Musical Time Travel

11 Mar

image descriptionIf you’ve read or listened to my interviews, then you know I’ve asked several musicians questions about what they would like to see if they could go back in time.  Day dreaming about time travel seems to be a fairly universal pastime among music lover.

I decided to take it a step further than day dreaming and wrote a bit of fiction for music lovers.  It’s the story of  Nathan Ballew  who has a brush with death and finds himself back in 1962 with his memory from 2013 fully intact.

The only drawback, he’s in the body of an 11-year-old.  So what would you do in this situation?  You you can read a few sample chapters, or download the Kindle book here.

Duane Allman Solos brought to life by Billionaire Music Lover

8 Jan

Forgive the headline hook, but that’s my own personal fantasy.  Before going to sleep last night, I listened to a recording of the Allman Brothers Band from January 23, 1971.  They were opening for Delaney and Bonnie at the Capitol Theatre, Port Chester, NY.

If you’re a serious Allman Brothers fan, you recall the laid back crowd reactions on the Fillmore recordings. Without even hearing any music, this crowd reaction will give you an indication of just how smoking hot Duane Allman and the band were that night in 1971.


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Hammond USA Announces it’s Hall of Fame

23 Dec

A special celebration and concert for the living members of the freshman class will be held during the NAMM show in Anaheim, California on January 24, 2014.

Visit http://www.hammondorganco.com next month for more details and a special webpage devoted to the Hall of Fame.

Derek Trucks & John Mayer play for BB King

13 Dec

BB King was only a couple of weeks away from his 87th birthday when he played the Hollywood Bowl on Sept. 5, 2012.  For the finale he was joined on stage by Susan Tedeschi, Derek Trucks, and John Mayer.

Even now BB King tours nearly 300 nights a year, clearly the love he gives and receives keeps him going.  I was lucky enough to catch BB King in a small lounge in Reno, Nevada in 1973 and it remains a vivid memory.

Here’s a tip, rent or buy his DVD about his life, it has interviews with Clapton, Santana, Derek Trucks, Dr. John and many, many more.  It is a wonderful film about an amazing person.

Jon Batiste & Michael Lee Firkins Interviews

25 Oct

Jon Batiste

t2m jon batiste

He and his band, named “Stay Human,” do just that, and they just released a breakout album entitled “Social Music.” When you watch video clips of him on the streets, or listen to his album, it’s music without borders or labels, but with integrity. I caught up with Jon in San Francisco in the middle of a very hectic tour

Michael Lee Firkins

michael lee firkins t2m

He first gained attention as the “next big thing” in instrumental rock with his impressive guitar skills.  On his just released album “YEP” on the Magna Carta label, he puts his singer/songwriter skills on display, backed up by the legendary Chuck Leavell (Rolling Stones, John Mayer, Allman Brothers), and Matt Abts and Andy Hess of Govt. Mule.

Listen to, or download these interviews here

The Beatles Final Tour & Paul McCartney’s First — Being there

12 Oct

It is difficult to impart to young people today what a phenomenon the Beatles were in the 1960s.  Imagine, when the Beatles appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show, 73 million people were watching, and in 1964 the US population was only 192 million!

Sullivan’s failure to scoop the TV industry with[Elvis] Presley made him determined to get the next big sensation first. In 1964, he achieved that with the first live American appearance of The Beatles, on February 9, 1964, the most-watched program in TV history to that point and still one of the most-watched programs of all time. (Wikipedia)

At 8 o’clock on February 9th 1964, America tuned in to CBS and The Ed Sullivan Show. But this night was different. 73 million people gathered in front their TV sets to see The Beatles’ first live performance on U.S. soil. The television rating was a record-setting 45.3, meaning that 45.3% of households with televisions were watching. That figure reflected a total of 23,240,000 American homes. The show garnered a 60 share, meaning 60% of the television’s turned on were tuned in to Ed Sullivan and The Beatles. Source

Their appearance on Ed Sullivan took place exactly 80 days after the funeral of John F. Kennedy, which was another event whose impact on the American public is impossible to convey to anyone who didn’t live through it.  You will often hear it said that we were in a collective state of mourning, and the Beatles appearance on Ed Sullivan was something that allowed the nation to come together with a sense of relief. Having lived through it, I agree.

In many ways the Beatles were the beginning of a universal youth culture, and they were at the center of the spirit of the 60s.

Up until this point, the world was much less interconnected.  Prior to the Beatles, with the exception of a fluke, or one-hit-wonder, it would have been unthinkable to have a British artist at the top of the US pop charts.  Our pop stars tended to have slick hair, and suddenly here were these guys from the North of England with (what was then considered) unbelievably long hair.  Consider this quote from Elvis Presley while visiting the White House in 1970:

“The Beatles laid the groundwork for many of the problems we are having with young people by their filthy unkempt appearances and suggestive music while entertaining in this country during the early and middle 1960s.”

Elvis Presley, recorded during a 1970 visit to Richard Nixon at the White House

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Breaking Bad’s Final Music

30 Sep

goodbye baby blueFor young fans of Breaking Bad who might be wondering where the final song of Breaking Bad came from, it is Baby Blue, by Badfinger.  A perfect choice.

Signed by the Beatles’Apple label in 1968 as The Iveys, they adopted the name Badfinger in 1969. Badfinger had four consecutive worldwide hits from 1970 to 1971: “Come and Get It” (written and produced by Paul McCartney), “No Matter What”, “Day After Day”, and “Baby Blue”.  Wikipedia

And if that weren’t enough, Todd Rundgren was the producer on Baby Blue:

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