Friday, December 23, 2011

Lost Gem: "Hell No I Ain't Happy" - Drive-by Truckers (2003)



"She's an overnight sensation after twenty-five years."
~ Drive-By Truckers ~


Drive-By Truckers deliver up refreshing "new century" southern rock. Well-written songs...terrifically gritty with a heart-strong urgency to bring it.

Their album..."Decoration Day" (2003) is a favorite...and ended up on several..."best of" lists.

DBT are good...and don't they love proving it!



Lost Gem:--> "Hell No I Ain't Happy" ...is an on-the-road bluesy thunder-bucket of rock-n-roll.  And the expressive title catch-phrase makes for a dandy crank-it-up & pop-another-beer sing-a-long.

Have you heard this gem?


There’s a lot of bad wood underneath the veneer
She’s an overnight sensation after twenty five years
Sharp fast curves, power steering
unroll that twenty, buy me some beer
Ain’t too bad, too bad at all, pick up the phone if I ever call
Hell No, I ain’t Happy.

There’s a purdy little girl outside the van window
Bout 80 cities down, 800 to go
Six crammed in, we ain’t never alone
Never homesick, ain’t got no home
Check my mail if you would please, Jenn
Collect my things till I’m in town again
Hell No, I ain’t Happy.

But I get a little closer everyday
Gonna be a long time till I’m back your way.

I’ve seen just how much I can stand
One night in Kansas City, we thought about killing a man
Seen my number fly by on Interstate Ten
Seen the mountains of Montana at Seven AM.
And I keep it all together for the sake of the kids
Got your fine-ass self on the back of my lids
Hell No, I ain’t Happy.
But I ain’t too crappy, too crappy at all.

Official website

Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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Sunday, December 18, 2011

Lost Gem: "Time Out" - Joe Walsh (1974)

"The maids are in the hallway bangin' on the door
askin' what the funny smell was."
--> Joe Walsh <--

Wichita breeze...Joe Walsh...was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998...as a member of The Eagles.

But most Classic Rock aficionados agree, Joe's earlier work as leader of the legendary James Gang...and...Barnstorm, along with several accomplished solo albums should easily provide more than enough cred for induction on his own merits.

Once you factor in his achievements as a producer, along with the ticker-tape list of session work he's done over the years.... and I guess ol' Joe can make as many goofy guitar faces as he wants while laughing all the way to the RnR Hall of Mugs...I mean Fame.

Forever adored by his Wichita, Kansas family...Joe Walsh is the real mccoy. Accept no substitute.

Lost Gem:--> "Time Out"...from Walsh's first solo album..."So What" (1974)...has that very distinctive guitar churn and stellar slide-work.
It all sounds loose and free, when, in fact, there's not a wasted note anywhere. His bite-ass lyrics are trademark good, as well.

Have you heard this gem?


Goin' through the motions
Tryin' not to snore
Didn't know the gun was loaded.
Rowin' through the ocean
Caught without an oar
Someone said they all exploded.

Time out, save the play
Try to make the line last
Any old way you can.
Signed out, blown away
When you speak your mind out
Never say what you plan.

The maids are in the hallway
Bangin' on the door
Askin' what the funny smell was.
Wake you up and tell you
It's OK to sleep some more
By the way, is there any you can sell us?

So the case is gettin' hotter
Hear me tell ya, Jack
Stick 'em up, you've just been busted
Your basement's full of water
Forgot about the tide
Hope to God the pump ain't rusted

Signed out, blown away
When you speak your mind out
Never say what you plan
Time out, save the play
Try to make the line last
Any old way you can.
(Editors note:--> This is the way I hear the lyrics. I've found many interpretations.)

Official Site

Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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Friday, December 9, 2011

Lost Gem: "Nothing's Free" - Alice Cooper (1994)


"Sign upon the bloody line. 
A drop of yours,
a drop of mine."
--> Alice Cooper <--

Sometimes people forget.

Maybe it's all his hobnob golfing. Maybe it's his friendly classic rock radio program. Or maybe it's because he once allowed himself to be tenderized by the dangerous...Muppets!

I get it. Alice Cooper is a nice guy.

But DO remember this. On stage...Alice Cooper is an original Rock and Roll bad ass!

