Monday, June 27, 2005


Sadly this Flipper song is still a valid response to an ugly war mongering government stomping through the world in a death orgy, bloated off of short term greed, and brewing nothing but ill will.

It's Like Deja Vu All Over Again...

Today, I'm running outta juice using a computer kiosk at a convention hall while the world's largest convention of Java programmer's runs rampant around me...

Yersterday I had to be here when the tradeshow opened & afterwards I bartended & cleaned up the slop all night, and then they had me back here today all day...and it's fricking 8:20 pm and I'm still here... I think I've had like 3 and a half hours of sleep in the last 48 hours... color me Sacrificed!

But at least I'm getting paid....

I used to answer Flipper's fan mail, not for the money, uh, just for the glory I think... besides they were too lazy. Their singer Will Shatter would show up and sit beside me at the record label at 10 am with a wine cooler in hand. he was really just hoping for spare royalty checks, and seemed disinterested in the fan mail from geeky kids. The label guy would throw him a few bucks to get rid of him lurking around the storefront, and will might even pilfer a couple 7"s on his way out to sell somewhere else. But Will was a beatnik poet, and really just a guy from Gilroy, and he died soon after of an OD...

lil mike on day will shatter's death hit the news

I think Will was the sweetest of the bunch, Bruce was such a prick, he was actually caught stealing his own master tapes in the warehouse a few years later, which he sold to Rick Rubin for chump change. It proved to be a stupid move, as now all the early Flipper tapes are out of print, and basically lost to the netherworlds of corporate negligence...

Flipper mighta been a buncha drug ravaged idiots, but they were also brutal artists who made a definite mark on the world. Really a band with no apologies, and a legacy of noise that still makes me smile despite knowing the muther fuckers.

They were one of the great band's of the early 80's post punk scene, and the only thing that held them back was their own dysfunctionality. I consider them America's nasty little answer to the pomp & circumspect Public Image Limited.

Flipper - Sacrifice

I dedicate it to all who stood up in opposition to Bush jr & his wicked War without End...

Can't you hear the war cry?
It's time to enlist
The people speak as one
The cattle, the crowd
Those too afraid to live
Demand a sacrifice
A sacrifice

Cant you smell their stinking breath
Listen to them
Wheezing and gasping and
Chanting their slogans
The grave diggers song
Demand a sacrifice
A sacrifice

Can't you smeel the fresh blood
Steaming into the soil
As our patriots
Fathers and mothers and lovers
Admire the military style
Praising Gog and the state
Crying tears of pride
For the sons and lovers
For all the fools slaughteres
For the maimed, the dying
And the dead
So the nation will live
So the people will remain as cattle
Demand a sacrifice
A sacrifice

Next time perhaps we'll get down to the nitty gritty out of print history of Flipper...

but for now enjoy the sick blast of what we have here

and lemme link ya to some other mp3'z from a recent Buddyhead post that also help ya relive the chaos that was the Flipper world order...
(Download - Flipper "Sex Bomb Baby")

Flipper - "Love Canal"

p.s here's a odd lil streaming file thang for y'all

p.s In case yer interested in fattening up yer weak collection of audio beyond MP3'z, I'm auctioning off a slew of cool heavy duty import vinyl records & some rare CD stuff check it out...

NEW YORK DOLLS - 72/73 Import
NY Dolls 72/73 CD $13.50

Curtis Mayfield - The Makings Of - NEW 180 Gram DBL LP
Curtis Mayfield - The Makings Of - NEW 180 Gram DBL LP Bob Marley - Jamaica Joint Jump RARE IMP DBL SET

Marley Dbl Disc CD Set $25.50

LOUIS PRIMA DBL CD IMPORT - Prima Di Tutto $28.00

Joy Division 2 RARE IMPORT PIC LPs
Joy Division Vinyl Pic Discs - $33.00
Ramones - NEW L@@K !!! More Unreleased Tracks LP
Rare Unreleased Ramones LP $17.75
Iron Maiden - Monsters of Rock
Iron Maiden "Monsters Of Rock" LP $17.5

Clash - TV EP - London Calling RARE 7
Clash EP $10.00

Rare NY Dolls Live LP $14.55
NEW YORK DOLLS - Live In Paris 1974
Out Of Print White Stripes Live LP $18.50

ALCOHOL & VICODAN - Queens of The Stoneage
QOTSA LP $17.55

Blue Oyster Cult alt mixes RARE IMPORT
Blue Oyser Cult Rare Alt Tracks $14.75

other stuff of note:

Mercury Blues- Midwest Vol 1 - New Import CD w/ pix

T-Rex Slider 12" 180 Gram Vinyl LP - NEW!!!!

new Joe Strummer Clash - rare LP "...Pigs Fly" vinyl

ALCOHOL & VICODAN - Queens of Stoneage Live LP

Social Distortion RARE "More Girls..." LP $17.50

Friday, June 24, 2005

Closer To The Stars - Birth School Work Death - G'bye Karl

Just heard that Soul Asylum's bassist Karl Mueller passed away at age 41 last week from throat cancer. I actually saw it on some blog called "Pimps of Gore" (well, sheeeeeeeeet, Karl woulda found some irony in that I'm sure...)


But ultimately, damn, that's a bummer. I had no idea how seriously ill he was...

Late last fall, apparently Soul Asylum had a reunion to raise money for Mueller's health care bills in Minneapolis and I didn't hear about it til I did a random web search last month.

