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Rock In My World

Nat

Weekly Podcasts:

5 & Out - 5 songs with a short intro and outro commentary.

Psychedelic Sunday - One song from the psychedelic era of rock. Smoke 'em if you got 'em.

Archived from iTunes at https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/rock-in-my-world/id176138530. Items in this collection are restricted.

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Rock In My World
Apr 9, 2009 Nat
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The BoDeans - She's A Runaway I can recall the exact moment when I first heard the BoDeans. It was during a car ride from Merrimack, NH to Portsmouth, NH to go to Pease AFB for some reason or another (most likely to shop in the base exchange.) We switched radio stations in search of music, as we always do when commercials interrupt our music. This song was playing, and I hoped the dj would announce the song title/artist. Back then, there was no web site to look it up, and we had to rely on the...
Rock In My World
Mar 27, 2009 Nat
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Elvis Costello - Oliver's Army I can't believe it's been 30 years since this was released. You know, it still sounds fresh to these old ears. The song was never a hit in the US, but I was a huge fan of the album it appears on, Armed Forces. I still consider it one of the peaks of Costello's long, varied career. According to Songfacts.com: Costello told Q Magazine in March 2008: "I don't think its success was because of the lyrics. I always liked the idea of a bright pop tune that you could...
Rock In My World
Mar 6, 2009 Nat
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Steve Forbert - Goin' Down to Laurel I flip through lots of magazines while I wait in lines, and I have noticed article after article in the ladies mags hyping how to save money on this and that, how to cut the bills, and how to cut back in these trying economic times. I mean, you'd think it was the seventies or something. Don't you people know how to save money already? Didn't your parents teach you this stuff? Oh yeah. I'm old and my parents were Depression babies. I keep forgetting that not...
Rock In My World
Feb 6, 2009 Nat
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Stevie Wonder - Pastime Paradise I've been having Stevie Wonder flashbacks since I produced a Powerpoint slide show for my Aunt Mary's birthday a few weeks ago. (I used Isn't She Lovely with silly pictures of old ladies, and it was a hit.) So, keep it hush, since I don't want to be hunted down by the mean old RIAA or anything. Anyway... Back to Stevie. Songs In The Key Of Life (1976) is part of the holy trinity of magical Wonder albums, along with Innervisions and Talking Book, and I like to...
Rock In My World
Jan 30, 2009 Nat
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Monday, when I participated in the Monday Movie Meme, I totally spaced out and forgot one of my favorite musicals: Little Shop Of Horrors. Sticks was in the pit band for a community theater production, and it was one of the best I've ever seen. The movie was meh, but I did love Ellen Green as Audrey and Steve Martin killed (literally!) as that demented dentist (people will pay you to be inhumane!) The songs are all based in sixties pop, complete with Motown and girl-group sounds. These songs...
Rock In My World
Jan 23, 2009 Nat
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It's been awhile, but I'm back! The The - This Is The Day I just flashed back to this when I wrote the Top 5 on Friday post this morning! It's from The The's 1983 album, Soul Mining, and it cannot leave you feeling anything but smiling and happy. You have my Nat guarantee!
Rock In My World
Dec 19, 2008 Nat
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The Neil Young show rocked, and my favorite song in the set was Cortez The Killer. Need I explain the flashback any further? I didn't get out to any other shows besides this one and the Christmas TSO show, but the quality of this Young show more than made up for it. This is one I'll remember forever. From 1975's Zuma, here's the original Cortez from Neil Young & Crazy Horse.
Rock In My World
Dec 5, 2008 Nat
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Fountains Of Wayne - Valley Winter Song The other day, I was thinking about creating a playlist of songs that aren't Christmas songs, but sound like they could be Christmas songs. I know, it's wordy. Anyway, I was watching TV and saw an L.L. Bean Christmas commercial featuring this song, and it's perfect for the playlist. This is from the 2003 FOW album, Welcome Interstate Managers, and it fits the playlist. Now, what else to add? I can think of Low's Just Like Christmas, The Weepies' All That...
