Google Engine: Find What You Need
Believe it or not, this is a very difficult subject matter for me to write about. Because as music streaming permanently cements itself firmly into our culture, and after more than a decade, I can truly see how the quality of playlists has declined. There is literally no care that is put into most playlists that are being promoted today! As a die-hard music fan and musicophile, it kind of makes me feel bad for saying that, as it could be misconstrued as me saying everyone’s musical tastes sucks ass, and my taste is better than everybody else! However, anybody who followed my blog for a long time know that’s not where I’m coming from! The reality is today, over the years I think we now have three (unexpected) major problems we have within the music streaming industry, in regards to it’s use:
- First, in the context of classic music, we still have huge problem of not enough of the older generation are interested in learning how to use music streaming, or choose to stay in their comfort zone by being comfortably computer ignorant. Please don’t react in a negative way to my statement. It’s NOT an attack on the character of older people. But, the fact that we all know how expensive music is, and that most older folk are on fixed incomes, why are some of you still waiting for stores like Target to get that CD you wanted since 50 years ago, when you can listen to it on YouTube? At this point, the only reason why an older person would get mad at reading my prior statement, is because they actually have no idea the plethora of of musical enjoyment you can experience by using streaming services. And to stay being offended is just stupid and silly. If people of my generation would make the effort to use streaming services, we’d have more playlists created by us, and for us. Perhaps our classic culture would not be as forgotten as it is now. Oh f&ck it, what’s the sense of our classic music being on these services, if our memories of them are wiped clean from memory? Because we don’t listen to them anymore?
- Playlists have now become a racket. I saw someone on twitter mention something I didn’t even think of. That was huge streaming service paying musicians to create music for the expressed purpose of putting them on playlists, and misguiding the public by making them appear as being the hottest tracks. Now, on the surface, they’re not breaking any laws, or breaking any sort of moral conduct (technically). However, we can look at this in two ways. The first way is services like Spotify could potentially make more money by putting together a team to write and produce their own songs and make money. I guess there is nothing wrong with that either, however, that also means that well known professional veterans in the business would be cut off from making money if their music are not on promotional playlists. Realize that any playlist that are created by services like Spotify, will be immediately followed by several thousand people in a matter of days, just because it’s Spotify.
- The last problem I think are many of the most popular music blogs. Many of them (if not most of them) are not musically diverse, or lack articles of classic music (regardless of the genre). If someone were to ask me how would I describe the music coming from some of these music blogs today, I wouldn’t know how. Honestly. Many of these artists/bands I hear from these music sites such as BandCamp, sound like they were in a drug induced creative moment (for lack of a better term). The nerve of those artists at BandCamp to think that music fans should be paying upwards of $15 for some of their work. While the internet has leveled the playing field for artist, and made them “equal opportunity,” on the other hand, it opened the flood gates for people who have absolutely zero professional talent. Don’t let me even get started on the rap genre.
Again, don’t get me wrong, I know there are plenty of talent out there, they’re just incredibly hard to find now. Not only that, with the changes in algorithms in both search engines and social media, I’ve noticed that a few legitimate music blogs are no longer easily found either! The truth of the matter is, unless you’ve been using streaming since its inception, a lot of people wouldn’t even know where to go! I think my old self rule still applies today. Depending on where you’re getting your playlists from; if a playlist has more than 75 songs in it, its more than likely not worth listening. Playlists needs to be manageable, and easily consumable. No one has the time to listen to a 5,000 song playlists. It’s more than likely that playlist is just a marijuana fueled album dump. In fact, do you realize that even services that allow you to create stations from songs you’re listening to, don’t put that many songs on a playlist (unless you have unlimited or infinity turned on). Bottom line, I guess playlist are still a vital way to find new music on the scene. Just remember to be selective and diversify the sites you visit, unless you really dig the site you’re on. Like mine!! 🤣
Man! Talk about an outstanding blend of funk and disco! This was my groove back in the day. as a matter of fact, I think this was the very song they used, when Michael performed the “robot dance” to the world for the first time. I don’t remember what show it was tho. I’m guessing it had to be between Dick Clark’s American Bandstand, or Soul Train. I think every boy in America imitated him for years after we saw him do this. The song Dancing Machine was #1 on the Hot Soul Singles category, and #2 on the Billboard Hot 100. But, as fast as it became popular, it became for gotten just as quickly (relatively speaking). It’s fascinating how songs that once had considered to have immortalized a band/singer, still become not only obscured, but out of the airwaves of our current music culture.
Seeing Michael Jackson dance the robot to this song, caused a dance frenzy. Everybody was doin’ it (young and old). These were the days when music was fun and innocent.
