Monday, September 30, 2019

THE GREATEST RECORD EVER MADE: "Liar, Liar"

These are not the Castaways we're talking about today.
This was intended to be (by far!) the shortest chapter in my book The Greatest Record Ever Made! (Volume 1), but at the moment I don't think it fits in there. So we'll share it here instead.

For those looking to see something that will be in the book, my $2-a-month paid patrons will have exclusive access on Tuesday to another previously-unpublished chapter of The Greatest Record Ever Made! (Volume 1). October's private post for patrons will appear on Wednesday, October 2nd. You can become a patron here: Fund me, baby!

An infinite number of songs can each be THE greatest record ever made, as long as they take turns. Today, THIS is THE GREATEST RECORD EVER MADE!



THE CASTAWAYS: Liar, Liar

Of course The Castaways' 1965 hit "Liar, Liar" should be proclaimed The Greatest Record Ever Made. Because loudly slurring, "Liar, liar, your pants are on fire, your nose is longer than a telephone wire" in a falsetto whine while swilling cheep beer is one of our fundamental rights as Americans. And the guitar break is so simple and (wonderfully!) moronic that it's intrinsically and immediately more interesting than any gratuitous display of six-string virtuosity could ever be. For the moment, anyway.



TIP THE BLOGGER: CC's Tip Jar!

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

Fans of pop music will want to check out Waterloo Sunset--Benefit For This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio, a new pop compilation benefiting SPARK! Syracuse, the home of This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio with Dana & CarlTIR'N'RR Allstars--Steve StoeckelBruce GordonJoel TinnelStacy CarsonEytan MirskyTeresa CowlesDan PavelichIrene Peña, Keith Klingensmith, and Rich Firestone--offer a fantastic new version of The Kinks' classic "Waterloo Sunset." That's supplemented by eleven more tracks (plus a hidden bonus track), including previously-unreleased gems from The Click BeetlesEytan MirskyPop Co-OpIrene PeñaMichael Slawter (covering The Posies), and The Anderson Council (covering XTC), a new remix of "Infinite Soul" by The Grip Weeds, and familiar TIRnRR Fave Raves by Vegas With RandolphGretchen's WheelThe Armoires, and Pacific Soul Ltd. Oh, and that mystery bonus track? It's exquisite. You need this. You're buying it from Futureman.


(And you can still get our 2017 compilation This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio, Volume 4, on CD from Kool Kat Musik and as a download from Futureman Records.)

Get MORE Carl! Check out the fourth and latest issue of the mighty Big Stir magazine at bigstirrecords.com/magazine

Hey, Carl's writin' a book! The Greatest Record Ever Made! (Volume 1) will contain 100 essays (and then some) about 100 tracks, plus two bonus instrumentals, each one of 'em THE greatest record ever made. An infinite number of records can each be the greatest record ever made, as long as they take turns. Updated initial information can be seen here: THE GREATEST RECORD EVER MADE! (Volume 1).

Sunday, September 29, 2019

No THIS IS ROCK ‘N’ ROLL RADIO Tonight



Alas, internet issues at the Westcott Community Center force us to scuttle this week’s show. The problem is with the Center itself, not with our own creaky but occasionally intrepid gear. Although this will ultimately delay our 1000th show (previously scheduled for November 3rd), we hope to resume that trek with # 995 next week. Keep listening to the skies!

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Fake THIS IS ROCK 'N' ROLL RADIO Playlist: Time Is On My Side

This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio with Dana & Carl is simply too large a concept to be neatly contained within a mere three-hour weekly time slot. Hence these occasional fake TIRnRR playlists, detailing shows we're never really going to do...but could.


Time for another fake TIRnRR playlist, and this one's all about time: a selection of songs with some titular connection to time itself. We've got songs about days of the week, seasons, days and collections of days (weeks, months, years, decades, centuries), parts of the day, times of the day, and time itself. Time to rock!

This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio with Dana & Carl--y'know, the real one--plays Sunday nights from 9 to Midnight Eastern, on the air in Syracuse on The Spark WSPJ-LP 103.3 and 93.7 FM, and on the web at http://sparksyracuse.org/

Spark Syracuse is supported by listeners like you. Tax-deductible donations are welcome at http://sparksyracuse.org/support/


You can follow Carl's daily blog Boppin' (Like The Hip Folks Do) at 

https://carlcafarelli.blogspot.com/

Hey, Carl's writin' a book! The Greatest Record Ever Made will contain 100 essays (and then some) about 100 tracks, plus two bonus instrumentals, each one of 'em THE greatest record ever made. An infinite number of records can each be the greatest record ever made, as long as they take turns. Updated initial information can be seen here: THE GREATEST RECORD EVER MADE! (Volume 1)THE GREATEST RECORD EVER MADE! (Volume 1)