Oh well, aside from buyin' a ticket, there's not much I coulda done I s'pose so I don't resent not being contacted personally...although they were a band that made everything seem personal.

From their low key friendly midwestern banter backstage & even onstage, to their touching music that bordered on incredible on the right nights.

I first saw 'em open for Husker Du in D.C at the old 9:30 on F st in Feb of 85 and they just tore the roof off the sucker and make Mould & Hart look like lazy fat guys. I was a teenage runaway, and after trying to sneak in twice , I reluctantly droppped my last 10 bucks at the door and got my money's worth in the first 15 minutes.

I went and saw em again a month or so later at some weird gay disco called The Eastside Club, and there were like 5 people there besides them. But man, they played that show just as fiercely as the packed one a few months prior and had a great time despite the dismal turnout. I was hooked, I bought the 7" single, the Times Incinerator cassette outtakes with Mueller gleefully singing James Brown's Hot Pants, the EPs , the new albums, and even the old albums like "Say What You Will Clarence, Karl Sold The Truck" etc.

As much I wish I coulda been some use to them over the years, they pretty much had it covered. Hi energy stage show, intense personal tunes, and a work ethic that took them through every podunk bar in the country twice.

poster i made circa 1988

I moved out west & I'd just show up early at venues and bug 'em, especially if I was broke. To get in free I'd load their gear (and laugh at their jokes while I drank their beer). At the Mab, Berkeley Square or wherever they were playing there'd be lotsa stories and jokes, & more beers. I soon noticed as they came around, they had upgraded to a rental van, and seemed things must be looking up.

I tried to get the band some press once, but Twin Tone sold their contract to A&M and Maximum Rock & Roll wouldn't publish my piece. Instead, Kerrang the metal mag sent a photographer and took pictures of them on the stairs of the old I-Beam on Haight Street.

From the melted Eagles tape on their dashboard to Dave Pirner's ripped t-shirts & jeans and Dan Murphy's baseball jerseys, to their voices just passionately wailing at the top of their lungs above the guitar drenched din. It was amazing to see circa 1985-1989 and something I'll never forget. Someday I'll get around to posting a crazy video clip I edited of those guys at The Rathskeller in Boston blasting through Closer to The Stars from one of those last indie hurrah's called While You Were Out.

Soul Asylum - While You Were Out CD

At some point someone at A&M decided to pump up the band with a 12" radio airplay single of their Hang Time record, but to this day no one can barely remember the A side, it was the B side recorded at The Roxy in LA That put the band on the college radio map for good...

The James at 16 Medley which incorporates everything from The Godfathers "Birth School Work Death" to Buffalo Springfield, Ted Nugent, Prince & Wild Cherry cribs. Long before we had Mash Up DJs & Me First & The Gimme Gimmes , we had Soul Asylum... kickin down thirteen covers in just over eleven minutes and that was all we needed man...

Here it is culled of some old creakly vinyl, featuring the amazing late Karl Mueller at the start... dig it

James @ 16 Medley

The Village Voice & Spin magazine called them the best live act in the US in the late 80's, and things could only get brighter...

But rumore had it that A&M brass weren't sure what to do with the band, and got pissed off when their recording sessions were too loud at the old Chaplin soundstage studios lot in Hollywood.

Next thing ya know they were supposed to be headed for the big time & then an album later Karl was back to washing dishes at the same club in MPLS his band would headline.

Seemed as quickly as they arose, they had just disappeared, and left just when the going got good. They resurfaced several years later, in the post Nirvana grunge era circa 1992, and instead of flying the flannel Pirner complained of hearing loss, and switched drummers & made the new one sit in a plexi glass box. Seems they had matured after a bit of woodshedding, and somehow after getting dropped by A&M, were signed to Sony.

Pirner got all extra sensitive, and let his inner hippy shine through more...

They put out a video that featured those runaway kids, and the next thing ya know they are double platinum and the first rock band to play on the White House lawn!

Gone were most of the pranks and chessy covers eating up half a set, and in was a Hammond B-3 player and a movie star girlfriend with tix to the Oscars.

Karl remained a loyal steadfast soldier, even when the promo budgets didn't allow him to do the radio station tours & MTV interview appearances...

He hung back in Mpls, likely smoking, while Pirner played out his 15 minutes.

Now we've lost Karl... and I haven't got anything important to add here... maybe we'll just put down a couple more tracks and listen in...

Here's some songs that mean a lot to me... not sure if y'all will care, but these are some important cuts I'm hoping you'll dig...

Soul Asylum - Closer To The Stars (Acoustic MTV Unplugged Version)

Soul Asylum - Hope ( Descendents Cover )

also the blog known as "Pimps of Gore" posted 4 classic tracks from the "Hang Time" & "Horse They Rode In On..." albums...

visit there within the next couple of days to suck up more good free shit...

Sony, in a classic spurt of a day late & a dollar short just finally released a live album this year of a concert from 1997 that the band played for a high school prom in a flood damaged part of North Dakota. I just ordered my copy and suggest you do the same if ya wanna have some fun in the memory of ol' Karl...

The band opens up the set by ripping into School's Out by Alice Cooper, and besides playing their own hits & near misses they toss in some other covers like Rhinestone Cowboy by Glen Campbell, Johnny Nash's I Can See Clearly Now, Marvin Gaye's Sexual Healing, Smokey Robinson's The Tracks Of My Tears & Lulu's To Sir with Love...

click to purchase : SOUL ASYLUM
After The Flood: Live From The Grand Forks Prom
recorded live 6/28/97
Soul Asylum - After The Flood: Live From The Grand Forks Prom June 28, 1997 CD

We'll miss you Karl...

