Archive for April, 2012

Video Du Jour: Robert Earl Keen’s Tribute to Levon Helm

Posted in Rock Moment with tags , on April 19, 2012 by 30daysout

Texas songwriter Robert Earl Keen wrote this great tribute to Levon Helm, “The Man Behind the Drums.” Keen performed it on the TV show “Austin City Limits.” Levon Helm died today, he will be greatly missed.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Austin City Limits website

Dick Clark, R.I.P.

Posted in News with tags , on April 18, 2012 by 30daysout

Dick Clark, on "American Bandstand" in the late 1950s.

Not the guy we thought we’d be writing a story like this about today, but: Dick Clark, the DJ who helped rock and roll go nationwide back in the 1950s, has died. He was 82 years old.

A few generations now know Clark only as the weird guy who shows up alongside Ryan Seacrest on those New Year’s Eve TV parties. But Clark, starting in 1957 and his TV show “American Bandstand,” put rock and roll in front of a mass audience in a way that radio could never hope to.

Based out of Philadelphia, “American Bandstand” was the meeting place for teens who wanted to see, hear and dance to the latest rock and roll idols. In the early 1960s Clark relentlessly hyped teen crooners like Frankie Avalon, Annette Funicello, Connie Francis, Bobby Rydell and many others.

Clark also got caught up in the payola scandal of the day, and ABC-TV gave him an ultimatum to either give up “American Bandstand” or sell off his shares in music publishing and record labels. Clark kept the TV show and got rid of everything else – and came out of the payola scandal squeaky clean.

But Clark should also be known for keeping rock and roll for “the kids.” “Bandstand” amassed a whopping 40 million viewers a week in 1958, and Clark became so influential that one play of a new record on the show could instantly send an act into superstardom.

He would host “American Bandstand” until 1989, just a few months before ABC cancelled it. The show had become irrelevant with the dawn of MTV , but by this time Dick Clark had his own broadcasting empire. He continued to host his New Year’s Eve specials from 1972 until 2004, when he had a stroke. In recent years he gamely shared time with Seacrest as the ball dropped in Times Square, but 2011’s show would be his last.

Dick Clark obituary in the Philadelphia Inquirer

YouTube: “American Bandstand” featuring Jerry Lee Lewis, 1958

YouTube: Iron Butterfly on “American Bandstand,” 1968

YouTube: ABBA on “American Bandstand,” 1975

YouTube: The Beach Boys on “American Bandstand,” 1964

Stream the new Jack White album

Posted in News with tags on April 17, 2012 by 30daysout

Jack White plays at SXSW in Austin. (Photo by Jo McCaughey/courtesy of Jack White

Jack White, formerly of the White Stripes – not to mention the Raconteurs and the Dead Weather – drops his first solo record, Blunderbuss, on April 24.  You can stream it now, however. It touches on all aspects of his career, and opens up a few new avenues for him. Take a listen:

Stream Jack White’s Blunderbuss here

Video Du Jour (Part Deux): Bruce Springsteen

Posted in News with tags , on April 13, 2012 by 30daysout

Check out this new live video of “Death to My Hometown” compiled from live performances and rehearsals at the Apollo Theater, SXSW, Atlanta, and featuring Tom Morello.


Video Du Jour: Ian McLagan

Posted in Rock Moment with tags , , , on April 13, 2012 by 30daysout

There are two really cool things about Austin, Texas, that maybe you don’t know: 1. This weekend, an Austin resident will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. That would be Ian McLagan, keyboardist for the legendary Small Faces and the Faces.

McLagan, who has made Austin his home for about 10 years, will be in Cleveland to accept the induction along with surviving Small Faces mate Kenney Jones and Faces mates Ron Wood and Rod Stewart. They’ll all pay tribute to fallen band members Ronnie Lane and Steve Marriott.

And the other cool thing? 2. Austin’s Bergstrom International Airport has a permanent stage, where live bands play regularly to welcome travelers to the “Live Music Capital of the World.” On this stage yesterday, the city of Austin threw a little bon voyage party for McLagan as he jetted off to Cleveland for the Hall of Fame ceremony.

Congratulations, Mac!

Thanks to chickrock for letting us borrow this video.

Macspages – Ian McLagan official website

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Back to Black: The Magic of Mono

Posted in Rock Rant with tags , , , , , , on April 12, 2012 by 30daysout

As I sit down to write this on a bleary-eyed early morning, I can hear the coffee maker click on automatically. My phone dings insistently to remind me of meetings, appointments and upcoming annoyances, then it offers up a morning tweet for dessert. In my pocket I there’s a little flash drive smaller than my thumb, carrying about 35 albums’ worth of music with a little room for more.

Technology has surely wiped some of the romance out of modern life; what did you expect? Old guys like me quickly get tiresome in referencing the past to recall the many ways that life was better – yeah, guilty as charged.

Thankfully, at my house there’s an easy way to shut up the old guy: slap some vinyl on the turntable, and crank it. With the resurgence of vinyl records we’ve all rediscovered our roots, and we are “remembering” our past, meaning: if we knew this at all, surely we forgot. Frankly, I forgot about mono.

