Thursday, February 28, 2008

New Yorker article on our girl, Amy...

Amy’S Circus The strange power of junkie retro soul. by Sasha Frere-Jones

Is there anything surprising about Amy Winehouse’s being awarded five Grammys this month? A cynic might say that her ability to stay alive is startling, but Winehouse’s worrying series of relapses and collapses could simply be a trick of the light. Actors and singers were misbehaving vigorously before the advent of radio; Winehouse may seem like such a dedicated tearaway because the lens recording her movements is wider than anything a sixties celebrity would have encountered, doesn’t switch off, and continually feeds a twenty-four-hour newsstand.

....Winehouse’s self-destructiveness isn’t a plausible explanation for her popularity, or her awards, no matter how easily it converts into press. With the producers Mark Ronson and Salaam Remi, she made a very popular album that looks firmly, and directly, backward. “Back to Black” is a deft and convincing pastiche of the girl groups of the sixties, the jazz singers of the forties, and a variety of rhythms from the seventies and the nineties. (The eighties get a pass.) It’s an entertaining, clever album that benefits from a strategy that makes everyone who isn’t Miles Davis look good: it’s only thirty-five minutes long (and closer to thirty without the bonus track). “Back to Black” is a modified sixties soul album, with one perfect single (the ubiquitous “Rehab,” which allows Winehouse to celebrate, make fun of, and justify her own substance abuse), sung and written by a twenty-four-year-old girl from Southgate, London, who says she has the musical taste of “an old Jewish man” and wears her hair in a vertical pile she refers to as “my hive.” - complete article

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Peter and Claire go to the Symphony...

Friday morning is snowy, but the streets are still black late into the morning. Andy calls from on the road somewhere in Connecticut, on his way from NYC, where there was four inches on the ground early. No big deal, looks pretty benign here.

I meet Claire in Somerville and we head for Symphony for our 1.30 performance. Brenda, Claire's nanny, comes along and we drop her off when we get to Symphony Hall.

The whole scene is so classic Boston. Snow falling quietly, elegant buildings around Symphony Hall. At the parking lot the attendant asks if we are going to the symphony. We look the part.

I don't think Claire has ever been to Symphony Hall....we walk around the ground floor level. The crowd is sparse now, and there are a couple of musicians on the stage. We decide to find our seats on the second balcony right. When we get there Claire is impressed that we are high up, but with a good view of the stage. You wouldn't want to fall over that railing. The lady next to us strikes up a conversation with Claire, who is confident and comfortable talking to adults.

It really is a grand setting, the high hall and the golden glow of the stage, the audience slowly gathering, the hum of noise. The orchestra...more of an ensemble, not the full orchestra for these pieces today...and the conductor comes out. Claire likes the conductor, James Levine. He's big and burly and active, but sits rather than stands, the result of injuries and chronic ailments.

The first piece is Mozart. It's accessible and listenable. I tell Claire there are four movements, so she can keep track of where we are. She likes my binoculars...good for seeing the stage and for people watching the audience.

The second piece is Berg, very difficult and inaccessible and long, with two soloists, piano and violin. The pianist has a page turner. I can see he is almost through the pages when suddenly he flips back. What the hell! Later I read there's an optional repeat in the music, and he picked up the option!

At intermission we have candy bar and a beer. Walking to the men's room I cross paths with the violinist, an intense looking young German woman. She's playing a 300 year old Stradivarius. Those things are worth millions I think.

After intermission they play a Brahms piece. It's lively and great to listen to and not too long, with five brisk movements.

After the snow is falling more thickly. We walk a couple of blocks back to the parking lot, talking to people about the performance, what we liked best, did you notice this. Then home through the snow. I hope we make this a tradition. It is fun to be the grandfather with the charming granddaughter.

Later to the Harvard Yale hockey game with Aidan and Ned.The Yale goalie has a disastrous night, 6 to 1, but the game is entertaining, with weird goals and fights and the Harvard band having a lot of fun.

Happy Birthday, Judi Housman!....

Judy, whatcha gonna do?
When you're older and no one wants to know ya?
I will look out for you,
If you will look out for me
I know I'm not as hard as you
But I think I can see right through you,
The Pipettes



Monday, February 25, 2008

Jim Kane (Bristol's oldies guru), what's your spin on this?...

