Thursday, 28 February 2013

My CD Collection 2

Just to clarify my filing system: artists are filed alphabetically, but within each performer's section, albums are filed chronologically, so that, for example, in today's six CDs by AC/DC, High Voltage appears before Black Ice. So anyway, here's part two in a project that i probably won't live long enough to finish....

From ABBA to AC/DC in two installments, a juxtaposition that suggests the eclectic nature of my tastes in music.

Oh, and here's the latest playlist (with nothing by ABBA or AC/DC anywhere):

Black Country Communion -- Afterglow
Joan Osborne - Righteous Love
Ofra Haza - Chai
Marillion - Sounds That Can't Be Made
Alanis Morissette - Havoc And Bright Lights
B.B. King - Live At Cook County Jail
Radiohead - Hail To The Thief
Jeff Berlin - Aneurhythms
Snowy White - Highway To The Sun

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

My CD Collection

Not sure how long i'll maintain interest in this, but i've decided to post my CD collection, cover pics thereof. In alphabetical order, too.  Just the CDs, though -- the vinyl albums and the music cassettes may come later but as i have well over 2000 CDs i will have a while to think about it.

So here's the first seven:

And, just to prove that i have more than ABBA CDs:

This could be fun. It could also take years LOL.

Saturday, 23 February 2013


The past couple of days at work have been horrible -- can i apply for a disability pension on the grounds of work-induced hypertension, insomnia and cirrhosis? Probably not.

Anyway, all i have today is a playlist:

Keith Emerson Band - Three Fates Project
Ray Davies - 80 Days Demos
The Incredible String Band - Wee Tam & The Big Huge
Snakecharmer - Snakecharmer
Wishbone Ash -- Glasgow Apollo, 1977
The Kathryn Tickell Band - Instrumental
Rory Gallagher - Jinx
Kirsty MacColl - Galore
Vivaldi - Mandolin And Lute Concertos
Various Artists - Stay Awake
The Tea Party - Seven Circles

Saturday, 16 February 2013

Quotation of the day ~ Sandy Ward Bell: The powerful chords that emanated from the radio heated me from the inside out, like a microwave.

I've been blethering quite a bit of late about radio stations, ever since the one i used to listen to went into the toilet last year.  As i wrote recently, nowadays i seem to be switching back and forth between K-SHE from St Louis Missouri ( ("The rock of St Louis" is their motto) and  K-Rock from Kingston Ontario ( The former is an excellent choice for classic rock (although it is very disconcerting to hear advertisements for hospitals!), the latter plays a wonderful mix of old and new (plus it has Wendy Boomer, one of my favourite djs from the station i used to listen to). (That's her down there.)

It's difficult to choose between the two. Obviously K-SHE is no good for my local news and weather, but whenever i decide that it's time to switch to K-ROCK in order to get my injection of info for Ontario, K-SHE plays a song i don't want to turn off. But they do have occasionally lapses in taste. Pretty much anything by Aerosmith, and i'm gone!

I thought for a while, why bother to try to choose a favourite between the two? I can have two favourites, for different reasons, can't i? Sort of like girlfriends. (Note to Astrid: that was a joke, dear.) <koff>  But something happened the other day which firmly moved me, favouritism-wise, into the K-SHE camp. They played Rory Gallagher!  And here's the proof, a screen shot, in case you don't believe me:

I hadn't heard Rory on the radio in well over twenty years, and i nearly fell off my chair. In fact, it was so unexpected that i didn't even recognise the song at first. I thought, this sounds familiar, what the heck is it...

Rory was, as you probably know, the greatest blues-rock guitarist of all-time, ever.

Shamefully and unaccountably, he's mostly forgotten nowadays and although he sold over fifteen million records during the course of his career (tragically, he died in 1995) he's never played on the radio anymore. But! K-SHE to the rescue, and if i do have to choose a favourite radio station now, they get the nod. Sorta makes me want to move to Missouri....