Long before there was a Marilyn Manson...Kiss...or...Rob Zombie, there was Alice.

For over 40 years, he has been delightfully creeping us out. Trapping his fans in an unsettling Rock and Roll web. Both musically and theatrically...Alice is (and always will be) the "Showman of Nightmares".

Embarrassingly overlooked by the RnR HoF, Alice Cooper was finally inducted in 2011.

LOST GEM:--> "Nothing's Free"..is from a must own and highly underrated..."The Last Temptation" (1994).  
The band sounds like they just walked into a 1970's Brady Bunch kitchen and they all wanna eat Marsha!...Marsha!... Marsha!
The showman deftly explains all things come with a price.

Have you heard this gem?



You, me
Understand
Shake my hand
Last chance, little man
Ain't it grand
It's a bargain, it's a steal
30 pieces of silver
And a deal's a deal
Sign upon the dotted line
I'll be yours and you'll be mine
Nothing's free
Eventually.

Nothing's free
From the rules and laws of morality
Free to take your fill
Free from your own free will
Nothing's free.

My boy, it's getting late
I'll raise the stakes
So close
Control your fate, why hesitate
Seal the deal, close the sale
Take my hammer, drive the nail
Sign upon the bloody line
A drop of yours, a drop of mine
Nothing's free
Eternally.

Nothing's free
From your conscience or
Free from the consequence
Free to sin and death
Free till your final breath
Nothing's free
Free from the claws and flaws of your family
Free from obedient life
You're cut like a double-edged knife
Nothing's free, nothing's free
Oh, you pay me.

Free to ignore the bore of authority
Free to spit in the face
Be the winningest rat in the race till
Judgement Day
Then nothing's free
Bow to me if you wanna be free
Free from life, come die with me
And when we're dead it's for
eternity.

Come on little one and dance in the fire
The heat's getting close and the flame's
getting higher
When the music's over there's a hush
in the choir
Nothing's free
When the trumpets sound and his light
is all around
And the saints all raise from the graves
in the ground
We'll be going way downtown
Way downtown.

Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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Thursday, December 1, 2011

Lost Book Gem: "The Time Machine" - H.G. Wells


"I danced myself right out the womb.
Is it strange to dance so soon?"
--> T. Rex <--



"The Time Machine" - H.G. Wells (1895)...is a classic sci-fi tale about a gentleman discussing his latest invention with a small and unbelieving group of dinner guests.

Of course this intricate contraption is called...a time machine. (btw...the 'time machine' term we have all become familiar with was first coined by Wells.)

The inventor tells of his strange traveling experiments that carried him off into the future where he finds himself way the 'H' in the 81st century.
H.G. Wells
H.G. Wells' thought provoking ideas on evolution are worthy of discussion...and appreciating the fact this novel was written nearly 120 years ago makes it all-the-more amazing.

Long before our man Gene-O was writing about explorers "boldly going where no man had gone before"...legendary sci-fi author, H.G. Wells was dreaming of doing a little cosmic dancing himself.

T. Rex  -  "Cosmic Dancer"  Electric Warrior  (1971)


I was dancing when I was twelve 
I was dancing when I was aaah 
I danced myself right out the womb 
Is it strange to dance so soon 
I danced myself right out the womb 

I was dancing when I was eight 
Is it strange to dance so late 
I danced myself into the tomb 
Is it strange to dance so soon 
I danced myself into the tomb 

Is it wrong to understand 
The fear that dwells inside a man 
What's it like to be a loon 
I liken it to a balloon 

I danced myself out of the womb 
Is it strange to dance so soon 
I danced myself into the tomb 
But when again once more.


Good stuff.

Casey Chambers
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Friday, November 18, 2011

Lost Gem: "New York's Not My Home" - Jim Croce (1972)


"And I had begun to doubt all the things that were me."
--> Jim Croce <--


Jim Croce's breakout album was "You Don't Mess Around With Jim" (1972)...with the uptempo title track being his radio debut single. Three tracks from this album would become radio staples.

The next year, Croce's follow-up record..."Life and Times" (1973) quickly went gold with another three singles taking over the airwaves.

He had just finished recording the album..."I Got A Name"...that same year with plans of a holiday release. Barely a week out of the studio, after doing a show in Louisiana, Jim and longtime partner Maury Muehleisen would tragically be involved in a fatal plane crash.