Fans of pop music will want to check out Waterloo Sunset--Benefit For This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio, a new pop compilation benefiting SPARK! Syracuse, the home of This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio with Dana & CarlTIR'N'RR Allstars--Steve StoeckelBruce GordonJoel TinnelStacy CarsonEytan MirskyTeresa CowlesDan PavelichIrene Peña, Keith Klingensmith, and Rich Firestone--offer a fantastic new version of The Kinks' classic "Waterloo Sunset." That's supplemented by eleven more tracks (plus a hidden bonus track), including previously-unreleased gems from The Click BeetlesEytan MirskyPop Co-OpIrene PeñaMichael Slawter (covering The Posies), and The Anderson Council (covering XTC), a new remix of "Infinite Soul" by The Grip Weeds, and familiar TIRnRR Fave Raves by Vegas With RandolphGretchen's WheelThe Armoires, and Pacific Soul Ltd. Oh, and that mystery bonus track? It's exquisite. You need this. You're buying the digital download from Futureman and/or the CD from Kool Kat Musik.

Fake TIRnRR Playlist: Time Is On My Side

THE ROLLING STONES: Time Is On My Side
--
THE BEATLES: Eight Days A Week
THE MONKEES: Pleasant Valley Sunday
FATS DOMINO: Blue Monday
THE SMITHEREENS: Groovy Tuesday
THE ROYAL GUARDSMEN: Any Wednesday
FRANK BANGO: Happy Thursday I Love You
THE EASYBEATS: Friday On My Mind
THE BAY CITY ROLLERS: Saturday Night
--
THE ZOMBIES: Time Of The Season
HELLO HELEN: Fall's Far Away
THE BANGLES: Hazy Shade Of Winter
THE LEMON DROPS: I Live In The Springtime
THE ISLEY BROTHERS: Summer Breeze
THE TURTLES: Like The Seasons
--
BADFINGER: Day After Day
THE FLASHCUBES: Wait Till Next Week
PETE & MAURA KENNEDY: Month Of Hours
EYTAN MIRSKY: This Year's Gonna Be Our Year
THE YARDBIRDS: Happenings Ten Years Time Ago
THE BEE GEES: Turn Of The Century
--
P. P. ARNOLD: Angel Of The Morning
THE KINKS: Afternoon Tea
THE EYES: When The Night Falls
PAUL SIMON: Late In The Evening
GOLDEN EARRING: Twilight Zone
CHUCK BERRY: Wee Wee Hours
--
BIG STAR: February's Quiet
COTTON MATHER: April's Fool
GAME THEORY: Crash Into June
X: 4th Of July
THE POPTARTS: August Is A Wicked Month
EARTH, WIND & FIRE: September
--
THE LOVIN' SPOONFUL: Six O'Clock
THE JAM: Tonight At Noon
THE VOGUES: Five O'Clock World
THE RAMONES: It's Not My Place (In The 9 To 5 World)
WILSON PICKETT: In The Midnight Hour
BILL HALEY & HIS COMETS: Rock Around The Clock
--
BIG HELLO: Today Will Be Yesterday Tomorrow
THE BEATLES: Tomorrow Never Knows
SHOES: Tomorrow Night
TAMMY & THE LORDS OF MISRULE: Clockwork
THE CHAMBERS BROTHERS: Time Has Come Today
THE JIVE FIVE: What Time Is It?
--
PAUL REVERE & THE RAIDERS: Time After Time
THE PANDORAS: It's About Time
THE ELECTRIC PRUNES: Get Me To The World On Time
THE MYNAH BIRDS: It's My Time
ALLEN CLAPP: While There's Still Time
HOLLY GOLIGHTLY: Time Will Tell
IRENE PEÑA: Own Sweet Time
THE ROLLING STONES: Out Of Time
THE DAVE CLARK FIVE: Time

Friday, September 27, 2019

THE EVERLASTING FIRST: Quick Takes For S [comics edition]

Continuing a look back at my first exposure to a number of rock 'n' roll acts and superheroes (or other denizens of print or periodical publication), some of which were passing fancies, and some of which I went on to kinda like. They say you never forget your first time; that may be true, but it's the subsequent visits--the second time, the fourth time, the twentieth time, the hundredth time--that define our relationships with the things we cherish. Ultimately, the first meeting is less important than what comes after that. But every love story still needs to begin with that first kiss.



