AC/DC, High Voltage

Posted in AC/DC, Youtube Favs on November 16th, 2011 by Willie

High Voltage is my favorite AC/DC album, and the song “High Voltage” is one of my favorite songs on there.  I think its a near perfect rock and roll song, the only thing nicking it up for me is the pre-chorus when Bon Scott chants, “HIGH…HIGH…HIGH…”  Always sounded a bit cheesy to me, but goddamn when that refrain kicks in, the song explodes in rock and roll overdrive.  The rest of the song is a funky little number with patented tongue in cheek AC/DC lyrics about embracing an idealized rock and roll lifestyle.  This version is a live TV performance from 1975 on Australia’s “TV Week King of Pops Awards.”  It’s a classic AC/DC performance with Angus vamping around and Bon losing his crazy jacket.  I also love the general presentation TV shows used to have for rock bands in the 60s and 70s.  A big well lit stage with a live band, dramatic camera angles, and just an all around simplistic approach.  It’s the perfect setting for the strait ahead yet outrageous rock and roll band like AC/DC.

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The Blues Brothers, Ray Charles, Twist it (Shake Your Tail Feather)

Posted in Ray Charles, The Blues Brothers, Youtube Favs on July 27th, 2011 by Willie

How about that keyboard reflecting in Ray Charles’s sunglasses?  That’s rock and roll, or more specifically, the blues.  This legendary scene, from the “Blues Brothers” movie, is and irreplaceable document of blues rock awesomeness.  The Blues Brothers were a group formed by Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi, two SNL geniuses who loved the blues and came up with this brilliant concept for a Chicago based blues group.  The dark suits, hats, and shades are icons of TV and movie magic.  It’s just another example of the insane role that the likes of Aykroyd and Belushi were on in the late 70s/early 80s when it came to dominating the coolest ideas of global comedy.  The original Blues Brothers band consists mostly of the first SNL band, and they really cook.  It’s a reminder of how huge SNL was in the late 70s that even the band members got starring roles in a blockbuster feature film.  The movie, directed by hot 80s director John Landis, is a crazy car crashing romp of great music and fantastic dance sequences, evidenced below.  Check it out.

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AC/DC Week, Highway to Hell

Posted in AC/DC, Youtube Favs on July 13th, 2011 by Willie

AC/DC week won’t stop, but Bon Scott’s contributions will.  Highway to Hell was released in 1979, and it would be the last album to feature the legendary front man.  Ten days after the video below was created, Bon Scott died from choking on vomit.  Whether it was his vomit or not, no one knows, because you can’t dust for vomit.  Anyway, its an appropriate ironic send off for the man who sang hard and drank hard.  I don’t know much about Bon’s personal life, but I’d like to imagine he’s in rock and roll heaven with 72 groupies…hah!  Oh, religion…Bon’s death was a turning point for the band obviously, and who they would replace him with, and the type of songs they’d create are all stories for tomorrow.  So stay tuned!

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AC/DC Week, Live Wire…LIVE!

Posted in AC/DC, Youtube Favs on July 12th, 2011 by Willie

For today’s AC/DC tribute, I got “Live Wire” from 1975’s T.N.T. and it’s LIVE…in London!  This is a GREAT video performance.  AC/DC were fantastic because they could easily recreate the energy from all their recorded tracks live.  It’s no surprise that they achieved massive international success.  All they had to do was show up, turn the amps to 11, and proceed to rock..hard.  On top of that, Bon Scott was a born rock star.  He  was always having a blast.  At times he tries to project masculinity and toughness with his stage presence, but he can never help his smiling because he is filled with so much joy doing what he’s doing.  And why not…AC/DC songs maybe hard rock, but it’s more like hard rock candy.  All their songs are catchy, buttoned up, and fun.  At their best, they are never really menacing and dark.  It always has to be fun first.  STICK THIS IN YOUR FUSE BOX (best line.)

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John Lennon, Cold Turkey

Posted in John Lennon, Youtube Favs on March 2nd, 2011 by Willie

Part 13 of my youtube favorites countdown continues with the hard-blues psyche fest, John Lennon’s Cold Turkey.  Just around the time the Beatles broke up, John Lennon set loose a blistering array of personal/emotional/political singles; Instant Karma, Give Peace a Chance, and this immortal classic, Cold Turkey.  John wrote the song about his experience in conquering heroin with his wife Yoko Ono in late 1969.  He offered it to the Beatles, but Paul said no, so John said fuck it, and recorded and released it with the Plastic Ono Band.  The lineup is legendary.  Ringo on drums, Eric Clapton on lead guitar, and his old German pal Klaus Voormann (designer of the Revolver cover) on bass.  The song features one of John’s hardest riffs and possibly his most bone chilling vocal delivery.  The song was not that big of a hit, prompting John to return his MBE (Member of the British Empire badge) in protest writing, “I am returning this MBE in protest against Britain’s involvement in the Nigeria-Biafra thing, against our support of America in Vietnam, and against Cold Turkey slipping down the charts. With love, John Lennon of Bag.”


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