Jim Croce and Maury Muehleisen

Made no difference whether you were a bruising truck driver or a scared young boy with a broken heart.  Redneck or longhair...it didn't matter.

He was one of us and he was singing our life.

LOST GEM:--> "New York's Not My Home"...is really about anyplace where we feel odd man out or last man picked. That place where the weight of all strange places and faces almost buries us.

Have you heard this gem?


Well things were spinnin' round me
And all my thoughts were cloudy.
And I had begun to doubt
all the things that were me.
Been in so many places.
You know I've run so many races.
And looked into the empty faces
of the people of the night
And something is just not right.

'Cause I know that
I gotta get out of here.
I'm so alone.
Don't you know that
I gotta get out of here.
'Cause New York's not my home.

Though all the streets are crowded
There's somethin' strange about it.
I lived there bout a year
and I never once felt at home.
I thought I'd make the big time
I learned a lot of lessons awful quick
And now I'm tellin' you
that they were not the nice kind.
And it's been so long since
I have felt fine.

Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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Saturday, November 5, 2011

Lost Gem: "Zero the Hero" - Black Sabbath (1983)


"Impossibility.
Impissibolity."
--> Black Sabbath <--


"Born Again" (1983) is a pretty good Black Sabbath album...but receives even higher marks as a post-Ozzy album.

Ronnie James Dio had a good run as the first Ozzy replacement. (four albums...the first one being diamonds.). But near the end of his tenure... Dio (may he RIP) was sounding a wee-bit tired and uninspired. Hence he cut bait.

This allowed legendary screamer Ian Gillan of Deep Purple to be brought into the fold...(this move caused a nasty backlash from Sabbath fans...Dio wizards...and Deep Purple purists!)
After one album...Gillan left.

However, Gillan's banshee vocals wailing atop classic Sabbath thunder riffs sometimes worked. The album deserved better.

LOST GEM:--> "Zero The Hero"...is dark, heavy and catchy. Tony Iommi fires off blistering riffs and solos...while Ian Gillan's vocals give the song a fresh twist of metal magic. Nicely done.

Have you heard this gem?


Accept the fact that you're second rate life is easy for you
It's all served up on a gold plated plate
And we don't even have to talk to you
Your face is normal that's the way you're bred
And that's the way you're going to stay
Your head is firmly nailed to your TV channel
But someone else's fingers on the control panel

What you gonna be brother - Zero the hero
Don't you wanna be brother - Zero the hero
When you gonna be brother - Zero the hero
Impossibility impissibolity mother really a hero

You sit there watch it all burn down
It's easy and breezy for you
You play your life to a different sound
No edge no edge you got no knife have you
Your life is a six lane highway to nowhere
You're going so fast you're never ever gonna get down there
Where the heroes sit by the river
With a magic in their music as they eat raw liver

You stand there captain we all look
You really are mediocre
You are the champion in the Acme form book
But I think you're just a joker
Your freedom life ain't so much of a pity
But the luv-a-duckin' way you're walkin' around
The city with your balls and your head full of nothing
It's easy for you sucker but you really need stuffing.

Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Lost Gem: "Wellsville" - Embarrassment (1981)


"Offered us his hospitality
but of course...
we were too busy."
--> The Embarrassment <--


The Embarrassment (Embos to their fans) were four young guys who seemed to have dropped through a weird..."CBGB Time Crack"...that borned them smack dab in the middle of ...Wichita, KS?

Freshly original, Embarrassment were off-center but always on target, making music that connected with the stressed-out and the left-out.

They were penguins on the prairie. They were kool.
Casey Chambers...In the daytime...In the sunshine.

LOST GEM:--> "Wellsville"...a great roadtrip song with snapping drumbeats and bass runs. Snaggly guitar trim from Bill Goffrier almost disguises vocalist John Nichols' regret of rushing through life.

Have you heard this gem?


Driving fast down the road
on the highway
I guess so
We stopped just past the Flint hills
there's a sign
it was Wellsville.