In an Era of the Beatles, the Shags Ruled, Too by Tammy LaGorce (NY Times)

PUT the words “Connecticut” and “garage” together, and most people see visions of weed whackers and garden hoses, not long-haired guys with guitars. But chances are that’s about to change. On Feb. 19, the much fetishized reissue label Sundazed Music released “Don’t Press Your Luck! The In Sounds of 60’s Connecticut,” an album that reaches back to a time not everybody remembers, but that anyone with a fondness for fuzzed-up guitar and suburban psychedelia will want to get to know.

“Back in the 60s, each geographical area had its own sound — like in Los Angeles, it was the sound of the Byrds,” said Bob Irwin, the album producer and owner of Sundazed, based in Coxsackie, N.Y. “What came out of Connecticut were these super-great garagey cuts with killer guitar. You can hear the influence of blue-eyed soul from Long Island, threads of the Rascals and the Vagrants. But what’s in the water in a specific place comes out on a record when you do an excavation like this. It makes my heart pound.”

Music — freewheeling rock ’n’ roll represented by long-forgotten New Haven-area bands like the Shags, the Bram Rigg Set and the Wildweeds — is what got the hearts of the teenagers featured on “Don’t Press Your Luck!” pounding; something the CD, available at www.sundazed.com, puts across within the first few speaker-thumping tracks.

But corralling and guiding those heavy heartbeats, Mr. Irwin said, was a single player: Thomas “Doc” Cavalier, founder of the still-running Trod Nossel Studios in Wallingford. Before Mr. Cavalier died of pancreatic cancer in 2005, Mr. Irwin made a deal with him to secure the masters for hundreds of songs, including the 22 that landed on the CD. - complete NY Times article - Hftd Courant's Eric Danton's weekly music column of 2/28/08 features this CD here

Jim Kane's response, direct from Port St. Lucie, FL:

OK you asked - Back in the 60's the state was split in two. Wallingford south, especially, was all rock n roll (all trying to be the next Beatles, Kinks, or Animals). New Haven was a particular hot bed. North of Wallingford, heading into Hartford - Soul Music was the big thing. Clubs like Tony Romano's Hofbrau Haus, Brad Davis' Fling-O Clubs, & Shaker Park were the hot spots with many a sold out night. One of the great exceptions was Bristol's Squires (Formerly The Rogues). Mike Bouyea, Tom Flanigan, John Folcik, & Kurt Robinson were signed by Atlantic Records under the name Squires. You can find some of their songs On NUGGETS & Pebbles albums still being sold today. The Squires songs sold very well in Europe. Their biggest hit was "Going All The Way". Mike Bouyea later on in the 70s was a top Disc Jockey at WDRC in Hartford, going under the name Mike Holland. One of the best bands ever formed was The North Atlantic Syndicate Of Soul. A ten piece soul group, which just happened to win a 100 band - battle of the bands at The Eastern States Exposition in 1968. This group was the lead group to record a six group album, entitled Connecticut Soul.

Other prominent groups were Billy Hooker's Flames, Dutchess & The Paramounts, The Downbeats, Harrison Glover & The LTD's, Bristol's own - Variations. The Connecticut Soul album was recorded at Syncron Sound Studio in Wallingford, under the watchful eye of none other than Doc Cavalier. Al Anderson (first band was the Six Packs) was doing some studio work with Doc at the time. For my money the best band to come out of New Haven was Bobby Bennett's Realms featuring the Marque Revue. This was one hot group.

Now here are some other names that played almost every weekend somewhere in Connecticut - Van Treavor & The Saturday Nights, Pearline Gray & The Passengers, The Fugitives, The North Atlantic Invasion Force, Yesterday's Children, The Upbeats, The Classics, The Latins, & The Wildweeds. Connecticut had its share of great recording artists - The tops were The Five Satins & Gene Pitney. But the best Connecticut group ever (Great vocals, outstanding showmanship, and fantastic crowd appeal) was The Fabulous Farquahr. They were the ultimate crowd pleasers. This is just an old fart's opinion, but I thank God that I was part of this scene in the 60s. - Jim Kane

Anyone else want to chime in on this topic?

Friday, February 22, 2008

A history of pop icons: Sharie & the Little Guy

Rising from the various youth centers and high school auditoriums of Rockin' Rockville, CT, Sharie & the Little Guy shot to the top of the pop scene in 1980 with their debut album, Songs For Sharin'. The band's latest album, Dinner With Elvis, mixes Sharie A's bouncy choruses with Keithie A's clean strumming to generate a disc overflowing with uber- memorable tunes. With standout tracks like Gene Pitney Was Overrated, Hangin' With Bernie, I Love Stanley Robinson and Big-Headed Drivers Should Never Be Borrowed don't be surprised if you find Sharie & the Little Guy at the top of the pop charts and beyond.