Rock In My World
Nov 28, 2008 Nat
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James - She's A Star Smiths wannabes, James, never really caught on over here in the States, but they did get some MTV time in the 90's when Laid hit number 2 on the Billboard Heatseekers album chart. Their highest US-charting song, Laid, comes from the album of the same name, and it climbed up to number 3 in Modern Rock Tracks and 61 in the Hot 100. But do I flash back to that song in the car when the radio personality is talking about James? Naaaaah. My brain is stuck on the sweet little pop...
Rock In My World
Nov 20, 2008 Nat
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Sister Hazel - All For You I was watching the morning news on the Boston Fox station, and I heard some familiar music accompanying one story. I couldn't identify it right away and that always drives me nuts. When the segment ended, I just kept humming the tune to myself. I knew it was a nineties hit, so I tried like hell to spark my memory. Lil Sticks used to love this song, and I knew it was a hit when he was in junior high. Finally, the band name snapped into my consciousness: Sister Hazel....
Rock In My World
Nov 7, 2008 Nat
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Graham Parker - White Honey This week, I spent so much time focusing on the election hoohaa that I pretty much zoned out everything else. To remedy that, I listened to Van Morrison's Tupelo Honey cd in the car, since it seems that is where I do my best listening. (By the way, I highly recommend Morrison to soothe your soul and reclaim your brain. Trust me.) In typical ADD fashion, my mind wandered to Graham Parker's White Honey. Parker pays homage to Morrison's style by invoking the blue-eyed...
Rock In My World
Oct 31, 2008 Nat
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Yesterday, I shopped in this very stodgy gift shop in the swanky new section of the Natick Mall, errr, I mean The Natick Collection. (Hoity-toity enough for ya?) This is the kind of store that usually features music like Yanni or Enya or something else from that blah, new-agey, mind-numbing genre in their overhead play, so you'll forget about why you're there and buy an overpriced Willow Tree angel. You know the store. It's the one with the sales lady that wears prissy sweater sets, reeks of...
Rock In My World
Oct 24, 2008 Nat
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Donnie Iris - Ah! Leah! Yes, it's totally cheesy, but whenever I hear it, it sends me back to 1981, when I finally moved back to the states from Guam. I had just settled in a duplex in OB (That's Ocean Beach, and I still call it that. I also have an OB decal on my car window to this day.), and I was in radio heaven. After four years living in a place that had one decent radio station, and one so-so backup, I had plenty of choice. There were a few good stations in San Diego, and if I tweaked my...
Rock In My World
Oct 17, 2008 Nat
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This week on the Contrast Podcast, the theme was Album Closers, and I chose Elvis Costello's final song from the US release of "This Year's Model", "Radio Radio." I usually put considerable thought into my choice, so I mulled over several choices of what I consider perfect album closers before I settled on the Costello song. Here's a short list: The Beatles - A Day In The Life, from Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band The Who - Love, Reign O'er Me from Quadrophenia...
Rock In My World
Oct 9, 2008 Nat
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Music of 1973 Imagine this: you are hit by a car and knocked out, and when you come to, it's 1973. That is the premise of the new ABC series (based on a BBC show), Life On Mars. Sounds cool. If you've seen the trailers or just some stills of the cast and you can remember 1973, you might say, "Groovy," or "Far Out." I mean, check out Michael Imperioli's hair and suit. He looks like he could fit right in with Barney Miller's 12th precinct guys. Of course, all of this has me...
Rock In My World
Oct 2, 2008 Nat
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70's Power Pop Flashback Flamin' Groovies - Shake Some Action The Rubinoos - The Girl 20/20 - Yellow Pills I'm on a little power pop kick, trying to get out of a funk I've been in all year. Nothing makes me feel better than the blissful sounds of 3 chords chiming out on electric guitars over some soaring harmonies and a driving drum beat. This week's flashback is a three-fer, since we could all use a little lift from the battering of bad news we've been having lately. This week, those Flamin'...
Rock In My World
Sep 25, 2008 Nat
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The Plimsouls - A Million Miles Away These flashbacks are giving me a headache. Oh wait, maybe it's just the war, the 700 billion dollar bailout, the prospect of a depression, the ..... You get it. I wish I was a million miles away sometimes. Thank goodness I have music like this Plimsouls song and mood-enhancing candles and bubble bath to help alleviate the pain of it all. From 1983, here's a power pop classic, A Million Miles Away.
