“Venezuelan world lightweight boxing champion Edwin Valero committed suicide in his prison cell after being arrested for the murder of his wife” – CNN.com. He was 28 and in his 27 professional fights he knocked all his opponents out. So yes Edwin was full of rage. I think back to my late teens and early 20s and how very pissed off I was. I had my reasons for clenching my teeth most days. People that know me always comment how much I have changed as I got older. Basically I am a happy person today. I often think how close I came to knocking someone out myself. How much I really did want to let loose on people. What saved me from a meeting with the Police? Music making, songwriting, screaming my head off in the studio and sweating like a lunatic on stage. So today’s post is a thank you to music for how much it has helped me avoid a life like Edwin Valero’s. Keep music in schools people… it could save us all!
I’ve always thought Gary Numan was highly underrated. Go back today and listen through his albums and see if you don’t agree. Honest loud real analog synths and interesting vocals. They don’t make them like they used to.
“Gary Numan (born Gary Webb on 8 March 1958) is an English singer, composer, and musician, most widely known for his chart-topping 1979 hits “Are ‘Friends’ Electric?” (with Tubeway Army) and “Cars”. One of the first musicians to use electronic synthesizers successfully in rock music, his signature sound consisted of heavy synthesizer hooks fed through guitar effects pedals. Commercially unsuccessful for many years of his career, Numan is nevertheless considered a pioneer of commercial electronic music. His use of themes from science fiction, and his combination of aggressive punk energy with electronics, have since been widely imitated.” – Wikipedia.org
Here’s my 5 thoughts about this: 1. This is what it feels like to go on tour in Germany. Imagine this for 12 hours straight and you now know what it’s like to play events over there. 2. German people! 3. This is actually pretty creative and awesome. 4. Even though I lived in Berlin for three years I have no idea what they are talking about. 5. WTF!
“meine name ist garfield, ja! ja
ich war schon immer da, ja! ja
und jetzt bin ich auch da, ja! ja
und du bist auch da, ja! ja
wir sind beide da, ja! ja
zusammen in the universe, ja! ja
zusammen mit der polizei, ja! ja
ich erzÃ¤hl ihm ihm was von salbei, ja! ja
eukalyptus und menthol, ja! ja
ich bin unschuldig, ja! ja
like manitu, ja! ja
das ist der killa, ja! ja”
Every now and then I come across a vintage synthpop gem that I never heard before. I found today’s song via the Matrixsynth blog and it’s called Computer Games by a band called Mi-Sex. Apparently the song was a huge hit in Australia. I checked out other Mi-Sex songs on Amazon and discovered they are really a rock pop band and this was one of the few tracks they released that were synth heavy. Amazon link: Computer Games/Space Race
“Mi-Sex (also spelt ‘’MiSex’’) was a New Zealand / Australian new wave rock band active from 1978 to 1984. Led by Steve Gilpin as vocalist, they were best known for their singles “Computer Games” in 1979 and “People” in 1980. Their first single for CBS, “But You Don’t Care” / “Burning Up”, was released in Australia in June 1979 and their debut album, Graffiti Crimes was issued in July 1979 to coincide with their national tour as the support act for Talking Heads. The LP included their biggest hit, the synthesizer-driven “Computer Games”, a Burns/Stanton composition released in Australia on October 1, 1979. The single went to #1 in Australia, made the Top 5 in New Zealand, and also charted in 20 countries including Canada and South Africa.” – wikipedia.org/wiki/MiSex
Most people don’t have homes with a stereo with a FM Tuner in it anymore. Most people aren’t disturbed enough to have 50+ Christmas music CDs lying around. Here’s two ways to listen to FREE streaming Xmas tunes this year. Remember to hit play while putting your tree up, cooking and opening gifts.
Grooveshark/search/songs/?query=christmas: click here
Last.fm/listen/globaltags/christmas: click here
“The tracks and city information is fetched from the SoundCloud API–in fact the list of cities and tracks is even updated in real time as new tracks roll into SoundCloud. Additionally, pictures for each city are fetched from Flickr.” – blog.soundcloud.com
Check it out for yourself and let me know which city your think is producing the best tunes: http://citysounds.fm/
Growing up I thought Willie Nelson was an old fluffy duffy singer. The only song I knew he did was “On the Road Again”. When I aged to the point of understanding life a bit more I discovered an album Willie recorded called “Teatro”. Produced by Daniel Lanois with many of the songs backed up by Emmylou Harris this album is one of my all time favorites. The song that made me played it a hundred times in a row is called “I Just Can’t Let You Say Goodbye”. It’s a heart breaking tune that tells a story of a man’s last encounter with a woman he loved. If you never had your heart smashed into a million pieces well then you probably won’t get this song at all. Nevertheless, you should enjoy the great studio work here.
This is one of those albums that every single song adds to the album’s worth. I bet if you listen to this a few times you will think of Willie in a different light. The lyrics, slide guitar and Emmylou’s voice are so wonderfully haunting. Take a listen:
Today’s Sunday sounds will just focus on one song: When I Hear Music by Debbie Debb. This song gets my vote for “Best Freestyle Song Ever”. Freestyle was an 80s genre of music mostly based out of New York and Miami.
“Freestyle reached its peak in 1987 before it fell in popularity and was slowly replaced by burgeoning house music in 1988. Silent Morning, composed by Noel (poster boy for Freestyle), hugely boosted Freestyle’s popularity and brought it to the forefront of the international scene in 1987, expanding its potential. But, before Freestyle could make a permanent impact, by the late 80s and early 90s, house music, a reincarnation of 1970’s disco, challenged the original, upbeat 1980’s Freestyle.” – Wikipedia.org
Besides the fact that I just think this song is hot I hear some nice equipment: Roland TR-808, Simmons Toms, Minimoog Bass, Analog White Noise Thunder Noises, and a great Vocoder. Can you pick out anything else? I know everything could have been done with sampling but I’m going to guess most of the stuff used was the real deal to tape.
So get your girlfriend to spray a “Mall Claw” on the front of her hair and head to Dancin in Palisades Park for teen night. Next, repeat after me: ewwwua ewwwua!
Today’s edition of Sunday Sounds is a playlist of early Rave tracks. I was deeply involved with this era so this playlist could be really long but for my own sanity I just picked 10 tracks. So go take some E, crack a few glo-sticks, find your most retarded clothes and press play.
“There’s a rainbow inside your mind!” – Praga Kahn
You want to make music like this? For gear I suggest an Akai S950, discs of breakbeat samples, Roland Juno-2, Roland TR-909, Roland TB-303.
I think Sundays will be a good time to share music playlists with you. Today is a collection of sad songs I adore. I really didn’t like this kind of music until I was in my early 30s when I really started to understand how hard life can be. I’m a happy person but if your eyes are open and you’ve lived/loved at all there’s no escaping the truth in these songs.
I remember in the 80s hearing Bruce Springsteen on the radio with songs like “Born in the USA” and thinking to myself, “Wow this is so cheesy I could never like this artist”. Fast forward two decades and I stumble onto the song “My Fathers House” and Mr. Springsteen makes me cry. Funny how that works. In fact, if you told me I would have to pay $5000 or I could never ever hear these songs again I certainly would pay.
It may surprise some people who know my own music that this is the stuff I listen to the most. The truth is I have recorded hundreds of my own songs like these albeit more synth heavy. Slowly they will start making there way onto my albums.
If this is all too sap for you don’t worry I plan on sharing more upbeat stuff too. Next week I’ll put together an Electronic Body Music playlist.