Posts Tagged ‘Santana’

Not Today

May 15, 2022

Originally posted August 17, 2009

Sorry, but whatever it is I’m going to do this week, you’ll have to wait for it. I hope to be here tomorrow with some cover versions to add to our discussion of last week.

A Six-Pack of Waiting
“Wait and See” by Fats Domino, Imperial 5467 [1957]
“Waiting” by Santana from Santana [1969]
“Waitin’ For Me At The River” by Potliquor from Louisiana Rock and Roll [1973]
“There’s Always Someone Waiting” by the Average White Band from Average White Band [1974]
“Wait” by Steve Forbert from Jackrabbit Slim [1979]
“Waiting for the Miracle” by Leonard Cohen from The Future [1992]

Saturday Single No. 765

December 11, 2021

With some errands to run and a North Dakota State football game set for late morning, we’re going to take the quick and random way out this morning by playing some Games With Numbers with today’s date. We’re going to look for a Billboard Hot 100 from December 11 during the years of my sweet spot – 1969-75 – and then we’re going to see what was at No. 23 that week.

And that puts us back – as I thought it might – in 1971, fifty years ago. And the No. 23 record fifty years ago this week was one that has – as far as I can tell – never been mentioned during the nearly fifteen years this blog has trudged along. (Oddly, though, the Texas Gal and I listened to it in the car the other day.)

Fifty years ago this week, “Everybody’s Everything” by Santana was at No. 23, coming back down the chart after peaking at No. 12. A note in Joel Whitburn’s Top Pop Singles says that the tune was originally recorded as “Karate” by the Emperor’s (yep, with an unnecessary apostrophe). That record peaked at No. 55 in late January 1967.

Here’s Santana’s “Everybody’s Everything,” today’s Saturday Single.

Still Catching Up On The ’90s

August 19, 2011

Originally posted October 8, 2008

I got to the CD party way, way late.

As the 1990s dawned, folks all around me were buying CDs of new music as well as replacing their long-suffering LPs (and then selling those LPs at places like Cheapo’s in south Minneapolis). Meanwhile, like a man watching a lake dry up, fearing the drought to come, I was watching the amount of new music available to me diminish seemingly day by day.

I’d seen the first signs of drought when I lived in Minot, North Dakota. Several stores that sold new records when I moved to town in the late summer of 1987 sold only CDs and cassettes by mid-1989, when I loaded another truck and moved back to Minnesota. Other music stores I’d frequented had far less vinyl for sale when I left town than they’d had two years earlier, all except the pawnshop, where the amount of vinyl increased greatly (though I spent little time there, for some reason).

By the time I lived in the Twin Cities, beginning in the autumn of 1991, new vinyl was rare. There might have been more, but I can recall right now only five newly released albums I found on vinyl during the 1990s: Bruce Springsteen’s Lucky Town, Human Touch and The Ghost of Tom Joad; the box set of Robert Johnson: The Complete Recordings; and Counting Crows’ Recovering the Satellites. Not being in a position to buy a CD player, I turned to cassettes to keep up on new music.

Radio helped, too. Not Top 40; I’d lost interest in hits sometime during the 1980s, but I listened frequently to Cities 97, a station that I think has a deeper playlist than most available in the Twin Cities. There, I heard some familiar stuff and a lot of new stuff by artists I was interested in learning about. Through radio and cassettes, I kept up with my old favorites and some new friends from the 1980s – Indigo Girls, Suzanne Vega and a few others – and got pointed toward some new performers: Big Head Todd & the Monsters, Toad the Wet Sprocket, the Waterboys, October Project and the BoDeans come easily to mind.

But cassettes are awkward things, a declaration that will be news to nobody. It’s difficult to cue up a specific song or to skip one. So I didn’t invest in tapes the way I had already invested in vinyl. The result was that I learned a little less about new music during the 1990s than I had in previous decades. Since I got my first CD player in 1998 and then ventured on-line in early 2000, I’ve learned a fair amount about the decade that I spent mostly in Minneapolis. A little more than ten percent of the mp3s in my collection come from the 1990s, so here’s what the decade sounds like when I do a random program:

A Baker’s Dozen from the 1990s

“Sweet Spot” by Linda Ronstadt and Emmylou Harris from Western Wall: Tucson Sessions, 1999

“Children in Bloom” by Counting Crows from Recovering the Satellites, 1996

“Ghost of Johnny Ray” by Boo Hewerdine from Ignorance, 1992

“Thunder” by Jimmy Witherspoon from Back To The Streets: The Music of Don Covay, 1993