From the 50s ’till about the 70s, we’ve had a steady stream of dance crazes. However, I think this was the best of all time (next to “The Buss Stop”). Even when I listen this song today, its almost a guarantee it will be a sweat-athan. This single song alone (not the album), sold over a whopping 3 million copies. Years later, the song was sampled by several other artists. Including, Vanilla Ice, MC Hammer, and Paula Abdul, just to name a few. If you were ever wondering what’s a good old school tune to play for a 70s party, Dancing Machine should definitely be on the top of your list!
I have to be honest, I don’t understand a lot of the kinds of “art” Gnarls Barkely creates. there is no debate in saying that Gnarls is DEFINITELY an eccentric artist. But, you wanna know something else? Most artists are inspired by other artist in some way shape or form. At the moment, there’s absolutely no one I can think of I can compare him to. This guy literally seems like he’s from another fucking planet! 🤣 However, if you concentrate and listen through all what sounds like disorganized notes from the instruments being played, Gnarls actually has a great voice! But, you’d never know it because his music beats are pieces of shit (in my opinion, sorry). I also think (in my opinion) that his voice fits better singing the kinds of music that Curtis Harding makes. Gnarls voice almost sounds like it belongs in a different era.
Sadly, I think Gnarls will continue to be a one hit wonder, because he was just too eccentric then, and now for the music culture of today.
Unfortunately, Gnarls Barkely is a one hit wonder, and it happens to be the only song he produced I actually like. That song is called “Crazy (2006).” This has such an awesome sick beat, anyone of any age can groove to this beat. It’s also sort has an old school sound too. It’s the only song from this album were the music beats themselves appear to be coherent. According to my research, the song has hit #3 on the American Pop Charts, and number #1 in the UK. From what I’ve read, after his one hit reign, he went on hiatus in 2010. As far as I can tell he hasn’t been performing (with the exception of a few commercials here and there). I found a nice remix on SoundCloud of Crazy that sounds nice as well. This song is a very unique hit, and I think any changes made to this song would fuck it up royally.
I wonder how many of my readers remembers this group? Or do you at least remember the song? As far as the hood is concerned, the song OPP, was almost like an anthem growing up. By the way, for those of you who don’t know what OPP stands for; it means Other People’s Property. Normally, I don’t like songs that degrade women, or songs that encourage degradation of others. But, this song has a REALLY catchy tune. Perhaps the other thing about the song was, the group sampled one of little Michael Jackson’s most popular songs, which put a familiarity to what we were hearing. I don’t know.. When I heard this song, I felt kind of like I had no other choice but to bop my head up and down, simply because I immediately connected with the song. I connected with the beat, and growin’ up in the hood myself, I connected with the lyrics, because it was literally the mindset and culture back then. Still is actually, the only thing is, I’m not sure people are rappin’ or singin’ about it as much as they used to.
This song truly represented our 90s culture
I’m not gonna lie, I was NEVER attracted to thuggish dudes. But, there was something about Treach that made him very attractive when he got older. By the way, I’m not necessarily talking about his beautiful hard body. I guess, you know how people learn a lot about life, and they finally “grow up,” they eventually start to look attractive. I believe our life lessons and life experiences can actually change the way we look; very much in the same way how drugs accelerate the body’s aging process 30 fold. Now, keep in mind, I don’t know anything really about the group, so I could be totally wrong. Anywayz……. Another song I liked by Naughty By Nature, was a song that got really popular as well. That song was “Hip Hop Hooray,” which was released in 1993. This too had an incredibly catchy tune, and it got stuck in my head for a very long time!
As a child, over several decades ago, I used to love, LOVE listening to the radio. The music culture was so different back in the seventies and eighties. It was such a wonderful time because the type of music culture we had really allowed us to discover new and interesting music every day. But today, a feral cat can literally put up a music video on YouTube and become a viral hit! Don’t get me the wrong way; I’m not one of those old farts that thumbs down every single music past year 2000. I’ve heard some darn good music recently. However, we can’t ignore the fact that the internet has changed the quality of music in so many ways unbeknown to the average music listener. Of course, our individual tastes has a LOT to do with it. On the other hand, back in the day, a lot of artists with potential where coached, trained and groomed to be that performer/band that we knew and perhaps still love today. I think this is one of the reasons that so many “old timers,” such as myself, that’s been listening to music for so long we’ve developed an ear for music quality. People like me have come from an era where music truly was about art; but today music is about shock value, and doin’ anything to get attention. Regardless if you’re talented, or even like music. Although it is common knowledge that the music industry had a hand in destroying music culture as we knew it; however, their greed for “that money maker” filtered the airwaves and prevented us from hearing music that would be less desired by the general public. I do believe that like it or not, there was a formula to what the labels were doing. It’s just their unchecked greed fucked it up for everybody.
