Joup Friday Album: The Teardrop Explodes-Kilimanjaro

Teardrop Explodes

As much as labels on art frustrate me they do indeed serve a purpose. One could say that a band sounds like melting plastic and I would know exactly what it means but to most folks it is not specific enough. Bands from the 1980s have labels like Synth, New Wave, Post Punk and Neo something or another and such labels never much appealed to me as a young Midwestern boy. The stuff that I grew up knowing as New Wave usually squeaked from my sister’s pink Panasonic jam box. My sister, three years my elder was into bands like Depeche Mode, New Order and Duran Duran. My bedroom was adjacent to hers but my sound system was much louder and I was usually blasting The Stones, AC/DC or Led Zeppelin. I was a rock- head and to me if it was not heavy music it was never going to penetrate my soul.

The Joup Friday Album Roman Gods The Fleshtones

2 Fleshtones

Joup Friday Album “Get Young” The Tripwires


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 The Tripwires caught my ear while listening to a WFMU podcast hosted by DJ Michael Shelly. He played a song called “Be All End All” and shortly there after I looked them up. Shelly only plays what he regards as number hits. To him songs are hits if they have a certain allure to them like… are the lyrics clever or are they unique according to the melody and musicianship of the song? Does the song have a hook and does it stick in your brain? Is it timeless or is it trapped in a certain feel good time? Does it have a loose drum sound or was it recorded in a bathtub and if so is it justifiable in nature? I tip my hat to Shelly because he tweaked my interest towards the band The Tripwires. Thanks Mike.

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.

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