Tuesday, January 31, 2006
John Lydon, aka Johnny Rotton (of the Sex Pistols), born 1/30/56
Harold Wayne Casey (of KC and the Sunshine Band), born 1/30/52
Justin Timberlake (of NSYNC and solo), born 1/31/81
..... You decide; which one is GOOD,
which one is BAD,
and which one is UGLY.
Monday, January 30, 2006
"Perhaps the most influential musical group of all time, the Beatles make their last public performance on this day (1/30) in 1969, giving an impromptu concert on the roof of their London recording studio. Neighbors complained about noise, and police broke up the concert. John Lennon closed the performance announcing, "I'd like to say thank you very much on behalf of the group and myself and I hope we passed the audition." In April 1970, Paul McCartney formally announced the group's breakup." Read more here....
OK, today was theme day at my Yahoo photography group, and the theme is "house plants". Well.... I don't exactly have a green thumb, and there's no living plants in our house (except a couple of Poinsettias, but I've satisfied my urge to photograph them!). So I decided to think outside the box, as in outside the house. Here's a plant that's growing by the house....
Sunday, January 29, 2006
Saturday, January 28, 2006
Sometimes you just have to play around…. Driving home last night, I thought the setting sun was pretty cool. So I snapped this picture out the side window of the car, traveling 75-ish. I did have the camera on auto-everything, so I could pay a little attention to the road. Then I went wild with photoshop this morning, trying to create a result that matched my mood. . . .
Friday, January 27, 2006
Thursday, January 26, 2006
Lynyrd Skynyrd: Skynyrd had released all of their pre-crash records when the guide was released. Reviewer John Milward was surprisingly positive about Skynyrd: "Plugging in hard-rock influences, where most other Southern place country roots, a mix of British rock sensibilities and hard-drinking Southern boogie established Lynyrd Skynyrd as top contenders for the mid-Seventies Southern Rock throne". They then go on to comment on each album, a courtesy that fellow inductees Black Sabbath and Blondie didn't merit.
Meanwhile, with the rock establishment's anti-Southern Rock Bias, Skynyrd only put 1 album in the all time top 500, with “Pronounced” ranking #401. Pathetic. They did manage 2 entries into the top 500 songs, with Free Bird (#191) and Sweet Home Alabama (#398). Worse, they were been shot down in the Hall Of Fame (HOF) voting 6 times, before finally making it in this time. I don’t think it’s coincidental that the HOF announcement lists only the pre-Crash band members, and I think the post-crash band’s use of the Skynyrd moniker has hurt. I think the current lineup is solid, but frankly not HOF material. Guess that means Johnny Van Zant, Rickey Medlocke and whoever’s been playing bass and drums aren’t welcome at the ceremony!! I wish Skynyrd could’ve gotten this recognition when Leon Wilkerson was still alive, and I hope Gary Rossington’s heart is well enough to actually play.…
Trying to imagine the HOF Jam session with Billy Powell, Gary Rossington, Johnny Rotten and Ozzy Osbourne…. Think they’ll play Free Bird in a heavy-metal style?? Or Sweet Home Alabama as a Punk anthem??
Full disclosure: I’m kind of a Skynyrd fan. They were my favorite band in high school (and beyond). I saw them twice in the 70’s, including my first rock concert. I have just about everything they’ve released (except the Christmas album), and wore out a complete set of vinyl of the first 6 records. All replaced w/ new vinyl, and, of course, its all on CD, now. I think I still know every note of every guitar solo by heart, from the pre-crash lineup. “What song is it you wanna hear?”
Wednesday, January 25, 2006
Sex Pistols: Their one “real” album made the Top 50 on Rolling Stones’ Top 500, at #41.
As reviewed by Dave Marsh: “The Sex Pistols were unquestionably the most radical new rock band of the Seventies. Their initial single “Anarchy in the UK” was widely banned in England, got them thrown off their first record label (EMI) and still made the Top Ten. The group’s nihilistic politics, coupled with their basic punk-rock musical approach, was startling, the best example of deliberate vulgarity rock has ever produced. Stretched over an album, the relentless power of Johnny Rotten’s scabrous vocals can become a bit wearing, but the best tracks, including “Anarchy”, “God Save The Queen” and “Pretty Vacant” are as challenging as anything recorded since the advent of Elvis Presley himself. Not for the faint of heart…”
Well, I gotta agree with old DM on this one. But nobody should be allowed to use words like “scabrous” and “nihilistic” when discussing the Sex Pistols. Even if they’re accurate descriptions, I suspect Sid Vicious would’ve bashed Mr. Marsh with his bass for talking so high-and-mighty. I’m pretty sure Johhny Rotten would’ve at least spit.
