Saturday, April 30, 2011

AM Radio Is Makin’ A Comeback!


For me. . . THAT. . . is a wonderful thing!! Because those songs stand the test of time.


I admit it. . . I was around when all we had was AM radio. Well, there was FM, in L.A. but not too many stations. My favorite songs came from L.A.’s AM stations, like KHJ, KRLA and Palm Springs’ KDES.


Holding my transistor radio, I could listen to my favorite artists or groups, like The Jackson 5, Paul Revere & the Raiders, Stevie, Todd Rundgren, The Beatles, The Monkees, even 1910 Fruitgum Co. . .HA!!!! And of course, there are soooo many more, but this is not about who I listened to back then, this is about someone YOU will be listening to and is already showing that his music will stand the test of time, too.


ADRIAN BOURGEOIS

Why do I equate Adrian with AM?
Well, mainly because the songs that influenced my love of musical tastes and styles, came through the tiny speaker of my transistor radio. Every 45 I have from the 60’s & 70’s, I treasure. They are the soundtrack to my life. I still listen to them and even karaoke to them!! : )

Adrian’s style, to my ears, is so reminiscent of Andrew Gold, Stephen Bishop and even Todd Rundgren, which is no surprise, since Todd is a long time family friend.


I recently saw Adrian perform while on tour with Ricky Berger.

Seeing an ‘up and coming’ artist in a small venue, you just never know how it's going to turn out, whether you're going to like them or not. And if you're basically the only one in the audience, it can make you feel a bit awkward. I was one of those that was basically the only one in the audience and I am soooo glad that disliking his music was NOT the case!

This guy is not your flavor of the month.

At 23, he is a seasoned songwriter, musician and artist. Listening to him, you can’t help but hear a Beatle-ish tone to his sound. You can tell he has been raised with music all his life. Well. . . “ I “ can tell, because I, too am a product of my parents’ great tastes in music.

And as much as I don't want to make a big “to do” about Adrian being raised around the music industry, it is a fact. His father is Brent Bourgeois, artist, producer, engineer and author. But Adrian is a great artist in his own right and so I really want to keep this about him.


Adrian takes everything he's heard and creates his own sound that is upbeat, bouncy & classic. Even now, as I’m listening to his latest EP “Picture Frame,” I feel like I am being taken back in time. He’s got such a classic sound to him while still being current. Some might say there’s even a “Ben Folds” influence there.

One song off that EP is "As Your Hands Can Hold.” The song is so deep, so touching. It literally brought me to tears, as I thought about the struggles “my” loved ones are going through. I had to let Adrian know how I felt and emailed him.

I guess I can say that this is my first real (PUBLISHED) interview with a music artist!! : )


THE INTRVIEW

Spin that 45: Adrian, I’ve been listening to "As Your Hands Can Hold” from your latest EP "Picture Frame." This is such a beautiful song. Your song says what I wish I could say to those I care about who are struggling.
WHAT A GREAT SONG!!!

Adrian: “Wow that really means a lot to hear! That's kind of the whole point of this whole music thing for me. All my life I've always felt most connected with by songs and beautiful music. The melodies and arrangements and even the lyrics, somehow understood me in a way that no people I knew could. My best friends were always my favorite songs and the musicians who made them. That's really the reason I've always wanted to make music myself, just to have THAT effect on others. So to hear that one of my songs is really speaking to you in that way means the world to me!”


Spin that 45: It sounds to me that the song is about the struggles of showbiz, but I could see that this song would speak to anyone who has lost hope in what they thought they'd achieve in their lives, but didn't and felt overwhelmed by life.

Adrian: “I guess the song is about showbiz...but only because of the particular circumstances I was writing about. Insert anything you or anyone has poured everything they had into for decades and feeling all you have to show for it is a life's worth of broken promises from others and from yourself. I wrote this song actually shortly after having a really meaningful conversation with someone I'm close to who I'd recently found out had started drinking again after years of hard earned sobriety, just reflecting on the fact that he wasn't who, what and where he thought he'd be at this point in his life, and how it's much easier said than internalized that one should be able to look at the good things you do have (wife, kids, family, house, etc) and rest in that legacy rather than be haunted by what could have been. But in the end, what you have is what you have and you can either choose to focus on that it "should" have been more, or change your meaning of what success and happiness are. And that's a hard place to come to. I've struggled to mentally prepare myself along the way of my own journey towards a hopefully successful career in music for how I will take it if life doesn't turn out the way I expect...which of course it never does. The point is finding happiness in who you are and making that an internal choice rather than one governed by external circumstances because you really have no control over that in the end.”


