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Showing posts from January, 2012

Saturday Video Fun: Gotye & Whatever happened to Jem - They , Wish I, & Just a Ride (all 2004)

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With the video still being posted on Facebook, and with now regular airplay on WXPN, I've been hearing that Gotye single, "Somebody That I Used to Know" quite a bit. Also, that Canadian band Walk Off the Earth who does the good sounding cover version, got flown this week to Los Angeles by the Ellen show, to perform "Somebody That I Used to Know" on her daytime talk show. No matter which version you hear, the song has a riff in it that clearly reminds me of a song by Welsh singer-songwriter Jem. That song is called "They" and it's our video of the week. To get the full effect, first jump back two weeks and listen to about the first minute of the Gotye single. In 2004, Jem (Jem Griffiths) was all over the airwaves, both radio and MTV on both sides of the Atlantic with hit singles from her album Finally Woken. "They" was the first single; it was followed in short order by "Just a Ride". Once the Gotye song made me think of J

Saturday Video Fun: RIP Kodak, Paul Simon - Kodachrome (1973) & Cyndi Lauper - True Colors (1986)

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The Eastman Kodak Company declared bankruptcy this week marking a sad chapter to their 100+ year history of providing photographic equipment, supplies, and services to the world. You didn't have to be a photographer to feel a trace of sadness at the news on Thursday. If you grew up before there were digital cameras, you most certainly have used either a Kodak camera, film, processing, or more likely, all three. In my life before digital, I shot only color slides. Kodachrome 64 was my film of choice. Kodak developed my slides and I looked at them on a Kodak Carousel slide projector that I bought with money I earned one winter shoveling snow in the neighborhood when I was about twelve. Paul Simon captured very well the love that photographers had for Kodachrome in this song from his 1973 album, There Goes Rhymin' Simon. They weren't making videos in 1973, but there are a plethora of homemade videos on YouTube, of which this one is the best. In 1986, Cyndi Lauper had

Grover Washington, Jr. - Grover Live (2010), A True Gift

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Grover Live Listen to "Winelight" Yesterday I made a huge find on Amazon. As a longtime fan of Grover Washington Jr., I, like everyone else who knew and loved the man or his music, was saddened by his death in 1999 when he was just 56. Somehow news of this album's release escaped me until now. I'll let Amazon describe it. "America's greatest R&B-funk and soul-jazz saxophonist, Grover Washington, Jr., (December 12, 1943-December 17, 1999) was one of the first musicians to successfully fuse R&B, pop, funk, blues, and jazz. "Grover Live" is a previously unreleased live recording. Captured on June 7, 1997 in Peekskill, NY, this album reveals Washington and his famous backing band blowing the roof off the sold out 1,500-seat Paramount Center for the Performing Arts." Listen to "East River Drive" This was not anything slapped quickly together to cash in, this was a true labor of love, a magnificent addition to his legacy,

Saturday Video Fun: The First New Hit of 2012, Gotye - Somebody That I Used To Know

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Eight days ago, I had never heard the name Gotye. A week ago yesterday, blog friend and UK correspondent Lee posted this video on his Facebook page with the comment " ...An early favourite song of 2012 - already been huge in Australia, out here shortly". Over the next few days more people posted this same video to Facebook, and by mid-week the thing seemed to have gone viral. By Friday the song had been added for airplay on WXPN. Check it out. Gotye's real name is Wouter "Wally" De Backer, and he's Belgian/Australian. In the last half of 2011, "Somebody That I Used To Know" was a huge hit, selling 6X platinum in Australia, New Zealand, Belgium and Holland. The recording also features New Zealand musician Kimbra. Not fifteen minutes after I first saw Lee's post of the Gotye video, a Canadian friend posted the following video of an excellent cover version by the Canadian indie band Walk off the Earth featuring Sarah Blackwood from another in

Rosie Thomas to Release New Album, With Love, on Valentine's Day, Plus Lots of Free Music

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Rosie Thomas, whose last album, These Friends of Mine was one of my favorite releases of 2007 , will release her next album, With Love , on February 14th. Right now you can listen and download for free, a song from the new album, "Where Was I", which sounds pretty great. <a href="http://rosiethomas.bandcamp.com/track/where-was-i">Where Was I by Rosie Thomas</a> Last month, Rosie also released a new Christmas song, "Remember When It Snowed". This song is still available, you can listen and download it free below. <a href="http://rosiethomas.bandcamp.com/album/remember-when-it-snowed">Remember When It Snowed by Rosie Thomas</a> Rosie's last effort

The Best XPN Songs of 2011

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Every year WXPN asks the listeners to submit lists of their top ten albums and top ten songs of the year. I normally only consider albums for my year end blog review and I submit same to XPN. Usually most of my picks are albums that don't get played on XPN (this year two of my picks got played). So this year when it came time to fill out the year end survey, I decided to play nice and do a real top ten list of songs that XPN actually played in regular daytime rotation. So here are my picks of the best songs XPN played in 2011. 1. Lana Del Rey - "Video Games" Listen to "Video Games" Lana Del Rey was already a star in Britain and elsewhere even before her first single, "Video Games" was released thanks to the video having gone viral several months prior. In the months since the single's release, "Video Games" has reached number one on the iTunes sales charts in nine countries, and number three at U.S. iTunes. 2. Mayer Hawthorne - &q