The Karl Mueller Memorial Fund
c/o Smith Barney
345 St. Peter Street
1800 Landmark Towers
St. Paul MN 55102-1637

Karl's funeral went down on Weds in MPLs. Pirner & Murphy of course spoke fondly of how without Karl there would have been no Soul Asylum, and how he came back from a trip to England in high school with an earring and a Discharge T-shirt and started the momentum that lead in 1981 to forming to Loud, Fast, Rules. Dan Murphy reportedly closed his eulogy with quotes from Karl's favorite song "Stay Free" by The Clash, a slogan which Karl carved into his bass (now on display in a Minnesota History Center in St. Paul).

"I'll never forget the smile on my face 'cause I knew where you would be/ And if you're in the Crown tonight, have a drink on me/ But go easy, step lightly, stay free."

There's accounts of his funeral posted at Scott Hudson's Rant-A-Bit

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Looking For A Kiss

Sealed With A Kiss, or at least in factory shrinkwrap, the CD pictured below is a hard to find Spanish Import CD that collects the New York Dolls earliest demo recordings before they signed to Mercury.

Back in the day when Prog Dinosaurs & Folk rockers were kings of the industry, The Dolls were wowing the crowds at The Mercer Arts Center with a blend of AM radio bubblegum sensibilities & a bit of Stooges like fury. These drag wearing goofballs were soon hanging with the hip gang like Bowie & Warhol at Max's Kansas City & becoming the talk of the town. In an effort to gain them exposure out of NY, their then manager Marty Thau gets the disheveled bar band an Oct 72 gig opening for Rod Stewart & The Faces in front of 13,000 people n the UK. Soon the buzz is so loud it's virtually unstoppable, fuck the Allman Bros. this is the new deal...

Staten Islander David Johansen bellows his way through the early hits featured here, while the late Johnny Thunders (aka John Anthony Genzale) a junkie goomba from Queens kicks out the jams with their illustrious musical sidekicks Arthur Kane, & vintage clothing retail pioneer Sylvain Sylvain. The drummer on these tracks rotates from Billy Murcia to Jerry Nolan, when Murcia O.D's on dope before the fledgling band even gets signed.

New York Dolls 02

ah, Youth is sweet... and these boys are caught on tape, all young and dumb and full of cum. Aside from Sylvain Sylvain & Johansen, the boys are now all dead, so this is the real deal, the first edition of a legendary act, and it's likely as good as it gets, phony recent reunions aside*.

When you crank up this collection you are digging back into a time when Tricky Dick was President, Vietnam lingered in the air, Times Square was a sleazy porn district, and CBGB's but a burgeoning dog doo stained glimmer in Hilly Kristal's eyes. Crank these tawdry tunes and catch a sonic glimpse of one of the most influential and fu*ked up groups of all time, before Malcolm McClaren came around to hang the Hammer & Sickel & squeeze 'em into red leather.

This disc from 72 & 73 collects all the early demo tracks in the order they were actually recorded, starting with their rave up "Looking For A Kiss", on through "Pills" (a.k.a Rock & Roll Nurse) & finishes with the great "Personality Crisis". That's of course not all, and several other lively blasts like "Bad Girl" from this seminal era complete this rare and hard to find disc.

Download The NY Dolls performing Looking For A Kiss

Eventually the aforementioned Malcolm McLaren, Booze, Heroin, Debts, Girl Trouble and all sorts of troubles would befall the Dolls... but that's another buncha stories for another day. This is the pure essence of the roots of it all... way before MTV and all that LA faux glam metal rehash b.s came along in their name a decade later.

Get this nicely packaged disc and learn about what it was really all about, before The Ramones, Blondie and others even set up camp in the Lower East Side to shake it all up. I betcha these boisterous rockin' tunes will likely be played over and over once you get your grubby hands on 'em in this cool gatefold record sleeve style digi pack slipcase.

Note: Spanish Import Edition, Made in EEC

New York Dolls - NYC  72/73 Demos - Sealed Spanish CDClick To Bid On This Collectable CD
@ E-Bay
New York Dolls - NYC 72/73 Demo Sessions - New Sealed Spanish Import CD

psst - (download an alternate version of the Dolls "Looking For A Kiss" a track recorded surrepteciously during the June 2004 New York Dolls reunion gig put on by Morrissey in London. To download more tracks from the bands 2004 UK gig featuring the late Arthur Kane on bass before is death in Jan 05 click here.

New York Dolls - Pre-Crash Condition: Live From The Royal Festival Hall DVDBetter versions of these same tracks exist on the official DVD & CD release available on DVD for 18.59 or for $15.38 on CD via Sanctuary)

hey, got time?

Check Out My Other Unique eBay Collectable Listings

pssst... just bid & get some rare music & support this site...

SUBLIME It All Seems So Silly - Rare Live Last Show CD
SUBLIME It All Seems So Silly In The Long Run - Rare Ltd Edition Live CDUS $55.00

ALCOHOL & VICODAN - Queens of The Stoneage
Blue Oyster Cult alt mixes RARE IMPORT
Clash - TV EP - London Calling RARE 7
NEW YORK DOLLS - Live In Paris 1974

Monday, June 20, 2005

Summertime & The Living Is Sleazy

On Sunday night I hosted a listening party for a new Sublime tribute Cd at the local bar I work at here in SF. Lots of fun people showed up on hardly any notice and reminded me of all the good times I had hanging with Sublime and their great jams and furiously passionate tunes that just melt your cares away. The new tribute disc is called "Look At All The Love We Found" and hits the streets this week ( Tuesday to be exact y'all). Check out the fine indie label for more info on obtaining, or if you do the I-tunes thing they pre-released for the I-pod nation at the link below Look at All The Love We Found: A Tribute to Sublime - now on iTunes!