The radio used to be essential when it came to discovering new music
When I was growing up, there were only two real ways of finding new music we loved. Listening to the radio, and or, going directly to the music store and listening to what they were playing. Music was so serious when I was growing up, that most record stores would play portions of an album for you, so that it would help you make your decision as to whether you wanted to by a record or not. But, today most record stores I grew up with are not defunct. The radio stations are now practically on repeat. Repeat because most stations are now fully playlisted. Even if a studio has a live DJ, they’re still using pre-selected playlists. I’ve mentioned this before…. A playlist (at least in the context of radio), is not the same thing as hand-selected music. There is a difference!! Most, if not all playlists that come from radio are automated, based on algorithms that pullout songs by record sales; and do not take into consideration the various music culture, neighborhoods, or even emotion. Music today are selected by robots.
Automated Playlists Hinders Further Music discovery!
Now we have a new problem with playlists. That problem is what I call cycling. See, I realized that there are only a set number of songs per given time frame or radio segment. In other words, if you’re listening to Internet radio, the selected playlist will play again usually in a 2 hour time span. On a “live radio station,” a playlist will get replayed about every 6 to 8 hours. Some times they’ll even shuffle the same playlist. What’s bad about that is, it’s become harder to find new oldies, because there is no effort to use a human DJ. A seasoned DJ. This brings up an important point, on how interesting it is (if feel) that now music streaming services (not youtube) are more important than ever! Why? Because huge streaming services such as Spotify and Apple/iTunes have complex algorithms that really do learn the type of music you like, therefor now becoming the best ways of finding new music (customized to your tastes).
I don’t think it’s my imagination, but finding album stats are becoming harder and harder to find. In my opinion, “Rhythm Nation,” has got to be Janet’s second, most successful album of her career (next to her “Control” album)! Or if not, it is my second most favorite Janet Jackson album! Almost all the songs in this album were in the top 10 range, and just about all her videos were perfect as well.
Now, I have to be honest, normally I’m not attracted to albums like these because there are some portions of the album that are political. Yet, there is enough diversity in the album that still managed to catch my attention. I think the best songs (and videos) from this album are “Escapade,” “Alright,” “Black Cat,” “Love Will Never Do,” and “Rhythm Nation.”
Hey guys! I’d like to quickly write about something you may or may not be aware of. It’s about converting your albums and playlists from one streaming service to another. Awhile back, I’ve written a little bit about a site called soundiiz. Soundiiz is a site that allows you to convert all your playlist and albums from one popular streaming service to another. Example, converting all your Spotify playlist to your new Apple account; or all your playlists from Youtube to Pandora; or iHeartRadio to Amazon; etc, etc. It’s important that streaming users be aware of sites like soundiiz, because streaming is here to stay, and from time to time it may be necessary to change back and forth between services. You don’t have to be chained, or obligated to stay with a particular service any longer.
There are also a number of conversion sites that convert specifically song and album links for use with social media. One of them is called SongWhip. This will convert any streaming link (including YouTube) and convert it into several services to be shared on social media, such as Twitter & Facebook. Very easy to use. In fact, I’m contemplating using SongWhip instead of direct Spotify links. Using sites like these truly makes music universal. I encourage other bloggers to use sites like SongWhip, because not only is it free to use, but it puts all streaming users on the same page.
Oh man, I found a beauty of a gem here! This is a relatively young band called “The Fightnrs.” I never heard of them before to be honest. However, I stumbled upon a cover they did called “I’d rather Go Blind. I’m not sure who originally sang this, but I first heard this song, it was song by the late, legendary Etta James. I loved the way she sung this song! This reggae cover is smooth, and I really appreciate the fact that they kept the old ska feel to the music. This song sounded so authentically classic, I was in disbelief that these young dudes came up with a musical interpretation I could jive to.
These talented young men are from Queens, New York. But their music travels in time to Jamaica, in the Rock Steady, 60s era. I enjoyed their cover so much! I don’t mean to sound like I’m putting down other artist that do old covers; but at the same time, it’s incredibly rare that young artists/bands keep the spirit of the original songs they’re doing. Everyone wants to do something “different for a change.” Whatever the hell that means. Look them up, I think you’ll enjoy their music too (that is if you love reggae).
Man….. It’s been a really long time since I’ve blogged. A lot has happened in my personal life in the last 6 months. I had (and still have) many personal challenges to deal with, and it has caused me to leave blogging for awhile. Don’t worry, my passion for blogging music has not left me ( despite the occasional need to take a break every once in a while). The good thing is, my financial circumstance has changed a little bit, and looks like I’ll be able to afford to keep my blog active! YAY!! 🤠 I really hated having to deal with the very real possibility of shutting down my blog. I’ve done so much bloody work designing, coding, and writing my own content. However, those worries are no more. At least for awhile. Interesting enough, I see I still get what I consider a sizeable amount of visitors, given the fact I haven’t written anything or advertised in quite a bit. I even removed my link from twitter. It’s nice to know there still exist people of my generation who not only are thirsty for nostalgia, but are savvy enough to know how to use technology to find the music they desire. No need to be pissed off at your brother for not returning favorite coveted album 30 years ago. Or mad at your sister in-law who accidentally sat on your only copy of James Brown album, and cracked it 100 pieces. You can just look it up on YouTube, or use your favorite streaming service. We may be old, but we’re not incapable of learning something new. Especially when it comes to finding music. It’s fun!!
