From his 1968, Comeback Special, here is the rather surreal video for Elvis performing, Trouble and Guitar Man. Further proof that Elvis was king of the air guitar.
So, one day you are in a great band, then a couple of the members bugger off to form a new band without telling you – instead they have the band’s accountant tell you. The band in question was the legendary, English Beat. Two members left to form, General Public. A name destined for the discount bin. The remaining two members formed the much more memorable, Fine Young Cannibals. It is ironic that the two guys left behind went on to form the more popular band. 500 singers auditioned for The Fine Young Cannibals, but none were chosen. In a moment of desperation they contacted, Roland Gift, who had sung with The English Beat, previously. Here is the excellent video for, Johnny Come Home.
Ween – these Scotch Guard huffing lunatics made some of the best music of the past 20 years. I had the privilege of seeing them in concert and it was 3 1/2 hours of uninterrupted bliss. When I listen to their music it is like they took my brain, shoved it in a blender and then played it back to me. Here is their great video for, Freedom of ’76.
The best song from their most coherent album. Sharp, concise, pumping and not suffering from poetic ramblings or other self indulgent nonsense (at least on this song). Here is the video for the Doors’ mini magnum opus, Break On Through (To The Other Side). Not sure where else one would break on through to, but whatever – at least Jim stays vertical for a whole song.
Old metal rockers end up looking like old hookers – saggily leather clad and haggard. “Where is this going?”, you ask. Well, the Scorpions just covered this song and it made me realize how good the original is (even if Marc Almond is a total freak). To be fair, the Scorpions cover wasn’t too bad, just a little geriatric and riddled with German taint. Here is the video for Soft Cell, performing, Tainted Love.
Falling into the, “it’s so bad it’s almost good” category, I give you the video for the truly sacchariney lament on death, Seasons in the Sun, by the very forgettable, Terry Jacks. Try to watch before eating anything.
Although not actually Mexican, Herb Alpert (and the Tijuana Brass) came to personify Mexican music. Herb’s particular brand was sometimes called, Amariachi. Fair enough, as it was never really mariachi music to begin with. One could actually consider him a pioneer of World Music.
A little known fact about Herb, he is the ‘A’ in ‘A&M’ (Alpert and Moss) records. Herb is one very rich faux Mexican. Not only were his records massive sellers, but he also had a huge stable of artists that sold millions of records throughout the Americas.
Prior to the arrival of the Beatles, Herb Alpert ruled the charts with his short and concise pop tunes. My favorite song by Herb is, The Lonely Bull. It is the opening song on his first album of the same name. The best thing about Herb’s records is that they are readily available at any garage sale. In fact, if there are no Herb Alpert records, I don’t even consider it a garage sale and leave in disgust.
Here is the video for, Lonely Bull, shot in a Tijuana bullfighting ring in 1962, replete with fake, “Oles”!
Beautiful color footage of Booker T and the MGs, performing, Green Onions. This video is from a French TV special filmed on New Years Eve, 1968, in Paris. This song once again proves that the best pop songs were no more than 2 and half minutes long.
Ok, it is St. Patrick’s day, the green halloween for a bunch of yobs to get pissed and claim their Irish heritage (regardless of their lineage), as apparently getting shit-faced is a pre-requisite to citizenship. Personally, I’ve never needed a specific day to make an ass of myself in public. So, in honor of St. Patrick’s Day, here is the video for U2 performing, Pride.
The 80s even tried to ruin reggae, but they couldn’t quite do it. Though not a huge fan of, UB40, I do enjoy this song. Red Red Wine, can go fuck itself. I’d rather listen to the Bulgarian National Women’s Choir. Anyway…here, not completely making a mess of things, are UB40, with their video for, If It Happens Again.