A Lyrical Tune Wedgie Haunting Me, “Now, I’m The Loneliest man in town”

1972 – Black Ivory Better known for the classic, “You And I” and “Don’t Turn Around”

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1972 – Any University, metro New York; dormitory:
The Soul music singing group, Black Ivory, better known for the classic, “You And I” and “Don’t Turn Around” is heard in the hallways regularly.  However, this is a personal Kratesfullojointzmusik mission I write about tonight. Hauntingly, I share it with thee as it teases me, for your obvious non-judgmental amusement.

The best lyric of all, in my opinion and dominion is the one this post is following. Maybe because I am an elf or maybe due to my status or fungus, but it is, “Now, I’m the loneliest man in town”. None-no-fun, as we used to say back in the day.

I am often that and morosely in-perpetuity. So, what? Need a hot fox to keep me company. One with the bosom of classic actress, Ann Margaret; maybe a red head, like I saw in the supermarket yesterday. Butt (lack of ass) who knows?
They say a supermarket is the best place to meet a chick! Nyet. Please bring your discount card! Didn’t work; couldn’t think up something to say to her. Now (again) “I’m the loneliest man in town”.
And so it comes to me that I am again making new friends and acquaintances in a distant city and where the crutch is the bible belt and the women are not as forthcoming sexually.

Fast-forwardly I, the Master, came to the Carolinas to rid myself of the cold and to be near the ocean, initially. Yet it is not the main reason, because retirement looms.

I am only lonely because [use your imagination or fill in the blank] And If it didn’t, I would fly, marry her according to their rules and bring her back to the USA, so that I would finally have the companion I need to walk up to the sun together with now. Damn…

Nevertheless, Sing, Brothers, Sing! Perform my comfortless burg’s principles!

Today’s Musikal “Cloud” Crowd Computing

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I like to be honest  and admit that I am not perfect all of the time.  More of us should embrace this policy- especially the politicos.  Regardless,  I will let you know that I did not understand the lyrics of every hit record that sounded great, or was a hit back in the glory days which defined my youth. This is what “tune wedgies” are for!  If you have lived two score and more, these tunes will gin-up into your brain if at all you were or are musically “insane”, like I am admittedly.

A horse named “Crowd Computing” won this year’s second leg of The Triple Crown, The Preakness Stakes. It did not last long and was maybe a sore name – yet of this generation.

Therefore, as Thoreau might have said, “music is of utmost importance, the very essence of life itself. According to him, music links humankind to nature, to the universal divine, and it offers to those who listen closely the potential for transcendence.

Fast-forward with diligence to the lyrics of The Rolling Stones and even further into today, I find that we often do not hear at first all of what the singer is saying, but in due-time, The Creator marries our ears to hear the originally intended message at the appropriate time in our lives – it becomes crystal-clear (with the help of on-line lyric translations, of course, lol!)

Thus is my latest “tune wedgie” and a few British lines that I never understood until I had to get up out of a light sleep, in the middle of last night to see on my computer. It was awesomely inspired by a SKYLINE t-shirt about “cloud computing”.  So, “Get off Of MY Cloud!” racked in my mental jukebox.  It is funny how that works, a ginned-up favorite song from my comeuppance!

(Actually, I loved this song, but due to the British accent, I never knew exactly what Mick was saying!)

“I live in an apartment on the ninety-ninth floor – of my block
And I sit at home looking out the window
Imagining the world has stopped
Then in flies a guy who’s all dressed up – like a Union Jack
And says, I’ve won five pounds if I have his – kind of detergent pack

I says, Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Don’t hang around ’cause two’s a crowd
On my cloud, baby

The telephone is ringing
I say, “Hi, it’s me. Who is there on the line?”
A voice says, “Hi, hello, how are you?”
Well, I guess I’m doin’ fine
He says, “It’s three a.m., there’s too much noise
Don’t you people ever want to go to bed?
Just ’cause you feel so good,
Do you have to drive me out of my head ?”

I says, Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Don’t hang around ’cause two’s a crowd
On my cloud, baby

I was sick and tired, fed up with this
And decided to take a drive downtown
It was so very quiet and peaceful
There was nobody, not a soul around
I laid myself out, I was so tired
And I started to dream
In the morning the parking tickets were just – like a flag stuck on my window screen

I says, Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Don’t hang around ’cause two’s a crowd
On my cloud, baby

I says, Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Don’t hang around ’cause two’s a crowd
On my cloud, baby…”

Below, is the original  performance that I will always remember seeing on TV as a boy!  Remember to check out my “mothership” blog since 2009 at http://www.achilliad.wordpress.com please and Comment!