And here's my recent playlist:

Rory Gallagher - Jinx
Snakecharmer - Snakecharmer
Junior Wells -- Live Around The World
Argent -- Don Kirshner's Rock Concert (bootleg)
Fred Neil - Fred Neil
Rory Gallagher - Mt de Marsan 1985
Rory Gallagher - Live At Montreux
Marillion - Radiation
Van Morrison - Into The Music
Weezer - The Lion And The Witch

Saturday, 9 February 2013

I Do Not Have O.C.D.

Quotation of the day ~ Jilly Cooper: Never drink black coffee at lunch; it will keep you awake in the afternoon.

I do not have Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, contrary to rumour. Nor do i have A.D.D. or P.M.S., and i haven't touched L.S.D. in forty years. So much for acronyms....

I do get obsessed occasionally, though.  Once every couple of years or so.  The last time, it was with the music of Seether.  I heard their album "Holding Onto Strings Better Left To Fray," (which i still think is a stupid title, btw) and loved it so much that i simply had to have their entire output on CD.

Prior to that, it was the writing of Ian Rankin, and particularly his novels about the cantankerous Inspector Rebus of the Lothian & Borders Police.  I read "Exit Music" -- which was, at that time, the last book in the Rebus series -- and simply had to have every book he'd ever written. There are a lot! And i'm still, now, missing one title. I have it on order at my favourite local bookshop, but they seem to be having some trouble getting it (it's a very early one which Mr Rankin is not particularly proud of, but i don't care, i want it).

Now, today -- actually, since December -- it is this:

Quite a few months ago, a friend, whose opinions i generally trust (in spite of his devotion to Dr Who) recommended to me -- in fact raved about -- a film called "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo." I wasn't convinced, i'd heard of it but it didn't seem like my type of thing at all and besides, i don't like tattoos on women. But i downloaded it anyway.  (There were two versions, an American one and a Swedish one. I downloaded the American one.)

In December, i finally got around to watching it, and had the top of my head blown off.

Starring Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara. I was so impressed, i was compelled to download the Swedish version, from two years earlier:

What does it say there? Magnificent, dazzling, heart-stopping?

Well, yes, it is. All of these.

So -- and who says that illegal downloads hurt business? -- i simply had to have the DVDs. I bought the American one first, watched it again, and decided that it was marginally superior to the Swedish version. But then, went to my favourite local DVD shop and discovered that the Swedish version was available as part of a box set called "The Millennium Trilogy." And i bought the box. And when i watched the Swedish version for the second time, i decided that it was marginally superior to the American version.

Then i watched the second film in the series:

I was hooked. No question. "The Girl Who Played With Fire" is even better. (A number of people have said to me that they thought that "Dragon Tattoo" started too slowly. That certainly isn't a problem with "Played With Fire"!) An American version is in the works. Well, of course, i'll have to have that, too....

And then the third:

Yes, like it says there to the left. Breathtaking and incredible.

So, yes, of course, then i had to start reading the books, and am, as i write, about half-way into vol. 2 in the trilogy and it's compelling stuff, un-put-downable, and the books expand on many things that were, of necessity, omitted from the films.

Lisbeth Salander is such a magnificent creation -- a societally dysfunctional left-brained genius, an expert researcher and computer hacker. Apparently, Stieg Larsson's inspiration was Pippi Longstocking. No, really! Pippi was also dysfunctional ... and immensely strong. (I've never read any of Astrid Lindgren's books about Pippi, but i will.)

I'm also working on a theory.  The Millennium Trilogy may in fact be a love story. In "Dragon Tattoo," Lisbeth and the journalist Mikael Blomqvist -- whose nickname is Kalle Blomqvist, after the character in the Pippi Longstocking books -- work together very closely. I don't want to give anything away here....




She literally saves his life.

