Thursday, December 22, 2011

Trader Rock Tumblr

Forgot to say that I'm now posting a lot of stuff at my new Trader Rock tumblr

Here you'll find photos, extra videos, MP3s, and reblogs of other stuff I find interesting or cool. Having fun with the more social, sharing elements of the tumblr platform. Check it out.


Tuesday, November 8, 2011

When You're Strange: The Doors documentary

When You're Strange, Tom DiCillo's 2009 feature on The Doors, is not your typical recent-vintage rock doc. filled with interviews from random talking heads. 

Rather, this film is largely comprised of original footage of the band and its charismatic lead singer and focal point, Jim Morrison. Johnny Depp narrates as the film follows the group's formation and early days through to the recording of their studio albums, live shows, and not-infrequent controversies. 

There's some valuable discussion of the group's musical influences, from Sinatra and the blues to fellow L.A. rockers, The Byrds and Love. I especially enjoyed this aspect of the film, as the legacy and influence of their Sunset Strip contemporaries is sometimes overlooked. 

You can watch the film here or rent/buy it via, if you prefer.

Check out these extra interviews with Robby Krieger and John Densmore at PBS' American Masters webpage. Ray Manzarek was also fond of the film, which he felt got The Doors' story right.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Loud Lucy - Ticking

Loud Lucy - Ticking

Does anyone remember this Loud Lucy single? This came out when I was about 16, back when the Chicago alternative rock scene was speeding through a minor post-Pumpkins gold rush.

Had to check the production credits to find the name of Brad Wood - I recall that he was the local producer of note at that time, having worked with Liz Phair and other Chicago notables. 

This single has that sound of your friends' now-seasoned senior year band, shined up with a bit of mid-'90s production gloss. Takes me back.

Interesting sidenote: Amazon includes a review from Jim Dero, who notes the band's debut album was originally recorded with Jack Endino, but scrapped as it was "too polished"(!). That's not a tag I expected to be hung on the engineer of Nirvana's Bleach and the first Thrown-Ups album.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

The Turtles - Elenore

The Turtles - Elenore

"Elenore, gee I think you're swell. Ah-haaa!"

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Ozzy Osbourne - Blizzard of Ozz / Diary of a Madman documentary

Been on an Ozzy kick this week and had to post this great documentary on the 30th anniversary of Ozzy's classic first two solo albums, Blizzard of Ozz and Diary of a Madman

There is some great footage of Ozzy and friends listening to album tracks and looking back on the making of these classic records which helped launch Osbourne's solo career. 

Unfortunately, this clip totally glosses over the musical contributions of his rhythm section and album co-writers, Bob Daisley and Lee Kerslake. It's disappointing, but no big surprise given the history of lawsuits and fighting over unpaid royalties and missing songwriting credits on these records. 

While the original rhythm tracks have rightfully been restored to the 30th anniversary album remasters, it seems the Osbourne camp preferred to focus on Ozzy's and Randy Rhoads' musical legacies for this retrospective. 

Having said all that, the spotlight on Randy Rhoads' playing is incredible, and you can see that Ozzy & Co. are all still floored by Rhoads thirty years on. Just watch Ozzy's reaction to the studio outtakes and you'll see the amazement in his face, eyes bulging out behind the purple shades.

I'm still amazed as well. Enjoy the music and the footage. 

Want the albums? Click the links above for the 2011 remaster editions.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Enuff Z'Nuff - New Thing

Enuff Z'Nuff - New Thing.

Chicago boys and our late-stage entry to the 80's glam/hair-metal scene. Back when rock was silly, flashy, catchy, and fun.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Suede - Beautiful Ones

Suede - Beautiful Ones.

Prime example of what I was saying earlier about Suede as a great singles band. Sharp video as well, no?

Monday, April 4, 2011

The Smiths - Under Review (documentary)

Interviews and recording clips provide a look back at the music and influence of The Smiths in this Under Review series documentary. Kick back and enjoy.

Related articles and posts:

1. The Smiths - Panic.

2. The Smiths - This Charming Man.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Joy Division: Grant Gee documentary (2007)

Beautiful and dark, both in tone and subject matter, Grant Gee's 2007 documentary Joy Division is a must see for rock fans and pop culture enthusiasts.

The film traces the group's development back to its roots in decaying, post-industrial Manchester and the punk scene that grew from its bleak, urban center.

Of course, as we now know, 1977 became 1978 and punk soon morphed into post-punk. Joy Division were at the vanguard of this new style and, following the death of lead singer Ian Curtis in 1980, have been forever ingrained as the leading light of the post-punk period.

As Tony Wilson explains:

"Punk had enabled you to say, "Fuck You." But somehow it couldn't go any further...

...Sooner or later, someone was going to want to say more than fuck you. Someone was going to want to say "I'm fucked". It was Joy Division who were the first band to do that."

Now in the early part of the 21st century, Joy Division are seen as one of the most influential and important groups since the Sex Pistols. This is the story of how they got there, and how the world we live in has changed since that time.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Trader Rock playlist IV

Just completed: Trader Rock playlist volume 4, a non-stop collection of hits from your favorite rock n' roll jukebox.

Press play and you'll have tunes for days. A great selection of continuous play rock whether you're in party or work/chill mode. All chronologically mixed from our last 100 blog posts.

Some of the artists and groups you'll find in Vol. 4: The Byrds, Van Halen, Aerosmith, Nirvana, Suzi Quatro, David Bowie, Sun Ra, Os Mutantes, Roxy Music, Cream, Jimi Hendrix, The Cure, Orange Juice, Rocket From The Tombs, Guns n' Roses, Nikki Sudden, Jeff Buckley, and Suede.

I've been totally lax in mentioning these playlists on the blog, as evidenced by the fact that we're already on number four and this is the first post in which I've mentioned them. Click the playlist link above to hear the full 100 song list (YouTube's embedded playlists cut off at 50 songs) and check out our Trader Rock YouTube channel for more.

Friday, January 28, 2011

The Faces - Bad n' Ruin (Top of the Pops 1971)

The Faces - Bad n' Ruin (Top of the Pops 1971).

Rod and the boys miming it on Top of the Pops, and having a real good time.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Patti Smith interview with Charlie Rose

Charlie Rose recently interviewed singer & writer, Patti Smith about her latest book and her relationship with photographer Robert Mapplethorpe.

While I've never been particularly interested in Patti Smith's music, having regarded her in the past as more of an NPR icon and a safe figurehead of New York punk, I really enjoyed this interview.

Smith comes off as a really cool person, and it's great to hear her talk about her early days in New York and the bond that grew between two young artists.

She also tells some nice stories about her late husband, Fred "Sonic" Smith (of the MC5), the nature of celebrity, and some of the great musicians and artists she came to know as a young singer living in New York.

Here's the famous cover photo from Patti's debut album, Horses, that Mapplethorpe shot. Story behind the photo is also revealed. It is a great image.

Enjoy the interview.