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Yankee Doodle Friday Influences Thread 07-01-11


Lee Knight

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Share your influences! What drove you to be so audacious as to think you could write a song?!?!?! And... are you sure you want to do this?

 

Hey! The Yanks celebrate their independence from the tyrannical Brits this weekend. We could never lose our fascination with them though. Instead of the obvious wave in the 60's... I'll share what had my panties in a bunch in the early 90's... moody, ethereal, Brit Electronica.

 

Not a sliver of Hip Hop influence. Nontraditional song structure, yet totally coherent form. Elongated structures perhaps, but when you were in "that mood" back then, elongated was just fine. Can I feel your face?

 

William Orbit's Strange Cargo III. I walked into a party and said, "SHUT THE FRONT DOOR! What is on the box? That music is incredible!" Has it really been almost 20 years?

 

At least stick around till the :30 mark when it is suggested that It's Time To Get Wize... ooh that bass.

 

[video=youtube;AFZdikapiaE]

 

 

Next! Yep, that's those once seemingly talentless Thomson Twin hacks finding god through chemistry. When the hits stop coming you pretend you planned it that way and change your name. This was a really good album. Babble's Ether.

 

[video=youtube;2VvYyjQutfw]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2VvYyjQutfw&feature=related

 

 

And I absolutely love Orbital's Snivilization. Just a wash of organized sound. Intelligent noise. Can I feel your face again?

 

[video=youtube;RrvCzGDse9M]

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In the early 70s I ran the midnight - 6 shift for a while at the local radio station in my college town. Dennis McGregor, a friend of mine from Lemon Grove, CA, told me about a guy he knew from open mic nights at a folk club in San Diego. This cat was a local singer/songwriter who also ran and emceed the shows. His name was Tom Waits. Dennis said he had an album coming out. One night, bored with my 6 hr. shift, I found Waits' first album in a pile of "unwanted" LPs, and listened to a few tracks on the audition channel, between whatever pop tunes I was supposed to be playing. I loved it! So around 4 AM, I began playing the whole LP.

 

I got fired the next day. For once in his life, my program director had decided to tune in. (That's okay, he got fired himself a few months later, and I was back on the air...)

 

Here's one of my favorite tunes from that album.

 

[video=youtube;x6NfUKUwqtw]

 

Several copies of this Maria Muldaur LP also sat in the radio station's unwanted pile for a long time. I took one home, played it and loved it. About a year later, this song hit the top 40. Stevie Wonder called Amos Garrett's guitar solo "the 2nd best pop music guitar solo of the year..."

 

[video=youtube;Q3tHYb4_bAg]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q3tHYb4_bAg

 

Speaking of guitar solos, here's another LP that sat in the unwanted pile for a long time. I kept bugging my program director to listen to this track. A few months later, it started moving up the charts, and he relented. For my money this song has one of the most relentlessly inventive guitar solos of all time.

 

[video=youtube;xo-J1wf2KHc]

 

LCK

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Damn right! What a solo. I love all the fills too. Like dripping honey or something. I was 15 when that came out. I remember thinking, holy crap! As a side note, I love the way she changes her melody and phrasing for the first two lines of the second verse. She could've repeated from the first but instead, she just goes to this very cool and natural little melodic detour.

 

Great record.

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Thanks for posting that, Lee. So good to hear it again. When he performed here umpteen years ago, Amos Garrett told a Winnipeg Free Press interviewer that Stevie Wonder had declared his solo on "Midnight/Oasis" to be the "second greatest solo" (in the history of pop musical bridges). I HAD to go and ask Mr. Garrett (that very night): "So who did Stevie say was his favorite?" With a big smile Amos said, "Remember a song by (Mary Wells, I believe, -- with the (staccato refrain, which he sang for me): "I know . . . you don't love me no more . . . no more, no, no more . . . " -- which featured a trumpet solo that was Stevie's favorite.

 

Sorry Lee I stole your "Yankee Doodle Friday" title and posted my favorite musical influence on my OWN thread today, but hereby include my favorite writing influence (who my wife says I most resemble, in appearance (dark eyebrows) as well as demeanor. Not music, but you may appreciate my single most important influence as a writer. Try to keep a straight face while you watch his:

 

 

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Sorry Lee I stole your "Yankee Doodle Friday" title and posted my favorite musical influence on my OWN thread today, but hereby include my favorite writing influence (who my wife says I most resemble, in appearance (dark eyebrows) as well as demeanor. Not music, but you may appreciate my single most important influence as a writer. Try to keep a straight face while you watch his:


 

 

Really? Your wife thinks you look like Kermit?

 

LCK

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Theories of history; Tolstoy and Thucydides; remembering how people remembered a time that I had experienced first hand; or more 80's music.

 

In the late 90's I had an apartment about 10ft above ground zero of the DC club/bar scene. There was a dance club down the street that ran "Retro 80's Night" every Saturday.

