Whose new album did you stream first today: Charli XCX? Perfume Genius? Moses Sumney? Jason Isbell? Polo G?
Probably not top-five-of-all-time great, though…
The new TRAPT album “Shadow Work” is the best piece of music trapt has put out and probably one of the top 5 albums that will ever exist for all of time
— TRAPT (@TRAPTOFFICIAL) May 8, 2020
THIS WEEK’S 10 HIGHEST RATED COMMENTS
|Score:37 | May 13th|
In my early days of hanging with you all here, I took a hit for expressing both too much and too frequent gratitude whenever someone had a kind reply to one of my comments. Annoying to some, I am aware. But it’s a life-habit that I’m stuck with. Today’s Number One reminds me that I’m way, long overdue with one particular “thank you.”
One night when working with the abnormally entertaining Harry Ray Orchestra, the band was killing time between sets. The on-break conversation was never what you would call “stimulating.” Most of the players had day jobs, and they had a perpetually tired, stoned, and somewhat defeated demeanor. But not tonight. The staircase behind the stage was abuzz.
Our fearless leader was an older, follicly challenged guy who was about to undergo a hip replacement. In 1981, this was a really major surgery, and he was going to be out for months. Because the show must go on, somebody was going to be named a temporary front-man and bandleader. The guys were speculating, and all five agreed; I was the heir apparent. “It’s obvious. You’re the young cat, you have the time, and, you can handle it,“ said one of the three Tonys. This was really something. It would mean a little bit more money, bragging rights, and invaluable experience.
I was really excited. Harry liked me, and always made a big deal of me to the crowd. It may have just been a steady working wedding and function band, but I knew a Big Break when I saw one.
We went back to do the final set. I noticed that the entire evening had consisted of wall-to-wall old tired standards, Engelbert rave-ups, and, I kid you not, a Steve Lawrence medley. Harry hadn’t yet done his usual shtick of coming over and putting his arm around me while saying, “Hey, everybody, can you believe this? Get a load of this young kid! Playing in my band! C’mon, mt, whatcha got for these nice folks?” Instead, I just sort of fake-book chorded along all night to songs that were recorded way before my time… but really, who really cared? They are old tunes, and I’ll just muddle my way through, until we do some new, pop up-tempo song. That’s my job, here. I’ll dazzle ‘em.
I had a new one ready, and had talked it through with the piano player and drummer before the gig started, anticipating that we’d give it a go. It was 11:50, and still there had been nothing for me to sink my teeth into. I asked if I could do a song. Harry said, “I guess so, which one?” I told him, and he said to the crowd, “Hey, before we wrap it up, let’s hear one from mt. Here’s, “Jesse’s Girlfriend!”
The gig is over. We all load up and leave, and I perform part one of my post-gig ritual: playing back a cassette recording of my night’s work in the car. FF to “Jesse’s Girlfriend,” and y’know, I’m feeling pretty, pretty, pretty, good. Part two of the ritual was to enter a note or two into a “gig-journal” that I’d started 30 months ago, after my first night with Harry.
The phone in my little rented room rings at 8:30 the next morning. It’s Harry. And I’m stoked because for the first time in my life, I’m about to get a promotion.
“Hello, mt, good morning. Look, I want to make this quick. I’m very disappointed. Your work was poor last night. Awful. It sounded bad, with lots of mistakes, and it seems like lately, lazy playing has become normal for you. Have you ever heard the phrase, ’mailing it in?’ That’s what you did. And I don’t appreciate it. It’s a slap in my face. It’s not what I want or expect from someone that works for me.”
“I have to let you go. I’ll make other plans for the work on the calendar. Vera will send out your final check. Good luck.”
It took a full minute for it to sink in, and for reasons that I’ll never understand, my first reaction was to run out to the car and play the cassette that was still in the dashboard deck. I rewound to the beginning.
I’ve rarely felt as much shame. It was much worse than “bad:” it was an audio archive of someone that didn’t care. Someone who was taking the money and running, save for his little moment in the sun while pretending to be Rick Springfield. In a moment of immaturity that I’ll never forgive myself for, I went back inside and threw the journal that ended with entry, “HRO Gig # 156” in the trash. And I didn’t retrieve it.
There are bad bosses for certain, and there is nothing like getting unfairly sacked to make your blood boil. But you know, Harry, I understand that had it coming to me 100%. I let you and the guys down. So, wherever you are, thank you. Thank for firing me. It has served as a lifelong lesson to do my best and not take good fortune and opportunity for granted. I sure don’t always succeed at doing so, but I promise that I am trying.
And although I tossed the journal, I still have the cassette. Whenever I think that I might be guilty of starting to believe my own press clippings, I threaten myself with giving it a listen.
Brings me right back down to earth every time.
|Posted in: The Number Ones: Rick Springfield’s “Jessie’s Girl”|
|Score:37 | May 12th|
|Posted in: No Kid Hungry Rejects Donation From Tekashi 6ix9ine|
|Score:38 | May 11th|
Every time I think I think half my life is over I think really hard about the furthest memory I can manage and realize I don’t even know that person anymore. Then I think about the extreme other side and I realize I don’t know that guy either. You can’t worry about the life of a stranger. Best I can do is take some pictures right now.
|Posted in: Premature Evaluation: Perfume Genius Set My Heart On Fire Immediately|
|Score:39 | May 12th|
So a PE for Bon Jovi then?
|Posted in: Album Of The Week: Moses Sumney græ|
|Score:39 | May 9th|
I’m not really trying to be snarky. It’s just a bit alarmist to say “dropping like flies” when a man dies in his late 80’s. I hope I get that old.
|Posted in: Little Richard Dead At 87|
|Score:41 | May 9th|
I mean, he was 87. It’s kinda more like “dropping like people who have reached the natural end of their life.”
|Posted in: Little Richard Dead At 87|
|Score:44 | May 8th|
“Stars On 45”……those days I had my daytime radio gig and three nights a week doing club work. A couple of weeks in, one of the bartenders bought me a nice big mug, saying now I don’t have to run over every 15 minutes for one of their 3 ounce cokes.