Cheers.

 

“on my cloud, baby…”

 

Manchin Musical Greetings By Paul’s “Salutations”

I dined upon and digested “Salutations” by Canada’s Paul Manchin during the spring 2017 holidays and I must admit that the feast was a smorgasbord of gourmet sounds upon a diverse continental musical menu, unlike any in recent memory. This is not to imply that I loved every utensil on this table setting, however. Then, his CD got stuck in my car radio player for many days, causing me to do even more research on how to free it again so that I could recite these titles to you!   Relatable…very. For me, this is a whole De Ja Vu experience with Paul again.  I first reviewed Paul’s “Truth” and “Expression” while writing for someone named “DJ Ron” who edited About.com/dancemusic circa 2006.  His voice and approach still reminds me of jazz singer, Michael Franks.

Leading with “Take A Ride”, you will hear a concept that anybody can relate to via its narrative description. Who among us hasn’t felt the need to take a car ride to try and forget a failed romance, unrequited love or just to keep from arguing?

“One”, cut two, is the first modest danceable number on the album and my favorite overall.  I play it on “repeat” mode.  Its beat conjures up a combination of the late Aaliyah’s, “Rock The Boat” and the Hues Corporation smash of the 1970s, “Rock The Boat”, just a tad slower [song title coincidence not planned, dear reader]. He bills this as a song “dealing with grief”, yet I do not hear it as dark as that. It is the best pure song on the album and Paul should develop his next effort around this style of “cha-cha”. As many of this effort it ends cold, leaving you wanting more.  I prefer the “vamp to fade”.

The rest of this CD seems to wax and wane between up and downtempo instrumentals with an occasional introspective classic, quiet piano piece interspersed.  You can find yourself in deep thought while listening to these songs and I wonder if the inspiration for some of this music is personal Paul Manchin angst?

So, is Paul an accomplished pianist? No, according to him, he composes and has other musicians play the keys.  I was hoping that it was he on some of those classic tickling the ivories moments like on “Are You Mine?” /featuring Gabriele Tosi.

I heard a mixed bag of intros and themes . For example, track three, “King”, has a familiar dance club intro only to flat-line into a mid-tempo love (?) song. Something strange going on here, methinks…

“I Think I Care” is really slow; “Let U Go” has a much bigger sound, ahead of three, mostly percussive jams – “Personal Space” with the most Afro-electronic beat – and then back to forlorn love on the 100% acoustic guitar, “I Want You To Know”.

Paul adds a couple more nice and promising short, instrumental interludes, including a very soulful instrumental theme on “Coming My Way”, before we bump to the disco beat of the very suggestive sucker, “Lollipop”!  Oh, NOW I am awake! An it’s a good thing because the next selection continues the 4X4 club beat with “spinning/spyros poulos mix. I had to ask, what is a “poulos”? Maybe a Greek DJ remix thing?

Track fifteen, “Down”, is a definite dance club and Rhythm and Blues number – but what is he saying?  “Life” is a good road trip theme song to drive to – if only it were longer. “Exitus” is very listenable and has the same beat of Freddie Jackson’s “We’ve Only Just Begun”.  And Uh-oh, Wow!  I fear the short classic horror movie organ on the title cut, “Salutations”! Which Edgar Allen Poe or Vincent Price character is going to jump-out next?!

To call this album “schizophrenic” might sound “mean” in today’s quasi politically-correct times, and yet it does have two personalities!  Maybe it is more like “Cybill”, lol

“Salutations” is a study of contrasts among twenty tasty tracks. Even though I obviously listened a lot in my car to this, I give it   theater-masks-illustration-representing-three-mask-three-different-facial-expression-happy-angry-sad-37790143    3.5 melancholy face masks out of a possible 5 due to the shortness of the instrumental tracks which seemed like padding.  I would have also liked to have heard those tune play longer and move towards a statement.  Finally, I cannot wait to hear this album on my full-out home music system, instead of in a car, this summer.

Comments welcome.

Check out my mothership at www.achilliad.wordpress.com

Valentine’s Time for Revisiting “Refections”

“As I peer – through the window – of lost time -looking over my yesterdays – and all the love I gave in vain….”