 

10pm

[video=youtube;_U5HpeA_WSo]

 

 

11pm

[video=youtube;ftJZomwDhxQ]

 

 

Midnight

[video=youtube;AWTooBL_EGU]

 

 

1am

[video=youtube;Xrd3lSn5FqQ]

 

 

2am - last call

[video=youtube;9rGA_rZxIV0]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9rGA_rZxIV0

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9rGA_rZxIV0

 

And because it was the 90's, all the white girls were trying to dance like Buffy.

[video=youtube;kPgZQ1XHtQI]

 

 

I'm off to take the kids to the beach for a week. Be good/peace out.

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What drove you to be so audacious as to think you could write a song?!?!?! And... are you sure you want to do this?

 

 

I have no idea. I wish I was a good mechanic. I keep doing this s*it though.

And the more I do it, the deeper in the s*it I sink.

 

***

 

I've been on a Sparks' kick.

 

You can keep your "Pet Sounds/Smile" or "Sgt. Pepper/Revolver/Rubber Soul".

The best Rock CD I've ever heard is "L'il Beethoven" (2002-2004).

 

Incredible vision. These guys are older than me. And they are still making ambitious, ageless music.

 

(I'd never even heard of Sparks until a pal turned me on to them a couple of years ago.)

 

[video=youtube;ive4NdBMjt0]

 

[video=youtube;CFP4aByUfxA]

 

[video=youtube;9FOs9_l33gY]

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Good songs LCK, I remember learning 'Scotch & Soda' on the guitar when I was a kid.

I remember driving south in the rain w/ "Misery & Gin" on the car radio.

 

I noticed that sweep of reverb on Sinatra's voice. Wow!

Vocals don't sound like that anymore. Damned shame!

I wish I could get that sound.

 

And the sound of that guitar in the left-channel intrigues me.

It almost sounds like a nylon-string arch-top. But it's probably steel flat-wounds.

 

Maybe that will be my next guitar.

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Just got the new Union Station CD. One of favorite musicians, Jerry Douglas on his Dobro, and of course Alison. But hey, produced by Mike Shipley? Great producer but... but... it freakin' works. So take note, a pop song without a snare drum backbeat. There are no snare drums in bluegrass. I love this {censored}...

 

(Skip the long vid intro if inclined. Music stars at :40)

 

[video=youtube;2-0drZqMdR4]

 

I've put it all behind me

Nothing left to do or doubt

Some may say

But every silver lining

Always seems to have a cloud

That comes my way

 

Anticipated pleasure

Or unexpected pain

No choice I fear

And love is hard to measure

Hidden in the rain

That's why you'll find me...

 

Here all alone and still wondering why

Waiting inside for the cold to get colder

And here where it's clear that I've wasted my time

Hoping to fly 'cause it's almost over now

 

People come together, people go their own way

Love conquers few

And I'll do whatever, I'll say what I need to say

Just not for you

 

How many days should I smile with a frown?

'Cause you're not around with the sun on your shoulders

And how many nights must I wake up alone?

And know in my soul that it's almost over now

 

Our love is like a paper airplane flying in the folded wind

Riding high, dipping low

And innocence is fair game, I'm hoping I can hold it in

Our love will die, I know

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I can't believe this has been out since March and I hadn't seen it until today... Once again, the Axis of Awesome guys have shown us how to do it... (it'll bump you to their page on YouTube; there's a commercial you can skip after the first 5 seconds)

 

[video=youtube;kdudKAMOz5s]

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Just got the new Union Station CD. One of favorite musicians, Jerry Douglas on his Dobro, and of course Alison. But hey, produced by Mike Shipley? Great producer but... but... it freakin' works. So take note, a pop song without a snare drum backbeat. There are no snare drums in bluegrass. I love this {censored}...

 

 

No kidding. Jerry Douglas is a frickin' great addition to this band.

 

LCK

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Oh boy... I continue to devour this Union Station album. Here, Dan Tyminski takes his turn singing. Hey, he's a hick, so what?. :) I love it. This song resonates with such country wisdom. And hey...

 

...I got back together with my wife this weekend. So, the outside looking in was fitting for me. I must've played this tune 100 times these past few days. It's good to be back "in".

 

[video=youtube;c2Wu6q5txyY]

 

You close the door in front of me, I wait patiently outside

And as the minutes tick away I feel my anger rise

And who's the object of my rage, and who's not being fair

Is it you for your indifference or me for just standing there

 

Cause in my mind the room beyond is bathed in golden light

I dream about you through the day and I toss and turn at night

Sometimes it's hard to understand, when they say that pride's a sin

Should I go or should I stay on the outside looking in

 

Well I didn't make the grade today and I'm not the only one

But my heart won't stop hurting and feeling all alone

Maybe we'll trade places in some not so distant year

I'll hear your voice calling out, and I'll cover up my ears

 

Cause in my mind the room beyond is bathed in golden light

I dream about you through the day and I toss and turn at night

Sometimes it's hard to understand, when they say that pride's a sin

Should I go or should I stay on the outside looking in

 

Well I could brag on the things I've done or the places I have been

But I never found a cure for on the outside looking in

Sometimes it's hard to understand, when they say that pride's a sin

Should I go or should I stay on the outside looking in

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