THE SANDMAN




My first Sandman was the 1940s DC hero, his gas-masked face first shown to me on the cover of Justice League Of America # 47. That was also the first issue of JLA I had ever seen, spied on the spinner rack at a grocery store in Aurora, Missouri during the summer of 1966. The summer of BATMAN! As a six-year-old on vacation, I was allowed to pick one twelve-cent four-color treasure off the rack to have for my very own. I was torn between this, the latest Batman, and an issue of Marvel's Tales To AstonishMom said to buy the Batman and be done with it. Thus was my introduction to The Sandman deferred.



That issue was, of course, one of the annual summer team-ups of the Justice League and their alternate Earth counterparts The Justice Society of America. I followed the JLA/JSA crossovers with religious devotion from 1967 on. The Sandman made a cameo appearance in the first part of the 1968 crossover (JLA # 64), which must have been the first time I saw the character. Even though he wasn't used all that much, The Sandman quickly became one my favorite JSA heroes, and I immediately wished that I could see more of him.

(And, although I preferred The Sandman in his original Green Hornet-inspired wardrobe of green business suit and a gas mask [plus cape], I did very much enjoy reprints of the Joe Simon-Jack Kirby version, decked out in traditional skintight superhero costume, proudly presented in early '70s issues of The Forever People.)



THE SEVEN SOLDIERS OF VICTORY



In the late '60s, DC Comics published a series of text pages called "Fact Files." These pieces told the back stories of various DC characters from the '40s, and they were my introductions to Sargon the SorcererTarantula, and The Seven Soldiers of Victory. The Fact File for The Seven Soldiers of Victory stirred an interest beyond any of the others: a super team I didn't know! Of its members, I was familiar with Green Arrow and Speedy, of course, but the others--The Vigilante, The Shining Knight, The Star-Spangled Kid and Stripesy, The Crimson Avenger, and unofficial eighth Soldier Wing--were all new to me. A gorgeous Murphy Anderson pinup page of these Law's Legionnaires (published in the giant-sized Justice League Of America # 76 in 1969) served to further whet my appetite to read the adventures of The Seven Soldiers of Victory.



The Vigilante returned as a guest star in a two-part JLA story in 1970, though I only saw the cover for the first part and a coverless copy of the second part at the time. In 1972, the original Seven Soldiers of Victory returned for a three-parter in JLA # 100-102, another JLA/JSA crossover that remains my favorite Justice League story. A pair of JLA 100-Page Super Spectaculars in 1974 reprinted one of the team's original Golden Age stories, and a previously-unused '40s SSOV script was assigned to new artists to run as a back-up strip in Adventure Comics. The entire 1940s Seven Soldiers of Victory chronicles were eventually reprinted in a series of three DC Archives hardcovers. Of course I own them all. Victory at last!



THE SILVER SURFER 



House ads in 1960s comic books were both a treat and a tease, enticing me with tempting images of far, far more comic books than I was ever going to be able to own as a kid. I don't remember seeing Fantastic Four # 55 in any stores in 1966, but I remember seeing its cover in a Marvel Comics house ad, and thinking a six-year-old's equivalent of COOL! I don't think I saw The Silver Surfer in an actual comic book until he got his own title in 1968.



In the mean time, following that house ad for FF # 55, my first real exposure to the character was in the animated Fantastic Four TV series, which adapted the story of Galactus and his spacefaring herald. In the summer of 1970, I had the chance to read all of the original comic book stories when my sister's boyfriend gave me all of his old comics. Surf's up!



THE SPIDER 




Nostalgia was big in the '70s, and this boom in the art of looking back gave me all manner of opportunities to discover superheroes and adventurers from the '30s and the '40s. I fell hard for 1930s pulp heroes, especially Doc Savage and The Shadow. I believe I first read about The Spider in Steranko's amazing two-volume reminiscence The Steranko History Of Comics. Since Marvel and DC had respectively licensed Doc Savage and The Shadow for new comic books, I hoped one or the other would also see fit to revive The Spider. But it was not to be.



So, after Steranko taught me about The Spider, and after I saw some photos from the two '30s/'40s Spider movie serials in the pages of Screen Thrills Illustrated, my first chance to experience the action-packed (and bloodthirsty) adventures of The Spider was in a paperback reprint of one of the original pulp stories. I adored superpulp paperbacks as a teenager, and snapped up a copy of the Spider novel Death Reign Of The Vampire King in 1975. The cover art depicted The Spider as a more generic paperback adventure guy, rather than the strangely-garbed mystery man of the pulps, but it was The Spider, Hadda start somewhere.




