There’s only time for a few more episodes before I have to move the Mike’s Basement studio and we spend a portion of #36 celebrating some of the new RRHOF inductees. We also dwell on some of the obvious and somewhat ridiculous omissions. One set was inspired by a terrific new documentary on Jeff Beck and we have new stuff from The Decemberists, Mercury Rev (with Margo Price), live David Byrne, Snail Mail and Bruce on Broadway. I have also located my favorite Christmas song of all time, which is guaranteed to make you reach for a box of tissues and/or a barf bag. Once again there’s some “Yacht Rock” that is never played and a blast of Holiday Cheer from The Cartwright’s. Dig in and turn on.
When posed the question, "What song would you like played at your funeral?" I immediately answered "My Shit's Fucked Up" by the late, great Warren Zevon. This made me think of a few other favorites where "shit" is an essential component. So just in time for Thanksgiving, you may want to play these after "Alice's Restaurant."
We are running out of true musical giants here on planet Earth. It seems we toss out platitudes like "legend" with ease and discuss ad nauseam who belongs in whatever "hall of fame" or "all-time greatest" list that grabs our increasingly short attention span. However, the depth and breadth of longevity, innovation and spirit that left us this week is a hole that may never be filled. Allen Toussaint may not be a household name, but in the world of music he belongs in the same conversation as Louis Armstrong, Jimi Hendrix, Charlie Parker, The Beatles, James Brown, Miles Davis and Cole Porter, to name a few. Rarefied air... and a very funky beat.
This isn't the place for a history lesson as his story, stats and accomplishments can be found quite easily on the web, and I would urge you to do just that. I can't think of many artists that touched as many different styles of music, wore as many creative hats or crossed as many boundaries. And certainly none that did it with the impeccable grace, humility and passion of Allen Toussaint.
Rest In Peace, Mr. Toussaint. We will never see your like again.
What follows is a mere drop in the bucket when you look over his discography but are among my favorites.
Can't believe I went more than a month without posting but I've been in dental reconstruction hell, as well as very busy at work. That said, here's a few new and old things that I've been cranking in the Basement Studio recently.
They say love conquers all
You can't start it like a car
You can't stop it with a gun
He would have been 64 today and he left us way too young. His songs are timeless and real and they will never leave us. He was my favorite songwriter and I miss him every day.
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