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Are you guys weird???


Lars68

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Thanks j45nick! :)

 

 

 

Actually, I have mentioned Norman Blake here before, but have never seen anyone else mention him (until now). Of course, he is more associated with Martin instead of Gibson. I first heard him in 1973, and he was the main reason why I sold my electric guitar and bought my 1974 J-50. I found these recordings of Norman Blake from the Telluride festival recently.

 

I saw Norman Blake some years ago now, and have been a fan since - thanks for the links.

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No prejudice against any of this music. It's just that very little of it is something I'd spend my time listening to more than once after I first heard it. The lyrics and the performers don't make a connection with me. For one thing, if I can't clearly hear the singer above the band, I tend to lose interest. It has nothing to do with their talent. It's obviously, for me, a generation gap more than anything else. I'm from the heydays of Cash, Dylan, Stones, Beatles, and a group of folksingers and folk-rockers who sang about things I can identify with. I know some of these newer folks are current day folksingers, but it's kind of like listening to the current country singers after I grew-up listening to Williams, Cash, Jennings, Nelson, Cline, Jones, Wynette, Haggard. There's just no real connection. Much easier for me to make a real connection with stuff like this---

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No prejudice against any of this music. It's just that very little of it is something I'd spend my time listening to more than once after I first heard it. The lyrics and the performers don't make a connection with me. For one thing, if I can't clearly hear the singer above the band, I tend to lose interest. It has nothing to do with their talent. It's obviously, for me, a generation gap more than anything else. I'm from the heydays of Cash, Dylan, Stones, Beatles, and a group of folksingers and folk-rockers who sang about things I can identify with. I know some of these newer folks are current day folksingers, but it's kind of like listening to the current country singers after I grew-up listening to Williams, Cash, Jennings, Nelson, Cline, Jones, Wynette, Haggard. There's just no real connection. Much easier for me to make a real connection with stuff like this---

 

 

 

Agree

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Thanks so far everyone, this has been fun. Lots of good stuff posted. The weirdness award goes to....Joe Byrd and the Field of Hippies.

 

As for me, I pretty much agree with MP's post above. It is the singer-songwriter stuff that really speaks to my soul. I guess you could say that the music closest to my heart is the americana genre, as represented by Cash, Neil Young, Springsteen, Dylan, and Townes van Zandt among lots and lots of others within that genre. I have also found throughout the years that I tend to connect more easily to music with a melancholy, dark, feel. No wonder Townes Van Zandt spoke to me right away when I found his music very recently...

 

With all that said, I do get excited about music besides from "a guy with a guitar singing depressing songs". [biggrin] I grew up in the 80's and made strong connections to some music from that time like The Smiths, The Cure and the bands/artists linked in my first post. At the time I believe this genre was called "alternative". Now 30+ years later the music and the artists are mostly still around, and I like to ocassionally check in and see what is going on in that corner of the music universe. Again, this is music with a dark edge, but expressed differently, so it is not as far from the singer/songwriter music I like as it may appear.

 

Lars

 

By the way, speeking of dark and depressing guy with a guitar. This one by Townes takes the cake in that regards, and I just love it!!!

 

