Statement Songs For The Weekend
Alright, twelve new songs to sit dance to in your cubicle today and to get weird with during your (hopefully) Saturday and Sunday off. Welcome Colorado Zack to the party.
"Police on my Back (Live at Shea Stadium)" by The Clash - Live at Shea Stadium
It's raining during this performance which makes Joe Strummer telling the crowd to "stop yapping" all the more bitter and better. I'm usually not a "live version" guy, but there's no denying this tune's intensity.
"One Less Set Of Footsteps" by Jim Croce - Photographs & Memories: His Greatest Hits
It's been many moons ago, but I'm pretty positive that this Jim Croce greatest hits album was the first CD I've ever purchased. You don't get singer-songwriters like this anymore and nobody was able to transition from humorous story songs to beautiful ballads better than Mr. Croce from south Philadelphia.
"Bad Catholics" by The Menzingers - After The Party
I know 2017 isn't over, but After The Party is without a doubt my album of year. Much like the rest of the album "Bad Catholics" is a reflection of when times were a bit wilder for us, but the expectations of early thirty-somethings to move on with marriage, families and mortgages seem to muck things up. Peace be with you.
"New Age Girl" by Deadeye Dick - Dumb & Dumber Soundtrack
Picked this song because I woke up this morning with it in my head. It's one of those tunes which almost everybody likes, but can't remember when it's time to make a mix tape. Also, my band used to cover this at live gigs, and nothing gets a pop from a crowd like sing a lyric like, "she don't eat meat, but she sure likes the bone". (Sadly, not on Spotify)
"1612" by Vulfpeck - Fugue State
Another song introduced to me by ol' Billy Fatface (Bill Burr), this is one jam which you can't help but tap your toes to. I can see myself listening to this one years from now.
"I.G.Y." by Donald Fagen - The Nightfly
Heard yesterday that Fagen has taken ill following the death of his friend and partner Walter Becker. This has always been one of my favorites among his solo songs, and I think it perfectly illustrates the skill he possesses as a musician.
Shem The Pen's Picks
"Chartered Trips" by Husker Du - Zen Arcade
RIP to drummer Grant Hart who just passed away. Husker Du were The Who of 80s indie rock: loud, riffy, angsty & dramatic. I played the hell out of this Zen Arcade album when I was wandering the streets of Tucson AZ instead of going to college.
"Esco Let's Go" by Nas - Single
Happy birthday Nas, the best rapper of all time. Not the best album maker though - he left this classic off of his 2008 Untitled album. Some really goofy lyrics, with Elizabeth Taylor advising Nas to join Wu-Tang and The Beatles(?) Smoke a blunt to this one. (Sadly, not on Spotify)
"You Are Not Needed Now" by Townes Van Zandt - High, Low and In Between
From the late great Townes, this is an extra special song. I think it's about his pregnant wife, who's being taken care of while he waits and muses on his life and future. But it's also about how some events are beyond our control. And that's okay. Calm down, you are not needed now.
"Hurricane" by Band Of Heathens - Top Hat Crown & the Clapmaster's Son
In light of the recent disasters this song captures it all. Great band from Austin, great song.
"Ain't Nothing Wrong With That" by Robert Randolph & The Family Band - Colorblind
I love Robert Randolph - he has transformed what pedal steel guitar players can do. This song launches like a rocket ship right into your face.
"Some Fantastic" by The Barenaked Ladies & The Persuasions - Ladies and Gentlemen: Barenaked Ladies & The Persuasions
Truly one of my favorite bands and certainly one of the most underrated. They have been making great - dare I say brilliant - music for 30 years now. I came across this album they recorded with The Persuasions and the cover "Some Fantastic", one of my favorite songs off their 1998 album, Stunt.