a blog for those who never gave up their turntables

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MY FIRST PUBLISHED PIECE was with the Wyoming Valley West High School news­paper, where I was the nerd who got the gig of re­viewing records. That was 1969 and, like most nerds with super cool record col­lec­tions, I wrote con­de­scending re­views of records that all my non-nerd class­mates bought. I re­member damning Glen Camp­bell and dis­missing Cream’s farewell album, GOODBYE. READ MORE

an introduction to the punk note ideations of john yates

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I WAS NOT A FAN OF PUNK ROCK in the 1970s and ’80s. I ad­mired the po­lit­ical as­pect of the punk move­ment in the UK and the anybody-can-be-in-a-band spirit, but I didn’t con­nect with most of the music. (I still don’t care for most of it but have loos­ened up a bit with age.) I also didn’t care for the art­work that adorned the sleeves and jackets of punk records, al­though I did ad­mire the anybody-can-be-an-artist spirit. READ MORE

the cheesiest semi-legal records in the world?

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I MOVED TO CALIFORNIA from my na­tive North­eastern Penn­syl­vania in June of 1978. I naively be­lieved I would find some sem­blance of “the six­ties” hidden away in San Fran­cisco. But in only a few years, most of it had been blotted out. Oh, there were still a lot of hand-painted Vic­to­rian houses and a few hip coffee shops and book­stores.

Long­hairs still walked the streets and played in the parks.


where was the “vinyl rapture” before the “vinylgeddon”?

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WHILE THE PURPOSE OF THIS BLOG is to ad­dress the records that were re­leased decades be­fore most of the people who spend the most time on the in­ternet were even born, I can look at a cur­rent topic every now and again. I sup­pose my fas­ci­na­tion with the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in not es­tab­lishing some ob­jec­tive stan­dards for el­i­gi­bility and the equally ob­sti­nate Wikipedia in in­sisting on “sources” but not on hiring ed­i­tors to fact-check those sources. READ MORE

elvis paved the way for artists like ed sheeran (who?)

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“DID YOU LOVE ELVIS PRESLEY?” That was the ques­tion that popped up on Quora on Friday and that I ig­nored over the weekend. It seems kinda dumb but this morning it caught my at­ten­tion again and I thought I’d check out what­ever an­swers had been posted in the past few days. One an­swer from a young man signed in as Zeek Street stood out from the others:

“I wasn’t born in that time pe­riod and I’m not much of a rock and roll sort of guy. READ MORE

like, whoa, do the doobie brothers belong in the hall of fame?

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THE DOOBIES IN THE HALL OF FAME?” That’s a ques­tion that’s been asked a bit in the wake of their re­cent in­duc­tion into said Hall. There was a ver­sion of that ques­tion (“Are the Doobie Brothers Hall of Fame Worthy”) on Quora this morning. I an­swered it there and wanted to share my an­swer here.

But first, I am not that big a fan of the Doo­bies. READ MORE

wikipedia really messed up “music recording certification”

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I LEFT WIKIPEDIA ALONE for the past few months, even though cri­tiquing their en­tries is like shooting fish in a barrel. When it comes to “de­f­i­n­i­tions” of per­sons and terms re­garding pop­ular music, Wikipedia’s theme song seems to be a well-known song by Elvis: “If you’re looking for trouble, you’ve come to the right place. “Sub­sti­tute “bone­headed state­ments” for “trouble” and you’ve got Wikipedia nailed. READ MORE

why are non-rock artists in the rock & roll hall of fame?

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A SERIES OF ARTICLES about Elvis Pres­ley’s Gold Stan­dard records has been taking up most of my time (along with re­designing the look of all my blogs). Be­cause of that, I have been ig­noring both the readers of this blog and those who sali­vate waiting for me to an­swer a ques­tion on Quora. So, why not kill two stones with one bird? READ MORE

does link wray belong in the rock & roll hall of fame?

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I HAVEN’T BEEN PAYING a lot of at­ten­tion to Quora lately, but this ques­tion caused me to re­spond; “Will Link Wray ever make the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame?” Wray had one sem­inal hit, Rumble, in 1958 that Cub Koda stated pop­u­lar­ized “pop­u­lar­ized “the power chord, the major modus operandi of modern rock gui­tarists.” My an­swer was short and, I be­lieve, apt:

“The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame should have at least three means of entry:

• as an artist
• as an in­flu­ence
• for a record

Whether or not Link be­longs in the Hall as an Artist is de­bat­able; that he was an in­flu­ence and that Rumble be­longs in the Hall as a record are not. READ MORE