Rock In My World
Sep 19, 2008 Nat
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Three Dog Night - The Show Must Go On This week's flashback occured last Saturday during Sticks' company outing at Canobie Lake Park. Every time I go to an amusement park, I get this Three Dog Night song stuck in my head because of the circusy calliope part that rears its ugly head over and over. 3DN's version is a cover of a Leo Sayer song, which I recall seeing him perform in clown makeup on either The Midnight Special or one of those other pop music shows in the seventies. Sayer's is kind of...
Rock In My World
Sep 12, 2008 Nat
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David Naughton - Makin' It The thing about flashbacks is that they're not always pleasant or welcome, as was the case this week. I was lazy and a little bit tired on Wednesday, which was brought on by a bout of insomnia the night before. I was, therefore, loafing on the sofa in the afternoon, flipping through channel after channel of television mediocrity, until I hit paydirt: Meatballs! Hot damn, I saw that at the movies in its original release! I remember thinking it was hilarious, even...
Rock In My World
Sep 4, 2008 Nat
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The Rumour - My Little Red Book Even though I quit my job, I'm filling up my date book with workshops, meetings, girls days out, and the like. I don't know where I'd be without my little red book (well, it's more of a maroon, but that's red, right?) As I stood at my kitchen island filling in dates, I flashed back to this cool song from The Rumour, one of those new-wavy contemporaries of Elvis Costello and Nick Lowe. They were on Stiff Records, which was a tres cool label filled with new wave...
Rock In My World
Aug 31, 2008 Nat
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The previous episode of Psychedelic Sunday featured The Incredible String Band, who had bowed out of their Friday night performance at Woodstock 39 years ago. In their stead, a little-known folk singer by the name of Melanie took the stage. Prior to Woodstock, she'd recorded for Columbia Records and released two singles, one of which, Beautiful People, had minor success in the Netherlands. In a radio interview with WAMC in Albany, NY, Melanie says she was invited to play at the Woodstock...
Rock In My World
Aug 29, 2008 Nat
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This week's Democratic National Convention has been boring the hell out of me striking up my enthusiasm for the November election. Doesn't it just get your blood pumping, like back in the good old days of the 1968 convention in Chicago? Who needs Abbie Hoffman and Jerry Rubin? We've got three guys with guns, drugs, and walkie talkies, who have the Feds looking into an Obama assassination plot. We've got thousands in a stadium being entertained by the likes of Stevie Wonder! It's just not that...
Rock In My World
Aug 22, 2008 Nat
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Joe Walsh - Turn To Stone Those American girls gave brilliant performances on the gym floor in Beijing this year, even when the odds seemed stacked against them. (No way in hell that all of those Chinese girls were at least 15. Just no friggin' way.) I was immediately impressed by Nastia Liukin's elegance and fluidity, but, damn girl, maybe you could smile a little?! I don't think she cracked a grin until she triumphed in the All-around. Perhaps it's a way of psyching out her opponents or...
Rock In My World
Aug 17, 2008 Nat
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The Incredible String Band - Painting Box The Incredible String Band was a British folk trio (sometimes duo), whose biggest claim to fame is that they appeared at Woodstock. Due to the downpours on Friday night, the band ditched their plans to play, and were replaced by young Melanie Safka, aka Melanie. She later wrote a big hit song about that appearance, Lay Down (Candles In The Rain.) The Incredible Strings, squeezed between Creedence and Canned Heat, finally appeared on the Woodstock stage...
Rock In My World
Aug 15, 2008 Nat
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New series here, featuring old songs every week. This week, with the Olympics in full swing and sports on our minds at the Contrast Podcast, I flashed back to this song, and how my classmates at Lancaster Catholic used to chant the chorus "na na na na, na na na na, hey hey hey, goodbye" to taunt the losing opponents' fans, especially when the opponents were from public schools. We had God on our side, after all, so had a right to display cockiness. Go Crusaders! Here's the 1970...
Rock In My World
Jul 19, 2008 Nat
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The Pretty Things - S.F. Sorrow Is Born Previously on Psychedelic Sunday, I featured Old Man Going from The Pretty Things' groundbreaking 1968 album, S.F. Sorrow. The album was one of the earliest rock operas, preceeding The Who's Tommy (but not surpassing it, by any means.) In true Nat fashion, I presented the songs ass backwards, as Old Man Going is the second-to-the-last song on side two of the album, and is, of course, about the ending of S.F. Sorrow's life. Today, here's the song about...
