Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas

We miss our Misty very much but we wanted to give a kitty a home for Christmas and find a new friend for Phurbee so we went to the SPCA 2weeks ago and got picked by Charlie. He's 5 years old and a sweety ... plus he's got very long legs, is kind of colt-ish because of it and he also likes to bark with happiness. He's already part of the family and it already feels like he's always been here :-) Welcome home, Charlie!

On the other hand, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas was a 1982 film adaptation of the musical of the same. The film starred Dolly Parton and Burt Reynolds and also featured Noah Beery, Jr., Jim Nabors, Charles Durning and Dom DeLuise. Durning was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role as the Texas governor. In terms of box-office, The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas was the most successful movie-musical of the 1980s. The film soundtrack was released along with the film in July 1982. In addition to the score of Carol Hall songs that had also appeared on the stage soundtrack, the film soundtrack included two Dolly Parton compositions: "Sneakin' Around", which she performed as a duet with costar Burt Reynolds and a reworking of her 1974 classic "I Will Always Love You", the latter of which topped the U.S. country charts in September 1982.   Since it is almost Christmas a little Hard Candy Christmas is in order.
homercat vinyl.

Hard Candy Christmas by Dolly Parton
Buy It

Funny Toon

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Bad Luck Streak in Dancing School

It has always been my intention here to not only put up a couple songs from an album, but also to encourage folks to track down a hard copy, be it cd or vinyl (preferably vinyl), as the original always sounds way better than these compressed mp3's. I find mp3's too tinny sounding on the high end and thuddy and muddled on the lows. As far as portability and file size goes an mp3 can't be beat, it's the ultimate for taking your music anywhere, but the sound quality leaves much to be desired. A lot of the stuff I put up here is rareish or out of print, mostly leaving the new releases alone.

A week or so ago I heard on the news that as of the end of next year the record industry will no longer manufacture cd's because they will be going to a strictly digital download route for all music, thus rendering all music "out of Print". It wasn't specified whether this was only major label releases or the entire industry or if it's a gradual phasing out. Or did my local radio station report this as news when it may only be a myth? As an audiophile this bugs me tremendously, personally I don't pay money for a tinny, compressed version of a song. I might consider it if it was lossless, yet those files can be quite large. Then there's the, can you hold it in your hand and read the liner notes factor, which I always do. My vinyl and cd collection is huge and I don't apologize for that. I know some of the arguments for digital including the carbon footprints vinyl and cd leave. I rarely buy anything on cd anymore because if a release is available on vinyl I purchase it. So I could be said to be contributing to the cd's demise. If nothing new is ever printed on vinyl or cd, I guess I'll be spending more time in the used record stores as there is a ton of vinyl out there at pretty cheap prices and we can continue to watch music sales decline. Nothing better than a trip to the record store and flipping through the albums and stumbling upon a treasure that you've been looking for. I also wouldn't want to risk my entire music collection on a hard drive that could crash or an mp3 player that might accidently fall in a toilet or a sink full of water. Anyways would be interested to hear other people's take on this news.

Bad Luck Streak in Dancing School was Warren Zevon's 4th album released in 1980. The term Dancing School in the title is a euphemism for a brothel. This album was cut as Zevon was struggling to stay clean and sober after the success of his previous album Excitable Boy. Because of this the album has a strength of focus that was absent on that album. The album's rockers hit harder and cut deeper than any of his previous work, and on Wild Age Zevon addresses his own failings and expresses his need for a greater maturity in his life. Along for the ride are a zillion guest artists such as Joe Walsh, Jackson Browne, Linda Ronstadt, Don Henley, and Glenn Frey just to name a few. Zevon showed again that the quality of his songwriting was no fluke. homercat vinyl.

A Certain Girl
Jeannie Needs a Shooter
Buy It

Funny Toon

Saturday, November 26, 2011

From the Hip

Josie Cotton is a classic example of an artist whose entire career is overshadowed by one song. A hit from her first album, Convertible Music, was the in-dubious-taste "Johnny Are You Queer?," which was such a controversial song at the time of its 1982 release that the rest of her fantastic debut album album was overlooked in the brouhaha. Josie's music invokes the whole California girly pop scene of the early '80s.

Her second album came out in 1984 and is called From the Hip. This album has its standouts -- "School Is In," "Way Out West," and "Jimmy Loves Maryann," which incite new wave sock hops and hip shaking. Despite having the likes of Lindsey Buckingham as part of her back up band, the second album couldn't quite match her debut as it was almost flawless. Having said that the album is very good and I love to listen to it. I don't have her first album on vinyl so this gets played a lot. You can get her first two albums on 1 cd from amazon, but that doesn't help me cause I'm a vinyl nut.

School Is In
Jimmy Loves Mary Ann
Buy Convertible Music: From the Hip

Funny Toon

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

How Bizarre

"How Bizarre" is a 1996 album by New Zealand group, OMC. It was first done under the huh! recording label, issued by PolyGram New Zealand, and manufactured and marketed by Mercury Records in the United States. The title track was very successful worldwide which has given this group it's status as a one hit wonder.

OMC is from Otara, Auckland, New Zealand. Originally the Otara Millionaires Club, the full name of the band is a tongue-in-cheek reference to Otara's status as one of the poorest suburbs of Auckland.

