Saturday, October 30, 2010

Lost Gem: "Hitting You" - Loudon Wainwright III (1992)


"All we do is argue
like two people 
who are through."
~ Loudon Wainwright III ~


North Carolinian...Loudon Wainwright III...may bring to mind his novelty song..."Dead Skunk"(1972) or his bit part playing Captain Spalding on TV's "Mash"(1975).

But this singer/songwriter has been crafting songs forever.


I haven't followed this tongue-wagging troubadour too closely over the seasons...however, 1992 saw him release "History".  Considered his masterpiece...he purges the past very close to the bone...never soft-soaping the ugly parts.

"History" is a absolutely must-own!

Lost Gem:--> "Hitting You"...is as honest a confession as you'll likely to hear.  Painful and heartbreaking in the understanding...that there are seldom, if ever, any take-backs or do-overs......................not really.

Have you heard this gem? (start at 2:28)


Long ago i hit you
we were in the car
you were crazy in the back seat
it had gone too far
and i pulled the auto over
and i hit you with all my might
i knew right away it was too hard and i'd never make it right

I was aiming for your buttock
but i struck your outer thigh
you had on a bathing suit
and right before our eyes
suntanned skin turned crimson
where the hand had hit
and my palm stung from hitting you so hard that i hurt it

Against the law in sweden
charges can be filed
here it's all too common
a parent hits a child

On your face i saw the shock
and then i saw the pain
then i saw the look of fear
the fear i'd strike again
then i saw your anger
your defiant pride
and then i saw one tear drop
the rest you kept inside

I said i was sorry and i tried to clean the slate
but with that blow i'd sewn a seed
and saw it was too late

These days things are awful
between me and you
all we do is argue like
two people who are through
i blame you, your friends, your school, your mother and mtv
last night i almost hit you that blame belongs to me

Long ago i hit you
we were in the car
you were crazy in the back seat
it had gone too far
and i pulled the auto over
and i hit you with all my might
i knew right away it was too hard
and i'd never make it right.


Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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Monday, October 25, 2010

Lost Gem: "Fearless" - Pink Floyd (1971)


"And I'll climb
the hill in my own way."
~ Pink Floyd~ 


Pink Floyd's..."Meddle"(1971)...was released two years prior to their masterpiece..."Dark Side Of The Moon".

But elements of that classic recording can be heard throughout this underrated album. In fact, at least one song left on the cutting floor for this album...would later appear on "DSOTM".

Despite a ridiculously bad album cover...(looks like an elephant's snout to me)..."Meddle" is filled with plenty to like and should be in your collection. Also, this is where we find guitarist David Gilmour stepping up his game a bit.



Lost Gem:--> "Fearless"...is a brilliant exercise in songwriting with Gilmour throwing down an amazing guitar riff that sounds as fresh today as it did 40 years ago.  Roger Waters has nice lyrics (as always) and the surprising addition of a football crowd...well...I liked it.

Have you heard this gem?


You say the hill's too steep to climb,
Chiding!
You say you'd like to see me try,
Climbing!
You pick the place and I'll choose the time
And I'll climb
The hill in my own way
just wait a while, for the right day
And as I rise above the treeline and the clouds
I look down hear the sound of the things you said today


Fearlessly the idiot faced the crowd, smiling
Merciless, the magistrate turns 'round, frowning
and who's the fool who wears the crown
Go down in your own way
And everyday is the right day
And as you rise above the fearlines in his frown
You look down
Hear the sound of the faces in the crowd.

Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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Thursday, October 21, 2010

Lost Gem: "Your Dictionary" - XTC (1999)


"So let's close the book
and let the day begin
and our marriage be undone."
~ XTC ~


Seven years had disappeared before XTC went back into the studio to record..."Apple Venus Volume 1" (1999)...and it was jaw-dropping brilliant.

Unfortunately, numerous management problems and personal differences were causing friction at around the same time this record dropped...and history has proven this is rarely a good thing.

Andy Partridge, Colin Moulding, Dave Gregory

Critics loved XTC's alternative-psych-rock sound, but lack of solid promo in the states buried this nugget in the racks.

Lost Gem:--> "Your Dictionary"...is a bitter acoustic kiss-off to the ghosts of a broken relationship.   So bitter...yet Partridge pulls it off.

The surprising Beatlesque arrangement near the end offers 'hope' that closure will be found for all of us.

Have you heard this Gem?


