Daily Tonality: Song of the Day 02/07/2018

February 07, 2018

Today’s Daily Tonality is brought to you by fond memories.

buckowenspromophoto4Buck Owens – Act Naturally (from the single Act Naturally, 1963) Buck Owens has the best country music name, ever. If your name is Buck, what do you call your backing band? The Buckaroos, of course. My grandparents used to have a modest collection of country records when I was a kid. I didn’t care for the majority of them, but two artists stuck out. Johnny Cash and Mr. Owens. There is just something about his brand of country western music that differs from most. Don’t ask me what it is, because I can’t explain. Just listen to his stuff and you will see. His music has a very lovely effect on me. It always makes me nostalgic for my childhood, as well as remembering my grand folks fondly. Sometimes you just have to shut up and let the music do the thinking for you.

Fun fact – There is rumor (probably true considering the crazy life he led) that my granddad, Jim, was a roadie for Buck Owens during one of his western Canadian tours back in the day. I would have loved to ask him about it, but he passed before I was given this information. If it is a true story, I hope Jim and Buck shared a laugh or two.

T.

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Daily Tonality: Song of the Day 01/28/2018

January 28, 2018

Today’s song is brought to you by putting my Spotify library on random and making the first song to play your Daily Tonality.

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Charles Bradley – Strictly Reserved for You (from the album Victim of Love, 2013) A former James Brown impersonator named “Black Velvet”, Charles Bradley did not achieve a good level of success and notoriety until later in life. For my money, he is second only to James Brown as far as male soul performers go. I discovered his music a few years back in a record store. His LP Victim of Love was being played on the turntable and I instantly knew it was special. Bradley’s voice is soulful, but has a shade of pain and experience within. His longtime backing band, The Menahan Street Band, perfectly compliment the singer’s vocalizations.

As I write this, I have found out that Charles Bradley succumbed to cancer and passed away in September 2017 at the age of sixty-eight. The world was just discovering the man’s talents. Rest in peace, Black Velvet.

T.

Daily Tonality: Song of the Day 01/25/2018

January 25, 2018     

Today’s Daily Tonality is brought to you by Ice T…because he’s certified dope.

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Ice T – O.G. Original Gangster (from the album Original Gangster, 1991) In the world of hip hop, a lot of M.C.‘s claim this, and claim that, and brag and boast about how they are the hardest. In 1991, Ice T made a claim that he is the Original Gangster. Guess what! Damn right he is. When I was eleven, my boy Keithy came over with a cassette he acquired. It was called Power, and it was a rap album by Ice T. This cassette changed us. We heard some things on this tape that we never heard before. One song in particular, L.G.B.N.A.F. (Let’s Get Butt Naked And F**K), captivated us. It was as if learned a life lesson or something. That was my introduction to what it was to be Gangster. From hip hop, to his metal band Body Count, to acting on Law and Order: Special Victims Unit for nineteen years, Ice T has made a living out of being a B.M.F. I recently listened to a podcast featuring Ice as a guest, and he said something pretty cool. He said “you don’t guide life, you ride life”. Words to live by.

T.

 

Daily Tonality: Song of the Day 01/17/2018

January 17, 2018

Today’s song is brought to you by putting my Spotify library on random and making the first song to play your Daily Tonality.

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Tom Waits – What’s He Building? (from the album Mule Variations, 1999 – For my money, Tom Waits is the most unique singer/songwriter ever. His voice, gravelly and gruff, is unmistakable. His style cannot be categorized. Mr. Waits does not make an album because the “label” tells him to. He does not release a single because he needs money. You will not find any fluff or filler in his catalogue (which spans from the early 1970’s to present). Mule Variations is easily my favorite Waits album. It is a great mix of folk and weird. I could have picked any track for song of the day, but Spotify chose What’s He Building for us. This isn’t really and song in the traditional sense, but it is Tom Waits, so it is good.

Little Fact – Not really a fact, but a bonus video of one of Tom Waits memorable appearances on The Late Show with David Letterman.

T.

 

Some pretty cool posters.

As I browse the internet, I come across so pretty cool images. I am a fan of music gig posters, and minimalist movie posters. A lot of creativity inhabits the world, and cyberspace is the easiest way to get your art out to the masses. As I come across something I find pleasing to the eye, I save it. Here are some of the images I feel are very sharable. I have no idea who the artists are, and I can take no credit for any of these pieces. Whoever did these, please keep up the amazing work.