SPY SMASHER



Ah, Spy Smasher was a hero to me long before I ever had a chance to see him in any sort of adventure. Like The Spider (but earlier in my timeline), my interest in Spy Smasher was ignited by the comics histories I was absorbing in the '70s. My first glimpse (and probably first awareness) of Spy Smasher was in the book All In Color For A Dime, and its full-color reproduction of the cover of Spy Smasher # 1 from 1941.I saw the book on the shelf at World Of Books in North Syracuse some time in the early '70s, flipped through its pages, and I was hooked on all of these heroes of the past. 



My interest in Spy Smasher was subsequently reinforced when I learned that--like his comrade the original Captain Marvel--he'd starred in his own movie serial in the '40s. More comics histories (especially the Steranko books) continued to feed this interest. Other than his part in the 1976 JLA/JSA crossover (JLA # 135-137) and the reprint of his first appearance in DC's tabloid reproduction of Whiz Comics # 2, I didn't get to read an actual Spy Smasher comic book until years later, nor see his serial until decades later. But I was and remain a fan. It all started with All In Color For A Dime.



STAR WARS



To paraphrase both Josie & the Pussycats and TV ads for Virginia Slims cigarettes: we've come a long way, baby. In these days of summer movie blockbuster events, it seems a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away that such things didn't exist. In the '70s, my friends and I all saw lots of movies in the summer, but the idea of any individual popcorn flick becoming a pop culture flashpoint was...well, fantasy. 

Until Star Wars rewrote the rules in 1977. I can't tell you objectively if the movie holds up now, but when I was 17, freshly graduated from high school? Star Wars was unlike anything any of us had ever seen. I knew comic books and science fiction, from the most basic space opera through attempts at more intelligent and mature storytelling, Buck Rogers to Harlan Ellison. I'd seen the first Flash Gordon movie serial, doted on TV reruns of Star Trek, ogled Valerie Perrine in the film version of Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse Five, turned my nose up at Space: 1999. I wanted more. I wanted serious science fiction and high adventure.

Star Wars was definitely not serious science-fiction, but it was the full-screen realization of every pulp, serial, and superhero fantasy up to that point. Good versus evil, confident in its cosmic skin, with none of the self-consciously campy ooze that characterized so much of '70s genre films (lookin' at you, Doc Savage: Man Of Bronze). It was fun, it was fascinating, and everyone I knew saw it several times. The dawn of the era of the summer blockbuster was upon us.



But the film was not my introduction to Star Wars. I had picked up the first issue of Marvel's licensed Star Wars comic book, written by Roy Thomas and illustrated by Howie Chaykin. The first issue was cover dated July 1977, but it was on the stands months before that, and I believe several issues had been published before the film's opening scroll promising CHAPTER IV: A NEW HOPE appeared on any theater screen. I don't think I was quite blown away by the comic book, but it was interesting enough that I stuck with it for a little while. And when a bunch of us made plans at Faith Berkheimer's graduation party to see that new sci-fi movie opening the following week, I was the only one of my pals to already know a thing or two about Luke Skywalker and company.

And still, I had no idea how big Star Wars would be. I've yet to see any of director George Lucas's prequel movies, and I've only seen one of the latter-day Star Wars efforts (The Force Awakens, which I did enjoy). But those first three Star Wars movies were events, the precursor to the Marvel movies of today. Pass the popcorn. May the Force be with you.




WHEN THE EVERLASTING FIRST RETURNS: T is for


TIP THE BLOGGER: CC's Tip Jar!

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

Fans of pop music will want to check out Waterloo Sunset--Benefit For This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio, a new pop compilation benefiting SPARK! Syracuse, the home of This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio with Dana & CarlTIR'N'RR Allstars--Steve StoeckelBruce GordonJoel TinnelStacy CarsonEytan MirskyTeresa CowlesDan PavelichIrene Peña, Keith Klingensmith, and Rich Firestone--offer a fantastic new version of The Kinks' classic "Waterloo Sunset." That's supplemented by eleven more tracks (plus a hidden bonus track), including previously-unreleased gems from The Click BeetlesEytan MirskyPop Co-OpIrene PeñaMichael Slawter (covering The Posies), and The Anderson Council (covering XTC), a new remix of "Infinite Soul" by The Grip Weeds, and familiar TIRnRR Fave Raves by Vegas With RandolphGretchen's WheelThe Armoires, and Pacific Soul Ltd. Oh, and that mystery bonus track? It's exquisite. You need this. You're buying it from Futureman.

(And you can still get our 2017 compilation This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio, Volume 4, on CD from Kool Kat Musik and as a download from Futureman Records.)

