Thursday, December 12, 2013

June Through December Music Picks

Things have been a little crazy 'round the Mod Male headquarters. I've been wanting to put up a Music picks post for months now, but well... it's been a tad difficult.

But, I gotta get something up before year's end, so here are just some tracks I've been digging heavily since almost 6 months ago!

1. Rupert's People - 'Reflections of Charlie Brown' - Many people on Twitter and Facebook have been posting some great '60s freakbeat clips and have reminded me of many songs I used to LOVE years back but have kind of forgotten about over time. It's natural... you discover new music and you sometimes put away old faves. This Rupert's People track was brought back to my attention and got me back into wanting to pursue more of these late '60s British sounds.

2. Van Morrison - 'Warm Love' - My old pal Juan posted this one up on the ol' FB and, let me tell you, I played it over and over again for about 3 days straight. So much better than the actual recorded version, I think. It's that funkier beat that gets me.

3. The Impressions - 'Love's Happening' - We have been on a BIG Curtis Mayfield kick over these last few months (okay, always on a Mayfield kick). But the other day, I pulled out This Is My Country, and was just floored all over again by how great this whole album is. Was hard to pick just one track, but this one is a pretty good indication of what you get.

4. Beachwood Sparks - 'Forget The Song' - One of my favorite things is coming home to a new CD my wife has picked up on a surprise whim. A few months back, it was the 'new' Beachwood Sparks CD (okay, a couple of years old, by now), Tarnished Gold. Friends, if you're a fan of that psychedelic country sound, hook up with this! It's been an almost daily play since she picked it up.

5. Big Sandy and His Fly-Rite Boys - 'Three Years Blind' - My wife scored twice in the last few months, the second time with the new Big Sandy release! Basically, a collection of re-worked songs from their catalog. And it's great! I was working one night and completely stumped by what she was playing. It took a while for me to realize it was, in fact, Big Sandy. The song that stumped me was 'Baby Baby Me'. No confusing his voice on this track, though!

6. Parliament - 'Silent Boatman' - Here's another track I rediscovered after trying to re-organize LPs after our move. Again, that whole album, Osmium, needs to be in your collection with some really great tracks ('Automobile' and 'Little Ole Country Boy,' two of my other faves). But this haunting track gets me every time. (Yeah, it's the bagpipe.)

7. Simon & Garfunkle - 'Homeward Bound' - Another song that helped welcome us to our new place. Really, when it comes to S&G, I don't need to say anything you haven't already heard.

8. Patti Smith - 'Gloria' - It was weird. After Lou Reed's death, I wasn't really in the mood for the Velvet Underground or his solo work. Instead, I found myself wanting to hear other New York sounds like Television and Patti Smith. I used to really like this stuff back in high school, but haven't heard it in years. In fact, I don't even own any Patti Smith records which is something I really need to correct soon. This particular cover is the one that hits me hardest. Just powerful.

9. Kaleidoscope - 'Sky Children' - When our baby was born, this was one of many songs that hit my head. (This and 'Balloon' but couldn't find it on YouTube.) I just thought about playing this for her as she got older to really start sowing those 'good music' seeds. Sure, she'll go through her teeny-bop phase. Yes, we'll have to endure whatever New Direction band is around when she's an adolescent. And I'm okay with that. Because one day, after she's through that phase, she'll come to us and say, "Hey pops... hey mama... still have those old Kaleidoscope records?" And then, she'll (re-)discover White-Faced Lady and her little college mind will be blown. (Trust me... my dad knows it happened with me and Bob Dylan.)

10. Derek See - 'She Came This Way' - Alright, gotta give a shout-out to local boy Derek See with his recent 45 release. I got this in the mail right when we were moving and didn't come across it again until opening a box of books. This is a nice piece of heavy, moody vinyl for you. If I didn't know any better, I'd peg it at 1968, but nope... this is 2013!

Man, looking back on this list, you all probably think I'm some mopey dude at home. Hey, what can I say? I like the slow jams when I'm home mellowing out.

Alright, I'm out! Probably my last post of the year. Oh yeah, and if you want Mod gift ideas, oh I don't know... I hear there's Mod wine out there now. Go figure.



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