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Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016)

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True Romance (1993)

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Lost Boys (1987)

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Blair Witch Project (1999)

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The Exorcist (1973)

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The Shining (1980)

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Goonies (1985)

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Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back (1980)

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Ghostbusters (1984)

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The Shining (1980)

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The VVitch (2016)

 

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Danzig/White Zombie/Kyuss Gig Poster

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Melvins Gig Poster

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Pallbearer Gig Poster

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Blondie Gig Poster

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Queens Of The Stone Age Gig Poster

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Queens Of The Stone Age Gig Poster

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The Sword Gig Poster

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Queens Of The Stone Age Gig Poster

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Beastie Boys Gig Poster

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Pink Floyd Tour Poster

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David Bowie Gig Poster

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Pink Floyd Gig Poster

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The Sword/Pallbearer Gig Poster

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Queens Of The Stone Age Gig Poster

T.

Daily Tonality: Song of the Day 01/15/2018

January 15, 2018

Today’s Daily Tonality is brought to you by the radio at work. I heard this song and thought it was perfect for song of the day.

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Men Without Hats – Pop Goes The World (from the album Pop Goes The World, 1987) Men Without Hats are a Canadian synth-pop based band which formed late in 1979, in Montreal. This is one of those bands that instantly take me back to a time when I was a young kid, just starting to develop my taste in music and appreciate radio. This is a happy sounding song that immediately gets stuck in your head. So for nostalgia sake, have a listen, get it stuck on repeat in your brain, and have a good time. Don’t say I never did anything for you.

Little Fact – The name of the band came from the band members’ refusal to wear warm hats during winter, choosing style over comfort. Thus we have Men Without Hats.

T.

Daily Tonality: Song of the Day 01/09/18

January 9, 2018

Today’s song is brought to you by putting my Spotify library on random and making the first song to play your Daily Tonality.

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Roky Erickson And The Aliens– Two Headed Dog (Red Temple Prayer) (from the album The Evil One, 1980) Roky Erickson is an interesting fellow. He started his musical journey with the 13th Floor Elevators in the late 1960’s. After some pretty intense recreational drug use (LSD, Mescaline, DMT, and Marijuana), Erickson found himself in and out of mental institutions, receiving voluntary shock therapy. His lyrics and subject matter heavily lean towards horror and science fiction. Two Headed Dog is about Soviet scientist Vladimir Demikhov, who performed head transplants on dogs in the 1950’s. Erickson is highly respected by his peers, and quite often I have heard other artists covering his music. I am a fan of his straightforward, effective guitar playing, and intense vocal style. At seventy years old, he still plays shows and continues to write music.

Little Fact – In the 1980’s. Roky Erickson became obsessed with the mail, even getting arrested for mail theft. He wrote letters to both dead and alive celebrities during his obsession.

T.

Daily Tonality: Song of the Day 01/07/2018

January 7, 2018

Today’s song is brought to you by putting my Spotify library on random and making the first song to play your Daily Tonality.

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Mark Lanegan – The Gravedigger’s Song (from the album Blues Funeral, 2012) Sometimes it seems like my Spotify account can read my soul. Last night, I had this song playing in my head for a little while. Today, as I do the magic shuffle to get the song of the day, BAM…The Gravedigger’s Song appears. Mark Lanegan is an amazing songwriter, and the gravely, ghostly voice to perfectly showcase the subject matter. This song has a driving bass line and tempo, accompanied by a rich, reverb filled guitar landscape. It’s beautiful. If you don’t like the song, your ears are probably fucked up and you should have them tested. The whole Blues Funeral album is the perfect highway soundtrack. It would be easy to get lost in the music and miss your exit.

Little factLanegan was part of Screaming Trees, one of Seattle’s early grunge bands, and has collaborated with Queens of the Stone Age, and Isobel Campbell (Belle and Sebastian).

T.

 

 

Daily Tonality: Song Of The Day 01/05/18

January 5, 2018

Today’s song is brought to you by putting my Spotify library on random and making the first song to play your Daily Tonality.

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Alice In Chains – Rooster (from the album Dirt, 1992) Damn, AIC was a great band back in the day. I am not saying they are bad now, I’m just saying. This song, and album for that fact, reminds me of high school and rolling around in my friend Paul’s Buick Skylark. For me, besides Nirvana, Alice In Chains epitomized Grunge music during that whole Seattle invasion thing. The video is pretty rad as well.

Little Fact – Guitarist/song writter Jerry Cantrell wrote Rooster as a tribute to his Vietnam war veteran father.

T.

