Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Stand By

Today in Music History:

1991, Milli Vanilli singer Rob Pilatus attempted suicide while staying at The Mondrain Hotel, Los Angeles by taking an overdose of sleeping pills and slashing his wrists.
technical difficultiesWebmeister homercat is experiencing technical difficulties as he tried to upgrade his OS and things are a bit wonky. I would love to stick a fork in Bill Gates' eye for making things as difficult as possible. Now I find out all of my devices (printers scanners etc) are old as dirt and are not supported. Aaargh. It's like Gary Numan always sings about. The machines are taking over. I'll be back when things are sorted out. Meanwhile here's some Gary Numan in honor of my technological meltdown.

We Have a Technical by Gary Numan
(File taken down, check current posts for some more great music)


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Funny Toon

Monday, November 28, 2005

One Hit Whackers

Today in Music History:

1974, John Lennon made his last ever concert appearance when he joined Elton John on stage at Madison Square Gardens. Lennon performed three songs; 'Whatever Gets You Thru The Night', 'I Saw Her Standing There', and 'Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds'.
Homercat is experiencing growing pains, faster than homercat can afford it. When the bandwidth guy hits you with a bill, a rethink in what you're doing is inevitable. Seems everyone likes the music, i guess. In the last two weeks I've had about 8 comments and 600 downloads and 2 ad clicks. People loves to steal that music. Meanwhile I'm getting a bill for excessive bandwidth use and I'm like mega poor to begin with. Homercat has to make a decision. Continue this blog, continue this blog with shitty second party download services, shut down or would it kill ya to visit a sponsor once in a while.(directed to the leechers, not my loyal readers)Dilemma it be. This whole thing kinda reminded me of one hit wonders. Maybe you can figure the connection, I couldn't

This first one hit wonder I thought of comes from Jigsaw. Can't tell you much about them, cause there ain't much out there. A British pop group that supposedly have 13 albums to their credit. ?? Really. Any way this is a catchy tunefrom the 70's and on the rare occasion you hear it, you inevitably crank it up. Sometimes

Sky High by Jigsaw
(File taken down, check current posts for some more great music)


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Was gonna write more about another band but I'm tired.

Funny Toon

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Lest We Forget

Today in Music History:

In 1991, Freddie Mercury died of complications from aids at his home in London's Holland park aged 45, just one day after he publicly admitted he was HIV positive. Also on this day and same year, Eric Carr, drummer with Kiss died of complications from cancer in a New York hospital.
freddieOn November 24, 1991, the announcement came: "Freddie Mercury died peacefully this evening at his home in Kensington, London. His death was the result of pneumonia brought on by AIDS." He was born "Faroukh Bulsara" in Zanzibar, and he died "Freddie Mercury", in a six million dollar home in London.

Freddie was the first major rock star to die of the disease. Although everyone suspected (just look at the last few videos Queen made), he didn't announce his affliction until 24 hours prior to his death, stating "I felt it correct to keep this information private in order to protect the privacy of those around me." During his last few months, Freddie was cared for by a few very close friends. Freddie's former girlfriend Mary Austen, with whom he remained close, showed up most days. In fact, it was Mary who inherited the Logan Place house, and still lives there today.

Here is an excerpt from Jim Hutton's (the boyfriend who lived with him for the last eight years of his life) book, Mercury and Me
Peter started changing the bed (Freddie had messed himself) while I took care of Freddie. As I was about to change Freddie into a clean T-Shirt and a pair of boxer shorts, I asked Dave to leave the room for a few moments. It was when I was getting his shorts on that I felt him try to raise his left leg to help a little. It was the last thing he did. I looked down at him, knowing he was dead... His eyes were still open. I can remember very clearly the expression on his face and when I go to sleep at night it's still there in front of me.
What can I say about Queen that hasn't been said before or said a thousand times already. Freddie was gifted with one of the most distinctive and powerful voices in all of rock music, and as a live entertainer, he was magnificent. He would feed from the crowd's energy, doubling it and giving it right back to them in full force. A showman in every sense of the word. I have been accused of being unemotional but there has been three times when the death of a musician has made me openly weep and then drink mass quantities of booze. Freddie Mercury was one and you'll just have to guess the others. Freddie released two solo albums in his career and today as a tribute to Freddie here's a cut from his 1985 American release Mr. Bad Guy(out of print). An import is available.

Thank you Freddie.