Rock In My World
Jun 19, 2008 Nat
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Sing Me Spanish Techno - From the 2005 release, "Twin Cinema" Mutiny, I Promise You - From "Challengers", a 2007 release The Laws Have Changed - From "Electric Version", 2003 Mass Romantic - From their 2000 debut, "Mass Romantic" Use It - From "Twin Cinema"
Rock In My World
Jun 15, 2008 Nat
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It's back to the sensational sixties this week, with a band I have not featured before. How could it be that I've been at these psych-rock songs for over two years and I haven't played The Troggs? When I mentioned The Troggs, did you immediately start singing, "wild thing, you make my heart sing" in your head? Busted! In 1966, that song became their highest-charting single. As a pop-lovin' kid back then, I really didn't like that song. When it played on the radio, I think I'd tune it...
Rock In My World
Jun 5, 2008 Nat
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Lost 80's Tunes Some might argue that there's a reason these songs aren't played so much, even on classic rock radio, but I like all five of these tunes. My favorite song of the set it Zebra's Who's Behind The Door?, though, due to the whole Zep feeling Zebra established on their debut album. I just read that this album sold 75,000 copies in the first week, which was an astounding number for the times. I also love David & David's Welcome To The Boomtown, mostly because I'm a Baerwald fan....
Rock In My World
May 25, 2008 Nat
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Slade - My Life Is Natural Sometimes, I like to delve into the era spawned by 60's psychedelia, the hard-rockin' early 70's, so this week I bring you: Son Of Psychedelic Sunday! Slade was a band that never quite became a household name in the US, even as glam artists such as David Bowie, T. Rex, and Sweet were embraced by many mainstream-loving fans. Glam made lots of people nervous, since ambiguous sexuality was a hallmark of the genre, and that's not something 15-year-old record-buying boys...
Rock In My World
Apr 17, 2008 Nat
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The Weepies - Antarctica - This husband/wife singer/songwriter duo will release their latest album, Hideaway, next week, but I've heard one song, and I like it quite a bit. I just love Deb Talen's voice, and I hope you will, too. She & Him - This Is Not A Test - She is actress Zooey Deschanel and he is singer/songwriter M. Ward. Together, they create a magical step back into sixties pop and country (lots more magic than Zooey's appearance in Tin Man last year.) Sarah Mac Band - Open Fire -...
Rock In My World
Apr 6, 2008 Nat
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It's back, baby! The Yardbirds - Happenings Ten Years Time Ago This legendary English band catapaulted the careers of three of the rock guitar gods: Clapton, Page, and Beck. This blues-steeped band hinted at psychedelia in much of their early works, and Happenings Ten Years Time Ago is a classic example of this. The song, released in October of 1966, features Page playing colead guitar with Jeff Beck. There is a brilliant fuzzy break about 2 minutes into the tune, and you can definitely pick up...
Rock In My World
Mar 16, 2008 Nat
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The Bee Gees - Every Christian Lion Hearted Man Will Show You Nearly a decade before they caused perfectly normal people to gyrate under mirrored disco balls, The Bee Gees released a perfectly cool psychedelic record, and it was their debut Polydor album, Bee Gees 1st. This gem is often overlooked, simply because the band became synonymous with white suits, medallions, and Saturday Night Fever. It's worth a visit, though, because the earlier Bee Gees offerings were really good rock records. No,...
Rock In My World
Mar 10, 2008 Nat
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Not only did we have crappy weather over the weekend, here in the US, we had to set our clocks ahead and lose an hour of sleep in the wee hours of Sunday. I was just getting used to waking up with the sun peeping through my window, and now I'm back to stumbling in the dark. I need to laugh. Hopefully, this set will help: Flight Of The Conchords - Beautiful Girl (Part-Time Model) - From their Grammy-winning EP, The Distant Future. Tenacious D - Wonderboy - Just because Jack Black is one of the...
Rock In My World
Mar 2, 2008 Nat
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Atomic Rooster - Night Living I thought it was high time I started featuring early prog and metal in addition to psych rock. Those genres were born from the experimentation of psychedelia, so it seemed like a logical extension of my psychedelic theme, and it gives me the opportunity to shake things up from time to time. With a name like Atomic Rooster, you might get the idea that this is a psychedelic rock band anyway, sort of like Strawberry Alarm Clock. Make no mistake, this Rooster was...