In truth, this blog wasn’t just about preserving music history; or about saving our lost Black music culture that most parents have failed to introduce many of their children. Not all music is “devil music.” If you knew the kinds of truly vulgar music that would be coming, I bet a lot of you would have tried harder. Anyway, it’s also about me feeling technologically relevant, while using this same technology to revitalize our ethnically musical past! I spent (I don’t know how many) hours on my computer researching better ways of having a healthier relationship with social media in relation to my blogging. If you can’t see or feel the massive change within internet culture, you must be out of your mind. Those of us trying to do something positive online has to now figure out new ways to tell our story, as the cancel culture still continues to push on with vengeance. I’m trying not to let this discourage me, but I also know bloggers shouldn’t have to be working so damn hard to do what we love. If you’ve started on social media from 2010 and earlier, you’re one lucky bastard! It was so much easier for us then. The algorithms were fair, and chances are you got followers galore! Now, everything is entirely different if you’re a blogger or a public personality. Speak to you guys again soon.
It’s sort of troubling to me, when I think about just how fast music streaming is moving (including YouTube). Between the fast movements of social media/streaming services verses the old folk who simply isn’t interested in tapping in to what streaming has to offer; I realize it’s very hard to measure the level of appreciation we still have for classic music. Classic music such as one of Celine Dion’s album “The Colour Of My Love (1993).” It’s been a REALLY long time since I’ve heard anything of Celine on either mainstream radio or radio streaming. It’s a shame because she’s had many, many hits. But, I suppose with America’s culture shifts, if there are people who still do remember Celine, would be mostly likely associated with her Titanic theme song.
One of my favorite hits from this album, is her cover of Jennifer Rush’s “The Power Of Love.” I feel that both artists have done an amazing job with this song. I’m not sure if I like one over the other. “The Power Of Love,” is definitely one of those “made for females” romantic songs. We don’t talk about it much, but woman can make romantic music too. Another amazing song from this album is her cover of “When I Fall In Love,” featuring Clive Griffin. If you are a fairly good singer, I can’t see how anyone could screw this song up! It’s a simple love song, with easy notes that almost anyone can carry. Check out this classic album, and add it to your favorite streaming service.
Do you remember this album? Did any of you hip hop fans even knew this existed? This was Queen’s first jazz album! I had mixed feelings about this album (but neither one of my feelings were negative tho..) I guess it’s because Queen took such a 360 degree turn, it made me do a double take. Let me say this, Queen was one of the very few artists from back in the day that could actually sing! And was one of the very few hip hop artists that could have pull that off. Probably the only other person I can think of that was pure hip hop that could have pulled this off was Lauryn Hill. But, not even then, because she would have turned her album into a jazz/beats project.. I know for most of you youngin’, this album is perhaps too mellow for you liking, but it’s really a good album. Although her album is called “The Dana Owens Album,” the album is really filled with a bunch of cover songs which she performed quite well. I liked her cover of “I Put A Spell On You,” she sounded like a mellowed down version of Nina Simone. I also really liked “Simply Beautiful,” and “California Dreamin’. This may not be the album many of you would add to your daily music consumption, but it’s a nice album for relax time. Check it out..
After that whole scandal/tragedy of Jam Master Jay’s murder, for some reason, I haven’t thought much of Run DMC. Not that I felt some kind of way… Perhaps we all sort of neglected them. I mean, when you listen all these hip hop documentaries talk about who was a GOAT, I don’t think I’ve heard anyone mention Run DMC. This was a damn shame, because Run DMC actually made history, as they were the first hip hop artists to merge hip hop and rock with their hit “Walk This Way,” featuring Aerosmith. Young people today don’t know how huge that song actually was in the 80s. Also, another rock inspired hit they had was a song called “Rock Box.” Just before Jam Master Jay’s murder, Run DMC recorded an album called “Crown Royal” some time in 2001. It was around that time I stopped listening to mainstream radio and got more into music streaming, so I can’t recall if this album was promoted or not. This has some really good tracks in it. I love the fact that they continued to kept their same distinct Run-DMC style. It’s old school yet their sound is modern. Same flow, yet relevant. Check out “Queens Day” feat. Nas & Prodigy, “Ay Papi” feat. Fat Joe, ” and “Simmons Incorporated” feat. Method Man.
