You still catch this one occasionally on the Oldies stations in smaller US markets and it does pop right out .
The first major Europop hit is generally considered Los Bravos’ “ Black Is Black,” a million-seller in 1966. Los Bravos was a Spanish group with a German lead singer and a British producer. Their success was a model for both cross-European collaboration and commercial opportunism.
Half the songs on Middle Brother involve drinking and the rest hangovers of the heart, and on Paul Westerberg’s “Portland,” everyone chimes in on the line “It’s too late to turn back, here we gooooo” — they’re certain of trouble ahead, and relishing it.
Middle Brother is a prediction of great things to come. It’s a promise that a new generation of songwriters is rising up to carry and brilliantly build on the tradition.
The saying goes that “history is written by the victors,” and while usually applied to the history of the world, it can easily be used in as relevant a context within the world of music. That is to say, in countless situations, the true inventors of a sound or style are left behind the shadow of an artist or band that made the sound commercially successful. Though many “music revisionists” might try and argue, the fact of the matter is, few artists played a more vital role in the development of rockabilly and rock and roll than Carl Perkins, but he is rarely given the complete credit that he deserves for his contributions.
Mr. Perkins toured as Presley’s opening act and had a second regional hit with ”Gone Gone Gone.” Mr. Cash, who also recorded for Sun, suggested one day that Mr. Perkins write a song about a new item in the teen-age wardrobe: blue suede shoes. Shortly afterward, playing for a dance, Mr. Perkins heard a couple arguing. ”Don’t step on my suedes,” the boy growled at his girlfriend over a scuffed shoe.
The Lemon Pipers were a 1960s psychedelic pop band from Oxford, Ohio, known chiefly for their song “Green Tambourine”, which reached #1 in the United States in 1968. The song has been falsely credited as being the first bubblegum #1 hit and ushering in the bubblegum pop era but it\’s still a classic of the bubblegum genre.
The album revealed the wide division between the musical tastes of the band and the commercial demands of the band’s label, Buddah Records. Five bubblegum tracks written by Brill Building songwriters Paul Leka and Shelley Pinz shared space on the album with folk-rock (“Ask Me If I Care”), blues-rock (“Straglin’ Behind,” “Fifty Year Void”) and psychedelic tracks (“Through With You,” running over than nine minutes and bearing influences of The Byrds, particularly their John Coltrane-infused song “Eight Miles High“). Leka was the album’s credited producer.
For all of the music Jack White has put out into the world, Blunderbuss is his first solo album, though it sounds much like his work with The White Stripes, The Raconteurs, or The Dead Weather. Written, recorded, and produced entirely by White, Blunderbuss has all the stomp and sway of his best records, but also the unevenness that plagues him to varying degrees.
And to think, Blunderbuss wasn’t even supposed to be. Jack White recorded these songs on a whim (!), after he had been stood up in the studio by RZA. In those moments when you find yourself missing The White Stripes, listen to Blunderbuss. And then send RZA a gift basket.
Instead of quitting music after Fountenberry and Dunn’s previous group, the Incredible Moses Leroy, bricked commercially, the pair shamelessly founded the SoftLightes to fuse every song that you never want to get caught singing in your car. Say No! to Being Cool, Say Yes to Being Happy is eleven lullabies for insomniacs.
Magnetic and flirtatious, Say No to Being Cool; Say Yes to Being Happy draws in the listener with indie electronica and then mixes in shades of folk, alt-country, indie-pop and low-fi — taunting us like a high school cheerleader on the pep bus.
Belle and Sebastian grew out of a class project and became a sensation in the U.K. due to word of mouth. Their third album, which is steeped in a wide array of musical influences, grew their audience even more, and earned them a coveted Brit Award.
This 1998 album (their third) from these Glaswegian tunesmiths is another invigorating slice of poetic pop, containing a collection of songs once again peppered with witty and idiosyncratic lyrics and infectious melodies. For me, whilst Arab Strap does not quite exhibit the level of consistent brilliance of the band’s debut album Tigermilk, it still warrants a five star rating since it contains some of my favourite ever songs by the band.