Friday, July 27, 2012

P.S. to rant and other stuff

Hello music friends!

One more item to include with my Olympic rant the other day. A lot of media as been including the Clash's classic tune London Calling in their coverage of the Olympics. (I tend to hear that in the openings before I switch it off. I'm boycotting any personal support of the games because of how London is treating musicians.) I find this hilarious. Has nobody involved listened to the lyrics? The subject matter of the song is the sort of thing the IOC is terrified of! No matter. Let's dig the clash!

They sound (and look) great!

Also, there's been a bit of a Steely Dan discussion lately through social media. Now I really dig the later stuff they did (Aja, Gaucho, as well as the recordings they've done after they've gotten back together) but in some ways I feel that original drummer Jim Hodder was just as great as the many drummers who played on later recordings. He's on Can't Buy a Thrill and Countdown to Ecstasy. He sounds beautiful throughout and even sings on the tune Midnight Cruiser.

The whole later Dan thing is a bit of a double edged sword, I feel. Yes, they were able to get the exact musician on each song that would play what they felt was the perfect thing, and they created a lot of incredible music. On the other hand they were a big part of the "studioization" of popular music in the 70s and 80s where band members would be replaced on tracks. (Now I know this is a process a lot older than Steely Dan, but they helped make it more commonplace, to be sure.)

There a sound a band has and I feel when you fill music with guest stars and studio legends, it doesn't feel the same. For another example, check out bands where all the vocals are one person multi-tracked as opposed to a blending of different voices. In Dan's case. Jim Hodder was the one who played all the crappy gigs and did all the tiring travel. (When they were still playing live.) There's a really funny story of them being laughed at by Sha Na Na when they were sharing a bill with them.

So here's a couple of tunes with the late, great, Jim Hodder.

Anybody know why Fagan didn't sing lead on that like the record? Another Dan mystery!

Thanks all!

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