The compilation features contributions from a slew of current great musical greats, and likely offers up something for nearly everyone... from smooth latino grooves from the like of Los Lobos to punk rock blasts from Avail & Pennywise to funky interpolations from hip hoppers, ska bands and even the nearly unclassifiable Camper Van Beehoven.

Here's an Mp3 download from the compilation
The Greyboy All Stars - "Doin' Time" (7.68MB)

which of course, if you're familar with this song, was really just Sublime hacking up a Gershwin tune, and now Karl Denson & Co. cut it up one mo' time for a jazzy mostly instrumental trip down summertime memory lane.

If ya dig that you can click to preview some other tunesfrom Look At All The Love That We Found

Since I'm slowly coming out of a Sunday stoner coma, I'll keep it thick and funky for a bit until we juice up the super seventies white trash wagon...

Here's 9 minute version of a perfect summer funk track from the 70's. It's The Danny Krivits edit of Cymande's Bra. Cymande is right up there with Osibisa, Tower of Power and Mandrill on the list of large legends of cool ass 70's funk bands. Danny Krivits a.k.a Mr. K was/is a NYC DJ of some reknown who hung around the Paradise Garage scene with fellow turntable & reel to reel warrior Larry Levan and would offer up his remixed versions of funky tracks to be played . Back in the day, before sampling and scratching were popular, 70's disco DJ's would tape splice the beats & breaks on reel to reel tapes to get extended mixes ready for the late night coke fueled dancefloor action around NYC .

This track Cymande- "Bra" is from an out of print compilation of some of Danny's popular edits.


And not that it's particularly related , I'll toss in a link to download the Calexico version of Joy Division's "Love Will Tear Us Apart", which actually is a poppy pleasant diversion from the original's over wrought gothic 'tude.

Calexico - "Love Will Tear Us Apart"

Prior to bartending and showing vids at The Sublime Tribute party, I hung out at the North Beach street fair this weekend a bit, drank some organic ales with my old pal Greg Mooney who's an ex-Ringling Bros clown, and an actual graduate of clown college. We were intermittenly checking out lots of crazy cleavage, and laughing at the cops, who never cease to amaze at the ways they can collect overtime by doing very little.

The day before I caught my pal, the mighty Greg Dale performing at a punk rock hootenany of sorts at Thee Parkside. Greg fronts a band called Sorrowtown Choir, who play a moody batch of trouble making songs like this one featuring my pal Bone Cootes on guitar.

Sorrowtown Choir - "Mama Don't Keep No Pictures"

Greg was on a bill with the "notorious" John The Baker, who once won a settlement from the town of Woodstock NY when the cops tried to keep him from singing some "sleazy" lyrics in their parks. Here's a real audio streamed interview with John The Baker.

Here's an MP3 of John The Baker and The Malnourished performing "Get Out of My Face"

If that ain't white trash enough for ya, I'll toss in a couple more to keep ya lazy fool's entertained:

Charlie Rich - known as The Silver Fox, he spent decades laying down the lush soulful trailer trash operas like no other. From his Sun records days and "Lonely Weekends" to his 70's shlock platinum hits like "The Most Beautiful Girl In The World", he was basically untouchable in my book. Here the late Memphis based singer showing why he's just the fucking man on this classic song ...

Charlie Rich - "Life's Little Ups and Downs"

Charlie Rich

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Cocktail Nuts!

i'm in the middle of a long weekend, and if all the booze, lack of sleep, extra sunshine & whatnot wasn't enough, I just got my first email threatening me for violating the Digital Millennium Copyright Act... gottta love it!

It makes me wanna harken back, to a kinder, gentler time... when men could swing without fear...

the Cocktail Nuts are a legendary band o' swinging jazz musicians who've influenced a generation of musicians including the Ramones & Dire Straits with their hopping original jazzy sound...

"Very few people outside of the inner circle of the music industry's elite understand the significance of the all-too-short career of the Cocktail Nuts. The midwestern jazz quintet toured relentlessly throughout the mid-50's and, with an LP's worth of original material on tape and a national distribution deal with the Planters label (a major contender at the time), the group seemed poised for success if not for the untimely death of singer and song-writer Pat Stachio due to a boating accident in Kansas during early 1958. " - from The Cocktail Nutsofficial website.
To better understand the group, we suggest you read the website devoted to the Cocktail Nuts Mythology

Check out a streaming audio sample of their early version of Blitzkreig Bop ( later recorded by the Ramones )

Download an mp3 of Sultans of Swing ( the track that put Dire Straits on the map)

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Hank Thompson - living country music legend


from my collection, an autographed Hank Thompson songbook

Today I'm pleased to present one of country music's greatest performers, who even though he's in his late 70's is still touring and playing.

