Sidetwo’s Decade Ending List, Part 4

We’re getting close, into the Top 20 now. Music from a soul legend, a New Jersey Boss, a bunch of power popsters, an Irish powerhouse and a Canadian talent that will be sorely missed are among those in this batch. There’s only ten more to go. Care to guess what’s No. 1?

20. Don’t Give Up On Me–Solomon Burke (Don’t Give Up On Me)

A new classic from a soul legend. Powerful stuff.

19. No Such Thing–John Mayer (Room for Squares)

From the album that kicked off a hugely successful career. And he’s a damn fine guitarist, too.

18. Are You Gonna Be My Girl–JET (Get Born)

A great blast of rock n roll from Down Under. Too bad their follow-ups haven’t been as strong.

17. Little Red Light–Fountains Of Wayne (Welcome Interstate Managers)

From the album that brought us Stacy’s Mom. Great power pop with a sense of humour. Love it.

16. Not Ready To Go–The Trews (House of Ill Fame)

See No. 26. And turn it up.

15. My City Of Ruins–Bruce Springsteen (The Rising)

Fact is he wrote it about his hometown, before 9/11 happened. But when we saw him sing it on the America: A Tribute To Heroes special, it proved to be an incredibly moving tribute, and a rallying cry to rise up.

14. Gypsy Biker–Bruce Springsteen (Magic)

The E-Street Band turns out another winner. On record, Gypsy Biker simply kicked ass. In concert, however, they took it to a whole new level. Like, the moon. The guitar duel is awesome.

13. New Wave–Against Me! (New Wave)

Saw these guys open up for Foo Fighters on the Foos last tour. And now they’re the opener for Billy Talent. Always a bridesmaid, never a bride. But they rock like there’s no tomorrow. Great stuff.

12. Vertigo–U2 (How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb)

1, 2, 3, 14. Ok, so Bono can’t count. But it’s still got a good beat and you can dance to it.

11. Can’t Stop–Jacksoul (Sleepless)

This isn’t on here because of Haydain Neale’s recent passing, which is a tremendous loss to the Canadian musical community. This is on here because it’s a great song. Period.


Canada loses a powerful voice

Just a few short weeks ago I blogged about the return of Haydain Neale and Jacksoul. You can read it about here. Now comes word that this past Sunday, Haydain lost his battle with lung cancer at the age of 39. The Canadian music scene has lost a very talented performer. He will be missed.

The Return of Jacksoul


Toronto-based R&B and soul outfit Jacksoul, led by Haydain Neale, are set to release their first album of all-new material since Neale was seriously injured in the summer of 2007 after being hit by a car while driving a scooter in the city.

According to their official website, the band’s fifth disc titled “SOULmate” will hit shelves December 1st. All 10 tunes were written before the accident, and the group spent the last six months in the studio laying down the tracks. The first single, “Lonesome Highway,” is already streaming on the band’s website and will be available on iTunes November 3rd. You can listen to the new track here.

All proceeds from the sale of SOULmate will go to the Haydain Neale Family Trust which was set up to help with the costs incurred with Haydain’s rehabilitaton and therapy.

While we wait for Haydain’s return, lets’ go back to 2000’s Sleepless and the awesome Can’t Stop:

Happy Canada Day!


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
The Band
Barenaked Ladies
Blackie and The Rodeo Kings
Blue Rodeo
Bruce Cockburn
City and Colour
Colin James
Doug and The Slugs
Downchild Blues Band
Gordon Lightfoot
Great Big Sea
The Guess Who
Joni Mitchell
Kim Mitchell
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
Tom Cochrane
Tragically Hip
The Trews
Wide Mouth Mason

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:

The “It’s !#@%!**! 5:00 a.m. and the batteries have died in the smoke alarm” Shuffle Report


Having a decent night’s sleep, when the Bargainista (love the shades, BTW) wakes me up to tell me the smoke alarm is going off. The first natural reaction is that it’s due to (heaven forbid) a fire, but as soon as I heard it I knew instantly what it was. That incessant beep can only mean one thing: the batteries have died. So after stumbling for a chair to climb up on (and due to the alarm’s location praying I don’t take a header off of the upstairs landing) I gingerly climbed up and then pried the bloody thing off the ceiling, only to then struggle to open the battery compartment while it continues to beep in my face.

With thoughts of just heaving the thing across the room swirling through my foggy head, I managed to get it open, remove the offending double-A’s, and climb back into bed. Managed to salavage a little bit more slumber, but not much.

So what does all of this have to do with today’s shuffle report? Nothing. Just thought I’d share the misery. 🙂

But what I really want to know is..why is it that when the batteries go kaput in your smoke alarm, it happens when you’re sleeping? And why is it that you drive on a parkway, but park on a driveway? Sorry, I’m babbling. I’m tired and punchy. Have a good Friday everyone.

The list below is what I listened to as I dragged my weary body into the office this morning. Some good tunes today.

1. If You Fall—Steve Earle (El Corazon)
2. Get It Hot—AC/DC (Highway To Hell) [Wonder what this one’s about? Coffee, perhaps?]
3. The Valley—Los Lobos (The Town and The City) [Why aren’t more people listening to Los Lobos? Can’t say enough good things about this band.]
4. Guitar And Pen—The Who (Who Are You)
5. Faithless—Rush (Snakes & Arrows)
6. Band On The Run—Paul McCartney (Band on The Run) [Good concert clip here.]
7. Think You Should Know—Jacksoul (Resurrected) [Hope Haydain Neale will return to performing again. A great Canadian talent.]
8. Raise Your Hand—Bruce Springsteen (Live 1975-1985) [Vintage Boss!]
9. Norwegian Wood—The Beatles (Rubber Soul)
10. Sound & Vision—David Bowie (Low)