Endless Loop: Experiment in Terror

henrymanciniHave you ever had one of those songs that gets stuck in your head for days…weeks…years? Sure you have. These are the songs that always make the cut. The songs on repeat. We all have them. I have a ton. Welcome back to Endless Loop.

“Experiment in Terror” by Henry Mancini

The Joup Friday Album: Jean-Claude Vannier – L’Enfant Assassin Des Mouches

jeanclaudevannierHey guys, it’s scary out there.  And it’s only getting scarier.  So, why not get lost in an oddball record of orchestral pop?

After providing the arrangements on Serge Gainsbourg’s legendary 1971 album Histoire de Melody Nelson, French composer Jean-Claude Vannier followed up that landmark with a record of psych-tinged soundscapes that were like nothing else out there.  Ignored and lost to time upon its initial release, years later the record became rumor to salivating collectors in the know, a legend, a ghost, something entirely too amazing to actually exist.

Joup Friday Album: En hommage à la maîtrise d’un Django Reinhardt

Django Reinhardt

Django Reinhardt at his best. Photo courtesy of pixsharp.com

The Joup Friday Album: Leonard Cohen – Death of a Ladies’ Man

leonardcohenSomewhat embarrassingly, I did not discover Leonard Cohen until I heard “Waiting for the Miracle” during the opening scene of Oliver Stone’s Natural Born Killers, and as much as I dug that movie, I was entranced by the soundtrack (compiled, assembled, and produced by Trent Reznor) and the two Cohen tunes in particular. The journey down the proverbial rabbit hole started from there. Over the next couple of years, I began to find Leonard Cohen’s music all over the peripheries of pop culture, be it Jeff Buckley’s stripped down and beautiful take on “Hallelujah,” or the soundtrack to Robert Altman’s McCabe and Mrs. Miller, or as an almost direct lyrical influence on Nick Cave. He was everywhere if you looked hard enough. It was wonderful, and I now consider myself a disciple.

Joup Friday (Err…Saturday) Feature Album: Brigitte Bardot Sings

Brigitte Bardot Sings (Phillips)

Brigitte Bardot Sings (Phillips)

So I’ve been staying in Logan Square in Chicago. Been subletting from my very good friend Liz whom is now in Oakland, CA running the wonderful conservatory Mynah Music. You can read my interview with her about Mynah here.

She’s a wonderful musician, accomplished in violin, piano and even guitar. I’m lucky enough to have an apartment that has a turntable and a great selection of international music. I’ve added to that collection thanks to Reckless Records in Wicker Park. But Liz had a hidden little jem by one Brigitte Bardot. Yeah, that Brigette Bardot, you know…And God Created Woman. Probably every man (especially French men) in the late 50s and early 60s dreamed about her and every woman…well I can’t really speak for them. She was though, an original “supermodel.” Truly.

35 Albums in 35 Years: 1985

In an ongoing attempt to bleed my opinions all over your computer screen, I’m selecting one album from every year that I’ve been alive that has some sort of significance to me…and then writing about it.  Welcome back to 35 Albums in 35 Years.

 

tomwaits1985: Tom Waits’ Rain Dogs

Some years seem to generate so many more albums that hold special places in my heart than others.  It becomes a challenge to not only pick one to write about, but to even narrow the number down to a manageable level to begin with.  1985 is one of those years.  I kind of agonized over which record to choose.  In the end though, there was really only one direction to go in.

Chicago Music : A Word with songwriter/guitarist Bill MacKay : Joup Interviews

Bill MacKay at his best - creating (billmackay.wordpress.com)

Bill MacKay at his best – creating (billmackay.wordpress.com)

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