Monday, November 16, 2009

The 15 albums that made me who I am - Part 1:


Part one of a 5 part post:


Music.......it's been my life. From the second I emerged from the womb I have had a love for music. Music is constantly playing around me at all times....when I go to sleep (or when I am alone in my thoughts) it is ALWAYS playing in my head. There is never a second that I am not hearing music in one form or another. From the very first 45RPM single I purchased when I was 5 years old ("Band On The Run" by WINGS in case you were interested) to the latest Raveonettes CD, I will always seek out and discover new artists, try to discover old ones I might have missed, and re-discover what I already know by heart. So I figure I get started by listing the 15 albums that have made me who I am. The 15 albums that shaped my life.....that made me want to write, record, perform.....The 15 albums I am about to list are by no means the "Best" albums, or even my favourite albums ...in fact a couple might actually be pretty mediocre albums, but these 15 hold significance for me. They are all connected with a specific memory, or occurrence. When I hear a track from any of the following albums they cannot help but to bring me to a place , conjure up memories, make me nostalgic. I will list these in the order in which I heard them...starting with the earliest, which was released the year I was born and finish off with #15, which came out just last year. Let's start with number one:

#1 - THE DOORS - "STRANGE DAYS" (1967).


As a small child I was fascinated by singles.....45's.....7-inch wonders.....I had many favourites but it wasn't until I was 7 years old that I would begin my love affair with the album. One Christmas I received 3 albums that to this day remain 3 of my all time favourite. THE BEATLES "SGT. PEPPER" , THE BEATLES "ABBEY ROAD" and THIS. The Doors second album. As a child I didn't know who the artist was (I couldn't read the strange letters that said DOORS as they registered in my tiny brain as more symbol than letters of the alphabet) so for years I had no idea who or WHAT made this strange creepy music. I sat and listened for hours to the scary stories told by Jim Morrison, the hypnotic organ sounds...the screaming...lyrics about girls in the window that won't drop, of strange days and faces that look ugly when you're alone....it scared the hell out of me. In a GOOD way......Most critics slag off this record but to me it remains a very solid follow up to their master debut.
#2 - THE WHO - "SELL OUT" (1967)


How can a child NOT love this. The album cover art says it all. And I still believe that THIS (and not the overrated TOMMY) is their REAL masterpiece. This reminds me of being about 11 or 12 years old. I used to take albums out at my local library and most of the time I would choose what to listen to just by the cover. This intrigued me then....and it STILL intrigues me. Here's the COMPLETE version of ODORONO. Pasted together by yours truly.
THE WHO - "ODORONO"







#3. JOHN LENNON & YOKO ONO - "DOUBLE FANTASY" (1980) and THE SPECIALS - "THE SPECIALS" (1979)


Christmas 1980. I received a cassette recorder with a built in AM/FM radio. NOW...I could FINALLY record songs off the radio in good quality ( trust me kiddies...it was a big deal in 1980) and I was so happy. I opened up my gift, put batteries in the machine, popped a fresh blank tape in and hit "record" . as the tapes rolls I try to tune in a radio station. I find one and get a few seconds of the Specials "Message To You Rudy", then tune to a station playing John Lennon's then new "I'm Losing You". and THAT, my friends would perfectly sum up my taste in music for the next 3 decades of my life........


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