The Friday Five: August 30, 2013

Friday Five : |ˈfrīdā – fīv| : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button in iTunes and share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up the media player of your choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

“Taxman” by The Beatles (from Revolver, 1966)

“Taxman” is the rare Beatles tune that I have very indifferent feelings about. I don’t dislike it, nor do I particularly love it. I actually dig Stevie Ray Vaughan’s cover. Hey, enough about this Beatles tune; have you all heard Sir Paul McCartney’s new tune, “New“? I fully realize that it is the tinge on nostalgia struck the moment the harpsichord begins belting out that jaunty phrase that hooks the ear, but I’m damn excited to hear the rest of the record nonetheless.

“On My Way Up” by The Constellations (from Southern Gothic, 2010)

I don’t recall much about The Constellations other than the fact that their publicist really liked sending me material, which is an southern-rock through an hip-hop sized, indie rock filter. If I remember correctly Cee-Lo shows up somewhere on this record. I don’t know, I’m ambivalent about this tune. Next!

“What Does Your Soul Look Like, Part 4″ by DJ Shadow (from Endtroducing….., 1996)

Time to sit back, relax, and just melt into the headphones. The downbeat groove just breathes under the repeating bass line; peaking with just enough of a crescendo to keep your mind occupied while your soul takes a ride. If I’m not mistaken I mentioned this record as being “essential” on an episode of Four and a Half Mikes earlier this month. (Yes, that was a shameless plug.)

“The Morning After” by Maureen McGovern (from Have a Nice Decade: The ’70s Pop Culture Box (disc 3), 1998)

Maureen McGovern, not Maureen McCormick. So … uh, I’m not going to lie: that just sent me down such an abysmal rabbit hole that I’m not sure that I want to even admit where I landed before finally looking up (20 minutes later) and realizing that I had stopped paying attention to the Friday Five.

“Garden of Simple” by Ani DiFranco (from Revelling / Reckoning (disc 1: Revelling), 2001)

I love it when Ani channels John Fahey. Vastly underrated for her ability as a guitarist, DiFranco has a manner of coaxing a huge range of dymanics from her Alvarez Yairi ADY1 utilizing her vast amount of alternate tunings and some Lee Press-On Nails. You know, I may just have to go back and finish listening to this record. After I listen to that new Macca tune about a dozen more times, that is.

What’s on your shuffle today?

  • jhallCORE

    1) Jeff Bridges – “I Don’t Know” (Crazy Heart soundtrack, 2010).
    2) TLC – “Waterfalls” (CrazySexyCool, 1994).
    3) Abbey Lincoln – “And It’s Supposed To Be Love” (Wholly Earth, 1999).
    4) R.L. Burnside (featuring Cedric Burnside) – “Don’t Stop Honey” (Come On In, 1998).
    5) Buddy Guy – “Tramp” (Sweet Tea, 2001).

    Enjoy the holiday weekend.

  • Phil

    I originally planned to shuffle up a playlist that included the words “work” or “labor,” but I just wasn’t in the mood to listen to five different versions of Rush’s “Working Man.” So this is what I get as we head into to the long weekend…

    Coldplay – “Sparks” (Parachutes, 2000)
    Here’s a nice little tender jam to start things off. I can remember not thinking much of Coldplay when I first heard them by way of “Yellow,” but then I really started to listen to this album and began to really appreciate it for what it was. Nice subtle textures throughout.

    KISS – “Rock and Roll Hell” (Creatures of the Night, 1982)
    …And Gene kills the mood. As usual. Nothing subtle about him or this track from KISS’ last album on Casablanca, last album from their first makeup era, and last album to feature Ace Frehley (at least on the cover anyway). Creatures is a solid album, heavier than anything released by KISS up to that point, and arguably one of their better albums of the previous five years despite Paul’s and Gene’s dependence on outside writers. Surprisingly enough, this particular tune was a product of the Bryan Adams/Jim Vallance song machine.

    Ramones – “Bonzo Goes to Bitburg” (Ramones Mania, 1988)
    Probably one of the most upbeat protest songs ever. It’s difficult to feel Joey’s disgust of Reagan’s visit to a West Germany military cemetery over the backing chorus of “Ahhhh, la la la.”

