What are you listening to today?

ipod-classic-accessories-3Beautiful Tuesday afternoon, letting the iPod do it’s thing in shuffle mode.

The last 15:

1. Crawl–Barenaked Ladies

2. Set Me Free (Rosa Lee)–Los Lobos

3. Mary Shut The Garden Door–Donald Fagen

4. Swingtown–Steve Miller Band

5. Moorie–Great Divide

6. Rock and Roll Music–Chuck Berry

7. Easy Lover–Phil Collins & Phil Bailey

8. I Want You (She’s So Heavy)–The Beatles

9. Don’t Let The Darkness In Your Head–Blue Rodeo

10. Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting–Elton John

11. The Boys of Summer–Don Henley

12. One Fine Morning–Lighthouse

13. Your Own Worst Enemy–Bruce Springsteen

14. Home Town–Joe Jackson

15. Trouble–Robert Palmer

It’s Friday. That’s my 2nd favourite F word. How about some F songs?

ipod-classic-accessories-3To be filed under ‘why not’:  I took a rough count of the number of songs that begin with “F” on my iPod: 328. That includes songs that start with “The” as in “The Fever”. Listing all of them and adding links so you can have have a listen would be somewhat of a ridiculous undertaking, so instead I have provided a sampling. I chose them based on alphabetical order, moving down the alphabet and choosing the first two (if there are two) for each letter that’s the second letter in the song title. Hope that makes sense. It’s an interesting mix of tracks.

1. F The CC–Steve Earle (Note: really funny, but NSFW)

2. F.I.N.E.–Aerosmith

3. Fa-Fa-Fa-Fa-Fa (Sad Song)–Otis Redding

4. Face Dances Part Two–Pete Townshend

5. Fear For Your Future–Ronnie Wood

6. Fear of Falling–Robbie Robertson

7. Fiddler’s Green–The Tragically Hip

8. Fields of Gold–Sting

9. The Flag–Barenaked Ladies

10. Flamethrower–J. Geils Band

11. FM–Steely Dan

12. Folds In Your Hands–Passion Pit

13. Follow–Susan Tedeschi (just a sample for this one)

14. Fractured Mirror–Ace Frehley

15. Fragile Bird–City and Colour

16. Ft. Worth Blues–Steve Earle

17. F*ck You (NSFW)–Cee Lo Green

18. Full Moon–The Kinks

My Saturday morning playlist. What are you listening to today?

springFinally. It’s finally starting to feel like maybe Spring will actually make an appearance soon. The last few days have felt more like late January than late March. Depressing weather. This morning the sun was shining, so I decided to take advantage of respite from the cold and head out for a walk. Stopped for a haircut along the way. Now I feel better. You’re wondering what I was listening to, right? Glad you asked. The last 15:
1. Born In The 50’s–The Police
2. Trampled Under Foot–Led Zeppelin (Celebration Day version)
4. Better Days–Southside Johnny & The Asbury Jukes
5. Turn The Page–Bob Seger
6. Flesh And Blood–Solomon Burke
7. What If I Do?–Foo Fighters
8. 36 Inches High–Nick Lowe
9. Entangled–Genesis
10. Who Am I Telling You?–J.J. Cale & Eric Clapton
11. Sound of Your Voice–Barenaked Ladies
12. Erase/Replace–Foo Fighters
13. Hollis and Morris–The Trews
14. Wicked Rain–Los Lobos
15. Sisters Are Doin’ It For Themselves–Eurythmics & Aretha Franklin

The “Why is the Subway so bloody slow today?” Shuffle Report

ipod

The Shuffle Report: 10 songs I listened to, in order, on my iPod in shuffle mode at a given point in time. No editing, no skipping. It is what it is.

