Friday, 25 September 2015

Paying The Cost To Be The Boss

Imagine a world without Hendrix, Cream, Santana, Paul Butterfield, The Allman Brothers, Johnny Winter, Fleetwood Mac, ZZ Top, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and Robert Cray.

Hard to imagine, isn’t it?  Not something you’d want to imagine, is it?

Well, according to Rolling Stone’s 10 Legendary Acts That Wouldn’t Exist Without B.B. King, all that magic would not have happened were it not for B.B. King.

That’s 10 more thankyous we owe to B.B..

Friday, 18 September 2015

Nowhere To Run

A thumping beat that punches you in the back.  A relentless riff that hooks and then numbs your brain, until you suddenly find yourself inside the song.  Biting social commentary.  Energy.  Pathos.  Rebellion.  Despair.  Hope.

I could be wrong, but I’m pretty sure Born In The USA should be Bruce Springsteen’s entry in the contest for best rock song of all time.

Friday, 11 September 2015

Got Live If You Want It

As the introduction to Rolling Stone’s 50 Greatest Live Albums of All Time says, it’s impossible to capture the frenzy (and I would add joy) of a great live show on record.  But as the list shows, there have been some awesome live recordings.

Confession:  in general, I have always preferred studio albums, because the sound quality is better, there’s less self-indulgence from the band, and the mistakes land on the cutting room floor.  But I still enjoy a good performance, and I love going to concerts.

The list has something to satisfy just about every musical taste, and it includes some career-establishing performances.  But for me, its main virtue is that it serves as a healthy reminder that music is meant to be enjoyed live.

Thursday, 3 September 2015

We Salute You

To paraphrase Mark Twain, reports of the death of rock have been greatly exaggerated.

I was at the AC/DC concert in Quebec City last week, and I assure you that rock and roll is alive and very well, thank you very much.