    U2 – “Pride (In the Name of Love)” (Rattle and Hum, 1988)
    I’ve always had a sort of love/hate thing with U2. This seems a fitting song to pop up just a couple of days after the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech, but I find I have mixed feelings about this song that is supposed to be about MLK but lyrically really isn’t. Good performance from Rattle and Hum, though.

    Toad the Wet Sprocket – “Liars Everywhere” (Pale, 1990)
    Ending this Five like we started it, with a nice slow jam, this time from one of my favorites bands. Hard to believe these guys were between the ages of 18-22 when it was recorded.

  • Michael Parr

    Man, I’ve got to dig up that Crazy Heart soundtrack. I haven’t listened to it in a bit, and it really has some incredible tunes.

  • Michael Parr

    I always get a good chuckle when an Adams/Vallance track pops up in an unlikely place (though I know KISS is not an unlikely space, as they wrote a few tunes for the band.)

    “Liars Everywhere” and “Nothing is Alone” are two of my favorite cuts from Pale.

  • gthradecky

    First songs of the morning. Short, loud and nervy. I swear iTunes is sentient sometimes.

    1) “2” Dick Mobile” – The Negro Problem
    2) “Alive & Amplified” – The Mooney Suzuki
    3) “Shave Your Legs” – The Pursuit of Happiness
    4) “Line Up” – Elastica
    5) “Rattled by the Rush” Pavement

  • Rock_dawg

    “3 A.M. Eternal” – The KLF, The White Room
    [Shudders at the memory of his pre-teen self going around singing “KLF is gonna rock ya”.]
    “Wildfire” – John Mayer ft. Frank Ocean, Paradise Valley
    Paradise Valley trods the same laid-back, ’70’s rock vibe of Born & Raised and is maybe even improves on it a bit. And then Frank Ocean shows up for this little soulful interlude that has nothing to do with the song of the same name earlier in the album. Shrug.
    “As Long As You Follow” – Fleetwood Mac, Greatest Hits
    The Mac go fully adult contemporary on this one, but it’s got such a nice mellow vibe and heartfelt vocal from Christine McVie that it’s hard to dislike.
    “If I Ever Lose My Faith In You” – Sting, Ten Summoner’s Tales
    The lead off track from the last Sting album I really liked.
    “Heaven Help” – Lenny Kravitz, Greatest Hits
    I never cared for Lenny’s ballads on Let Love Rule or Mama Said, but when this one came out on Are You Gonna Go My Way, I knew he had stepped up his game. I still prefer him rocking out, but this remains one of my favourites.

    Have a great long weekend, Fivers!

  • Dennis Corrigan

    After you listen to Crazy Heart, go listen to Ryan Bingham’s Junky Star

  • Michael Parr

    Wait… you are excluding “It Ain’t Over ’til It’s Over,” right?

  • Dennis Corrigan

    So I did go ahead with the “work”, “labor” & “job” Labor Day theme – and there are good odds of some version of “Working on the Highway” popping up

    1. “We Can Work It Out” by the Beatles from Past Masters, Volume II. Only the greatest band ever could release a dual A sided single as good as this and “Day Tripper”.

    2. “Man’s Job” by Bruce Springsteen from In Concert – Plugged. With the nobody nowhere ever lamented (except maybe @mwardlaw) “other band”. Instead of “WOTH”, we get this live version of a Human Track and one of my fave songs from that record as it featured the great Sam Moore on backing vocals. ”

    3. “Got My Mojo Working (But It Just Won’t Work on You)” by Ann Cole from Blue Masters, Volume 6: Blues Originals. You’re probably more familiar with Muddy Waters’ version, but here’s the original, complete with a honking sax solo

    4. “Finest Worksong (Other Mix)” by R.E.M. from In The Attic – the one with horns

    5. “Keep on Working” by Pete Townshend from Gold (originally on Empty Glass). I would’ve put money on WOTH (5 versions in a 66 song playlist) instead, this little nugget from Pete.

    Enjoy the long weekend!

  • Rock_dawg

    Meh. It’s not that I think it sucks or anything, it just never did anything for me and then lost points for being overplayed. (It’s probably playing in the drug store around the corner right now! Right after the above mentioned Sting track. Lol)

  • Michael Parr

    I can see the overexposure angle. I don’t know, this song always resonated with me. I’m also with you on the Sting tune, and album.