Met a country man
willing to lend a hand
fix the car
run the land
down to earth
man stands so tall
he informed us
of the sky and the rainfall.

pass by life
(pass it by)
pass by Wellsville

Offered us his hospitality
but of course
we were too busy.

pass by life
(pass it by)
pass by Wellsville.

in the daytime.

pass by life
(pass it by)
pass by Wellsville

in the sunshine
where the youth die
pass by life
(pass it by)
pass by Wellsville.

You can see main street anytime.

Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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Monday, October 10, 2011

Lost Gem: "The Lottery Song" - Harry Nilsson (1972)


"If life is just a gamble...
gamble if you want to win."
--> Harry Nilsson <--



He was handed the ultimate stamp of approval any artist would cream their jeans to receive...complimentary long-distance phone calls from each one of The Beatles.

Harry Nilsson. The eclectic musical magi with a head full of moonage daydreams. John Lennon's..."favorite group".

Nilsson was like nobody else. He had spirograph vocals and lite-brite visions. But his fear of performing in front of crowds all but voided any chance for growing that much larger fan base he justly deserved.

Nilsson was Nilsson...and it's exactly these strange attributes that drew me in.

And it is especially rewarding for me when I discover any Nilsson song being utilized in a film...("Coconut" in "Reservoir Dogs" & "Jump Into The Fire" in "Goodfellas") quickly come to mind.

LOST GEM:--> "The Lottery Song"...a gentle McCartneyesque melody, instantly catchy and sweet...but, on closer listen, more sweetly...tongue-in-cheek. The big-time dreams of the small-time everyday man. (himself included). Perfect.

Have you heard this gem?


You could do the laundry
I'll come by on Monday
You give me the money
I will buy a ticket
On the local lottery
We could win the lottery
We could go to Vegas
And be very happy.
Ooh Loo...

I could be a plumber
We could wait till summer
We could save our money
Have a fine vacation
We could buy a trailer
If we bought a trailer
We could go to Vegas
And be very happy.

Ooh Loo...
If life is just a gamble,
Gamble if you want to win
Ooh Loo...
Life can be so easy
Let the wheel of fortune spin.

We could make a record
Sell a lot of copies
We could play Las Vegas
And be very happy
.


btw...go stream the terrific documentary... Who Is Harry Nilsson (And Why Is Everybody Talkin About Him?)

Good stuff!
Casey Chambers
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Sunday, September 25, 2011

Lost Gem: "Clean Clean" - The Buggles (1980)


"Johnny tell the chaplain
go
and polish his tombs."

--> The Buggles <--


The Buggles, and their now-famous and delightful opening video for MTV, will always be an answer on some game show somewhere. And that ain't such a bad thing.

But The Buggles were more than a one-hit-wonder. They were blending synth sounds and tones creating a unique electronic pop experience that masked a darker future of a more antiseptic society.

The band consisted of just two guys experimenting in the studio...making moods. But with one rare difference. They were outstanding musicians.
Geoffrey Downes spun his magic over the keyboards and percussion...while Trevor Horn pottered the bass, guitar and vocals.

When the
legendary prog band...Yes...heard The Buggles debut..."The Age Of Plastic" (1980)...they quickly asked them to produce and also join the band. Now that's some pretty strong cred.

LOST GEM:--> "Clean Clean" ... an aggressive runaway roadburn that begins with a slow, almost church organ announcement. The synthesizer solo breaks are classic new wave.

Have you heard this gem?


Pogo Johnny kicked me in the head
Aiming for the floorboards but they picked me up instead
Through the ringing of the night before
Said, ‘The engine’s running, gotta pay a call.’
Johnny drove the half-truck
‘Cause we could not find the Jeep
Wake me in the morning, gotta get some sleep
Driving all night out of fear
Got it in the ribs every time he changed gear

I’m gonna,
Take a ride, gonna pick up the team
Gonna go where we’ve never been
I’m gonna,
Take a ride, gonna pick up the team
(Pickin’ up, pickin’ up the te-e-eam)
God, you know it’s hard to keep the fighting clean

Clean, clean
Clean, clean
Clean, clean
Clean, clean

Pogo Johnny gonna fight the war
Chaplain in the morning at the local liquor store
Pogo coughing bad from diesel fumes
Johnny tell the chaplain go and polish his tombs
Lying on the waste ground with a blanket on his face
Indicating that he’s left the human race
Helmet open where the world came in
Gotta keep your head if you wanna win

Clean, clean
(lost a million in our very first attack)
Clean, clean
(don’t you worry ‘cause you know we’ll get them back)
Clean, clean
(lost a million in our very first attack)
Clean, clean
(don’t you worry ‘cause you know we’ll get them back)

Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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Saturday, September 10, 2011

Lost Gem: "We'll All Ride High (Money Bags)" - White Witch (1974)

"For your life to begin
ol' Money Bags,
your life will have to cease.
"
--> White Witch <--

White Witch were a gifted group of young Florida boys who oddly signed with a Southern Rock label (Capricorn)...but who were not Southern Rock.