Back in the day, record companies put out music in monophonic – as opposed to stereo – because they wanted their hit singles to sound good on AM radio and on the crappy sound systems that lived in most homes. Stereo was kind of an afterthought, and often you could hear stuff on the mono (meaning: “original version”) that didn’t show up on the stereo versions. Or so we’re told today.

When LPs nearly died and CDs came along, old music got remixed, remastered and repackaged. The resurgence of vinyl provided another opportunity to hear (and buy) the same old stuff once more and then we have the mono versions. I don’t know how many versions of Revolver or Highway 61 Revisited I want, but I certainly have more than I need. Mono is the aural version of watching a black-and-white movie: experiencing the past while not quite reliving it. Know what I mean? (I think I don’t.)

Hell, I didn’t know the Beatles did their albums in mono. I was just a kid when the Beatles were a real thing, and besides, I didn’t buy albums – just 45 singles. I knew about Brian Wilson’s famous deafness in one ear, and that’s why he did many of his masterpieces in mono; but I learned that only after I had gotten older.

So here we are, a decade deep into the 21st century, and we’re still spinning mono records on turntables. You gotta admit, that stuff sounds GOOD.

MP3: “Mr. Soul” (45 single) by Buffalo Springfield

MP3: “Run Through The Jungle” (45 single) by Creedence Clearwater Revival

MP3: “A Hazy Shade of Winter” (mono remaster) by Simon & Garfunkel

MP3: “All Tomorrow’s Parties” (45 single) by the Velvet Underground

MP3: “Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds” (mono remaster) by the Beatles

MP3: “Jumpin’ Jack Flash” (45 single) by the Rolling Stones

MP3: “Help Me Rhonda” (mono album version) by the Beach Boys

Record Store Day official website

Video Du Jour: Alabama Shakes

Posted in Rock Moment with tags , on April 11, 2012 by 30daysout

Probably the most talked-about new act at the recent SXSW conference in Austin, the Alabama Shakes are certainly shakin’ up the music world. Their debut album Boys and Girls came out this week and they’ve appeared on national TV and countless write-ups – so their star is certainly on the rise.

And deservedly so. The Alabama Shakes are certainly a rough-hewn breath of fresh air for a stale music industry. When we saw them a few weeks ago in Austin, the band had a sound that owed a little to soul music, a bit to rootsy rock and a ton to Brittany Howard’s force-of-nature singing and songwriting.

Their music sounds like it was conceived not by seasoned pros in a fancy L.A. studio, but by music freaks in their bedrooms and garages. They are certainly worth a listen.

Here’s a song you won’t find on either Boys and Girls or their self-titled EP: “Always Alright.”

Alabama Shakes official website

Why don’t we give you a bonus, seein’ how it’s Wednesday and all: the official video for “Hold On.”


Video Du Jour: Bonnie Raitt

Posted in News with tags , on April 10, 2012 by 30daysout

“Right Down The Line,” originally written and performed by Gerry Rafferty, is the first single from Bonnie Raitt’s new Slipstream, out today. The album is Raitt’s first since 2005 and the video for “Right Down The Line” is her first video in 14 years.

Slipstream is getting good reviews –NPR is streaming the album in full.

Bonnie Raitt official website

Mess O’ Monday Blues

Posted in Rock Moment with tags , , , , on April 9, 2012 by 30daysout

John Lee Hooker

Don’t know about you, but my eyes are still sorta glazed over from the long weekend. No better time to blow some blues for Monday.

MP3: “Howling For My Darling (or Baby)” by Howlin’ Wolf

MP3: “I’m Shakin’ ” by Little Willie John

MP3: “Automobile” by Lightnin’ Hopkins

MP3: “Delia” by Blind Willie McTell

MP3: “Boogie Chillun” by John Lee Hooker

MP3: “Three O’ Clock In The Morning” by B. B. King

MP3: “I’d Rather Go Blind” by Etta James

MP3: “Last Night” by Little Walter

MP3: “It’s A Shame, Shame, Shame” by Juke Boy Bonner

MP3: “Take Out Some Insurance” by Jimmy Reed

Rockin’ Into the Weekend

Posted in Rock Moment with tags , , , , , , , , , , on April 5, 2012 by 30daysout

The late, great Ronnie James Dio.

Many people will be celebrating this weekend – Passover, Easter or just two or three days off from work. Let us be the first to welcome you to the weekend … here are some hard rockin’ tunes to help get you in the right mood.

MP3: “Shout It Out Loud” by KISS (2009 version)

MP3: “Holy Diver” by Dio

MP3: “The Ripper” by Judas Priest

MP3: “Caught In A Mosh” by Anthrax

MP3: “The Number of the Beast” by Iron Maiden

MP3: “Sweet Leaf” by Black Sabbath

MP3: “Cowboys From Hell” by Pantera

MP3: “Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap” (live) by AC/DC

MP3: “Cities On Flame with Rock and Roll” by Blue Öyster Cult

MP3: “Revolution Rock” by the Clash

MP3: “Kick Out The Jams” by Rage Against The Machine

MP3: “And The Cradle Will Rock” by Van Halen