Full disclosure: I have The Sex Pistol’s only original album on vinyl, but nothing on CD/digital. Great stuff to put on when getting ready to head out on a Saturday night (back when I was young, single and stupid). They belong in the RRHOF both for their handful of hits, and for their attitude, and for changing rock. As Neil Young said “It’s better to burn out than to fade away”.
Tuesday, January 24, 2006
I also had 2 other Finalists, that's my best showing at BP, to date:
- Poinsettia In BW (Finalist) -
Leaf #25 (Finalist)
Check out all the winning photos at BetterPhoto.com!
Sunday, January 22, 2006
Saturday, January 21, 2006
We’re not too far from on the 2006 induction Ceremony for the Rock N Roll Hall Of Fame. The ceremony will be 3/13/06, held in NYC (rather than Cleveland, where the Hall resides). The class of 2006 will be includes Black Sabbath, Blondie, Miles Davis, Sex Pistols, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and Herb Alpert/Jerry Moss. I have an old, beat up record guide from Rolling Stone, circa 1979, and thought it would be interesting to review what these premier rock critics thought of these eventual hall-of-famers back then.
Today's spotlight is Blondie: Debbie Harry and the band ended up with 1 album on Rolling Stone’s Top 500, but that one (Parallel Lines) was released after the Guide was published. All three of the discs reviewed for the guide were given 3 stars (out of 5) by critic (and editor of the guide) David Marsh. His view back then: “Punk rock’s answer to Linda Ronstadt? Blondie’s Deborah Harry does for Patti Smith what Alice Cooper did for Iggy Pop: swipes a minor good idea and beats it to death. But the band can play, in a sort of revivified British Invasion style”.
Yep, 3 whole sentences, one might say dismissive. Dave Marsh, of course, is one of the most famous rock critics out there, started Cream magazine, and was editor of Rolling Stone magazine throughout the mid 70’s.
Full disclosure: I own 3 Blondie records, including the first 2. I saw them in concert at the Stanley Theater in Pittsburgh in ’79 or so, and was pretty disappointed. I think they went downhill around the time they got really popular. I don’t have any of their stuff in digital format.
Taking my daughter back to school last weekend, we parked behind this minivan in front of her dorm. Our poor little car looked naked next to this one!! In case they don’t show up on blog-size, here’s a run-down:
.....John Kerry for President
.....Speechwriters LLC for US Senate
.....Iowa TIP (Turn In Poachers)
.....I Give Evolution 2 Opposable Thumbs Up
.....Meat Makes Me Sick
.....Mean People Suck
.....The Beatings Will Continue Until Morale Improves
.....The Relief Project
.....Climb It (???)
.....VHS Parking (2 years, Valley High School?)
.....Have You Dug Wall Drug
Friday, January 20, 2006
Music theme day today, over at the Yahoo photo group. Meaning my BetterPhoto post is based on a song title from the 70’s supergroup ABBA. I had a bit of a struggle, haven’t been shooting much lately, but I did come up with this… I actually like ABBA, in small doses. They have several great songs, from S.O.S. to Waterloo, to Name of the Game, to Take A Chance On Me….. .
Thursday, January 19, 2006
We’re not too far from on the 2006 induction Ceremony for the Rock N Roll Hall Of Fame. The ceremony will be 3/13/06, held in NYC (rather than Cleveland, where the Hall resides). The class of 2006 includes Black Sabbath, Blondie, Miles Davis, Sex Pistols, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and Herb Alpert/Jerry Moss. I have an old, beat up record guide from Rolling Stone, circa 1979, and thought it would be interesting to review what the premier rock critics thought of these eventual hall-of-famers back then.
Today’s inductee: Black Sabbath: At the time the guide was published, Ozzie and the boys had released 9 albums, including 3 which ended up on the recent Rolling Stone list of 500 best albums of all time. But, back then, only the ultra-classic “Paranoid” got more than 1 star (out of 5) and it only managed 2. Here’s what rock critic Ken Tucker had to say: “These would-be English Kings of Heavy Metal are eternally foiled by their stupidity and intractability. In the early seventies their murky drone was all the more appealing for its cynicism – the philosophy that everything is shit, and a flirtation with pre-Exorcist demonic possession. Time has passed them by; their recent stuff is a quaint bore. Their high point was Paranoid, a better example of their goofy malevolence than the We Sold Our Souls anthology, and cheaper."
A quick google says Ken’s still around, currently a TV critic for Entertainment Weekly…..
Full disclosure: I'm a Black Sabbath fan, even had a poster of them on my wall as a youth. I have I have 1/2 dozen of their records on vinyl, but only 2 on CD.
Stay tuned for reviews of the other inductees!
My younger daughter performed at the "Bi-State" band competition last week. A collection of the high school band kids from the St. Louis metro area (Missouri and Illinois), were nominated and then auditioned to be part of the performance. Very cool, the kids played great. This is outside the auditorium, at Dunhill Hall, Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville (SIUE)...
Wednesday, January 18, 2006
Tuesday, January 17, 2006
Leaf in frozen puddle. . . . Not be confused with the recent post of a leaf frozen in a puddle. That one, titled Leaf #28, really should've been Leaf #31, making this one Leaf #32..... Also not to be confused with the recent post of a leaf frozen in a small creek, Leaf #27, which was a repost, but un-numbered originally. .... got it?? 'Cause I'm not changing the numbering now.
Sunday, January 15, 2006
My shot for the Knickknack theme at the Yahoo-Group. This is an old glass piece from Blenko Glass, Milton WV. We used to go to Blenko semi-regularly in my youth, and several pieces have since been passed down to me. We used this glass owl as a doorstop throughout my youth. It now sits on my bookshelf, keeping watch.. .
Saturday, January 14, 2006
Thursday, January 12, 2006
A repost from last summer, since Frothy declared "Thursday Squirrel Blogging" over at his site....
A sneaky squirrel, taking the roundabout route to the bird feeder. When we moved to Illinois (at the end of the 80’s), it amazed me that there were virtually no squirrels around. At least compared to Pittsburgh or Washington, DC. Rabbits out the ears, but not many squirrels. Well, I planted as many trees as I could fit on our lot, and 15 years later, we have squirrels. Squirrels that eat the food I put out for the birds. GRRRRRRR….
Wednesday, January 11, 2006
I’ve had “a thing” about bare tree branches for a long time. Just something about the interaction of the various branches and twigs, the semi random lines and whatever, blah, blah, blah. Especially when it is a bit breezy, and different branches move in different directions and rhythms, creating a dynamic visual (more blah, blah, blah). Anyway, I though the addition of a blue background made this one really “pop” . One of the maples I planted in the spring of 1990, with a Sycamore peeking in from the left. . .
Tuesday, January 10, 2006
Woman all shook up over Elvis song
An Australian woman will face court, charged with repeatedly stabbing her partner because he played an Elvis Presley song over and over again, police said Tuesday. Police said the 30-year-old woman was charged with unlawful wounding after her 35-year-old partner was stabbed with a pair of scissors in the back, shoulder and thigh at Northam, about 62 miles east of Perth in Western Australia state on Monday. The man, whose injuries were described as "non-life threatening," had been repeatedly playing the song "Burning Love," a police spokesman said.
The 1972 song was the U.S. rock great's 40th and last top 10 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.
Just how many times do you have to play "Burning Love" before it becomes justifiable homicide (attempt)?
Monday, January 09, 2006
Sigh. This is one of those that is almost decent, but falls short. Not quite enough depth of field (DOF), the tip of the branch/stalk is out of focus. And the lighting is a bit harsh. I was trying to balance the lighting w/ a polarizing filter (like sunglasses for your camera), but that really “eats” the light. Since I needed as fast a shutter speed as possible (1/100th, due to hand-held and slight breeze), I was stuck with a small f-stop (f-4.5). And therefore not enough DOF…. Oh well, it’s Monday, “almost” will have to do! .
Sunday, January 08, 2006
Friday, January 06, 2006
Thursday, January 05, 2006
Wednesday, January 04, 2006
Tuesday, January 03, 2006
Monday, January 02, 2006
Sunday, January 01, 2006
Glen Carbon water tower, just up the road from home. The water tower (and the adjacent DQ) have been around since we arrived here in 1989, but most everything else in town is new. Taken from the Wal-Greens parking lot, home of the $0.19/print emailed photo printing! .… .