November 21, 2008


The Grand Funk Railroad Poll has pretty much trickled down to nothing.  And as I have figured, it is not as well received or marked as previous polls have been.  But there were participants with a fairly wide view of what ranked as the best in GFR’s interchangeable career.  We’ll have that list on Monday for you. until then, the link (seen below) will remain active for last minute pollers.

It is also time for you to start thinking about your selections for our 5th Annual Readers Poll.  I’ll include the email link sometime in very late December (to allow for any late releases, of course) and we’ll give it a month for you to get your selections in.  I’ll post results on the first Monday in February.

There isn’t much to write about today especially as the Thanksgiving holiday draws near.  Even our release news is sparse.  As a matter of fact, one label barely has anything releasing in the month of December.  January and February items are beginning to creep out but the announcements are still just a creep.  The real flow usually begins seriously in January.  As always, we use this slow-down to have fun and just enjoy ourselves.

Hopefully, some of you were able to enjoy the 100.3 FM 'vinyl sides' Wednesday on The Sound - LA. It was lots of fun with many good selections. I'm already looking forward to next weekend.

We have several reviews for you today that are Holiday oriented. The first is a collection of Amy Grant Christmas tunes culled from three previous Christmas albums. It is called The Christmas Collection. The other is A Swingin' Christmas from Tony Bennet with the Count Basie Big Band.

We have a stream of four songs from the Amy Grant Christmas Collection album that we have reviewed. The songs are complete streams so have fun and enjoy them.

Jingle Bells - Windows Media
Jingle Bells - Quicktime

I Need a Silent Night - Windows Media
I Need a Silent Night - Quicktime

Baby It's Christmas - Windows Media
Baby It's Christmas - Quicktime

Count Your Blessings - Windows Media
Count Your Blessings - Quicktime

We'll see you on Monday with some more reviews. We'll introduce a new reviewer who has several for us, one of which goes up on Monday. As we wind into the Holiday period, we'll be absent on Friday, November 28. But we'll be back on Monday, December 1.

The GFR Poll has been slow to get off to a good start but it does have fans. We're hoping that it picks up a bit but. like some of our earlier Polls, sometimes they don't, I'm going to see what album you thought was the best thing that Grand Funk Railroad issued. Here's what makes this one so much fun: Grand Funk went from an album-oriented band to a singles-oriented band...and then tried to get back to AOR (Album Oriented Rock). So there's plenty to choose from. Grand Funk, like many bands, stylistically changed as the years went by and people will have an opinion on which version of the band said it the best. Even the transitional album, We're An American Band, moved between the two forms of the band interchangeably. On one track, you had "Creepin'" and on another, the popular title cut, "We're an American Band." I don't really expect this one to be a barn-burner participation but we'll see. So, send in your votes for the Best of Grand Funk Railroad. We'll post results on Monday, the 24th...just before Turkey Day.

For the long promised Albums You MUST Hear Before You Die! list (#13), I will be posting a letter each post until exhausted (there were only 17 21 25 27 29 30 31 32 emails).  Some were only a few titles, some only one.  But there were more than a few that were massive and a few extended, well-detailed lists.  I’ll post them as I received them.  Today, I have a list of 10 obscurities and 10 traditional selections. Thanks to Robert for his list:

This list could be considered 10 great rock and roll records no one has ever heard (but should):

10. Stiv Bators - Disconnected
9. Exploding Hearts – Guitar Romantic
8. Man or Astroman – Experiment Zero
7. Grandpaboy (aka Paul Westerberg) - Mono
6. Supernova – Ages 3 + Up
5. The Star Spangles  - Bazooka
4. The Hellacopters – Rock is Dead
3. The Humpers – Live Forever or Die Trying
2. Bash & Pop – Friday Night is Killing Me
1. Lee Harvey Oswald Band - Blastronaut

A more traditional list:

10. Replacements – Pleased to Meet Me
9.  Thin Lizzy - Jailbreak
8. Lou Reed – New York
7. Sex Pistols – Never Mind the Bollocks
6. AC/DC – High Voltage
5. Rolling Stones – Exile on Main Street
4. Neil Young – After the Gold Rush
3. Clash – London Calling
2. Beatles – Abbey Road
1. Bowie – Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust

We're going to keep the Best Album of ALL Time up for a long while as we continually update it. But I'll say this: The Beatles took the lead with not only The White Album but also the fact that they have been selected with two albums. Like The Albums You MUST Hear Before You Die! run, which does not show signs of stopping (I'm still getting emails, which I have no problem with and encourage - Send Them In), I'm hoping that this new thing stays strong. Send in your selection (one only, please) for the album that is the ruler of all.