Hey, all you fuckers, you should check out the new Drive-By Truckers...

Can't get enough of Brighter Than Creation's Dark, the latest effort, and first without lead singer/songwriter Jason Isbell, of the Drive By Truckers. Kind of a cross between George Strait and Lynyrd Skynyrd (with a sly wink), DBT hooked me a few years ago when niece Kay gave me The Dirty South for Christmas.

The Truckers will be in the area for shows in March:
  • Mar 21 (Fri)- Pearl Street, Northampton, MA
  • Mar 22 (Sat)- Paradise Rock Club, Boston, MA
  • Mar 25 (Tue)- Toad's Place, New Haven, CT
  • Mar 26 (Wed)- Terminal 5, New York, NY
  • Wednesday, February 20, 2008

    Latest news from Plantsville's own....

    we're HEADLINING ** at Toad's Place!

    **and the only band at 9:15am(!) sunday march 2nd for the WPLR shamrock and roll road race. this year we won't be freezing our asses off at our fire marshal's station at the jct of prospect and edwards. come in for free, see us play, and then listen to Lappie give out the awards. or not.

    we're going to be playing 9:15am-ish as soon as the runners start coming inside. check our MYSPACE/thesawtelles site for any updated info so we don't inundate you with emails.

    not sure where you'll be able to park so plan accordingly. the finish line if I'm not mistaken is right at the door of Toad's. support us at our HUGE headling toad's place show EVER! how many other local bands can claim that?? do you want to??

    maybe we can fire up the hottub downstairs. join us!!

    You see, he's not just a pool hall stud after all....

    Restaurant the second for couple —and maybe not the last by André Ward, special to the Record-Journal

    SOUTHINGTON — Hus­band and wife Barry De Paolo and Cheryl Moran are glad they own Bonterra Italian Bistro — it’s their chance to spend their days together. “If I weren’t a part of it I would never get to see him,” said Moran with a laugh. The two have very different backgrounds in the business — Moran got hooked while bar­tending her way through law school, and De Paolo got his start early. De Paolo was bar­tending at his father’s restau­rant, Hitchcock Station in Southington, when he got his first taste of life as a chef. “My father threw an apron at me and said OK, you’re in the kitchen now,” he recalled. It didn’t take much more for De­Paolo to fall in love with the in­dustry, and 20 years as a chef would follow. He worked at Hard Rock Café and as the cor­porate chef for Planet Holly­wood, opening up restaurants in London, Spain and Indone­sia. “The travel was amazing,” De Paolo said. In 2001, the couple made the move to Southington and opened up Anthony Jack’s Woodfire Grill, which would quickly become one of the town’s most popular restau­rants.

    Last year, De Paolo was approached with an offer to open up another restaurant a stone’s throw away from An­thony Jack’s in a new space be­ing made available. He and Moran were excited, but won­dered what they could offer in a separate experience.
    “If I did do it, what could I do that would be different?” De­Paolo said. “So we decided that Southington could use another Italian restaurant.” Owning two restaurants in a span of 100 yards has offered unique challenges. “People seem to eat out 3-4 days a week now,” De Paolo said. “But if we do compete with someone, we hope we don’t compete with ourselves.” The two restaurants have many of the same cus­tomers, and De Paolo and Moran often spend their days going from one place to the other. Bonterra’s cuisine is Italian in name, but incorporates wider Mediterranean influences, of­fering dishes such as butternut squash ravioli and grilled scal­lop risotto. De Paolo is especial­ly proud of the wine/private party room which offers audio­visual capabilities and always seems to be booked. When the summer comes, the two will open up the patio area for out­door use, providing diners with a view of the town green.

    Both De Paolo and Bonterra’s chef, Eddie Dwyer, lived in New York and were struck with the city’s progressive approach to sustainable foods. So they are trying to stay ahead of the curve with Bonterra, offering organic wines as well as beer and vodka. The restaurant’s pasta is also made in house, and almost nothing is frozen.
    For most people, owning two restaurants would be more than enough, but De Paolo and Moran aren’t ready to cry uncle just yet. “We’ve thrown around some ideas for another one,” said Moran with a smile. “Never say never,” De Paolo said. “If we were to open up an­other restaurant, it would have to complement the other ones and be the right piece to the puzzle. But it’s fun to keep building the team.” “It’s like having kids,” Moran said. “The first one’s tough, the second one you get used to it a little more, and then after that it’s easy.”

