Music

Sunday morning coming down

Featured image St. Paul native Dave Frishberg died on November 17. The New York Times obituary by Barry Singer covers his career and captures the Frishberg phenomenon. I learned things I didn’t know from Singer’s obituary and recommend it to readers who may be interested. By my lights, however, it doesn’t quite do justice to the insanely witty mind Frishberg put on display in the lyrics he wrote for his own or »

Sunday morning coming down

Featured image Jesse Colin Young turns 80 tomorrow. You may have heard of him as the founding member of the Youngbloods or as a solo artist. I love his work. It has meant a lot to me for a long time. I want to salute him briefly and post a few videos for fun this morning. Jesse struggled over many years with a devastating case of Lyme Disease that went undiagnosed until »

Sunday morning coming down

Featured image A week ago last night we went to see Peter Rowan before a nearly full house at the Dakota in downtown Minneapolis. I had seen Peter in town once before, some 20 years ago, accompanying himself as the warm-up act for the Nashville Bluegrass Band (I think) at the Cedar Cultural Center. Although I enjoyed him on that occasion, he blew us away at the Dakota. Backed by Los Texmaniacs, »

Sunday morning coming down

Featured image If you listen to the right radio stations at this time of the year, you will hear a few songs associated with Halloween. On WUMB’s Highway 61 Revisited show yesterday, host Albert O devoted the entire four hours to songs fitting the day. He played oldies ranging from the traditional “Long Black Veil” (Johnny Cash’s cover) to Donovan’s “Season of the Witch” (covers by Vanilla Fudge as well as Al »

Blood On His Hands

Featured image John Ondrasik (Five For Fighting) released a song yesterday titled “Blood On My Hands.” It expresses his dismay at the consequences of Joe Biden’s inept withdrawal from Afghanistan. John has a long history of patriotism and of supporting American troops in many ways, including many performances overseas. This song expresses those values. Ondrasik wrote about it: Like all Americans, I was stunned and horrified at the images of falling bodies »

Tonight’s Cancellation

Featured image The NFL season starts tonight, as Paul noted a little while ago. So whoever sings the National Anthem at tonight’s game between the Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Dallas Cowboys will have a wonderful stage. I don’t know who will sing the Anthem, but unfortunately it won’t be Victory Boyd. I had never heard of Miss Boyd until an hour or so ago, but she is a »

Sunday morning coming down

Featured image With the passing of Don Everly in Nashville on August 21, we mark the end of an era. Younger brother Phil predeceased him in 2014. In the Cosmic American Music the Everly Brothers have a constellation all to themselves. They brought the close harmony singing of traditional country music into the mainstream of American popular music. I want to look back this morning in a post that draws attention to »

Sunday morning coming down

Featured image After the week that was, I thought it might be time for another installment of this series to take a break from the news in search of lost time and placid thoughts. Yesterday Sharon Lee Myers — better known as Jackie DeShannon — celebrated her 80th birthday. I want to seize on the occasion to take a look back at a few highlights of her career. Jackie made a mark »

Sunday morning coming down

Featured image Songwriter Jimmy Webb celebrates his 75th birthday today. I want to take the occasion to compile my notes on Webb’s work and revisit a few highlights this morning. Webb is a winner of numerous Grammy awards and a member of the National Songwriters Hall of Fame. He first achieved fame as an incredibly precocious songwriter in the ’60s — the composer of the over the top pop epic “MacArthur Park” »

Fighting out “Street Fighting Man”

Featured image I celebrated Mick Jagger’s birthday this past Monday in “Some kind of a fight.” I plucked the Rolling Stones song “Street Fighting Man” from Beggars Banquet for my lineup of songs illustrating, ah, Jagger’s virtues. Most commenters understood my appreciation. A good time was had by all, or almost all. A commenter or two objected to the inclusion of “Street Fighting Man” in my lineup. “The song “is the Stones »

Some kind of a fight

Featured image Sir Michael Philip Jagger was born in Dartford, Kent, England on July 26, 1943. He turns 78 today. I thought we might take a look back at some of his work with Keith Richards and the Rolling Stones that has stayed with me over the years. Even with an hour’s worth of the music, however, I know we are like giraffes munching on the top of the trees. Even though »

Them changes

Featured image I have taken up the issue of Joe Biden’s declining mental faculties by reference to the tale of “The Emperor’s New Clothes.” Everyone can see that the guy is naked. In his New York Post column this morning, Kyle Smith takes up the issue in a way that recalls the old Buddy Miles number “Them Changes” (“My mind is going through them changes…”). Referring to Biden’s bizarre performance at last »

Sunday morning coming down

Featured image I love the work of the musician Tim O’Brien. I compiled the videos below this morning when I discovered that Tim’s “Time To Learn” was finally available on YouTube. When I listened to the video yesterday, the song reduced me to tears, as it always does. I pulled down my stack of Tim’s recordings some five or six inches high to jog my memory of his work. Looking through the »

Color him father

Featured image I wrote this on Father’s Day several years ago. It is a post that struck a chord with at least a few readers. I amplified it last year and am taking the liberty of reposting these reflections in honor of the day. My father was a thoughtful man in his own way. In the last years of his life he recited for me the things for which he was most »

Never been to Spain, Kamala Harris edition

Featured image If our cyborg president malfunctions, the ludicrous Kamala Harris will try to step into its very small shoes. What a lightweight leftist hack she is. She can’t even handle a friendly interviewer without embarrassing herself (video below). HARRIS: "We’ve been to the border. So this whole thing about the border."Harris: "We’ve been to the border."Harris: "We’ve been to the border."HOLT: "You haven’t been to the border."Harris: "I… and I haven’t »

Not dark yet, cont’d

Featured image Bob Dylan’s celebrates his 80th birthday tomorrow. When he snagged the Nobel Prize for Literature a few years ago, I pulled out all the stops by posting a big set of my favorite covers of his songs. I don’t have any stops left to pull, but I’m adding a few covers this morning in honor of his milestone birthday tomorrow. In my estimation Dylan is first and foremost a songwriter. »

Not dark yet

Featured image Tomorrow is the birthday of Minnesota native son Bob Dylan; he turns the ripe old age of 80. It’s not dark yet, but it’s getting there. We’re going to celebrate him as long we’re both still around to enjoy the occasion. He is a remarkable artist, self-invented, deep in the American grain. A few years back I visited Dylan’s old home at 2425 7th Avenue East in Hibbing. The house »