Thank-You WordPress Followers!

200 Follows!

 

In the Grand Scheme of Life, Quantity is not all that meaningful.

Quality IS what makes both the WordPress and Real World go ’round!

You, my 200 WordPress followers are the personification of Quality.

I see this Q-force in all your posts, too!

My heartfelt Thank-You to you all!

My Thanks, too, to those who check out my posts but don’t follow! 

In the days ahead, I’m sure the limitless power of that Q will apply to all who I’ve yet to meet, as well.

While I wish this blog’s companion video could’ve been a bit less gender specific, the overall sentiments of gratitude are what really matter.

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Four-Play (Week #12) A Salute To 71

 

Welcome to my twelfth Internet Blogcast. This week’s program could also be subtitled “Senior Moments”… a nod to the facts that my four featured tracks were transcending the musical charts’ stratosphere during my high school senior year… AND that, at present, I’m considered (by our ageist society) to be a senior citizen.

For you hippies who just happened to be stumbling down life’s highway along with me… oh… say… c1971… this music will stir a few fond where-were-you-when moments… perhaps the lyrics / stringed instruments might even tug a heartstring or two?

For those who are younger (perhaps hippie wannabes?)… be adventurous and give these classics a listen anyway… they really are that good!

Turning now to routine Blogcast housekeeping duties…

Beneath the applicable song titles, below, you’ll find links to three must see / must hear cover versions.

And while we’re on the subject… I’ve gotta give a shout out to the talented YouTube videographers and performers… the sensory stirring sights and sounds you bring to my Blogcast are akin to the cosmic Big Bang redux.

For any of my listeners who may’ve missed previous shows and/or would like to hear encore performances they’re all neatly archived in my music category.

Well, at this point, here’s where I’d usually say…

“Blog response will be akin to Arbitron / Nielsen “radio ratings”… so… if you’ve enjoyed what you’ve heard, click that “Like” Star. Of course, comments are always welcome, too!”

However… since my ratings, to date, do not warrant my continuing, meet me back here… same time… same “station”… for my last Blogcast… you never can tell what you’ll be hearing seven days from now.

Long sigh… that’s about all I’ve got. Since the music speaks for itself… that’s my cue to shut up and deliver the goods…

Who ~ Behind Blue Eyes

Cover Performed by Grace Doty

Moody Blues ~ The Story In Your Eyes

Led Zeppelin ~ Stairway To Heaven

Cover Performed by Jess Greenberg

Cover Performed by Chloé

John Lennon ~ Imagine

 

 

Musical Compositions “Decomposed”

The above clip aurally sums up a recent plagiarism lawsuit… the case where the estate of Spirit’s guitarist / songwriter, Randy Wolfe (a.k.a. Randy California) had claimed that, in 1971, Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway to Heaven” composers  Robert Plant & Jimmy Page had ripped off the guitar riff to Wolfe’s 1968 instrumental song, “Taurus”. Well, yesterday, a jury settled the matter in favour of Led Zeppelin… and I’m not totally convinced they decided correctly.

In this next clip, guitarist TJR, further showcases these two songs, practically “decomposing” them down to their atomic structure. He also demonstrates the similarities between Zeppelin’s “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You” and Beatle George Harrison’s “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”.

Of course, forty years ago, Harrison, himself, had been found “guilty” of subconscious plagiarism re his 1970 recording, “My Sweet Lord”… that song being deemed a musical clone of Ronnie Mack’s composition, “He’s So Fine” (recorded by the Chiffons in 1963).

There have been other similar sounding tracks, which have caught my ear, as well, over the years… including “Things We Said Today” released by the Beatles in 1964 and the Hollies’ 1966 track, “Bus Stop”.

 

It was only about a week ago, while I was playing the John Lennon / Paul McCartney composition, “Help”, on my piano, when it suddenly dawned on me that George Harrison had kinda / sorta, “ripped off” his own band mates… had employed the exact same chord progression [A – C#m – F#m – D – G – A] for the bridge to his composition, “Something” (once the key signature shifts from C to A).

 

So… why does this happen? Well, I’d say with our brains, for the most part, all being wired in a similar fashion… with multiple millions of musicians limited to playing within the confines of western music’s 12-note octave, the possible (pleasing) sequences of these notes are not infinite and, as such, whatever plagiarism issues which arise… well… let’s just say that this should not come as any big surprise.

 

Going to California… in my mind (pt. 1)

Just as James Taylor sings about going to “Carolina In My Mind”, I now find myself blogging in a similar state of mind. The differences beyond the fact that J.T. is famous and I am not? Well… the state I’m longing for is California AND I’ll be blogging my words, not playing musical notes, to tell you just how homesick I am for the Golden State… but wait a moment…

Maybe it is possible to set my blog to music. After all… I did train to be a DJ. Folks, we’ll get those tunes spinning… after this brief message…

Here’s the backstory to my homesickness. It’s been ten+ years since I last set foot in La La Land to attend a family reunion for two… yes… essentially… my sister and I represent our entire family census… not counting distant relatives (who I could walk right past on any city street on any given day… and never know it).

By now I can hear you ask, “Ten+ years? Why wait any longer? Why not simply book a flight, pack up your bags and board the next westward bound jet?” Long sigh…

Well… since my last trip to the Left Coast… so much has happened… and not all those events would get entered into the plus column of my Life’s Ledger. To CliffsNotes it… there’s been a reversal of my good fortune… both money-wise and otherwise.

Naturally, I am thankful for reasonably good health, the roof over my head and the bare essential furnishings, devices and supplies under that roof… but… nonetheless… another long sigh… I do miss California. And I don’t feel it odd for this lifelong Michiganian to consider the greater Los Angeles area to be my home away from home.

Now… I do have one regret re my past visits… that I had only done my en route sightseeing from my widow seat at an altitude of 38,000 feet… instead of through my car’s windshield while traveling America’s highways and byways. But… what’s done is done.

And so… I’ll just have to settle for going to California in my mind ~ To be sure, no trip would be complete without first producing a “mix tape” featuring great road songs. To that end… I recently produced two C-90 cassettes to enhance my imaginary western journey… and at this time… there’s also a third project in the works (Volume 3 to feature a more hard driving rock genre).

As for this blog… I’ll be sharing my Volume 1 soundscape with you. Whether or not a similar posting for Volume 2 and 3 will occur is highly dependent on the number of hits and comments this blog receives.

A brief heads up… since this music is all courtesy of YouTube… from time to time there are bound to be interruptions of musical service.

For starters… these videos do frequently get deleted due to artist objections / copyright issues. Lastly… there are all of those commercials, which YouTubers tack on. But… what the H… “To dance to the music we must pay the piper”… right?

BESIDES… would not these gaps also enhance the realism of the road trip? Imagine this as if your car radio has temporarily lost a drifting, low wattage AM signal… something easily remedied by switching stations… i.e., clicking onto the next link. Also consider each commercial interruption as being akin to what we hear on AM top-40 formatted stations… as we all know… they’re oft forced to overbook advertisers… simply to pay for the electricity to stay on the air.

On a more positive note… since some of these YouTube videographers have poured a vast ocean’s worth of their talent into the visual aspects of their productions… it’s easy to trip out while viewing these scenes… thus making our going to Carolina OR California in our minds all the better… OR for that matter, anywhere else our l’il ol’ hearts may desire.

Replicated below is my liner notes printout, which I cut out and inserted into my “Volume 1” cassette’s case.

Well, that about covers the preliminaries… Without any further ado… everyone pack your bags, lock up your home sweet homes, kick the tires, adjust your rear view mirrors and car seats, buckle up, turn the key in your ignitions, get ‘er in gear and KICK OUT THE JAMS!!! We’ll soon find out if the Moody Blues gents got it right… that “Thinking is the best way to travel.”

To now paraphrase a Lennon/McCartney sentiment… let’s  listen to the music playing in my head… and… hopefully… in yours, too!

 

Hit The Road Tracks – Volume 1

SIDE A: 02/29/16 ~ DOLBY B ~ 46:30

01 2:51 Canned Heat – Going Up The Country

02 2:42 Vanity Fair – Hitchin’ A Ride

03 4:27 Janis Joplin – Me & Bobby McGee

04 4:13 Judy Collins – City Of New Orleans

05 2:41 Boz Scaggs – Waiting For A Train

06 3:16 Norah Jones – The Long Way Home

07 2:26 Roger Miller – King Of The Road

08 3:00 Natalie Cole – Route 66

09 1:09 Nelson Riddle – Route 66 TV Theme

10 2:11 Ray Charles – California Here I Come

11 4:15 James Newton Howard / Kenny G. – Driving North

12 3:56 Roy Orbison – California Blue

13 3:36 Led Zeppelin – Going To California

14 2:11 James Newton Howard – San Francisco

15 2:58 Scott McKenzie – San Francisco

16 1:09 Nelson Riddle – Route 66 (Reprise)

 

SIDE B: 02/29/16 ~ DOLBY B ~ 46:30

17 5:38 Refreshments – Interstate

18 4:23 Eagles – Ol’ 55

19 3:42 Bob Seger – Wait For Me

20 2:59 Lobo – Me And You And A Dog Named Boo

21 3:46 Gordon Lightfoot – Me & Bobby McGee

22 4:06 America – A Horse With No Name

23 3:28 James Taylor – Country Road (Single Mix)

24 3:35 Simon & Garfunkel – America

25 2:44 Lovin’ Spoonful – Never Going Back

26 4:33 Arlo Guthrie – City Of New Orleans

27 4:17 Neil Diamond – America

28 3:36 Ray Charles – America The Beautiful