Spin that 45: Wow! That's pretty profound. And yes, you've definitely communicated that message in "Hands."
Can you tell me about who is playing on the EP and the engineering?

Adrian: “Yes, I recorded, played, sang (with the exception of the bridge on “Hands” where it says "You bet your heart" echo in the bridge...that's Ricky Berger) and I produced everything myself on that. . .Recorded at home in my room.


Spin that 45: Wow, you played all the instruments??? And did the mixing??? That's great! For being “homemade” the mixing turned out well. It sounds great! To my ears, it does not have that "homemade" after taste to it.

Adrian: “Thank you. I'll probably re-record all the stuff on my EP when I get home from touring with Ricky Berger, or at least remix it. These home recordings are a work in progress and I'm still learning how to use all the equipment but hopefully this is all leading up to my next album.”


Spin that 45: Well, I, for one, cannot wait to hear your next release!

Adrian, thank you so much for taking time to tell me about “Picture Frame.” Where can your fans hear the EP?

Adrian: “Well I've been selling it at shows on my tour mainly. I decided to get ‘creative’ with the packaging and sell the EP in picture frames which ties into the fact that there's a song on it called “Picture Frame” and then you have the option of either listening to the CD or just putting it on your mantle and staring at it all day...; )

I also just started selling it on my website as a download--

you heard it here first!

--and if you'd like to hear it and/or purchase it, you can do so at My Store."


Spin that 45: Great! I'm sure your "legions" of fans cannot wait to check the songs out!!


So folks, you did see it here first! HA!!

When you visit his website, be sure to also check out his debut album. It too, is worth a listen.

Adrian is currently touring with Ricky Berger Ricky Berger.com

Check out his website for tour dates.






NOTE: all photographs used by permission

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Ricky Berger has Another Blue Dream



And she's going to tell you ALL about it!!

What can I say about Ricky Berger!?

She is simply put. . . A-M-A-Z-I-N-G !

With her fairytale princess presence, this early "20 something," may sound like she is all about fun and pretend play. . .and she is!! But let me tell you, this girl's music is something she is VERY serious about!

There may be other young artists out there who are similiar, but to my knowledge, I've not heard any. She's no Gaga, she's no Miley, she's no Adele. . . she's Ricky!! To some, her sound might be considered eccentric, nostalgic, maybe a little quirky by today's standards, but by no means. . . boring. What I like about her songs, is they're profoundly written while still being singable. Ricky invites you to sing along with her melodies. And you want to!

Writing since she was a young girl, she plays what I thought to be over 20 instruments, not just good, but WELL! This girl can also play a glockenspiel and piano together, making it sound like a little girl's music box. . . So lovely.

Thinking she was classicaly trained, listeners will be surprised that she is not.
As Ricky puts it: "I'm not classically trained! Took a few piano lessons as a child but I've taught myself to play all the instruments that I do! I play almost any instrument my fans/friends/family have given me...to list them would go on and on and on."

For someone who has taught herself, she can carry a mean Django Reinhardt rhythm on her guitar and ukele, whisking you back to the early 20th century as if you were standing on a beach with your friends listening to someone play the latest "Hit Parader" tune. I can even see a few doing a little Charleston.





Her song, "A Dream Is A Wish Your Heart Breaks" from her EP "Another Blue Dream" has that amusement park sound, with that underlying Danny Elfman tone of darkness, doom and tragedy. And you can't help but feel that she is exposing the innermost part of her being.

For me, she has me feeling like I'm on a ride and I want to get off, but don't know how to stop it! So I go round and round in my emotions, still experiencing some happy moments but they somehow seem false and I see no way of escape, until the very end, when I just collaspe, tired and broken.

PEOPLE!! That's what songwriting is ALL ABOUT!!! You write for yourself, YES, but you also write for us, too!

The other songs off this EP are: "Another Me" and "Why Be Blue." Both songs have that light and airy sound while the lyrics are very profound and honest.

Seeing Ricky live is definitely a treat!! Not only is she multi-talented, she is super humble, kind and gentle. Definitely not presumptious about her gifts. When you meet her, you can see she is very genuine and appreciates every praise she receives from her fans.

Go see her!! I saw her twice in one week!

Please take time to see this 'up and coming' artist.

Ricky is currently touring with Adrian Bourgeois. Adrian Bourgeois.com

Check out her website for music and tour dates

Ricky Berger.com

Ricky on Myspace




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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Time for Recess





Some albums should NEVER be forgotten. . .







