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Archive for the tag “entertainment”

Happy Birthday Les Paul!

FILE - In this Feb. 26, 2007 file photo, Guitar legend Les Paul performs at the Iridium Jazz Club in New York. Paul, 94, the guitarist and inventor who changed the course of music with the electric guitar and multitrack recording and had a string of hits, died, Thursday, Aug. 13, 2009 in White Plains, N.Y.,  according to Gibson Guitar. (AP Photo/ Colin Archer, file)

Les Paul (photo swiped from Google search)

Happy Birthday to the late Les Paul — he would have been 100 today!

I’m very fortunate to have caught one of his performances before his death at the age of 94.

Here he is performing one of my favorite guitar songs, “Sleepwalk” (on his 90th birthday!)

And in his younger years, with wife Mary Ford

And some more amazing-ness!

Welcome to My Nightmare, A Dream About Alice Cooper (and Bob Ezrin!)

Alice-Cooper-offstage_EDIT_w1Alice Cooper (photo by Roni Hoffman)

Welcome to my nightmare.

No, it wasn’t a real nightmare, it was a cool dream actually. That I was a writer for Creem magazine and I was interviewing Alice Cooper.

Alice CreemMy dream was not that far fetched. I was a music journalist most of my adult life and have written for publications like The Aquarian Arts Weekly, Punk magazine, and kevchino music. I’m also interviewed many artists for the entertainment sections of The Montclair Times, The Patch online, etc.

My adventures are documented in my first book: “On the Guest List Adventures of a Music Journalist”

But, no, I’ve never interviewed Alice. I never even thought of it. There’s so much music out there and while Alice Cooper isn’t one of my top 10 favorites, I do love him lots.

I was aware of Alice since childhood but what inspired me to buy his album “Alice Cooper Goes to Hell” in 1976 at the age of 12 was the song, “I Never Cry” (which I first had as a single). The B-side of “I Never Cry” was “Go to Hell.” I played both songs repeatedly and then got the album. Alice Cooper purists poo-pooed that album (and other stuff that Bob Ezrin produced). But what stood out most about my dream was that I asked Alice about Bob Ezrin. I told my husband this and he laughed.

Bob Ezrin, as a producer, knew how to attract the likings of young girls — at least me. Hey, I was 12 and listening to really cool music, but still, I was a girl and I wasn’t a musician either. And like most girls, I needed a softer touch, right? It’s perfectly normal that I’d be diggin’ something that was semi-commercial and borderline “not cool” such as “Goes to Hell” and “Welcome to My Nightmare.” And at the same time I was buying other Bob Ezrin produced records like “KISS: Destroyer.”

To this day I will argue with any Alice Cooper fan that “Alice Cooper Goes to Hell” is the BEST and most under-rated Alice Cooper album ever.

“Goes to Hell” is poetic genius. So much so that when I was a spoken word poet in the early 1990s, I spoke those lyrics as a “cover poem” to an applauding audience. “Goes to Hell” was my psych-song before I went on stage before a live audience. How can anyone deny such a clever tune?

And now, for the single 45-rpm record that I wore out as a little girl. The passion in the vocals sends chills up my spine, almost 40 years later. But “I Never Cry.”

When I was 12 and I’d spend endless hours listening to music, I’d display the album I was listening too. When “I Am The Coolest” was playing, my great grandmother was standing in the doorway listening to Alice saying, “I am the coolest, I am the baddest, I am the greatest …”

And looking at the cover to “Goes to Hell” she deadpanned, “But you’re ugly as hell.”

And, finally, the grand finale of “Goes to Hell” — “I’m Going Home” which wraps up the album beautifully. When I saw the comments on You Tube, I was touched to read that someone buried their father, who loved Alice Cooper, to this song.

Bob-EzrinBob Ezrin, the mastermind behind some of my favorite albums.

Relating to Morrissey on His Birthday … Kinda!


A very happy 56th to dear Morrissey.

Morrissey was a tad inspiring to me when I needed some music to include in my upcoming book, “Love Cats” — available on Amazon by June:

“Love Cats” is a fiction story that takes place during the 1980s and there’s a heavy duty gothic and dark wave soundtrack. You can read all about here:

There’s a scene where lead character Beck Stewart is down in the dumps over his break-up with Janey Peyton and one of the appropriate songs, for him, is “How Soon is Now” by The Smiths (co-written by Morrissey and Johnny Marr).

I don’t think I’ve ever felt that low, but for me, “How Soon is Now” was a favorite nightclub song to dance to in the 1980s. Oh that Marr guitar is so sweet!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Morrissey has another song that really speaks to me — in reverse. It’s the song, “We Hate it When Our Friends Become Successful” as I’m quite the opposite, I’ll be the one cheering you on!

