About Me

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I'm the co-host of THIS IS ROCK 'N' ROLL RADIO with Dana & Carl (Sunday nights, 9 to Midnight Eastern, www.westcottradio.org).  As a freelance writer, I contributed to Goldmine magazine from 1986-2006, wrote liner notes for Rhino Records' compilation CD Poptopia!  Power Pop Classics Of The '90s, and for releases by The Flashcubes, The Finkers, Screen Test, 1.4.5., and Jack "Penetrator" Lipton.  I contributed to the books Bubblegum Music Is The Naked Truth, Shake Some Action, Lost In The Grooves, and MusicHound Rock, and to DISCoveries, Amazing Heroes, The Comics Buyer's Guide, Yeah Yeah Yeah, Comics Collector, The Buffalo News, and The Syracuse New Times.  I also wrote the liner notes for the four THIS IS ROCK 'N' ROLL RADIO compilation CDs, because, well, who could stop me?  My standing offer to write liner notes for a Bay City Rollers compilation has remained criminally ignored.  Still intend to write and sell a Batman story someday.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

GROOVE GRATITUDE (A Gift Of Music)



In my continuing effort to fill this space with an engaging blog post each day, I'm starting a new series called Groove Gratitude (A Gift Of Music). Groove Gratitude will look back on music I received as a gift at some point, and will encompass LPs and CDs (plus cassettes and 45s, if I think of any that qualify). Continuing the personal nature of much of Boppin' (Like The Hip Folks Do), entries in Groove Gratitude will discuss the selected album itself, perhaps touch on its history and its place in the artist's own story, and place it in the context of its specific relevance to me (i.e., who gave it to me, the circumstances surrounding the gift, and what it meant to me, then and now).

This new series was inspired indirectly by my friend Ronnie Dark (host of The Wax Museum with Ronnie Dark on WVOA in Syracuse), who recently posted on Facebook about The Beatles, aka The White Album. Ronnie thinks The White Album is The Beatles' least-interesting work; he doesn't hate it, but doesn't think it's up to the standards set by any and all of the Beatles releases that preceded it. A lot of folks have similarly criticized The White Album over the years; I believe even producer George Martin--who sure knew a thing or two about The Beatles' music--felt it should have been a single album, rather than a (presumably bloated) 2-LP set.

So Ronnie's on pretty solid ground, and among good company, with his opinion of The White Album. Paul Armstrong of The Flashcubes responded that, its faults notwithstanding, he'd rather listen to The White Album than Sgt. Pepper; I responded that I like both of those albums, but would still prefer Beatles VI to either of 'em.

But the exchange got me thinking. I used to love The White Album. Then I didn't love The White Album. What do I think of it now? And this, in turn, prompted me to remember receiving the album as a graduation gift from three girls I knew in high school. And that led me to thinking about all the many, varied records I received as gifts over the span of decades...

...And the idea for a new Boppin' (Like The Hip Folks) series was born.

The inaugural entry in Groove Gratitude will address The White Album, and it will initially be a private post for Boppin' subscribers only. It will not be available publicly until at least June. If you want to read it before that time, you can become a patron of Boppin' (Like The Hip Folks Do) for as little as $2 a month; patrons receive one bonus private blog post each month. Past private posts have included my introduction for a book I may someday finishing writing (about The Ramones), a Greatest Record Ever Made about "You Really Got Me" by The Kinks, a Virtual Ticket Stub Gallery about seeing The Monkees in 2012, and a super-secret update on a sort-of-secret project I've been working on. None of these has yet been made available to the public, but they're all available right now to patrons of Boppin'. You can become a patron via Patreon: Fund me, baby!

There will, of course, be plenty of public Groove Gratitude entries, too, and more of all of my other series: The Everlasting First, Rescued From The Budget Bin!, Love At First Spin, Comic Book Retroview, The Greatest Record Ever Made, Batman's Degrees Of Separation, What If? So What?, The Notebook Notions, Virtual Ticket Stub Gallery, and Lights! Camera! REACTION! There will also be "Count Me In," the previously-promised post about rock 'n' roll's all-time greatest count-ins, and still more stuff that I haven't even imagined yet. A daily blog eats up ideas in a very short time. Luckily, I have a lot of ideas. Whether you're a paid patron or a casual visitor, I thank you for being one of those boppin' hip folks.

You can support this blog by becoming a patron on Patreon: Fund me, baby!