Bowie was Easy

Bowie was Easy

David Bowie was easy to work with.  Guitarist Earl Slick has played off and on with David Bowie through tours and albums. He played on the album Station to Station and remembers Bowie giving simple directions on what he wanted for the song “Golden Years” which made it to number 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1976, Bowie’s second biggest hit. Earl Slick recalls the session and David Bowie’s instructions:

“For some reason I really remember that day. I remember I used my black Les Paul and I used my old 50 watt Marshall. We started that track at the beginning of the album, so I think that’s why I remember it. He would just pick an idea out of a hat that he wanted and that would be that. He would just say, ‘I’d like this to be kind of a late ‘60s funky Otis Redding this or that,’ and we would go from there and that would be about all. He wasn’t pushy and overbearing as far as direction and what we played.” 

Photo: Wild1/Photorazzi.com.

At least they didn’t try to call it Hey Jude

At least they didn’t try to call it Hey Jude

The late REO Speedwagon guitarist Gary Richrath would have been 69 today (October 18th). He wrote a lot of the REO songs but wasn’t sure which ones were worthy or what to name them. The song that became “Take It on the Run”, Gary wanted to call Don’t Bring me Down…there was already a song with that title…by the Beatles. Singer Kevin Cronin suggested they change the title to “Take It on the Run.” And make a few adjustments. It ended up on the album Hi Infifelity in 1980 and number 5 on Billboard’s Hot 100.

Kevin Cronin on first hearing the song that became “Take It on the Run”.

“It’s a song called ‘Don’t Let Me Down’ and I thought, ‘Wait, haven’t I heard the title “Don’t Let Me Down” before?’ type of thing. And it’s, like, ‘OK, play it for me anyway.’ So sure enough it was ‘Take It on the Run’ and just a couple of minor lyric changes and juxtaposing a couple of the lines in the chorus to make the title line be ‘Take It on the Run.’ Once we made those couple of changes, it sounded like a hit song to me. A lot of people didn’t want to release that as a single and I just thought, ‘Man, this is definitely a hit.’ And sure enough, we were right.”

Photo: David Gabber/PRPhotos.com.

Lying or Joking

Lying or Joking

The late Doobie Brothers drummer Mike Hossack would have been 72 years old today (October 17th). He says he helped get Pat Simmons through a case of writer’s block on the song “Black Water” on the album: What Were Once Vices Are Now Habits in 1974.  The song made it to number 1. Here is Mike Hossack:

“In the process of writing that song, Pat experienced a very severe case of writer’s block. [He] took the changes that were on a piece of paper and said, ‘I’ve had it with this. I don’t want to do this anymore.’ I said, ‘Pat, you write that song. Pat, you finish that song. ‘Cause you know, Pat, that’s going to be a number-one hit.’ God bless you, Pat, I was right.”

He laughed when he said it.  He wasn’t even in the band at the time the song was written.

Photo: Daniel Locke/PRPhotos.com.

2018 Meriden Markham Fly-In and Public Safety Festival

2018 Meriden Markham Fly-In and Public Safety Festival

2018 Meriden Markham

Fly-In and Public Safety Festival

Saturday October 20, 2018

Rain Date – Saturday October 27, 2018

The airport is located at 213 Evansville Ave., Meriden CT 06451

Parking: Free parking is located on Evansville Avenue across the street from the airport at Gate 3. Handicapped parking is at Gate #2 at the admission gate. Gate #1 is for Staff only.

Admission: Event is free, but we would be grateful for any donation as you enter. Your donation goes toward much-needed airport improvements.

Schedule of Activities: See the ‘Festival Schedule’ for the schedule of activities.

Restroom Facilities: Portable toilets are located at the main gate and include one Handicapped Toilet. Event Map is on the back of the program guide and at the information booth.

Food: Breakfast is available from 7:30 am until 11:00 am. Lunch is available from 11:00 am until 2:00 pm. Event activities open at 9:00 am.

Aviation Seminars: We offer a series of 3 free seminars located in the South Quonset Hangar. See the ‘Seminar Schedule’ for the line up.

Emergencies: The event will be staffed by emergency police, fire and ambulance personnel to assist you with any medical or security concerns.

We ask that you PLEASE adhere to the following at all times while on airport grounds:
No alcoholic beverages
No Smoking
No Pets (except for service dogs)
No Political Campaigning
No Bikes

Grateful Bluegrass

Grateful Bluegrass

Bob Weir of the Grateful Dead celebrates his 71st birthday today (October 16th). The Grateful Dead’s two 1970 albums — Workingman’s Dead and American Beauty — marked a return to the band’s acoustic roots. Bob Weir was asked if “Friend of the Devil” in particular had been an attempt to get back to the bluegrass that Garcia had started out playing in the early 1960s.

