Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Eric Clapton

Dad pulled this one out one late summer afternoon. It was a compilation album, although I didn't know it at the time. I looked at the cover, which had a cartoon drawing of a guy playing the guitar, which looked like something from The Electric Company. The first song I heard from it was "Let It Rain", and I was hooked immediately by the "falling rain" notes on the piano, reminding me of that Doors song I heard a little while back. What a cool song! So what if it was nice outside? There were also some good cuts on it, like "Layla" and "Bell Bottom Blues". I still remember that sunny afternoon with a smile whenever I hear these songs now.
This was another of this guy's albums in the collection. I kept hearing some song about something called "cocaine" and that "she didn't lie"...I had no idea what the song was about. It was around this time that we took ownership of a pair of rabbits that had been left behind when the people next door to us moved out. One was white, and the other one was reddish-brown. Red Fred immediately christened them--respectively--Cocaine and Quaalude. So, then, whenever I heard that song about cocaine, I thought of our new white rabbit!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Fleetwood Mac

I remember seeing this one back at the Blue House...
Dad played the song "Hypnotized", and I was immediately hooked by its opening drum riff in 6/8 time, and the song's minor chordings. I wasn't sure what was going on on the album cover, although I liked the illustration of the gorilla and the old wise man on the beach, even if it made no sense to me. On the inside cover, with the black-and-white group shot, I thought guitarist Bob Welch was Dr. Johnny Fever from WKRP In Cincinnati.
At the Red House, I began hearing a couple of their subsequent albums with some regularity. I took their word that it was the same band, although there were a couple of new faces in the band, but what I heard was pleasant enough. When the newest album, Tusk, was out, Dad bought a copy of it at the Sears store downtown the same day he bought a new LXI stereo system, which was going to replace the old but beloved Zenith stereo, and that was one of the first things we heard on it.
One amusing incident happened a year later at the next house we lived in, with their next album. Dad had just gotten the Live album in the mail from the Columbia House record-club, and there was a bit of a windstorm going on outside. Halfway through the first side of the album, the power went out...for only about fifteen second, and then came back on. The stereo was still on, as was the turntable, but when the power came back on, the surge coming on so abruptly had caused the turntable to spin backwards! Dad turned it off right away, but we all thought that was funny, and I remembered that any time that the album was played after that.
In the later '90s, when the Rumours-era band was doing their reunion tour, Dad went back and began collectin some of the really early stuff by them, from when they were a hard-core British blues band. Then Play On became an instant favorite, despite being a downer, and then we got the videotape compilation The Early Years, showcasing songs from the blues years. I really took notice of Mick Fleetwood's drumming, as I was just starting to play drums for The Pace at that point. I began buying up anything from that lineup of the band, especially as various compilations and live albums were really starting to come out, and I really enjoyed their works.