Foolin' Around by Freddie Mercury
(File taken down, check current posts for some more great music)



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Funny Toon

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Excitable Boy

Today in Music History:

In 1976, after having been arrested 10 hours earlier, Jerry Lee Lewis was arrested again after brandishing a Derringer pistol outside Elvis Presley's Graceland's home in Memphis, demanding to see the 'King'.
First I have to get this off my chest. Some folks have made their way here via google or some other search engine looking for Christmas music. No, No, NOOOO! Not yet please. Wait for the first of December at least. I just can't stand TV, radio, malls and every other store in the world trying to cram this holiday down our throats starting in November. End Rant.

Warren Zevon Shadows are falling and I'm running out of breath
Keep me in your heart for awhile


So begins the last song on Warren Zevon's final album The Wind which was released on August 28, 2003. Ten days later Zevon died of mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer, usually associated with previous exposure to asbestos.
One of the most underrated classic rock musicians of all time and those who manage to discover his music often deem him a genius - and with good reason, although he never had much commercial success. Unless you live under a rock, of course you've heard Werewolves of London which was a hit back in 1978. Intelligent, satiric lyrics paired with raucous or beautiful melodies were trademarks of a Zevon song. I found that Zevon had quite the interesting life. Born to a Russian Jewish father and a Scottish mormon mother in Chicago Illinois. The family moved to California. Around the age of 13 he was a regular visitor to the home of Igor Stravinsky where he, along with Robert Craft, would study music. He was said to have scored the highest IQ ever in the city of Fresno, California. But he moved around often, and dropped out of high school when he was 16. I'll skip over his time as a songwriter for White Whale records, or his stint with the Everly Brothers and his poorly accepted first solo album released in 1969. Success finally came when Jackson Browne produced and promoted his major label debut in 1976. For the next 20 years Zevon would continue to record and release albums sporadically and with varying levels of success, while fighting personal demons including an acknowledged battle with alcoholism and drugs.

Zevon toured the US regularly during the 90s, often alone, with minimal accompaniment. By this time he was sober and remained so for the rest of his days. Many tours started in Colorado to allow Warren an opportunity to visit with his long-time friend, Hunter S. Thompson. Warren was close with several prominent writers who also collaborated on song-writing, including Carl Hiassen. He also served as musical coordinator for a group called the Rock Bottom Remainders, a collection of writers performing rock and roll standards at book fairs and other events. This group included Stephen King, Dave Barry, and other popular writers. In interviews, Zevon described a lifelong phobia of doctors and seldom received medical assessment. In 2002, after a long period of untreated illness and pain, Zevon was encouraged by his dentist to see a doctor; when he did so he was diagnosed with inoperable mesothelioma and was told he had three months to live. When his diagnosis became public, he told the media that he just hoped to live long enough to see the next James Bond movie. He then began recording his final album, The Wind, with guest appearances from close friends including Bruce Springsteen, Don Henley, Timothy B. Schmit, Joe Walsh, David Lindley, Billy Bob Thornton, Emmylou Harris, and others.

On October 30, 2002, Zevon was featured on the Late Show with David Letterman as the only guest for the entire hour. Zevon performed several songs and spoke in length about his illness. Zevon was a frequent guest and occasional substitute bandleader on Letterman's television shows since Late Night first aired in 1982. When Dave asked Warren if his illness gave him any special insight into life and death, Warren shrugged and said he didn't think so, "Not unless I know how much you're supposed to enjoy every sandwich." There was a hush in the audience.

That night, Letterman ended his broadcast with his arm around the dying singer and said, "Warren, enjoy every sandwich." A perfect ending to a highly emotional hour of television. It was Warren’s last public performance.

On June 11, 2003, his grandsons, Augustus Warren and Maximus Patrick Zevon-Powell, were born to his daughter, Ariel and her husband, Ben Powell. Warren was in attendance at the hospital for their arrival. He rarely left his apartment at this point, but made every effort to be there for their birth. Warren did get to see that Bond film, it came out in 2002 and it was called Die Another Day. Zevon saw his last album immediately chart at #16 and he died at his home in Los Angeles, California, on September 7, 2003. He was 56. He lived nine months longer than the doctors said he would.
If I leave you it doesn't mean I love you any less
Keep me in your heart for awhile

When you get up in the morning and you see that crazy sun
Keep me in your heart for while

There's a train leaving nightly called when all is said and done
Keep me in your heart for while
I should have wrote this back in September and bad on me for not doing that. If Werewolves is the only Zevon song you're familiar with, then do yourself a favor and check out todays song from the self titled 1976 album, then buy it and buy The Wind, and Enjoy every Sandwich.

