Originally published on OS on September 3, 2010 as part of an open call to writers on the site.
This post was part of an Open Call here on OS for people to list and discuss 15 albums they have their greatest emotional attachments to. Since I create associations between albums/songs with, well, just about everything, trying to pick 15 LPs that are memorable owing to specific parts of my life or events would be an insurmountable task. Therefore, I zoomed through my collection, made a (long) short list and picked my 15 favourites—or what passes as such at this moment—but will briefly discuss each more in terms of memories, time and place, etc than as a critique. (The full long list appears at the bottom.)
My Favourite Album
025. So Here I Am: UB40, Centennial Hall, London, Ontario, March 7, 1984; Alumni Hall, UWO, London, Ontario, March 14, 1985
When you’re a tunehead lifer, farming your musical terrain with a polycultural approach to sonic agriculture, it’s a reality — indeed a necessity — that certain strains of artists/genres/stylistic obsessions inevitably drop out of and then later resurface in my listening crop rotations. But, as I’ve previously noted, not all seasons’ harvests continue to yield again down through the years. While some evergreen produce re-seed and return stronger than ever, others wither and dine on the vine. Read the rest of this entry »
024. Discopravity: Psychic TV, Danceteria, New York City, New York, November 17, 1983. $n/a
NOTE: While this second of a two-part entry covers Psychic TV’s gig at Danceteria (part one included a look at a Circle Jerks’ show at The Reggae Lounge), its focus is more on the hijinks, buffoonery and events experienced among my friends and I over several days in NYC in late ‘83.
Now this was a club! Danceteria was utterly brilliant: a four-storey funhouse that was exactly what the doctor ordered (especially if he’d been Dr. Robert).
Ethel & Fred Mertz (Vivian Vance & William Frawley) in a still from an I Love Lucy postcard that I bought while in NYC. The physical exuberance depicted in this photo represents but 1/20th of that which was present in the mosh pit during the Circle Jerks’ show.
023. Back Against the Wall: Circle Jerks, Reggae Lounge, New York City, New York, November 16, 1983, $ n/a
NOTE: While this first part of a two-part entry will touch on the Circle Jerks’ show — and 024 will cover Psychic TV at the Danceteria — these two entries are more about the hijinks, buffoonery and events experienced among my friends and I over several days in NYC in late ‘83.
176. Lightning: Ottawa Jazz Festival 2013 with David Byrne & St. Vincent and Wynton Marsalis and Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, June 23 & 29Posted: September 9, 2013
My wristband for the 2013 Ottawa Jazz Festival and Macaulay Culkin sporting an appropriate facial gesture. (All photos and scans by VA.)
176. Lightning: Ottawa Jazz Festival 2013 with David Byrne & St. Vincent, Sunday June 23 / Wynton Marsalis and Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, Saturday June 29, Confederation Park, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, $165.00 for a (largely wasted) Festival Pass
Another year, another Ottawa Jazz Festival: more great music intersecting with frustrations. In other words, business as usual.
This year’s J Fest appeared as a terrific proposition with a stellar line-up anchored by its biggest star, Ms. Aretha Franklin, along with the currently touring collaboration between ex-Talking Head David Byrne and the fabaroony St. Vincent aka Annie Clark. Sweetness! Not only that but Willie Nelson, The Bad Plus, Wynton Marsalis and Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, Mavis Staples, and a few other options. Read the rest of this entry »
Marianne comes to town on a steamy August Monday evening. It was a night of thigh-slappin’ rhythms, contented smiles … and dangerous acquaintances.
021. Dangerous Acquaintances: Marianne Faithfull, Fryfogle’s, London, Ontario, August 15, 1983, $12.50
Marianne Faithfull has occupied mental real estate in my consciousness since I was but a wee lad. As someone who grew up in a household where the music of the Rolling Stones was ever-present via my older sibs (“Dandelion” was one of the first singles I ever owned; Out of Our Heads, my first album, was gifted to my four-year-old self from a visiting aunt and uncle from the UK), I was always following the Stones-related headlines and hijinks. Mick and Marianne’s exploits throughout their time as a couple in the late 1960s always got a profusion of ink. Read the rest of this entry »