(93 ‘Til line from Hiero + Adapt)
Question from Morgan: What would you rank as the top three albums you enjoyed in the last ten years that would have surprised the guy you were back in 2003? Follow up: Same question, but for the guy you were in 1993.
Answer: The 2003-2013 question is hard to answer in the way you’re asking if only because 2003 marked an important shift in my thinking about/relationship to music. It was the year I re-embraced pop music in a profound way, leaving [...]
Continue reading 93 TIL + MORE
It’s probably not a coincidence that these four were the least easy to “categorize” and therefore, ended up by their lonesome…except to keep company with one another. Don’t call them afterthoughts though – all were heavy in the rotation this past year.
For real…I thought I didn’t like this song much, (mostly) because A) it’s overplayed way too much at sporting events and B) much as I like “the hook = the song” this pushes things a bit too far. But that said, “Na Na Hey Hey” has a delicious backstory that I’m still not 100% clear on except to say that the group “Steam” never really existed outside of this song and supposedly, it was built from a drum track from a previous single by one of the core songwriters.1
The thing is though…I totally forgot that the song has [...]
Continue reading NA NA HEY HEY, BREAKS BREAKS
My latest KCET piece is on the new spate of record stores that have opened in L.A. over the last few years, many of which are out in my neck of the woods on the eastside. Of the batch, my favorite has been the Record Jungle, Andy Perez’s spot out in Montebello. As I suggest in the piece, it’s got an old mom-and-pop feel to it but Andy knows his soul, funk and Latin records on par with the best, upper-end boutiques. His is like the best of all worlds and over the last year or so, [...]
Continue reading IN THE JUNGLE, BABE
Was there a more striking video this year (not featuring a Korean rapper rodeo-dancing)?
Every year or so, Nas releases a song that makes you think, “OMG, Nas is back!” And of course, he’ll then go on and disappoint us but I still that moment where I still believe. I’m still hoping to figure out what the sample that begins the third verse is.
I owe my discovery of the Alabama Shakes to friend/colleague Ann Powers who wrote about them on NPR early on. I wasn’t as floored with the album but this cut just [...]
Continue reading 2012 REWIND: FIVE SONGS THAT LEFT ME BANGING ON THE DASHBOARD (IN VIDEO FORM)