Carmelita by Warren Zevon
(File taken down, check current posts for some more great music)


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Funny Toon

Monday, November 21, 2005

Roxy Music

Today in Music History:

1980, Don Henley was arrested after a naked 16-year old girl was found at his home in Los Angeles suffering from a drug over-dose, he received a $2,000 fine with two years probation.
roxy musicLet it be known that I like music. Heavy metal to jazz, Punk to anything but crap rap. So it may surprise you that what I think is one of the best songs ever. It is a smooth, excellent to have sex all night long song. The song is one of the best ballads I ever heard and the female backing vocalist is superb at the end and Bryan Ferry's crooning makes you think I need some sex, and dad nabit this song gets me in that romantic mood the women are always talkng about.
Roxy Music bid farewell to its fans with this album and they saved the best for last. I dare you to listen to the Avalon album with a chick in attenadance and not get laid. This album is that good fellas. Or vice versa ladies. I learned this in the eighties and thank you Bryan Ferry and Roxy Music for helping me get laid in the 80's. Besides all that it's one of the best songs ever. And ladies lest you think I'm sexist, well prove me wrong eh. If it makes a guy romantic then it's like a supersized Fried Green Magnolias, or is it Steel Tomatoes. I always get those mixed up. It's supersized though.
Avalon by Roxy Music
(File taken down, check current posts for some more great music)


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Funny Toon

Friday, November 18, 2005

English Beat

Today in Music History:

1993, Pearl Jam singer Eddie Vedder was arrested in New Orleans for disturbing the peace after a fight broke out in a bar.
ranking full stopI'm not much of a ska fan, but there is one band in particular that made me at least explore ska music more thouroughly and I have learned to appreciate ska music better as a result. That band being The English Beat. I snagged their album I Just Can't Stop It back in 1982 and when I slipped the vinyl on the turntable I was hooked. I decided to cover this band today because of the previous post and Krokus Kick ass cover of Stayed Awake, which was better than the original version of the song. With today's post about The Beat, we have a cover version which clearly outshines the original version. I don't want this blog getting mired down in cover songs, Copy, Right? specializes in that and does a much better job of it than this blog does.will return to normal fare next week.

Sadly the Beat only lasted three albums and disbanded in 1983, it's members basically splitting to form two new groups. General Public and Fine Young Cannibals. This first cut is the outstanding cover of the Smokey Robinson classic, Tears of a Clown. Better than the original? That's my opinion, but hey you tell me.

Tears of a Clown by The English Beat
(File taken down, check current posts for some more great music)

Another nice original track is Save it for Later, which Pete Townshend did a great version on his Deep End album. For anyone unfamiliar with ska or someone who doesn't care much for the genre, the English Beat is a great starting place for beginners. Not to say that The Specials, Madness and The Selecter aren't excellent bands, who also came before the Beat. It's just that the Beat are more accessible to the mainstream.

Save it for Later by The English Beat
(File taken down, check current posts for some more great music)


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Funny Toon

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Krokus Turner Overdrive

Today in Music History:

1974, John Lennon was at No.1 in the US singles chart with 'Whatever Gets You Through The Night.' Elton John played on the session and made a deal with Lennon that if the song makes No.1 he will have to appear live with him.
KrokusKrokus, doesn't that name blast you metalheads back to the eighties? The title for this post may sound confusing but it will become evident. Some of you may already know what I'm referring to. I became familiar with Krokus back in 1982 when I was at this party and someone was playing the One Vice at a Time album. I said who the hell is that, it sounds like they're trying to copy AC/DC. In fact the lead singer was trying awful hard to sound like Bon Scott. Yet I found that even though this band were blatantly copying AC/DC's sound, I liked it.