If you have missed the last As The Disc Spins (updated), check it out here.

To access the previous site and catch up, click here.






Universal Motown has a DVD on the December schedule from Drake Bell.  The Pop concert video is called Drake Bell in Concert and will be made available on December 16.

Hear Music will release a self-titled effort from Anjulie, which is expected at the end of the first quarter of 2009 already.  That date is March 31.

Another Concord title being planned for March 31 is a Count Basie album arriving from Fantasy Records.  This collection will be called Basie Swing Standards.  I will remind of these potential releases (anything can happen) as the time draws nearer.

Hip-O Records will accumulate some Dean Martin tunes and compile them into what will be called Love Songs.  This album is slated for January 13.

Fania Records will deliver Volume Three of The Complete 78s for Salsa artist, Tito Puente.  They will also release Se Salto/On the Loose by Ricardo Ray.  Both Fania albums will release on January 20.

Concord Records will release Modern Art from The Rippingtons, preparing space on the calendar date of March 10 for its arrival.  I’ll remind.

Decca Records will release a Various Artists album collection called The Ultimate Ballads Album Classic Love (See, even Valentine’s Day has plenty of clout).  That album is scheduled for January 13.  On the same date, Decca will also offer this title as a Digital Download (DD).

Sanctuary will release two Pentangle albums in Digital Download (DD) format on December 9.  Those titles are Reflection (1971), and Solomon’s Seal (1972).

Also on December 9, Sanctuary Records will release a DD collection for John Renbourn called Nobody’s Fault Anthology: 1977-2007.

The Playlist series grows in January with more additions.  Added to the growing list are ‘best of’ collections for:

  • Michael BoltonColumbia Records
  • EuropeEpic Records
  • Dan FogelbergEpic Records
  • Indigo GirlsEpic Records
  • The JacksonsEpic Records
  • Teddy PrendergrassPhilly International/Legacy
  • Run-DMCRCA Records
  • Spin DoctorsEpic Records
  • Steve PerryColumbia Records
  • Van MorrisonColumbia Records

These titles are all planned on January 13.  They join the previously scheduled Playlist series titles planned for December 16 for Brooks & Dunn; Martina McBride, Bob Dylan, and REO Speedwagon.

There are also a growing collection of Love Songs series titles expected on January 13 that include music from Dolly Parton; Babyface; Miles Davis; The Isley Brothers; and Barry Manilow, although the Barry Manilow album may take on a different face.  What can you say?  The guy sells records.

Here’s a super pleasant piece of news.  RCA will release an LP version of Already Free from The Derek Trucks Band, scheduling for January 13.



Review - Tony Bennett - A Swingin' Christmas - CD

It's Tony Bennett...Hey, c'mon. The master makes a Christmas album and it just so happens that it is pretty damn good. but we kinda knew that was gonna happen, didn't we? A Swingin' Christmas is with the Count Basie Big Band. And that is quite special all by itself.





Review - Amy Grant - The Christmas Collection - CD

Amy Grant has beena staple of CMG for several decades. She attained crossover status with the release and success of her "Baby, Baby" Top40 hit. She has produced three Christmas albums and The Christmas Collection pulls th ebest tracks and places them into this 'best of.' It also adds four new songs, heard in the streams above.




Band - Glasvegas - Glasgow, Scotland

Hailing from Scotland, Glasvegas, who has Coldplay and Interpol as their musical mentor (and who has an album coming on Columbia Records in January), is sure to be some good music for a lot of folks. I first heard of them on The Sound (100.3FM-LA) and have been intrigued since. Suffice it to say, I'm anxious to hear their full- length album. But until then, I hope that these selection of tracks posted on Myspace Music will give you an easy idea on what they sound like. I have to admit to being a bit perturbed for the truncated 'radio-edit' of "Geraldine" (already available via iTunes) but it should do enough to give you an idea of what you're getting. Have fun.











Copyright 2002-2009 Matthew Rowe.
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Disclaimer: various news pieces may state a specific media publication or program as a source. All other news is considered 'rumour' only. That goes double for release dates.

212 Frech

"Even though most of the people I knew in my youth are gone, I still reach out to them..." Norman Maclean - Paraphrase

"...we should enjoy every sandwich." -- Warren Zevon
"Buy the ticket, take the ride." -- Hunter S Thompson
" best wake up 'fore tomorrow comes creepin' in...: -- Mark Farner (Grand Funk Railroad)
"We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful what we pretend to be." -- Kurt Vonnegut
"Because they wouldn't let me go for three..." -- Woody Hayes (OSU)
"Show me peaceful days before my youth has gone" -- Neil Diamond (Serenade)