H-A-T-E
Is that how you spell love in your dictionary
K-I-C-K
Pronounced as kind
F-U-C-K
Is that how you spell friend in your dictionary
Black on black
A guidebook for the blind

Well now that I can see my eyes won't weep
Now that I can hear your song sounds cheap
Now that I can talk all your corn I'll reap
I'm not so sure that Joey wed a Virgin Mary
There are no words for me inside your dictionary

S-L-A-P
Is that how you spell kiss in your dictionary
C-O-L-D
Pronounced as care
S-H-I-T
Is that how you spelt me in your dictionary
Four-eyed fool
You led 'round everywhere

Now that I can see it's the queens new clothes
Now that I can hear all your poison prose
Now that I can talk with my tongue unfroze
I'm not so sure of Santa or the buck-tooth fairy
There are no words for me inside your dictionary

Now your laughter has a hollow ring
But the hollow ring has no finger in
So let's close the book and let the day begin
And our marriage be undone.

Good stuff.


Monday, October 18, 2010

Lost Gem: "Closing Time" - Lyle Lovett (1986)



"...and hear those bottles ringing...
you know where you are."
~ Lyle Lovett ~


Texas troubadour, Lyle Lovett, released his debut in 1986 and was later included in Rolling Stone's 100 Greatest Albums of the 80's.

Lyle's been labeled a country artist, but is truly a singer-songwriter renegade who sings whatever feels good...labels be damned.

There is a sweet, almost bashful, aura that surrounds him. He just doesn't take himself too seriously...which is very refreshing.

And, much like his hair...you can't control him.
His walk is his own.  It's up to the listener to get in step.

Lost Gem:--> "Closing Time"...is a beautiful song about the dive bar monotony a performer goes through on his journey to reaching his dream.   Dig the weary acceptance in his voice.

Have you heard this gem?


The night she is a true companion
They shuffle in
They hear the sound
But by night's end
It's night's abandon
You look across the floor
Ain't anyone around

Closing time
Unplug them people
And send them home
It's closing time

Now Kenny he's been mixing sound all evening
Sometimes I think that boy
He ain't got no ears
And Kathy's laughing
Kathy's always laughing
Well keep on laughing Kathy
Just make it out of here

Closing time
Unplug them people
And send them home
It's closing time

So stack those chairs upon those tables
And stack those empties upon that bar
And count your money
And count my money
And hear those bottles ringing
You know where you are
The night's all that's left behind
You take your part and I'll take mine
And go on home
It's closing time.


Official Lyle Lovett Website

Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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Friday, October 15, 2010

Lost Gem: "Dirty Love" - Frank Zappa (1973)


"Like some tacky little pamphlet in your daddy's bottom drawer."
~ Frank Zappa ~


Frank Zappa is an acquired taste. I understand that. But as you begin digging through the man's extensive league of work, you might soon find yourself being drawn into his magic.

Or maybe not.

You see...FZ serves NO master.  His genius ranges from rock & jazz to electronic & classical music. He is a bad ass renegade whose tower of prolific power is well worth exploring.

And what you dig or won't dig is all on Frank because he is responsible for every note, word and sound on his records. Frank composes arrangements for every instrument you hear.


Few could do this and fewer still could do it as well. So, yea, Frank Zappa (may he rest in peace) could always get down with his bad self.

Lost Gem:--> "Dirty Love"...is part of any Frank Zappa 101 curriculum.  In 3-minutes, we get...
1. tasty guitar riffing from the 'Peach' himself.
2. nice band interach!
3. the attitude.
Bonus...some greasy naughtimess from the Zomby Woof.

Have you heard this Gem?


Give me
Your dirty love
Like you might surrender
To some dragon in your dreams
Give me
Your dirty love
Like a pink donation
To the dragon in your dreams

I don't need your sweet devotion
I don't want your cheap emotion
Just whip me up some dragon lotion
For your dirty love

Give me
Your dirty love
Like some tacky little pamphlet
In your daddy's bottom drawer
Give me
Your dirty love
I don't believe you have ever seen
That book before

I don't need no consolation
I don't want your reservation
I only got one destination
An' that's your dirty love

Give me
Your dirty love
Just like your mama
Make her fuzzy poodle do
Give me
Your dirty love
The way your mama
Make that nasty poodle chew

I'll ignore your cheap aroma
And your little-bo-peep diploma
I'll just put you in a coma
With some dirty love

THE POODLE BITES!
(Come on, Frenchie)
THE POODLE CHEWS IT!
(Snap it!)
THE POODLE BITES!
(Come on, Frenchie)
THE POODLE CHEWS IT!
(Snap it!)