Well, I don’t know if this was Teddy’s greatest album, but certainly no doubt it was one of his popular ones. One of the biggest songs I remember from this album is “Love T.K.O.,” this song was almost anthem like in the Black Community. This was a song that almost everyone enjoyed listening to when I was growing up. It’s a shame, we lost an incredibly talented voice at a young age. This is why it’s important to keep our Black music history alive. Oh, yeah, check out “Feel The Fire,” another huge hit for Teddy.
You know, I hadn’t realized just how stunningly beautiful Aaliyah was until after her death. The media showed lots of candid photos I never seen before. We tragically lost an artist that could have been just as large as the late Whitney Houston maybe? But, because this is of a different generation from mine, a lot of her music I didn’t connect with. However, there are a few songs I feel are worthy mentions. I really liked the song she did for the Dr. Doolittle soundtrack called “Are You That Somebody,” and I also liked “More Than A Woman.”
I remember listening to this album quite a bit growing up. As I’ve said before, Al Green had an incredible unique musical style. When we hear the first note of one of his instruments on his record, we instantly know it’s Al Green. Been listening to this album a bit recently. My favorite is “Tired Of Being Alone,” and “I Stand Accused.”
I really apologize to my small fans for not posting any articles. I was having a really hard time deciding whether to keep this site or not. So much has changed in terms of social media, and it’s really discouraging when you’re trying to do something awesome, and because of politics and cancel culture, it’s really made it difficult to not only be seen on social media, but the control within politics and social media has shifted people attention greatly. On the other hand, I said to myself, I did so much effff-innn work on my site, I’d feel upset to let it go too. Next thing I knew I was billed for another year.
I said to myself….. Well?? Eff it!! I might as well keep the site and see what happens in the future. But, just to keep the work manageable, I’ll have to write smaller articles. I guess I love music too much. My site is so personal and it means so much to me. I will do my best to continue to write more articles, as sharing our Black American classic music I feel is still incredibly important. My heart breaks that there are so little bloggers of color out here, and on top of that even less of those bloggers who are writing about our classic music. Like I’ve always said, shame on the parents who dropped the ball on this. What a effin shame. Shame!!!
Hi guys! I’m happy to announce that I’m finally a new first time author. I’ve completed writing my first book called “Snap Out Of It! Homophobia Is A Mental Illness! It’s been a long journey through this writing process, but I finally did it. Homophobia is still an incredibly serious issue, and we need to have a sense of urgency to talk about it, while America is going through a forced cultural change right now. The last four years has been literally chaos, and I suspect it will get a lot worse before Americans are forced to understand the problems we’ve caused by our divisions. If the American people do not set aside egos, and if we don’t work together (that includes both politicians and American citizens), we’re gonna be in deep trouble.
Whether you choose to admit it or not, people who are double minorities (meaning being of both color and gay), this can destroy the gay Black community in ways you can’t fathom. We need to put aside our beliefs and look at reality. No matter what you believe and how much you believe what you believe, your beliefs doesn’t take the place of real-time realities. Hopefully, my book can open your hard-heart just a little bit, enough for you to understand our struggles. As always, I feel the major political upset takes away the focus of LGBTQ Americans and LGBTQ immigrants rights. Despite our progress in the queer community, a significant part of our community continues to be left on the back burner. We must not forget our histories and become complacent. Otherwise, before you know it, everything we’ve worked for can easily be revoked with a stroke of a pen (as we seen with Joe Bidden undoing more than 90% of Trump’s policies. Please pickup a copy of my book, it is now available on Amazon.com
Song: Star Search
Album: CBS Productions (1983-2003)
Genre: TV Show
Hi guys!!! Today, I thought it would be fun to write a little ’bout a forgotten talent show called “Star Search.” To be honest, I forgot what channel I used to watch it on, but, it had to have been either channel 5 or 7 in NYC. This show was on way longer than I realized. I remember watching it in the early 80s, however, the show lasted until about 2003. Star Search was a show similar to the Apollo; the only difference was that Star Search’s format was a lot more formal, and appeared to be more structured. The show was hosted by a number of people throughout the seasons, including Arsenio Hall (believe it or not). But the host I remembered the most was the late Ed McMahon. Mr. McMahon literally became a house hold name back then; in fact, I dare to say his popularity could be compared to the legendary sports announcer, the late Howard Cosell. They both had very distinctive voices. You knew immediately who they were the second you heard their voices. In fact, Ed McMahon was so popular, he often appeared on the late Johnny Carson Show just to hangout.
Truthfully, I Only Remembered Two Performers On The Show That Became Mega Famous!
To be honest, despite the fact that I did enjoy the show most of the time, I was an occasional watcher. Thinking back, I hadn’t realized just how many people Star Search has made famous! One guy that stuck in my head was a guy named Sam Harris. No disrespect, but…… If the late Patrick Swayze was gay, I think he’d look something like Sam Harris ? ?! Come on, you know it’s true! LOLOL.. The audience appeared to have fallen completely in love with Harris. The song that put him on the map, was his rendition of “Somewhere Over The Rainbow.” You know, it’s funny, back then I thought he tore the shit out of this song. Now, 30+ years later, I think he put a lot of stress on his vocal chords. Then again, Star Search was the first of it’s kind, and perhaps that was what it meant for contestants to “give it their all.”
Some Of The Biggest Celebrities That Started Off On Star Search Didn’t Perform All That Well!
One of my all-time favorite contestant of the show was a woman named Linda Eder. She left such a huge impression on me. Listen to Linda sing her rendition of “I Dreamed A Dream.” My jaw completely dropped to the floor when I heard her sing on the show for the first time. This was one woman I wish I could have saw perform live. Linda performs mostly Broadway tunes, and music standards. If you’re into this kind of thing, I definitely recommend you check her albums out. Sam Harris and Linda Eder are the only two performers that were prominent in my memory. However, below is a list of just a few contestants that became big names in their profession.
Beyonce, performed with a group called “Girls Tyme.”
Artist: Three Dog Night
Genre: Soft Rock
Unless your preferred music listening has always been rock, you most likely forgot about this group, or never heard of them at all. I don’t think they’re necessarily an obscured band, but I definitely think so among general music fans (especially 30 and younger). When I look at their streaming numbers, relatively speaking they’re not really that high. However, this doesn’t mean they didn’t do great music in the rock genre. To be honest, I hadn’t listened to their music for a really longtime. There are so much great classic music that exist, neglect of our old favorite classics is just bound to happen. It wasn’t until I started lookin’, that I actually realized how many songs they’ve done that turned out to be some of my favorites.
If There Is A Such Thing As Quality Rock Music
You know, I still don’t consider myself a “rock expert.” However, I’ve always said to myself, if there is a such thing as “quality rock music,” I think Three Dog Night’s name would be on that list. They’re one of the very few rock bands that create real love songs that actually borderline between soft and hard rock. I can’t think of too many bands that make these kinds of music. Surprisingly, one of my most favorite songs by them was one of the least played on music streaming. “An Old Fashioned Love Song,” for some reason was one of my favorites. Thinking back, the song sort of reminded me of one of those early eighties travel commercials. You know, one of those vacation resorts ?. However, their biggest hit of their career was actually a song called “Joy To The World.” You know, I still couldn’t figure out the meaning of this song. I think what threw me off was the title. It automatically sends a message that this is a xtian song, but it’s not. Perhaps the lyrics in the song were cryptic. Then again, maybe it was just one of those quicky songs where random sentences were put together. We had a lot of those in the 70s & 80s. America’s “Horse With No Name,” was another annoying song I couldn’t figure out. WTF?? Anywayz…… Although I can’t figure out what the hell the song meant, it had an awesome tune that made it popular.
Joy To The World – The Lyrics Didn’t Make Sense To Me!
Throughout the band’s existence, they’ve gone through a heavy turnaround rate. It’s amazing how many members they’ve gone through, and yet they still managed to pump out hits. Today, the band is unrecognizable. If it were not for their brand name, and the consistency in their music, I wonder if they’d still have that faithful fan base? Checkout some of their other awesome hits. Such as, “Mama Told Me (Not To Come),” “One” (I always mistaken “One,” for a Beatles song), and “Black and White.” Lastly, I want you guys to check out a cover that was first made popular by Otis Redding. It’s called “Try A Little Tenderness.” Wow!! They sounded amazing! In my opinion, they tore this song up! I really appreciated that they kept Otis’s spirit in the song. Very nicely done for all you old Otis fans out there!
Artist: Michael Sembello
Album: Flashdance (1983)
Wow! Talk about a ?hot? & hairy muscle bear! *Cough* *Cough* Anyway…. The 80s were filled with all types of muscle bears everywhere, and they were not afraid to show-off their hairy chest ?. Today, it appears that hairy chests are viewed as “unsightly,” and many men are encouraged to shave their chest hairs off ?. Could you imagine? Being made to feel ashamed of part of what makes a guy a man? Oh, brother! I digress! Anywayzzz.. When you think of the 80s…….. Does anyone think of Michael Sembello anymore? In terms of music, Michael Sembello was a “jack of all trades! Not only does he play several instruments, he is an incredible songwriter!
His Music Instantly Takes Me Back To The Dance Movie Craze Of The 80s!
Unfortunately, despite Michael’s talents, he was a “1 hit wonder” I have to say. It’s so disappointing when you hear the talent in an artist, and they just don’t get the overall recognition they deserve. Although, in Michael’s case, in my opinion he unfortunately fell in to a producer’s box that many talents are put in by the music industry. In other words, when Michael gave us his first and only massive hit, “Maniac (1983),” (by the way, he also co-wrote) the industry expected him to give us that same type of hits. “Maniac,” reached #1 in the U.S., #2 in Australia, and #6 in Germany. “Maniac,” was one of many songs selected to be on the “Flashdance Sound Track.” I think that the combination of “Maniac,” and Irene Cara’s “What A Feeling,” made the movie even more popular. Although, the entire album was great from beginning to end.
Was Michael Musically Typecasted?! ?
You know, sometimes I wonder if it’s possible to be “musically typecasted,” in the same way that many actors have been? It must hit musicians harder (I would imagine), because at least if you’re a well known actor, most have acquired the power to say no to certain roles. However, when you’re a songwriter, it’s impossible to know if something will become a hit, and if that hit could cause the industry to pigeonhole you into category of songwriters. The good thing is tho….. According to Spotify, he has roughly a little over 3M listeners a month. Not sure what the other streaming services are pulling in for him. But, that’s pretty good for a one hit wonder, and considering the fact that no one really speaks his name anymore. Have you heard of Baggallini bags before? They’re a little on the expensive side, but their really nicely designed. Check them out here.
Artist: The Elgins
Another forgotten treasure! Maybe I should have called my blog “forgotten treasures!” Because most of the artists a blog about are. One thing I really love about myself, is that I am open to so many different types of music, and it allowed me to find such phenomenal artist, as well garner enough culture to hand create a blog such as this one. Today, my focus is on a wonderful group called The Elgins. To me, this was such an unusual name back in the day, and I don’t recall ever hearing this name in my personal circles or otherwise. Back then, very few radio stations mentioned the name of these artists after their music was played. Having said that, because The Elgins were on the Motown Label, and since Motown had their own distinct sound, I easily mistaken the lead singer’s voice, Saundra Mallett, for groups like The Vandellas, or Martha Reeves.
The Height of their career only lasted about 10 Years
I don’t remember my family owning any of The Elgins’s music (at least I don’t own any original albums, but I may have one or two of their songs on a cassette compilation, I think). However, their biggest hit song “Heaven Must Have Sent You,” was heard all over the radio. This was my jam back in the day. You couldn’t help but to involuntarily dance to this song. The beat sort of made you dance. I was shocked to discover that in 1966 the hit song only reached #9 on the R&B chart, and 11 on the Hot 100 Chart. That song became one of many Black Anthems (I remembered growing up). I would have sworn this song was number 1, it was so incredibly popular in the Black community. But, no matter, it was still a colossal hit, and at the time appeared to have immortalized them.
Even Motown Sort Of Forgotten The Elgins!
Another great forgotten song you guys should investigate, is their song called “Darling Baby.” Personally, I felt this was an amazingly beautiful romantic song. What I find really strange tho… Also released in 1966, the song hit #92 on the Top 100 Chart, yet an the R&B Chart, it reached #4. Now, I am no expert when it comes to the flow of Billboard numbers, but to me that’s a huge gap, and I’m wondering if this had to do with the fact that “Darling Baby,” was originally released as a side B. I truly feel that The Elgins were truly underrated, and that includes by Motown too to some extent. I say this because despite only having a few hits under their belt, they were huge enough to be included in much of Motown’s memorabilia collections. And in my opinion, it had a lot to do with people like Berry Gordy. I’m not a conspiracy theorist, but lets not forget, Berry Gordy had his hands in Diana Ross’s pants for quite some time. Not only that, performers such as Martha Reeves, The Temptations, and The Four Tops, got all the promotion when it comes to being included in collectable albums. Their existence felt almost compulsory. There were so many more talents on the Motown label that were not acknowledged until well after the very artists were forgotten by fans. Now, if you do find music from The Elgins, it will be on some sort of “obscure collections.” By the way, Summer is approaching. See what Google found for designer T-Shirts!!
Genre: Club Music & Remixes
I’ve been meaning to do this for a very long, long time ?! As I’ve said before, just as straight people have history, so does the LGBT community. We have a history that is unique to us as LGBT people. In addition, LGBT/SGL Black American and Boriqua/Hispanic American have our own unique sub-history within LGBT history. And like the straight community, we have huge generation gaps within our gay history. Learning about gay history is just as important as any other history, especially when it comes to Black and Hispanic gay culture. We are presented with our own unique challenges, and our ability to try and convey our stories largely depends on the gay generation you come from. It is unfortunate that it appears that there are more young LGBT people in politics, that aren’t connected to any part of gay history. This should not be, as understanding our journey gives you a deeper understanding and perspective of our diverse realities. Not only that, I’ve seen str8 hip hop videos where the dudes where actually vogueing. But because it’s hip hop, and you’re supposed to be “gangster,” it’s not seen as anything… No one bats an eye… Meanwhile, my gay brothers and sisters where beat-up and chased for our uniqueness back in the day, and straight people are allowed to steal and recycle something that’s been created by us, and been in our community for decades. Know your gay history MF. LEARN!! It’s important.