Krokus didn't start out as metal though. These headbangers from Switzerland started out in the 70's as a progressive rock outfit along the lines of Yes, Genesis, and ELP. Hard to believe, eh. The band didn't get anywhere commercially, so it decided to cash in on metal's popularity and started emulating AC/DC. Call it one of those guilty pleasures. Everything about this band says I shouldn't like them, yet I listen to them on occasion. Their biggest album was Headhunter which contains a wicked cover of BTO,s Stayed Awake All Night. With all due respect to Randy and the boys, Krokus' version of this song kicks serious butt and sounds deliciously good cranked up to maximum volume. I only ever bought these two albums so I couldn't tell you whether any of their other stuff is any good. I know their cover of Ballroom Blitz is dreadful and after that I refused to buy any more of their albums. For two albums though Krokus delivered the goods. Incidentally, the band has undergone a few personnel changes and are still kicking around and just finished a US Tour.

Stayed Awake All Night by Krokus
(File taken down, check current posts for some more great music)


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For comparison and to let you judge for yourself, I will include Bachman Turner Overdrive's original version of the song here also. It comes from the first self titled BTO album. While not bad you can tell for yourself that the Swiss guys really turned it up a notch.

Stayed Awake All Night by Bachman Turner Overdrive
(File taken down, check current posts for some more great music)


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Funny Toon

Monday, November 14, 2005

When Musicians Have Fun

Today in Music History:

2004, The Rolling Stones were refused permission to pursue a claim against their former record company Decca for unpaid royalties through the courts. A High Court judge in London said the dispute must go to arbitration and not be decided in court. The dispute centres on their Forty Licks compilation CD, which was released in 2002 and was the first collection to span their entire career.
Mojo at GracelandBeen a rough week, sorry been gone so long. Well obviously everyone that comes here to snatch a song agrees with me. I must be the best otherwise there would be a few dissenting comments. I'm number 1, no one argues yay. Don't you love to listen to music when you can tell the artist is having a ball making the recording. As I was thinking of the old days when MTV used to play videos, I got to thinking about the original VJ's and Martha Quinn popped into my head. Then a song about Martha Quinn called Stuffin' Martha's Muffin by the one and only Mojo Nixon. Mojo was a darling of the early MTV. Until he wrote a song that dissed MTV.(maybe it was that Martha song). Then he was banned from their high falutin TV channel. Now that high falutin' TV channel is a piece of garbage and Mojo is still priceless.

Think of Mojo as a real working class guy. Telling it like it really is. Kinda like Bruce Springsteen without the stick up his ass. I loved Mojo and I am still waiting for his comeback. If ever music needed Mojo it's now. Hillbilly, rockabilly, politically incorrect and a musician that really speaks his mind and doesn't give a flying fuck what anyone thinks. Yeah, gotta love that. We need that now.

I got two Mojo Nixon gems for you. This first one is probably one of the nastiest and fun songs he ever did. Fun and nasty? That was Mojo, you could tell he was having a blast with every song he recorded. He never took himself to serious.This first song is an easy X-rated litany that probably sounds better if you're slightly (or totally) inebriated. AS I say in the upper right corner of this blog, "advisory". Example lyric: grandma's get down with an ear of corn.

Tie my Pecker to My Leg by Mojo Nixon

It's a keeper by golly

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(File taken down, check current posts for some more great music)

Then I have this gem culled from some long lost website. It's also my favorite Mojo song. I tried to find it the other day and it's gone. Sob. It's a bootleg recording of Mojo of a show he did in Vancouver,CA in 2003 and it is fucking hilarious. He rips George Bush a new asshole in this one. It's even funnier now that Mr. George's administration is falling down around his knees. It's like Mojo knew all along. Well I knew all along the war in Iraq was bogus and so did most Americans. It's like he was a mind reader. Nothing is sacred in this one. MUST HAVE song. If you steal nothing else this year it must be this one. By the way Mojo loves it when you download one of his songs illegally.

Louisiana Liplock (live) by Mojo Nixon
(File taken down, check current posts for some more great music)

Funny Toon

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Musical Knowledge

Today in Music History:

In 1967, The first issue of Rolling Stone Magazine was published in San Francisco. It came with a free roach clip to hold a marijuana joint.
knowledgeable guyFor a dumb guy there are a few things I know for sure. For example I know that after first hearing it 25 years ago, The Clash's London Calling is still the best album I have ever heard. Yeah there are a lot of classic albums out there, from Beatles to Zeppelin, and I'm sure some would argue vehemently with me, but I stand behind that thought.

