Have an absolutely beautiful rest of your life.
We are deep into the quarantine as we open the curtain for From The Basement #85 (Joe’s Garage Act ILV) an attempt to give a proper goodbye to John Prine, Hal Willner and Bill Withers, while sending healing prayers toward Marianne Faithfull who is continuing to battle the very same plague that claimed the supremely talented trio already named. There’s a mega set from Anastasia putting a sonic spin on our current isolation and new things from Dramarama, Asgeir, Andrew Bird, The Strokes, Sea Wolf and a new remake inspired by current events from Neil Young. Prefab Sprout, The Cowboy Junkies, Terry Reid, Cheap Trick, Cotton Mather and Electric President are just a sample of this latest romp in the record room. Thanks for listening and opening your hearts and wallets at https://paypal.me/pools/c/8beKwFWlHR. Stay safe!
In what promises to unfortunately be a continuing trend we need to say goodbye this episode to two people. First, my former bandmate, friend and brother Pete Decker lost a brave battle with a very aggressive cancer. I called him “D.D.,” ''Dodge,” “Sparky, “Margie,” and a host of other nicknames, but along with Tommy and Hot Dog we were The Amazing Bolts - same Father, different Mothers. That was our story and I’m sticking to it here. The other farewell is for the multi and mega talented Adam Schlesinger who succumbed to Covid 19 just yesterday. We also celebrate some good news as Jackson Browne has pulled through Covid 19 and has a wonderful new single and the legendary John Prine remains in stable condition at this time. New offerings to specifically help us through these times arrived from Mavis Staples (with Jeff Tweedy) and Ben Gibbard, and other new offerings are exposed from Sea Wolf, The No-Ones, Clem Snide and a lengthy diatribe from Bob Dylan. There’s some Blues, some humor, hard hitting Rock and much more. Thanks again to all for remembering our Mike’s Basement Fund at https://paypal.me/pools/c/8beKwFWlHR. Be safe, wear a mask and gloves and thank you for all the love.
John Lennon once sang, “strange days, indeed” and on From The Basement episode 83 he cries out to “gimme some truth.” Anastasia and I do what we can to help us all pass quarenteen time with new music from Tycho, Viagra Boys, Other Lives, Kev Minney, Adrian Younge and Ali Shaheed Muhammad, Real Estate, Nada Surf and The 400 Unit’s Sadler Vaden. We give get-well wishes to Jackson Browne and hear from his good friend Warren Zevon, encourage some healing with John Lee Hooker and Glen Hansard and still find time for everything from Yello to Mavis Staples (with Robben Ford) and Morphine to Herman’s Hermits, to name but a few. And yes, we remember The Gambler through the psychedelic pen of Mickey Newburry. Thanks to everyone for your generous and continued support to our fund at https://paypal.me/pools/c/8beKwFWlHR
Episode #82 (Joe’s Garage Act XLII) finds us all in place we’ve never been with seemingly each new day becoming the new normal. Hunkered down in the music bunker we’ll try to fill some of your alone time with new sounds from Bettye Lavette, Lucinda Williams, The Lemon Twigs, The Boomtown Rats and Sam Gendel. We’ll examine isolation from the point of view of John Lennon, Warren Zevon, The Chameleons and even Yes, while saying goodbye to Buzzy Linhart, chilling out with DJ Shadow and Bill Evans, getting sound advice from Michael Franti and Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy, David Bowie, Beck, The Teardrop Explodes, City and Colour, Curtis Mayfield, Elbow, Laurie Anderson, Frank Turner, The The and a whole bunch more. Stay safe, turn the volume up and if you have any change from your last run for provisions please contribute at https://paypal.me/pools/c/8beKwFWlHR
With Episode #81 of Mike’s Basement we say hello to new stuff from Chuck Prophet, Car Seat Headrest, DMA’s, Califone, Real Estate, Rufus Wainwright, Greg Dulli, Best Coast and Shelby Lynne and wave goodbye to David Roback through his brilliant recorded legacy of The Rain Parade, Rainy Day, Opal and Mazzy Star. We also find some time for musical interludes from Frank Zappa’s early work with The Mothers of Invention, Chance The Rapper joining up with Death Cab For Cutie, Axiom Funk, Built To Spill, Centro-matic, Negativland, Gil Scott-Heron, Cowboy Junkies, Voice Of The Beehive, The Waifs, Teenage Fanclub, Ultra Vivid Scene and much more. Thanks as always for lending your ears and wallet to https://paypal.me/pools/c/8beKwFWlHR.