This album may not be the greatest album of all time but the single, How Bizarre, definitely plants an ear worm in your head when you hear it.  When I first heard the song back in 96, I couldn't get the darn thing out of my head for days.  Today I was reminded of the power of this piece of ear candy when it came on the radio and then I proceeded to hum the ditty for  the rest of the day.  Once again I couldn't get it out of my head.  Now I return the favor and get it buzzing inside my reader's heads.

How Bizarre
Right On
Buy It

Funny Toon

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Road Fever

First off I want to thank everyone for their comments about our little Misty, we appreciated it very much and has helped with our healing. Secondly, some of you must have thought that the old homercat has finally hung it up because of the long hiatus. October was just a rough month here and now am hoping to get back on track on a semi regular basis. So again I say thanks to all of you.

The seventh album by the Downchild Blues Band came out in 1980 and is called Road Fever. Founder Donnie Walsh has been called the 'father of Canadian blues' and with good reason. He is a blues pioneer on the Canadian scene. It was Walsh who paid the highest dues so that later Canadian blues acts, such as the Jeff Healey Band, the Colin James Band, the Powder Blues, Sue Foley, The Sidemen and The Highliners could also enjoy their success. According to Walsh, more than 120 musicians have been associated with Downchild since its 1969 founding. The band has never lost its focus on blues music. Two years after the release of this album the band suffered a major setback with the untimely death of keyboard player Jane Vasey, who succumbed to leukemia at the age of thirty two. Donnie Walsh, who was living with Vasey at the time, took a period of time off to reflect on his future and that of the band. Mr. Downchild couldn't be kept down too long though, by the end of the year the band was back.

TV Mama
Try To Fall in Love With Me
Buy Road Fever

Funny Toon

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Goodbye Baby Bear ...

October was an extremely difficult month for the Homercat household, culminating on October 31st when, after a long struggle with progressively worse illnesses, we had to bid goodbye to our little grey-striped Misty-cat. She was the strongest, sweetest little kitty in the world and we will miss her so very, very much. She was born in Ottawa, Canada on July 1, 1995 (or thereabouts), being tossed away like garbage and left to die, we never knew her actual birthdate, but she lived through that experience (after being rescued by a vet who found her on the side of the road), and has graced our lives ever since. She was diagnosed with diabetes almost 4 years ago and lived through her twice daily injections with loving good humour, never once complaining or running and hiding to get away from it. If we could have half her courage, half her heart and half her love, we will have lived a very good life indeed. Rest In Peace our little baby, and we hope you have a great hereafter in Heaven chasing butterflies and waxing fat and sassy. All our love forever, your Mom and Dad.

Misty Neufeld-Gordley
~July 1, 1995 - October 31, 2011~
I used to know this old scarecrow
She was my song, my joy and sorrow
Cast alone between the furrows
Of a field no longer sown by anyone

I held a dandelion
That said the time had come
To leave upon the wind
Not to return
When summer burned the earth again

Cultivate the freshest flower
This garden ever grew
Beneath these branches
I once wrote such childish words for you

But that's okay
There's treasure children always seek to find
And just like us
You must have had
A once upon a time

We send you a million kisses and hugs, and know we will miss you. Always.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Souvenir: 1989—1998

The Rankin Family is a Canadian musical family group from Mabou, Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia. The group has won many Canadian music awards, including 15 East Coast Music Awards, six Juno Awards, four SOCAN Awards, three Canadian Country Music Awards and two Big Country Music Awards. Out of the 12 Rankin siblings, Jimmy, John Morris, Cookie, Raylene and Heather released their own independent cassettes The Rankin Family (1989) and Fare Thee Well Love (1990), featuring original songs and a combination of traditional jigs, reels and Celtic folk songs. After five albums they went their separate ways to pursue their own projects. This was in 1999 and less than a year later, John Morris Rankin was killed in a car accident in Cape Breton. They have since reunited for a couple of new albums.

Souvenir: 1989—1998 is a 2 disc greatest hits compilation that came out in 2003. It is a great overview of the decade when the Rankin Family rose to prominence in the Canadian pop/folk scene and opened a floodgate of likeminded musicians who brought Celtic influences into the contemporary scene. It is evenly focused on their entire career, and also serves as a memorial to the late John Morris Rankin (1959-2000). Mrs. homercat introduced me to The Rankins and I love them. Just one listen to You Feel the Same Way Too, Borders and Time or The Mull River Shuffle and you'll be hooked too. The family is blessed with wonderful voices, particularly the women. The harmony is dense and absolutely pure. The voices are clear and crisp, the lyrics are full of meaning, and the music is just fantastic. The men in the group are excellent instrumentalists and the late John Rankin's fiddle playing is superb in an authentic Gaelic style. Truly one of Canada's best kept secrets.