She was gorgeous and she absolutely loved “Stars on 45”. I would play it and look over, watching her beautifully boppin’ behind the bar, giving me a thumbs up. She was so far out of my league, but somehow we clicked. Went to a lot of movies, saw a lot of concerts. Kept trying to get her to have some photos taken to send to modeling agencies. Lots of laughing.
A little more than a year later, I tore my leg up in a car accident. She was right there for me, cooking, helping me get around with a massive hip to toe cast, always encouraging. Then complications set in, and I had to fly back home for more work and therapy.
We kept in touch by phone and a couple of weeks later she sent me a bunch of professional photos she finally had taken. Within two weeks, she had multiple offers from different agencies. We went through them all, and she went with one of the majors. In no time, she was on her way to L.A. The calls got more infrequent, we both moved around and eventually lost touch.
10 years later, I was just stunned to see her smiling face staring back at me in a full page sunglasses ad in Entertainment Weekly. My heart just swelled up knowing not only was she successful, but she has had that rare long career.
Now we get to the Internet Age, where you can look up anyone. I always felt that was a pretty creepy, stalker kind of thing. But a couple of years back, I relented and looked her up. On the search auto-fill hits me with ‘model’ and ‘Europe’. Seems she did a whole lot of work overseas. Lots of pics and portfolios. Just so happy for her success.
Went back last year, and auto-fill hits me with ‘model’ and ‘Facebook’. So I go to her Facebook page.and there she is, just as gorgeous as ever after all these years. It looked like a pretty new page, not much content. But this really eases that creepy stalker feeling, now it’s just a matter of working up the courage and wondering what to say.
Finally manned up and went back a couple of months ago to find the Facebook page. Auto-fill hits me with ‘death’ and ‘obituary’. I don’t remember much after that, slipping into that place everyone knows about, but no one talks about. It took a couple of weeks to go back. She had moved back to her hometown. She wasn’t answering her moms call, so mom went over to check on her and found her.
She never married and lived alone. They say it was natural causes. She was 57. I can only hope and pray that she was happy. I can only hope and pray that she is happy.
So now these days, probably more than I should, I just put on my headphones and play the long version of ‘Stars on 45’. I close my eyes, look to the side and see her swaying and smiling behind the bar, giving me a thumbs up.
|Posted in: The Number Ones: Stars On 45’s “Stars On 45″|
|Score:47 | May 11th|
the Essential Moment is around 3:59, when it ends.
|Posted in: The Number Ones: Air Supply’s “The One That You Love”|
|#2||Duke of Merle|
|Score:48 | May 9th|
Little Richard was one of the pantheon of Rock ‘n’ Roll Gods that my father worshipped since he was a teenager. Growing up, Richard, Presely, Berry, Perkins at al, filled my house like oxygen. If I got my love of reading from my mum, then my dad gave me my love of music; both gifts that can never be measured, or repayed. It doesn’t matter that the music I got into later was a world away from that of 50s rock, what matters is the space someone carved into your heart to love that particular THING. When my dad developed dementia in his late 60s, that music was the quickest way to connect to him, to make him happy. To sooth. He died last week. The day before, I was standing over his bed looking down on my nearly comatose father. He was barely moving, but a Bobby Darin (a favourite) song started playing on my brother’s Echo Dot, and blow me if there wasn’t movement in his hands all of a sudden, an urge to tap along to something he first heard in 1959. The next day he eased out of life with my brother holding his hand and an Elvis classic ushering him on.
|Posted in: Little Richard Dead At 87|
|Score:57 | May 10th|
…? Am I missing something or she literally like… did not say it was problematic? She just said “Mother’s Day can be difficult for some people for many reasons” which is true, and probably true of Father’s Day as well. Idk what is the point you’re trying to make here.
|Posted in: Lana Del Rey Shares Message Acknowledging Mother’s Day Can Be Problematic|
THIS WEEK’S 5 LOWEST RATED COMMENTS
|Score:-10 | May 13th|
Rap has got to be scared of this, the robot can pump out trash faster than all the Lils and Babys combined. No way you could tell a difference between the same 808s and flows either.
|Posted in: Do Electric Songwriters Dream Of Human Muses?|
|Score:-10 | May 8th|
Well, we now have a song by the two worst humans in music, albeit for charity (someone should closely track those scholarships funds, though). Now I’d like to see a collaboration by the two nicest. Dave Grohl and Conor Oberst, maybe?
|Posted in: Justin Bieber & Ariana Grande – “Stuck With U”|
|Score:-11 | May 12th|
Bruh, eating a fucking snarling, whole bat is weird, foreign, and uncivilized. You nasty.
|Posted in: Bryan Adams Under Fire For Blaming Coronavirus On “Bat Eating” Wet Market Vendors|
|Score:-33 | May 9th|
Don’t be a dick. Cause is unknown still. Very well could be coronavirus, cancer, etc. We don’t know. Not everything you say has to have some snark
|Posted in: Little Richard Dead At 87|
THIS WEEK’S EDITOR-IN-CHIEF’S CHOICE
|Score:6 | May 14th|
People still don’t seem interested in insurance these days
|Posted in: Watch A Bunch Of Famous Comedians Sing Weird Al’s “Eat It” On The Mr. Show Zoomtacular Annual Business Call Event For Charity|