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Lars, this is a good thread. Good topic for discussion. It all ends-up revolving around each person's personal likes and dislikes. With most of my musical and songwriting heroes either gone or on-the-downhill-slide, I listen to people who make a similar type of connection with me. I don't just listen to some guy with a guitar singing a depressing song. I enjoy listening to someone singing who is using music as "the universal language" as a way to tell a human story. On the other hand, human stories are often depressing, simply because of the human connection. Spartan accompaniment and a life story/axiom/adage, etc. is all I need. I want to hear the words. A lot of the big hit songs of the 50-60-70s were not much more than noise and to my ears that's the direction newer music has taken. Years ago I enjoyed those songs from the perspective of what it took to entertain me as a young man. Today, those same songs make me smile, but I don't look for them anymore. I'll look for the more simple and in my view "human" artist. I don't like everything Greg Brown does. Sometimes he'll do a jazzy arrangement of a good blues song and I can't stand it...lol...but much of his stuff is very folksy and with a real touch of humanity in it. He grew-up in a small town in Iowa and that's his inspiration for a lot of his material...plus, he's married to Iris De Ment, so he better be a folksinger...I don't like everything that Cash, Dylan, PP&M, Neil Young, Guy Clark and many others have done, BUT, the huge bulk of their work really hits me on a "been there and done that" kind of level. Things I can identify with I'm just not into the sounds of shredding guitars and nonsense lyrics. Today, the music comes across as too much technology and less "realness." All that said, I can see the likelihood of a Dylan or Cash never even getting the opportunity to speak with a record producer, let alone getting a contract if they have come along today instead of the 50's. They were too raw, too human, too simple, and not manufactured........Anyway, here's Greg Brown with one of his best. He can tell a story as well as any of my heroes....

 

And if you think you might like some of Brown's stuff, listen to his Hillbilly Girl. A bunch of us have probably known or would have liked to have known her. There still a lot of good music being made. Brown is just one of the makers. But hey, even he's not a "spring chicken" anymore. He's almost my age.

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MP, that was an excellent post. The older I get, the more the sentiment of your post holds true. When I was in my teens, image and attitude of the artist mattered too much. Not so anymore. Words and emotions are where it's at.

 

Beautiful song. Very good.

 

Lars

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Only a couple or so mentions of the great World of Classical Music...

 

IMO often scary for many folks to explore....with some justification

 

Boring, long winded, old fashioned etc etc

 

IMX can be very refreshing after hearing too much 3 chord rock and blues... :blink:

 

Opera, Ballet, Symphonies, Concertos, Chamber Strings , Solo Piano, Solo Guitar

 

Can be very inspiring and have inspired some interesting 'modern' musicians

 

John Entwistle

Mick Ronson

Paul Gilbert

George Martin

Bill Evans

Dave Brubeck

Jon Lord

Richie Blackmore

Procol Harum

John Renbourn

John Williams

Keith Emerson

Ingwie Malmsteen

Frank Zappa

Brian Eno

Randy Rhoads

 

and many more.... [biggrin]

 

V

 

:-({|=

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Naming the songs I play when I gig is not really very telling, since I mix country and classic rock. I am a solo artist, strictly.

 

What I do is where I think I make my contribution.

 

a. Guitar Style... tons of riffs, lots of lead guitar work as solo, use of wah pedal with acoustic to shape the tone, longer arrangements, mostly tons of lead passages, since most folks are used to seeing a solo guitarist do strumming, they are kind of impressed when I play "Black Dog" by Zepp, the whole riff....solo work while holding the rhythm..not easy and the audience knows it

 

b. Vocal style....took me years to find "my" voice, I use the VE 20 so its rich with the right preamp, eq, delay, reverb...but more than that, its finding my on way of singing something, in my contrabass range,,, use a rock vocal style, used to do this folky melodic voice...which was friggin generic..now they ask for more vocal work. People like it now. My voice was without character for most of my life...I thank artists like Leslie Feist and Myles Kennedy for showing the way. I had the same vocal teacher as Alannis Morisette, but NOT her chops.

 

c. Selection of material to encourage up beat dancing... I do very few, if any, mood pieces. Its all beat driven. Footloose, Locomotive Breath, PinBall Wizard, to Blake Shelton...I morph country into prog rock and smooth out prog rock to acoustic....again its about being unique, not "covering" the piece, but re-charging it with how we feel right now

 

d. As far as music selection, my own tastes are Nightwish, Paramore, Deep Purple, Jimi Hendrix, Waylon Jennings, George Jones...see the pattern? There isn't. I even do some David Allen Coe.

 

Cheers.

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Now I really want to hear a guy doing black dog solo !

