NOVEMBER - 60 Songs in 30 Days (v3)
Regular readers know the drill: November is the month where I strive to post 2 songs for every day in the month. That doesn't mean I'll be on here on a daily basis, but I will be holding to that rule, regardless of whether I post 2 times or 20 times this month (looking at my post history, let's just be honest and say it'll probably be closer to 2 than 20).
I might focus on one artist one day, and a whole assemblage of tracks the next. There's not really a lot of rhyme or reason to it, just a massive delgue of music for you to sort through.
I have to be honest: I'm a little unsure about the future of Pimps of Gore right now. I just got my renewal notice from my web host, and since I've been operating this site out of my own pocket for years (aside from the help of a couple of friends, and one reader who donated money once, way back when I tired to have a Paypal link here), the "returns" seem more and more diminishing each year. Between my doctor's bills, my school debt, my other debts, and my lack of free time these days, the idea of keeping this thing going has become a little illogical (and a lot counterproductive) lately.
With my debt mounting, I've been eyeballing my record collection and have considered a massive Ebay clearance in attempt to raise some money. I've also been considering creating a spreadsheet or document with everything I'm selling and maybe sending it along to interested parties. I'm going to start work on that in the coming weeks, so please feel free to let me know if you'd like to do some record shopping. I'll try to keep the prices fair, but if there's something rare that I might be able to auction on Ebay, I'm just going to be honest and price it at the "market value." Not a whole lot of CDs, probably a few hundred records, and some DVDs will be in the mix.
Anyway, the free tunes will keep coming for the next couple of months, at least. Enjoy!
"Society" by EDDIE VEDDER
"Hard Sun" by INDIO
"Sheraton Gibson" by EDDIE VEDDER
"Tonight You Belong to Me" by EDDIE VEDDER w/JANET WEISS
"Tonight You Belong to Me" by MEREDITH LOUISE MILLER:
To wear my heart on my sleeve for a moment, I have to say that I was profoundly moved by Into the Wild, Sean Penn's film adaptation of John Krakauer's incredible nonfiction book about a young man's tragic journey into -- well -- the wild, in Alaska. I'm not going to get into an entire movie review here, but I thought it was one of the most humane and beautiful films I've probably ever seen, and would highly recommend it, especially to anyone who may have entertained the thought, at any time in their life, of disappearing off of "the grid" and leaving everything they know behind them. I know, as a college kid, I pondered the idea myself more than a few times, and Krakauer's book was a monumental reminder to me that, as Christopher McCandless discovered, happiness is meaningless if you can't share it with anyone.
I think Penn made a pretty wise choice in peppering the film with music written especially for the film by Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder. Even Vedder haters might agree, because he seems the perfect voice as the internal monologue -- and possibly the Greek chorus -- for this incredibly ernest and idealistic young man, who lived his life, and measured all others, by a strict moral code. "Society" is from the soundtrack to Into the Wild, and sums up better than any other song the character and motivation of McCandless. I would not be surprised if we see Vedder performing this song at the Oscars this year.
One of the highlights from that soundtrack is Vedder's cover (paired with backing vocals from SLEATER KINNEY's Corin Tucker) of INDIO's "Hard Sun." I'm posting the original, which reportedly features backing vocals from Joni Mitchell, here this afternoon. Vedder and Pearl Jam's history with Sleater Kinney goes way back (I've even theorized that SK's bombastic, stadium-rock-sized The Woods may have been influenced by their long tour as openers for PJ in the year or two prior to the making of that record), and it's only appropriate that Vedder popped in at SK's final show on August 12 of last year, performing "Tonight You Belong to Me" with drummer Janet Weiss.
I've always loved "Tonight You Belong to Me," a song which I first heard in the Steve Martin film The Jerk, in one of that movie's most quiet and sweet moments, performed on beach between Martin and the adoreable Bernadette Peters. While I couldn't locate that version, I'm including another take of it from Meredith Louise Miller.
The two other Vedder solo tracks, "Bee Girl" and "Sheraton Gibson," are alternately a rare Pearl Jam track about the little girl who appeared in the BLIND MELON "No Rain" video, and a Pete Townsend cover from a 1994 tribute concert. While the latter isn't the best live recording, it still makes for a fun listen.
