Sunday, July 27, 2014

Muscle Shoals

On Netflix:

Pressing On
Well I’m pressing on
Yes, I’m pressing on
Well I’m pressing on
To the higher calling of my Lord
Many try to stop me, shake me up in my mind
Say, “Prove to me that He is Lord, show me a sign”
What kind of sign they need when it all come from within
When what’s lost has been found, what’s to come has already been?
Well I’m pressing on
Yes, I’m pressing on
Well I’m pressing on
To the higher calling of my Lord
Shake the dust off of your feet, don’t look back
Nothing now can hold you down, nothing that you lack
Temptation’s not an easy thing, Adam given the devil reign
Because he sinned I got no choice, it runs in my vein
Well I’m pressing on
Yes, I’m pressing on
Well I’m pressing on
To the higher calling of my Lord
Written by Bob Dylan

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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

My original receiver.

Well, there it is. It is the same model of receiver that I had as a child. It sure looks spiffy!! :) 

I just purchased a used model for $38 which included shipping. It will come some time this week, I guess. What a pittance to pay for something I long ago threw away and have regretted doing so ever since. I have a pre-amp that I use with a newer model receiver now, which also has a usb connection. But this wonderful beauty above has a phono input... like everything did back then. It is kind of obviously low-fi, but at the time, no one could have told me there was anything better than this thing which cost $139 at the time, I believe. That was a lot of money for my parents to shell out for my Christmas present. This coupled with a Dual turntable and 4 Panasonic speakers, I think that was their brand as well, was just amazing. My dad had a little gadget that delayed the back two speakers into a kind of fake 4 channel. I used this bit of hardware years later to fake 4 channel sound for my TV. 

The really awesome thing was that Dad mounted speakers on the walls of my bedroom to create a rather good sound stage. Dad... he loved electronics.

I should no longer worry about throwing things away that I might want later. I should just document the details necessary to find them on ebay later and put them into circulation at my local thrift shop. If I ever want it later, well, I don't have to search through the attic to find it. 

I have searched for this thing numerous times and finally decided that I must have thrown it away. Does one ever remember throwing things out? Most of my life I lived in apartments with minimal storage. Had I kept all my stuff, the amount of money I would have spent on storage would be quite a tidy sum by now. So.. technically, I could save money by throwing things away and rebuying them later. This is all theory mind you. 

You can see I am excited to see this come in the mail. I hope it works well. After all, these things must be at least 45 years old by now. 

Tuesday, July 22, 2014


I always associated the sounds between tracks  (first 12 seconds) with these songs. After hearing this on mp3's from CDs for decades... honestly... this Vinyl appears to have a whole different (warm?) temperature to it. It may just be my imagination. I was taking good care of my records by the time I purchased this one. Very few pops. Transferring it was a bit difficult on settings, but I think I got it it pretty close.

Greenwich Village: Music That Defined Generation / on Netflix

Monday, July 21, 2014

Have a Cigar (alt)

Alternate "Have a Cigar" / Pink Floyd

I do like this version. It is so distinct in it's differences yet spot on the same song... well minus the rapid ending on the album. 

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Good Bye to Tiki for now

The quintessential song in exotica or tiki lounge is "Quiet Village."

The first is by Martin Denny, the second by Arthur Lyman (who left Denny's band to make his own mark.) I lean towards the Lyman version but there are for sure lots of versions of this song out there. It is THE song to do. :)

Although I am fairly sure Les Baxter did Quiet Village as well, let's leave him with a different song that I like "Hong Kong Cable Car"  (which Denny and Lyman have probably done as well. :) )

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Peter Gunn

While we are surfing around the area of lounge, this sub-genre seems notable. "Peter Gunn," the main theme for a television show of the same name, is intriguing because of its combination of jazz orchestration with a straightforward, rock 'n roll backbeat. I heard this song a lot when I was young. I never saw the TV show when I was young... I guess my parents had some standards for what is appropriate for kids.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Esquivel and the Road Zamboni

Since recently listening with the feeling of the needle hitting the vinyl of Martin Denny, THE Martin Denny record that started my interest in music, I have been listening to lounge music in my car. I went through Les Baxter songs. All music seems wonderful to me now. This is not muzak but nicely done creative instrumentations. 