Good stuff!


Casey Chambers
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Monday, October 11, 2010

Lost Gem: "I Want You to Hurt Like I Do" - Randy Newman (1988)


"And things don't always...
things don't always
go the way we plan."
~ Randy Newman ~

Randy Newman is a singer/songwriter who, when not focusing on his many film scoring projects...takes pleasure in revealing the darker shades of ourselves.

Taking on all comers with a surgeons eye and a Shakespeare's sarcasm...striking a little closer to home than some would like.

His job is to shock...sometimes offend...and hopefully cause the listener to look a little deeper inside themselves. I'm guessing this makes Randy very happy.




Lost Gem:--> "I Want You to Hurt Like I Do"...is a ballad of "anthemic" proportion about media-grabbing grand-standers.

The..."We Are The World" types... who take on a cause...simply for the sole purpose of drawing attention...to themselves.  The self-righteous bleating about all the pain, their particular cause...causes. Unforgettable!

If the words were changed, this song could easily be another "group-hug sing-a-long" for the world...

Randy chose a different course.

Have you heard this gem?


I ran out on my children
And I ran out on my wife
Gonna run out on you too, baby
I done it all my life
Everybody cried the night I left
Well, almost everybody did
My little boy just hung his head
And I put my arm, put my arm around his little shoulder
And this is what I said:
"Sonny I just want you to hurt like I do
I just want you to hurt like I do
I just want you to hurt like I do
Honest I do, honest I do, honest I do"

If I had one wish
One dream I knew would come true
I'd want to speak to all the people of the world
I'd get up there, I'd get up there on that platform
First I'd sing a song or two you know I would
Then I'll tell you what I'd do
I'd talk to the people and I'd say
"It's a rough rough world, it's a tough tough world
Well, you know
And things don't always, things don't always go the way we plan
But there's one thing, one thing we all have in common
And it's something everyone can understand
All over the world sing along

I just want you to hurt like I do
I just want you to hurt like I do
I just want you to hurt like I do
Honest I do, honest I do, honest I do.


Randy Newman Website

Casey Chambers
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Friday, October 8, 2010

Lost Gem: "The Back Seat Of My Car" - Paul McCartney (1971)


"We believe...that we can't be wrong."
~ Paul McCartney ~



"Ram" (1971) was Paul McCartney's 2nd post Beatles album and it's loaded with more hooks than a Peter Pan pirate.  A must own on so many levels.

Many of the song ideas were surely spinning through Paul's mind before the breakup.  And I can easily see The Beatles harmonizing and jamming to half the songs in Jerry's Bizarro world.

I'm a John Lennon man myself, but I'm totally onboard with the McCartney magic.  And "The Back Seat Of My Car" is one of this Beatles' finest card tricks.


Paul and Linda

Lost Gem:--> "The Back Seat Of My Car"...is a brilliant mini-suite that captures the beautiful naive urgency and self-importance only young lovers enjoy.

Filled with surprising rhythms and melodies... it slowly swells to an unbelievable climax that is both touching and chilling.
Don't be fooled by the simplicity. This is trig, my babies!

Have you heard this one?


Speed along the highway, honey I want it my way
But listen to her daddy's song, don't stay out to long
Were just busy hidin', sitting in the back seat of my car
The lazy lights are pretty, we end up in Mexico City
But listen to her daddy's song, makin' love is wrong
Were just busy ridin', sitting in the back seat of my car

Oh we was only busy hidin', sitting the back seat of my car
And when we've finished drivin' we can say we were late in arriving
and listen to her daddy's song, we believe that we can't be wrong
Ohhh we believe that we can't be wrong
Ohhh we believe that we can't be wrong

We can make it to Mexico City, sittin' in the backseat of my car

Ohhh we believe that we can't be wrong
Ohhh we believe that we can't be wrong
Ohhh we believe that we can't be wrong
Ohhh we believe that we can't be wrong
Ohhh we believe that we can't be wrong
Ohhh we believe that we can't be wrong
NO NO NO NO
Ohhh we believe that we can't be wrong.

Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Lost Gem: "Damn Good" - David Lee Roth (1988)

"Sure, we was acting
like a couple of kids.

Good to remember,
you know that it is."