Get MORE Carl! Check out the fourth and latest issue of the mighty Big Stir magazine at bigstirrecords.com/magazine

Hey, Carl's writin' a book! The Greatest Record Ever Made! (Volume 1) will contain 100 essays (and then some) about 100 tracks, plus two bonus instrumentals, each one of 'em THE greatest record ever made. An infinite number of records can each be the greatest record ever made, as long as they take turns. Updated initial information can be seen here: THE GREATEST RECORD EVER MADE! (Volume 1).

Thursday, September 26, 2019

When Your Screen Resembles The Cover Of The White Album (except without the embossed title)



On Tuesday, I mentioned to Brenda that I don't really seem to run into writer's block. The following morning, I found myself staring at a nearly blank screen, with roughly half a sentence written, on an important short project with a looming deadline. It's not a paying project, mind you--let's not get crazy--but it is something I need to do, something I need to do well, and something I need to do now. So much for hubris.

But it's okay. I know the basics of what I want to write, even if I couldn't quite capture it early Wednesday. When that happens, I leave it and come back to it. In this case, I watched one (1) TV show, went out to accomplish my errands, and returned to the computer in the afternoon. After I finish the piece you're reading now, I will return to the main project and complete a first draft. That will have already been accomplished before you see these words. [POSTSCRIPT: That is true.]

I'm not a full-time writer, at least not in the sense of having to meet professional deadlines on a regular basis. I'm a hobbyist, but I'm still writing all the time, whether in my head or on my screen. I maintain the care and feeding of this blog's ravenous daily schedule, I tend to my book, I tend to my short stories, and a body of work accumulates. It's not Proust, but it's not bad.

When I was a younger writer, aged 15 to, say, 30 or 31, I used to sweat the perfection of the typed word, hoping to avoid white-out and rewrites. Word processing programs set me free. Since the early '90s, I've been able to sketch in ideas just as easily as I used to sketch renderings of Batman in my art pad. I can let words, phrases, ideas, impressions, silly jokes, and leaps of freakin' faith flow, captured on the screen for me to come back and rearrange at will. The training I had in my ol' Smith-Corona days, of trying to write a first draft that could serve as a finished final master, serves me well now; sometimes the stream-of-consciousness that invades the screen doesn't need all that much tweaking. And sometimes it's junk that needs to be discarded and replaced with new garba...writing. Either way, with the removal of the intimidating factor of the unforgiving blank page, the mind swells with the delight and possibility of creation.

I love writing. I used to parrot Dorothy Parker's preference for only loving having written, but no, now I enjoy the process itself. I don't have a lot of concrete real-world success to show for it, but I love it anyway. And writer's block? The only known cure for writer's block is...writing something. Now please excuse me; I have a White Album I need to sketch in.

TIP THE BLOGGER: CC's Tip Jar!

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

Fans of pop music will want to check out Waterloo Sunset--Benefit For This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio, a new pop compilation benefiting SPARK! Syracuse, the home of This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio with Dana & CarlTIR'N'RR Allstars--Steve StoeckelBruce GordonJoel TinnelStacy CarsonEytan MirskyTeresa CowlesDan PavelichIrene Peña, Keith Klingensmith, and Rich Firestone--offer a fantastic new version of The Kinks' classic "Waterloo Sunset." That's supplemented by eleven more tracks (plus a hidden bonus track), including previously-unreleased gems from The Click BeetlesEytan MirskyPop Co-OpIrene PeñaMichael Slawter (covering The Posies), and The Anderson Council (covering XTC), a new remix of "Infinite Soul" by The Grip Weeds, and familiar TIRnRR Fave Raves by Vegas With RandolphGretchen's WheelThe Armoires, and Pacific Soul Ltd. Oh, and that mystery bonus track? It's exquisite. You need this. You're buying it from Futureman.

(And you can still get our 2017 compilation This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio, Volume 4, on CD from Kool Kat Musik and as a download from Futureman Records.)

Get MORE Carl! Check out the fourth and latest issue of the mighty Big Stir magazine at bigstirrecords.com/magazine

Hey, Carl's writin' a book! The Greatest Record Ever Made! (Volume 1) will contain 100 essays (and then some) about 100 tracks, plus two bonus instrumentals, each one of 'em THE greatest record ever made. An infinite number of records can each be the greatest record ever made, as long as they take turns. Updated initial information can be seen here: THE GREATEST RECORD EVER MADE! (Volume 1).

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

What Impeachment Means To Me



Donald Trump is unfit to serve as President of the United States of America. He has been an embarrassment and a disgrace, and yet I concede the plausible likelihood that he will remain in office throughout this current scandal, and I further concede the very real possibility that he will be elected to a second term. He might even win the popular vote this time. Speaker Nancy Pelosi's decision to initiate a formal impeachment inquiry could well backfire and further embolden his lock-step supporters--"Cult 45," as writer Paul Myers calls them--and maybe sweep up some malleable swing voters, too. For the sake of our nation and our world, I hope that is not the case.