 

 

as far as contemporary artists , there are plenty , probably more than there was way back when but they need to be hunted. You're not going to hear them on regular radio stations or tv shows . But they are out there

 

Jeffrey Foucault , Jake klar , Eddie burman . ...

 

Always great music about old and new

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I guess you can say we should have followed the singer-songwriters -- they are a natural dependent of the folk revival. But the world view of the folk revival was very much a descendant of the Puritan immigration into New England -- the "American Exceptionalism" shinning vision on the hill view. But instead, we went over to the dark side -- the Scots Irish view that dominates the rural interior of the country. And there we have stayed -- except when we stray of course.:rolleyes:

 

We got to meet -- and trade guitars with -- Norman Blake several time a few years ago. I wrote an account of the first trip. I'll post it here in case anyone wants to read it.

 

All the best,

 

-Tom

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I guess you can say we should have followed the singer-songwriters -- they are a natural dependent of the folk revival. But the world view of the folk revival was very much a descendant of the Puritan immigration into New England -- the "American Exceptionalism" shinning vision on the hill view. But instead, we went over to the dark side -- the Scots Irish view that dominates the rural interior of the country. And there we have stayed -- except when we stray of course.:rolleyes:

 

We got to meet -- and trade guitars with -- Norman Blake several time a few years ago. I wrote an account of the first trip. I'll post it here in case anyone wants to read it.

 

All the best,

 

-Tom

That was an exceptionally charming read. Thank you for sharing it with us! Interesting that you should speak of the folk revival having a dark side, which I hadn't heard articulated just that way before. It rings very true to me and makes sense of parts of my musical background which prior to now were always somewhat mystifying. Some folk music refugees were urban revivalists, so they say, but I have always been uncomfortable with both the designation and its relative lack of application to my music. Again, thank you!

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Versatile, good points on Classical. Another one that might fit that impressive list is Neil Diamond. He said that during his early years he used hear a lot of opera and classical music played at home by his parents. When he finally began getting serious about songwriting as a profession, he found his songs usually having a big build-up like a symphony as it went into the chorus. I never even thought of it that way until I started listening closely to songs like Sweet Caroline and Brother Love's Travlin' Salvation Show, Together in Blue Jeans and some others. There is a powerful build-up of sound as he approaches the chorus and then it kind of explodes, reminiscent of music from people like Bach, Beethoven, etc. Diamond says he has never spent a lot of time actually studying music itself, but he had the sounds in his head and instead of going into medical school, he spent much of his college time writing folksy-rock songs and symphonies..

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Versatile, good points on Classical. Another one that might fit that impressive list is Neil Diamond. He said that during his early years he used hear a lot of opera and classical music played at home by his parents. When he finally began getting serious about songwriting as a profession, he found his songs usually having a big build-up like a symphony as it went into the chorus. I never even thought of it that way until I started listening closely to songs like Sweet Caroline and Brother Love's Travlin' Salvation Show, Together in Blue Jeans and some others. There is a powerful build-up of sound as he approaches the chorus and then it kind of explodes, reminiscent of music from people like Bach, Beethoven, etc. Diamond says he has never spent a lot of time actually studying music itself, but he had the sounds in his head and instead of going into medical school, he spent much of his college time writing folksy-rock songs and symphonies..

 

Yes agreed....and IMO Neil Sedaka had a great sense of shape and emotion in many of his songs

The eye opener for me in many ways was listening to Frank Sinatra...with his 'operatic' interpretations of songs (It Was a Very Good Year etc}....perhaps echoing Italian forms in a new way in popular music.... [thumbup]

 

V

 

:-({|=

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I've been in an Americana mood for the past few years but I always loved jazz and listened to a lot of bossa nova and sambas. Spent a few years working up some Jobim on guitar. I'm going to link up a brazillian piano player that I love to listed to....Eliane Elias. I just bought tickets to see her in Chicago when I'm there in a couple weeks. I saw that she is performing near my hotel.