~ David Lee Roth ~


The close relationship between the high-flying front-man David Lee Roth and guitar whiz Eddie Van Halen...for all intents and purposes...dissolved in 1985.

The two had sadly reached an..."I don't want you here" / "I don't want to be here"...impasse.

Harsh words said. Uncool things done.  Yada, Yada, Yada.  And the point of no return gets crossed right before your very eyes.

Great music was made.  Great friendships were made. The music will last.  Unfortunately, and sadly, the once "tight as shite" band bond is lost forever.

Which makes Roth's greatest solo song...toll all the more deeper.

Lost Gem:--> "Damn Good"...This acoustic olive branch is a great tribute to old friendships long past. And gets better with every drop of sand.

Not often, if ever, does Roth drop the ego mask...which makes this Zepplinesque bitter-sweet beauty especially rewarding.  Steve Vai provides the guitar employment.

Have you heard this Gem?


Time rolls on
that's as it should be
Here and gone
Seems to move so quickly

Man, we was happy
in our restless hearts.
It was heaven right here on earth
Yeah, we were laughin'
as we reached for the stars.
And we had some
for what it was worth.

Those were good times
Damn good times
Those were good times
Damn good times

Hey, take a look at this picture,
Can you believe that was you?
And who's that standin' there in the corner?
Not me!!!
Ahh, all the crazy things we used to do
Sure, we was acting like a couple of kids
Good to remember
You know that it is
I still feel it
Like the sun on my skin
Maybe that's better

Cause these are good times
Damn good tiemes
Talkin' about good times
Damn good times

So it's one for the money
But that don't make the show
Count to three and I'll be ready
To follow that road (yes I will)

I see it comin'
Yeah, and this one is ours.
We got Heaven right here on Earth.
Ain't nothin' like it
When you're reachin' for stars
And you grab one
For what it is worth

You can tell 'em
We'll be having good times
Damn good times
I'm talkin' good times.
Damn good times.


Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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Saturday, October 2, 2010

Lost Gem: "Fingerprint File" - Rolling Stones (1974)


"And there's some little jerk in the FBI
keepin' papers on me six feet high."
~ Rolling Stones ~


"It's Only Rock 'n Roll" (1974)...was the 1st album produced by Jagger and Richards under their fictitious name..."The Glimmer Twins."

This was also Mick Taylor's last album as a Rolling Stone...soon replaced by Ron Wood.

The record received mixed reviews...and the Stones didn't even honor their new release with a tour til long after a year had passed. Nonetheless..."Fingerprint File"...deserved better.


Lost Gem:--> "Fingerprint File"...is the last track and it burns with a wicked hypnotic wah-wah funky freakout churn.

Taylor and Richards are in perfect balance...with Mick hitting the sleaze button phase that certainly foreshadows things to come.

Crank it up at your next party and just try to sit still...btw...the delicious clavinet/synth sounds are courtesy of underrated Billy Preston.

Have you heard this gem?


Fingerprint file, you get me down
You keep me running
Know my way around. Yes, you do, child
Fingerprint file, you bring me down
Keep me running
You keep me on the ground
Know my moves
Way ahead of time
Listening to me
On your satellite

Feeling followed
Feeling tagged
Crossing water
Trying to wipe my tracks

And there's some little jerk in the FBI
A keepin' papers on me six feet high
It gets me down, it gets me down, it gets me down

You better watch out
On your telephone
Wrong number
They know you ain't home

And there's some little jerk in the FBI
A keepin' papers on me six feet high
It gets me down, it gets me down, it gets me down

Who's the man on the corner; that corner over there
I don't know. Well, you better lay low. Watch out

Keep on the look out
Electric eyes
Rats on the sell out
Who gonna testify
You know my habits
Way a head of time
Listening to me
On your satellite

And there's some little jerk in the FBI
A keepin' papers on me six feet high
It gets me down, it gets me down, it gets me down
It gets me down

Hello, baby, mm-hmm
Ah, yeah, you know we ain't, we ain't talkin' alone
Who's listening? Well I don't really know
But you better tell the SIS to keep out of sight
'Cause I know they takin' pictures on the ultraviolet light
Yes, uh huh, yeah, but these days it's all secrecy; no privacy
Shoot first, that' s right... you know
Bye bye.
Right now somebody is listening to...... you
Keeping their eyes peeled...... on you
Mmm, mmm, what a price, what a price to pay
All right. Good night, sleep tight.


Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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