I’ve been on a Who kick lately. I’m constantly trying to decide which band had the better rhythm section, The Who’s Keith Moon and John Entwistle or Zeppelin’s John Bonham and John Paul Jones…still wondering…But anyway, Who rocks! I’ve mentioned “The Seeker” as a riff fav, But I’ve always enjoyed Pictures of Lily, See Me Feel Me, Behind Blue Eyes and the rest. I’m out of my brain on the train…the 5’15!
Zeppelin…Wow! This was my first exposure to rock when my brother brought Led Zeppelin’s Untitled album home on LP (Yeah, I’ve been doing this for a while). Black Dog blew my mind! The drum beat from When the Levee Breaks is iconic now and a cornerstone of early hip-hop (at least in my mind). Throw in Jimmy Page’s Dragon-Legged Jumpsuits, Les Pauls and violin bows, and Robert Page’s vocals (minus the ad-nauseum crotch shots from the movie “The Song Remains the Same) and you have hard rock at its finest. The main debate in my head with this band (excluding the Who’s rhythm section) is whether or not Led Zep was the first heavy metal band or if Black Sabbath has that honor. Zep took blues influences and added stellar, hardcore riffs, but I think I have to give it to Black Sabbath as far as pushing it over the edge to heavy metal. I think Zep was the first hard rock band and Sabbath took it another step.
Its winter time and for some reason around witner I get in a jazz mood. Davis’ Kind of Blue album is quintessential jazz. With my personal favorite John Coltrane (along with Cannonball Adderly) on sax, this album lowers my blood pressure anytime I listen to it. If you get stressed out, here’s what I recommend:
Put this on (preferably in LP format), turn the lights off, close your eyes and imagine complete blackness in your mind’s-eye. you’ll have time to do this because “So What” takes a while to get going…Then as each instrument kicks in, let it paint a different color line on that black canvas. I personally prefer neon-type colors like the old Looney-Tunes musical cartoons of the 1960s. Try that and see if it doesn’t help. No, I don’t need a drug test.
And while we’re at it, here is “The ‘Trane” at his most relaxing…The easy piano from “Soul Eyes” and “My Little Brown Book” just groove! I don’t know how else to describe it. His cover of Duke Ellington’s “In a Sentimental Mood” makes me stop whatever I’m doing and just listen…you know concentrating without trying. Finally, “Nancy (With The Laughing face)” makes me want to name any future daughter Nancy…Or Jessica (Allmann Bros), or Roxanne (just kidding).
And just in case you’re wondering…This is the very first album I ever purchased (or hounded my mom to buy). Well, this isn’t the exact album because Amazon didn’t have the LP that I purchased back in the 80’s. Don’t ask me how I ended up with Fats Domino, but man it was good stuff. Maybe that’s why I dig on the blues and old-school R&B now.