I don’t understand. The ride to work on the subway this morning to forever. Not sure what the reason was, but it was so sloooooooooow. I mean, it’s not like I was in that big of a hurry to get to work, but there’s only so much standing shoulder to shoulder with people that one person can take. Thankfully the iPod was fully charged.
In the rotation this morning:

1. Livin’ On The Edge—Aerosmith (O Yeah! Ultimate Aerosmith Hits) [Is Steven Tyler in or out? Depends on who you ask.]
2. I Never Loved A Man (The Way I Loved You)—Aretha Franklin (30 Greatest Hits) [I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. This is a must own.]
3. Me and Mrs. Jones—Billy Paul (360 Degrees of Billy Paul) [Ok, it’s about infidelity, but it still sounds great.]
4. Must Have BeenThe Devil—Otis Spann (The Blues Never Die!) [Damn straight.]
5. Sad Songs (Say So Much)—Elton John (Greatest Hits 1970-2002) [Musically, the 1980’s weren’t that kind to EJ. But there were a few gems, like this one.]
6. Run Runaway—Great Big Sea (Up) [Bet you can’t sit still through this one.]
7. City Love—John Mayer (Room For Sqaures) [A song about falling in love with the wrong person for all the right reasons. Awww.]
8. Boys—The Beatles (Please Please Me) [One of my favourite Ringo sings tracks.]
9. The Song Is Over-The Who (Who’s Next) [Please tour this year. Please tour this year. Please tour this year.]
10. Shoebox—Barenaked Ladies (Disc One: All Their Greatest Hits) [While I’ve always liked them, I highly doubt that without Steven Page, there will be a worthy Disc Two.]

From The Ticket Stub Vault: Barenaked Ladies

February 16, 2007 (Air Canada Centre, Toronto)

Ah, those were the good ol’ days. I considered myself a long-time fan of the band but this was the first time I had a chance to see them live. Touring behind the companion discs of Barenaked Ladies Are Me and Barenaked Ladies Are Men, the (then) five-piece outfit whose legions of fans spread around the world played an amazing hits-filled-interspersed-with-comedy show that resulted in the nearly sold-out show turning into one massive sing-along. I had a smile on my face the entire night. The new songs were well-received, and the hits? Well, with tracks like Brian Wilson, Pinch Me, One Week, Lovers In A Dangerous Time and Falling For The First Time, there really wasn’t anything to find fault with. The interplay between the band members left you with a genuine sense that these guys would do this for free. And the fact they were doing it front of a hometown crowd made it that much more fun.

But dark times lay ahead for the band. Steven Page’s drug bust right around the time the guys were promoting a children’s album eventually led to discord in the ranks and the decision for Page and the band to go their separate ways. When I heard that..well, I figured the band’s days were numbered.

Fast forward to 2010 and BNL minus Page have a new album on the way. The first single is You Run Away (read into that what you will) and now that the band has lost a very gifted singer-songwriter it’s mostly the voice of Ed Robertson we’ll be hearing from now on. The new single is ok, but I can’t help but feel a sense of loss just listening to it knowing what’s missing. One of the things I always like about the band was that there just wasn’t one personality fronting the group, there were two. Now nothing against the rest of the group but this was always the Steven and Ed show, and with Steven gone…well, to say that a certain spark will be missing from their live shows is an undertstatement. I’d like to hear the rest of the record, and it will be intersting to see what the takeup will be for tickets on their upcoming Spring tour.

As for Steven Page, he’s releasing A Singer Must Die – Art of Time Ensemble with Steven Page on February 16th, which is an interesting take on a covers album. You can read more about it and listen to tracks here. He’s got a solo album in the works for later this year.

The BNL tour kicks off April 6th in Victoria and ends May 1st in Oshawa. Full itinerary can be found here.

Here’s the new BNL single. Thoughts?

And for a taste of happier days:

Sidetwo’s Decade Ending List, Part 1

Hey, if Rolling Stone can do it, why can’t I? Actually, while Rolling Stone asked a number of journalists and musicians to submit their own picks of the decade (both whole albums and songs) and then come up with a Top 100 list of each, I’m keeping it simple. 50 songs from some of my favourite discs of the decade. The order is somewhat arbitrary; a song in the bottom ten can easily be in the top ten and vice-versa. I like ’em all pretty much the same. But there can only be one #1, so that one was a little tougher to pick.