Borders and Time
You Feel the Same Way Too

Funny Toon

Friday, August 26, 2011

One Fine Morning

One of Canada's most original pop groups ever, Lighthouse was formed in Toronto early in 1969. Their sound was as diverse as their listening audience, and contained cellos, violas, an array of horns and a full percussion section. Similar to Blood Sweat and Tears. Lighthouse was undeniably one of the driving forces of the Canadian pop machine of the '70's. With a total of nine gold records, three platinum and 4 Junos, no other band of the day could touch them. In a time before Canadian radio stations were required to play a minimum of homegrown talent, Lighthouse wasn't affected. Their keen pop sensibility, combined with plain musical talent and clever production styles, helped their light shine brightly, guiding many of today's groups along the way. The title track from their 1971 album One Fine Morning was an international and American hit. Other notable songs on this album include “ Hats Off Stranger” and “ Love of a Woman.”

 I finally acquired this on vinyl about three weeks ago and it's in darn good shape.  I had posted a song from this album back in 2005, but it wasn't my rip.  Now that I finally found a good copy I have my own rip that sounds much better than the one I had.  The horns on Love of a Woman are insane.  Having played trumpet back in the day,  that song left me scratching my head as to how it was possible to hit some of those notes.  They disbanded in 1976 but have since reunited in varying incarnations.  In fact a couple of Albertans I know just saw them a few days ago in Lethbridge, Alberta at the famous Whoop Up days and they reported to me that it was fabulous. Classic Canadian music here that is going for 89 dollars on CD at Amazon.

Love of a Woman
One Fine Morning
Buy It

Funny Toon

Thursday, August 18, 2011


In 1989 The Smithereens released their third full length albuym titled 11. The title and the cover are an homage to the original 1960 Ocean's Eleven film. This album was their most successful owing to the single A Girl Like You. If you're a fan of Troma movies like The Toxic Avenger, then look for The Smithereens starring as themselves as they were featured as the entertainment in the indoor beach party scene of the Troma film Class of Nuke 'Em High, playing the song "Much Too Much".  Critics loved their first two albums and gave this one a lukewarm reception.  Homercat loved this album and isn't too keen on the first two.  In their early phase these guys were accused of sounding too much like The Byrds and The Beatles. Where the guys in the band kept pointing out that its Marshall Amplifier-heavy live sound was closer to heavy metal than it was to The Beatles. Though The Smithereens are still around, they were yet another victim of the grunge fad of the 90's.

Yesterday Girl
Blue Period
Buy It

Funny Toon

Friday, August 05, 2011

Warren Zevon

Warren Zevon is 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. Zevon released his self titled second album in 1976. The album was produced by Jackson Browne and has since been labeled a masterpiece in the Rolling Stone Record Guide. By the time this album was released he had already spent 10 years in the biz as a songwriter. When one looks at the credits on the album there is Hall of Fame list of guest musicians who participated. Don Henley, Glenn Frey, Bonnie Raitt, Phil Everly, Lindsey Buckingham, Stevie Nicks, Jackson Browne, JD Souther are just a few of the talented folks helping out Warren. Warren Zevon may not have been the songwriter's debut, but it was the album that confirmed he was a major talent, and it remains a black-hearted pop delight and as the guide says, a masterpiece of vinyl.

320 kbps
All songs composed by Warren Zevon

"Frank and Jesse James" – 4:33
"Mama Couldn't Be Persuaded" – 2:53
"Backs Turned Looking Down the Path" – 2:27
"Hasten Down the Wind" – 2:58
"Poor Poor Pitiful Me" – 3:04
"The French Inhaler" – 3:44
"Mohammed's Radio" – 3:40
"I'll Sleep When I'm Dead" – 2:56
"Carmelita" – 3:32
"Join Me in L.A." – 3:13
"Desperados Under the Eaves" – 4:45

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Funny Toon

Saturday, July 30, 2011

One More Song For You

The Imperials are an American Christian music group that has been around for over 47 years since their inception in 1964. As you can imagine there have been several line up changes through the years. Now homercat is not a religious cat in the normal sense of the word. I have my own faith and spirituality and I'm not a fan of any sort of organized religion. Having said that, I'm a huge fan of The Imperials because when I listen to their music, something happens inside of me that lifts and soothes my heart.  Don't ask me why.

The Imperials really started getting recognition when during the years between 1966 and 71 they recorded a lot with Elvis Presley and appeared  on his last two grammy award winning albums. In 1969 Elvis was embarking on his Vegas years and The Jordanaires who usually sang back up for the King didn't want to stray far from Nashville because of their studio work. Elvis hired The Imperials to be his backup singers, so from 1969 to 1972 these guys toured with Elvis. They finally had to part ways in 72 because of scheduling conflicts.

In Early 1976, the group hired baritone David Will, who would stay on for 23 years with the group, and soulful belter Russ Taff as their new lead vocalist. It was with the Taff-led outfit that the group found their biggest success, both with awards and on the charts. Mrs. homercat introduced me to these guys

[Mrs. Homercat interjects] [I saw The Imperials in Calgary at the Jubilee Auditorium in 1982 with my brother, sister-in-law, and sister.  My sister brought a second date to this concert and he was absolutely blown away ... between the horn section and the words of each song it was so beyond amazing.  I was heart-broken when Russ Taff left to pursue a solo career. The happy part of this is that I had several of their albums on vinyl ... though they spent several years in my parents basement. When mom & dad brought my record collection to us last year I rediscovered them and was so happy to introduce hubster to them.  I encouraged Homercat to listen to them, & one day he broke them out to rip them and this was the first one he ripped.]

By the end of the album I was hooked. The music On One More Song for You is in the soft pop rock vein and this Grammy nominated masterpiece is listed among CCM Magazine's best 100 Christian albums of all time. For very good reason as it really is a five star album. Highlights are I'm Forgiven, Eagle Song and the title cut. Since ripping their albums we listen to them a lot and I gotta thank the missus for making me listen to them. Check it out, you might be surprised. Don't let the cheesy looking album cover scare you away.

I'm Forgiven
Eagle Song
Buy It

Funny Toon

Monday, July 25, 2011

Hooked on Classics

K-Tel didn't always do compilation albums. Although that's what they mainly did, occasionally they would issue original material. The most notable of which were the Hooked on Classics series of classical recordings with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. The original Hooked On Classics album came out in 1981 toward the end of the disco era's peak in popularity. Louis Clark, former arranger for Electric Light Orchestra, conducted the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra playing a collection of very recognizable extracts from classical music pieces played over a continuous beat, much like the Stars On group. While classical purists might bemoan the fact that their beloved classical pieces were put to a disco beat, the album did bring classical music to the masses and the first Hooked on Classics album became K-Tel's biggest all time selling album, selling over 10 million copies. A little side note is that while the compilation albums were released on the K-Tel International Label, this particular K-Tel release came out on RCA Victor. For a K-Tel album this is as near a mint condition vinyl album as I'll probably ever find. I've listed just the main titles for the songs here. In the file is a text document with the breakdown of which classical pieces were included in each cut.

320 kbps

Hooked on Classics Parts 1 & 2
Hooked On Romance
Hooked On Classics Part 3
Hooked On Bach
Hooked On Tchaikovsky
Hooked On A Song
Hooked On Mozart
Hooked On Mendelssohn
Hooked On A Can Can

Copy and Paste this link into your browser to download

Funny Toon

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Electric Warrior

Straight from my sweet 180 gram vinyl release comes Electric Warrior, the sixth album by T Rex released in 1971. Widely considered to one of the best, or in my opinion the best glam rock album ever released. Electric Warrior still stands the test of time after all these years. Should be against the law for someone to not own this record. I'm sure most of you have it but I just had to share the sweet sound of this 180 gram vinyl. This is one of those rare albums, like Rubber Soul, in which every song is superb.  This album completes T. Rex's transformation from hippie folk-rockers into flamboyant avatars of trashy rock & roll. There are a few vestiges of those early days remaining in the acoustic-driven ballads, but Electric Warrior spends most of its time in a swinging, hip-shaking groove powered by Marc Bolan's warm electric guitar. Don't get much better than this.

Get it On
Life's a Gas
Buy It

Funny Toon

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Commodores Live

Commodores Live came out in 1977 as a 2 record set hot off the heels of their outstanding self titled album. One of the truly outstanding live R and B albums of all time. The guys recorded this at the height of their beginning as a supergroup. All of the early classics are here. You will feel as if you are right there back in Atlanta in 1977. The guys are having a lot of fun and it is evident in their live show which has always been a staple of the Commodores. The six-man original Commodores were a powerful and self-contained unit that could effortlessly alternate between turning over mean and serious funk jams or a slow, sexy power ballad. By the time the band plays the 10 minute plus Brick House it is quite obvious the band has reached funkified critical mass. In my opinion the Commodores were at the top of their game with this recording. Soon after this album the group caught the dreaded balladitis disease and there was less and less funk. Transferred from original vinyl.

Slippery When Wet
Brick House
Buy It

Funny Toon

Friday, June 10, 2011

Songs From the Wood

Songs from the Wood came out in 1977 and is the tenth studio album by Jethro Tull and is considered to be the first of a trio of folk rock albums (Songs from the Wood, Heavy Horses and Stormwatch) despite the fact that folk music elements are present in the work of Jethro Tull both before and after this trilogy. These particular Tull albums all fit nicely together and should be listened to as such. The unofficial full title of the album is Jethro Tull with kitchen, prose and gutter rhymes and divers songs from the wood.  Filled with folk and fantasy imagery, and ornamental folk arrangement, the album is a departure from the hard rock of earlier Tull material, though it still retained some of the band's older sound.  I'm a Tull fan and hands down this is my favorite album.  I love to listen to the three albums back to back as it provides a great listening experience.  Ian Anderson delivers some great flute action on most of these songs and overall they're catchy as hell.

Hunting Girl
The Whistler
Buy It

Funny Toon

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

This is Music

My last couple of K-Tel posts haven't been the best quality so I'm putting up a Quality record today. No really this is a 1987 compilation called This is Music which was released by Quality records and it contains 18 tracks. No idea if they're affiliated with K-Tel in any way. I think most of the visitors here prefer the 70's K-Tel records so this may be too recent for some. It's a good rip though with nary a pop or click. I own several 80's compilations and this one has a selection of songs that aren't found on a lot of comps from the 80's. Not strictly K-Tel but I'm tagging it as such.

320 kbps

Artist- Title
Timex Social Club- Rumors
Jermaine Stewart- We Don't Have to Take Our Clothes Off
Nu Shooz- I Can't Wait
Sly Fox- Let's Go All the Way
Doctor & the Medics- Spirit in the Sky
One To One- Angel in My Pocket
Timbuk 3- The Future's So Bright, I Gotta Wear Shades
Howard Jones- No One is to Blame
Simply Red- Holding Back the Years
Pet Shop Boys- West End Girls
Chris De Burgh- The Lady in Red
Belinda Carlisle- Mad About You
Force M.D.'s- Tender Love
Freddie Jackson- You are My Lady
Glass Tiger- Thin Red Line
Kenny Loggins- Danger Zone
Heart- Never
Stacey Q- Two of Hearts

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Funny Toon

Friday, June 03, 2011

The Compleat Angler

Hailing from Manchester, England, Jon Astley began his career as an assistant to Glyn Johns in 1973. In the late seventies he became a freelance engineer and produced the Who's Who Are You and Eric Clapton's Just One Night. It was Astley who took a 25 minute demo of the classic Who are You track and edited it down to a (still) epic 6 minute track.

He turned his attention to North America in the 80's and produced Corey Hart's first two albums, and then signing to Atlantic records as a recording artist himself. Astley released 2 albums and had two #1 alternative chart hits. If you were around in the eighties then you heard the song Jane's Gettin Serious kicking around somewhere. This song was later used in a Heinz ketchup commercial that featured the debut of actor Matt LeBlanc of "Friends". In the 90's Astley focused his career back to engineering and has become somewhat of a whiz kid at remastering older titles. He is also the brother of singer Virginia Astley and ex brother-in-law of Pete Townshend of The Who. His association with Pete has made him an in-demand producer having already revamped and remastered the entire Who catalog. Based on his excellent working relationship with the sometimes cantankerous Pete Townshend, when it came time to remaster The Who's entire back catalog, Astley got the nod as producer. He has also remastered Led Zeppelin for which he has won an award, George Harrison’s solo records, all 8 Abba CDs, the 3 Tears for Fears records, the 10 Level 42 CDs and also 13 Judas Priest records as well as working with contemporary acts Republica, and Tori Amos.

The Compleat Angler was his second and final album coming out in 1988. Astley was a truly underrated artist; and this album deserves much more than the indifference which greeted it in 1988. On "Put This Love to the Test," Astley adopts David Bowie's midnight-caller croon and the arty new wave rhythms of David Byrne's Talking Heads and is as catchy as Bowie's version of Iggy Pop's "China Girl". The lyrics on this album are pointed and witty. On "I'll Show You Bastards," Astley raises a defiant fist against his critics. "I'll show you bastards with reason and rhyme/I'll make my mark now that you've drawn the line," Astley sings with contempt. He attacks the fickle music industry on "But Is It Commercial?," complaining that "If the man in the chair doesn't care/You are a thing of the past." Both of his albums are very difficult to find and out of print for a long time and any collection of obscure and overlooked 80's albums is not complete without this gem.

Put This Love to the Test
I Dream About You (But I Cannot Sleep)
Funny Toon

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Interior Design

Interior Design is the fifteenth album by Sparks being released in 1988. Once again another album from the Mael geniuses that most folks have never heard and didn't do anything commercially. Two tracks did make it to the Billboard Hot Dance Music chart. The vinyl pressing only had 10 tracks and CD versions of the album included a number of bonus tracks including three versions of the LPs final track "Madonna", a remix of "So Important" and the short instrumental "The Big Brass Ring". Long out of print, Sparks' own record label Lil' Beethoven Records reissued the album in a digipak sleeve retaining the bonus tracks back in 2008. It's a nice slice of late 80's synthpop which I just love, although the three different language versions of Madonna I could have done without especially since that is my least fave track on the album. Many critics cite this as their weakest album. Not agreeing with that one as I can think of a couple others that are weaker efforts than this.  For example I thought Lil Beethoven  was a less than stellar release. I just couldn't wrap my head around that one yet the critics absolutely loved it.  Even Sparks fans are split on this album,  they love it or hate it.

The Toughest Girl in Town
Let's Make Love
Buy It

Funny Toon

Friday, May 13, 2011


In 1990 Adam Ant released his 4th solo album, Manners and Physique. The album yielded a top 20 single in Room at the Top. Then in 1991 Ant returned to the studio and recorded his fifth album for a planned release in 92 or 93. MCA, however, was a little ticked that Manners and Physique didn't achieve gold status and the label decided to drop Ant from their label after hearing the new album. Apparently MCA wasn't keen on Adam's dance oriented sound and wanted stuff that sounded like Goody Two Shoes.

The new album was titled Persuasion and following the rejection of the album by MCA, Adam, together with a new band including Marco Pirroni, embarked on the live 1993 Persuasion Tour to attract a new label for the album. Ant was able to sign to new label Capitol Records in the USA and EMI in the UK, but MCA pulled a pissy pants move and was unwilling to let go of the Persuasion master tapes and so a new album Wonderful was recorded instead with the band from the tour. The album has surfaced as bootlegs and once in a while shows up in fan forums. This album is one of the 20 written about in "The Greatest Music Never Sold" by Dan Leroy, a book that reveals information on the legendary lost recordings of many famous artists. The latest news that I've found is that Sony now has the rights to the recordings, although nothing has been said yet with regards to releasing it. I picked this up from a fan site 7 or 8 years ago and as I was searching for the site again I found it's no longer in existence. I wouldn't call it his best work but there are moments of the Ant brilliance. So here is a couple cuts from the lost album and if anyone has been searching for it can drop me an email.


Funny Toon Canadian edition

Friday, May 06, 2011

The Greatest Western Themes

This week while I was cruising through my vinyl collection and looking for the next album I wanted to rip, I came across this album residing in my soundtracks section. Not sure where it came from. It might have been in the Mrs.' collection or maybe I picked it up when I was at a friends house going through his extra albums. I thought hey this looks good. As I was ripping The Greatest Western Themes and getting the info I realized it was a K-Tel record. Sort of. On the back it says a K-Tel release but on the vinyl it says Era Records presents. Well it seems Era Records was started in 1955 as a pop, country and jazz label. In the mid 70's the Era Records label and back catalogue was sold to K-Tel. The once-proud Era name was soon subjected to the indignity of being an outlet for bogus versions of rock and roll hits re-recorded by "at least one member of the original group." That is all I can find out about this album. These are not the original versions of these classic western tunes, although whoever did these covers did a very good job and it's quite an enjoyable listen, bringing back lots of memories. Although the original composers are credited on the back of the album, there is no mention of who actually recorded the versions on this album. A lot of times if it wasn't the original artist it would say somewhere, as recorded by the "doo wop singers" or some such group. As a result I had to tag it as unknown artists. The album is in pristine condition and if anyone might have some additional info about it I would be curious to know more.  This version of the Good, the Bad and the Ugly is quite different but it's a good listen nonetheless.

The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly
The Magnificent Seven
Funny Toon

Wednesday, April 27, 2011


“I’m Like James Brown only white and taller
All I wanna do is stomp and holler.”—Hayes Carll, “Stomp And Holler”

Back in 2008 we went to see Corb Lund in concert and the opening act was someone I hadn't heard of at the time. His name is Hayes Carll and he blew us away. When his set was done there was a line up from hell at the merchandise booth(I was in it) and every single person ahead of me bought his disc, as did I. His music is a perfect combination of old school rock 'n roll and bluegrass with a country twist with some of the cleverest lyrics you've ever heard. Hayes put out his first album, Flowers and Liquor, back in 2002 and many publications that year named him the best folk act and best new artist of 2002. Carll's songs combine ragged tunes with autobiographical lyrics, including themes about lazy solitude, strumming his guitar, and drowning his sorrows in alcohol. Hayes just came out with a new album which we just purchased on vinyl. How excited were we when we saw it was pressed on a special edition clear vinyl. The album is fantastic and I can't stop listening to it. Cruising around online I see his first album  is already out of print with prices ranging from 60 to 120 dollars for his debut. Saw one used copy going for 112 dollars. Hayes is easily the best new artist of the new millennium, I have his Little Rock album listed on my top 100 albums of all time. So I urge you to listen to these tidbits and then run out and get his new album, KMAG YOYO (and other American Stories). You won't be disappointed. The acronym stands for Kiss my ass guys, you're on your own. In 2008 Carll had proven his talent for story telling with “She Left Me for Jesus”. On the song KMAG YOYO he does it again with a first-person fable of a soldier’s journey from an Abilene Dairy Queen to outer space (hence the album’s acronym) told in a rapid-fire salute to Dylan’s “Subterranean Homesick Blues”: “Bowie on the system and a bottle on my knee, Armstrong ain’t got nothing on me.”  This is great stuff.

Stomp and Holler
Another Like You
Buy It

Funny Toon

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Young Man's Blues

The Rock City Angels are probably one of the best nearly unheard bands of the 80's. Now I wonder which history of the band I should talk about because one version is straightforward and the other version tells quite the different story filled with conspiracy theories capped by the total screwing they got by one Geffen records. The straightforward version can be found easily enough over at Wikipedia. Let's talk about how they got screwed over eh.

Originally formed in South Florida, the band was plagued with a revolving door of musicians and were ready to call it quits and while playing their farewell gig, Ann Boleyn of New Renaissance Records offered the act a recording contract. They relocated to LA and around this time Johnny Depp joined the band as guitarist. Geffen records took notice of the band and bought their contract from New Renaissance Records. Here's where the story starts getting weird.

While with New Renaissance the band played the Sunset Strip and started to steal away the Guns and Roses fans. They had recorded an album and shipped singles to radio stations when Ann Boleyn received a phone call telling her to stay clear of the band, and someone later attempted to run her vehicle off the road. It was apparent that Geffen wanted to sign the band, and did shortly before the release date of the Renaissance debut to the tune of 6.2 million dollars (unheard of for an independent act). As soon as the band signed to Geffen all evidence of the debut album was destroyed, leading many to speculate that the label only signed the Rock City Angels to avoid competition with Guns N'Roses.

Geffen sent the band to Memphis, Tennessee to work on new material, but wanted the group to lose the glam makeup and change their style. Unwilling to leave California, Depp left the band and soon got his job on 21 Jump Street. Eventually Young Man's Blues would be the first release from the band in 1988(the original Renaissance debut wasn't released till years later), with Mike Barnes (guitar), Doug Banx (guitar, later of Mr. Nasty) and Jackie D. Jukes (drums). The band toured in support of the album with such acts as J. Page, J. Jett, and the Georgia Satellites, and recorded a wealth of material for a second album (which was finally released in 2008, I think). At one point they recorded with Thin Lizzy guitarist B. Robertson. The band’s second album never saw the light of day as Geffen decided to drop the band. Many theories abound as to why they were dropped including drug use, a desire to keep Johnny Depp in acting, as well as fear of lawsuits concerning wrongly credited songs. Journalists in publications such as The Cutting Edge, Hit Parader, and RIP have theorized that the Rock City Angels were signed by Geffen to thwart potential competition with Guns 'N Roses. I have also heard that since Geffen signed both bands at the same, he couldn't decide who he was going to promote and who he was going to sweep under the rug so he flipped a coin and Guns n Roses won. Not long after this the band was history and we are left to wonder what is the real story. Were the Rock City Angels signed by Geffen to prevent them from stealing some of Guns N'Roses' audience? Was the group shipped to Tennessee to force Depp to give up his rock'n'roll dream and concentrate on acting? Or as others suggest, was the band simply sent away to try and get them clean and sober? Depending on who tells the story, the Rock City Angels were either the victims of record company politics, or of their own debauchery.

I have no idea if the history I written about is anywhere near the truth as there are so many theories floating around out there and I've just tried to piece it together. Whatever the case I'm glad my vinyl guy turned me onto this album cause I really enjoyed this puppy. My copy is a promotional copy that is in great shape. People curious about Depp's abilities will find one song co written by Depp on this album.

Beyond Babylon
Hard to Hold
Deep Inside My Heart
Buy It

Funny Toon

Thursday, April 14, 2011


Freeways was the sixth studio album by Bachman–Turner Overdrive rleased in 1977. This album marked a couple of firsts for this band. It was the first BTO studio album to become a commercial failure, featuring the first BTO single that did not chart ("My Wheels Won't Turn"). It did reach the charts but it became the last BTO album by any formation of the band to reach the chart. I sometimes refer to this one as the mellow album or the Randy Bachman solo album. It was the last album Bachman appeared on and the last album to be made with the classic and successful "Not Fragile" line up. As you can see Randy did most of the writing and most of the vocals which really pissed off Fred Turner. He was reportedly so unhappy with this album that he wouldn't allow a straight-on picture of himself to be used on the cover, saying he felt like a "side man." Now that's all the bad news, the good news is that this is a very enjoyable record from start to finish. Keep in mind that the bone crushing riffs that BTO was famous for don't make an appearance here. Yet I would easily take a couple of tracks from this album and place them on a greatest hits compilation. Most people outside BTO's core fan base probably wont listen to this, there were no familiar radio staples like Hey You, Let It Ride, or Takin' Care Of Business but for fans of 70's worker rock, this is a great album. It's just the kinda album that one needs to listen through in one sitting and let the goodness of the music sneak up on you.

Just For You
Easy Groove
Buy It

Funny Toon

Friday, April 08, 2011

California Sun

Every once in a while homercat likes to put up something fun and he tries to do it on a Friday. Well homercat went and did it again.  He located a couple more K-Tels at the local Value Village.  Just in time for another K-Tel Friday.    Today we have California Sun and according to the wayback machine it was released in 1976.  The title says it all, 20 Greatest Hits, 20 Greatest Stars.  Yer crazy edits are in 1st gear here, for example the first cut Beach Baby, was originally over 5 minutes long and here it clocks in at 3:28.  California Sun is just what I needed because homercat is really wanting a warm,dry, day.  This cold and rain is starting to get to me.  So I hope a few of you will have a brighter K-Tel weekend now. 

320 kbps

Artist- Title
First Class- Beach Baby
Jan & Dean- The Little Old Lady (from Pasadena)
Hondells- Little Honda
Turtles- Happy Together
Joe Jones- California Sun
Mamas & The Papas- Monday, Monday
Gary (US) Bonds- School is Out
Surfaris- Wipe Out
Rip Chords- Hey, Little Cobra
Johnny Rivers- Help Me, Rhonda
Mamas & The Papas- California Dreamin'
Jan & Dean- Surf City
Lovin' Spoonful- Summer in the City
Turtles- It Ain't Me Babe
Gary Puckett & the Union Gap- Lady Willpower
Frankie Ford- Sea Cruise
Gary Lewis & the Playboys- Count Me In
Freddy Cannon- Palisades Park
Chantays- Pipeline
Bobby Freeman- C'mon and Swim

Copy and Paste this link into your browser to download

Funny Toon

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Big Black Sky

Canadian rockers Prism have sold millions of albums, and the songs say it all - Spaceship Superstar, Armageddon, Take Me Away, Young & Restless, Flying, Take Me to the Kaptin, Night to Remember and others - all Canadian rock standards. Back in 2006 on New Year's Eve I had the pleasure of seeing Helix, Headpins, and Harlequin with Prism closing out the show and ringing in the New Year with their rock anthem Armageddon. Admittedly the band hasn't been quite the same since the death of Ron Tabak back in 1984 but they still soldier on and the live show does kick ass still. Al Harlow does all the lead vocals now and does a pretty good job even though Mrs homercat thought he looked a bit creepy. Back in 2008 Prism actually released a new album called Big Black Sky and I'm just putting it up here today because a lot of folks may not have even realized that they are still recording. The album is quite satisfying if one listens to it without expecting the vocal prowess of Ron Tabak. Back when Prism was a commercial force Al penned a lot of the great songs. Long time Prism fans might be inclined to say that this isn't Prism, it's the Al Harlow band. One would have to judge for yourself.  Love the album cover, probably their best one.

Big Black Sky
Buy It

Funny Toon

Friday, April 01, 2011

Silk Degrees

Good news people! With the amount of vinyl rips that I occasionally provide here, one might think that I'm just an old fart living in the dinosaur ages but you'd be wrong. Vinyl record sales are back in high rotation. In 2010 Vinyl Records sales increased to become the fastest growing music format in USA and Canada. Take that digital. Also these numbers do not include all of the 100% DIY/Independent releases. Or sales from most Mom & Pop stores and bands who sell off-stage at concerts. Barcodeless-off-the-grid stuff. So the numbers are even higher than being reported. Now if you think it's just a bunch of us old hippies trying to relive our glory years you'd be wrong again. Younger people are the fastest growing market for vinyl. There are a number of factors at work here. Digital download limitations in recent months has led some customers toward searching out for higher sound quality, as well as the more authentic experience of physically putting on a record and holding and looking at the sleeve. After reading several articles I've come up with at least 10 reasons for the renewed interest in the glorious vinyl sound.
1: Generally most of us audiophiles believe vinyl has better sound, a more soul reaching sound. Even after ripping it to digital.
2: Cover art and liner notes are way more cool than needing a magnifying glass to read cd liners!
3: Us boomers want to reattach to the era that they got into vinyl.
4: Lots and lots of cheap used vinyl out there and tens of millions of titles with many that will never see the light of day with CD even after 30 years of CD .
5: A physical and almost organic attachment to the black disc.
6: More and more new vinyl being pressed and sold.
7: Lots of good used turntables out there many very affordable.
8: More and more new turntables being made and sold.
9: It's A tweakers paradise unlike all other playback formats.
10: Many younger music listeners are getting caught up in it and the retro part of it, in one interview a young kid said he liked the way it felt when he held the album.
There you have it folks, straight from the mouth of babes.  Mp3's are a great portable medium and I'm down with that but you just can't beat the sound quality that comes from a hard copy such as vinyl.

In honor of this news I'm posting up a couple tunes from a classic piece of vinyl from the 70's. Silk Degrees is the seventh album by Boz Scaggs, released in 1976. The album reached #2 on the U.S. pop albums chart. The album is a mix of straight pop rock tracks, smooth soul compositions and appealing ballads. Two tracks from this album, Lido Shuffle and Lowdown, are two of the best songs released in the seventies. Lido Shuffle is one of my all time favorite songs. Has anybody out there ever heard the cd of this album? I can tell you it is quite horrible. A friend had ripped a copy for me way back and I thought the sound was awful. I was glad when I finally found a vinyl copy of this classic. Listening to the two different formats and it was immediately obvious which sounded better. Interesting note is that Boz recorded this album with session musicians who would later go on to form Toto.

Lido Shuffle
Buy It

Funny Toon

Friday, March 25, 2011

No Fun Aloud

Glenn Frey is best known as a founding member of the Eagles but when they called it quits (the first time) he did have a decent solo career mainly in the 80's. No Fun Aloud was his first solo album coming out in 1982. It was a moderate commercial success and it was mostly fairly received by critics also. The album contains the top 40 hit The One you Love. Homercat's better half swears that the sax in that song is one of the sexiest sax soloes she's ever heard. Glenn's vocals and impeccable talent for crafting laid-back love songs really make the album noteworthy. Partytown is another great little song that's great to listen to around 5 on a Friday afternoon. A curious remake of Sea cruise sounds like a fluffy little bubblegum piece that seems out of place on this album, but the rest of the tracks make for mighty fine listenin'

The One You Love
Buy It

Funny Toon

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


In 1981 Juice Newton released her third solo album, Juice. While many had never heard her until this album, she had been around for awhile. Before going solo she was in the band Juice Newton and Silver Spur which had released three albums before splitting. Juice was the multi platinum breakthrough album containing two #1 hits "Angel of the Morning" and "The Sweetest Thing (I've Ever Known)". It also features "Queen of Hearts," the biggest-selling single of her career, peaking at #2 on both Billboard's Hot 100 and Adult Contemporary charts. The vomit inducing "Endless Love" by Diana Ross and Lionel Richie prevented the song from reaching #1. Maybe I was a bit harsh about Endless Love, I hear some people liked it. "Queen of Hearts" was also a popular music video during the summer of MTV's debut year. Juice Newton is probably mostly associated with country music yet this album is all pop. The old girl is still around and most recently released an album back in 2010.

Angel of the Morning
Country Comfort
Buy It

Funny Toon