Sorry for the delay in getting Episode 80 (Joe’s Garage Act XL) but there was a port removal and two trips to Hopkins in Baltimore in between and the best part is, all the news is positive for Anastasia. Thanks to all for the notes of support. We have new stuff this time from Michael Stipe, Sam Burton, Sea Wolf, the return of Julian Cope and The Psychedelic Furs, Brendan Benson, Puss N Boots, Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit and a huge set for Black History Month featuring a new take on Gil Scott-Heron’s “I’m New Here” from Makaya McCraven, as well as the 10th Anniversary edition of that brilliant album. Speaking of brilliance, Christian McBride’s “A Musical Portrait of Four Icons” is just that and rounds out the set. We also make room to honor the memories of groundbreaking guitarist Andy Gill and Ivan Kral who have left us entirely too soon. Thanks for your generosity and your ears and please give what you can to keep this going at https://paypal.me/pools/c/8beKwFWlHR as the cupboard is starting to get thin.
We couldn’t wait for the results of the brouhaha in D.C. to unleash episode #79 (Joe’s Garage Act XXXIX) but will make sure to follow up with our impressions on the next one. We’ll use this precious time to give the great Harry Harrison a fond farewell and preview new offerings from Tindersticks, Sea Wolf, Nada Surf, Brian Fallon, Caspian, Brandon Wolfe Scott and Ben Watt, as well as historic releases by Bryan Ferry, Morphine, Simon & Garfunkel and Marshall Crenshaw. The long sets ebb and flow with sounds from Brittany Howard, Julien Baker, The Hold Steady, The Delfonics, Virginia Astley, John S. Hall & Kramer, Damien Rice and many more. Thanks, as always, for your ears and heart and your continued financial support. At press time all I can say is “Bolton Must Testify!”
A tumultuous week in American History has left this somewhat addled brain and psyche absorbing more bumps and bruises than ever. My daughter Anastasia and I try to ease the pain with long sets centered on the problems and possible solutions, with a huge assist from the esteemed Adam Schiff. We have some new things from The Drive-By Truckers and Wire, a band still managing to stay relevant after 43 years, as well as another track from the great new Weeklings album, 3. We give a much deserved feel better Lloyd Cole shoutout to our dear friend Tobi and a Happy 60th to one of John Coltrane’s landmark releases. Much love to all for the support, both financial and emotional, and for listening.
From The Basement begins 2020 by celebrating the release of the wonderful new album from The Weeklings with a visit to their basement and 3 tunes from their new record, their first in stereo, called “3.” Speaking of new stuff, Nada Surf return with a song that would be a smash if real radio still existed and the same goes for Jeff Whalen, former Tsar leader, who put out 2 of the best albums of 2019. There’s also a Gil Scott-Heron reworking, as well as terrific new stuff from Diane & The Gentlemen and Graham Parker. We’ll take some time to acknowledge the musical brilliance of Neil Peart and cultural icon Ed “Kookie” Byrnes who have left for the afterparty in the sky and my daughter Anastasia contributes a stellar set of tunes, proving once again that she’s a chip off the old block. Look for the bonus tracks from last episode at the end of the posted playlist of this one and see if you can guess this week’s nuggets before they are revealed next time. Thanks as always for your support, love and ears!
We say goodbye to 2019 and the great Neil Innis with Episode 76 of From The Basement. Happy New Year to all and thanks from the bottom of my heart for all the support, which has allowed me to continue this project and continue to recover. My daughter Anastasia joins briefly with a set for the year, and there’s even hidden bonus material following the usual Zappa closing. See you all next year and let’s all hope the best days are truly ahead. Love…. Mike.
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