Blog Archives

Rocktober Final Friday 2018 – COWBELL!

 

I had no idea this existed. H/T to Ace of Spades HQ –

A thing of beauty!

If this existed, I would buy it –

Christopher Walken very briefly mentions Cowbell, and talks about his other famous SNL skit –

If you are one of those extremely rare and broken people who has never seen the Cowbell skit, well, now you can.

Notice how even the cast members, including Walken himself and especially Jimmy Fallon, can’t keep from laughing.

Just watch –

WARNING! DO NOT CLICK UNLESS YOU ARE HARDCORE!

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Friday Night Video – Rockytober

A scene from the movie Rocky II

It’s an inspiring scene. A local guy is training hard to make something of himself, and his community encourages him all the way. Neighborhood kids see him running by and follow him, running with him, cheering him on and shouting “Go! Go! Go!” spurring him to push harder and make it to the finish. It might be a scene from a movie, but you could easily picture it happening for real.

How likely is any of that today?

These days, everyone would be telling him he’s wasting his time – assuming any of his neighbors even knew who he was – and the kids would point and laugh instead of joining in.  And even if the kids did go with him, they would get in trouble for not staying in their own yard. Or get lost once they were more than two blocks away from home. Hell, when was the last time you even saw kids playing outside?

America needs some hometown heroes again.

To end things on a lighter note, here’s a few people keeping in that spirit –

Faketober Friday Night Videos – Smells Like TOTP Spirit

“Load up on drugs, kill your friends”
– Kurt Cobain, 1991

Nirvana was set to perform their recent hit single, “Smells Like Teen Spirit” on the British music chart television program “Top of the Pops.” …What resulted was, and still is, one of the greatest middle fingers and live performances ever

That Time That Punk Rocked

 

Kurt doing his best(?) Morrissey impression. Kinda wonder what a Nirvana cover of the Smiths would have sounded like. Or vice versa.

Rocktober/Friday Night Videos: “…Let Slip The Pigs Of Jazz”

It’s that time of year again, Rocktober. And to celebrate, let’s have some…. not rock.

Andy Rehfeldt posts a rare video of Black Sabbath performing live –

 

The music rather suits the video, given the Mod outfits (especially Ozzy’s fashion disaster) and the stage set. Seriously, a big rainbow over your stage screams “Lounge” far more than it suggests “Metal.”

Andy has been at this for a long time, and a lot of his songs are improvements over the originals.There are also a few mashup in there that are fun.

Rocktober – Tricked Out Treat

A Halloween thrill costumed in a different genre… but first, a word from our sponsors about all your favorite Halloween songs by tonight’s featured artist –

 

“Thriller” 1930s jazz style –

 

 

Rocktober – Late Edition

It’s well into the month and I haven’t Rocktobered once. Things have been hectic here at the station…. nothing really wrong, just very busy. However, in the spirit of lateness, here is some late night music –

And now a word from our sponsors and totally random celebrities, including two notorious for keeping late nights –

 

And now an obscure import to comply with the 4 A.M. public affairs broadcasting regulations –

This concludes tonight’s Rocktobering. Late Night Sky Radio, signing off –

Rocktober – Monster Mashup

Some truly monster-ous mashups for your Halloween.

One of the first mashups to go big was Steely Dan’s “Do It Again” crossed with Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean” circa 1983 –

By the 90s, mashups were becoming quite the thing, and during the 2000s (especially with everyone having a computer and YouTube coming online), mashups exploded. Most are crap, but some are really good, such as this Daft Punk/Adele mix –

DJs and home remixers began digging up old classics to mix with more modern songs –

Nirvana is one of the more popular bands for mashups…. consider this mix with Amy Winehouse or this even better mix with No Doubt, both based around Nirvana’s “About A Girl.”

A Korn song was massively improved by combining it with a Cure song –

There was a real video for that song, but it’s gone now. Had a neat Escher ending, not to mention Robert Smith getting slowly eaten by the Spider Man (no, not that Spider-Man).

Disco is a prime fountain of pure unrefined mashup material. Especially when mixed with the most incongruous types of music –

 

Speaking of incongruities, this takes the cake right out of the rain –

It works so well!