LGBT People Have Our Own Unique Music History!
I can honestly say that for most of us, the music we listened to literally kept many of us alive, both in our mind and spirit. The club scene allowed us to escape from our deepest emotional pain; as well as escape from abusive relationships. The pressures put on LGBT people to be straight was immense. I don’t think I could find the words to even begin to explain to a straight person what that’s like, and the damage they’ve caused for many LGBT people. When I was growing up, for many straight people, having a Walkman and headphones was simply optional. However, for most gay people in the poorer communities, owning a Walkman or CD player was a necessity. It was the only effective tool we had to use that helped to block out negativity and devastatingly hurtful words.
Most Music Played In Gay Clubs Were Str8!
I’m not sure if there was a reason for this, or perhaps it just happen to be the way it was back in the day, but…. You’d think in the clubs we’d hear our own music made by gay artists. However, for whatever reason, there just wasn’t that many. And when I came out, RuPaul hadn’t emerged yet. Actually, there was only one prominent gay performer producing his own recordings. That was performer’s name was Kevin Aviance. The best way to describe Keven was, he was almost like a male version of Grace Jones ?. Unfortunately, I only liked one song he produced, and that was a song a called “Cunty (1999).” Yeah, I know, some of you may take issue with the title song; however, this was what the gay culture was back then. For many LGBT people, embracing words that would normally be considered inappropriate, were used to take back our lost power in defiance. The power that was lost due to living in a predominantly oppressive hetero society. I love this song because it had a fierce vogue-able dance beat in it’s background.
Back Then, In The Black/Hispanic Gay Club Scene, Our Music Was Very Much Underground For The Most Part!
One reality that wasn’t talked about in regards to underground music; gay clubs played a significant role as to whether or not an underground song/beat would be successful or not. Also, let me just say that, back then, I think it’s safe to say that if a song/beat was not vogue-able, it would be a guaranteed flop! I knew so many people who refused to go to certain clubs if the music played were not vogue-able (hissy-fit and all). It is also interesting that a lot of underground str8 music played in gay clubs, were usually not heard in str8 clubs unless the song went mainstream. It is also true that a lot of good Latin club music would not be heard in a predominantly gay Black establishments either. This not only baffled me, it frustrated me too. This was an era where both Black and Hispanics done the most music collaborations. I couldn’t for the life of me understand why in this aspect, we appeared to be separated. Unfortunately, if we wanted to hear Latin club music in the 80s, we needed to go to specific places, such as an establishment called “Escuelita.” Escuelita has been closed for about 5-6 years now I think. To be honest, I hated that club, because if I remember correctly, they functioned like a lot of the str8 clubs did. That being, they used to pick and choose who gets to enter in the club. I’ve been in too many situations where many of them that operate like that, didn’t live up to the hype (once you finally get in).
Some Of The Biggest Club Mixes Where Dirty As F***!
So, this is the largest playlist I ever made for pubic consumption. It has a whopping 101 major gay anthems I could remember growing up in the gay clubs. This isn’t even all of them. I may consider doin’ a part 2 in the future, I’ll think about it ?, I darn near popped a brain cell trying to remember all these greats! One of my many most memorable favorites was, “Break 4 Love.” You know, it was funny, although this was one of my most favorite club mixes, I was frightened to play this around family back then. For me, I felt it was way too raunchy, and was not appropriate to play for family. At times I kind of felt embarrassed. However, when I started hearing it played on the radio, I was like, f** it, I’m gonna play it too. LOLOL
Today, EDM Appears To Be The Replacement Genre For What Was Once The Greatest Club Music Of My Time!
Another dirty song I used to like a lot was a song by a performer named, Sweet P**** Pauline.” She had a song out called “Work This P****.” Unfortunately, this was one of those songs that was so popular, there were like a million remixes for it. It seems that Spotify doesn’t have the original (or at least the most popular one I remembered), but, I think the one I found on YouTube is ok, because it contains full lyrics. This song was hilarious!!!! Other favorites on this list is “I Can’t Get Enough,” by Liz Torres; “Work That Muth*****,” by Steve Poindexter; “The Party,” by Kraze; “Magic Carpet Ride,” by Mighty Dub Katz. We also vogued to a lot of traditional classic oldies, such as Diana Ross’s “The Boss,” and many music by Salsoul Orchestra. I hope you enjoy your trip through memory lane.