The Joup Friday Album: Sam Cooke Live at the Harlem Square Club

Sam Cooke

Sam Cooke Live at the Harlem Square Club was recorded in 1963 and released in 1985 by R.C.A. Records, who had kept it in a vault for over twenty years. This album took twenty-two years to be released! I’m sure that probably broke a Guinness book world record of some sort. Think about it – how many records went from the actual recording and production to a twenty-two year release date? Sam Cooke Live at the Harlem Square Club is a prime contender for that category. Sam Cooke’s name alone circa 1963 sold a ton of records, but Live at the Harlem Square Club was shelved and never released at the height of Cooke’s fame. Why?

The Joup Friday Album: The Young Rascals

The Rascals

The Joup Friday Album: The Rolling Stones – Some Girls

Some Girls

The age-old rock and roll debate continues. Are you a Beatles or Stones person? I am torn on this debate because my mother was the Beatles fan and my dad was the Rolling Stones fan. I will say I always lean towards the Stones side because of the dirty image they projected. To quote the recently departed Tom Petty from a late 90’s interview he said “Rock and roll was never supposed to be nice”. His statement inferred that rock and roll was originally labeled as the devils music and it challenged authority like a battle cry for the young, rebellious kids of the 1950’s and onward. There is nothing nice about a battle. Parents and the clergy tried to ban rock music and it made the kids that much more curious. The Beatles were nice and palatable, they were still a threat but they were wolves in sheep’s clothing. If the Beatles were a glass of wine with dinner the Rolling Stones were a whole bottle of Old Crow whisky, straight with no chaser.

The Tepid Ringleader

South Side Bar

Before reading this story keep in mind I am describing the events as I witnessed them. The vernacular and slurs that are used were essential to telling this story. The foul language and misconceptions of some characters captures the mindset and ignorance that unfortunately still exists where I was born and raised. There are no safe spaces here in this place. I am not writing this for shock value or to offend people. This is just a story about where I was before and after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. This piece was hard to write and it may be a little grainy. Please be advised.

The Joup Friday Album: Thin Lizzy – Jailbreak

Thin Lizzy Jailbreak


Irish rock bands have a certain charm to them that is exclusively unique. I don’t know if it’s the folklore, the climate or their rich history but Ireland has produced some of the best artists and bands in the world. Van Morrison, Rory Gallagher, Thin Lizzy, The Undertones, Stiff Little Fingers, the Boomtown Rats and U2 are amongst the many groups and artists from Ireland but let’s spring off Van Morrison. Van Morrison and his early 60s group called Them were sort of the trailblazers for the Irish rock music scene. The band was a brash rhythm blues outfit fronted by one of the greatest voices in the world, Van Morrison. They had soul, grit and a swagger that was all their own. Them got the ball rolling for rock music in Ireland. Flash forward to 1970 two schoolmates outside of Dublin, Ireland named Brian Downey (drums) and Phil Lynott (vocals, bass guitar) founded a band that would be later called Thin Lizzy. They took inspiration from Van Morrison, Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, Celtic folk music and rock bands like the Jeff Beck Group and Jimi Hendrix.

Quick Thought: Battle of the Continents


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Quick Thought

Harley Truck

Okay. Your Ford truck is not a Harley. It’s a Ford F150 with Harley Davidson logos all over it. Your truck can’t be a Harley, okay Chief? Don’t cry about now. I had a matchbook on the rear tire of my BMX bike when I was a kid. The friction from the tire and matchbook would make a noise like a motorcycle. If you could pretend it was just like riding a motorcycle but it wasn’t just like your truck that you think is a Harley.

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