    Bonterra is located at 98 Main St. in Southington and is closed Mondays. It is open 11:30 a.m.–9:30 p.m. Tuesdays through Thursdays, 11:30 a.m.­10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, and 4 p.m.-8 p.m. on Sundays. The restaurant’s chef, Eddie Dwyer, shared a recipe for parpadelle with us. (see Wednesday's R-J)

    And you said taxes were boring...

    Chrissie Hynde Takes Bus for Tax Increase Akron, Ohio by WebCPA staff

    Chrissie Hynde, lead singer of the Pretenders, rode an Akron bus to show her support for a countywide sales tax increase that would bring increased revenue to the local mass transit system. The 0.25 percent sales tax increase in Summit County, Ohio, would raise the total sales tax to 6.5 percent. The tax would increase the budget for the Metro Regional Tax Authority by 62 percent, giving the agency an extra $18 million in revenue. Voters are set to vote on the proposal on the March 4 ballot.

    Hynde, an Akron native, joined 15 members of the Greater Akron Partnership for Sustainability on a bus ride in support of the tax increase. Public transit is "what makes a city a city," said Hynde, according to the Akron Beacon Journal. "If you feel you have to have a car, you feel trapped," she added. The group also sees the added support for mass transit as a way to cut down on greenhouse gases.

    Tuesday, February 19, 2008

    Someone from Spokane emails....

    “My Pappy said, ‘Son, you’re gonna drive me to drinkin’, if you don’t quit drivin’ that Hot Rod Lincoln.’”

    Remembering a rockabilly icon Doug Clark, Columnist

    When a cowboy dies (and I’m talking about real-deal cowboys, here) it’s customary to paint a romanticized picture of the deceased cowpoke riding slowly off into the sunset astride a cherished pony. Not Charlie Ryan. In my mind he’s sitting behind the wheel of a souped-up, candy apple red Lincoln-powered Model A. There’s a white Stetson covering his head and a grin on his face. He’s got the pedal to the metal, too, burnin’ rubber all the way to those Pearly Gates.

    That’s the way Charlie would have us remember him, too. The soft-spoken Spokane man who gave the world one of the best car songs ever written – “Hot Rod Lincoln” – passed away peacefully Saturday after a long struggle with heart failure. - story

    Monday, February 18, 2008

    Is there worthy talent out there?...

    Rusty Records
    THE DOCTOR’S STILL ROCKIN !

    TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN: ATTENTION !

    We, at Rusty Records, are looking to sign some local Connecticut talent. At this time we are putting out the call for any Connecticut recording artists to submit their work (past or present) for our consideration.

    We will select the best recordings and make a CD for sale. We will then sign the top four recording groups to a long term contract(s), which could go into seven figures. The top four groups will be announced at a live television newscast. The intention is to put the four top groups on the road in a series of concerts next fall. The groups will then be traveling the European continent next winter in a series of live concerts.

    Time is at a premium, so contact us as soon as possible. If you have material you wish to record, we will make our recording facilities available to you and your group. All recordings will become the property of Rusty Records.

    Please contact us at: RUSTY RECORDS
    C/O WORLD TOUR
    359 Farmington Ave.
    Plainville, CT. 06062

    Sunday, February 17, 2008

    NBA allstar music...

    For the Saturday night allstar festivities in New Orleans (celebrity game, slam dunk contest, skills and 3-point contest), fans were treated to some fine music as well. Marc Broussard and his band played several numbers and Dr. John soloed on Louis Armstrong's What a Wonderful World.

    For Sunday's main event, Nola trotted out the Rebirth Brass Band featuring Trombone Shorty and Kermit Ruffins for the player introductions, while Branford Marsalis, Stephanie Jordan, and Jonathan DuBose performed a wonderfully understated Star Spangled Banner. Finally, the halftime extravaganza featured Harry Connick, Jr., Allen Toussaint, Dr. John, Davell Crawford, Art Neville, Ivan Neville, Jonathan Batiste and Ellis Marsalis and a host of others (as I watched the Dukies get asswhipped by those Deamon Deacons of Wake Forest).

    Saturday, February 16, 2008

    Mumbo jumbo from Johnny Gumbo.....

    Advance talent scout extraordinaire Johnny Gumbo writes of promising lineups on the evenings of the 2nd weekend of JazzFest (after pounding the Pool Hall Studs, of course):

    Maple Leaf Bar
  • THU 5/1- The Trio George P, Johnny V w/tba; Perrier Lounge Soul Party 2008 featuring DJLogic, Tony Hall, Renard Poche, Eric Bolivar, plus special guests
  • FRI 5/2- Johnny Sketch & the Dirty Notes
  • SAT 5/3- Jon Cleary & the Absolute Monster Gentlemen
  • SUN 5/4- Joe Krown w/Organ Combo

    Rock N Bowl
  • THU 5/1- Legends of Zydeco featuring Buckwheat Zydeco, Leon Sam, Liíl Buck Senegal, Rockin' Dopsie Jr., and more
  • FRI 5/2- Bonerama and Kermit Ruffins
  • SAT 5/3- Rebirth Brass Band
  • SUN 5/4- Sonny Landreth and Tab Benoit
  • Wednesday, February 13, 2008

    Who da Queen?...

    Beyonce's "Queen" a Royal Pain for Aretha

    There are plenty of divas. But there can only be one queen. Aretha Franklin has lashed out at well-intentioned comments made by Beyoncé Knowles during the latter's introduction of Tina Turner on the Grammy stage Sunday night. Franklin, 65, says she felt disrepected after Knowles referred to Turner as the Queen, while relegating Franklin to a brief name check in a long list of inspirational singers past, an act apparently tantamount to musical heresy.

    "I am not sure of whose toes I may have stepped on or whose ego I may have bruised between the Grammy writers and Beyoncé. However, I dismissed it as a cheap shot for controversy," a clearly offended Franklin said in an unprompted statement issued by her publicist. - story

    Sunday, February 10, 2008

    Showtime!!!!!!....

    Excuse me, sorry about stepping on your feet. Nice shoes. Sorry, meant it as a compliment. Quiet, it's showtime. Gum?

    Alicia Keys, fresh from the Super Bowl, and Frank Sinatra learning the blues. I'm looking up at that peek-a-boo thing. Here's to the next 50 years! American Idol Carry Underwood singing, pissed at her man, gonna trash his truck....drums are too loud for the song. Hope she doesn't key the wrong truck!

    "Frank Sinatra looked good for 150, didn't he?" Prince, what a kidder! Lookin' red, presenting to winner Alicia Keys in her peek-a-boo thing. Shout out to God (does He watch these awards shows, 'cause it could give Him a big head).

    The Time....and Rhianna....80's funk.....forgettable. Tom Hanks tells us about The Band....Lifetime Something recipients. And the Beatles. Never was a fan of Let It Be, but like the gospel take.

    Amy wins #1 as Cindi Lauper accepts excitedly. Some guy outside wants us to vote by phone. Screw him. Damn, excuse me, got to go to the bathroom. Sorry, didn't mean to step on those great shoes again. I promise not to on the way back. Back. Oops, sorry. Kanye West is doing a Devo thing. He's up against Amy Winehouse in a few categories tonight. Will he tell us off if he loses? Doing the song about his Mama....pretty touching.

    Fergie, forgot your Peas? Duet with John Legend. Finally.....over! Cher introducing Beyonce who shows off for a bit then brings out Tina Turner, who looks a little weird. No Ike Turner tribute? Well, maybe just a little one, with Beyonce doing Ike's part on Proud Mary.

    Yikes, Andy Williams is still alive? Not sure, but he's up on stage right now. Amy wins #2! They send us back outside? Oh, we can just sit in here and watch the Foo Fighters sing outside with an orchestra....or something stupid like that. What? Maybe now's the time to sneak out to the lobby for a beer. Damn, not again!...Sorry, but you have big feet. Just kidding, your feet are fine, I'm just clumsy. Here, step on mine, then we're even. Jesus, lots of commercials!

    Waiting for Feist or Amy Winehouse to perform, but get Brad Paisley instead singing I'd Like to Check Your Tics. Pretty awful.

    Kanye West wins best rap album and tells the jerks who play that sendoff music to kiss off. Good for him. Now some gospel from Aretha and Bebe Winans, Clarks Sisters. A WHOLE LOTTA GOSPEL. Pretty cool. We always make sure to check out the Gospel Tent at JazzFest each year. Jeez, it's almost 10 o'clock. I mean, 7, 'cause we're, of course, out on the left coast.