“Shake That Thang” by Long John Baldry from It Still Ain’t Easy, 1991

“Bordertown” by the Walkabouts from Setting The Woods On Fire, 1994

“Blue Yodel No. 9” by Jerry Garcia, David Grisman and John Kahn from Songs of Jimmie Rodgers, 1997

“Do You Like The Way” by Santana featuring Lauryn Hill and Cee-Lo from Supernatural, 1999

“Need A Little Help” by Billy Ray Cyrus from Trail of Tears, 1996

“Follow” by Paula Russell from West of Here, 1999

“Skies the Limit” by Fleetwood Mac from Behind the Mask, 1990

“Ghel Moma” by the Bulgarian State Radio and Television Female Vocal Choir from Mystère Des Voix Bulgares, Vol. 4, 1998

“Lives In The Balance” by Richie Havens from Cuts to the Chase, 1994

A few notes:

The Linda Ronstadt-Emmylou Harris collaboration, Western Wall: The Tucson Sessions, is a gem. The two had worked together before, of course, most notably during the Trio sessions with Dolly Parton that produced two albums. The result of this collaboration is the sound of two voices and two souls performing in harmony.

Back To The Streets: The Music of Don Covay is one of the multitude of tribute anthologies that began to pop up in the 1990s. Covay’s catalog of soul and R&B songs is immense and truly great, though I believe he’d be immortal if “Chain of Fools” had been the only thing he ever wrote. And the CD is a delight, featuring some intriguing choices for the vocals, such as Todd Rundgren, Gary U.S. Bonds, Bobby Womack, Iggy Pop and others. Witherspoon’s fine performance on “Thunder” was likely one of his last recordings. The Covay tribute was released in 1993 and Witherspoon crossed over in 1997 at the age of 77.

I don’t know much about the Walkabouts. I came across “Bordertown” on another blog – I forget which one – and liked it a lot. Having it pop up at random today is a nice stroke of luck, as I’m going to add Setting the Woods on Fire to my short list of CDs to find soon. All-Music Guide says the album is a “sweeping, stately record” that “owes a great deal to the Stones’ Exile on Main Street.” Sounds like a good deal to me.

Mention Billy Ray Cyrus and most folks flash back to 1992 and “Achy Breaky Heart,’ which dominated the country charts and made it to No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100. I looked for his Trail of Tears album simply because it includes a cover of J.J. Cale’s “Crazy Mama,” which turned out to be a pretty good version. Trail of Tears turned out to be a pretty good and surprisingly rootsy country album, which surprised me.

“Skies the Limits” (which makes no sense as a title to me) is the opening track from the album Fleetwood Mac recorded after replacing Lindsey Buckingham with Billy Burnette and Rick Vito. Behind the Mask is a pretty uninspired effort with a couple of good tracks on it. Unhappily, neither “Save Me” nor “Freedom” popped up.

Jackson Browne’s 1986 song “Lives in the Balance” was still relevant in 1994 when Richie Havens made it his own on Cuts to the Chase, and it’s still relevant today.

Saturday Single No. 214

December 4, 2010

There are many reasons I’m glad that we left the Twin Cities and moved to St. Cloud eight years ago, but I was reminded of one of them yesterday: It began to snow about three o’clock in the afternoon, and by the time we got to what passes for rush hour here, the snow was fairly thick, the winds were swirling and the streets were a little slippery.

Weather like that slows things down of course, and when the Texas Gal got home – she was able to leave work a little early yesterday – traffic wasn’t moving very fast. And I thought to myself that having her deal with a snow crawl in St. Cloud with its sixty-thousand or so people is far more preferable to being in similar circumstances in the Twin Cities with its three million or so folks. I’m a stay-at-home now, of course, but during the 1990s, I spent enough snowy mornings and afternoons on the Twin Cities freeways to know that I never want to do so again. Nor do I want to worry about the Texas Gal being caught up in major traffic out there. So that’s one big plus in St. Cloud’s favor.

And then I thought about how I passed the time as the traffic crawled on those wintry days. I don’t think any of the vehicles I drove in those days even had a tape player, so I was dependent on the radio. And I began to wonder what would a Top 40 listener have heard during a snow crawl during the first week of December? So I thought I’d dig through the charts for the years this blog generally deals with and see what might have been coming out of the speakers at No. 12.

