So on Sunday morning August 17, 1969 Grace Slick of the Jefferson Airplane took the stage at the Woodstock festival and opened the day with some morning maniac music! By 1969 the Airplane had already released five studio albums and one live album. I did not pick up on the Airplane until 1968, and their release Crown of Creation by that time they had already had big hits like “Somebody to Love” and “White Rabbit” (their only top ten hits) but with songs like the title track, “Greasy Heart”, David Crosby’s “Triad”, along with Jorma’s guitar on “Chushingura” the album became one of my all-time favorites! Actually, after Surrealistic Pillow (3) it was their highest charting album peaking at #3 on the US charts. Their next two albums Volunteers and the live release Bless Its Pointed Little Head, with the later being another all-time favorite with the opening track “3/5 of a mile in ten seconds” possibly being my favorite Airplane song!! William Ruhlman writing at AllMusic says this about the album……
Quill opened day two at Woodstock.Since I don’t remember or didn’t know them I went to Wikipedia to find out a little about the band……
Quill was a popular Northeast United States band that played extensively throughout New England, New York and the mid-Atlantic states in the late 1960s and that gained national attention by performing at the original Woodstock Festival in 1969. The band was originally founded by two singer/songwriters and brothers from the Boston area, Jon and Dan Cole.
Most times I can pretty much tell if I am really going to like an album, after the first few seconds of the first track. This method of assessing a record did not work with David Crosby‘s latest release Croz. The first time I listened to the album, I was not impressed by the opening track, so I really didn’t continue to listen. If today August 14th was not the 73rd anniversary of David’s Los Angeles birth, I may not have listened to the album again, and have missed out on a pretty damn good album!! I have followed David’s career since it began with the Byrds in the early 60s. But like most of my music listening, I became a real fan in the late 60s and early 70s after he left the Byrds and teamed with Graham Nash and Steven Still to form Crosby, Stills, Nash. I can still remember when I purchased the album Deja Vu in the Moorestown Mall, being told by the clerk that I was the first one to purchase the album!! Crosby was born and raised in Los Angeles, California the son of Aliph Van Cortland Whitehead and Bing Crosby, Bob? no, Floyd Crosby, who appears to have no close relationship to the other Crosby’s. Although, Floyd did make a name for himself in Hollywood, as an academy award-winning cinematographer. Both his parents have genealogical roots going back to early New York. His mom is a descendent of the Van Cortland family and Floyd was a descendent of the Van Rensselear family. After an undistinguished academic career, Crosby moved to New York to make his way in the music business. Arriving in Greenwich Village in and around 1963 David joined Les Baxter’s Balladeers a group in which Bob Dylan was also a member. Fred Neil who was already a friend and mentor to Dylan also took Crosby under his wing. Now since I don’t know or remember as much about The Byrds as I do his later bands, here is a little info from Wikipedia….
So back in 1971 I found the music of John Prine. The liner notes on his début album were written by Kris Kristofferson whose music I knew and whose opinion I respected, I had also read great things about the album, so I couldn’t wait to get my hands on the album. That album started a 42 year and still continuing love affair with John’s music. A year later, I read the following on the back on another début album:
I been listening to the radio since I was three years old. I figured by now I could see songs better than most people listen to them. The first time I heard Steve Goodman on the radio, I knew I was listening to a tall skinny cat with a little beard singing the best damn train song I ever heard.
Two months later in the backroom at The Earl of Oldtown, I met a short stout fellow with no beard who wrote and sang the best train song I ever heard. His name was Steve Goodman. The Lord works in Mysterious Ways – John Prine, 1971
Well, whether I needed a little motivation or not to get me out on the road and running today, I got some yesterday, when I ran into the best runner on my high school cross-country team yesterday, while shopping at Target. See he is running a triathlon today I’m not really how far the swim and the bike ride are but the run part is a 10K! While know there’s no way in hell I can even come close to competing with him, it does give me some incentive though just to keep plodding along. Anyway the weather was fairly co-operative today staying in the low 80s, but even with that I waited until the sun was down a little and ran a course that I knew was shaded for most of the run!! While my overall time was nothing to write home about, my average pace of 10:51 a mile over four miles is acceptable, at least for me, especially since I kept my heart rate under 160 even going uphill!
One of the albums that has been on the iPhone for the last day or so is the new album from Thorbjorn Risager Too Many Roads. I have only given it a couple of listens, but so far I like what I hear. I hope to listen in a little more detail tomorrow and maybe even get to write a little more about Thorbjorn and the album, but for this early morning let’s just get a little taste of his music! Here’s a performance of the song “Precious Time”, Gotta love the band, sax, trumpet, organ ….and more….
Last night after I came home from a run, I sat down at the computer and was trying to get back to normal, when my wife asked if I had watched the new parody video from Weird Al “Word Crimes”yet. I said that I hadn’t, she made me come out and watch the video. The video is very funny and probably funnier if you know the Robin Thicke song, which I don’t and never will, because I can not stand Robin Thicke. Shortly after that, my wife said, she now had the song stuck in her head. That set my mind to wondering about songs that get stuck in my head. The one that popped up was Gale Garnett’s “We’ll Sing in the Sunshine”. So I went to Youtube to find a video of the song, which I did, from the 1964 Grammy Awards, but I didn’t like the video so I didn’t post it. But if you want you can watch it here.
So Chris Wall writes in the chorus of his song – ”I Feel Like Hank Williams”
I play classical music when it rains,
I play country when I am in pain,
Tonight I won’t play Beethoven,
no the mood’s just not right,
no, I feel like Hank Williams tonight.
So the question is, Do you play certain songs or artists at certain times to suit your mood? If so what song or what artist, for what mood? I know that if I’m stressed out I usually turn to a little jazz and maybe Gary Burton’s vibes or I play R. Carlos Nakai’s native American Flute! If I need a little pick me up “The Best of the New Grass Revival” may come on, “Can’t Stop Now” always gets me going! Maybe a little bluegrass from Rhonda Vincent something like “Drivin’ Nails in My Coffin” If I need a little laughter maybe John Prine’s “Please Don’t Bury Me” or Steve Goodman’s “Vegematic”. They always bring smiles to my face!
So tonight before I settled down to continue reading, Tell No Lies by Gregg Hurwitz, I looked through some of my vinyl collection for a favorite album that I haven’t listen to in a long while. I came away with Lightshine from Jesse Colin Young. Lightshine released in 1974, was the third solo release from Jesse after the breakup of The Youngbloods. The one song that everyone knows from The Youngbloods “Get Together” was really there only big hit, but in my opinion they produced some really good music in their short career that spanned five years (1967-1972) and produced 8 albums. Their album that rose the highest on the charts was 1970′s album Rock Festival, which is the first album of theirs that I bought. Three out of the four albums that they produced are in my collection with 1971′s release Sunlight being the only absentee. I always enjoyed their music they were kinda’ like a light Grateful Dead with many of their songs having long flowing musical interludes with jazzy overtones.