When my first book, “On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist”(  came out last year, I got a ton of support from friends. And then a ton of flack from fake friends who couldn’t handle little me having a book published. (Oh, the stories I could tell you!)

That is when Morrissey’s song popped into my head … and I related from the opposite end, as I was the one being hated for an accomplishment. And it didn’t feel too good. But then again, they must not feel too good about themselves to behave in such a jealous manner, right?

I’m almost positive Morrissey wrote that song about himself, yet never expected a mere commoner like myself to relate so heavily to it.

But lucky me, I’m not a jealous type and I say to all my friends and family:

Write that book, create that song, find your soul mate, save a puppy or a kitten, get that ring on your finger, hooray for your new car, travel the world, lose 50 pounds, get a new job, get a sassy new look, and a whole lot more!!

I wish you all the blessings because I LOVE IT WHEN MY FRIENDS BECOME SUCCESSFUL!

SAM_4811Signing autographs = somewhat successful 🙂

It’s nearly laughable, ha-ha-ha-ha-ha

And now, in closing of my tribute, enjoy something truly beautiful, by Morrissey:

Happy Birthday Les McKeown

LesLes McKeown

Happy 59th to the lead singer, during the most successful time of The Bay City Rollers in the 1970s. Currently they seem to still be going strong with Les leading the band again.

Check it out:

The Rollers are one band I didn’t get to see live, though I did meet them when they were recording an album in New Jersey, back around 1981, though Les wasn’t in the band during that time.

Here are some hit songs from their early years, with Les on lead vocal:

Happy Birthday to Paul Cowsill!

SAM_5951Far left, PAUL COWSILL

Back: Me and my husband, Dennis

Front: Susan Cowsill and Bob Cowsill

(From Summer 2014)

Happy Birthday to a very down to earth legend — Paul Cowsill! It was such a blessing to go see The Cowsills over the summer when they performed in our neighboring state Pennsylvania. Here’s the blog I wrote back in August:

Enjoy a few great tunes!

Happy National Saxophone Day!


Happy National Saxophone Day!

The party is here! Here’s some good ones (and to make it extra special, they are all from the 1980s!):


Music for National Singles Awareness Day

singles awarenessSingles and loving it!

Today is National Singles Awareness Day, a humorous holiday celebrated by those not in a romantic relationship.

But when I hear “singles” I’m not thinking of unpaired people, as a music lover what comes to mind is those 45 rpm records, the little ones. Since I love music so much, I have a 45 rpm spindle (used for singles) tattooed on my wrist, though my wrist is small the tattoo artist had to re-size the spindle in his outline.

So to celebrate records — the little ones of course — I want to share some of my favorite singles I had as a kid and  teenager. And for extra fun, I’m going to post the ones that actually show the sleeve or label. ENJOY, it’s quite the variety. (And some of these I played when I deejayed in NYC!)

Daniel Ash

danielash-698x1024Daniel Ash (photo swiped from Google)

Today is the birthday of Daniel Ash and I’m a great fan of his work. In 2002 when he debuted a solo record, not his first, but the first for Psycho Baby Records, I gave him a stellar review for the column “On that Note” in the Montclair Times.

Here are a bunch of songs from his vast collection of work:


Bela Lugosi’s Dead

She’s in Parties

Tones on Tail


Love & Rockets

Ball of Confusion


Foolish Thing Desire

This Love

RIP Pepe Marchello, of The Good Rats

Good RatsThe Good Rats

RIP to Pepe Marchello, of The Good Rats (from Long Island) who died a few days ago of a heart attack at his home. He was 68.

The Good Rats were one of my first concerts. I saw them in a shopping mall (Willowbrook, Wayne, New Jersey) at age 13 or 14.

They were a lot of fun and tossed rubber rats into the audience. I regret that it was the only time I got to see them.

Pepe will be missed!

Just Found Me a Lady

Fireball Express

The Truth is Gone

Peppi Marchello - Good RatsPepe

The Good Rats album coverI LOVE this album cover!

Parquet Courts

parquet courts

I just heard this band today on Sirius and I’m excited!

This song, “Stoned and Starving” has a very yesteryear authenticity, reminding me of early Modern Lovers.

Check it out:

Parquet Courts – “Stoned and Starving”

Can’t pinpoint exactly which Modern Lovers song it reminds me of though.

Maybe this one?

Modern Lovers – The Old World

Or maybe another. I’ll figure it out, I always do.

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