“To a degree. We weren’t trying to bring back, they were just creeping back. The bluegrass had sort of been hanging around the corners and every chance it got it would just sort of sneak in. We had an era where we were doing a lot of country influenced stuff.”

Photo: Daniel Locke/PRPhotos.com.

If he didn’t cut it; he would of been cut

If he didn’t cut it; he would of been cut

50 years ago today (October 15th, 1968) at a show at Sussex University in England, the band previously called The New Yardbirds was billed as Led Zeppelin for the first time. “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You” was a song on the first album in 1969. Jimmy Page learned the song from a Joan Baez record and used it when Robert Plant auditioned for the band. Page explains how he knew the song and why it was important.

“I heard it on a Joan Baez in Concert record. It’s nothing like our version, but I did play him that original one. I thought it was a traditional song, I didn’t know. ‘Cause at the time those folk artists were doing lots of traditional songs. And I heard this track and I thought, ‘That’s really haunting.’ He was up and open for the sort of things that I was showing him. To be honest, if he hadn’t have locked into it, then I’d’ve been looking for somebody else who was.”

Photo: Landmark/PRPhotos.com.

The Richman Spooktacular Chili Cookoff

The Richman Spooktacular Chili Cookoff

Join 102.9 The Whale at the Richman Spooktacular Chili Cookoff on Saturday, October 27th, from 12 to 5 p.m

The Richman Spooktacular Chili Challenge presented by the Simsbury Chamber of Commerce will feature the region’s most well-respected and experienced chefs, as well as a collection of bands guaranteed to rock the day way at the Simsbury Performing Arts Center on Iron Horse Boulevard.

39 food vendors, 12 amateur cooks, and 12 local restaurants, have signed to participate, including Abigail’s Grille & Wine Bar, Ana’s Kitchen, Andy’s Italian Kitchen, Flora Restaurant, Iron Horse Sports Pub, Market Place Kitchen, Plan B, Popover Bistro and Bakery, Table 570, The North House, and The Simsbury Inn.

Live entertainment will be provided by Still Kickin’ With the Big City Horns, Jake Kulak and the LowDown, and Atlas Gray. Still Kickin’ is a nine piece band paying tribute to the great ‘60’s, ‘70’s and ‘80’s horn bands, and delivers a variety of Classic Rock, R&B, Blues, Soul and Funk, with a touch of Country thrown in to keep you moving on the dance floor. Jake Kulak and the LowDown features three teenage rockstars,

Tickets are $10 in advance for ages 11 and up. Children 10 and under are FREE. Tickets can be purchased on the Simsbury Chamber of Commerce website, www.simsburycoc.org, the event website, simsburychili.com, or by calling (860) 651-7307.  Parking is free with a shuttle from area lots or $5 for premium parking in the front lot of the venue.

Merry McDonald

Merry McDonald

Michael McDonald puts a fresh spin on his Christmas recordings with Season of Peace which goes on sale today. There is a newly recorded take on “Winter Wonderland” added to 14 previously released tracks. Michael McDonald talks about the album:

“Which is a compilation of pretty much all the Christmas albums I’ve done over the years, which — I make it sound like a lot of them…there’s really actually only two of them that have been compiled different ways. But I always try to add a new track each year that is something different or unique. So Jake, myself and Ray Benson, we just jammed on ukuleles and guitar, another version of ‘Winter Wonderland.'”

McDonald likes the informal nature of this newly recorded track.

“This one is just kinda what you’d expect if we were at your house at a Christmas party and pulled out the ukuleles and just played ‘Winter Wonderland’ instrumentally. But it was a lot of fun.”

So…same album 1 new song.  Just sayin’

Photo: PRPhotos.com.

U2 a Complete Novice

U2 a Complete Novice

U2 released the Rattle and Hum soundtrack, featuring “Angel of Harlem,” 30 years ago today (October 11th, 1988).U2: “Angel of Harlem” was an attempt at American music made by what Bono called “complete novices and fans.” It peaked at number-14 on the Billboard 100. The Rattle and Hum soundtrack, which came out in October 1988, was a transitional album for U2. On the single “Angel of Harlem,” a tribute to singer Billie Holiday, the band was doing something it hadn’t done before. Here is Bono on what made songs like “Angel of Harlem” different for U2. OC:…the edges. :28

“It’s American music, but we made it as complete novices and fans. But there is a thing about jukebox records and being in New York or some city in the U.S. and it comes on in a bar and it makes so much more sense there than anywhere else. We were fans – fans of America. It wasn’t just American music. We had this love affair with the country, but at the same time we could see that this dream that we’d all bought into was really starting to fray at the edges.”

Photo: Andrew Evans/PRPhotos.com.