Born in 1925, Hank grew up in Waco Tx, he grew up in the depression, fascinated with a neighbor lady's Victrola, emanating sounds of Dalhart's Texas Panhandlers, The Carter Family & Jimmie Rodgers, at the movies Gene Autry was singing on the big screen, and Earnest Tubb was broadcasting out of Fort Worth, and The Grand Ol' Opry on WLS every Saturday night out of Nashville.

download a track by one of Hank's early influences

Dalhart's Texas Panhandlers - Better Get Out of My Way
From A 78 RPM Diamond Disc from 1926

He learned guitar & harmonica by age 10 and could pick tunes up by ear of the radio, or via the nickel jukes & by the time he was in high school, Hank had his own sponsored radio show on WACO.

He started writing his own material aboard ship in the Navy circa WWII, and returned to Texas and got shows on the big Mexican radio stations like XCLO & XERF known as "border boomers". The signals were so strong they could be heard as far as Hong Kong, and of course throughout the entire US.

His homespun diction, and memorable tales of love & woe , jubilation & rebel rousing soon earned him fans near & far.

His first record was written while in the Navy, 1946's Whoa Sailor b/w Swing Wide Your Gate of Love and were big on the hit pardade on KRDL in Dallas. He bounced around on indies like Globe, & Blue Bonnent, but with help from Tex Ritter, he landed a deal with Capitol in 1947, and finally struck it big with "Humpty Dumpty Heart" in 1949. He quit a regular run on the Grand Ol' Opry in 1949, and travelled the back country playing country's version of the vaudeville circuit, consisting of school houses, barn dances, saloons & grange halls.

Hank Thompson - Fool To Fool Around With You.mp3

IN 1952 after hitting a 33 week stint in the top 10 with "Wild Side of Life" (a.k.a Honky Tonk Angels), he began a string of 21 top 20 hits, many in the top 5. His road band the Brazos Valley Boys had two fiddlers , wore suave suits, and featured their own sound and lighting system ( built using expertise learned as a Navy radioman and via a brief collegiate G.I Bill stint at Princeton). With his big band, they played , and played, hitting county fairs and on into larger ballrooms like the Trianon in Chicago, Meadowbrook in New York, The Panther Hall in Fort Worth & Prom in Minneapolis, with later appearances at venues such as the Smithsonian Institute, the Hollywood Palladium, Carnegie Hall. His charming personality, hit making and sense of showmanship & style found him offered a television show in Oklahoma City, the first variety show broadcast in color.

Says Thompson of his colorful sequined studded Nudie suits and blazing stage show "The public is entitled to something that is colourful and flashy. We're in showbusiness and there's nothing colourful about a T-shirt and ragged jeans."

Hank's hits during the 1950's included "Waiting in the Lobby of Your Heart" (1952), "Rub-A-Dub-Dub" (1953), "Breakin' the Rules" (1954), "Honky Tonk Girl" (1954), "The New Green Light" (1954), "The Blackboard of My Heart" (1956).

Hank Thompson- Rub-A-Dub-Dub.mp3

Click to direct to an an mp3 of Rub-A-Dub-Dub, from a rare early 1950's radio transcription recording released by Bloodshot Records of Chicago

In 1957 he recorded the album "Songs For Rounders" ( the first stereo country LP) that featured rough hewn rowdy western swing tracks like "I'll Be A Bachelor Til I Die" and his version of "Cocaine Blues" ( years before Johnny Cash got around to releasing it). Other highpoints in the 50's included "Driving Nails In My Coffin" & "Squaws Along the Yukon" (1958) not to mention being voted #1 Country Western Band in Billboard for 14 straight years, and in that time played 14 Texas State Fairs.

track from his out of print LP

Songs for Rounders - Capitol
Play: Streaming Windows Media .asf

His 1960 release "Hank Thompson, Live at the Golden Nugget in Las Vegas" showcased his groundbreaking Las Vegas country show featuring Merle Travis on guitar and Bobby Garrett on pedal steel and was the first live country album. The live album was so successful two more live albums followed within two years. His hits in the early 60's included "A Six Pack To Go" & 1961's "Oklahoma Hills."

Hank Thompson - A Six Pack To Go

As the decade wore on Hank switched allegiances from Capitol where he'd done 25 albums, and he began working with Warner Brothers in '64, charting with "Where Is the Circus" and "He's Got A Way With Women." By '68 ABC/Dot became his label where he recorded 18 albums including tributes to Nat King Cole & The Mills Bros as well as classic drinking themed tunes "On Tap, In the Can, or In the Bottle (1968), and "Smoky the Bar" (1969).

Hank Thompson - Smoky The Bar

Approximately 12 more albums followed on a smattering of labels. One was a 1997 tribute/duet album of sorts featuring Vince Gill, Lyle Lovett, Marty Stuart and others. The standout track for me is a medley mash-up of his breakthrough hit Wild Side of Life featuring the inclusion of the famous answer track by Kitty Wells (& in amarketing ploy, how about Tanya Tucker who is tossed in the song for her who knows what, as she definitely sounds worse for wear than either of her elders).

Click to start listening and we'll let Hank tell his own story of the song...

Play: Streaming Windows Media .asf
file The
Wild Side Of Life/It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels

Hank, Kitty & Tanya - Curb Records 1997

    Whatever meaningful contributions I may have made to this industry must pale by comparison to the profound effect of my recording of "Wild Side Of Live."
    Not so much what the song did for me, but that it spawned an answer song
    (not unusual back then), "It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels."
    It catapulted a relatively unknown young girl vocalist, Kitty Wells, to immortal stardom. Prior to Kitty's emergence, female singers in Country Music (and all other forms as well) had only modest success. It is now academic to
    say that she paved the road. Kitty cut the ribbon to the freeway for those to come: Patsy Cline, Tammy Wynette, Reba McEntyre, Tanya Tucker and other
    superstars. Kitty Wells came into the studio and sang her signature song as well, if not better than she did on the original recording. The clarity and charm of her voice project an exhilaration that is unmistakable! By contrast
    and compliment, Tanya Tucker added her saucy, and even sassy, retaliation. She
    put a sting to those lyrics so characteristic of her style and personality.
    And to think Kitty and I recorded those songs years before Tanya was born! Who
    would have thought that someday we would be here for this historic event. It
    makes us very proud!

Amazingly , Hank who has had 7 decades of hit making is still on the road as I started this piece in late April, playing a Knights of Columbus hall in deep in the heart of Texas with the lastest edition of The Brazos Valley Boys , featuring Hank's fiddle player since 1955, Curly Lewis. Look for them on the road , still rousing up crowds at Theaters, Fairs, Ballrooms and Casinos coast to coast...dates are posted at

Other recent efforts from Hank include an indie released retro collection of radio transcripts on Bloodshot & and his latest release Drinking Songs and 2000's "Seven Decades" on Hightone.

While yer there at his site, pick up an autographed photo from this country legend and a CD !!

Hank Thompson - last of the living legends,

Sunday, June 12, 2005

The Cult Inside My Intoxicated Man

I first ran across the raving lunatic known as Pat Ryan when he was sputtering about onstage with some kinda globe trotting quasi african/euro trash Partridge Family-esque industrial punk fusion orchestra replete with homemade metal percussion devices. I can't remember if the percussion devices or their white bus, or their relationships broke down first, but their only real obvious mistake was naming their band after some kind of vaguely defined disease.

All the good disease names were taken I guess they figured, so they couldn't ever be Anthrax anyhow. However, they also missed out on a lot of medical association convention work and high school proms due to this marketing faux pas.

The first bass player thought he was actually the next Bob Mould , and defected to Minneapolis with his wife on the drunken off hand advice of Dave Pirner, and was never to be heard from again. I seem to recall the drummers were soon realizing the ship was leaking next. One apparently made it to New Zealand safely and got a paying job with The Chills for awhile before breeding & then trying to beg himself onto the Goo Goo Dolls road crew. A percussionist left to become some kind of cane wielding cartoon animator. Another drummer was brought in, already a beaten refugee from Poi Dog Pondering ( I suppose once you've taken orders from that evil beast Frank Orral, you'll pretty much salute a wet dishrag on a stick if the bassist tells you it's a flag). The rest of these guys that Pat cavorted around with were either always working out visa details in Hungary or Germany or one of the lesser evil Slavic countries. Then again it seems they were also spotted moonlighting illegally in the flagship location of a chain of Senegalese Tamarind Whisky bars in some west coast barrio or something like that too. One could never tell with these type of gypsy people...

Pat shuts his eyes to the harsh reality of another sordid
homo-erotic modeling session to earn room and gruel & pirate radio play in a squat
in the wintry city of far off Fluffennutter

As grunge swept the charts, the bands' street cred was irreparably harmed when a leaked translation document showed that the German version of Rolling Stone magazine had called them "a Grateful Dead of the 90's".

The band remained hopeful, especially after one big break involved a stadium tour supporting a French band that was really big in Belgium. The new connections were paying off until the headliners lead singer decided to bludgeon to death his French movie star girlfriend in a Romanian hotel, making for a plot of yet another bad French movie that would haunt the band on European Hotel TV's for years. Fortunately, the band was forced to stop playing the t.v, and returned to playing the squats, playing the tarot, and playing with each others minds.

Eventually court records rveal that even children were involved, but none were Pat's, at least that he knows of, because by then he was a broke pseudo-alcoholic poet gypsy road dog with only partial custody of his faculties. Other than some faded passport stamps & even more faded handstamps, there is very little evidence of this period to go on.

Eventually the band formed their own religious cult for tax dodging purposes, and prayed that the wacky original material about killing the president, plus the random Bob Dylan, Daniel Johnston and Nick Cave covers would crack the charts as a soundtrack to an as yet unmade action adventure teen exploitation type movie about their lives. Unable however to secure releases from the long missing bassists & drummers, they could not sell the film rights, but kept churning out various sundry tunes on at least 5 or 6 obscure labels. They held long group therapy sesions in search of a hit and even brought in Andy Gill from Gang of Four to produce before hiring their own mothers & even more attractive girlfriends to lead the band in tawdry onstage strip teases. These moves never got 'em much airplay or chart action, or even additional chicks. Unbeknownst to the band, it was a period in Europe where Gang of Four were long forgotten, and even thinking about sex, particularly with krauts and M.I.L.F's had become unfashionable at the time.

Pat and our protagonists would forge on, rock a festival of 9000 outside The Palais du Malaise on Thursday afternoon, hit a club and play to 1000 in Farfigneuton that night, and a wild party of 800 punks in a squat outside Rottenburg on the next day and still be playing to 8 folks in a dilapitated movie theater in West Sacto Ca. within the week. In no time at all, they'd go from interviews on international radio to interviews for gigs laying sheetrock. They somehow managed this shtick for over decade until being forced by socio-economic factors, inner strife and child protective services into downsizing their operation.

I'd get all the details & dates straight for ya, but then I'd still have to change the names to protect the guilty, and then again, what's the point?

Well the point is, I guess, weaker poet thinking man's rocker dudes woulda O.D'ed, faded into rehab or blown their pretty little brains out, but our hero Pat Ryan simply survived. He just crept away quietly one day at customs with his dignity wrapped in an old tour t-shirt (hand-stitched by his mother), and the band just rolled on without him. They all got dysentary in southeast asia and a write up in a Thai rock magazine, and Pat, well, he went and got a job.

He was in his mid thirties, and had never sat at a fake wood veneer desk before. Yes, indeed he was born anew.

Rumor says he's somewhere downtown, and I wouldn't be surprised if he's like the quintessential quiet festering accountant guy, with a secret creative life that no one at the office need know about. A proverbial Clark Kent with thick rimmed glasses , hiding his secret powers from the secretaries & middle management types. In fact he's probably web surfing up his name right now and finding this horrible spiel that insists on revealing his depraved destiny and his terrible treasure trove of tales to the world.

I bet he'd even think this was funny, if it wasn't all pretty much fucking true.

"I can see severely now..."

Pat Ryan is a rare creative character, and someone whose talents and charisma lie hidden from public view these days like a guerilla sleeper cell. He's been keeping busy, spider holed, observing the world, working in the lab and waiting to strike.

For sometime now he's been recording & mixing a solo album called "THE CULT INSIDE MY HEAD" that is far more complex and rich in tones & content than the entire ouevre of most of the twee tweedle knobbers and disco dumble dee dee dahs that I hear sputtering on the radio these daze.

Of course I know deep down , Pat's project, like most from unheralded indie warriors, will be commercially doomed, at least until he can get out on the road, and win those bleeding hearts in the nosebleed seats one by one. Unfortunately he's too old for American Idol tryouts, and I doubt Paula Abdul would wanna bump uglies with him. Besides he'd probably engage Paula in some sort of off camera banter about the neo-fascist resurgence in Eastern Europe and completely lose her.

But dammit, why should we punish him for that? He's an old fashioned idea man, and is willing To get up & boogie & shout bam-a-lama if he has too. That courageous boy wonder of so many years ago was born to do it and Amerikkka needs him now more than ever. He has a special wily onstage persona that somehow invokes the terrifying & dramatic spectre of Allan Ginsberg morphing into Joe Pesci doing a Van Morrison imitation at a Lenny Bruce Memorial Pow Wow Can-Can rain dance & seance in the Naropa Institute teacher's smoking lounge. He's like a drunken demon leperchaun on ludes leaping about in high heeled jack boots & rallying Ward Churchill's Bar Mitzvah crowd at the Mos Eisley space station dive bar lounge. I ain't making any of that shit up either you goddamned bored blog reading he's sensitive & cute as a button!

anyhow, Pat's revealing tracks from his soon to be released magnum opus one by one and unless you frequent the bars on the wrong side of 12 Galaxies, you might not be hip to this shite yet...

The Cult Inside My Head - Slowly

deal wit it , it's deep y'all...

p.s if ya made it through that, then here's some more mp3'z for ya that'll tell ya where I'm at tonight :

Serge Gainsbourg + Brigette Bardot - Intoxicated Man

Green Day - Blood Sex & Booze

Teenage Head - Ain't Got No Sense

Devo + Isaac Hayes - Huboon Stomp

James Brown - Funky Women

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Feathered Hair + GI + Body Bags

The above photo is a pic of a "high school senior picnic" with lotsa flowing feathered hair circa 1981. Uh,'s ok, yer not on acid, I fucked the pic all up in a photo editing program to protect the identities of the guilty that I found on some Blacksburg Va High School reunion website. I actually delivered pizzas for awhile in Blacksburg circa 1986, and recall the town being pretty near to Jerry Falwell's bible thumping H.Q just down the road.

Looking at these students reminds me of some of the reasons I got so into punk rock in the early 80's, and was consciously rejecting the conformity and grotesque bourgeois brainwashed 80's values and so called "normality" of my "peers".

In the early 80's , my father was to join a little start up media company called USA Today. Dad uprooted us from a village in western NY along the Erie Canal, to become a worker on the information superhighway and help edit the nation's experimental satellite delivered newspaper. Moving to the suburbs of D.C for me, was a mindnumbing & warping experience to say the least.

Much of the city was a bombed out pcp dosed ghetto warzone, and outlying bedroom communities of our nation's capital a vast wasteland of hopeless corporate conformity & dull drones with Government Security clearances. It seemed unlike the blue collar jobs people in upstate NY had, everyone in "The Beltway" was a white collar clone working off the tax payer teat at innoucuous pork filled agencies and fiefdoms like the US Geological Survey, Clarence Thomas' EEOC or James Watt's Dept. of Interior. Within the faceless bureaucracies, Spy culture is big, and right down the road was an airport named for the first director of the C.I.A and numerous and anonymous lobbying and military contracting firms in every sinister tinted window bearing office complex. Lots of my classmate's folks and our neighbors worked for divisions of the military, Treasury Dept, NASA or within the almighty "Intelligence Community". It's hard to imagine what they mean by "intelligence " or "community", when you aren't allowed to think for yourself or discuss anything with anyone. My neighbor Tim (now of the band Avail) down the cul de sac had a pop who was a CIA analyst, and one got the feeling their wasn't a lot of dialogue about that in the family.

Meanwhile the Army recruiters trolled campus promising you could "Be All You Can Be In Today's Army" and Ronald Reagan's cold war humor had us believing the "The Bombing begins in 5 minutes. . ."