 

https://youtu.be/Ngf_pj3wGd0

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I remember once having a phase with normal hair-cut and cloths, doin' real normal things - man that was weird.

 

Had to return to old normal, which was fx my father saw as really weird.

 

So I said to him, "I can't go on that way - would you dig having an afro perm. . ". He looked at me as if I was weird, but then as the statement sank in, just accepted old normal.

 

And 'old normal' naturally included this tune, which I to this day can't tell if is normal or weird. Someone chime in - haven't got a clue. .

 

1972 ~ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=raENcEROUOQ

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I remember once having a phase with normal hair-cut and cloths, doin' real normal things - man that was weird.

 

Had to return to old normal, which was fx my father saw as really weird.

 

So I said to him, "I can't go on that way - would you dig having an afro perm. . ". He looked at me as if I was weird, but then as the statement sank in, just accepted old normal.

 

And 'old normal' naturally included this tune, which I to this day can't tell if is normal or weird. Someone chime in - haven't got a clue. .

 

1972 ~ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=raENcEROUOQ

 

I'm the Urban Spaceman..... [thumbup]

 

V

 

:-({|=

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Naming the songs I play when I gig is not really very telling, since I mix country and classic rock. I am a solo artist, strictly.

 

What I do is where I think I make my contribution.

 

a. Guitar Style... tons of riffs, lots of lead guitar work as solo, use of wah pedal with acoustic to shape the tone, longer arrangements, mostly tons of lead passages, since most folks are used to seeing a solo guitarist do strumming, they are kind of impressed when I play "Black Dog" by Zepp, the whole riff....solo work while holding the rhythm..not easy and the audience knows it

 

b. Vocal style....took me years to find "my" voice, I use the VE 20 so its rich with the right preamp, eq, delay, reverb...but more than that, its finding my on way of singing something, in my contrabass range,,, use a rock vocal style, used to do this folky melodic voice...which was friggin generic..now they ask for more vocal work. People like it now. My voice was without character for most of my life...I thank artists like Leslie Feist and Myles Kennedy for showing the way. I had the same vocal teacher as Alannis Morisette, but NOT her chops.

 

c. Selection of material to encourage up beat dancing... I do very few, if any, mood pieces. Its all beat driven. Footloose, Locomotive Breath, PinBall Wizard, to Blake Shelton...I morph country into prog rock and smooth out prog rock to acoustic....again its about being unique, not "covering" the piece, but re-charging it with how we feel right now

 

d. As far as music selection, my own tastes are Nightwish, Paramore, Deep Purple, Jimi Hendrix, Waylon Jennings, George Jones...see the pattern? There isn't. I even do some David Allen Coe.

 

Cheers.

I would love to see your show, sounds killer ! [thumbup]

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My alarm clock is set on a classical channel for my wake up call.

 

Mine is set to "Coast to Coast" and at a very low volume so I have to REALLY listen to hear what kind of weird crap they are talking about.

 

Yep.

 

Guess I'm weird..........

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Murph, you may be weird, but it's a "weird" the majority of us can understand. Music talks to us on a personal level and we all like things we feel compatible with. My "weird" is folk music........Many moons ago I knew this gal who used to set her alarm for 4am in the morning so she could get up, make some coffee, shower, get ready for work, and still have an hour or more to just sit and play her guitar. She said people she worked with teased her and laughed. She knew it was good-natured teasing, but she said they just didn't get it.. Those people didn't understand that musicians/songwriters, at all levels of competence, do that kind of thing. We may all seem a bit "weird" to ordinary folks, but that's okay, because a lot of those people wish they could like be us.

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I can relate to your story, Larry. I have two youg boys, and between them, work and other adult responsibilities, there is just not much time left for the guitar. I don't do my playing in the morning. Instead I tend to stay up late at night. The house is asleep and I get lost in the music. If I'm trying to write a song, it often happens that time passes so quickly that it's 3 am when I realize it's time to go to bed.

 

Lars

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