Rock In My World
Feb 10, 2008 Nat
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t's difficult to play just one cut from The Soft Machine's debut album, Volume I, since there really is no defining line from one cut to another, but I'll post Joy Of A Toy, even with the awkward, abrupt ending. This is a fine piece of jazz-infused psychedelia from a band who, along with Pink Floyd and Tomorrow, led the way in the British psychedelic scene. Although band members Kevin Ayers and Robert Wyatt have remained relatively obscure to US audiences, they have had long and fruitful solo...
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Jan 28, 2008 Nat
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The Velvet Underground - Venus In Furs Psychedelic Sunday has been a weekly feature in my blog for just over two years, but I didn't spotlight anything from The Velvet Underground until November of 2007. What was I smokin'? Each of the eleven songs included on that album deserves a separate post! Venus In Furs is the fourth song on The Velvet Underground & Nico, a groundbreaking 1967debut album from the band. The song was written by Lou Reed with inspiration from Leopold von Sacher-Masoch's...
Rock In My World
Jan 21, 2008 Nat
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Pink Floyd - See Emily Play Written by Syd Barrett and recorded in May of 1967, See Emily Play was the second single released by Pink Floyd, following Arnold Layne. I've read various accountings of the origination of this song, but according to this source, he was quoted in NME in 1974, revealing, "I was sleeping in the woods one night, after a gig we'd played somewhere, when I saw this girl appear before me. That girl is Emily." The wikipedia article claims he later admitted he made...
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Jan 13, 2008 Nat
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Tinker Taylor - Terry Reid In the late 60's, psychedelic rock reached its nadir and spawned hard rock and progressive rock. In '68, when The Yardbirds broke up, Jimmy Page was looking to expand his horizons and wanted to rock loud and hard, and was forming a new band. He offered the vocalist job to Terry Reid, who had been in a band called The Jaywalkers. Reportedly, Reid turned it down, suggesting that Page check out a guy named Robert Plant, who had been with Band Of Joy. Bad move on his...
Rock In My World
Jan 7, 2008 Nat
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To continue with the countdown: 6. All You Need Is Love - The Beatles - The album closer of 1967's Magical Mystery Tour record, with a hopeful, if naive, message. 5. Viola Lee Blues - The Grateful Dead - The only band to have two appearances in the countdown. 4. Hot Smoke And Sassafras - The Bubble Puppy - Their only hit, which made it to #14 on the pop singles chart in 1969. 3. Hole In My Shoe - Traffic - Trippy sitar music makes this one a stand-out. 2. Nantucket Sleighride - Mountain -...
Rock In My World
Jan 6, 2008 Nat
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Old Man Going - The Pretty Things Brit band, The Pretty Things, created one of rock's first concept albums, released in 1968, S.F. Sorrow. This album, based on a concept by the band's guitar playing vocalist, Phil May, tells the story of Sebastian F. Sorrow from his birth through his death, and it has been speculated that Pete Townshend borrowed this idea when he wrote Tommy. (And in case you're interested, there is a live recording of S.F. Sorrow, called Resurrection, featuring David Gilmour...
Rock In My World
Dec 31, 2007 Nat
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The votes are in, and there were quite a few songs with 2 votes or more. I was going to make this a Top 10, but I can't just randomly pick one of the 4 songs that received 2 votes each, so you're getting a Top 13 instead. There were two songs with 9 votes apiece, 2 songs with 4 votes, 5 songs with 3 votes, and 4 songs garnering 2 votes each, so I'm going to step up and be the tie-breaker! (Next year, I'll figure out a way to give each vote some weight, so I can be more fair about counting...
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Nov 25, 2007 Nat
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"The Brondesberry Tapes" album was pre-King Crimson Fripp, along with Peter and Michael Giles, released in 1968. This song eventually evolved into a piece, "The Letters", on King Crimson's album, "Islands", according to Bruce Eder of allmusic.com. (I can't vouch for that, having never heard Islands.) I love the little touch of Beach Boys harmony at the 1:15 point, even though it's not exactly psychedelic. What follows that, though, is a bit of fuzz guitar...