So after I exhausted Les Baxter, apparently my iPod was on to Esquivel. My iPod interfaces with my car and it intimidates me. I have so many songs that I find it difficult to do anything except shuffle. After all, When you are driving, do you really want to search things? 

However, despite this, I had found the genre of "lounge" before I left my driveway and have been listening to songs for days. Sometimes I skip a particularly bad one. but I try to keep an open mind. 

Then there was Esquivel. I kind of knew what to expect out of Esquivel but what I did not expect was to be stopped at an intersection, blocked by a thing that looked like a huge Zamboni that was grinding up the road and spitting it out like a harvester into a truck in front of it. There was a state trooper car sitting there.... just threatening...  no help with the intersection or instructions on where to drive. On top of this huge machine behind the huge truck was a guy sitting in an airconditioned cabin, looking for all the world like a southern boy so happy to finally be going through the intersection with people being forced to see that he was the driver of the machine that chomped up the road. To the left of me was some other good old boy cursing because of the delay and... as the guy slowly Zambonied through the intersection in front of me, the soundtrack was this:

I have not been the cheeriest of persons in my recent days, but.. honestly, this cheered me up to the point of uncontrollable laughter. I am cheery now and hope to stay that way for a while.

Just to give you a better sense of Esquivel, here is the song I was listening to before the moment, as I was gliding down the road not a care in the world until of course, the road Zamboni, which stated  immediately "You will be late for work...."

Sometimes you just have to laugh. It is good for you. Music, it is always good for you. Listen... the life affirmation is there.

"My Blue Heaven" had to be my mother's favorite song, not in this version, of course.

She sang it to me a lot and changed the lyrics to include our family particulars.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Alabama - Neil Young


Oh Alabama
The devil fools with the best laid plan.
Swing low Alabama
You got the spare change
You got to feel strange
And now the moment is all that it meant.

Alabama, you got the weight on your shoulder
That's breaking your back.
Your Cadillac has got a wheel in the ditch
And a wheel on the track

Oh Alabama
Banjos playing through the broken glass
Windows down in Alabam'.
See the old folks tied in white robes
Hear the banjo.
Don't it take you down home?

Alabama, you got the weight on your shoulder
That's breaking your back.
Your Cadillac has got a wheel in the ditch
And a wheel on the track

Oh Alabama
Can I see you and shake your hand?
Make friends down in Alabam'
I'm from a new land
I come to you and see all this ruin
What are you doing Alabama?
You got the rest of the union to help you along
What's going wrong? 

Friday, July 4, 2014

Stoneground Words

Melanie / Stoneground Words

Although this album is a tour de force of singer songwriter talent, I am drawn to the version of Pete Seeger's "My Rainbow Race" as a song which stands out.

One blue sky above us
One ocean lapping all our shore
One earth so green and round
Who could ask for more
And because I love you
I'll give it one more try
To show my rainbow race
It's too soon to die.

Some folks want to be like an ostrich,
Bury their heads in the sand.
Some hope that plastic dreams
Can unclench all those greedy hands.
Some hope to take the easy way:
Poisons, bombs. They think we need 'em.
Don't you know you can't kill all the unbelievers?
There's no shortcut to freedom.

Go tell, go tell all the little children.
Tell all the mothers and fathers too.
Now's our last chance to learn to share
What's been given to me and you.

M'Bira - Martin Denny

Martin Denny was really my first love musically. Yes, the Beatles were obviously the main inspiration to my love of music, but I was listening to Martin Denny before that time. My dad had a fair number of albums, maybe 40. I cannot remember them all and I doubt I saved them all.

I certainly saved Martin Denny's Primitiva. For one thing it had an awesome girl on the cover.

I know this album so well. I cannot possibly comment on it objectively. It is part of my being. 
Going back over the songs on the album, I have chosen one that was a favorite when I was 5 years old, and is still awesome today. The record came out the year I was born. 

Here is the exotic " M'Bira " from the same vinyl I played at least a hundred times when I was young:

See the instrument the song is named after, the m'bira, played properly:

Learn more about Martin Denny:

Learn more about the musical genre "Exotica":