    1,2,3,4....Feist!....scaled down version, should have kept the gospel peeps around for the song.....Kid Rock and Keeley Smith sing Old Black Magic....then give some award to the Foo Fighters, who were apparently let inside to accept.

    Boy, they are riding the Amy performance hard before each break. G hopes she's not "pre-gaming."

    Alicia Keys is introduced by Stevie Wonder for her current hit.....out comes CT's John Mayer to accompany her on guitar at the end! Country album goes to Vince Gill's These Days, a wonderful four-album set that features some stuff by CT's Al Anderson of NRBQ/Wildweeds fame. Another break!

    Joe Montana? Oh, not. Another Joe. Herbie Hancock and Someone Asian dueling pianos on Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue (what WAS that airline, anyway?). Hey, the White Stripes are here! Oh, fooled again. It's just a Crest Whitestrips commercial. Getting real tired, let's wrap this baby up. I've got to catch the red-eye back to CT in a couple hours.

    Amy, live from London, where it must be like Tuesday by now. Waiting for the trainwreck, but she does funky versions of I'm No Good and Rehab. Throws out several references to her Blake in the songs. Then wins #3 for Song of the Year for Rehab. She thanks Mom, Dad and her incarcerated hubby, Blake.

    Wait, I said QUIET, asshole! The Academy Prez is speaking! Wow, he's FANTASTIC, especially at 11 o'clock!

    Now it's time for dead men scrolling. Ike Turner and Pavarotti. Josh Groban and Andrea Bocelli sing to honor the Big Guy.

    John Fogerty, Little Richard and Jerry Lee Lewis! Fogerty does the lead in to Jerry Lee's Great Balls of Fire (Killer's balls aren't quite as firey as they once were, but cool to hear) and Little Richard's surprisingly energetic Good Golly, Miss Molly. Brings a little life to this place. Is it over yet?

    Will.i.am (periods???) doing some kind of rap listing of old songs. Okay, I admit that I don't get it. Final award- Album of the Year. WHAT? Herbie Hancock for "River: The Joni Letters," a jazz album (with dreaded duets) of Joni Mitchell songs. Big surprise, but Kanye doesn't go postal on us.

    Okay, gotta run. Damn, sorry. Actually, you do have kinda big feet. See you next year. Out.

    Outside on the carpet.....

    Who am I wearing? Oh. Hmmmmm......I'm wearing something made just for the occasion by Mr. Dockers..... Hope everyone else isn't wearing him; don't want to be one of the crowd. Oh, and briefs by Jockey. What stain? Shit, that's from the burger I had over at the street vendor. Way to much catsup. I TOLD him! Got to run 'cause 60 Minutes is on.

    HEY, Whitney, what's up! No, no, no. Can't do that, got sinus problems, but thanks for asking. Hey, Jay Z, when are the Nets moving to Brooklyn? Shout out to B for me! Yo, Will.i.am (did I get the periods right?), LOVE the Barack video!

    Time to get myself inside, lest someone steal my FRONT ROW seat.

    Saturday, February 09, 2008

    Johnnyk goes to the Grammys....don't miss it!

    I don't have a date yet for the Red Carpet (The Reet say no, no, no), but I'll be there to give you the lowdown. Very excited. Just touched down in Elay this afternoon and I feel just fab, can't wait to get going. grammy.com -

    Album of the year candidates:
  • Foo Fighters "Echoes, Silence, Patience and Grace"
  • Vince Gill "These Days"
  • Herbie Hancock "The River"
  • Kanye West "Graduation"
  • Amy Winehouse "Back To Black"

    Aretha tribute launches Grammy weekend - story - Here's Lady Soul live on the Cliff Richards Show in 1970 singing Say a Little Prayer:
  • Bristol oldies guru Jim Kane reports...

    The powers that be at Rusty Records are keeping mum about their newest project. Just bits and pieces floating in. We do know that Dee Valerio, Linda D'Aprile & Lesley Montella have been in the recording studio.

