Spitball Army

Fire all of your guns at once and explode into space.

Spitball Army random header image

Fred FM playlist: 1 August 2010 “Stolen from Nancy”

August 1st, 2010 · 8 Comments

Where did your musical influences come from?  Whether you’re a musician or just a stereo knob turner like me, your musical tastes – if you have some (and that’s not being snotty…some people truly could care less about music) – were formed by certain people or experiences early in your life.

Before going to college and discovering the vast world of classical music, all that performance-art cerebral stuff, jazz, the Talking Heads and Elvis Costello, I spent many hours listening to my oldest sister’s record collection.  The first record that I remember being given that wasn’t a Walt Disney “story and songs from the movie” package or an Alvin & the Chipmunks LP, was a 45 RPM single of Scott McKenzie singing “San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair).”  My two sisters, at the same time, were given a copy of The Monkees’ Headquarters album.  It intrigued me.  It would be fair to say that I spent more time listening to that Monkees album than my sisters did, and certainly more than I listened to the Scott McKenzie single.

The Monkees: Headquarters

From then on, I always knew there was something different in my sister’s record collection than the “safe” stuff I possessed.  I was drawn to it.  Many of her records eventually took up residence in my bedroom, but I can picture the album cover of In Search of the Lost Chord and her royal blue shag carpet every time I hear The Moody Blues’ “Legend of a Mind,” or the sloppy photo on the cover of Jesse Colin Young’s Song for Juli whenever I hear “Ridgetop.”  I learned these songs from her LP library, and they sent me off in search of others like them.  It has always been apparent to me that the songs that most pointedly defined my musical tastes from then on were the ones that I had stolen from Nancy.

The Moody Blues: In Search of the Lost Chord Jesse Colin Young: Song for Juli

And, if you were wondering, the shag carpet in my bedroom was avocado green.

Approximate playing time: 78 minutes.

  1. Crosby, Stills & Nash  “Wooden Ships”  (1969) from Crosby, Stills & Nash
  2. The Moody Blues  “Legend of a Mind”  (1968) from In Search of the Lost Chord
  3. David Bowie  “Space Oddity”  (1969) from Space Oddity
  4. Joni Mitchell  “Woodstock”  (1970) from Ladies of the Canyon
  5. Jesse Colin Young  “Song for Juli”  (1973) from Song for Juli
  6. Bobby Womack  “You’re Welcome, Stop on By”  (1972) from Lookin’ for a Love Again
  7. Sonny & Cher  “It’s Gonna Rain”  (1965) from Look at Us
  8. The Monkees  “Mr. Webster”  (1967) from Headquarters
  9. Three Dog Night  “Out in the Country”  (1970) from Golden Bisquits
  10. James Taylor  “Anywhere Like Heaven”  (1970) from Sweet Baby James
  11. Buffy Sainte-Marie  “Take My Hand for Awhile”  (1968) from The Best of Buffy Sainte-Marie
  12. Emmylou Harris  “Satan’s Jewel Crown”  (1975) from Elite Hotel
  13. John David Souther  “Faithless Love”  (1976) from Black Rose
  14. Linda Ronstadt  “Willin'”  (1974) from Heart Like a Wheel
  15. Creedence Clearwater Revival  “Green River”  (1969) from Green River
  16. Joan Armatrading  “Down to Zero”  (1976) from Joan Armatrading
  17. Simon & Garfunkel  “The Only Living Boy in New York”  (1970) from Bridge Over Troubled Water
  18. Loggins & Messina  “Travellin’ Blues”  (1973) from Full Sail
  19. Jackson Browne  “Rock Me on the Water”  (1972) from Saturate Before Using
  20. Honk  “Pipeline Sequence”  (1972) from Five Summer Stories soundtrack

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.


Fred FM playlist (25 July 2010)

Tags: family · Fred FM · house · music · self

8 responses so far ↓

  • 1 David Pinto // Aug 1, 2010 at 8:22 AM

    I never knew that song was named Space Oddity. I always thought it was Major Tom!

  • 2 bureaucratist // Aug 1, 2010 at 10:08 AM

    I love Pinto’s comment. Doubtless he speaks for the vast majority of us. I only learned a few years ago when … well, that’s a long uninteresting story.

    Great post. Our local public radio station will let you DJ for an hour with a sufficient donation, like $375, I think. I was listening to one such hour recently and the guy told eerily similar tales about raiding his older sister’s music collection, probably about fifteen years after you. He himself was quite painful to listen to, but the music was just great, lots of Cocteau Twins, the Cure, early REM, that kind of thing. I’m less familiar with your sister’s taste, but am looking forward to learning.

  • 3 bureaucratist // Aug 1, 2010 at 10:08 AM

    Oh, and for the record, I was WELL into my adulthood before I realized that it was “Major Tom” and not “major tongue,” which I suppose I took to be some kind of esoteric oral sex reference.

  • 4 spitballarmy // Aug 1, 2010 at 10:18 AM

    Thanks for the TMI, Bureaucratist. Somewhat related, I just watched an hour-long documentary on The Doors’ first album, and all of the buried Jim Morrison obscenities in it. Not deleted, mind you, just lowered in volume and obscured by other instruments. Really interesting to see and hear the engineer remove everything from the mix except for the vocals.

    I was tempted to go all-out with anecdotal writing on this post, as there are stories galore related to just about every record album listed above. But I held back. Maybe another day. Meanwhile, I’m making notes.

  • 5 bureaucratist // Aug 1, 2010 at 11:44 AM

    What’s the TMI part, “major tongue?” At least I didn’t tell you how I used to shout that out every time I … never mind.

    I always hope you’ll get more anecdotal on Sundays. Hell, man, it’s your blog! And it’s usually pretty damn interesting when you do.

  • 6 Linkmeister // Aug 1, 2010 at 2:58 PM

    I own nine of the twenty albums mentioned here. I must be your sister’s approximate age.

    Ronstadt covers Souther’s “Faithless Love” on the same album from which you picked her cover of Lowell George’s “Willin'”. Souther sings harmony on her version.

  • 7 spitballarmy // Aug 1, 2010 at 4:16 PM

    Funny that, Linkmeister: I was originally going to list Linda’s version of “Faithless Love,” then I realized that I really liked the JD Souther version, as well. There was a lot of cross-pollination that went on among many of these artists on the Southern California circuit, as you point out.

  • 8 bureaucratist // Aug 1, 2010 at 8:38 PM

    One of your best, S/A.

Leave a Comment