Can't Get It Outta My Head








                A Baby Boomer


       Muses on The Music

This Time, Six Degrees

At the time I blogged them, I promised — threatened, if you didn’t like it the first time around — to reprise my Seven Degrees of Separation posts from last year. Well, we’re here, although this time I'm sticking to the original Six Degrees format (but not getting to Kevin Bacon at the end). We’ll start by going from one of the legendary figures of American roots music, to a legendary figure of American blues. That may sound somewhat redundant, but bear with me. Huddie Ledbetter, born Jan. 20, 1888, even before charting the course of early American folk and blues music, became known as Lead Belly. In his early 20s, he wrote a song called “The Titanic,” which was in part a civil rights anthem

The Year of the Amazing Albums, Part II

(Picking up where I left off last week, reconsidering the Who’s Tommy and the other outstanding albums released during 1969.) Tommy wasn’t the only notable album released in May 1969. Sly & the Family Stone’s Stand was one of the best-sellingest LPs of the ’60s, and ranks No. 118 on the Rolling Stone list. Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere was Neil Young’s first album to credit his long-time backing band, Crazy Horse; the Rolling Stone list has it at No. 208. California Bloodlines was the second album by former Kingston Trio member John Stewart, and ranks in the Top 200 on the Rolling Stone list. Crosby, Stills & Nash was the debut album for the supergroup of the same name, made up of former m

The Year of the Amazing Albums, Part I

I read an opinion piece the other day about Tommy at 50. You may ask, Tommy who? Tommy, by the Who, which was released 50 years ago this month. The online column was interesting and well done, and gave the album — a landmark work for one of the great rock and roll bands of the 1960s and ’70s — the credit it is due. Personally, in the category of rock operas written by Pete Townshend, my preference is for Quadrophenia, but I like Tommy a lot. But the article set me to thinking about the time when the Who’s first rock opera album came out, 1969. That was an amazing year for rock albums — if not the high point of the LP-as-art-form trend, certainly the beginning of its heyday. The year got off


For those of my readers unfamiliar with 19th century German culture, the title of this blog post is a play-on-words on Ragnarok, a concept from Norse mythology describing the end of the world. Those of us who are fans of The Music have been for a time, but are now even more, immersed in this End Times eschatology. The recent announcement that the up-and-coming Rolling Stones tour had been postponed underlined this. My take on my generation for years has been that, when the lead item on the TV news is that Mick Jagger is on life support, you can stick a fork in us — we are toast. Well, a couple weeks ago, we were informed that the Stones’ next tour was indefinitely delayed because the Mickste

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