October 15, 2008


I feel like I’m trying to buck a trend.

This is a topic that we’ve gone over before but yet I arrive at it again.  At some point in our lives, we tend to slow down with our musical involvement and concentrate instead on the many issues that seem to confront us on a daily basis – children, careers, and accumulating debt, amongst other things.  As a result, we lose track of evolving trends in style and taste.  Of course, we listen to the radio, or hear something on TV that sounds intriguing but it always contributes to the “single-serving” (what movie did that phrase come from?) song problems that plague artists today.  Often, we’ll jump on to iTunes and nab that one song.  But that’s not my discussion.  It is our eventual extrication from the music that we followed pretty closely when we were younger that concerned me.

We have attached a wealth of memories to songs.  We remember where we were, what we did, and what we were with just by remembering a song.  Our first everything is wrapped up in minutes of a song – our first kiss, our first drive around the block, our first <ahem>.  In between all of those abundant streams of remembrances are a ton more, finely-tuned into points of reference for our lives.

We listened to radios, we watched TVs with music varieties, we bought albums and singles, and we went to concerts.  We told our friends about bands…hell, we forged friendships based on our love of bands.  We dressed in careless, Rock ‘n Roll ways and we spent time in record shops.  Then we reached an age where we just quit.  And even though we still enjoyed music, we just listened to the stuff that made us remember a different time.  And the damn stations that still sold that music at a penny a spin (because we’re buying it) remind us of our inevitable aging by calling those songs Golden Oldies. 

Somewhere along the way, we developed a form of dementia because we fail to remember much after 30.  Why?  No music to attach it to.  The old stuff doesn’t work because they’re already tethered to plenty of memories, many too pleasant to supplant with new infusions.  And we’re not sure whether we like the new stuff enough to pay too much attention to it outside the occasional Pop song.

Here’s where I enter in again.  I feel like I’m trying to buck a trend because I’m keeping myself ‘in the loop” by listening to lots of new music, when many of my friends have quit long ago.  Music in the “old days” was too much fun to relinquish.  I enjoyed it too much.  And so when I found myself in a waterless place some years ago where I realized that I have abandoned the ongoing flow of music, I despaired.  I despaired largely because it was a reminder that I was growing old, falling into a place where my parents resided when music was fresh for me.  They went on about how music had changed and it didn’t suit them like it used to.  They played those old records with a bit of sadness.  They reminisced about a time past and how music “today” just didn’t cut it.  But – HEY…I loved that new music they couldn’t; why couldn’t they?  And yet I stand in their shoes today – different era of music, same feeling.

There’s a lot to love in today’s music.  In fact, if many of those bands (whoever they might be) were around when I was young, they’d likely have a greater importance than I affix to them now.  Does our general busyness hamper our adoption of these bands?  Are we no longer having a bunch of great new memories?  Do these bands no longer speak to us?  I’m sure it’s all psychological at this point but we cannot put our absolute fingers on it.  I wish that I knew what the roadblocks were.  There are some great bands today but giving them a place in my life like I did for Led Zeppelin, the Faces, The Who, The Rolling Stones, John Lennon, Talking Heads, and a hundred more, well…that’s the hard part.

Once, I received an email from a reader of TAP.  In it, it was suggested that when we bought albums in the past, we bought only those that meant something because that was all the money that we had.  And we listened to those religiously and made heroes out of the band themselves.  This also suggests that we have too much availability today.  With the internet like a cavernous store of music, where you need a lifetime to flip each title, we cannot respect the music that we can freely or cheaply acquire as much as we respect what we’ve paid cold, hard-earned cash for.  That and the fact that there weren’t as many recorded musicians back in those days.  You really had to be impressive in order to be signed but that reason is for another day’s post.  I think this reader’s email hit one of the problems squarely on the head.

TAP is not one of the premier music sites on the ‘net but then I never claimed to be that.  Through its posts run a lot of questions, a bit of anguish and sadness, and a whole lot of respect for music.  I think – I hope – that I speak for my brothers and sisters who read MusicTAP.  If I can bring a moment of remembrance and love back to us in the form of Polls that give us a chance to slip back into the timestream for a bit, I’m doing it.  If I can find a band that rocks or an album that I think we all might find some enjoyment with, I put it up.  If I can make your day just a bit better after having read a few words, then I’m happier.  We’re a community and you’re all encouraged to participate by writing and sharing.  Thanks for hanging around and being the people that you are.

I was unable to assemble some news for today and for that I profusely apologize. But I did provide plenty to read to make up for the lack. Friday will have plenty of news for you.

Remember, YES is our choice for our new Best Album Poll. Many of you know the drill. For those that don't know, it's easy. Just click the available link and offer up your choice of what you consider to be the best album that Yes made. You have quite a catalogue to wade through. I may forgive you some of your choices, and I may not. (Just kidding). Send all votes to The Best of YES and we'll collect 'em. And we'll let you know in a few weeks what you chose as the 'numero uno' YES album. The first day of email votes have been very brisk. If you haven't voted yet, please do so.