. . . this is just one of them. . .








This album is heavy on the Smooth Jazz... I like to call it, "Mr. Mister meets Kenny G with Gloria Estefan & Janet Jackson singing on the female vocals, Al Jarreau scattin' with Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis as producers." HA!!! With some GREAT engineering on here!! Listen with your headphones to catch it all.

Plus these musicians were so seasoned. I wish I knew more about them. I would love to find out what their backgrounds are in music and where they are today.

When I first heard "Hands That Made The World" on my local Christian radio station, it seemed so out of place for their playlist. The song sounded more appropiately for 94.7 The Wave in L.A. I had to buy the album. Boy, was I surprised!!!

I LOVED IT!!!

The musicians are TIGHT as all get out!!!

After doing some research, it seems like this was the only album they put out. And unfortunately, as with many good albums, this one is out of print. But I'm sure it can be found in the usual places, eBay or a preloved CD store.


Here is HANDS THAT MADE THE WORLD

This song is definitely the smooth jazzy sound with what I think is Gloria Estefan, Janis Siegel vocals.

ENJOY!!! : )






I have to add this note:

I had to blog this song. I've had this album since it came out in 1990.

How is it you can listen to a song and want to dance AND cry at the same time????

You need to listen to this song!! It's so freeing. You want to throw your hands up in the air and twirl around while the tears stream down your face. . . . well. . . that's how I see it!!
I cried back then and as I listen to it again and again today, it takes me back to something very important. . .

This song reminds me why Jesus chose me!!!


Thank you Recess, for being faithful in putting out a quality album while being diligent in encouraging and exhorting us out here!! I'm still crying happy tears!! Thank you, Lo


Oh and BTW, I do have the accompaniment track to this ; )

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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Imperials are Still Standing in Classic style!



Just because you've been in the business awhile doesn't mean you can't put out a great LP. And yet, sometimes that happens to groups/artists who have been around for as long as these guys have been. But that is not the case here! This is a great album!!! I love how the tracks are merged into one another, yet separated. Great vocals! Great sound! Great musicianship!! Great engineering!!!!! Kudos to that person! I really like this album! Still Standing will appeal to everyone who loves Country, Rock n Roll, Southern Rock, Soul & Gospel. So well done!! I'm rockin out to it now!! LOVE IT!!!

Check out their website The Classic Imperials

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Monday, April 18, 2011

It's Not Over

Here at Spin That 45, I try to keep this blog upbeat, but this is something I just have to share with you.


Steve Bartlett, a former real estate agent who is now working with a company that helps college aged kids look to continue their education, began a project, not knowing where it would lead, when his heartstrings were pulled at the effects of the Gulf Coast oil leak a year ago, April.


I'll let him tell his story:


"Last June I noticed that the poets and artists seemed kind of quiet about this hole that was gushing millions upon millions of crude oil into the water of the Gulf.

Fast forward to November 2010, and I was notified by a friend in Kentucky about an event here in Seattle. It was a symposium held by Project Gulf Impact at Seattle University. So my wife, my 10 year old daughter and I went to this to see what the latest was from the Gulf of Mexico. What I saw stopped me dead in my tracks. Speaker after speaker got up and told their story. A fisherman named CJ who had lost everything and was having a hard time getting any compensation from BP. We heard stories about how 1/3 of the fishermen on the Gulf were Vietnamese/American and how many of them could not read English very well and yet our government had printed out pamphlets, to help people with the claims process, in English only. Thousands upon thousands of Vietnamese had no idea that Federal assistance was available to them let alone how to go about getting that help. We saw a man get up in front of everyone and break down crying. He was sobbing and gasping for his words. He had taken his three year old son to the beach one day and since then he had been in the hospital three times with kidney problems and respiratory problems. This man was overcome with grief.

After this symposium I realized that this thing was NOT OVER!!!

The next day I started writing this song; 'It's Not Over.' I contacted my friend, Joe Monto in December and we decided to wait until after the holidays to get together and star working on this. I knew early on that I wanted our friend, Fortune Nyondo to help us produce this. Fortune has a tiny little office in the upstairs corner of an old country church just 10 minutes from my house. Fortune is from Zambia and he is remarkably gifted!"


What came out of time spent together was It's Not Over - The Gulf Oil Spill Disaster Continues




This is three guys who brought their talents together and produced and recorded this song ON NO BUDGET for the people and wildlife on the Gulf of Mexico that continue to suffer from the largest environmental disaster in our nation's history. We are one year into a tragedy that will take decades for nature to correct.














