The Friday Five: February 7, 2014

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:

“Smooth Operator” by Big Daddy Kane (from It’s a Big Daddy Thing, 1989)

That Mary Jane Girls—née Rick James—bass line is so smooth that Kane had no choice but to drop a jewel on it. When it comes to golden era lyricists no one can touch Rakim, but I’ve still got a spot in my top 10 for Kane.

“Bombin’ the L” by Fun Lovin’ Criminals (from Come Find Yourself, 1996)

Last week I gave anyone actually reading these words an earful about no one listening to that White Town record; this week I’m crying mea culpa as I have not ever, not once, listened to the entirety of this Fun Lovin’ Criminals record. Listening to this song reaffirms the fact that it might not have been such a bad thing.

“Jimi Thing” by Dave Matthews Band (from 1995-02-08: DMBLive: Palace Theatre, Albany, NY, USA, 2013)

Clocking in at over twelve minutes this is a rather rote version of the ode to the afternoon, um, sandwich snack!

“Folds in Your Hands” by Passion Pit (from Maners, 2009)

Man, I haven’t listened to this record in … two years?! I need to fix that.

“Ritual” by Journey (from ECL1P53, 2011)

Well isn’t this the turd in the punchbowl? Don’t get me wrong, I am completely okay with Arnel. Hell, after watching that documentary on his first year with the band, I even fell sorry for the guy. He’s got a great voice and can mime Perry’s every inflection and tone; something that I doubt even Perry can do, these days.

What’s on your shuffle today?

  • Phil

    Don’t get me wrong, I am completely okay with Arnel. Hell, after watching that documentary on his first year with the band, I even fell sorry for the guy.

    Still haven’t seen this doc, but it’s in my Netlix queue. Hopefully soon.

    Anyway, have you seen the latest rumors? Apparently Arnel wants out by 2015 and doesn’t want to record another album with the band.

  • Phil

    The Wildhearts – “The Jackson Whites” (Chutzpah, 2009)
    I’ve been on a bit of Ginger kick lately with the release of his Albion PledgeMusic project, so this is a welcome way to start off my Five.

    Styx – “Mr. Roboto” (Kilroy Was Here, 1999)
    And just like that, the mood changes. “Mr. Roboto” is not a bad song (I have always quite liked it, thankyouverymuch), but I agree with Tommy Shaw–it must have been maddening to come up with synth-laden songs about robots when you were coked out of your mind and just wanted to rock.

    Miranda Lambert – “Makin’ Plans” (Revolution, 2009)
    Genre whiplash! I have very few songs in my library that would be considered country, and most of them are actually of the bluegrass/newgrass persuasion or guys like Willie Nelson or Johnny Cash. So I was a bit surprised when this popped up. Where did I even get this?! Turns out, it’s not even in my local library but is a song that resides in my iCloud storage. I’m not a fan of the country whine and drawl–that only works if you’re Hank Williams. Sr., that is.–but if I’m going to listen to country, this is the kind of song I would pick.

    Pink Floyd – “Run Like Hell” (Delicate Sound of Thunder, 1988)
    Snap! Whiplash again. I have always liked this live album, but this song just seems to be missing some of the energy of the album version.

    Hüsker Dü – “She’s a Woman” (Warehouse: Songs and Stories, 1987)
    Short, sweet, and catchy. Seems to be as good a place to end this all-over-the-map Five as any. Have a great weekend, Fivers!

  • Rock_dawg

    In honour of their legendary US arrival 50 years ago this weekend, I’ve gone all-Beatles-all-day.

    “Roll Over Beethoven” – With the Beatles
    I love the sound of the guitars on this Chuck Berry cover – but only on the original UK mix! On the US stereo mix (found on the Capitol Albums box) it’s just aural torture with a ton of echo and reverb making it all sound so tinny and the handclaps beefed up in the mix and panned hard to one side.
    “I’m Happy Just To Dance With You” – A Hard Day’s Night
    One of my favourite early Beatle deep cuts – if any Beatles track could be considered a deep cut. Just a sweet little love song.
    “Do You Want To Know A Secret” – Please Please Me
    Shuffle seems to be stuck in a George groove. Another sweet innocent one that seems about a million years away from “Within You Without You”, but was really only about 4 or 5 years! When I bought my vinyl copy of their second Canadian album Twist and Shout (which turned 50 itself about a week ago) when I was about 16, this was the track the clerk dropped the needle on to demonstrate it’s condition. (Which was just so-so, by the way, so I talked her down and got a pretty good deal.)
    “Dig A Pony” – Let It Be
    For me, Let It Be plays like a humdrum coda to their career; a bunch of half finished outtakes, polished up and released to tie up loose ends. Even the “deSpectoring” of it in ’03 doesn’t take away that feeling. That said, there are still some good songs on it, like this one, I’ve Got A Feeling and of course, Get Back.
    “When I’m Sixty Four” – Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band
    No matter how experimental they got, you could count on Paul to bring it back to Earth with his peerless popcraft and old music hall odes like this one.

    Happy weekend, Fivers!

  • Michael Parr

    I considered doing a Beatles Five, but forgot when it came time to listen to the tunes. Maybe I’ll do a supplemental Friday Five, later today.

  • Michael Parr

    Arnel’s publicist released a statement earlier today denying any discontent.

  • Phil

    I don’t doubt that. If it were me, I’d hope my publicist would do the same. Seems there’s some smoke there, though. Perry comes out and says he’d be interested in rejoining. Journey (or their publicist) says, “No way.” And now this. The only way they could get more press at this point would be if everyone started suing everyone else, à la Queensrÿche.


    If Rakim is, say, a 9.8 in terms of rap genius, Big Daddy Kane is, like, a 9.72.


    My five:

    -“Till It’s Gone”-Britney Spears (from “Britney Jean”, 2013): I can’t say I’m much of a Britney fan. I got this album (as I’ve gotten most of her catalog previously) as a promo and this song was one of the ones I kept in my library. I’m generally not much for dubsteppy sound effects, but this is one of the more tolerable examples. Way more of a production than a song, but good for nodding your head, or working out.

    -“Supermodel (You Better Work)”-RuPaul (from “Supermodel Of The World,” 1993) : Gotta love the LaWanda Page (Aunt Esther) cameo on this song. High camp, high quality. Oh, by the way, did you know that I’m gay?

    -“Can I Get Wit’Cha?”-The Notorious B.I.G. feat. Lil’ Cease (from “Born Again,” 1999): One of the best songs from Puffy’s endless grave-digging expeditions. Chunky sample of Bell & James’ “Livin’ It Up (Friday Night)” which is one of my favorite songs from the disco era. Biggie’s storytelling was maybe just a notch below Rakim/Kane. Life cut too short, would have been one of the all-time greats even if his legend wasn’t amplified by his murder.

    -“I Don’t Sleep, I Dream”-R.E.M. (from “Monster,” 1994) : This album gets shit on unnecessarily. Not to say it’s aged fantastically, but if I had to choose, I’d pick this over “Out of Time.”

    -“Country Road”-James Taylor (from “Sweet Baby James,” 1970): James Taylor’s voice affects me more than any non-soul singer in existence. There’s a soothing, very parental quality I identify with his voice. To me, this is one of the more incidental songs in his catalog, but still good.

  • Michael Parr

    Wait, you are? Quel Scandale!

  • gazill

    Crying ~ Roy Orbison
    The Whistle ~ Steve Morse Band
    Don’t You Just Know It ` ~ Huey “Piano” Smith and the Clowns
    Confucius ~ The Skatelites
    Scuttle Buttin’ ~ Stevie Ray Vaughan