Dance music goes well with more classically-influenced works –

Who knew Enya could spit rhymes like that?

If you feel like your childhood has been violated, your teen years touched inappropriately, your college years…. well, something involving microaggressions and a rape hoax, I’m sure… then this song is dedicated to you.

Rockitober!

Back around 1984, I used to watch a lot of MTV (which likely explains a lot about me). I also watched other music programs like Night Tracks, Friday Night Videos, and Night Flight. So I was often viewing strange music videos at 2 in the morning or later (Night Flight was especially damaging… they would show experimental movie shorts and bizarre comedy skits and who knows what other surreal stuff. It’s also where I first saw “Bambi vs. Godzilla.” I loved Night Flight!).

One such bizarreness was Herbie Hancock’s “Rockit!” –

Imagine being 14 years old in the 80s, when MTV and all this stuff was still kind of new, and seeing that at 4 in the morning.

The song was awesome, though – Herbie totally nailed the vibe of the time with the record scratching and synth sound. So awesome that he was nominated for a Grammy award, where he performed “Rockit!” live. I believe I saw it when it originally aired. Pay attention to this one –

Didn’t see that coming.

Also, watch after the song to see Michael McDonald announce the nominations for Best R&B Performance and see who Herbie was up against. Nice remix of the winning song (Spoiler: it wasn’t Michael Jackson) at the end.

Rocktober Saturday Night Studio – DOLBY!

Presented in Dubly!

Everyone knows Thomas Dolby’s classic song, “She Blinded Me With Science!” But he’s had quite a career since that song. A couple of his songs appeared in last weekend’s “No Static At All” post, “Radio Silence” and a live version of “Commercial Breakup.” Go give them a listen.

Before releasing his first album, The Golden Age Of Wireless, Dolby did synthesizer arrangements on Foreigner’s songs”Waiting for a Girl Like You” and “Urgent,” the latter also featuring saxophone by Junior Walker. Walker later recorded his own (Dolby-less)version of the song with his All-Stars, which can be heard here.

Kicking off this Studio proper is a 1983 “Live Wireless” concert in its entirety –

In 1985, he appeared onstage at the Grammy Awards with Units 1,2, and 4 in a synthesizer showdown –

“…the big surprise was I didn’t expect Thomas Dolby to come out in that amazing wig and tuxedo — which is so him, you know, and brilliant. And that tiny little keyboard!” – Howard Jones, who also explains why some of the performance was prerecorded.

A lot of it was prerecorded stuff that we’d already done in the studio because of the ambition of it, because it was using that amount of technology. I don’t think anybody would have been brave enough to play everything live! So we played some things over the top of it, and then the rest of it was pre-done in studio. I think that’s the only way to have achieved it for the Grammys. I think it would have been very risky otherwise!

Dig those keytars!

More recently, Dolby was involved with “The Toadlickers,” combining techno, bluegrass, and parkour –

He also worked on an online multiplayer game which coincided with his album of the same name, Map Of The Floating City, set in an alternate history. As he described it, “The Floating City is set against a dystopian vision of the 1940s that might have existed had WWII turned out a lot differently.”

Trailer –

 

Map of the Floating City playlist –

Finally, we finish with Dolby performing his signature song “She Blinded Me With Science!” at Moogfest in 2012, with some commentary about Magnus Pyke and the San Francisco Giants –

Rocktober – Dead Or Alive

Pete Burns of Dead Or Alive is dead. He suffered a “massive cardiac arrest” on Sunday October 23, according to a posting on his verified Twitter page. He was 57.

I first heard of Dead Or Alive around 1984, when the video for “I’d Do Anything” was in brief rotation on MTV. I had become somewhat accustomed to New Wave and other alternative music thanks to MTV, and even the radio was playing some oddball stuff here and there. But it was still a bit different and catchy in its own way., and never really caught fire.

The singer, whose name I didn’t know then, seemed to be really good, but he struck me as pretty damned weird.

Around spring or summer of 1985, the song “You Spin Me Round (Like A Record) hit the airwaves and just exploded. It was in constant rotation on radio and MTV for a good while.

It kind of dropped off after a few months, but was usually featured in any kind of 80s-themed event. Eventually it started getting airplay again, and I still sometimes hear it on the radio even now.