I could’ve picked way more than 50 but in the interest of publishing this sooner than later, I kept it to 50. I only have so much time on any given day to devote to this thing that is my blog. 🙂 Also (for the most part) I didn’t pick these because of some deep meaning, or because they’re in some way revolutionary. I’m not a critic. They’re just songs that have come out over the last ten years that I could listen to multiple times without getting bored.

So, let’s begin. Here are Nos. 50-41. Will post the rest in the coming days. I hope.

50. Rough Justice–The Rolling Stones (A Bigger Bang)

Forty years on and the boys still proved they had the mettle to turn out something that really rocked.

49. Monkey To Man–Elvis Costello (The Delivery Man)

Wish Spectacle would continue. Great show.

48. Why–David Baerwald (Here Comes The New Folk Underground)

Wish this guy would release more music. A criminally underrated singer-songwriter.

47. I’m Not Drowning–Steve Winwood (Nine Lives)

That voice never seems to change.  Love the groove on this one.

46. Kind of A Girl–Tinted Windows (Tinted Windows)

Throw Cheap Trick, Fountains of Wayne, Smashing Pumpkins and Hanson in a blender and this is what you get. Terrific power pop.

45. Water or Gasoline–Blackie and The Rodeo Kings (Bark)

Canadian roots-rock never sounded this good.

44. Easy–Barenaked Ladies (Barenaked Ladies Are Me)

I love the Ladies, and while Ed Robertson sings lead on this one,  they’re never going to be the same without Steven Page. Sorry.

43. Good Morning Aztlan–Los Lobos (Good Morning Aztlan)

East L.A.’s finest.

42. Weighty Ghost–Wintersleep (Welcome To The Night Sky)

One of those songs that catches your ear the first time you hear it and doesn’t let go.

41. When Your Mind’s Made Up–Glen Hansard & Markéta Irglová (Once)

Just one of a number of great songs from this movie.

Happy Canada Day!

Guitar

Canadian music kicks a**, doesn’t it? In honour of our collective birthday, everyone should listen to some homegrown music today. Whether you prefer rock or jazz, rap or country or anything in between, the Canadian music scene has something to offer everyone, and it keeps getting better every year. So many of our artists have made it big on the world stage and this should be celebrated, not just today but all year long.

Also on the subject of music and all things Canadian, if you’re looking for an entertaining summer read, pick up a copy of Six String Nation. Bargainista bought it for me for Father’s Day. Conceived by writer and broadcaster Jowi Taylor, it’s a fascinating story about the construction of a guitar called Voyageur built entirely from pieces of Canadian history. As the website states:

The ongoing mission of Voyageur and the Six String Nation project is to encourage Canadians to tell the story of Canada from a multitude of perspectives, to know and embrace our diversity as a kind of commonality and to celebrate the power of music – a language that Canada speaks better than just about anyone in the world.

Well put.

As for the homegrown music I enjoy, here’s a list of the artists in rotation on my iPod. Who do you like to listen to?

Attack In Black
B.T.O.
The Band
Barenaked Ladies
Blackie and The Rodeo Kings
Blue Rodeo
Bruce Cockburn
Chilliwack
City and Colour
Colin James
Doucette
Doug and The Slugs
Downchild Blues Band
Gordon Lightfoot
Great Big Sea
The Guess Who
Harlequin
Harmonium
Headstones
Jacksoul
Joni Mitchell
Junkhouse
k-os
Kim Mitchell
Lighthouse
Martha and The Muffins
Matthew Good
Maynard Ferguson
Neil Young
The Odds (and the New Odds)
Oscar Peterson
Powder Blues Band
Pukka Orchestra
Pursuit of Happiness
Robbie Robertson
Rush
Sloan
Tom Cochrane
Tragically Hip
The Trews
Wide Mouth Mason
54-40

And if you were to ask me what I thought was THE ultimate Canadian song, I think there’s a lot of songs that could fit the bill, but this is one of my favourites: