Wednesday, March 27, 2013

March Music Picks

So, I think Anorak Thing and Monkey Picks have been on to something good with their monthly music picks. Something so good, I think I'll join them!

Years back, I used to take part in one of those Live365 internet station things and I used to love uploading a wide range of good music. I got burnt on having to convert everything to MP3 though, so I eventually pulled out. But, now that YouTube has grown into a vast video archive, I can just grab songs off of there. Hopefully, I can keep this up on a monthly basis.

Anyways, here's a Top 10 list of stuff that's been hittin' me just right this past month:

1. Herbie Hancock - Fat Mama - Makes me miss the days a couple of years back when I used to DJ jazz/soul tunes in between sets of live jazz from The Nick Rossi Trio at the Burritt Room in San Francisco. It was a mellow time when I got to experiment with '50s/'60s/'70s jazz along with newer tracks, then taking a break to enjoy a drink and listen to the guitar, bass, and vibes from the Trio.

2. Nina Simone - Cum By H' Yere (Good Lord) - Pulled this album out again recently. Amazing voice and stripped-down instrumentation. Love the way it just soars as it goes.

3. Simon & Garfunkle - Homeward Bound - One of my fave S&G tracks, amongst many. I was always a fan, in general, but that fandom went up a few notches when we picked up their 'Old Friends' live CD a few years back. They still have that chemistry!

4. Prince Phillip - Keep On Talking - Received the Hall of Fame: Rare and Unissued Gems From The FAME Vaults compilation for Christmas and it's been playing often on our system. The track that gets me going and makes me want to go back to hunting for good soul 45s, though, is Prince Phillip's 'Keep On Talking' written by Dan Penn.

5. Gil Scott Heron - I Think I'll Call It Morning - This one off another album I hadn't listened to in a long while. You know how it is: you get into a record, put it away for a couple of years, and when you re-visit it you re-discover songs that you may have overlooked before. This track became my new favorite.

6. Rodriguez - Crucify Your Mind - We're late to the Rodriguez party, barely catching the Searching For Sugarman movie at our local Elmwood theater over a month ago. And yes, it IS as good as you've heard. I couldn't decide on which track to include, so I'm sticking with my wife's favorite.

7. Dexy's - Nowhere Is Home - This new Dexy's stuff ain't bad, I tell ya. I keep coming back to this one, playing it over and over while I'm at work. Just has that type of mellow beat I'm really into these days.

8. James Hunter - Minute By Minute - Caught the James Hunter Six earlier this month and, as always, it was a great show. Now, his CD is playing non-stop in our car and this is the fave track.

9. Ten Year After - If You Should Love Me - Sad news earlier in the month when Alvin Lee from Ten Years After passed away. Admittedly, as a young Modnick, this is a band I NEVER thought I'd ever get into. Then, one day, I heard this song and my musical horizon expanded just a bit more.

10. Dr. Robert - Heavenly Thing - Back in the '90s, my friends and I got on a huge Dr. Robert kick. Some of you might have remembered him from his Blow Monkeys days, but when he released his solo EP, Coming of Grace, we were hooked. Now, in all honesty, it may have had a lot to do with the fact that the EP featured back-up from people like Paul Weller, Mick Talbot, and Rhoda Dakar. No matter what, though, it was Dr. Robert's voice and the songs' compositions that kept that thing on re-play. Egad, almost 20 years later, and Dr. Robert has done it again with this sweet slice of modern soul! (This clip includes a sample of the track mixed with 'Realms of Gold' which was my fave track off the Coming of Grace EP.)

That's it for this month. Hope these songs grab you like they grabbed me!


  1. Real nice collection of tunes Carlos! I'll have to dig out that Herbie Hancock record, I haven't listened to it in quite a while. Didn't know that Nina Simone track, but it's quite good. And of course, love the Dr. Robert pick!

  2. Welcome along! Nice list. Your wife is a fine judge of taste - Crucify Your Mind is the best Rodriguez song (a few to choose from though). As for The Blow Monkeys they have a new single out (I know, I was surprised too). Can't remember what it is called but it sounded okay.