On this 2nd and final album, "A Spiritual Greeting" (1974)...White Witch were RnR chameleons...sounding Beatlesque one minute...Bowieglam the next. Sabbath another time and Uriah Heep yet another.
But White Witch were not merely imitators. Their songs stand as Premium Original 70's rock jams. Played and performed at Premium Octane level. This range, however, would sadly prove to be their undoing.

Capricorn obviously didn't know how to market them...so they didn't.

LOST GEM:--> "We'll All Ride High (Money Bags)"...The intro is a "hoist-your-beers" feel-good chant that quickly turns into a guitar-burn.  
Wicked vocals preside over a cemetery burial.
A sacrifice, perhaps.
I like to think so. Turn it up!

Have you heard this gem?


We'll all ride high in the saddle again.
We'll all ride high in the saddle, my friend.
We'll all ride high in the saddle again.

We are gathered here today to pay respect
to a man who was filthy rich.
Though he owned this and that, when it came to friends
he had not a single stitch.
Though he played his part to Oscar-winning performance
While his entity lay, while it lay ever so dormant

We'll all ride high in the saddle again.
We'll all ride high in the saddle, my friend.
We'll all ride high in the saddle again.
Money bags. Money, Money bags

Now as a general rule, we don't usually hand out no flowers.
But as I recall is was said near and far, The old man he had powers.
May your death find you some love. And may your rest find you some peace.
For your life to begin, ol' Money Bags, you're life will have to cease.


Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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Monday, August 29, 2011

Lost Gem: "The Randall Knife - Live" - Guy Clark (1989)


"I'd cried for every lesser thing...Whiskey, pain and beauty."
--> Guy Clark <--

Guy Clark is a kool hoss singer/songwriter...and he is absolutely one of the best.

Crafting each song with a surgeon's steady hand and a rebel's defiant turn, it's no wonder other artists line up to cover his songs.

And "Live From Austin, TX" is a great Guy Clark introduction.

LOST GEM:--> "The Randall Knife - Live"...a deeply personal telling of a father's passing. The song captures perfectly how hurt feelings left unspoken can turn into a powerful matzo ball.

Have you heard this gem?


My father had a Randall knife
My mother gave it to him
When he went off to WWII
To save us all from ruin
If you've ever held a Randall knife
Then you know my father well
If a better blade was ever made
It was probably forged in hell

My father was a good man
A lawyer by his trade
And only once did I ever see
Him misuse the blade
It almost cut his thumb off
When he took it for a tool
The knife was made for darker things
And you could not bend the rules

He let me take it camping once
On a Boy Scout jamboree
And I broke a half an inch off
Trying to stick it in a tree
I hid it from him for a while
But the knife and he were one
He put it in his bottom drawer
Without a hard word one

There it slept and there it stayed
For twenty some odd years
Sort of like Excalibur
Except waiting for a tear

My father died when I was forty
And I couldn't find a way to cry
Not because I didn't love him
Not because he didn't try
I'd cried for every lesser thing
Whiskey, pain and beauty
But he deserved a better tear
And I was not quite ready

So we took his ashed out to sea
And poured `em off the stern
And threw the roses in the wake
Of everything we'd learned
When we got back to the house
They asked me what I wanted
Not the lawbooks not the watch
I need the things he's haunted

My hand burned for the Randall knife
There in the bottom drawer
And I found a tear for my father's life
And all that it stood for.

Guy Clark Official Site

Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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Saturday, August 20, 2011

Lost Gem: "Wynona's Big Brown Beaver" - Primus (1995)


"But the beaver was quick And grabbed him by the kiwis." 
--> Primus <--

Primus unfairly lost a few followers when they began stepping outside of the imaginary genre thrust on them.

Like a sponge, they were drawing ideas from other styles of music. Not stealing...Pushing. Stamping the envelope and pounding it in the mail slot. This is fresh..wicked...smart stuff and well worth owning.

LOST GEM:--> "Wynona's Big Brown Beaver"...funky groove that trips with a devilish quirk that would've made Zappa smile.
Bassist-extroidinare Les Claypool. ..turns loose like a Looney Tunes Tasmanian Devil. And guitarist Ler LaLonde shreds in and out like customers at a hooker's factory. Silly, sure...but silly ain't never sounded this good!

Have you heard this gem?


Wynona's got herself a big brown beaver
and she shows it off to all her friends.
One day, you know, that beaver tried to leave her,
So she caged him up with cyclone fence.
Along came Lou with the old baboon
And said "Recognize that smell?"
"Smells like seven layers,
That beaver eats Taco Bell."

Now Rex he was a Texan out of New Orleans
And he traveled with the carnival shows.
He ran bumper cars, sucked cheap cigars
And he candied up his nose.
He got wind of the big brown beaver
So he though he'd take himself a peek,
But the beaver was quick
And grabbed him by the kiwis.
Now he ain't pissed for a week.
(And a half!)

Now Wynona took her big brown beaver,
And she stuck him up in the air.
Said "I sure do love this big brown beaver
And I wish I did have a pair."
Now the beaver once slept for seven days
And it gave us all an awful fright.
So I tickled his chin and I gave him a pinch
And the bastard tried to bite me.
Wynona loved her big brown beaver
And she stroked him all the time.
She pricked her finger one day and it
Occurred to her she might have a porcupine.

Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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Monday, August 8, 2011

Lost Gem: "Dark Eyed Cajun Woman" - Doobie Brothers (1973)


"You're like a woman
I've never seen."

--> Doobie Brothers <--


The definitive Doobie Brothers album..."The Captain and Me" (1973)...is filled with their trademark twin guitar and twin drum assault. (This is pre-Michael McDonald stuff, babies...and that's a good thing!)

While Tom Johnston (vocals and guitar) was fronting the California band...the Doobs sounded like The Eagles on a Red Bull chug-fest.  Plus, they had a touch of Southern spirit in their sound.

With underrated Patrick Simmons adding to the fiery guitar churn...it was no wonder the Doobie Brothers were quickly endorsed by the wildest of biker clicks and chicks.

LOST GEM:--> "Dark Eyed Cajun Woman"...creates a mysterious vibe...with vocals and melody perfectly matched for the ride. Timeless and lures me to the car for leaving... Anywhere!  Windows down. Thunderstorms, be damned.

Have you heard this gem?


I think back to the time
When I first saw your face
You were walkin' across the delta
To your cold and lonely place
You know, I took you for a small girl
Really not quite seventeen
Oh, Lord, but I was wrong, oh so wrong
You're like a woman I've never seen.

Dark eyed Cajun woman
Where are you comin' from
Your soul is in the back woods
They say you never had a home
But I'm gonna know you better
If it takes all night and day
Dark eyed Cajun woman
You'll never get away, no, no

Now the evenin' breeze is blowin'
I hear your voice most everywhere
Your cold, black eyes
They are dancin' in the starlight
Warmin' the cold night air
It's so beautiful, you know I have to say
Dark eyed Cajun woman
You'll never get away.

Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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Monday, July 18, 2011

Lost Gem: "Highway 17" - Rodney Crowell (2001)


"I'm the perfect sample
of a bad example

gone forever from their graces
."
--> Rodney Crowell <--


Since 1972, Rodney Crowell has been writing and performing great songs, yet somehow has always been one of Americana music's best-kept secrets.

(His rebellious nature at the direction mainstream country was taking probably had a lot to do with it.)

After signing with an indie label...Rodney made jaws drop and eyes raise with his brilliant release..."The Houston Kid" (2001).

Quite simply, from beginning to end...RC...hangs the laundry out in the wind for all to see. The songs feel real...and personal. Fact or fiction? I imagine a little bit of both.

LOST GEM:--> "Highway 17"...This raw acoustic story song is filled with raw memories of bad people, bad deeds...and bad luck.  His chilling delivery is like a festering wound...and rides shotgun with the best.