(Classic Holland-Dozier-Holland genius lyrics…)

I can dig it thoughout my own unrequited love story. Happy “Valentines’s Day”.

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There are times in all of our lives when we need to meditate and reflect. Some now use the complicated verb “to chill” to describe the same need.   It is healthy for mind, body and soul.  I am in one of those periods now, which probably spawned my latest phantasmagoric “tune-wedgie”, “Reflections” by The Supremes.

Speaking of “soul” , that is what this music was labeled as back in the 1960s in America in Billboard magazine and on the radio..

When the record, “Reflections”, first came out in 1967, the intro sound was markedly different than their earlier, more melodious hits like the 1965 smash, “I Hear A Symphony”.  The intro was electro-spacey and Star Trek psychedelic for The Supremes, who had by then become known as Diana Ross and The Supremes.  Maybe it was at the same time that The Temptations’ “Psychedelic Shack”attacked the charts.  The sound of Motown was evolving.

Ms. Ross’ stage presence evolved as well. In the first performance below, in living “black and white” television, she was shyly portraying the song.  By the time of the next video, you can see her confidence and showmanship grow, exuding a playful and sneaky self-depricating smile that endeared generations of listeners and fans to this very day, in my opinion (IMO).

Check out, enjoy and compare these four performances:

 

and the outfit changes!

I love how Ms. Ross’s funky confindence grows into this song each time she sings it and how she seems to do the “boogaloo” between verses (a little neck movement thing and the dane of the day when you had to know how to do the latest dance in order to be hip and party hardy!) Levi Stubbs of The Four Tops did a similar jig.

This is the best one, IMO and Ms. Ross et-al get really into it as the song-story progresses!

See the confidence Ms. Ross and the ladies have in the second and third ones?  Mary, why did you hide behind her at one point? lol

Ross is so cute at 1:46 when she is into it and gives a little ad lib “Hoop!” Nice.

and this one with full French orchestra in back…Awesome.

This is Hall Of Fame and lifetime favorite music that I want to remind the world, especially the ” millennials” I worked among recently, about. History is important, whether is it conquering territory or music, the latter being much more soothing.

Always take time to “reflect” and pray because the music will heal your brain and your prayers will be answered.

 

 

Tune wedgie: “Hey Western Union Man, Send a Moneegram…”

“…still my favorite Jerry Butler jam. From the old Mercury Records label, circa 1988, it mysteriously returns to my musical mind from time-to-time. Maybe because I am still lonely and without a soulmate at my ripe old age…”

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This is still my favorite Jerry Butler jam. It is a powerful hit record. Powerful. Did you know that he and the late Curtis Mayfield were together as part of the dynamic 1960s- early 1970s group, “The Impressions”?  From the old Mercury Records label, it mysteriously returns to my musical mind from time-to-time. Maybe because I am still lonely and without a soulmate at my ripe, old age.  A wealth of music in the mind is a tortorous thing sometime. I remember practicing my drum kit to its funky beat. I am going to estimate that this song came out in 1968.  Please correct me in your comments. Two minutes and forty-five seconds of powerful, masculine vocal, soulful funk. The way it SHOULD always be.  Can you bend your knees and lift this kind of music today?  If not, get back to the damn gym!  I like when early at :46 in the tune he sings, “Send a telegram, send a telegram, HURRY UP, to my baby-bay…”

Now, I made a slight modification to the title due long-distance relationship experience and a dream I had after a recent surgery.  Must have been the pain meds, but the epihinany was that why doesn’t WU use the fact that most ppeople who use their services now wire money as a marketing campaign and change the NAME and use “The Iceman”, Mr. Butler’s fame?  Instead of “send a TELEGRAM, why not, “Send a monegram, to my Baby…”  Notice I changed the spelling of “moneygram” because I think that American Express uses that for,. However, I am sure that Western Union’s legal team can find a way to market “monEgram” without infringement and make it happen.

Heck, I will even do the voice-over for FREE!  All in ALL, a classic and timeless soul song lives on and is still relevant, no matter the purpose.

There is a “live” version of this from 2012 that I wanted to post with these semtiments, until I watched it go way too long. Jerry Butler was never one to do an active, dancing around flamboyant stage act, but now in his Senior years, that version went on for about three minutes too long, which turned it into an agonizing display like, “just let the man leave the stage already!”