I was busy rebelling, creating underground newspapers, spray painting bullshit punk rock slogans on walls and trying not top get beat up by moronic jocks. I was also getting into mags like Trouser Press, Maximum Rock & Roll and listening to bands like The Cramps, Damned, Clash, Minor Threat, Social Distortion, No Trend, The Ramones & and soon starting my own noisy little combos with pals.

It's been kinda interesting, even weird & mostly sad to see the extreme outpost of rebellion that was hardcore punk turn into a well marketed mall cartoon version of itself. Nowadays mannicured & moussed bands like Good Charlotte , Fall Out Boy, MX PX & Sum 41 are sort of representing the ultimate distortion of punk. They all remind me more of Def Leppard than the scrappy bands I used to go see.

I remember punk slipping into a death nell in the late 80's & then it all really got instantly out of hand a few years later after Nirvana blew up. Basically the underground was adopted quick & The Offspring went from playing Gilman St. to having 5 or 6 fax machines set up backstage in every amphitheater by 1995. I remember looking around thinking who the fuck anywhere would need 5 fax machines? How many times a day do 5 people need to fax something absolutely all at once in this band's entourage ? Must have had a no waiting policy in their contract rider I guess...

I assume everyone in the band has a Blackberry by now...

Stuff like that makes me long for the good ol days, when bands didn't even worry about any of that shit. If ya sold more than a thousand copies of your underground record, and it went into a second pressing it meant it was pretty much a hit! If ya had a free beverage & place to sit backstage it was like you had made the big time. But why would you sit backstage when all your friends were in the other room?

I recently picked up a massive 2 CD collection of old Government Issue tracks called Complete History Vol 1 put out by Dr. Strange. I hadn't heard some of the tracks in twenty years, and the 80 some cuts included reminded me of what a fearsome live act this old D.C hardcore band was. My old high school buddies used to cram 5 or even 7 of us at times into a tiny Toyota and haul ass into DC to go see G.I all the time. They would play church basements, and dive bars with shitty PA's and tear the roof off the sucker every night. The singer John Stabb was a real character, unafraid to throw a lil ' ol fashioned Show Biz attitude around as the stage diving madness swirled around him. Stabb would quite often wear something outrageous like a silver studded polyester Elvis gone thrift store jumpsuit type thing to stick out above the see of flannel.

John Stabb circa 82 (GI)
pic on left by Jim Saah from Banned in DC book

Listen to G.I's Teenager in A Box from their Make An Effort 7"

While the vocal sound quality isn't always top flite, particularly on the live cuts, the meaty Tom Lyle guitar always surges right through like a fuzz toned bullet to the brain. Brian Baker produced a lot of their early studio tracks including this track Familiar from the great Joyride EP.

Live the band could get a crowd rocking in a swirling fury, with a highlight of nearly every show being a work out of the old Lee Hazlewood & Nancy Sinatra song "These Boots Were Made For Walking". Megadeath later attempted this tune, and G.I's version outrips theirs by far on likely a thousandth of the Mega Mustaine budget.

G.I would tour a lot, and play just about anywhere it seemed, ironically many of their gigs were in Vet's Halls . Once I saw them in a bar deep in a NW D.C hood on a split bill with Trouble Funk, where big black go-go boys were getting a joyous kick outta holding their stationary fists out smashing the heads of white boys who were circle dancing around in the pit.

Like their friends in Marginal Man, who I profiled late last month (check the archives dawg while the mp3'z are still up!) G.I had their live moments and their recordings only tell a portion of the story. Also like Marginal Man, they sort of left one distinct sound and attempted to forge a more commercial punk-metal-college rock hybrid that was a bit either ahead of it's time, or just plain unwanted.

G.I toured as much as possible, but bounced around on a slew of small labels ranging from early releases on Dischord & Fountain of Youth to Mystic and later Dutch East India affiliated Giant. Eventually they lost some of their core punk audience, and never really hit the big time with their "new" one. By the late 80's, the Stabb & Lyle show were on their umpteenth rhythm section and relics of a rapidly dying scene. Brian Baker had long since moved west to L.A and no longer produced their records, Minor Threat had begat Fugazi, and G.I's contemporaries like Scream were trying hard to stick it out to tour and make money in Europe, enlisting yet another drummer in young Dave Grohl from Dain Bramage. Fellow east coast thrashers like C.O.C & Gang Green were having crossover success on the thrash metal circuit, but Stabb & Lyle were unable to hit the charts with their raw & simplistic songwriting.

G.I finally pulled the plug in 1988... and with them officially died the first wave of D.C hardcore.

a few more of DC/HC 's greatest hits.

bonus track:

A band that I never saw live, but because of their sound I imagine were similar in effect to G.I was Chicago's Effigies.

One of the midwest's finest hardcore bands in the eighties, this is a download of their sorta "hit" Body Bag from 1982. It's from a 7" put out by their own label Ruthless, that also released the first Big Black & Naked Raygun records. Search around forEffigies records if ya love the sound of early 80's era hardcore, replete with pissed off gravelly vocals, speedy drum banging & just imagine a pit of violently thrashing madness in some lonely vets hall. Touch & Go re-released their Remains Nonviewable Collection awhile back.

Apparently the band did a reunion earlier in May and it's documented with some photos etc here at the great site

Effigies - Body Bag

Flyer for a killer DC Hardcore bill in 1982 featuring Government Issue, Black Flag , Effigies, The Faith, Double-0, Iron Cross at The Wilson Center ( a church basement)

thanx also to these sites:

for hosting G.I info, mp3'z & images