Fortune Nyondo, producer,
also played all of
the instruments in this song.
He is from Zambia
and has only been in
America for 7 years.












Joe Monto, vocalist, is a recording artist in his own right and is also Youth Pastor at his church.








Could this song apply to the recent disasters, such as the recent tragedies in Japan and tornados in the south?

Steve says, YES!! "We see this song as not only being 'A song for the Gulf Coast, but as a song for the world.' Most elements of this song go beyond the Gulf Coast. This is a song that can easily apply to any number of disasters. With the exception of the line 'They're down on their knees, sifting through the oily sand...' it's pretty generic that way. It was purposely written that way. Make no mistake about it. This song is first and foremost about the Gulf oil spill. But we feel that the sentiment of this song is even further reaching than that. Haiti? Katrina? Afghanistan? Iraq? It fits many different places."


You. . .the reader can help spread the word!

SHARE THIS BLOG WITH AS MANY THAT YOU KNOW!!!

Steve also has a blog called A Hole In The Ocean

Share the video with everyone you know! http://is.gd/2ylppg


"This song will be available on iTunes for 99 cents. A portion of whatever we make will be sent directly to the relief effort on the Gulf Coast.


This is a song of hope. . . FOR EVERYONE!!
Thank you for helping

Steve, Joe & Fortune"

SHARE:

Saturday, April 2, 2011

THE COVERING BY STRYPER

I have to be honest here and say that I've never been a Stryper fan. I know, I know. . . Blasphemy! Maybe I can redeem myself by letting you know that my husband has been a long time fan.  

And as I've said before my philosophy of good music surpassing all genres rings true once again. 




I would listen to this album over and over. 

First of all, I LOVE the name of the album!!!! THE COVERING???? That is a FANTASTIC name for an album from a group that has made living and playing for Christ their main focus. 

And the fact that they've chosen to "cover" some of Rock's greatest songs in history is, what I believe, the 2nd reason for the naming of this LP as opposed to the first.
But. . . I could be wrong ; )

I think covering another artist or band's songs can be a hit or miss kind of thing.  Whether the songs sound the same or are different, my opinion is you gotta make it your own to make it worth my listening. 


MAKE IT YOUR OWN

One of my favorite remakes that sounds so much like the original AND current is "Abracadabra" by the Steve Miller Band redone so well by Sugar Ray in 1999.

Dylan's "All Along The Watchtower" was rearranged by music icon, Dave Mason and he strongly encouraged Jimi Hendrix to record it. And the rest is history. 

Stevie Wonder covered The Beatles' "We Can Work It Out" making it so funky. I totally love both versions and feel I'm listening to two different songs that just happen to have the same song title and lyrics. 

Some others worth mentioning. . . 

Muddy Waters' " You Shook Me" covered by Led Zeppelin 

"Voodoo Child" by Jimi Hendrix AMAZINGLY covered by Stevie Ray Vaughan

80's classic "Tainted Love" by Soft Cell originally done by Gloria Jones in 1964. 

Of course, there are soooo many others I could mention, but I'm sure you all get my point. 


THE LISTENING

I had no preconceived ideas of what to expect from this album.
Boy, was I pleasantly surprised! 

Not only is the integrity of every song kept but they stand on their own. Which is exactly what Stryper was going for. And I'm so glad they did.

Track listing is as follows as well as who they covered.

1. Set Me Free (Sweet)
2. Blackout (Scorpions)
3. Heaven and Hell (Black Sabbath)
4. Lights Out (UFO)
5. Carry on Wayward Son (Kansas)
6. Highway Star (Deep Purple)
7. Shout it Out Loud (Kiss)
8. Over the Mountain (Ozzy Osbourne)
9. The Trooper (Iron Maiden)
10. Breaking the Law (Judas Priest)
11. On Fire (Van Halen)
12. Immigrant Song (Led Zeppelin)
And the newest Stryper tune....
13. God



It's hard to say which were my favorites. I liked them all!!! But I will admit I did play Immigrant Song, Highway Star, Breaking the Law over several times. 

I would love to see Stryper do an MTV video of Highway Star, using the old 80's technology, format and style. This song has that classic 80's sound to it and we all know that the 80's are making a comeback.

No matter what your taste, what your faith, or for the staunch Stryper fan...you gotta give it a listen! You will not be disppointed!








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