Friday, December 29, 2017
Conceived of (successfully) as an "instant folk song" in the age of instant mashed potatoes and instant coffee, "Long Black Veil" is a tale of murder and infidelity, yes, but is it also a tale of (I hate to say it) "bros before hoes" taken to its senseless, meaningless extreme? The narrator of this song, singing from The Great Beyond, may have wanted to go down a hero by admitting to a crime he didn't commit (murder) so he wouldn't have to admit to a crime he did commit (sleeping with best friend's wife). But I can't help but see him as a selfish coward who's done nothing but add to the burden of those still living. Life goes on without him, and that means 1) there's still a murderer at large and the townsfolk have no idea 2) he died while his best friend was still in belief of his lies 3) neither his mistress' nor his best friend's life is going to get any easier now that he's gone. Not in the short term anyway. Great song though! I'm a bit rusty after some time off, so forgive me any production errors.
Listen HERE on Podomatic
Listen HERE on iTunes
Here are the stars of this episode....
Thursday, April 13, 2017
WTSCF Podcast Ep. 20 Michael Nesmith's The Grand Ennui: An Exploration of its meaning and its musical evolution through seven "iterations" 1971-2013.
Nez in 1970. The ennui is palpable.
Nez in 2013. Ennui was allowed a brief visit to reminisce with its old pal. After three minutes of staring at nothing in particular, punctuated by impatient sighs, Nez politely directed his guest to the group of hipsters standing outside the bar across the street.
While you wait for the release of his new memoir, dig this all-Michael Nesmith episode. Seven different versions of his classic song "Grand Ennui", from the 1971 studio version up to his 2013 tour. Its arrangement and feel has evolved in some cool and unexpected ways.
This episode had quite an evolution of its own. It began as a written piece intended for the forum on Nesmith's Videoranch website during my brief, experimental stint working for the site. Once the experiment was abandoned and I was back writing for myself, I decided to turn this into a podcast. In retrospect I should have cut much of the armchair psychoanalysis contained in the first 15-20 minutes, and if you agree, you can always skip to the musical analysis. I'll just say in my defense that I wrote that part while in a very analytical mindset influenced by the vibe of the stuff being written, by myself and others, on the Videoranch forum. Add to that it being the dark days of New England winter as well as my mother living out her final weeks. Things were heavy and I was reflecting that mindset. But as I got more into the podcast, I remembered "entertainment value!" and lightened up. So if you find yourself zoning out at the beginning, I encourage you to utilize the fast-forward until it sounds like things are getting fun. Because they do get fun! And as I say, please go to my Facebook page or my Blogger site and let me know which version is your fave!
Listen....(stream or download)
(as of this posting, this episode is showing on my phone's iTunes but not my computer's. Odd. Just so you know. Hopefully won't be an issue very soon..)
Saturday, December 3, 2016
Truth is at least as strange as fiction. Fact intertwines with my flights of fancy in this episode. At its core is an analysis of the fifth album The Monkees SHOULD have released. I was asked to contribute something to the excellent blog, Monkees Live Almanac back in May of this year to help celebrate the band's 50th anniversary. I thought about it intermittently for two months, wrote it sporadically over the course of the next two months and recorded/produced it in fits and starts over the last two months. And here it is. You do not have to be a fan of the band to dig this one. Enjoy.
Wednesday, August 3, 2016
Prolific is the new unprolific (at least for now). And so, right on the heels of Part One, I give you Part Two, or the conclusion, of my conversation with Andrew Sandoval.
More stories, revelations and insights into the life and career of one of the hardest working people in the music industry. I admittedly turn into a bit of a chatty fanboy in this half but pull myself together and stick with (most of) my planned questions. Enjoy.
Friday, July 29, 2016
Veering away from the regular format, this is part one of a two part interview with producer/engineer/historian/author/singer-songwriter Andrew Sandoval. In 1990, at the age of 17 he wrote the liner notes for and sequenced The Monkees' Missing Links 2 album for Rhino Records. Since then he's produced countless reissues and rarities collections (Big Star, The Kinks, Bee Gees, Turtles, Beach Boys....), was nominated for a Grammy in 2010, has authored two books and countless liner notes and has been Tour Producer for The Monkees since 2011. The Monkees are celebrating their 50th anniversary this year and Andrew has been a huge part of making it a year to remember for Monkees fans, with the critically acclaimed (!!!!) new album, Good Times! as well as a Blu Ray box set of every Monkees episode, plus their film Head and tons of recently unearthed rare stuff. Our chat took place at the Hampton Beach Casino Ballroom (New Hampshire) on the afternoon of July 16, 2016.
Enjoy! Look for Part Two in a week or so.
or listen (and subscribe!) on iTunes
Wednesday, March 30, 2016
A belated tribute to David Bowie as well as my final podcast before an official hiatus. Not many notable cover versions of this song, but Bowie covered it and that's all that matters. I may have overcompensated for the small amount of cover versions with too much yapping, but hey, I haven't talked to you in a long time and won't be talking to you for a few months. So enjoy. We can have fun just grooving/fooling/screwing around, can't we?
I may publish some written pieces during the podcast hiatus, but we'll see if time allows. In the meantime, enjoy!
Saturday, November 28, 2015
Dear readers and listeners.
I know how annoying it's been to come to this site and have multiple embedded episodes of the WTSCF Podcast start playing at the same time. I tried and tried, but every time I'd think I'd fixed the problem, I'd receive another complaint.
Sometimes I'd receive a complaint about the problem in the same week that I received a thank you for fixing the problem.
So I was utterly confused and, I admit, I turned my back on the problem, because why fix old problems when there are so many new and interesting problems--I mean podcast episodes-- to create?
But knowing it existed would eat away at me. Still I ignored it. Like knowing your fly is unzipped in public but just hoping no one notices rather than ducking down a corridor to discreetly zip up. Not that that's ever happened to me. But I'm sure SOME hapless loser has experienced it. Douche...
Then I thought about how MOST curious podcast surfers aren't going to take the time to find and turn off each offending embedded player. MOST folks will jump at the sudden cacophony, close the tab, say "%$*&&%!!" and cross this podcast off their list of ones to check out and possibly recommend. And I'll lose potential fans each day that I don't fix it.
That thought would haunt me at night and yet I couldn't seem to summon the strength to do something about it. I'd followed the instructions the Podomatic folks gave me, but it didn't always work.
Then, just yesterday came the thought: less is more. Embedding is a luxury. Links are no hardship. You can follow links, can't you?
So I went back and took out all the embedded players and replaced them with links to both the Podomatic player page and to the iTunes page.
You have a choice, as always, but now they're laid out for you.
Podomatic or iTunes.
Listen or download. Or both.
You can subscribe.
It's all free.
And once in a while I even link to my Facebook Page, which I urge...no, it's not that important...politely suggest that you "Like".
This housecleaning gave me a great opportunity to fancy some things up too. Some of the episodes didn't include a photo. Or tags. I fixed all that.
I also listened to some snippets which was weird because I never listen to the episodes once they're up. I felt reconnected to the guy who started this podcast. And I think I now have the fuel to keep on going.
Yes, perhaps this was a stall tactic. But one that benefits us all!
You'll be hearing from me soon....and we'll listen to many versions of a song which is sung by a man who admits to his crime from the beyond.
Posted by brian at 8:45 PM