But no matter the consequences, this president needs to be impeached. 

Trump's ongoing disregard and disrespect for the law and the rule of law is uniquely toxic. Trump is worse than Nixon. His above-the-law arrogance is a greater sin than his many, many other sins, from his sheer petulance to his appalling lack of intellectual curiosity, his utter classlessness to his characteristic cluelessness, his raging narcissism to his alarming paucity of anything resembling maturity, his fear-mongering and race-baiting to his aversion to empathy, his absence of humility to his smug and callous demeanor, his hateful rhetoric to his aberrant predilection for putting ketchup on steak. Calling him a buffoon does a disservice to hard-working, self-respecting buffoons all over the world. Hell, I'm a lazy buffoon, and I would resent being lumped in with the odious company of our Buffoon-In-Chief.

But he's not on the verge of being impeached for being a preening, unprepared lout with no redeeming qualities; he's at immediate risk of impeachment for colluding with a foreign government to influence an American election. High crimes and misdemeanors, not lying about a blowjob. Donald Trump is accused of committing treason.

This charge does not fall under Trump's smoke und mirrors misdirection of Fake News, nor can it be blithely shrugged off with ignorant what-aboutisms concerning Hillary Clinton or Joe Biden. It is a credible accusation with substantial corroboration. It can't be ignored. It must be investigated. 

The cost of an impeachment effort could be devastating. Voters may view it as partisan, conveniently overlooking the fact that you can't dismiss something as a witch hunt if it does in fact find witches. If the House of Representatives does vote to impeach, the Republican-led Senate is about as likely to remove Trump as I am to become Batman or a Beatle. Donnie the Insufferable would then pronounce himself vindicated, and his sycophantic supporters would eat it all up like dung beetles at a bovine dump buffet.

Nonetheless...the House has no choice but to pursue impeachment. Even if it bites us in the ass. Even if we wind up watching the planet burn during Trump's second term. 

Because we have to take a stand. We have to. We can't turn away, pretending this awful behavior is normal or acceptable, and we can't take a strategic knee in the hope we'll prevail in the long run. Future generations--if there are future generations--will look back upon what we do now, the decisions we make, the actions we take. If we wish to believe in the quaint notion of making America as great as it was, as great as it can be, we have to take responsibility, and we have to hold the irresponsible accountable for the crimes they commit.

Impeachment isn't about a do-over of the 2016 election (as much as I would wanna wish that electoral fiasco away). It's about seeing justice done. It's about reminding the powerful that the people have the power. We the people. We can't hit reset, but we can move forward: to take the scorched earth, this hopeless and desolate terrain, and try to build something better. 

So yeah, impeach the mutha. And come 2020, vote Blue no matter who.



TIP THE BLOGGER: CC's Tip Jar!

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

Fans of pop music will want to check out Waterloo Sunset--Benefit For This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio, a new pop compilation benefiting SPARK! Syracuse, the home of This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio with Dana & CarlTIR'N'RR Allstars--Steve StoeckelBruce GordonJoel TinnelStacy CarsonEytan MirskyTeresa CowlesDan PavelichIrene Peña, Keith Klingensmith, and Rich Firestone--offer a fantastic new version of The Kinks' classic "Waterloo Sunset." That's supplemented by eleven more tracks (plus a hidden bonus track), including previously-unreleased gems from The Click BeetlesEytan MirskyPop Co-OpIrene PeñaMichael Slawter (covering The Posies), and The Anderson Council (covering XTC), a new remix of "Infinite Soul" by The Grip Weeds, and familiar TIRnRR Fave Raves by Vegas With RandolphGretchen's WheelThe Armoires, and Pacific Soul Ltd. Oh, and that mystery bonus track? It's exquisite. You need this. You're buying it from Futureman.

(And you can still get our 2017 compilation This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio, Volume 4, on CD from Kool Kat Musik and as a download from Futureman Records.)

Get MORE Carl! Check out the fourth and latest issue of the mighty Big Stir magazine at bigstirrecords.com/magazine

Hey, Carl's writin' a book! The Greatest Record Ever Made! (Volume 1) will contain 100 essays (and then some) about 100 tracks, plus two bonus instrumentals, each one of 'em THE greatest record ever made. An infinite number of records can each be the greatest record ever made, as long as they take turns. Updated initial information can be seen here: THE GREATEST RECORD EVER MADE! (Volume 1).