In part two, they haven't seen each other or had any contact at all in a couple of years, in fact she seems to have deliberately removed him from her life. But at the end of the film, Mikael finds her -- at a scene of much violence, she is half-dead, covered with dirt and blood, and he holds her and says words that rip my heart out. He embraces her and says, "I'm here. I'm here." Devastating in its simplicity.

So, where was i? Oh, yes, affirming that i don't have A.D.D.

Here's the most recent playlist, just a short one:

Curved Air - Second Album
The Kinks - Live At Kelvin Hall
Richard Thompson - Cabaret Of Souls
Black Country Communion - Afterglow

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

The Decline And Fall Of 94.9 The Rock

Well, it's over. My love affair with the Oshawa (Ontario) radio station The Rock (, after a really bad year, has finally come to an end.

When i first discovered them, four (?) years ago, i thought that they were the best radio station i had heard since the glory days of CFNY (The Spirit Of Radio) back in the 80's.  They were innovative (the very first day i listened they played some Cheech & Chong, and how often do you hear them on commercial radio?), they played music i hadn't heard in ages but also played cutting-edge stuff. They were the first place i ever heard The Arkells, Seether, and Big Wreck, for example.

I listened mostly in the mornings -- the Craig (Robertson) & Rita (MacInally) show, and they were hilarious, obviously having heaps of fun and it was great.  But there were other deejays i liked, too: Rockin' Rod and Vanessa Murphy were both friendly voices, i enjoyed their shows immensely, mostly because of their personalities.

But, at the beginning of 2012 Vanessa went on maternity leave and then something else happened: Rockin' Rod was let go. I have no idea why -- i thought he was one of their most popular jocks. (He now works at -- it's what i call music for dentists' offices: safe and inoffensive. I rarely listen.)

Then Rita disappeared. No idea what happened to her. I saw a couple of her posts on Twitter in which she said things like, oh, well that's the radio biz, but i have no idea where she is now.

It gets worse. At one time, one of their slogans was, "I haven't heard that song since...." -- suggestive of the fact that they played a lot of fairly obscure music.  It changed. The new slogan should have been, "I haven't heard that song since ... two hours ago."  The playlist shrank drastically.

I fled. I started listening to a lot of different stations, including from Auckland New Zealand, from California -- both great stations but neither one very good for local news and weather.  I even listened (for a while) to a Stratford station: and they play some decent music but the on-air personalities are complete yawns.

And, slowly, i went back to The Rock.

Craig Robertson had a new morning show host, Wendy Boomer, and she was great! The music wasn't as varied as it once had been, but i decided to stick with them. I downloaded their app to my smartphone and all was okay.  Not great, but okay.

My contentment was short-lived. Craig quit on Dec. 21st, to pursue his dream of a career as a musician. Good on you, Craig, my friend, i wish you well.

Vanessa Murphy returned but left after a week. I only was able to listen to her once, and i believe that she now works here: -- more music for dentists' offices. And then Wendy Boomer quit, to return to her home town of Kingston, where she's now at

This morning, i listened to The Rock's new morning show -- and it'll probably be the last time i ever do.  The new guys, Craig Venn & Mike Luck, are humourless and the music is just the same ole stuff they were playing the last time i listened.

So, my routine has become: first thing in the morning. A great classic rock station, they really do play a load of great music that i haven't heard in yonks, but as they're from St Louis, Missouri, they're no good for local news and weather. So i switch to  OK, Kingston is nearly 400 kilometres east of me, but it's closer than St Louis!

But, i write sadly, it's the end of an era. Bye, bye, The Rock. I have removed their app from my fondleslab (but added K-SHE's!)

And here's my recent playlist:

Ten Years After - Essential
Kansas - Song For America
Wishbone Ash -- Live At The Glasgow Apollo
Rival Sons -- Head Down
The Pasadena Roof Orchestra -- A Talking Picture
Quintessence - Dive Deep
Van der Graaf Generator - Vital