  • Michael Parr

    “We Can Work It Out” … now that is a Beatles tune that I can get behind; I absolutely love that tune. I purchased Past Masters, Volume II back in early ’90s for that, and “Don’t Let Me Down.”

  • Ernie G

    1. “Halfway Hotel” – Voyager
    2. “Even Roses Have Thorns” – Jesus Couldn’t Drum (now, there was a band!)
    3. “Mercy, Mercy Me (The Ecology)” – Marvin Gaye
    4. “Midnight Dream” – Boz Scaggs
    5. “Un Garçon Nommé Suzy” – Joe Dassin (French version of “A Boy Named Sue”. As bad as it sounds)

  • gthradecky

    But the truth is Rock_dawg, KLF DID rock ya, didn’t they?

  • paulzas

    1) The English Beat – “Walk Away” from Wha’ppen?: “Special Beat Service” is my favorite English Beat album, but I invested in the box set that came out late last year and don’t regret it. A lesser but still nice tune.

    2) Wang Chung – “Wake Up, Stop Dreaming” from To Live and Die in L.A. soundtrack: Love this song (and this album) Back in my high school driving days, this held the No. 3 slot on my “Late Night Drive” mix tape, right after “The Feeling Begins” from Peter Gabriel’s Passion and Lou Reed’s “Walk on the Wild Side.”

    3) Bruce Hornsby -“Mandolin Rain (live solo) from Live Bootleg: It’s thanks to Popdose that I’ve gained an appreciation of Hornsby beyond his 80s hits, but I still have a soft spot in my heart for this one, particularly in a stripped-down man-and-his-piano arrangement (except for some synths at the end).

    4) Michael Giacchino – “Manifesting Destiny” from Lost Season 3 soundtrack: A quick palate cleanser.

    5) Paula Cole – “Manitoba” from Raven (2013): Paula Cole’s life has moved far from her 1998 Grammy wins, and her output has been uneven as she’s moved through record companies and personal strife. I’ve stuck with her, almost more out of habit than fandom, over a number of albums of varying quality that too often felt like she was trying to find out how to express herself as she moved into parenthood and middle age while still harboring the big thoughts and big emotions that were her trademark. There’s a reason this great track, from her 2013 Kickstarter-financed “Raven,” feels like it would fit right in among her “This Fire” recordings–she write it earlier in her career. But she delivers, and I love that she can still hit this kind of artistic height.

  • Rock_dawg

    [Hangs head, defeated.]
    But “What Time Is Love” actually rocked much harder.

  • DwDunphy

    Song of the Minerals – Shellac (At Action Park)

    Honeysuckle Milwaukee – Canon Blue (Rumspringa)

    Learning To Drive Again – Kyle Adem (Syracuse)

    Her Palace – Ty Tabor (Moonflower Lane)

    I Want Home – Bee Gees (Rare Precious & Beautiful)

  • 1001Songs

    1. Harry Nilsson “Poli High” The Point (1971) from the soundtrack to my childhood

    2. The Jam “Ghosts” from The Gift (1980) Paul Weller’s got more soul
    3. The Kinks “Preservation (single)” from Preservation Act 1 ( 1973) from the dark and theatrical period of The Kinks

    4. The Alarm “The Stand” from The Alarm RP (1983) the hit song inspired by the Stephen King book
    5. Wild Magnolias “Fire Water” from The Wild Magnolias (1974) A slice of authentic New Orleans culture in less than 4 minutes

  • BRock

    Black Joe Lewis – “Skulldiggin” (Electric Slave)
    If James Brown fronted the Black Keys…
    Nada Surf – “Waiting For Something” (The Stars Are Indifferent To Astronomy)
    Late to the party on these guys, Doug Gillard joining up was the clincher.
    Bruce Springsteen – “Roulette” (Tracks)
    The Boss!
    Chuck Prophet – “Summertime Thing” (No Other Love)
    Yes it is!
    Black Oak Arkansas – “Sting Me” (Street Party)
    Lots of bands with Black in their name. These guys were the first.