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

THE GREATEST RECORD EVER MADE! (Volume 1): rearranging the deck chairs while we wait



I have no news to report regarding my proposed book The Greatest Record Ever Made (Volume 1). The completed book proposal is in the hands of my agent, who will try to find a discerning, elusive someone who would be interested in publishing it. This is the long wait. It could be days, or it could be weeks, or it could be months. The odds are certainly against me, and this may never be published. But I believe in the book, and I believe in my agent. I guess we'll see what happens.

I've continued to work on the book, though it remains about 16-17 chapters shy of a finished first draft. I've tweaked the Table Of Contents, adding and rearranging the blueprint with the goal of making it all flow together (almost) as if it were a single narrative, not a collection of essays. I remember the book's mission statement: Our favorite records don't live in isolation; each one has a story to tell. And I summon the book's central mantra: An infinite number of songs can each be THE greatest record ever made, as long as they take turns.

I've added chapters on "I Fought The Law" by The Bobby Fuller Four (finished!) and "I Want You Back" by David Ruffin (not even started yet!). I haven't deleted any other songs, but I've switched "Liar, Liar" by The Castaways and "I Don't Want To Grow Up" by The Ramones to Interludes instead of GREM! entries; they're really still GREM! entries, but I call 'em "Interludes" to maintain the fragile illusion that there are only 100 GREM! chapters in the book, when there are really...um, more than that.

I have two other interludes pending: Don Henley's "The Boys Of Summer" (a terrific song that would give me an opportunity to discuss my long-time dislike of The Eagles and acknowledge how that attitude has mellowed over the years--I have three Eagles songs on my iPod) and The Dandy Warhols' "We Used To Be Friends." The former is in the current Table Of Contents for now, the latter might be added. The tweak goes on.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