“Oh, Western Union man send a telegram to my baby
Send a telegram, send a telegram, oh
Send a telegram to my baby
This is what I want you to say

I want you to tell her that I’m all alone
I tried to call her on the phone
Tell her I’m in misery and think she’s avoiding me
And if the telegram don’t do
Send a box of candy too an maybe some flowers

Tell her that I miss her for hours and hours
Send a telegram, send a telegram
Hurry up, send a telegram, man, to my baby
Do you hear what I say?

Oh, Western Union man, send a telegram
Oh, send a telegram to my baby
Western Union man, hey, send a telegram, oh
Send a telegram, send a telegram, oh
Send a telegram, man, to my baby
This is what I want you to do

Listen, tell me, have you got a boy you can send?
This is what I want him to do
Put him on his bike right away
See if he can get my message through
Maybe tomorrow but mail it right away

I want the girl to know that I missed her
Something like yesterday
Send a telegram, send a telegram, oh
Send a telegram, man, to my baby
Do you hear what I say?

Oh Western Union man why don’t you send a telegram?
Well send a telegram to my baby
Western Union man, send a telegram
Oh send a, send a telegram, send it
Send it, send it, send it, right on to my baby
Do you hear what I say?

Hey Western Union man, send a moneegram, oh
Send a moneegram to my baby, hey”

Songwriters
BUTLER, JERRY / GAMBLE, KENNETH / HUFF, LEON

Trumpeter Whistling, “Lonely Bull”

“The magic of my jukebox-like brain is that when a tune from the past enters it and presses “play” automatically, I can usually find it and/or name it, with the help of YouTube, in seconds! “

Yesterday,  I’m sitting at my boring work desk and haven’t thought about this tune in decades, when suddenly it is in my mind all of the time and I whistled it aloud perfectly as when it was on the radio daily back in the 1960s. The magic of my “jukebox brain” is that when a tune from the past enters it and presses “play” automatically, I can usually find it and/or name it with the help of YouTube, in seconds! So I “google” Herb Alpert and as soon as the “Greatest Hits” album comes up first and I see that familiar A&M Records olive-green label and the first cut, “Lonely Bull”, I was confident that I had my tune du jour.

I believe that simple familiarity is part of the alluring beauty of the music of this bygone era. Suddenly, I could have been in a scene at a Riviera resort in a James Bond (Sean Connery) movie or something! lol  Doesn’t it sound like the background music for one of those scenes?

Herb played a Chicago Benge in the TJBrass days, later a Yamaha, and then a Sima trumpet. I’ve read where he said that the trumpet is not as important as practicing. Practicing scales on the trumpet is boring.   I wish I could interview Mr. Alpert.  I feel like I grew up with him or  maybe he helped me grow up because I used to play the trumpet. My dad, a stiff of the military’s World War II bands wanted me to just practice scales, but Herb Alpert, Al Hirt and Miles Davis shaped my interpretation of the horny horn through the years and I wanted to play words like they did!

Herb Alpert is the man who played the contemporary disco dance classic, “Rise”! I betcha didn’t know that.  More on it later because this post is about Herb Alpert and The Tijuana Brass’ “The Lonely Bull” as penned by me, “The Lonely Cheetah“.

Now lets jump to his many performances of it over fifty years beginning in 1962! I especially enjoy the one from 1969 where he wore the Star Trek-like “Captain Kirk” shirt and leaned a bit more to the right and waay back from the microphone! lol  I think it one of his signature stances.

Measure several of those performances of this against the slower and more tempered original studio version on the video below, please.  Pour yourself a class of Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon and check out this first one, the whole “Lonely Bull” album.

Wow! What a run! I am glad he is still with us in the physical world to possibly blow more magical notes, if he so desires. I wanted to get in-touch with him for this post, but didn’t know how.  Googling A&M Records went nowhere and I gleaned that the label is a casualty of the corporatization of the music industry that we used to know. However, my interview of Herb Alpert research lead me to this insightful video, where we get a flavor of the cool of Mr. Alpert and his philosophies on life and his approach to playing.

Geez, we all age and grey to some extent, but I will always remember the suave, energetic and excitable band leader seen in the above videos – not that he is finished as I write this, by any extent.

And oh, about “Rise” my classic dance 12″ I mentioned above?  From “My Vinyl”collection, here you go:

Any similarities between “Rise” and “The Lonely Bull” that you’d like to discuss?  Just blow some comments at me below!