We’ll go with odd numbers here and start with 1963. The No. 12 song during the first week of that December, when I was ensconced in fifth grade at Lincoln Elementary, was Sam Cooke’s “Little Red Rooster,” a bluesy piece of R&B with a superb organ break. I don’t know the record well, and I’m going to have to listen to it again very soon. The record was on its way to No. 11.

The twelfth spot in the first chart of December 1965 brings us “Run, Baby Run (Back Into My Arms)” by the Newbeats. They’re better remembered today for “Bread and Butter,” which went to No. 2 in 1964. I don’t recall hearing “Run, Baby Run” during that December of seventh grade, but I happened to come across it the other day and thought it was a fascinating mix of 4 Seasons vocals and Motown backing that peaked right at No. 12.

In December of 1967, I was in ninth grade and was more aware than ever of the music my peers were listening to, even if I wasn’t exactly listening to it intently. Sitting at No. 12 during the first week of that month was Cher’s “You Better Sit Down Kids,” which Wikipedia says was “arguably the first [single] ever released that dealt with divorce, as divorce was a somewhat taboo subject in the 1960s.” The record was on its way to No. 9

By the time December of 1969 rolled around, I was listening to Top 40 along with the rest of the high school world. At No. 12 during that month’s first week was a song that still brings me a smile (and is one I probably should have installed in this year’s Ultimate Jukebox): “Smile A Little Smile For Me,” the only hit for the British studio group Flying Machine. The song was on its way down the chart after peaking at No. 5.

I was just about wrapping up my first – and disastrous – quarter of college when December of 1971 arrived. My listening would soon begin shifting toward album rock as I began to spend more and more of my time in the offices and studios of KVSC, the St. Cloud State student radio station. But I’m pretty sure I heard that week’s No. 12 record both in those studios and on my radio at home, though it rarely makes oldies playlists today: “Everybody’s Everything” by Santana, which actually peaked at No. 12.

During the first week of December 1973, I was hitch-hiking my way through Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands despite the fact that there was little traffic on the roads. (The oil-exporting nations had decided to send very little oil to Western Europe to punish the Europeans for their support of Israel in a brief October war.) Hitch-hiking during an oil embargo was perhaps not the brightest move, as I walked a lot and busted my budget taking trains. One thing I didn’t do was listen to U.S. Top 40 radio, which meant I didn’t hear Marie Osmond’s cover of “Paper Roses,” which was sitting at No. 12, having earlier peaked at No. 5.

I was living in the Twin Cities and sitting in the occasional snow crawl on my way to my internship at a television station during December 1975, and I imagine that I likely heard the record that was at No. 12 during that month’s first week: “Love Rollercoaster” by the Ohio Players. In a season of good funk and lots of disco, “Love Rollercoaster” was as good as anything else in the Top Fifteen and was on its way to spending a week at No. 1.

The first chart of December 1977 came out two days after I first saw my byline in the Monticello Times. I have no idea what I did that first Saturday of December that year, but I imagine that I listened to the radio for at least a part of it. And sitting at No. 12 that week was Dave Mason’s “We Just Disagree,” which I’ve always thought was a pretty good single. The record was at No. 12 for the second straight week and would go no higher.

And we come to December 1979, during the time when I missed a lot of popular music and don’t recall a lot of what I did hear. The No. 12 record during the first week of that month was Anne Murray’s “Broken Hearted Me,” which I did not recall until I listened to the first few bars this morning. I’m sure I heard the record on the FM station we regularly listened to at home at the time, but it obviously never impressed me much. The record spent one more week at No. 12 before moving back down the chart.

And our tenth record of the morning in this little experiment – No. 12 during the first week of December 1981 – is actually a pretty good one and one that I do recall hearing coming out of the radio in our living room just outside Monticello: “Leather and Lace” by Stevie Nicks with help from Don Henley. That was a time, of course, when it seemed like one could not turn on the radio without hearing something that had some connection with Fleetwood Mac: Production assistance, guest vocals, solo recordings or even records by the band itself, and to my ears, “Leather and Lace” is one of the better of those side projects. It was on its way to No. 6.

So, there we have ten tunes from the first weeks of Decembers long past, and – with the exception of the Marie Osmond single and perhaps the Anne Murray record – they make up a pretty good stretch of listening. But which one do I pull out for extra attention? Well, I was reminded as I dug this morning how good Santana’s “Everybody’s Everything” is, so it’s actually an easy choice for this week’s Saturday Single: