold all my cassettes at a garage sale years ago and I regret it--even though half of them were warped from being left out in a hot car too long.

    Suze--I was exaggerating a tad on the guests. There were 80 ;) One day I want an entire wall of album cover art.

    Raelyn--I'm feeling more recharged--things always look better after you go old school for awhile!

    Carol--I loved the woodwinds. Probably why I chose the clarinet in elementary school band.

  15. I have 600+ albums that I refuse to part with, tucked neatly away in the depths of a closet, despite the fact that I painstakingly converted every track to digital files and have it all loaded now on my iPod. I love my vinyl! In fact it was the process of converting all my albums to digital that inspired my first book. :)

  16. Our household owned four of those vinyl records while I grew up (Hair, Revolver Beatles, Pyromania, and I think Kiss. Though now I think about it, I had the Pyromania cassette tape. Plus the GnR cassette. :) I loved both of those bands SO much as a teen.
    And we are Star Wars geeks here. My 1st grader has been building the Lego Death Star since Christmas day. My padawan is determined (and amazing).
    Hope your spirits are lifted soon, Julie! I haven't written in a month. And hope the new year will spark my butt into gear! :)

  17. Oh, some fabulous music there :-)

    My albums and cassette tapes are all under my bed, waiting for I don't know what - someone to invent something new to play them on?

  18. You have some true classics here. Grateful Dead, Blondie, Hair (excellent movie too who can forget George Burger). Thanks for the trip down Memory Lane!

  19. I loved when Ritchie Petrie sang The Little Drummer Boy on one of The Dick Van Dyke Show Christmas episodes. Julie, Wishing you and your family a happy and healthy New Year!

  20. JULIE ~
    >>...And I did throw Billie in, hoping you'd comment.

    The ol’ Billie Holiday on the vinyl records list trick, eh? Well, I took the bait alright. Unfortunately for you, however, my comments are oftentimes more like books.

    >>...Very cool that you channelled her into a screenplay.

    “Channelled” is probably the right word, too, because I feel that half of that screenplay practically wrote itself. (Too bad it couldn’t sell itself, too!)

    It was an interracial romance story about a nerdy White guy attempting to write a screenplay about vampires overrunning Las Vegas (yes, it was meant to be a bad idea) and a hip, sassy Black girl who sang Blues songs on the Venice Beach Boardwalk for spare change.

    There’s a little exchange of dialogue that I always liked and I think you’ll maybe appreciate it also:

    Billie Clayton is in Billy Withers’ apartment and he’s looking through her vinyl record collection:

    WITHERS: Howlin’ Wolf, Lightnin’ Hopkins, Big Bill Broonzy? They sound like they’re from the World Wrestling Federation.

    CLAYTON: They’re all great bluesmen. You know, if it wasn’t for whiskey, the devil, and big-legged women, there wouldn’t be any Blues records at all!

    Neither of them has any money, and later in the story, he buys her a used, portable record player for Christmas, so she’ll be able to listen to her record collection again, which she hasn’t heard in about five years. In appreciation, the first thing she plays is the Muddy Waters song “The Same Thing” and she performs an “extremely seductive” striptease to it for him.

    Do you know that song? It must certainly be my #1 all-time favorite Blues song. Muddy’s lyrics and singing combined with Otis Spann’s piano – Wow! What say you, does it have that “striptease vibe” to it? Ha!


    ~ D-FensDogg
    ‘Loyal American Underground’

  21. That last album cover warms my heart. I loved those records.

    Have a wonderful New Year, Julie.

  22. I totally forgot about Cowboy Junkies! I hope listening to your collection helped to soothe your soul.

    I took an impromtu semi-break from eStuff over the holidays too. I think it's a healthy exercise every once in a while. Welcome back!


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