Have you heard this gem?


I put away fifteen grand doing one-night stands
mostly liquor stores and fillin' stations
Me and this peepin' Tom by the name of J.D. Swan
and any number of his odd blood relations
This was armed robbery 1957
and mostly our getaways were clean
Then I'd pay off the boys
and bury my bread out on Highway 17

I had five kids and a wife with one dress
and a yard full of cars that wouldn't run.
My two oldest boys they were on to my noise
they despised what their daddy done
But I did my thing the best I could
making plans by the light of day
And then night would fall and it was time to call
and I was always on my way

Now J.D. he was crazy and he was inbred
he drank whiskey like it was goin' out of style
You know I should have seen it coming the writing was on the wall
he was getting just a little too loose and wild
And he made his mistake out on Airline Drive,
you know those North Houston cops are quick
They blew a hole in J.D. the size of Dallas
and put a lump on my head with the brunt of a nightstick

You know 5-10 in Huntsville ain't no good times boys
but I walked that line do you know what I mean
'Cause my mind was snug on that hole I dug out on Highway 17
I said my mind was snug on that hole I dug out on Highway 17

So I served my time only way I knew how
thinking big and making plans
All about the way I was gonna change the world
when I get my hands on that 15 grand
You know C.W. and Herschel my two oldest boys
they took care of their momma and their little sisters
the best way that they could
Dealing dimes and stealing hubcaps
you know pretty soon they were doing good
So I walked out those prison gates a free man
on the first day of November 19 and '63
I kissed my wife and I hugged my babies
but they didn't seem the same to me

You know the boys looked on they were already grown
it was written across their eyes and their faces
I'm the perfect sample of a bad example
gone forever from their graces
But baby six long years and a lot can change
many miles beyond your wildest dreams
But a six-lane wide modern interstate ride out on Highway 17.
Lord they sunk my ship 'neath a concrete strip out on Highway 17.
Man they broke my back they built a concrete track out on Highway 17.
Well, you know it ain't funny but they buried my money out on Highway 17.

Official site

Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
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Monday, July 4, 2011

Lost Gem: "Damaged" - Blue Oyster Cult (1998)


"But I'm a howler monkey.  Moreau's half & half-man."
--> Blue Oyster Cult <--


I've always been a fan of Blue Oyster Cult.

But sometime in the eighties, BOC sorta fell off my rocknroll radar after back-to-back (to back)...dud releases.

It was only by lucky accident, I stumbled upon their "Heaven Forbid"(1998) CD and was able to take it with me on a 3 hour Tulsa road-trip.  Surprise!

Blue Oyster Cult are swinging their scythes again.
Original members...Eric Bloom and Buck Dharma...have unburied the coffin.

LOST GEM--> "Damaged" <-- is classic Buck Dharma with an agenda. Bruising churn & burn riffs quickly push a left-of-center intro out of the way.
Hey, I admit it. I thought this band was over the hill.
But these cemetery chord bangers are fit...and don't they know it.

Have you heard this gem?


Wish I was a better person
With more control
Turn the other cheek
When the punch comes, roll
Wish I was a kinder person
Could see the others pain
Not overreact, never judge
Shrug off the spreadin' stain

But I'm a howler monkey
Moreau's half & half-man
A panther with its tail in a trap
A pumped up pyramid of pulsing glands

I'm damaged, and I like it
It made me what I am
I'm damaged, and I like it
The rest is just a sham
I'm damaged, and I like it
I live for rock 'n' roll
I'm damaged, and I like it
It thrills me to the soul.

Yeah, I told girlfriend I was gonna change
Gonna kick the habit and the taste
Trust me baby, this time it's real
There's a big part of me I've yet to waste
Don't give up baby, don't turn your back
I ain't no wailin' lost cause
I'll toss the pipe and heal the tracks
As long as you don't mind the blood
On my hands, drippin' down the back that's right

D-a-m-a-g-e-d damaged is what I am
D-a-m-a-g-e-d damaged is what I am
D-a-m-a-g-e-d damaged is what I am
D-a-m-a-g-e-d
What I am.

Good stuff!

Casey Chambers
Follow Me On  FACEBOOK  &  TWITTER