Friday, September 21, 2007

"Girl, You're Gonna Drive Me To Drinkin' If You Don't Stop Drivin' That Hot Rod Lincoln"

Dear friends,

why I chose this driving topic, I simply have no idea at all, perhaps it is just because I was rather late for work this morning and drove a bit too fast .... perhaps it is just because both songs featured in today's post I always liked a lot and can't get them out of my head.

'Hot Rod Lincoln' was first recorded by Charlie Ryan and the Livingston Brothers back in 1955. Apparently Ryan had a 1941 Lincoln Zephyr 4-door Sedan at the time, which he turned into a Hot Rod over the years and kept it until his death.

The song became a little hit for Johnny Bond a few years later, Johnny being one of Gene Autrey's regular sidekicks at the time and Autrey owned the public rights to the song. Alas I've heard neither of the two versions, but perhaps one of these days ... who knows?

Anyway, Jane Bond's version of 'Hot Rod Lincoln' (mp3), recorded in 1982, is good enough for me. First issued as a 7" on Ear Movie Records (EM2S007) it had 'Come On Up' on the flipside, backing vocals on this track by Susanna, Debbi and Vicki .... and if those names don't ring a bell, you know them as the Bangles. I once saw the Bangles play in the early 80's in a nearby village and briefly met Susanna Hoffs .... well, she stood some 50 metres away and looked in my direction, but that did it for me. That and the fact that she said in an interview to be eating Milky Way (or was it Mars?) Bars whilst having a shower would be pretty cool. I was a 15 year old adolescent at the time, easily aroused I might add, and the thought alone of her showering - with or without eating sweets - .... oh boy! But I digress (and should've posted a Bangles track instead, I think), sorry for that.

Back to Jane Bond & The Undercovermen. Jane Bond came from L.A. and were Lisa Mitchell (as Jane obviously) and Ethan James as (at least one of) the Undercovermen. Multi-instrumentalist James founded Radio Tokyo Studios and produced such acts as Black Flag, Minutemen, Red Hot Chilli Peppers and ... The Bangles (ha!!).

Jane Bond recorded two albums, the first, self-titled one, is from 1981, the second one, 'Politically Correct' seems to be from 1982, although I'm not absolutely certain about that, personally I think it was issued two or even three years later. Anyway I cannot recommend it enough, it is a real treat throughout and can rather easily be found in your favourite second hand record shop, I would think.

The second driving/racing tune, another one that you don't hear all that often, comes from Drag Racing Underground, some side project out of Big Stick, if not Big Stick themselves. Issued as a 7", limited to 500 copies only (far too few, I would think) on Snakeskin Records in 1989, 'Hellfire' (mp3) remained one of my favourites ever since ... and I can only hope you will enjoy it as much as I always did!

As usually: comments and/or requests: highly appreciated!

Take care,


Thursday, September 6, 2007

Vapors - 'Spring Collection'

Hello friends,

the good news is: the mighty Tim Young from Contrast Podcast has replied, saying he wants me on his blog: I feel deeply honoured by his invitation, you can believe me! The bad news is: still I don't owe a microphone and furthermore this week's topic is more than difficult, at least it is for me: 'Back To School' .... I have no idea which song I could possibly contribute ... nevertheless I hope both problems will be solved in due course.

Today's download comes from the Vapors, best known for their 'Turning Japanese', I would think. A brilliant song, therefore it's a shame that it frequently turns up nowadays on cheap Indie/Punk/New Wave - compilations, the ones you find in the bargain bin at the supermarket, you know what I mean.

'Spring Collection' (mp3) though is taken from their 1980 album 'New Clear Days' on United Artist Records. In my eyes it is much more enjoyable than 'Turning Japanese', and this has not much to do with the sell-out of 'TJ': it's just because it's a catchy little number which gets stuck in your head for the whole day ... at least it got stuck in mine. Kindly let me know if the same happened to you, will you? And: enjoy!

Valley Girls - 'Marina Men'

"Yeah, I learnt quite a while ago not to be afraid to wear fashion underwear"... is, I would think, my favourite song line ever. It's the last phrase from the Aquavelva Geek before the fantastic 'Marina Men' (mp3) by the Valley Girls fades out, recorded in 1982 and issued as a 12" on Rhino Records. Deleted, of course. If I only had a scanner I would be able to share with you the wonderful back of the sleeve, which in fact is described as the 'Val Talk To English Dictionary'. The description of the Aquavelva Geek for example reads as thus: "(ak' wa vel'va gek) n. : Distasteful individual hailing from Marina Del Ray area; frequently divorced and on the make." Next to this there is a little comic-style drawing of the Geek with clothing details described below: "1. attempted perm on balding head, 2. fake gold chain, 3. unbuttoned white collar shirt, 4. chest hair wig, 5. Casio alarm watch w/ Pac Man game, 6. Ultra-suede jacket, 7. doubleknit pants, 8. Justin boots. "

The Valley Girls were Chrissy Peters (16), Sonia Gordon (16) and Pamy (18). If I only knew where they are now that we need them ....

Hate me for it, but I love this record. Enjoy .... and let me know what you think about it, please.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

For a starter ....

Well, what can I say? Why did I start this? Frankly speaking, the main reason was that I fell in love with the absolutely brilliant concept of 'Contrast Podcast' and I wanted to participate. Took some time, but there you are ..... as far as I understood it, the only thing I need now is a mike and a good idea about how to prepare my little intro ... in the meantime I will try to post a few gems I always liked a lot: perhaps you know them already and are happy to hear them again. But perhaps they are new to you and give you as much pleasure as they gave to me .... either way: enjoy.