List-o-rama: My Five Favorite Guitar Players

My Five Favorite Guitar Players

picture-014At some point in a young man, or lady’s life, they want to become a rock star. Which kid does not want an electric guitar? A lot of people give up when they realize it is mostly just a pipe dream. There are those who stick with it and actually learn how to play the guitar. I got the bug when I was fourteen, and picked up my first six string; an awfully indistinct Squire Stratocaster. I stuck with it for the most part, and twenty five some years later I still play and enjoy it. Every aspiring musician needs a hero. A player to aspire to. For me, I have many guitar inspirations. For the sake of not getting too carried away, I will keep the list of guitar players to a minimum. This list is not based on technical skill. Skill is good, but there are so many other factors that go into these decisions; look, feel, sound, and cool factor all go a long way. Here is my list, in no particular order.

139816178_iommi_467853cTony Iommi (Black Sabbath, Heaven and Hell)  This is the man that created heavy music as far as I’m concerned. Armed with his signature Gibson SG, Iommi’s guttural guitar sound changed popular music. His down tuned (one and a half steps) came out of necessity as he lost the tips of his fingers in a work accident. The looser strings were easier for him to bend. One of the first songs I learned was the Black Sabbath Classic Iron Man, and I still enjoy playing many of their other songs. As Sabbath winds down their extraordinary career, Iommi still goes out on stage every night and kills it. Not to mention this legend has been battling Lymphoma, and is currently in remission. So many bands and guitar players owe Tony Iommi and Black Sabbath for having the success they have.

6186089295_1bfcc46b85_bPepper Keenan (Corrosion of Conformity, Down) I love the dirty southern sludge guitar sound, and Pepper Keenan knows how to create some swampy stoner rock riffs. When I first hear Down‘s NOLA many moons ago, I fell in love with the sound. Soon after that, I discovered Keenan played a Gibson Firebird and I was sold. His playing fits in with modern metal, but he would also fit right in with classic southern rock bands like Lynard Skynard. He runs a lot of the same effects pedals that I use or used to use on my board. Pepper also owns a bar in New Orleans called Le Bon Temps Roule. This is one pretty cool guy, not to mention a hell of a guitar player.

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Buzz Osborne (Melvins, Fantômas, Crystal Fairy) King Buzzo! Perhaps the man responsible for the “Seattle sound” that came roaring into popular culture in the early nineties, this man, along with Melvins drummer Dale Crover, has been the one constant in sludge music for nearly three decades. Buzz is unique from top to bottom; his look, his playing style, right to his political and social views. Perhaps what I admire the most is the respect he receives from his peers, as he is always collaborating with other artists such as Mike Patton, Tool, and Jello Biafra. Just to add to his mystique, my friend Earl and I went to see a Melvins show a few years back. As we were coming into the club, King Buzzo was walking in. Earl got excited and grabbed Osborne by the arm (in a non threatening way). Buzz responded with one of the most amazing death stares I have ever witnessed.

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Matt Pike (Sleep, High On Fire) To put it mildly, Matt Pike is a beast. If this was an alternate universe, he’d be slaying dragons. He writes the heaviest riffs, and has the voice to match as the guitarist/singer for one of my favourite bands, High On Fire. I should mention that he is also guitar player for doom metal giants Sleep. He is all that, and does it never wearing a shirt while performing live. I have had the pleasure of seeing both High On Fire and Sleep perform in person, and they are among two of the best shows I can recall. If you are interested in getting your feet wet in the doom/stoner metal genre, listen to Sleep’s Dopesmoker. I feel it is a genre defining record, and Matt Pike is at the helm.

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Joshua Homme (Kyuss, Queens of the Stone Age, Them Crooked Vultures) There was a time about fifteen years ago where I kind of lost interest in playing guitar. I just wasn’t feeling it. Then I heard Queens of the Stone Age debut, self-titled album. I was suddenly interested again. I can safely say that QOTSA is my favourite band of all-time. Perhaps Joshua Homme is the biggest influence on my playing. Some people say he is arrogant, a little bit of a prick, but those people also haven’t made albums with guys like Dave Grohl, John Paul Jones, or Iggy Pop. Homme’s sound is always evolving, and his song writing just gets better. In a sea of endless alt-rock and pop garbage, QOTSA and Homme’s other projects prove that rock ‘n roll still has a pulse. For a kid who played polka music on the guitar for his first two years of lessons, he does pretty good for himself. Oh, and he is also the drummer for Eagles of Death Metal. I’ve said enough.

T.