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Nov 18, 2007 Nat
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One from the classic "Velvet Underground & Nico" album from 1967, the fabulous, ethereal "Sunday Morning." ANd don't forget to visit my blog at http://natsthename.blogspot.com to vote in the annual Psychedelic Sunday countdown poll!
Rock In My World
Nov 12, 2007 Nat
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Nantucket Sleighride - Mountain This live cut from Mountain's 1972 live album, Live - The Road Goes On Forever, clocks in at 17:34, while the studio cut of this song is a mere 5:50. What does that spell? J-A-M. Normally, I don't get into extended jams. Once a song passes the 8 or 10-minute mark, my attention wanders and I get impatient. I never would have made it as a Deadhead or Phish Head. What you'll hear is Leslie West's fabulous guitar work, and Steve Knight's skilled keyboard work. The...
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Nov 5, 2007 Nat
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The Herd earned a Top 10 spot in the Brit charts in 1967 with this song, but they were barely known in the US. Just nine years later, though, Herd's original lead singer would go on to chart-topping almost overnight success here here with Frampton Comes Alive. The opening bells might lead you to believe you're about to rock out to AC/DC's Hell's Bells, but once the piano kicks in, it's obvious that this song is not quite that loud and in-your-face. There's some fuzz guitar, the pleasant voice...
Rock In My World
Oct 29, 2007 Nat
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I'm feeling the need for another Nazz song in the Psychedelic Sunday series, and it's been a year since I featured a song of theirs. This one's from their 1968 debut album, called The Nazz. This song didn't chart, but it's memorable because of the fuzz guitar, the opening riff that always fools me into thinking I'm going to hear The Who's Let It Rain, and the always great use of that phasing effect. Ga-roovy, baby.
Rock In My World
Oct 1, 2007 Nat
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Today, I've got 5 songs from an album never released on CD. These songs are mp3 files, gloriously ripped from the vinyl. This is the best I've heard of these rips, and there are lots of scratchy ones floating around. I do own this on vinyl, but my turntable isn't hooked up and my copy is full of pops and cracks, since it was well-loved. Enjoy! Crying In The Night Crystal - which later appears on Fleetwood Mac's "Fleetwood Mac" album Long Distance Winner Lola (My Love) Don't Let Me...
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Sep 30, 2007 Nat
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I Can See Through You - Episode Six I had never heard of this band until I stumbled upon some songs while searching for mid-late 60's psychedelic tunes in some torrent files. Episode Six was Roger Glover and Ian Gillian's pre-Deep Purple band (and Deep Purple was the first real, hard rocking band I was into besides, well, Led Zep.) They tried like hell to have a hit song, releasing nine singles in Britain without cracking the charts. Such disappoinment probably gave them the stick-to-it-ivness...
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Sep 23, 2007 Nat
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Back in April, The Bubble Puppy's song Keep Your Mouth Shut Once In Awhile made an appearance on Psychedelic Sunday, and I thought that would be that. After all, who'd heard of them? I kept going back to that song, though, since I liked it, so I thought I'd look for more. After hearing their 1969 release, A Gathering Of Promises, in its entirety, I realized that I had, indeed, heard this band before! Hot Smoke And Sassafras is their one hit I remember! It's one of those songs that I hear and...
Rock In My World
Sep 9, 2007 Nat
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Hole In My Shoe - Traffic Steve Winwood was still a young teenager when he and his older brother joined up with Spencer Davis and Pete York to form The Spencer Davis Group. He quit the group in 1967, when he was still only 19, and joined up with Dave Mason, Chris Wood, and Jim Capaldi, to form Traffic. Although a great deal of Traffic's sound leaned toward blues-rock, particularly when Winwood sang lead, some early Traffic is truly psychedelic. Mr. Fantasy, their first album (also released as...
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Aug 26, 2007 Nat
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Quicksilver Messenger Service - Mona It's high time I revisited one of the most highly lauded of the San Francisco scene bands, Quicksilver Messenger Service. Their second album, Happy Trails, was recorded live and peaked at #27 on Billboard's Pop Album chart in 1969. Side one of the album was an entire suite based on Bo Diddley's Who Do You Love, which I'd love to feature here on Psych. Sunday, but it's quite a marathon piece for short-attention span listeners. (If I get email requests,...