    We know that Johnny Kennedy has reformed his old group - The Heartbreakers. Out on the West Coast rumors have been flying about concerning Steve Petroff coming east to record some new material. Even more interesting is that Woody "The Legend" Crosby has not been heard from for a month. The word is that he has gone into seclusion to work on a project. Another strange happening - recently transplanted to Florida, Bob Beliveau has booked a flight back to Connecticut to join with some old buddies to rehearse some songs. Eileen Chase, Joan Delisle, and Liz Malley have been seen in Plainville coming out of Rusty Camp's dentist office, which we know is just a front for "Rusty Records". And here is the kicker - Bob Lindsay has been in touch with Fred Paris of the Five Satins, and it has reached us that they may collaborate on a couple of numbers. It is all adding up to a new CD! We will continue to dig deeper, and keep you informed.

    Previously:
    Southington based Blues Man - Johnny Kennedy has some info on the next CD from Rusty Records. It seems that Rusty Recorrds president - Dr. Rusty Camp will be stirring the rumor pot with a challenge to some very famous Bristol groups. Rusty has been in touch with Johnny Kennedy about Johnny putting his old group back together, for one last recording session. Not only that, but Rusty is also in heavy negotiations with Bristol vocal group - The DEE LITES. Dee Valerio spilled the beans the other day during a coffee break at Forestville Machine Co. Yep, We have our spies everywhere. Not only that but world famous rocker, Steve Petroff, has been in communication with some former Bristol friends. It seems that Steve is going to enter the fray. I'm going to contact Flash Carlson tonight to see if he has heard anything.. Whitey Dudzinski , from Bristol's Six Olde Fartz, has been contacted, but he has already forgotton why. What can be in the mind of Rusty Records - only time and the Shadow knows !

    Friday, February 08, 2008

    Gumbo returns!...

    What a surprise! Johnny Gumbo returned, if only in a larger-than-life photo, to celebrate Fat Tuesday at the Southington Rotary's annual Mardi Gras Night fundraiser at Anthony Jack's Wood-fired Grill. The former co-chair of the event has picked up his roots and moved out west where he has become involved with the Armed Forces & Aerospace Museum in Spokane.

    Guests feasted on Cajun favorites and were entertained by the very hot D. Smith Blues Band. Saxman John Smayda sat in for a few spirited numbers with the band. A portion of the night's proceeds will benefit the Bread For Life soup kitchen in Southington.

    Wednesday, February 06, 2008

    Carolyn goes to the Beehive...

    You mean Carolyn B has gone to the Amy Winehouse look? No, no, no! Reporting from Beantown, our Big Four (or whatever the number is these days) accountant-in-residence gives us the headsup on places to go, people to see, things to do in the City of Imperfect Patriots:

    The Beehive is most definitely a hot spot and certainly something to try! Great tunes from the Nat Simpkins/Henri Smith Band included the Mardi Gras Mambo. Each table is adorned with masks, beads and gold coins. The place was hoppin! but my Tulane Alum fellow EY Staff Accountant Brigitte and I were able to squeeze into a table and try some of the delicious grub. Shrimp Etoufee was delicious - a couple shrimp over a biscuit with creamy gravy. Brigitte went with the Brie and Bacon Grilled Cheese - I had to snag a bite, most unique grilled cheese I've ever had. I was curious about the Gyro Salad with Shaved Lamb and Feta Yogurt Dressing. Scared at first, by the head of iceberg lettuce staring at me in the face, it was actually quite good and made me feel for a split second that I was swept off my feet by a Greek shipping heir who brought me home to meet the rents. Brigitte deems the hurricanes non-authentic, as they tasted more like a screwdriver than the famous Southern Comfort based cocktail. And instead of making them red, the bartenders instead served them in red plastic glasses. All in all, a great time in Boston's South End with lots of potential for success. Could be a spot for Herbie to entertain some Bostonians if he's ever in town!!

    You'll be the first to know of any other jazzy places I try and feel the urge to review! Hope all is well! Carolyn B(eehive)

    Monday, February 04, 2008

    Gumbo reflections on Super Bowl XXXXII....

    From his unique perspective up in Spokane, WA (I think the time difference is 2.5 hours), Johnny Gumbo offers his take on the Super Bowl, whether you want it or not:

  • Best TV shot: camera following Kevin Faulk walking off his injury on the sideline with all the cheerleaders in their hot little uniforms in the foreground;
  • Halftime show with TP pretty tame, he's lookin' older and older, almost Willy Nelsonie like;
  • NFL quarterbacks should not let their girlfriends come to games;
  • Best Ads: #3 - Pepsi Max and the nodding heads; #2 - the Etrade baby throwing up; and #1, Mark Gutowski impersonating Will Farrell pitching Bud Light - Yahoo Sports

    What about Danica Patrick?
  • Sunday, February 03, 2008

    They Might Be Giants!!!!