FOREWORD
DISCLAIMERS AND DECLARATIONS (A User's Guide To The Greatest Record Ever Made!)
OVERTURE: A Fistful Of 45s
1. BADFINGER: Baby Blue
2. CHUCK BERRY: Promised Land
3. DUSTY SPRINGFIELD: I Only Want To Be With You
4. THE SEX PISTOLS: God Save The Queen
5. ELVIS PRESLEY: Heartbreak Hotel
6. PATTI SMITH: Gloria
7. LITTLE RICHARD: The Girl Can't Help It
*8. NEIL DIAMOND: Brother Love's Traveling Salvation Show
9. CRAZY ELEPHANT: Gimme Gimme Good Lovin' 
10. WILSON PICKETT: In The Midnight Hour
11. THE HOLLIES: I Can't Let Go
12. THE SHIRELLES: Will You Love Me Tomorrow
13. BUDDY HOLLY: Peggy Sue/Everyday
14. JOHNNY NASH: I Can See Clearly Now
15. THE RUBINOOS: I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend
16. GLADYS KNIGHT & THE PIPS: Midnight Train To Georgia
17. THE RARE BREED: Beg, Borrow And Steal
18. THE 13th FLOOR ELEVATORS: You're Gonna Miss Me
19. THE ROLLING STONES: Get Off Of My Cloud
*20. PAUL REVERE & THE RAIDERS: Just Like Me
21. ARETHA FRANKLIN: Respect
INTERLUDE The Monkees Seize The Day
22. THE MONKEES: Porpoise Song (Theme From Head)
23. KISS: Shout It Out Loud
24. THE RASPBERRIES: I Wanna Be With You
25. THE FLASHCUBES: No Promise
26. THE NEW YORK DOLLS: Personality Crisis
INTERLUDE THE CASTAWAYS: Liar, Liar
27. THE BOBBY FULLER FOUR: I Fought The Law
28. THE EASYBEATS: Friday On My Mind
29. TOM PETTY & THE HEARTBREAKERS: American Girl
30. SMOKEY ROBINSON & THE MIRACLES: The Tears Of A Clown
31. BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN: Girls In Their Summer Clothes
*32. TRANSLATOR: Everywhere That I'm Not
33. LESLEY GORE: You Don't Own Me
34. THE LEFT BANKE: Walk Away, Renee
*35. P. P. ARNOLD: The First Cut Is The Deepest
36. TODD RUNDGREN: Couldn't I Just Tell You
*37. SHOES: Tomorrow Night
*38. RUFUS: Tell Me Something Good
39. BIG STAR: September Gurls
40. PRINCE: When You Were Mine
41. THE BAY CITY ROLLERS: Rock And Roll Love Letter
42. THE KNICKERBOCKERS: Lies
INTERLUDE The Tottenham Sound Of...The Beatles?!
43. THE DAVE CLARK FIVE: Any Way You Want It
44. JAMES BROWN: Please, Please, Please
45. GRAND FUNK: We're An American Band
INTERLUDE Old Time Rock & Roll
46. THE BOB SEGER SYSTEM: 2 + 2 = ?
47. SAMMY AMBROSE: This Diamond Ring
48. THE FIRST CLASS: Beach Baby
49. THE ISLEY BROTHERS: Summer Breeze
50. THE FLAMIN' GROOVIES: Shake Some Action
ENTR'ACTE THE BEATLES: Yesterday
51. MARVIN GAYE: I Heard It Through The Grapevine
52. THE SEARCHERS: Hearts In Her Eyes
53. THE FLIRTATIONS: Nothing But A Heartache
54. THE SPINNERS: I'll Be Around
55. ALICE COOPER: School's Out
56. BARON DAEMON & THE VAMPIRES: The Transylvania Twist
57. SLY AND THE FAMILY STONE: Everybody Is A Star
58. THE RAMONES: Sheena Is A Punk Rocker
INTERLUDE I Don't Want To Grow Up
59. WHAM!: Freedom
*60. DAVID RUFFIN: I Want You Back
61. LED ZEPPELIN: Communication Breakdown
62. BEN E. KING: Stand By Me
63. THE BYRDS: I'll Feel A Whole Lot Better
*64. OTIS REDDING: (Sittin' On) The Dock Of The Bay
65. THE GO-GO'S: We Got The Beat
66. THE COCKTAIL SLIPPERS: St. Valentine's Day Massacre
67. GENE PITNEY: Twenty Four Hours From Tulsa
68. THE WHO: I Can't Explain
69. THE VELVET UNDERGROUND: I'll Be Your Mirror
70. FREDDIE & THE DREAMERS: Do The Freddie
71. THE DRIFTERS: On Broadway
72. SAM & DAVE: Soul Man
73. THE SPONGETONES: (My Girl) Maryanne
74. THE TRAMMPS: Disco Inferno
75. HAROLD MELVIN AND THE BLUE NOTES: Don't Leave Me This Way
76. THE JIVE FIVE: What Time Is It?
77. PAUL COLLINS: Walking Out On Love
78. T. REX: 20th Century Boy
*79. GRANDMASTER & MELLE MEL: White Lines (Don't Don't Do It)
80. THE KINKS: You Really Got Me
81. THE KINKS: Waterloo Sunset
82. THE FOUR TOPS: Reach Out I'll Be There
83. THE SMITHEREENS: Behind The Wall Of Sleep
*84. THE COWSILLS: She Said To Me
*85. THE SUPREMES: You Keep Me Hangin' On 
86. MATERIAL ISSUE: Kim The Waitress
87. ELVIS COSTELLO & THE ATTRACTIONS: (What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace, Love And Understanding?
88. FREDA PAYNE: Band Of Gold
89. THE EVERLY BROTHERS: Gone, Gone, Gone
*INTERLUDE The Boys Of Summer
90. THE BEACH BOYS: God Only Knows
*91. LULU: To Sir, With Love (Museum Outings Montage)
*92. MANNIX: Highway Lines
93. THE SELECTER: On My Radio
94. SOLOMON BURKE: Everybody Needs Somebody To Love
*95. CHEAP TRICK Surrender
96. DAVID BOWIE: Life On Mars?
97. THE GRATEFUL DEAD: Uncle John's Band
*98. THE O'JAYS: Put Your Hands Together
*99. EDDIE & THE HOT RODS: Do Anything You Wanna Do
100. STEVIE WONDER: I Believe (When I Fall In Love It Will Be Forever)
ENCORE! EYTAN MIRSKY: This Year's Gonna Be Our Year
LAST CALL! THE JAYHAWKS: I'm Gonna Make You Love Me
An Infinite Number
Underrating The Beatles
THE GREATEST RECORD EVER MADE! THE BEATLES: Rain
CLOSING TIME! THE T-BONES: No Matter What Shape (Your Stomach's In)
CODA: Cruisin' Music
AFTERWORD     


The asterisks denote chapters that aren't finished. Of these, the Grandmaster & Melle Mel chapter is closest to a complete first draft, and the David Ruffin and "The Boys Of Summer" placeholders are the only ones with nothing written yet. (The Dandy Warhols chapter, though not listed here, is about half done.) In the past, I've removed a few completed chapters to make room for other songs I wanted to discuss instead; this lengthens the writing process, but builds a better book in the long run.

I keep a file collecting all of the completed first drafts, in sequence, and I occasionally read through them, to check again how everything fits and flows. It reads like a book. I'm happy with what I've done so far, and I hope you have a chance to read it all someday.

But for now...we wait.