I was a Dire Straits fan way before the "I want my MTV" thing. In fact I thought the Brothers in Arms album was subpar for this band. It might have been better if they had left Sting off that song. Because of the golden age of video it caused album sales to soar and made them superstars. Don't they have a new greatest hits album out now? Not sure. I do know that the song that follows is the best Dire Straits song ever. One might argue that Tunnel of Love is better and one might convince me after lengthy conversation.

Skateaway by Dire Straits
(File taken down, check current posts for some more great music)


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This comes from what I feel is the best Dire Straits album ever. Excellent songwriting and musicianship (what a great guitarist). Knopfler is at his height as a songwriter on this one. Skateaway and Tunnel of Love have to be two of the best songs he has written but every song on here is fantastic. Except for the last cut, Les Boys. Which is probably the worst Dire Straits song ever. How this song made it on this fine album I'll never know. It's tolerable though and has a tendency to grow on you if you're not careful.

Funny Toon

Friday, November 04, 2005

Fun Music

Today in Music History:

1963, The Beatles topped the bill at The Royal Variety Show at The Prince Of Wales Theatre, London. With the Queen Mother and Princess Margaret in the audience, this was the night when John Lennon made his famous remark “In the cheaper seats you clap your hands. The rest of you, just rattle your jewellery”.
It's been raining here for days, my last post was about people in planes, the one before that was about people dying in planes and darn it it's getting me down. So let's have a fun music post and put on a happy face.

RaffiOnce upon a time there was this feller named Raffi and some guy who was good doing computer stuff. If I knew his name I would give him credit, but I don't, One day the two collided. Kinda like a "hey you've got chocolate in my peanut butter" thing. I don't know bout that, but I do know that this piece of inspired flash movie short was born. Once You heard it, that sucker would stay in your head all day.The Flash was made by combining the song Bananaphone and the visuals from the Flash Badger Badger Badger (with Bananaphone additions); it can be found at lemonizer.com's list of mirrors. It was created by a user of the General Mayhem forums after the original Flash was posted there.

Raffi is a popular children's entertainer in Canada and Bananaphone is the name of an children's album, as well as a humorous song by Raffi, released in 1994. The lyrics describe a combination between a banana and a telephone, using many puns ("It's a phone with appeal!") and made up words like "bananular" and "interactive-odular" as Raffi extols the virtues of his unique telephone. Born in Cairo of Armenian parents, he spent his early years in Egypt before emigrating with his family to Toronto in 1958. Today, Raffi resides in Victoria, British Columbia. He's also been honored by being parodied on an episode of The Simpsons. Here's tyhe official unsped up version minus the badgers.

Bananaphone by Raffi

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(File taken down, check current posts for some more great music)

For a bonus song, I've got a track by a local band that played the bar circuit. This is a live recording taken from the soundboard which is actually pretty good quality. Everytime this song shows up on the player I have to listen to it 3 or 4 times before going on. It's pretty good and even though the band is now defunct this is a fun song. I love the bass and the vocals. The dude who played guitar said I could let you all hear it and he's interested in feedback. I forget who did it originally, so if anyone knows, educate me. I think it was Kathy Mattea. Let me know if you like this one as well as I do. Have a good weekend!

455 Rocket by TNT and the Blasting Caps

Funny Toon

Thursday, November 03, 2005

People in Planes

Today in Music History:

1997, Metallica came to a out of court agreement with a fan who claimed he lost his sense of smell after being dropped on his head by fans at one of their shows four years earlier.
People in PlanesPEOPLE IN PLANES are a 5 piece rock band who come from Cardiff, Wales. Actually this is their third group name. Before this incarnation they were Tetra Splendour and they started out as Robots In The Sky. They were recently signed to Wind Up records(Evanescene and Creed) out of New York and currently have a four song EP available in select record stores. Here is how they describe themselves
a band that tries to play an intelligent fusion of contemporary cutting edge rock music, whilst retaining the warm aesthetic tones produced by retro instruments & equipment and exploring the genre spanning possibilities of programming and editing.
While that seems a bit wordy to me, I can't exactly put a fix on what style of music they play, so I'll just say alternative. That may be a bit of a cop out, but I do know that their EP has spent extensive time in my CD player. I don't know how many times I've listened to the song "Moth". Been quite a few anyway.

Their first full length album is due out in the early part in 2006, and they are currently on tour opening for such acts as The Bravery and Seether. Take a break and check out this cut and look for the album coming soon. I will be.

Moth by People in Planes
(File taken down, check current posts for some more great music)


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Funny Toon