Billy Bragg, (Online, 2002)
Written as a protest against the Iraq Invasion, I think Bragg's online release still has as much impact today as it did when it first hit the bandwidth in 2002. [ Free MP3 @ BB site]
Muddy Waters, Hard Again (Blue Sky, 1977)
Can't go wrong with this classic on a hot and humid night. Sipping on a PBR longneck, feet up on the coffee table, fan blowing and the keyboard's getting sticky...
If the Blues don't get ya hot 'n bothered every once and a while, then you're probably reading the wrong blog.
YOUNGER POINT OF VIEW
The Dogs, Fed Up (Baachus Archives, 2000 Reissue)
Months ago, Kendra, my esteemed West Coast L-colleague, floated the theory that Sweet's "Wig-Wam Bam" may be most perfect song ever recorded.
I would have to say that this track, a classic 1970s garage/punk/hard rock track, is pretty damned close.
A belated congrats to Ms. K. on her acceptance to LIS School.
STORY OF MY LIFE
Social Distortion, Social Distortion (Epic/Sony, 1990)
Jeezus! This song can't be 16 years old. It's old enough to legally drive? I remember singing along to this song with my Dad in high school.
Social D. was one of two punk bands my dad ever liked, actually. (The other being the Ramones.) He and I even jammed out to this once or twice, though he could never get the lead parts right.
I used to think Dad was the biggest dork on the face of the planet, but, you know, he's an awesome Old Man.
FALL IN A RIVER
Badly Drawn Boy, The Hour of Bewilderbeast (XL, 2000)
One of the best albums to come out of the U.K. in the last decade.
Doujah Raze, (Single, 2005)
I first learned of this Alexandria, Va., emcee a year ago and I've been impressed by his development ever since.
His headlining gig at the SXSW Music Festival in Austin this year proves that I'm obviously not the only one impressed. [ FREE MP3 from Trilogy Records].
LATCH KEY KIDS
Bad Religion, 80-85 (Epitaph, 1991)
A lot of folks don't like the older Bad Religion tracks.
I tend to call these folks "Starbucks Punks." Well-meaning kids who think every punk song ever recorded has this, like OMG, deep meaning, because older punk bands like Bad Religion are, like, wise and shit.
Sometimes it's best to just call a song a song, kids. Don't look too deep into it.
BOP GUN (ONE NATION)
Ice Cube f. George Clinton, Lethal Injection (Priority, 1993)
You know, this is completely random...
But for some reason this song always reminds me of drinking a stolen gallon jug of White Lightning with this girl, H., and a friend of mine in her parent's mobile home in rural Virginia.
We smoked all of her mom's Newports. It was hot and humid. We had a fight with the garden hose and were covered in Virginia red clay.
And then she wanted to show my friend and I a trick she'd learned from her 23 year-old boyfriend (we were all 15.)
Her mom came home in the middle of the display, grounded H., made her go to her room and pray.
To this day, her trick remains one of the most interesting displays of vocal flexibility I've ever seen.
It's amazing what some women can do with a squash.
H., last I heard, was now a adult entertainer/pole dancer somewhere in the American Deep South. And I'm sure she's making good money off Vegan-friendly stage props.
Er.... I'll leave it at that.