Tag Archives: ’60s Music

Great Times, Good Oldies @ Foodmaster

It is sad to see Johnnie’s Foodmaster close. The Boston area supermarket chain was my first work place beginning shortly after I turned 15 and ending yesterday. I didn’t know it then, but those first days and months would eventually go on to help shape my musical tastes. ‘Oldies’ never meant much, until I began hearing them every weekend I worked for hours at a time. The average customer might spend an hour at the most in the store, but the worker dwells far longer and develops either an aversion, interest, or nonchalance about the musical situation. I developed an interest early, but it’s been within the last two years that I’ve found myself really appreciating the old stuff, the Maltshop Memories, the doo-wop, the R&B, the garage. It is more than likely that the artists and bands that are constantly posted about on this very site are/were fascinated by the following half-century old gems. This post can serve as a reminder of the great music that crossed Foodmaster airwaves and made it a trademark of the shopping experience for customers and employees alike. I compiled this list in the dull moments of my final shift:

Patsy Cline – “You Belong To Me” (LINK)
The Hollies – “Pay You Back With Interest” (LINK)
The Orlons – “Wah-Watusi” (LINK)
The Beatles – “I Feel Fine” (LINK)
Peter and Gordon – “I Go To Pieces” (LINK)
The Hollywood Flames – “Buzz Buzz Buzz” (LINK)
Jerry Lee Lewis – “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Going On” (LINK)
Sam Cooke – “Wonderful World” (LINK)
Elvis Presley – “Suspicious Minds” (LINK)
The Marvelettes – “Please Mr. Postman” (LINK)
Jay and the Techniques – “Apples, Peaches, Pumpkin Pie” (LINK)
Billy J Kramer & The Dakotas – “Bad To Me” (LINK)
The Beach Boys – “California Girls” (LINK)
Tommy James & Shondells – “Hanky Panky” (LINK)
The Searchers – “Needles and Pins” (LINK)
Dion & The Delsatins – “Lovers Who Wander” (LINK)
The Coasters – “Yakety Yak” (LINK)
Bobby Rydell – “Wild One” (LINK)
Petula Clark – “A Sign Of The Times” (LINK)
Tommy Roe – “Sweet Pea” (LINK)
Maurice Williams & The Zodiacs – “Stay” (LINK)
The Shirelles – “Dedicated To The One I Love” (LINK)
Paul Revere and the Raiders – “(I’m Not Your) Stepping Stone” (LINK)
Four Tops – “It’s The Same Old Song” (LINK)
Randy & The Rainbows – “Denise” (LINK)
The Impalas – “Sorry (I Ran All The Way Home)” (LINK)
The Box Tops – “Soul Deep” (LINK)
The Turtles – “You Baby” (LINK)
The Supremes – “Baby Love” (LINK)
Johnny Kidd & The Pirates – “Shakin’ All Over” (LINK)
Righteous Brothers – “You’ve Lost That Loving Feeling” (LINK)
The Human Beinz – “Nobody But Me” (LINK)
Mickey & Sylvia – “Love Is Strange” (LINK)

Really Classic Album Review: Sounds of Silence

Artist(s): Simon & Garfunkel
Full Title: Sounds of Silence
Year: 1966
Label: Columbia/ CBS

1) Sounds of Silence- 9
2) Leaves That Are Green- 8
3) Blessed- 7/8
4) Kathy’s Song- 9
5) Somewhere They Can’t Find Me- 8
6) Anji (instrumental)- 7
7) Richard Cory- 8
8) A Most Peculiar Man-9
9) April Come She Will- 10
10) We’ve Got a Groovy Thing Goin’- 8
11) I Am a Rock-9

Simon & Garfunkel kick off this ditty with an impassioned, classic, Folk Rock anthem in the title track. The song showcases the duo’s great talent for harmonious vocals, soft, emotional, pop ballads; a far, far cry from their Tiger Beaty teen idol counterparts. A focal point, I often feel is necessary to make- that S & G were not just another wimpy, sensative, Teeny Bopper group, a category/genre that they are sometimes cast aside to. “Leaves That Are Green,” is a nice, catchy number, not too adventerous, but sound. “Blessed,” at least for my money, doesn’t quite cut as deep; it’s an ok tune, but not on par with other tracks. Enter “Kathy’s Song,” a rather soft spoken ballad, that is extremely direct, musically and lyrically. It’s as if Simon is singing soley for Kathy. The tune utilizes the “less is more” logic: it’s simply Simon and his Gee Tar singing his poetry, without any major choruses or instrumental changes. It really gives the ballad a distinct quality and overall feel. Clearly, the band had a knack for writing poetic numbers with deep themes behind them. Later on in the album, we hear two back to back character studies of two very different (or very similar?) suicide victims. The first being “Richard Cory” (based on the Edwin Arlington Robinson poem of the same name, we read in Brennan’s class, if y’all recall :) a fast paced tale about a extremely successful businessman, who seems to have it all and then one night decides to “put a bullet through his head.” This unexpected suicide is contrasted by the next track, “A Most Peculiar Man,” a slow, softer, song about a lonely man, who “lived all alone, within a house, within a room, within himself.” This fucking guy leaves on the gas in his car and thus takes his own life, much to no one’s chagrin. The two studies brilliantly stand in stark contrast to one another. They are followed up by the gentle, folky, “April Come She Will,” the LP’s strongest track, in my humble opinion. It’s so peaceful and almost Summerlike- reminding me of kicking back, relaxing, and thinking about “life.” And ok, also the fact that the months idenitfied include the Summer season! Another reason why I adore this lesser known S & G track is the fact that it was featured in the classic film, The Graduate (1967) as was the title track, the much, much more famous song. For some reason, April stands out to me more and instantly brings back images of the film and the scene it’s featured in. April, her only crime? Brevity… 1:53 is too short! This LP closes with another Folk Rock anthem in “I Am a Rock,” a highly catchy and memorable ditty that contains just about everything that made the pair loveable to begin with. Overall, this is a solid listen, but comparably weaker than most of their efforts. It feels more like a bunch of decent songs, rather than a whole album. With that being said, if you like 60s Folk Rock, poetic lyrics, songs with stories, a shit load of harmony in your vocals, etc. then you will probably dig this, and naturally if you are a fan of Simon and Garfunkel, then by all means, check this out.

Grade: B+

Film Review: Pirate Radio

Title: Pirate Radio (US); The Boat That Rocked (UK)
Production Company: Working Title Films
Release: 2009

Pro’s: Great music, generally good acting, the women who arrive on board, famous females appearing from famous songs (So Long Marianne and Eleanor Rigby).

Con’s: The whole plot about the government trying to abolish pirate radio

Overall: Pretty great movie from music and sub-plot standpoints. Unfortunately, the main plot and the ending kind of blew. This is probably one of the best I’ve seen in 2009…keep in mind I haven’t seen that many.