"Goin' to Acapulco" by JIM JAMES AND CALEXICO
"Simple Twist of Fate" by JEFF TWEEDY
"Stuck Inside of Mobile With the Memphis Blues Again" by CAT POWER
"Stuck Inside of Mobile With the Memphis Blues Again"
"Simple Twist of Fate" by BOB DYLAN:
Speaking of movie soundtracks, the FUCKING STELLAR soundtrack to I'm Not There, Todd Haynes nutty Dylan semi-biopic featuring a handful of actors playing Dylan at different stages in his career, was just released last week. It's a bargain at any price, but I got my copy of it from iTunes for less than $15. . . not too shabby for 37 songs (the iTunes version includes 3 bonus tracks) by an incredible list of artists that includes the likes of Eddie Vedder, Willie Nelson, Sonic Youth, Stephen Malkmus, Tom Verlaine, John Doe, Yo La Tengo, Sufjan Stevens, and tonight's three artists, who all contribute incredible covers of classic and somewhat obscure Dylan songs.
I'm just going to say it right here: Chan Marshall, I love you. Call me.
"Just Keep Walking" by INXS:
I know I've posted on here many times before that I think even some of the most wack artists can pull out a great song (which is why I think it's important to reserve the word "sucks" for bands that truly, truly suck, like Creed). This INXS song, from the band's self-titled debut (although this comes from an early compilation called INXSive) is further proof of my theory. A nice rip of that whole Adam Ant/Gang of Four postpunk sound, and not something you'd expect from a band that would go on to become so corny that they'd replace their dead lead singer with an Elvis impersonator.
"Castles in the Air"
"Till Tomorrow" by DON McLEAN
"Crying" by WAYLON JENNINGS:
Speaking of artists considered corny, Don McLean has been done no favors by being know as that "American Pie"/"Vincent" dude. He inspired the poem that inspired Roberta Flack's "Killing Me Softly," so he can't be all bad, right? "Magdalene Lane" is, in my eyes, his true masterpiece, a harsh indictment on Los Angeles, Hollywood, and the movie industry's tendency to chew up and spit out young stars. More specifically, McLean tackles the tragic story of Judy Garland ("The Wizard brought benzadrine smiles / and he never let Dorothy doze"), who abused pills and alcohol and died at age 47 from an overrdose of barbituates. McLean's song is absolutely scathing.
I once won a Delaware radio station contest where entrants were asked to rewrite the lyrics to "American Pie" and update them to speak to today's music industry. McLean picked the winner, and I was truly honored, but was going to be out of town for the concert and wound up calling the station to ask them to give my prize of going to the show and meeting McLean backstage to the second place entrant. A truly regretful loss on my part, because I would have begged him to perform "Magdalene Lane," or, at the very least, "Till Tomorrow," one of my other favorite songs of his, and one that broke my heart at such an early age that, like The Beatles' "Yesterday," it was a revalation to my young mind that a song could make me so sad. I remember being in love with a girl in elementary school and making her a tape by the time we were "graduating" from junior high that included this song.
Another of those songs that made me aware of music's power to break my heart at an early age was Roy Orbison's "Crying," covered here by McClean, and alternately by country legend Waylon Jennings.
"Zaratozom" by GOBLIN:
I finally had the pleasure of sitting down before Halloween and watching the Dawn of the Dead DVD boxed set I purchased a while back, which features several different versions of the movie and includes the Dario Argento edited European version. Trimmed down from Romero's longer version, Argento's cuts to the chase and works more like an action/horror movie. It also features the entire Goblin-recorded soundtrack (Romero's used a couple of the band's songs). "Zaratozom" is a charging little rocker that really sets a fire under the scenes where the biker gang stroms their way into the mall. Good stuff.
"Danelectro 2" by YO LA TENGO:
A gorgeous, simple and sleepy instrumental from one of my favorite bands, and a fine tribute to the guitar(s) for which the song is named. And a nice way to close things out this afternoon. See you around.