We have three reviews for you today with one actually a review of six classic albums in a new series called Total Soul Classics launched by Philadelphia International and Legacy Records. Those albums include 360 Degrees of Billy Paul (Billy Paul), Wake Up Everybody (Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes), Back Stabbers (The O'Jays), Teddy Pendergrass and Life is a Song Worth Singing (Teddy Pendergrass), and Here to Create Music (Leon Huff). We also have the long delayed Multi-Dimensional Warrior, a 2CD collection from Santana, and finally, a Holiday album (our first Holiday review of the upcoming season) from Yo-Yo Ma and Friends called Songs of Joy and Peace. We have several from one of our reviewers (James Hrivnak) that we'll dole out to you on Friday and Monday.

Also, on Monday, we roll out the growing list of Albums You MUST Hear Before You Die. I'm thinking that I'll provide an email at a time as some have listed a catalogue's worth of albums. Perhaps we'll revist this in 2009 and ask for qualifiers to support the selections. That always add to the quality of the vote.

We'll see you back here on Friday for our beloved Weekend Edition. But before we go, we have a stream for you from the just released Greatest Hits Live from War, available in CD/DVD and DVD Blu-ray.

WAR - Live 5-minute Medley
(includes "Low Rider," "The World is a Ghetto," "Cisco Kid," "Spill the Wine," "Why Can't We Be Friends," and more fragments).

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.






MRI will release both CD and DVD versions of Have You Heard Jim Croce Live for legendary singer, Jim Croce.  It is scheduled for release on October 28MRI will also release the CD called The Wicked Soundtrack by Al Jourgensen by Ministry a month later on November 25.

Epic and Legacy will release an LP reissue of Passion and Warfare, a Steve Vai album now planned for October 28.

Columbia and Legacy will also release Vinyl LP reissues for Miles Davis offering these classics on November 25: Bitches Brew, In a Silent Way, Nefertiti, and Sketches of Spain.

The recently converted Motley Crue catalogue to the recently formed Motley Crue Records will reissue their albums (Dr Feelgood; Girls, Girls, Girls; Saints of Los Angeles; Shout at the Devil; Theatre of Pain; Too Fast for Love) on Vinyl LP.  They are scheduled for November 25.

Kemado Records will bundle the two albums from The Sword (Age of Winters; Gods of the Earth) in to a slipcase releasing the set on November 25.

Soft Drive Records will release the solo effort from Scott Weiland, a personal album of music from the STP/Velvet Revolver vocalist called Happy in Galoshes on November 25.

We’ll remind you but there are albums coming in 2009 from Mark Isham, Delbert McClinton, and The Cover Up.

The original roundup of series titles (The Green Series) that include music by: Trace Adkins; The Band; Glen Campbell; Joe Cocker; Grand Funk Railroad; Great White; Lee Greenwood; Heart; Huey Lewis and the News; Megadeth; Steve Miller Band; Poison; and Bonnie Raitt, has been date-shifted from original date of November 25 to NEW date of December 9.  Make your corrections.

Verity Records will bring Gospel and Christmas together with a collection of songs called And There Was Christmas.  This album will feature songs by the best in today’s Gospel like Yolanda Adams (“Little Drummer Boy”), Donnie McClurkin (“Hark the Herald Angels Sing”), Mary Mary (“Merry Little Christmas”), and others.  This album is scheduled for October 28.

Razor & Tie will offer an upcoming Christmas title from The Blenders, scheduling for October 28.  The album is called Holiday Classics and will have – at the moment – 16 tracks of traditional songs.  The same label will also be releasing I’ll Be Home for Christmas from Brian McKnight, also with a batch of traditional songs but given the McKnight treatment.  It, too, is available on October 28.

Rounder has announced the LP release of the previously announced Jingle all the Way from Bela Fleck and the Flecktones.  It is currently planned for issue on November 4.

Mike Burchfield will release his A County Piano Christmas on November 11.




Review - Santana - Multi-Dimensional Warrior - 2CD

Santana has created more great music than many. On this new collection, Carlos Santana has selected his most personal songs and assembled them over 2CDs called Multi-Dimensional Warrior.





Review - Total Soul Classics - Reissue Albums - CD

The firstfruits of this new series (Total Soul Classics) include great albums like 360 Degrees of Billy Paul (Billy Paul), Wake Up Everybody (Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes), Back Stabbers (The O'Jays), Teddy Pendergrass and Life is a Song Worth Singing (Teddy Pendergrass), and Here to Create Music (Leon Huff). One or more of these classics are not to be missed.



Review - Yo-Yo Ma & Friends - Songs of Joy & Peace

Famed cellist, Yo-Yo Ma has gathered with his friends like Diana Krall, James Taylor, Alison Krauss, Chris Botti, and a whole gaggle of others to help celebrate the Holidays with some special music. If you like Holiday music, you'll like Songs of Joy & Peace.








Copyright 2002-2008 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
"...you 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)