    New York, New York


    Johnnykmusic goes to the Super Bowl....

    Alicia Keys is performing on the field for us idiots watching this early. She's hot and has a great voice, but I'm not a fan of her song style. She's showing off those thunderous thighs packed into some leopardskin pants. Is she really singing? I'm skeptical.

    Ordered up some wings from the Cadillac Ranch....hot wings, Jack Daniels wings (very good) and peanutbutter wings.

    I thought I heard that Jordan Sparks was singing the National Anthem (it's on FOX and it's her hometown). That will please The Reet. Wonder how she plans to show off; hope she doesn't take the 'durge' tempo, that's just torture. Do it and get the hell out of the way. - listing of previous performers. She did a pretty nice, understanded version, not toooo much grandstanding - BUT WAS SHE REALLY SINGING? Again, I thought I detected some phrasing missteps. You?

    Who's the chick in the Doritos commercial? Kina Grannis

    They told us to go to godaddy.com to look at Danica Patrick. So we did. Hey, lil buddy!

    What's that odor coming from Tom Petty's dressing room? Oh, that's right, it's the Bridgestoned Halftime show. Not bad, Tommy Boy, got some of the hits in. American Girl, Freefallin'. No Mary Jane's Last Dance though. Oh yeah, Parents Going Bullshit would have cost Fox millions.

    BILL, come back, there's still time!!!!!!!!

    Thanks for the reminder, Johnny Gumbo....

    A long, long time ago...
    I can still remember
    How that music used to make me smile.
    And I knew if I had my chance
    That I could make those people dance
    And, maybe, theyd be happy for a while.

    But February made me shiver
    With every paper I'd deliver.
    Bad news on the doorstep;
    I couldnt take one more step.

    I can't remember if I cried
    When I read about his widowed bride,
    But something touched me deep inside
    The day the music died. - American Pie by Don McLean

    Today is the 49th anniversary of The Day the Music Died, immortalized by Don McLean's 1970 epic, American Pie. From Wikipedia: Charles Hardin Holley (September 7, 1936 – February 3, 1959), better known as Buddy Holly, was an American singer-songwriter and a pioneer of rock and roll. The change of spelling of "Holley" to "Holly" came about because of an error in a contract he was asked to sign, listing him as Buddy Holly. That spelling was then adopted for his professional career.

    Although his success lasted only a year and a half before his death in an airplane crash, Holly is described by critic Bruce Eder as "the single most influential creative force in early rock & roll." His works and innovations were copied by his contemporaries and later musicians, notably The Beatles and The Rolling Stones, and exerted a profound influence on popular music. In 2004, Rolling Stone Magazine ranked Holly #13 on their list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.

    Friday, February 01, 2008

    Dusting off Dusty...

    Big fan of Dusty Springfield here, so my curiosity was piqued a few months ago by an article that Shelby Lynne, of whom I had heard, but had not heard, was doing an album of old Dusty stuff, suggested by Barry Manilow! Yikes! Lynne is a country singer who had some success a few years ago, starting with a duet with George Jones, "If I Could Bottle This Up", which became a top-50 hit in 1988 and her first album, Sunrise. (She is also sister to singer Alison Moorer, wife of Steve Earle, who I saw introduced at the 2005 Newport Folk Festival by an inebriated Lucinda Williams thusly: "Com'n, give it up for Steve Fuckin' Earle.") But I digress. Shelby Lynne won a Grammy in 2000 for the album I Am Shelby Lynne, but has flown under the radar in recent years. Now, out this week, is the Dusty Springfield disk, Just a Little Lovin', and it's getting some decent buzz. - AllMusicGuide

    Shelby Lynne I Only Want To Be With You:


    Dusty singing her first solo hit on Dutch TV on 23/1/1964:

    Sarah blogs us about new video...

    Today is the official premiere of the brand new SBBS video, 'Stop and Think It Over', on ArtistDirect.com! The video was shot on January 2 and 3 by Hobnox USA in and around our hometown of Boston, MA. It features not only the Lizard Lounge (the Cambridge, MA club where we got started), but also some of our favorite Boston folks! We're so excited, let us know what you think!

    JK- The video site setup is a little weird, starts with a movie promo and slides into the video. I'm searching for a clean one on youtube.